athenagrey: (Default)
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What a wonderful way to tiptoe about and bring magic to peoples lives.  I love random acts of kindness, and especially anonymous ones. I think I would be filled with joy, not upset at all.
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]I find New Year's resolutions silly and somewhat limiting. I have guiding principles by which I live, and they are designed to cover the big things in life. Anything else is just details, and I do not give much attention to details. Nor do I know now what is going to be important to me come three or four weeks from now. I'd rather figure that out when I get there.

I do believe in affirmations, and in past years have scribbled them down in the front of my annual journal.

This year I'm not buying an annual journal. I still have the better part of last year's to fill with collages and journal entries. I'm not enslaved to a linear format. I just open the book at random and work on the first blank page that I encounter, or decide to add something more to an existing page.

If I make any affirmations in the coming days, as words to nourish me in the outward spiral of emergence, I may write them in my journal, but I must carry them in my heart.
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]My fondest memory of the year was stepping across a rustic wood bridge, looking up at the two rectangular white blazes painted on a tree, and beginning a very short hike on the Appalachian Trail. It was a homecoming. It was a declaration of better things to come.

It was a catalyst for some rapid and unnerving changes that are still unfolding. I walked safely down the trail, but it seems that a lot of my emotional blockages plummeted right off the side of the mountain.

I've been spending a lot of time in the woods. I've also been spending time seeing my everyday life through a slightly shifted perspective. I'm less likely to turn off my feelings and just carry on through an indifferent situation. I am more likely to speak up and effect a change, or stand up and walk away.

Now that I have a better idea of what comes next in my life, I am having an easier time wrapping up the things I must finish to get me there.

Would I wish I could do it over? That's the beauty of it all. I will!
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]September 2006. 

We had Chinese takeout in the dayroom. I brought the food, paper plates and napkins.  I even brought my own present that you had selected for me, a statue of the Goddess of the Greenwood. I still have her, broken and glued together again. Kind of like me.

The real gift was your presence. It was the last time we celebrated my birthday together. 

The last ones were the sweetest.  My birthday.  The sabbats from Mabon to Ostara. Your birthday. The memories are sweet and timeless.

athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]I'm sure I would be able to cobble together some shelter for myself, and find water. I'm a bit vague on wilderness cooking, though.  I know that in theory you can make flour out of acorns, but you have to process it first. So, unless I found some fruit trees or something that  was obviously food, I'd be in serious trouble in a couple of days. I've lived much of my life in cities and towns. Not much chance to experience real wilderness.

If I ever put down real roots someplace, I would like to take a workshop about the local woodlands and what is edible there. That's as far as I would be willing to take it.  I really don't want to be out in the wild.

I just want to live a simpler life, with a garden and orchard of my own. I certainly could survive in a post-industrial society, which would be much less challenging because I would be in a community with others. I'd be spinning wool, weaving cloth and doing energy work while someone else made the flour. Humans are by nature a tribal animal. We need to work together.

So, you won't find me out in the wild. I just want to live on the edge of the village
athenagrey: (Green Woman)
[Error: unknown template qotd]I'm most concerned that the contemporary way of life is in dis-harmony with the Earth. All the individual problems, such as polluted waters, global warming, reliance on fossil fuel, are but symptoms that stem from the fundamental disregard for our place in the eco-community.  We are part of the Earth.  Not something separate. Not masters with God given rights to deplete and destroy Her.

Can I make a difference?  I believe it.

I support alternative energy sources.  The Aerie is completely powered by wind and water. I drive as little as possible, and when I do, I have one of the most energy-efficient cars. I am vegetarian, and try to buy local food as much as possible.

Each Earth Day, I try to take one more step toward living in better harmony with the Earth. This year, my focus will be on water. We must keep water clean and free. Our lives depend on it.  The bottled water 'industry' produces mountains of plastic trash, not all of which is recycled. It also creates a mindset that tap water is inferior and beyond hope of improvement. I already use filtered tap water at home. I'm going to start carrying water from home, and avoid buying bottled water at all. Water is our birthright.  Let's keep it pure and free.
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[Error: unknown template qotd]I have gone on silent retreats, and find them very peaceful. I am also surprised how much silence stimulates my visual senses.  I see more in my surroundings when I don't have to concentrate on words.

At home, I take an occasional day of silence whenever I need one. I try to avoid reading or listening to spoken and sung words during these retreats. I focus on receiving the images and sounds of nature.  Like the birds chattering right now. I had to stop typing for a minute and listen.

I also have gone on meditation retreats, and three days was as long as I kept silence. I could have gone on for a few more days, but I was too happy in my silence and was concerned that it would be difficult to return if I stayed any longer.


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[Error: unknown template qotd]LiveJournal was my winter project for 2004. I was in the midst of relocating to The Aerie, and the simple relief of having one snug home, rather than dividing my time between my pied-a-terre and Maplehurst, was just sinking in.
I was in the midst of a major career shift and was in the process of healing from a period of my life that I simply call 'the wasteland.'

My friends list has expanded and contracted several times in the intervening years.  [livejournal.com profile] writtenoutloud has been with me the longest.
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]I prefer email.  Nothing in my life is so urgent that I need to text, and I'd rather break the silence with the quiet click of keys, as I type a carefully chosen phrase. There are two or three people who have my phone number, and on a given day I might enjoy talking with one of them. When I get a chance. And I don't listen to my voicemail.

All those years of being on call soured me on the idea of being constantly reachable. I guard my privacy like a tiger guards her cubs.

You, my dear online circle, are the people who know how to reach me.  You are patient, knowing that our lives are not exactly running parallel, and you know that I'll reply.  Eventually.
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]Hmm.  Do I own 5 DVDs?  Maybe, but I can only think of four that I would be willing to watch again.

Spinning Exotic Fibers (hey, if the desert island has a DVD player, what's not to say it will have a spinning wheel and some exotic fibers?)

Nights at the Alhambra

Other Faces: the origin of the Zati Mask

Yoga Mind and Body
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]Of course. I have to laugh at the question first, because if there is no place to sit down, it's not a restaurant. That would be a deli or a takeout. 

I used to travel for business a lot, and I've made a point to seek out the best vegetarian-friendly restaurants in every city I visit.  If I'm lucky, I will find a really good Indian restaurant that serves great food and has impeccable service.

I have a certain luck that I always get a good table, even without a reservation. I have one of those solid-steel-beneath-the-velvet auras that makes maitres d' tremble before me, I guess.

A small book of poetry keeps me company and I enjoy a leisurely meal.
athenagrey: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]The whole Thanksgiving script is a huge turn-off for me. Shouldn't having this holiday be about doing things that bring you joy and gratitude for your life?  There is no joy for me in an overblown banquet of bland meat-centric American food. I don't eat that way the rest of the year, why should I celebrate with it?

I didn't have the polite truth, or even a convenient lie, at the tip of my tongue when a neighbor invited me to join their celebration this year. I'm so dreading it. I guess I'll pepper my vegetables gently, try not to look at the meat, and be grateful when the ordeal is over. Then I'll go home and celebrate in my cosy studio. And for that I am genuinely thankful.
athenagrey: (Default)
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Stitch by stitch, I knit
Counting time, neat row by row
The clock races on.
athenagrey: (Default)
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Athena Grey is the name I chose for myself, to reflect the witch-woman that I am. Grey is soft and gentle like a dove. Grey is firm like steel. Grey is the mist. Athena is wisdom. She drops feathers from the sky to make us pay attention to her words. She is a warrior, and she is peace.

We are given our names at birth. Sometimes we grow into them, and sometimes we grow out of them.

I carry my original name in my genes, but it was not my destiny to become that woman. I carry my present legal name like a well-fitting glove, proud that I did grow into this woman. I carry Athena Grey as a banner of the woman I am starting to become.
athenagrey: (Default)
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I'd like to do more of...less.

I wonder if I need to rearrange some of my priorities. The one that is killing me right now is that people are more important than stuff. I have a habit of accepting too many invitations, which I enjoy, but it's starting to cut into my creative time at home. Or worse, into my quiet time.

Last night turned out to have a good balance. I had just finished getting the kitchen back in order from a few days' neglect, when a neighbor called to invite me and Amber-cat up to the Crow's Nest (two flights up from my Aerie) to enjoy sunset on the terrace. It was relaxing. The cats get along well, and left us in peace to enjoyed drinks, nibbles and good conversation. The sunset wasn't spectacular, but being outdoors at that hour certainly was.

I hadn't set any intentions for this moon, so I guess what is coming to fruition is aimlessness. That's OK for a change.

I also must remember that I'm now free to make major changes in my life. I had set a one year moratorium on major changes (like career or relocating) after my mother's passing.

The only change I want to make is quite small. I MUST give myself time to do less, less, less.
athenagrey: (Default)
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Well, you know I try to put a spiritual perspective on most of my chores, which makes them quite enjoyable. Cleaning and putting things to rights brings me closer to harmony with Mother Nature.

Shredding old papers and paid bills is probably the chore that I find hard to put a positive spin on. I wish these papers didn't exist in the first place. Why must so much personal information be put to paper in the first place?

Since my Aerie is powered by wind and water, I'm not compounding the waste by using that bit of electricity to shred, but I am forced to endure the whine of the machine and the waste of my time.

Sometimes I empty the shredder and make recycled paper out of the strips, smiling gently at the notion of making something creative and artistic out of the dross of big business. Only then is it less of a chore.
athenagrey: (Cherry Blossom)
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My spring cleaning is mostly done for the year. I clean in anticipation of spring, using the weeks between Imbolc and Ostara to shake the cobwebs of winter out of my home and my head.

I have a few tips I'd like to share with you.

First, embrace your cleaning as a spiritual process. You are preparing for most honored Guests. Be glad for the returning light, and be glad that Mother Earth has awakened. Be active and enthusiastic in your welcome.

Second, let in fresh air. A breath of fresh air is more than a cliche. It does awaken and enliven you. When I lived at my most northern way station, I would finish cleaning a room, open the window wide, and scurry out, closing the door behind me. An hour later, I would rush back in to close the window, and eventually the room would warm up. I love the memories of that sudden rush of cold air.

Third, the best way to really clean a room is to take everything out, roll up the rugs, and clean from top to bottom. If you don't have enough space to do this, create four zones in the room and empty each zone completely to clean it. Of course, everything that has to go back must be cleaned first and the put away.

Lastly, when all the cleaning is done, renew the blessing on your home, by earth, air, fire, water and spirit!
athenagrey: (Default)
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Dancing the Sun back home

Last minute rehearsal of holiday chants and songs at the piano. I love that in cold weather, Temple of Ara holds its rituals in a cosy and well-appointed dance studio. The founding High Priestess teased me that the ritual cakes were 'so L.A.' I suppose the were. Humble disks of butter cookie, brushed with orange marmalade and gilded in 23 ct. gold leaf. Jannie's love of creating rich and exotic pastry lives on in me.

ToA has a very loose framework for rituals, and you never quite know how they are going to unfold, except that reverent mirth is a big part of the tradition.

As I sit writing this, a beautiful raven is perched in the Aerie's maple tree. He has come to absorb the last bit of solstice darkness and hold it in his gleaming black feathers until we need it again at midsummer.

The tiny altar was beautiful, encircled by a HUGE evergreen wreath and then by a ring of white candles. Unlit. Waiting.
read on for the memory of a beautiful Yule celebration... )
Be Blessed this Yule!
athenagrey: (Default)
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I saw snowflakes
I heard the gentle crunch of the snow under my feet
I smelled wood smoke from the hearth that awaited my return
I tasted hot chocolate that warmed me for this expedition outside
I felt the gentle padding of my warm coat

I knew (with my sixth sense) that Mother Earth slept.

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June 2012

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