Pilgrimage + Travel Magic

Goddess at the GateJust returned from the amazing Goddess Retreat 2016, and a quick leap up to Canada for art making and several lovely VIP days with a client, before I landed back home! Home…renewed and in a space of reflecting and connecting. The studio is covered floor and tables overflowing, books are flung open and I am feeling into the NOW!

Looking back, I realize that when I left I was feeling a bit depleted. Spring brought some fatigue that was uncomfortable and seemed to hover around me. A foggy subtle confusion was lingering in my psychic space…then there was a sneaky cold that hit and sent me to bed the week before my flight!

Even a season of blah-ish-ness could not resist that the journey was calling…called me back and reminded me of who I am and what I love! Every time, EVERY TIME, in art and in life I am called back to myself through the journey. It happens in my studio, through my hands, on the page, in my body, walking a path, reading a poem and sometimes jumping on a plane. It is the Journey that remembers me home, renews my spirit and lights me up.

I feel the connection between my inner and outer expression aligning, my essence surfacing, is expressed and experienced more strongly and with that energy an active visioning is rising. It is PRESENT…not pressured or nagging, but comfortably there, ripples along the edges – bringing a sense of accessible free flowing moving energy.

I am also feeling connected in my body. Embodiment is (and has been) an active intention this year, lightening up, moving more – delighting in this sacred body and myself as a vessel that holds the divine spark. Tight hips and crunchy knees are certainly present, sore back and yes traveling across a dance floor or up a high hill or lugging suitcases through airports can leave me breathless at times.

Amazingly when I travel, most of my joints calm, my lungs open, my muscles relax and JOY propels me. I bring this glowing energy, a lightness, movement, range of motion and LOVE back with me from Glastonbury (*considered to be the heart chakra of the world), the ripple effect of any kind of journey is long and strong!! While there are many experiences that have contributed to this energetic lift, I recognize something that is held in the core of my being, root of my root, the depth of my soul…and cetianly part of my souls path…it is this:

I am a seeker.

I am a seeker who must journey within and without. I am a seeker-artist, poet, philosopher, healer and priestess…wisdom keeper in all forms. It is the inner yearning to learn and grow, to guide and go into the next spiral of my life that propels me, inspires the creative rising and passion that must be met in all ways. The quote below continues to inspire me after 20 years and I experience this deep and profound connection when I paint, collage, travel to and step into landscapes that call to me. These words in action are the mysteries that fuel my commitment to the journey, this life-work that includes teaching, healing, coaching, guiding and opening up the field of mythic living through art, depth and process. These are the mysteries that have chosen me, as much as I have chosen them!

Mythic landscapes
I know that these wisdom words inspire you too…they are spoken in the collective, channeled through the voice of wisdom writer Jean Shinoda Bolen and offered like a gift right into your art and life. You can whisper these words like prayers and see what sacred landscapes are coming close and remembering you. What journeys are calling you forward? Are they inner or outer landscapes, above or below realms, mythic or remembers, real of imagined? They all count, they all matter, they each have right timing and divine purpose so pay attention to the call, to the inspiration and to the guidance that is offered in your life! Image and words are blended to share an image of the grandmother tree in the Avalon Orchards, where I close the retreats in England with a ritual and prayer.

This is invocation. This is life.

I guide pilgrimage and retreats once or twice a year, always to places that are magical to me. These sacred places hold personal and universal connection that has been long activated the land, in ways that are unparalleled. I only know these places because they call me to them, generally though art, sometimes in dreams, books, images and poetry, but the call is felt in my body and spirit in ways that cannot be denied. I will develop a communication with sacred place through art making and dreaming first.

For years I was an armchair traveler, winged night-dreamer making my visitations and landing into sacred places in order to bring back some of the magic that was waiting for me. I activate through art and then amplify connections in any way that I can…which is how my Mythos Journey process new came to be!

When I am in a place that has called me, I am standing on the bones of the ancestors. They are the ones that offer me gifts to guide me, pieces of their experience like lanterns to light my way. It happens when I am walking, making, in ritual, when wandering and through listening. Sometimes when I travel and am called to a place I don’t know well…I wonder if I am following a whim or listening well. But in these times I am aware of the call and that something specific is waiting for me so I choose to trust and travel deeper in. When actively seeking the connection in sacred place there is a special kind of consciousness or magic that rises into awareness. It is awakening energy and even more potent and extraordinary when other women join me.

Here are some image memories and celebrations in art and life, from the last six years – the next Goddess Retreat, “La Dolce Vita” is in Tuscany!