Posted on 1 Comment

Full Moon Guidance (July 2017): Fehu & Solitude

Today we had our first Runic Meditation at the Wilderness Park. Though it was a hot day, we were blessed to find the outdoor amphitheater under the shade of tall pine trees.

Things went well. I introduced the Rune FEHU (1st of the 24 Runes of the Elder Futhark), and discussed its divinatory meaning and spiritual uses (as always with an emphasis on self-knowledge, inner alchemy & transformational work). I explained my take on the posture (also known as Stadhagaldr), energetic breathwork and how to overlay the Galdr (chanting or whispering) in order to deeply connect with Fehu. We ended our gathering with a meditation to retrieve a more personal meaning or message for each of the attendees. If you wish to be part of our next gathering (which will take place 2 weeks from now), you are welcome to join our Meetup group HERE.

Now let’s talk about Fehu some more. Well, it’s a Rune that is traditionally connected with growth, wealth and the material world. Fehu means “cattle”, which in Germanic tribes were both food (and therefore a mean for survival) and a currency. Some scholars speculate that Fehu was a later addition to the alphabet, since cattle were introduced during the Neolithic revolution – as opposed to the following Rune URUZ (the auroch: which was their wild, undomesticated relative) which obviously has a more ancient connection (for that reason I tend to believe that the alphabet was initially UTHARK, and that the Runes could date back to the last Ice Age). But Fehu and Uruz have a very different energy – Fehu is a somewhat harmonizing Rune.

If I had to define it in one sentence, it’d be “Know thyself and thou shalt know the Mysteries of the Gods and the Universe.” Why? Because Fehu invites us to look inwards for our inner wealth and our inner resources, which combined with the outer material resources available to us, will support our growth and the materialization/manifestation of our vision, goals, and dreams. It’s all about finding or re-establishing balance because as helpful as material wealth is in terms of survival and personal well-being, one’s true wealth lies inside.

This Full Moon has a very earthy side because it’s in Capricorn so it’s a good time to ground ourselves as well as our personal goals. Let’s analyze them in an objective way: are these goals and dream realistic and feasible or just wishful thinking? How can I make them real? What do I need to shed in order to make them happen?

In your quest for clear and honest answers, Solitude (the card above) is the key. Take the time necessary to rest and recharge your batteries, because you need clear thoughts, strong will, and energy (URUZ) to make things happen. Don’t be hard on yourself. You’ll get there slowly but surely, one step at a time. Pay close attention to your dreams and your intuition as they may hold some important clues. The night is an ally (notice the Moon, the Owl and the Moths on the card) so why not try some moon gazing? And who knows, the breeze might whispers things into your ears in a language more ancient than silence…

 

 

Posted on 1 Comment

New Moon Guidance (June 2017): Dagaz, The Navigator & The Fledgling

We are still under the influence of the Summer Solstice (which happened 2 days ago) and in the Runic month of Dagaz. We are now experiencing the 2nd phase of our alchemical Calcination (the 1st phase happened during Othila, see my Full Moon post on the topic): after examining and redefining our self, our set of values and our connection to our Ancestors, we are now ready to be reborn from our own ashes (best compost ever!). This “Phoenix phase” is what Dagaz is about.

A veil has been lifted and we are now experiencing a new, refreshed perspective on our self and on our life.

Dagaz combined with The Navigator indicates that we are now ready to take matters into our own hands and therefore the lead in our life. We have redefined who we are (during Othila) as well as the direction we wish to move toward with our life. With this new self comes a sense of confidence based both on skills and experience(s). We are not at the mercy of the Winds of Fate anymore (at least not completely). We know how to read and understand the signs that are leading us where we need to go. We speak the language of the mind aligned with the heart, and we are able to navigate and play around systems, rules, and norms in a way that suits us and our personal goal(s). Time to be bold and daring with this (re)new(ed) vision!

Dagaz is also combined with The Fledgling, who is here to rekindle our sense of adventure. This card gives us wings, literally. Its uplifting energy is here to help us reconnect with our inner child, our sense of curiosity and our enthusiasm. Ask yourself what is it that makes you happy? What makes your heart and your soul sing? What are you looking forward to? Once again, be daring! Don’t be afraid to take chances even if the little voices in your mind say that it is foolish…You might find yourself rewarded with unexpected, yet beneficial results. Your new, redefined self doesn’t need anybody’s approval…So just be! Who cares if your choices don’t fit social norms, expectations or traditions…You can create your own. They will come from the heart and will have a real meaning because they will be true to you. Be like a child: trust and take chances! “Your gift is a fresh start. Your resources are boundless.” (from The Slow Holler Tarot). So, enjoy the ride!


Like what you read?

I’m available for personalized reading as well (in person, via email or via Skype). Feel free to contact me privately: deerzenseer@gmail.com

 

Posted on 1 Comment

The Inner Alchemy of Samhain: Nigredo & the Release of the Old Self

A delayed article that I intended to write a few days ago…

As much as we like to view ourselves as “Homo Technologicus”, we are still children of Nature and are bound to its natural cycles, even within ourselves. Some of us happen to be more in tune with these cycles than others, and we intuitively know when it’s time to retreat inwards.

Every once in a while, I like to open Glennie Kindred‘s book Earth Alchemy – A Dynamic Fusion between Alchemy and the Eight Celtic Festivals, in which she describes the principles of Alchemy as applied to the Celtic Wheel of the Year as well as her own personal experience.

She naturally associates Samhain with Nigredo/Putrefaction, a phase when you get rid of the old parts of the Self that are no longer relevant, that are then turned into ashes via the fire of Inner Alchemy. It’s a time of release and letting go, the end of a cycle. These same ashes will become fertile ground/compost for the new, reinvented & redefined self with its new intentions, new dreams, wishes & projects.

I associate this phase with the Rune Jera. Everything in Nature is cyclical: where a cycle ends, a new one begins. One must look at one’s inner harvest with scrutiny and objectivity, as well as kindness. We obviously don’t want to repeat the same mistakes but we can’t be too harsh on ourselves for having made these mistakes in the first place. Mistakes are lessons to be learned and, as such, are part of our growing process.

“Alchemically, Nigredo, the Dark, is the ending of one cycle, out of which new possibilities are revealed. It begins with a descent into the Darkness inside us to find the Lead, which is also the Gold, the Alchemist’s Prime Substance or Base Matter, the very essence of life…Through meditation, the art of being and contemplation I find stillness within. I am able to touch my deepest wisdom and find my connection to my natural goodness and inner knowing at my core. I find my connection to Spirit and the Gold that lies within.” Glennie Kindred

This alchemical phase happens to take place within the Runic half-month of Hagal(az). This specific Rune is often associated with destruction, hence its name (hail). Hagal will shake you to your core, and find its way to the cracks and the dark place of your being. Hagal has the power to turn your world upside down, and it will leave you naked with your core foundations exposed to the elements & with the duty to repair and rebuild your Self and your life), better and stronger than before.

Hagal also happens to be a Mother Rune: a Rune of potential and creation. While you can’t have any control over what it is going to unleash into your life, you can choose what and how you want to rebuild. In that sense, Hagal can make us a favor as most of us don’t want to be consciously confronted to our shadow side.

While we are turning inwards and facing the Dark, it is important to remain grounded. Autumn, with its cooler & shorter days, requires more energy from our body. Nutrient-dense foods such as root vegetables, meat, and animal fats will provide the fuel needed for our body to face the outer world.

But to help us define our vision and dream our dream, we can turn to Mugwort (Artemisia Vulgaris, also known as Cronewort) as an herbal ally.  Mugwort is 1 of the 9 Sacred Herbs in Northern Shamanism, and is used to induce visions and dreams. Raven Kaldera writes in his Northern Shamanic Herbal: “Mugwort is very old, and it has been used magically for a very long time. It has no active hallucinogenic parts, unlike Wormwood, but it doesn’t need them to do the trick of creating a sacred space and enhancing one’s psychic powers.” 

Judith Berger also talks about Mugwort in her wonderful book Herbal Rituals: “…Known to many as an herb of magic, cronewort allows us to live in several worlds at once, expanding and nourishing the habit of drawing our gaze before us to that which is visible, and behind us  to that which is invisible. Regular use of cronewort in tea or extract strengthens our ability to absorb intuitive information as we preserve an aspect of sharpness in our interaction with the complex, outside world.”

Mugwort is also a nourishing, medicinal herb with an affinity towards the digestive system (which will be useful to help us digest the rich seasonal diet of Autumn): “Like a true wise elder, cronewort knows that a grounded, vital body is as precious as our visionary abilities, and so Artemisia Vulgaris tones our organs so that we will become sturdy as well as wise old crones. Cronewort leaves are a rich source of vitamin B complex, vitamin C expressed as ascorbic acid, and carotenes expressed as vitamin A. Cronewort abounds in minerals such as calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and iron. A vinegar made from the leaves of this artemisia will strengthen the entire digestive tract, improving appetite, normalizing bile production, and supporting and restoring the supple strength of the small and large intestine.”


Sources:

“Earth Alchemy” by Glennie Kindred

“The Northern Shamanic Herbal” by Raven Kaldera

“Herbal Rituals” by Judith Berger

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on Leave a comment

Oracles as Tools for Knowledge

I collect tarot & oracles decks, just like I collect other things. I choose them depending on their theme and more importantly on their artwork. I use them regularly, especially when I feel unsettled, somewhat lost or when I have a doubt. I also use them to complement my Runes, because some of them can be a bit vague at times.

The beauty of oracles is that they are more precise than tarots, which makes them more approachable. While most people use tarots & oracles to divine the future, I find that they are also very good tools for self discovery and to help guide you in times of change & turmoil. When you are not sure of what’s going on but understand that some things are out of your control, that universal/evolutionary forces are involved in the great story of you & your life purpose.

It’s comforting to pick a card or two to tell you that everything is alright, that you’re heading to the right direction, that you are awakening to something new, that you shouldn’t be afraid of change(s),  that there is light & hope at the end of the tunnel, that what you are currently going through is beneficial and/or necessary, and that you just need to be a little bit more patient that’s all.

card-of-the-day2

Today I picked those 2 cards. The past few days I’ve been feeling a bit down, which is unusual for me. I always have a million projects going on and I have a very rich inner life (which has helped me keep my sanity on more than one occasion).

Salu talks about wellbeing: whether on a physical, emotional, mental and/or spiritual level – let’s face it they are all connected. I have recently felt the need to reconnected with my roots and my natural earthiness (as a Virgo/Horse), the need to feel good, peaceful and balanced. The need to be me, the real me, the wild me, the delightfully weird me, not the one people expect me to be. That means breaking the illusion, even if it means shattering some people’s dreams. For my own sake, I need to be selfish and drop that burden once and for all. The world is not all white & black, there are many shades of grey in between. And my spiritual gift comes in grey, even the darkest grey. And grey is probably not New Agey enough for some people. But my roots (and my strength) come from the Underworld, there is no point in denying it. I accept it and guess what?…I embrace it fully and wholeheartedly. I shine like antique silver!

I’m not here to redeem the so-called “fallen ones”: mischievous pixies, forgotten Sidhe or Little Folks in Faery forts. They don’t need redemption, and they don’t need a Savior either. They were created by the same Intelligence than everything else in this Universe, therefore they are perfect just the way they are.

Back to Salu & wellbeing, well it starts with what you put in your body – the nutrients. Since I haven’t been feeling quite like myself, I naturally haven’t fed myself as well as I usually do (and in the Summer I usually have other cravings anyway). So I’m gonna get back to what suits me the best: my customized paleo diet, with some wild plants, herbs, edible flowers and a good amount of fermented foods (packed with nutrients and beneficial bacteria, and also great detoxifiers). I’m also gonna get back to my beloved herbs. I was sick for almost 2 weeks in August (I get sick about once in a decade) and became aware that I haven’t been preparing remedies like I used to. So I can predict that some tea blends and other herbal concoctions will find their place on my shelves once more in a very near future.

Salu’s message: You must also do the work: sweat and discover just what you are capable of, and be sure also to change your nutrients – enhance the food you are eating, be sure you eat well, and acknowledge any unhealthy eating patterns you may have developed to self-nurture and comfort. All of this dedication and self-love will pay off in marvelous ways…”

Now for Isa (I’m very familiar with the Rune of the same name), it’s all about stillness and inner consciousness (a bit like the Hanged Man). We all see the ice but few of us are aware that water is flowing under…I once read that Isa creates matter. So under the ice, and away from the eyes, things are slowly but surely manifesting into the physical.

As I’ve said in previous posts, I’ve been though a period of change. It was long, it was painful, I nearly lost hope on more than one occasion but I’ve done the work, and it was worth it. I’m a very different person that I was 3 years ago. It’s almost like night and day. I’m like a newborn butterfly drying its wings in the sun…Soon it will be time to go, time to leave/fly to another place but not quite yet. Once again patience is the key. I don’t forget my goal(s), I’m still doing the work but the Universe always has the last word. My friend Stefan would say something about “all the cooperative creative components falling into place” but he says it better than I do.

Isa’s message: This is a moment of complete stillness and simply be-ing: a long moment where you are completely present. You are as still as a chrysalis, hanging seemingly static from a branch, fragile and mysterious. Like the chrysalis, you will “do” nothing – nothing at all, except become yourself. Your transformation is being worked invisibly, on the side, and when the time is right, you will share it with the world. In a situation where you seem to have no control, no power, you are learning the most valuable form of power there is – self-mastery…”