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intuition

creativity inspiration & influence intuition

Healing with words of gold: The Empress, Kintsugi and alchemy

March 24, 2017

kintsugi

When we draw the Empress, the time has come for change and renewal in the sense that it is the right moment to dare to come out with our ideas, plans and insights.

Tarot as a Way of Life: a Jungian Approach to Tarot, Karen Hamaker-Zondag

The Empress connects us with this new dimension of awareness; for is it through her intuitive understanding rather than through masculine logic that the spirit leaps forth into outer space to connect with celestial insights.

Jung and Tarot: An Archetypal Journey, Sallie Nichols

The Empress – Part II

This is the second in a two part series on The Empress tarot card which has been appearing lately in various guises. These posts explore The Empress, her powers and how she is showing up for me right now as a guide.

In the first post, The Empress: vision, creativity and patience, we explored her appearances recently in tarot spreads and the symbolism of The Empress in various tarot decks as an insight into her meaning.

In this post, I’ll be sharing thoughts and intuitive writing on the messages of the Empress to help channel growth in creativity and healing at this time.

Activating heart energy

I’ve been working with gifted channeller and intuitive healer, Amber Adrian for the past six months as part of a transition process to focus on creativity as a way of life. Amber’s Activate program is about switching on your wisdom, power and light more, especially (for me) around creativity.

It’s all about connecting with our higher selves, integrating what needs to be integrated and showing up with what we learn and experience. It’s powerful and healing work, hard to describe, but my role it seems is to put my experiences into words.

In a session recently, guides stepped through for each of us with a message. For me, the guide was a woman with red hair, goddess-like. She was there to help me connect with my heart. She put her hand over my heart. With gold from her palm, she filled in any wounds with gold, so it was like my heart was made new again. She released shadows and energies, removed cords from my heart and filled the holes left by my heart wounds.

And she gave me a special message:

 Your heart is ready, put it on the page.

I am not sure who this goddess or guide is, but I am feeling the energy of both The Empress and Pele, goddess of fire and irrepressible passion who is guiding me this year. I’m feeling the power of both as they appear around messages of vision, creativity and passion. They are a couple of mighty female consorts with transformative energy I can tap into and channel creatively.

The empress

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My superpower – writing

The guides in this Activate session also came forward with messages around our superpowers: how we want to be seen as we truly are. This included messages around learning how to mother and care for ourselves.

When anyone has ever asked what my superpower is, I would (and will) always say it’s writing. It’s a strength I rely on for so much: in my work role, in my personal life, strategising ideas, processing pain, capturing beauty and sorrow to experience, move through and on. It’s helped me navigate so much and words are my life-blood and heart.

So it was with a smile of recognition that I heard the words from Amber that the guides were activating channelling gifts as they come through writing. The gift being activated, once I cycle through some layers of self-care, is an ability to sit down and receive writing as a divine conduit to words – “beautiful, entertaining, what’s needed in the world.”

I am blown away by this but it seems right. It means opening up through resistance and fear to this and I note also, requires actually sitting down to write. Important.

Later we are encouraged to let our guides show us where they would like to connect and how – for example, ceremoniously, through exercise, afterwards, when you sleep. Journalling is a way we can do this, asking guides to speak to us or come through as we sleep.

In this spirit work, we need to flex and move through our own paths. The guidance and support is to be accessed. It’s a gift we need to learn. We are reminded:

It’s a muscle like anything else.

Like a muscle, we need to use it.

light person fire

Message in a Bottle

The next day while all this is settling, I receive the ‘Message in a Bottle’ card from The Wisdom of the Oracle deck, in protection position (reversed). This card is all about communication and signs from spirit and guides pointing to your highest good. In protection position, it’s saying:

Don’t ignore the signs. Spirit always has your best interests at heart and will draw your attention to what you are overlooking.

With its image of a telephone in a bottle, there’s a sense of messages coming and not being able to get them or read them. The Wisdom of the Oracle guide book says this is also about allowing yourself to “become fluent in the language of symbols, oracles, and omens.” But in protection position, it’s about maybe not acknowledging signs because they don’t fit our world view. We are tending to want them as we want them. Or we are missing them altogether.

So I’m listening, opening up and working to become fluent in this language of guides, signs, symbols and intuitive writing. It’s natural ground in one way, but the signs are flagging a richer and deeper connection with spirit and channelling of words.

This is welcome but there’s that resistance I can feel around what this means. Channelling, for example, is a concept I am not entirely comfortable with and it seems a big step into an unknown world right now. In my mind, are the inevitable thoughts of “What will (insert anyone you like) think about this?” with all the dark power and shadow that such fruitless thinking can muster.

message in a bottle

Night thought visits

I head to bed with an open heart, inviting guides to speak to me in the night as this seems to be the way I am currently receiving information and inspiration.

In a wonderful interview on The High Priestess podcast, Julie Parker speaks with guide and psychic, Helen Jacobs, about intuition in the most down to earth of ways. This was such a balm for my soul at this time. They discuss how the way we access intuition and information from guides is different for everyone. And it can also change from time to time for each of us. Talk about keeping us on our toes!

The way my intuition and guides seem to be speaking to me now is through what I call night thoughts. They are words, symbols, signs or lines of songs that come through clear as a bell when I wake in the early hours of the morning.

So I wake in the night with wavy haint blue lines that I know from the Spirits card in Marcella Kroll’s Sacred Symbols deck. I know it means that spirits are calling offering wisdom and help. I draw the wavy lines with my finger in the air as I can feel them so strongly.

spirits

I look at the time and it’s 3:13am. Those numbers speak to me too – I’ve been noticing lots of number sequences lately especially 111, but this sequence 313 seems significant so I take note.

I know I will need to get up and write this down so I don’t forget. And I know I need to write. Here is an opportunity to harness the spirit of guides and channel any messages, despite my uncertainty about this. It’s a gift, a present, a presence and a guide. It’s there for me to access and it’s there to help me channel love and light. It’s not all about me it seems.

Journalling night thoughts

I have a Night Thoughts journal – I’ve had it for a while – and I capture all the thoughts that come in the night there. They are so rich. I open the journal and I write this message:

I’m waking you in the middle of the night to say I’m here, spirit, 313, helping you to see and hear the signs that come to you. Ask and you shall see. You need to ask.

(I then insert three of the Spirits wave symbols as in the card above)

The Empress, orange cloak, golden hair, is guiding you. Plant the seeds, heal the wounds, feel the gold inside the cracks, go there. It’s a gift you’ve always had from very young to see and feel the cracks and fill them with gold. The gold in your heart is what can help heal others’ cracks and wounds and your own.

You’re called to help heal, to hold the hands and hearts of those who hurt. In many ways, like a kindred soul, standing in healing, standing side by side, in the trenches of the heart. But healing with words of gold, from your pen and from your mouth.

Number 313

Afterwards I check about the number 313. And what I read again blows me away. Joanna Walmesley of Sacred Scribes explains in this post that it’s an angel number:

Angel Number 313 is a message from your angels that the strong connection you have with the angelic realm and the Ascended Masters is assisting you with staying positive, light and optimistic about your life…It is time to live your truths and express yourself with clarity, purpose, passion and love. Be a positive light to others.

I’m encouraged just like the ‘Message in the Bottle’ to pay close attention to intuition and inner wisdom, that guides are there helping me with the next steps along my path.

313 is made up of the attributes and vibrations of 3 appearing twice. Then I recall that 3 is The Empress’s number also, she who has appeared twice recently in my tarot readings, with 3 linked to creativity, self-expression, talents and skills. Number 1 is about self-leadership, intuition, fresh beginnings and approaches – all in line with The Empress and her messages of creativity, intention and patience. I love the term ‘self-leadership’ and this number emphasises that:

 we create our own experiences with our intentions, thoughts and beliefs. This makes 313 the number of optimism, enthusiasm, communication, creativity and expansion.

Kintsugi

After all this beautiful light and energy that has flowed from The Empress appearing in various guises, I keep reflecting on that palm of the hand holding my heart and filling it with gold. It feels so warm and positive. I know that sense from somewhere.

Then I remember the Japanese art of Kintsugi (or kintsukuroi). A representation of the idea of wabi-sabi, it’s a method for repairing broken ceramic pieces with a lacquer mixed with gold or other precious metals with the philosophy behind this:

to recognize the history of the object and to visibly incorporate the repair into the new piece instead of disguising it. The process usually results in something more beautiful than the original.

In a piece on kintsugi, wabi-sabi, the beauty of scars and her son’s repaired heart, Amy Basken says:

kintsugi pieces are prized precisely because they have been broken. They are said to be more beautiful, more unique, and “stronger at the broken places” (to quote Ernest Hemingway)

I’m feeling like my heart is a vessel, a sacred object, cracked from wounds and hurts but healing. As I reflect, I realise there are 3 significant times in my life when my heart fractured and hurt intensely with deep grief, loss and pain.

I feel my heart wounds fill with gold and heal. I’ve had enough suffering from these wounds for now. I can move on. I can communicate the lessons and emotions to help others heal, to feel they are not alone or to acknowledge and honour these feelings as part of moving on.

How often do we hide these wounds and experiences with a sense of shame instead of realising they are what makes us strong, beautiful and able to support others with what we have learned.

Not that we would ask for these experiences. But if they happen to us, Kintsugi and The Empress remind us that breakage and repair, wounds and healing, are natural, not something to be concealed but there to be held up to the light with love. And love mostly for ourselves.

Seek and you shall find…one layer of Truth at a time. Every experience we have in life, even the missteps, and especially the bliss, is a step closer to that sacred radiance. We are all waking up in the same direction.

Danielle LaPorte White Hot Truth: Clarity for keeping it real on your spiritual path from one seeker to another (forthcoming May 2017)

Alchemy: the power to transform things for the better

I leave the draft to this point overnight, asking for guidance to clarify and make sense. The words that come in the night are:

This is alchemy, you are experiencing alchemy.

Yes, I realise, that’s it. Alchemy: the power to transform things for the better – that would be a relief and something I can work with, a healing thing for me and others. I relax suddenly, snuggling into the warmth of my loved one and cuddling my little stuffed bear in the dark, smiling. I relax into this knowledge, this beauty, and lean into its wisdom, embracing whatever is to come.

Thought pieces

You can learn more about Amber Adrian and her brilliant work in activating creativity and healing at AmberAdrian.com – she is also a fan of stuffed animals and is the most beautiful writer.

Dee at Archangel Oracle – Divine Guidance explores The Message in a Bottle card in more detail. These thoughts resonate on becoming fluent in reading signs and symbols.

For more reading and beautiful visuals on kintsugi and its processes visit:

Kintsugi: the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery

Kintsugi: the art of broken pieces

Image acknowledgements:

  • The Empress card is from the Sakki Sakki tarot deck; others as noted in the text
  • Other images from pexels.com and used according to licence with thanks to the creators.

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is on Facebook – Please visit here and ‘Liketo keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on tarot, intuition, influence, passion, creativity, productivity, writing, voice, introversion and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017. This includes tarot, MBTI developments, coaching and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world. New opportunities and special offers coming soon.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

The Empress: creativity, vision and patience

Dance to a new beat – Full Moon in Virgo

creativity inspiration & influence intuition

The Empress: vision, creativity and patience

March 17, 2017

The empress

The Empress – from the Sakki Sakki Tarot Deck

The Empress

The Empress has been appearing lately in my last two full moon tarot readings for Virgo and Leo. And she is popping up in other ways as a guiding goddess right now. I’m still working through all this wonderful energy! So thought I’d do a deep dive into The Empress, her powers, how she is showing up for me right now and share this with you as I work through.

In this first post of two on The Empress, we explore her appearances recently in tarot spreads and the symbolism of The Empress in various tarot decks as an insight into her meaning for us.

In the second post to follow, I’ll be sharing thoughts and intuitive writing on the messages of the Empress to help growth in creativity and healing for me and for you at this time.

The Empress appears – Full Moon Leo, Jan 2017

The Empress has been appearing pretty frequently in my daily guidance draws but has made cameos appearances in my last two Full Moon tarot readings – for Virgo and Leo.

She first appeared in the Full Moon in Leo Reading with the Sakki Sakki tarot deck in the final position around:

What positive energies will come to fruition from this Full Moon?

full moon Leo

I made some intuitive notes around:

It’s the right time to birth creative potential and plant seeds for the future.

It was also a lunar eclipse coinciding with the Leo Full Moon so the shadow side of creativity and self-expression and our doubts were also in there.

Revisiting the insightful Leah Whitehorse’s writing for this Leo Full Moon accessed via Mystic Mamma, these words jump out and sing to me:

Sometimes you have to go out there and show what you’ve got or stand up for what you believe in. The skills and talent you have are yours and yours alone. No one sings or paints like you. No one has your own special way of seeing the world. That’s what makes you unique and extraordinary…

Sometimes it’s about showing what you’ve got regardless of all the fear. Shine as you were meant to shine. This isn’t a rehearsal. Giving the best of yourself can be a great gift to the rest of humanity.

This thought is part of the DNA of Quiet Writing and my life’s work and passion – shining a quiet light, shining as we are meant to shine, helping others to do the same. And writing this and into this. So it’s a great message to come from this reading and confluence of the constellations.

The Empress reappears – Full Moon in Virgo,  Feb 2017

Leah Whitehorse notes about the Leo lunar eclipse:

As Leo often represents the entertainer, I feel like this eclipse is like a pilot episode of a new drama series – a taste of things to come.

So it seems to have turned out with the Empress appearing again in my Full Moon in Virgo tarot reading in prime position, now setting the scene and focused on:

How can I seek the greatest vision of myself?

full moon virgo

My intuitive notes:

So I can seek out that greatest vision of myself just by being myself, celebrating what I love, relaxing into the creative process. I can connect with nature and spirit, allowing the vision to gently emerge over time, living it as I go.

Along with the other cards from the reading, I worked up a page with the cards and key messages with these words as the summary:

raw

 

visual collage

Raw, yes, – I never could cut in straight lines, and it’s messy but that is not the point. Or maybe it is – just being raw, real and ready, authentic not perfect! I love those words that connect with uniqueness, shining and showing up. And patience to self-nurture, learning as I go, feeling into my vision as it emerges.

Exploring The Empress and her many guises

I love seeing how the symbols and imagery of The Empress plays out in different interpretations and I use this to guide and weave in with my impressions and intuition. It’s rich fuel for the fire and such brilliant learning. And I’ve developed this sense further through the fabulously wise and rich 78 Mirrors e-course I worked through recently with Susannah Conway.

I mainly work with six tarot decks so here is The Empress in her guises across these six decks:

1. Rider Waite Tarot
2. Robin Wood Tarot
3. Sakki Sakki Tarot
4. Fountain Tarot
5. Dame Darcy Mermaid Tarot
6. The Wild Unknown

Here is The Empress as she appears visually in each of these decks:

The Empress tarot card

Top row left to right: Rider Waite, Robin Wood, Sakki Sakki

Bottom row left to right: Fountain Tarot, Dame Darcy Mermaid, The Wild Unknown

Here are the standout images, symbols and thoughts for me from these different decks and their interpretations:

Rider Waite

The Rider Waite tarot Empress is solid, front facing, with a mature growth and sharing focus around her. Pomegranates feature on the robe of the Empress, symbolising the “eternal renewal of life” according to The Book of Symbols. In ‘The Pictorial Key to the Tarot’, Arthur Edward Waite refers to The Empress as “the fruitful mother of thousands”.

Robin Wood Tarot

In The Robin Wood Tarot, The Empress is spinning, with images of green and gold and a basket of produce at her feet. The imagery symbolises fertility, growth, competence and security, weaving a sound future.

Sakki Sakki Tarot

The Sakki Sakki Tarot Empress, speaks to me directly with her orange robes and richness. According to the Sakki Sakki Tarot guidebook, she symbolises the “mother of all, creativity, femininity, fertility, abundance, Mother Nature.” In essence, the mother of all creations whatever they be: “a baby, business or the world itself”.

Fountain Tarot

The stunning and ethereal Fountain Tarot Empress appears to be standing in a pond or pool, cloaked in gold, her rainbow energy around her. She is abundant creation and from the Fountain Tarot guidebook…

invites you to water your new creation with love and patience.

Again that theme of creativity, passion, what you love, nature and patience connecting. I love these words from the Fountain Tarot accompanying book:

As the ultimate mother, she will nurture you through the unique moments of each particular stage of growth – through the cycles of life, death, create and destruction. Relax into the safe glow of her embrace, and begin what there is to begin. Now is the time to act.

Dame Darcy Mermaid Tarot

The Dame Darcy Empress is all about mermaids, feminine energy and the pearls of wisdom to be found in the depths of the sea and elsewhere. It’s a message about exploring those depths, going there and speaking of them.

The Wild Unknown

And in the beauty of The Wild Unknown – a deck I have been working with a lot lately – the energy is all about trees, growth, reaching out branches, creation, nature and the mother. The Empress is described as:

the mother, or goddess of the tarot

She emphasises maternal relationships, connecting with our feminine side and especially nature, encouraging us to get outside to ground ourselves and activate our senses. I am finding this is really critical to forming vision, needing that quiet space in nature to find myself and hear my inner voice.

The Empress

Image from Shutterstock via pexels.com

Stay tuned for the second post on The Empress….

…in which we weave all this rich material together as she starts to appear more actively to me through channelled messages and night thoughts with intuitive writing guidance! Exciting times!

Your turn – would love to hear your thoughts about The Empress…

  • What’s your favourite Empress image and symbolism?
  • Has The Empress appeared for you with any special messages?
  • Has this piece stirred anything for you?
  • What card is showing up for you lately with special messages?

Would love to hear your experiences and thoughts here or on Instagram or the Quiet Writing Facebook page where I’ll post a link to this post.

Do share to stimulate this beautiful and powerful feminine energy in the world!

Thought pieces and references:

Symbols in The Empress Tarot card – Janet Boyer – is a fabulous deeper dive into the symbolism of the Rider Waite Smith Empress card – fascinating reading!

Leah Whitehorse’s beautiful blog Lua Astrology

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is on Facebook – Please visit here and ‘Liketo keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on tarot, intuition, influence, passion, creativity, productivity, writing, voice, introversion and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017. This includes tarot, MBTI developments, coaching and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world. New opportunities and special offers coming soon.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy: Dance to a new beat – Full Moon in Virgo

intuition music & images

Music, intuition and messages of songs

March 2, 2017

Before we live what’s next, it always seems like there is some answer we need to arrive at. But daring to enter, we are humbled to discover, again and again, that the act of living itself unravels both the answer and the question. When we watch, we remain riddles to be solved. when we enter, we become songs to be sung.

Mark Nepo – The Book of Awakening – for 3 March

lyrics intuition

There’s a special form of intuition that comes through music and the lyrics of songs that is there if you listen.

Lines of music in the night

Recently, this intuition has been speaking to me through lines of music in the night. It’s more than just remembered music, the lines stuck in your head. It comes as random lines, perhaps from something I’ve been listening to but sometimes it’s a song I haven’t listened to for a while. This intuitive messaging via lyrics, song and music is marked by the qualities of being:

  • random
  • meaningful
  • repeated
  • a direct message
  • sometimes almost painstakingly pointed, sometimes a little more oblique
  • insistent enough to wake you night after night.

It’s a strange phenomenon. I’ve always been a lover of music, lyrics and the poetry of songs but it’s only lately that I can remember waking up with insistent and direct musical messages coming to me.

The most recent experience has been hearing the lines of  ‘New York’ by Alicia Keys coming to me in my own voice. And it’s a specific set of lines that keeps coming to me in the night over and over:

Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothing you can’t do
Now you’re in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new…

Read more: Alicia Keys – New York Lyrics | MetroLyrics

I haven’t listened to this song for ages and I’ve never been to New York but I understand its symbolism.

The main message for me is the inspiring words: ‘There’s nothing you can’t do’. It seems like an intuitive message from spirit, from angels, from ancestors. I don’t really know who it’s from, but it’s a message of encouragement from my intuition, just as rainbows appear in my life at key points. It’s saying that I’m on the right track, able to do much, and to tap into a collective creative spirit such as New York as a city might symbolise.

Intuition, symbols and learning to listen

Personality types for whom introverted intuition is a dominant or auxiliary function are the ones most likely to be finding this type of intuition coming to them. MBTI types who tend to rely on or experience this type of visionary insight are: INFJ, INTJ, ENFJ and ENTJ. People with these personality types can find that answers come from an interior intuitive kind of knowing. This can be via symbolic ways such as images, metaphors, lines of songs, words and dreams. And all people can learn to strengthen this type of intuitive insight whatever their type.

It tends to come as a whole piece that summarises the answer, feeling or thought succinctly in a kind of code you can hear or read if you learn to listen. It’s similar to how we can learn the language and symbolism of dreams. But like dreams, you almost have to go through an education or opening to its wisdom which is collective in nature but individual in context and application.

Intuitive Friday and intuitive music

I launched a hashtag project a while ago called #intuitivefriday about taking time to celebrate intuition in a mindful and deep way on Friday. Mostly on Instagram, people have posted all kinds  of rich images and associations around intuition. I plan to do an occasional deep dive such as this into some of the concepts people have shared.

@todorf shared a particularly beautiful piece on considering intuition from the perspective of lyrics that move you, the poetry in compositions and people’s stories of lives changed by a piece of music or song.

Have you ever had a song that gets stuck in your head?

on an #IntuitiveFriday consider intuitions from lyrics that move you.

Have you ever had a song change your life?

CBC ‘s The Sunday Edition aired a popular series called 20 Pieces of Music That Changed The World. On a recent Radio broadcast, i heard stories by listeners from across Canada who’s life was changed by some song or piece of music. The ideas and emotions could be told from many countries for music is universal.

I remarked that the poets are alive and well in our music… also in addition to lyric, there is poetry in the compositions

.

‘In the clearing stands a boxer…’

‘… as he walked from the grave, no one was saved… ‘

‘ …I’ll string my bow and cease my senseless running…’

Share a piano passage by Junior Mance –

Hear Wynton Marcelius teach jazz at Lincoln Center –

Feel the passion of a flamenco guitar –

.

there is a special place in my heart for Recuerdos de la Alhambra

A post shared by nod (@todorf) on

20 Pieces of Music That Changed the World  is the most amazing series on music and influence and its impact to make change from an interior to a wider world. It is about “feelings which coalesced in music first then moved out into the rest of society”. I am so thankful to dear @todorf (nod) for sharing this.

I was struck by the comments in the introduction to the first episode by Robert Harris about music as an “emotional package”, which has the “ability to crystallise emotional states”. He talks about how music:

has the power to show us a future that we only dimly understand intellectually but understand emotionally.

Music is unmediated and “beyond the power of words” but “our brains understand it instantly.”

Lyrics and intuition

So lyrics, lines of songs, coming to me in this way unmediated in the middle of night, through words somehow beyond the power of words, is a kind of intuition.

When I wake in the middle of the night, I get up to capture the words in my notebook in the dark because I know I will lose them if I don’t. They are a knowing without knowing, words beyond words, and a dialogue with spirit that I need to heed and listen to. They are messages from beyond that we need to get in some way though we do not always fully understand.

As I finish this piece, the lyrics singing out in the room from my own Spotify playlist are from The Stranglers’ ‘Skin Deep’:

Some days there’s things on your mind you should keep

Sometimes, it’s tougher to look than to leap

better watch out for the skin deep…

It’s a song I have listened to over and over, nodding and smiling, watching out for the skin deep, going deeper, leaping rather than looking and understanding that some days there truly are things on my mind I should pay close quiet attention to.

That power of music, lyrics, songs to reach from the beyond – or into the future –  has a magical ability to make you smile, understand or get a sense of something.

Every life is a language no one knows. With every heart-break, discovery and unexpected moment of joy, with every lift of music that touches us where we didn’t think we could be touched, with every experience, another letter in our alphabet is decoded. Take a step; learn a word. Feel a feeling; decode a sign. Accept a truth; translate a piece of mystery written in your heart.

Mark Nepo – The Book of Awakening – for 3 March

Thought pieces

Love to hear your thoughts on music and intuition:

  • When has a song or music come to you in the night? What did it say and what does it mean to you?
  • When have you sung words, listened to lyrics knowing they deliver something deeper that you don’t as yet understand ?
  • What music, songs, lyrics takes you back to a special moment you can hardly put into words? One that enables you to be able to capture exactly where you were, what you felt: the tears, the laughter, the grief, the purest emotion that you could not put into words if you tried?
  • What song has changed the world for you?
  • What’s your favourite song and you don’t even really know why?

I welcome you to contribute your thoughts here in the comments or add your intuitive inspiration to #intuitivefriday on Instagram or other social media. Visit the gallery of posts gathered to date in IG via the hashtag. There’s so many beautiful mindful pieces there and a collective energy of intuition to be savoured. Thanks to those who have engaged so far – I’ve learnt from every rich post shared.

lyrics music intuition

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is on Facebook – Please visit here and ‘Liketo keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on intuition, influence, passion, creativity, productivity, writing, voice, introversion, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) and tarot.

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017. This includes MBTI developments, coaching and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world. New opportunities and special offers coming soon.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

You might also enjoy:

Being a vessel or working with introverted intuition

Lyrebird: spirit animal for Quiet Writing

inspiration & influence intuition music & images

Lyrebird – spirit animal for Quiet Writing

February 16, 2017

This post is about the lyrebird, its meaning and why it is the spirit animal reflecting the heart of Quiet Writing.

lyrebird

Lyrebirds run across my path

Each day I drive through bush to the top of the hill through national park with rainforest pockets and waterfall rock faces. The road opens up at times to a cathedral of trees and sky. I sing to music or listen to podcasts on creativity and writing, finding minutes to express my self before a busy work day.

On many days I smile, as a lyrebird, tail down making a sleek black figure, darts across the road into leaves and bush. On some occasions, I’ve seen two lyrebirds in one trip. That’s when I feel especially blessed by lyrebird magic.

I wonder at its meaning. I don’t recall seeing the lyrebird in any spirit animal guides I’ve read, being an Australian bird. I’m sure it’s there somewhere. I know I will need to look into Aboriginal stories too. I commit to doing that silently. But when I get on the train for the commute to the city, I decide to start with an intuitive write of what the lyrebird might mean.

Intuitive thoughts on the lyrebird

This is what I write:

I think it means spirit, like a sprite, a visitor of wisdom saying “You are on the right track. I’m running across this road right now to tell you that.” Like the rainbows I’ve seen in the past that wrote whole narratives of my life in the sky for me to read, it’s so explicit and timely.

I think it’s a muse: a muse of Australia, a lyre, a stringed instrument, playing like a voice, saying: Tell your story, sing your song, be your voice, the sacred creative voice that you are and want too be. Tell the stories of those who did not have a voice, help those who want to have a voice to tell their stories. The suffering, the struggle, the resilience, the spirit there that teaches us.

I think it’s about hearing the voices of others, listening, absorbing and maybe sometimes referring, quoting, ‘mimicking’, singing and trying out others’ voices to find my own voice. Knowing that the uniqueness of my voice is from all these influences and experiences, my voice a conglomeration or filter, a series of lyrebird calls, the synthesis.

It was great to write out my intuitive feel of the lyrebird before seeing others’ thoughts on the lyrebird and its meaning.

About the lyrebird

The lyrebird is a ground-dwelling bird found on the south east coast of Australia. The male has a tail shaped like a ‘lyre’ or harp. The male combines the display of his beautiful tail with extensive songs and mimicry to lure the female. The female lyrebird is also skilful in being able to mimic.

lyrebird

The birds are capable of mimicking just about any sound including chainsaws, cameras, human voices and car sirens. However they usually focus on the sounds of other animals and birds. The voice of a lyrebird resounds through the damp, tree-ferned gullies and valleys where it mostly lives. You can often recognise its presence by a series of different types of bird calls in quick succession.

The lyrebird’s syrinx or voice box is the most complex and sophisticated of any song bird. It has three instead of the usual four voice box muscles which gives flexibility. The birds are shy in nature. They are an ancient bird, with the earliest fossil records from about 15 million years ago.

Check out this brief video from David Attenborough to see the lyrebird in action. I’ve included a few more links below because they are so interesting!

The lyrebird – what others say

I find that many have documented the lyrebird and its meaning including some Aboriginal Dreaming stories. Here are the key messages of the lyrebird honed from online sources integrated with my own thoughts:

1 Creating a unique song letting other voices move through you

The lyrebird encourages us to create our unique song, especially via other influences moving through us and making them our own. We are the unique collation of what we love and what we have experienced. Our ideas connect and integrate with the ideas of others in ways that only we can orchestrate.

Lyrebird reminds us that one of the reasons we are unique is because we can choose to create something new from the old. It is time to create our own unique song, if we do not have one, and it is time to strengthen it, if we do.

from: Animal Energies – Lyrebird by Ravenari 

Another way to think of this might be as ‘collage’ as Austin Kleon does:

Next time you’re stuck, think of your work as a collage. Steal two or more ideas from your favorite artists and start juxtaposing them. Voila.

The unique way we choose and combine ideas is in itself an act of creation.

2 Listening to the true meaning of ourselves and others

The shadow aspects of lyrebird are about letting our true voice out, being comfortable and facing our fears. Connecting with our feelings and influences will enable us to find our true voice. 

Lyrebird encourages us to really listen beneath the surface. Just as lyrebirds make calls that include car alarms and bird songs to attract their mate, the lyrebird teaches us to see behind words and actions to the real meaning.

I’m currently working on life coaching. Learning to truly listen actively and with curiosity so we can gauge what people are really saying is a critical skill. This relates to lyrebird spirit:

Lyrebird gives us this power to see the truth in what a person is saying, no matter how they are saying it.

from Animal Energies – Lyrebird by Ravenari

3 Listening to and channelling spirit

Linked to #1 above is the idea of the lyrebird symbolising letting spirit and ancestors flow through us. 

As Carl Jung reminds us:

Our souls as well as our bodies are composed of individual elements which were all already present in the ranks of our ancestors. The “newness” in the individual psyche is an endlessly varied recombination of age-old components.

Lyrebird also encourages channelling. It might be via mimicry and new combinations as in #1 above. Or it could be working with spirit guides, ancestors and animal energy to help us find truth and meaning. Lyrebird is a link to ancient and ancestral voices, with a voice beyond time.

Valuing quietness and encouraging peace

Finding sacred places and practices to enable this connection is something that lyrebird spirit encourages. We need to find quiet places so we can listen to the true meaning within. Lyrebird particularly encourages expression of what we find out loud in some way.

Just as the lyrebird’s habitat is often secretive and hidden, so we need to go within to find space to reflect and gather. This is valuable for introverts especially as they draw energy and insight this way.

With their ability to speak in other ‘languages’ or voices, lyrebirds also symbolise peacemakers. In an Aboriginal Dreaming story, Lyrebird is given the role of the peacemaker in the first great dispute between all creatures:

As a reward, the Spirits gave Lyrebird the ability to be the only animal able to communicate to all the other animals. The other animals were punished by losing this ability, and Frog, the cause of all the trouble, was given a croaky voice to replace his once beautiful voice.

From Native Symbols info

5 Keeping sacred spaces clean and decluttering

The lyrebird also encourages keeping our sacred spaces clean so that we can create a clear space for spirit, influence and voice. Lyrebirds are elegant and tidy, scraping leaf litter and dirt to create a beautiful space within the forest to attract a partner.

This can be seen as a metaphor for attracting energy and creativity in our lives. The decluttering, the scraping away, can be physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. It’s essentially about getting clarity in our lives. This might be around issues of grieving and letting go of what no longer serves us and is weighing us down.

6 Being a teacher to help others to find voice and sing

Another Aboriginal Dreaming story links a few of the above strands together around teaching voice:

…there was a stream in which little bubbles contained spirits.  One spirit wanted to become real when he heard Lyrebird’s beautiful song.  While singing, Lyrebird noticed this bubble moving and dancing in rhythm with his voice.  The Great Spirit told Lyrebird to remain singing until the creature was born.  Finally, and it took Lyrebird time, effort and concentration, out popped a little green frog.  Lyrebird’s purpose was then to teach this creature to sing.

From Native Symbols info

The spirit of teaching others to find their voice is another message of the lyrebird. The Dreamtime story suggests that it is through singing our own song that we help others come to life. This might take ‘time, effort and concentration’ and it may feel like we are not getting anywhere. I think of blogging, and how we can feel like we are howling into the wind. Or how when we are creating larger pieces of work that need crafting over time, it feels like they will never be finished. When sent out into the world, our creativity can help others in ways we do not even realise.

7 Symbol of the bard

The lyrebird is also seen as a symbol of the bard and of our poetic souls. It has a long repertoire of different songs and uses auditory memory to learn these songs and string them together. The lyrebird is a symbol of poetry, song, auditory skills, a love of language and poetic inspiration in all of us.

Lyrebird and Quiet Writing

So for all these beautiful reasons including its appearance many times running across my path, I have chosen Lyrebird as my spirit animal for Quiet Writing. Or rather Lyrebird has chosen me.

The value and skills at its heart are:

  1. Creating a unique song and letting the voices of others move through you – acknowledging and working with our passions, influences and the voices of others to find our uniqueness.
  2. Listening to the true meaning of ourselves and others – working in a process oriented way to get to meaning and voice – through understanding the self, listening and writing.
  3. Listening to and channelling spirit – working intuitively to listen to and access spiritual energy including archetypes, symbolism, tarot, oracle and healing work.
  4. Valuing quietness and encouraging peace – knowing that quiet places and quietness within are sources of strength and peace to be valued, celebrated and cultivated. Introvert preferences and skills such as introverted intuition are especially vehicles of vision to be strengthened.
  5. Keeping sacred spaces clean and decluttering – working to clear space for the new by clearing out the old and unnecessary. There’s a spirit of being open and a work in progress where coaching, writing and other intuitive skills might clear energy and make way for the new.
  6. Being a teacher to help others to find voice and sing – Quiet Writing has at its heart the focus of helping people find their voice in the world. Whether it be career or creativity, the aim is to help people find expression to be able to sing their unique song, loud and clear.
  7. Symbol of the bard – Quiet Writing is fuelled by a poetic spirit, by words and a love of language as a form of expression. Writing – both process and product – is a tool to self-understanding and self-expression that helps us connect with ourselves and others.

So I am so glad I paid attention to the lyrebirds running across my path. I’m so happy too there were resources available to help me understand further including Aboriginal Dreaming stories. This combination of intuition, research and thinking is valuable.

I can summarise this manifesto of sorts now but it’s taken time to coalesce and is still evolving. That first piece was written on the train nearly 6 months ago now. I am grateful for lyrebird energy focusing my attention and pointing out the signposts so I could bring them together. This vision for Quiet Writing is something I likewise offer in focused attention to you as we move into the future.

Thought pieces and acknowledgements 

Austin Kleon’s 25 quotes to help you steal like an artist captures thoughts on collaging and coalescing influences. This includes the Jung quote above. I love this way of thinking about influence and uniqueness. We are our own curated version of our passions, experiences and ways of expressing. I believe though that we should acknowledge our influences and sources and make them explicit. This enables others to share in them and learn from them in their own way.

Lyrebird videos: Do watch some of them, so beautiful and fun, some wild and some captive birds, but all fascinating:

Lyrebird song – Stephen Powell Wildlife Artist

1963 CSIRO Superb Lyrebird footage

Lyrebird Song 

Lyrebird in Australia talking to an Englishman!

My thanks to these sites and books for their insights on the lyrebird to integrate with my own intuitive insights:

Animal Energies – Lyrebird

nativesymbols.info – Lyrebird

Lyrebird medicine – your spirit has a voice beyond time

Australia – Aboriginal Dreamtime

Readers’ Digest Complete Book of Australian Birds

Image acknowledgements:

Images used under Creative Commons licences with thanks to the creators:

Superb lyrebird photographs from CSIRO Science Image (awesome image bank!)

Photographer : John Manger

Lyrebird as Totem by artist Ravenari via Deviantart

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is now on Facebook – Please visit here and ‘Like’ to keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on creativity, productivity, writing, voice, intuition, introversion, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), tarot, influence and passion!

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017. This includes MBTI developments and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

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Being a vessel or working with introverted intuition

February 10, 2017


Practising introverted intuition

Introverted Intuition is my dominant preference as an INTJ Myers-Briggs Type. I’ve been working recently at how to tap more into this strength more. It’s a creative gift and I am focusing on how to translate this into words.

Learning to be aware of and capture my night thoughts has been a crucial part of this. This post outlines how I’m working with my introverted intuition to inspire my creativity and direction. I hope it may also inspire yours.

What is introverted intuition?

Introverted intuition is one of the eight psychological types developed by Carl Jung and described in his work, ‘Psychological Types‘ first published in 1921. Jung saw these different personality types as gifts. Introverted Intuition can be seen as having the gift of visionary insight. Angelina Bennet in The Shadows of Type, describes Introverted Intuition this way:

Introverted Intuitive types quickly see the connections between things and use these to create new concepts. They enjoy theory, innovative ideas and making connections. They are motivated by implementing original ideas and value inspiration and originality.

So true! Another phrase to describe the Introverted Intuitive is ‘The Seer’. Gary and Margaret Hartzler in their book, Functions of Type, describe the hallmarks of Introverted Intuiting skills, including:

  • insights that seem to come out of thin air and learning to rely on them
  • the ability to see intrinsic patterns and working with them from different perspectives, and
  • being energised by and making meaningful connections using visions, images and symbols.

From this you can see why an Introverted Intuitive like me loves poetry, imagery, writing, strategising, big picture visioning and imagining what might be. Balance can be provided by realising that some things are just as they are and by focusing on the senses more. This rounding out tends to develop more fully later in life. As Hartzler & Hartzler put it:

This leads the individual to being much stronger, both ethereal and real.

What a fantastic combination to strive for! This post describes and explores the experience of working with introverted intuition to make it both ethereal and real.

Listening to introverted intuition

On this occasion, I wake in the night with a word clearly in my mind. It happens quite often. This time, the word is ‘vessel’. I note the word down, knowing that, as clear as it is, it can be forgotten by the morning. When day breaks, I reflect on this word that spoke to me from my inner voice in the night.

I start with definitions and check in with Google and dictionary.com and come up with:
• a ship or large boat
• a hollow container, especially one used to hold liquid, such as a bowl or cask
• a duct or canal holding or conveying blood or other fluid.
• person regarded as a holder or receiver of something, especially something nonmaterial: e.g. a vessel of grace; a vessel of wrath.

In essence, I see it’s about being a receptacle or conduit, especially in relation to liquids or transportation, and apparently derives from the Latin word ‘vascellum’, meaning ‘vase’ and also ‘ship’.

Being a vessel

I think of what ‘vessel’ might mean at this time: being a conduit, a channel, surrendering a bit more, allowing things to move through me as blood moves, intuition, ideas, finding my purpose, what others might need, with me as a channel. Maybe it’s about a quieter way of being, without the ego chattering away.

I wouldn’t want to be an empty vessel making the most noise. I would hope that I could be a vessel that can conduct things of value, like: life, blood, music, words, something created out of silence and flowing, moving through to keep things, me, other people, alive. A receptacle: receptive, open, transporting, watery, fluid, flowing.

Then I remember I have written a poem called ‘Vessel’ many moons ago.

Only yesterday, I went through all my poetry files and created a receptacle for them, something I have been trying to get to for too long.

The placeholder, entitled ‘Poetry Working Files’, is now set up in the Scrivener writing software space, ready to be filled. Elsewhere, I have all the files organised in alphabetical order by poem. It’s a small but powerful thing now to transfer them in as a body of work. From there, I can conduct magic with them. I know where they are, where they’ve been, how I can combine them, coalesce, revise, add to, edit and seek to publish them, if I so choose.

It’s a receptacle now, an empty vessel right now, but one easily filled with the richness of years. Receptacle, coming from the Latin – ‘recipere’ – to give back, receive, be receptive. I now have a place to receive, and give back. I have a place for poetry’s heart; even if it’s only on my computer, it’s a start.

Vessel – the poem

‘Vessel’ is actually a poem I love, previously published in a writing anthology, Writers at the Raglan. I don’t know where the title came from. The titles of my poems are often a word or phrase that just arrives capturing something more than I know. Sometimes arriving in the dead of night.

 

Vessel

Your hands are all encompassing
in their imminence,
but maybe you are simply
too large.

And I, the virgin field
of your imagining,
dressed in white
for your uncovering,
feel the widening flaws
expose the cotton armour
of my longing.

Will the hard rubbing
of your words
make me shine
above the clouds
I manufacture
in silence
without you.

The poem captures the feeling of being an empty vessel, waiting for another’s blessing, being alone and feeling vulnerable. There’s abrasion, exposure, a waiting to be filled.

It’s from a long time ago when I used to spend a lot of time waiting for others, waiting to be blessed, ordained, consecrated, to be made pure, to be approved of. It’s not a practice I engage in so much now, if at all, but it’s good to be reminded of the risks through these words penned from another time.

Preparing for transition

So I am now preparing this vessel again, this space to fill with words, receptive and ready to transport and be transported. I think of the imagery of the Six of Swords, the journey across the open water into the unknown and the card I used to symbolise the start of the Quiet Writing journey. It’s a message of surrender, but a soulful surrender, creating a vacancy for the new, for what is to come.

six of swords fountain tarot

 

It’s a watery journey, and there’s spirit involved, fire as well – all the elements coming into play, as I ground myself as a channel for what comes next. The destination is open-ended with an out-stretched sky, but a faint horizon to anchor me, there in the distance.

There’s receiving and giving – being open-hearted, flowing, dressed in white perhaps but not feeling quite so vulnerable. My own skin is now something I am much more used to and happy to be sitting within. The lifeblood of poetry is coursing through again and taking me to new places with the heart of the old whispering guidance.

I’ve learnt you need to listen and watch for signposts that quietly show the path: like two white feathers and a shy rainbow one day recently. And words that arrive in the night. Like the single word ‘vessel’ that started this piece and the train of connection to form a message winging its way through the dark to inspire a circle of light.

Thought pieces

For more on Introverted Intuition, one of the eight personality functions, this article is a great introduction. A key thought:

The powerful means by which Introverted Intuition reveals its solution are associated with a gut sense of conviction and certainty. INJs “know” at a deep intuitive level that it is correct. But they cannot stop there. Once they have received the intuition, they must work to flesh it out. They must articulate and illustrate it in order to render it accessible and useful to others.

Hence this article!

I would love to hear your thoughts on Introverted Intuition and creativity. Jung has described the Introverted Intuitive as one of the most difficult of the types to understand, one that has elements of mystery.

So I encourage your comments on this as we explore writing with spirit here. Please share in the comments below or on the Quiet Writing Facebook page.

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is now on Facebook so please visit here and ‘Like’ to keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on creativity, productivity, writing, voice, intuition, introversion, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), tarot and yes, passion!

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017 – including MBTI developments and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

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Overwhelm, intuition and thinking

January 27, 2017

thinking and intuition

You can get overwhelmed when the intuition is firing and there’s an abundance of creative inspiration. Whilst it’s a good problem to have, without balance it can lead to inaction. Here are some thoughts on how to manage this.

As an INTJ Myers-Briggs Type Indicator type, Introverted Intuition and Extraverted Thinking preferences play out to a large extent in my life. They are my dominant and auxiliary preferences respectively. There’s a frequent tussle going on between intuition and thinking over which takes the lead role at any particular point.

Being the dominant one, intuition often leads, coming from an interior and quiet place. It’s an inner voice or a flash of insight, a mystery I don’t fully understand and possibly never can. It’s taken me a while to begin to understand this part of me even though it’s the preeminent piece.

Thinking then is not far behind, connecting the ideas that come from intuitive inspiration, shaping them into an argument or a project, a strategic plan or a blog post. It links symbols in poetry more overtly or plays the role of editor, cutting back, refining and polishing.

When our intuition is switched on and we learn to tune into it more, suddenly so much comes in. That big picture becomes huge and threatens to overwhelm. Our to-do lists that involve crafting that inspiration further become enormous. It feels like all that creativity is going nowhere, just spinning round and round our head.

The Seven of Cups tarot card from the The Fountain Tarot recently captured this for me so well.
7 of cups

So many ideas, so many options, so many projects, so many plans. I can relate to the look on the woman’s face. The first time I drew this card, on a day of particular overwhelm, I laughed out loud. It just captures the feeling so perfectly, a state of being stunned into inaction by the options.

And the upshot of all this? Nothing much gets done except a lot of brainstorming, scribbled notes of potential and words of promise. We need to learn how to bring the intuition and thinking functions together to ground ourselves more into action in the external world.

Coalescing intuition and thinking

So if your interior world is running hot and your to-do lists are longer than your arm, here are some suggested strategies based on my experiences to focus energy and attention into action.

1 Practise rest and self-care

Ironically, I am finding that rest and self-care is fundamental to coalescing intuition and thinking to get action happening. Self-care is fundamental to all things, but it’s a special consideration here.  Like self-care in emergency situations so we can be of service, we need to ensure our buzzing intuition and sparking ideas don’t drive us into an energy tailspin where we are of no help to anyone. As Amber Adrian, intuitive and energy healer reminded me, “Put your own oxygen mask on first.” Wise advice.

And lo and behold, when we do rest and practice nourishing ourselves, the well-springs fill and the right ideas burst forth. Suddenly we know the answer or the next best thing to do.

2 Capture ideas and work in bite-size chunks

One of the big issues with creative overwhelm is that it’s all so exciting. We can feast on that emotion and not much else happens. I’m working to focus on specific aspects of projects within the time available each day. My Write Your Own Adventure planner, with its open and spacious approach, is helping to make every day a creative step in the journey. It’s easy to document progress and it’s showing me where my energy is going and where it’s dissipating.

I’m also working on breaking things up more: time into chunks and words into achievable targets. I’m starting to work with Scrivener  more to shape writing drafts and manage inputs. I’m using tools to capture ideas and connections so I don’t lose them. I’ve been a long time user of Evernote for gathering ideas, references and images and tagging them to bring together later.

I’m exploring time management and productivity techniques like the Pomodoro technique. Linked to self-care, it’s all about short bursts and writing sprints plus getting up, walking and keeping refreshed instead of sitting for hours. This is something I need now.

In a Secret Library podcast interview with Caroline Donahue, Scott Carney explains his formula for getting writing done which combines these techniques. He explains how he uses Scrivener and writes 500 words a day, 5 days a week and that over eight months, this ends up the length of a book manuscript. Or it could be a lot of blog posts. Either way it’s a great practical way to focus effort into chunks and get the writing done.

3 Realise the benefits of strategy

Sometimes a combination of intuition and intellect can lead to ‘analysis paralysis’ and over-thinking, especially when combined with introversion.

At our best, however, we can bring these three orientations together to create visionary plans, then work out the logical steps and goals to get there. We can identify the measures that help us achieve the plan and we can define what success looks like. And we can leave room for the unexpected.

Strategy is elegant clear thinking, being confident and assembling what we have logically. As Colette Baron-Reid says in relation to the ‘Thinker’ card from the ‘Wisdom of the Oracle‘ deck, when strategy is calling…

Things are exactly what they seem. You have all the information you need. Keep it simple and you will win the game of life you’re playing now.

thinker

Joanna Penn is my role model in this respect. Her webinar on how to achieve your goals in 2017 is a valuable example of strategy development in creative spaces. Joanna’s achievements over time exemplify how to work with both intuition and strategic thinking goals to make excellent progress.

Like any journey, knowing the destination helps with managing the steps to get there and avoids the wasted time of going down wrong paths.

4 Keep showing up

The overwhelm of so many creative ideas can make us feel that we are not getting anywhere compared to our aspirations. Consequently, we get discouraged and do nothing or not as much as we had hoped.

So it’s important to keep showing up to write the words, get the blog posts published and focus on the inputs that will help manifest our vision.  It’s vital to keep learning the skills that will help us do the work of our heart. But it’s achieved little by little as we show up each step of the way to bring that effort to bear.

Sometimes it’s hard to see where it’s all leading as an intuitive creative. But just ‘doing the work’ in line with our vision and plan is the way to take it forward.

Steven Pressfield is the best person to read about showing up and doing the work. His work has clearly shown us that the ‘not sitting down to write’ is resistance and ultimately, fear. We need to break the impasse and show up to find the intuitive mystery of the words as they unfold. In Turning Pro, Steven reminds us:

That place that we write from (or paint from or compose from or innovate from) is far deeper than our petty personal egos. That place is beyond intellect. It is deeper than rational thought.

It is instinct.

It is intuition.

It is imagination.

So the plan, the strategy, the structure, the formula are all valuable, but the heart of the work and the journey is at that space where the pen hits the page or the fingers hit the keyboard. It’s when the instinct, imagination and intuition find form.

And we only make that journey by showing up and writing, unfolding the mystery of our intuition, word by word.

Making the connection between head and heart

So my reflections on this have led me to realise that intuition leads the way, being the inspiration and destination. The intellect is there too but its role is to shape the map, plan the timeframes, create the doable list or corral the effort into something manageable. It has its place and its ultimately about keeping things simple and on track, not over complicating.

But the intuition, the active imagination comes first. It’s not so neat and time-sensitive nor is it predictable, but it’s the heart of the effort, the raison d’etre.

We need both. Without intuition, we wouldn’t have the creative imagination to start with. Without thinking, the inspiration wouldn’t see the light of day in a practical way.

In comes the Queen of Swords

I left this piece open-ended overnight as I thought how best to finish it. And in the night, the Queen of Swords came like a flash, her sword glinting in the darkness.

Queen of Swords

And this brought all the pieces together. You see, the Queen of Swords has been my poster girl for a while. She sits at the front of my Softly Wild  journal, guiding this piece of my life, where it says: “I dedicate this notebook to making the connection between head and heart.” I am on the last page of that book now.

And only yesterday as I work through Susannah Conway’s fabulous 78 Mirrors course, I discovered that the Queen of Swords can be seen as the court card for the INTJ type. Cutting through, clarity of thought and commitment are her specialty. I’ve recently completed my Myers-Briggs Type Indicator certification so this link holds special meaning as I seek to take this work into the world.

So in the end I find that I have the answers within me. That intuition is the heart and conduit to feeling. Thinking is the sword to cut through to the essence and bring it to light for me and others. It’s time to finally commit and do the work, given that I already know the strategies to get there.

I hope the spirit of the Queen of Swords and these ideas can give you the courage to face the overwhelm and get on with your work in the world too. Because we so need to see its refined shining light.

This piece is written for #IntuitiveFriday – you can find more about this initiative celebrating intuition here.

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is now on Facebook so please visit here and ‘Like’ to keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on creativity, productivity, writing, voice, intuition, introversion, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), tarot and yes, passion!

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017 – including MBTI developments and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

If you enjoyed this post, please share via your preferred social media channel – links are below.

Featured image from Shutterstock via Pixabay and used with thanks.

Queen of Swords image is from the Sakki Sakki Tarot deck.

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Trusting intuition and launching #IntuitiveFriday

January 17, 2017
Learning to trust intuition as a source of wisdom is a journey. I’m launching #IntuitiveFriday to help celebrate listening to that small still voice within.

trust your intuition

The journey of trusting intuition

Learning to trust intuition and understanding how to tap into it as a source of wisdom and power is a journey. It’s important to better understand and celebrate the valuable role of intuition in how we perceive the world.

As a Myer-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) INTJ personality type, Introverted Intuition is my dominant gift and preference. Even though I naturally lead with this way of perceiving, working from my inner world, it’s taken me time to truly begin to understand and trust it. It’s so easy for my louder, logical brain to step in and not allow that still small quieter voice within to be heard.

I’m a work in progress in this regard and in 2017, I am wanting to experience intuition more, especially as it relates to passion, spirit and voice.  I am interested in working together with you as the Quiet Writing community to see how we can explore intuition as a concept and a valued way of perceiving.

Just as there has been a recent focus on the value of introvert strengths, I think it’s time for intuition to be explored and better understood. Even when it’s a strong preference, we can still feel strange about acting on what feels like ‘gut instinct’ or first impressions. Anyone can learn to strengthen this preference and value it as part of a balanced way of experiencing the world.

So what is intuition?

Intuition can be defined as:
the ability to understand something instinctively, without the need for conscious reasoning.

Synonyms include: “hunch, feeling, feeling in one’s bones, gut feeling, funny feeling, inkling, sneaking suspicion, impression.”

In a Huffington Post article on 10 Things Highly Intuitive People Do Differently, Sophy Burnham, bestselling author of The Art of Intuition, says,

“I define intuition as the subtle knowing without ever having any idea why you know it…It’s different from thinking, it’s different from logic or analysis … It’s a knowing without knowing.”

In ‘Looking at Type and Spirituality‘, the high level descriptor of the MBTI Intuition preference type is:

  • Figurative meanings
  • Pay attention to imagination/insight
  • Theory, patterns
  • Focus on possibilities
  • Learn new skills, then innovate
  • Big picture
  • Trust inspiration/hunches
  • Impressions first
  • General concepts
  • Anticipation/vision

Ways to access intuition

There are many ways to access or create the right environment for intuition. Here’s a quick ‘Introverted Intuitive’ brainstorm:

  • working with tarot and oracle cards
  • reading
  • walking in nature
  • meditation, yoga, tai chi, gentle exercise
  • being in or near water – ocean, beach, lake, shower
  • mind-mapping, brainstorming
  • journal writing, free-writing
  • vision board, collage
  • poetry, found poetry
  • coaching and being coached
  • healing practices
  • asking for/receiving assistance from spirits, ancestors, guides
  • spirit animals
  • symbols and images
  • flashes of insight
  • dreams, listening to dreams
  • synchronicity/meaningful connections
  • considering multiple perspectives
  • identifying quotes that speak to you
  • using your unconscious more overtly
  • jigsawing pieces together – literally or figuratively
  • envisioning/imagining possibilities/affirmations
  • techniques for using imagination
  • pinning with Pinterest
  • strategic planning
  • trusting your feelings
  • knowing what to do in line with vision

Launching #IntuitiveFriday

If you are like me, this list is exciting and inspiring! There’s so much rich material here, so many ways to access intuition and to look at what it means. As a way of exploring this as a creative community, I’m launching a new hashtag project: #IntuitiveFriday. Similar to the #MondayBlogs and #FridayReads hashtags (both of which I enjoy), it’s a way of connecting across platforms on all things intuitive, especially on Instagram and at the Quiet Writing Facebook page.

I know intuition doesn’t only happen on Fridays but it will be a great way to be mindful and tune into the ways we are ‘knowing without knowing’ during the week. Then share and celebrate it, learning from each other.

So when Friday comes, let your creative imagination come into play. Share your poetry, quotes, images, tarot and oracle cards, symbols, collages, vision boards, dreams and experiences with synchronicity. Or any other signs of listening to that still small voice within or without.

We will mainly be on Instagram – just tag your post #IntuitiveFriday – and you can tag me in too as @writingquietly if you so choose. You can share ideas at the Quiet Writing Facebook page too. And I’ll be posting round ups and emerging thoughts on the Quiet Writing blog.

I encourage you to get your intuitive/feeling caps on and get ready for #IntuitiveFriday this week and every week.

It will be, well, intuitive, so I’ll keep it open to start, introducing some prompts along the way to focus our attention. And I welcome your thoughts and feedback as we progress.

I encourage you to get your intuitive/feeling caps on and get ready for #IntuitiveFriday this week and every week.

True feelings, hidden potential

I drew a card from Lisa McLoughlin’s Plant Ally oracle deck  to focus attention as we embark on #IntuitiveFriday. And this was the card: Bluebell representing ‘True Feelings’:

true feelings

The message?

Align with inner truth to unlock your hidden potential.

You are moving towards a period of personal blossoming.

Communicate what you discover about yourself.

Beautifully appropriate! I’ll be communicating what I discover and hope you will join me in this blossoming of true feelings and potential.

Keep in touch

Quiet Writing is now on Facebook so please visit here and ‘Like’ to keep in touch and interact with the growing Quiet Writing community. There are regular posts on creativity, productivity, writing, voice, intuition, introversion, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), tarot and yes, passion!

Subscribe via email (see the link at the top and below) to make sure you receive updates from Quiet Writing and its passions in 2017 – including #IntuitiveFriday, MBTI developments and other connections to help express your unique voice in the world.

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‘Trust your intuition’ image from Pixabay, with thanks.

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Intuition, new moon and a new year

January 5, 2017

intuition new moon

Intuition and the narrative of tarot

Happy New Year! It’s a time of newness all round including learning to use my intuition when working with tarot and oracle cards. I’ve been moving from the narrative of ‘I’m still learning tarot’ to ‘I’m writing the narrative of tarot and what it means in my life.’

I’ve been working on New Moon and Full Moon tarot readings for a while now in an intuitive way. After posting one such spread on Instagram recently, someone asked, “What does it mean?” So I thought I would take some time at this new year to focus on intuition, tarot and new starts here at Quiet Writing.

In particular, I’ll focus on a New Moon in Capricorn reading from the end of 2016 and preparing for 2017.

Tarot and oracle cards are like reading an ongoing narrative of your life. As with any narrative, there is a protagonist, an immediate setting and a broader context. The protagonist is the subject of the reading, in this case, me but could also relate to you as the reader here. The setting is the individual circumstances so what is going on around me. The broader context is the lunar and astrological conditions in which the reading takes place and the energy around it.

New moon preparations

The first things I do are identify the time of the new moon (or full moon) where I am in the world.  I like to understand the moon energy context in which I am reading the cards. I find the following two astrological reports to be fabulous for this context:

Mystic Mamma – there’s always an excellent curated summary of key trends for each lunar event at Mystic Mamma. Here’s the one for the Capricorn New Moon with the overall message of stepping back to reflect and release in preparation for 2017.

KV at Aquarius Nation – there’s an abundance of rich material available at Aquarius Nation too with a focus on customised intuitive guidance including by sign. You can subscribe for regular and very detailed lunar updates which are valuable.

New moon spread

Next step is to work out the reading you wish to do and an appropriate spread for the lunar happenings. I really love the moon spreads prepared by Sam Robertson aka @escapingstars on Instagram. Each New Moon and Full Moon, Sam prepares a specially tailored spread and posts it on IG. Below is the spread for the recent Capricorn New Moon that came to us in Sydney at 5:53pm on 29 December 2016:

Personal preparations

In terms of getting ready, key things are:

  • making space and time around the energy of the moon – it’s so easy to get side-tracked and miss the important times!
  • preparing personally and spiritually with whatever helps your energy – crystals, candles, intentions, words that help to call in guidance from spirits, guides and ancestors
  • making sure you have practical things like water, a notebook and something to write with, your camera if you wish to records the cards and any key tarot reference books on hand to support your intuitive work.

Using your intuition

I’ve been trying to use my intuition more for a while now and not go straight to tarot books. So many of the teachers and leaders in this space encourage this. But as an INTJ Myers Briggs type, my intuition and intellect are always jostling a little to step in first.

It’s so tempting to go straight to the book and not allow your intuition to have the first go. I’m just beginning to get comfortable with relying on my intuition first and foremost. In fact, this reading was the first I managed that felt right without referring to tarot books first. I was very pleased and excited by that!

I did check in afterwards with a few reference books for any further perspectives to add to my intuitive read. I find that this is a great way to develop my burgeoning tarot knowledge.

I’ve just started Susannah Conway’s 78 Mirrors e-course too which has been on my list for a while now and am loving an intuitive deep dive and more learning about tarot for the next six weeks.

My New Moon in Capricorn reading:

Below is my New Moon in Capricorn reading for December 29 2016 in line with the @escapingstars spread and using the Sakki Sakki Tarot deck:

Here’s my reading and intuitive interpretation, plus any key perspectives from tarot reference books.

1 What thoughts or behaviours do I need to purge before the New Year?

Card: DEATH

I know the Death card can bring on an intake of breath but it’s really all about approaches to change.

My first intuitive thoughts were that I need to purge the thoughts or behaviours that stop me from getting to where I want to go. That’s really anything leading to atrophy and dullness. This means any self-defeating and excessive behaviours like: eating too much, drinking too much, protecting others too much, taking on things for others and comparing myself to others. A key message coming through is to go on my journey and allow others their journey. I need to move into change without fear.

Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom adds this insight which resonates:

Contrary to what many people believe the card of Death does not actually refer to transformation. Rather, it shows us the precise moment at which we give up the old masks and allow the transformation to take place.

2 Where do I need to draw healing energies into myself in order to dig into my power?

Card: TWO of RODS (WANDS)

The Two of Rods is saying that I need to open co-operative energies around working with others. Rather than getting stuck in ‘comparisonitis’, I need to be creatively open to others, their gifts and their work and in this way, open myself to my own gifts.

Playing with Symbols, which is a companion to the Sakki Sakki deck, reinforces:

This is a time to set goals, define a course of action and see what else or whom else to include in your plans. The need for collaboration does not take away your independence – it only opens new possibilities.

3 What intentions would bring me in harmony with my most genuine Self?

Card: EIGHT of CUPS

This card has been appearing consistently over the past year with a strong message. This message is about making peace with the past and moving on. It’s about turning my back on my previous success in one sphere and shifting to a new body of work and journey. It’s also about realising that the heart of my work continues over time – that is, the cups are full and it’s my choice. All of this contributes to self, spirit and skill and a richness that I can share with others from my experiences. 

The booklet accompanying the Robin Wood tarot deck succinctly sums up:

Enough of this!

Meaning: Abandonment of this phase of life, rejection of material things and a turning towards spiritual things…A search for new paths.

4 How can I stay grounded with all the plans and intentions flying around me?

Card: KNIGHT of CUPS

The Knight of Cups is reminding me to stay grounded by balancing dreams with action. It’s also suggesting that I need to focus on my gifts and strengths and what I have to give to others. I’m also being encouraged to be open to the gifts of others, as suggested by the Two of Rods in this reading.

Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom says about this card:

The Knight has not learned that the true imagination feeds on action rather than fantasy. By this I mean that if we do nothing with our dreams they remain vague and unrelated to the rest of our lives.

Ouch. So definitely a resonating point here to focus on action in relation to gifts and strengths. I need to keep moving, connecting the pieces together.

5 How can I best tend to my inner needs?

Card: FOUR of COINS (PENTACLES)

My intuitive thoughts with this card are that I need to go deep, nurture, nourish and hold close what I value. I need to develop my own knowledge and frames of understanding for the areas I wish to explore further. They are my passions and the intersection of them is what I want to share and communicate with the world.

As above, connecting the pieces in my unique way is the best way to tend to my inner needs.

As Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom explains:

Finally, on a very deep level, the Four of Pentacles symbolizes the way in which the human mind gives structure and meaning to the chaos of the material universe.

6 How can I use the energies of the New Moon to plan and guide the upcoming year?

Card: EIGHT of SWORDS

This card speaks to me of reflecting on what’s holding me back, the limitations and the blindfolds. It’s important to realise that this is the end of a cycle with a universal 1 year in 2017. This card suggests the best use of the new moon energies is to acknowledge any restrictions, especially those I put on myself, and to basically let them go, step up and let it rip in 2017.

As Playing with Symbols states:

The Eight of Swords is calling you to break out of restricting habits and thoughts, and to initiate your own well-being and advancement by heightening your awareness of your abilities and options.

This echoes the messages of the Death card (purging what no longer serves), Eight of Cups (realising abilities) and the Four of Coins (creating meaning).

Using intuitive gifts

One of the areas I have been exploring and will be working further on in 2017 is Myer Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). It’s been so valuable to me to understand my personality type and orientation. I’m looking forward to working to help others understand their type and unique gifts to the world.

This is one of the key creative pieces I am connecting as I move forward in 2017.

As an INTJ, my dominant gift is Introverted Intuition. I’ve mainly exercised this in the work sphere until recently. Tarot and oracle cards are helping me to connect and exercise my natural intuitive gifts in other spheres of my life.

It’s a powerful experience to trust your intuition to read the cards and their symbols naturally without first consulting texts and books. But it does take a leap of faith and a stepping into the unknown in some ways. It’s scary at first but exciting and I look forward to richer intuitive work as I go deeper in 2017.

And I look forward to sharing this with you.

Would love to hear about your experiences:

Where have you been working more intuitively in your life? How has it helped you?

Please leave a comment below as I would love to hear more about how intuition is playing out for you in your life.

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