Wednesday, 15 December 2010


i am having one of those brief but incredibly delicious moments of clarity...well i say brief but i seem to be resting in this spacious place for the last few hours!... all is well... all is perfect... all that is my reality and my life is a blessing, rich, beautiful, and joyous.... i dont know how long this will last, tho i know that unless i have gained enlightenment (unlikely tho would be great!) this moment too shall pass and once again the grasping, seeking, comparing, needing and all too human mind will come crashing back into the drivers seat bringing mayhem and mischievousness its way!

so i am enjoying the place i find myself this eve...hearing the sounds of the city...the tapping of my fingernails on the keys of my laptop.. the warmth of my fleecy pyjamas holding my fire, comforting me...the pillows behind me easing and supporting my toes softly dancing with each other.... my breath gentle and soft...a little smile on my face...just this moment... just this now...

how did i get here? i cannot say for sure but maybe... just maybe these factors came into play:

1) i feel truly deeply incredibly blessed to be doing the 'work' that i do...i love teaching.. i love my students.. all of them...i love what i receive from the experience of sharing these ancient practices...i am filled with so much gratitude for this in my life right now

2) i spent the afternoon with a dear, beautiful and inspiring friend...sipping tea and eating cake...sharing news and snippets from our lives...laughing... shopping... basking in the warmth of open hearts...lately i have really been feeling how lucky i am in the amount of love and friendship i have in my life.. its kinda blown me away!... i am one very lucky lil lady!

3) the amount of support i seem to be receiving from the universe around my 'alchemy of the arts' events and retreats seems to be unbounding... truly! again i feel deeply grateful and also very excited to witness my little seed gently and tenderly taking shoot.. i will be careful to nurture it and tend to its needs as it hopefully continues to grow both widely and wildly to dance with the world

4) tho i do not wish to offer too deep an insight into what has been a tenderly painful yet devastatingly delicious distraction over the last few months, the ending of my latest dalliance in intimacy and love, has offered me so much insight and so many gifts... thro the tears and heart breaking sadness of it all, i can feel gratitude, once more, lurking quietly in the corner of my heart..i took a risk, and i will risk again, someday!

god... do i sound like i have been swallowing happy pills?!.. i can asure you that whilst that is certainly not the case, i have been swallowing pills of a different nature... these ones have 'thank you' written on them...someone once said, and i think it was meister eckhart,
"if you only say one prayer in your life, make it 'thank you'"
om namaha

Thursday, 9 December 2010

planet magic

'energy burst'... mixed media on canvas

one of the ways i like to keep connection with the earth and its cycles is to turn a curious eye to any astrological events that may be occuring and messing with my status quo! i am always intrigued to find out that some strong planetary alignment has possibly (and please note the word possibly!) had an influence on what i may be experiencing that week. hell if we are so effected by the full moon (and accidents and emergencys always report an increase in walk-ins at this time of the month) then surely it is not so far fetched that some of its large bodied cousins may have say in how we are doing too?!

on december 10th, mischievous mercury goes retrograde messing up our plans, and causing potential setbacks...such a trickster is that mercury!
however the key to dealing with mercury is that it reminds us to loosen up that control part of us when things go's by learning to deal with the little setbacks that we become more successful at tackling some of life's bigger challenges.
this time mercury will travel thro capricorn, our practical earthy cautious planetary energy. a reminder not to get too carried away by big spending this season, but maybe to step back and offer from your heart instead...make some lil gifts; give your time and a friendly ear to loved ones; have the pleasure of experiences together with those folk you love.

however, if mercury's prankster energy causes appliances to stop working, that letter you were waiting for not showing up, or your train journey being delayed, remember to step back, take a deep breath and smile. can we create that space within where the world can falter a little and its not the end of the world?...unless it is the end of the world of course! but thats a different story altogether!

on a more intriguing note, the 10th will also boost a lil romance in the air, as mercury and venus (planet of love) sparkle and dance in sexy seductive passionate scorpio...turn up that heat and find alternate ways to warm those cockles folk!

Tuesday, 23 November 2010


the true meaning of love is to stay with. i have been thinking of this lately. how it relates to our yoga practice: staying with the edge, the challenge in a difficult posture, the challenge of a whirlwind mind. to love our self means to stay with our self, like a good friend not leaving our side, but holding us close and whispering words of comfort and support tenderly in our ear. when we stay with ourself we no longer abandon our self, our inner child, like we may have chosen to do many times before, in a blind panic, in not knowing what to do, or how to make it better.

when life is so painful it is easier to turn away. when our heart aches it is easier to look away. anything is easier than feeling the pain, than owning the suffering. so turn away we do, so many ways, like a carnival, to distract us. here are some of my favourites: tv, too loud music so i can no longer hear my self think, cleaning the flat, reading, surfing the net for hours, wild night out, disconnect from feeling my body, and the one i am most skilled at, being ridiculously busy!

yet, i know that each time i turn away from my self, from staying with my self, from loving my self, i am breaking my own heart, i am betraying the only one who will travel with me until my last breath out.and so i have made a commitment recently, to keep turning back, to fully notice when i just have to look away for a while, and then gently, so gently, find my way back, to holding my own hand, shyly, softly, no words needed, no apology, no guilt. simply sitting besides my self once more fully feeling all that is moving through me.

and believe me, sometimes this takes great strength, a great warrior heart, yet it is the only way.

if i love my self, i choose to stay, no matter what, until the bitterness of my pain turns into the sweetest blossom my heart could ever hold, and i know that a new day is finally dawning upon me and my beloved self.

Thursday, 18 November 2010


love (mixed media)
'do what you love
love what the moments of your beating pulse offer
what is your passion dear soul?
can i hear your whispers beneath the raging city decibels?
the twitching of my ears to sounds of music
feet up then down with the beat
beating the earth as she hums in delight
whilst skeleton limbs throw shapes with the wind.
the light of my eyes filled with you
yes, you, who shines a talented furl my way
teasing and inspiring my fingers to play
with words paint feathers wood sound,
in ways new, to me, anyways
do what you love
no time wasted start now,
breathe inspiration into a full belly
of tomorrows dreams'
why is it so hard to simply do what we love most? what makes our heart sing, our eyes twinkle, our belly feel warm? is it fear? i wonder what we are so afraid of.
maybe we are afraid that if we began to truly live as we desire so deeply, that our carefully placed world will topple and fall like the last card atop a playing card house. our lives might change. our priorities seemingly different. our little everyday to do lists of monotonous ongoing tasks may not get ticked off. whats the pay off? increased happiness. knowing we have created meaning to our time on this earth. courage to continue to risk for the sake of living fully and feeling deeply. a satisfaction that we no longer procrastinated in the creating of our one singular precious life.

Saturday, 13 November 2010


(click on the title 'breathtaking' to see this video. unfortunately i haven't worked out how to download videos properly yet so please bear with me for now!)

wow! this rendition of the gayatri mantra by the wonderful deva premal is just simply breathtaking. it touches me very deeply and breaks my heart open in tenderness and awe. i love this mantra, always have done, and i have decided to embark upon a 40 day discipline of chanting this mantra as we head into wintertime. my experience of it from previous years is that it felt like it had lifted my spirit, quite literally, i felt like i was imbued by light, by the sun, a lightness of my whole being.

the late mantra master, acharya namadeva thomas ashley-farrand, whom i was incredibly blessed to have met at one of his workshops on the shakti mantras last april in london, talks about the effects and importance of this mantra in his book 'healing mantras'. he says that not only is this mantra thousands of years old, but is considered the essence of all mantras. he says:

'the gayatri mantra is simply meditation on spiritual light...for pure spiritual potency, the accumulation of the highest spiritual light, and attainment of enlightenment, there is nothing to compare with the gayatri mantra'

when i chant this mantra, i feel connected to something old, so old and ancient that it makes me weep with a remembering and re-connecting deep in my bones. mantras are magical, and i highly recommend this beautiful, powerful and luminous one to steer one's spirit thro' the darker months.


Friday, 12 November 2010


'softly, gently, night unfurls its splendour...', so sang the phantom from the opera of his name. well the night is blowing strongly out in the wee hours of manchester, the wind howling, announcing its power, and leaving us in awe of the elements we can so easily forget sweeped up by our city lives.
mary oliver wrote:
'you do not have to be good.
you do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
you only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.'
(wild geese)
mmmm...the soft animal of your body. how delicious! with the cold weather bearing its weight can we find that softness, that animal part of us, our sensual nature. how do i find that? thro rolling around on the earth, on a dancefloor, on my solar fringed rug; in the arms of a lover, warm, receptive, playful; with big juicy tubes of paint squeezing out into freedom and form. what else connects me to that softness? my lil 3 year old beautiful niece, hanging out with a cat learning from its natural sensuality, naked in the nevada desert, playing with clay teasing it into ever evolving shapes.
i wonder what makes you soft dear reader, what connects you with that animal part of you, your sensuality?

Thursday, 11 November 2010


golden fire leaves burning away the old, making space for composting, resting, clearing, transitioning into the unknown, the 'fertile void'.
ah, time to slow down my friends, to feel the pulse of the earth pulling us deeper and deeper into slowing down. 'stay for a while longer' the earth whispers as we prepare to leave our homes. 'surrender to me' she purrs as we are busy planning and doing.
this is my lesson right now. my oh so familiar pull towards being busy and rushing on to the next activity is being challenged. i am being asked to slow down, to pause, to surrender. eeek!
do you know that osho mentions the difference between 'activity' and 'action'? he says the first is about this constant buzzing, doing, and generally wearing ourselves out with so much, usually, pointless motion. whereas the latter is a more focused, aware and purposeful movement, powered by our intention and wisdom.
well, creating this blog is a form of taking action for me. well at least i can write in the warmth and comfort of my own home, with fresh green tea as company, and the sounds of lucinda belle on the stereo. bliss!