(Note: this should’ve been published on 5/30, but I fell slightly behind as I was returning from camping vacay and taking care of the mundane things.)
Week Seven is about “endless sources of power.” Earlier in the book, we learn about everything being connected, everything being made of this power/energy that Francesca calls “mana” (and that the Huna call mana, also), but which I have called, “Awen.” It is the same power known by many names, including Chi, Kundalini, Life Force, et cetera. And it is not a make-believe spiritual power – it is a literal, full-on, you-can-feel-it power.
One of the assignments was to go out into nature to feel/sense this power. Our camping trip was the perfect opportunity for me to do that. I sort of skipped ahead a little for that reason, because I wasn’t going to have much more of an opportunity for it. But, in my intent to be spiritually mundane and mundanely spiritual – incorporating it all into my daily life and reality – I realized that I could do the same thing in my backyard. And so I did.
Then there was the section of “Ritual Breathing of Power.” I’ve read similar activities and participated in them before. It was really kind of a refresher for me to do this ritual power breathing. I don’t know if you’ve seem them or not, but there are colored smoke balls that you can by around the 4th of July. Here, they go up for sale around the beginning of May, usually. So we buy those every year because they’re very pretty when the smoke is fully colored. One of them is blue – and it’s my favorite because it’s somewhat of a day-glo blue. That day-glo blue smoke is how I picture the Mana/Chi/Awen when I’m breathing it. Unfortunately, because of working nights, I have to be careful not to get into the habit of pulling in Awen in the mornings before bed – otherwise, it’s up, up and awake!
And finally, there is a series of questions at the end of this lesson that we’re supposed to answer. Here they are, with my answers:
What do you think of when you hear the word power? Well, if I were a beginner, I might say something along the lines of “the ability to cast spells,” or, “energy.” Not that those are wrong answers by any means. But for me, I think of the ability to control my life, the ability to walk my path of my own volition. The word “power” makes me think of being independent and able to take what comes without being shaken by it. The word “power” lets me know that I am able to create my own life, my own reality, my own beingness – to (as I’ve said other-wheres), “God up my world like a BossBitch.”
What negative things does this society say about power? Honestly – nothing. Until you look below the surface. Power is good, power is great, they want us to feel empowered, these days. The problem is that when we really do get empowered like they say we should be, the infamous “they” is no longer in control. Then “they” feel threatened, and so “they” torture, imprison, rape and murder us. Because we are more powerful than “they.” For some, though, power makes you a “bitch,” or an “asshole.” Not because it goes to your head, but because “they” (there they are again) feel threatened, and therefore, your behavior is “socially unacceptable.” Fuck “they.”
What negative things does this society say about power and women? Less now than it used to. Now, it’s good to be a woman CEO of a major multinational fortune 500 company, for example. Just don’t get too powerful, lest you knock the fat-headed pig off his throne. Like I said earlier: on the surface, nothing is wrong with it. But look beneath and we’ve done nothing but covered the pile of shit with a pretty plastic veneer (faux fur, perhaps?). It doesn’t seem like it on the surface, but rest assured, somewhere at the top or somewhere at the bottom, there’s someone who says that the woman in power is a “bitch.”
What negative things does this society say about power and men? Now we’re getting to the nitty-gritty! I kind of have an issue here that I’m working through. See, the tables have turned. They say its okay to be a female CEO of a fortune 500 company – or however else you want to perceive power. And then it happens. And there are still those in opposition. But now, it’s as if the media/society is flip-flopping – putting men exactly where women were, as if two wrongs make a right. A man at the top of the corporate ladders must be an “asshole” or a “bastard” or a “self-absorbed douche-bag,” because he accomplished his goal. If a woman is a complete slut and fucks around on her husband or, better, never gets married but just has thousands of casual sex partners throughout her life, many consider her an “independent free-thinker, good for her.” But when a man does it – well, we’re just “cocksucking asshole douche-bags.”
What are your personal problems about power? Well, I just mentioned one of them – the double-standard that now suddenly seems “okay” because, after all, men did it to women for centuries, so it must be okay for women to do it to men. On a more personal note, though, I don’t have a lot of private issues with power. I’m guessing that’s because I’ve sort of come to terms with living with power – being able to dream, create, pursue, change, grow, reach, attain. It’s possible that my feelings about the double-standard itself have crept up as a block to power. But really and truly, I have no problems obtaining power, using power … not in the sense of gathering and using Awen, anyhow.
What are your powers, strengths? I’m very social. Get a couple of drinks in me and it’s like you and I have been best buds forever. LOL I’m also great at … well, skills (you’ll have to read the Gay Slut Magic posts to figure it out). I’m also great at setting up altars and communing with spirits. I can meditate for quite a long while. I run energy on a regular basis. Once I really set my heart to something, I can keep disciplined with it. I pick things up very easily, so learning a new task is not difficult for me. I love to write, and I write very casually (in case you haven’t noticed). I’m adaptable to most situations and I bounce back from hardships pretty quickly (for the most part, unless I’m working through some sort of personal growth issue around it). I’m the type of person to not be overly judgey and just accept people for who they are – because who I am to say you have to change anything? I’m God like you’re God, but only of my own World, just like you’re God of your own World – creating in other peoples’ realities is not my job.
What do you like about power? Well … Awen/Chi/Mana-wise, I like that it’s freely available, all around us, and accessible for whatever we may need it to accomplish. As for social power (which I obviously excel at in some situations), I like that it helps me to ease into and adapt to situations that otherwise might be too difficult to handle.
That’s it for week seven. We were to use the Ritual Breathing of Power whenever we needed a pick-me-up or to feel better or whatever throughout the week. I did and I enjoyed it. I did it to feel more lively when I was dog-tired during the camping trip (because I had to sleep in the car on the way to the campground for several hours, I felt like utter poo, but used the power breathing to give me a jolt when I needed it). I also breathed power to keep the gumption to go paddle-boating for an hour and a half! (That shit will eat your calves alive, son!)