Eisodus or exodus? Where is your heart headed?

Eisodus or exodus?

Eisodus or exodus?
A little disclaimer, first

There’s a whole lot of Old Testament stuff connected to these two terms (exodus and eisodus), including some that I have a lot of trouble with — cultural appropriation, genocide, and more. But as with many spiritual teachings, when I can be still, and receptive, the goodness, the universal teachings, rise to the top. That’s what I’m sharing with you today — the good stuff, the good questions, from my heart to yours.

Eisodus and exodus

I heard a talk from one of my spiritual teachers during the holidays, and he shared a concept I had never heard before — eisodus. What landed and resonated for me is the idea that, in any moment, you are either headed away from something or you are headed toward something. I felt that distinction viscerally. I felt it as two questions: Where is your heart headed? And how will you get there?

When you are in exodus, when you are headed away, you are motivated by fear in one way or another. It could be in reaction to something that someone said, or something that happened. You could be trying to find a place, or situation, where you feel safe. You could be sure that Anywhere But Here would be more comfortable than your present circumstances (kinda like the Geographic Cure that’s talked about in 12-step recovery).

When you are moving in eisodus, you are moving toward, you are connected to faith, to your heart. You are finding direction and taking actions consistent with your intentions. You are present to what is, in deep acceptance. You are connected to the Divine (however that manifests for you: God, Goddess, nature, spirit) and cloaked in the courage and safety that connection gives you.

This distinction — eisodus or exodus? — raised some loving and powerful questions.

Take some time this week with these questions. You can do some journal writing, and of course, you are invited to share what comes up for you in the comments.

  • How do you deal with unexpected upsets? How do you get past reaction and reconnect with your sacred intentions?
    In your business, this could be loss of revenue, or a client deciding to complete their work with you. Or a computer failure, or your website going down. In your beautiful life, this could be a relationship that you see is not working for you. Or it could be illness. Or you could get in a bad car accident! What works for you to move you from reaction to intention?
  • How do you soothe your tender heart when you are upset? How do you release the impulse to defend and soften into acceptance?
    In business, and in your life, when you’re upset, do you notice impatience? Do you snap at others? Or yell and scream? (If you don’t yell and scream, you probably didn’t grow up in a rageful household, lucky you!) What do you do to connect to Divine compassion and forgiveness, for yourself first, and for others?
  • When you are tempted to kick it all to the curb and leave, how do you re-ground, and re-center, and connect to your breath, to your courage?
    In your business, especially when you’re just beginning or in a revenue ebb, it can feel just too hard, and too scary. Same with your relationships, and your health and self-care. How do you make friends with what is?

The answer to all three of these questions, for me, starts with gratitude. Because of course.

When I can reconnect to gratitude, in this now moment, no matter what, I’m in a better place. Grounded, connected to the Divine, in acceptance. This allows me to see with love everything that is on my plate in this moment. Car accidents, chronic illness, the financial state of my business… all of it, yo.

I’d love to hear how this lands for you. I know, it’s a unusual set of concepts for me to discuss, but I’ve been feeling them in a deep way since I heard them, and I thought you might find this useful. Please do share what you think in the comments.

Posted on January 11th, 2015. Posted in these categories: acceptance, awareness, compassion, gratitude. 16 Comments

New beginnings — guess I needed a swift kick in the rear

On the next-to-last day of the year, I was rear-ended. Hard.

Rear-ended, new beginnings

It was varying degrees of awful, and it could have been much worse.

My job is to rest my body and my tender heart this weekend, so what I’m going to do is share with you what I posted on Facebook on the night that this happened.

Here we go.

It’s time to connect to my gratitude. ‘Cause if I can’t I’m stuck feeling like a victim, and feeling sorry for myself, and feeling scared.

After taking a beloved friend to lunch, and giving her some cash because she’s in financial straits, I went to the grocery store, and as I left, I got rear-ended — hard. My car may be totaled. I’m sore.

  • So I tenderly say to my victim thoughts: No, honey, it’s not linear. You’re not being punished, nor does your generosity to your friend exempt you from life happening, from shit happening. Life surely happened today. The woman behind me wasn’t looking and drove right into the back of my car. With gusto.
  • And I lovingly say to my self-pitying thoughts: It could have been so much worse. You could be in the hospital, or dead. Your car could have hit one of the people in the crosswalk for whom you had stopped. You made it safely to the side of the road, you are insured, and you’re driving a 2015 fancy-ass Impala while the fate of your old Camry is being processed.
  • And to my fear thoughts, I say: Oh sweetie, you’re okay. You’re safe. You’re fed. You’re loved. Just keep breathing. Even if the insurance company totals the car, you’ll be okay; you’ll get the transportation you need. And, yes, darling, why not watch just one more episode of The Wire before bed? (My self-soothing may seem really weird, but it works for me!!)

I got such incredible love and lessons from my tribe on Facebook! Like….

  • A rear-ender means a good kick up the backside to get you moving in life… Where are you stuck and and needing to move? It is opportunities to grow further… Look to 2015 as extra special New Beginnings… Have a fantastic journey this year and keep moving forward…
  • Having this end 2014 is better than, say, starting off 2015 with this incident. This is annoying, but not tragic and though you may know that intellectually, it’s always good to review it. On the plus side, things can only go up right?
  • Way to stand plunk in the middle of compassionate power and say, well, wow, a day in the life…

I am so happy to have gotten to acceptance and gratitude in such a short time.

It was all in the same day, yo. It was about four hours.

That’s the whole game, isn’t it? Life happens. Life happens in wildly unexpected ways (and from directions you can’t even see), right?

It all comes down to this: When can you let go of resentment, and fear, and self-pity, and get to gratitude? What do you choose to do about it? All of it? What do you choose to think? What do you choose to say? What do you choose to do?

I got the kick in the rear I must have needed, kicked me right into the new beginning of a new day, and a new year (and maybe a newer used car!).

How are you choosing to accept what life has offered you today? What new beginnings (sought or not) are you facing? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Love and so much gratitude for you!

Posted on January 3rd, 2015. Posted in these categories: acceptance, gratitude. 29 Comments

What’s your theme for the year ahead? I’m All In….

Just a few days left to get complete with 2014.

Have you taken some time to review, complete, and release all that happened in 2014?

The good, the bad, everything? I have a handy workbook that will help you do just that; thanks to everyone who downloaded it!

All In in 2015

Once you’re complete, look forward and find your theme — your keywords — for the year ahead.

I’m All In.

This last year brought new challenges in my business and in my health. I got sicker than I’ve ever been, had two hospitalizations. My business, of course, slowed down as I recovered and learned in entirely new ways how to manage my resources and meager reserves.

What wonderful opportunities for acceptance, and surrender, and gratitude!

I’m All In for 2015.

Even though I now know in a deeper, completely unexpected, and very profound way that I don’t get to choose what it is I will get to deal with, process, and accept. What is given to you to walk through is your jewel, your gift, your treasure, no matter what. And when you stop resisting and get to acceptance, you can even end up in sincere gratitude for everything, even the really hard stuff. Much to my surprise, I got grateful for the tough and scary stuff, and that gratitude — as it always does — changed everything.

What is your theme for 2015?

I’d love to know, please share with me in the comments.

Full Moon in Cancer

Sunday, January 4th
14º31′ Cancer
8:53 pm Pacific
11:53 pm Eastern

Some call Sunday’s Full Moon the Quiet Moon, or the Moon After Yule. It’s the first Full Moon of 2015, and it’s in Cancer, which is ruled by the Moon. Emotions, your heart, all are going to be tugged by this Full Moon.

Complete 2014 with love, acceptance, and intention; and release everything — even what was incomplete. Name and embrace your theme and keywords for 2015. These are the best rituals you can do this week. Allow Sunday’s Full Moon to meet you standing in your sovereignty.

Posted on December 28th, 2014. Posted in these categories: gratitude, theme of the year. 14 Comments

A stillness point on the Wheel of the Year

Solstice wishes and gratitude to share

Stillness pointMoving through the points on the Wheel

A really interesting conversation came up in the comments on last week’s blogpost, about how even though we celebrate all the points on the Wheel of the Year, the wheel never really stops. I have some more thoughts to add to the conversation.

Today is the Solstice, the point where the Sun appears to stand still — a stillness point — and then begin to change direction. Here in California, where I live, we celebrate the return of the light today, on Yule.

I love celebrating each stillness point on the Wheel of the Year, because it’s a time when I can take a breath in the sacred moment I get to celebrate on that day. A breath of recognition, of awareness, of commitment, of gratitude. But as I get more connected to my spirituality, as my practice gets more seasoned and more real, I find myself pulled to connect in a deep way to every single day of the year.

It’s like tai chi, yo.

I’ve been a tai chi student for 40, maybe 41 years (I don’t remember much of the ’70s, honestly). Years and years and years of classes and practice and more classes. Studying the form. Learning all those moves, those positions, where you arrive — body, arms, legs — everything arrives at once. Chunk — arrive at ward off left. Chunk — arrive at ward off right. Chunk — arrive at the press, the push, single whip. Chunk. Chunk. Chunk.

And then after a few years of learning all the chunks, I started to learn a deeper lesson. There are no chunks. Yes, everything arrives at once in ward off left, and ward off right, and every other “position” in the form. But you don’t stop. You arrive at an opportunity to check in, but it’s a breath that you are moving through. No stopping. Just movement. One continuous movement like a silken thread being pulled from a cocoon.

Wishes and gratitude

  • I hope you enjoyed your Solstice today, and that you continue to enjoy all the sparkly holiday gatherings you choose to attend, or throw for others. (Yes all those twinkly lights come from ancient traditions; in the darkness we celebrate the light, and remind ourselves that we will plant, grow, and reap again).
  • Here’s a wish: Enjoy your holiday, whatever and however you celebrate. And enjoy the days before, and the days after, and the days in between. Move through every moment with ease, awareness, and love.
  • I thank everyone who took the time to download the 2014 Completion and Release workbook. It’s not too late to get complete with everything that happened in 2014 and set a powerful foundation for the year ahead.
  • I fervently pray that the 13 recipients of my homemade gifts get them with no breakage or other mishaps. Yes, I am that one — crazy enough to mail out glass bottles with homemade skin toner and mosquito repellent. I wrapped them in bubble wrap and shoved them in a box. Then I decided that just one layer (all that would fit) of bubble wrap wasn’t enough, so I wrapped the boxes themselves in bubble wrap and shoved those in a mailer envelope, held in place by crumpled paper. Oy, I hope they all make it in one piece. Off to the post office in the morning, and at lease Mercury is not in retrograde right now.
  • I am grateful for the antibiotics that I took to help me heal from this lingering cough. No more fever, that’s a good sign.
  • I am grateful for the turn of the wheel and the return of the light, in case I hadn’t made that clear enough.
  • I am grateful that I have learned how to choose love, to choose positive thought, to wish everyone well. Life gives me so many opportunities for me to make that choice!

How was your Solstice? How was your day? Do you have some wishes and gratitude to share? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Posted on December 21st, 2014. Posted in these categories: gratitude, solstice, wheel of the year. No Comments

What’s waiting for you on the other side of the stillness point?

Sunday, December 21st

New Moon in Capricorn

0º06′ Capricorn
5:36 pm PST, 8:36 pm EST

Sun enters Capricorn

The Solstice
3:03 pm PST, 6:03 pm EST

Right before all the change, take some time in the stillness

Yes, change is coming on Sunday. If you haven’t been feeling the year-end bustle yet, you certainly should be by then. On Sunday, we have another in the series of zero-degree New Moons, the third of four. How have you been moving through these? Have they been landing like clean sweeps? Have the changes taken you by surprise, because you didn’t get any time to feel the energy of the Sun in the sign before the New Moon arrived? That’s how it’s felt for me.The Stillness Point

Before all the changes on Sunday, you have a celestial, spiritual invitation to be still

2014 Completion and ReleaseAccept the invitation. Set aside some time on Saturday the 20th, and reflect. Have you downloaded my 2014 Completion and Release workbook yet? If you haven’t, Saturday is the ideal day to do this stillness point working. If you have gone through the workbook already, bring it with you into your stillness point time and review it, you may get some new and deep insights that didn’t show up the first time you looked at this.

Suggestions for you — what you can do to make the most of this stillness point

  • Take some time alone. I will do this working in darkness, which makes sense here in California, since we have so much darkness right now, and since Sunday is the turn of the wheel, and the beginning of the return of the light. In the Southern Hemisphere, you might want to do this working in bright daylight.
  • Create an altar. Whether inside or outside, all you need is intention and maybe a sacred object or two to make a space sacred.
  • Get quiet. Invite the stillness. Allow the stillness to help you to turn away from the world, from your thoughts, and from your worries. Sink instead into your heart.
  • Take some time to look back at the year that’s almost ended now. Accept what was challenging, give thanks for what worked. And here’s the big magic: give thanks even for what didn’t work out as you hoped it would. The more you can get grateful for everything, the better. On every level. Accept it all, get complete with it, give thanks for it, and release it. Now you are ready to move on.
  • After some time in this deep and sacred reflection, end your stillness time with celebration. Celebrate the New Moon that is coming, and the New Sun, and the New You!!!

Now you are ready to start looking at your goals, intentions, and visions for the year ahead.

I’d love to know how the stillness point lands for you. Please talk to me in the comments below.

Posted on December 14th, 2014. Posted in these categories: completion, New Moon, release. 10 Comments

Stop! Wait! Before you start visioning and writing goals, do the completion and release work first

This post was originally published in December of 2012. It’s been completely updated and brought up-to-date.

This is the time of year when your thoughts start to turn to your visions, goals, and intentions for the year ahead

It’s December, a natural time to start thinking about plans, and set intentions, to get clear about your visions for the coming year. You may even be thinking about those things right now.

2014 Year-End Completion and Release WorkbookBut before you start writing those goals for the coming year…Stop and breathe. There’s work to do first!

Honor yourself in the most sacred way and allow for closure for all the beautiful actions you took in 2014. Take the time to look back, and acknowledge your magnificent accomplishments of this past year. Give yourself the gift of completing and releasing the year that’s coming to an end before you begin looking ahead — when you do, you’ll be creating a firmer loving foundation for your intentions and visions.

Introducing the Magnolias West 2014 Completion and Release Workbook.

Here’s how to create a strong, workable, sustainable foundation for your vision, goals and intentions for an amazing 2014! In this workbook you can make note of what challenged you, and what may still be incomplete. Celebrate yourself for all the new, audacious, brave, risky things you’ve taken on, tried, and manifested. The actions that worked out as planned (or better!) and the ones that didn’t. Everything that was wonderful, everything that was challenging, and everything in between. When you get to gratitude for all of it, you are lovingly cutting the ties to what may hold you back from your magnificence in the New Year.

Read what a client, Christine Scudder, has to say about the Completion & Release Workbook

CSheadshot“When I started the workbook, I was feeling pretty down on my year that was ending, but in the process of reviewing the questions, I found that I actually took more risks — and some significant ones at that — in the past year, and that each risk, each action, was deserving of my mindful attention and gratitude. I found the overall “taking stock” to be helpful. The language was at once direct and empowering, serving as an invitation to reflect upon this year in a way that was forthright, yet kind to myself. This is new for me — previously I’ve found “year in review” type activities to bring out a serious amount of harsh, critical self-judgment. I left this activity with a sense of clear renewal.” —Christine Scudder, MSW.

Even when your efforts fail, gorgeous, as long as you’re trying, you’re making progress.

They call it failing forward. I promise you, taking the time to do this completion work will remove the weeds and undergrowth from your path, so that your new start  —the goals, visions, blessings, and miracles you will bring to 2015 — will germinate, root, and flower beautifully for you.

How to buy the 2014 Year-End Completion and Release Workbook

It’s easy! All the information you need is right here.

Pricing, purchase links, more information, more testimonials, the whole megillah (yup, that’s Yiddish again — means the whole story). Check it out. Put yourself high on your gift list.
But wait, there’s more!

Posted on December 7th, 2014. Posted in these categories: completion, goals, intentions, release, resolutions. 16 Comments

How do you discern what’s true and glean useful knowledge and wisdom?

There is a lot of information flying around

The upcoming Full Moon in Gemini, which is ruled by Mercury, may be bringing a wide array of information to your attention. Mercury will be only one degree away from the Sun in Sagittarius during this Full Moon, intensifying the information load (and potential overload), if you’re not mindful.

Full Moon in Gemini 2014

Full Moon in Gemini

Saturday, December 6th
14º18′ Gemini
4:27 am PST, 7:27 am EST

It’s a good time to be flexible yet discerning as you go; check all facts before making assumptions and decisions.

Not everything you are told will be useful or reliable, and not everything has to be fixed right now. Gemini’s twin energies can be scattered, and may prefer to go after the quick fix or the hard-to-resist temptation to make hasty decisions. Stop. Breathe. And breathe again. Allow the commitment to the truth that Sagittarius brings to help you discern what’s useful, what can and should be acted upon now, and what can wait.

Believe me, a lot can wait.

Resist impulses, spend some time in the waiting, so you can discern in your sage heart what’s really useful to you and your business at this time. There is useful knowledge and wisdom for you — take the time to get clear.

How liberating is it when you allow yourself to choose what actions you will take!

This is the last Full Moon before the Solstice

The light will begin to change.

Here in the Northern Hemisphere this Moon has been called the Long Night Moon, the Open Moon, and the Cold Moon. Wherever you are, whether the light will begin to return or begin to wane at the Solstice, we are coming up to a turning point. If you can take some time during the Full Moon weekend, some ritual work around communication, expression, and discernment can be really useful. Useful for you and your beautiful heart, and useful moving forward in your business as the calendar year winds to a close.

  • Do you have a special pen, and/or a journal? I have two fountain pens that I use pretty exclusively. One has green ink, for all matters financial, and the other has purple ink, because of course 8-) . I will place my pens outside on Friday to charge overnight with the energy of useful and accurate and loving information (received and given) under the light of the Gemini Full Moon.
  • throat chakraAre you expressing everything you want and mean to say? I like to do some chanting to clear any expressive energy that may be blocked. You can clear the throat chakra by sitting in a meditative posture, and chanting Om 9 times, then Ram 9 times, then Ham 9 times. Stretch out the sound gently, easily, without strain. As you chant, focus on the center of your throat, and imagine the blue image to the right. When you have done your three rounds of chanting, repeat: “My thoughts are positive, and I always express myself truthfully, clearly and with love.”
  • Could you use some support in discerning what’s useful for you now? What I’m going to do is to put a bowl of filtered water outside next to my pens on Friday night to be charged. I will cover it with a cloth or a dish to keep any schmutz (Yiddish: dirt of unknown origin) from landing in the bowl. I will drink the water on Saturday, as close to the actual Full Moon as I can.

What do you have planned to mark the energy of this Full Moon?

I’d love to hear from you! Please talk to me by leaving a comment below.

Blessed be!

Posted on November 29th, 2014. Posted in these categories: Full Moon, wisdom. 10 Comments