Taking a Vision Quest…an Old Way to Recover from Challenge

Soul Surrender, collage by Licia Berry 2006

Soul Surrender, collage by Licia Berry 2006

I feel this is an important message for survivors ..one of the ways I recovered and empowered myself was to revisit the old tradition of Vision Quest.

Excerpt from my blog:

“I traveled the southwest, camping in the desert under the stars and in my car, purposely avoiding contact with people, my only companion my journal.  What did I do with myself for 10 days?  A lot of sitting in the dust and on the rocks, a lot of looking at the simple horizon of sky and land, a lot of listening to the wind.  I was searching for guidance, but of course what I was really searching for was myself.

“The result of that journey was a tremendous breaking open of the dam in my heart and the resulting flood of tears, the bliss of knowing in every cell that I am part of something larger than me and my little mind, and the quiet reinstatement of my center as the thread of my life.”

 

Do you feel the calling of your soul? Perhaps a Vision Quest is in order!

Read about the wild cast of characters I encountered on mine…and what I discovered.  Read more here!  

http://www.liciaberry.com/2013/05/14/vision-quest-mapping-the-story-of-our-life/

 

Sexuality and the Sacred Feminine – Reclaiming our Sexual Nature after Sexual Assault

Sexuality and the Sacred Feminine

Original post on my blog, copyright  November 22, 2011 by Licia Berry

Readers of my website and blog know that I’ve been on a long  journey of recovery from sexual abuse and assault at the hands of men as well as from physical, emotional and mental abuses by my mother.  For 25 years I have worked hard and diligently to re-member myself, sewing the pieces together that had been ripped asunder, and realizing that I am a good person.  My process started with mental work to understand my history, proceeded into spiritual awareness to provide a bigger perspective, then came back down into my body as physical reclamation of the joy of being a woman.  I wouldn’t change anything about this miraculous journey back to myself!

The most amazing realization to date is that the experience of my mother, the more damaging parent in terms of attack on my well-being, is actually the greatest gift of my life.  This is because her mothering drove me into the embrace and awareness of the Sacred Feminine.  An un-mothered daughter herself, her inner masculine became a dominant force -aggressive, critical, and predatory.  The absence of the Sacred Feminine in my upbringing created a powerful thirst in me to find Her.

I have been working closely with the Sacred Feminine for several years now.  The energy of the Sacred Feminine is the most wonderful balm to my spirit, and lives in a very real, embodied way in my daily life.  In fact, the embodiment of Her is what opened the invitation to mature my inner masculine.  This year I was aware of these two dynamics collapsing into one another in union within me; it was a lived experience of bliss and homecoming that made my heart sing and my body pulsate with alive-ness.  I’ve been experiencing full-body orgasms this year, and I understand now that this has been a direct upshot of the joining of my inner feminine with my inner masculine, becoming Divine as they circled one another and merged.

Oh the delights of the body as expressed through the Sacred Feminine!  Having been more masculine-oriented in my life, the soaking of my arid inner landscape with the nourishing waters of the feminine invites the desert in my belly to flourish into a prolific garden.  The belly holds the keys to the flow of abundance,creativityplayfulnessmoney ease, and sexuality…as I’ve come into union, my belly has come online as a potent ally in my success and joy in this life!  What’s not to love?!

My observation and experience tell me that lots of us have been operating in our lives from an immature masculine place, unpartnered with the feminine, and the women in my circle of awareness are hungry for something deeper inside of their well of wisdom.  The belly is a location of mysterious power, power that gives us total joy and effectiveness in the world as well as the power to create.  The masculine is one part of the equation and deserves respect, but the feminine demands it, and calls us from a deep place in our psyche as well as in our body.  I LOVE my life because I AM life!

The balance of the feminine and masculine within us creates such an alchemy as to transform our lives into utter magic; I wish this for everyone, not just women.  The men have been damaged by the absence of the Sacred Feminine, too, and deserve the wholeness and bliss that comes from inner union.  Our world seems ripe for love, balance, and people who are spilling over with the joy of fulfilled lives!

To your Joy and Juiciness!

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As I Breathe, I Learn. 4 Tips for Creating An Attitude of Gratitude

PeaceandCalm 

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

The Little Prince

Life is for learning. How often have you heard this or a similar sentiment, doing your best to suss out what that means, or filing it away entirely?

It can be hard to see sometimes but every day, we’re graced with at least one major opportunity to learn about ourselves. These lessons don’t have to be hard-earned, or even hard, but often they can feel that way. We can of course learn from what’s comfortable and uncomfortable in our experiences.

I’m firmly convinced that everything and everyone in our experience teaches us something.

Noted author Kahlil Gibran brought to mind the idea that we can always discover and explore lessons in kindness from those who seem unkind…as he digs even deeper into the idea, he chides us for complaining about others who are unkind, calling such expressions ungrateful. In a sense, he could be right.

Right?

As I reconnect with the idea however, I realize that complaint is an expression of a desire for things to be better, an elevated “ouch!” and ultimately the soul’s request for healing and insight. So-called “ungrateful” expressions are gratitudes not yet discovered or explored, expressed or claimed.

Yes, mean people (more kindly seen, hurt people who are acting out with actions that could be viewed as mean) can in fact always teach us to be “a little kinder.” Reflecting kindness back to disharmonious people or in uncomfortable situations is a decision, a habit, a practice.

Here are four tips to keep handy when you want to claim, reclaim, or experience an “attitude of gratitude:”

  1. Accept What Is, Right Now:  Making yourself or others wrong helps no one’s progress, and yet sometimes it’s the best we know. Once you accept what is and make peace with it, you can operate and make decisions with a clearer head. It also makes letting go of the past, forgetting mistakes, and dropping any perceived hurt sense that much easier.
  2. Focus on Learning Instead of Reacting: Be curious, stay in wonder (I got this “wonder-full” learning tip from  Gay and Katie Hendricks). When you are in reaction mode, it can rob you of the opportunity to make more conscious and loving decisions. Responding in a “like with like” manner (i.e. “You’re mean, so I’ll be mean”) destroys any chance of helping either party feel better. Ultimately, water puts out fires. Be like water. Here’s a great example, courtesy of Kathlyn and Gay Hendricks: ask, “I wonder what that means?” Being in a state of wonder can be internal. It’s something you can even just think to yourself. If the other party is somewhat interactive and willing to engage with you, you could even proactively ask, “Hm, I’m curious…what did you mean by that?” and stay present for their response with no attachment to what the outcome “should” be like.
  3. Make It “A New Day:” Let’s say you react with bitter tears, you mouth off like a hothead, or you otherwise seem to disappoint yourself in any given situation. Now, what? So what? Shrug it all off and make it a new day, right now. Whether that mental change happens in the early morning, late afternoon or middle of the night, just begin again. We can always begin anew. That’s why we call spiritual practices practices.
  4. Just Be Kind: Above all, just be kind. We are all doing the best we can. Just because someone else’s version of “doing their best” isn’t at all apparent to you, it doesn’t change this universal truth. Apply this rule to yourself first and foremost. Don’t worry, it’s not selfish—it will automatically reflect outward in your interactions with others. That’s just how life works.

Namaste,

Jaye