Wednesday, December 8, 2010
The first, already known to readers, was that I posted the announcement for the Samhain to Solstice "Same Time Tomorrow" Donation Drive, which I'd been planning for a couple months in hopes that I might generate enough funds from supportive readers to move this blog to an expanded website with its own domain name. Almost as soon as I'd posted the announcement, however, a creeping sense of regret and frustration began to steal over me. I knew that I would dislike always wondering, as each day passed, if anyone would like my work enough to donate, which is why I'd only planned it as a temporary measure. I had no idea how painful it would be to feel overlooked as the month went by, with less than one percent of readers acknowledging the donation drive, and my readership numbers actually shrinking after I shared my request for suppport. Yet within a week of the donation drive announcement, a new job opportunity came my way and I began working from home as an independent contractor with a more flexible schedule and better pay than my former waitressing job — doing work that, being project-based and detail-oriented, satisfies my Gemini urge to plunge into the nitty-gritty and make measurable progress on particular tasks, and then move swiftly on to the next one. Experiencing the sense of job satisfaction and enjoyment I got from this new work put my frustration with blogging into sharp relief.
While all this was going on, I had also committed myself to working through the Nine Lessons as an aspirant of the Druid Order of the Three Realms, a community inspired and organized by Bob Patrick and Paige Varner (whom I'd worked with as editors of the practical spirituality journal, Sky Earth Sea). This aspirant work involved keeping a fairly simple daily diary about the various activities and thoughts of each day and what connections there were between them; I supplemented this with my on-going daily tarot readings and some notes about the turnings and changes of the sun, moon and local landscape. As the weeks progressed, I began to see in no uncertain terms how much of my energy was siphoned off worrying about the medium of blogging and the logistics of scrambling for reader attention and feedback. I was reminded of my journal entries from my trip to Northern Ireland for the Celtic Spirituality and Peacemaking retreat, and how refreshing and freeing it had felt to write from a place of deep connection and contemplation. I felt more and more that I needed to find a way to return to this kind of writing, and blogging was simply not the appropriate medium for that sort of work.
And even as I was slowly turning these insights over in my mind, I found myself suddenly sucked into an intense conversation on a forum that I had frequented only casually in the past — a conversation about Brighid as a goddess of the Forge of Creation, Lady of the Star Fire arising in the depths of the universe. Synchronicities piled up around these discussions, sparking a renewed interest in poetry and creative writing as well as a deeper exploration of the liturgical craft. A group of us, scattered all across the world, decided to hold a ritual on the next full moon — the blue moon of November on a night when the sun crossed from a sign of water and ice into a sign of fire and flow. During the pathworking of this ritual — as well as those of a few nights before and a few nights after — brought me to the feet of a dark goddess of starlight and forge fire whose auburn-amber hair curled like tongues of flame, and who lectured me kindly about neglecting my soul work and avoiding my fears.
It seemed the universe was conspiring to send me a message — but the message seemed tangled and garbled, and I had no idea how to interpret it or act on its convoluted symbolism. It was during this time that I pulled the Seven of Cups for daily divination on three different occasions, a card indicating too many choices, some promising deepening authenticity and spiritual integrity while others tempted with fantasies of ambition and success. But which were which, and how to make a choice with so many options available?