In the world of psychology it is commonly believed that anger, fear, shame, and guilt are secondary emotions. Meaning they are not what is truly happening for a person. Just scratch the surface of these four (which is what all good therapists know how to do) and you will almost always find grief.
For many reasons most humans can’t stand feeling grief (which is such a bummer, cuz grief is some magical stuff…but that’s another post.) Grief is so disliked by our logical mind that it sends in these four emotional states to distract us:
Anger: who says grief is unacceptable
Shame: who says there is something wrong with you for experiencing grief
Fear: who claims that grief is scary and dangerous
Guilt: who says don’t pay attention to grief, focus on how terrible you are instead.
Anger, shame, guilt, and fear definitely have their valuable place in the world, but if you frequently suffer from one or more of these four – check yourself for unattended grief.
Is just reading this post making a part of your body tense? Do you believe being grief-stricken is wrong or it’s not for successful/cool people? Do you ignore the (abundant) sadness of being alive? Do you believe if you allow your grief, it may never end?
This time of year, as much of Northern Hemisphere watches the leaves die, the days shorten, and the winds sweep in – grief is just in the air. This makes for a potent time to consciously be with it.
As I contemplate nature and grief, wolves come to mind. Wolves are so bad-ass for many reasons AND they rock grief. When they need to howl, they howl. No buts. No ambivalence. Just pure broken heart.
If this post speaks to you, take some time to simply be with your body and scan where some grief may be hiding out. Say hello, do a simple candle lighting ritual to honor it, feel the tenderness of your heart, write your feelings down on paper, and maybe…you know…cry.
Befriend the sadness of your heart and truly be free.
On a final note, here is an awesome video about the benefit of re-introducing wolves to Yellowstone National Park. I see it as a metaphor for grief (the wolves) and the human body (Yellowstone). Re-introduce grief and watch the eco-system of your body thrive.
Happy new moon,
October 24, 2014
If you asked me what my favorite holiday is I would have to say El Dia de Los Muertos – The Day of the Dead.
Not that I am morbid, but compared to other holidays, the really-realness of the Day of the Dead just wins me over every year. It is a complete match with my values in the following three ways:
- It’s authentic: There is typically very little pretense at a Day of the Dead party. Everyone’s emotional truth is on the table: someone they loved crossed over. They are participating to honor their loved one and their grief.
- It’s connected: Everyone who attends is instantly connected to each other because they have all met the incredibly surreal world of love+loss.
- It’s healthy: Coming together with a small group to honor one’s grief is very healthy thing to do. Your emotional world (which greatly affects your physical, mental, and spiritual worlds) will thank you.
The Day of the Dead celebration is a stunningly elaborate creation in Mexico that requires weeks of preparation. I have some U.S. friends who go to town re-creating Mexico’s traditions: sugar skulls, homemade chocolate, traditional altars. They would all attest that the preparation is as nourishing as the actual event.
But if you’re like me – with a very fixed amount of time and energy – you can pull off a super meaningful night without all the traditional embellishments. Here’s all you need:
- An altar made from a black box – You can cover a cardboard box with black material or paint it with black spray paint. If you can make a three-tiered altar (a very large box on the bottom, a medium box in the middle, and a small box on the top) that is ideal.
- Candles — A dozen tea lights are sweet and easy.
- Chocolate – Buy a handful of assorted chocolate bars for dessert.
- Fresh flowers
- Small plates
Invite a group of close friends. The smaller the better, so try to cap it at twelve. Ask invitees to bring:
- A picture of a loved one they would like to honor
- The loved one’s favorite food for a potluck dinner
- A fresh flower
After your guests arrive, have them put a small piece of the meal they brought, a piece of chocolate, and their flower (trim the stem with the scissors) on one of the small plates. Then giving everyone a turn (about 5 minutes each), invite them to:
- Hold up the picture and introduce who they are honoring.
- Tell a story about their awesome loved one.
- Toast the loved one’s quality that they miss the most.
- When they are done, have them place the picture on the shrine next to the small plate which is an earth offering to the loved one (according to Shamanism our ancestors LOVE when we make offerings of food and nature because they miss it so much.)
- Finish by lighting a candle for the loved one and place it next to the food on the shrine.
After everyone has had a chance to share, the evening is finished off with the potluck, chocolate, and more informal sharing.
There it is.
I hope this inspires you to celebrate this special evening. You’ll be so glad you did.
October 15, 2014
I think one of the most difficult and detrimental aspects of modern society is the lack of rites, rituals, and reference points that help a grieving human thru.
Life’s little disappointments happen often and are provocative enough, but then there are the major losses: marriage ending, loved one dying, losing one’s innocence…to name just a few.
Considering that we all will face grief’s intensity at multiple points in our lives, modern society seems to set us up to:
1) deny grief (which then channels it into illness/anger)
2) meet our grief with fear and anxiety
Shortly after arriving to Seattle eleven years ago, my father was diagnosed with cancer. My husband and I rushed our wedding to ensure my father’s attendance. Prior to the wedding my dad and I would listen to the radio, seeking the perfect song for our father-daughter wedding dance. One day we heard “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart and we both immediately agreed it was the one.
My husband and I were married in January 2003 and my father passed away the following August. After he died I felt conflicted about my grief. While he was a nurturing father, he was also a very unhappy man and seemed without any inclination/awareness to change that.
I felt burdened by his discontent, so when he passed away, my ego developed a very thick belief that he was “better off on the other side.” This thought took precedence over my tears. My rational mind trumped my emotional world and my grief was placed in the backseat.
Fast forward to this past summer when, just before leaving Seattle, I began the process of forgiving my father for being unhappy. Then on August 10th, as my family and I were pulling into our new Colorado home, “Forever Young” played on the radio. I felt happy to hear it and that was a good test that my forgiveness process was coming along.
A month later, with a seeming bazillion transitions (new house, new schools for kids, new routines, etc.) I suddenly began feeling super anxious and afraid at night.
My passion for emotional health came in quite handy and within a week I was able to decode my anxiety. Since I had forgiven my father, the grief I refused to feel eleven years prior was finally flowing. As soon as I got my mind on board with that, the fear subsided and the tears released.
This is a good time of year to intentionally honor grief. Autumn vividly illuminates the dying cycle of life. Between late October and early November the veil between worlds is thin. Halloween and Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebrations are ultimately about this phenomena.
So this autumn I am making it a priority to welcome the grief around my father’s departure by:
- Listening to my father’s favorite music. I’ve created a playlist called “Dad” (Bob Seger, anyone?) which includes “Forever Young” (and makes me weep every time.)
- Journaling about my father: I write honestly about anything I am feeling/remembering about him.
- Journaling to my father: I write him letters about whatever comes to heart and mind.
- Attending a Day of the Dead party: I will gather with some friends, make his favorite meal, and share a story about his life.
- Most importantly and in my super busy life, I am carving out space and giving myself 100% permission to be a blubbering, sobbing, sorrow-filled goddess, for as long as needed.
P.S. – Need a little help with honoring your emotional world? Got something that needs forgiving? The Goddess Process rides again Wednesday October 29th (weekly format!)
October 8, 2014
Today, inspired by the most awesome find, I am writing about the phenomenal world of self-pleasure.
A huge piece of feminine reclamation is
1) to unabashedly own the fact that the feminine essence is a highly sensual force
2) that sensual forces are designed to receive and exude pleasure
This means that exploring and revering your unique sensual terrain is a ultra bright move towards health and wholeness. The wondrous world of self-pleasure is a mighty path to this end.
Endorphins are released, oxytocin is emitted, stress is relieved, intuition is accessed, and sensuality is expressed. Instead of the ego’s harsh edges, the feminine power of connection reigns.
Self-pleasure seems pretty holy to me.
I am not a sensuality expert, but here’s the little I know about self-pleasuring options:
- Hand/Fingers – As we all know, they work well.
- Vibrators – I’ve never owned one, but they seem super popular.
- Rushing water – If/When you can score a source, it is probably the best way to self-pleasure.
And, I am super excited to add to the list:
- The Chakrub – The Chakrub is made from pure energy crystals and as I hope you are imagining…it has many talents. As soon as I laid my eyes on this divine creation it was love at first site. I bought mine in Indian Jade.
Chakrub’s mama is named Vanessa and she is extending my readers a 10% discount. Just use code “Goddess10”.
A SPECIAL NOTE TO “INORGASMIC” SISTERS: Don’t fret, loves. Sensuality heroine Nicole Daedone has eradicated the “inorgasmic” label by redefining “orgasm.” Instead of “the achievement of climax”, it is simply and profoundly “the reception of pleasure.” This means in the world of female orgasm, there is nothing to achieve and lots of pleasurable sensations to receive. Check it out;-)
Speaking of the sensations of your body…do you revere yours? If not sister, I have a fabulous experience for you: The next Goddess Process Live course is in Seattle and it’s the weekly version! Beginning Wednesday, October 29th – Wednesday, December 10th (no class on November 26th).
The Goddess Process Live is for you if…
- There is something about woman nature that eludes you
- You doubt your emotions and your sensitivity
- You desire better relationships that truly see you
- You are interested in decoding the messages your body is communicating
- There is something about being “spiritual but not religious” that is lacking
- Realizing the path of self-love seems arduous
- You feel somewhat disconnected from your value as a woman
- You desire to heal/restore your health
“Thank you. Your work is so powerful and healing and I flew home on my bike like I was one with all of humanity, the earth, the sky, and eternity.” A.S. Seattle, WA.
“I just had the privilege of spending three magical days in The Goddess Process where I was masterfully and joyfully guided through the re-enthronement of the Feminine Essence within myself, my relationships and my community. Thank you Dara, your work is empowering, transformative and kissed by the Divine.” Lauren Herold, Seattle, WA, Intuitive Healer
October 1, 2014
Prior to June 2012, I was among the millions of folks who would rather get a root canal then forgive. Before that fateful month, when anyone ever suggested the idea to me my inner teenager would roll her eyes and quietly scowl “wow, you really don’t understand.”
Today the tables have turned and now I am the one suggesting forgiveness and receiving the incredulous looks. When I mention the “forgive” word, people act like I just handed them a sock that was stuck in the washer for 10 years. Every muscle on their face contorts and says “ew.”
Why is this forgiveness thing such a buzzkill?
Forgiveness is often defined as pardoning an offense, but the truth is that pardoning is just part of the forgiveness equation, and more often then not, pardoning is the result of the forgiveness process. Forgiveness’ true definition is that which heals betrayal.
Betrayal is intense, right? Google defines betrayal as “…the breaking or violation of a presumptive contract, trust, or confidence that produces moral and psychological conflict…”
All true, but I don’t really feel it.
So here’s my really-real definition: Betrayal arises when someone or something you trusted fails you, often without any notice, leaving you up against a dark void of loss that your mind fervently struggles to compute.
And if that isn’t hard enough, betrayal almost always paves the way for divine rupture (“How could God let this happen to me?”) and self-aggression (“There must be something wrong with me that this happened/I let this happen.”)
The world of betrayal is super intense and life seems to betray us often.
So as trite as the word “forgiveness” is for so many, it’s true definition is designed to tackle a world of immense confusion, incomprehensibility, and emotional suffering. Thus, this can only mean that forgiveness is…a total badass.
In June 2012, I read something on forgiveness that framed it in a way that I was able to get. I had been carrying the pain of a major betrayal for way too long and it seemed that forgiveness could help. Since I still had no clue how to forgive I said a little prayer that bascially declared I was willing to be shown. And shown I was.
I imagine you are now wondering “OK, So how do I it?” There is no exact prescription as it all depends on the person and their unique situation. However, the numero uno essential ingredient is desire.
This post invites you to answer two Q’s:
1) Do you cringe, wince, bubble with anger, flush with shame, and/or fill with fear when recalling certain events of the past?
2) Do you desire to heal them and feel peaceful again?
Often the answer to Q number 2 is “no” or “no, not now” and that’s legit.
If the answer to Q number 2 is “yes”, no need to rush out and “do” anything. Just let yourself marinate in the “yes”. It’s a major declaration and the universe is listening.
So today, to the disbelief of my inner teenager, I am a forgiveness guide. Being that I have always been a junkie for emotional health, the divine, and all things magical, it makes perfect sense that I have arrived to this point.
One piece of the ever dynamic Goddess Process Live course is to invite participants to begin a serious contemplation on forgiveness. Then any Goddess Process Live grads who decide it’s time to lighten their emotional load are invited to do a Forgiveness & Freedom 4-week follow-up course that journey’s participants down the river of forgiveness in face-to-face soul-sisterhood. It’s hot.
I will be writing more about this topic in the future, though if you’re ready to heal a betrayal now, The Goddess Process Live is where to start and it delivers in spades. The next course is September 26-28, 2014 in Seattle, WA (click here to register!)
“Dara’s spirituality is so alive, you can almost see it, taste it and smell it. By the end of the Goddess Process, I had a very real sense of my own feminine strength and wisdom, which I realized I had lost somewhere along my spiritual path. How silly to think I could’ve carried on much further without it. Dara was the perfect muse to help me re-birth it back into the world.” Rev. Allison Anton, Author of True Healing
September 5, 2014
It’s a huge moment in the rise of The Goddess Process. I have contracted with the most phenomenal facilitator. I can hardly believe 1) that this day has finally come and 2) how incredible this woman is.
Without further ado: I present to you the WORLD’s very FIRST Goddess Process Facilitator: The ever-evolutionary Carissa Morris!!! Read on and see why I am beaming with pride:
1) Describe your path to becoming a Goddess Process facilitator?
The first Nia class I ever took was taught by Dara and the minute it started I knew I was in the right place. In front of me was a strong, tall woman (it’s rare to see a woman my size leading a fitness class) leading us in a spiritual and athletic dance movement class.
I knew there was something special about Dara and I proceeded to soak up whatever passions and guidance she doled out. From her first retreat in Mexico, which was magical, to taking the Mama Gena’s Mastery Course at the School of Womanly Arts, to the current version of Dara’s teachings, The Goddess Process.
I’ve taken Dara’s courses multiple times and never tired of their profound wisdom. I remember thinking “I want to teach this some day!!” and here I am, teaching this genius material to anyone who’s genius enough to sign up.
As someone who is trained as a coach and therapist, who’s work has a strong spiritual leaning, and who is constantly and continuously committed to the raising up of the feminine, I am the perfect goddess for this job. And I am SO honored that Dara saw that in me.
2) What does feminine power mean to you?
Intuition, inner knowing, gut feeling. There are so many different names for it, but I think intuition is at the core of feminine power. Feminine power is both soft and fierce. That’s the magic of it. It’s impenetrable, yet surrendering. Obstacles and issues melt away in the face of pure feminine power.
3) If you had the ear of every woman in the world for one sacred minute, what would you want them to know?
Your feelings are right. Your desires are holy. The emotions you are experiencing are there for a reason. Your power lies in the honoring of ALL your feelings, desires, and emotions.
4) If you could spend 24 hours with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be an why?
Dr. Martin Luther King. Whenever I hear his speeches, I cry. I’m not much of a crier, so the fact that I burst in to tears when I hear him speak gives me an indication that he is/was a direct messenger of the divine. Also I think he embodied the divine feminine in such an elegant way – nonviolence, power, compassion, change, courage, grace, love, and forgiveness. He epitomized ‘power from within’ versus ‘power over’.
5) What gets you most excited about being a Goddess Process Facilitator?
Being able to deliver such profound information in such a sacred setting. Flexing my priestess muscles. Changing lives with the information that has changed mine. Being a part of re-enthroning the feminine in our world!! I can’t think of anything better or more important.
Do you see why I’m in love???
Carissa is getting right to work with re-enthroning the feminine for twelve very special women Sept 26-28th in Seattle WA. I’ve had the privilege of being facilitated by Carissa I know firsthand that she delivers the goods with grace and power.
“The Goddess Process is a deep dive into everything that we should honor in being a beautiful Goddess of this compassionate planet. Every female I know should take this class and realize their true gifts and once and for all, claim their brilliance!” - Trina Gadsden, Photographer
“As a healer and witch who has lived and breathed all things Spiritual and Goddess for years- I thought I had the feminine essence allll figured out, I thought I had my Inner Goddess down. That is until I arrived at the Goddess Process. Through the course of the weekend I learned that I had been working with my Inner Goddess via a masculine approach- thinking, willing and efforting to connect with her. Learning that the way to really listen to her (which is listening to the Divine) is through my emotions, my body, my impulses, and my visions changed everything. My feminine nature doesn’t make sense because “making sense” is of the mind, the ego. From this course I allowed myself the spaciousness of not making sense – and in so doing, walked away from the course feeling validated and divine in the wild, cooky, visionary, unnameable and unwilling to conform woman that I am! I feel for the first time I have tools to get my ego/mind on board to manifest my Goddess Destiny!” - Lauren Herold, Healer
Click the image below to secure your sacred spot!
August 26, 2014
Our time is drawing to a close and if I had to sum up our twelve year relationship I would have to say it was really real.
Not that I don’t always play hard, but goddess-oh-goddess, your cool-wet-dark-self was deceptively intense and set quite the transformational stage.
I arrived here at 31, a buddhist psychotherapist, Nia teacher, full of gusto, big dreams…and a good dose of arrogance. I am leaving at 43, The Goddess Process creator, forgiveness guide (yes, it’s true), mother, wife, divine servant…and happily humbled.
As my departure approaches, I am taking inventory of all that I am going to miss about you…which is a lot. You are an amazing city and I am so honored that I was able to plant deep roots here.
Thank you for all the amazing people and things you sent my way. I kiss the earth in gratitude for every single encounter.
I celebrate some of them below. From eco-fashion to soul workers, professional organizers to Tarot readers, I vividly see how blessed I was to live here.
And a super special thank you for The Goddess Process. I truly couldn’t have created her without you. She is our love child and will continue to shine the brightest of lights in Seattle after I depart.
I will come visit often and like many healthy relationships, I think the distance is going to do us right.
I love you,
Allison Nelson of The Space Shaman. Oh. My. Goddess. The Space Shaman, AKA The incredibly divine Ms. Allison Nelson, AKA The Organizational Maniac. The latter title is what hooked me one day while scanning a bulletin board on Capitol Hill. It was love at first organization. You know all that stuff – those piles, that room, that closet, the basement, the garage, the shelving unit, your filing cabinet – she knows what to do with all that stuff. She creates systems for it and helps you process any burdensome emotional attachments (“But my aunt in Missouri made it for me….”). She helps whatever needs to go, go and whatever needs to stay, stay. I’ve been working with her for over 10 years now and every time she leaves my house, I feel like I just spent a day at the spa.
Annie Huntley of Dotted Line Jewels. The divine works through Ms. Huntley in many ways . The most obvious are her one-of-a-kind “Hot & Holy” jewelry pieces. Annie has been resurrecting the goddess in her adornments for years and to know the depths and heights of this woman is to love her creations all the more. I am super blessed to own many of her pieces and even more blessed to know her spirit.
Breanne Boland. In addition to being my design production genius, Breanne is a content strategist, UX writer, and overall usability nerd. She loves to travel, both within and without of Seattle, adventures she chronicles in her blog, Deviation Obligatoire. She’s always working on a novel, a craft, or on bringing something else to life that wasn’t there before.
Cherie Claire of Belle Femme. Belle Femme is the genius of Cherie Claire and it’s where cosmetology meets the cosmos. Truly, Cherie gets IT and brings IT into every treatment. Surrounded by the deep lull of bells, energetically enhanced stones, and the delicious scents of her organic products, you are in for a beauty experience that touches your skin and your soul. If you seek a meaningful experience while doing the sacred work of self-care, Cherie delivers in spades. If you live in Seattle or are passing through, definitely gift yourself the Belle Femme experience.
Jennifer Lucero-Earle of The Embodied Tarot. I hesitate to even tell you about Jennifer because I secretly want her all to myself! If you’re ever needing some divine intervention, Jennifer has an uncanny ability to translate the mystery of Tarot into clear and masterful guidance. She’s also an incredible movement teacher. You can score one of her Tarot readings from anywhere in the world, and if you are in or passing through Seattle -> move with her. Your body will thank you.
Julie Wray of Olivine. Julie is a genius of scent, self-love, and an amazing friend. I don’t consider myself a perfume person but Julie’s creations have me hooked as they are truly as mystical as the names. “Full Regalia” was my first love, but now “More Than The Stars” is my new fav. Check out her amazing blog and recent interview with Every Mother Counts Founder Christy Turlington (!)
Lauren Herold. A few years back when I was in the pit of despair I would drown my sorrows in chocolate smoothies from a local haunt called “The Herbalist.” Lauren was my “bartender” and our karmic connection unfolded. Her herbal prescriptions were key to the recovery of my emotional health. Our conversations illuminated worlds beyond my conception. Lauren is a gifted healer of the earth and soul, if you or someone you know needs intuitive help, she will deliver and then some.
Prairie Underground! So I can thank (or blame) Julie Wray for this obsession: I am a nut for Prairie Underground. CONFESSION: The dark days of winter created a little bit of an online shopping addiction, and it came with some guilt about all the stuff that is made abroad. Ta da! My guilt was swept away the day I met the creativity of Davora Linder and Camilla Eckersley. I now wear clothing that is made from organic cotton, in the USA, and is total work of art. They put out four collections a year of 30+ pieces each (how do they do that?!?!) My source is the amazing team over at Show Pony. I am a member of their Prairie Club and get to preview and pre-order upcoming collections (which I highly recommend.)
Randee Fox, Nia Technique Trainer. Ten of my twelve years in Seattle were spent teaching The Nia Technique and movement maven Randee Fox was one of my very first Nia friendships. Today she is one of Seattle’s first Nia Trainers (meaning she teaches a week long training that will leave you madly in love with the miracle of your body in addition to training you how to teach The Nia Technique.) Her Sammamish studio is my favorite place in the world to dance Nia. If you want an amazing relationship with your body from the inside-out and a movement practice that is deep and fun, Randee is your woman.
Tali Edut of Astrostyle. Did you know we have one of Astrotwins living right here in Seattle? Ms.Tali Edut truly brings “the stars down to earth” and with a slew of hot media appearances she and her sister, Ophi, are bringing them (back) to the mainstream. Drenched in depth, graciousness, and style, they channel the cosmos with tremendous practicality and relatability. My reading with Tali dramatically changed my life for the better. Get on her list and be connected to the heavens.
Dr. Tamara Cullen of Naturopathic Family Medicine. During my (many) low moments in Seattle, I would write gratitude lists to help get me through and Dr. Cullen’s amazing clinic would always show up at the top. Dr. Cullen radiates compassion and expertise. My kids LOVED going to the doctor and I loved the care my family received. Her entire clinic team reflects her mastery and nurturing gifts.
Dr. Weiqun Miao of East Asian Well Being. So many people ask me how I recovered from adrenal fatigue in just one year and Dr. Miao is how. Originally from China and trained in Traditional Chinese Acupuncture AND Western Medicine she loves a hard case. I saw her religiously for nine months. Her compassion, conviction, and skill got me through one of the darkest spells of my life. Her office is in Bellevue and I arrived there in half the time it would take me to go to Ballard or to find a parking spot on Capitol Hill. Run, don’t walk, to Dr. Miao.
August 3, 2014
Oh anger, you’re just something else, aren’t you? Honest, real, and protective at best. Righteous, rageful, and destructive at worst.
The human condition is programmed for anger. When you were a baby you fiercely cried and when you were a toddler you freaked. As an adult if you or a loved one were violated tomorrow, you would experience anger. No one is exempt.
So we’re all left with the intense job of figuring out how to “manage” our anger…in a society that shames it.
I feel like I’ve tried every way under the sun to pacify my own anger. From self-medicating to meditating, therapizing to expressing, and everything in between.
After twenty somethin’ years of experiencing and studying my anger, I vividly see:
- how ineffective the path of anger generally is
- my anger is here to stay. It’s truly part of my design in this life.
Since suppressing and expressing anger have proven to be dead end roads, I would like to propose this alternative: how about making anger divine?
Here’s an example of how it works:
I was about to board a plane and I was feeling depleted. If I am ignoring something that is bothering me, feeling tired is when the truth always surfaces. So as I am sitting there waiting for my section to be called, angry thoughts of a recent event began to bubble.
In a moment of intuition I knew I had a choice – I could spend the next few hours on the plane swirling in anger or I could figure out a way to make it sacred.
So I whipped out a piece of paper and at the very top I wrote “THIS IS DIVINE”, (so when the inevitable shame about my anger arose I would remember that it was holy.)
I then scanned my body for where I was feeling the anger and I noticed my lower back felt clenched.
I then imagined what these sensations would say if they could speak, and whatever popped up in my head I wrote down on the paper.
I kept going with this recipe: I felt and wrote, and felt and wrote, as the anger moved through different areas of my body.
I did this for an hour, through a handful of tender and weepy moments, until my body felt sublimely, utterly, and completely peaceful.
On my piece of paper however, it was pretty ugly. Mean. Vicious. Harsh. All sorts of terrible words were sprawled across the page with underlines, capitalizations, and exclamations.
Though within all the ugliness it was also full of beauty. It was beautiful because it was honored. It was beautiful because it was safe. It was beautiful because it wasn’t inside me anymore, eating away at me. It was beautiful because it wasn’t directed toward anyone. That dark ball of anger was perfectly content to be in the loving arms of that piece of paper.
Then upon arriving home, I offered up the paper via a simple ritual.
In my backyard I have a special place for burning things (metal paint can with some sand in it.) I crumpled the paper, lit a match, and recited “Please show me the way to a peace” over and over as I brought flame and paper together and watched it burn.
I ended the ritual with the Making Miracles visualization for myself and the perceived source of my anger.
Here is a re-cap in eight easy steps:
- I was aware that angry thoughts were bubbling in my head (awareness is huge)
- I took out a piece of paper and wrote “THIS IS DIVINE” at the top
- I felt my body
- I imagined what the sensations in my body would say if they could speak
- I wrote down whatever came to my imagination
- I did steps 3,4, & 5 until I felt completely peaceful
- I then burned the paper while reciting “Please show me the way to peace”
- I ended by doing an unconditional loving-kindness meditation for myself and the perceived source of my anger
Rinse & repeat, as needed.
If you feel inspired to check this ritual out, do it exactly as I did the first time. Then based on how it feels when your done you can modify it.
And yes, you can do this process for ANY emotion and I highly recommend it.
If you try it yourself, please let me know how it goes. AND/OR if the idea of making your emotional world holy, sacred, and divine sounds like something you would love to rock, the next Goddess Process Live class is coming up: July 25-27th.
July 8, 2014
I am a lover of duality. This means I believe understanding the seemingly opposing forces of the universe is quite useful. For this reason, one of the first things The Goddess Process teaches is what the feminine essence and the masculine essence are.
After five years of teaching this wisdom I know how provocative distinguishing the masculine and feminine can be for some folks. I hear things like: “why do we have to define the masculine and feminine, aren’t we all just humans who want to survive and love?” Or, “I feel like this just puts men and women in a box.” Or, the woman who rocks her masculine side goes on the defense.
So in order to get my for-good-not-evil points across, I give many reminders that we all have both essences, and emphasize that being aware of how these energies play out, within us and in the world, gives us the opportunity to synchronize them. When these energies synch, beautiful things happen.
Here is one of my favorite real-world applications:
We all have loved ones we like to support, right? So say a loved one is experiencing a loss or some emotional turmoil that is impossible to bypass. Two of the most amazing things you can offer this person are:
1) An invitation to pour out their grief.
2) And when they are done tell them, “I see you.”
“I see you” is pure sunshine for the soul. Those three little words mean that their experience is honored exactly as it is. That beyond the details of all perceived turmoil, their unique unfoldment is in divine process. “I see you” shoots a love arrow into the heart of the feminine essence.
Then let’s say you know someone who is contemplating a big leap and they are wondering if they can “do it”? If they have what it takes? If they’re good enough? If they’ll succeed? Two of the most amazing things you can offer this person are:
1) An invitation to pour out their doubts and fears.
2) And when they are done tell them, “Whatever you decide, I believe in you.”
“I believe in you” is pure sunshine for the inner administrator. It means that you trust your loved ones ability to discern and achieve. It means when they succeed, be it tomorrow or ten years from now, they will have you to celebrate with. “I believe in you” shoots a love arrow into the heart of the masculine essence.
So as a general guideline, if it’s an emotional purge and you had to choose one sentence, tell the loved one that you see them. If it’s fear and doubt, and you had just one sentence to offer, tell your loved one that you believe in them. And yes, telling all loved one’s that you see them AND believe in them is a total-being home run.
Speaking of seeing and believing, the next Goddess Process Live course is July 25-27th (click here to read more and register).
And some truly wonderful women are seeing and believing in me these days. Here are some very kind words from my latest Goddess Process Live class:
“Dara is a genius. She has synthesized so much powerful information in a way that is truly more than the sum of its parts. Her vision for reconnecting women with their innate goddesshood, and healing the feminine legacy is nothing short of revolutionary. She has clearly walked the path that she is teaching and delivers the information in a way that’s concise, beautiful, and full of magic.” – Carissa Morris, Seattle, WA.
“I have loved, loved, loved, The Goddess Process. Thank you for inviting me to join. It has been such an incredibly beautiful experience for me. I feel truly blessed. [The course] helped me to reconnect to the divine. It feels so freeing to let go and trust. It is so powerful and important.” – Kathleen L., Seattle, WA
“I knew, even before experiencing the course, that I would love The Goddess Process. What I didn’t know was how much the course would ripple out into all areas of my life. During the first session we were asked to take a vacation from self-selected masculine practices. I chose “thinking” and “planning.” I deeply wanted to shift to a place of being and receiving and those two ways of being proved to be quite the barrier. This intention and commitment instigated the most blissful five weeks where I learned to slow down, be in relationship with everything around me and openly express gratitude for the beauty I saw and experienced. Instead of planning, I learned to yield and follow the energy of each moment. Instead of spiraling out into over-thinking, I treated myself, and others, with uncompromising presence and compassion. I allowed myself to become unguarded enough to feel supported and seen by a sisterhood that wanted to shower me with love and adoration. It made me, in essence, a happier person. I am still basking in that afterglow. All women and men who want to become happier beings should take this course. The Goddess Process is an experience of awakening to a profound state of feminine presence and connection that will leave you transformed. I am not the women I was when I started the course and am so wildly excited about the divine woman I am becoming.” ~ Jennifer Lucero-Earle, Seattle, WA The Embodied Tarot
“Taking Dara’s most recent class -The Goddess Process – helped me to deeply appreciate and explore the intimacy with my feminine core. Dara taught me how to draw from my feminine core to create, surrender, forgive and live in loving kindness with myself and others. She is a masterful teacher and integrated important content of her book with practical exercises for the group to explore in the process. Her skill to create an intimate yet engaging atmosphere of the class invited us to depth learning. I am very excited and grateful at the same time for Dara’s commitment to women’s well being and “The Goddess Process! and wish that her knowledge and teachings continues to rock women’s worlds!” ~ Dr. Liliana Sacarin, Seattle, WA
June 17, 2014
This one is dedicated to my teacher Sao.
Of all the exciting and cool things happening with the current rise of feminine power, this is one of my favorites: The priestesshood is being re-established.
Miriam-Webster defines priestess as, “a woman who leads or performs religious ceremonies in some religions”.
Ummmmm, kind of.
Though, not really.
A priestess is a woman who helps others connect to the divine so that they can heal and/or actualize their soul’s unique path.
Typically, she will use ceremony to accomplish this task, but it is unlikely she will represent a religion. When it comes to connecting to the divine she is a polygamist, and knows on a deep level that her personal relationship with spirit trumps any organized path to it.
These days, there are a lot of sisters helping to heal and actualize others that do not call themselves “priestess”. They are the life coaches, therapists, tarot readers, naturopaths, artists, intuitives, energy healers, astrologists, and social workers, to name a few. Deep down inside I sense these women know, even if it’s on a subconscious level, that they are priestesses. I verbally refer to these sisters as “priestess” every chance I get, and I am always met with twinkling eyes that say “yep.”
My divine feminine awakening happened seven years ago and ever since, my mind and heart magnetize and synthesize all the wildly awesome sides of feminine spirituality. This has led me to finally see, own, and celebrate that:
- I have an uncanny ability to grasp the mystical
- My desire to serve and create health is white hot
- I am obsessed with the nature of nature
These are all marks of a priestess, they have been present in my being from the day I was born, and they are all extremely valuable qualities in today’s culture.
Growing up in the Irish-Catholic Bronx, I heard about priests, but you had to be a dude and represent dogma (and thank you goddess, not being the former protected me from the latter.) Back then, the only option I saw for spiritually called women was to become a nun. Had I ever had the slightest inclination to join the convent, I would have lasted negative 10 seconds. Fifteen years ago, when I felt a lot of pressure to choose a career path, had “priestess” been a menu option, I would have been spared multiple panic attacks.
So it’s thrilling, and kind of scary, though mostly thrilling, to finally say that I AM A PRIESTESS.
And I am beyond grateful that I was born in a time where it is finally OK to be that again.
Speaking of the priestesshood – May’s Goddess Process Live course is in session (yay!!!)!
If you missed that one, I have great news: my intuition has guided me to bring The Goddess Process Live experience to a weekend format July 25-27th, 2014. If you feel called to be one of twelve special women and experience the cultural oasis that is The Goddess Process click here for details and to secure one of the ten remaining sacred spots:
May 12, 2014