Category Archives: Symbolic journeys

Walls of honey

In my last blog, I shared a story about the two thousand-year old fortress walls that I noticed were alive with loudly humming bees flitting in and out of a small hole in the mortar; how I took this as a sign of hope. It became, for me, a metaphor made manifest of how something built to be hard, rigid and intractable had been broken open by something small, soft, honeyed…and it was like imagining egg yoke running over from the edges of the most surprising kind of shell, broken open before my very eyes. It encompassed the feeling of the kind of surprise we are set to experience as our world…the world we think we know so very well, that many of us have become so jaded and derogatory about…breaks open to reveal an inner softness; its own honeyed centre waiting to pour out like the sustenance we are all waiting for… Continue reading

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Living from the centre

There is a place that I go…that I’ve worked with…for well over a decade now; you could call it my spiritual hub, somewhere I walk to process things through, even when I don’t know that I’m processing them or needing to work anything out. It doesn’t really matter to my readers where the place is; it could be anywhere and you probably have one similar of your own, somewhere that draws you to it, repeatedly, though you hardly know why. Long before I came to understand how I work with this particular landscape, as an externalised “model” of some inner landscape that I am also walking through, I came to this place and found a special solace from being there, like it helped me unravel parts of myself that might otherwise have remained in an unfathomable tangle. Through my feet, its features helped me untangle and make simpler what was otherwise unfathomably complex; layer upon layer, through many years’ walks that became littered with symbolism, adding a richness of association that was built upon each time I went there (which was often)…read on… Continue reading

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Love letter to myself

The last decade has been a self-righting, a sort of rescue operation and a slow-steady reunion of two aspects of myself that had become exaggeratedly fragmented (I know now) expressly so I could learn how to put myself back 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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A walk on the grass

Around that once avoided turn in the road could be the very next person we were meant to meet or the opportunity that alters our whole trajectory and which (by vertue of the fact we are prepared to meet the very thing that we previously avoided so studiously) we have shown we are now ready to receive. Thinking we know everything already or that we even know ourselves so very well can be a very limiting thing and the practice we gain in questioning all things is immense when we consider even those things that seem “obviously” out-of-bounds. After all, it is all just information wrapped up in different packages and working with information like this (receiving the occasional “yes’ where “no” was written on the label) can be another way of affirming how everything is working in our favour, all is on our side; in fact nothing could be said to be going against us when we are prepared to take our best assistance from all kinds of messengers, even those which once turned us away. Noting our aversions and those area of life where we still religiously follow rules that really don’t fit us any more can be another way of receiving such powerful data as well as growing ourselves past a whole other layer of limitations to expand our experience even more. Continue reading

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Fountain of Life

it all feels done done done now…all is complete…like reaching a journey’s end in some hugely momentous way. Newly, I feel able to rest in a feeling of overwhelming grace that had previously eluded me though I got very close to it; a deep and immersive awareness of myself and of the whole planet resting in a permanent state of grace that is already here; and we get to claim it as soon as we like. It was like slipping into a warm pool and accepting a deserved rest. And even though I have had to open my eyes and to go back to my daily activities, and though things go in on their worldly, far less than perfect-seeming, way (I feel like I want to entreat you, don’t be fooled or taken off track by them), I still know that it is done; that it is not compromised by what “seems” on the outside, represented in our three-dimensional world, which can be much slower to catch up. 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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Amsterdam – where left meets right

There’s something crystalline about places that formed along strictly organised lines masterminded by great architects…and then softened over time. It’s not the history of the places that draws me per se but the process of succumbing and melding with something more fluid, after the event of their creation, that beguiles me; it’s where they are at now that appeals. Like a cup overspilling, the colour and creativity of human life that they burst with – now – is like that liquid I refer to, although it’s not; its more energetic in nature, it’s a feeling that manifests as beauty…. Revisiting Amsterdam, having some epiphanies about what creates the unique energy of a place along the way. Continue reading

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Free press: a synchronistic tale

Across the locked-away years, we have always had those few individuals (sometimes, but not always, females) who have been prepared to express themselves in spite of how hard their circumstances made it for them to do so and Anne Frank was one such “feminine” impulse…A story of remarkable synchronicity as long-time hidden things continue releasing from their “box”. 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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