Miscellany

Meet New Seasons with Intention: A Guide to Crystals for Manifestation

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The season is changing, the year's beginning its closing quarter, and everyone seems to be reflecting on how best to make the most of it. While nothing beats good old grit, some tools can help us tow the line.

(Though before adding anything to the mix, clean house. A seasonal refresh of your surroundings can help clear stagnancy and set a clean stage for the coming chapter. Then, you can accessorize according to your aim (abundance, peace, love or the like). New seasons are also an excellent time to sage. I’ll be doing mine on the next new moon.)

Crystals – be they powerful or simply pretty placebos, which is for you to experience and know for yourself – can serve a variety of purposes.

Broadly, crystals absorb, reflect, deflect or magnify us. Our intentions or company - what we want, or already have.

Therein, their specialties are more nuanced. While you own your intentions and your actions toward furthering them, a great (and trendy, yes) focus is manifestation.

My definition: Encountering what we should – because it’s what we need – is always an if not the ultimate pursuit. (“Encountering” may mean making, chasing, accidentally stepping on, being run over by or otherwise, which is all to say that the insight may come from any direction, and won’t necessarily be pleasant. But, let’s not digress.)

Following is a nice little guide to some crystals for manifestation:

Source: Adapted from http://wisdom-of-spirit.com/

clear quartz crystal for manifestation_rachelle robinett

The power of crystals lies in their ability to hold and transmit energy.

Crystal energy can help us to heal, focus our intent and manifest desires. There are many different types of crystals. Each type of crystal has its own unique characteristics and will thus aid us in different ways.

They are also believed to help align our vibration with our intentions. Crystal energy and the various types of crystals can be seen as important tools to help us to quickly manifest desires of all kinds.

CLEAR QUARTZ: Powerful crystal energy to manifest desires of all types. Stores and amplifies energy. Acts as a mirror of your inner energy/vibration. Is said to provide clarity and understanding.

ROSE QUARTZ: Crystal power ruling emotions. Great for manifesting love, creating gentle healing energy and opening the heart chakra to receive love.

AMETHYST: Emanates crystal energy of higher mind. Aids us in expanding consciousness, identifying and strengthening intention, strengthening psychic ability, opening us to receive inner guidance and helping us to manifest desires by illuminating the path towards our highest goals. The crystal energy of amethyst can help us to dissolve creative blocks, connect to the wisdom of spirit within and aids us in life after death communication.

AGATE: The crystal energy of agate provides protection, strength and harmony. Agate comes in various colors. Each holds subtly different properties. Agate increases energy and enhances longevity. Wear agate when you intend to manifest desires for the continuation of a positive experience. Agate demonstrates the power of crystals through its properties of enhanced courage, self confidence, grounding positive emotion. It also helps to cleanse and stabilize awareness.

AVENTURINE: Out of all types of crystals, Aventurine provides its wearer with the highest levels of emotional tranquility. It enhances inner strength, leadership ability and facilitates decisive action. Provides emotional alignment to enhance spiritual growth and wellbeing of independence.

AMAZONITE: Amazonite helps to manifest desires to communicate clearly. It amplifies wisdom of the heart, removes emotional blockages, enhances creativity and elevates one’s level of ‘star’ quality. A wonderful manifestation tool for writers and artists. Helps to strengthen inner voice. Soothes nervous system disorders.

CARNELIAN: Use this power crystal to banish sorrow and uplift emotions. Carnelian helps to propel one forward to take initiative towards manifesting desires. Helps to balance creativity and self confidence. Enhances ability to love self.

CITRINE: The crystal energy of this stone helps to eliminate body toxins. It clears away negative energy of the aura and physical body and transmutes negative energy to positive energy. When harnessing the power of crystals, use citrine when desiring manifestations for all types of abundance. Citrine enhances self-esteem, instills confidence and provides an energy of warmth and abundance.

PERIDOT: This power crystal emits a warm, friendly energy. Provides bodily protection, inner happiness and illuminates the personal path to joy. One of it’s greatest powers lies in it’s ability to dissipate angry emotions.

GREEN TOURMALINE: Attract success, prosperity and abundance. Helpful for immune system disorders and weight loss. This is a stone that helps open one up to channeling. It provides protection from lower energies.

FLOURITE: (*I often see these little guys near cash registers at particularly tuned-in places.)

Enhances spiritual pursuits and facilitates the attainment of higher knowledge. It aligns it’s user with greater powers of concentration and deepens meditation. Aids us in expanding our consciousness to higher levels to perceive from broader perspectives. Helps us attain life after death communication. Good for PMS and menopause.

GARNET: Garnet is the stone of health. It is thought to balance the thyroid and to adjust energetic flow within the body. Helps to manifest desires by enhancing our commitment to self and others. Harmonizes energy between ourselves and others.

HOWLITE: Howlite is the power crystal of calm communication. Wear this stone when negotiating anything. It enhances awareness and ability for emotional expression. Enhances spirituality by allowing us glimpses into the higher realms.

JASPER: The crystal energy of Jasper enhances our state of relaxation and tranquility and wholeness. Manifest desires with greater ease through wearing this stone. Jasper provides nurturing and protective qualities during astral travel and helps to facilitate direct life after death communication.

Scenes from Sundays

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Sundays have been so beautiful, I had to share. Starting the day with Rx deliveries - on the bike - and recently to a new boutique in Greenpoint - Mind Over Matter. It opened this month, taking over the old One Well location, and among the housewares and holistic health and beauty products, you'll find most of my line there.

One of the products I'll stock there is new-ish for me, which I teased a while ago (on Instagram) and have been tweaking the recipe for, but is definitely there now: Remineralizing Whitening Toothpowder. An all natural dry "toothpaste" that will actually help repair your teeth, rather than stripping them of their natural strength (minerals). It's on the shelves at m|m and in my shop.

See some Rx herbal teas (also newly available online), our Mugwort tincture and the trusty Elderberry Extract making new friends:

After a stop at Botica & Co. for a shot of their exceptional mushroom extract (including eight different varieties) it was off to errands in the city.

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Not pictured: my biker's shoulders tan.

While the sun was out, I recharged my quartz. In the remaining calendula-Epsom salt mix from the batch made for products, just because it looked good:  Juiced some beautiful, brrright orange turmeric from Dual Specialty in the east village. They're consistently the best source for fresh turmeric and I don't know where they get it but this stuff was Jurassic sized.

Realized that it matched my necklace. Which was about all I was wearing. Which is another reason I love summer. Let's call this my "hut practice" look: Which wasn't dinner appropriate so we clean up, but keep the chain as there's an orange theme going at this point.

INTERVIEW: MEREDITH MCMAHON, YOGA TEACHER, EMPATHIC HEALER, MEDIUM

MEREDITH MCMAHON

Name: Meredith McMahon

Profession: Yoga teacher, empathic healer, medium, general twitchy woo woo energy feeler and dealer in life.

What does that mean exactly: Generally I teach beginner yoga classes and private sessions which also include meditation if the student/s are comfortable with it, not everyone is at first. I can teach advanced students but I like to help lay a solid foundation in their practice. Empathic healing can be a separate thing if need be as well. Essentially I feel out what is going on in the person, body, mind etc. on the surface and deep deep deep down. What we work on that day really depends on what I see and feel. It's about what is for the person's highest good, not necessarily mine. With that information I try to energetically mend it and I try to teach them a meditation, or something along those lines, to do on their own if they feel overwhelmed, overcome etc. with what it was we were trying to heal. As far as medium work goes, sometimes that gets integrated with the empathic healing work and sometimes it's just medium work. What it means is that I can sense/see, talk to, communicate with spirits of those that passed or will soon, in some cases.

Passion: Life. My passion is to just live and to do it in a way that when people think about me they knew that I cared more about living than I did about sitting in a cubicle in order to pay my bills. I want to show people love. I always thought that through that, the healing they need would come. Life should be lived and not wasted on a job you hate or a relationship that no longer fulfills you. When you love you, you're happier, you make better choices, you spread it to those around you, your life just improves, and it feels effortless and easy. That's what true love is anyway. Making the choice isn't always easy... It's not always easy to step on my yoga mat, or to love someone instead of giving into my urge to tell them to fuck right off but, stepping onto my yoga mat has yet to be a bad choice and not make me feel good and choosing to act with love instead of negativity has never backfired. Don't get me wrong, I'm fiery, I bite back, I get mad and don't always make the loving choice but, I always try to.

Why? No idea. Can we ever really explain why we are passionate about something? I think it's just hard-wired in me to be passionate about it. I don't think you get to choose your passion, it's just there burning in you to do it. As it goes with love of any kind. You don't get to choose. You don't really get to choose what you love, who you love and why. It just is. That's what you love, who you love, and burn and breathe for. It just happens and your life is never the same and if you're smart you pursue it and don't look back.

Do you have a mantra? "Just keep breathing." Breathing takes me through awesome yoga sessions and hard ones, good days and moments and bad. It's how we keep living. Some days it's the most I accomplish and that's ok.

Favorite health approach: Fresh green juice, ginger, lemon, cinnamon tea, yoga, a hard workout... Good hugs. It sounds cheesy I realize but there isn't anything more comforting sometimes than a really good hug from someone you know loves you.

What one or few things have improved your quality of life most? My horse, my dog, my tribe of people, my yoga practice.

What matters most to you these days? That what I am doing, who I am around and giving my time and energy to creates happiness in me, and them if it's a person. If it doesn't, I let it go. I've felt stuck before and I refuse to ever stay where I feel stuck again. Life is just too short to sacrifice happiness to feel stuck and helpless.

What have you learned recently that you'd like to apply to your life? I went to a yoga workshop this summer, it was Kathryn Budig and she made the statement that every choice we make either comes from a place of love or a place of fear. That statement changed how I looked at everything.  The things and the people I choose now are choices of love. Fear just controls too much anymore for so many, it makes me sad, if you dread going home or to work, change where and what and who those things are.  I started choosing love more... It makes all the difference.

What do you know that you wish more people knew as well? Well, we are all broken and I think people forget that. With that though I wish more people would realize that people who love you who really love you don't use your brokenness as a weapon against you. Those that really love you would only see your brokenness as a place to put their love and light into. Love isn't pointing fingers and dragging someone else through the muck, it's simply being there for each other, open and honest and encouraging.

What do you wish you knew more about? Everything haha :). Human anatomy and herbology both of which I'm currently studying!

Who should we profile next and what should we ask them? Travis Taylor, He's a plethora of knowledge and wisdom. He was and in more ways than I can count still is my mentor and beautiful friend. He's a reiki master and empathic healer and all-around amazing being.

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Liked this? There're more.

"Season of the Witch" - Why We're So Into It

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I didn't time my witching to the trend, but it obviously is that (a trend). Or, more aptly, a movement, a reawakening - the development of a side and sect and section of consciousness that was due to develop.

On the topic, some excerpts from a pretty solid piece from The Guardian. Compliments of a male witch in my recent proximity. (Speaking of, Refinery29's recent story on male witches. And their witch-ness shopping guide. See? Trend.)

Direct quotes. Images from what Google said "fashion witches" look like which then lead me to Natalia who I'm sticking with because she's just so beautiful. Link to full article here.

"Rapper Azealia Banks brought witchcraft back into the mainstream by tweeting ‘I’m really a witch’. But women in the US have been harnessing its power for decades as a ‘spiritual but not religious’ way to express feminist ambitions.

“I’m really a witch,” rapper Azealia Banks quipped last January, shortly before all hell broke loose on her Twitter account.

Banks is known for her online rants. She tends to share fairly dense ideas, spontaneously spun out in punchy lines liberally interspersed with curse words. I don’t know a person on this earth who can agree with every one of them, but her opinions are smarter than she usually gets credit for.

Still, even by Banks’s standards, the witch thing was weird. It came out in the middle of a run about black Americans and their relationship to Christianity:

"I wonder if most of the black American Christians in the US know WHY they are Christian. I wonder if they even consider for a SECOND that before their ancestors came to the Americas that they may have believed in something ELSE."

Not uncontroversial, but not wrong. Banks then suddenly took a hard left into what seemed like either a joke, or an unexpected embrace of Harry Potter fan fiction. She went on:

But really, it’s all about magic. The most magical people are the ones who have to deal with oppression, because the non-magical are jealous. That’s why Jews and Blacks have been persecuted over and over again throughout history. because they have the most magic ... all I’m trying to say is that black people are naturally born SEERS, DIVINERS, WITCHES AND WIZARDS. we have REAL supernatural powers, and the sooner we ALL learn to cultivate them and access them, the sooner we can REALLY fix shit.

Then she joked that racism might end a lot sooner if black people could make their enemies sicken and die with a thought, and of course the rightwing publications started sounding the klaxons.

It was the strangest thing: simply by calling herself a witch in public, Banks had managed to evoke real fear. Rightwingers treated her as if she were actually planning to blight crops and hex her enemies, all the while claiming that they didn’t believe in witchcraft.

Given the strength of the reaction, you would think that [Azaelia] Banks was the first woman to cross over to the dark side. You would be wrong. Witchcraft – and the embrace of “magical” practices, like reading tarot cards – has recently experienced a resurgence of sorts among young, creative, politically engaged women.

This is largely reflected in niche corners of US pop culture: 2013’s American Horror Story: Coven, in which witchcraft stood in for girl power, was the most popular American Horror Story season ever. A popular Tumblr blog, Charmcore, purports to be run by three witch sisters; it gives sarcastic “magical” advice and praise of the female celebrities it deems to be “obvious witches”. On the more serious side, teen sensation Rookie magazine has published tarot tutorials along with more standard-issue feminist and fashion advice, and Autostraddle, a popular left-leaning blog for young queer women, has an in-house tarot columnist. Speaking of which, those tarot cards are available in trendy Brooklyn knickknack shops and Urban Outfitters, as well as new age stores. And these days, no one thinks there’s anything weird about herbal medicine and other potions.

The task of reclaiming the witch is a fundamentally poetic one.

In vogue or not, Banks was continuing a heritage of women’s activism that stretches back decades by expressing her politics and invoking the fearsome power of a “witch”.

“To reclaim the word witch is to reclaim our right, as women, to be powerful,” wrote Starhawk, in her seminal 1979 book The Spiral Dance. “To be a witch is to identify with 9 million victims of bigotry and hatred and to take responsibility for shaping a world in which prejudice claims no more victims.”

NOTE: I was introduced to Starhawk (as a with, not personally) in my Tarot 101 session and have wanted to read more about+from her since. She's an old and reportedly forceful one. We'll get around to it.

“I’ve been involved with this resurgence of interest in spirituality since the 1960s,” Starhawk told me during a phone conversation. “It’s like suddenly the world opened up and people realized there wasn’t just Judaism, Christianity, Islam. There was a whole world of eastern religions and traditions. In the 1970s, with the resurgence of the feminist movement, a lot of us began to investigate a feminist spirituality and the goddess traditions of Europe and the Middle East.”

Wicca, with its focus on a goddess (rather than a male god – though it has those too) and its relatively open approach to creating canon, was a natural fit for many feminist women interested in writing their own spiritual script. But women who weren’t explicitly Wiccan were also drawn to “witchy” ways of processing the world: not only did women make feminist tarot cards in the 1970s, author Alice Walker personally endorsed one set – the Motherpeace deck. Feminist psychologists such as Jean Shinoda Bolen and Clarissa Pinkola Estés wrote books on using goddess imagery and myths as means of understanding female subjectivity.

What’s more, in the moment that Starhawk and others like her were practicing witchcraft as a religion, non-religious women were also claiming the witch as a symbol of their feminist ambitions. The 1970s socialist-feminist collective Witch – the letters stood for anything the leaders felt like from moment to moment, but Women’s International Terrorist Conspiracy from Hell was a popular choice – held theatrical protests, starting by “hexing” the New York stock exchange and going on to attend a “bridal fair” where they unleashed white mice into the crowd.

Their protest chants were particularly catchy: “Double, bubble, war and rubble/ When you mess with women, you’ll be in trouble”.

There’s something deeply appealing in the notion of being put in touch with an inner source of power. It was a gimmick, but it resonated: “Because Witch actions could be done with a small group and were both fun and political, they quickly spread around the country,” writes Jo Freeman. “Boston women hexed bars. DC women hexed the presidential inauguration. Chicago women zapped everything.”

I asked Starhawk why she thought the iconography of the witch had such persistence in activist circles. After all, feminists could be going around calling themselves harpies, or sirens. Of all the mythological images we could pick, why does this one stick?

“I think that part of the power of the word is that it refers to a kind of power that is not legitimized by the authorities,” Starhawk says. “Even though not all witches are women, and a lot of men are witches, it seems to connote women’s power in particular. And that’s very scary in a patriarchal world – the kind of power that’s not just coming from the hierarchical structure, but some kind of inner power. And to use it to serve the ends that women have always stood for, like nurturing and caring for the next generation – that, I think, is a wonderfully dangerous prospect.”

“In each wave of feminism there’s this renewed respect for the women that came before us,” says Beth Maiden, Autostraddle’s tarot columnist who also runs the website littleredtarot.com. “I think we like to identify with the stories of women who were persecuted in the past – wise women, witches, women who practiced that kind of ‘kitchen table’ healing that wasn’t part of the patriarchal progression of medicine.”

This means identifying, as women of the 1960s and 1970s did, with ancient myths and iconography of goddesses, or with the mythological figure of the witch. But it may also mean a renewed respect for those women: the legacy of their spirituality movement seems to have been quietly re-incorporated back into the mainstream of feminism.

This is part of a larger phenomenon – the tendency for Gen X-ers and those who came after them to be “spiritual but not religious”. Rather than converting to one set mythology, younger people tend to pull spiritual ideas and practices from any source that works.

There’s something deeply appealing in the notion of being put in touch with an inner source of power that can’t be taken away. Not that this power needs to be something nebulous and mystical: as Suzy X, one of Rookie’s tarot teachers and frontwoman of “witchcore” punk band Shady Hawkins, says, it can be pretty damn pragmatic.

Embracing the witchiness – deciding you can know something about your life by looking at tarot cards and listening to your hunches, or trying to affect a situation by focusing your will on it – might be just a process by which women can come to trust themselves.

There’s also the pull of the taboo, of being a woman who does what she’s not supposed to: “It feels incredible to use all the aspects of being a woman which the dominant culture considers to be signs of weakness, like emotional sensitivity or a menstrual cycle, as tools when you are giving a reading or doing a spell,” says Marty Windahl, proprietor of Tarotscopes. “This is really the heart of being a witch for me, turning everything on its head. That, and making treasure of trash.”

Today's Tarot draw: Strength

via Instagram http://ift.tt/1DEqFTN
"Under a golden sky, a woman gently pats a lion on its forehead and lower jaw. The woman gazes down at the lion with a peaceful smile on her face and appears to be successfully taming this wild beast. The fact that Strength is represented by a woman indicates that this card is not focused on pure physical strength. She has the infinity symbol above her head, the same symbol seen in the Magician. Her white robe is that of the innocent Fool, indicating a #purity of #spirit. The blue mountain in the background is the same phallic symbol seen in the #Lovers. The lion is a symbol of our animal passions and desires. The lion itself is sticking out his tongue. Animals that are preparing to bite do not stick their tongues out. This lion is happy to submit and surrender to the woman. The #woman overcomes the lion with a quiet strength that can only come from within. Her left arm represents mental effort, while the right arm represents physical effort. Her right arm is merely holding, while the left arm is exerting all the pressure. She wears a belt and crown of flowers and stands unprotected in an open green field. The crown on her head represents the fullest, most beautiful expression of nature and transient #life. The sign associated with the Strength card is #Leo."

Jungle Sounds: Live Life from the Frontlines of Earth

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I record a lot of audio.  In general but especially when it's dawn or dusk and the only sights and sounds for miles are jungle. Figured I'd share the sound-love. Here's, Hawaii. Morning, and night. (As you'll notice, night was much louder. Those are Coqui frogs.)

Recommended listening for a.m. routines, meditation or if you find yourself in a mall or something.

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Hawaii: 10 Days & 120 Hours of Sleep

Aloha lovers - now that I know what that word actually means, which is not just "Hello".

In the Hawaiian language, aloha stands for much more than just "hello" or "goodbye" or "love." Its deeper meaning is "the joyful (oha) sharing (alo) of life energy (ha) in the present (alo).

As you share this energy you become attuned to the Universal Power that the Hawaiians call mana. The loving use of this power is the secret for attaining true health, happiness, prosperity and success."

Source: The Aloha Spirit, a little paperback book which I was gifted by one of the hosts.

I put this post together as I was (am) readjusting to wearing clothes again. I will not wax on the heaven that tropical paradise are, period.

Winter holidays in NYC were well spent, in Hawaii. A bit outside of the tiny town of Pahoa, I had my hut, a jungle backyard and 10 days to do as I damn-well pleased.

Which was basically: sleep, explore, lay on the ground somewhere staring at something, yoga, and write. In that order, every day, and without a hint of boredom, restlessness or anything other than peace and happiness that spread into total rest and a sort of smiley daze that probably doesn't stand a chance against NYC, but which surely added an extra year or few to my life.

My hut was one of two with electricity - the rest were anything from a tent to a simple, screened bamboo box.

The kitchen was communal. The shower was solar-powered and in the jungle. <3

(And, I've spared those not interested in geeky foods from those photos. See: Hawaii Eats: Island Food Finds for the hunting/gathering details.)

By day, I'd run and/or ride (4 miles to the beach). The beach was a breeze to bike to and a bitch to get back from. 500 foot elevation difference over the four miles. Meaning, uphill the whole way. The bike I borrowed was two small and it took me five days to kick it out of three gears but of course I rode it to death.

When the sky started its sunset, I'd sit down to write. It became my favorite time. The breeze would pick up and I'd leave the door to the hut open to a backyard of huge swaying palms and a view of the ocean below those 500 feet. (The writing is a different project - from my other side (creative, fiction aka not ErthlyDlights stuff) hence the quiet over here lately (sorry!)).

Nights were starry and covered in Coqui frogs.

And more, and less but I wrote myself out of words there. So, in pictures and no particularly order:

Interview: Lisa Levine, Acupuncturist, Founder & Director of Maha Rose Center for Healing

LisaLevine Name: Lisa Levine

Profession: Acupuncturist, Founder & Director of Maha Rose Center for Healing, Reiki Master Teacher, Jewelry Designer

What does that mean, exactly? ha ha..I have my hands in many pots, but they all feed each other. Or are all making a beautiful stew together.

Passion: The light, service, raising my vibration and helping others to do the same.

Why? It feels so good.

Do you have a mantra? Yes, but it’s a secret one from my teacher.

Favorite health routine/recipe/trick/approach/go-to: Salt water baths, long walks, breathing it out, receiving healing sessions myself.

What one or few thing(s) have improved your quality of life most recently? My fiancé and the daily love and support that he brings into my life.

What matters most to you these days? Receiving, being present and clear.

What have you learned recently that youd like to apply to your life? To face the awkward and the uncomfortable, quickly and with grace. Not avoiding anything.

What do you know that wish more people did as well? The importance of doing the work- the inner work and how much grace that brings.

Resources, if applicable: http://maharose.com - <3 <3 <3

What do you wish you knew more about? Western and Eastern medicine- these will be my studies for life.

Who should we profile next and what should we ask them? Ava Gerber- and how she got so good?

thank you !!!

Inspiration: Minimalism

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minimalism2 While we're on the topic of abstinence, how about a few quotes on how and why to consider a minimalist lifestyle. In whatever sense that's right for you. I've found it liberating, inspiring and conducive to productivity, creativity and peace. From a sparse desktop to a simple diet or well-edited closet. We don't need to fill every shelf ...

Have nothing in your homes that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. - William Morris

Cultivate poverty like a garden herb, like sage. Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends. Things do not change, we change. Sell your clothes and keep your thoughts. - Henry David Thoreau

The intention of voluntary simplicity is not to dogmatically live with less. It’s a more demanding intention of living with balance. This is a middle way that moves between the extremes of poverty and indulgence.- Duane Elgin

To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing as one’s own in the midst of abundance. - Buddha

Minimalism

Halloween: And Why You're Dressing Up as Dead Things

IMG_0983.JPGHallowe'en(/ˌhæləˈwiːn, -oʊˈiːn, ˌhɑːl-/; a contraction of "All Hallows' Evening"), also known as Allhalloween, All Hallows' Eve, or All Saints' Eve, is a yearly celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows' Day. It initiates the triduum of Allhallowtide, the time in the liturgical year dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs, and all the faithful departed believers.

The traditional focus of All Hallows' Eve revolves around the theme of using "humor and ridicule to confront the power of death."

According to many scholars, All Hallows' Eve is a Christianized feast initially influenced by Celtic harvest festivals, with possible paganroots. Because many Western Christian denominations encourage abstinence from meat on All Hallows' Eve, the tradition of eating certain vegetarian foods for this vigil day developed, including the consumption of apples, colcannon, cider, potato pancakes, and soul cakes.

Many Christians acknowledged "a belief that once a year, on Hallowe'en, the dead of the churchyards rose for one wild, hideous carnival," known as the danse macabre. The danse macabre urged them not to forget the end of all earthly things."

Sometimes, the High Road is Empty

The topic of solitude versus loneliness, and the aptitude of some to enjoy or prefer isolation to company - silence to conversation - is one that interests me particularly. {Recall: "Choosing to be Single. That's What I Said."} I suppose that trait makes me well suited to be trekking this road, hm? Today, some inspiration there. Share with friends, or, don't. :)

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Therefore, dear Sir, love your solitude and try to sing out with the pain it causes you. For those who are near you are far away… and this shows that the space around you is beginning to grow vast.

Be happy about your growth, in which of course you can’t take anyone with you, and be gentle with those who stay behind; be confident and calm in front of them and don’t torment them with your doubts and don’t frighten them with your faith or joy, which they wouldn’t be able to comprehend.

Seek out some simple and true feeling of what you have in common with them, which doesn’t necessarily have to alter when you yourself change again and again; when you see them, love life in a form that is not your own and be indulgent toward those who are growing old, who are afraid of the aloneness that you trust.

And don’t expect any understanding; but believe in a love that is being stored up for you like an inheritance, and have faith that in this love there is a strength and a blessing so large that you can travel as far as you wish without having to step outside it.

— Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet