In Defense of Loki

I’m going to get a lot of shit for this, and only partially because I really do see and experience Loki almost exactly as Tom Hiddleston portrays him. But not quite.

It’s impossible to talk about Loki without including disclaimers every few sentences. And I think that’s where the polarization occurs – you either land on Team Loki or Team Everyone Else. And then when you are Loki, you find yourself in the most frustrating spot of all. The middle.

Let me give you the background on Loki and why a lot of very traditional Norse practitioners would come for my head for writing this.

Though his exact lineage has been debated on for quite a long time, it’s been accepted by now that for all intents and purposes, Loki is part of the Norse family and pantheon, like it or not. Loki, like Eris in the Greek family and Coyote in some Native North American families, is one of the trickster gods. He isn’t implicitly benevolent and he isn’t completely evil, either. There have been many times where he thought what would be a great prank turned out to be quite terrible, and not as reversible as he expected (like cutting of Sif’s hair and trying to pass off Idunna as payment for his various misdeeds.) But there was one occurrence that drew the line, and I understand it.

Loki killed Baldr, the only son of Odin and Frigga, though he did not think the trick would lead to death. Real death. Loki was overcome with jealousy with how much everyone else loved Baldr, and Loki, well, not so much. I have recounted the story of my brother Baldr before, here.

Naturally, the rest of the gods imprisoned Loki for a very long time for what he did. He knows he deserved it. Some people think he’s still chained in a cave, but I know that isn’t true. It was only a matter of time until the shapeshifter figured out how to get out. Loki is out and about on his own terms now, and the rest of the gods know it. Perhaps enough time has passed, and the prophecy of Baldr leading the new generation post-Ragnarok has softened the blow a bit. Frigga will not speak of Loki. And everyone else in Asgard knows better.

Through it all, though, I have felt very connected to Loki. When I first started to feel it, I tried to fight it away. Shut it down. There was no way I was as incredibly nihilistic and chaotic and mind-bogglingly neutral as Loki. But Loki isn’t like that all the time, either. The whole thing about him is that he is…and he isn’t.

I know for a fact had he been born under our stars, Loki would have been a Gemini. My sign. The twins. The duality of nature. The good, the bad, the light, the dark. All at the same time. People feel safe when things are predictable. People like things that are neat and orderly where they can have expectations. Society’s preferences for these things were slammed down onto my head as a child and oh, did I try so hard to do what would make the people around me happy. But it came at a cost.

My stomach would knot over itself in worry. I looked at myself over and over, nitpicking any imperfection and shaming myself for things I didn’t do right. I clearly remember a girl from my third grade class. Her name was Brianna. She had really pretty, straight, long blonde hair and blue eyes. The thing I admired most about her was how organized she was. She always had everything our teachers required of us, neatly tucked in a folder.

I was messy. Disorganized. I would lose important papers and leave books in my locker that I needed to do homework later. And I was miserable. I wanted to be organized. I wanted to have everything that anyone would ever need from me. I wanted to be like Brianna. I wanted to be perfect and clean and normal.

It wasn’t until my reckoning with my own nature, brought on by a visit from Loki himself, did I start to begrudgingly accept that maybe, just maybe…my true nature simply cannot allow for order and perfection.

I’ve been reading Care of the Soul by Thomas Moore recently, and early on in the book he talks about shadow quite a bit, having been influenced by Carl Jung’s work (like most of us in this field, I think.) It was on a particularly sensitive day for me that one paragraph brought tears to my eyes:

"Care of the soul begins with the observance of how the soul manifests itself and how it operates. We can't care for the soul unless we are familiar with its ways. Observance is a word from ritual and religion. It means to watch out for but also to keep and honor, as in the observance of a holiday. The -serv- in observance originally referred to tending sheep. Observing the soul, we keep an eye on its sheep, on whatever is wandering and grazing - the latest addiction, a striking dream, or a troubling mood...for example, if I see my responsibility to myself, to a friend, or to a patient in therapy as observing and respecting what the soul presents, I won't try to take things away in the name of health. It's remarkable how often people think they will be better off without the things that bother them. "I need to get rid of this tendency of mine," a person will say. "Help me get rid of these feelings of inferiority and my smoking and my bad marriage." If, as a therapist, I did what I was told, I'd be taking things away from people all day long. But I don't try to eradicate problems. I try not to imagine my role to be that of the exterminator. Rather, I try to give what is problematical back to the person in a way that shows its necessity, even its value."

For so much of my life, I’ve been trying to pull and wrestle and strangle my soul to fit into the box that will make our life here easier. Be organized. Be helpful all the time. Keep things as clean as possible. Stay on track. Plan ahead. Only focus on one thing at a time. Achieve, achieve, achieve.

And I just can’t do it anymore. I’m so tired of getting angry with myself because the living room is a little messy. Or because one minute I wanted to go write lesson plans and now I want to go paint instead. Or because I dressed in pink in the morning and am wondering how strange I must seem for showing up for dinner in black. And in the darker aspects, I’m tired of trying to fight with a soul who, at its very essence, is both the beauty and the horror of chaos.

There have been a few times in my life now where everything has fallen apart, or at least felt like it. I recently had another, quieter one. I still had a stable, gentle home environment. All the bills are paid. All of my animals are well. I’m physically well. But my entire inner framework seemed to collapse in on itself. I was exhausted of my mind yelling, “Why can’t you just _______?

I could fill in the blank with anything, but when you strip all that away, every time it comes up, what it really means is this: Why can’t you just be a different person?

While attempting to navigate this period of uncomfortable metamorphosis (because you really feel like that poor caterpillar who turns into a bowl of mush in their cocoon) someone mentioned that they had their Gene Key read. If you know anything about Human Design, it seems very similar, so I was curious to know what my genes would tell about me. I’ve done a lot of readings over the years, so I do feel like I know myself pretty well on the spiritual/etheric level (I’ve just chosen to ignore and repress some of the parts, clearly.) I find that I often access the right information at the right time when I’m in these darker places, and this was certainly a turn in the story.

Your Purpose: Gene Key 47. At a mythic level, your purpose is to bring light into places where there is no light. On a mundane level, this means you must not get stuck in any single way of being. Everything about you is changing all the time, so you had better learn to appreciate this about yourself. You can be consistent when you wish to be, but don't define yourself by your past. You are becoming more aligned with your soul's purpose, and it will consistently change you as it brings you into better alignment with that purpose, so you see - your purpose is the most consistent thing about you. Your methods and actions and feelings will keep shifting, and you may despair in what appears to be chaos to others, however, this is one of the most natural processes for you. The 47th Shadow is an access portal through which the fears of the human collective flow into waking consciousness. Very few people confront their shadow archetypes in their life. They do not want to stare down the barrel of the 47th shadow, because the deeper they look, the deeper the rabbit hole seems to go. Those who carry the 47th Key have no choice. You will always be dealing and feeling with fear, whether it's your own, or the collective's. You carry the gift of Transmutation, and if you can access and harness this, you will be able to handle the work of the 47th with ease. Beneath what left-brained scientists have misread as chaos hides one of the greatest secrets of creation. Your gift is the Royal Art - alchemy - the natural destiny of human beings who live their life totally, embracing everything and holding nothing back. It is the art of living dangerously. This does not mean that you necessarily take outer risks - the danger is to the illusion that there is anything fixed about you. The true human soul is indefinable because it is constantly surpassing all definitions. Life is not about success or failure for you - it's about turning lead into gold, helping others to take the reins of their own lives and transmuting themselves with helpful, sacred hands.

So, at the end of this little detour of my life, where am I?

I will no longer make promises, for my sake and for others.’ As we’ve all heard a thousand times, expectations only lead to disappointment, and I doubt that I share the same expectations as most people. And it kind of kills me to say that anyway – I have a very strong Virgo part of me that does feel good when things are organized…but I’ve realized now that she enjoys certain types of organization and expectations that clearly only work for her. I have specific ways of doing things that I need to acknowledge and be supportive of rather than trying to break myself to fit into other people’s boxes.

This doesn’t mean I shirk my responsibilities. I’ve chosen them, so I feel passionate about doing everything they need from me, on my own terms. However, I do feel much pickier about what I choose now, and I know that I’m going to make some people uncomfortable when I say no. I’ve avoided “no” in my vocabulary for a long time, but look where it’s gotten me.

The general consensus is to avoid Loki, but I just can’t. Loki is only really aggravating because he defies all expectations. As if being a shapeshifter wasn’t enough of a hint. I feel that the way Tom portrays him in the Disney+ series is the closest anyone has touched on what really is going on underneath the mythological archetype of the Trickster, and I see myself reflected in those internal struggles. I want to underline that this isn’t the same as those people who glorify being cHAoTiC EviL to seem edgy (you know exactly who I’m talking about.) It’s not an easy existence. I’ve spent 25 years of my life wishing that I could firmly stand on the left or the right side of the spectrum (of anything at this point) without feeling like I was choking in some way.

Now I have to figure out how to allow myself to live in the middle, where I belong.

10/6/2021: New Moon in Libra

It’s that time again, witches & warlocks (and all other associated mystical beings).

We have an incoming New Moon in the sign of Libra, direct at about 6:20 AM CST. If lately you’ve felt like you’ve wanted to hit the reset button, start anew, clean the slate…then this is the time!

Before we dive into the New Moon itself, we should take a look at this moon’s flavor – Libra.

Sweet, sweet Libra. Lovers of beauty, art, comfort, academia…lovers of love, too. They’re fair and balanced, of course, seeing as that their symbol is the scales of justice, so naturally most people look at Libra and think they have it all together! (Well, most of the time they do. I’ve had quite a few Libra friends who I love to death, but hot mess can be another one of their descriptors at times.)

When I see a New Moon in Libra, it makes me reflect on how I’m dancing with self-love in that moment. It’s been on my mind quite a bit as of late, if I’m honest. I’ve noticed that some of my daily habits just haven’t been serving me anymore. It could be a variety of things, including the changing of the seasons, but for me, they seem to not fit anymore because I’ve recently outgrown that version of me in another uncomfortable spiritual ‘glow-up’ (that’s the flyaway fairy way of saying evolution or shift but I do like using the fae-leaning terminology every once in a while.)

So for me, this cycle is going to be about creating new daily routines that support who I am now.

Every moon cycle begins with a New Moon, hits its energetic peak at the Full Moon, and then gently cascades down into the darkness to renew itself again. New Moons are the time for new beginnings – if you want to work with the power of the Moon to usher change into your life, then I would pay attention.

The process of manifestation can happen anytime, clearly, since we’re constantly manifesting things into our lives (and it’s mostly on us if it’s, well, ikke bra – not good.) In order to draw what we seek to us, I often say we must dress the part. We need to be attractive to what we want – the easiest way to do that is to embody and surround ourselves with the same vibration and frequency of what we desire. Great! So how do we start?

First keep in mind that the New Moon is just the beginning – it’s your planning stage. Don’t work yourself up and think that you have to manifest your intention tonight – you’ll actually be continuing this process for another two weeks, until the Full Moon, if so you choose.

New Moon Practice

This is a brief overview of what I generally plan for New Moons and can also be viewed on my New Moon Magic page. Please feel free to cut and paste and adapt to your tastes and preferences! That’s how you create your practice. If you’re not sure what you prefer yet, then just try a little bit of everything and see how it goes!

New Moon Bath or Shower

Before any practice, ritual, or energetic work I do, I always want to cleanse myself first. Since I am usually at home for lunar practices, I opt to take a bath (if you prefer a shower you can do this as well). Make your bathroom cozy – dim the lights if you can, light a candle or two, have a fresh towel waiting for you. If you are drawing a bath, consider adding Himalayan or Epsom salts to the water – they are great detoxifiers and can relax your muscles. You may also add essential oils if you wish (being sure to check if they are safe to use in the water). When you get in your bath (or shower), visualize yourself being cleansed from the inside out. If you are in the shower, imagine the water washing away any negativity or energetic debris and allowing it to run down the drain. While you are bathing or showering, you could listen to a guided meditation or a magical ambient playlist via a Bluetooth speaker, or simply relax in the stillness of silence. If you are in the bathtub, pull the plug and stay in the tub until all of the water has drained out – taking with it any negativity or energetic waste. When you get out, gently dry yourself off and do anything else that makes you feel fresh and clean – like moisturizing your body, washing your face, drying your hair…etc.

New Moon Practice / Ritual

First, familiarize yourself with what sacred space is, and then know that you can set it up however you wish, as simply or as intricately as you would like. Lighting a candle in a clean space is enough. Lighting a lot of candles, smudging, calling in the directions and deities, and burning incense is also enough. I have done both ways, always dependent on how I’m feeling or how much energy I have in me that particular night.

Before anything else, I tend to do my divination first because I like to be made aware of anything that is currently in the dark prior to my intentions and planning. To me it just makes sense – you want to see the full picture before you decide what you want to focus on! We’ll keep using me as an example – today I drew from my Moon Deck, my Chakra Oracle Deck, and my Starseed Oracle deck. The Moon Deck told me that I need to focus on nourishment – both food and nourishing practices. Yeah, well, that fits considering the self-care aspect of what I’m thinking about. The Chakra Oracle deck gave me an Earth Star card, advising me to connect in with Jord (Mother Earth) at this time and to trust that she can help me care for my needs. Noted. And lastly, the Starseed deck reminded me that since I am a leader forging new paths, I need to remember to take care of myself. Yeah, well. I get it. Working on it.

So, great – most of what I had already felt, but good advice and inspirations nonetheless. Now it’s time to write down my intentions. These are more in the rough-draft stages, but:

I am quickly made aware of and easily understand my body’s cues.

I find it easy to commit to routines that nourish me.

I have all the necessary time, funds, and ingredients to create nourishing meals.

And I make my self-care a priority every day.

Always write your intentions in the present tense. If they are in the past tense – they’ll stay in the past. If they are in the future – they’ll stay just out of reach.

After you write down your intentions, close your eyes and think about them for a few moments. How do they look? How do they feel? Bring those energy streams down to you through your thoughts – they’re not so far away. See if you can imagine how it sounds, what it looks like, and perhaps what it could smell and taste like. How would you feel emotionally at the completion of these wishes? After you have done as much visualizing as you can, fold your paper up and keep it in a safe place. Try to reconnect with your intention(s) each day until the Full Moon and practice visualizing them.

New Moon Journal Prompts

I love writing things down. It gets them out of the jumble of my thoughts and clearly onto paper that I can physically see, and therefore, better organize. Consider answering these New Moon questions in a journal:

  1. How have you been feeling lately?
  2. Is there anything that you are ready to release, let go of, or heal?
  3. What are you ready to call into your life right now?
  4. What is/are your intention(s) for this lunar cycle?
  5. What is your reason for wanting to manifest these?
  6. Who benefits from your intentions, and how?
  7. Using one word, what is the main feeling this/these intention(s) bring you?

New Moon Correspondences

‘Correspondence’ is a word you will encounter a lot when reading about magic and spellwork. I explain energetic correspondences as objects, ideas, or practices that carry complimentary energy. The more correspondences you can layer onto your magical work, the more energetically powerful it becomes. So, here are the common correspondences of the New Moon:

  • Colors: Black, silver, purple
  • Gemstones: Labradorite, Black Moonstone, Amethyst, Aquamarine, Hematite, Black Tourmaline, Black Obsidian, Smoky Quartz, and Clear Quartz.
  • Herbs: Angelica, Bay Leaves, Blessed Thistle, Calendula flowers, Cardamom, Catnip, Chamomile flowers, Ginger, Jasmine flowers, Lavender buds, Lemon Balm, Nutmeg, Oats, Passionflower, Red Clover blossoms, Rose buds, Rosemary, Sage, Skullcap, and Witch Hazel.
  • Oils: Angelica, Bay, Calendula, Cedarwood, Cypress, Ginger, Jasmine, Lavender, Lemon, Melissa, Myrrh, Patchouli, Rose, Rosemary, and Sweet Orange
  • Deities: iNyanga (Zulu), Khonsu (Egyptian), Artemis (Greek), Diana (Roman), Luna (Roman), Mani (Norse), Selene (Greek).

This is not an end-all, be-all list, of course. Always listen to your intuition. If you have strong feelings to use a certain tool for New Moon energy, then by all means – use it!

Happy planning!

Why I’m ‘Obsessed’ With My Ancestry, and Why You Might Come to Be, Too

I’ve seen a meme floating around recently that made me pause and think. It said, “Why are Americans so obsessed with their ancestry? You’re from America. You’re American. End of story.”

If it were that simple, would we have the general unrest and discrimination and inequality we have in America right now? Food for thought.

The United States is an interesting country (and certainly not a perfect one, by any means.) I should know – I’ve lived here my whole 25 years of life and have only had the opportunity to travel outside of it just once, to Puerto Vallarta in Mexico when I was 12. I have many international trips mentally planned for when the world is open to us Americans once again. For now, I can roam about this country.

For those of you who haven’t been to the United States, it’s enormous. I have only been in 16 out of 50 of our states. The East Coast is incredibly different from the West Coast. You can experience deserts, mountains, plains, barren ice fields, temperate rainforests, beaches, rolling farmlands, and a plethora of many other natural wonders, all within the same country. So it even feels weird to say you’re ‘American’ unless you’ve experienced all of America – most people in our country identify with the regions they’re from – the East Coast, the West Coast, the Midwest, the South, the Pacific Northwest, the Plains…etc. And just like the ever-changing climates and scenery, there are many, many different people living here who came from other places in the world, which understandably underlines our current reckoning with the notion that no, the average white man does not have a right to make life difficult, consciously or unconsciously, for others who are not just like himself.

The United States is here today because it was taken by force from the indigenous people who lived here before others took to the oceans to explore. This was never ‘our’ country. It was never ‘my’ country. I think this is the root of my discomfort with being known as just an American. Of course, other things have piled on top – our position on the world stage is at the lowest point its ever been, we have political cartoon characters holding positions in our government, and we have quite the track record of shooting ourselves in the foot in nearly all situations that have been put onto our plate as of late. I don’t think I’m the only one here feeling like they’d like to distance themselves a bit from their ‘American’-ness.

I have a very deep spiritual relationship with the earth, with the world – clearly, otherwise I wouldn’t be running this blog. And every time I have sat here, in the place where I have chosen to live for now, I have never felt 100% that it was truly ‘home.’ This land is not my land. It was taken. I see it, I feel it, I understand it. I take extra care to give back to this place, in offerings and gratitude, and thankfully this land has accepted me and the penance I bring forward, for myself and my ancestors. I feel as though I have developed a relationship, or a pact, with the native spirits of this land and they are accepting of my residence here, however, I know deep down that for as long as I live here, I will be a guest in a perpetual state of borrowing.

Eternally thankful for my grandmother’s work on our family genealogy, I have found that I am over 65% Scandinavian. Most of my ancestors come from Sweden, but I have quite a few relatives still peppered over Norway and Finland. The other 35% is basically Eastern European and English, which makes sense. Every time I look at photos of these places, I feel a longing. A pulling. A calling from home. I crave to be in the dark, green forests, surrounded by snow-capped mountains, and listening to the waves roll into the cool, salty fjords. The more I read and learn about the culture, the more I realize how naturally it comes to me. Americans are boisterous, friendly to a fault, and way too eager to make small talk, the absolute opposite of Scandinavia, and the opposite of myself, who is perfectly happy keeping to myself and exchanging a simple hello, if at all. This is just one example, but there are plenty of things in their society that I resonate and align with, especially the Laws of Jante.

The folk music from Scandinavia also keeps pulling me in, and back, so to speak. Music has always been incredibly important to me, as most people know. I feel very strongly that I work with the medicine of music better than any plant or crystal or oil. My musical preferences are varied, though there’s always a common denominator: it needs to be on the heavier side, with a steady beat. And what music is Norway, Sweden, and Finland known for? Black and heavy metal, one of my favorite genres since I was young. It has a very specific kind of dark, primal, earthy, tribal energy – something that calls to all of the artists who find themselves in these genres. Einar Selvik of Wardruna, one of my favorite Norse folk artists, was in a heavy, black metal band before he started Wardruna. He felt the call of the ancients, the desire to attempt to preserve Norse folk music, and let me tell you, he’s certainly succeeded. He and Wardruna have received many awards and accolades for their work in preserving the songs and instruments and traditions of the old world. I use Warduna, Danheim, and Heilung’s music exclusively for my energy work sessions, because the music contains the medicine that I know I have within me thanks to my DNA. It works as a superconductor, bringing the knowledge of the ancients into the present.

I won’t gloss over this either – my ancestors, the Vikings, took things from people. When they moved and expanded, they took down others. All of our ancestral cultures have committed such crimes, but that doesn’t excuse them. I work every day to heal my lines from the traumas they were given and the traumas they inflicted in turn. That is the only thing I can do now from where I am.

Almost everything about me aligns and resonates to a part of the world in which I do not currently live, but have strong energetic and genetic ties to – just because I don’t live there, does that really mean I can’t identify with it? Nah. I don’t subscribe to that belief.

At the end of this, I do want to say that I acknowledge that I carry a lot of privilege with my natural United States citizenship. I’m allowed to sit here and talk shit about my country and my leaders because it’s allowed. I’m also a woman who is allowed to speak (though we’re still working on actually being heard.) I realize that because I live where I do right now, I am more protected and have access to many more resources than a large percentage of the world. Those are the gifts, as well as the beautiful places I can travel to without leaving this country. For me though, deep down, it has been a rewarding and transformative experience to come into the understanding of where I’m really from, what I need to heal, and how to move forward.

If you haven’t done any research into who you are or where you’re from – try it. See what you find. When you learn who you are, the answers will come.

Landing in Chaos…and Being Grateful Anyway

Hello, everyone! I’ve been away for a while. All for good reasons – supporting the business that I run.

For months, we’ve been planning a yoga retreat through our studio for the end of August in beautiful Joshua Tree, California. It was absolutely breathtaking and full of magic – it’s one of my favorite places to be. I was also there to facilitate, hold space, and do energy work, so at the end of the day, it was business, in a sense.

Then, a week later, I found myself in Denver, Colorado for the first gem show expo we’ve been to in nearly TWO years. It was incredibly exciting to finally be able to replenish and renew our stock for the studio! Though I was walking in between some of the most awe-inspiring specimen pieces I’ve ever seen, again, it was still business – talking with the vendors, getting good deals, making sure we were getting the correct amounts and weights and grades. Doing personal shopping, doing networking for other companies that we work with who couldn’t be there. For about 6 hours a day in the hot, Denver sun (it was cracking 98-99 this weekend). It’s a lot. It’s overwhelming. Yesterday I think I took a small breath of relief that I would be coming home today so I could have a few hours in the evening to relax before diving back into it all again.

I was getting little hints through the week that not all was what it seemed, though. There has been a chaotic, dark undertone running underneath these last few days, and I wasn’t quite sure what it was, or where it was coming from.

For the past month, I’ve been having a run of straight nightmares, which is very unusual for me. No matter how much cleaning and clearing and smudging I do of myself and of my bedroom, they persist. I have not been able to break this cycle yet. Sometimes they’re minor dreams. Sometimes I wake up in the night and have to tell myself it wasn’t really happening, and calm myself down enough to sleep again.

Someone I know has left this plane of existence suddenly, without warning, and still without explanation. I will be assisting with their memorial service soon, deeply ritualistic in the solemn, quiet woods. And with the sadness, I sit and wonder why. Why now? Why you? Why us?

I witnessed a traumatic event in Denver in which I found myself playing the role of someone who’s sitting on the pavement while 911 is frantically dialed. An older gentlemen fell off his bike and shattered his hip. He was immense pain, he couldn’t move. No one stopped to help him except us. We stayed with him and tried to support and comfort him for the long thirty minutes it took for the ambulance to arrive. I am sure he’s still in the hospital. I still remember his cries of pain and his yelling as they put him on the stretcher, how he tried to contact his brother, how he thanked us over and over, and how it all still hurts in my heart. And again I sit and wonder: Why you? Why us? Why now?

This morning, we were set up for a leisurely day before our 4:55 PM flight from Denver to Chicago. I had a notion to pack up all of my things early in the morning, before we went to FedEx to wrap, box, and ship all of our stones and crystals. I’m glad I did, because at 9:45 AM, we received a message from Southwest that our flight was cancelled, and we were rescheduled for the next morning.

I nearly went into panic attack mode. I love to take trips, but I love to be home. Home is where I feel safe. Where all of my loves are (human and animal.) Home is where I can breathe and just be, without anyone demanding anything of me (well, aside from the chickens and ducks demanding their mealworm treats, but I don’t mind that.) I had to come home today. I would not accept any other outcome.

We managed to grab the last three seats on the last flight out of Denver to Chicago, at 12:30 PM. We ran straight to the airport, and I held my breath until we were at our gate. Chaos still tried to peck its way in. Once we were lined up for boarding, we were told that boarding would be delayed for 10-15 minutes due to a ‘computer malfunction’ onboard the aircraft. Now that anxiety was here to linger on top of everything else. I think flight anxiety is fairly common, as human bodies are certainly not evolved to be completely comfortable leaving the earth and being 10,000+ feet in the air for an extended period of time. But it’s even more pressure on someone who just wants to be home.

While rushing around trying to handle our flight, I was also trying my best to handle our studio. I have been working or on-call for the entire time that I’ve been away. There were a lot of last-minute requests that I was desperately trying to accommodate. I went up and down our lists of substitutes four to five times over the past few days, and unfortunately, none were available.

Cancelled.

Cancelled.

Cancelled.

I felt a knot in my stomach. It doesn’t look good when you see a studio’s schedule with a bunch of cancelled classes. But there was nothing left I could do. I tried. I did my best.

I’m really lucky that I still have my grandparents on the earth plane with me. I have a special connection to my Poppa, and ever since I was little, he always told me, “As long as you try your best, I’ll always be proud of you.”

I wish everyone was like my Poppa, but unfortunately it isn’t that way.

I’ve become the villain in some people’s stories. Or the ‘bad’ manager. The whispers have curled around my back like the wind and leaves on a dark, autumn day. In my soul, I know this isn’t about me. I’m out here trying my best. I’m 25 years old and have never been trained to be a manager. But I threw myself into it with the best of intentions and learned as much as I could from others that I admire who help manage people and businesses. My Virgo Ascendant does a great job. She’s very attentive to detail, likes to make a lot of notes and memos for everyone, pretty marketing and announcements, and clear, concise policies and contracts. She’s also straight with people. I know for a fact that I am always the first one to apologize and am always ready to work things out the best way that I can when there are mistakes or misunderstandings. I absolutely try to help everyone who comes to me with a question or request. But, not a lot of people have been coming to me. I can’t help if I don’t know that something is off.

The part of me that struggles is the Pisces Moon. When things get chaotic, she cries. She weeps because she thinks she must not be doing enough. That she’s in trouble. That she shouldn’t be where she is. That’s when she wants to escape – to run off, never to be seen again. Away from the world and all of the eyes and the words and the texts and the screenshots and the stories based on nothing of substance.

Oh yeah, even people who have been in this game for 10+ years still struggle with these things. If I’m here, alive, then I’m human. Thankfully, I have tools and practices to bring myself back down, cleanse, reset, and start again. Which is what I have to do. Need to do. I have to keep going.

The truth is that I love where I work. There is no other opportunity in the world like it. I am in deep reverence and gratitude for it every day. I clean the studio on my hands and knees. I perch myself up on the ladder to clean each and every hanging globe light by hand. I dust and wipe off every single crystal and stone we have every week. I scrub the toilets. I cultivate a strong sense of energetic cleanliness by smudging and blessing and opening and closing circles every day. I am constantly in our software making sure things are scheduled correctly. I run and analyze all of our reports weekly. I create all of our visual graphics for marketing and run all of our advertising campaigns. I am in charge of our website as well as our online store. When our stones and crystals come in, I will be the one unboxing them, cleaning them, playing the bowls for them, blessing them, tagging them, logging them in the system, and putting them out on the shelves. When our students have questions about anything, even beyond the means of a yoga studio, I am there to answer. And if I don’t know the answer, I do some research on the computer and have an answer for them when they come out of class. I love our teachers. I think they all bring a healing gift to the studio, all unique to them. I want to help them as much as I can. I am always available through texts and messages and will do my absolute best to figure things out when they need to be. I want to see the best for everyone, because when everyone is experiencing their absolute best, then we all receive a gift.

And that is my truth. Straight from my mouth (well, hands.) No one else can say my truth for me – they aren’t me. I want to watch everyone succeed and live in the light of their Highest Self, because when they do, I smile too. And I know that I am doing my best to be able to support everyone with that intention. I can’t do any more than my best, and I can’t do anything less, because I want to make my Poppa proud.

So as we begin to move into the autumn season, where the air energy takes the dominant hold – things are going to be chaotic. Up in the air. Swirling. Spinning. I ask you, with the sweetest words I can imagine, to observe yourself.

If you find yourself spinning in your emotions or thoughts – ground yourself. Take a breath. Don’t think. Just breathe.

If you find yourself wanting to talk about someone else – ask yourself these things:

  • Is it necessary?
  • Do you have permission to share someone else’s story?
  • Will it positively add to the conversation?
  • Is it kind?

If you’re unsure or uncertain about something or someone else, ask them directly for clarification. Don’t go through a middleman/woman/person for answers – they aren’t them. If you’re uncomfortable asking, explore why. Perhaps the question doesn’t need to be asked. Or, perhaps a better rapport needs to be established so you feel comfortable.

This autumn is going to be tricky. I can feel it already. I will be posting my seasonal guide for autumn soon, but in the meantime, I hope everyone can find peace and stillness in the dark, cool days ahead.

Thank you for being here with me.

Why I Chose To Be Vaccinated

Because, yes, it’s still a choice, contrary to (some) popular belief.

This will not be a biological science lecture, even though I’m perfectly capable of giving one. I studied the broad subject for four years at Purdue University and was required to take cellular biology to earn my degree, a course taught by an experienced research virologist who knew the subject very well. I know how vaccines operate. I know how the data is collected.

Even without that background, I would have still chosen to receive the vaccine. Why?

It would be an absolutely vile spit in the faces of my ancestors if I didn’t.

My ancestors have suffered through wars, through famine, through uncertainty, and through both epidemics and pandemics.

I have lost ancestors through sickness and disease through no fault of their own. Nothing they had at the time was strong enough to combat it outright, and much of the time, no medicine was strong enough to truly bring ease to their suffering. For those who fell ill, yet survived, they still emerged with scars – physically and emotionally. Their hearts broke for the losses in our family and community. My family who survived kept pushing on towards the future, with the ultimate hope that as we advanced, we would never have to endure such terrible things again. That there would be a way, a medicine that could protect their children and their children’s children.

My paternal grandfather was stricken with polio in his childhood, before the vaccine was widely available. He came close to death several times before he pulled through. He has dealt with the physical aftermath for the rest of his life. If he had not pulled through – I would not be here.

I can’t express to you how heavily this presses upon me at times.

My ancestors who survived long enough to pass their DNA on, eventually to create me, have gone through hell to do so. They pressed on, through it all, so I could be here today.

I can’t bear to imagine what they would say or how they would feel if I told them that I refused to acknowledge the ways they suffered. The depth of what they went through when there was truly nothing that could have been done. To jeopardize how far we’ve come. Now, I’m in a place where I can preserve all the work they did with two simple pokes in the arm.

My wonderful partner and husband, who I’ve been with for going on 10 years, had a severe case of bronchitis and pneumonia when he was very young, which permanently damaged and scarred his lungs, leaving him with breathing issues ever since. Any time he gets ill, it usually requires a trip to the emergency room for oxygen treatments. As soon as we started to get clearer information about how this virus presented and affected physically, I was very concerned about his chances of survival should he become infected. I worked to protect him in the beginning – sanitizing surfaces, making sure we had masks in crowded areas, limiting my own time out and about so I didn’t bring anything home with me. Did that mean I needed to make some sacrifices on my end in an effort to keep him safe? Of course. Was I ever mad about it? Absolutely not. Wearing a mask for the 20 minutes I was in the store every few days was an extremely small price to pay to increase his safety.

I love my grandparents dearly. My grandfather has a host of chronic issues that stem from decades of smoking, and his breathing problems are evident on the day to day. My grandmother, at 73 years old, still works part-time in a hospital in her radiology position. When she asked me to wear a mask or keep my distance when I came over, I understood completely, and agreed. Yes, I wanted to hug my grandparents. One hug isn’t worth two funerals. I’m aware that death is inevitable. But causing it to come sooner for such a trivial, preventable reason is unnecessary.

The work I do in this life is really important to me. The powerful healing work I am doing for my lineage would not be possible without my ancestors – I will protect myself to continue to do this healing work for them – they more than deserve it. The work I do for others to aid them on their healing journeys means the world to me – I will not carelessly throw another potentially dangerous roadblock onto their path. And above absolutely everything else, if I dare to claim even a fraction of the title of ‘healer,’ I must hold myself to the ultimate standard – do no harm.

Everyone is a ‘healer’ these days. But I wonder if they knew the true realities of the role, they would still claim the title.

To be a healer is to be selfless. It is to be of service to your community, your collective.

Even if I don’t become ill, even if I believe that I don’t need the vaccine – I can still carry the virus and pass it onto someone else who cannot receive the vaccine (children and those with compromised immune systems).

How dare I claim to be a healer if I were to throw all caution to the wind and say, “Well, it’s no concern of mine if you catch the virus, even if it did come from me. I don’t care if you’re a child. I don’t care if you’re elderly. I don’t care if you have a compromised immune system due to no fault of your own.”

How dare I pick and choose who is worthy of continuing to be here, in this plane of existence, for nothing more than to upkeep my ego’s illusion of personal strength without external aid?

In the circle of people I know, there is a person who refers to themself as a practitioner, or another name for a healer. In a conversation, a name came up – a mutual friend who is battling cancer.

“You know, they could just heal themself if they really wanted to. They don’t have to go through all that – they choose to.

There is still a tightness in my chest when I recount this story. I still feel the shockwaves of disbelief – the audacity of the statement, mired in selfish ego, coming from someone who claims to be a practitioner in the healing sphere.

Our chronic issues and diseases can come from our own energetic wounds. That’s true. They can also come from ancestral trauma – carried up and over thousands of years. But to so flippantly disregard the suffering, the trauma, and the depths of these wounds by claiming it’s so ‘easy’ to heal yourself from it is…horrifying.

This is the same ideology that comes into play regarding vaccines, I feel, in this particular community.

Where has our collective compassion gone?

Maybe it’s my Pisces Moon (read: probably), but it’s difficult for me to watch others suffer, even if it was through their own doing. In my sessions, people come to me all the time and lay it all out in a confessional: I’m the worst person in the world. I fucked up. I did ____, and I hurt someone else. Or, I’ve been like _____ for a long time and have been hurting myself.

Too much of the time, in this world, we say, “Well, you deserve to be in pain, then. You deserve the chronic condition that comes with it. You can heal it, you just don’t want to.”

People want to heal. They really do. Maybe they don’t know how. Maybe they don’t know they need to. Maybe they have thousands of years worth of inherited trauma, and 100% healing simply won’t occur in this lifetime. When you see them suffering and assume that they don’t want to heal…let me ask you why you carry that assumption, and challenge you to see where you need to heal.

Maybe I’m strong (healed) enough to function perfectly well without the vaccine. Maybe I should just go along with the belief that it’s every person for themself. Maybe I shouldn’t be concerned about the people around me, those who I know and those who I don’t.

Simply put, it’s just not in me to do any of that. I care. Maybe I care too much. I look around me and my eyes well up when I see what’s happening in overcrowded children’s COVID wards. My heart hurts when I read the stories of people who have lost loved ones to this illness – unable to see them, touch them, say goodbye to them. Knowing they couldn’t breathe or be comfortable in their final hours. I refuse to be part of the mass delusion that unless this is happening to you, then it isn’t real. This world is already hard enough. Cruel enough.

I chose to be vaccinated because I am, at the same time, the most, and not the most important person in the world. I am protecting myself – my ancestors’ work; my labor of love that is healing my ancestors, which requires me to be alive and kicking; the personal work that I clearly need to be alive in this world to accomplish; if I ever decide to bring another life into this world, they will share my protection – and I am also protecting others – because I am no more important than they are, regardless of who they are, how old they are, what they believe, what their societal status is, what color their skin is. By being vaccinated, I am also indirectly protecting those who chose not to be – I am one less person who can possibly infect them. I am giving them more time to heal whatever they need to heal to see the world through a clearer lens.

Though things seem to be moving in the opposite direction even more every day, I still hold out hope that one day we can move away from the heavy-handed, patriarchal-tinged culture that prizes the personal ego over all else. To be part of a community, a collective, there must be a sense of brother/sister/otherhood. We need each other far more than we know. The world would be a lonely place if we were truly all on our own.

Scandinavian Culture: The Law of Jante

There’s a fascinating social/cultural code in Scandinavia called the ‘Law of Jante’ that I only recently came across in the past year, but surprised me in the fact that I feel I’ve lived most of my life with these same beliefs (genetics and lineage truly run deep.)

“The Laws of Jante go back to a fictional book by the Norwegian writer Axel Sandemose. In his brilliant book from 1933 called A Fugitive Crosses His Tracks, he writes about the Danish town called Jante and the unwritten social code that defines everything in it. This novel describes the author’s alter ego, Espen, a sailor who sets about discovering himself through his childhood in a town. In fact, what Sandemose really did was document this social code that was present all over Denmark and Norway and to an extent Sweden, too. Across all of Scandinavia, this peculiar set of ‘laws’ or rules exists. Not mentioned, but always there, silently enforced by everybody in unison. These are known as ‘The Laws of Jante.'” – from the ScandiKitchen.

Upon reading, maybe these seem a little harsh. It’s just because they’re worded simply so they’re easy to remember. Let me translate them in my own way:

1. DON’T THINK YOU ARE ANYTHING SPECIAL.

We’re all special and unique – we can’t be ‘more unique’ than someone else. It’s impossible. You will always be different in some way, shape, or form, no matter what.

2. DON’T THINK YOU ARE BETTER THAN US.

Again, each and every one of us is better at something than someone else. Yet that someone else will be better at something that you aren’t. Thinking you’re wholly better than someone else for one thing is silly.

3. DON’T THINK YOU ARE SMARTER THAN US.

Similar to the above, you’ll never actually be smarter than someone else. They will always know something that you don’t, regardless of what knowledge base it comes from. I know plenty of tradespeople who have a larger knowledge base than those with college degrees. Yes, you may know way more than they do about astrophysics. But when you call a tradesperson for help with a home repair, you’re asking them for help because you don’t have the knowledge they do. We should celebrate that.

4. DON’T CONVINCE YOURSELF YOU ARE BETTER THAN WE ARE.

A sidebar from #2: once you’ve convinced yourself that you belong up on the pedestal, it’s going to hurt way more when you fall off.

5. DON’T THINK YOU KNOW MORE THAN WE DO.

See #3.

6. DON’T THINK YOU ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN WE ARE. This is a big one right now for the collective. Thinking and acting like you’re more important than someone else is causing harm. All of the previous points of the ‘law’ build up to this – we are all unique, we are all intelligent, and we are all important.

7. DON’T THINK YOU ARE THE *VERY* BEST AT ANYTHING.

Now, I really don’t think this one is meant to shame yourself or to pull back and be hyper-humble. Be proud of what you can do and what you do well! There’s a line between soulful pride and rampant ego. If we convince ourselves that we are the best at something, hands down, then we close the door on learning and improvement. We can always improve and keep working towards *our* best version of what it is we do. But we must also recognize that there are other ‘best’ people in our fields who do things differently than we do. Instead of comparison, judgment, and tearing each other down – why can’t we recognize the many ‘bests’?

8. DON’T RIDICULE US.

What is normal and acceptable to you may (read: probably) differ from others who live in different parts of the world (or even next to you). Ridiculing others means you put yourself in the position of the judge. Do you really feel qualified to judge others? Personally, I’d rather let Odin and Tyr handle the judging.

9. DON’T ASSUME THAT YOU’RE ENTITLED (to other people’s time, energy, or resources.)

Always ask. Never assume. [Blind] expectations breed resentment. It is perfectly okay to have expectations (since they’re an extension of personal boundaries) of how people can use your time, energy, or resources. Just clearly communicate it at the time. If they don’t agree with your expectations, then they can go elsewhere.

10. DON’T THINK THAT YOU NEED TO TEACH US ANYTHING.

Ah. The culmination of it all. Even if you do think you *could* teach someone something – did they ask you? [I’d love to go tell religious conversion ‘missions’ this]. Too many of us believe that our way is *the* way. Ego. Sure, others’ ways may not be pleasant. Or helpful. But what’s the point of trying to forcibly teach them if they aren’t open to listen? The best way you can teach people is by not teaching at all. Just live your way. Those who notice may decide to follow in your steps.

After reading through these points, you may not be surprised by the common thread – why this cultural code came to exist in the place that it did. In ancient times, surviving in Scandinavia was difficult, and even more difficult if you were alone. Fostering healthy connections and relationships with your neighbors and your tribe was a MUST if you wanted to keep going.

If you lacked the knowledge of hunting, then you better hope that one of the hunters liked you enough to teach you how, or was gracious enough to bring enough back for you, too.

If you were the ‘best’ healer in the village and you decided that someone wasn’t important enough for your services – they would likely die, their family would grieve, and it wouldn’t bode well for you for the village to know you only treated *certain* people.

On that same note, if you were the ‘best’ healer – what happens when you die and you haven’t passed on your knowledge to anyone else, keeping your secrets so you could remain the ‘best’? Everyone suffers, all for you to keep your ego happy.

These are just a few examples, and maybe they’re pulled from ancient times, but I still see the world very much like this today, and it feels like the strong ship that my ancestors built to carry me through this life, inscribed in Runes in the bow. Remember where you came from, remember where you’re going.

When Will We Decide To Heal Our Collective Feminine?

When will we start collectively addressing our wounded feminine?


The worst illusion I’ve ever had (and maybe still have) myself under is that we leave our middle/high school selves in the past. I used to believe that we weren’t those people anymore – that we grew up, learned, experienced more, and as a result, have left those toxic behaviors behind. I of course am still working on wounds from my past that will sometimes spring up at the most inopportune of times, but in my experience, I know that 99% of the time, when I feel hurt, it’s much less about the other person and more about me. I’ve learned so much about myself and I’ve gone back in time through meditation/journey state to sit with the wounded versions of myself – the 12-13-14-15-16 year old(s) and do healing work with them. I will take responsibility for my healing. Holding onto pain and grudges against those who have crossed us is like consistently feeding ourselves poison in hopes that the other person will be hurt. I will heal myself. Others’ healing is not my responsibility – consequences will catch up, and honestly? I hope that everyone heals. Because if we can all take a breath and realize that being in this world is traumatic in itself, and take steps toward our own healing, we’re way less likely to keep hurting each other (therapy is good – therapy is good – therapy is good)


Lately, my impressionable, gullible Pisces side is sad. I’m bummed and numbly shocked and disappointed to see that a lot of us are still operating as our middle/high school selves into our late 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond.
When I was younger, I thought I would be surrounded by women who were older, therefore wiser, who would guide me and teach me as I also went through this stage of life.


They are teaching me, but not in the way I had hoped or idealized. Now I’m learning who I don’t want to be. How I don’t want to act. How I really want to show up for my family, my friends, and my clients. And mostly, how incredibly important the work of healing is. We must do it. For everyone’s sake.

The question of, “Why do we keep doing this?” keeps rolling around and around in my head like an 8 ball that just refuses to sink into the corner pocket. Didn’t we get our fill of all of this dramatic bullsh*t back in middle school? High school? Why do we keep bringing it forward now, repeating it over and over, wounding ourselves the same way? An inescapable hellish stage production that just keeps going, with the same storylines, same characters (even if they get re-cast a few times), and same endings. Is it not exhausting? Or is my stamina just non-existent?

Screenshots. Private messages. Closed group texts. Telling stories that aren’t ours to tell. ‘Hearing it through the grapevine’ and repeating it regardless of its accuracy or source. Taking things personally when they really aren’t about us at all.

God, that was middle school for me. And I never wanted to go back. Yet I find myself somehow there again. Instead of seeing lockers, backpacks, desks, and Abercrombie & Fitch everything, now I just see it all play out in each faction of my existence, regardless of if I wanted to be involved or not (hint: I really don’t ever want to be involved). When I experienced this in middle school from friends and acquaintances I thought to myself, Wow, this really sucks. I would never wish this upon anyone. I’m going to do the best I can to make sure I never make anyone feel this way.

And that’s the truth. The whole truth. I have been through so much in my life. My heart has been shattered. The rug has been pulled out from under me. I have walked up to the edge and jumped – miraculously I’m still here today. The point is that since I know how it feels, I try so hard to make sure that no one else around me will ever feel that way, because it is so heavy and gutting and soul-crushing. I grew up. I learned. But I should know better. I have no say in how other people will feel, and I certainly can’t control how others will feel, regardless of how hard I try. In the end, all I have are my words and what I’ve learned in my time here. So that’s what I’ll share:

I think collectively, a lot of us still operate with these old mindsets and programs because we really haven’t ever gone back to rectify or start to heal wounds that we first encountered in these formative years of our lives. I’ll go first – when I was young, I was picked on a lot in elementary school (for god knows what real reason) and didn’t have many understanding teachers. I developed an intense fear around criticism and ‘getting in trouble.’ I’m still working on this one, but it has gotten better. Instead of going into a full panic-attack mode when someone asks me, “Hey, could I make a suggestion?” (and usually it isn’t worded as nicely) – now I take a deep breath and listen to what they want to say, knowing that I can either take their criticism to heart – or leave it, if I feel like it doesn’t resonate.

Speaking of taking things to heart, in my experiences, I’ve definitely learned that 98% of the time, when people lash out at me – it’s not really about me. Everyone who knows me well can back me up on this – when I screw up or make a mistake, I’m the first one to admit it. I think the fourth most common phrase in my personal language is “hey, that was my bad – I’ll get it fixed.” And I do the best I can at the time it happens.

I’ve noticed that some, instead of taking responsibility for the healing that their energetic bodies are asking for, will instead create a story that fits their perspective or how they want the narrative to go. I don’t necessarily categorize this as lying, but lying can be a part of it sometimes. It’s more of manipulation, I think. Twisting and turning the story to our perspective. I understand why this happens. Healing can be really difficult. Going back to those times where we were hurt or traumatized can be asking a lot. So instead of taking the journey into ourselves, we deflect – we turn the story around so it isn’t ‘our’ fault. If we keep up the illusion that we ourselves don’t need any healing, that the other person is horrible and terrible and needs to be locked up (or hopefully, go on their own healing journey) – what does that make us? The victim. And what do victims do? They suffer. If we hurt others without any attempt to heal ourselves, guess what? We’re all hurting.

So instead of making assumptions, creating stories, or trying to ‘read between the lines’ (when there are no lines) – I want to challenge us all to do things differently.

Ask for help if you’re hurting.

If you get triggered by something or someone, please don’t be afraid to speak up and say, “Hey, this is triggering/poking an old wound for me. I need help/support to release this or start to understand this.” When you speak up and let someone know that you’ve been hurt in the past by similar behavior, both of you soften. Not many people intentionally go around hurting and traumatizing others. Most people can’t read minds, either. Most people don’t know about your wounds and traumas. So when you fly off the handle and try to create hurt for them also, they may be completely blindsided and become defensive themselves. You say, “How dare you.” They say, “I didn’t know.”

Ask the person directly for clarity.

Nothing that comes through the grapevine is 100% accurate or true. Instead of passing it around to more people and trying to put the puzzle together with the wrong pieces – reach out to the person in question directly. If you feel uncomfortable doing so, then drop it – there’s no need for you to get involved.

Don’t assume things are about you.

Sometimes when we’re hurting inside, or questioning our own right to be here, we can read or see something that just feels ‘@’ us and have a complete breakdown, even though it wasn’t about us at all. This is normal, and it happens.

Like I’ve talked about before, when you vibrate at a certain frequency, you begin to attract things (or situations or people) that match that frequency. So, sometimes we get accidental ‘confirmation’ of our feelings in our external world if we allow these feelings to take us over completely. The energy we’re putting out created a situation (or found a person or thing) that then forces us to turn our full attention to where we need to heal.

I’ll pull out an example from my life again. When I was in high school, I was a lovesick little thing. I was desperately searching for love and acceptance after being wounded in elementary school and gaining the belief that I was ‘unwanted’ or ‘unwelcome.’ I still maintained this belief through my teenage years because it was so deep, and unsurprisingly, I kept putting myself in situations where I was unwanted or rejected. Kicked out of a friend group. Given the cold shoulder. Rejection of romantic advances. Even though I was a perfectly sweet, loving soul, the Universe kept trying to show me where I needed to heal. That I was the one who needed my love the most. Not someone else. I’ve grown up enough in myself now that I almost want to thank all of the boys who said no to me back then. Bless them all, because they put me down very gently and never said a mean or harsh word. It would have been unfair to put my healing on them. It wasn’t their responsibility. It was mine.

When something comes up and triggers pain, be quick to ask yourself why. Why do I feel like this? Where does it come from? That’s where the healing starts.

Being in this world isn’t easy. Making it more difficult for others and yourself by perpetuating childish drama isn’t the answer.

We’re all in this Earth School to learn. I’m tired of watching my ‘classmates’ suffer more and more when they really don’t need to. Let’s cut the shit & shift. It’s time.

The Reality of Healing in a Spiritual Community Full of Massive Egos

You want to get real? Let’s get real then.

The spiritual community has an endemic ego and narcissism issue. I see it and experience it and I’ve gone a long time keeping my mouth shut on it. But it’s really been bugging me lately.

There’s a great article by Justin Brown going through his experience of transcending through his own spiritual narcissism, and I really appreciate his refreshing honesty and bravery to take a look in the mirror and be able to see it for what it is. “Instead of really using spirituality to move beyond my constructed ego, I was using spirituality to reinforce it…one of the sneakiest ways spiritual ego gets you is that it tells you by intentionally acting [so, not being genuine] and trying to be humble, grateful, positive, and so you think you’re on a better level than those around you who don’t do those things…the “I’m so special” mentality…they look at you with a hint of pity if you don’t share their precise worldview…”

“The ego has many ideas. It says, ‘I want to be a spiritual person. I want to be recognized as a spiritual person. I want to be more spiritual than all these people. And I’m definitely more spiritual than YOU…the essential dysfunction of the ego is still operating. This is why we have the phrase, ‘The road to hell is paved with good intentions.’

Eckhart Tolle

Again, from Justin Brown, “In fact, many (perhaps most) self-proclaimed spiritual gurus or teachers become trapped in the stage of having a spiritual ego. This usually happens because they achieve recognition based on what they share with others about spirituality…the list of those who have achieved powerful spiritual insights but used them to manipulate or mistreat others or start unhealthy communities full of abuse, control, and authoritarian hierarchy is long…so is the list of people who have been hurt by these kinds of experiences.”

This is why I feel like I need to speak up. Because I’m watching people potentially be manipulated and abused and disrespected in the energetic sense by self-proclaimed ‘experts’ and ‘teachers.’

BEWARE OF THE ‘GURU’

“At the guru stage, someone is no longer bound by the method but is able to use their knowledge and experience to speak to everyone’s unique situation. They can take their spiritual practice and make it apply to your life. Spiritual gurus or teachers are often brilliant and persuasive, which can be good when they are sharing amazing information and practices, but can become dangerous and full of deception, too. You should always keep some caution around self-proclaimed gurus, especially ones that are offering ‘levels’ of knowledge, progress, or spiritual unlocking. This is because the guru is smart enough to see through ideologies and systems but will still often choose to use them in order to control and profit from others.” – Justin Brown

Okay, back to this life…

This whole topic really slid across my plate because I have been watching some energetic practitioners in my sphere and have been somewhat horrified by some of their actions and words as of late. Acting as though choosing to feel emotions is spiritually ‘negative’ and ‘tsk, tsk, looks like you haven’t done your [spiritual] work because you wouldn’t be feeling this way if you did!’

If you think you’re enlightened because you’re detached from all of your emotions and feelings and the hard sh*t – then why are you here on Earth?


And before anyone takes that out of context, no, I’m not telling anyone to leave this physical realm. I’m really asking. Why are you here if not to have this human experience? Why are you sitting there telling me that none of it really matters? Mind over matter? What’s the whole point of you coming down here to learn and live? Is it just to stand atop your pedestal and pretend like you have all the answers? To have the masses at your feet, worshiping and repeating every word you say? Feeding your ego by telling everyone that it’s their own faults for their traumas, their illnesses, diseases, and emotional breaks – and then telling them how they should fix it, even though they never asked?

Allow me to be transparent with what I believe (most of these speaking towards energetic practitioners but can apply elsewhere):

AN UNORGANIZED, SOMEWHAT SUBJECTIVE, SLIGHTLY RAMBLING CODE OF CONDUCT FOR ENERGETIC PRACTITIONERS, SPIRITUAL LEADERS, AND EVERYONE ELSE

  • When you do not allow yourself to feel, fully, what emotions come up from your experience, you are pushing it down and creating pain to deal with later.
  • When you do not allow others to fully express, you are co-creating an energetic wound full of shame and judgement for both yourself and them.
  • When you purposely detach yourself from your own feelings and emotions, you are not living in your body and your experience – get ready to come back to Earth in the next life to re-do all the lessons you’re purposely skipping. This is not the same flavor as detachment as a trauma response – that is entirely understandable, and with proper mental health care, you can come to process your emotions and find closure, moving through the trauma rather than ignoring it due to ego.
  • If they don’t ask you for advice – it isn’t your place to impose yourself and your beliefs on them. Your services are better suited for those who come looking for you – not you forcing it onto everyone you encounter because ‘I can help.’ You could help. But your help may not be what they need or want right now. Respect boundaries.
  • It is energetically disrespectful and crossing a boundary to attempt to do energy work and ‘tap into’ someone who has not asked you or given you explicit permission to enter their energy field.
  • When a client is on your table, they are in an incredibly vulnerable and open state. They have put your trust in you to treat them with care and respect. Unfortunately I have had the experience where I have been on a table and the session was not for my healing – they opened me up and put their own traumas and issues onto me, expecting me to counsel them while I was lying face down. This ego made it all about them – some of their clients have also told me that they felt they were used, particularly in the sense that they were used for the practitioner’s own energetic development and renown. I never went back and have sealed my energy field off, especially after hearing the next few points about said practitioner:
  • IF YOU ARE NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR OR LICENSED IN A WAY TO DISPENSE MEDICAL OR PSYCHIATRIC ADVICE, YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO ENDANGER SOMEONE WHO NEEDS THE HELP OF THESE QUALIFIED PEOPLE. Stop demonizing doctors. Stop demonizing therapy. Stop demonizing medication. If someone needs help that you are not qualified or able to give, you are obligated as a practitioner to help them find someone who can. If you care about your own ego and beliefs more than the life of someone else, you should not be an energetic practitioner.
  • Concerning the above, unfortunately I have a real-life story of this happening. A client was having suicidal thoughts brought on by anxiety and trauma brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. An energy practitioner thought that they could heal this client with energy work alone. The practitioner did not notify the client’s family or emergency services. Suicidal thoughts and idealization are an emergency and should be handled by qualified individuals, which this practitioner was not. This angered me to my core because I have been in that place of suicidal thoughts and I know just how fast things can escalate. I know that people who are suicidal are great at lying and will tell you that your energy work ‘definitely helped’ only to go home, be alone with their thoughts again, and commit the act later. It was incredibly irresponsible on the behalf of the practitioner and showed no concern for the client whatsoever.
  • While doing energetic work, you also benefit as a by-product of the work. But it isn’t about you. It’s about your client, and channeling clean Universal energy. Not your own [see below]
  • If you are an energetic practitioner, you are not the source of healing. When you act as though you are, you create a power dynamic between you and your client that reads ‘You need me to heal.’
  • If you aren’t an energetic practitioner, you are more than capable of taking on your own healing. All of us have that ability, some of us have just been trained and have studied it. Google and books are your friends. Practice and experience are your teachers. I promise that you don’t need anyone, even me. It’s okay to want help processing and moving through these things – that’s what I’m here for! I have been trained for a long time and have some degrees, which gives me some hefty qualifications. Some practitioners want to keep you under the guise that you need them because of the money they make from you. I guarantee you that my intention is to help you if you want help – not to make you believe that you need my help, if that makes sense.

At the end of all this, I suppose I just needed to express what I’m seeing around me. It’s one thing to accept and embrace your shadows, but it’s another thing to let them run rampant and be in the driver’s seat, feeding your ego, especially when you’re leading in this community. They are your responsibility, and if you’re committed to helping our collective heal, then you must keep them in check. We aren’t helping anyone if we allow our shadows and egos to do more harm. “I’m not hurting anyone if they’re triggered – it’s their fault they have wounds,” is a bit of a selfish statement. Everyone has wounds. It doesn’t mean you should go marching around with the intent to be a trigger. Triggering someone who doesn’t have the tools or the practices to process through that trigger in a positive way is causing harm. You are taking advantage of their unconsciousness (which can come from lack of access to information – not everyone is unconscious because they want to be) and using it against them to shift the blame away from you when sh*t hits the fan.

And, remember: if they don’t ask you for help in becoming aware of their wounds or how to heal, then it isn’t your place to step in and attempt to force them to do something they aren’t ready for.

So, with all of that said, how do you navigate this world?

  • Sometimes you’re going to trigger someone when you didn’t mean to at all, even with the lightest steps. Be kind. Apologizing isn’t taking the blame for their wound. It’s common decency. “I’m sorry that I touched a sensitive spot for you. I really didn’t mean to. I’m sorry.” They can then proceed in the ways they wish to, and most people will soften. They feel heard, they feel seen, and they feel as though someone does care that they have pain (and, you know, be sure that you mean it).
  • Most people don’t expect you to solve their problems or pain for them. They just want to express them so they aren’t lingering in their systems any more than they already are.
  • It is perfectly reasonable to distance yourself from people who are triggering your wounds. How do you expect to make progress in healing your wounds if they’re getting ripped open every few days? To me, this is different than unconscious avoidance. It’s consciously stepping back, creating a safe and sacred space for yourself, and facing the wound on your own terms – not because someone else is forcing you to.
  • When you feel triggered, it usually doesn’t help to lash out at your trigger. I’m sure we’ve all been there before, and it’s very clear that your trigger is in need of their own healing, too. But you can prevent forming an even stronger (negative) energetic cord between you if you disengage. Feeding the cord makes it stronger and more present, and will take much longer to dissolve.
  • When you see, hear, or experience something that is hurtful or dangerous to someone else, a group of people, or a race of people – speak up, but be mindful of your words. Nastiness, name-calling, and threats cause more pain and detract from the issue. Bringing awareness to a situation is incredibly important for all parties to become aware of things they previously were not, to (hopefully) have some self-reflection and take charge of their shadows, and ultimately, the goal is to heal and prevent these situations from recurring.

If you think that to be enlightened means to have no emotions, no triggers, no wounds, no pain; to have an Instagram-perfect life, to seem like you’re never ‘unbalanced’ or ‘shaken,’ a perfect home, a massive following of disciples who hang onto your every word, a huge business, a load of money, expensive clothes, and a library of accolades and degrees and certifications – then I’m going ask you to look in the mirror and start working to heal that ego. Don’t allow it to do more harm than good. ‘Fess up, get brave, and do the work.

Growing Pains (or Spiritual Ascension)

It’s been a long week. And today is Thursday.

You know the type of week I’m talking about. Where you started off on a high peak, admiring the scenery, and then feeling the earth crumble beneath your feet, dropping you onto the tracks of a high-speed roller coaster ride. Swinging up, plummeting down, inverting in a loop, and then feeling like you’re still inside out when you land.

Some people call it a spiritual ascension. I call them growing pains.

I’m no stranger to these periods. I’ve experienced at least one or two a year for the past three years. The frequency of them has slowed down, but the pain is more substantial, and the growth more noticeable after the wreckage has been cleared. We, as entities, have many, many layers. Multiple physical layers, emotional layers, energetic layers. Wounds and traumas can be located in the first layer only, they can stretch a few layers deep, or some of them can be so far underneath that we will not discover them until we have already peeled away most of ourselves. That’s why this journey of healing can be frustrating – or easy. It depends on how deep it is, and how much work it’ll take to get there.

Note that the word ‘work’ does not imply that it is difficult, or in contrast, easy. It is work.

I’m not sure how many times I’ve been approached after classes and workshops and been asked, “I learned so much from you today. I had no idea about any of this stuff! But how do you…I don’t know, how do you do it? How do you heal?”

What a simply complex question.

Last Friday night, on my way home from work, my car’s engine overheated. It was the first moment that I felt truly stuck and restricted from moving about the way I wanted for a long time, and it was the catalyst for this particular growing period.

I’ve needed a new car for a long time. Bless the poor thing though, even through getting nearly every recall in the book and a transmission that slips and jerks whenever you downshift, it still got me from Point A to Point B consistently. This coolant line leak was the last straw, though. I knew it was time. It was already paid off, I have the title, and used cars are going for much more than usual in the current market. It was a no brainer.

I’ve been trying to manifest a new car for over a year, and I use the word ‘trying’ lightly. My life is generally appears as a jam-packed, ink scratched, sticky-note covered schedule. Yes, it’s mostly full of good things, but it would be even better if I committed to making time to practice my craft or do my own work. This feels like a mega HYPOCRITE alert in my brain, because most of my time is spent teaching others how to practice. I know what and how and where and why and with what tools. I just need to do the damn thing, you know?

In the span of about four days, I was told that my grandmother’s cousin owned a car dealership in Illinois and he had been helping out our family with cars, including my mother and my aunt, so I had family on the ‘inside’; when I called, he asked me what I wanted, and pressed me to be honest so he could find me something I would like; he went to a dealer auction to find something just for me, and it was the same color and had the same features of the car I dreamed of for a year; our financing got approved with no issues and a reasonable interest rate; and a $1,000.00 down payment in addition to my trade-in manifested itself out of nearly thin air.

What had taken me nearly a year of 0.25% trying happened in about 4 days with almost zero effort. The Universe saw that I needed a new car, and she put everything in motion for me. Part of me wondered if she thought, “There’s no time to waste. She has clients scheduled for energy work and she needs something better to get her there.”

The first thing I realized was, Holy shit. See what happened? And think about what could happen if you ACTUALLY TRIED and DID THE WORK?!

The second thing I realized didn’t feel as empowering. I had an anxious, icky feeling in my stomach. You would think I would be jumping for joy, right?

“You literally just got everything you asked for as easily and quickly as it could have happened. It’s awesome! Aren’t you excited?” my closest guide asked me.

“I am,” I replied, starting to sink down into my body. “But I’m also worried. I don’t know, money always makes me anxious.”

And there it was.

When I think back on it, I remember my guide audibly sighing, because he knew just as well as I did that I stumbled upon a wound. A wound that I knew was there, but chose to forget or downplay; a wound that is possibly a few layers deep; and one that I know for certain is a few generations continued.

The energy of money is held in the Solar Plexus, the chakra center just above the belly button. It’s our manifestation center and where we house our power, so this makes sense to me. Money is an energetic tool that we use to manifest what we want. The way we use it is entirely dependent on who we are, what our wounds are, and what was passed down to us. A lot of us feel a certain sense of shame around money (considering that I feel like I’m speaking to the other 99% right now) and if you’re one of those people, I want you to know that you aren’t the only one.

Shame around money can look different for different people. For me personally, it’s my debts. I ended up repeating a pattern that I saw when I was young but didn’t really understand until now. I dug myself a reasonably sized hole to the tune of about $6K on credit cards. I have about $25K in student loan debt, too. We could speak about the political and financial nature of these debts for days, but that doesn’t really interest me. My work is in the energetic nature of it. Why did I put myself here? What is the lingering mental program that keeps me in this energy stream of debt?

Maybe it’s because, through the critical environment I was raised in, I believed that I wasn’t good enough and nothing I did was ever going to be enough (leading to never having enough).

Maybe it’s because my expectations of myself are aligned with a societal expectation that I haven’t investigated enough to agree or disagree with (leading me to fall into the belief that you’re a good, responsible person if you don’t have debt and a bad, irresponsible, shameful person if you do)

Maybe it’s because I watched and embodied a pattern of trying to fill emotional wounds with objects that brought a fleeting dose of serotonin.

Or maybe it’s because I have a deep, gaping wound of shame that’s feeding all of the money related channels in my body that I need to address.

As you may have guessed, it’s (mostly) the latter, but the other ones play their parts, too. My guide and I came to this conclusion and he asked me, “So, I guess we have to start to pick through this thing. When have you felt really ashamed or embarrassed?”

It hit me like a brick. The realization that I haven’t dealt with or processed anything that happened to me while I was in Catholic school.

When you come upon these realizations, these light bulb moments, what do you do with them? You want to heal them. How? What does healing look like? We’re all so unique that different things will work for different people. For some, it’s therapy. For others, it’s healing through plant medicine. For some of my clients, it’s by doing energy work.

Let me tell you what I did with this wound.

After I became aware of the wound, I wanted to resolve it as fast as possible. It was causing me to quite literally hemorrhage money in my physical existence to keep feeding this wound, and I am ready for the freedom that more money can give me to do the work I do in this life.

So, I blocked out time. Yes, for real, I made myself pick a day and time to begin to unravel this. It was after one of my last energy sessions for the day, and I closed myself into my treatment room and prepared the space just as I would for a client coming in. I called all of my watchtowers (Freyja and Freyr in the East, Baldr and Sol in the South, Thor in the West, Odin and Frigga in the North, Mani in the Above, and Mother Jord in the Below) as well as Eir, the Norse goddess of medicine who I work with often. I felt many more out on the periphery, though, as if they had been tipped off that I was doing this work tonight.

I sat down on my treatment table in a straddle position, facing South, for the fire element and its correspondence to the Solar Plexus. My main guide took a seat across from me, and I began my work.

Picking up my crystal energy key, I slowly began to open up my Solar Plexus by turning it to the left. Generally, my Solar Plexus feels pretty good. I feel confident in myself, strong, and do things the way I want to do them. But that was just my top, healthy layer. I had to go deeper.

“Okay,” my guide started. “You need to go back to the Catholic school now. You have to go back and see what happened.”

I watched it all unfold again, just as it did 18 years ago, but from a third person’s perspective. I watched the little girl hold onto her tears with all she could so that she wouldn’t cry in front of her classmates. I watched the teacher yell and dump her desk over, sending everything onto the floor. I felt the heat of embarrassment and shame in her little face as she desperately tried to clean everything up, making herself as small as she could. I felt the pit in her stomach, the fear that her parents would be called and she would be in even more trouble.

What did she do wrong? She couldn’t find a worksheet. Her desk was a little messy. Her home life was a little messy. And she was 7 years old.

As I watched this memory with older eyes, my heart felt like it was breaking into a thousand pieces. In my visualization, or while I was in that realm of memory, I reached my arms out to grab her. I could feel it, somehow. I pulled her close. Now we weren’t in the school anymore. We were just sitting on this massage table together. I could feel her scratchy school uniform, her little body shaking in my arms as she cried. Tears slipped down my face, too.

“You’re okay,” I remember saying. “This all happened a long time ago. You don’t have to stay there anymore. It’s over. You aren’t a bad person because you’re a little messy. You aren’t a bad person because you lost something. [Our teacher] should have helped you. She should have just given you a new worksheet, or she should have let you, or even helped you, clean your desk during recess. She should have asked you if you were okay. But she didn’t. Instead she decided to embarrass and traumatize you in front of everyone else. And that wasn’t right. I know how hurt you feel. It’s okay. We’re older now, and we’re going to let that go. We don’t need to carry it anymore.”

Suddenly, she disappeared, and for a moment I felt lighter. Maybe it had worked, maybe I had released her from being trapped in that memory. But then I doubled over in pain, my stomach turning into knots. I could barely hear my guide trying to talk to me. I quickly opened a portal on the table, in between my legs, and just began to sob, letting it drain into the portal. I felt hands on my back and my shoulders, and I was pushed forward so that my stomach was closer to the portal. My guide at the other end held my hands as I shook and cried.

In between gasping for air, I could hear them. The gods, my ancestors, everyone. They were all telling me the same thing. We love you.

I don’t know why, but whenever I hear that, I always cry harder. For some reason, just getting the notion that someone else outside of me actually having the audacity to say those words and truly mean it sends me over the edge every time.

I started to have visions of my ancestors, feeling their feelings. The anxiety they had coming to the New World. Worrying about money, about debt. Do we have enough? Enough food? Enough to get us through the winter? Will we be able to come back from this setback? The tears wouldn’t stop coming. I can’t remember if I actually managed to speak it or just think it, but I remember trying to express to them, Thank you. Thank you for everything you did. Everything you went through. You survived, which is the whole reason I’m here. All of you made so many sacrifices that led to me being here, to do the work that I’m doing. I don’t know if you knew it then, you probably didn’t, but now that I’m here, we can all heal. I want to heal this now, for all of us, for everyone who comes after us. We don’t need this wound anymore, and I definitely don’t want it. If you help me to release it, we’re all released from it. We’ll be free.

I don’t know how many hands were on me, but it felt like a lot. Eventually I ran out of tears to shed. I felt empty, drained. But light. Something had moved. The muscles in my abdomen were sore. Things felt different. I closed the portal, and one by one I felt them leaving. Eventually it was just me and my guide left. I gathered up the twenty crumpled tissues, shut the lights off, and went home.

Did I release it all the way? Maybe. It’s too soon to tell. In my experience with energy work, there are always layers. So many layers. If that was one layer, then so be it. That is how I heal, or begin to heal. Get in it. Face it. Release and express all of the emotions you couldn’t then. Use the tools that you have available to you. Let yourself rest.

Tomorrow I’m picking up my new car, which the dealer also put brand new tires and brake pads on as a ‘family bonus.’ The more I open, the more I receive.