scattered thoughts #1

Holidays always swoop down upon me like the worst sneak witch-thief. Imbolc is approaching fast, but I managed to be prepared. Half prepared, anyway.

I’ve been spending my time cleaning my room. I now have a bit more space, but it still lack proper organisation. I need some boxes to store candles and other witchy objects. A wooden box, for my poor tarot that are now without a home. And somewhere to store my stones.
It really seem you have everything scattered around. Do you have everything scattered around? Yes, sorry. Instead of finding a place for my stuff I just had it linger around for so long that now I don’t know what to do with it.

Don’t worry, part of me hate this chaos. My problem is this lingering sense of unisiness; this idea that I can’t make this room look the way I want to. Why? Because it has always been like that: jumbled furniture with jumbled things around. Our entire homes have always been like this. It cracks me up. It’s maddening. It’s like having a big STOP sign saying that I can’t do in any other way, or any better. I’m projecting on the furniture some wild emotion I can’t work out, I guess. No one should be that much annoyed by the appearance of their home.

But I have to be honest: another part of me is unable to do things the proper way. Starting from point A and walking in a straight line to point B? Putting the book on the shelves instead of leaving it on the table? Almost impossible. There’s always something (useless) that distracts me. I’m trying to be more discplined, but it would be better if I wasn’t the over-indulgent person I am. To put it in tumblr words: I’m probably sinning right now.

Strange feelings

Have you ever had the impression that, although you fell asleep, no time passed between when you closed your eyes and when you opened them? It happens sometimes to me and it is always horrible because it seems you haven’t slept at all.
This is the feeling I get from the world now: Nature barely went to bad and it’ll soon be time to get up. It doesn’t make any sense, I know, but I feel like this will be a busy turn of wheel. And one in which the weather will be very strange.

With Imbolc coming, you’d expect me to be happy: spring is one of the cutest season, and I like mid-times. Summer is too hot and Winter too cold. Spring? Just perfect. If I forget the strange sensation mentioned, I am happy. On the other hand, I feel like there is something else other than the days of celebration. Something that deep down, is more important to me. Plenty of strange sensations these days.

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It’s all a Matter of Curiosity

I’ve always been in search of something. I didn’t always clearly understood what was that I wanted, or needed, but I’ve always felt the urge to dug deep into things. A desperate longing to understand and know. What is the World? How does it function? Why is “good” good and “bad” bad? Are fairies real? Will I receive my Hogwarts letter?
You can say I was a curious child a rebellious adolescent and an even more curious young adult (accent on the young)

One of the things I focused on my “pagan studies” were symbols.

La Nature est un temple où de vivants piliers
Laissent parfois sortir de confuses paroles;
L’homme y passe à travers des forêts de symboles
Qui l’observent avec des regards familiers.
Correspondances, Charles Baudelaire

I’ve always found meaning in symbols. Words, drawing and music have a huge presence in my life. When I discovered archetypes and how much the lore could tell me about things I looked at without any interest, I was stunned. You could say I had an epiphany.

In Nature’s temple, living pillars rise,
Speaking sometimes in words of abstruse sense;
Man walks through woods of symbols, dark and dense,
Which gaze at him with fond familiar eyes.
– Jacques LeClercq, Flowers of Evil

The idea that everything in the world is linked still fascinates and resonates with me. Add to the cocktail that I easily spot patterns and love to find new interpretations, outcomes and meanings in what I see, and here you have the best serve.

So, what does this all bring us to? Is this intrinsic curiosity source more of answers or questions? You may already know the answer: it brings to both. My boyfriend doesn’t fail to express amazement for this constant research. “Aren’t you tired of seeking something? Haven’t you found your answers yet?” I did. And then I changed and needed new answers. Sometimes the questions slowly shifted into something new. I encountered something I didn’t expect and there it is! A new question born.
There is nothing more exciting than setting for an adventur and to me that rhymes mostly with self-discovery and growth. My quest doesn’t involve golden rings, princes becoming king, or rebel princesses. I wished it involved more fairies, maybe an Elminster or two, more travelling. Nothing that can’t be done (except for Elminster I suppose).

What I believe is that my need is to know the world. You can’t do that by studying only sciences. You can’t do that only with philosphy. You need both. And you can’t understand the loudest inhabitats Earth ever seen by being static. Empathy brings us to a point, but to truly understand (fear, panic, exstasy, whatever) we need to experience. Maybe that is why my spiritual growth involves so much shifting and changing. Maybe that’s also why I spent so much time in search of my “true” me. Not because the one I was wasn’t real, but because I felt the wrong me for the time I was living in.

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Words for the New Year

Yesterday, while browsing bloglovin, I found a couple of articles on Hello Neverland about choosing a word for the upcoming year (you can read them here and here). I was already wondering about the fact that my 2015 could be summed up by the word recovery.

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I don’t really know when the process begun, or how. It may seem strange, but one day I managed to wake up at 9am instead of 12am. I actually did something during that day. I wasn’t hunted by fear or anxiety. I wasn’t feeling a complete waste or a failure – on the contrary I felt all the possibilities opening up at me. I felt like I had the power to improve my life, to make it better and to stop feeling as poorly as I did.

It’s a slow process I’m still working on, on different levels . For this reason I decided to choose words for this new year, so that I will be able to give direction to my life and my growth.

And growth is one of the words I choose for 2016, together with mindfulness and dare.

growth

From my point of view, life is an ever-ending process of learning and growing. Nothing is static, everything evolves into something new and grows into something else.
This 2016 I want to grow my roots deep into the Earth and let my trunk grow tall and meet the sky. I want to become a better version of myself and be more compassionate, more loving, persevere more, reamain true with myself and find beauty and wonder in the world that surrounds me.

Here’s where the mindfulnees kicks in. Dealing with something bigger than me let me in a chaotic state of mind. My head is always talking, worrying, whispering things I don’t need or want to hear, and sometimes things I don’t even rationally believe are true! I need to look at all this, aknowledge it and let it go away. For the sake of my mental stability.

mindfulness

Will I dare to do all this? Will I dare to stand up for myself, look at people in the eyes and tell them what I want? Will I dare to say “yes” when my fear is trying to keep me in the comfort zone? Will I dare to walk the road not taken?
I honestly hope I will. Master the courage to go out and see what the world has in store for me is a probably the biggest thing I’ll do this year, but it’s the biggest chance to experience life in a different way and to grow (see as everything is interconnected? :D).

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I’m aware that it won’t be easy and that I’ll probably fail a lot at the start of the year. It’ll take a while to let everything sink in and for me to recognize what patterns I’m repeating and what schemes my brain just won’t let go.
But I’m not here to accuse myself of what I cant’ do, I’m here to learn how to do it. And I know I will.
I know I won’t be disappointed!

Do you have any words for 2016 you’ll use as a mantra, or as a guide, to give purpose and direction to your life? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

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Allow Yourself to Grow

This is a last-minute decision to participate in The Pagan Experince 2016. I was very intrigued by the fact that the theme for the month of January is spiritual growth, as “growth” is one of my words for 2016.
– i should probably ask forgiveness for how long this is.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO GROW SPIRITUALLY?
Everyone has it’s own definion of growing. We’re all different and usually with different experiences behind our backs, which determines what we are, how we do things and what we need (or want) to work on – religiously and spiritually speaking.

If I think about what does it mean to grow spiritually for me, my answer is either a “understand who I am” or “become who I am” – two things that don’t always overlap.
One of the things I focused when I became pagan was balance: I had this desperate need to find balance between my inner world and the outerworld, between who I was and the mask I wore when I went out, between my misanthopic feelings and the need to excercise more compassion towards others. I felt like there were two sides of me, one the opposite of the other, and that balance meant to find a compromise between those two sides. Except it turned out it wasn’t really how it worked way.
Those parts of my characters that came out because of various personal experiences during adolscence washed away during a long period of sufference and yes, self growth. It was long and painful, but what I’m able to see now is that those days gave me the opportunity to look into myself and understand better what I am and what I’m not. For now, at least.
Have I become a better person, in the popular sense? Maybe not – I still make mistakes. I still am deeply affected by what other’s think of me, I’m still prone to hate others because of how they look, or because they seem to be a certain kind of person. It’s still different for me to look at things from other’s point of view (although being an empath helps to understand how they emotionally react) and to be totally unbiased.
This doesn’t mean that I haven’t made steps forward and here’s another truth about spiritual growth: there’s no aboslutely right nor absolutely wrong, or a standardized correct way. There are tools (such as meditation, visualization, divination and so on) we can use and relationship we can seek, build and foster – i.e. with the Gods, Spirits, Ancestors, Guides and Teachers – so that we may gain deeper understanding of the world and of ourselves. However this stems from my personal view of religion – that is a mean to better understand the world and its forces in the entirety of their complexity. If I understand how the world work (and to me the Divine forces of the Gods are inherent part of how everything functions properly), I’ll also be able to better understand how do I, as human, fit in it and how should I approach nature, animals, life and so on.

What we have is a set of tools, coming from our religious paths and personal research, that can help us achieve the goal.

ALLOW YOURSELF TO GROW
When you plant a seed you need to let him rest for a while before the first sprout can arise from the soil. You need to give it space so that the roots can grow. It needs nourishment in the form of water, sun and air. It needs time so that it can become a full-grown plant. Trees requires years to fully grow, and so do humans.
Allow yourself to grow. Allow yourself to have a time when you won’t be disturbed and a place suitable for your needs. Allow yourself to make the first step and stumble. Allow yourself to fall down and scratch your knees. Allow yourself to understand what you need, and what isn’t necessary. Allow yourself to get rid of everything in your life that harms you – yes, people too.
Give yourself what you need, but most of all give yourself the right to do what’s good for you.
There can be no growth if you are constantly trying to please others, fulfilling expectations, doing things because people ask you to, refrain yourself because *put reason here*.

ALLOW YOURSELF TO FAIL
Here comes a special paragraph about fear and failure, anxiety and all that (sounds like a good title for a book!), because they’ve always been problems in my life and I understand how it is really hard to go past them.
One of my fears is the fear of failure: I feel so bad when I fail at something, that if I can’t get things right I usually end up procastinating or giving up.
And here’s a brief chart of what I do when I decide it’s time to grow in a specific area of my life:
1. I understand something isn’t right/that I want to implement something in my life
2. I actively choose to do (or not to do) something
3. I inevitably fail and repeat the wrong behaviour
4. fail&correct myself
5. fail&correct myself again
6. and again
7. and again
8. When I’m lucky, here’s the point when I do it right for the first time.
As you can see, no matter how much I fear failure – it still is a big, big thing in my life.
The idea that everything can (and should!) be achieved in no time is peculiar to our  culture. Our very school system teaches that when it demands different kids with different learning abilities and different strengths and weaknesses to perform at an average level – or worse, on an average time. When you start to learn meditation you won’t earn a D if for the first three weeks you’ll barely able to relax.
All this just to say that failing is part of the process. And yes, trying is the first step toward failure, but failure will teach you how to do – or don’t do – stuff. Failing teaches you that Tarot isn’t good for you, but the pendulum is. Or failing may teach you that you’re not a great diviner, but you’re strength lies with the herbs and their uses. Failing may let you understand that that cool thing everybody seems to do isn’t what you’re good at – and that’s okay.
Failure is a tool, like the others: it can tell you many things and set you on the right path, if you’re not afraid to discover something of yourself.

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Lists are nice. Setting goals is too.

The new year is finally here. The first day of 2016 is almost over and I’m excited and thrilled about the twelve months to come. I’m motivated to work on different things this year, but before living fully these firsts days I want to stop for a second and set some goals.

TAKE BETTER CARE OF MYSELF
When you’re trying to gather enough energy to get off the bead, it’s hard to focus on the wellness of your body. I overlooked myself competeley because I didn’t have the energy to care. Now that I’m functional again, I want to work on healty habits and learn to love my body and image again.

EAT BETTER AND LOOSE WEIGHT
This could go with the previous point, but it needs its own. I eat badly, in every possible way: I don’t give myself the time, I skeep launches often, I don’t care about what or when I eat. As a result, I gained a lot of weight and even if I’m not worried about the kilos I bring around with me, it’s necessary that I stop gaining 5kg every five months.

BE MORE ARTSY CRAFTSY
I intend to start making art again. I’m not a good writer, I’m not a good painter, but this shouldn’t stop me right? I especially want to doodle more on my journals, write a lot of article for this blog and enhance my room.

BE MORE LOVING AND COMPASSIONATE
The past year made me understand a couple of things about myself. I’m deeply touched by love and kindness, even if I overlooked them for many years. I still am bitter  towards people even when there no need to be, and some times I’m prejudiced against some. This is wrong and fuels a behavior that is negative both for myself and people I meet.

BRING THE GODS BACK IN MY LIFE
Another thing that I left behind were my daily devotions and my work with the Gods. I recently started studying Irish polytheism and there are a lot of things I want to learn, but theory isn’t all that I want. I had plenty of it in the past, and my religion isn’t something I want to stay on paper or in my mind. I want to fully embrace it and this is what I hope to do during the new year.

STUDY, STUDY, STUDY
I gave up university for a while. Now that my gap years are completed, I need to stay back on track and pass a lot of exams. I know I can do it!

PROCASTINATE LESS
My procastination is the twin sister of my lack of self-esteem. I don’t do because I can’t/I’m a failure/it’ll be horrible and useless. This process kills my mood and my enthusiasm to do things, and is obviously bad for my work. And as there’s a lot of things I want to do in 2016, better not to mingle.

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