Sunday, December 20, 2009

Bare Trees Mandala

bare trees mandalaBare Trees Mandala (Circles of Winter series) © Sue O'Kieffe 2009
source image: twigs in sandtwigs in sand

I created this mandala a couple of weeks ago, but I wanted to wait until Solstice to publish it. The source image, two little twigs I spotted in the sand of a riverbank after a heavy winter rain, seemed like a runic message left by the storm gods for someone to interpret.

Solstice is a time of magic and mystery. This past fall I began studying with a shamanic practitioner and learned how to communicate with my spirit allies. It was a potent time, and tonight I am going to a shamanic journeying circle to experience Solstice with other journeyers. While Solstice is often celebrated as that time of returning to the light, tonight we will be journeying with the spirits of darkness. I think it will be a potent time.

Those of you who know my art know that exploring the mystery is one of my favorite themes. I am most true to life when I stop trying to control it and let it - and me - just be. At that time is when I am most aware of the unknowable.

How about you? What truth do you find in the dark?

Sue O'Kieffe
Sacred Circle Mandalas

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2 comments:

Colleen said...

There is a lot of truth in the darkness. I feel that is where I often journey and it shows up in my paintings. Oftentimes the best answers come during the darkness. A little light in the dark is very uplifting!

healingmagichands said...

I love the dark. I choose to walk my dog in a conservation park in our town that has no lights; and I usually am there after sundown, walking her in the "dark". I love it because NO ONE else is out there after the sun goes down, so it is like my own private park.

One of the truths I have learned is that the dark is not truly dark (unless you are in a cave or our root cellar!), and once your eyes have adjusted to the lower light levels you can see fairly well. I think for me the lesson there is that if you are only patient, the dark will reveal its secrets to you.

I think that the rune that best fits your twig shape is "Protection". My book says this: "Control of the emotions is at issue here. During times of transition, shifts in life course and accelerated self-change, it is important not to collapse hourself into your emotions -- the highs as well as the lows. New opportunities and challenges are typical of this Rune. And with them will come trespasses and unwanted influences.

Algiz (protection) serves as a mirror for the Spiritual Warrior, the one whose battle is always with the self. The protection of the Warrior is like the warning rustle of the sedge grass or like the curved horns of the elk, for both serve to keep open space around you. Remain mindful that timely action and correct conduct are the only true protection If you find yourself feeling pain, observe the pain, stay with it. Don't try to pull down the veil and escape from it by denying what is happening. You will progress; knowing that is your protection."

Blessed be, and a happy Solstice to you, Sue.