How do we get to travel beyond our own limitations and out and beyond the old barriers and cages of self? The ice river is a very ancient and also, a very well known way to do just that. It exists in many different permutations across the widest range of cultures; and it is a truly magical occurrence. Just as magical are the winter lands.
There is no accident in the fact that Superman’s “Fortress of Solitude” can be found at the North Pole, the palace of the Ice Queen and Father Christmas’s multi-coloured magical workshop “where all the toys in the world are made”. This is deep magic, very old, very powerful.
On this journey we do nothing but to scout these lands “beyond” and become more familiar with them, re-claim them as our own and begin to make a first connection to the magic which resides here and which truly, “cannot be found in any other place, in any other way”.
Many people spend a lifetime “looking for their magic” and this journey will show an aspect of this magic which is perfectly ours, perfectly our own and perfectly reachable – if we make the effort and seek it out with volition, get to know it and when the time is right, re-awaken it from its frozen sleep.
On a personal note, it was Ice River directly which taught me how to use my “night eyes” – to see the patterns of the energy world with a set of other senses than the physical eyes. What it might do for each individual of course, I cannot know – but I do know that I would like each person to at least travel there once and just make that first contact, so their own “north poles” are once again, a part of their world in awareness at least.
Let’s transport ourselves for a moment
to a different place, a different time
of where the autumn turns to winter
scapes, a gentle merging as the sun
is low on the horizon and the air
tastes sharp and clear.
We would stand
in warming furs, well covered
and we would see ahead
a river white and wide
straight river, out into
the far perspective where
the banks have merged
before the low horizon
meets the single point
And we would step upon
our starting point,
a frozen lake
so deeply frozen,
of white and blue
so solid now
beneath our feet
and as our feet
would quite without
our mind’s command
would now begin
to move and slide
and skate in
left to right
and as our bodies
bend into the movement
and our arms begin
to reach as well
thus we begin
on the river white
and raise our eyes
to where the point
of far perspective lies
and we begin to travel
Faster, faster still
each forward pulse
increases the momentum
each forward pulse
adds speed and now we
seem to fly towards
the point of far perspective
where the land must
meet the sky and all is
one, and silent white,
as the point expands
and seems a light
that seems to grow
in brightness and
lies before you
as you keep your eyes
towards the gate of far perspective
as you approach
and it grows more defined
in your vision
and pulsing with a beat
that is the same
that pulses in your body
that brings you closer
closer with each beating
of your heart
the doorway grows
and now it fills your vision
here it is,
here you are
here you have arrived
at the gate of far perspective
and another pulse or two or three
bring you into the white
and white is right
and all there is
and for a moment there is
nothing but the movement
on continuing and phasing
slowing from the impetus
relaxing down and slowing more
until you passed the gate
and you become aware and see: T
he winter world before you
and the river still
and frozen still it is for
you to travel glass and icy smooth
and yet it is a river and it turns
and loops through winter land.
Slowly and without the slightest effort
you begin to glide the Winter River
and you see all along
the banks on either side
fantastic landscapes, crisp and white
the sky so radiant blue above
and all is winter still
and winter reverend.
Gently you glide by
and you perceive
and there’s a knowing
that there’s sleeping things,
snug and safe
in timeless slumber
the sweeps and crests
of ancient ice
that lie a frozen ocean
and further still.
Gently you glide by
and you perceive
that are beautiful
and they are here
as they could be
Gently you glide on
and know that this
is now a world
that others never seek
to seek, nor seek to
And as you travel,
and as you travel
and you marvel at the beauty
and the clarity
and perfect beauty of the white
your world grows larger
and a part that has been
has taken and is taking now
its rightful place
And you can know
as darkness falls
and Northern Lights play
in the sky
beneath your closing arc
that there is magic here
that there is much
you never thought to seek
that you might think
of coming here again
to seek and find
to learn and love
to stand before
the vastness and the beauty
and you might find
the kind of treasure here
that simply cant be known
in any other way
in any other place.
Beneath the banding lights
of dancing jade and purple,
celestial blue and green
in hues you’ve never known
you glide on by to find
the gate of far perspective
for your journey here
was one of recognition
and of admiration
and of re-connection
to a something
that you might have thought
you had forgotten
and yet that lives
and sleeps and breathes
forever in a beauty
that cannot be found
in any other place.
Beneath the diamond stars
in stillness you return
and close the distance gently
as the gate grows from the point
of far perspective
widening on your approach
and with a tiny sense
of deep regret
at leaving once again so soon
and with a small decision to return
when time is here and time is right
you move towards the growing gate of white
that takes you back and through into
your time of mind,
and back and through
into your time of here and now,
a gentle dis-so-lucian
of the magic and
a gentle drifting back to self
in thought, in mind, in
as your awareness of the here-and-now
comes back in gentle waves,
in gentle waves of feelings and sensations
here and now
and bright aware
retaining and remembering.
If you could shift
your point of view for just a moment, as you
now grow still
and silent within,
without a thought or care,
without a thought of worry or desire,
then you might just begin to feel:
A power tingling in your fingertips,
a breath that draws to you
a part of all there is, of which
you are a part,
and that surrounds you, buoys you, nourishes, protects
and reaches far and wide
and further still
into the deepest blues of oceans
the deepest greens of mountain lakes
and all the creatures that reside
in forest groves, eternal deserts
the stars are dancing.
Oceans of energy
and they lie at your fingertips,
for you to navigate and learn
to know the ancient arts
of balance, deep release
and once again restore
the Even Flow,
the perfect state of being.
Silvia Hartmann, 2001
Please take a seat and clear your mind of what fills it now and hear my words:
As you are sitting, close your eyes and feel the yellow of the sun..Reach up with your arms and let your fingertips touch that yellow..Now, lay back, with your arms extended and become a ray of the sun..As we all lay in a circle, we form the sun – we are all rays of this vivid starburst.
Look down to the Earth and see the fields ripe with the summer’s abundance..Find your self in the center of this abundance holding a large willow basket, eager to begin your autumn harvest.
Step first into an expanse of sweet corn..See the erect, regal, green stalks of corn..Observe a ripe ear on a particular stalk which extends to you..Under its scruffy whiskers kernels that sparkle like gold shine through. You are reminded of your own riches – both tangible and intangible..Reach out and pick this ear and put it into your basket.
Leave the corn field and enter an orchard; an apple orchard..See the beauty of these trees, these majestic symbols of the Goddess..Feel the fullness of her boughs – full of ruby red apples of knowledge..Reach up, way up, and pick two. Put one in your basket and eat the other. Taste and enjoy this fruit – for in this garden tasting an apple is not forbidden.
Now move toward an onion field which beckons you..Once green, now browning spikes point up to you, tempting you to dig below…Pull gently and the ground gives birth to aniridescent, opal bulb, full of body and character and strength..A vegetable with the power to make you feel the power of tears..Add this to your growing harvest.
Notice ahead thick bushes of ripened raspberries..Sharp brambles protecting their precious, succulent garnets..The sweet nectar of these berries remind you of your own sensuality – your own ability to feel, express, extend all that is soft and loving and warm to others..Take your time here and pick plenty of these supple jewels for your basket.
Step away now and look around you..Find a patch of fruit or vegetables that appeals to you..Enter it, admire its offerings, select a precious gem of your own to harvest..Choose a resource to sustain you in the rapidly upcoming time of cold and darkness…Capture some warmth and light and savor its presence.
With your arms now laden with this basket of bountiful treasures, it is time now to rest..Take your harvest to the grassy knoll in the sun just beyond and sit and bask in the glory of its healing heat..Rest in contentment knowing you have collected that which you need to give you strength and nourishment in the winter days to come.
Put yourself back in the sky now..Become the sun once again..Shine down upon yourself and your gatherings..Absorb the energy of the fruits of your labors, bless these seeds you planted in the Spring and nurtured to fruition through the summer..Be the sun..Shine down upon all that is good and good-giving..Give the light of hope to all you shine upon.
When everything you have touched with your rays is full of your brightness, open your eyes and rejoin our circle.
Found at: Magickal Winds
At Lughnasadh (August 1st), the harvest is kicking in. This is a time of year when the masculine energy of the earth is in full swing. For starters, it’s the season of the spirit of grain, and a time to honor Lugh, the craftsman god. Lugh was not only a craftsman, but a gifted smith and swordsman. The season from late summer to the middle of fall is often a season of heightened energy for those who identify with the warrior soul.
Who Is the Warrior?
The warrior in today’s society is someone who understands the idea of right action. He or she follows a code of honor, and abides by that code even when it may be inconvenient or unpopular. The warrior recognizes that the forces of creation and destruction must be balanced. The warrior is empowered because he or she knows his own circumstances, limitations and goals. Perhaps most importantly, the warrior is someone who has made past mistakes, owned up to them, and learned not to repeat them.
A note on women and the concept of warrior:
The notion of masculine energy and a warrior soul is not exclusive to men. Many women have powerful warrior spirits. Think of the warrior soul as an archetype of personal empowerment. Indeed, throughout history, many women have been known as mighty warriors. If it helps you get in touch with your inner warrior, envision some of them as you work. Picture Boadicaea of the Iceni, conquering the Roman army, or Penthesilea battling her lover, Achilles. If you lean towards more current history, consider France’s Jeanne d’Arc, or Grainne’ ni Mhaille, the Irish pirate. For those who connect best with pop culture, even television’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly’s Zoe, or Xena make perfectly good warrior woman archetypes.
Setting the Mood:
You may wish to prepare your mind and body prior to starting the meditation. Some people like to take a ritual bath as a method of cleansing the body, and clearing the mind. If you wish, you can anoint yourself with Blessing Oil or another oil of your choice before beginning. Since you’re performing a warrior meditation, why not try adding a bit of war paint to your face amd body?
Before getting started, make sure you can work undisturbed somewhere for about an hour. Turn off the cell phone, get off the Internet, and send the kids off to play with friends for a while. Perform this meditation outside if at all possible. Set up a small altar that you can sit in front of. Since you’re working outside, consider using a flat stone or a tree stump as a natural altar. On it, place symbols of the warrior spirit: a knife, a drum, an arrow, a shield — anything that helps you connect with your inner warrior. If you have ancestors or loved ones that represent the warrior archetype to you, feel free to include photographs or other heirlooms. Finally, add a purple candle – purple is the color of royalty and power, and of honor.
Although this meditation is designed to be performed solo, it can easily be adapted into a group practice, or turned into a full-fledged ritual.
Welcoming Your Inner Warrior:
Sit before your altar, and light the purple candle. Focus on the flame, and visualize the fiery passion of the warrior soul. Think about the things you’ve done in your life, incidents in which you should have taken one path, but instead chose another. Consider mistakes you’ve made, and how they’ve affected not only you, but other people. Think about the consequences of these actions. Did you learn anything from these events?
Take this knowledge of past action, and move it into the present. As a warrior, you have followed a particular path to get to the present, one with many roadblocks, twists, and obstacles in the way. How has this helped to shape the person you are now? Think about the person you have become, and how you have grown during the different experiences you’ve had.
Now, think about the person you wish to be, and how the past and present will influence the future. Understand that for you to follow a principle of right action, there may be times when you make decisions that are unpopular. Are you willing to stand up for your convictions? Are you willing to live in a manner that will earn you the respect and honor of others? To do this, you must first and foremost honor and respect yourself. One way to live rightly and with honor is to make a pledge, both to yourself and to the gods of your tradition.
As you focus on the burning flames, say:
I am a warrior.
I am one who lives with honor and pride,
in my deeds, words, and actions.
I am a warrior,
and I pay tribute to myself, my family, and my gods,
by living rightly.
Honor is found not in the sword and the first,
but in wisdom, and courage, and strength.
I will make the changes I need to make,
that I may live in an honorable way
and follow the code of the warrior.
I am a warrior,
and I have control over my mind, my thoughts, and my sword.
I pledge to hold truth in my heart,
to hold strength in my hands,
to be honest in my words,
and to stand on behalf of those who cannot speak for themselves.
This is the way of the warrior,
and I shall live with honor.
While you do this, envision the warrior archetypes that you wish to emulate. Who are some warriors you look up to and hold in high regard? Think about them, and draw their energy into you. When you are ready to end the ritual, put the candle out.
Article by Patti Wigington
Mix your mind with the moonbeams at night. Wash your sorrows in their rays. Feel the mystic light spreading silently over your body, over trees, over vast lands. Standing in an open space with quiet eyes, behold, beyond the limits of the moonbeam-revealed scenery, the bedimmed fringe of the shining horizon. Let your mind, by steady wing-beats of meditation, spread beyond the lines of visible scenes and over the horizon. Let your meditation run past the rim of the visible to the lands of fancy.
Spread your mind from the moonbeam-visible objects to the dim stars and distant skies lying beyond in the eternal stillness of the ether, all throbbing with life. Watch the moonbeams spread, not only on one side of the earth, but everywhere in the eternal region of your spacious mind. Meditate until, in the cool moonbeams of your calmness, you race over trackless skies and, in realization, behold the universe as Light.
~Paramahansa Yogananda, Metaphysical Meditations
Sit in an upright position in a chair, with your back straight, feet flat on the floor, and hands comfortably in your lap. If you wish, play soft inspirational or sacred music in the background.
Slowly take three deep breaths. On each exhalation, release all tension or negative thoughts from your mind and body.
Keeping your heart open and receptive, close your eyes. Imagine a ball of rainbow-colored light at the top of your head. Visualize it descending into the center of your brain.
Concentrate on that glowing energy, and direct it down through your neck and into your heart, feeling warmth and love. Continue directing it downward into your stomach and the rest of your organs and finally down through your legs to the soles of your feet and into the ground.
Now visualize this healing and centering energy and light coming back up from the ground and up the back of your legs. Slowly direct it up through the core of your spine and back into your head.
Imagine yourself being lifted gently into the universe. Keeping a sense of your meditative posture, see and feel yourself floating gently in outer space, surrounded by the stars and planets.
Realize that your body and the manifest universe are an inseparable cosmic creation of vibrating atomic polarities.
Realize that all the atoms in your physical body are billions of years old – composed from the exploding light of ancient stars and other electromagnetic energies.
Imagine yourself being pulled into a black hole of radiation, going past time and space into the dark womb of the universe. The silence of this black hole is beyond description – it is intelligence, as yet unthinking. Experience the peace and bliss of this all-pervasive intelligence.
Imagine this intelligence beginning to think and creatively to dream. Suddenly you experience a roaring sound and a spark of visible light spreads. Somehow originating in the sound, the light begins to radiate throughout the darkness. Creation has begun. You perceive vast clouds of many-colored lights that are the formation of galaxies and all the other creations of Earth, including your physical body.
Imagine yourself as the soul within the human body and that the sun’s rainbow-colored light is entering into your physical body. Now imagine streams of electromagnetic energy and waves of visible light pouring out of your body and creatively interweaving with the streams of energy that compost the universe.
Meditate for a momentum this web of light streams that connects your soul, mind, and physical body to the universe. Realize that through the divine inner light of your consciousness you are participating in the creation of this tapestry of light and life.
Gently bring your focus back to the planet Earth and the spot you occupy physical. See with new eyes.
~from Mandala by Judith Cornell
In this exercise you will meditate on your skin, muscles, bones, and blood. You’ll discover that your blood runs not only in your veins, but also flows back in time to its ancestral source. Thus you can find or better determine your spiritual and magical roots, the exploration of which will be part of your own unique brand of magickal initiation.
Read through the exercise to get a good idea of how it flows, and then begin.
Get comfortable, quiet, and centered. Breathe deeply and relax your body. When you are fully relaxed, begin the meditation by thinking about your skin. Focus on how it feels. Maybe you have an awareness of how your clothing feels in the places where it touches your skin. It is through your skin that you interact with all things….
Think about this for a few minutes… It is through your skin that you interact with the world.
Now, think about how it is that your skin keeps you separate from all things as well. It contains you. Feel yourself as a being who is separate… you are quiet you are contained within yourself, and in that quiet containment you are relaxed, confident, and your spirit is free from intrusion and fear.
Now, feel your muscles and bones. One way to do this is to visualize them under your skin. Or you might move your body – the smallest possible amount – as you picture your bones solid, dense, and providing a frame, which, in your imagination, your muscles maneuver, vividly filled with vitality.
Feel your blood. One way to do this is to imagine it running in your veins. Don’t worry if you can’t really “feel” it, simply imagine that you are feeling it and that will be sufficient.
What does your blood tell you? Anything? Be open: see if you hear anything or if a thought pops into your mind or you get a sense of some feeling stirring in your body or idea peeking at you in your thoughts.
My blood is of a river,
my blood flows through the dark void of time and space,
back to its source.
What is its source?
Where did it come from?
What did my blood do at that time,
in that place?
Again, visualize the blood running in your veins… imagine it flows past you like a stream or brook, not in the sense it would if you were injured but in a miraculous, mystical pilgrimage… Imagine your blood flowing through a safe, comforting darkness… You are going to follow that flow as it moves to it’s source…
Now your blood arrives at its source. Perhaps you will suddenly get a picture of, or sense, an ancient people. You might encounter anything, the possibilities of what happens in this step are endless… you might encounter anything from a star in the sky to a specific race of people or species of animals or to a plant or even a mythical beast.
You might not see anything. You might instead hear, smell, or simply get a sense of your ancestral source; modes of psychic perceptions are endless, and no one is better than another. An idea, word, or phrase that comes to mind might be your psychic perception even if it makes no sense right away.
Note whatever it is that might be happening at that far-off time and place. Are you doing anything? Are your ancestors? Are there words or sounds? Do you have any feelings or impressions?
Are you given any gifts?
Say to your ancestors, even if you feel that you have experienced nothing in this voyage, “I thank you for this visit.”
Imagine, picture, somehow be aware of your blood traveling a long distance back through time and space… this is a dark, safe, and comfortable journey, your blood flows through this space carrying any gifts you’ve gained.
Now, be aware of your blood flowing all the way back to you, arriving with its new gifts. Feel your blood flowing through your body, replete with its new gifts and power.
Feel your skin… Feel how it interacts with your clothes… feel how it interacts with the seat under you… feel how it interacts with the air.
~ Francesca de Grandis
To begin your meditation select a quiet time and sit with a straight back on a cushion on the floor in front of a low table, with a lighted candle and incense if you desire.
Alternately, sit in a chair and place your candle and incense on a regular table. Either way, have your mandala in front of you at eye level – on the table or behind it on the wall.
Fold your hands in your lap or place them palms up on your thighs. Begin with a prayer and then set your intention of using this time of meditation and contemplation to move into a place of spiritual centeredness.
I like the phrase “Toward the One.”
Next, for the reflective portion of your meditation just sit quietly, eyes open, gazing at the mandala. If you find your eyes wandering gently bring them back to the mandala. If you find your eyes watering, or feeling heavy, allow them to close while keeping a mental image of the mandala in your mind. If your thoughts wander, gently bring them back. Maintain this quiet time for about 10 or 15 minutes. Allow yourself to enjoy the experience.
Now, close your eyes. If your eyes are already closed, open them and look at the mandala once again, and then close your eyes. Conclude your meditation with thoughts, affirmations or prayers for personal and world peace.
Meditating regularly over a period of time brings spiritual discipline, and produces ever longer stretches of centeredness and peace.
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