Posts Tagged With: San Diego

Your Charm for October 9th is The Gnostic Talisman

Your Charm for Today

The Gnostic Talisman

Today’s Meaning:

This aspect will be tested morally. This test is may be well hidden and the solution a mystery to you. You will have to make your way through it blindly. Have faith in yourself and you will do fine.

General Description:  

The Egyptian Gnostic talisman is engraved with their hawk-headed and frog-headed deities, the winged uraeus, and the ankh, the symbol of life. The inscription is a supplication to Bait, Hathor, Akori, and ends with Hail, Father of the World! Hail, God in Three Forms! This amulet was worn as a protection against both physical and moral evil. The religion of the Gnostics was a strange intermingling of pagan and Christian ideas. It was a system of complicated symolism made purposely obscure and mysterious.

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We Are Sorry And Need To Explain

Lady A is about ready to pull her hair out. We don’t know if WordPress is tuning something on the site. The window to WordPress froze on Lady A twice. That is the reason the posts took so long. We are never made aware of when WordPress is going to do some work on the site. It would be nice. Then we could give you notice as to what is going on.

We apologize for any inconvenience this might have caused.

Thank you,

Lady Abyss & Mystie

 

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Angelica/Masterwort (Uses in Gris Gris Bags)

Angelica/Masterwort

Power: Protection of the home/healing

Use the root in a bag for happiness and protection in the home, in healing bags or alone as a charm to bring angelic influences into your life. The root also brings psychic awareness and luck in speculation and money matters where there is a risk.

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Precious Pup of the Day for May 22nd

Name: Emily
Age: One year, six months old
Gender: Female Breed: Maltese, Poodle mix
Home: San Diego, California, USA
My dog Emily is very special to me and to so many other people as well. She’s sweet, friendly and extremely loving to anyone she meets.

I first met Emily on a vacation to Texas where I went to visit some distant relatives. They had a litter of eight week-old puppies that needed homes. They told me they were having trouble finding a home for Emily, who was the runt of the litter, and would soon be taking her to the pound. I had been looking for a companion to keep my eleven-year old Baby D (Dexter) company. I thought Emily might brighten up his spirits, since Baby D had been very sick for a long time. I was concerned about adopting a puppy and bringing it into my home and upsetting Baby D, but couldn’t bear the thought of her being in the pound. That evening I dreamed that I adopted her and named her Emily, a name I would not have normally chosen. The next day, I went back and got her and braced myself for some serious puppy training!

Emily is very timid around unfamiliar objects because she’s so tiny, weighing in at less than five pounds. It takes a while to convince her that the object isn’t going to “eat her alive”! She is, however, very friendly around dogs of all sizes. She loves to go to dog beach in Coronado and always happily wags her tail to greet a friendly face. My friend Richard, who loves her so much, takes her for sleepovers once a month. He usually treats her to blueberry facials and grooming which she absolutely loves.

About a year ago, Baby D passed away and now Emily accompanies me to work three or four times a week in her little “Simply Dog” travel bag. Once at work, a co-worker takes her to his office where she spends the day with his mini Aussie Checkers. They are best buds and Emily follows Checkers everywhere.

I didn’t plan for my trip to Texas to be so life changing. I was expecting Emily to save Baby D, but instead she saved me.

WE LOVE EMILY!

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Conception of God

Conception of God

Author: Katie Koumatos

“How do you envision God?”
“As a witch, do you believe in God? In Jesus?”
“How can you have multiple Gods?”

When I talk to non-pagans about my spiritual beliefs, I get these questions a lot. I imagine this will only increase as I begin my time as a seminary student. While the community at Pacific School of Religion is open minded and welcoming to pagans, I imagine that there is still a lot of ignorance about pagan practices. Even within our community, there are a lot of discussions about how to approach the conceptualization of the divine. So let me share with you my own approach. After many years of searching, I found a beautiful metaphor that describes it perfectly.

Consider the ocean. For any of you who are lucky to have lived in a coastal town, it isn’t easy to imagine that we know the ocean. Growing up in San Diego, I spent many childhood days playing at the foot of the Great Pacific Ocean. As I learned how to spell and do long division, I also learned how to negotiate the fickle nature of the ocean, survive the rising tides and avoid the hidden dangers.

So it is easy to say I know the ocean. But what I actually know is one small piece. I have come to know the Pacific Ocean through half a dozen spots where it comes into contact with the land up and down the California Coast. I know the ocean at its boundaries, its borders. And even then, I only know THIS ocean and I only know it at THESE boundaries.

Every time I go to the ocean, even if I go to the very same beach, it is always a different ocean. Each wave falls differently along the sand, making small but powerful changes in the shape of the land. For me growing up in San Diego, the ocean was blue and relatively warm, playing along long flat beaches filled with sun worshiping beach-goers. The ocean of my adulthood is a colder ocean, breaking against the picturesque rocks of the Northern California coast. Up here the ocean is a grey and windy creature, with swirling and powerful tides. Up here I sit far above the ocean’s break, enjoying the view and the spray but rarely submerging myself in the water.

After many years, I have finally realized that God is like this.

The ocean is truly unknowable. We can list facts and send boats out to gather bits and return. But no human being will ever fully know the ocean. It is simply too vast, constantly changing, and so very deep. However, while the full ocean is unknowable, human beings from the beginning of time have had complex and important relationships with the ocean. We know her in our own spaces, at the boundaries of where she meets the land upon which we live.

Each human being who reaches out into the void seeking the divine cannot ever expect to understand the wholeness of God / Goddess / Universe / Great Spirit / the All. But in our little space, at the boundary between our short, incarnate existence and the vast eternity of divine energy, we find our face of God. Like the ocean, it changes over time, waves shifting the shape of our lives as we adjust and grow in our relationship. And while many people may gather at the same beach, but have different experiences of the ocean, so too may many people gather together in fellowship and yet remain separated by the different faces they see in God.

People can shape God as well, just as humans can shift the land where the ocean meets them. We shape the stories and the perceptions, the expectations and visual imagery. Over time this shaping can become powerful and deeply ingrained. But they are still open to interpretation.

We need these interpretations. The immensity of the divine energy is just too big to engage and feel the comfort and solace that religion offers. Having a personal relationship with God is only possible when God is squeezed down a bit, into a form that we can conceptualize having a personal relationship with. So we humanize the divine energy. Some religions are monotheistic, and give one face of God their full attention. While others simply spread out the realms of symbolic control, creating multiple faces and personalities for us to engage.

Whether your face of the divine is a multi-armed Hindu deity, the kami of the stream near your home, the Virgin of Guadalupe, or your own higher spirit, we are all just seeking a personified form to engage with. As we are made by divine energy, the worship and energy of human beings creates a real and tangible presence for the forms and faces that we have created for the divine. These faces of God are not stagnant, but they can and do exist separately and distinctly from our own personal experience because they are and have been conceived of by other human beings. With each ritual calling, we are making and remaking our Gods just as they are making and remaking us.

In the end, I believe that divine energy is the sum of all of us, along with all the animals and the plants and the whole wide universe. It is the spark of distant stars and the reproduction of the smallest bacteria. It is life and death and the shifting movement of existence here and everywhere, in this moment and in all moments before and after it. I believe that this whole is greater than the sum of these little parts and that collectively, we are conscious. I believe in a pattern, a tapestry of life in which we all play our part. We can make choices in this, but we have a part to play and there are pieces in our lives that guide us. And in all of this, different Gods are just convenient faces, ways to engage an unknowable energy.

The way I see it, God doesn’t care or even acknowledge the differences in our practices. Only human beings, with our limited sight and infinite distractions, could come up with a way to make such a small difference into a reason for centuries of war, dominance, and animosity.

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Dog-gone Doggie of the Day for April 20th

Mars, the Dog of the Day
Name: Mars
Age: One and a half years old
Gender: Male Breed: Black Labrador Retriever
Home: San Diego, California, USA
Mars is an energetic Black Lab who loves doing anything outside. He enjoys many trips to dog beach and walks in the surrounding regional parks. We live in San Diego, so the weather is usually good, and there are lots of choices of places to take him! He is constantly the center of attention (both good and bad), and is adored by anyone who meets him.

Although at times his energy is a little overwhelming, a quick toss of the ball outside or a nice walk always calms him down. His favorite trick to do is “high five,” of course a treat is always appreciated when doing this. He loves to get his belly rubbed and does the most adorable head tilt when you are talking to him. It really looks like he understand every word you say! Overall, Mars is the friendliest Lab you will ever meet and always wants to play with new friends.

Recently Mars went to a doggie cafe social at the local humane society and won first place in the trick competition they had! He basically outlasted all the other dogs by knowing how to do the most tricks which was super fun and exciting!

Mars, the Dog of the Day
See more images of Mars!

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The Big OM: Your Brain on Sex & Meditation

The Big OM: Your Brain on Sex & Meditation

  • Pamela Madsen

I was lost in my mantra. It didn’t matter that I was sitting in a room surrounded by almost 300 other meditating souls. I was lost in trance. I had no physical body. I had let go of thinking. I was floating in a place that I have only found when I was lost deeply in my own sexual pleasure – riding the waves of simply being. How could that be? I was meditating in a crowded room?

I love it when I come across scientific papers that prove to me that the experiences that I’m having are real and not some figment of my own overactive imagination. I’m just back from studying meditation with Dr. Deepak Chopra, and Davidji at the Chopra Center in San Diego. Their workshops are a soul-opening opportunity. I loved the “Journey into Healing” workshop.

But I have a confession to make: I had sex on the brain the entire time, because in each meditation I was having my own personal epiphany about my brain’s relationship to sex and meditation. The trance states that I was accessing during meditation often felt like the same trance states I could experience with ecstatic sexual experiences. I keep wondering why we weren’t talking about this. And I didn’t want to bring it up. As it was, I kept being identified as the “Sex Expert.”

I worried that my Chopra friends would think I was just caught up in my own professional biases. But, I knew what I was feeling, and I started to research it as soon as I got home. I kept thinking how wonderful it would be to ramp up the use of meditation as a tool in sexual healing. Many sex educators were already doing this as a part of the slow sex or organic orgasm movement. Meditation is the perfect entry point to many profound sexual experiences. Successful meditation and successful sex all start with the same three key entry points:

1. Get comfortable.
2. Slow down.
3. Connect to the breath.

When we are able to approach sex just like we approach meditation (without rushing to go somewhere fast) we are able to touch deeply ecstatic or erotic states where we have “alterations in bodily perception” and a “diminution of self awareness,” as mentioned in a Scientific American article called “The Neurobiology of Bliss – Sacred and Profane.” These shared experiences are found both in subjects deep in meditation and in people having sexual experiences.

As I got more practiced at meditation, I was able to feel my ego dissolve along with my own general sense of self-awareness. As I floated into “the gap,” the place that Deepak Chopra says is the place without words, I also noticed that I lost track of where my body was in place and time. Oh yeah, I have been in these places before and it was not in the lotus position!

According to studies, when you meditate, the left side of your brain becomes activated and when you engage in sexual activity, the right side of your brain runs the show. Both of these brain responses helps you to stop the constant thinking or talking in your brain. And herein lies the key—when you are able to stop the chatter, and float into what can be called “falling into the gap”, “states of higher consciousness,” “erotic trance states” or even what is known as “sub space”, your brain helps you by allowing you to lose physical and mental boundaries. That is where we can find enlightenment or dare I say it – bliss.

According to the article in Scientific American:

“Until eight years ago, neuroscience had little scientific basis from which to comment on bliss, sexual or otherwise. Despite our public fascination with things sexual, as researcher, Gemma O’Brien put it, ‘orgasm is not impersonal and third person enough for the sciences.’ Neuroscience was hobbled by the avoidance of such squashy topics, even if it meant setting aside important parts of human experience. However, a clearer portrait of pleasure is now emerging. Bliss, both sacred and profane, shares the diminution of self-awareness, alterations in bodily perception and decreased sense of pain.”

So what do you think? Are you ready to get your mantra on and connect to bliss states?

I do it twice a day now. After all, Dr Chopra recommends that. And I always listen to the good doctor!

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Conception of God

Conception of God

Author: Katie Koumatos

“How do you envision God?”
“As a witch, do you believe in God? In Jesus?”
“How can you have multiple Gods?”

When I talk to non-pagans about my spiritual beliefs, I get these questions a lot. I imagine this will only increase as I begin my time as a seminary student. While the community at Pacific School of Religion is open minded and welcoming to pagans, I imagine that there is still a lot of ignorance about pagan practices. Even within our community, there are a lot of discussions about how to approach the conceptualization of the divine. So let me share with you my own approach. After many years of searching, I found a beautiful metaphor that describes it perfectly.

Consider the ocean. For any of you who are lucky to have lived in a coastal town, it isn’t easy to imagine that we know the ocean. Growing up in San Diego, I spent many childhood days playing at the foot of the Great Pacific Ocean. As I learned how to spell and do long division, I also learned how to negotiate the fickle nature of the ocean, survive the rising tides and avoid the hidden dangers.

So it is easy to say I know the ocean. But what I actually know is one small piece. I have come to know the Pacific Ocean through half a dozen spots where it comes into contact with the land up and down the California Coast. I know the ocean at its boundaries, its borders. And even then, I only know THIS ocean and I only know it at THESE boundaries.

Every time I go to the ocean, even if I go to the very same beach, it is always a different ocean. Each wave falls differently along the sand, making small but powerful changes in the shape of the land. For me growing up in San Diego, the ocean was blue and relatively warm, playing along long flat beaches filled with sun worshiping beach-goers. The ocean of my adulthood is a colder ocean, breaking against the picturesque rocks of the Northern California coast. Up here the ocean is a grey and windy creature, with swirling and powerful tides. Up here I sit far above the ocean’s break, enjoying the view and the spray but rarely submerging myself in the water.

After many years, I have finally realized that God is like this.

The ocean is truly unknowable. We can list facts and send boats out to gather bits and return. But no human being will ever fully know the ocean. It is simply too vast, constantly changing, and so very deep. However, while the full ocean is unknowable, human beings from the beginning of time have had complex and important relationships with the ocean. We know her in our own spaces, at the boundaries of where she meets the land upon which we live.

Each human being who reaches out into the void seeking the divine cannot ever expect to understand the wholeness of God / Goddess / Universe / Great Spirit / the All. But in our little space, at the boundary between our short, incarnate existence and the vast eternity of divine energy, we find our face of God. Like the ocean, it changes over time, waves shifting the shape of our lives as we adjust and grow in our relationship. And while many people may gather at the same beach, but have different experiences of the ocean, so too may many people gather together in fellowship and yet remain separated by the different faces they see in God.

People can shape God as well, just as humans can shift the land where the ocean meets them. We shape the stories and the perceptions, the expectations and visual imagery. Over time this shaping can become powerful and deeply ingrained. But they are still open to interpretation.

We need these interpretations. The immensity of the divine energy is just too big to engage and feel the comfort and solace that religion offers. Having a personal relationship with God is only possible when God is squeezed down a bit, into a form that we can conceptualize having a personal relationship with. So we humanize the divine energy. Some religions are monotheistic, and give one face of God their full attention. While others simply spread out the realms of symbolic control, creating multiple faces and personalities for us to engage.

Whether your face of the divine is a multi-armed Hindu deity, the kami of the stream near your home, the Virgin of Guadalupe, or your own higher spirit, we are all just seeking a personified form to engage with. As we are made by divine energy, the worship and energy of human beings creates a real and tangible presence for the forms and faces that we have created for the divine. These faces of God are not stagnant, but they can and do exist separately and distinctly from our own personal experience because they are and have been conceived of by other human beings. With each ritual calling, we are making and remaking our Gods just as they are making and remaking us.

In the end, I believe that divine energy is the sum of all of us, along with all the animals and the plants and the whole wide universe. It is the spark of distant stars and the reproduction of the smallest bacteria. It is life and death and the shifting movement of existence here and everywhere, in this moment and in all moments before and after it. I believe that this whole is greater than the sum of these little parts and that collectively, we are conscious. I believe in a pattern, a tapestry of life in which we all play our part. We can make choices in this, but we have a part to play and there are pieces in our lives that guide us. And in all of this, different Gods are just convenient faces, ways to engage an unknowable energy.

The way I see it, God doesn’t care or even acknowledge the differences in our practices. Only human beings, with our limited sight and infinite distractions, could come up with a way to make such a small difference into a reason for centuries of war, dominance, and animosity.

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