Animist Psychology ~ Last Call

Hi everyone!

This is a short invitation to join this fascinating course I am taking with Daniel Foor. Forgive me that I did not alert you sooner, I have been quite distracted and busy. Today, November 10th is the final day to register for this 8 week course on Animist Psychology. This course found me and  knew it was important, as many synchronicities will reveal. I received an email invite for a course on ancestral healing and was wondering why I no longer receive notifications about Daniel Foor’s courses. So I went to his website and lo and behold this brand new class was being offered and starting soon. They also gave me a scholarship!

Here is a short description from the site:

As a participant you can expect accessible and interactive learning, invitations to reflect at depth on your own journey through guided experiential practices, and an increased ability to identify and speak to important psychological and cultural dynamics in your personal lives and communities of practice. Topics include: colonialism and mental health, ancestral curses, archetypal possession, psychosis and spiritual emergency, belonging in places with major historical trauma, cultivating resilience in partnership with the ancestors and land, and a range of other considerations under the banner of Animist Psychology.  Resources included with each lesson favor ancestrally diverse voices both within and outside the psychological establishment, and additional calls each week (times vary for international inclusivity) include options for BIPOC and LGBTQI-only small discussion groups. Finally, the approach to learning is kind and inclusive with lots of space for questions, and peer discussion.

I looked at Daniel’s chart ( without birthtime) and discovered he is incredibly Plutonian ( Sun conjunct Pluto opposite moon, Pluto square Mars). His tone is calming and soft, yet I can feel the underlying intensity and passion about this work. The lessons and live calls allow me to think and process in a new way both as a clinician and as a human. This material is designed for those not trained in psychology but who are intrigued by the spirit of the land, animals, plants, the spirit world and one’s ancestral lineage. It is so much more than I can say and draws from so many disciplines.

The course is quite affordable and offers payment plans. All lessons are recorded along with ritual exercises, live calls, and breakout groups and are accessible forever!

Visit here to learn more!

I had planned to include this invite with another post, but I could not get to posting anything new. If this course seems like something you would enjoy, go check it out! I decided within minutes because I knew in my gut I would grow and discover more of who I am at my core.   

Namaste until the next time!

Blame it on the Rain

A few minutes ago the title for this post came to me and it is perfect. Honestly, I have no one or no – thing to blame for my misfortune, but sometimes it is fun to regress a little and place the blame somewhere.  Today’s New Libra Moon has really turned out to be a bummer for me and I did not have any expectations. I do have hope that tonight may turn out to be lovely. But I want to write about how I am feeling right now. It seems like my latest round of job leads has been disappointing and misleading.  Just a week and a half or so ago I was feeling quite jubilant, in the flow and excited about two interviews. Then in the midst of this timeline another job that sounded even better emerged and the employer expressed interest in me. I even dreamed about telling someone about it last night, meaning it had remained with me in the astral.

All three jobs did require that I stuff myself in a box in terms of clinical approach. But they had remote work flexibility and decent pay and were happy to take someone without the LCSW. The two screening interviews I had last week were awkward and felt forced. One already wrote a rejection email. I am waiting to hear back from the other. The most interesting twist is about the third job, which has excellent pay, is very close to home and offers benefits and fulltime hours.

I was asked to answer a question about projecting myself three years into the future and I enjoyed that challenge. The other day I was informed I was going through to the next phase of the selection process. I was  asked to perform an online assessment to see if I would be a good fit. In the past I have had to do this once or twice with poor results. This time I was given the name of the instrument so I looked it up. I was curious how this test would influence their decision so I paid to take the test first myself and learn about how it works. I could not find a free test and considered it to be an investment. It was definitely interesting and echoed a little of my Myers Briggs profile. Today I was ready to take the test for the prospective employer and the code did not work. This seemed off but I attributed it to Mercury retrograde. I emailed the practice to tell them about the glitch so I could take the assessment. Half an hour later I get an email from an admin thanking me for my interest and telling me they hired someone else. What happened??

My mind went down a rabbit hole. I thought that maybe they knew I took the test already and that perhaps disqualified me. Or they accessed my results and decided not to move forward. Or it was a miscommunication.  Eventually the practice owner responded and said that the hiring process moved faster than expected and that she will keep my resume on file as they expect another vacancy in the winter. I do not know if I believe what I was told, but I need to let it go. I will be kind to myself and let my feelings move through me. While musing on this, I remembered something my Reiki teacher said recently about the second attunement she did for me. She received a message that my need to control situations usually makes them worse and that I must find a way to be in the flow. I really tried to control this assessment situation. I did not like being judged this way and wanted to “crack the code”. The irony here is that my test results revealed that I do a lot of research and preparation when I face a difficult problem.

So here you go.

In the midst of this dreary day I drove to the post office to mail my ballot. It was anticlimactic. I usually like to wait in line to vote and find this ritual energizing. But it is more convenient to go the mail – in route. I am not excited about this election, just three days before my 60th birthday ( a discussion for another day). I am not a Biden fan. I remember him from the Anita Hill fiasco during the Clarence Thomas Supreme Court hearings back in the nineties. I found him to be sexist and it bothered me. If I could choose, it would be Marianne Williamson or Bernie Sanders. I prefer authenticly messy people over ambiguous phony people. But I certainly don’t want to live in a reboot of Nazi Germany. I read that Trump’s first wife said he would often read Hitler’s speeches over and over. I could go on about the Con Man/ Mob Boss in Chief, but I am out of wine and do not want to worsen my mood.

This Libra New Moon is very challenging as it squares Mars and opposes Jupiter Saturn and Pluto. So it behooves me to watch my words a bit online and off. And yet, as I ponder my job search and this latest theme of trying to please others by showing up as the prototype they prefer, I really resent not being simply me! I do not have a “brand” and shy away from writers who are inauthentic in order to always stay on brand. This is not for me. I revere honesty and want to write from a place of vulnerability.

I may never get a chance to find out if I was right for that job that required an assessment, but I really would like to work somewhere with people who are more like me. Where are they? Who are they? I don’t know. Libra energy is harsh for me because it occupies my solar 12th house and natal 8th house. These houses are messy and often contain hidden emotional baggage. I have no planets in Libra. I know some wonderful Libra folk like my advisor ( hey CL!)  and my niece but many Libra’s I have encountered have caused me much harm or frustration. It is what it is. We all have our strengths and our weak spots.

Controlling outcomes is one of my weaknesses and Scorpios love to control. Tomorrow is a new day and fortunately my moods tend to change quickly of late. Writing about my darkness is a cathartic relief. So now to bring some light I  will leave you with the song that inspired today’s title :

rain photos by pexels.com , public domain

Who Are You? Part I

I wanted to post something today on the 19th anniversary of 9/11. I was born in New York City, currently live in Pennsylvania and have visited the DC area many times and have relatives who live not far from that region.

While I am more inclined now to think the whole event was an “inside job”,  it does not lessen all the hate and trauma nurtured from then until now. Including all the carnage due to war and acts of violence arising from all this density. While it is human to struggle with difference and assign blame, we are all sparks of the divine. May we all see this truth sooner, rather than later.

litebeing chronicles

Who Are You ? by the Who

This is the first installment of a series on identity. I would imagine that most people shift in identity many times within a lifespan. As my spiritual evolution continues to accelerate, my identity is dissolving once again. Yet, if I choose to live on Earth in a body, it is crucial that I remain tethered to some ego structures , aka personality.

Let’s focus today on race and ethnicity. As someone who was raised with two religious orientations always lurking in the background, I found myself quite confused. My mom grew up Roman Catholic and went to church regularly, yet she says she did not like this faith and happily went along with Judaism when she married my dad. She learned some Hebrew and became familiar with many of the customs and joined Jewish organizations.  She did not have to convert because her…

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wikipedia.org public domain

The Golden Road to Transformation

Where were you 25 years ago today? RIP Jerry ❤

 

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What a long strange trip it’s been, indeed.

My inspiration for the Time Machine Challenge started on a crisp and brilliant afternoon in September. If you are new to my blog or would like to catch up on your reading, please visit here to find the entire roster of spectacular challenge blogs. Reminiscing about my first September in Philly and the man who represented that era took me back to a state of excitement and joy.  I was amazed how my instantaneous flash of insight was later validated when I visited a website where that former boyfriend currently works. According to Michael Lutin, this time period before the New Scorpio Moon accentuates preoccupation and/or random encounters with past lovers or folks who trigger memories of former flames.

A few connections from Leigh and Laura gently guided me on a path of forgiveness and acceptance of the past. Leigh’s post on the  ho’oponopono prayer got me thinking of all the guilt and regret that still remains within me. An unexpected email from a stranger set in motion a fresh attempt to reframe any past relationships. I am speaking of the ones that seemed to stick with me, defying all my efforts to sever lingering cords. That stranger who contacted me is now a friend who readers know as Laura.

So I set out on an adventure to forgive all my past romantic entanglements, beginning with the first and moving towards present time. I would recite ho’oponono before falling asleep and visualize myself back in time with these former flames. It was often unpleasant as long forgotten details resurfaced. I was also looking to explore with fresh eyes the circumstances in which my ex from college would re-enter my life. I am seeking clues as to what his presence symbolizes for me now. I expected this process would eventually lead to healing. Truth be told, this exercise has been met with much resistance. However, I still am pursuing this path, hoping it is a “path with heart.”

But it is a path unfinished and did not reveal a story for the challenge. Around the same time ( late September) I followed up by contacting the director of the group practice where my ex works to inquire about employment. I did so because my ex works at their other location and my friend spoke so highly of the director. This contact led me to the discovery that I cannot get re-credentialed at my level of licensure. Perhaps this was a blessing in disguise because if I was hired and unable to work, the fallout would have been more upsetting and more time would have been wasted.

So I put off writing a post and hoped for the best. After reading Fiona’s challenge offering, I remembered an unfinished draft from July. Oddly enough, it addresses the challenge beautifully. Why am I surprised to discover that yet again Spirit has other plans?

So without further adieu I bring you my nonlinear, unplanned, but totally cool trip back in time:

See that girl, barefootin’ along,
Whistlin’ and singin’, she’s a carryin’ on.
There’s laughing in her eyes, dancing in her feet,
She’s a neon-light diamond and she can live on the street.

Hey hey, hey, come right away
Come and join the party every day.

Well everybody’s dancin’ in a ring around the sun
Nobody’s finished, we ain’t even begun.
So take off your shoes, child, and take off your hat.
Try on your wings and find our where it’s at. *

Was it 2015 or 1978 or perhaps 1967 ?  You decide:

July 4, 2015:

I had just received some long over -due money. I noticed that the Grateful Dead were live streaming their Chicago Fare Thee Well  50 year anniversary reunion concerts on On Demand. The fees were pricey but I had extra money. I deserved to splurge on something fun and purely entertaining. I had not seen any assembly of the Dead in decades and I was not going to be teleported to Chicago, sans an airplane ticket and place to stay. The concerts were to be held over 3 nights. This could be my last chance to see them perform, ever. Which night do I choose?

I could not justify viewing all 3 shows. I finally decided that July 4th would be the one. My reasoning was they would be settled in after the 1st show and since I associate the Dead with parties, why not celebrate America’s birthday in style? This decision was an arduous process. As an INFJ, I like to ponder and deliberate, often to a fault. In this case, I am glad I took my time.

Earlier that day I spotted a HUGE beetle like creature on my bedroom door. It seemed almost alien-like. I was terrified but managed to flush it down the toilet. Dexter was oblivious to this terrifying menace, but it certainly got a reaction out of me. I looked up beetle online to see what I could find here.

By J. Coelho [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

This image is a rather close approximation. While I found the various interpretations fascinating, the following paragraph holds true till the present:

Perhaps the most profound lesson the beetle shares with us is the lesson of transformation and adaptation. Beetles engage in metamorphosis for development and growth. From egg to adult, they are a marvel of transformation illustrated in a short lifetime. They go through these revolutionary transformations with aplomb, very nonchalantly and matter-of-factly. Beetles embrace the flow of life and all its transitions without question. They surrender to change.

Looking back, I realize that this was my final complete weekend with Dexter. I was blissfully unaware that he would be leaving me so soon. Yet I did surrender to change and enter into a phase of transformation. The beetle sighting was fortuitous as it signals a new way of being on the planet. I would venture a guess that Dexter is more adaptive than I have been, given his loving demeanor in spite of multiple placements and tricky health issues.  We have so much to gain from the natural world.

Post beetle episode, I am ready for the concert. There was so much to take in and integrate.  Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined watching a live concert on TV in this fashion. The word surreal is not superfluous in this instance. The telecast was filmed so you were truly in the moment, without commercials and artificial editing. I cannot exactly describe it, but it was quite close to being there in Chicago.

It turns out I almost lived in Chicago. My parents traveled their often as it was where my dad’s company’s main headquarters were located. It is also where they purchased my very first astrology book. I still have it and it was published in the 1960s. I also made a wonderful friend from Chicago who I met in Miami. We both stayed at the same hotel for 2 years over Xmas holidays. We became pen pals and I never forgotten her. Plus I have some online blogger buddies from Chicago so the city keeps appearing in my life.  I recently found out that we almost moved there when I was young. My mother revealed that my dad was offered a big promotion at the main headquarters. I was shocked to hear that he turned it down, given we moved around so often.  So here I am focusing in on elusive and mysterious Chicago. Here’s yet another example of the road not traveled.

wikipedia.org public domain

The music itself was very moving. The pace was slow and many of the songs were folksy and bluegrass style. The evening progressed like a heartfelt lullaby. Yet at certain points the mood shifted and the pace quickened. I had not been feeling well and was functioning on little energy. But I was propelled to get off my couch and dance. One song in particular set me in motion like a dervish. The Golden Road to Unlimited Devotion was playing. I could have been hallucinating , but I was lucid and sober. As Dexter watched, I began to swirl. This is MY song and I have never heard it performed live. I felt as if another force was propelling me into seamless, graceful, dizzying, flight. How did I get so energized? What was the source of all this power inside of me? I was floating on air, whizzing in circles, free of obstructions or constraints. I was on fire!

Later I researched the show online to read about the setlist. I came upon this article that blew my mind wide open. Here is what was written about the Golden Road performance:

Next up was “The Golden Road (To Unlimited Devotion),” a song Jerry Garcia wrote about the Haight hippie scene that The Grateful Dead only played a handful of times in 1967. Bruce Hornsby and Trey Anastasio fronted the group on the obscurity.

My favorite ( among favorites such as Eyes of the World, Sugar Magnolia, Truckin’, Scarlet Begonias, US Blues, and Box of Rain, to name a few) is basically a favorite of the few. It was last performed in 1967. I had not even heard of the band until 1977 and had not attended my first show until 1978.  It is probably a statistical anomaly that this song was performed on the exact night I decided to watch the show. This is not just a song to me. It is an anthem. I was this chick in the song in high school and college. Or at least I imagined myself to be like her. She was free and blissful and at peace. Perhaps I longed to get out of my own way so I could be her.

I actually transformed into her a few months earlier. Here is an excerpt of my May 26th post on dream number 3 of an incredibly active sojourn of slumber.

May 26, 2015 ( circa 1978?)

And now for something completely different:

3 – Went back in time to the 1970s. Lots of teens around, big crowd. I run into a friend.We will call him “Sam.” He used to be my dream prompt. Seeing him meant I was dreaming. He has not appeared in years though. There was to be a 1970s party. I was excited about this. My friend “Sam” said I would like to dance with you , big smile. I was so excited and I typically don’t like to dance. Lots of love between me and Sam, unlike real life where we were longtime yet intermittent, platonic friends. I knew him from when I first moved to NJ in the middle of 6th grade through the summer after HS grad when our families vacationed at the same hotel down the shore. At the party, there was such a joyous atmosphere. The room was dark and the music was psychedelic. Sam and I hit the dance floor and did our thing. We were both young but I danced with the confidence of a more mature person. In high school I would have not felt as eager to express myself this freely.

When I turned around I saw a young Bob Weir singing Grateful Dead music. It was a big surprise. I have dreamed of Bob and Jerry( Garcia) many times before over the years. Sometimes while dreaming I talk with them. In this dream I did not know Bob, nor did I interact with him. I was so excited and remembered Sam was there at my first Grateful Dead concert in 1978. The same day he and his band performed a concert at the high school. A group of us began to chant the date of that concert 5-13-78. ( later I checked and that was the actual date of the concert. How did I remember that?) It was wild. I said to him “You were in a band!” I think he was the lead singer. My friends who attended the concert with me were at this party or at the very least I mentioned them to Sam. Some of Sam’s friends were also there. Sam and I were becoming a couple and were very happy. I felt loved and adored.

What was so interesting was the Bob Weir became the face of the Dead once Jerry Garcia passed away. He was my favorite anyway so I would always focus on Bobby. I was also stunned to realize the prophetic nature of this dream. I was seeing Bob Weir perform and dancing as if no one was watching. I was imbuing my current knowingness into the past.  What a wild ride of past and future morphing together in Dreamtime. You could say that for a few short minutes I was livin’ the dream.

I said Fare Thee Well to Dexter one week later. I also learned that the farewell concerts were not the last. A newly formed group called Dead and Company featuring Bob Weir, John Mayer ( another Libra with loads of Scorpio) , Mickey Hart, and others have begun touring recently so the music apparently never stops in some form.

Update: Apparently Dead and Company were performing in Philadelphia last night ( 11-5-15) while I was completing this post. The synchronicity continues…

We never know how much or how little is happening at any given time. I did not know that my current physical body possessed that much energy. I certainly never expected to hear the Golden Road performed live and in real-time in my living room. Life is a mystery that keeps surprising me, just when I think I’ve got it all figured out.

But I have figured out one important lesson. I want to play! Perhaps having the experience of both spontaneity, exuberance, and confidence will assist me in replicating this behavior going forward. My birthday is approaching as I type and I have set my intention to be that girl from the Golden Road. Being free and playful and in motion is the way. 

The time machine kept me quite busy, transporting me to and from Philly to Chicago and to 1967 ( around the year I began studying astrology), 1978,  2015 and beyond. My consciousness flowed from waking state to frenzied ecstasy to Dreamtime. My challenge was not what I intended upon its inception in September. Yet I took the steps necessary to get me to this point. Now I am ready to try on my wings.

*lyrics credit

Here’s a video of the original 67 performance.

Here’s what I saw on 7-4-15.

Thanks to all for another spectacular blogging challenge. They keep getting better because WE keep getting better.

image credits: beetle by J. Coelho [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons dervishes images, wikipedia.org, public domain
header image, wikipedia.org, public domain
wikiart.org public domain

Brave New Earth

http://commons.wikimedia.org/

Sometimes I see unfathomable beauty while dreaming. Other times I capture it digitally on my phone. I used to see it often while visiting museums or going to places like Longwood Gardens. And occasionally, I find it on TV or film. The city depicted in the new TV series Brave New World was unfathomably beautiful until it wasn’t.

When the new Peacock streaming platform announced the launching of Brave New World, I was more than excited, I was held in a state of anticipation. I was held for a few months until it aired on July 15th. Based on the 1931 novel by Aldous Huxley  ( during a Saturn Pluto opposition), the story asks what happens when an outsider is brought into a contained technologically – controlled society that stresses conformity, frowns on monogamy, forbids procreation, and manages emotional fluctuation with designer drugs.

I must admit I rather liked the idea of living in the utopian New London during the first couple of episodes. Everyone seemed happy and happiness is highly valued. No one got ill, everyone had a job they loved, and every night was a party. I quickly realized I would only be happy if I was designated an Alpha or a Beta. This concept reminds me of my high school, where each student was assigned an academic track. Maybe this arrangement started earlier, but I don’t think I was aware until entering high school. I was in the A track, meaning I took the most difficult classes with the smartest students. Maybe this was decided by test scores, it was never explained or discussed with me. I did belong there, mostly. I performed miserably in Biology, and was relegated to B track for Science classes going forward. I enjoyed meeting new friends in B Chemistry and actually learned more there. However, I cannot see myself being happy as someone considered “average” or less than. I was raised to be studious and intelligence was how I was recognized.  It was “my thing”, said my ego. With higher ranking there is more privilege in New London, but freedom does not exist.  Embryos are designed to be different as each subtype is needed for the greater functioning of the whole. We naturally have diversity within our species, but we lack equality and basic living standards in this “modern” world of 2020 AD. To say this is problematic is to state the obvious.

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Upon completion of Season 1, I was eager to reread the novel. Fairly certain I had a copy at home, I found one hidden away with some other Sci-Fi classics such as 1984 and Walden 2. While perusing the forward of the 1946 edition, the author concludes that world totalitarianism is imminent, it is just a matter of when and in what form. The story was set in the 2500s. However, Huxley reveals that this was inaccurate and that a fascist state is most likely to happen in the early 21st century.

And here we are….

Images courtesy of wikiart.org and wikipedia.com, public domain

Do Nothing Now

wikipedia public domain

Remember when I posted back in January about moving forward with new pursuits? Now is the time to be still. I doubt this will be a change for most of us during this time of social distancing and global stay – at – home orders. Even for those who are back out in the “real world” ( or essential workers/heroes who never stayed home and kept us safe and secure), the stars require us to slow down and look inward. Three planets are stationing retrograde this week: first Saturn, then Venus, and finally, Jupiter. Many ask what will this planetary retro – dance look like? It is not something that can be easily answered. Some people will feel these energies and some will not notice anything. Three planets slowing down within days of each other is rare, but with all the chaos we find ourselves in, it is unlikely that most people will see any immediate changes. It has less to do with sensitivity and more to do with one’s astrological chart.

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For example, I have both Saturn and Jupiter currently moving through the 12th house in my natal chart and it is unlikely I will notice anything. Transiting Venus is conjoining my natal moon right now in the 4th house and I do expect that the Venus retrograde cycle will bring me experiences that are connected with women, nurturing, home, family or familiar people, and increased psychic activity. I will have to wait and see what transpires. Many times I have little awareness of planetary stations, especially while the cycle is active. Other times I do feel something immediately and powerfully at that.

Bottom line, I would suggest we all slow down, hold off on any major life decisions, and use this time to review, research, regroup,  reflect, reinvent,  revise, reinvigorate, relax, recapture, release, and recreate. Personally, I have often longed for a few weeks off to relax and regroup. But I never imagined that getting my wish would look like this! I expected that after a couple weeks post-layoff I would be busy with creative projects and new ventures. I was off track here because I have felt unwell for most of this at – home time. It has been two months since I called out sick on March 11th and have not been back at the office since. While working remotely I was exhausted per usual and did not really appreciate the benefits of staying home. Lately, I continue to be busy putting out financial and bureaucratic fires. I had been telling myself that my energy will perk up and I will start to make use of the quarantine once all the financial benefit glitches are straightened out. Recently it occurred to me that this type of thinking is similar to saying ” I will be happy once I move to a new home, or get a promotion, or lose 10 pounds, etc. ” I rather live life in a way that I won’t be bogged down by the necessary but tedious tasks that seem heavier now than before. Can you relate to this faulty thinking pattern? Let me know in the comments section.

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In the US, being busy equates with being happy. I was raised that way and many Americans do identify themselves with what they do, not who they are or who they are becoming. There is still some residue within me that resists the notion that everyone is created perfectly and need not take any action in order to be worthy of love. It is clear that I will have another chance to embrace the truth that all sentient beings are made of love with no further enhancements needed via acquisition or competition. We can choose to take action but are totally fine as we are. Let’s definitely settle down at this time and choose love.

I Applied to 200 Jobs and All I Got Was This Moderate-Severe Depression

Hey litebeings, I wondered onto Discover and landed on this insightful moving essay by the ubertalented ( not the taxi service uber) Athena. While this reblog might be off brand for litebeing chronicles, I was so drawn to it as someone who has endured so much suffering via unemployment and the job searches from Hell. Although I am certainly not a Millenial, Athena’s desire to be her authentic self and not be homeless while waiting tugs at my heartstrings. My desire is for some of my readers to reblog her post and help her get closer to finding the career that is waiting for her somewhere. ❤

Bertha Mason's Attic

“And when everything else is gone, you can be rich in loss.”

– Rebecca Solnit, A Field Guide to Getting Lost

About Me, Your Friendly Neighborhood Millennial:

I was your garden-variety smart kid, shuffled through GATE programs of every type from kindergarten onward. In sixth grade, I left the classroom in the afternoons to study Latin roots with our school’s principal for the spelling bee circuit. As you can probably imagine, I was bullied a lot (Apparently, no one likes a first-grader who says “in addition to” instead of “and.”). I went to a competitive high school near Silicon Valley, where– with my AP courses– I had a 4.0 cumulative GPA, but was not in the top 10% of my class.

After getting summarily rejected from the Ivies, I went to a small university in Oregon, where I worked harder than I thought possible to graduate a year early with…

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Who Are You ? Part II

This is the next segment in the Who are You? series that examines my ever-shifting identity. The first installment addressed my ancestry and where I came from. This piece considers my current state of being. I have been busy, mostly internally. I find that many of my attempts to entertain myself have fallen flat as I realize that time is fleeting and I need to be employed. Can’t you hear it, tick – tock, tick – tock?

September is here. It is Labor Day in the US, the unofficial end of Summer. I have visited September months ago in my mind and now my thought form has manifested. There was a time, an innocent time, when September lifted my spirits simply by arriving. I can still visualize shiny new brown leather shoes, ready to be broken in. And then of course came the pièce de résistance, September Vogue. It wasn’t really the actual clothes themselves that set my heart a flutter, as I am not a fashionista at all. For me, the excitement was in discovering the new trends, color schemes, and accessories for the fresh new season. The September issue was huge and bulky, filled with exotic advertisements that promised fulfillment of dreams. If only it was so simple now.

I work tirelessly to prevent sinking into a permanent blue mood by following passions, curiosity, and/or hunches. Sometimes following the thread leads to peace. Other times it leads to bleak uncertainty.

Here are a few examples of what I am into now :

What I am doing: I take myself places that have historically altered my mood in a good way. While I am a vastly different person spiritually, certain activities still whisper a promise of joy.  Movies, art museums, walks in nature, restaurants, visits with friends ; I have tried them all.  My latest trip to the Phila Museum of Art offered up close and personal views of wonderful creations, but the trip itself was unpleasant and exhausting. Yet, I was able to capture some images to share with you.


What I am thinking: I have been working on raising my vibration and resisting the temptation to stay in fear and hopelessness. I have been bombarded with childhood memories triggered by spending time on my High School Reunion Facebook Page and watching a certain television series ( to be explored later in this essay.) The memories are sweet and bitter, but not bittersweet. Some recollections are joyous and others are ghastly. There are also a few that don’t really register much emotion, more of a hmmmmm.. I am often balancing my need to problem solve with the desire to be in the flow. This often trips me up. The past few weeks has resulted in many electrical and technological challenges, before and after Mercury retrograde. Cable, Internet, Laptop, landline, kitchen fixture, thermostat, full throttle power outages, often intermittent and without warning. The newest wrinkle is I can call out on my phone, but no one can call me. This does seem like a metaphor for my identity at this moment. I feel that others don’t see me, hear me, or value me. This does not mean that I am not seen,  heard, or valued, but that my perception is distorted. I feel very disconnected or invisible most of the time.

Searching for work has brought out my cynicism and resentment. These personal traits do not suggest high vibrations.  As with most issues,  I vacillate between strategic thinking and letting go. When I let go, I feel like I ought to be doing something practical. While in problem solving mode, I consider that I am trying too hard and need to slide into the moment and align with Source.

What I am reading: Just like most activities, I read more than one book at a time.  Its how I roll. But  Playing the Ascension Game by Diana Stone has been an unusual diversion that may turn out to be a “game changer”. Diana Stone was an astrologer, shaman, author, and Aquarian provocateur. I do not recall when I got wind of her, but eventually discovered her website and got on her mailing list. Her newsletters were long-winded but quite enthralling. Withe her Sun on my Ascendant, I found a true partner in crime. We corresponded a few times and she even read my blog! She was best friends with the awesome astrologer  Donna Cunningham, who I also had the privilege of knowing online. They both departed recently and Diana’s passing prompted me to buy her book. It is written in a conversational style and covers so many topics on metaphysics. It is close to 500 pages long and is close in size to that September issue of Vogue! It reads like a diary of the coolest kind, as she recounts her experience with traveling to several dimensions and uncovering all sorts of bizarre occurrences. Her  accounts in the Coffee Chronicles lead me to drink a vanilla latte today after a long break from all things coffee. Her book makes me see miracles again, even if only vicariously. It reminds me that I once lived this way. It is THAT compelling. This isn’t really a review, but get your hands on this book.

What I am viewing: I am perpetually viewing something, or so it seems. Black Mirror, Q Anon videos. Matt Kahn. Gaia TV, WordPress blogs ( yea!), articles on Ascension, job listings, Facebook posts, emails, etc. Note how I include all screen activity as viewing. It is not the same as reading off-screen. Tonight I will focus on one series that has me blissfully distracted. The AMC series Mad Men has become an addiction that leaves me wanting more. The show is about a Manhattan advertising firm in the 1960s. It focuses on several characters, but Don Draper is the big fish, if you will. He is a man with a flimsy identity ( sounds familiar?) who exhibits complexity, compassion, and recklessness. He is a tough nut to crack during a very tumultuous time in our planet’s history. I watched a few episodes while it was airing, but have taken to binge-watching it now via Netflix. The series begins where I began, in New York City in 1960. Watching this show allows me to experience some of what was happening in my childhood, but now as an adult. I lived through most of this decade, but was too young to really taste it. The narrative emphasizes how hard it must have been to be female in mid-century America. Women were called girls and were treated  mostly like porcelain dolls or whores. Expectations were low and alcohol seemed to be running from the faucets. Watching this series helps me understand how my parents were socialized. The field of advertising fascinates me, from the artistic angle. I considered briefly entering this field as a writer. In high school I discovered that one of my classmate’s father was in the business. He showed me a little about what goes on behind TV commercials and I was captivated by his insights. Advertising still strikes me as a fascinating blend of  psychology and art, although I am less and less a capitalist with every breath I take.

Don Draper is played by the actor Jon Hamm, who happens to be a Pisces. He is also a recovering alcoholic who spent some time in Rehab. According to Google, he also was in an episode of Black Mirror! Gotta love those synchs. His Piscean persona is so evident in the Don Draper character. His aka could be Dapper Don as his character is so well put together, at least externally. Tall, handsome, creative, charming, and sometimes sensitive. He is also a chronic liar, womanizer, and escape artist, expert at shape-shifting and manipulation. A stunning example of a wounded soul painted over with a illusory handsome veneer.

Jon Hamm happens to be a great actor in a series that contains an excellent ensemble cast. At times it seems like I am watching an old fave The Sopranos, because there is an overlap between big business and the mob. The other parallel is more subtle, but so powerful. Many of the most profound scenes are portrayed without dialogue. What isn’t being said is what stands out here. This creative technique was also very skillfully executed in The Sopranos.  I wonder if some of the writers worked on both shows. Update: Damn I’m good! Just read an article about Mad Men creator Matt Weiner that said that he wrote a couple of Sopranos episodes. Either I am psychic or a really great observer of television writing or both!

I continue to be smitten with subtlety as an expression of life. What isn’t said is often more palpable than what is spoken. The role of the observer is closer to “real” than identifying with a bunch of cells encased in human flesh. The less obvious, more nuanced messages and clues often lead me out of darkness these days. I do process and receive the dark, but must admit that sustained light has been a scarce visitor these days. The numerous diversions and distractions rarely lead me anywhere solid. I am learning to adjust to living an untethered life. But it ain’t a cakewalk, this ascension business. I am not giving up, but am definitely struggling. Fortunately there is so much more to watch on Netlflix. I will take refuge wherever I can nowadays.

As I took in this sculpture last week at the Art Museum, it revealed a subtle message to me. The Bob Marley tune Three Little Birds entered my mind.

Don’t worry bout a thing, cause every little thing’s gonna be alright.

 

Iran

Who Are You? Part I

Who Are You ? by the Who

This is the first installment of a series on identity. I would imagine that most people shift in identity many times within a lifespan. As my spiritual evolution continues to accelerate, my identity is dissolving once again. Yet, if I choose to live on Earth in a body, it is crucial that I remain tethered to some ego structures , aka personality.

Let’s focus today on race and ethnicity. As someone who was raised with two religious orientations always lurking in the background, I found myself quite confused. My mom grew up Roman Catholic and went to church regularly, yet she says she did not like this faith and happily went along with Judaism when she married my dad. She learned some Hebrew and became familiar with many of the customs and joined Jewish organizations.  She did not have to convert because her mother was born Jewish. Confused yet? So if on the surface it appeared my parents were in agreement, they weren’t really. My mother still played Christmas carols on the piano in December, but we were forbidden to celebrate Christmas. My dad said he preferred his orthodox Jewish orientation, but accepted my mother’s request not to keep kosher. Yet he did not eat pork or shellfish on the Jewish holidays and expected us to follow along. It was a hot mess, but made sense to my parents. For many, many years, I was plagued with the inability to integrate the two systems. Eventually this issue fell away. While I do feel more connected to my Italian roots, I have mellowed towards my Jewish ancestry over time.

Then there’s the mystery surrounding my ethnic and racial background, I have been curious about my heritage, part of the identity puzzle, since early on. I began to research my genealogy long before we had the Internet. But it proved to be a rough going. My family gave me very little to go on, because they did not have the facts.  Was it true that my father was descended from Sephardic Jews? Why did people speak to him in Spanish when we visited Florida? Why did my parents fall in love with Spain and Portugal when they traveled there? How could my dad look Spanish when both parents were born in Eastern Europe? There were rumors that my father’s people lived in Spain or Portugal until the Spanish Inquisition, but nothing was substantiated. My paternal grandfather died way before I was born and my father’s speculation was not really reliable.  I also wondered why my father’s side of the family looked African-American when they got tan. My aunt closely resembled Aretha Franklin and this was an established fact. Were we part African?  I also wondered why people continuously come up to me and ask me if I am Native American. Yup, it happened twice within less than a week. Today it really bothered me when a restaurant cashier casually inquired if I was Native American. So I asked the cashier if he was Native American and proceeded to tell him how rude it is to ask people this question , especially in this political climate and when you are working. Maybe it bothers me more than usual ( but it always startled me), because I have zero Native American DNA according to the Ancestry DNA test I took last year. So many questions, especially on my father’s side of the family. Well, the test did provide some clues and a few surprises! 

The photos featured are from places my ancestors may have lived.

Here is a breakdown from Ancestry.com on my DNA profile. I toyed with the idea of getting a test done back in 2006 or so but it was too expensive. I finally gave in and bought a test kit in 2017 and the kit sat there unopened for months. Eventually I bit the bullet, filled up the test tube with saliva and sent it off with high hopes. Was I part Native American? Could I have some African blood? Or maybe something even more unexpected? Or not???

Ethnicity Estimate

EUROPE 94%

 

European Jewish 76%
Western Ukraine, Moldova, Eastern Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary , Moravia
Italy/Greece 15%
Italy, Greece
 Iberian Peninsula 2%
 Spain, Portugal
Europe West< 1%  Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Liechtenstein
WEST ASIA 6%

Caucasus 3%  Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Turkey

Middle East 3%  Syria, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Oman, Yemen, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Lebanon, Israel

 

Conclusions: The 76% European Jewish statistic is dead on. With 3 out of 4 grandparents Jewish, this works. I know for certain that my maternal grandmother descends from Poland and my maternal grandmother was born in Russia in the Ukraine. What I did not know initially was that all Russian Jews were forced to live in the Ukraine in pogroms. Allegedly my paternal grandfather, for whom I was named, came from Poland. But my dad said at that time the borders were always in play, so he may really be German. My last name sounds German, but who knows? Would that account for the tiny Western European percentage?

What seems to be off is my maternal grandfather’s lineage. The 25% Italian heritage was reduced by 10 percentage points. I do realize that this is not a complete representation since we do not inherit all of the DNA from each parent, rather varying percentages from both. Science is not my thing, but I have read enough on this topic to glean that some results will be obvious and others may not be.

The 2% percent portion from the Iberian Peninsula is a nice surprise. While the report does not say which ethnicity stems from which parental lineage, I am guessing this result validates the Sephardic Jewish connection. It is such a tiny sliver of my genetic makeup, but most likely this thread goes back hundreds of years. I do find it validating to see some reason why my father and his siblings and some of my cousins look just as Mediterranean as my Italian relatives ( or even more! )

I suppose it is possible that my Italian relatives have some Spanish or Portuguese blood, but rumor has it they descended from France and later immigrated to Rome and Southern Italy. Since my mom’s maiden name appears French, this theory may have legs. That may explain the tiny Western European percentage.  I know this French connection is strongly valued within my mother’s side of the family. Then again, it is so small that it may be insignificant. Yet, I felt French in my heart ever since I chose to learn French in 7th Grade and whenever I encounter anything Parisian.

The main surprise in this entire report is the West Asian connection. When did West Asia become a thing? Does that mean I am biracial? Does West Asia translate to Middle Eastern? Most of the possible countries listed ( and some overlap) are clearly Middle Eastern. If I am part Armenian, could I possibly be linked with the Kardashians? This category would also explain the darker skin tone that I possess. But then again, I am also Italian. But it does not explain why people think I look Native American ( unless I am missing something here.)

It is not lost on me that the West Asian category is the 3rd largest percentage listed. But 6 % is still a fraction of my genetic composition. It is quite fascinating to ponder which of these various places are part of my heritage. Most of these places are where terrorism is nurtured and a few are on the US travel ban list. Many have large Muslim populations. Frankly, most of these places don’t scream out to me ( like India or Brazil) and a few of them worry me. What is interesting is that this report raises a provocative question. Could I be descended from the three monotheist traditions – Judaism. Christianity, and Islam? And if so, can that help me extend compassion towards all people, even those who hate Americans and Jews? Truth be told, I do not have to be part Muslim to have compassion for those who embrace this particular path. This genetic data has opened my eyes even wider to the truth that we are everyone and no one. everything and no thing.

spain

While I was hoping for some linkage with the Americas ( Brazil, Peru, Guatemala, Mexico) or Southeast Asia ( India, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore), this is not the case. Originally Morocco was included in the findings, but Ancestry.com deleted it when they updated my results. Morocco is a place I have been strongly drawn to for most of my adult life. Since the report is not as specific as I had hoped, it still could be possible that Morocco is still in play. Like so many things, some answers do little more than reveal new questions. Perhaps some of the places I long to visit have linkage to past incarnations or parallel lives ( or both). Maybe the continual prompt about Native Americans has something to do with encouragement to dig deeper into some of their spiritual traditions. It remains a mystery.

 

 

After I had processed the results, I began to build my family tree using Ancestry.com’s resources. I did not get that far because most of my ancestors lived outside of the US and I could not find clear details beyond my great grandparents. I did take out some books on Sephardic Judaism hoping some aspects of this culture would jump out at me and resonate on an intuitive level. Sadly, this did not happen. It was gratifying though to pass on what I learned to some of my remaining older relatives. I wonder what my father would have thought about these findings. I grew up with so much family infighting about race, religion, ethnicity, and class. I was raised to be biased and to judge those who are “other.” I had such disdain for all the hypocrisy and ignorance. But I see it quite differently now. It takes an enlightened perspective to recognize that we are all worthy and there are reasons behind each and every decision one makes. This is why forgiveness and compassion are so very important.  While many unanswered questions linger, I have a greater appreciation for the diversity and commonality we all share.

https://www.ancestry.com/dna/

 

images of Spain, Portugal, and Iran courtesy of wikipedia.org, public domain

Magnificence in Motion ~ I AM THAT I AM

Hey litebeings! As I continue to find my new voice, I came upon a blog of mine that illustrates the spiralized nature of awakening. While the current flavor is different, I see the message to strongly reflect my journey rather well. As we continue to live during these profoundly provocative and passionate times, may we grow stronger, wiser, heart-centered and peacefully woke.

love ya, Linda ❤

litebeing chronicles

Hello everyone, this is my contribution to Litebeing’s Magnificent Challenge. I waited until today to complete my post because I needed some time to put it all together. I am thrilled with the response we have gotten. After posting a reminder yesterday, two more bloggers added their entries to the mix. Thanks Dayna and Michael for sharing your reflections on what makes you “you“. There is still some time left to enter the challenge. Why not take a few minutes and conjure up  some of your magnificent essence now? There is also a shot at a free reading and this nifty badge to display on your site!

magnificent-challenge-badge

First, a little bit about the process. I don’t think I ever intended to create blogging challenges. I would receive an idea that sparked my enthusiasm and soon after, I would receive another notion that it would make an excellent…

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