Monday, July 31, 2006

Home Om -- Day 22

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus

The Garden.

I’ve always wanted a garden. As I daydream about my garden, it gets more and more elaborate – not only will it take 20 years to create, but it may be more than I can handle!

However, there are elements I want to include:

Lilac, rose, forsythia, rhododendron, and azalea bushes
At least one of each of the 13 sacred trees
A small natural pond or water fountain
A birdbath
A small grove of birches with a bench
Statuary
Beds of flowers
An herb garden
A vegetable garden

I want to create it so it can be certified as a habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. Their program is exciting, and you can learn more about it here.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Home Om -- Day 21

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus


The Library.

To me, that is the most important room in the entire house. While I am capable of writing anywhere (and by “anywhere” I mean on trains, in coffee shops, and backstage in between cues), I PREFER a home library.

Not a home office, mind you. A home LIBRARY.

By that, I mean a room with high ceilings and lots of natural light. I mean floors sturdy enough to hold several walls of floor to ceiling bookcases. I want and need my books around me. I want a large, six-legged wooden table as my desk, so that I have space for computer work and for longhand work. I want long, lateral files for my paperwork, so it’s not all housed in boxes and it takes me hours to find something. I want at least one big comfy chair with a reading lamp bending over it, so I can sit and read.

Pet-friendly, of course. Everything in the house must be pet-friendly.

And it must have a door.

This is the room where I will spend the bulk of my writing life, and I’m specific about how I want to set it up. I want to set up what works for me as a creative space.

Everyone has rooms in the house that are of particular importance. The library is mine.

If the house has both a living room and a family room, chances are I will convert the formal living room into the library. I have no need of a formal living room. A dining room is more important to me than a formal living room. The family room is my living room.

I don’t believe in having rooms shut up and unused most of the time, just for show. I believe that a house should be lived in.

And my library will get more than its share of life.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Home Om -- Day 20

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus
Mercury Direct

Mercury went direct last night. While the Merc Ret is great for thrift shopping, big tickets items tend to run into problems. Now that both Mercury and Jupiter are direct, it’s safe to sign house contracts.

Now we can enjoy the home energy we’re pulling towards us. Take some time to daydream about specific elements you want or need in your home.

Several qualities are important to me in a home. One of the most important is the kitchen. I don’t need the fanciest, most up-to-date kitchen. (And, am I so sick of the spoiled brats on House Hunters who whine about perfectly decent, lovely kitchens because they don’t have granite counter tops? It wasn’t that long ago it was unusual for a kitchen to have electricity. Get over yourselves!) I love to cook. I love to have people over for meals. I love to work on oils, incenses, tinctures. All I need is a kitchen where I can move around easily, and a gas stove. In the best of all possible worlds, there will be a separate pantry. I like to have a full refrigerator and a well-stocked pantry. I’m used to cooking a meal for twenty in a galley kitchen.

I certainly wouldn’t refuse a state-of-the-art kitchen, but natural light and a gas stove are more important than the latest bells and whistles. I really do not need or want a television screen in my refrigerator. All I need my fridge to do is keep my food cold and give me ice upon request. I would much rather it did those two things well than a half a dozen other things that have nothing to do with fridgi-ness.

Will I paint the walls? Probably. I have no set ideas as to color and cabinetry, etc. for the kitchen. I’m flexible. I’ll see what’s there. If all I need to do is repaint the walls, terrific. If the cabinets need some stripping or painting or maybe a different type of handle, fine. As long as the floor is pet friendly and doesn’t look like an acid trip from the 1960s, I’m happy.

The feel of the kitchen is important. I’ll spend a lot of time there, cooking, baking bread, making coffee, reading the paper. Of course I’ll smudge the whole house, align with the devas of place, and all of that. But I want to be able to stand in the kitchen and feel its pulse when I go through the house. I don’t care if it hasn’t been renovated since 1957 – if the vibe is good, I can work with it.

I’m a home and hearth person, and the feel of the hearth has a lot to do with the feel of the overall home. The kitchen is important. But it needs to be MY kitchen, not something ready for a magazine shoot.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Home Om -- Day 19

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


This week, you may well find obstacles and resistance and all sorts of wrenches thrown in the works to test you and ask you, “How badly do you want this change?”

How will you deal with them?

Look back at old patterns that haven’t worked. Make a conscious effort to break them.

Concentrate on your meditation. Concentrate on your breath. And spend time focusing on the sense of peace and happiness you will feel in your new living situation.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Home Om -- Day 18

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury

Did it happen to you? Because it certainly happened to me.

Very often, when you perform life-changing work, things get worse before they get better.

That’s what’s happened in the past few days. The negative aspects of the Home Situation have reared their hydra-like heads, hissing, spitting, and doing their best to make my life impossible and to paralyze me in the move.

The challenge here is not to fall back into the old patterns, but to find ways to stay the course of the patterns broken on the dark moon – find new ways of dealing with these challenges and actually prove to myself that I don’t simply descend back into the old patterns.

Break out, not break down.

Be good to yourself, everyone. We can get through this and be stronger and more focused on the path.

Home Om -- Day 17

Waxing Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury



After two big days of working/visualizing/meditating, use today as a gentle day.
Be gentle with yourself and those around you. Focus on breathing.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Home Om -- Day 16

New Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


I admit, I had some problems yesterday with letting go of the obstacles. It was an interesting challenge – banishing the fears when the fears are part of what keeps me holding on to them! In fact, the obstacle candle went out several times (indicating a rocky road), and had to be relit.

Today, with the New Moon, we start to pull our new home towards us.

On the piece of paper, create a symbol or sigil that, to you, canonicates a positive home. You can add the symbol of Jupiter to that, and sign it. (I considered distilling my list down to the first letter of each word and creating a sigil; it did not work for me, but if you are a sigil-user, feel free to do so.

Fold your paper into four, and tie the little bundle with one end of your green cord. Carve your name and the word “home” into your green candle, rub your oil into it (from the bottom up) and fasten it into the holder. Light the candle, concentrating on what you want and need from your new home. Holding the other end of the cord, toss the bundled end as far as the cord allows. Pull it slowly towards you while you concentrate on a positive new home, and then spend a few times with your Home Om chant.

Do this every day until the candle burns down or until the full moon, whichever comes first. Symbolically, you are pulling your new home towards you.

And, keep your eyes and ears open – new opportunities will begin to manifest, and awareness is the first step to success.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Home Om -- Day 15

Dark Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Today is one of our turning points.

Give yourself some time and space where you will not be interrupted. Do not answer the phone or stop to do something for the kids. If you have kids, feel free to include them.

Imagine yourself enclosed in a safe, light space, where nothing negative can interrupt or interfere with what you’re doing.

Take the two white candles. On one of them, carve your name. On the second, carve the obstacles. For instance, I chose “Lack of money” and “fear” as my obstacles. I need more money to make the house move work. The rest of my list – concerns about career change, starting over in a new community, being away from my support system – all boil down to “fear.”

So, on my second candle, I carve

$<

and

FEAR


Rub your oil into the candles, from the top of the candle down (you’re pushing the obstacles away).

Firmly fasten the two candles in their respective holders. If you are a woman, put your name candle on the left and your obstacle candle on the right. If you are a man, put your name candle on the right and your obstacle candle on the left.

Take the black cord. Tie one end around one candle and the other end around the other candle, leaving 3-4 inches of cord in between them.

Light the candles. Watch them burn for a few minutes. Imagine your obstacles moving away from you. When you are genuinely ready to, once and for all, remove the obstacles from your life, take the scissors and cut the cord.

You’ve now symbolically cut what binds you to your obstacles.

Thank the energies around you. Have a snack (because chances are you’ll feel hungry). Let any excess energy that’s built up flow down into the ground, so that you feel stable and calm.

Watch the candles burn all the way down (that’s why I suggested small candles). Let everything cool off and dispose of the remains away from your home. In other words, you can’t just toss it in the kitchen trash. Either bury it (if you’ve got a yard), or put it in the garbage and take the garbage out of your home.

Do NOT put it aside and say, “Oh, I’ll do it later.” It needs to be out of your home TODAY. The point is to remove the obstacles, on a physical level as well as a psychological one. Procrastinating indicates you aren’t willing to give up the obstacles.
And removing the obstacles is important to moving forward.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Home Om -- Day 14

Day Before the Dark Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Today is the last day in which you can indulge yourself in the patterns holding you back from a new and better home environment. Worry all you want, put up resistance, get it all out.

And gather your tools for tomorrow and the next day. They are turning points in our work.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Home Om -- Day 13

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury

This is the 13th day of our work. Enjoy its significance.

Today, use silence as your tool. Instead of having noise on at every moment of the day, do whatever you can to encourage stillness. Keep the television off unless you actually watch it. No ipods, no radio, no background chatter.

Listen to your current home. Does it have anything to tell you?

Use the silence to contemplate the changes you want and need to make in your new living situation.

And, when you are house hunting, use the same techniques to listen to your potential new homes. Attune to your new environment. Take the time to connect with the spirits of place.

If you’re in the midst of packing, think of it as a meditation in motion. As difficult as packing is, in this case, it is a physical manifestation of positive change. Appreciate it.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Home Om -- Day 12

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


You’ll do your daily sit/meditation/visualization.

In addition, anytime you’re walking around or sitting in a car or find your mind wandering, do the “Home” chant (even if you do it silently instead of frightening the other commuters around you).

Use every packet of unused or frittered time to concentrate on the “Home” chant today and see how it elevates your mood.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Home Om -- Day 11

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury



As you work on your lists over the next few days – the list of obstacles and the list of desires – also work on distilling down the lists to the most basic parts. Are there related items on the list? Can they be combined, with a single word covering the topic?

Also, gather the following items:

For Dark Moon:
Two small white taper candles and holders for them
Something with which to carve the candles
Rosemary, lemon, lime, or bergamot oil (or any other oil scented with something you associate with cleansing)
Black cord, yarn, thread (about five or six inches)
Scissors or knife

For New Moon:
One green taper candle with holder
Rosemary oil (or any other oil you associate with comfort)
Cord, yarn or strong thread in green or white
Something with which to carve the candle
Small square of paper
Pen

For the next few days, work on your “Home” chant in front of your altar, and also as you work on the list.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Home Om -- Day 10

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Exhaustion can become a hindrance in the daily meditation. When you’re so tired you don’t think there’s a chance in . . .anywhere . . .that you can focus, simply sit and repeat the “Home” chant (to the “Om” intonation). Sink into it. Don’t worry about visualizing, don’t worry about anything except the word “home” and how it resonates.

The latest edition of Yoga Journal suggests taking twenty minutes every day to rest. Step away from cell phones, pagers, texters, etc. Lie down and put your feet up. It’s a mini-vacation, and a much-needed restorative.

While I suggest you do this separately from your meditative practice, remember to be gentle with yourself if you fall asleep during either one – it means you needed a deeper rest.

Besides, you might dream your new home.

Homework:

You really didn’t think we’d work for a whole moon cycle without homework, did you?

For the next four days, compose two lists:

1. The obstacles keeping you from making this home shift;

2. The list of the elements you want in your home.

We are using them separately, but since we’ll need one on the Dark Moon and one on the New Moon (which come mere moments apart) – work ahead of the game!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Home Om -- Day 9

Waning Moon
Retrogrades – Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury



Sometimes, we obsess about what’s not working in our living situation and it interferes with us getting what we want and need. Sometimes, it’s a way to short-circuit ourselves by holding on to the negative because it’s familiar.

Today, assess what’s not working in your current living situation, acknowledge it, and release it.

That way, you can create the situation that’s good for you, instead of creating something that is just a knee-jerk reaction to what’s current.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Home Om -- Day 8

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Today marks the beginning of the second week of Home Om. This will be the toughest week in the process – you’ll find yourself resisting, making excuses not to do your daily sit.

Overcome them.

By nature, most people resist change, even positive change. You have the opportunity, in this month, to get the energy moving to manifest for something you both desire and need. Get out of your own way and do it.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Home Om -- Day 7

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


After today’s chant, when you are fully relaxed, visualize a beautiful day in your new home. Would you read while lounging in the garden? Drink wine with your friends? Cook a meal? Swim a few laps in a pond? Listen to music?

Take a psychic vacation in your new home.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Home Om -- Day 6

Interesting twist in today’s meditation – I started “writing’ (in my head) and essay about why I’m leaving where I live now.

Think about it: Why are you leaving your current home? What legacy do you want to leave for the next person who lives there? What good memories/growth will you take with you?

Friday, July 14, 2006

Home Om -- Day 5

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Today, as you visualize, let your mind wander around and through your new home. Don’t force your pre-requisites into this meditation. Surprise yourself.

Sometimes, the sub-conscious has a better idea of what we want/need/will draw to us than the conscious mind is willing to admit!

Write down what you experience in your journal, so you can refer back to it in the months to come.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Home Om -- Day 4

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Since we’re in the waning moon section of the month, and the waning moon is for removing things from your life you no longer need, it’s a good time to reflect on patterns of behavior.

Do you have any patterns that have hurt your home-and-hearth energy in the past? Do you recognize any patterns of behavior that prevent you from completing the home relocation now?

Think about it. Be ruthlessly honest with yourself.

Take responsibility. Don’t say, “Well, it wasn’t my fault because of x, y, z.” If it’s something for which you need to take responsibility, then do so.

And then, forgive yourself. Self-forgiveness is the first step to breaking a pattern. First, you stop blaming the people and situations around you. If you are unhappy with something in your own life, YOU have the power to change it. Remove the pattern of, “well, it’s not my fault, it’s because I had an unhappy childhood/my boyfriend cheats on me/ so-and-so is out to get me.” Take responsibility and forgive yourself. “Yes, I did it, I made a mistake, and this is what I’ve learned from it to continue down my path in the future.”

Once you’ve taken those two difficult steps, think about how NOT to repeat the pattern in the future. What have you learned that will advise you down a different path if a similar situation comes up again? How will you set off the inner warning bells to remind you not to fall back into the pattern, simply because it’s familiar.

And then, do it.

Such small little words, and so difficult to put into practice!

But this is the waning moon – use that energy to push it away.

That way, when the moon turns towards the new, you can pull towards you both what you want and what’s good for you – because, hopefully, those are no longer mutually exclusive.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Home Om -- Day Three

Waning Moon
Retrograde: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury



Mark the 24th of July on your calendar – it’s the Dark Moon, and we have some special work to do in context of Home Om.

Note: I didn’t come up with the phrase “Home Om” – I only wish I had! I believe I originally saw it mentioned in Yoga Journal – although it was in a different context than I’m using it – and I’ve heard several people use the phrase in the past year or so. “Home Om” seemed to be a good title for this month’s work.

One of the best parts of the experience, for me, is that, no matter how discouraged I feel going in to the sit, by the end of it, I feel renewed, and as though everything is possible. Getting that positive energy moving is helpful in opening up new possibilities and SEEING those possibilities when they arrive.

Ask yourself: what do I need in a home? Fixating on a specific house can backfire. So, although you want to be detailed, you don’t want to obsess. For instance, my favorite house style is Victorian Gothic. One of those old, rambling places that looks like it came out of It’s a Wonderful Life. However, in the area of the country where I wish to relocate, it’s much more likely I’ll find something in a Colonial, Gambriel, or Expanded Cape style – all of which I like, too.

What other elements are important to me? The ideal size is 5 bedrooms, 3 baths, but 4 and 2 would work fine. A working fireplace is important. A gas stove (I can’t stand cooking on an electric stove – yuck). A room I can transform into my library/office, with floor to ceiling bookcases, comfortable furniture, and a six-legged table to use as my desk. A good sized yard. Not handkerchief-sized, but not too massive. Between three quarters of an acre and two acres would be great. I don’t want the houses to be too close together – I can’t bear the thought of being able to reach into my neighbor’s kitchen window and pour the milk into his coffee in the morning! I’d like a garage. I’m enamored of screened-in porches, or the kind that are all-weather (conservatories), and I also like decks. Again, the deck is a prominent feature in the area in which I’m searching. I don’t want to seem greedy, but since this is my “perfect” house – I’m visualizing both a screened-in porch AND a deck! Those are the most important elements. I also want things like a bay window, a window seat, a curving staircase. But I can be more flexible. I don’t need the ultra-modern gourmet style kitchen and I don’t need a completely state-of-the art tiled bath. I certainly won’t say no if they’re there, but there are plenty of older kitchens and bathrooms that work just fine for me. I tend to lean towards older houses than new construction. Also, new construction tends to constitute an oversized house on a teensy lot, and I don’t want that. I need room to plant, and room for the dogs to run! But more on the garden in another post.

What are some of the elements important to your desired home?

If you’re in the throes of moving, the packing is often the part that’s so exhausting. I’m very good at packing up other people, but falter when it comes to me. I love UNPACKING in the new place and setting things up.

When I get tired, my favorite packing visualization is items putting themselves in the boxes!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Home Om -- Day Two

Waning Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury


Good morning!

I dedicated the Home Altar last night and did my first meditation in front of it. I did this morning’s early on.

I light the two dark green votives on either side of the house representation, and do the “Home Om” chant. The chant is quite simple: Instead of saying “Om”, I say “Home.”

I chant it over and over, concentrating on the word, letting everything else go. As I relax into the word, I allow images of “home” to flow. Then, I stop the chant, and simply visualize the elements of what I want/need/am looking for in my new home, based on the list.

I admit – I haven’t figured out how to turn my list into a rhyme yet! But I’m working on it.

After my own meditation/visualization is done, I do another chant – this is the one for my friends/colleagues to find their new homes, or for their moves to run smoothly. I took each of their names and wove it into the chant.

When I’m finished, I ground and center, blow out the candles – and I’m ready for breakfast. It’s hungry work!

I do this meditation after my morning yoga, and after my regular morning sit. It turns my meditation session into two parts.

Sometimes, I may do this meditation at night.

My goal is to perform this at least once a day, sometimes twice, each day between now and August’s full moon on the 9th.

What’s great about this experience is that, even when something discouraging comes up, as it did yesterday, in regard to the hearth-and-home situation, performing the meditation gets the energy moving again, positively, and makes me feel optimistic about all of it again.

Feel free to join in, whenever you wish, adding your energy to the mix. Feel free to comment about your experience in the comments section below.

Enjoy!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Home Om -- Day One

Full Moon
Retrogrades: Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury

Hello, everyone! If you’re in a hearth-and-home transition (whether it’s an actual planned move or just gathering the energy to find the best home for you), I hope you’ll join me over the next month for a Full Moon to Full Moon working I’m calling “Home Om”.

Part of the reason I’ve been away for so long is that I’ve been dealing with a family crisis based in hearth-and-home. And, although it seems to be resolved, and somewhat positively, my gut is telling me to move forward with the relocation.

So, since today is the full moon, I decided to embark on a full moon to full moon working that I call “Home Om”.

I’m using tarot and runes and a few other objects to inspire the working.

There’s always a risk in making a working public when it’s in process (the whole “keep silent” thing) – however, since I have two other friends in need of new digs and a friend in the throes of an actual move – I’m going to give it a shot.

I can’t promise I’ll post every day, but I’m going to try. Please note that on this blog, I will focus the writing on the meditative and visualization part of the working. I will be doing other rituals through the course of the month, but those will be kept silent until they’re done.

Normally, for this type of work, I would use the Celtic Dragon Tarot. However, since Dragon logic is different from human logic, with movement directly from A to B, I thought I’d use the Robin Wood instead. I don’t want the force of dragon energy removing me from the home – I want a GENTLE transition – moving is stressful enough!

There’s a link to the right to Robin’s website. Perhaps later in the month, I’ll be able to post a photograph.

The cards for the month are:

The Queen of Cups - in this case, my significator
The Four of Wands – building a solid future.
The Ten of Pentacles – setting down roots

The runes I’m using are Feoh (cattle) and Ur (the strength of an Ox).

I took a small, square, wooden and glass tray. Across the bottom, from left to right, I set: The Four of Wands, Feoh, The Queen of Cups, Ur, The Ten of Pentacles.

Above that, I have an amethyst, a rose quartz, a green agate in the shape of a heart, and two small seashells.

Above that, is a small resin Tudor cottage (I picked up in Hallmark store over ten years ago because I liked it), flanked by two small round pewter dishes that will hold votives (once I get to the store later today and buy them). I’m not visualizing a Tudor cottage – in fact, I’m not visualizing every detail of the structure, because I want to make sure I draw the best possible house for me, and it might be quite different than what I think. However, as the days wear on, there are specific elements that I need/want the house to have, and I will visualize those.

This mini-altar is my focus for the daily meditation/visualization.

Now, I want to make a list of everything I want in a house and, somehow, figure out how to make a rhyme out of it, so I can chant it each day as I sit.

For those who are in the process of moving, simply concentrate on the new, loving home environment, and the peace and stability it will bring once you’re there. Taking a few minutes each day to meditate on the joys of your new home will help keep you calm and centered during the actual moving process.

If you want to use the phases of the moon during this month, we’re at the full moon today – fulfillment. The next two weeks, as the moon wanes, concentrate on removing blocks and obstacles to a successful move, and, when the moon turns, concentrate on pulling the best home for you towards you, building for the future.

Since Mercury is in retrograde, I won’t sign a contract until it goes direct. In fact, there’s no way of knowing if I’ll even be in a position to sign a contract any time soon, but I don’t sign contracts during Mercury Retrograde, period. What I hope this month will do is help me get out of my own way, and get the energy moving in a positive way (since the last few months were so negative), so I can move down the right path.

Off to buy those candles – I have a visualization to do!