Musings

Musings

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Alchemy

Greetings all,

Last week I spoke of inertia, and this week has been about momentum.  Where once in my life I had long stretches of nothing and no one to occupy my time, this week has been full and rewarding with synchronicity and soulful doings.

Since I left retail at the beginning of the summer I have been rediscovering parts of myself.   You shut a lot of yourself down in certain work situations.  Retail certainly taught me humility, or maybe it was humiliation.  In either case it put me out in the public in a way that I wouldn't have been.  I can be kind of a hermit at times.  I have traded one form of public interaction for another though and now I am teaching and speaking in front of groups on a regular basis.  I'm not sure if the retail helped with that, but for my own peace of mind we'll just say that it did.

When I made the decision last week to get back into my clay work, I was immediately gifted with a fortuitous "coincidence".  Previously I had to drive to the next closest city an hour away to get supplies, but this weekend was the grand opening of a ceramics supply store right here in the center of town.  Sure it could just be random chance, but what are the odds that it would open the same exact week I began to get my hands dirty again in the studio?  I tend to suspect some magical agent was involved in this, or perhaps some precognition on my own part.

So I came back into my studio, confronted by months of neglect with difficult clay and found that it had stiffened further so slab building was impossible.  Quite simply it was too hard to be rolled out.  So I went to plan B which was to use my extruder (a giant size play dough fun factory for ceramics).  I literally had to punch the clay into shape so it would fit into the barrel of the extruder.  Due to the extreme toughness of the porcelain, when it came out of the barrel the tube bent and tore in crazy directions.  As an evolved being I took a breath and then exhaled, "FUUUUUCCKKKK!"  Then with that calming ritual completed, I cut the odd shapes loose from the equipment and set them aside.  After cutting them down a bit I began to see directions that I wouldn't have thought of pursuing without the initial imperfections.  I came out of it with three very unique pots which I then carved to enhance the forms that I co-created.


All of this came out of the difficulties I was having with my materials.  In the past some of my best work has come about due to problems I had to solve, or because I had leftover material that I didn't want to go to waste.  I often liked it better than what I had planned or envisioned.  This taking in of the current conditions and working with them to transform and create is the driving force of alchemy. Whether it is turning lead into gold or spinning air and space into a dense mound of clay it is a magical process.  It is challenging and fascinating and learning how to turn what comes our way into opportunity and blessings is part of the way of the alchemist.  Some things take a bit more thought, ingenuity,  and energy to transform than others, but the densest material often yields the most spectacular end results.  

So how about you?  What perceived negative situation or material can you rework into a golden opportunity?  What problem can be transmuted into a brilliant alchemical solution?  This is not the same as positive thinking, it is better, it is transformative thinking.  What if everything that arises around you could be used as a stepping stone to a major transformation?  What if what weighs you down could be decanted into fuel that would rocket you up to your shooting stars where you wishes and dreams dance?  It won't be easy, but if you can learn to work with what you are given then you will become the Alchemist, master of destiny, servant of the Divine, and you will hold dominion over the matter of your life.  Seems like a cool gig if you ask me.  Try it on for a bit and see what solutions rise to the surface of your life.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Inertia

Greetings all,

I hope you have had a relaxing week.  The first part of it I spent running around like a chicken with its head cut off.  I was trying to get around to visit everyone whilst I had a guest.  The summer is soon drawing to a close  and indeed today we've had some very mild weather, a taste of the days to come.  The greening time never seems to be long enough for me.  I like the arching hallways that the leafed trees form on the back roads and twisting lanes, but all seasons have their time.

This summer I haven't been as productive as in years past. I've barely traveled, and I have not made too many things.  This year I don't have the excuse of writing a book either, I'm on hiatus from that endeavor for a little bit.  I've been focused on promoting the book I've already published which is a job in and of itself.  I've focused a great deal on teaching and learning this past season.  As well as streamlining some of my business practices and online presence.  However I haven't touched clay in months.

For those of you who don't know, aside from my teaching and psychic life coaching and healing work, I am also an artist. Although I prefer to see myself as a maker of things.  It's part of what I love and yet it's been far too long since I really have done anything meaningful in my studio.  Making pieces has always been a struggle for me.  It takes a great deal of energy for me to bring a piece to life.  I've often said I've experienced every obstacle to making work you can think of.  I've had professors who used to publicly shame and humiliate me.  I've had apprenticeships in studios that closed.  I've had people back out of deals for firing work after they had fleeced me of labor.  I've had a kiln that never quite reached temperature.  I had a gallery that was never open so my work sat unseen, and a gallery that sold my work but then didn't pay me for it.  The last thing that happened was that there was a leak in basement which weakened the boxes my clay was stored in so that it became permeable to moisture. So now I am stuck with several hundred pounds of clay that is so stiff I can't work with it on the wheel.

I love creating and working in clay, but the idea of just getting started right now is exhausting.  For this reason I've let my supplies and equipment sit idle while I put my energies elsewhere.  Yet I am not happy about that.  As much as I love the healing work that I do, making things is part of who I am.  Without it I feel empty, like a part of me is missing.  I've just not had the energy or inspiration for the struggle to get things going again.  This has led me to feeling like a big failure.  The irony is that while I am typing this I am drinking tea from one of my own handmade mugs.

I have made some good work in the past, but I've also had a lot of heartbreak in the past few years.  I'm not one of those moody artists who gets more creative when they are down.  When I create it is from a space of expansion and joy.  Nothing kills my creativity so much as sorrow.  Amanda Palmer the singer/songwriter talks about this in a video preceding one of her songs.  She says she had only written 3 songs in 2 years because she had been depressed, and the worse thing was the expectation that as an artist she should be using that depression as fuel for her art and when she couldn't that made her depression even worse. (I'll link the video down below. Check her out because she is a goddess of creative energy).  So it gets me both ways.  Right now I'm at a crossroads of whether to give it all up or try again.

I've decided I am going to try again.  My several hundred pounds of clay that is too stiff to work with on a potter's wheel is still useable if I hand build with it.  This is something I've done almost none of, but maybe it is an opportunity to grow my skills and bring even more ideas to life through my hands.  I've been going through old ceramics magazines and watching how to videos on Youtube.  I'm starting to get inspired.  I've begun sketching and hoping and looking forward to working again.  I'm not quite ready to begin but I am feeding the fires, and refilling the well of inspiration.  It takes a bit to reach escape velocity when you've been held down by the inertia that life can sometime exert.  I know there will be challenges so I 'm trying to build my excitement until I just can't stand to wait to get into my studio.

So why am I telling you this?  Well we all have dreams that we set aside for a time.  Sometimes it is for legitimate reasons, but some of us never pick those dreams up again.  We think our time has passed, and it is too late to make any difference.  If this year has taught me anything it is that we must make use of our time before the sands of our life run out, because they will and then it will be too late.  We grow and we change, and sometimes old dreams are outgrown but our deep longings are always there with us.  For some it may be to learn to play an instrument so they can start a band with friends, others may want to learn to paint, others may want to write stories, or hike undiscovered trails in the far mountains.  We must honor our obligations and duties in life, but we must also reach for our dreams and expand our spirits.  We didn't come here just to make a living, we came here to make a life.  Those two ideas need not be exclusive to one another.  So pick up a pen, a brush, an instrument, or whatever implement you need for your dream.  You don't have to be amazing at it, you don't have to earn a living with it, but you do have to put your heart and soul into it.  Come on let's break through the inertial dampeners our past has placed on us, it will be more fun together.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle


Sunday, August 14, 2016

Guru Trap

Greetings all,

I've had an exhausting and rewarding week.  I've gotten to spend some time with friends seldom seen and that is always a good thing.  Today I slept in and rather than feeling guilty about it, I reveled in it.  Sleep well earned is a good thing.

As I have reimagined my website and refined its forms I have also been looking at the structure and challenges of my life more deeply.  My relationship to my ability, power, and reception of what I do has been at the forefront of my mind.  I feel I do good work, and yet I also feel I am holding myself back from doing even more powerful work.  So what exactly is the deal?

Well in the past when I have done service for people there have been times when they have basically given their power away.  They have placed me up on a pedestal as a savior, or some sort of special class of person, high above the teeming masses.  This is a very uncomfortable position to be in for me.  Most of the time I feel like so called "ordinary" people have it a lot more together than I do.  I have fears and insecurities too as many if not more so than the mainstream folks.  I worry (it's a family trait).  Beyond that, there is another reason why I may shy away from more showy manifestations.  I call it the Guru Trap.

Quite simply the Guru Trap is when you start to believe your own hype.  You think because you can do amazing things the rules of society just don't apply to you.  I've seen this with several masters in the field. They bring in astounding energies and have what I call a large special effects budget.  They warp reality around them.  Invariably they also fuck up their lives.  They have affairs with students or their assistants.  They get embroiled in lawsuits and feuds with other practitioners, or they misuse their influence over those that come to them for help.  A good part of me fears turning into that, and so I hold myself back.

Right now I am at a crossroads, I either stay small and have to find another means to support myself or I  must grow in what I allow my influence to be.  I like my work, I like helping people maneuver through life's challenges and thrive.  I am going to choose to grow, but I am left with the quandary about how to avoid the Guru Trap.  "The first step in avoiding a trap is knowing of its existence."  At least that is the case in the novel Dune.  Unfortunately that didn't seem to help Duke Leto.  Currently my only strategy is to rely on my friends to let me know if I turned into the self serving guru maniac. I also keep repeating to myself, "To whom much is given, much is expected."

So why does this matter to you?  I think a good many of us fear turning into an asshole so we don't step forward.  We are afraid of who we may become so we stagnate and turn back in on ourselves.  That which doesn't continue to grow decays.  So many of us feel worn out way before our time.  We disconnect with any larger purpose in our lives because we just can't let ourselves grow into that role. It doesn't have to be large public role either, it can be as normal as being a parent, a homeowner, or sober.  We ask who would we be and we assume that we would be that thing we fear.  Maybe we've looked at other role models and found their shine is tarnished when viewed up close, or maybe we've expected perfection.  Perhaps we think failing on a small scale is better than screwing up on a grander one.  In either case who are we to tell the universe, "No I'm sorry I think you have the wrong person for this mission.  You want someone taller with fewer personal flaws and insecurities."

What to do now?  Well instead of fearing what we might become what if we focus on what we'd like to be in the event that greatness is thrust upon us?  What if we learned from the failings of others and forged a different path?  What if we focused on using our growing gifts to serve the world and in turn let it serve us in kind?  When we focus on just ourselves we run the risk of being "that guy", but maybe if we focus on a larger self of community and world we may leap over the pitfall of the Guru Trap.  So try it with me, be a partner in growing because the world needs our best self and efforts.  Now is not the time to shrink back, now is the time to rise and serve.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Windows of the World

Greetings all,

Today I write from a guest computer.  Mine has taken ill, it came on quite suddenly. I am sad to say that the hard drive is with the Lord now.  As I am on a borrowed laptop this posting shall be a bit more brief than usual.

The gut wrenching experience of having my dear sweet laptop fail really brought home a few issues to me.  One, I spend a huge amount of time immersed in the digital landscape.  Now to be sure a lot of this is for work, but a good deal isn't.  Secondly, work tends to blend into leisure.  There is always something fascinating to see and learn online.  I've applied a ton of what I see on Youtube in my artwork.  There are millions of fantastic podcasts, compilation videos, and inane hilarities to be found.  Thirdly, I have been feeling a bit tethered lately to my machine and knew I needed to unplug a bit more.  In steps the hand of fate, voila I am forcibly unplugged.

I sometimes wonder if we have two souls.  An analog one and a digital one.  My generation saw the rise of the online world.  The one that followed it has never known a world that isn't plugged into the informational matrix.  Have a question?  Ask google.  We're so used to the instantaneous availability of data that we feel like a part of ourselves is chopped off when we can't access it.  The pace of life has increased so much that unplugging for a day or more brings up fears that we are missing out or will be left behind by our connections.  This is even more true for those of us who have online businesses.  The IT departments have become the new priesthood, they hold the keys to the combined  uploaded knowledge of the human race.

So now bereft of my work and play companion I am left to ponder my identity.  I am no longer Borg. I am unassimilated into the great collective consciousness of the internet except in small bursts.  I have time now to interact and I have been having more offline conversations and interactions.  So I hope that when my computer has been resurrected by the priests of the technocracy I choose to unplug more and live within my skin rather than a digital avatar.

How about you?  Do you feel deprived of some aspect of yourself when the WIFI goes out?  Is your avatar getting more attention than your analog self?  Are you projecting more of your spirit into the digital reflection of the world?  Well if you are don't despair, most of us do that from time to time.  Sometimes what we need is a hard reboot of our life and priorities.  So set aside some time to unplug.  Maybe don't google something the second it occurs to you, take your time and use the information stored in your internal drives, and as always make sure you are keeping regular backups of your data.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle

Saturday, July 30, 2016

In and Out

Greetings all,

We are coming to the dog days of summer now.  Lammas eve is tomorrow, the first of the 3 harvest festivals in Celtic calendar.  These are often the hottest times of the summer and yet the fading of the light is already apparent.  Although I haven't been in school for a number of years I still feel a tie to the academic year and memories of summer vacations winding down always bring my mind back to simpler times.  This is not to say I long for those days for they are weighted with regret.  I wandered without much direction or purpose in my youth, the road continually vanishing beneath my feet.  I regret time wasted and opportunities left unclaimed.  This may be why I try to keep myself occupied, so I can appreciate the long hot days when I am not busy as a respite rather than feel abandoned by the currents of life.

When we get to the tail end of summer just as winter we can often feel stuck in the fabric of time.  The external world has not offered much in the way of hopeful signs lately.  The siren song of cicadas has been drowned out by the circus of two political conventions in the past two weeks.  Social media has become a minefield of navigating the various degrees of vehemence on the left and the right.  Part of me just wants to check out, and in point of fact I have been spending more time in deep meditations and journeying.  This is good in one way in that I am getting caught up with some of my personal spiritual work.   Still I know my tendency is to numb myself with transcendental states and disengaging from the 3-D realm around me.  The difference these days is that I am not just passing the time in an insulated dream.  I am actively seeking knowledge and empowerment so that when I plug back into our collective world I am more effective at implementing changes in my life as well as the lives of others.

I was having a deep conversation (my favorite kind) with a good friend this week talking about my self perceived faults on not being able to connect well with many people.  However I was not taking in account that what is often depicted online and in other media about relationships is often scripted.  On average people connect on the surface of things and have very few people that they share deep ties with.  This is one of the reasons that many of us struggle with family issues.  We are deeply connected to them, more so than anyone else except maybe a spouse.  We are vulnerable to them whether we want to be or not.  We go out of our way to not reveal our vulnerabilities to others.  Now I am not saying we should be shouting out to the world our deeply held feelings and vulnerabilities.  I've learned the hard way that just because I feel an intense connection with someone it doesn't mean they are meant to be let inside my sanctum.  It's tough I am an introvert that loves people (in small groups, not in public spaces or noisy events...I know I don't ask for much do I).

I remember speaking to an immigrant out of West Africa, she told me most of their songs were about rain, because rain was scarce.  When she came here she noticed most of our songs are about love and she wondered if love was a rare commodity in our culture.  She may be onto something.  I think many of us operate under a love deficit, or rather an intimacy deficit.  We have so much to distract our senses now that we often neglect developing deeper connections, and yet that is what we all on some level are looking for either in our current relationships or in seeking new ones.

So why am I telling you all this.  Well if you're anything like me you want to connect with people and share an understanding.  You want to find your tribe where you can be you and feel like you fit.  Many of us give up the search and settle for the surface currents of life, we watch tv, skim our Facebook feeds, and check our likes and comments rather than engage in the world.  We have tools at our disposal that can help us connect with others who share our values and interests and yet I've heard this from people over and over that when they put up an event if a dozen people say they're coming only one or two show up.  We have so many crutches for interactions now that we often excuse ourselves from the possible awkwardness of interacting.

How about you?  Are your needs for deep meaningful connections being met?  Do feel starved of affection and understanding?  Are you convinced there is something terribly wrong and unlovable about yourself?  Well many of us feel that way from time to time.  Your pain doesn't make you special so try not to confuse yourself with it.  In each of us exists a capacity for beauty either through our form, our movements, in our dealings with others, or the work of our hands and spirits.  If you find yourself in a dry spell for connection don't despair.  There are people who feel exactly the same way, and if we make connecting a priority we can help each other out.  Is your past littered with "failed" connections?  Well guess what the past is relevant only if you decide it is.  It can be your guide for what to look out for instead of a prophetic playbook.  So while the warm days last, before the light wanes and the trees fade make an effort to seek those connections out.  Not every one will work out, but that's part of the process.  Find your tribe and sing your song, I'll be listening for it on the summer breeze.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle


Saturday, July 23, 2016

Wandering Oracle

Greetings all,

Another week another blogpost.  I've been pondering this one quite a bit.  To give you a bit of background several years ago a fellow psychic informed me that they'd had a dream about me becoming some sort of spiritual leader.  They also had envisioned me being killed for my beliefs, and then subsequently receiving some sort of worship like an icon.

First off let me start by saying martyrdom does not appeal to me.  However that vision that was shared with me did inspire me to get my writ down just in case.  This has been known in my circles as the only commandment.  "Don't be a dick."  I won't go into that too much here because I wrote a blog post on it a while back where I elaborate.  Here I'll just link that so we can get on with it.  http://thomasmooneagle.blogspot.com/2013/11/the-first-commandment.html

All caught up now?  Good, have we got some roads to walk together yet.  Lately as current events heat up one issue or another I've been remarking about the Church of the Mooneagle.  Mostly things like in the "In the Church of the Mooneagle we don't care who you marry, just that you treat them well."  (It goes back to the not being a dick thing).  Still, every now again in the still hours, a figure will drift in and out of my musings.  There are no prophets in the Church of the Mooneagle, we don't much hold with that sort of thing.  Prophecy is bad for business all around.  What we do apparently have are oracles.  Nothing so done up as Delphi mind you, our oracles don't stay in one place.  Oracles do share one trait with prophets in that no one wants them in their neighborhood very long.  My oracle comes in the way a lyrical phrase will fall together while contemplating the mysteries both large and small.  I call him the Wandering Oracle.  Although I suppose the Wandering Oracle could just as easily be female, because the Church of the Mooneagle is an equal opportunity employer of spiritual truth.

The words of the Wandering Oracle come in little spurts.  Good luck seeking him out.  Part of the wandering means not so easily traceable.  I never know when he'll turn up.  Although it tends to happen when I am more centered and aligned with my inner truth and the beauty of the world.  In those moments it is like setting an extra place at the table.  Sometimes the oracle accepts the invite, and sometimes I dine alone and must put the leftovers in tupperware.  I like the uncertainty of it all. Too much certainty poisons any spiritual path.

Where did he come from, this oracle?  I almost spilled the beans there for a moment.  You see I wrote out his exact origins and then deleted the paragraph. (I know it's particularly wicked for me to even bring that up but I am a trickster).  Part of the mystery is where he came from.  I know his true name and  how he became an oracle, but to share that might dilute the magic surrounding him.  An oracle thrives on mystery, it's his meat and mead.  That is the function of a true oracle, to point out the mysteries that surround us, to help us puzzle out where we fit into them, and occasionally to lend us compassionate reassurance.  So you see the Wandering Oracle helps us to find the wonder in the world.

The oracle's words are not often one of prediction, again we aren't into prophecy down at the Church of the Mooneagle.  They reveal a truth, they cast a lens of understanding upon a facet of our lives.  To receive the oracle is a gift, for his words do change us.  I shall give you the first words I received from the Wandering Oracle.

I walk a wandering road,
East of west and north of south,
My mind flies forward as my heart reaches behind,
My eyes see far across the wastes,
My ears echo with the cries of the fallen,
If you seek me you will find me not,
If you find yourself then I will seek you.

So how about you?  Have you forgotten the mysteries great and small?  Does meaning seem lost in this world?  Do your words carry power and potential like an oracle's?  Walk under the light of the moon and stars.  Catch the breeze in the summer leaves.  Taste the sun in the fruits of the field.  Breathe deeply the sounds of the sylvan night air.  Hear the chorus of the cicadas.  It is the song of summertime.  If you move centered and open through the world, you may catch a glimpse of the Wandering Oracle as you walk.  He may even gift you with a few precious words.  I advise you to write them down, they can be slippery to the waking mind like dreams, fading like mists in the morning sun.  I'll gift you again with the most recent telling I received on the subject of futures.

"The future more often than not is written in sand not stone." Words of the Wandering Oracle.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle

Friday, July 15, 2016

The Greatest Story Ever Sold

Greetings all,

I have a hard time expressing just how grateful I am this week for all that I have learned, and all the connections I have made.  I've had the opportunity to use my skills and push the limits of my abilities this week, and it feels so good to stretch.  I got to address a local metaphysical church as a speaker and it showed me just how much I have grown in the past few years.

Recently a fellow practitioner remarked on how many different groups I am involved in.  Years ago I never would have believed I would be involved in not one but two shamanic groups, a group dedicated to using magic to save the world, a group dedicated to deepening healing abilities and access to grace, a game night group, and several meditation groups.  Somehow I've gone from being totally isolated to being plugged in and an active member in social/spiritual groups.  I look at it as finally finding environments suited to my own soul.  Just like a plant if you put me in the right supportive environment I thrive.

Human beings are social creatures.  Most of us are hardwired to seek companionship and community.  There are outliers of course, but just about all of us want relationships with other human beings.  We are all connected in that sense.  In these times we are also connected via satellite, 24 hour news channels, and internet memes.  This has its downsides as well as upsides.  Beyond that we have a collective consciousness of patterns of behavior.  Some of these patterns help to keep us safe, others keep us trapped repeating the same stories over and over like a child who only wants to hear Hansel and Gretel at bedtime.

Right now we have the conglomerate we call media telling us a story.  To quote a popular television show, "This is a story about how the world ends."  The European Union is falling apart, America is set to elect a narcissistic blockhead, terror attacks are everywhere, and there will be a race war in the streets!  You are not safe! Bad people are coming to destroy you, your family, your way of life, your country, your job, and your privilege!

We are not to be informed anymore we are to be entertained and to be told who we should be afraid of.  That is the story we are being sold.  We are told we have no power, so we must appeal to the powerful.  It's a compelling story of the underdog, but in this case the dog gets run over.  The thing about this story is, it's a lie.  There are facts in it, but they are conveniently placed and highlighted to show exactly the shape of the world we are "supposed" to see.  Frightened people are easily manipulated.  They tend to make poor decisions since fear shuts down the frontal lobes in favor of the older mammalian and reptilian brain.  That portion of the brain is great for rote actions and so you see, history repeats itself.

We are in a quandary, because there is a drive and a certain need to be informed, however in this age of the world we are drowning in information,  Much of it is irrelevant to the problems at hand.  We are also plugged into this collective of programmed sentiments and reactions.  So what do we do?  I myself have over the past few years been trying to slowly unplug from that unconscious collective of limitations and negative programming.  It is not easy, it takes time, and you have go gently or you will step off into the abyss.  The deeper I go inside to unplug, the more junk I uncover that needs to be transmuted, for I am not just dealing with my personal issues, but those that are carried by all of us.  The upside is that every person who unplugs from a destructive pattern weakens the whole pattern as it has one less person to power it.

Collectives of consciousness are powerful forces.  This is why I have become involved in groups.  Nature abhors a vacuum, and so do we.  We are social creatures, our lives and our patterns flow into and out of the great void of creation.  There will always be a collective, but we can individually address it, change it, and make it a more supportive and loving one.  The more of us who do this and take on the mission of changing the stories we are being sold, the more free all of us become.

So how about you?  Are you stuck in the world of "the way things are"?  Do you find yourself despairing for the state of the planet?  Are you drowning in the cult of fear?  What happens if you start to question the powers?  What happens if you don't buy the story you're being told?  What happens if you join with others to sing a new world of possibilities into being?  Lift your head above the mire.  Marvel at the majesty of the sky.  Bow your head in prayer and contemplation of a better world of collaboration and acceptance.  Find the other dreamers who have shaken the sleep from their eyes and grasp the hands of your new friends.

Peace and Blessings,
Thomas Mooneagle