Category Archives: metaphor

Little wren

All kinds of realities can look as real as anything as we proceed through our human existence; we are all surrounded by them, every day, but when we keep hurting ourselves because of them, we can be sure they are a fiction of some kind…perhaps one that is so long-running that we don’t even remember anything different. They can be as convincing as anything we have ever seen, made all the more potent through the tug of nostalgia and familiarity. When they are a false reality in our experience, and they suddenly dissolve, we don’t go to pieces with that circumstance but, rather, that dissolution is what it takes to end the repeat cycles of self-destruction….perhaps even those repeated across many lifetimes. We stop hurling ourselves and hurtling mindlessly towards things that don’t serve us, in search of what we have fixated upon as “what we need to perpetuate in order to survive”. As is sometimes the case before illusory worlds fall apart (as we are seeing happen right now in our world-politics…), the illusory reality sometimes has to be stepped up to become even more overtly unnatural than ever, in order for us to “get it” and move on. Such a moment is what proceeds the moment of realisation…when we, as it were, wake up to what is real and swiftly find our way back to ourselves.

This tale of extreme optimism was “told” to me by a little wren just the other day… Continue reading

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Finding my sweet spot

So, as an artist, what do I most want to do…do I want to present it all on an equal footing, as though you were standing there in that garden with me, getting to choose which blade of grass to examine closely next? (I tend to think that would make me into someone who delivers visual information, documentary fashion…but not an artist.) Or do I want to share what I, personally, focussed on and so experienced there because it was so high-frequency it overwhelmed me with love and appreciation of life and I want to dole that out like a tonic to all the world? The same goes for life, do I want to see the whole picture, or do I elect to find my own personal sweet spot and choose to stay there, as much as possible, modelling this way of being (not that this is why I do it) to anyone who cares to notice how good it can feel to be this way? Why do I suspect there’s more to this topic than meets the eye; that there’s pure alchemy at work when we, each of us, elect to seek out our own sweet spot and make it into our home, our very way of being, the thing that determines how we spend our time, what we give our thoughts to, how much joy, love and gratitude we feel every day… Continue reading

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Blazing a trail along an alternate path

…So why not open to your instincts and let your feminine impulses be your guide, then you too can walk a softer path through so-called chaos; wherever you happen to be. Blaze your trail through it. Dare to unfurl your full stature there. Read all the subtle clues like the pro that you are. Remember who you already are in those places; that these are already your pathways. That there is no need to hide. And don’t forget to slip your shoes off and feel into where you are from your very roots, allowing that feeling to swell and grow upwards to the ceaseless light shining from your crown. For you may be surprised at the sheer power of the affirmative you receive for this simple act of reconnection with the surface of the earth in places that at one time always seemed to turn you away. Continue reading

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On track for non-duality: healing the rift by walking its path

This post is a long and winding path but I invite you to join me on it. Along the way, I stitch together so many observational threads about the feminine as guardian of “the long straight path” and where we are all headed in a world that is venturing beyond duality. Continue reading

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The feminine has landed…so how do we induce her to stay?

…As the feminine learns to dare to take down her blockade and end her long denial of her own natural receptivity (having fully reactivated the divine integrity that keeps her perpetually intact from within), the male learns how much more fulfilling it is to give (not force) and how to enjoy holding something like a tender embrace (not an imprisonment or statement of ownership) once again. And as the feminine deigns to come into this arrangement, wanting to stay, to receive, to be offered the structures in which she can be her most playful and unlimited self, we all get to experience wholeness…together. Continue reading

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Shaking up life’s algorithms

Sometimes just for fun, or because a silly-summery mood takes me over, I dive into something completely outside of my usual musical taste, you could say my comfort zone, into something frivolous, unexpected or as though I am become someone else for a holiday. Different cultures, completely different styles; there’s nothing to lose and everything to gain when you get to dip in to it all so freely as we now can do. Partly, its as though I am trying to throw some part of me off my own scent when I experiement, surprising myself into feeling something fresh. And indeed, these diversions do throw off the algorithms associated with my Spotify account, serving to pepper-up my future weekly lists with weird and wonderful suggestions aimed at meeting this new seasoning where it crosses with my more familiar choices. These diversions not only freshen up my “here and now” but, quite often, throw up some of the more interesting fusions of music that are some of my most treasured recent discoveries; where cultures and eras cross over into a free-for-all of musical taste. And, believe me, all these options exist out there – the world’s most diverse musical taste has never been more experiemental and available in a way that explorers like me help to encourage. In other words, my preparedness to open-up my taste a little now feeds into the  potential for me to explore a lot more in the future. I am offered new and ever more creative shades of experience that might never have come up for me to sample had I stuck to the well trodden route of my more-typical music taste accessed in a more traditional way.

This is a post about music…or is it! Continue reading

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Glass butterflies II

Glass Butterflies is a growing collection of photographs depicting butterflies in juxtaposition with glass: under frames, next to windows, inside glass houses…a metaphor that has deeply informed my painting, writing and thinking for a number of years. As well as taking me on a journey of deeply personal exploration, these synchronistic experiences have everything to do with releasing the Sacred Feminine from her “box” whilst learning to appreciate how that feminine aspect can be allowed to settle upon a much more equal and balanced relationship with the male-oriented, left-hemispherical “structures” of our three-dimensional reality. In a sense, the butterfly learns to work with “the box” on her terms and in ways that enhance her innate qualities; which is the very marriage of fluidity and form that underpins the art-process, taking “inspiration” through the journey of the creative act to where we have something tangible that we can interface with as a three-dimensional form of expression. As you can tell, the metaphor has many layers and continues to develop as one of the long-running themes of my experience. Continue reading

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Fire and water

It was just a little bit magical to find butterflies “fluttering” inside the vast spaces of the abbey I know so well, like a potent metaphor made manifest. Their colour and variety seemed to flutter new life into torpidity, as though the leaden religious narrative of so many quite massive stained glass windows had been exploded into shards then grown wings before hitting the ground; so, not the end of the world, just a fresh new beginning that had required the courage to break with old ways. Their unexpected presence there above my head seemed like a breath of fresh air sweeping through those unreachable spaces from one arched window to the other, stirring up the dust motes of heavy tradition. The reaching and arching endlessly higher and higher of all those immense gothic ceilings that speak of always striving, never quite getting there, seemed to be brought down to attainable height, their pristine stone made mortal yet in no way trivialised by fragments of coloured paper that could have been cut-out with scissors by a child. It felt like a sacred marriage to witness the two side-by side; both aspects made “better”, somehow more whole and perfect, by the collaboration of art installation and its most ideal space; in fact, I realised I had never seen the space look better than it did on this day… Continue reading

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When trees talk

There was an undeniable metaphor in this gnarly old lime or “linden” tree with its so-called deformities, an ugly tree you might even say; in spite of which every square inch of it was bursting with new life. Burls (of which this tree had several) are odd-shaped bulbous growths, often caused by illness or stress; though they are highly prized by artisans for the intricate beauty of their grain. This tree seemed to assert that, out of the most unlikely, distorted and tired-seeming old structures, some of the freshest new shoots often sprout. It’s as though all these shiny and bright new growths, asserting all the promise of regeneration, are super-propelled to come out through (and perhaps because of) the unappealing old structure that held them in potential; as though it is the thick-skinned distortion through which they have had to assert themselves that reinvigorated the organism’s fundamental ambition to thrive. From deep inside, all these tender new growths summons up all the necessary courage to show themselves en masse, in spite of the inclement season, and so the whole organism is renewed in exact proportion to what looked most unpromising with the eyes; as is often Nature’s way. Continue reading

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Don’t give it your power…and then paint it the way you like it

When these apparent tumbles in our circumstances happen, it hurts with all the betrayal of thinking that all the glories we have gathered along the way were false signposts, conjurings, mistaken glimpses through the mist. The pain comes from feeling our power taken off us – all over again (or that’s how we feel) but, really, it is because we have forgotten who we really are for long enough to give our power away…again. Its death of a thousand cuts comes from the handing over of our power to outside circumstances at the first sign of “here we go again”, making our joy conditional like we are sheep resignedly walking back into the same-old fold. The shock to our system can be profound after living it large for so long. We allow ourselves to go back to that cramped little world where we “can only be happy if” such and such thing happens or is a certain way, having come to know how expansive it is to live way beyond that. It is not so much that we are disappointed by this thing as in ourselves…for freely handing over our sovereignty to the “stand and deliver” of outside circumstance all over again, having told ourselves we were beyond all that. If there was one week when I needed to easily demonstrate to myself that I was capable of flight…whatever the outward circumstance…this was that week yet the learned behaviours of lie down and succumb can be powerful pattern-makers and they play out even now, in the swan-song of their era; for we are way beyond going back into the small places we have lived in for so long. This week has felt like the death throes of old reactions that hold us small…while we catch our breath…before throwing them over for ever. Continue reading

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