Category Archives: The Great Wheel

Once a Muggle, Twice a Witch

Hello friends. Instead of waiting for the Big Spiritual Passion to return before writing, I thought I’d share what it’s like waking up from a long stretch in the mundane. We all have fallow seasons. Why not honor them?

Much love,

Tasara

The waiter at the 24-hour diner is in a good mood. He is chipper. It’s too early in the morning to have any customers yet he’s waiting for me at the door, menu in hand with a smile on his face like he’s got a secret. This makes me happy.

I hope it’s because he woke up next to the right person this morning. But now I’ve heard him giggle. He might be on the spectrum. The wonderful spectrum where the stars are brighter and innocence is somehow ever-present. 

I tell him that it seems he really likes it here.

He says, “I sure do! It’s like my second home.” 

I tell him I am looking for another job and he says, “You should apply here.”

I half laugh, then cut the knee-jerk condescension I sensed in myself, hoping I did it before he noticed and say, “Maybe I will.”

The cook is bitching about another one of the cooks that doesn’t show up. His campadre, an older woman, is trying to remind him to be grateful for having a job. He doesn’t want to hear it.

Each time she cuts in with advice, he says, “I know. I know. I know.”

But he’s really mad.

She says, “You have to focus on your own work because if you don’t, someone else will take those hours. They’ll take that money.

He says, “You’re right. You’re right. You’re right.”

The waiter yells under the heat lamps, “She just doesn’t want to work here!” And he laughs. I’ve been having my meal and he’s come over with the check because his shift is almost through.

“Ohhh! ” I say. “You’re tired!” I was trying not to assume that a waiter at a diner is taking drugs.

The morning crew is showing up and the rhythm of the diner is kicking in. The cooks have switched from English to Spanish.

I get my to-go container and it’s the most horrific thick plastic. I tell the waiter I think I might be going to the third circle of hell for it. He tells me I’ll be okay.

I’m stalling inside my car because he’s come out of the store and I want to know more. He gets in his car and I resist the urge to follow him. I’m behind him at the driveway. He turns left and I just miss his bumper sticker. It has the words We are witches.. but I can’t get the end part so I don’t know if it’s a joke or if he’s really a witch. I could go back tonight when he’s back at work and read it. I don’t think he’s autistic. He might not even be on drugs. He’s just a really incredible person. 

It’s easier to say these things without knowing the details so we can enjoy the story – without getting so deep into it that we run into trouble. 

There is a lesson here for me in how fucking condescending I can be. I should take an example from my elder. He never gives advice to me even when I’m trying to pry it out of him. One should never give advice unless solicited, is what they say. If he wrote it (which he would not), it would sound like One should never give advice. He even joked about it yesterday and said to me , “If you’re ever looking for advice again, now you know the person not to call.”

In case you’ve wondered why I’m up so unspeakably early, it’s because the Spirits told me to go watch the crows this morning. It’s two days before Summer Solstice and I’ve been saying again and again that I gotta go out and see the crows because it’s off-season and I want to know how many there are. I tried to go back to bed, but I got a kick. I said out loud “Really?”

And then I hightailed it to the roost. 

As I was getting into my car, I was noticing that it was my gut that was directing my decisions. It wasn’t a mental projection I needed to manifest like everybody’s yelling at you to do. It was instinct – and this is the first time I’ve enjoyed writing in over a year.

I love the edges of things. Twilight, back roads, off-hours. Lots of people stay up late for the same reasons, thinking they’re special but us morning people, we get it. It’s not just wildlife that becomes more pronounced. All creatures come out. Human personalities reveal themselves. There’s more magic, more to discover. 

I’m at the beach and it’s practically raining, just the way I like it. Now that I’ve watched all the crows disappear from their roost, I’m back closer to the city and there they are, yelling, continuing on their morning. These surfer shoes from Hawaii are perfect for walking on Pacific Northwest rocky beaches and getting your feet wet.

“It doesn’t have to hurt to be good, Jen.” 

I had a manager tell me that over twenty years ago and it’s still there like a billboard in my mind revealing more layers of the same truth. I think when things are hard, it makes me feel more proud when I accomplish them. But the same things that I worked so hard on before, I can just do. Life without drama is some kind of peace.

Progress Note #1:  There are some things that I just do now, instead of making it a big deal and having to win a victory, so I can tell myself I did a good job.

I might be too hard on myself with this one. It may have truly hurt before. What’s missing now is the passion in the completion. My notion is that I will have passion about different things and these will become menial tasks. I’m mostly talking about work but I also noticed this in the house. For instance, cleaning the kitchen.

Progress Note #2:  When I have a new thought or meaningful experience, I don’t assume I’m the only one having it. I think of all the other people thinking the same thing. This is important not only because I feel less alone but because it takes me out of that special club of people that think they are better than everyone else.

Progress Note #3:  There is a new glimmering shiny revelation that has arrived. I can even touch it. It might be possible that instead of either being attracted to or running like hell from addicts, I am merely not triggered. Perhaps I could even appreciate them and love them in a different way and not be pulled underwater.

People are starting to show up in the park. Meaning that there are eight cars here now and the parks department guy is finishing his chores. Time to go. Time to go back into the house. It’s true. I’m driving out. But still, there’s an older couple waltzing in the parking lot. I’m not kidding.

I’m home now, 9am, drinking the rest of my glass of wine from last night, and my wet jeans are warming by the fire. When I was at the beach, I was seeing dragons and I wanted to fall on my knees and weep to feel the magic again.

You see, the Spirits of Kindness beached me in the mundane a few years ago and left me there. I accepted the mission and I’ve learned things about myself and behaving in the world that was a long time coming but I was starting to feel a little bit abandoned. The long haul is not over, I know. I can’t jump into the flow of a passionate vocation just because I’ve completed my studies, because that flow is no longer there. I don’t even know what the vocation is anymore. I’ll have to walk a little further.

Maybe that’s the point. Maybe it’s about the long game. In the meantime, I’ll treasure every speck of magic that comes my way.

Tasara

You’ve Come So Far

And She said,

“There will be times in your healing process when you will be reminded that you don’t need to fight anymore. You don’t need to endlessly scan the land, looking for trouble, as you once had to. Each gate you go through, there will be a clear sign of certain dangers falling away. You will forget those signs and need to be remembered.

But here’s the clincher. In the lack of danger, there will be a void that will seem as frightening as your life was before. You will feel like you are floating out into space, into the unknown.

Remember your mantra, ‘If lost, return to self.’ 

There is always something to hold onto. It is you. The gorgeous light you have found inside yourself. Sing your song. Kiss the blessed earth and don’t forget to enjoy the garden you have cultivated within. Survival skills do not understand gratitude practices. They seem ..not very useful when things need to be done.

Walk into this terror. Feel it enliven your body. It is the first good terror you’ve come across. Remember the gates. You know what you have survived, what has left you and what is still to be mastered. Trust the truth of what you have accomplished. Trust the changes you have already made in your life. 

This work you have done – you have earned your own trust, so use it.
What does life have to offer when there is not imminent danger? It is not what they tell you. Go find out for yourself. Go make the life you wanted when you were held down.”

Hold on, my friend.

My heart goes out to those who are emotionally suffering under the “shelter in place” order. I know. It can be excruciating to stay present while in the depths of one’s own disorganized self, especially if one has known great tragedy. And who in this great world has not? If not in our families and relationships, by the influences of corporate greed, which has swept us away, again and again from our true heart needs, while gouging Mother Earth, who literally is us in every way imaginable.

Maybe there is some energy rerouting that can happen. Think of the awe-inspiring, creative force each of us contains. We all have designed our own flow to keep our lives stable, investing our energy in chosen places, people, media, activities and mental structures. Now that our normal balance is upset, our energy might be spilling over, stopped up. It might be striking out. It can burrow down and create depression. Or it can just freeze and all those things we have been avoiding are right here, maddeningly in the forefront.

Hold on, my loved ones. This is a rare visit to the sacred forge of transformation. The power is building up and the heat is rising. This is the time to use every tool in your toolbox, every lesson you have learned about taking care of yourself, to rest, to ground, to breathe deeply and to listen. To dance, speak, sing, to ponder. To let yourself freak out. To write, break bonds, reach out or let go. You know what to do.

The quiet voice that has been whispering to you, all this time, is still with you. Listen. Listen. Allow true inspiration to come from the depths of yourself, the earth, just as the Spring tendrils curl and reach upwards in a dance towards the coming sun.

I know you. You can do this.

Tasara Jen Stone

Prayer for Us All

Great Mother Earth, I am listening. Your cry, your warning could not be clearer, your Spring ever sweet in your instruction.

You have taken many lives in the wildfires, storms and floods. Now you take more in this pandemic.

I call out to the Spirits of the Land. I have not forgotten you. My heart aches for your resurgence. I call out to the Fey, to revel bright, to strengthen Mother’s voice for all to hear, to feel in the winds, to taste in her precious foods, to be intoxicated by, when her blossoms give and give yet again.

May we learn our lessons gracefully this time. May the need for drama and extremism fall away. May the stillness be long enough for us to hear our heart of hearts. May we listen. May we turn the tides gracefully and with ease and wisdom. May we tend to all the sick of the world, human and other, with grace. May those that pass on, pass gracefully, and may they find their way to the other side by the grace of the Spirits of Kindness.

May we remember our citizenship in this world. May we level our eyes to every living being. May we wield with love and bring ourselves back into balance, before it is too late, before she balances for us, and we must start again, as we did millions of years ago. May this be the time that we listen. May this be the time that we understand.

Tasara Jen Stone

Perching Before Samhain

Grandmother pulls her shroud
and the rains, the warm rains,
it rains inside this endless cup of grey.

Grandfather blows his crisp leaves
and the smell, the earthly smell, 
the smell brings me to myself.

Tis the blessed season of endless twilight, 
of richly dressed sunrises,
of memories fine, memories drawn,
memories, ancient borne,
come from the crack of the horizon.

As I gaze through branches brown,
sienna tangled in my hair
I know my home, my home,
my earthly, earth home.

She waits for me in the shape of a rook,
on the other side,
in a cave,
in the dank
the darkness.

And I savor the moment, her beckoning,
for she is no longer my huntress, my dread.
She is my mistress, my mother, my crone.

For I have been through canyons dark, seen mirrors sharp.
I have walked the valley of the dead,
been tangled on the rocks with no matter,
I have been, again and again.

Under the wraiths’ long cry,
the songs I could not hear
the banshee did not lie,
and then I found my footing.

She has shown me the way, through myself and back again.
And this time.. I relish the time, the time.

Tasara

The Ancient Bones of Ceremony

This book has no recipes for ceremony. Instead, it takes you on a journey through the stages of creating your own. Through this experience, you will deeply understand the energetics of what makes ritual powerful.

Cover

Step into the mysteries of the ancient ways as you travel on an allegorical journey to explore the many dynamic aspects of what makes a ceremony transformative for yourself, your family and your community.

Weddings, rites of passage, baby blessings, funerals, yes, and also life changes that are not typically honored: loss of relationship, divorce, new home, new job, eldership and retirement.

For many of us, the formats provided by higher authorities are not enough, and imitating traditions of other cultures is controversial. We need to return to the bare bones of ceremony and create transformative events that are personalized to our own lives and the culture we live in. This is where our power lies.

With Tasara Stone’s careful guidance, you will learn to:

  • Identify your heart’s yearning and turn its message into a pure, ceremonial intention
  • Create beautiful metaphors and symbolic language to express your heart’s need
  • Invoke and maintain sacred space
  • Perform ceremony with effective, safe practices

For public ceremony you will learn to:

  • Identify community needs and desires
  • Empower others to participate in the ceremony-creation process
  • Manage large groups of people when the energy is unpredictable
  • Hold ethical and safe space for others

Tasara Stone’s lyrical writing, which includes prayers, blessings, and paeans of gratitude, transports us to a sacred landscape where our heart’s needs are treated with utmost care. We tune into the light that glows at our core, connecting us to all of life. We spend time with Mother Earth and her elemental spirits, who teach us to walk the sacred spiral path. We learn about the importance of aligning ourselves with the cycles of growing and dying, accepting and letting go. Only with this wisdom and love can we craft and experience ceremonies that are truly transformative.

Tasara Stone offers us not only a practical guide, she gives us a powerful and moving experience of the energies that will nourish our practice. Her words root us in the very soil out of which ceremony grows. Fully engaged, heart, mind, body and soul, we come to understand how the wisdom of ancient times can help us cultivate an authentic spiritual practice in the midst of modern life. This is another essential gift of The Ancient Bones. As we contemplate the lies and distortions that bombard us daily, we come to understand ceremony as a way of creating alternative stories for ourselves, ones that give our lives true meaning.

Access The Sweetness Within You.

Sing Your Song.

Shine Your Light.
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Where to Buy

Paperback/Ebook
Bookshop is my favorite, because they donate to local bookstores.
Also, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and many others.
Audiobook
iTunes Store / Audible, Amazon / Audiobooks.com / AudiobooksNow / AudiobooksNZ / Authors Direct / BajaLibros / Beek / Bokus Play / BookBeat / Bookmate / Chirp / eStories / Fuuze / Google Play / hibooks / Hummingbird / Instaread / Kobo, Walmart / Libro.FM / Nextory / NOOK Audiobooks / Papaya / Playster / Scribd / Storytel

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Skeleton II

This life,
ever fought for,
sought for, sacrificed for,
runs fresh in my veins,

It shifts my body before the notion to do so arises.

I am alive.
What I gained on the other side,
this glowing rock,
this molten lava,
this star bursting from my chest,
is not meant to be beared, but shared.

In stillness, I would cave and fester.
In movement, a booming echoes around me, from me somehow.

The magnet of my compass has grown so strong,
it is more trouble to ignore, now, than to follow.

What will I do?
What will I do?

I will discover in the doing.


[photo credit: https://downtheforestpath.com/2013/03/06/little-pagan-monastery/]

Final Reprise

PART ONE:

When the warrior finally reaches the green pastures and sunny meadow,
when the warrior puts her weapons down,
she feels the heat rise from the ground beneath her and lies down to rest
under the high grass,
smell of lyrical flowers.

Further no purpose, no quarry in sight, she dreams of battles
and then when she rises, all comforts greet her body
and she sighs, and she sleeps again.

When the warrior has found her way out of the darkness
into the light of her own heart
there is no longer need to strive

for arrival is come
and the land is still.

There is nothing left to seek,
yet the song still awaits,
and she waits for the song.

Soothe the jagged remembrances of evil.
Remember the misplaced soothing of jagged affairs.

Awake she is, like never before and
like never before, she draws from her sleep,

every fiber,
her being whole now,
glistening and listening to the holy voice within.

PART TWO:

I asked, “Once the debris has been cleared, the demons faced and transformed, what is left in the sacred vessel, in the shadow within us?”

and I heard the reply,

“That which one is connected to
but has no words for.

That which gestates and must not be disturbed,
lest it be damaged in the process.

The Great Mother, who holds us, who nourishes and weeps and cheers for us.

This is also the realm of the White Raven, she who has been burnt through and still lives. She who is Grace with a thin cloak of iron unseen and unshakeable. She who is container, soft as feather, hidden power capable of those very things she yearned to do when in pain but put down as soon as she was able. She is Death, she has seen and understood every aspect of Death and yet she has no need to bring on Death. She holds forgiveness, her compassion gently touches us with the naked light of presence aware.”

Once the stagnation is broken in the sacred vessel of shadow,
once the river is flowing freely,
dreams of the Gods quickly,
our journeys clear in the slipstream of their inspiration.

Then when we tell, we tell from a place of the Gods.

This is all I know and I pray for.

When the Veil

When the veil comes down, we are standing there like Innana, naked. Or maybe we are already turning on the spit.

What they don’t tell you about Innana is that by the time she gets to that point, she is so desperately relieved she could kiss the ground. She is sick of the long haul, the grasping for something, anything, the agony of loss – and she’s glad it’s finally all gone. Because now she can see that which could have never been taken. It is herself. And that undignified humiliation, that unbridled relentless unapologetic agony is what brings her to herself. She faces herself, and then she knows all that she has always known, this time without interference. And she thinks, “Holy crap. I am home”.

veil

And all that has been stripped, she knows she’ll never want back. Her jewels, her crown, if necessary will only be a prop for the real show that needs no casing. It is the people who need it to be encased in order for it’s rawness to be bearable to them. She can give them that. Such is the power of a woman.

And the veil to the outer world is torn down too. The antics of humanity, the circus show that has always tantalized in some way has now become a low hum because she no longer wants. She does not hunt. Her power, her nourishment is found, and she has become like the rocks, like the waterfall, like the moon. She channels the archaic ages of time and sips her tea while she watches. And she waits. She may try to trip us up once in a while hoping we may find our way to her, to keep her company, but she knows that no one can do that finding but ourselves.

Yes, we. We are all forces of nature, some to glow, some to build, some to sing, some to purge and some to awaken. Like waves crashing upon each other we greet, we encounter and we retreat to await the next surge. What will it be like next time? Will it be different? But who will we be? There is no other.

The wise woman, she breathes on the sea bed. She has seen it all. She has lived every form from hay flower to flea, from bat to snail. She has growled and been prey. She has birthed and she has lay down to die. She has loved and she has burned. She has prayed and crawled. She understands the value in things and the waste in trying.

The old woman, she is endlessly awake, her awareness our daylight, her dream-time our moon. And with her gaze she holds us all. She holds us with a love yet unfathomable.