Do You Fear Making Mistakes?

Heart6

If I’m afraid of making mistakes, I will be afraid all day every day.

But I need help to not be afraid. When I receive Divine help, my fear dissipates. Here is my prayer for help:

MistakesMay I not fear my mistakes.

May I have the highest ideal possible and do everything within my power to achieve it. May I realize that even my best attempts are riddled with imperfections.

May I remember mistakes are part of doing anything, and thus fearlessly reach for the stars.

May I feel safe knowing whatever problems my errors cause are nothing compared to the Goddess’ power as She carries me unceasingly toward beauty and happiness. May I fearlessly trust She is doing this even when I cannot see it.

May I love myself exactly as I am and celebrate my mistakes as part of my attempts to live fully and serve the Goddess well.

BYABa3

Wakening Yourself and the Earth

Wakening Yourself and the Earth
Winter blahs? Or just need a boost any time of year? Let’s use every means possible to be awake and to wake the earth, so we can dance together and with Her, in celebration of our collective wild, honorable beauty.

MyGodsAreArtists1SmMy following 2007 article was originally published in Faerie Nation Mag.

Where I live, many people become depressed around February and March. There’s not a lot of light here in the winter, and the cold and snow keep folks indoors with cabin fever. Moreover, local economic problems that prevail all year round exacerbate any seasonal difficulties.

To combat our February/March ickiness, my friends and I decided to go out together. While we weren’t sure what we’d do, it didn’t matter. The important thing was that getting out of our houses would break the monotony.

MyGodsAreArtists2TinyWhen deciding what our outing would consist of, I also happened to be pondering the local population. A good number of exceptions aside, there seems to be a collective lack of self-worth, accompanied by a general sense that there’s no point in being a dreamer who strives for a better life.

Though economic hardship accounts for some of this, it seemed to me that there must be a hidden additional explanation. The area is filled with natural beauty and power that should be uplifting and motivating people. Why wasn’t it? Or, if it was, why wasn’t it doing so enough? Perhaps, in a town where Christian fundamentalism is the norm, an energy field had been created that squelched the earth’s joy? What if the spiritual power of the land was being repressed?

Mind you, I understand that many Christians feel a spiritual connection to the earth. I’m not implying they don’t. Just about everyone here gardens, which makes them appreciate nature and its gifts. I could add lots more about a real appreciation of the land here, felt by most residents. To some extent, folks are uplifted by the land here. So what I’m addressing here is fundamentalism. It is so stifling and uber-controlling that maybe it doesn’t just affect people’s spirits but also the spirit of the earth here, so that it can’t give everything it wants to give us.

Okay, maybe my words seem like crazy talk, but I decided that doing a ceremony to free the land here from its mystical chains was not only a great idea, it would also be a fun way to shake my friends and me out of our winter doldrums.

I started to write the ceremony below, to wake the land from any lethargy, stupor, and even oblivion that might have been forced on it. Before doing so, I happened to mention my idea to Faerie Nation Mag staff member Ade, and joked, “I’m writing a ritual to wake up the power spot here so that it can overthrow local patriarchy.” We laughed, but then it seemed I had accidentally summed up one of the logical outcomes of my ritual.

Here’s the rite I wrote, shared with you in the hope that if enough people use it, the hopelessness that comes from repressive mentalities everywhere can be better combated. Not that this ritual alone is sufficient. The problem must be attacked from many fronts. However, we who are mystics bring a very specific gift to the mix. In addition, the land is alive with abilities beyond muggle imaginings. Let’s draw on that potential.

In serving the earth, we wake ourselves up from any negativity that we’ve fallen prey to.

If you lead a friend or friends in the ritual, please read them the whole article for context, because it empowers—and is a chalice for—the rite. Also please attribute the article and ritual creation to me. Attribution heals Gaia and ancestors. Lack of attribution makes bad mojo. Blessed be.

PastelSqStep 1. Find the (or a) major power spot in your immediate area. My friend, Kush, suggested finding out what the first building here was, that it was likely put on a power spot. So I called the town’s Visitor’s Bureau and asked what the first building was. I also asked what the first church was, since they are often on native sacred sites. A local historical society might also be a good place to call—that’s who the Visitor’s Bureau referred me to.

If you can’t find a “major power spot,” go to a place that resonates for you. Or just find a square foot of dirt somewhere and go stand on it for the rite. Or sit in your own living room! The earth is all one piece, and it is alive and aware. Wherever you do the ritual, the area you live in will, as a whole, hear you. We did the rite inside a local church.

Step 2. Once in your spot, say out loud or silently,

Wake up
wake up!
Spirit of the earth
we call to you
It is time. You can rise now,
break through the mind-numbing
earth-crushing
desolation,
rise up, wake up,
bring your joy and power up
to the surface of Gaia
and into the company of the earth’s other children—
we humans and other beings who live here.

No longer can brick and board and cement
laid heavily against your urges
suppress you.
NesltrSqTLet this prayer give you the power
to be free again.
Let this prayer give you the power
to be free again.
Let this prayer give you the power
to be free again.

And help us, who live here, have
the power to live free ourselves,
the power to honor your needs,
the power to take care of you,
so that you and we live
in a cycle of keeping each other whole and happy,
back and forth, ‘round and ‘round, again and again.

Wake up,
wake up,
We sing to you.
We sing to you
in love
and fellowship,
in hope
and lunacy,
in gratitude
and freedom.
So be it, So be it, So be it. So be it.

Step 3. Leave two offerings: one of joy and pleasure, the other of food and drink. In other words, the first offering should be fun or beautiful—a handful of dried rose petals strewn on the ground, or a few flowers placed there. Or a sprig of sweet-smelling herbs, a pretty feather, rock, or bead, or whatever else is uplifting. We hung a strand of beads on a tree.

As for food and drink, leave at least one tablespoon of each, any edible and beverage that you feel is appropriate. If you can’t think of anything that seems right, choose randomly so that you at least leave something. This offering can be placed directly on the ground, or in a cup or other container.

Step 4. (Optional) Do something to wake up your own spirit. The first three steps should accomplish this on their own, but you may want to add more. It needn’t be large. Spritz yourself with perfume. Or hug someone. Even a cup of tea can kindle warmth in your soul. It’s wonderful to do big things, but if that’s not possible, better something than nothing.

You needn’t do this ceremony in winter, but instead just when you want to give yourself and the earth a renewal of the spirit. Please try the rite out. It might change you, your town, our world. Many acts are needed to free the human race of its terrible dilemmas and to save Gaia. Let’s use every means possible to be awake and to wake the earth, so that we can dance together and with Her, in celebration of our collective wild, honorable beauty.

By the way, just the act of creating the rite really helped my mood. Then actually doing the ritual with my friends made me feel even better. And we had a ball on our outing.

NwsltrOrTr

Goddess Womb Dreamcatcher

GdsWmbDC1S The only lore I’ve read about dreamcatchers is specific to dreams and nightmares. I sensed a deeper layer about visions—and an even deeper layer about the Goddess. To convey everything I channeled, I crafted a poem and a sculpture. I call them both “Goddess Womb Dreamcatcher.”

The poem and sculpture also convey my thanksgiving to Goddess.

To make the sculpture, I felted wool into organic shapes like leaves, vines, flowers, and a feather. I attached the shapes to a V-shaped stick, so the Dreamcatcher would be reminiscent of a woman’s reproductive system.

The poem is below, but first a detail of the Dreamcatcher: the wool sculpted feather.

GdsWmbDC2S

Shout out to the folks at Living Felt, where I purchase my wool: they sell quality felting supplies, created without cruelty to sheep, and provide exceptional customer service.

OK, this is the poem, (prayer, affirmation, contemplation, story, brilliant insights, brilliant application of said insights, visualization, ritual, etc.,):

Goddess Womb Dreamcatcher

All visions spring from the Goddess’ belly.
They travel down
until they meet a feather,
then tumble from between Her legs,
onto my mind.

I give thanks.

My mind is a womb upside down, though my mind is right side up.
My womb is a mind upside down, though my womb is right side up.
I am whole if I live in paradox.

I give thanks.

All life is woven within Her womb.
She’s the spinner who spun Herself into being.
I offer the life and art I weave to Her.

I give thanks.

NesltrSqTShe is the dreamer and the dream.
There is no Dreamcatcher but Her.
I send Her my dreams as an offering.

I give thanks.

The Goddess protects me—
captures both nightmares and sweet dreams,
taking them into Herself,
then birthing only the beauty
into my waking day.

I give thanks.

Yes, She’s Nightmare as well
—cackling menace in my powerless hours,
which are both sleeping and waking.
Even in those times, She holds all creation
—including the whole of me—
as the weaving of life that’s safe in Her womb.

I give thanks.

She bestows on me Her complete Self:
all creation and all beyond creation.
My ideal: give Her no less of myself,
offer my entirety
to Her and Her dreams.

I give thanks.

NwsltrOrTr

Sacred Doubt

May I not let doubts drive me into fear-based decisions.

DoubtRecently, I was feeling shaky about my decisions in a couple of life’s arenas: I had doubts about how I approach relationship with my Gods. I was also doubting one of my financial decisions.

The doubts popped up during ritual. At first, I thought these distractions during rituals lessened the rites’ power. But I’m realizing that doubt is part of the spiritual process. Sometimes, it’s good to doubt. Sometimes, doubt adds to a ritual. (Yes, doubt during a rite can lessen its power. But I’m talking about something different here.)

I started thinking about the benefits of doubt. Doubt can lead us to change our minds for the better.

Doubt can also lead us through a process that, in the end, helps affirm our decisions and cleave to them better than ever.

Moving all the way across the country sometime soon, to return to California, is a huge decision and risk. For example, I’m giving up ownership of a three-bedroom rural home on 7/10 of an acre, with a $700 monthly mortgage payment (!) to rent at a much higher monthly cost. Eek! So I wrote a prayer about doubt. The prayer could also be used as an affirmation. I share it here in case you find it relevant to your own personal life.

If you use this prayer/affirmation, please tell me how it goes. I’d love to hear your experience, because it will be unique to you.

Sacred Doubt

May I accept my doubts.
May I recognize doubts as part of life.
May I understand doubts as sometimes part of a self empowerment process.

May I not run from doubts in myself.
May I not run from doubts in other people.

May I not let my doubts drive me into fear-based decisions.
May I not let other people’s doubts drive me into fear-based decisions.

Instead, may I remember that my doubts are a part of me
that might be need healing or empowerment.
May I give that part of myself love.
May I give that part of myself respect.
May self love and respect heal my doubts, if they need healing.*

May I allow my doubts to bless me,
with power or other gifts.

Though there are times it’s good to validate,
invalidate, or analyze my doubts,
may I take time for simple gentle awareness of them.

May this simple, relaxed observance
allow my cells’ innate wisdom
to guide my whole being, both body and spirit.

Note 1: I added the phrase “if they need healing,” because sometimes a doubt does not need healing. For example, a doubt can be a partial recognition of a truth we haven’t grasped yet. When we honor doubt, instead of trying to “heal” it, we allow space in our consciousness for the partially hidden truth to fully emerge.

Note 2: Here are instructions for the above-mentioned simple gentle awareness. Instead of watching your doubts with a sharp effortful focus that is a tiring strain, rest your attention on your doubts gently, the way your head rests on the pillow at night.

Use the comment field below to tell me your own thoughts about doubts. We all have different experiences. Perhaps yours are so different from mine that they will enlighten me. Or perhaps yours are fairly similar to mine, which would be helpful affirmation for me.

Blessed be, Francesca

FRS_Bar_6

On your life journey, you deserve the best tools. Click here to learn about the Faerie Ritual Set: http://www.outlawbunny.com/2014/06/11/frs/

Diana Lucifera

Faerie art, Francesca De GrandisDiana Lucifera
Love, Beauty, Blessings, and Occult Danger

Diana, the Light Bearer.
Magna Mater.
Goddess of Stregas.
You are all power, love, and beauty.
You are bliss.
You are eternity in which I reside each moment.
You are every moment.

This blog is not about the wonderful Diana that many American Pagans know—virgin huntress and patron of Dianic Wicca, a women-only witchcraft tradition.

This blog is about the equally wonderful Diana, known more in Europe. She is the Great Mother. I painted the above portrait to honor Her.

I discovered amazing love from Her and for Her. After I’ve given my students rituals to experience the same, the majority of the men chose Her as their Patron.

Pray—not just read—the following prayer, to experience an example of Her heart. It can only be understood experientially.

Prayer for Solace and to Be Filled with Her Spirit

Diana, enfold me in your embrace. Comfort me. In the wailing of my heart and the sorrow that wracks my back and chest, let yourself shine down upon me, your moon self. Hold me. Be with me. Let me feel your loving presence. Send the Bird of Heaven to me, to enter my heart and fill me with your spirit.

You know, I think the prayer is in a 1980s SageWoman magazine … Yup, except there I’d called it “Invocation to Diana.” I called Anne NN, who gave me this link to the issue.

Running with Psychic Scissors

A blessing can become a bane. The bigger the blessing, the more it can sour. Diana bestows immense blessings, so let’s discuss how a blessing can turn against one. Much of what I will say can be adapted to apply to many other blessings and occult explorations.

She loves each of us completely, knowing every cranny of our psyche. This makes us feel special, as we should. However, specialness can cause us to doubt She can love anyone else so purely. That is arrogance.

Arrogance can ruin any blessing, in ways that harm you and people around you.

Whether a relationship with Her is new or decades old, we can stay humble, by knowing 1) its amazing love is unique yet not unique and 2) it will always be only a beginning of the love and power She can give. Thus we walk in grace and fulfillment of our life goals.

She bestows great love and great power, both beautiful beyond description. When you think you have a monopoly on a pure beauty, you’re in trouble.

I try to help my students navigate amazing gifts they receive, not just those from Diana. The occult world is dangerous if navigated alone. Without input from a teacher and other friends, any of us can badly harm self and others, despite good intentions.

For one thing, when you receive a blessing of immense power, negative spirits might try to trick you into using it for evil. They might masquerade as your Patron Deity, feeding your ego (arrogance) with “spiritual” nana.

They also might give you untrue information about your allies, making you mistreat and forsake them, so that you have no input to counter the negative spirits’.

Plus, we do not hear everything from our actual Patron correctly. We listen with flawed perceptions. Other people’s input is important.

After watching a fair number of people whose amazing, illuminating visions preceded those people’s descent down the tubes, I’m grateful for teachers who saved me from my own arrogance by consistently giving me input.

Anyone, newbie or adept, can profit from simply praying, “Diana, please shine your light on my heart, so that I stay humble in your love.”

Diana’s Secrets

Golden_Bough_CaduceusDiana offers moonlit secrets. Meditate on this painting to receive a secret blessing from Diana. (You may have seen my former renditions of this decades ago. Now that I paint digitally, I can offer Her a better version.)

Paradoxes: Her secret wisdoms, being so perfect, are only for you. Keep the secrets, but do not think they make you more deserving than other people.

Closing

With humility, your power and bounty never cease.

Serve according to Her will, then your heart and cup forever fill.

She accepts our flaws.

Diana’s decades-long flawed servant, my blessings only increase.

BotmBevldNwslter

Prayer of Forgiveness

Prayer of Forgiveness
How long before I always forgive readily?
Francesca De Grandis, 2007

I ask the butcher, “Carp?”

“Sure,” he says. Immediately dipping his large meaty arm into a fish tank directly behind him, he pulls out a large fish, throws it on the floor, and raises a killing tool. All of this happens within fifteen seconds of me saying, “Carp.”

I am shocked: Unexpected death will happen within seconds. Nevertheless, while the butcher’s arm descends, before he can slaughter the animal, I bless it. “Thank you,” I silently say, “for giving your life to feed me.”

I am surprised, though pleased, that all my years of shamanism kick in more quickly than the merchant’s automatic killing blow.

That night, I eat the fish, with love for it, gratitude, and in peace.

PiloCsStudy

Click painting to see it clearly.

I want to forgive my enemies in the same manner, trust the life cycle of one being dying to feed another—whomever Goddess deems the sacrifice in the cycle of the minute, the hour, the day, the lifetime.

I want to bless my enemies, saying, “Thank you for any way you fed me or not. I eat the results with love for you, gratitude, and in peace.”

This does not always kick in quickly. It seems that I need more years of growth and practice before I automatically forgive. Goddess, if it is your will, make me a person who readily and immediately forgives. And if it is your will, make that change in me right now.

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Want a spiritual counselor who doesn’t rest on her spiritual laurels but keeps growing? Want support doing the same so your life keeps expanding? Make an appointment with me: http://www.outlawbunny.com/pastoral-counseling/

Two Prayers for the Sacred Marketplace

This is a follow up to last week’s blog.

image

I wrote this prayer to help me be the best possible merchant of sacred goods and services. I never say it unless I follow it with “Merchant Prayer to Oxala,” which is below. Context for both prayers are in last week’s blog. But first, the prayer above, in case you cannot see it in its graphic:

Hermes, Mercury, Exu, open the road and gate to my profession today, that I may serve. Open the road and gate within my heart today, that I may serve. Open the road and gate, today, for the person whose needs and goals are well met by my particular shamanic skill set. Guide my day in the divine marketplace, today. Help me be a sacred merchant, today. Help me try and try and try, today, for to be a professional shaman who is well-serving community means to ever be resurrected, both in my private life and daily in my commitment to the market place.

I, personally, almost never pray to Exu without prayer to Oxala. So I wrote an Oxala prayer to say after my Exu merchant prayer. You might recognize phrases and concepts from my past writing, because I’m committed to refining, building on, and expanding on my spirituality. The version of the prayer in the graphic is a briefer version than the text below it:
OXlaPryr1

Merchant Prayer to Oxala

Oxala, please,
help me surrender to you.
Help me surrender to you.
Help me surrender to you.

Oxala, please,
help me know in my cells, each moment, that surrender to you is power and peace.
Help me know in my cells, each moment, that surrender to you is power and peace.
Help me know in my cells, each moment, that surrender to you is power and peace.

Please, clear the roads of obstructions.
Clear the roads of enemies.
Clear the roads.

Please, smooth the roads,
making my passage easy to travel.

Please, help me know in my cells, each moment, that surrendering to you allows me your smooth easy roads along which I can travel in power, peace, and success.

Oxala, you made all creation. Please help me know in my cells, each moment, that, surrendering to you, your power of creation is mine.

Grant me the wisdom that, no matter what I ask you for, I accept the moment I am in—the moment you actually send me—and know it, in my cells, as ideal.

Grant me peace.

———————
Here’s a description of my shamanic counseling sessions, and you can schedule online: http://www.outlawbunny.com/pastoral-counseling/

Hands

imageHands

I heard words about silence,
again.
And again.
Eloquence can lead us toward a stilled hush,
but “toward” is not “at.”

Our poems and prayers
sometimes muzzle God,
leave Divinity mute,
unable to speak except for the hollow terror we feel
for lack of touching Her palm
with our small empty
fragile fingers.

So I got silent to hear God.

Afterwards, I wrote a poem describing what happened:

“The silent voice
tells me, ‘Love.’
More than tells me,
also gives me
the ability.”

Did writing the poem about the ability
make me lose the ability?
I am more and more dissatisfied
with my words, your words,
I want to just be with you, holding hands,
in God’s company.
__________________
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I’m so excited to offer Archetype Coaching in a one-hour appointment, instead of only as part of something else—such as a class—which is how I have done it til now! http://stardrenched.com/archetype-coaching/

Prayer for the New Year: Knowing Beauty

Hiya, Was just reminded of a prayer I wrote a while back. I wrote it for my own personal use, but am posting it because, perhaps, others might find benefit in reciting it:

I painted this blessing banner a year or two ago, but post it now bc it is in the spirit of my prayer.

“May I see and know beauty, inner and outer, beauty of self and all existence.

“May I know that inner beauty I was born with—the beauty of my innate importance and greatness. We are all born with it; may outer beauty never distract me from the beautiful truths and importance in all beings and all existence, but reinforce in my mind the beauty of each person’s truth, power, and importance, the inner beauty of the truth, power, and importance in each and every atom.

“May my creation of outer beauty mirror—and nurture—the innate inner beauty of all reality, instead of being an escape from reality or distracting me from it.

“May I know all my beauty, and help others know all theirs.

“May the beauty of my Gods run through me, flawed a vessel though I am, that others can feel Their utter love. May i be a lighthouse, the beacon of which does not point to me as a solution and hope, but to the perfect loving beauty of the Divine.”

Those of you who study with me know that helping folks know all their beauty (note the word “all”) is important to me. And, for me, beauty is a word with wide meanings. Thanks for letting me share my prayer! It reminds me to use it, LOL! Oh, the line about the beacon might be familiar bc I wrote a similar line in a couple of my blogs.

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Know all your beauty: http://stardrenched.com/2012/06/20/wisdom-adventures/

Blessing #2 and Gratitude

Detail, Faerie Landscape, Outlaw Bunny

As the relaunch of this site approaches, I pray to all gods I hold dear, World Tree, the lines which I come from and which I create, and the rest of my Faerie crew, please keep safe and bless this site.

Please keep safe and bless all who support this site through their direct work on it or simply by visiting in good cheer.

Please keep safe and bless me and mine, all my work and all my life.

May this site be maximum fun and beauty, helping cosmos, my Gods, Tree of life, the lineages I come from and which I create, the rest of my Faerie crew, and all beings stay safe, whole, ecstatic.

May this site be maximum service, helping all be safe, whole, ecstatic.

Keep me and my work in your light
that my own light be bright—a beacon.
May all I do and am be a shining beacon
for those who should see it—not a beacon to me,
because I am too frail to carry anyone,
but a beacon leading people to Divinity, as they see it,
that they be loved so fully as to be stardrenched.

May I shine bright in joy.

May I shine free from harm.

May I shine hidden from anyone who’d try to
extinguish my light or otherwise harm me and mine.

May all for whom I am the right spiritual guide find me.

May this site create abundance for me and tribe. 

May this site and all my work
be a welcoming hearth to star-dusted travelers.

May all I do here be according to the Divine Will.

Thank you. So be it.

Dear visitor, a bit of the above blessing is adapted from an earlier prayer I wrote on my other site.

On another note: Humbled by blessings in my life, I had to paint this banner to express gratitude. It hangs in my kitchen. I put it here to send thanks into the universe, to you who bless me—this includes a site visitor who blesses me simply by a single good-willed visit here, whether now or any time since the 90s when the site started.

It is such joy to love my gods, ancestors, and the rest of my community­—the joy of loving a blessing itself.

I feel excited wonder about all the blessings this site has received during our revamp of it, so want to share about that in upcoming blogs.

Thank you for visiting.

Kathi, my webmaster. I painted it in gratitude for and homage to this amazing woman