Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Request an oracle reading online

Last summer at the Cortes Island Friday Market I used the Journey Oracle deck to give an oracle reading to many residents and visitors to the island. Now in this dark time of the year, when many of us want to receive a reading about the year ahead, I am offering you this experience online. We will create an intimate relationship to the Journey Oracle deck online, not by asking you to draw cards for your reading in an electronic way, but by creating a personal relationship with the Oracle herself—using our online contact as a way to begin.

During my summer of polishing my ability to give a powerful reading from the Oracle deck, I received many questions about how to contact the spirit world, how to find a spirit helper, how to enter successful relationships or exit difficult ones, and even questions about how to ask good questions. All these topics and more can now be explored online with an oracle reading.

Our online oracle reading will begin by you thinking of a situation for which you want guidance, and then emailing me at journeyoracle@gmail.com with a number from 1 to 47. Do not describe the situation or give me any details about yourself—send me only a number from 1 to 47 and a one word category for your situation, such as "37 / work" or "21 / relationship". This will enable me to draw the first card of the reading. I will send you a psychic reading of your situation as I see it in the card. You will gain insight by applying the reading I send online to the situation you are thinking about.

This one card oracle reading is free until January 6, 2010. Go to www.journeyoracle.com/journey-oracle-cards.html to read about how you can purchase a deck and create a reading for yourself.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Creating Solstice traditions

This story about my first solstice celebration is one of 47 spirit-directed stories in the Journey Oracle divination deck.

A man and a woman were just beginning to be together, and wanted to make their own holiday traditions. They decided they would stay up all night on the longest night of the year, and remember how much they loved the sun. The man and woman decided they would make a feast, but eat without any of the conveniences that get in the way of the sun on earth which is fire. They gathered one food of each kind that kept them alive: meat, fowl, fish, root vegetable, vine vegetable, plant vegetable, fruit and nuts, and went out into nature at sundown.

They made a lean to for shelter and built a fire just beyond its rim. They invited the sun into the flames and watched them on the prowl for wood to eat. The wind came to the feast and pushed the smoke and cinders of the fire into their eyes and mouths. “This is no loving parent,” the couple said. “The wind is stalking the edges of our feast because we forgot to make a place for it to sit.” And so they told stories to the wind, and cleared a place where it could play inside the shelter. The man and woman stayed captured by the night, playing games and eating each food separately that they cooked over the sun on earth which is fire.

At sunrise the couple felt that something had been begun. They were sooty from being played with by the wind, and greasy from doing without the conveniences of serviettes and utensils. The man and the woman walked to a bus stop to ride home. Although the bus that picked them up was crowded with early morning commuters going to work, all the seats around them remained empty.

“I think there is judging that we are not correct” the couple whispered to each other as they noticed their stained clothing and wood-smoked hair. “Truly, by feeding the longest night something has been begun on this day.

Although we now go into nature on solstice day, rather than at sundown like in this first celebration at a park on Oahu, Hawaii, for 31 years we have never missed spending this shortest day of the year feeding the sun and the wind, and thanking all the creatures that keep us alive. Now we light a bonfire at dusk to give the sun strength, and when we are again back inside with stained clothing and wood-smoked hair—we feel the honor of still showing up to something begun so long ago.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A middle world shamanic journey

Sometimes I use the Journey Oracle cards to frame a question, rather than to find an answer. This helps me prepare for doing a middle world shamanic journey. Michael Harner writes about how the “middle world” is this world with the veils removed. It is important that these journeys be carefully framed with clear intention and questions because of the danger of talking to spirits whose agenda you do not know.

Here is a journey showing how I proceed. First I ask the cards to show me a situation in my daily life that needs resolution. I focus on my ordinary reality for this journey because the answer comes within the forces and creatures of this world. I draw card 12 and in this moment interpret this powerful image as one showing me my occasional jealousy of other’s success in internet art marketing. I find my question for this journey by deciding to turn the card over.

“Am I listening” immediately prompts another question: “to what? The person in the picture seems to have no left ear, while the right side is filled with swirls, perhaps of sound. I decide to pursue this right left symbolism as the focus of my journey. I associate my left side with action in the spiritworld and my right side with action in this world. To what action am I being shown to listen?

I decide to take a walk for my journey and set my boundaries carefully—from the front door out to the front door in—so I will know the parameters of the journey messages. A strong wind strikes me on my right side as I leave the porch, and I notice the gate bell rings loudly in my right ear as I pass. I see a rough path in the woods on the right and go this way, even though my dog would rather keep going straight. At the apex of the woods trail the wind is now full in my face. When I turn left at the base of the hill to return home the wind becomes blocked so although I can hear it I cannot feel it. At a three pronged trail intersection I let my dog choose the direction and she goes right, even though this is not our usual route. As I come back up the hill the wind stays blocked and the gate bell, now able to ring in my left ear—is silent.

The journey is showing me to listen to the right: this is where movement is coming from, although at first it is difficult to see and I have some resistance to going this way. At the apex of my first choices for successful internet art marketing, I will feel movement from both sides. After a period of quiet I am again shown to choose the right side; the action in this world. I now have clear direction from my nature-world guidance to choose the human-world work…and I enjoyed a walk in the woods.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Creating a Green Burial

I have just returned from a green burial for my friend who died recently. What a powerful experience. I felt that this is the way that is right for the earth. My friend’s body was placed in a shroud instead of a casket, with no chemical embalming, and no headstone. The Royal Oaks Burial Park in Victoria, British Columbia is perhaps the only one in Canada now offering this remarkable new, old way to return our bodies as food for the Holy.

I was asked to officiate at the ceremony, and began by calling the winds to bring the spirits to witness the beauty of her life told in stories, poems and songs, as these became an embroidery of eloquence on a beautifully embellished shawl already draped over her body, made by her circle of women friends, so the ancestors will recognize her on the other side.

The most moving part of the ceremony for me was when myself and other women sang while I drummed, as her many friends and family moved slowly past her body, strewing it with flower petals. The petals continued as a rain of beauty and tears into the grave, as her body was lowered to the earth. When I now think of her body lying within the moist darkness of the enveloping earth, I am comforted anew to know its energy of transformation can touch her directly.

Once home I asked the Journey Oracle cards to show me insight about this experience, and this image came. The question is particularly meaningful to me, because I believe when we recognize a way of being in right relationship with earth and spirit, we become responsible for manifesting that way, as best we can, so that like a seed cracks open and cannot resist reaching for the sun, we enable new behavior to come into the light.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Death Song

My friend is dying, and I am seeking advice on how to be with the power and sadness of her passing. I look through the Journey Oracle divination cards, letting any card come into my attention. I ask the most beautiful to choose themselves.

I think we all have taken a wrong turn in this modern culture that hides from death, and so we do not know how to be open and prepared to meet Death consciously. We may know we will stand in the light, but few of us know how to be in the dark ravine that leads to that vista.

I believe none of us want to suffer the often unbearable pain of terminal illness, yet there must be another way to get there, than to be made unconscious with sedatives in the name of comfort. What do the folk ways of our ancestors tell us about making a good death? Surely there was a time before our fear when we knew, and had help knowing, how to curl into a new seed.

During my time with Martin Prechtel at Bolad’s Kitchen, he told a story of how in Santiago Atitlan, neighbors would stop a pregnant lady in the village street to sing to the child in her belly. The baby would hear the community singing this same song as she was being born, and again the singing would hold her as an old woman when she was dying. Maybe we can begin to remember how to help those we love to die by remembering to sing to them—not just once but continuously so the song becomes a boat on a river of breath, carrying them into the view of friends and creatures with kindly eyes, on the other side.