Tag Archive: spirituality


I liken my own personal spiritual path to a long vacation trip . . . where there are many stops and lovely gift shops.  I go into different areas of my spiritual interests and look around. I may or may not find something I want to keep for myself, but its an adventure all the same, seeing the many gifts they have to offer.

There are many such shops on the path of metaphysical philosophy.  Places that offer lots of gifts.  A spiritual path full of lovely colors, sights and sounds that connect me with Spirit. Practices that let me get actively involved with understanding my purpose on a deeply personal level.  My gratitude for Divine Spirit having led me to this path increases every day. My gratitude too for the wonderful, world wide web . . . for bringing me all this lovely knowledge.

In one such place on the web, I was exposed to the concept of the Gates of Inspiration.

I first learned about these gates on Steve Nelson’s Gaia Astrology website.   Well versed in a variety of ancient astrological and mythological viewpoints, he puts it all together in a very practical, easy to understand way.  The phases of moon being central to my own practice,  I especially love the moon magic page as an almost daily starting point for focusing my energies.

There are nine gates, called Muse Gates by Mr. Nelson and one opens every 40 days. The one that opened today is ruled by the moon, my own ruling planet and remains open until May 1st at 12:45 am EDT.  This timing event occurs on the eve of May Day . . . a cross quarter day marking the mid-point of the Sun’s progression between the vernal equinox and the summer solstice.  By this time, seeds planted earlier have started to sprout and grow and is a time celebrated by many pagans as the beginning of a bountiful period of growth.  It is a day for fun and for enjoying life.  A day to sit, dance and sing in the garden and let the sun shine into your heart and soul with thanksgiving.

This gate is of a particular importance to me as, according to Mr. Nelson, “Whatever blocks creative flow comes before the Gate to be let go. This is a time to dissolve body tensions that hold outmoded ways of thinking and feeling. Breathe deeply and move freely (yoga, tai chi, dance!) to shed the old and be present to the blessings of the new.”

Today, the sun is shining . . . and I’m starting to gear up for my own personal celebration.  My garden is growing, and some of the flowers are blooming. Inspired, I already feel my creative energy stirring.

May all your days be filled with child-like wonder.

Judy

 

 

 

 

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I guess being a moon child, born into the sign of Cancer, makes me more sensitive to its phases.

I find that I am inspired by the moon. I sometimes don’t understand why others aren’t. Especially other women.

If it is true “there are no coincidences”, then the fact that a woman’s cycle follows that of the moon was, perhaps,  in some sort of divine plan.

Crescent New Moon April 23 2012

I like believing that.

Perhaps that’s why I find the moon the perfect focus point for meditation, prayer, whatever . . .

I must say I’m having a lovely moment on my journey.

I hope you are too.

Blessings,

Judy

In the process of creating a series of self-discovery classes, I started writing this as a sort of spiritual bio. Planning to use this blog as an online gathering spot for upcoming classes and events . . . I decided to share it with everyone.

May you all be blessed with Spirit’s love and protection. Now and always.

Judy

The Abstract Spirit . . . a gathering of seekers

Though I was raised in an alternative Christian religion, I do not belong – officially – to any. Meaning,  I never made a decision to be baptized.

While all around me, kids about the age of 12 made that commitment . . . I just wasn’t ready.  Some scriptures that impressed me as a child were “seek and you shall find” [truth] . . . and “you will know the truth and the truth shall set you free”.

At one point along my journey, I also studied Judaism with the intent of converting. I must say this, I learned more about how to follow Jesus doing so. Can you really be a follower of Jesus if you don’t fully understand Judaism, in a personal way?

My view of religion, then as well as well as now, is that is does not set you free.  Organized religion is too often distant from spirituality . . . and if you don’t “toe the line” of their interpretation of God’s rules and regulations . . . then, well . . . you probably know the rest.

While scripture says: “do not judge, lest ye be judged”, because of the each religion’s interpretation of scripture . . . judgment occurs on a regular basis. It’s built into their script to be judgmental of others who do not believe as you do, or make religious “mistakes”.

I saw at an early age the hypocrisy of religious ideals and practice.

These words of scripture had a most profound effect upon me.  How could I actually know what truth is if I didn’t look at all the ways people all over the world claim to have found it?  Blindly accepting a religion because it is a family belief is not seeking at all.  If you hold dear the words of scripture, then it is a call to examine, or seek out, all possible roads to truth.

Religion is the middleman . . . the wolf in sheep’s clothing.  In my opinion, it’s like trying to find a short-cut to God; if I do this and don’t do that I’m OK . . . I’ll be saved.

But when you pray, you are in direct contact with our Creator.  It’s just the 2 of you.  You ask and you will receive according to your faith. Having absolute faith is belief without question. No Doubt. And there are many, many people who have this kind of faith . . . this one faith . . .  all over the world, in every religion.

Our world today is permeated with fear. Yet scripture says, “Fear not, I am always with you.”  Fear is a sign of disbelief in the Creator as protector.  Religion spews plenty of things to be fearful about.

So, it seems – to me – that cultivating faith in your instincts and personal beliefs as well as your Creator is more important than having it towards a religion.

Spiritually broadens this relationship.  Having a conversation with God, The Creator, is a wonderful thing.  Creative Spirit is a very good listener. Finding ways to foster this relationship is what The Abstract Spirit is all about.

I do not believe that our Creative Source chose one group of people out of all creation to bestow the bounty of life on.  That would be like a parent having to choose only one child, and discard the rest.  I don’t know about you, but I could never do that. I love my children. Even though they are very different from one another, I love them and desire the very best for all of them.  I believe our Creator sees us as his/her children and is connected to all mankind.  Touching the lives of every culture throughout history who have interpreted  and honors this connection in their own unique way.

We have much to learn.

I always seem to be more energetic during the waxing of the moon. Each night rising later and later, bigger and brighter  . . .  it seems to keep me on track. Knowing that I’m in a period of increase as it is getting closer to its fullness makes me work just a little bit more to do the things that will allow me to make progress toward my goals. Being able to use the moon as a focal point to speak with Spirit about my fears and dreams and ask for guidance has been a very rewarding experience.

Since connecting with the energy of the sun and moon’s phases, I have found  a sense of order in my life. A time to do everything under the sun. While you could liken the new moon phase to Yule, the winter solstice . . . it’s now, at the spring equinox, the sun’s 1st quarter, that we celebrate new beginnings. Time for our New Year’s resolutions to take root. Time to start making our dreams come true. Time for our best ideas to be born.

The sun is rising higher in the sky, the days are growing longer and warmer.  The trees are budding in their lovely pastel greens of every hue. The early blooms of daffodils and tulips, red buds and azaleas popping up everywhere, pushing aside the gloom of winter and creating a a kaleidoscope of color in our landscapes.

And our hearts.

This new beginning, this fresh new start gives us a sense of renewal after a long, cold winter.  We welcome the birth of a new season of growth with a healthy sense of optimism. Breathe deep . . . hope is in the air. It’s time to awaken and let Spirit guide you.

While many cultures celebrate the vernal equinox, which may or may not happen near a new moon,  Passover and Easter are observed during the 1st full moon after the equinox.  This season of the year seems to have a global, if not universal calling. Transcending all cultures and religions.

As I enjoy the connection of the season with the moon phases, it seemed most appropriate for me to begin this new yearly cycle at the 1st new moon nearest the vernal equinox.  A time to meditate and focus my thoughts on what is missing in my life that I would like to find this year.

I was most fortunate that the weather, which had been rainy . . . cleared and I was able to prepare my little fire-pit with a variety of dried gifts from my garden.  As I worked the past few months, trimming foliage from a variety of magical plants in my garden, I placed them in my drying basket . . . just for this occasion. The dried petals from the new Camelias I planted earlier this year, flowers kept and dried from family occasions throughout last year were added. As I trim and save all the branches from my Yule tree for use throughout the year as kindling, I put some in. The aroma of pine clears and purifies my garden sanctuary.  My sacred space.

It was a most magical evening.

Moving forward, the first full moon of the new zodiacal year is just a few days away . . . Friday, April 6, 2012  at 3:18 pm, EDT.  Every year starts with the sun in the sign of Aries . . . the ram, head lowered and charging blindly through.  Which makes the 1st waxing new moon, also in Aries this year, the perfect time for putting into motion the actions toward fulfilling our hopes and dreams. Any time up to the moment of its fullness is a time to make wishes and dream your most magnificent dreams. The last night waxing is a most potent time to do this.

At its fullness, it is a time for gratitude and thanksgiving for all that we have and all that we have accomplished. A time to give thanks for the people who have, in one way or another, entered our lives and made it better.

This year I am truly grateful for finding the missing link to my personal spiritual evolution in the writings of Jessica MacBeth. I stumbled upon her website on Sun Magic, Moon Magic, Lunar Cycling, Solar Focusing many months ago. As I merged her simple approach into my own spiritual practice I began to connect with Spirit in a way that made everything else more clear.

What I find particularly lovely in the grand scheme of things, is that we’re given 3 months to think about what it is we want in this next cycle. From winter solstice til the spring equinox we’re given plenty of time to mull things over. The cloak of winter stratifying the seeds of the past cycle that will come alive as the sun continues to wax full.   I am grateful for this time. Laying to rest that which no longer serves me and dreaming of what I’d like my life to be.  Planting the seeds of hope and fresh ideas and knowing Spirit is listening.

During that space of time we also plan and prepare our gardens. Cultivating the soil, tending to the perennials that survive even the worst of conditions, plucking out the weeds that would threaten the seeds we wish to plant.  The garden is the perfect metaphor for what we need to do within ourselves to prepare for the coming months and years.

I have watched, by day,  the results the light of the moon has on my little seedlings. Seeds planted last fall are now sprouting and seem to double in size overnight. I eagerly greet each day by watching them grow.

As the sun continues to wax full, I look forward to many nights in my magical garden gazing at the moon and speaking with Spirit.

Hope to see you there.

Best wishes to one and all for a bountiful and beautiful new year.

May all your dreams and wishes come true.

Judy

I don’t write in this blog often . . . but when I do, I have something to say that will hopefully carry me onto the next leg of the journey.

Here we are, the 1st of April still feeling the charge of Aries pushing us into a new yearly cycle.  I’m sitting in my garden, with new things sprouting up all around me and enjoying the fruits of my labor of the past three months.

Last year I didn’t spend much time in it. I kept busy making mushroom ornaments and garlands. Besides, last year, here in Florida we went from extreme cold to extreme hot overnight. There were no mornings of cool to get a lot of work done.

This year, however, was perfect. Cold in January and February, but not so cold that a good bit of hard work wouldn’t warm you up comfortably. March too, though toward the end it was beginning to show signs of summer. Even now, at 8:47 pm, it’s almost too hot to have a fire, but the temp is starting to drop and a I’m starting to feel cozy.

I love my little make-shift fire-pit . . . made from the lid of an old kettle type bar-b-que grill. It’s perfect for those new and full moons when the weather is cool and dry.

My garden is my sanctuary. It’s my place of refuge, my safe-haven. This year, I have a new lap-top thanks to my husband, and a very long extension cord. No longer tethered to my desktop,  its a glorious place to sit and ponder life in this universe.

This year Spirit, working through two friends, has encouraged me to broaden my horizons a bit. I do admit that I am a happy hermit . . . happy to be alone with my own thoughts about my spiritual path. While I do enjoy the company of others, I often find that the beat of my drum is a lot different that other folks. So I’m content beating my drum as I please.

Metaphorically speaking that is.

I live in a suburban environment where my prayers are not said aloud in my garden . . . there are ears all around. And my prayers are between me and Spirit. The last 2 times I’ve tried to play music aloud in my garden was met with the neighbors behind me bringing out their music system and blasting me away.  With music that wouldn’t soothe a savage beast.

So, the ipod it is. Though I must admit, it would be nice to have a background of music when my friends come over.

Would love to start a drum circle, but I don’t think that would go over so well.

Anyway . . . back to broadening my horizons.

My friends, who are interested in all the same things as me, have encouraged me to share some of the things I know about.  Based on some of the classes they’ve taken at a local metaphysical shop, they feel that I know so much more.

I hesitate as I do not consider myself an authority on anything. Everything I do, or know, is really just reading and researching and applying adaptations of different approaches to my own personal spiritual practice.  Doing what feels right for me.

Last night, I happened across this question and instruction in a lunar report from one of my favorite astrology websites:

“Do you have a short written statement about the chief purpose of your life? It is time to read your statement. Write it, read it, and put it inside your wallet. Stay focused on what’s important to you.”

Being in a waxing moon period, and thinking about creating a series of classes I could possibly instruct, I thought that it was a good time to stop and think about this. To clarify my intention of purpose.

I’ve done many things in my life, but at my age, starting anew in any one of them has proved to be contrary to what the universe wants me to do – apparently!  We won’t go there . . . we’ll just move forward to what I’m supposed to do now. . .

So, here it is:

My Brief Written Statement about the chief purpose of my life:

“I am here to share that which I’ve learned about how to have a practical, magical, spiritual life and how to connect in an individual way to the bountiful energy of the Creator of all-that-is.”

I still can’t believe I said that! It is just as powerful for me today as when I wrote it last night. My greatest fear is that I am somewhat lacking in what I know . . . I know only what’s right for me. Can I somehow convey this to others in a broad enough scope?

I know that while I’ve come far on this journey . . . others are just beginning, or are  just as befuddled as I was in the beginning.  There are just so many different spiritual paths and practices within the metaphysical realm that it is sometimes overwhelming to find what feels right.

It would be nice however,  to share what I have learned with the hope that it may help others feel closer to Spirit.

In many ways, it does feel right.

snowypathyou will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

John 8:32

No matter how far I think I’ve come, I know I still have a long way to go.

It must be the time of year that’s roused a need to reflect on just where I am on my spiritual journey and how I got here.

Christmas being a time of peace, love, joy and goodwill toward mankind and Hannukah – the Festival of Lights – commemorating the triumph of religious freedom have both molded my view of religion, belief and spirituality.

Even though neither were celebrations I grew up observing.

It’s been a long journey, with many twists and turns, yet I know that one should never be too confident in thinking that they have arrived. Is there even a point of arrival, a place where the search ends?

Christianity teaches that the end may be heaven for some people, and if you survive the “wrath” of God’s Armageddon – eternal life. While searching for truth, I found that as my journey progressed my desire for religion waned.

While I have always felt deeply connected to my Creator, I have never found any comfort in religion. I’ve always felt like an outsider looking in, rather than a welcomed participant. No matter how I much I longed for inclusion, and tried, it seemed like the impossible dream.

I’ve had many conversations with God about this. Even though I did all of the talking – I always felt He was listening. Forever believing in the words “do not judge, lest ye be judged”, all I seemed to find at churches and synagogues was judgment. Perhaps it was God who allowed me to see this contradiction as part of the truth that set me free.

Today, I see religion as simply a mechanism which teaches with “Cliff” notes in order to control the group. Instead of allowing the truth to be revealed in its own way to each individual, religions have their own interpretation of the way- the one and only way – God requires us to believe in Him. A one size fits all approach and if you don’t “fit” by ascribing to their philosophy and their rigors of observance, you are not one of the “chosen”.

In today’s modern society some religious groups have become more tolerant of other points of view. This seems to be a step in the right direction. Yet each one, when you get right down to the nitty gritty of their core belief, still hold themselves and their way of believing as the absolute and only way to salvation.

At this moment in my journey, I simply cannot – will not – see this as truth.

I believe that our Creator – the I Am That I Am – is the Infinite Source of all that is. I believe that this source has touched every thing and every one on the face of this earth and beyond. To believe that the source of all creation would select only one group to bestow salvation betrays everything I believe God to be: merciful, loving, compassionate, and forgiving – just to name a few. I believe that we – each and every one of us – as a vital part of His creation, are valued and loved. Whether we choose to believe it or not.

As a parent who loves her children unconditionally, I cannot see how – if we are God’s children, He could love all of mankind – His creation – any differently. My children complain, they don’t always do what I ask them, and sometimes do things that really make me mad. As they’ve gotten older, they don’t always agree with me. But I still love them. I don’t think there is anything they could do that could ever make me not love them or wish them harm. That is how I believe our Creator to be.

A long time ago, when explaining to my mother why I no longer believed in the religion of my youth, I quoted the bible as saying there is only one faith. This has long been held as the indefensible proof that there is only one true religion.

But faith has no religious boundaries.

The belief in One Creator of all-that-is permeates even those religions viewed as multi-theistic. I know people of many different religious philosophies who live their lives with faith in this belief. Good, honest, people who lives their life with a deeply founded faith in their belief that you’ll find is no different from one religion to the next.

I think the question of faith lies in what it is you have faith in. Is it a sincere faith in the goodness of God and how we have been instructed to treat others? There is a form of the “Golden Rule” in every religion. Or is it a faith based in the fear of the “wrath” of God? That is a troubling question, as many are led into and held captive to religion by fear.

One of the most fearful scriptures for me as a child was the warning to “beware of the wolf in sheep’s clothing”. I have come to believe that religion itself is this wolf we need to be wary of.

Over the years, I have sought to understand many different religious avenues. The words “seek and you will find” was a directive to explore in order to decide which way was the true way, I needed to understand them all – or at least expose myself to their concepts and pursue those which sounded true for me. By using the gift of freewill, I am always free to question and decide for myself. By examining these different paths, I can see where God has touched them all.

What I have also come to see is that religion really has little to do with spirituality although it is a term traditionally believed as belonging to it. Spirituality is a more deeply personal connection to God, that transcends any religious doctrine.

While I currently have no formal religious affiliation, my reflections on these issues have helped me clear my mind to see the important lessons of the Christmas and Hannuka season.

There is a warmth in the ideal of Christmas. Of giving, though it seems the receiving if far more important to a lot of people. Although it is a Christian adaptation of pagan celebrations to honer the birth of the Messiah, it does seem to encourage goodwill and joyousness in many of us. If nothing else, it causes me to stop and show my appreciation for the man known as Jesus, who walked his talk of the “golden rule” by example – even to those shunned by many in his day as unrighteous – with kindness, patience, tolerance, acceptance and love. May I celebrate this holiday doing my best to follow his lead.

Let me also appreciate that “pagan” – though thought of as evil – is nothing more than the rustic religious beliefs of anyone not Christian, Jewish or Muslim – from which many of their beliefs originated from.

Hannukah provides me with the opportunity to celebrate the justice in fighting for the right to believe and worship your own brand of religion. Just as the Maccabees triumphed over those who would prevent them from worshiping God the way that their faith guided them, so too shall I celebrate this triumph by honoring and respecting others who have beliefs different from my own. May I uphold and promote the rights which allow all people to worship and believe the way that is right for them. May I stand up and fight against those who would deny us this right, or seek to force their views onto those who differ.

Let me too, see those things – within all religious beliefs – which are good, and of “good report” as messages meant for all of us. Meant to bring us together rather than divide.

May this season be a joyful one for us all.

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