Sexual Energy is Powerful Medicine

Isn’t sexual energy just for sex?

Sexual energy has the power to create new life as well as heal all manner of imbalances, blocks, dis-eases, and illnesses. Perhaps this is a new idea for you, using sexual energy for anything other than sex. It is for most people.
Our life force energy is the most abundant energetic resource available to us. It’s a precious gift that has infinite applications beyond physical sexual connection. Imagine orgasmic, sexual energy as the most powerful healing potion in the universe. It’s free, readily available, infinitely abundant, and intrinsically yours. If you had access to such a potent healing elixir, wouldn’t you want to use it?

The power of Shakti

We can look at sexual energy or life force energy in a larger context by considering Shakti. Shakti is the feminine principal of the universe. It’s the fullest possible expression of the feminine without restrictions, limitations, or boundaries as well as the untamed, primal creative force and the agent of change and liberation. When you embrace Shakti energy, you live deeply from your creative center and move and flow as you are inspired to rather than as you think you should. Shakti inspires you to dance like no one is watching, even when they are. Shakti energy is snake energy: sinuous, always moving, and sometimes a little dangerous.

Why sexual energy for healing?

Sexual energy is an unlimited resource that we all have access to. It has the power to clear blockages and congested energy when used with intention. Stuck energy, unresolved pain and wounding, and repressed emotions are all contributors to illness and dis-ease. Using sexual energy for healing may take some focus and practice, and it will likely bring things to the surface that have been previously hidden. It’s not always an easy path but it is a rewarding one.

Here’s an example of how it’s worked for me:

I began my journey with sexual healing in 2005, by attending workshops and trainings that taught me sexual healing and awakening practices (I was single at the time). I met my beloved partner in 2008 and he was also involved in sexual healing. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013, I used all the tools I had gained to heal my cancer in less than three months. I used a combination of alternative medicine, allopathic medicine, and sexual energy practices. I believe that my deep connection with my sexual energy made my journey with breast cancer easy, joyful, and free of the pain, fear and anxiety that most people experience with a cancer diagnosis.

What if I’m not in a sexual relationship right now?

This is the most important time of all to cultivate your sexual energy, as most people tend to shut down their sexual energy when they are not in a relationship. Though it seems like a logical thing to do, it’s not at all beneficial for your being. You want access to all of your life force energy, right? Whether you’re exchanging it with a partner or not, you have an opportunity to cultivate personal sexual healing and awakening practices that will empower you for the rest of your life.

How do I cultivate my own sexual energy?

There are some foundational practices that you’ll want to master before you begin cultivating sexual energy on a solo basis.

  • Grounding – creating a solid physical connection with the earth and your body
  • Presence – full attention, awareness, and participation in the present moment
  • Breath – an ability to deepen your breath and breathe into your whole body
  • Imagination – an ability to see, hear, and feel beyond your thinking mind
  • Intention – a clear, focused desire that you bring to your practices

Once you have a handle on these simple practices, you will have the capacity to make good use of the sexual energy that arises as you initiate the cultivation practices. Generating sexual energy outside of a sexual situation takes some practice, but it’s well worth it as you alchemically create the potent life-force elixir that will feed and nourish your whole being.

Cultivation practices:

  1. Stirring the Cauldron

Begin by getting grounded and bringing your awareness to your pelvic region with some deep breaths. Fill your pelvic bowl with your breath on each inhale (if you don’t know how, imagine that you do). Send what you no longer need out through your feet with each exhale, using your intention.
Start slowly moving your hips in small circles. You can do this either standing or sitting, or even lying down. As you feel your hips warming up, make the circles bigger. Keep breathing into your pelvis. Be sure to circle in both directions.
Imagine you are stirring a cauldron (with your hip movements) filled with sacred healing elixir that’s just for you. Notice what gets “stirred up” as you move. Notice how much range of movement you have in your hips. Try other kinds of hip movements, like side-to-side or tipping your pelvis front to back. Make this a daily practice and tune in; notice any information your pelvis offers you.

  1. Priming the Pump

In a seated position, ground yourself and become present with your body and your breath. Allow your awareness to drop into your pelvic floor. Lift your pelvic floor by gently squeezing the muscles in that region and then releasing them completely. The point is not to strengthen the muscles, as in kegel exercises, but to invite an awakening from the reservoir of sexual energy that spirals at the base of your spine and “pump” it up your spine to circulate through your body.
As you squeeze and inhale, visualize the energy rising up your spine and enlivening your entire body. Notice what you feel and how you are impacted by this practice. If you feel absolutely nothing at first, keep practicing and noticing, a little each day.

  1. Connecting Heart & Genitals

This is a wonderful thing to do as you lay down for sleep and as you awaken in the morning. Lay one hand over your pubic mound and one hand over your heart center, and just let them rest there. Notice how it feels to connect with yourself in this non-sexual way. Can you feel any energy in your pelvis? Can you feel an energetic connection between your pelvic region and your heart?
Imagine you can run energy in your body between these two powerful centers. If you don’t know how, pretend or imagine that you do. You can combine this practice with Priming the Pump to jumpstart the circulation of energy. Build up to a daily practice and keep noticing how it feels.

How do you use sexual energy for healing?

As you build sexual energy and recirculate it in your own system, you will be naturally engaging healing processes in your body. You can amp it up with your intention and imagination; for example, sending pure life force into a part of you that needs healing or into the cells of your body. Allow your body to guide you… check in with your body and ask it what it needs, then listen with all your senses. Trust what arises, even if you think you are making it up. Your imagination is the gateway to your intuition.
I would love to add my intention to yours. Please post your personal intention for healing in the comments section and I will hold it with you.

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The Birth of The Sacred Feminine Mystery School

A new generation of feminine empowerment is rapidly on the rise. As women step up and speak their truth about sexual harassment and abuse, they claim their sexual sovereignty. But what about the impact of all that sexual wounding? It doesn’t just vanish.

On the contrary, it gets stored in our bodies and energy fields. In some cases, it eventually manifests as disease or illness. As our culture rises up against sexual misconduct, we must rise up and clear out the residue in ourselves.

Much of it gets stored in the second chakra or sexual/sacral center. This energy center is the root source of our financial, sexual, creative, and emotional life. It holds enormous power from bringing forth life, to pleasure far beyond imagination. It’s also holding centuries of trauma… cultural, personal, and ancestral. It rarely gets addressed in traditional healing work, for good reason. It’s time for a new paradigm.

The rising tide of women’s sexual empowerment has put a spotlight on the need for sacred sexual healing and awakening. The Sacred Feminine Mystery School is answering that need. We provide retreats for women who want a safe place to heal their sexuality in sacred sisterhood circles as well as a Certified Teacher Training for women who want to provide support for others. Certified Spiritual Sexual Educators® are empowered to teach people of all genders the art of Sacred Sexual Awakening and Healing-AH®. 

The Sacred Feminine Mystery School was created by women, for women, and specifically designed to lovingly transmit Women’s Sexual Mysteries and to awaken and heal feminine sexuality. We are building a global community of women who bring impeccable integrity and safety to releasing and healing that which holds us back from our fully-expressed, joyfully abundant selves. Together, we are embodying and advocating a new generation of feminine empowerment.

We’ve spent more than a decade refining our signature Sacred Sexual Awakening and Healing practices into a graceful, accessible, divinely feminine body of work. You won’t find this uniquely feminine experience anywhere else!

The Sacred Feminine is rising and calling YOU to your highest soul alignment. There is no more time to waste. She is calling forth her Priestesses to take a stand for Awakening and Healing right now. Once you activate your personal sexual healing and awakening, you become a Chalice that overflows with radiance and wholeness and impacts the entire web of our existence – a Vessel of awakening and healing for everyone you come into contact with.

Learn more about our programs here.

 

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Fall in Love with your Girls!

Why does breast health matter for every woman?

With more than 1 in 8 women being diagnosed with breast cancer in the US and over 300,000 women opting for breast augmentation, breast health has become more important than ever.

There are so many expectations placed on our breasts – are they small enough? Big enough? Perky enough? The “right” shape? As women, we must take a proactive role in caring for our breasts, which starts with falling in love with them.

Heart Pillows

Think about where your breasts are located on your body… right in front of your heart. These beauties are your heart pillows. No matter what size or shape they are, they are your glorious Goddess-given globes! Their location in front of your heart chakra is no accident. As a woman, you penetrate the world with your breasts and your heart.

Starting Over

I’ve had the opportunity to fall in love with a new set of girls, as my original girls were removed during a double mastectomy after my breast cancer diagnosis in 2013. I had the privilege of being attended by highly skilled surgeons and nurses, and after a 14-hour surgery, I had new breasts (sans nipples). I elected not to receive implants, but to have my own belly tissue used to create my new breasts. This reconstruction is called DIEP Flap.

Heart-Yoni Connection

As a sacred sexuality and sexual healing instructor, I learned a long time ago about the connection between my heart and my yoni (sacred word for vulva). For years, I’ve practiced placing one hand on my heart and one on my pubic mound and sending love between these two energy centers. This is such a simple exercise, one you can do before sleeping or upon awakening… or anytime you have a moment to yourself. It’s a great step in the direction of falling in love with your girls.

Massage

A wonderful way to love your breasts is to take the time to gently and lovingly massage them. You can do this in the shower or afterwards, with your favorite oil. Rub in your love… talk to them and tell them how beautiful they are. Find the beauty in them, no matter their size or shape. Appreciate that you have nipples and love them, too!

Get Them Moving

Girls just gotta dance… you know what I mean? The tissue around your breasts is filled with lymph glands, and lymph glands have no internal pump. Movement keeps the lymph running smoothly, which keeps the body healthy and moves out toxins. Breasts were designed to move… to swing, to bounce, and to shimmy; that’s what keeps the lymph moving. So let your girls dance!

Ditch the Bra

As often as you feel you can get away with it, lose the brassiere. Bras were created to cover, restrain, reveal, or modify the shape of the breasts, and they are commonly accepted as a fashion necessity at this time in our culture. While they do accomplish their purpose, they also restrict the movement of your breasts and clamp down on the lymph glands and pathways. Let your girls move and breath and be free whenever you can. This may be somewhat more uncomfortable for women with larger breasts, so use your best judgment about what works for you.

Your Body Knows Best

Mammograms may be connected to higher rates of breast cancer, so do your due diligence before blindly following doctor’s orders. If possible, get thermography as a safe alternative for cancer screening. If you do receive a cancer diagnosis, take some time to check in with your body and find out what it needs. The medical system has a prescribed “standard of care” conveyor-belt model that is one-size-fits-all, and you have the option of asking your body what SHE wants and needs for her healing. I created a simple, top-notch guide for anyone who has received a breast cancer diagnosis called Don’t Just Survive, THRIVE! The 5 Vital Steps to Take After a Breast Cancer Diagnosis. You can get it here.

Breast health cover 3DIf you would like a free PDF of this blog post, you can get it here.

Please share in the comments below how you feel about your breasts and what, if anything, you would like to change about those feelings!

Love & blessings, Amrita

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Retrieving the Divine Child that Lives in Each of Us

Who is the Divine Child?

beautiful-931152_1280As each of us enters the planet from the non-physical realm, we come in with our being still connected to the wisdom of our soul. We appear in the human realm seemingly a blank slate, but we are anything but. Physically, we are helpless, dependent, and unable to communicate with words. And yet, have you ever looked into the eyes of an infant and seen a vast depth of wisdom and presence?

What so often happens to the divine child is that they lose that soul access as they are acculturated into human life. As they learn to speak and behave according to their caretaker’s rules, the light that they came in with gets dimmer and dimmer, and the inherent gnosis recedes into a very distant place inside of them. If they are lucky enough to have very aware parents, that light may be encouraged rather than extinguished, but still they must learn to function in a human world, and that means there will be bumps and bruises.

Where does the Divine Child go?

The divine child lives on inside of us in that pure and innocent form. No matter what has transpired through your childhood and your life, be it drama, betrayal, or indescribable trauma, that pure drop of God-consciousness lives on, indestructible, eternal. It’s even possible to gain access to that part of yourself while still in human form, if you like. When my divine child appeared to me in a healing session, I was blown away by her wisdom, her power, and her clarity. She came through it all completely unharmed.

The way I was able to access her was through a traumatic, triggering experience that brought forth some intense and very scary emotions, including murderous rage, deep sadness and grieving, and lots of fear. As I worked with a Parts Work facilitator (aka Internal Family Systems) in a deeply shamanic session, I invited each of the parts to come forth so that I could understand their purpose. The murderous rage part, who preferred to be called “Brute Strength,” has been a powerful inner protector of mine through my childhood. His counterpart, “Spiritual Overview,” was a part of me that I didn’t even know about until the session. She was very nebulous and etheric, and she was the one guiding me to “be above” the trauma, to basically be in spiritual bypass around it. The two parts seemed very polarized.

In Parts Work, these parts are called “Protectors.” They protect the “Exile,” or wounded child part, from being further damaged. As they resolved into a team during my session, I began to see that their role had been to keep that Exile safe. What I experienced as an adult took me straight back into the childhood threats and fears and the protectors acted accordingly. Eventually, they revealed themselves as my Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine parts, who gave birth to the Divine Child.

How can we access the Divine Child?

With the permission of the protectors, now that I had their trust, I began to work with the exile. At first, she stepped forward as the wounded child. She told me her name was Broken Heart. Her heart had broken because no one could see what she had to offer when she came into human form: so much love, affection, healing energy, wisdom, and presence. She had not been welcomed and received for who she really was. And her light dimmed until it was just a pinprick. As she was able to express her needs and be seen during the session, her light grew brighter and she felt safe to express herself fully. She transformed into the Divine Child, and now her name is Open Heart.

Each of us carries the Divine Child archetype inside of us. She may be hiding behind the wounded child, but she is there. This is our God spark, the pure, sweet, innocent, wise, beating heart of our soul… still in touch with Source, ready to bring wisdom and council. And each of us has an opportunity to form a relationship with our own Divine Child.

What is your relationship with YOUR divine child?

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Fleeing Fresno High – A Story of Healing and Redemption

A special note to the women who read this, especially the women I went to school with: As a teenager and young woman, I didn’t know how to be with other girls. I only knew how to be with boys/men. I never felt good enough, pretty enough, or like I belonged, even when I was part of the majorette team, and I was competitive and aggressive in a very masculine way. I’ve made it one of my life missions to heal the feminine wound, and to reunite the sisterhood that we all, as women, share. 

I’ve just reclaimed a huge piece of my past… a piece I haven’t been interested in revisiting for over 25 years. A few weeks after being added to a secret Facebook group called “Fresno High Friends,” I decided to reveal my identity as the former Kim Gammel in the group by posting my senior portrait and a group pic of the majorette team that I was on in 1978.

I took a very deep breath before doing so. Would this be a waste of time and energy, a big ol’ black hole? What inner demons might emerge to taunt me about that horrible time in my life when I had few friends and zero self-esteem? I took that breath and went for it, and I’m so glad I did!

I fled Fresno High a couple of times, once in my junior year (for part of the school year) and then in January of 1980, having passed the GED. I said no goodbyes either time. I just bolted.

Let’s rewind the cassette tape back a decade. My mom had divorced and remarried a violent and abusive man. There was physical, emotional, and sexual abuse that went on for 5 years, and that marriage broke up when I was 10. I had been threatened not to tell, and I didn’t… even after he was long gone. I turned it inward and hated myself.

The sexual abuse impacted me in a very particular way. I had no sexual boundaries and after my first post-abuse sexual encounter in my sophomore year, on some level I realized that I now had the power and no one would ever have power over me again. That power grew into a monster over time.

I drew troubled relationships to me, no surprise there. The boy I dated for much of my sophomore year had a nervous breakdown while we were together. I kept all of this secret, as I had been taught to do. Everything was closely guarded and on the sly. I had to shield myself from the shame.

MajorettesIn the summer between 10th and 11th grade, some friends of the family came for a visit, and invited me to come live with them in Sacramento. I imagine that I was complaining about how awful I had it at home, and they took pity on me. The excuse of the moment was that I could not get along with my sister (1 year younger). To illustrate this: I had done a nasty piece of work at the end of the previous school year, during majorette tryouts. My sister was coming in as a sophomore and trying out for the team. I told the coach that I could not be on the same team with her. She didn’t make the team. However, by deciding to move to Sacramento, I gave up my spot and she was placed on the team. I forgave myself a long time ago for that.

During the conversation with my mom and the next stepdad, I told them why I wanted to move away. I felt like a “black sheep.” I didn’t fit in. And somehow during that discussion, the truth finally came pouring out about the sexual abuse. My mom was petrified. Seriously, she could not move or act. I received no help or support, though there was talk of bringing criminal charges. Thankfully, that was abandoned. I was 16.

I moved out of my house and fled Fresno, running hard and fast from my demons. I had peace for a little while, at a new school where no one knew me. I had a boyfriend in Roseville who was very sweet and kind and had a stable family, and that was a very supportive environment. But eventually, I got tired of being a perpetual guest in someone else’s house.

I moved back home and went back to Fresno High partway through my junior year. Someone told me that there was a rumor that I had been pregnant and that was why I left (I was shocked then, but of course it’s no surprise in retrospect). I’ll put that to rest right now. That was not the case. I just ran away when the opportunity presented itself.

Now I had a driver’s license and a car, an old yellow Chevy station wagon my dad gave me. I went down the “stoner” road, smoking cigarettes and drinking Boone’s Farm jug wine when it could be had. I spent evenings dirty dancing at Electra disco and cruising Belmont. And the sexual monster grew.

When the chance to take the GED showed up in my senior year, I grabbed it. I was down to 4 classes and had straight A’s in all of them, but I was bored. My family and home had completely broken up and scattered, and it was time to get out of Dodge once and for all. I can still remember walking out of Fresno High for the last time in January of 1980.

I took a job at China Peak Ski Area, living in the dorms, and the sex-drugs-rock n roll lifestyle kicked in full force. I had also reconnected with my troubled boyfriend from 10th grade. He asked me to marry him and I said yes. Then, I went off for my second season at China Peak and immediately took up with a guy there. I realized that I had a problem… but in that moment, I pushed it away and decided to deal with it later. I broke off the engagement.

I did go to the Fresno High class of ’80 ten year reunion with my then-husband. All my demons came up in my face and I didn’t have the tools to deal with them then. It was a rough night, my husband didn’t really want to be there, and we were all 28ish years old… still posturing and preening and competing. It makes me appreciate the wisdom and self-love that’s come with getting older.

Fast forward the cassette tape to 1998. Two broken marriages filled with addiction and co-dependency, and I hit rock bottom. I self-diagnosed as a sex addict and started seeking help. It was hard to find in the small town I lived in in the Sierras, so I carved out my own healing methods. It took several years for me to get “clean,” but I was committed to healing, and there was no turning back. It was a gradual process and I took many non-traditional paths. Foremost was my personal spiritual path, also very non-traditional.

Eventually I realized that after years of therapy, my sexuality still was not completely healed. I found my way to a school that taught sexual healing, and became an avid student of these arts. It made a huge difference for me and finally addressed the abuse and addiction on a visceral, physical level instead of just talk, talk, talk. I became a practitioner, helping women overcome sexual abuse.

The name change came with the reclaiming of my feminine nature through the sexual healing work. I changed it legally before moving to Maui in 2006. It was a reflection of becoming a whole new being, changed and healed. I changed it all, first, middle, and last, to Amrita Divine Grace.

In 2009, I published a book to help guide people that had experienced childhood sexual abuse to healing and wholeness. It’s called “Reclaiming Aphrodite-The Journey to Sexual Wholeness.” It won an a award. I gave away over 1000 downloads. It’s on Amazon in book form and Kindle.

It was through the sacred sexuality work that I met my Beloved, Apollo. I was living on Maui and we met in Sedona at a sacred sexuality conference. We had a long-distance but very connected relationship for 2 years, then he moved to Maui and we got married in 2011.

In 2013, I was diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer. I knew exactly why I had drawn the cancer into my experience, and healed that aspect very quickly. I was cancer-free in less than 3 months, and I had a very easy, uplifting experience with cancer. (I know, that sounds weird, but it’s true.) I had a double mastectomy and a beautiful reconstruction that used my belly fat to create new breasts… no implants. I said no to chemo and radiation.

In December of 2015 we moved from Maui to Western North Carolina (Smoky Mountains) and bought a house (something we could not do on Maui). We are still settling in, and I’m investigating what’s next for me in the realm of helping others have better experiences with healing and recovery from cancer and from sexual abuse. Maybe there’s even a connection. I know that all the sexual healing work I did made a huge impact on my cancer recovery.

Here we are, back to the beginning of the story. Several people have reached out to me in the Facebook group, and I’m remembering that yes, I did actually have some friends. It was not a waste of time or energy. On the contrary, it’s been a huge healing for me to reconnect with this piece of my past. And my heart is open to receiving the love that I could not receive back then… in high school. The outpouring of love and compassion as I’ve shared my story has rocked my world and touched me deeply.

Thank you for sharing this journey with me. I welcome your comments below.

Love & blessings, Amrita Grace, formerly Kim Gammel, Class of 1980 Fresno High

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Sacred Inner Masculine

The sacred feminine is balanced by her counterpart, the sacred masculine. Rather than being outside of yourself, the sacred masculine is part of you. People of every gender carry both feminine and masculine energies inside of them; some people lean more into their feminine sides and some more into their masculine sides. The 20th century, with the rise of feminism and equality, brought more women into their masculine and into competition with men, driving some of the qualities of both masculine and feminine into the shadow. 

Has the shadow masculine aspect become dominant in running your life?

Here are some questions you can ask yourself:

Am I an overachiever, a doer, and an accomplisher?

Do I ever feel aggressive or competitive?

Is my self-worth tied up with my achievements?

Has the shadow feminine aspect become dominant in running your life?

Here are some questions you can ask yourself:

Do I often need to be “rescued”?

Do I ever feel helpless or dependent?

Do I have problems with giving, wanting only to receive?

The sacred feminine path is the antidote to being run by the shadow aspects of masculine and feminine, which naturally arise in varying amounts in people of all genders throughout their lives. With awareness and practice, it’s possible to shine a light on the shadow aspects and invite healthy, dormant qualities forward, bringing balance to your masculine and feminine sides.

Meet Your Inner Masculine

Set aside 20-30 minutes for this visualization/inner journey. Get really comfortable either sitting or lying down. Imagine yourself walking down a path, noticing whatever emerges around you as you walk. It might be trees or a beach or rocks or even something you don’t recognize. Eventually, you come to a meadow or clearing, and you see that there’s a park bench in the clearing. Head to the bench and sit down. Take a deep breath and relax on the bench. Invite your inner masculine to join you in the clearing. You can either speak the invitation out loud or say it internally.

Now simply be with whatever unfolds. You might see, hear, smell, or feel something, or you might “just know” he is there. He may come in a different form than you expect… an animal, a fictional character, or even a symbol or metaphor. Ask him if he is your inner masculine. If he says yes, ask him about himself: how he feels, what he needs, how you can best connect with him. If he says no, ask whomever it is to help you locate your inner masculine.

Ask him if he would like to make a deeper connection and support a state of wholeness and balance in your being. If he is not interested or says no, ask him why. Be curious and allow space for him to express his needs, concerns, and feelings. Ask for his support in ways you need support from the masculine. Be patient, as sometime the inner masculine will be reticent after decades of not being acknowledged.

If he says yes, and you want this too, invite him into a ceremonial sacred inner marriage for the purpose of harmonizing the masculine and feminine aspects of yourself. If he agrees to the sacred inner marriage, let him know that will happen in a separate ceremony.

As you part ways, bow in Namaste or hug or do whatever feels good to honor the newly established connection and then take the path back in the direction you came from. When you feel ready, open your eyes.

Self-Reflection Questions

What does my inner masculine look like, feel like, sound like, and/or smell like?

What color or shape did he take? Did his color or shape change during the encounter?

How did he respond to my questions?

What kinds of support did I ask for?

I invite you to share your answers in the comments section.

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The 7-Month Homecoming

Our HomeMy last blog was posted on 11/1/15, more than 7 months ago. What’s up with that? Big, big change, that’s what! Nothing less than the beginning of a whole new life. It all began with an invitation…

Did you know that I’ve written another book? Probably not, as it’s not been published yet. It came pouring out of me in 30 days in April 2015. The working title is “Dancing With Cancer – The Sacred Feminine Path to Wholeness.” I sent it over to my priestess sister Anyaa McAndrew to read and she liked it so much she invited me to collaborate with her to create a new process for women with cancer during weeklong Dancing With Cancer workshops.

Ultimately, the workshops got put on the back burner for now. The awe-inspiring process that followed that invitation started with a seed idea that grew fast and healthy and strong and got us moved completely off of Maui in 30 days time and sent us wandering for a few weeks, set free of our “stuff” while it rode the slow boat to the mainland.

IMG_1851I had no idea I was ready to leave Maui after nearly a decade… until it was instantly crystal clear. We were magnetized to the Isis Cove community in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina, home of the aforementioned priestess sister, Anyaa. We landed in Isis Cove in mid-January, after an extended visit with my in-laws which included a Caribbean cruise for their 50th anniversary. Talk about confusing to my body… Maui, then to Minneapolis in December/January, to the Eastern Caribbean, back to Minnesota, then the 2-day drive to Isis Cove. It was -10 when we left Minnesota, dropping to -15 as we crossed Wisconsin. It was “only” in the high teens/low 20’s when we arrived in North Carolina, balmy in comparison.

Irestone CabinWe passed the winter in a wonderful, tiny cabin at the top of the mountain in Isis Cove, with stellar views of the Smokeys and no insulation. I had a really hard time getting warm. That seems like just yesterday, and now we are running the A/C.

We spent the better part of 7 months looking for a home to buy, after initially bidding on a house that was on the edge of Isis Cove. That house turned out to be a “lipstick on a pig” situation… it showed well and looked good, but underneath and above, it was a mess. We let it go just before Christmas, days before we left Maui for good, and picked up the search again in mid-January. We closed escrow in May on a wonderful place 5 minutes from Isis Cove, in the middle of 6.5 acres.

What’s been most interesting about this move is that I’m being called back into the realms of sacred sexuality. I thought I was all done with that calling when I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013, but I started getting invitations very quickly. The first was to film a 3 hour trauma-release sexual healing session that I coached a couple through as part of a series with 3 other amazing teachers. That went spectacularly well. The series will be launched in the fall. The next was an invitation to do an interview for a conscious sexuality conference, also airing in the fall. And now, I’ve been invited to be interviewed for World Women’s Orgasmic Offering Day, a charming combination of ceremony and sacred sexuality. I’m going to speak about reclaiming our aliveness as we age. Oh, and I’m offering a 2-day workshop with Caroline Muir called Aphrodite Arising – Sacred Sexual Feminine Awakening in October at the Illuminated Heart Retreat Center in Isis Cove.

Screen Shot 2016-06-15 at 11.53.42 AMAnother amazing synchronicity was finding out about Debra Hawley’s book Reclaiming Magdalen – A Memoir of Sexual Healing. The similarities between us, especially our healing paths, right down to the cover art on our books (mine is Reclaiming Aphrodite-The Journey to Sexual Wholeness), has been a stunning and very uplifting discovery. We will meet in early September. I can hardly wait to meet this new (ancient) sister/friend.

I’m seeing a theme here. Dancing with Cancer meets Sacred Sexuality. Sexual healing and how it contributes to cancer prevention and recovery. (It sure did for me!) I’m open and available. I’m cheering on a younger generation that is enthusiastic about sexual healing. And I’m celebrating re-entering sacred sexuality at a new octave, one where I get to let go of the sense of shame and hiding about what I do. (What would Grandma think?) Really, I was simply afraid of being judged, and I still am… but what’s more important are the gifts I can give, and they are extensive. It would be downright immature and irresponsible to withhold them in order to save face. Right?

Please share your response in the comments below. I welcome all comments.

Love & blessings, Amrita

 

 

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Post-Mastectomy…. Burlesque?

When I want to feel empowered, I dance. Dance has carried me though times of greatest challenge and greatest joy. But I never dreamed I would be performing Burlesque on my 53rd birthday, 2-1/2 years post-mastectomy.

Being born the day before Halloween, most of my birthday parties have included costumes. The last time I had a party was when I turned 50, a few months before my breast cancer diagnosis. I didn’t have another party until this year (2015), and I was not planning a costume party. But a week before the party, Goddess whispered in my ear… “DANCE!” and it began to emerge. A roaring 20’s theme and a Moulin Rouge-style burlesque performance. “REALLY?” I asked… and the answer I got was YES. REALLY.

I set up a dance studio in my garage. Grabbed the mirrored closet door and threw a rug down. Spent hours finding music. Went to the Halloween store for a few costume items. Chose a stage name: Ruby Pearl. Watched some YouTube instructional videos. And I dress-rehearsed all week.

Ruby arms halfI have a long history of bringing sacredness to dance. As a belly dancer for many years, I taught women of all ages, shapes, and sizes to wiggle and jiggle and love their bellies. My intention for this birthday performance was to embody beauty, sensuality, grace, and empowerment for the people (especially the women) who would be watching. To show them what’s possible. And it blew way past all my hopes and expectations.

What was so sacred about this dance for me was that I’ve been calling forth my own Shakti to be expressed in a more balanced way, instead of only within the container of my marriage. After spending most of my late 30’s and early 40’s recovering from sexual addiction, I had my Shakti wrapped up tight and saved only for my marriage. But there comes a time when I get to trust that I can bring my full life force expression to the world and that it will be appropriate and welcomed. That time is now.

The burlesque performance was a full-on Reclaiming Aphrodite experience. I had so much fun and the audience absolutely loved it. The women came up to me afterward feeling so empowered and inspired!

This year (2019) is much more sedate for me, birthday-wise, as I  prepared to leave November 1st to facilitate the second annual Certified Spiritual Sexual Educator Training. Little did I know what I was calling in with that burlesque performance! A move from Maui to North Carolina, a Global Vision for helping the world heal from sexual shadow, and the creation of The Sacred Feminine Mystery School!

So tell me (in the comments)… what archetypes are you playing with this Halloween?

With so much love, respect, and joy, Ruby Pearl (Amrita Grace)

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Consciously Negotiating Challenging Emotions

When I feel sad, angry, lonely, jealous, or sorrowful, I know I’m in the underworld. I feel the descent and the darkness around me. While it’s not much fun, I know the value of being with it and that I will eventually come out the other end, provided I’m willing to ride it out. It’s okay to be in the dark sometimes. I always emerge with valuable insights and more inner peace, and that’s worthwhile to me.

I think of the underworld as an actual place and I honor the darkness as much as I do the light (well, almost as much). In the wheel of the year, there is a season for darkness; a season for light; and time and space for the infinite gradations between them. The same is true in our human existence, no matter what you may have been taught. Life is obviously not all sunshine and rainbows.

The underworld is a potent place you can traverse through… once you learn to recognize when you are in it. When you understand how to identify and navigate the underworld rather than trying to keep it at bay or pretending it doesn’t exist, you harness the tremendous power that resides in your emotional body. Like the power of a half-tamed horse, it can either take you for a wild ride or you can learn to saddle it, ride it, and guide it where you want it to take you.

The power of your emotions is that when you acknowledge and feel them, they pass through and out of you, layer by layer. You don’t even need to know why you’re feeling them. Just ride the waves. Feel what you are feeling. Breathe with it. Be with it. There doesn’t need to be a story or a drama attached to it for it to move through and out. Chances are, whatever you are feeling is actually something you first experienced in childhood that you’ve been reminded of, re-evoking the same feelings. When you are able to just be with the feelings, you are forging new neural pathways in your brain, effectively re-wiring yourself in a very positive way.

Excerpted from the forthcoming book, Dancing with Cancer – The Sacred Feminine Path to Wholeness by Amrita Grace

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The Ceremonial Rededication of the Priestess

Upon this Autumnal Equinox day 2015, on the slopes of Haleakala Maui, I rededicate myself as a Priestess under Morning Star Venus in Leo. I embrace the Leo themes of radiant, radical self-love, vision-carrier, and innovative creator. I declare my willingness to shine my full light and bring my unburdened, unarmored heart to every aspect of my life. Whatever beliefs, patterns, habits, and structures do not support my full, joyous expression are unwinding easily and effortlessly.

By my example, I inspire and empower others to shine their own brilliant light. I see God and Goddess in everyone, while projecting God and Goddess on no one. We are all part of the same divine matrix, here to learn together and help each other along the path. Though occasionally that might look like strife and challenge, I trust the process and I trust myself to navigate graciously.

Having walked through some of the darkest of underworlds, I have gained the capacity to hold exponentially more brilliant light than ever before. Through the alchemy of transformation, I have separated the gold from the dross in the crucible of my body, my emotions, and my heart. Having embraced the parts of me that need love the most, immense expansions of love, joy, abundance, and pleasure are immanent.

I take full responsibility for the life I am creating… every relationship, every circumstance, every situation. I am a sovereign, autonomous woman of immense compassion, power, and discernment. I have full capacity to channel the sacred feminine mysteries through my being as I welcome and allow all appropriate consciousness upgrades to my human and divine systems with ecstatic ease.

I open myself to sensual pleasure, delightful fun, expansive creativity, and playful adventure. I embrace my birthright as a fully healed spiritual/sexual expression of the divine. I welcome all of my Shakti and life force energy to express fully through me with the utmost integrity.

My feet are firmly upon the body of Gaia, rooted deeply into Her. My arms reach for the heavens, welcoming the light codes that are entering the planet for the highest good of humanity, the planet and all her inhabitants, and the universe. Divine Feminine, Divine Masculine, and Divine Child energies dance harmoniously within me.

I surrender my will to divine grace. Show me the highest options and the most expansive magic. I am an empty vessel. Pour Your divine love through me. I am Yours, God/Goddess. Everything is Sacred. Blessed Be.

Amrita Divine Grace

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Spinning Spiderwebs Into Gold

D for Dragon

Artwork by Emily Balivet – emilybalivet.com

The dreaded “Dark Night of the Soul” (DNS). It’s kind of like giving birth (I imagine) in that you can’t remember how painful it was after it’s over, because if you did, it might just take you down. Having just come through a DNS portal, the pain is not that far behind me… but far enough that I am no longer immobilized by it.

What’s the point of a DNS, and what to do with it? In my very recent DNS experience, I brought every euphemism I could think of to bear: The only way out is through. Breakdowns lead to breakthroughs. There’s always a silver lining. The key to the pain is in the pain. This is an initiation. Something amazing will emerge from this. None of them worked. There was no light at the end of the tunnel, ever. Until there was.

Sometimes, we just have to be taken to our knees. The reasons will vary by individual soul contract. If you’re a light-worker (you know who you are) and you’re not living your open-hearted truth and your full potential, especially in these powerful times, expect a wake-up call. I don’t care how much work you’ve done on yourself, how many years of therapy you’ve had, or how many transformational workshops you been to. I’ve done it all. A thousand times. And I still got taken to my knees.

I have an amazing and happy life, a beautiful beloved relationship, and an award-winning book published and a second book written and gestating. I live on Maui, for goodness sake! And what better place to get shaken and stripped to my core. The land and my home supported me beautifully as I melted down in the alchemical crucible of my multi-layered bodies – emotional, physical, spiritual, and mental.

It doesn’t really matter what the catalyst was…. it never does, though it’s easy enough to place all the blame squarely on the trigger. Suffice it to say that it was the biggest and most powerful trigger possible in my life right now (short of the death of a loved one). And that’s what it took to force me to look at the carefully constructed reality I had generated and was very attached to maintaining (and remaining blind to) at all costs.

After many months of rising stress followed by many weeks of intense underworld suffering leading up to the final fall (from grace? into grace?), I began to get an inkling. Then the inkling opened into a trickle. Then the trickle became a flow. I saw how I had abandoned myself and my spiritual path, how I had given my power away to the point of a near-complete loss of self. Now I could begin to spin spiderwebs into gold.

Once I could see the bigger picture beyond my crying jags, victimhood, depression, fear, rage, and grief, it didn’t take long for me to galvanize my inner resources. Clarity came quickly and I started to stabilize, drawing back my power and my projections and calling me home to myself. I began letting go of illusions that had long sustained me, letting them shatter like stained glass upon a tile floor. I swept up the broken pieces and began to reconstruct myself from the inside out.

The best advice I can give someone who is experiencing a DNS is to ride the waves of emotion, just feel them all the way, even when it doesn’t feel like it’s productive or like anything is moving. Don’t push it away or try to understand it. Just ride it. And get support! Lots of it, including professional support. Don’t try to go it alone. Be gentle with yourself, make sure you are in a safe place to feel your emotions, and do your best to love and embrace the parts of you that are driving the bus. They are each a very sacred and important part of your psyche. Give yourself time to integrate. Several months, if needed. I’ve lovingly given myself six months to adjust to this completely new version of myself.

In Part 2 of this post, The Ceremonial Rededication of the Priestess, I share the culmination, the gold that emerged from this process: shining, valuable, precious, and downright indispensable.

What gold have you spun from spiderwebs? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Love & blessings, Amrita

 

 

 

 

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When the Shadow Feminine Comes Out to Play

As a woman, have you ever had an experience of feeling betrayed, deceived, or manipulated by another woman? How do you feel when that happens?

I want to explore this, because while it’s easy to cast blame and be the righteous victim, there’s likely some potent information underneath the initial reaction. Women have been competing with each other for various things, including men, for a very long time. What’s been building up is a collective experience filled with the razor sharp memories and tattered remnants of the unresolved deception, betrayal, and mistrust.

Sister, it’s time to heal our collective experience. It begins within each of us. Pointing fingers at each other is not the answer anymore… we’ve all done it, and it’s all forgiven. But have you forgiven yourself?

The invitation here is to ask inside yourself when you feel you’ve been harmed by another woman.

♥ When have I harmed other women in exactly the same way?

♥ How does the experience reflect what’s unhealed inside of me?

You might be quite surprised by what arises. You can work this one backwards in your history for some rich veins of shadow material as well.

I had an opportunity to do some of this work myself, recently. I was really grateful to be able to excavate some very old, unforgiven, and mostly forgotten ways in which I had been the perpetrator of exactly what I thought I was the victim of. It led me to a powerful ceremony of Ho’oponopono. I got to make it right. Including forgiving myself. Now, I get to hold that sister that supposedly harmed me in compassion, acceptance, and accountability. (Yes, accountability.)

When the shadow feminine comes out to play, we all benefit. When we cast light on our shadow, acknowledge it, accept it, forgive it, and embrace it, it can no longer run us from its subterranean hiding place. And we have an opportunity to create something new in the sisterhood. Cooperation, collaboration, acceptance, trust, love, friendship, support, and the sharing of resources. It’s time to weave a new story of the feminine.

Please share your experiences of working with the shadow feminine within yourself. How are you weaving the new story?

Blessed be, Amrita

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What is the Sacred Feminine?

Who am I to define the sacred feminine? Well, I’m a wise woman, for starters…  and a high priestess with direct experience of the sacred feminine mystery. And why would I even want to try? Because She is emerging to help heal the planet in brand new ways right now, and I am one of her emissaries. She wants to be understood, integrated, and embodied.

Imagine before you a maternal being that is as big as the universe. She takes you in her arms, against her soft bosom, and you know that you are safe and protected. Let yourself sink in, for in this moment you are a child with no cares or fears. Take a deep breath and fill yourself with the sense of nurturing that radiates from her.

She begins to shift now, into a mama bear whose babies are threatened. Feel her fierce protectiveness and her willingness to defend her children at all costs. You are one of her children.

Now she morphs yet again, beginning to dance and move with wild abandon, flowing skirts and scarves following her every leap and twist. Do you dare to dance with her? Feel her breath breathing her, her dance dancing her, her life force fueling every cell to express with full freedom and total abandon.

She spirals down to the ground now, placing a dark mask on her face. She lies down upon the earth and surrenders herself to the underworld journey, willing to navigate the place where she feels all her earthly feelings… sadness, grief, anger, rage, loneliness, and sorrow. She beckons you to follow if you have the courage.

Looking up, you see there’s a playful winged creature in the woods ahead of you, giggling and peeking around trees. She’s got a magic wand and she’s not afraid to use it. She leads you on a merry chase, laughing until you both collapse in a soft, warm, green meadow. She asks you about your creative projects, your dreams, what you do for fun. She wants to make some play dates with you.

She rises up with a sword in her hand, screaming, “Off with your head, tame your ego, cut out the bullshit, carve away what no longer serves you, do it now, now, now!” She sticks out her tongue, feints her sword toward you once more with the sternest face you can imagine, and offers you the hilt of the sword.

She brings her hands to her heart and then opens them toward you. From them spills golden light, shimmering and sparkling, flowing and rippling all around you. She brings her light-filled hands to your body and swirls the energy around you, anointing you with it. She taps your third eye and you are transported to another realm, filled with indescribable colors, scents, and sounds. Every place she touches you ignites with pure ecstasy and bliss. Breathe it all the way in.

She leads you now into a temple of such beauty and grandeur as you’ve never experienced before. She reminds you of who you really are, who you have always been. She bids you look into a magical mirror that reflects your true essence to you, and you gasp at the magnificence and elegance that you witness as you look. She offers you a drink of holy water. Her lips don’t move, but you hear her say, “May you never thirst.”

She drops to the ground and transforms into a writhing snake and you feel a blast of pure, formless sexual energy. She bids you sit on the ground and slithers behind you, bringing her head to your sacrum. Expanding into the fear, you feel her moving up your spine. You are breathing the energy that creates life up your spine and feeling it fountain out of the top of your head in red, yellow, and orange sparks. The sparks form a human body made of fire and you look into her wild and primal eyes.

She melts into grandmother, wise ancient one, she who spins the threads that connect us all. She shows you how every thread is connected and reminds you that every thought you think and every action you take impacts everything and everyone else in the universe. She reveals the paradox of as above, so below… as within, so without. She reminds you that when you love and care for yourself, you are effectively loving and caring for everything and everyone, not the other way around.

The years drop away from her ancient face as she transforms into a beautiful, mature woman holding a chalice… the symbol of the feminine. Her beloved approaches her, holding a sword, a symbol of the masculine. Together, they place the sacred articles upon an altar, and come together, wrapping their arms around each other and joining their foreheads. As you witness this, you see the multi-colored skeins of energy and light wrapping around and through them, and you suddenly understand the true meaning of “communion.”

Everything vanishes, the altar, the chalice and sword, the beloved. You are now facing the queen of death, all in black. Fear ye not, for death does not always mean physical death. Death must occur in order for rebirth to happen. She asks you what needs to die within you now, and you have an opportunity for letting go of what no longer serves you. Will you take it? The queen of death will guide you.

The black disappears, and she is hugely pregnant with planet Earth. Your willingness to let something die has paved the way for this birth. You are her midwife, just as she is yours. She is giving birth to herself, just as you are giving birth to yourself. Her message is We are all in this together.

The sacred feminine is vast, ever changing, powerful beyond measure, and always with you. She resides within you. You have access to her at all times, in any of her aspects you choose to call forth. Perhaps some are more hidden within you than others, but you can invoke and cultivate them as you choose.

What does the Sacred Feminine mean to you?

Please add your comments below. I would love your input and feedback

Love & blessings, Amrita

Artist Credit: John Moseley

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What Happens Next?

MaslowsHierarchyOfNeeds.svgHave you heard of Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? Looking at the pyramid, as each set of needs is fully satisfied, one’s attention can move up to the next level. Regarding the top of the pyramid, Maslow said, “What a man can be, he must be” (emphasis mine). This level of need refers to what a person’s full potential is and the realization of that potential. Maslow describes this level as the desire to accomplish everything that one can, to become the most that one can be.

Sometime in the past year, I hit the top of the pyramid, and it set me off on a quest for my life’s purpose. After recovering from breast cancer, I was no longer wiling to cast about in the hope that I was living my purpose. This led me to the fascinating realm of modern hand analysis. Turns out that life purpose, life lesson, and special soul gifts are all encoded in our fingerprints and handprints. After receiving some basic information about my own handprints, I have a lot more to go on now. There were some fun surprises… and my clarity is growing by leaps and bounds.

At times over the past year, I’ve grumbled that I know a lot about many things and am the master of nothing. Now I see this condition as multi-talented and bringing a very unique body of skills to my contribution. I’ll share more as it’s revealed to me.

What I can say for now is that I’ve put my stake in the ground: I’m creating a new paradigm around breast cancer and there’s nothing PINK about it. Stay attuned!

Love & blessings, Amrita

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Navigating the Maze

fractal spiral wheelHave you noticed a different feel to 2015 and the days leading up to this turning of the year?

What I’ve noticed and spoken with others about is how unknown the future feels… even the immediate future. It reminds me of being in a maze and not knowing which turn to take or what will appear around the next corner.

I find it an interesting paradox, because we really never know what’s coming, right? It’s like the illusion of knowing is getting more transparent all the time. I think it’s a opportunity to become more and more present in the right-now and to trust that I am being guided at every step through my powerful connection to Source.

My friend Kara Maria Ananda just published a great article called 33 Ways to Create More Magic in Your Life and I really enjoyed it. I found that I already practice a large percentage of the 33 Ways, and I believe that each of these Ways deepens my connection to the inner guidance that sustains me and keeps me in a state of contentment and joy.

My hope for you AND me that 2015 is the year that life expands beyond our wildest dreams! My wildest dream is to successfully create and run the Breast Cancer Mystery School and help thousands of women have an amazing experience with breast cancer (as I did). 

What is YOUR wildest dream for 2015? Please share in the comments below.

Love & blessings, Amrita

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Do You Mind if I Don’t Celebrate Christmas?

Every year I ask myself: Is it okay that I don’t celebrate Christmas? Will everyone think I’m a Grinch or a Scrooge? Do I even care what other people think?

I suppose I do care, or I wouldn’t be writing this. So, as long as I’m writing this, let me speak my truth. I don’t dislike Christmas or have any problem with it being celebrated far and wide. I honor the energy of the season, the birth of the Christ Consciousness, and the blanket of peace I feel out in the world on that sacred day, when the shopping is done and many people are enjoying time with their families.

Wiccan HolisaysBut, I am not a Christian. As a Divine Feminine High Priestess, my holy day comes a few days before Christmas, at Yule or Winter Solstice. And the time leading up to it, when most people are going crazy spending and shopping, is for me a time to come into stillness and receptivity; to clear out what no longer serves me (inside and out); and to vision what’s next in my life. It’s the darkest time of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, including in Maui where I live, and this year it even falls on a new moon.

Giving and receiving… there’s an elephant in the room!

Part of what is complex and difficult for me is the gift giving and receiving. When I was younger and did engage in traditional Christmas, I always wanted to create homemade gifts or give something that I already possessed and wanted to pass on. But that’s really not how it’s supposed to be done, right? It’s mostly about BUYING STUFF. I also find it very confusing being caught in a sense of obligation around gifting. Someone gave me a gift so I feel obligated to give one back. I’m letting that one go this year! To add even more complexity, receiving gifts is not one of my love languages… in fact, it’s at the bottom of my love language list.

Giving stuff that’s not actually “stuff”

When I give a gift, I want it to be from my heart and because I have chosen to give it, not because a custom or tradition dictates it. Gifts can take many forms, and I most adore the intangible kind! I love to gift through cooking and serving food, passing on something that I no longer need but someone else will cherish, and as an introvert, giving my time and presence is a gift. Does that make me a Grinch?

A plethora of December holy days

There are so many different multi-cultural celebrations this time of year… Hanukkah, Asura, St. Nicholas Day, Bodhi Day, Yalda, Kwanzaa, and of course, Yule and Christmas. Whichever one you celebrate, if any, I hope that your holiday season is filled with love, connection, and joy. I know mine always is!

Please comment below if you have a perspective about anything I’ve brought up here… or if you celebrate in a different way, too.

 

 

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Cancer Free, One Year Later

The Benefits of Letting Go

May 29, 2014 is the one year anniversary of my double mastectomy and breast reconstruction, and I can’t help but notice how fast the year has gone by. When I received my diagnosis, I let go of my entire career, the one I had been building for years, with relief and gratitude. Relief because that career really wasn’t working and never really had. Gratitude for a clean slate, a new beginning.

I decided to maintain my website, blog, and email list, not knowing what the future might hold or how those assets might serve me in the future. Over the past year, I kept blogging and sending out newsletters and occasionally touching up my mostly static website with no clues about what might be next for me.

So What IS Next?

A year later, I still don’t know what’s next, if indeed there is a “next.” When my website recently came up for annual renewal, I questioned why I’m maintaining a blog and a website when I’m not actually selling anything… why I have business expenses without any related income. I even considered closing my expensive, outdated website down for good.

Luckily, I got a powerful reminder of why I want to keep in touch with my list and maintain a web presence. For so many years, I was driven by the desire to make a difference in the lives of women… and with the cancer diagnosis, it all came tumbling down. I see now that I CAN make that difference, and I’m willing to maintain my online presence until I have clarity about exactly how I will do that.

A New Website, Really? Why?

amritagrace.com

So what about that website renewal? I decided it was time for an update, and my tech-savvy beloved suggested building a new Reclaiming Aphrodite WordPress site and integrating my formerly separate blog into it. With his help, support, and tech knowledge, I created a brand-new, beautiful WordPress site that I am very proud of.

So What Are You Selling?

As of this writing, I’m still not selling anything or offering any services… but I know I enjoyed the creative process of building my piece-of-art website and I still believe in what I’m providing. So yes, I’ll continue offering my blogs and occasionally promote really high-quality programs that I believe in while keeping in touch with my small but beautiful community of people who’ve received benefit from my book and/or my former workshops.

I continue to “just be” in the cauldron of the unknown, and I’ve actually gotten pretty comfortable there. Who woulda thought? Certainly not me, if you’d asked me a year ago!

It seems I keep counting the blessings of cancer.

Love & blessings, Amrita

 

 

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Making the Leap: From ‘Healing’ to Living an Ecstatic Life

For so many, many years I focused on “healing” myself. It was an important road for me to take on the journey to wholeness; but I recently asked myself, at what point do I get to just live as a whole and healed being? The answer is NOW!

On the other side of breast cancer, and having just returned from several weeks of travel in Europe and the UK, I’ve come home. Not just to the physical sanctuary I live in, but to my body, my wholeness, and my fully conscious choice to live my life as Art. I am healed. I am healed from the sexual addiction I wrote a book about, I am healed from breast cancer, and I am healed from my childhood wounding. I declare it so.

I’m not saying I’ll never have another neurosis or issue or illness again, but the “healing work” on myself has evolved into enjoying the whole ecstatic journey of being human. That includes everything from washing the dishes to being fully present in my relationships with friends, family, and my beloved.

There’s nothing I need to figure out, I don’t need a mission statement… there’s really nothing at all that I need to DO. Finding wonder and beauty in every word I speak, every chore I do, and every step I take is a state of being that I’ve been seeking to embody for years, and suddenly the striving is over.

Here’s to an ecstatic life!

Love & blessings, Amrita

 

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Turning Contrast Into Gratitude

Have you ever noticed how wonderful it feels to come home after being away for awhile? Or to be healthy after being sick? I got to experience both together recently, and I really noticed the impact on my gratitude, joy, and sense of contentment.

An American Mermaid in Paris - at the Tuilleries

At the Tuilleries

It all started last fall, when I received a newsletter about a week-long workshop that would be taking place in Scotland at the Callanish Standing Stones. I knew immediately that I was supposed to be there. From there, it grew into a 6 week odyssey that took my husband and I through The Netherlands, Amsterdam, France, the UK, and the Northwestern Isles of Scotland.

We began and ended in Minneapolis, where winter still ruled the day. A week there on either side of the trip helped with the jetlag, splitting the distance between Hawaii and Amsterdam. We spent three nights in Amsterdam, one in Antwerp, and two in Paris. It was all very whirlwind, a mere taste of each place. Then on to the UK for a three nights in Edinburgh and a disconcerting drive on the left side of the road to Inverness. From Inverness, we flew to the Isle of Lewis and were driven to the Doune Braes Hotel to be with our group of 27 workshop participants and facilitators.

What brought us halfway around the world was a workshop entitled Renaissance of the Sacred Feminine, Re-dreaming the Magical Link between Land and Sky, Soul and Spirit. It was a return to my spiritual roots of Celtic Earth-based spirituality, sprinkled with Shamanic Astrology, ceremony, Shamanic Breathwork, and visits to four of the twenty-plus Callanish Standing Stone sites. It all took place during the April full moon lunar eclipse and the astrological “grand cross,” aligning us with important celestial and ceremonial timings.

Moon Setting at Callanish 1 Before the Eclipse

The stones felt like old friends. It was cold, wet, and windy, and we were always bundled in coats, gloves, hats, and “wellies” to tromp through the soft, wet, squishy peat that covers the island. We were up at 4:30 am and out with the stones during the sunrise and moonset of the lunar eclipse, which would begin at this northern latitude just after the moon slipped below the horizon. It was a magical day!

Christina Walczuk Moonstone Studio

by Christina Walczuk    Moonstone Studio

That afternoon, as I was sitting alone in the lounge, a local couple walked in and sat down. They asked about the workshop and I told them about what we were doing. Turned out that Roger was very knowledgeable about the Callanish Stones, and Christina was an artist who painted the stones, highlighting their mystical and magical qualities and symbolism. She was bringing two of her paintings to be hung at the hotel, and with her permission, we hung them above our altar in our workshop room for the duration of our stay there. After seeing her painting of the Carloway Broch, I was inspired to see it for myself and set out on the 20 minute walk from the hotel.

On the last day of the workshop, I woke up with a nasty cold. Others in our group had been sick as well, and I was at the end of my resources after all the travelling and exposure to the wind, wet and cold. I took care of myself, rested, and hoped to move through it quickly, but it was not meant to be. There was still a few days of travel ahead of me, and I did the best I could with it. The descent into Minneapolis after an 8-hour flight was challenging. I rested all the week we were in Minneapolis, and still took the lingering cough and congestion home with me.  As of this writing, I’m nearly well again.

Callanish 4 – The Birthing Stone

I’ve come home full of gratitude not only to be home and feeling healthy again, but for the incredible opportunity to experience for the first time European cultures and countries and languages. It was a rich time of exploration and adventure, in contrast with the calm routine of being home and settled and having easy access to necessities and amenities that I take for granted most of the time.

Contrast offers us the opportunity to turn up the volume on our appreciation of life. Sometimes we can create the contrast, as I did with my travels, and other times, life creates it for us. It’s part and parcel of our human condition, so I say, let’s work it to our advantage!

How has contrast enhanced gratitude in your life? Your comments are invited and welcomed.

Love & Bright Blessings, Amrita

 

 

Posted in Blessings, Gratitude, Sacred Feminine, Standing Stones | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Following a Trail of Heart-Crumbs

heart petals on letterI was recently sitting in a workshop that I helped coordinate, looking at the flip chart that the facilitator was using. I had provided that flipchart, thinking the pages were all blank. As she turned a page, I caught a glance of something I had written. Luckily, she did not expose the whole page, but turned to the next blank page.  I drew in a breath and a clapped my hand over my mouth. I felt mortified, shocked, and a little ashamed! A few people near me turned to see what was wrong. I felt a fierce blush creep up my neck. The person sitting next to me later told me my upper arm had gone red, too.

What on earth was on that page? A bad word? A naked picture? What?

flip chartMy eye had caught some numbers, a price. The sheets (there were two) were actually advertisements for two workshops that I had planned to put on in 2013, both cancelled because of my cancer diagnosis. So why did I have such a strong reaction? This was way beyond embarrassment at an unprofessional oversight. I thought back over the past year, to the last time I used that flip chart, and I realized it was just about a year ago. I had ambitiously scheduled three workshops over the course of three months on Maui. I was really making a push to birth a body of work into the world, to ‘make it’ as a workshop creator and facilitator. Two of the workshops would be co-taught with Apollo. We were creating weekends to help singles and couples heal their sexuality and leave the baggage behind so they might have the kinds of relationships they wanted. We were excited and giving it our all. We had spent thousands of dollars and weeks of time and travel learning how to market in a way that was heart-felt and aligned with our values.

I took everything I learned in my marketing classes and applied it to a free intro for my women’s workshop. It was called, ‘Three Common Mistakes Even Smart Single Women Make That Keep Them Alone, Lonely, and Hungry for Love.’ (Yeah, that really was the name of the intro.) I followed all the marketing rules I had learned. I planned to sell the women’s workshop and the single’s and couple’s workshops as well that day. I had written up the flipchart pages in advance, well in back of the flipchart. 35 women showed up that day, and I was really pleased with the turnout. Five women registered for the Reclaiming Aphrodite workshop. It was barely enough to make it a go…. but I was buoyed by the success of the free intro.

Following the Reclaiming Aphrodite workshop, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. The two workshops to follow were cancelled. Apollo and I both breathed a huge sigh of relief. “We don’t have to do this anymore!” No more marketing, no more trying to fill workshops, no more putting in hundreds of hours and making barely enough money to survive on!  I never looked back. I was done. After nearly a decade of putting on workshops, I had had enough.

Fast forward a few months to post-cancer: fully recovered, ready-for-what’s-next. What is next? I have no idea. I’m happy to have some work to do, website and graphic design, working at home. Happy to be healthy, living in Maui with my beloved. Happy to help organize a workshop that was easy to fill on subject matter I’m very interested in, Internal Family Systems ‘Parts Work.’ Seeing those flip chart pages sparked something deep. My reaction of mortification was intense and visceral. Why?

I invite the feelings to wash over me again, so I can dig deeper. There’s shame in there. Disgust. I hated having to market myself. Some part of me feels like I was a fraud. I didn’t really know what I was doing. Nothing I was teaching was original. Who did I think I was, anyway? Another part of me knows. I have a gift and I wanted to use it. Perhaps teaching was not the right use of it. I hereby invite and invoke right use of my gift!

orange heart ribbonsMy gift is so subtle as to be almost invisible. It’s the gift of presence. Listening. Being with. Witnessing without fixing or advising. I may not always choose to use it, but when I do, it’s palpable. I can also teach others how to bring presence, if they are willing and have a desire to practice. Because it is truly a practice. If you want to know more about presence, contact me and I’ll send you info.

Since ‘workshop facilitator’ was a part of me that I identified with for so long, it’s natural that I would feel bereft when that part is no longer needed or called upon. Do I need to create another persona to take its place? I’m not so sure I do. I have tremendous contentment in my life, but I am by no means stagnant. I keep doing my inner work, and writing about it for the benefit of myself and others, as this blog and my book reveal. Perhaps I am simply myself. No labels necessary. I accept!

Who are you, without your labels? If you care to share, I respond to every comment below. Thanks for tuning in.

Love & blessings, Amrita

Posted in Balance, Gratitude, Love, Presence, Releasing | Tagged , , | 12 Comments