Graciella and I pulled this week’s card as usual. We’d tried last week, but I couldn’t seem to get the post picture inserted. I have to admit I was frustrated and irritated. My spouse and I were planning to go out and I had forty-five minutes to get the post in. Well, forty-five minutes later I was still tooling around with the picture that refused to show vertically. It insisted on a horizontal layout. At some point, I let it go. I needed to move on and that was the card I’d chosen- the traveler. I also felt that I wasn’t ready to start the oracle readings up yet. I needed to do the easier thing. So after three-quarters of an hour of going uphill I gave up. I am in a phase of letting things be so that’s what I finally did. I can be stubborn. It’s a Varela trait.
Today, Graciella and I shuffled the oracle deck. We fanned them out on the dining room table. This time I didn’t smudge. I think it will be okay. Together we pulled the Change/Cambios card.
The card image shows an arm reaching up for a particular cannister. In the process of doing so, it seems that another cannister has inadvertently fallen open. In the sweet sugar or flour that is spilled, there is another image. One of a chain of golden links that is in the shape of a heart. Sugar and flour are usually used to create a baked good or a confection. We may have to work a little bit for the tasty muffin or pie but it is usually well worth it when we bite down into it. While there could be minor annoyances, such as having to clean up a spill, the idea that something unexpected and pleasant may show up spontaneously in a favorable way, is the idea that Graciella would like to share.
A friend had sent me a beautifully touching letter today. She’d read yesterday’s post on the loss of my father and how I am adjusting. At the end she wished me all the courage I could muster as I move forward on this voyage. It was heartfelt and I’m in gratitude at the love sent in that letter. Today’s card speaks to the wonder and fulfillment about to be experienced in changes that will be encountered. I think that they’ve already begun. One example is me picking up a needlepoint piece that I’d put down a couple of years ago. I didn’t have the concentration or the patience to work on that piece. This weekend the ease of the needle work was calming and yes, comforting.
If you experience an unexpected satisfying change this week, will you share it here with us?
I’m back at my latest novel Coney Island Siren. The final corrections are nerve-wracking. I have excellent notes and comments from my editor, but am still anxious that I’ll miss something. I will. That’s what makes me human. Hopefully, any errors will be kept to a minimum. It felt good to be back in the text and the poetry. I still love the book after years of writing it and months of editing. I’m planning to have advance reader copies ready within the next couple of months. Let me know if you’re interested. I’ll see what I can do. There’ll only be a few but maybe you’ll be on the receiving end of an ARC. The book release will be in June of 2019. Soon there!
I have a candle burning in the background and could hear Graciella trying to get my attention. It’s Sunday evening and time for a weekly reading. She’s on time. So I am. Finally. I smudged myself and the oracle deck with white sage and feathers. Together, Graciella and I centered, took a few deep breaths, and shuffled the deck three times. We spread the cards out face down in a fan-like formation and asked for this week’s message. We pulled one. The Toreador-Matador Card! ¡Olé!
This is the card that came up multiple times at the Artisans Annual Holiday Market at El Barrio’s Art Space that I attended recently with other artists and authors. This card just kept popping up!
As the toreador who circles, who embodies the concept of stealth, we are ready to strike repeatedly at all costs of life to satisfy the audience. We strive to complete the transaction that we believe we are bound to and cannot consider extricating ourselves from. The truth is that we can remove ourselves from anything we are in conflict with at any time. We are not robotic in our maneuvers. The toreador seems to be in union with the bull. Watching its every move. Planning the execution. But the toreador also has his or her eye on the blood-thirsty crowd who has gathered to see what for some is a barbaric fight. The same grace that is needed for this bloody dance is also one that may be used to save the one who may actually need the saving. Is it the intended target, such as the bull? The audience who has paid a fee for the spectacle? Or is it the toreador who might benefit by walking away? During the week, look to see where this might fit in your drama. It may be a quick strategy. It may not even be your own, but one that you are allowed to be privy to. Share your experience in the comments when you experience it. Graciella and I are certain that you will have the opportunity.
After a day of watching television and relaxing with a run thrown in, I’m feeling a bit back to myself. I’m finally back to writing. Two and a half pages for my second Daisy novel to be exact. I don’t keep a word count. That’s a bit excessive for me. Daisy spoke to me and I was able to give her attention. She’s patient. And so are you. I’ve had a few people ask me at some recent events, when my next Daisy novel will be ready. Soon, guys. We’re working at it. She’s persistent and that’s one of her strengths. Today I received a call from the hospice chaplain for my Dad. We talked about my Dad’s needs and mine. It’s been a revelation to be on this journey and realize I truly have lots of help from many sources. To have the ability to tell the chaplain that I’m in a good spiritual place is a gift.
As I prepared to pull this week’s card from Graciella’s oracle deck, I thought about the positivity of the holiday week. I wondered what type of celebratory card that we’d pull. I smudged myself and the cards with a good dose of white sage. I felt Graciella’s energy merge with mine as I shuffled the deck and fanned the cards out on my desk. I felt excited about what I sure would be a pleasure filled concept. Together, we pulled the Treachery/Traición card. What! Treachery card! How dare Graciella! But so it is. I actually took a moment away from the card to deal with my disappointment in the card. But I’m over it now and ready to tackle Graciella’s message.
The text that is provided in the booklet says, Blinded by your own reflection, Self-will binds, Allow awareness to surge through your being, Refrain from self-betrayal. The Spanish translation is: Quedarse ciego con su propio reflejo, La obstinación ata, Permite que la concencia aumente a través de tu ser, abstenerse de la auto-traición.
What I take these words to mean, in this particular reading, is to not limit ourselves to our desires, wants, and perceived needs. There is a much bigger picture to consider. The image shows the gentleman tied up and hanging from a branch. Fairly innocuous as he’s held up by his coattails. His feet are reflected in the water. Where has he been? Where is he going? Where does he believe himself to be on his path? His hat floats below him. A hat such as this type is often symbolic of pride for many. Has he lost his head? We see Graciella sitting in a meditative pose at the side of the pond. The pond is clear and will show many things as long as Graciella or we are willing to look at what is below the surface. In her hand she holds a clear quartz crystal. What better tool is there to bring us clarity? To bring us to the light within.
The message of meditating to bring clarity to ourselves is apparent. But we can also, during this time of holiday celebration, are encouraged to not be shallow as the pond. We can allow our masculine and feminine sides to merge and be whole in spirit and mind. We are encouraged to reflect upon our reflections! Are we open to the simplicity in giving and receiving, such as a crystal point that channels energy both from ourselves to others and from others to ourselves? Be open. Be reflective. Let the joy of giving and receiving come to you without pre-conceived notions. The celebration may just be in that!
Happy holidays my loved ones! May you bask in joy and love!
I made it a point this week to keep last Sunday’s read up front in terms of my experience. The concept of the Sun/Sol showed up clearly for me. The meaning wasn’t news that I might be unhappy to receive. But it did arrive with a starkness, a clarity of vision, of knowledge that I would be ill-advised to deny. Did I have to do anything about the information? No. But it was still helpful to know and it started a series of talks for me to begin managing an important part of my life.
Today, I smudged myself and the oracle with white sage. It smells so wonderful. I shuffled the cards three times, and fanned them out on an uncluttered surface, my creative table. I felt Graciella’s energy merge with mine as I centered and together we pulled the Change/Cambios card from the oracle deck.
Change! Yet again, we receive the message that change is afoot. What else is new? The image shows the hand reaching for two cannisters when there is one on the counter that is spilling sugar. Surprisingly, a piece of jewelry is also seen in the sugar. The wall tiles are vividly colored and today I see them as Christmas decorations already hanging. Can you see that too?
As we become busy with the holiday season, it would be prudent to take the time to tend to what needs to be done before we attempt to do more. Are we buying things we already have? Are we neglecting basic things because we are harried and in a rush. What might we be purposefully neglecting because we believe that cleaning up our messes will take up too much time.
Take a moment. Look around. Where in our lives are things neglected or ignored because we believe that other things take precedent? The festivities are already here. We don’t have to look too far for them. We can create fun and happiness while still taking the time to take care of the things that ultimately bring a sweetness to our lives unrealized in our daily activities.
For many of us, the leftovers are in the fridge, we’ve hugged our loved ones so long, and we ready for the coming week. There’s much planning that’s been completed and now we begin to plan for the upcoming holidays! For others, this time of quiet has afforded us the time to complete certain tasks and bask in solitude. However, we choose to spend our holidays, I hope for all that the wonder of life is fulfilling and that Spirit has shown you how special you are in this world.
Today, as usual, I smudged with white sage in my abalone shell and centered my energies with that of Graciella, la Gitana, who walks with me. I shuffled the cards from the oracle deck and fanned them out on an uncluttered surface. Together, Graciella and I chose the Sun/Sol card.
The simplicity of this image is one that always surprises me in its beauty. Graciella walks the desert with her camel. There must be a certain trust in the environment to take this action. The aridity and barrenness in the image invites one to acknowledge the certain need to believe and have faith in what is happening or may occur in the environment or situation. The blueness of the sky is stark, yet pleasant, to the eye. The sun is seen, in this particular case, like a opening one may reach into. If one chooses to reach in, he or she must take care not to be burned. If we are aware of our protection, we must use it. Before we avail ourselves of situations that may not be to our best interest, we should take stock of what we may need. Do we need basic survival tools, like a cloak, a canteen or two filled with water for you and your loyal beast? Food that will not spoil? A balm for one’s burning lips?
Go forth, this week and allow yourself to be aware of the areas in your life that may be illuminated with information or knowledge that is brought in honest frankness. We might not find ourselves in the desert, but be prepared. The sun lights areas with sometimes uncomfortable radiance. Don’t we want to know? Don’t we want to see? Don’t we want to be prepared? While seeing with such clarity may be anxiety provoking, it will bring us exactly what we need and ultimately want to know.
Tonight I felt so lazy in pulling this week’s card. I’d written a few more lines to the second installment of my Daisy Muñiz mystery series- Murder at the Gowanus Canal and wanted to just sit and add more but the manuscript will wait for me to come back to it. The last week and a half has been jam packed. Yesterday, I had the great pleasure of sharing in Comité Noviembre that is a grand family event at Hostos Center for the Arts that’s held yearly. Puerto Rican artists and authors come together and it becomes, well, a festival! I plan to share a bit more on that this week, but other things were also cooking. We returned from packing up our little house in Puerto Rico as we have placed it on the market. My Dad got sick so I spent vital time with him. My dear aunt, who was 99 years old, crossed over and we went to the wake. Not to mention I managed to weave in getting back to work this week too. Are there enough hours in the day? What have you been doing? When I speak to friends and family, we are all moving so quickly.
But I did pull the card. As usual, I smudged with sage, shuffled the cards, and fanned them out on a clear smooth surface. I centered and joined with Graciella’s energy. Together we pulled the North/Norte card from the oracle deck.
The north! of course. Be at peace with the goings on at this time of year. The north speaks of the ancestors. It speaks of those who have been our relatives, either those elders that continue to guide us or those who have already crossed through the veils. They are the ones that have shared their great wisdoms with us. The one we yearn to be with as they feed us with the rich stories of their lives, teaching us how to live in grace, in honor, and with dignity.
For myself, today is my sister’s birthday. She crossed over at the age of fifteen. She was my elder. I feel her presence strongly at this time of the year especially. The anniversary of my mother’s death comes on November 27. She left us at Thanksgiving time. It is bittersweet when those we love cross over. I remember the unexpected feeling of relief when my mom passed. The knowledge she was no longer suffering helped my own grief along with a multitude of other feelings that came with her crossing. I spoke with a cousin today who shared a similar story. We were able to give each other strength at this difficult time of thin veils.
At some point today, I had the realization that I have become an elder. I’m no longer the child who was emotionally hurt so many years ago. That is part of my fiber but I’m now one of the ones that share the wisdoms that come with living many years on the planet. It was interesting to realize that. Why didn’t I notice that before when I looked in the mirror at my gray locks. It’s good for me to know that I have something to offer others who are now feeling what I have in the past. I have the opportunity to share as the wise one.
Graciella and I would both love to know how you are dealing with the North, the thin veils, and this time of nostalgia during the holiday season. Won’t you share that with us? We invite you to leave a comment below.
We just returned from a Mexican restaurant, LaFrontera, here in Puerto Rico. The food was delicious and the service very nice. We sat outdoors and enjoyed this beautiful clear 75 degree weather. Last evening we ate at ElSarten Criollo where I usually eat mofongo. But last night I ate asopao de pollo. Chicken soup with broth that’s to die for with rice that’s perfectly cooked. It’s with a full and happy belly that I pulled a card with Graciella.
Tonight I didn’t smudge, but was sure to center and join with Graciella’s energy as I especially asked that the message I channel would be a general one for all for this week. I’ve been focused on the packing here in Puerto Rico as I’ve just placed my house on the market and didn’t want any mix-ups.
Together we shuffled, fanned the oracle cards, out and pulled the Changes/Cambios card. This card tells us to be mindful of things, activities, and situations that will change. Keep the idea of quickness in mind. There’s no time to dwell or ruminate on our desires or wants. Be ready to jump into action..
This card brings forth sweetness such as the sugar I see falling out of the canister. In this particular read I also see a sliver of gold. Something that might have been lost shows up again.
This reading foretells that something good is coming. Be ready for it. Be sharp and on the lookout. It may entail family or loved ones. This may be your week!
Tonight’s read came after a day filled with accomplishments and a few challenges that seemed insurmountable at the time. The clocks are moved back an hour and our physicals are expected to work with the prescribed rhythms. I’m not sure mine will tomorrow morning but that’s the assumption (insert tongue in cheek here).
This time in preparing to pull a card from Graciella’s oracle, instead of smudging with sage, I decided to smoke the deck. I lit a cigar and let the smoke from it waft over the deck. It felt right. A cigar goes well with a read on most days for me. In the usual manner I shuffled the cards, fanned them out on a clutter free space, and mingled my energies with Graciella’s. Together we pulled the North card.
The North belongs to the ‘old ones and those gone by’- our ancestors both on this plane and of the realms of those who have crossed over to the other side of the veils. We look to our elders, here and gone by, for wisdom, for guidance, for the beauty of truth and direction in trudging our destinies. The image of water, in the case, is offered for reflection like a looking glass or a mirror that shows us what we need to know. It’s important for us not to forget that we also carry the wisdom of centuries within our bones, our sinews, ourselves.
The trees seem to be a barrier of protection against the fortress that is nestled between them and the icy mountain tops. Use nature and natural forces to protect yourself as often as you can during this coming week. The flags atop the fortress remind us to stay alert. We must be proud of who we are and what we do. We signal to others who we are by how high we carry our pride afloat. The fortress may also be depicted as the old schools and institutions that not only hold our places of learning, education, but of elections. These are reminders of the institutions that are not easy to change. Use this time of election to vote. The older manner of voting was to flick those little flags down in small booths and in this way we effected change. We may use different means to vote today but we are still effecting change in our use of the vote. Get out there and make your voice heard this week. This is what a warrior does! A warrior woops his or her call as it strikes for change! Our lives and those of our fellow human beings are depending on it.
I must admit that I was surprised because we recently pulled that card for this weekly reading. But quickly, I received the message that should be shared tonight. Our world is a very sick one. In light on the assassinations and attempted murders on the national front, we are all personally involved in pain, hate, resentment, and anger. What a lust for hurt! My own dismay at my feelings must be counteracted with love, compassion, forgiveness, and healing in whatever service or level that I may reach. We are all different and must accept what we and others are able to give as we move to condemn the rhetoric, the demands of the twisted, and those who seek to harm.
Our actions in healing and changing our world to a better one absolutely includes prayers. It includes us personally engaging in whatever activity we indulge in that may bring happiness and joy to ourselves and to others. Stress levels decrease when individuals cook with their children, while telling stories of our ancestors. It also decreases when one runs in a group, in a solitary manner, or sings, or plays an instrument that raises our vibrations.
This card depicts the male and female aspect communicating. The language is seen through the expressions, the fervor, the ability to yield to the love and the voice of another. We must listen to each other for understanding to take place in communication. We must also speak out to share our viewpoints. This speak comes in many forms. For some it is a whisper, for others it is a solid voice that doesn’t quiver in fear. Again, it is what we can manage in a healing way. Communicating our needs in our personal lives with our families is often not easy. It can also be challenging in the world outside of our walls. One of our most effective ways to communicate is to vote.
If we want our society to be a healthy one, with the masculine and feminine in balance, we must not hold our visions to ourselves. Look around you. Observe your world. What ways can we employ to make it healthy again?
Welcome to this week’s reading from Graciella la Gitana Oracle. As is our custom, I smudge with sage, light a white candle, and center myself. Feeling at one with Graciella la Gitana’s spiritual energy, together we focus our intent on what the message is that she would like to send out into the world. Her aim, as always, is to bring compassion into the world.
Together, we shuffled the deck, fanned out the cards, and pulled the Spiral/Espiral card. The image shows the tambourine that Graciella uses in dance, in music, and during gleeful celebrations. These are lighthearted activities that we need in our worlds to keep ourselves balanced. The ribbons that extend from the instrument are reminiscent of the double helix- like DNA strands that code our ancestry. While we may believe that we are undergoing the same as in past situations, we must remember that we have moved up on the rungs of the spiral. We may be familiar with the positioning but we have grown, we have learned, and we have progressed. Others may treat us as though we have not learned our lessons, but within we know differently and are encouraged to respond in a manner that depicts our development. Our progress may not easily be apparent, therefore, we must take the time to recognize our advancements as Graciella so lovingly encourages us to do.