Wednesday, January 25, 2012


Sometimes life just goes along, ho-hum, and then one day you have a revelation.

This is not some divine revelation. Well, maybe it is. It depends on how you define "divine". The job of the guru is to get you to "wake up" from your sleep, to realize the truth instead of wallowing in delusion. If that is "divine", then I suppose this is a divine revelation.

I don't know what brings about such sudden changes. I might point to a number of factors. One would be meditation, certainly. I have been faithful to my meditation schedule for more than a month; this usually puts me more in touch with what is often know as one's "inner voice". The Inner Voice was making me quite uneasy these days. I had a Plan. I knew exactly where I was going in the next five years. Then the voice started rumbling. Whining, in fact. The last time I really recall this happening was before my wedding to my now ex-husband. I wrote it off to transitional anxiety, jitters about "change". Boy was I wrong. Hence, I have learned not to disregard this "voice".

Calling it a voice is not exactly accurate, either. For many people, it sounds like you're crazy, like you're hearing people urging you to do things inside your head. The real "inner voice" has nothing to do with such nonsense, or with any psychosis. Having that "voice" is healthy. It's the sound of a healthy intuition. It's hard to describe, because it appears as a thought that won't go away. But it's not like someone whispering in your ear.

Another possible factor is the loss of one of my cats earlier this month. It occurs to me that I would not voluntarily give up the other ones, especially Shiva. And taking them with me would not be feasible.

In any case--I have completely tossed all of my five year plans, and have developed new ones. This has also involved stopping many things that have been ongoing for a number of years. Things that seemed mysteriously right, things that had promise. Whatever fruits may have grown from that labor, now it's time to stop. It's become a hindrance, and is leading me in the wrong direction.

Some of this involves cutting ties with certain people. This is painful, because at least one of those people I love dearly. But I know a one-sided thing when I see it. And even if there are many good and just reasons for it being one-sided, it no longer justifies the long-term effort. I am sad, because it is part of a pattern--a pattern of emotional bonding with someone already committed. Just once, I would like to see a true liaison of spirit, something that feels right and actually works. But it hasn't happened yet, and I'm thinking I should not hold out hope that it will.

Of course--if I'm wrong, the bottom line is--I'm done making the effort. It's left me broke and alone. If I'm wrong, the other party will have to make the effort. Worst case, I have deluded myself. Best case--it's still not attainable unless the other person makes an effort. I will assume that they don't want to make the effort, or can't. Therefore, I will bow out, with the words, "you know where to find me if you want to keep in touch, or make the effort."

I reiterate it because I really don't want to do it. But at this point, I know it's the right thing to do. I'm not angry, because I was never promised anything. Well, just one thing, and that was never fulfilled. No matter. The person in question could easily say, "I never asked for this." And they would be right. Another reason to bow out. I am more frustrated than angry.

On the plus side, I have also become realistic about the fact that England is not the place to work on my doctorate. The academic culture there is materialistic, and I am more "universalist", more comparative in my approach. I have been very politely told that I would have a hard time finding anyone who espouses that point of view among scholars there. So, I am looking into becoming a Jungian analyst instead. While I enjoy teaching, and have no need to give it up, I also think it would be good to work with people one on one, help them through their journey, as well as formally take my own. It takes a long time and a lot of funds to become a Jungian therapist. But--it still beats giving up my house and everything I have here for something incredibly uncertain and perhaps not even the right thing. With the state of the world economy, it's even more daunting.

There is still much unfinished business. Loads of debt to pay off, prerequisites to be met before I can enter the Jung Institute, and writing that needs to be finished. That has been my focus, which is why you have not heard from me all month. I have been restless with a mixture of elation and sadness. But the sadness will go away, like it always does.

In the meantime, and in a less serious frame--I discovered two wonderful places in New York, both from a Yahoo article (if you can imagine). One is the City Bakery, which has to-die-for hot chocolate, made from melted chocolate bars. (If you have a Whole Foods near you, they apparently sell the hot chocolate mix). Starting next week, they will be having their hot chocolate festival, and there is no way I'm not attending. Not if they're serving it with their homemade marshmallows.

The other place is called the Brandy Library. I did a post about 4 years ago called "Quiet Spaces". This place sounds like the atmosphere I'm looking for. Conversation rather than yelling. Music is soft jazz, furniture is earthy like a wealthy person's library. Dress code is casual, but anyone dressed "trashy" is turned away. And--it's small, so it's not overcrowded and stifling. The menu looks spectacular, and I can't imagine anything more wonderful than sitting at one of their tables enjoying an armagnac after dinner. Of course, it's not cheap, so I have to wait til I have some money.

I also notice that in March, the IFC in the Village is playing two Jodorowsky films. I have all of Jodorowsky's films on DVD, but it would be excellent to see them on the big screen. For those of you with an interest in esoterica who live in or near New York City, these are not to be missed if you haven't seen them.

And now, back to finishing my paper. If I can focus.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

January Associations

It has been a snowless January so far, but the cemetery looks frosty. In spite of it being so close, I hardly ever walk there. The pleasure of viewing the artistic and unusual headstones is usually ruined by the end of the walk. On the way out the church driveway, there is a "memorial to the unborn", reminding me that a large social and religious institution values potential life more than mine. One could say a lot about large social institutions these days, religious and political, but it gets tiring after awhile.

Several people on the street still have lights and Christmas decorations up, and I wish they would take them down. I don't think any of them celebrate Epiphany, I think they just haven't gotten around to it. They can't use cold weather as an excuse--save one or two days this week, the weather has been most reasonable.

This week I said goodbye to my cat, Whiskers. What started out as a simple eye infection ended with a cat who couldn't eat and had fluid in her lungs. I suspect, as the specialist said, that "much more was going on with this cat besides the eye". I opted to put her down rather than try to spend thousands on tests and hospital stays. In the end, it was likely they'd tell me she had incurable cancer anyway, and it would have just extended the cat's suffering. I think I was more floored that it cost more to cremate a cat at the emergency vet than it does a human being. I've dropped $3,000 in the last 6 weeks on 3 cats--a catalytic converter (apologies for the pun), Shiva cat, and Whiskers cat. They say things happen in threes, so let that be the last for awhile. Please.

The start of this year has fluctuated between being an emotional void and being sad, and besides the kitty event, I couldn't put my finger on why. I realize now that it's because a lot of things that previously satisfied or interested me have fallen flat, and I haven't found anything to take their place yet. It's interesting to view the cycle of boredom, which leads to point that is between a "death" (or just loss, if you prefer) and wanting things to go back to the way they were before. The cycle has to finish with something brand new. But there is an insecurity about the middle place, like you're stepping off a cliff into empty air, and you want to know that you can reach solid ground again, but your foot hasn't hit it yet. Of course, most of the things we attach ourselves to are temporal or unrealistic anyway, and the result is inevitable, until we stop doing that. But the question becomes--what else is there to do?

A crow is sitting very close to my front porch, and cawing into my window. Crows remind me of the Morrigan, the complex Celtic goddess who has many characteristics of the triple Moon goddess. A friend of mine mentioned a new interest in studying her the other day. I had been working on a story about the Morrigan a couple of years ago, but that stopped for a number of reasons. Perhaps these are synchronicities telling me to pick up that thread yet again. I did so much work on it, it may not be a bad idea.

I had also read somewhere, to my surprise, that in some versions of the myth, the Morrigan is the mother of the goddess Brigid. It provides an interesting metaphorical connection. My friend said to me the other day, "You know, they say you don't choose the Morrigan, she chooses you." Perhaps that is so.

Whatever happens, my January plan is to have a quiet, rather austere month. I will be presenting at the Mid-Atlantic American Academy of Religion conference in March, so my first priority is finishing my paper for that event. I also have many unfinished things at home, reminding me of the old expression, "When a fisherman can't go to sea, he repairs his nets." For all the time I've spent tying up loose ends this past year, it's amazing how many still remain.

In retrospect, I noticed that things in my life happen on the "9"s. I entered puberty at age 9, which led to huge psychological and physical changes. I had my first breast tumor and something akin to my life crashing around me--and me starting over--at 19. At 29, I left my husband, and began a new life. Now, at 39, I feel like something big is going to change again (and I had another breast tumor), but I don't know what yet exactly. Clearly when old structures break down, new ones must take their place. Of course, associations with the number 9 have been forever ruined by the likes of Herman Cain. (Well, maybe not forever. This year, anyway).

At any rate, thank you for indulging my musings--I hope to have more focused and topical blog posts going forward. They say that when you can't write what you want, write anything, and this may be an exercise in that. Here's hoping 2012 will be a productive and interesting writing year.