Spiritual musings.

Finally finished the post I’d started last week…. so on to the next one.

I’m off work today, not feeling well. So using the time, in addition to resting up some, to thinking about some recent events…

When it comes to all things spiritual, I’m by no means conventional – I don’t follow a particular line of thought or practice, and I don’t particularly align myself with one particular thing. I follow my intuition, which is my biggest guide in this. As a result there are ideas in there from many sources. Some more than others, and if I had to actually use a label, then it would probably be along the lines of pagan, with a celtic/norse leaning. HOWEVER: that is certainly not the be all and end all- add in there some native american, as well as eastern ideas, and you’d be getting a little closer. Also, don’t forget the British and European ideas as well… I’m sure that you see where I’m going with this….

 

The last few weeks I’ve been having a think about all of this, now that I’m in a position to consider things a little more than I perhaps have previously. Coming back to ideas I had been considering some time ago, which had gone to the wayside for various reasons – mostly not being in the headspace- and watching serendipity do it’s wonderful thing; for example, thinking to myself “it might be a good time to think about sorting out getting the runes I was thinking about making done – finish collecting the stones and then crafting them” before being given a set of clay runes by my brother a few days later… as well as looking at natural/complimentary therapies – the ideas behind them as well as the practice of.  These are something I tend to approach quite scientifically. I certainly don’t for a second believe that we’ve learnt all there is to know scientifically, and there are things that happen out there, which work but we can’t explain why – acupuncture, t’ai chi are just two examples.

(Excuse me if this jumps about a little as I go by the way – I am just writing it as it comes… and this is as much for my benefit as anyone elses… !)

I’ve always had a bit of an affinity to a few different things – mostly looking at natural ways of healing and improving things – massage, herbs, ‘so called- superfoods’ etc as well as looking into other things. Massage is something I’ve just been able to do instinctively, and there are a fair few people out there who’ve been on the receiving end of one of mine to say that I certainly know what I’m doing, even without any formal training (done a fair bit of reading though!) I’ve always used my intuition to guide me in that – leading me to troublesome spots, which I fully admit is enhanced by a working knowledge of the body and muscles. I’ve also passed on a bit of what I know to people I trust as the one downside to it is that you really can’t actually do it to yourself!

On Saturday night I was giving a good friend of mine a shoulder massage and thinking about what and how I do it, and had paused to think about where I was going to go next when I heard an ‘ooh’ of surprise. I asked if they were OK and got the yes, fine, and I went back to what I was doing. It was only a little while afterwards that I realised that at that time, I wasn’t actually touching them  with my hands. I was thinking about where to go next, and i guess the easiest way I could explain it is that I was feeling it with my mind before I carried on….  I spoke about this with my friend the next night, after thinking about it for a fair while and coming to a conclusion as to what might have happened, and started out by asking if he remembered that particular point and why the surprise, before saying what had happened, and my thoughts on it. After discussion we concluded that I’d managed to transfer energy, in the most basic terms – much like those who practice Reiki, Qi Gong, or other forms of Energy Healing would. We also concluded that it’s probably not the first time it’s happened, but in the past I’d have been in contact whilst doing it. So what’s different now, and why has this happened? I have no idea, but I’m looking forwards to finding out a little more and exploring what this means, and seeing if I can actually do this consciously. So some learning and practice required.

Another tentative step forwards in the journey of life. Sometimes in a direction you never expected to go!

Art: A reflection of a perception, or the baring of the soul?

Today (6th August) has seen me head out into Newcastle. Not a place I go to often anymore, as, quite frankly, aside from the people living there that I know, there isn’t really a great reason to go. If I want to go and see things, then I’ll go out to Durham for the day, as I feel like I’m going out somewhere else, and if it’s just generic window shopping/picking stuff up then Sunderland has most things I would need (and those it doesn’t have, Durham does, for the most part).

However, there was a reason behind today’s trip and that was for culture. First stop was the Laing Art Gallery – where we had a look round a couple of exhibitions, but in particular had gone to see the Quentin Blake section (http://www.quentinblake.com/en/). Forgive me if this is patronizing, but for anyone who doesn’t know – he’s the chap that illustrated for, most famously, Roald Dahl’s books, and is still going strong, even now he’s 80. For me, he’ll always be a bit of a lesson in life, I guess, as he doesn’t conform to ‘conventional art’. It’s been said on more than one occasion that his influence is seen in some of my sketches (although it’s VERY rare I’ll allow someone to see one of my sketches in the first place!)

For me, I’ve never had much confidence in my ability when it came to art. Surrounded by friends, and family members who were absolutely amazing at more traditional forms of art, where I, quite frankly, sucked at it, was not a good place to be…. I never really knew that there was more than one way to ‘do art’ – until I stumbled on this chap’s work. He certainly didn’t have the finer features of the face down perfectly, or everything in proportion, and no-one seemed to mind…

So basically I got to thinking about the way in which society perceives art – what classes as ‘good’ art? I don’t think it’s the same thing that I, or a fair few people I know would say it is. For general society, conventionally ‘good’ art is aesthetically pleasing, neat, coloured, safe. Occasionally you’ll get someone like Banksy come along who upsets the status quo and becomes the darling of the media for a while, but over time we return to the conventially accepted norm.

For me ‘good’ art is anything which I can see has something of it’s creator in it. Whether it’s a particular method used, or just the perception you get from it. No more more less. Art, for me, should be a reflection of your perception of life, whether it’s a portrait, an abstract, a landscape or something of the imagination – for why should the realm of imagination be any less real or valid than those things we can see!

With a storm, comes destruction….

Today has seen an awesome storm front make it’s way inland, from the coast where I live.

As it got a little further in, it caused a few problems. Power outages, flash flooding, hail breaking windows.  Not your normal fayre for the North East of England. A wake of destruction means there’s cleaning up to do.

As it is with the weather, so it is with life. I’ve weathered a few storms of my own, if you’ll pardon the rather obvious pun. Each one leaving it’s own wake of destruction, some messier than others, but with each one also came possibility. The possibility to make things better than they were before. The possibility to clear out some of the dross whilst removing the damaged parts, and allow the flowers hidden underneath the rubble space to grow.

 

So… back to today’s storm.  People tend to react in one of two ways initially to a storm – they either love them, or they hate them.  The marmite effect, if you will. Each reaction is then usually split into a further two possible responses – for those who hate them, it’s mostly either because they cause a severe inconvenience to them, or they are scared of the storm itself. For those in the love camp, they usually feel invigorated by a good storm, or it’s the immediate ‘afterglow’ that they enjoy – the sense of things being washed anew.  There will always be exceptions to all of these.  I am one. I don’t say that out of arrogance, or to make me sound special. It’s just an observation. I actually find them quite meditative and relaxing. Cathartic, even.

So today, when the doozy of a storm broke, imagine my discomfort when I didn’t find myself observing the status quo I used to have. There wasn’t another reaction. Just it didn’t happen. I felt a little less fogged – but that was more down to the change in pressure than anything. Not really sure what to make of it.

Yet.

 

Which I guess in a very roundabout way brings me nicely onto the purpose of this blog.  Definitely not my first, and probably won’t be my last either. But after a good year or so off the blogging circuit, and writing in general, now, is probably as good a time as any to start. As to what you’ll find here? A mix of musings, with different focuses – some mundane, some spiritual, some creative…. photos, poetry, things that strike me as I go through my day….

Why I’m doing it? To help me discern my direction as I wander through life, the universe and everything. I’m not feeling lost at the moment (which is usually my reason for changing/starting/restarting to blog) but I have to say I don’t really feel like I know where I’m going at the moment, either. A lot of doors I thought were closed seem to have re-opened of late, and I’m not sure if it’s because it’s a cyclical event, if I’ve gone backwards, or if I’m ready to see or discover something that I wasn’t before… Each of these possibilities has it’s own set of outcomes, and I’m curious as to which it is. Perhaps it’s something I haven’t considered yet as well… after all. You can’t know what you don’t know. Someone probably said that once. I know I wasn’t the first.