Archive | February, 2018

mood :: i wish i could speak like music

You get a double post today because I am in a mood.

I am tired of hypocrites. [even though I, too, sometimes do hypocritical things.]
I am tired of those who will not look at their darkness
I am tired of what may be worse yet :: to look at darkness and refuse to engage with it
I am tired of guns and violence [even though I am sometimes violent and born to a violent culture.]
I am very tired of inequality. Very tired.
I am tired of willful ignorance. [it is not even ignorance; it is stupidity.]
I am tired of needless death and suffering.
I am tired of needless death and suffering.

And yet.

All I want in this moment, in this mood
Is to sit with someone
chest to chest
and feel the warmth of their beautiful human body

I want to look into their eyes
and smile
and cry
and let all the love that is within me
vibrate into them

To cup their face in my hands
And kiss their uglybeautiful soul
with my eyes
my smile
my lips

In this mood of darkness
all I want
is to set love free.

 

::: ::: ::: :::

Perhaps Hafiz said it better.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – –

I wish I could speak like music.

I wish I could put the swaying splendor
Of the fields into words

So that you could hold Truth
against your body
and dance.

I am trying the best I can
With this crude brush, this tongue,

To cover you with light.

I wish I could speak like divine music.

I want to give you the sublime rhythms
of this earth and the sky’s limbs

As they joyously spin and surrender,
surrender
Against God’s luminous breath.

Hafiz wants you to hold me
Against your precious
body

And dance,
Dance.

| Hafiz |

::: ::: ::: :::

A similar mood. Because I need the way this feels tonight. [just tell me I’m good enough]

Sarah McLaughlin in the way only she can say it:

Just let me try
and I will be good to you

::: ::: ::: :::

I love you all, fellow travelers. May we be very good to each other, may we love as much as we can, even in our anger, even in our fear, even in our weariness.

Joanna :: xoxo

 

 

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New Moon in Aquarius and Solar Eclipse

I consider it a personal gift from the planetary gods that the entire month of February is without a full moon. All the dark, all the time. And tonight is the darkest day of the month (one day after my birthday, too!)- the new moon. I’m all dance-y and giddy right now.

Here’s what you need to know to navigate the next couple of weeks.

::: ::: ::: :::

From TheGoddessCircle:

Change. Beginnings and Endings. Try new options. 
Make plans- stick to them. 
Moving relationships forward. Follow inspiration.
Positive change. Let go of the complicated. 
Open to new solutions. Don’t shut off emotions. 

 

::: ::: ::: :::

From The Hood Witch:
[Description of Aquarius is spot on.]

On the 15th is when things get weird. At 1.05pm PST there will be Solar Eclipse in revolutionary Aquarius. A Solar Eclipse happens during a New Moon, and this one provides an excellent time to get free. Expect some serious upheaval in your life, but don’t worry – it’s happening to help point you in the right direction, not to knock you off course. Pay close attention to the themes in your life this week, and also remember what was going on around January 31st because you’ll be integrating these themes until the next Solar Eclipse on July 12, 2018.

Aquarius is a sign that is concerned with humanity, even if it finds actual humans low key annoying. Pay particular attention to the gap between what you theoretically believe and what you can emotionally handle at this time. New Moons are openings – they’re beginnings of a new cycle – and the Moon is always concerned with the flow of your heart. Aquarius can be really heady, which is great for so many things, but not so much for feels. Don’t run after false ideas that only work for you in theory. If you can’t back your ideas up with emotional presence and material action, they’re just ideas and nothing more. This Eclipse is a chance for you to start fresh, but this can’t be done from up in the clouds or without clear intention. Show up. Be here for the uncomfortable bits, especially for your own feels and the emotions of the people you care about.

From the 16th-18th, irritable Mars will square escapist Neptune, and the self-centered Sun will sit on top of analytic Mercury. These transits are a big part of the Eclipse and are likely to muddle things quite a bit, so here’s a Pro Tip to help you through: you don’t have to do anything except for take care of your side of the street. It’s not your job to call out the wrong in others; all you need to do is what’s right for you. If you’re seeing things in people that you don’t like, try to sit with it for 72hrs before making a call or taking action. 

 

::: ::: ::: :::

From Empowering Astrology:

Each month the page turns, the characters change, and the story progresses. It’s the solar eclipses, however, that set a new chapter.

And here we are; it’s a new chapter.

When we reach Aquarius Season, we’re coming to the end of the astrological year. As the eleventh sign, Aquarius bridges the worldly ambitions and responsibilities of Capricorn and the liminality of Pisces. Aquarius is consciousness. It’s thought made manifest. It’s the systems that form our world. It’s the social fabric as well as the sense of belonging to something larger. Aquarius is connection. So, over the coming six months, we’ll be living out a story framed around this theme of connection and, by its polarity, disconnection.

Do you struggle to feel like you’re a part of something? What does tribe mean to you? What role does friendship and community play in your life? What does social justice mean for you? How do you balance your own needs against the needs of the collective? And, because this is a South Node eclipse, we have to work through our past karma as well as our past choices around these Aquarian themes.

When we look at the chart of the solar eclipse, we see the energy pointing towards Saturn in Capricorn. There’s something blisteringly real about the coming six months, an ultimatum — Saturn doesn’t sugarcoat things — to clean up our act, set boundaries, and take our responsibilities seriously.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Aquarius is consciousness — consciousness that forms patterns and shapes. This consciousness can either support and inspire or imprison. (If you know someone who is caught in negative thought patterns, then you know what I mean by imprison.) Aquarius is also anti-consciousness in its negative polarity, the times when we willfully looked away from reality. So, with that in mind, we’re working with consciousness over the coming six months, the systems and patterns that we hook into, the times we’ve disconnected or looked away.

 

::: ::: ::: :::

From The Sky Priestess:
[Click the link and check the title; it’s me in this post.]

Blessings. The Solar Eclipse / New Moon in Aquarius asks us to set the seeds for innovation, collective engagement, ideational breakthrough and networking. It is when we develop upon or dissolve older frequencies of thought and experience and step into newer modalities of being. We are asked to let go of more egoic notions of selfhood before accessing some of the higher-frequency stuff. This requires us to deconstruct and decolonize our minds of concepts, paradigms, and ways of seeing the world that make us invested in a particular ego-personality. It asks us to come back to the roots of our being and not the false self we have been conditioned to believe we are.

The way we do this is by engaging the energy of the heart and allowing the leadership of the Inner Child to light the way to the Heavens. Go back to what made your heart sing and do it. Repeatedly. Whether it´s watching a childhood movie, dancing, playing, singing, speaking on stage – let your emotional body engage with the mental body. One cannot exist in isolation of another. For those of you whose mother tongue is not English – go back to your mother tongue. You will access genetic codes unique to your culture and its connection with the Earth. Never underestimate the power of that connection.

Whilst Aquarian energy can be compassionate, that compassion stems from ideology – rather than emotional connection. Aquarian energy can be very headstrong in its understanding of the ideals by which humanity ought to live. It´s not very fluffy-cuddly, but is a lot more abstract.

With Mercury (25 Aquarius) and Juno (26 Aquarius) so close to the actual Eclipse (27 Aquarius) – expect a high degree of communication amongst members of (what looks like) your soul tribe. This may include romantic, spiritual and/or platonic soul-mates. This aspect of the energy is a little double-edged as Juno does not always indicate a positive marriage partner or soul-mate experience, rather she comes to show us the type of energy who can help us awaken the soul to other possibilities. In other words, soul-mates can help us grow through pleasure, nurture and healthy support – or they can push us to growth through pain, abuse and/or neglect.

Through my study of Juno in clients´ charts, I have found her to be a mixed aspect at best. Either way – whoever shows up now holds the key for your re-connection to the Feminine aspect of being. Just wait before you declare s/he´s ´The One´. Collect a little more data.

In terms of Mercury´s influence, say what you have to say with respect to your truth, be it through written or spoken form – and then let it go. There´s going to be a lot of energy present through social media channels, and not all of it is good. Do not expect others to share your opinion of the world – as one works with their own truths at the pace that they can handle it.

Remember that we are prone to choose truths that make us feel comfortable – and whilst that makes for a more consistent perception of the world, it´s not necessarily great for growth.

::: ::: ::: :::

It sounds like this next two weeks might be a doozy. But finding our way, finding our truth, and growing are always useful- even if they are hard. I hope you learn with ease this new moon season.

Big love from the trail,
Joanna :: xoxo

 

 

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On Repeat

Ya’ll I was downloading some music this weekend and realized I did not create ANY playlists for myself in 2017. What. The. Fuck.

I date and name my playlists and there were none for 2017. Granted, it was a tough year. And I didn’t download much music- I needed my old favorites. But music is a source of so much joy and creativity for me, I was really stunned by the fact that I didn’t make any playlists last year.

So.

Since it’s my last day of being 42, I got a little playlist por moi and por vou. It’s the stuff I’ve had playing on hard repeat (meaning, 20 times in a row or more) for the last few months. They say INFJ’s like to do that- play a song on hard repeat- but it’s not usually my style. I guess I’m changing.

Here’s what’s been keeping me musical company.

Intro | The xx

This track is only 2:07 minutes long, but I could listen to it on repeat for a good long time (which is basically what the people in the link did- awesome). The rest of the album I don’t care for. The Intro, though- yum.

 

Into the Ocean | Blue October

When toxic masculinity gets you down and you want to commit suicide- that’s what this song is about. Only it’s the loveliest way to say those things (almost Alt-J levels of wordsmithing). Let the rain come down. (Also: dude’s eye makeup is sexy af.)

 

On and On | Stephen Bishop

For three weeks I was all “…she just keeps on tryin’ and she smiles when she feels like crying…on and on…” This song is an aspirin when your heart aches.

 

On the Dark Side | John Cafferty & The Beaver Brown Band

Played this 15 times in a row while I emptied the dishwasher and moshed at the same time. (It can be done. Don’t break the dishes.) ‘She’ll never know just how I feel…slip to the dark side, across that line.’ I’m gonna cross that line someday, I just know it.

 

Life is Beautiful | Vega 4

Soft and sweet. A good reminder that life is complicated but also so very beautiful. There are miracles.

 

Sunday cereal with iPod and insulin pump. A good life.

 

Tiny Dancer | Elton John

Who doesn’t want someone with pretty eyes and a pirate’s smile? Lovely. Always lovely.

 

Somebody Else | The 1975

This is one of the cruelest sentiments ever: I don’t want you, but I don’t want anyone else to have you, either. And yet, this song makes it sound palatable. I, myself, could never do that or claim that- I either want you or I don’t. But I get how it feels. The song is clearly a walk through bittersweetness, which is my favorite emotion, so it gets a pass on cruelty.

 

I Like Me Better | Lauv

This song is full on pop, but I really love it. It reminds me of when my husband and I were falling in love- he made me feel like I was my best self all the time, and that it was easy to stay there and be that way. When someone makes you feel like that- lit up, good, whole, accepted – don’t let them go. It doesn’t happen very often.

[For whatever reason, though, the energy of this song doesn’t belong to my ‘falling in love’ feelings. Some songs have people attached to them or ideas or information- this is what happens when you’re in touch with other realms. And when I dance to this one, it belongs to N. No idea why, tbh. It’s just that his face is there when I open myself the alternate dimensions of the music. Weird, but true.]

::: ::: ::: :::

This is what has occupied my mind and heart for the last few months, loves. Hope you enjoy something here, too.

All my love,
Joanna :: xoxo

 

 

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ego + delusion + learning

He wrote other things in his text that felt the way a superficial cut across my forearm might feel. They hurt and stung, fast slices that surprised me. But they were easy to accept.

Then he wrote these  words:
“I appreciate your concern for what you think I might be…”

And those were the ones that sunk the knife into my gut and turned the blade. Those words cut me and killed me. Because they were the absolute truth and hit the wound of an old habit I have for seeing the potential, and not the reality, of people I care for.

In that moment, it was my ego that was cut down. I that moment, I realized how much I had deluded myself about what was going on, what was really going on, in my head. And what was going on in my head was not the truth. What was going on in my head was all desire and ego. And it was a delusion.

And his words brought the delusion to a quick and painful end.

::: ::: ::: :::

It was almost always mixed messages between us.

He said one thing but his actions were the exact opposite. [I can’t tell you what he was thinking, but the two things were never in sync.] Even as he said goodbye he asked me look at something from his life- to go, but also stay and listen one last time.

I asked him for coffee on my twentieth wedding anniversary. [To be truthful, I had gotten a new tattoo that day, and my dress was fabulous, and the heels made me feel super confident. I tried to tell myself it was just companionship I was after, but really…the daydream of tracing his collar bones with my fingers while we were wrapped in a tumble of white sheets in the afternoon sun (and a 1000 permutations of that*) was regularly on my mind. My actions weren’t 100% innocent, either.]

And we were from two different universes. Mine well over a decade older than his.*

We barely spoke the same language. I am long letters. [I will always be long letters.] I’m not sure that was his style.

Which is all to say: there was a lot of potential for misunderstanding and miscommunication. And that left plenty of room for me to fill in the blanks with whatever I dreamed. However much I hoped those things might be the truth, they were not.

And the reconciliation of truth and reality was that night and that text.

 

Photo by Ashim D’Silva on Unsplash

 

The thing about having your ego slain is that it hurts. It hurts psychologically. Because the view we generally have of a situation is tied to our identity, it is tied to our ability to perceive things correctly. And when we realize we’ve perceived them so incorrectly, it makes our ego very uncomfortable.

Most people run from this discomfort. They hide or deny or try to ‘fix’ it.
“It didn’t happen like that.”
“I always thought it was that way, anyway.”
“You don’t understand what I meant.”
Accusations. Defensiveness. Passionate retorts and explanations.

There is a difference between ‘fixing’ and ‘learning,’ though. When we rush to ‘fix’ a bad situation, to explain away a delusion or poor behavior, we are not learning from it. We are simply trying to make the pain go away by moving on as quickly as possible, by apologizing without true remorse, by painting over the mistake and pretending it’s new. Learning from a bad situation takes time.

You can understand a lot if you watch people and what they do when they make huge mistakes or are forced out of delusion. I once watched an ‘up and coming’ feminist marketer make a big fucking mistake with her foundational cohort. This woman claimed to be ‘woke’ in terms of racism, but actually did some really racist, sexist, immoral shit to other women, and especially other women of color. And when her delusion came to an end, I watched her try to ‘fix’ it. And how do I know she was fixing instead of learning? Because it took her 36 hours to start her comeback. You don’t learn shit in 36 hours. Learning takes at least three days. You gotta sit with it like Lazarus. Three days in the cave is the only way you’re going to even begin to learn. If you’re back at it in 36 hours, you’re just cleaning up a mess so you can keep your ego intact.

The pain of having our ego slain is a call to learning, though. It is a good thing. It is worth investigating and sitting with. The pain will point us towards the truth if we let it.

::: ::: ::: :::

It’s been a day and a month since he sent that text. And for the first five days I couldn’t even read it again, it hurt my psyche and my ego that much. (Which is a lot, because I can put up with a shit ton of pain, psychological and otherwise.) It hurt because I had fucked up so very much. I fucked up my perception of him, my perception of myself and my actions, and my perception of the situation. Many levels of fucked up.

So, first I sat with the pain it caused me. And that’s helpful but the next step is to go sit with the pain of what happened- to purposefully look at it and drink the pain like medicine. Because if we can do that we’re on our way to learning.

Learning comes when we look at our part in the situation. Learning comes when we examine our desires and wishes and hopes and falsities in the context of the situation. Learning comes when we see what we did wrong, in thought + action + intention, and decide we won’t do that again. Learning comes when we heal whatever it was that made deluding ourselves a reasonable choice and begin to act differently.

::: ::: ::: :::

That is what I’ve been doing the last two weeks. Having sat with the pain, over and over until it was tolerable, I am now beginning to behave differently. I question myself and my actions and intentions more. I do not immediately default to my intuition for insight about a situation. I admit to my dreams and fantasies if that is what the situation entails (it doesn’t always). I do not abandon myself in the search for connection. I think more critically about what data I’m using to guide my actions and to gain insight into others’ actions as well. I validate before I act more than I used to. I try not to have too much pride about my intuition or how ‘right’ it is (yes, it’s true: pride goeth before the fall). I am learning.

I am grateful for the fact that I haven’t heard a peep from this guy since our interaction. Nothing to see or read or deal with as I find my way forward. That’s a gift when you’re in the dark, knowing you’ve made a big mistake and likely hurt other people in the process.

I wish things had ended more smoothly between us, but I would not have learned as much as I did if it had been that way. I needed to be clearly and cleanly broken so I could heal and learn more deeply. Clean out the wound; reset the bone. I’ll never be ‘like new’ again. Instead I will be stronger at the broken place.

The pain of having our ego killed is actually one of the greatest gifts we can get because, if we let it, we can find truth inside the broken delusion. And if we can truly learn from our mistakes, we can become better people. That’s how it’s been in the past, I’m hoping it’s the same now.

I’ll be sitting here at Broken Delusions Ranch for a while yet. Come and join me if you need a friend on your journey.

Big love from the mistakes on the trail,
Joanna :: xoxo

 

 

* He was too young to be a great lover (in five years, though? mmmm…yeah), which is why daydreams are awesome. God, I love my imagination.

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Badass :: Defined

Hey loves. How are you doing? I’ve been thinking of you for the past week. For whatever reason, Cyndi Lauper’s song, “Time After Time” plays every time I think of sitting down to write. I think you all needed that song. If you’re lost and you look, you will find me…time after time, my friends.

 

 

Photo by veeterzy on Unsplash

 

Today I was thinking about the people in my life who I wold consider ‘badass’ and it really came down to one thing: I define badass but how much you’re willing to work on your life. Yeah, badass can mean all kinds of things- daredevil, fearless (or stupid), carefree. But I think those all come down to breaking boundaries- that’s what makes them badass. In my realm, breaking boundaries for emotional healing and growth makes you a badass.

I think of people who:

  • say ‘this doesn’t work for me anymore’ to their spouse, job, or family
  • decide to work on the ‘shit’ they created in their own lives
  • decide to work on the ‘shit’ someone else left inside of them when they were too small to understand (which can happen even when you’re 33)
  • step outside a self-imposed box
  • decide to tell the truth :: about anything
  • cry for no apparent reason and decide to investigate that
  • reach beyond their usual relational habits to make something new :: or better
  • who open their heart when it still hurts and let someone else look inside
  • wonder why they do what they do and step bravely into the answer :: no matter how much it hurts
  • leave their family’s expectations of them and their life
  • dare to take one step towards a dream
  • leave behind even one script society has given them
  • believe in and protect their own hearts
  • who dance :: wherever
  • notice when the shadow shows herself and turn towards her
  • risk their heart + their love + their life to be true to their feelings
  • feel all the way down
  • dare to shine their light for someone new to see
  • make themselves small and then grow into their true self again
  • sit with their pain and let it flow
  • stay alive even though they don’t always want to
  • reach out
  • cry :: joy fear love pain
  • acknowledge the wound and heal it

I believe that everyone is doing the best they can- no matter how that looks to people outside the situation (cuz we’re all judgin’ someone!). But the badasses are taking it one step further and doing the work. They are breaking the boundaries of what their family told them, of what society told them, of the ways their heart has been broken, of the ways they feel broken. They are walking to the other side.

God bless the badasses. You’re making the world a better place.

Big love from the path,
Joanna :: xoxo

 

 

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