some simple instructions on how to handle the potent eclipse weekend

By now, probably most of you have heard that we have yet ANOTHER
major astrological configuration coming at us this weekend . . .
There are so many amazing astrologers out there to find out info about this.
My personal favs:
Kathy Biehl
Mystic Mama
Kaypacha (Tom Lescher)

But if you are like me ~ this all starts to blur together at some point.
We all know that shit is going down.

Simplicity is what is called for right now.
Asking for what you need right now.
Looking at what the stress & conflux of these last months have brought to your attention.
What you just can’t live with anymore.
Jettisoning all clutter & that means all that does not serve you:
friends, love, possessions, living situations.

Also information.

Keep it simple.

So here are a few concise instructions for working with the moon.

The New Moon is the beginning of something
The First Quarter is the first trial or first need for focused choice or effort, Action
The Full Moon is the Gift/Opportunity
The Last Quarter is the Doubt, the Test, the Proving

Then whether or not the cycle feels complete . . The New Moon comes again & we need to let our process go & prepare for the next level/layer.

This New Moon is a Total Solar Eclipse as well (in Scorpio).  A solar eclipse disrupts the energy flow between the Sun & the Earth & is the perfect time to do some intense house cleaning: you may not have any choice but to abort repetitive behavior & patterns.

If this seemingly is happening against your will, do not be afraid or resist, maintain as open a heart as possible & pass through.

You will make it & you will find exceptionally fertile ground to establish new energy channels for possibility.  Perfect for the amazing gardens that we will be growing right now & in 2014.

Yes, this weekend may seem full of portent, but know these steps are true each month & that we are all here together in the world, feeling the same moon.

So here we are at the New Moon (actually Sunday at 7:50 am East Coast time).  Who doesn’t love the chance to have a new beginning: a brand new notebook, new sheets, a brand new empty space in one’s lives to let go of everything that hasn’t worked so far, or everything that is just done.

Here is the challenge: expectations.  They really get in the way.  While it is worthy to set intentions, it gets heavy & sticky when you cling to a set idea of how that might transpire.  There is a saying: “An expectation is a premeditated resentment.” Or I might say, at the very least, a premeditated frustration.

This is the same with our lovers, our job, our children.  We want the best for them.  We worry about their past. We worry about their future.  We want to make it all right.  These desires often get in the way of how we enjoy them.  Even how we actually see them.

So in the next days, for yourself, prepare & receive these Super New Moon energies by finding ways to feel open & relaxed.  Extreme self-care in the realm of your busy day.  Walk slower.  Eat without reading or your phone or computer. Do one thing at a time.  If you can, take a bath.  Take time before sleep with no electronics for a half hour. Listen to music (electronic but separate from it, keep from touching it, set it up a leave it). Read. Spend time with your altar. Breathe.  Let the Moon come to you. Prepare yourself like an altar of receptivity.

Let this be all. Cultivate an openness. Just because.  Let you come to you.
Watch, listen, notice.  Just notice. Take note. Appreciate. Let your loved ones come to you as you are.
Let your passions reveal themselves to you.

Receive.

It is best to have a light touch with this.  Do not over-analyze. Let it reveal itself to you.  I have been working with moon cycles for almost 30 years.  Their perfection is that they ALWAYS begin again.

You keep beginning again.  The cycles keep turning. You have to let it go. Faith. The New Layer of Life.

I can teach you how to work with this with your own personal moon-cycles . . . We are all born at a specific moon phase & this colors our whole life . . . I was born just a few days before the Full Moon, kind of the ultimate Mommy Moon, a good phase for a teacher! Let me know if you are interested in finding out more about your relationship with the Moon, your moon & any of your other planetary configurations & we can schedule a private appointment at some point.

Know that I have your back.

Looking forward to continuing this work with you.

ABSOLUTE DEVOTION XO YOUR LOVE ARTIST

a gift from me to you

I am really, really excited.  This is the first in a series of many gifts from me to you. Beginning with this very love note,  in addition to this journal, I will be sending out weekly hints & recipes & advice

to my mailing list, practical tips on how to keep your love temple all spruced up & ready to soak life up into all the nooks & crannies, ready to fall in love, ready to love yourself.

 Abrete Corazon: soften, open, soften, open, soften, open

 This is my daily, sometimes hourly practice, I have no problem in being transparent with this here. We are all family, after all.

Sooooo . . for today, I am thinking about one of the lessons from THE LOVE ARTIST INITIATION ~ my online relationship practice, beginning again this weekend. (Yippee)

It utilizes a map of the energetic points in the body, the places where we connect to the world:

The Belly (including both the sex chakra area, a few fingers below the navel, as well as the navel/solar plexus itself)

The Heart

& The Third Eye

These are our three “points of contact” where we interface with “the world” or all energies outside of “us.” I put the words “world” & “us” in quotation marks because this is paradox ~ the separation. What is outside, the other, is actually part of us.

The union with the lover is actually a coming home. This is a sexy thing.

These three gateways are where we attempt to control the love/energy/union/wholeness. It is almost as if there are dials or gauges at these entry points where we can turn the volume of connectivity up or down.

The belly is the portal to the life force, like that of the life force in nature, sexual union. The heart center is the empathetic connection to other humans, to community, to family. The third eye is the connection to spirit.

They don’t always operate with this kind of exclusivity. Sometimes they get jumbled up. That’s ok. We are just becoming aware of how we interact & how we resist interaction.

For today I am merely asking you to notice the feeling sensations at these points as you go through your day. Whether you are arguing with someone at work or making love with your beloved, focus on the sensations in those areas, beyond thinking, & where do you feel it, are you open or closed. Pay a little bit more attention. Breathe into those muscles & relax a little bit more, if you can.

Just like that, be gentle.

For today, that’s all you have to do.

Love.

Know that I have your back.

Looking forward to continuing this work with you.

ABSOLUTE DEVOTION XO YOUR LOVE ARTIST

PS Next LOVE ARTIST INITIATION begins this Saturday. I still have a few spots left.  Sign up HERE or write me with any questions.  Also, feel free to sign up for the mailing list at the bottom of all pages or on the CONTACT page, so you don’t miss anything.  I love you.

when mad men & women can still open your heart

Not sure that Chipotle, the Mexican food chain, is really the cultural food visionary that they make themselves out to be, but I am willing to love them, just for today & maybe for a while, on the beauty of the above ad & I pray with every molecule of my being that they are not lying.  On the Chipotle site, they call themselves Food with Integrity & they promise that they use 70 real avocados in every batch of their guacamole &, as someone who gets anxious without at least 3 avocados nearing a perfect ripening point in my kitchen, I am willing to suspend all disbelief in the possibility of corporate food production with heart for today & get a little weepy with the scarecrow while he cooks up some tacos for us.  Call me naive.

mushi~she

One of my absolute favorite things to do when I am craving sanctuary is to crawl into the beautiful subterranean apartment of my beloved Mark, one of my oldest friends.  Back in the punk days in Boston, Mark & I were known to hole up all day listening to TAKING TIGER MOUNTAIN (BY STRATEGY) & SWASTIKA GIRLS with the needle back for hours & then to wander off into the night, finding ourselves perched on the edge of a roof somewhere in Chinatown, while bands like La Peste & The Girls thrashed below, smoking clove cigarettes & often times beholden to some other kind of transcendent substance, holding court with various pilgrims, communicating with the world telepathically or through foo dogs & gargoyles found in the eaves of the surrounding buildings.

Nowadays we just sit in the garden behind his house in Boerum Hill in Brooklyn & listen to the night sky, eating meals that last for hours in tiny bowls.  When it gets late, we like to watch Mushi-she, a manga series in anime form on YouTube. The story features ubiquitous invisible creatures called Mushi that possess special powers. Mushi are beings in touch with the essence of life, far more basic and pure than other normal living things. Due to their ethereal nature most humans are incapable of perceiving Mushi and are oblivious to their existence, but there are a few individuals who possess the ability to see and interact with the spirits, particularly children.

days of awe

I was cranky & didn’t really want to go to the beach but I made myself. It took a minute to notice all the bread in the water. Then all the old men in suits & their pants rolled up. Old women in fancy hats & no stockings. Random people standing in the water all dressed up reading out loud. Then one large group of people singing. Then another. Throwing bread. A huge flock of seagulls coming down. The sun setting. I realized they were praying. So beautiful. Happy New Year.

the most beautiful woman on earth

“Rabia of Basra was considered one of the most beautiful women living on earth in her time. Her youth and beauty were unsurpassed. Now it so happens that a young man from Shiraz in Iran comes to Basra while travelling and sight-seeing. He’s vigorous and handsome and very successful in business. His business takes him from place to place and country to country. At this time it brings him to Basra. He’s fond of sight-seeing. So while having tea or food he asks whomever he meets, ‘Are you from Basra?’

‘Yes.’

‘Tell me what’s to be found in this place? Is there anything out of the way, anything unusual, anything special?’

‘Well, we have fine gardens and we have fountains and all that.’

‘Oh! I have roamed many countries and seen a number of big cities. There are many such beautiful things; but is there anything here that is out of the way?’

‘Yes.’

‘What is it?’

‘The most beautiful woman on earth!’

‘What? The most beautiful woman on earth!’ He’s young and handsome, and youth is always attracted by beauty. He hears this and laughs. ‘Well, I’ve seen thousands of beautiful girls. Can there be any more beautiful than those in Iran?’

‘Well, that’s what I’m telling you,’ says the man.

And the young Iranian again goes sight-seeing and again asks some people, ‘Is there anything special to see in this place?’ And they tell him about various sights, and again he asks, ‘But is there anything special?’

And they say, “There is nothing better here than Rabia of Basra. Her beauty surpasses all beauty.”

‘How can that be?’ he asks. ‘What makes you say that?’

And they reply, ‘Those who are starved for beauty, they will find that out when they meet her.’

‘All right, where can I find her? How does one see her?’

‘Well, where else? In a brothel!’

‘Oh, that’s a common story. We have prostitutes in Iran too. We know about that kind of woman.’

‘Yes, but this is different!’ they answer.

He goes around to different places in the city, and again he hears the name of Rabia from someone he meets, and then from another man and then another and another. Gradually he comes to realise that this whole city is somehow different from other cities he has visited. This place is charged with such an atmosphere that people talk freely about the beauty of a woman, and yet there seems no trace of vulgarity in their talk. What is it? Who could she be? What makes her so beautiful and at the same time approachable by all? He thinks, ‘Well she’s only a beautiful prostitute. That’s why she’s approachable for all.’

After some days he decides to visit Rabia even though she’s in a brothel. Although he is from a social stratum that customarily does not frequent brothels, he makes himself bold to go there. For the first time in his life he makes up his mind to go to such a place and see for himself what he has heard about from other people. He makes discreet inquiries about the place and time she’s available. Somebody leads him there in the evening, saying, ‘Go up the stairs and there will be a matron who will see you and ask you to pay a fee.’

‘She takes fees?’

‘She doesn’t, but the matron asks for them. Without paying you won’t be able to go in.’

‘Okay, nevermind. I have money.’

So up he goes, slowly climbing the stairs. And all the time his mind is working, full of this beauty he has heard about and anticipating the moments he’ll spend with her. When he arrives, the matron questions him, ‘What do you want? Are you a stranger in this country?’

‘Yes, I am a stranger here, and I want to see Rabia of Basra.’

‘What do you mean you want to see Rabia of Basra? Is she an exhibit in a zoo or something?’

‘Well, isn’t she approachable?’

‘Yes, but you have to be with her, not just see her. And you have to pay a fee.’

‘Yes, yes, I want to spend time with her.’

“All right, but the fee is exorbitant.”

‘I don’t mind; I’ll pay whatever it is.’ He pays and she takes him to the suite, ushers him inside and shuts the door.

He finds the room is vacant; there is nobody to wait upon him. Then he gradually ventures further in. There is a little room to the side and in it a figure is praying. A prayer carpet is spread and the figure is kneeling, absorbed in prayer. What beauty she has! He has never seen such beauty! ‘Oh, how could she be here?’ he thinks, ‘How could she allow men to co-habit with her?’ He sits and gazes at her beauty and loses himself. Yet, his passion is aroused, and he waits for her to be finished with the prayer.

She prays and prays. An hour passes. Gradually there is an ebb in his passion. He is attracted by her beauty and at the same time by her purity. After another hour or so she finishes her prayer and looks at him; it is as if lightning has struck him, the very sight of her!

She apologises and says, ‘I’m so sorry. Pardon me for keeping you waiting so long! I was absorbed in prayer. You must be hungry.’ She claps and her maidens come. She orders, ‘Spread the feast for him. He is our guest tonight.’ And to him, ‘Would you like to drink something? What sort of liquor do you prefer/’

‘Well, I’m from Iran….’ And he thinks, ‘That’s good, she’s not too absorbed in prayers; she offers me food and drink also. And it’s true what people say — she’s truly beautiful!’

So he takes an interest in conversing and opens up his heart. He tell her his whole story while she listens intently. As he talks he just gazes at her, feeding upon her beauty. She also participates in the conversation, inquiring about his well-being, and about his travels and his work.

‘You must have visited many places and seen many fine sights. Have you visit Basra properly?’

‘Yes,’ he says, ‘I have almost finished my visit to Basra, and everywhere I go I hear about your beauty. And so I wanted to be here with you.’

‘You are most welcome,’ she says, ‘But after all, what is this beauty of mine? It’s a passing show! Very soon I’ll get old and become all wrinkled. Age will tell upon me just as it will upon you.’

And she takes up the thread there. The talk about beauty and truth and God starts, and it goes on and on into the early hours of the morning. Eventually she leads him to the point where he becomes a real devotee.

‘What a discourse you’ve given me tonight!’ he says. ‘Now I begin to realise what real beauty means, how one should behave in life, how one should seek that eternal beauty which never perishes.’

‘Yes,’ she says, ‘that’s right. That’s how it is.’

Finally he feels it’s time to go. ‘I’m your slave,’ he says from his heart. ‘Tell me anything, anything in this world I can do for you.’

‘I have one little request.’

‘Anything,’ he replies. ‘Ask for wealth. Ask for anything you want.’

‘There is just one little thing, if you could do it.’

‘What is it?’

‘Never tell anyone what transpired here tonight. Allow the people to come to me. This beauty is bait to lure them. It motivates them and gives them strength and right understanding and the right perspective on life. God has placed me in this particular place so that I can do His work and tell people about true beauty and real love. Promise me that you’ll never tell others what you’ve experienced here tonight.’

‘Oh!’ he says. ‘So this is the secret of Basra! The whole city clamours after your beauty. Yet nobody tells me about his experience.’

‘Yes,’ she smiles. ‘They all promise. You see, my beauty is my strength to fight in the cause of my Lord.’

~ story by Meher Baba

sweetness

I have read that, in Africa, when the body of an antelope, which all its life ate only leaves and grass and drank nothing but wild water, is first opened, the fragrance is almost too sweet, too delicate, too beautiful to be borne. It is a moment which hunters must pass through carefully, with concentrated and even religious attention, if they are to reach the other side, and go on with their individual lives.

~ Mary Oliver

(image by Fay Helfer)

with Kathe Izzo