Friday, September 21, 2012

Appreciating Mabon 2012

Appreciating Mabon 2012

With a week back at my desk under my belt & at work with DTCP, Mabon kinda sorta snuck up on me. I mean I knew it was coming, I have a calendar. But with getting my work life back in order after NYFW, I looked up & realized the first day of autumn was upon me. The Sun goes into Libra, marking the shift into Mabon Saturday, September 22nd at 10:49am. Thankfully I will be at our weekly Saturday Morning Miracles (ACIM) group at The Silver Broom in Sayville at the time.

Mabon is a little bittersweet. Summer is my favorite season, yet I really enjoy the spiritual energy the Fall Equinox offers. In my coven we have been considering it ‘Spiritual Thanksgiving’ for a long time. That makes it a favorite sabbat because I learned many years back that “gratitude is the attitude of increase.” This means simply that what we are thankful for multiplies by our focus upon it & the good feelings that giving thanks inspire.

But I have also learned that gratitude can have a touch of hardship in it, mixing in the struggles we have endured to attain what we have become & acquired. So, I have shifted it personally, to be an attitude of Appreciation, which is free of the struggle aspect.

This makes sense with the corresponding Chakra for the sabbat. The Crown (Spiritual Power) is the 7th Chakra & Mabon is the 7th Sabbat. So we are looking at a very spiritual season, focusing on the Crown’s Sacred Truth, “Live in Present Time.” Appreciation is good for staying in present time. Though we can certainly be appreciative of things gone by, it is much easier to focus upon what is already here in our lives when we choose to appreciate deliberately.

For example, take a moment to appreciate the technology in your life. I know it can be a pain in the ass sometimes, but what happens when the power goes out or your cell phone dies? Mayhem usually transpires. We certainly appreciate technology when the power comes back on. But you can even appreciate the simplicity of fresh air, time to yourself to contemplate & a good, solid friend. In other words, you can appreciate more than just physical acquisitions. You can appreciate your health as well as your wealth in its myriad forms.

You see, Spirit is always in a space & focus of appreciation, especially of YOU. When we match that frequency in our thoughts, the Crown Chakra opens & lets more life force in. We can tell by how good it feels. YOU are in control of the valve that lets spirit in or keeps it out by your moment by moment thinking. The other big time perk is, the more you open it up, the more inspiration flows into your experience. It makes sense; you open the valve to let spirit in; in-spirit-ation.

This need not be a grandiose ceremony either. Though on Sunday when I meet with my coven, we will have a ceremony marking the sabbat as well as the many people, places, things & expansions we are thankful / appreciative of. But it is also extremely effective to do this on a daily basis, as it puts us squarely in alignment with Source/God/ Goddess, even if we do it silently.

So make your lists of things you appreciate. Write it down if it helps you focus, release it to the Gods in your own way; set it on fire, what have you. But this is more than a once & done thing. Just spend 5 minutes in the morning, focusing on what you appreciate in the present moment. You will find more & more ‘things’ pop into your mind & your eye drawn to even more throughout the day. In this way “Appreciation is the attitude of Increase” will show itself to you on many levels, from the personal/spiritual to the physical/global.

May you find more & more to appreciate in this season of the 2nd Harvest & may you & yours truly find yourselves blessed.

Blessed Be,

Mark A Lyons
Professional Witch
Follow me on Twitter @ProfWitch

PS: The October 2012 Schedule of Events is now up in tentative form on the website.

Monday, September 17, 2012

New York Fashion Week 9/2012 Part IV

Blessed Foot Forward

This is the last blog on Fashion Week for awhile, well at least until February. But that’s sort of the point of this one. My life through the looking glass into the world of fashion isn’t ending anytime soon. My partnership with Eila Mell is a long one & it has the feel of destiny to it. This blog is about taking what I learned & now looking forward.

My 44th year has started out really amazing, as in like a maze, but a fun one. I never really know what lay behind the next corner, no one does. Clairvoyant mean ‘clear seeing’ not all knowing. There would be no adventure to life if I did know & that’s fine. I don’t claim 100% clear precognition, not that anyone does, not even Phoebe Halliwell had that. I have guidance, which this past week has sharpened & honed.

Everyone has access to guidance & I mean everyone. Call it emotional guidance, intuition, what have you, but I made a career on & a career by following my guidance as best as I can. It’s not hard, it just takes consistent practice. Pay attention to how you feel. As it is written above the pen board in the Malachite Room of The Silver Broom in Sayville, “Simple need not imply easy.”

So as I return to that very room to teach, take clients & do what I love & do best, I’m eager to see what happens next. I am on a roll. Mabon/Autumnal Equinox is right around the corner. I aced my New Moon Magick Saturday night, lighting a candle at the exact moment of 10:11pm. All I have to do now & stay happy, not blissful, not ecstatic joy. I just have to chill in Happy. Everything else will fall into place.

All this fashion stuff really does up the ante for me spiritually. I think I’ve illustrated that in these past few posts. It wasn’t easy, but the intention overall was simple. I phrased it many ways:

  • ·         Stay in the Vortex
  • ·         Stay in Alignment with Source.
  • ·         Forgive everything
  • ·         Flow & have fun

It’s an attitude more than a to do list. Having zero intention to have a career in fashion was like a shield. It kept me from attaching to outcomes aside from being of service to Eila as best I could. But even this wasn’t about staying on schedule really. It was about me being as uplifting as I could be within the range of the day. The more in flow I stayed, the easier the traffic parted & free parking appeared. The better I felt the more doors of opportunity opened &the right people came to us. 

When I wasn’t so on target vibrationally, we were delayed, & faced glitches. But we never, not even once, were late for anything. I’m a Virgo. Eila is a Sagittarius. Mutable earth & fire work really well together to clear a path & have fun in the process. Yes, it was work, but my intentions not only kept things moving, they made me stronger.

That is only going to positively influence my work. Just like if I trained at a gym non-stop for a week. I would come back stronger. Yes, I’m still resting. I’m not 100% back yet. I still have my left heel on the fashion side of the looking glass. But the cool part is, I get do the work I love on this side of it all & eventually step back through applying even more of what I learned in my world. 

Starting with this Monday’s Witchclass Cycle One: Circle Casting, I am officially back. Circle Casting is a very hands on class as Amy & I cast circle a few times. I’ll spend today finishing up my personal recharging for that. I’ve got readings booked all week, the Vortex on Tuesday & the Silver Broom’s fund raiser An Enchanted Evening on Thursday. Friday, I’m having lunch with the ladies, including Eila, where we will tell our private accounts of the week, in confidence, stuff we will never put in print.

This personal purge is important because life is all about stories. With each adventure we find ourselves in, we add another chapter. The characters within us rise & fall in succession. One moment we are the Hero, the next we become the Victim, then the Healer & the Caretaker.  To look back, summarize & melt down the symbolic lead into the Gold of Wisdom is the alchemy of life. It’s what Witches do, Lemons into Lemonade, again & again.

I am expecting some sweet returns for Mabon, the 2nd Harvest Sabbat. As The Sun in Virgo (my Servant/Hedonist Archetype) gives way to the Sun in Libra (My Prince/Lover Archetype) I can only assume & feel it even now, that things are just going to get better for me & those around me. I’m working on my book. I’m having a blast & I am consistently with people I love. It’s tricky to do, as I have already admitted over & over. But it is doable, one step at a time, one foot in front of the other. But as I have the choice as to do it plodding along or ‘ pounding the runway’ I’m gonna make the sidewalk my catwalk.

The overall message I wanted to convey over these 4 installments of the blog is 

  1. that you really do take your spirituality with you wherever you go. Well, at least we can if we stay focused. It’s not enough to read books & attend workshops then toss it out the window when life gets rough. 
  2. Judgment/condemnation of others is a huge pitfall regardless of what path you walk, even if it is never verbalized. It's even harder when the general atmosphere is bitchy, catty & based on visual critique.  
  3. We need to take care of ourselves first before we extend that care to others, regardless of the form in which we transmit that care. 
  4. Making peace with where we are is necessary to turn our lives downstream so we can go with the flow of life again. 

But what really stands out to me, more than the fashion, the practice or the pitfalls is the love. I love Eila & Amy. I love my career. I love my Gods. I actually have come to love the fashion world, its denizens & even New York Fashion Week.

For all of its often hidden depth & challenges of spirit, I still find art & adventure. I enjoy the smiles of new friends met who probably have zero idea they are talking to a Professional Witch. But best of all, I love how it tones me up to return to Drawing the Circle Productions & the Silver Broom Ministries. 

I’m clearer about what I want. I’m better than I was before the week started. Hell, I’m even thinner than when I started on my birthday/Fashion’s Night Out. So, I’m back to my desk, back to my work/career/vocation with just a tiny bit of me holding on to NYFW, maybe just a toe. But that toe looks really good.

Blessed Be,

Mark A Lyons
Professional Witch
Follow me on Twitter @ProfWitch

Sunday, September 16, 2012

New York Fashion Week 9/2012 Part III

September 11th, 2012.

I’m going to do my best to keep this uplifting. So much has been written regarding 9/11. I cannot do justice to the subject beyond what has already been said, so I’m not going to. This is about my personal experience of September 11th 2012 during Fashion Week.

It isn’t about glamor, though it did play its role in its way as I had to disguise to the world what I was experiencing as best i could. That I was in NYC on Tuesday has everything to do with NYFW. But it was a very challenging day. I was caught in the paradox of an intense inner experience countered by an equal but opposite very intense outer experience. The former was truly emotional/spiritual the latter very physical/mental.

Let me start by saying that I made my career first as Clairvoyant Empath. I have read more people than I can count. Public situations, especially crowds, have always been tricky. Get me in a roomful of people focusing on the same stimuli, like a movie theater & the energy stays with me for a few days. That was wonderful for Lord of the Rings, not so great for Hellraiser.

Tuesday morning I woke up tapped into the collective emotions of everybody focusing on the anniversary of the NYC Twin Tower attacks of 9/11/2001. The alarm went off at 10:30am & I knew I was in trouble. I didn’t meditate or anything before going to bed. I got in at midnight after a truly magnificent day attending Viktor Luna’s show, Kimberly Goldson’s show & then a really posh, wonderful after party at Noir on East 50th. Really, I got home, showered & passed out in my bed. I wonder now if I took the 30 minutes to light a candle, say a prayer & sit in silence if the next day would have been easier. I don’t know.

My child, no one is ever told what might have been” Aslan, Voyage of the Dawn Treader.

That said, I knew upon waking, waning Moon in Cancer, exhausted & wanting to stay in bed & cry I had some decisions I had to make fast. I did my best to lift my vibration. With every degree it raised it felt like I dropped 2. Moments of hope & optimism were fleeting as I was easily distracted by what was going on that morning. Achy, moody & scattered, I got my shit together, said a prayer & called Eila. I really didn’t want to head straight into NYC, the global focus of the day’s grief & mourning.

Now, I am not a flat-leaver. If I can’t make something I make sure all parties involved know in advance etc. I am, after all, an event producer. I told her I was in bad shape, would take her into the city for the day, but it was probably my last day. I would do what I could to get her there for the rest of the week without me. We agreed to discuss it when I got to her home & take it from there.

I was a red hot empathic mess on the drive over. I was literally fighting back the urge to break down & cry on the Southern State Parkway. At the same time I’m reaching for my guides who are very clearly telling me I’m fine & that this was expected to happen eventually. They conveyed that what I was experiencing was a combination of maybe 30 different things, 9/11 being the tipping point into empathic pain. 

We all have a psychic immune system that we often call the aura, energy system or personal energy field. Consider the complex network of Chakras & energy meridians as similar to your endocrine & physical immune system. It is really good at dealing with external negativity, what Caroline Myss calls Psychic Free Radicals. But if we don't keep our own balance, it gets overrun with toxicity, just like the body's physical immune system & we get sick.

I started to make peace with it all, that it wasn’t time to cry as I was driving. But there was no sense beating myself up about it either. Making peace with where I am has been a HUGE part of my lessons in general this year. Resisting what you feel is not only futile but is eventually toxic. Whether this was my empathing the mass global emotion of the day or sheer burnout didn’t matter all of a sudden. I was where I was & I could just get Eila, drive, park, sit & pray while she was doing her thing. Then I could just pick her up, eat dinner & drive home.

Eila was amazing about it. She puts up with a good deal of my strange metaphysical ramblings. She’s a skeptic, but open minded. She also knows I’m not nuts & predominantly a happy person. I don’t think I scared her necessarily, she’s known me forever. But she really took care of me that day. She dropped a few shows to shorten our day, gave away tickets to really good shows, made sure we ate well & most of all, she understood without knowing. THAT is unconditional Love. She didn’t really know what I was going through, but she understood I wasn’t doing great. So she helped where she could. Her continued support & humor got me through the small steps that made up the day.

So we get to Lincoln Center, park in a garage & walk into the tents. Eila refused to let me sit in the car on the streets & paid for the parking so I could walk around. I’m glad she did & I’m glad I did. It’s not that I stepped into LC & suddenly the birds sang & the day was fine. No, the opportunity to snap into business mode was perfect. I got her off to her shows & I went to smoke a butt in the Pepsi 0 sponsored outdoor, smoker’s lounge, photo op thingy space. I was met by others who were more than kind, bumming butts, which I was happy to share & mild chit-chat was had.

Keeping a poker face in place I did my best to shield myself from the waves of emotion I was picking up in the general atmosphere, but it was a stark contrast. On one hand there was the fast paced fashion week energy with Fashion Police filming at the tents (I really adore Kelly Osborne.) On the other hand was this deep sadness over the whole global issue of 9/11 & what would turn out to be the rage of eventual embassy attacks in Libya & elsewhere. What an emotional, empathic clusterfuck.

All I wanted to do was connect with the people I love & tell them that I loved them. I wanted to rush home, hug my Mom, my cat Sabastian & make sure Amy knew how important she is to me. Amy Krinner, by the way, one of my best friends, High Priestess & Non-Romantic Life Partner, was essential to my whole being able to take off for a week to for the whole fashion world thing. She taught Witchclass on Monday night solo (Wheel of the Year) looked after Sabastian & held down the fort in my absence. I’ve said it before, I am nothing without her & would have been swinging from a noose many times over without her love & support. She’s also a very powerful Cancerian & Witch, so she got what I was going through immediately. It is so good to be understood by those you love.

Long story short (too late) the rest of the day shot by quickly. I don’t remember much of it except sitting in traffic on the way home & Eila making me laugh. She’s really good at that, as we have shared inside jokes going back decades. By the time I got home I was much better. I ate, drank a lot of water, showered, watched Rachel Maddow (she is my new absentee, doesn’t know I adore her too, friend) then slipped into my spiritual practice before passing out.

Thankfully I was able to finish out the week with Eila. We got her to her shows & I was clear about making sure I took care of myself for the remaining days. I packed food, ate a crapload of Fiber One bars as they were being handed out constantly at the tents (Chocolate + Caramel + Burlap = delicious) I stayed in a place of ‘prayer without cease' as best I could. I am really proud of myself in retrospect.

I learned that I am wicked good at what I do as a friend & a Professional Witch, but I have my blind spots. Though I am a NYC Traffic Jedi (you should see me do traffic magick in midtown during rush hour) endless driving is not my thing. I’m also much better off isolating myself during times of intense emotional atmosphere. But I can’t always enjoy that luxury. I also learned that though I have no serious blood sugar issues, if I don’t eat & take care of myself physically, it is hard for me to focus my mind & achieve vibrational alignment with my Source.

Tuesday September 11th, 2012 was a harsh day, but one I shifted archetypally from Victim to Victor (no Luna pun intended) bit by bit & with great love & understanding from the women in my life. I think Caroline Myss would have been proud of me. I also sent out several text, tweet & Facebook messages to the people I loved, telling them how glad I am that I know them, even those I haven’t seen in years. It even opened up new lines of communication with a few of them, who were feeling similar.

But the best part for it all was seeing how many were feeling the same way & who had trouble shaking it off. You see, I am a predominantly uplifted & happy person. When people see me shaken, if not stirred, it is often alarming to them. But I never ever said I was happy 100% of the time, nor perfect. I am still walking my path, hitting my pitfalls & missing my blind spots. But if anything I am a Witch & a Mystic at heart, one who takes responsibility for my emotional & physical manifestations. Deliberate Creation isn’t always easy. But I do heal, learn & grow as I go. Then, I get the joy of teaching it all by example & verbally in posts like this & in the various readings, classes & other events I find myself in.

To this, though the day in question was hard, I rose from my own ashes anyway. I think America is like that. We are a perpetual Phoenix Archetype of a country, rising & falling, again & again. That is the transformative spiritual path my friends & in the words of the beloved Stevie Nicks, “Sometimes it’s a bitch, sometimes it’s a breeze.” Thankfully I got to do it looking good, if not so much feeling good. But wings of fire spread I am still rising. The Moon is new & now in Libra, the Cardinal Air sign. So I will be spending today in reflection, focusing on what I love, balancing my mind & seeing what comes next.

Part IV will be written soon as I want to consolidate this all in overview. Keep tuned for 1 more & I will do my best to stay tuned to Source as best I can throughout.

Blessed Be,

Mark A Lyons
Professional Witch
Follow me on Twitter @ProfWitch

Friday, September 14, 2012

New York Fashion Week 9/2012 Part II

I’m subtitling this “Reality Check.”  You’ll see why:

In Part I of the NYFW blog I set the stage as it were, pointing to how much work goes into the week in general & how much spiritual work went into it for me. I thought I’d expand on it a bit in the sense that Eila & I have a flexible routine to get us ready; just in case you thought we were chauffeured & fed throughout, here’s what usually went down.
·         I wake up 4 hours before the 1st show of the day. If the show was at 9:30am, I was up at 5:30am, which happened a few times.
o   1 hour to check e-mail, shower & dress for me.
o   1 hour to drive to pick up Eila getting Starbucks (Iced Venti Skinny Vanilla Latté for me, Venti Decaf Non-fat Latté for her) 2 whole wheat bagels from Brendel’s with light cream cheese & gas up the car.
o   2 hours to drive into NYC, usually on the 59th St. Bridge then hunt for free parking, time allowing.
§  On heavy traffic days find the best garage.

The reality of this is that Eila & I traveled a very different schedule than most. Her work as a journalist took us all over NYC & included a lot of prep work. It is very different from anyone who just goes to see the shows. So from my point of view, if you can get to experience the week as a spectator, GO! It looks like a lot of fun if you aren’t there to work. Well, a different kind of fun than we had. It really is an amazing feat of production that goes on twice a year. Maybe someday we’ll just go to a show, but for now the daily adventures are more thrilling for us than any 1 show… ok with a few exceptions.

Two of those exceptions were the Project Runway show & the Viktor Luna show. I didn’t get to see every show Eila did. That’s not our arrangement. She’s working, I’m assisting. When I did get to see a show, which was often, it was more of a treat as I have no essential attachment to the fashion world except that Eila meet her objectives day to day.

The 2 shows I mention here both have their ties to reality TV, Project Runway a challenge/expertise based reality show & Viktor Luna, one of the finalists of P.Runway from Season 9. When Eila started working on the Project Runway book, we were both really excited. Interviews began in January of this year & she got it all done in a few months. I got to meet a ton of people associated with P.Runway : guest judges like Rachel Roy who is absolutely gorgeous btw. Heidi Klum is one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever met in person, smart & charming to boot.  

Above all of them however, I really enjoyed sitting for lunch with Fern Mallis, original creator of New York Fashion Week.  Eila also interviewed her for her NYFW book. I was a bit a’scared to meet her at first. But as many will tell you, she is the nicest & a very comforting person, in person. OK, Fern is kind of my all time favorite because with all that power, she is still really calm, clear & kind. I just respect her immensely.

I also got to meet a number of different contestants. I met Austin Scarlett, Kara Janx, Daniel Vosovic, Christian Siriano, Jerell Scott, Kenley Collins, Anthony Williams, Emilio Sosa, Carlos ‘Casanova’ Cassanova, April Johnson, Michael Costello, Mondo Guerra, Joshua Mckinley & Viktor Luna. Mind you, Eila interviewed many more in person, on the phone & via e-mail that I didn’t meet. But these listed above are just the ones I met in person during the interview process.

It was kinda cool to sit back & sip coffee while Eila did her work. She’s really good at what she does, makes her subject very comfortable, assuring them she’s there to bring out the best for her books. Then they just open up to her. I won’t say she’s seductive, but she does get the best side of people’s stories. She interviews the way I teach & read people, with a sense of humor & a sense of clean intimacy/safety.

Anyway, the reason I’m even mentioning this is… OK confession time. I, like millions of others tend to get very judgmental about people on reality TV shows.  It is so easy to project onto these people who for whatever reason place themselves in what is often a very unflattering spotlight. I am guilty of ‘loving’ or ‘hating’ random people on different sows, making quite literal snap second character assumptions based on what the producers & editors present to us on TV.

That kinda ended this year. There is not 1 person I met connected to a reality TV show that was anything less than an artist, at least in the Project Runway context. Those of us on a spiritual path would do well to remember that each of these people have a history & a future they want to get to. They have feelings, aspirations & are each quite beautiful in their own unique way. I found many of their energies incredibly deep & insightful. But deep & insightful isn’t usually considered ‘Good TV.’

Being the intuitive that I am, I couldn’t help but read the energy of each person & feel their sense of connection or disconnection to source energy/spirit. Few were the walking wounded, in fact, I ‘saw’ much success & expansion for the majority of them, not just in fashion, but in life.

Why do we tout that ‘We are all One’ face to face, but put that face on TV & suddenly all that spiritual truism goes out the well dressed window? I was struck by the sweet humanity if not the inherent spirituality of each that I met & was lucky to get to know a few more deeply in conversations over the months. In essence, my illusions of judgment were smashed by the truth of their radiant spirits, just like everyone else incarnate on planet earth.

This was the real Reality Check. These people aren’t just real, they are talented & a few of them I even found quite easy on the eyes, but I’ll keep those names to myself. A Witch knows how to keep some things secret you know. But as a Witch, Professional or no, I learned what I was trained to do in a deeper & more unexpected manner. I looked past the façades of style, fashion, artistry & met some amazing people. I expected shallow & found depth. I expected frivolous & found insightful. I even stumbled across some ‘closet mystics’ but that I’m keeping my yap shut about too. To Know, To Will, To Dare & TO BE SILENT! Remember?

My perception of reality TV changed drastically before NYFW 9/2012 & even more so at the shows where I met many more people; Anya Ayoung-Chee, Anthony Ryan-Auld, Bert Keeter, Peach & so many that I snapped pictures of for Eila. Yes, I became an unexpected fashion photog this past week. This shy Virgo (yeah right) had to activate his Mars conjunct Leo Rising to walk up to these total strangers & ask them for a picture. Granted, everyone wants their picture taken, but from models to designers, celebs & editors everyone was courteous, kind & willing to spend a few minutes to chat. It was lovely.

I wish every day was as wonderful as the Project Runway show & Viktor Luna’s. Viktor’s was amazing by the way. He even does menswear which I was thrilled to see & am even more thrilled to someday wear. But not every day was so easygoing, especially Tuesday September 11th, which will be the subject of Part III of this Blog. I’ll get to it after classes & clients tomorrow, as I am teaching Tarot II all 1 – 9pm Sunday.

Oh yeah, I also met Manila Luzon of RuPaul’s Drag Race at Viktor’s show… I swooned, but no one knew but Eila.
So stay tuned, my next post has more of the spiritual punch you know I am capable of delivering.
Mark A Lyons
Professional Witch
Follow me on Twitter @ProfWitch