The Primal Animal of Your Body

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The Primal Animal of Your Body:

You know what you are by how it feels to experience yourself.

As I work on a new incarnation [yes, she’s coming to life again as we speak] of Writing Raw: Writing from the Animal Body, I’ve been contemplating the animal body and these lines came to mind.

“You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.”

Part of a longer, amazing poem, these lines by Mary Oliver remind us of what a break from conventional wisdom it is to even realize that we have a soft animal of our body and that we can simply let it love what it loves.

What I now am curious about, though, are the different animal qualities a human body can have.

How might you let the fierce animal of your body love what it loves?

or…
…the fiery animal of your body or…
…the luscious animal of your body or
…the primal animal of your body or
…the slinky animal, the protective animal, the well-fed animal, the hungry animal, the delighted animal, the joyful animal?

You have an amazing array of animal qualities to experience in your body.

Qualities of experience tell you so much about what you are because you only exist here and now, not as an idea but as a living breathing being.

You know what you are by how it feels to experience yourself.

 

Try this…

For a moment, close your eyes, take a few deep breaths, sink down into your hips and thighs and belly and feel and sense the animal in you, the animal body that you really are.

Sense into how it feels to be your animal body.

Sense the feelings and then the qualities of these feelings.

They could be tight, hard, fluid, pouncing, expansive, hungry, languid, on-the-prowl.

Listen and feel, closely.

Feel your hind paws on the earth and notice how they link you back to ancestors not so far removed from the earth, ancestors who felt no distinction between who they were and the animal body they had. Ancestors who hadn’t yet perfected the art of forgetting they were real, alive hairy animals who had to scout and forage for food.

Your animal body is this close.

Enjoy the experience of getting even closer, so close you no longer feel you ever left her far behind.

writingrawfromtheanimalbody

 

If you’d like to get closer still, join me for

Writing Raw: Writing from the Animal Body

It’s not just for writers. It’s for women who long to be and feel alive, and are curious about writing deep into the space of their soft, primal, alive… animal body.

We begin on October 30th.

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Act On Your Caring OR Big Dog, Little Dog; When it Doesn’t Go So Well

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Photo by Austin Ban on Unsplash

This morning at my cafe – the one I go to each morning – in a split second, one big dog lunged for one small dog and suddenly there were two upset dogs and two traumatized humans. The little dog was okay after shaking for a bit. The big dog was hauled off to a car after being scolded by the woman who happened to be dog sitting and was caught unaware of how to handle the situation. Her combination of apology and tears showed she was not quite sure how to handle what was happening. And the little dog’s mom was shaking in such a way that it was clear she was in shock. Actually, I think both humans were in shock. In a world where some are experiencing such big trauma, such a thing might seem trivial. But as I sat with the little dog’s mom, someone I know from years of seeing each other every morning, holding her as she held her little dog, placing pressure on her legs, just enough to ground the shaking, I saw and felt so much vulnerability in everyone involved. This human thing isn’t easy. And I take it this dog thing isn’t either – especially for dogs trying to exist in the heart of an energetically intense city. And I saw and felt how deeply we need to acknowledge the traumatic nature of our society and world.

We need each other. We need touch. We need care. We need to feel. We need to know we will be cared for by others when things get hard and that we have the capacity to be the ones who will do the caring when the time comes to care.

We need to act on our caring.

I was inside facing the window that looked out upon the corner where and when the big dog lunged for the little dog. I saw the little dog’s mom’s face cry out with fear and my body and heart responded instinctively by getting up, going outside, helping her to sit down, wrapping my arms around her, and placing my hands on her lovingly. Yes, I knew her so she trusted me already. And I knew to go gently and slowly. I knew she needed to feel held and grounded. I’ve done enough somatic work to know and yet in the immediacy of the moment, my instincts were what guided me.

We’ve been cut off from our instincts but now we need to rekindle them. We need to trust in our body’s wisdom. Our bodies know how to be with each other, especially if we allow ourselves to feel our innate compassionate nature and move from this. Our hearts know.

We must act on our caring.

As I sat with the little dog’s mom, we checked for blood and a wound. There was no blood drawn. No wound we could see.

The big dog’s woman sitter came over to apologize. Her eyes were filled with tears – a mixture of fear, sadness, shock, surprise, and a bunch of ‘what the hell do I do now’, she offered an apology, her hand shaking as it reached out toward but not all the way to. Her hand reached out toward us, not quite sure of what to do, then slowly made its way over toward me. At which point I reached out with my left hand and took hold of it. She softened, clearly needing touch, too.

Everyone needed touch. Reassurance. Connection. Dogs and humans, both.

Her eyes searched for reassurance. She received some and yet I sensed she needed more. Perhaps we needed more bodies, more hands to reach out and touch. More people to come over and simply be together. We were surrounded by people, but most sat and watched, their eyes reaching out with a look of ‘What do I do here?’, ‘How do I be here?’

I don’t have answers other than to feel, to act upon the caring your heart signals when it signals. To listen in the moment for how you might be needed. And to trust what you hear. To gauge what is needed by what you see and hear and feel and sense.

We are all trying to exist in a world that feels as if it is going madder and madder each day. And yet, we are here with capacities perhaps much greater than we know because they haven’t been tested until now. Perhaps it isn’t going madder. Maybe we are being offered the opportunity to grow into the fullness of our humanity.

Will I continue to act upon my caring when I don’t know the little dog’s mom? When the stakes are higher? When blood IS drawn, so to speak? When it is humans lashing out at humans? I intend for this to be so. I was deeply moved by what I witnessed this morning. In how we try to be here as best we can. And I know we have more inside of us dying to be offered even though we don’t yet trust in ourselves to give it.

I know I need you. I need to know I matter. But more importantly, I need to know I have something to give, something that in these moments makes a difference, in the everyday moments, when another needs something that only a human being can offer. I was fortunate to see that my instincts offered were graciously received and that in some small way the love I offered made a difference. This was the huge gift I was given. The love that came through me knew what was needed. I was the one, though, that had to act for it to do so.

Will we act upon our caring when we don’t know how to but know we must?

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Love in a Time of Personal Power

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Photo by Jake Weirick on Unsplash

 

“We have put the value of love — of life, self, and others, — in combative opposition to the value of personal empowerment. In actuality, these two values should be more like the Eastern concepts of Yang and Yin, which are not combative. Rather, they compliment each other as opposites while retaining their own identities, reaching toward a universal harmony. Love needs empowerment to have strength and substance, and empowerment needs love in order to have value, purpose, and meaning.”
— Massimilla Harris and Bud Harris (Into the Heart of the Feminine)

 

I grew up during the second wave of Feminism. I remember those years of women fighting for equality. And, I remember how they were treated for wanting equality.

Looking back now, I see that the call was for equality but not really for love for all of life, for justice for all, for the leveling out of the playing field for all.

It’s clear the feminine (as she appears in all human beings and in all of life) has been missing when we see the ways in which the power structures and institutions of our western culture values some lives more than others. When we discriminate against some lives and not others, when we commodify lives, when we don’t provide safety and care for all lives, we are witnessing the lack of the feminine in our institutional, systemic, and individual behavior.

Over the past two decades, many of us have found ourselves on this deep reclamation of the feminine.

She called and many of us answered, not really knowing what that meant.

The feminine (yin) can only be known in relation to the masculine (yang), and the masculine only known in relation to the feminine. In Chinese Medicine, this relational dynamic is understood as an elemental way of seeing and knowing life. Everything is related and nothing truly stands on its own. So when I speak of the feminine, I speak from this perspective. I am not speaking of women and men, but rather the energies of yin and yang.

The feminine is dark as related to the light. The feminine is moist as related to dryness. The feminine is non-linear as related to linearity. These aren’t moral leanings. They describe life and all life entails, including death.

The feminine is the mystery. She doesn’t reveal herself in clearly defined ways. Instead, she reveals herself through symbol, intuition, dreams, and the deep imagination of the inner world. But, the feminine has been revealing herself back into the world of form and we’ve begun to see the world in new ways. We’ve come to see how the feminine appears in this world.

We have so far to go to truly hold all of life as sacred, worthy, and equal. I believe one of the reasons we have not done so is that we don’t know the feminine. We don’t clearly see her. And, because we don’t see her clearly in relation to the masculine, which has had a greater presence in our world, we don’t see that the nature of life itself is to live not for itself but for the whole.

This is how the feminine moves in all of us — not hierarchically, but relationally. The feminine cares for life — all of life. Not some life. And not just life that is commodifiable. She cares for all of life equally.

The feminine is Eros. And Eros is love. Eros nurtures the impulse to live. And the living of Eros moves in such a way to ensure the preservation of the human species.

But the feminine is not moving within all of us because we haven’t become conscious of how she is within us. And we become conscious of how she is within us when we come to see what is hidden within us when we find the courage to face that which we haven’t wanted to see. When we do this, our hearts can break open. Our compassion can flow. And, our love can pour forth.

We can come to remember our wholeness.

While we’ve been seeking empowerment and equality, this twin ‘value of love’ has not been championed in the same way.

“We are liberating our empowerment, yet at the same time, we are denying our inherent abilities to like, nourish, and take loving care of ourselves and to make the love of ourselves, others, and life the dominant value we try to live by.”
– Massimillia Harris & Bud Harris

We want to be equal to men. We want to be empowered. But to what end?

Ultimately, it must be for the love of all things, all beings, all of life. For this is the nature of the feminine. She does not discriminate. She does not exclude. She does not favor one child over another.

Empowerment needs love in order to have value, purpose, and meaning.

What does empowerment do for us and the mess we find ourselves in if we aren’t caring for all beings if we aren’t using this power to liberate all of life from the effects of our out of balance, hyper-masculine western culture, exemplified by racism and white supremacy? The feminine does not hold any aspect of life supreme over any other, any expression of life over any other, any incarnation of life over any other.

Yes! Love truly “needs empowerment to have strength and substance.”

We must do what it takes to free the Love within ourselves, otherwise, we are still stuck in the old paradigm of ‘what’s in it for me’ where there is little true value offered to the whole of life through our work. And when we do free ourselves, we then have the strength and substance to bring Love to the forefront of our work in the world.

When we face all of the intense conditioning within us — everything that feels so hard to face and own — we often feel guilt and shame when we finally do. But here’s the thing. It is through feeling these very things that love frees up within us. When we truly stay with everything that comes to call on us, asking for us to face it, our hearts can open to the life that is here — to all of life, not just some of it.

This is how we do the deeper work we must do. We do what is ours to do. We face what is within us so that our hearts can do what our hearts know is true to do. This is how Love moves.

And for those of us who’ve said yes to Love and have been uncomfortable saying yes to power, myself included, it is time to bring these two together. Power-over, how we see power playing out in our world, is a zero-sum game. But power born of love is power-from-within, and this power is the expression of our deepest being into the world. It is our life force. It is Soul born from the deep Love that moves all things. It is generative. It is inviting. It is intelligent in the way of Life.

It can be frightening to live our power when our true power has been suppressed. We’ve feared our power for suppressed power fears harming others. We know somewhere that if we unleash it, it can be harmful. Yet, by not addressing it, we harm, too. Our true strength and power are of life itself. When we come to trust life itself, we come to trust that which flows through us and that which flows through all — the Source of life itself.

We cannot have true empowerment without having the conscious understanding that we are given our lives as a gift, that all of life is of equal value, worth, and beauty, and that we are here to serve the continuation of life itself. When we are willing to see what is standing in the way of this knowing and willing to do the work to dismantle it, I sense we will be able to live for life itself and to live life as the gift that it is.

Again, the feminine is the mystery. When we sit in what we don’t yet know and are unwilling to face what we must feel in order to know it, we’ll suffer and cause suffering. Everything is conspiring for us to end this suffering and liberate ourselves and the whole.

Originally published at JulieDaley.com

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Liberating Ourselves from the Pervasive Bind of Being Reasonable and Logical

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I remember their faces, a little stern and adult-like-condescending, as I tried to tell them of my willow tree and how much she loved me. Sitting under her was my delight, and I think her’s, too. But they couldn’t understand. Too far removed from childhood, everything now had to be reasonable and logical. The mystical and the sacred were now seemingly too far out of reach — seemingly.

And so, they would sternly correct me when I spoke of her love and the love I saw in everything around me, which included them but I didn’t know how to speak of that to them. I could only show them through my eyes the love I had for them. The girl that I was felt like a stranger in a world gone mad with reason, a world that had forgotten that play and love and divine curiosity were the magic we can know here on Earth.

I’ve struggled with this myself as an adult. The one so imaginal, light, joyful, and free; the one who loves the process much more than the finished piece; the one who revels in watching it all unfold, revels in the anticipation of touch when skin meets skin for the first time after letting desire blossom and fruit into ripeness — judged, criticized, and silenced by that voice inside, the adult voice that somewhere along the way became ‘my voice’. That voice thinks this is all fluff, weakness, and something no one will respect because it is not logical, practical, nor does it utilize the ‘brilliance of mind’.

I, like my parents, have a good mind. A strong mind. One that loves math and coding and understanding how things works. And that love is a pure love for these things. But that is not who I am. I am not logical. I am one who can utilize logic when it is helpful and let it go when logic is not the right tool for the job.

Here’s the thing — the thing that now saves me every time I sit down to work and create…

We are not logical creatures. We never have been. We are imaginal beings, sacred to the core, mystical beings appearing as real live people, here to awaken love, here to find delight and joy in living, here to not turn away from ourselves or each other when we forget what we are.

While the loss of connection to love can be too great to hold and feel in our hearts during our early years, the delighted one who dreamed up worlds where trees are loved for the magic they are, where everyone knows the truth about flowers — that they are just a mere breath away from Source — is still very much present and this delighted one now must be freed.

We free this one, this imaginal delightful one, together, in community, in circle, held in love, always in love. For it is only love that liberates. It is only love that transforms. It is only love that frees us from the inner captivity of our own making. We, who are not captive in the outer world, we who are free to move and speak, we who have the means and have the privilege to effect real change, can and must.

This world is not what we’ve come to believe it is. It is a realm of love in a multitude of forms.

Love is spread out before us in everything and we do not see it.

The way back to knowing this is by seeing with the heart, allowing the mind to be held in the heart so that it can rest and come to know itself as love, too.
For all is love.


I offer you this meditation to help guide your beautiful mind down into your heart to be held, your heart down into your pelvic bowl so that the mind and heart are held, and your pelvic bowl down into our great Mother Earth so that your whole being can be held by the Mother.

Come join me in Writing Raw or my new course Flourish. We will find this one who knows, who imagines, who hungers and thirsts for what she knows is real and whole and beautiful.

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Sustaining the Web of Existence, Human & Otherwise

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What happens when human beings come to believe we do not matter? That we are needed for others but there is little to no need or use for what is within us?

What happens when we live our lives believing that who and what we are is not worthy of love? That there is something fundamentally wrong with us?

What happens to our connection to the whole? And what happens to the whole when this happens?

Our sense of disconnection as human beings doesn’t just affect our own psyches. It weakens the fabric of life, the web of human existence, and the web of existence itself.

This is much of what we are experiencing now on Earth. A weakened fabric of human existence and a weakened connection to the Earth and all that is sacred. We can’t necessarily see it in the physical realm, although we experience the disconnection from each other (and even from ourselves). But I see and feel it internally, on the inner planes.

I see and feel it and now know this because this was my experience — and I know I am not alone by a long shot. I sense the majority of human beings feel this way in varying degrees. I don’t know many who’ve been raised to truly know they matter not in spite of who they are but exactly as they are. That there is a place for them because they are who they are, exactly as they are.

As a young girl…

Growing up in a family with a lot of dysfunction, I came to believe I did not matter. This sounds dramatic, but I don’t mean it as drama. I am not saying my parents or the other adults in my life ever said that. They didn’t. Rather, it was the belief I came to hold about myself because of what I experienced.

We were a deeply disconnected family: emotionally, physically, and psychically. And that disconnection took hold in my soul. The soul longs for connection. Young children need to be connected. We, humans, hunger for connection. And when it’s not there as young children, we believe it has something to do with us. Children are self-referential. We make it about us because we desperately need to believe in the strength and wholeness of our parents and caregivers.

This belief ran deep. The wound was painful and it wasn’t until very recently that I saw it for what it was and is. What I now see is how disconnected I became from my instincts and from life. Our instincts come out of our connection to the instinctive nature of life and I became disconnected from my body and from the Earth.

As a very young girl, I see how my belief caused me to energetically and psychically disconnect from the fabric of life. I turned away from my own worthiness. I turned away from the Source of Life that gives me life. We don’t (necessarily) die when we do that, but we leave our existence by ‘going way’. By disassociating. By isolating. By numbing out with substance(s) or things we do repeatedly to get away from the pain of this sense of not mattering, of not being worthy of love.

And when I healed this wound of disconnection I saw how my connection to the web of life grew stronger.

Everything is interconnected in this web of life, but it is more than simply interconnected.

Everything on the web is the whole and at the same time is simply itself. This is what a hologram is — each part contains the whole.

“Thus each individual is at once the cause for the whole and is caused by the whole, and what is called existence is a vast body made up of an infinity of individuals all sustaining each other and defining each other. The cosmos is, in short, a self-creating, self-maintaining, and self-defining organism.” Francis Dojun Cook

If we come to believe we don’t matter (or we aren’t lovable or we aren’t enough or we aren’t ‘however you have this one wired’), and/ or we treat others as if they do not matter, then we aren’t being sustained and we aren’t sustaining each other. This is part of our job here on Earth — to sustain each other, to keep the web healthy and whole, to grow a vibrant community — and to be powerful, loving stewards to all of life.

We were created to be what we are.

If we come to live a belief that what we are and how we were created does not matter to creation itself, then we are weakening the strength of our link to the whole and the whole suffers for it. But when we are in the pain of the wound, we cannot see this.

While everything is connected, something profoundly damaging happens when we come to believe we are not…and that we aren’t worthy of this connection. This connection is sacred and when it is weakened we weaken our remembrance of the sacred in everyday life.

I can see it, but I still find this hard to put into words, to be honest.

But this matters greatly. Our human community must be strong and vital to evolve out of this mess we are in. We must be strong and vital to come to care for the whole of life as stewards on this planet. We cannot be strong and vital if we continue to live this western, patriarchal way of devaluing so many.

We don’t have to live as numb human beings, but to make the change we do have to learn how to feel and that means being willing to feel.

I am but one human being who has grown up in a kind of culture that devalues the incredible singularity, diversity, and creativity of each human being. My upbringing and family life were a reflection of this culture. My parents were/are good people, but they, too, were raised in a culture is deeply disconnected from this web of life.

Every human being not only matters; their voice, creativity, and uniqueness are vital to the health of the whole, and to the strength of the fabric that holds us all together. And many who are not in positions of power or privilege have been silenced, traumatized, and denigrated terribly.

Moving forward…

As leaders, we must ensure inclusion and diversity, as well as provide the opportunity for everyone to rediscover what they truly are and that what they truly are matters to the whole of life. As leaders, our job is to midwife this essential creative nature and create a culture in which people are free to express it. We need everyone’s creative genius in order to move forward. We need everyone’s happiness from being connected to the whole. We need connection, period.

We must come to know and live the truth that the expression of every human being, including that of our own, is sacred and vital to the well-being of the whole of human existence, and the whole of existence itself.

***

If you’re interested in finding out more about what I offer, including my one-on-one coaching and Writing Raw circles (current circle is still open for registration), please visit me at JulieDaley.com.

 

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The Wild Within: Where Only the Majestic is Enthroned

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loli clement on Usplash.com

Holding my own flesh
like a holy site
an unbound pleasure.
~ Isabelle Abbott

 

Unbound pleasure takes me in. I have rarely let myself go completely like this. I close my eyes to feel this. I know this unboundedness as awareness, as infinite consciousness. An open sky. But in my own flesh? No. But I want to. I’ve been admitting this to myself lately. Lilith is calling me. She who is a goddess unto herself, she who told Adam, ‘No, I will not be on the bottom.’ She who left the garden.

Did her fierce sovereignty cost her? Perhaps only in the eyes of those who believe in the texts, but I believe in the text of Lilith’s flesh. This is her holy site. How is her text mine? In her text, she left on her own accord. In the text of the patriarchy, she was banished.

I sense the Garden of Eden as man’s garden. Man drew the borders, set the fence posts, strung the wire and proclaimed this to be the civilized world and anyone who strays outside and enters the wild becomes the feared, the scorned, the wicked. But outside the garden? Unbound pleasure.

What keeps me from unbound pleasure? This fear of banishment. I felt a bit of this when I left my relationship six years ago. Suddenly, I was not with a man – no longer one who is chosen. Oh yes, no one says these words. But I could feel it.

A woman’s sexuality is powerful. Wild even. To be fully oneself, one must enter the wild. We fear banishment because we’ve believed we no longer have our wild.

Banishment in the wild without one’s own wild is frightening. Banishment in the wild WITH one’s own wild is a homecoming.

***

Plums, not apples.

Dark thick, purple-black plums, like Her.

The Dark Queen.

The Black Madonna.

Hidden throughout shelters and caves with rustic,
hand-made altars erected to her reckoning.

She is the impenetrable woods.

Thicker than the honey that lines the heart. Blacker than the moonless nights. She is unbound pleasure as she spreads herself across the wild land she claimed with her own, Hell No.

That dark queen lives in me.

The impenetrable woods, the thicket, and bramble that winds its way into my holy center. Protected. Fierce. Where only the majestic is enthroned.

The Black Madonna knows banishment well. Yet, She also knows the deepest most encompassing love, including love for those who banished her. For here is the grace She wields. And here is the grace she is teaching me. My desire that burns hot will not banish me but rather burn away the pain of my own separation from my majestic sexuality.

And it is majestic.

It is union with the Beloved. All the unspoken lies go up in the flame of Beloved and lover becoming one.

My body is an altar to Her.

Everywhere, there are wild altars to Her.

***

Through my own journey, I have discoveredlilypotf that flowers are altars to Her. A flower once showed me the whole of existence through her bright countenance. She showed me the true nature of life here on Earth. She opened my heart showed me that flowers speak to us so that we can remember this nature, our nature. And when I open to flowers, they guide me.

For a short time, I am offering a Power of the Flower Lite Study of You. I’ve created a deck of flower cards. With you in mind, I pull one flower, your flower, and then I sit in deep meditation to see what she reveals to me about you and any question you’ve shared with me. I write up what I see into a beautiful 14-16 page PDF and send it to you. Within a few weeks time, I will also mail you – yes, snail mail! – a printed copy of the flower for you to have and place on your wild altar.

Read more about this beautiful study of You and how I was awakened to the Power of the Flower. You’ll be taken to JulieDaley.com

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The Wild Within: Where Only the Majestic is Enthroned

Share
loli-clement-219773
loli clement on Usplash.com

Holding my own flesh
like a holy site
an unbound pleasure.
~ Isabelle Abbott

 

Unbound pleasure takes me in. I have rarely let myself go completely like this. I close my eyes to feel this. I know this unboundedness as awareness, as infinite consciousness. An open sky. But in my own flesh? No. But I want to. I’ve been admitting this to myself lately. Lilith is calling me. She who is a goddess unto herself, she who told Adam, ‘No, I will not be on the bottom.’ She who left the garden.

Did her fierce sovereignty cost her? Perhaps only in the eyes of those who believe in the texts, but I believe in the text of Lilith’s flesh. This is her holy site. How is her text mine? In her text, she left on her own accord. In the text of the patriarchy, she was banished.

I sense the Garden of Eden as man’s garden. Man drew the borders, set the fence posts, strung the wire and proclaimed this to be the civilized world and anyone who strays outside and enters the wild becomes the feared, the scorned, the wicked. But outside the garden? Unbound pleasure.

What keeps me from unbound pleasure? This fear of banishment. I felt a bit of this when I left my relationship six years ago. Suddenly, I was not with a man – no longer one who is chosen. Oh yes, no one says these words. But I could feel it.

A woman’s sexuality is powerful. Wild even. To be fully oneself, one must enter the wild. We fear banishment because we’ve believed we no longer have our wild.

Banishment in the wild without one’s own wild is frightening. Banishment in the wild WITH one’s own wild is a homecoming.

***

Plums, not apples.

Dark thick, purple-black plums, like Her.

The Dark Queen.

The Black Madonna.

Hidden throughout shelters and caves with rustic,
hand-made altars erected to her reckoning.

She is the impenetrable woods.

Thicker than the honey that lines the heart. Blacker than the moonless nights. She is unbound pleasure as she spreads herself across the wild land she claimed with her own, Hell No.

That dark queen lives in me.

The impenetrable woods, the thicket, and bramble that winds its way into my holy center. Protected. Fierce. Where only the majestic is enthroned.

The Black Madonna knows banishment well. Yet, She also knows the deepest most encompassing love, including love for those who banished her. For here is the grace She wields. And here is the grace she is teaching me. My desire that burns hot will not banish me but rather burn away the pain of my own separation from my majestic sexuality.

And it is majestic.

It is union with the Beloved. All the unspoken lies go up in the flame of Beloved and lover becoming one.

My body is an altar to Her.

Everywhere, there are wild altars to Her.

***

Through my own journey, I have discoveredlilypotf that flowers are altars to Her. A flower once showed me the whole of existence through her bright countenance. She showed me the true nature of life here on Earth. She opened my heart showed me that flowers speak to us so that we can remember this nature, our nature. And when I open to flowers, they guide me.

For a short time, I am offering a Power of the Flower Lite Study of You. I’ve created a deck of flower cards. With you in mind, I pull one flower, your flower, and then I sit in deep meditation to see what she reveals to me about you and any question you’ve shared with me. I write up what I see into a beautiful 14-16 page PDF and send it to you. Within a few weeks time, I will also mail you – yes, snail mail! – a printed copy of the flower for you to have and place on your wild altar.

Read more about this beautiful study of You and how I was awakened to the Power of the Flower. You’ll be taken to JulieDaley.com

 

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Our living well can only come out of our living connected.

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I’ve discovered something. Something that keeps us believing in our smallness, in lack, in the absence of goodness and kindness, in a sense of being unsafe and unable to really live who we are and what we came for.

I’ve discovered it through my own life journey of forgetfulness. A life journey where I began so full of light, so full of love and joy. So full of life. And then the journey of forgetting. Forgetting that the Earth is alive. Forgetting that I am alive, truly. Forgetting that I once lived as light.

We are not meant to live alone.

Not just physically alone. We are not meant to believe in the falsity that we are simply human beings on a planet that is just a big rock. We are not meant to believe that there is nothing beyond this place. We are not meant to live as if we are alone. Our living well can only come out of our living connected to both the Earth and to the light. Our living well comes out of knowing we are in direct relationship with the soul of the Earth, with her as an alive being, and filled with the light that infuses us, available to us, always filling us with each breath, in every moment.

We are creatures here on Earth, sacred creatures, living on a sacred planet, being breathed by light. This has nothing to do with any system of belief. It has to do with life itself and how it moves and lives through us.

There is a ‘push out of your existence’ (thank you, Joseph Campbell) that is life moving through you. A push. A force. A living, always in flux, push. To live. To be alive. As you. For life. This IS life. You as life. Living. Connected to the Earth. Filled with light. Filled with breath. Vibrantly alive until you are alive no more in a human body.

We are not meant to live believing we are not connected, separate, from each other, separate from the Earth and nature, separate from the light. 

But, we do forget. And all around us are reminders, everywhere, always, to remember. We walk the Earth in forgetfulness until we remember. And then, we walk the Earth remembering. With each step. Remembering ourselves back into fullness.

And then, we walk the Earth remembering.

With each step. Remembering ourselves back into fullness.

***

My 21-day self-study course Belonging is now available. It’s deep and you can access it in the comfort of your own home.

 

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Living the Feminine

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Much has been written about the return of the feminine.

But what does that mean? Practically speaking, how does this actually show up in our world today?

I used to think that somehow the feminine was missing, but what is true is that the feminine has been hidden. Because of the frightening ways women who seemed threatening to the dominant paradigm were treated over the last many hundred years, we learned to suppress those aspects of our nature that were labeled as dangerous and bad. We came to hide our knowledge of healing, our relationship to the earth, our tenderness and hearts – namely many of the ways women are naturally powerful. We learned to hide our internal knowing, our intuition, and instincts. We hid our deep love for the earth and nature, and our relationship to all of life.

 

We women hid that which scared those in power in the dominant paradigm. And men learned to hide things, too.

Now, she is rising. Appearing again. Making herself known. But how? How does she show herself?

She is becoming known in all of us who feel the call to go within, to listen to the inner voice and open to the inner life. She is becoming known again through the awakening of intuition and instinct, through the healing of trauma, and through the attention and love we are now learning to give to our bodies. And she is becoming knowable through the ways we are called to care for each other and for our planet, through the call for justice for all people, through the ways we now see we are a global village.

She is rising through those of us who are not afraid to live the qualities of the feminine and to voice and express her and how she moves. We see her when we are courageous enough to speak and create through her, offering her aspects into the world.

She wasn’t hidden in all peoples. Not completely. Many indigenous cultures and non-dominant peoples stayed closer to her for they kept touch with ceremony, relationship, and medicine. They kept touch with earth wisdom.

 

Last November after the election,

I realized that many of us fear to show what we know, and what we’ve remembered of the feminine within. We fear to embody her. But it is up to us ‘everyday people’ who know her and now realize that she is rising within us and asking us to live her presence into the world.

Yes, it can be frightening to show her to the world through us, through what we speak and write, and through how we are with the earth and nature, with other women. It’s in our cells to be afraid. There were too many burnings to not affect multiple generations down the line.

In response to the normalization of anger, hatred, racism, and misogyny after the election, I felt a deep desire and calling to speak what I know of the feminine through my own experience. So, I began to write and share the deeper nature of eros, the vibrant and sensuous aspects of love, that have become so much of my own lived experience as she has come to move through me more consciously. For she is eros – eros that is the force that thrusts through stem and leaf, body and soul.

We must live her.

We must find a way to no longer be afraid to speak her and be her and show her knowing and wisdom through us. Many of us do healing work and fear truly coming out and speaking the full truth of this work. But while it can be frightening to speak the full truth, it is also invigorating for she is joy and aliveness, sensuality and sensuousness and when we acknowledge these are natural aspects of who we are, we begin to live these qualities in the world.

To live her is to give back to the earth. To live her is to heal you back into wholeness and fullness. To live her is to bring more kindness, compassion into the world. So many of us are addicted to suffering, to war, to violence because we are disconnected from the heart of life. To live her is to offer to the world the medicine that can rebalance our existence as human beings here on our planet, a balance that is not just for human beings but for all of life.

In many ways, there is one woman, one mother. That is why women connecting is so important. It is in our weaving together that we come to know the feminine as whole again. If my body is the earth’s body and your body is the earth’s body, and so on, then in our coming together, we begin to experience the earth in a more full and whole way. At least this is what I sense. I don’t want to make statements of truth. What I offer is an understanding from my experience. And that can shift as we shift.

Each of us lives her uniquely. Each soul’s journey is unique. I don’t mean to make it sound easy. I know it hasn’t been for me. And I know I still have moments where I want to shy away from it. But I also know the truth of this in my heart: that I am here to do this. I am here to remember her and to come into balance, and to be one guide of many to support our species coming back into right relationship with life.

So here’s what I want to know…

Do you feel called to live her? To speak her? To express her? And does this frighten you? Do you feel alone in this? Do you fear what will happen if you live what you know now within yourself?Together

Join me for a free gathering with me and other women this Friday, May 26th, from 11:00 am to Noon PDT. We will drop in and listen and then speak what we hear. We’ll meet on Zoom, a wonderful conference system that allows for us all to be both seen and heard. Register here.

Together

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Join me for Together, a living, fluid, 3-month-long gathering of women. We will meet two times a month, together, by video conference where we will drop in together. We will create community and learn to speak of what we sense and know, and how we might speak this into the world. I will write and create practices and meditations based on what we sense in the field as we are together. (I’ve upgraded JulieDaley.com. You’ll be taken to this new site to read more about Together.

I am also working on a group coaching program for women whose work utilizes much of the feminine principles and who find it difficult to speak about what they do in a way that doesn’t water down the medicine in the work. Let me know if you would be interested in something like this by emailing me at julie (at) juliedaley . com 

We all contribute to the rise of the sacred feminine in our culture by coming to know our own sacredness and by living it into the world. To awaken and live the feminine is to do deep soul work for the feminine is soul. It is the deep and the dark. It is the moist cavern. It is the journey down in and under, and then back up into the light of the sun.

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Eros, Love, & Real Power

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Existence is relationship and you are smack in the middle of it. ~ Alan Watts

 

Eros

I am in a deep exploration of Eros. I suppose I have been for quite a while. It was showing up through me – in my photographs and writing – but now I am making a conscious decision to move into a thoughtful, open, inquiring exploration of what this form of love truly is. It is calling me.

Eros is love. It is joy. It is beauty and deep feeling. And it is power…

I’ve been writing a lot about power: the kind of power we see today in our culture and the kind of power that is beginning to take hold in our world that is truly a form of love, a form of Eros. I see these two expressions of power from a relational perspective, for all of life is relational.

Power Over

The power we witness in our culture today is what I call ‘power-over’. Power-over is hierarchical and is characterized by domination and control. In our cultural systems, those in power are held higher in privilege and worth than those who are not. Those who are in power are supreme over those who are not. Those holding up the power structure are those who have power, whether it be through positions of power or unearned privilege.

This is finite power in a closed-loop system. It’s a zero-sum game. Why? It is a systemic power granted by and held within this specific system. The system grants it depending on how high you rank in the system. But there’s a catch. It’s ultimately not true power in the larger reality because there is a greater source of power than power-over.

Power-over is based on control because to believe that this is true power one must ignore the truth that life is really in control – that life is the greater source of power. Think about it. Within our culture, we do not entertain the truth about death (part of life). We push it into some kind of ignorant oblivion. As long as we refuse to see death and its power, and to see the power of nature itself, those in charge and in power of our cultural systems can pretend that they are all powerful beings, which they are doing on a continual basis.

Power-from-within

But there is another form of power emerging. It is power-from-within. Power-from-within is also a systemic power but within a different system – the system of life, whether it be the whole of life or one’s individual life. Over the past decades, people have been becoming more conscious and doing the work to heal wounds and become clearer about who they truly are. What we’ve been doing is waking up to our power-within. Not everyone is doing this, but so many are. And it’s shifting things.

Within one’s own internal system, there is a flow of life force that comes from Source. It is a steady flow through the body while we are alive. The internal world is the world of the feminine, the world of soul. When the feminine rises within, there is a movement to know and live our power-from-within – our naturally creative, life force power – into the physical world.

The thing about power-from-within is that when we live it, we are no longer living solely in flow with the status quo. The power that flows from source is intelligence that is alive. It is fueled with intelligence that knows something more than any one human being, or two, or even three, could know. This intelligence is tied to the whole of life.

Power-from-within is Eros. It is deep creativity. Power-from-within is the expression of this love into the physical world of matter. 

Now you know why Eros has been made to be something to fear or something that is only sexual in nature because if we fear our source of true power, we will stay within the power-over dynamic, even if we are in the ‘under’ position.

Eros is definitely orgasmic, but then orgasmic experiences are, again, found in so much more than just sex.

Power-with

Power-with is when I am living power-from-within alongside you living your power-from-within. Power-with is generative. When I live power-from-within, I take nothing from you. I don’t dominate you. I don’t try to control you. In actuality, the reverse happens. When I live power-from-within and you witness this happening, the awareness of your own power source begins to be awakened in you.

Eros

So here’s the thing. Alan Watts wrote, “Existence is relationship and you are smack in the middle of it.” In order to navigate and negotiate power-over structures from a power-from-within approach, we must come to remember that we are smack in the middle of life itself. A power-over system is not the ‘big’ system of life. It is pretending that it has that power, but it does not. When we come deeper into the real relationship with life and know ourselves wholly from this place, we can then see these power-over structures for what they are. It does not mean they go away, but we can navigate them differently with this generative life-affirming power.

We navigate them differently through Eros and our relationship with Nature and the Earth. Earth becomes our foundation. We begin to weave our power-from-within together.

We become resourceful and resilient, together.

Eros is love. It is deep feeling. It is beauty and joy. It is pleasure. It is life moving through life, asking life to blossom fully. This is the love we can embody in order to bring a new world into being. Eros connects us and when we are connected we are much more powerful in responding to the power-over structures.

When sleeping women wake, mountains move. – Chinese proverb

It is time to awaken to our power-from-within. To do so, we must go within. That is the task at a hand and we are up for it.

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This is what I do in my coaching. I guide you to awaken to Eros, to your power-from-within. I then walk with you as you begin to live this in the world. I’d love to be your coach.

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