Letter two: Attuning our Attention to the (Im)Material ~
Winter days feel most material to me. The edges of things sharp and crisp, but also interrupted, as the light, like curtains of gauze, breathes the world into and out of focus.
Winter light is indirect, fanned, eclipsing our vision as it approaches us sideways, making the world at once tactile and diaphanous. We must adjust our seeing.
As I walk, I'm inclined to lower my gaze. The way I might if I were in prayer or about to begin a ceremony. I walk around in this way, already in a posture of contemplation, through blankets of light interleaved with long, dense shadows. I walk through the weave.
Each season has its own intelligence. And a part of winter's seems to be this gift of sight: to be able to see the material and immaterial worlds at once. To look at but also through a thing so that we might better see ourselves. This is winter's reattunement.
And so I share some of my winter companions for attunement to the seen and unseen, the here and elsewhere, at once.
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Walking Rituals ~
Wandering: Set out to walk without a destination in mind, in reverence to the journey itself, following the invisible compass of desire and your senses.
I love listening to who the plants are as they rest. And coming to recognize them through their winter vocabularies, when they aren't bejeweled in blooms.
Intime performance with Rebecca Bruton in Kinghorn, Scotland. Credit: Angela Rawlings, 2017.
Walk the perimeter of an imaginary shape: Perform this ritual inside your home, on a beach, in your yard, or in an open field. Bring a question to your practice, radiate healing, or simply bring a sense of curiosity. I perform this ritual at home when I seek advice from my guides and both before and after consultations with my clients. In this walking mediation, I find that my nervous system calms, aligns, and clears. And I feel, depending on the shape, an open conduit of communication through time and space. Sometimes I do healing work from this space, contact my guides, or ground and channel my energy when feeling dispersed or spun out.
(side note: do you know the work of artist Angela Rawlings? If not, you should!)
Earth Reading: We spend so much time experiencing the world through what we can most obviously see. Practice dropping your intelligence down into your whole body. Place your bare hands or feet on the ground. What do you see behind seeing from this meeting of thresholds? Bare skin to Earth. Can you feel the electromagnetic field of the land rising to meet you? Listen, entrain.
portrait of me by angela rawlings
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Visioning + Intentional Dreaming ~
Before going to sleep at night, invite your dreams to bring you messages. I keep a pen tucked into my journal at a blank spread of pages by my bedside. I speak a simple, I’m listening, before turning off the light. And in the morning, if I’m feeling moved to do so, I record what I came to know in my dreams.
As I dream, I'm often gifted herbal formulas for clients, new pathways for my creative projects, and messages from my guides. The more you exercise your intuition, the more you will receive messages through your dreams.
I created Artemisia Trinity— a blend of Mugwort, Sweet Annie, and Wormwood—for intentional dreaming. The Artemisias clear energetic fields, enhance visioning, relieve physical, emotional + spiritual pain, and allow us to more easily walk between the material and immaterial worlds.
I first made this oil with a circle of women in the hills of so-called Western Massachusetts. We gathered the Mugwort, Sweet Annie, and Wormwood from the same field. Brought it back to our circle and took turns cutting the herbs into a large glass jar. As we cut, we talked joyfully about our relationships with the moon, but soon we fell into kind of activated silence. One that felt charged, illuminated, wise.
That night, I dreamt of the Mugwort growing in front of the barn. In my dream, it was night and the Mugwort was tall, much taller than me, and whipping in the wind. I stood beside it, started to sway, and lifted off the ground into the air. In a language outside of words, Mugwort told me that I needed to rewild my movements and what I thought my body capable of.
And so, I keep Artemisia oil close as a reminder of this. Anointing my writing space. My eyelids. My womb.
I offer this deep, verdant green oil for your own visioning + relief. Made of the whole plants and infused under the moon’s light.
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More soon + with love —