Weekly Inspiration #32

Feng Shui Bagua with corresponding elements.
Feng Shui Bagua with corresponding elements.

As I mentioned in my First Post Challenge post on Thursday (if you missed it, go and check it out – a bunch of us are sharing our first ever posts – it’s very illuminating, and fun as well πŸ™‚ ), I have been in a February Feng Shui Frenzy. Every year at about this time I attend a Feng Shui workshop which lets me know about the incoming energies or flying starsΒ for the upcoming Chinese New Year. If you know a little bit about feng shui, then you will know that each section of your house corresponds to a certain permanent energy represented by a bagua or grid.

On top of that, with the incoming new year additional energies move about, settling in different directions – some positive and some negative. The idea is that we work to lessen or subdue the negative energy and to enhance the positive energy. This means that what worked in your house last year in regards to decorations, colours, art, furniture and so on, may no longer work this year. You may even intuitively be aware of this – something that you loved last year may be annoying you or just not working anymore.

I can’t really explain the frenzy I go into every February- cleaning, clearing, rearranging – except to say that I feel absolutely driven to do it. It goes without saying that it drives the Bear mental – and I must admit, I look like a crazy woman poring over my feng shui house map, lugging furniture around, switching art, trying to get the elements, crystals and colours right and then dowsing with my pendulum to make sure everything is in the right spot. What IΒ loveΒ though is that everything feels so fresh and cared for. When things stay in the same place, we stop seeing them. We get into a rut and we think that there are no other options. There are! There are always choices and alternatives – sometimes we just need a different perspective.

For the astrologically minded, I have both Saturn and Mars in Cancer, which means that both my sense of safety and productivity (Saturn) and my power and passion (Mars) are found in the home, the sacred feminine and my community. This means that I am a) a total house witch – getting the energy flow right in my home is essential to my well-being and b) my home is my haven on lots of different levels – you disrespect my home at your peril, if you get my meaning.Β To me, the process of applying feng shui principles is a way of bringing the sacred into my home.

wood sheepSo, 2014 was the year of the yang fire horse. It was a masculine year, lots of action, aggressive and very fast paced. 2015 will be the year of the yin wood sheep/goat. This is a feminine, grounded, creative, nurturing year – with the sheep closely corresponding to Cancer in western astrology. There is a wonderful article here which talks about this upcoming year and the themes that you are likely to see. If you would like to know more about the Flying Stars for 2015, click here – it’s a great article that explains in depth the energy of each star and actions you can take.

Do you use Feng Shui for your home or business?

Best Short Read

The best short read for this week is in (gasp) a book! I know :). I am reading Defy Gravity by Caroline Myss, a gifted intuitive healer, wise woman and writer. I find her work both fascinating and and inspiring. This particular passage on forgiveness resonated with such truth for me that I thought I would share it with you:

Healing as a Mystical Experience

…most people struggle with forgiveness, precisely because it is against the nature of our reason to forgive. Forgiveness does not make emotional sense to us, much less appeal to our pride, although it might sound great in theory. Our reasons and emotions prefer the logic of justice, an eye for an eye, a hurt for a hurt. Forgiveness seems to fly in the face of that, as if we are letting the person who wronged us off the hook. But forgiveness is a mystical act, not a reasonable one. Forgiveness is a mystical challenge meant to cleanse the windows of your mind, particularly those through which you can see only your need for personal justice. You can’t see anyone else’s pain through these windows, because like mirrors they reflect only you: you are the center of the universe, yours is the only pain that counts, and all that is just and fair should be based on what serves your life.

Forgiveness represents a struggle not only between yourself and the person who harmed you, but between yourself and God. It can be an initiation into the level of perception where you begin to comprehend that individual justice, as such, can never really exist in its idyllic form within any society.Β The capacity to forgive is nothing less than the acceptance of a higher principle of divine justice, rather than earthly justice, as the organising elements behind the events of your life.

Forgiveness is essential to healing, because it requires you to surrender your ego’s need to have your life fall into place around your personal version of justice.

Best Watch

Buzzfeed has put together a short clip meant to show over 3000 years of female beauty as dictated by their society at the time. As you can see, what constitutes female beauty changes regularly and vastly. My hope is that the next era is one where we appreciate all of our different types of beauty. Thoughts?

Best Words

β€œThis is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body.”
― Walt Whitman

This made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. Isn’t it amazing?

Best Listen

This is from Gregory Alan Isakov, who I had never heard of before until an American friend of mine posted it on my wall this week with these words:

For my Aussie beauty Sara, who teaches me about the moon.
And life.
And love.
And friendship.
❀

Aren’t I lucky?

Best Blog Post

I was waiting for something, I didn’t know what, before I published today. Everything was ready, except I knew something was missing. And then I found it. This is a beautiful blog post from Annabelle at Uncharted Ground, called Begin Where You Are. Annabelle is a mum of a toddler, she works part time, her husband works away from for long hours – and she was desperate to bring a sense of the sacred back into her life. Something for herself. So, this is what she did: she committed to 60 days of sitting meditation, and filmed herself. There is a beautiful three minute time lapse video of her commitment at the end of the post, which is more beautiful than I can say.

That’s all from me today – have a gorgeous day won’t you?

Don’t forget:

Twitter – follow me on Twitter to see all of my other best reads that don’t quite make it on this blog, but are still awesome – I love a chat too, so come visit πŸ™‚.

Facebook – I have just set up a brand new Practical Mystic Facebook page, where I share inspirational and thought provoking ideas, quotes and art. I would love to see you there πŸ™‚

Instagram – I am new here; why don’t you show me around πŸ™‚

24 comments

  1. I am not schooled in Feng Shui, but when I was working with a medical intuitive last fall, she could see the energy in my bathroom and it was not good. Too much blue and water she told me. It was negatively affecting abundance; sending it down the drain. It’s a nautical themed room with ocean, lighthouses, and lots of blue. I changed out the rug, shower curtain, towels, and will be changing the walls when the weather gets warm enough to paint. Apparently the energy in there is much better now- even though things don’t exactly match at the moment.

    My current body shape was ideal during the renaissance. In fact, I would have been a supermodel back then. Great video that definitely gives perspective.

    I have the book Defy Gravity, and haven’t read it yet. Must have bought it back during a book buying binge. But Caroline’s ideas about forgiveness definitely do resonate with me. I can see that one of my biggest life lessons is forgiveness. Still working on it, and I have a feeling that I will be for a long time… maybe.

    Walt Whitman’s words, “dismiss whatever insults your own soul,” are the third instance of the same thing coming to me inside of 24 hours. My message has been to discern things that come into my life (or are here already) by filtering them through my internal compass that is my heart. And to only be concerned with how they resonate for me, not for anyone else.

    I read and watched the video of Begin Where You Are. Loved it! Real life!!

    And I enjoyed That Moon Song. It made me want to find a spot to capture the moon the way they did for the video. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Susan, You looked at everything! I love that πŸ™‚
      Feng shui is just that – getting the energy right in each part of the house. I am only barely literate in what I know is a very complex art and science – I just know enough to get by. The pull to do it bypasses my logical mind, which is probably a good thing!
      Forgiveness πŸ™‚ We all have work to do there, don’t worry! I just loved how tough she was – how we disregard other people’s pain to make our own the centre of the universe. Ouch!
      I’m glad you watched the clips – the female beauty one was very illuminating wasn’t it? And the post on meditating with a toddler. She just nailed it exactly. Have a beautiful week, won’t you?

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thank you, I will. Just came from a local metaphysical workshop. Very small group (4). After we had a meditation, the teacher was talking to one of the other women there and I had an Aha Moment. What was fascinating was that I made some connections in my mind about a few things, and then all of a sudden I got very emotional. The kicker is that I don’t consciously know what I was so emotional about. It’s like something inside of me got something in a very big way, but my conscious mind wasn’t invited to the party. All I know is that something big inside me shifted, and I think a nap is now in order. Have a great week, too!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. So much to love here Sara. I’m starting to feel that spring cleaning energy – out today to buy new curtains, bedding, paint, ready for a change πŸ™‚ Love that quote by Walt Whitman, particularly the idea of re-examining anything that ‘insults your soul’.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Andrea. Yes, we feel it north and South, the urge to clean and clear this time of year. Even though it’s the hot droopy end of summer for us, I still muscle together what energy I have left over and spend it on the house πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. great post, sara! absolutely loved the excerpt from carolyn myss’s book. i have ‘defy gravity’ – in fact she signed for me when i met her at a workshop a couple years ago – but i haven’t read it yet! omg! now i’m going to, thanks for the reminder! πŸ˜‰ i think i also have my saturn in cancer, maybe it’s time to do some feng shui myself. πŸ™‚ aleya

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh yes, you must read it. I believe books find us – I popped into the library the other day to order a book, and i saw that they were having a clearance sale. I picked it up for $2. When I opened it up and started reading, I got goosebumps. I love that feeling, when I know that a book is going to be important πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Sara, thanks for a great post. I can see yo in your frenzy, running around the house, and I’m enjoying the image very much. I love Walt Whitman. Have read everything by him, including his non-fiction. A wonderful writer and the greatest American poet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have only dipped my toe into his work – I am ashamed to say that I am by nature a dabbler :). I found that quote when I was searching for that one in my reply to you in the first post blog the other day.

      Like

  5. I do not believe in Feng Shui or Vastu, but the concept of rearranging your house periodically is very appealing. While I do get into cleaning frenzies, I haven’t re-arranged furniture in nearly a decade! Long overdue πŸ™‚
    Love all your reading recommendations Sara. especially the Walt Whitman quote. Thanks you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Okay, I had to google vastu to find out what it is, so I’m learning today :). I don’t know if I believe in feng shui either to be honest, Madhu, but I do believe in energy and in keeping the energy fresh and flowing. For me, using feng shui allows me to access that energy, and that’s what I like about it. As for belief, well, that’s a whole other matter! It sounds as though it might be time to give your house a rearrange though 😊
      I’m glad you enjoyed what you read today ❀️

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Sara, The quote from Defy Gravity – blew through me like the wisps of wind I can see dancing around the Himalaya. Voiced the challenge, but echoed the deeper truth of forgiveness. I will take these words this week to echo through my heart (and critical mind!!) as I kidwrangle our children, and keep trying to keep the connection with dear Dave the husband, through the experiences of each day. dheri dheri dhanybaad (thankyou very much). Kate

    Liked by 1 person

    • The passage on forgiveness hit me like that too, Kate. It was pretty brutal I suppose, but in the way that truth is sometimes. Especially that part where it says that forgiveness clean the windows of our minds so that we can see that our own pain is not all there is nor all that matters. Wow, challenging stuff.

      Like

  7. After an initial scan of this post, I decided it was worth setting aside enough time to enjoy and click through each of the links at my leisure… which proved to be while eating tuna salad during my lunch break! It was like reading a really good mini-magazine – simple but comprehensive and thoughtful.
    One aspect of taking my time was mulling over the word “forgiveness” and considering my guilty pleasure of lack thereof for a single person in my life… I’m not sure that “whatever” counts for”dismiss whatever insults your own soul” or as forgiveness but lingering schadenfreude doesn’t I’m certain.
    My to read list is ever lengthening but I added Defy Gravity – I’m intrigued by the seven shadow passions, and seven inherent graces.
    And despite my shortcomings, or possibly because of Walt Whitman’s words are something to aspire to. It’s a great piece… more than shared anything I think I love shared words πŸ™‚
    The clip from Gregory Alan Isakov was a nice soundtrack, and I enjoyed women’s ideal body types through history… some like heroin chic were truly awful… shame shame on the perpetrators of that.
    I loved Annabelle’s meditation video… it’s apparent that my sometimes feelings of having no time are vastly exaggerated.
    I had read an article on Year of the Sheep… the G.O. is a Sheep, also a Cancerian (and I am a Snake) and the drive to prepare our home is strong for us this year as well as making the most of where we are at now. I’m a big believer in energy in living spaces whether expressed via feng shui or otherwise. I like Susan’s practical and creative take on it and life in general…I hate untidy clutter messy – select styled clutter is ok! But “pay off debt” is something many people don’t value enough… it’s a surpreme feeling.
    Your weekly inspirational posts are just that, much in them to consider, so generously created and shared

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dale, I really appreciate your thoughtful comment, so much. A mini magazine huh? I like that!
      The thing is, I really enjoy putting it together. It is a little time consuming, but I always get lovely feedback from it, and delightful interactions.
      I love that word ‘schadenfreude’. I’ve been using it a bit this week, especially when I saw a satirical article on Julia Gillard being taken to hospital with a severe case of schadenfreude with all the difficulties that our pm has been going through πŸ™‚ So yes, I think there are times where taking a little bit of pleasure in the suffering of someone that has tormented us is justified :). Have a lovely week, and enjoy beautifying your space!

      Like

  8. I love how much you cover in just one post! Somehow I found each section relating to me today- especially the forgiveness section for the best short read. That book sounds like a must read! I so appreciate the time you take to write what you know and share your passions with the blog world. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Leslie – it’s a labour of love for sure. It’s so rewarding though, going back over my week, being re-inspired, and then inspiring other people as well :).

      Like

  9. Love this:

    Forgiveness requires surrendering ego’s need to have life fall into our personal version of justice.

    And it’s good for us too, isn’t it? Just so we can stop feeling shitty all the time.

    Like

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