October 15, 2018

The Amulet

Imagine for a moment you are wearing a powerful amulet, a talisman so personal, so potent, you feel infused by it's presence on your body. You can feel it hanging, balanced and polished, the perfect weight - never a burden, always a joy. 

It might be nestled at your throat,  between collarbones, maybe even deeper, sternum or solar plexus. Notice if it is on a silk ribbon, leather cord, fine silver or sturdy link chain. As you are aware, take in the colors, the textures, even the slight sounds it might make, a particular taste in the mouth. 

Clasp it in your hands, allow palms and fingers to explore shape and form, textures and contrasts. Here might be the flintness of stone set in the softest if leather, imagine tiger's eye set in a resin of goldstone, offset by the craft of carefully cradling the preciousness within. Even the encasing is fused with meaning, a harmonious combination of sacred geometry, whether as precise as a merkaba or as organic as a lotus blossom, spiraling out  into the golden moment.

This is your talisman, your mojo, your power piece. It can never be taken away, because it is deep.in your mind. It can always be enhanced, buffing away any tarnish, strengthening any weak links. Wear it well, wear it with proper pride, your sacred medicine, the amulet inside.

Blessed Be.

October 1, 2018

Infinite Other Exhibition at the MAH

I'm pleased to announce that I have a piece of artwork in the new Infinite Other Exhibition at the MAH, an immersive, wildly colorful world created by artists Monica Canilao and Xara Thustra (MCXT).

MCXT is a creative partnership between Monica Canilao and Xara Thustra. MCXT uses drawing, installation, murals, and other media to cultivate a sense of wonder and mindfulness that can help us see the infinite stories in and between people, objects, and ideas.

In 2016, Monica Canilao & Xara Thustra combined their vision, talents, and activism to form a legendary creative partnership: MCXT. Their work is big in scale and heart. MCXT uses drawing, installation, murals, and other media to cultivate a sense of wonder and mindfulness that can help us see the infinite stories in and between people, objects, and ideas.

The artists often sketch and paint over one another, layering their visions to create large scale artwork that challenges the viewer to step back and think about topics like love, self determination, one’s own stories, and others’ possible stories.

Coming up in the Bay Area’s thriving DIY community, Monica and Xara bonded over their shared feminist and anti-capitalist ethics.

Infinite Other is their first large scale museum exhibition– most of the artwork was made just in the last 18 months. However, not all the artwork in the exhibition is new. MCXT thoughtfully chose artifacts from the MAH’s archives to incorporate into the show. The mix of new and repurposed objects creates art that explores the infinite stories and intimate connections we share as people. Read more about the exhibition here.

Infinite Other: Monica Canilao and Xara Thustra. October 5, 2018 – March 24, 2019

September 24, 2018

Release the Past

"Forgiveness does not mean that what happened was okay. It simply means that we are no longer willing to allow that experience to adversely affect our lives. Forgiveness is something we do, ultimately, for ourselves." —Christiane Northrup

What does forgiveness mean to you? Is there someone you need to forgive? Or someone you need forgiveness from? Or do you simply need to forgive your self?

Releasing the past does not necessarily mean letting go completely of what happened, but letting go of the trauma of what happened, and holding on to any essential wisdom from the experience.

A random example: I remember very clearly when my first cat Fatty died from lung cancer, the trauma of discovering his labored breathing, the rush to vet, the decision to put him down - all when I was about 8 years old. I remember my huge emotions in the backseat of the car as we drove home with the empty carrier, a combination of shock, guilt, grief, and anger - mostly angry at my Dad, who was not crying, unlike my mother and me, but mostly angry at that overwhelming feeling of, "Why? Why was this happening? How could we not know earlier? What could we have done sooner?" If I really allow myself to indulge in this memory I can easily start crying, despite it being 45 years later.

As an adult I learned that my Dad showed his emotions in other ways, and I also learned to pay more attention to the cats and the earlier red flags of disease.  Later, when I experienced the trauma of betrayal, divorce, going through the court system to get custody of my child, I remembered the lessons that I had learned from this childhood experience. That the most important question is not "Why is this happening?" but "What can I learn from this? How will this help me grow and become stronger?"

 I learned that while you will never really forget, you really can forgive.

Blessed be.

September 13, 2018

Good Boundaries

   What are good boundaries? Good boundaries are knowing where you end and someone else begins. Think of the turtle, who can go inside his shell for protection when needed. Or the spiny succulent, who appears thorny but is strong and juicy on the inside. Very different from putting up walls, shields, masks or other forms of emotional armor, which can leave one feeling isolated and bereft. But we live in a toxic world full of toxic people, so it's good to be able to protect oneself in a mindful and natural way..

Here’s what our Goddess Oracle has to say, “Durga (Hindu goddess of boundaries) is here to assist you in nurturing wholeness by creating and fixing the limits of your physical space. Establishing clear boundaries is an act of self-love. Having no boundaries gives others the message that you are limitless and want to be treated in a limitless way... Durga says that boundaries are vital because they let others now who you are and where you stand.”

Good boundaries means being mindful of creating inter-dependent relationships which are mutual, reciprocal, and beneficial rather than falling into old patterns of codependency out of desperation and a need to be loved or validated by another. Good boundaries means being able to tell the difference between enabling another or empowering them. 

Good boundaries means being comfortable in saying no. Say no to the energy vampires, to those who would take advantage of your generous nature or manipulate through the use of guilt, shame, or acting like a victim for you to rescue. It's not your job in life to rescue others, nor to be a martyr by constantly sacrifing your time, money, or energy to another's cause. Be the hero in your own story, say yes to yourself, say yes to having good boundaries.