Practice for Peace

Intuition Workout for Peace

An intuition workout is a practice session working with your own psychic gifts to gain clarity around different questions. What I like about it is that you need nothing more than uninterrupted time, a space to do it, yourself, and a notebook or journal. No Tarot cards, runes, crystal balls, ouija boards, pendulums, or any other equipment is required. Don’t get me wrong, I love all of that stuff, but it can sometimes distract us from the powerful intuition that we hold inside us and become a crutch.

To get ready for the session take your notebook or journal and write out no more than three of these questions, or some you make up on your own, with plenty of space to write an answer after each. Questions focus our intuition on the answer. A curious psychic gets more information.

What fears do I have about peace?

What harmful beliefs hold me back from peace?

What old programing or memories influence my lack of peace now?

What am I learning about peace right now?

What can I do to create more peace in my life?

How can I personally contribute to peace in my household?

…in my town?

…in my country?

…in my world?

What do I need to know to find or create peace in my life?

Once you have chosen or made up three or fewer questions for your workout, put your journal and pen in your lap or set them aside, close at hand. Take a deep breath and begin progressively relaxing your body from your head to toes. Relax your mind, relax your emotions, and allow your spirit to open and shine. Count down, visualizing the numbers from 12 to 1 on the screen of your mind. Release the screen and let the count down of 13 to 1 gently take you deeper. When you are at your meditative level, affirm that you are opening your intuitive abilities with something like:

“I am surrounded by divine protection and I am now safely opening up to my intuition. My guides are around me guiding and protecting me. I can call up and understand any psychic information. I receive only the psychic information that is correct and accurate for me at this time.”

Mentally call out your first question, focusing all your attention on it. Then let the question go and visualize a blank screen in your mind’s eye. Relax and allow the information to come. It can manifest through any of your senses or a combination of them. You may receive a memory, an odd image, a voice speaking in your head, a feeling, or just a sense of knowing. Relax and receive. Know that it doesn’t have to make sense right away and could be symbolic. When you feel the flow of sensation and information has stopped, with a soft focus open your eyes and write down what you received in your journal. When done, close your eyes again, take a few deep breaths to deepen into meditative state once more, and ask the next question, repeating the process of asking, clearing the mind’s eye and allowing what comes to come. Again with soft focus open your eyes and write out your perceptions until you have answered all the questions.

Close out the session with affirmations of ending.

“I give thanks to my intuition and my guides for this session. I will retain and understand all information from this session. This session is at an end and I will return to waking consciousness.”

Count yourself up from 1 to 13, wiggling your fingers and toes to bring your consciousness fully back to the body. Count up again from 1 to 12, coming fully back. Give yourself clearance and balance. Ground yourself as needed.

Look over your intuitive notes. What came up? Write in the margins your possible interpretations of any symbols that may have appeared. Use the information that came up to help you create more peace.

May your practice bring you peace.

Blessed be!

Practice for Peace

Prayer for Peace

Prayer is used in many traditions to communicate, praise, thank, and set intention. Prayer is often under-utilized in pagan religions because it is used so strongly in religious traditions that have tried to eradicate other religions, including paganism. That being said there is a great power in prayer that should not be overlooked just because it gets a bad rap. I have written a prayer for peace that you are welcome to use in your practice.  After it are two other prayers for peace: One by Fiona McLeod (William Sharp) that combines elements of both pagan and Christian traditions and has the feel of a litany. The other one attributed to Francis of Assisi, but can only be traced back to the early 1900s. Even if it can’t be traced back to him, it is a great prayer of peace used by many faiths to this day. All of these are inspirations for you to be able to write a prayer of you own or just inspire your sincere prayer for peace in the moment, from your heart. Which is the practice for this week. Write a prayer and say it every day this week.

Prayer to be Peaceful By Adam Sartwell. 

Deepest peace, That is the loving heart of the great spirit

Deepest peace, That is the clarity of the divine mind

Deepest peace, That is the manifestation of the divine Will

Radiant peace inherent in all the Gods and their work

Reflected in the perfect peace and perfect love of the circle

All of which I am a manifestation

May all my parts work as one in peace

May peace fill all within me

May I open to hold more

So in compassion and at need

I may overflow with it

Until all can enjoy relief from suffering,

In the holy peace of the Goddess and God,

And the enlightenment of the mysteries

In gratitude, I give thanks for all manifestations of peace

And the favor of the gods

May there always be peace between us

For the highest good

Harming none

Blessed be!

From The Dominion of Dreams. Under the Dark Star 

by Fiona Macleod (William Sharp)1895

Deep peace I breathe into you,

O weariness, here:

O ache, here!

Deep peace, a soft white dove to You;

Deep peace, a quiet rain to you;

Deep peace, an ebbing wave to you!

Deep peace, red wind of the east from you;

Deep peace, grey wind of the west to You;

Deep peace, dark wind of the north from you;

Deep peace, blue wind of the south to you!

Deep peace, pure red of the flame to you;

Deep peace, pure white of the moon to you;

Deep peace, pure green of the grass to you;

Deep peace, pure brown of the earth to you;

Deep peace, pure grey of the dew to you,

Deep peace, pure blue of the sky to you!

Deep peace of the running wave to you,

Deep peace of the flowing air to you,

Deep peace of the quiet earth to you,

Deep peace of the sleeping stones to you!

Deep peace of the Yellow Shepherd to you,

Deep peace of the Wandering Shepherdess to you,

Deep peace of the Flock of Stars to you,

Deep peace from the Son of Peace to you,

Deep peace from the heart of Mary to you,

And from Bridget of the Mantle

Deep peace, deep peace!

And with the kindness too of the Haughty Father

Peace!

In the name of the Three who are One,

Peace! And by the will of the King of the Elements,

Peace! Peace!

Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace:

where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

where there is sadness, joy.

O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek

to be consoled as to console,

to be understood as to understand,

to be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive,

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,

and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Amen.

May your practice bring you peace.

Blessed be!

 

 

Blessing Cord

Planning

The thirty-eighth bead on the blessing cord is the blessing of Planing. It is the blessing of earth in Hod. Hod has to do with our mental capabilities and mental faculties. When we apply this energy to the power of earth we get Planning. The blessing of planning helps organize our steps so we are more likely to get to our goals. This being said, don’t be afraid to change plans when you meet up with synchronicity or guidance that the goal isn’t for you. They say a plan is only as good as the first battle, and then it must change and adapt.

One of the concepts brought up in most human religions is that of the Divine Plan: that we are all here for a reason, we have a purpose, and the more we accept that we are working on this purpose, the more we are doing our great work. I feel like most of the people I read for are asking “what is my purpose?” or “why am I here?” These readings always make me laugh because they almost always say “well, I knew that” or “that is good confirmation” when the answers come through. Our plan or purpose from the divine is not just one thing or the lesson from one instance. Our purpose is what we naturally choose, mixed with our aspirations to make ourselves better people.

The “master plan” or “divine plan” is made up of all the choices and goals we make on a day to day basis. Not just what we consciously choose but what we choose with our whole being. We are constantly being guided by our Holy Guardian Angel and our Psychic Self. All the goals we work toward teach us more about ourselves and what our Great Work really is. The events that happen, the signs, personal development, and how the goal changes over time can teach us a great deal about the lessons of our “Divine Plan.”

The first step to having a plan is knowing what it is you want to accomplish. What are your

goals? There are two types of goals. There are means goals and end goals. A means goal is a specific goal as a step towards getting you to your goal, like getting a job to pay the bills so you can support yourself while you write the great American novel. The hard part of these goals is that you can eventually start to think of them your end goal. An end goal is more of the essence of what you want to do with your life. Like being happy, enjoying your life, feeling accomplished, and doing what makes you feel whole. The end goal is really the essence of what you desire.

To get a better feeling of what the essence of your goals in this lifetime are here is an exercise I learned from Vishen Lakhiani, CEO of Mind Valley, to get in touch with them. Get out a timer, a piece of paper and a pen. Separate the paper into three sections using a line of your pen. Write  one of these three questions across the top of each section: What do I want to experience in life? Where do you want to grow? What do you want to contribute to the world? When you have done that, set your timer to two minutes and begin to write your answers to the first question. Repeat the process with each question. The timer makes you go with your first instinct by not allowing you to dwell too long on each answer.

Now look over your answers. You may now have a better idea of what it is you want to create in your life. Now that you have seen them, you may want to form them into a kind of mission statement. Your mission statement may change over time but writing it out so you know what you feel is your mission in life is can clarify your choices that form your plan. If that seems too big for you, formulate what your goal is for the next five years or even just the next year. I like to make a list of my goals for the next year in the time between Samhain (Halloween) and New Year’s. Up here in the northern hemisphere it is a dark time full of reflection and celebrations with family. It is a good time to start thinking about the goals for the next year and to look back at the last year’s goals and how you did on accomplishing them. This can also inform your planning. What type of plan works best for you?

I then like to break up this year-long goal in my planner into goals for the month. This takes work to separate out what are reasonable steps I can accomplish to get to my goal every month. This is making a plan. I say “reasonable” steps because sometimes when we are in the planning phase we can get a little overzealous and over work ourselves. Always plan breaks from your work into your plan. The length of the breaks are proportionate to what it is you have observed you need to keep your balance. This could be a day off or a week off where you do something fun and relaxing. Breaks are important so we don’t have a break down. Make sure all these goals are done so you can change them when needed, not set in stone. Remember that a plan changes once it hits the battlefield. It is okay to change the plan and okay to change our goals when we find they were not exactly what we thought they would be.

There are times where planning seems to fail us and we don’t know what the next step is to our goal or even the steps to clear our path to it. We may be stumped on what the goals are and how to get there. The following meditation is a spiritual way to get a vision of a goal and the next step.

Meditation of Planning

Hold the Thirty-eighth bead of the blessing cord. The bead of expression, the blessing of water in Hod.

Count yourself down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand until it is a sphere around you. Feel a sensation of rising as your sphere begins to fill with an orange light. Resonate the God name El-oh-heem Tza-ba-oth.

The orange light surrounds you like a mercurial mist. Ask your guides and guardians to be with you to answer your questions. Ask the space around you:

“What is the best goal for me right now?”

Clear your mind and stare into the orange mists. A scene or symbol begins to emerge from the mist. You may have a thought, memory, feeling, or hear words in your head describing what your next goal will be like. Note all the sensory details about this answer. Suspend all doubt and take what comes first to your inner vision. Know that if you receive nothing, you may receive it in a dream or synchronicity in the physical world. Have faith in yourself and your process that you will recognize it at this time.

Again the orange mist rises and obscures the image or symbol. Your mind clears. Ask your next question of the space around you.

“What is the next step that is best for me?”

Again allow the mists to part and show you a vision of what your next step should be. Take in all the sensory details about this answer. Be open to it being something you might have not expected. A sign may show up in your daily life, so be open to perceiving it.

Thank your guides and the energy of this sphere for the answers you have perceived. State to  yourself that you will remember clearly all salient details of this meditation. The orange light rises again to obscure all from view.

Feel a gentle decent as the orange light begins to fade from your sphere. The screen of your mind returns to normal coloring and then shrinks back to its normal size.

Count yourself up to waking consciousness.

Give yourself clearance and balance. Ground if necessary. You may want to write down your answers in your journal.

Contemplation

What do you want to experience in your life? Where do you want to grow? What do you want to contribute to the world? What is the next step towards those things? How can I better plan ahead to reach my goals? What have I learned about what types of plan works best for me? Am I willing to change my plans if necessary?

Blessing Cord

Connection

The thirty-seventh bead on the blessing cord is the blessing of Connection. This is the earth of Netzach. We live in an interconnected world. There is not an action that can be taken that doesn’t have an effect on the world around us. We are a collection of molecules swimming in a sea of other molecules. We label things with words and illusionary boundaries so that we can consciously function. We are all part of the oneness of all creation yet we dim down our perspective so we can make choices for the part of creation we “control”. Without these words of binding, we can’t express what it is we are consciously speaking about.

This is why when we have our own vision of oneness where we experience a dissolving of all barriers we can’t seem to put it into words that others would understand. People who have had this experience of being part of the Mystery of the All, more then just a part, have a hard time explaining it to those who haven’t felt it fully. This is perhaps why some traditions call it a Mystery.

Breaking the One down into parts is how our conscious mind makes sense of the swirling chaos of oneness. We separate things in our mind by naming them, placing limits on what they are and are not, and putting the rest of what they are out of our minds. We do this so we can focus on a particular part of the All at a time. Without this we could not do our work in the world because we would be constantly distracted by all the information coming in from all directions.

It is amazing how the universal consciousness lets us have our personal will about our connection. We can slip into a closed circuit of our personal consciousness and not have to be aware of the world around us. I would say that we can recede inside our own heads but even this is an illusion, for our minds and spirits are all parts of the One. We shutter ourselves into thinking that we can only be aware of ourselves and all else we have to see from our own perspective.

We can dissolve these barriers at a whim. Often the work of the magician is to be able to melt the self-imposed barriers so we can gather energy and influence. We do this through connection and merging. An exercise that comes to mind from Raymond Buckland’s Scottish Witchcraft is to get an ordinary stone and open up to connection to it. Imagine the barriers between you and it becoming more and more hazy. Feel the energy and spirit of the stone and begin to have an exchange of energy. You could use this to pack a stone with energy or you could do it to recharge one’s self. This small exercise leads to opening up to energies of the earth or a tree and having an exchange of power.

This merging and connection also leads me to speak about a trick of invisibility I learned. Imagine yourself and your consciousness, the lines of the boarders of your body come into your mind. Begin to imagine them blurring and becoming one with the scenery all around you until you are as one with all that is around you. Because you have let go of your conscious limits and boundaries, you begin to become unnoticeable to those who use their conscious mind to see the world. You disappear, just a part of the greater all.

In this meditation we return to the garden landscape of Netzach and try merging to connect to all that is around us in the garden. Then returning to our “separated” state to get a sense of the power of the blessing of connection.

Meditation of Connection

Hold the thirty-seventh bead of your blessing cord. This bead of Connection, the bead of Earth in Netzach.

Count yourself down in to a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand until it is a sphere around you. Feel the sensation of rising as a green light begins to fill the sphere around you. Resonate the god name of Netzach: Yod-heh-vau-Heh Tza-ba-oth.

The green light surrounds you and becomes a mist. As the green mist begins to fade, You see a garden around you. This is the Garden of the Gods, a sacred space where you can connect to all of nature. Greenery abounds around you. Take some time to observe the plants and animals around you. Take in all the sensory details of the garden. What does it smell like? What does the grass feel like beneath your feet? What sounds do you hear?

Find a comfortable place in the garden. It could be leaning your back against a tree or a warm spot in the grass. When you have your spirt body comfortable in that spot, begin to imagine the boundaries of your spirit body blending and blurring. You are becoming more one with the scenery around you. Your skin becomes blended like in a painting. As you are now you can begin to sense yourself becoming one and merging with all the energies around you. You may experience the energies of connection to nature even more fully in this blended state. Feel the sea of energy that makes up the garden. Feel the vibration of the energy all around you. Trade energy with what is around you. Feel any tense or unhealthy energies for you taken on by that which can use or recycle that energy. As this energy moves out, newer and fresher energy that the world around you has to spare flows naturally flows in.

When you are done, visualize the boundaries of your spirit body firming, disconnecting from the blended state. Your skin becomes solid once more. As you become more separate from the energies you merged with, know that at anytime you can return to this connected feeling. You are always a part of this amazing creation.

Green misty light begins to fill the area, obscuring it from view. The green begins to fade as you feel a gentle descent. The screen of your mind begins to return to its normal size.

Count yourself up into waking consciousness.

Ground and center yourself.

Contemplation

How can you better connect with nature? What energies do you need to connect with more for the pattern of what you want to create in your life and the world? Why do we separate from the all? Is there another purpose to this disconnect that has nothing to do with conscious organizing?

Blessing Cord

Generosity

The thirty-sixth bead of the blessing cord is the blessing of Generosity. This is the earth of Tipereth. Tipereth has an energy that brings forth our True Will or our Great Work, what we came here to this world to complete, and how we choose to answer that calling. You can see the hallmarks of True Will by looking for how it serves not only the person but also the web of life. It takes a generosity of spirit to be able to do this Great Work as a gift to the divine that is within us all. This generosity shows our nobility of spirit and our inner sovereignty.

Generosity comes from the Latin word generōsus, meaning “of noble birth”. A good noble took care of their community by allocating resources, planing, implementing, and educating. They did so because without the community they would not be in the exalted position they were in. To take that into our spiritual realms, a good noble or sovereign is sufficiently in control of their own lives that they can give of their time, energy, resources, and wisdom to help those were less fortunate or in their charge. We each have this sovereignty within us, no matter our wealth, class, time, schedule, or energy level. We can adopt the noble path of generosity and give in the name of the gods. They love when we make these types of offerings and help to refill us so we can give again.

The community you aid with your generosity or your Great Work may take many forms, and not all of them are on a grand global scale. It could be once a year giving a homeless person an old jacket or a tent. It could be helping with the school bake sale for your kids’ marching band. You may feel called to go to an impoverished community or disaster area and offer your help and expertise. Generosity doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. You can generously give a smile or a complement. You can buy a friend a coffee or tea because they are having a tough time. Give a friend a book you enjoyed and think they will also.

 

The blessing of generosity teaches us how to give and share our gifts with community. Many  cultures and religions have tithes that they give to their religious institutions or charities. A tithe is a percentage of your income that you give back to the community with no expectation of return. Even if they didn’t expect return they still might get it in form of the rituals of the temple or from the gods themselves. You may also want to give a tithe of time in service to your community, if you do not have physical wealth to offer.

Generosity can feel like a sacrifice of time, energy or resources that could be used for yourself and your goals. We turn to the solar gods of Tipereth for our model. Most of the solar gods have a cycle where they sacrifice themselves to the land or its people. Many of the pagan solar gods sacrifice themselves so that we may take in their blessings by consuming a part of them. The young Oak King is sacrificed by the older Holy King at the summer solstice to bring his energy into the land so the fields will ripen. This also brings about the turning of the “wheel of the year” as the darker time of less daylight begins. The change of wheat from green to gold symbolizes the god’s energy in the land. From his sacrifice the wheat and all the plants ripen. This is an archetypal example of the generosity of the gods. We pagans are not alone in this, the Christian faith’s Christ sacrificed himself to take on the world’s sin. The rite of transubstantiation is to make the wine and host into the blood and body of Christ. People take some of the energy of his holiness, his sacrifice, into themselves with the sacrement. We pagans have the Great Rite in token, where we drink in the blessings of the gods after an athame is used to gather energy and it is brought into the wine as a symbolic ritual of the male giving up his seed and energy to the womb of life.

These divinities show their generosity by giving freely of what they have to help their people, just as the Sun, the symbol of Tiphereth, gives freely of its light and warm. We are only seeds of gods and don’t have the same expectations because we are human. Our sacrifice to generosity doesn’t have to be big or even something that we need or use any more.

This generosity has great benefits to it as well. Generosity has been scientifically proven to make people happier. I have never met an unhappy generous person. It improves your self-esteem and feelings of self-worth. It can connect you deeply to what your Great Work is in this world, something beyond just your vocation or career.

In this meditation we move into the energies of Tipereth and ask: “How can I offer up a service in generosity?” Our answer comes from our own Holy Guardian Angel, the Watcher-self, the god seed within us. Your answer may come in the meditation or be an encounter with a need you can fulfill in the days after the meditation. Take this chance to be an answered prayer for someone else.

Meditation of Generosity

Hold the thirty-sixth bead, the bead of the blessing of Generosity, the blessing of earth in Tiphereth.

Count yourself down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand into a sphere around you. Feel a rising sensation as your sphere begins to fill with radiant golden yellow light. Vibrate the God name of Tipereth: Yod-heh-vauv-heh el-oh-ah Vah-dah-ath.

The golden light surrounding you call out to your Holy Guardian Angel. You may see it as a golden ball above you or coming toward you. They may look like any appearance that they wish.  Thank your Holy Guardian Angel for being with you in this time.

Ask them “How can I offer up a service in generosity?”

They may give you a feeling, a word or phrase, some sage advice, or a image of someone. They may also say nothing at all.

Ask what you can give to your Holy Guardian Angel in thanks for its help and communion. You may be surprised at the answer. It may ask you to do a generous service for yourself or someone else.

Ask any other questions you might have about becoming a more generous person. Know that your Holy Guardian Angel has heard you and is willing to guide you after this meditation to a situation where your generosity is needed.

Thank your Holy Guardian Angel again. The golden light begins to fill your screen of the mind around you, obscuring your Holy Guardian Angel from view. The golden light begins to fade and the screen of your mind returns to its normal size.

Count yourself up to waking consciousness and ground and center yourself.

Contemplation

What can you give back to your community? What types of need call out to you? Do you look at what you want to do and what the need is in the world and make a compromise of the two? How can you be a more generous person?

Blessing Cord

Industry

The thirty-fifth bead in the blessing cord is the blessing of industry. It is the blessing of earth in Malkuth. In this blessing we take the power of Geburah and apply it to the earthly plane. Industry is the passion for work and creation. Industry is what we do to get all the things we need done done.

When I think of industry I start to think about some of the people I know who do craft-fairs. They personally produce a great deal of product with their many talents. They pack in as much crafting time before the fair as they can. There is a sort of furious fire of creation fueled by this deadline. Industry like this can bring stress because of the intensity of its energy, but it is this power that can help us achieve so much.

One of the things that can hold us back from the blessing of industry is the slowing effect of procrastination. We all avoid that which we feel is annoying or unpleasant, putting it off to the last minute, even though we know it is necessary or good for us. This makes changes more and more difficult. At times when I find myself doing this I make a list of all the things I know I should do and then rearrange the list for what I don’t want to do the most to be at the top. Then I take a day and just do everything I can on the list. I am always amazed how much less times it takes me to get things done then I thought once I just get started.

Another way I stoke the fires of my industry is using the Pomodoro technique developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s. Basically you make a list of all the things you need to do. Then you choose one to work on for traditionally 25 minutes which is called a “pomodoro.” They are called pomodoros because the timer Francesco used was tomato-shaped and pomodoro is tomato in italian. During this pomodoro you focus only on the task at hand. Any time you think of something or want to do something else you write it down on your list and get back to the task you were focusing your pomodoro on. When the timer goes off, you take a three to five minute break and then start a new pomodoro on either the same subject or a new one from your list. After you have done four pomodoro sesions with breaks you take a longer break that is 15 to 30 minutes. If you finish before the pomodoro is up it is suggested that you focus on over learning. Over learning to study something to refresh you memory about it. I just clean if I have extra time in the pomodoro, there always is more cleaning to do.

In this meditation we take some of the energy and power of Geburah and send it to future moments and times where we need to have the fire of industry. You might want to make a list of the things you need to get a move on about and prioritize them so you are ready with a few instances where you are going to need the blessings of industry. Don’t choose more then three things for this meditation because with the get-it-done energy of Geburah we can also invoke the stress and anger of Geburah and unbalance ourselves. Stress and anger directed toward a positive end can be useful but too much can be unbalancing. Industry can also be turned into overwork if we aren’t careful. Use moderation and your good sense.

Meditation of Industry

Hold the thirty-fifth bead, the bead of the blessing of Industry, the blessing of Earth in Geburah. Count yourself down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand to create a sphere around you. Feel a rising sensation as the sphere fills with a red light. Vibrate the god name of Geburah: El-oh-heem Gi-boor

The red light around you begins to fade and become a red sphere of light above you. At any time you can access the energy of Geburah by calling it down from this sphere. Before you conjure a picture of yourself doing the work that is on your list. See it in as much detail as you can. Ask the image of you doing this work what the reason is that you haven’t finished this project. Clear your mind and be open to any answers. It may be that the image changes or begins to talk to you to tell you why. You may get a feeling of knowing. Whatever the reason, forgive yourself for it. You may have a person show up as the reason you have issues getting this done. Forgive this person and embrace them.

Bring your attention back to the image of you doing the work you have put off. Draw down the red energy of Geburah with a breath in and with your exhale send it into the image of your work. See your image self surrounded in the red light. As you do, they begin to work harder on getting this project done. Time seems to speed up in the image until you are at the finish of the project. Breath in more light and send it to the image of the completed project. Begin to feel what it is like to have the project done. Use all your senses. Know that this project will be completed in the proper time. Release the image knowing that as it fades it goes into manifestation.

You may repeat this process with two other projects or continue to your return with the rest of this meditation.

The red light again fills your view obscuring all else. You feel a gentle decent as the red light fades. Your sphere returns to the shape and size of the screen of the mind.

Count your self up into waking consciousness and ground and center yourself.

Contemplation

What are you procrastinating on? How do you feel about what you are procrastinating on? What are your reasons why you don’t want to do it? What actions will move you forward on your path? Can you change the way you think about your task so that you enjoy it or at least are relieved when it is done?

Blessing Cord

Gratitude

The thirty-fourth bead in the blessing cord is the Blessing of Gratitude. It is the blessing of Earth in Chesed. As I write this, it is November and in a couple of weeks we will have our Thanksgiving holiday here in America. I am always reminded at this time about an article I read about a man whose meaning of Thanksgiving changed when he reversed the words into Giving Thanks. He went on about how he changed his life by starting a practice of sending out thank you cards at Thanksgiving to anyone he thought had helped him. This season always reminds me of the power of Gratitude. This blessing is one of the keys of a happy life.

Gratitude has been proven by psychologists to make people happier, more alert, enthusiastic, determined, optimistic, and energetic. Gratitude makes us more aware of all the good things in our lives and we begin to see every opportunity as a new blessing. Gratitude has a powerful magnetic quality as well. When we are grateful we attract more of what we are grateful for. The universe is always listening to what we are thinking and saying. It hears our every thought as a prayer. When we are grateful, we are praying for all the blessings of life. Gratitude charges these thoughts and amplifies our manifestation. Many spiritual and mental manifestation programs say to be thankful for what it is you are trying to manifest even if it is not yet in your life. This act of gratitude super-charges the manifestation to bring happiness and satisfaction.

Gratitude can be difficult in many situations. This is when we must turn our minds to working on contemplating “What good can come out of this situation?” “What can I learn from this?” or “How can I/we/the world benefit from this?” Even after we have contemplated we may not see a way to be grateful for the situation. These times of trouble outline the better times with such stark contrast. They at least help us see when times are good and to be grateful for them.

Some of the ways you can improve your awareness and gratitude is to practice it. Start your journal everyday with a number of things you are grateful for. Put up a sign or reminder to check-in with what your grateful for. Decide on a trigger in your environment that whenever you see it you will think of something you are grateful for. Wear a piece of jewelry that reminds you to be practice gratitude. Notice when people say thank you and tell them what you are thankful for about them or the situation you are in. Set a period of days to write a thank-you card to someone every day.

The practice seems so easy and that is why it is hard. Sometimes it is thinking of a perspective unlike our own to see all that we have to be thankful for. Putting on the head of someone who has very little in the way of resources can help you be grateful for all that you do have and maybe even share a bit with that person or the world.

The most powerful of all the gratitude practices is just giving to those who are in need. This doesn’t have to be a grand gesture, it could be just doing the dishes for a busy spouse. Giving thanks to things that have served you well in the past but are not necessary to your life and then giving them to someone who can use them more. You get to say “thank you” to the world with this gesture and see someone else gain happiness from your act.

Meditation of Gratitude

Hold the thirty-forth bead of your blessing cord, the bead of Gratitude, the bead of the blessing of Earth in Chesed.

Count your self down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand to create a sphere around you. Feel a rising sensation as sky- or electric-blue light begins to fill the sphere. Resonate the god name of Chesed: El.

Call out in your mind to your higher self to come and be with you in this meditation. Look above you to the great expanse of the universe and see a spot of bluish-white light descending and growing larger. This light is like a small star that comes closer to the top of your head and stops about six feet above you. This star is a representation of your higher self. Thank your higher self for being present and send up to it a breath of gratitude for being with you and a part of you. Feel the bliss of your connection.

Bring your attention to the screen of your mind before you. Call up on the screen of your mind someone you feel grateful for. See them before you. Call out to their higher self to be present with you. Ask if this person is open to a gift of gratitude. If not, just thank them with your words, knowing that you are subjectively communicating your thanks to that person.

If they are willing to accept a gift of gratitude. Tell them thanks for what they have done for you. Then imagine you are gathering the blue light from around you into a ball of light between your hands. Say to yourself:

“I create this gift and blessing of gratitude to be what your higher self thinks you need for the highest good, harming none.”

Raise the ball up above your head and breath up to your higher self asking for its blessing on this gift. You may feel a tingle as the ball is blessed. It may change color or become a symbolic object of what it is this person needs. Be aware of what it changes too, this may guide you to how to express your gratitude and thank this person in the physical world.

Give the gift to the person and say thank you again. End the exchange with a “blessed be.” Wave farewell to the person and their higher self. They fade from the screen of your mind.

Give thanks by breathing up to your higher self for its help in this gift and blessing.

Become aware of all the blue light rising around you to obscure this place. The blue light begins to fade as you feel a slight decent. The screen of your mind begins to go back to its normal size and color.

Count yourself up into waking consciousness.

Give yourself clearance and balance. Ground if necessary. Write down your experience.

Contemplation

How can I incorporate gratitude into my life? In this moment, what am I grateful for? What good can come out of this situation? What can I learn from this situation? How can I/we/the world benefit from this situation? Who in my life can I show thanks to? How can I give my gratitude back to the world for my blessings?

Blessing Cord

Patience

The thirty-third bead on the blessing cord is the blessing of Patience. It is the blessing of earth in Binah. There are three elements that must be invested into any manifestation: space, energy, and time. When we work on creating something we make space for it to exist, we devote our energy and focus to its creation, and we give it time to form. This last one has the blessing of patience ingrained within it. It can also be the most difficult of the three.

We can start to have unrealistic expectations of manifestation. Not every process is as quick as our Amazon order with overnight shipping. This desire for instant gratification of our desires has lead us as a people to become more demanding and entitled.

We not only put this expectation onto our manifestation but also to ourselves. My partner Steve likes to use the example from the movie Young Sherlock Holmes, where Watson comes in to an angry Sherlock cussing out himself for not being able to master the violin. Watson asks “How long have you been playing it?” Sherlock answers something like “Two days! Can you believe I haven’t mastered it yet?”

This is a fictional account, of course, but a great example of how unrealistic expectations lead us away from the patient creation of a truly magical manifestation. Some things take longer to manifest. We have to sometimes devote ourselves and our patience to the goal and keep working on each step along the way. The road can be winding and we sometimes can loose focus and hope. We will never see the outcome if we don’t continue down the path. This takes patience.

I spent years helping kids in group homes, training them to become better people. To adopt strategies that would help them through life. I knew their success could be a reality and would patiently correct behaviors until they reached a modicum of success. I found over the years that it was okay to loose patience every once and a while. To lose our faith in the manifestation, as long as we could return to that patience and hope and begin again. Much like the practices of mindful meditation. Sometimes we get distracted or thrown off, and that is okay as long as we return to our focus. That’s not a failure to meditate, it’s part of the process and the practice of meditation.

Jason Augustus Newcomb, in his book The New Hermetics, gives a mudra trigger exercise to program during your meditation so you can access more patience and tranquility in any situation. The mudra of tranquility and patience is to connect your thumb and middle finger at the tips while the rest of your fingers are relaxed and open. The middle finger is the finger of Saturn and the element of earth, both are very patient energies. In this meditation we make this mudra even stronger by making it a trigger for patience and tranquility. You can use this mudra to gain patience in any situation and invoke your tranquility.

Meditation of Patience

Hold the thirty-third bead of the blessing cord, the bead of the earth of Binah, the bead of Patience.

Count yourself down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand to create a sphere around you. Feel a rising sensation as the sphere begins to lose all illumination, until you are surrounded by a black endless void. Resonate the god name of Binah: Yod Heh Vauv Heh El-oh-heem.

In this black endless void conjure up a time where you were not patient. Observe this memory like a watcher from the outside. What was your posture? What were your hopes in that moment? Did you think that they could become true? Had you lost faith in your ability to manifest? Were you bored with what was going on? Were you frustrated? Reacting to a stimulus? Why do you think you lost patience and tranquility in this moment?

Rewind time to the beginning of the scene. Imagine what would have happened if you had been patient. Imagine yourself filled with patience and tranquility. Doing what needed to be done in that moment and feeling peace that all will happen as it needs to happen. All your needs manifest.

When you are finished with this scene, release it. Go to a time where you felt like you had a great amount of patience. Observe how you felt. What was different then the first scene? How is it better and more tranquil?

Really feel the energy of patience and begin to hold your hands in the patience and tranquility mudra. Imagine your patience and tranquility multiplying a thousand times its usual strength.

Charge this mudra with the following statement.

“I program this hand position as my patience and tranquility trigger. When I hold my hands like this, I will instantly feel patient and tranquil. I will do my work of the moment with faith that all my needs are met for the highest good, harming none.”

Feel the patience and tranquility. Release your mudra. Know that this feeling is always there when you need it. Your screen returns to its normal shape and size.

Count yourself back up to waking consciousness.

Give yourself clearance and balance. Ground if necessary. Write down your experience.

Contemplation

What throws you out of patience and tranquility? Why do you choose to let it get to you? Are you  continuing with all the steps you need to do to get to your goal while being patient?

Blessing Cord

Concentration

The thirty-second bead on the blessing cord is the blessing of Concentration. It is the earth of Chokhma. This blessing brings forth the focus we need to be able to be effective magicians and spiritual seekers. Many different spiritual and magical traditions have the beginning meditation of focusing all of your concentration on one thing and clearing your mind by bringing your focus back to that one thing. Our minds and surroundings are always trying to get our attention and by focusing our concentration on something we can clear our minds and increase our ability to do magic.

When I was in the second and third grade, when my teacher would be lecturing about something boring, I would focus my attention on one spot and see how long I could hold it. This became a practice when I was bored at home or at school. I would return my focus to the dot in a painting or the tack in my poster and focus all my attention on it. I sometimes couldn’t keep the focus for very long and would go into thoughts about cartoons or whatever suited my fancy. My teacher would call it “spacing out”. Without knowing it, I was doing beginner methods of concentration meditations.

Different cultures have used focused concentration on one thing to clear the mind in meditation for thousands of years. Some bring focus to our breath, a candle, mantra, chakra, and sometimes just the releasing of thoughts. Each time their thoughts wandered they would bring their concentration back to the focus.

With breath meditation you focus your thoughts on your breath. This could just be on your normal breath or focusing on counted inhalations and exhalations. Normal breath makes you focus on your natural breath. Counted breaths have a certain number for each inhalation, exhalation, and sometimes the pauses in-between. Such as breathing in for four, holding your breath for four, exhaling for four, and then holding out for four counts, and repeating the cycle.

Many Craft teachings start you out on concentration on a candle flame. You focus your concentration on the candle and try to think only of the candle. Sometimes you even let your eyes close and see how long you can hold the image of the candle in your mind. This builds both your concentration skills and the ability to visualize.

Mantra is a Hindu and Buddhist practice of focusing our attention on a group of words or one word. Usually a Mala or grouping of beads is used to count how many times it is said. The Catholic Rosary could be said to be a mantra practice since it is a group of words said over and over with concentration. There are many types of mantras for multiple purposes. For this concentration practice you can use one of the seed sound mantas like OM from the Word chapter. You can also use an affirmation which focuses concentration and also affirms the reality that you want to achieve.

One of the practices I loved from Kundalini Awakening: A Gentle Guide to Chakra Activation and Spiritual Growth is to focus your attention on a specific chakra in your body. Where our concentration goes, our energy flows. This is a gentle way of awakening chakras by simply focusing our attention on them. The attention sends our energy to that chakra. Usually this is done first by a balancing chakra meditation, then focusing on one, followed by another balancing to smooth out the energy.

When we are concentrating on anything, it is okay for our minds to wonder as long as when we become aware that we have wandered that we return back to the focus of our concentration. Having wandering thoughts isn’t failure any more than fatigue from exercise, it’s a natural part of the process of practicing concentration. Over time working with concentration you will be able to focus for longer and longer periods of time, just like building up a muscle. This is an important spiritual and magical skill to learn. Choose a method to focus on for this meditation. Breath, a visualized candle, or mantra work best for this meditation. A great mantra is the God name of this Sephira: Yod-heh-vauv-Heh. Set a timer for your practice of concentration. You can build up from a short two minutes to fifteen or more.

Meditation of Concentration.

Hold the thirty-second bead on the blessing cord, the bead of Concentration, the blessing of Earth in Chokhma.

Count yourself down into a meditative state.

Allow the screen of your mind to expand around you to form a sphere. Resonate the god name of Chokhma: Yod heh vauv Heh.

Focus your concentration on your breath, a visualized candle, or a mantra. Gently allow your concentration to rest upon this focus. Be gentle with yourself if you begin to think or daydream and just bring your concentration back to your focus. Let your focus be your whole world as you gently release all other thoughts. Let them drift away like a released helium balloon, like clouds on the breeze. Keep your focused concentration on your focus until your timer sounds.

Know that concentration is like a muscle. The more you work with it the stronger and more enduring it gets. Every time you concentrate your mind you are getting better at it.

Feel a gentle descent and let your screen of the mind shrink back to normal size.

Count yourself up to waking consciousness.

Ground and center as needed.

Contemplation

What steals your concentration and distracts you from your focus? Is there a thought that comes up a lot to steal away your focus? What do you concentrate on the most in your life? Does that focus of concentration embody where you want to go with your life? What goals do you want to concentrate and focus on?

Blessing Cord

Stillness

The thirty-first bead on the blessing cord is the blessing of stillness. It is the blessing of earth in Kether. Stillness is a feeling of centeredness and active peace. From this “place” of stillness we can see how things in our lives are going to move. We can see the rhythm and cadence of all that is going on in our lives without being unbalanced by it.

I am not sure where I heard it or read it, but when Shiva lord of the dance was described he was said to be the stillness of the center and the whirling cosmic dance. He was both in motion and centered in stillness. This has always stuck with me. I know that ecstatic dance has sometimes put me in this place where I could move my body, yet my spirit was feeling centered stillness. Stillness is that clear, uncomplicated awareness of being. Some people feel this in passive meditation when the mind is clear. The dancing Shiva has it while his body spins and his center is calm like the eye of a storm.

The Wheel of Fortune, one of the major arcana tarot cards, depicts a wheel going round. One of the things I council with the Wheel of Fortune is that where you place your focus changes how the wheel affects you: If you are focused on the outside of the wheel, you experience a roller coaster of experience. On the high part of the wheel you are lucky, your life couldn’t be better, everything is coming up roses and you get so excited you just can’t stand it. At the bottom of the wheel, you are at your worst: life sucks, you have the whole world on your shoulders and you are at your most depressed. The wheel can make us feel like we are almost bipolar with highs of mania and lows of depression.

This is what we experience on the outside of the wheel. In the center of the wheel is the axle around which it rotates. It is the stillness in the center of the dance of this cycle. From the center you can feel the up and the down without it moving you out of your center. You can have the luck and adversity and neither shakes you out of your equilibrium. You are part of the dance, but you have the stillness and centering to deal with all the twists and turns of the wheel. All of the cycle pivots around you instead of the other way around. The center of the wheel is the stillness we need to maintain to learn all that the Wheel of Fortune, of life, has to teach us.

When we act from this place of centered stillness we are like Shiva dancing. We find the rhythm of the dance and are not unbalanced by its motion. From a place of stillness we can observe and predict the next steps. All our parts are aligned in stillness and we feel greater unity with all of creation.

Meditation of Stillness

Hold the thirty-first bead of the blessing cord, the bead of Stillness, the earth of Kether.

Count your self down into a meditative state.

Visualize the screen of your mind expanding into a sphere around you. You feel a sense of rising as your sphere begins to fill with radiant prismatic light. Resonate the God name of Kether: “eh-heh-e-yeh”

The radiant light flows through you, making your spirit body feel fluid as you become one with the light. This place is timeless and yet contains with in it all times. Around you images flash of your past, but you feel a disconnection from these experiences. You are a silent observer on the outside of your time-stream. Focus your mind and intention to see a time where you felt the stillness.

See the time you felt stillness before you. You are an outside observer of yourself. Observe what you are doing. Look at your posture and even observe the energies that emanate from you as you feel stillness. When you feel satisfied that you have observed enough from the outside, merge with this past self. Feel what they feel. See what they see. What are you thinking about? What are you feeling? Where in your body do you feel your stillness the most? How are you dealing with the current situation? Draw your spirit self into the place of stillness within this past self. Observe how it feels to be completely one with this stillness. Feel how everything around it flows and dances while it remains the pivot point of it all. Now that you have found this stillness, know that you can return to it at any time.

Project yourself back out to be an outside observer again. Move back into the white radiant light of the place of timelessness that is all times. Set your intention to see a time in your past, where you had lost this stillness and the dance was swinging you out of control. See this time before you. Again you are an outside observer. Watch your past self loose their stillness. Observe what your past self is doing and going through. Feel and observe the energies that emanate from you. What are your posture and expression like? When you feel ready, project yourself inside your past self. Observe and experience what loosing stillness feels like. Why is this happening? You are just an observer, so you can disconnect from these feelings and reconnect to your intuition. What is it saying to your past self? What is the lesson of this time?

Now feel your past self’s body. Even in this time of unbalance can you find the stillness? Where is it now? Connect deeply to the stillness and allow it to spread from this place where you found it. Change the scene of you loosing stillness until your past body and your present “body” are in the stillness once more. Feel things calm as you regain your equilibrium. See and observe how the scene changes when you are in alignment with your stillness. Move again outside your past self, leaving behind the sense of stillness. Observe how everything you experienced from the outside has changed. The energies flowing off you and your posture have changed. You have not changed the past, only the way your present self interacts with it.

Step back into the white radiant light that is timelessness and all times. Know that you can find your stillness in any situation by taking a deep breath and focusing your mind to where your stillness lives within your body. The images of your past selves fade and the light grows more intense. Then it begins to fade and you feel a slight decent as your screen of your mind returns to its natural color. The screen recedes to its normal size.

Count yourself up into waking consciousness.

Give yourself clearance and balance and ground, as needed.

Contemplation

When do you most feel the stillness? What throws you out of your stillness? How do you regain stillness after you have been thrown out of it?