Tarot Tuesday: Andi Grace

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Good Morning COM|PASSionate Community, you beautiful, rambunctious, playful group of divine beings!

How has your week and your healing been going?

Today, we have such a special treat! A visitor has traipsed through the playshop by way of BC! Andi Grace, Poet, Facilitator, Author, Intuitive, and Social Justice Advocate, of Andi Grace Writes (And, formerly, of Moonlit Moth) offers the very special gift of a Tarot Reading to our COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community!

Thank you so much for the reading and guidance, Andi! ❤

———

In preparation for this reading Traci and I worked together to determine what questions would make up the spread. After some back and forth we settled on these questions:

  1. What is our community’s greatest strength?
  2. What shadows do we need to be aware of?
  3. What guidance/awareness should we hold for the present future?

There are many different spreads you can use for a reading. Personally, though I know several standard threads, I prefer creating my own spread with personalized questions. I feel creating my own spread allows me to really get down to the heart of the matter and this gives me greater clarity in deciphering the meaning of the cards. The spread is a roadmap that your intuition gets to walk down, so the clearer the points of reference (the questions) are, the easier it is to find clarity in the process.

Before starting the reading I burn white sage I recently wildcrafted. I open a window and let the smoke blow over the cards and over me. I reflect on the questions, take a few deep breaths, ground.. and then I begin to shuffle the cards. As I shuffle I wait for a sense that the cards are ready to be pulled from, a subtle sense in my body that it’s time to stop shuffling. With this reading the feeling of being done comes quickly. I cut the deck into three piles and pull from the pile I feel most drawn to.

Here are the cards I pulled:

{Image Credit: www.andigracewrites.com}
{Image Credit: http://www.andigracewrites.com}

The first card I pull is the community’s greatest strength: Six of Swords.

Six of swords is a card about putting down your weapons. It’s a time of reprieve during a fierce battle. It is a sign of hope that rises during an often very draining struggle. Swords are cards about air, mental acuity, understanding with our minds, and internal struggle. These sometimes scary looking cards are often tied to anxiety, shame-based-wounds, internalized oppression and self doubt.

I feel that the cards are saying that Compassionate Revolt’s greatest strength is your ability to find a sense of peace, compassion, hope, reprieve and safety within a world that is constantly trying to destroy that which is sacred. If we understand the world to be an oppressive place and a place that we must navigate in order to exist in this life, then we understand our lives as necessarily being invested in finding skills that bolster resilience in the face of oppression. And through all the busyness, all the pain, all the wounds and wandering and loss and confusion, there is always much to do. Always a sense that we haven’t done enough. The 6 of swords is a reminder that we are whole as we are. That people love us. That there is peace in stillness. It tells us that we don’t need to feel guilty for wanting and needing to access that place of peace sometimes. We can use that place, cultivated in community and within ourselves, as a means of finding much needed spiritual nurturance. It seems that your community offers this kind of reprieve and permission to it’s members. This work is your greatest strength.

The second card I pulled is the shadows you need to be aware of: Five of Swords.

And here we see the pain and anguish that the six of swords offers reprieve from. The five of swords is card about self destruction. It’s about pain and conflict and feeling torn apart. The swords are strewn about after a battle and the worm is cut in pieces. Worms are capable of surviving after having their bodies cut apart, but in this process something is lost that can not be returned.

I feel this card is suggesting that there is a shadow of grief to address. This grief arises from circumstances that feel like insurmountable loss. It does not mean the loss is insurmountable, but it feels like it is. This is a big part of how trauma lives in our bodies – and it would seem, how it lives in your community.

This card is also about the battles we fight. The battles where it may be more self preserving to just walk away. And yet we know that just because walking away would be self preserving, does not mean it is always an option. You can’t always walk away from a cop yielding a gun. From a man harassing you on the street. From a border that you walked to because you have nowhere else to turn.

I believe that this card is asking you to address the deep grief. The grief that lies in the shadows because it feels impossible to talk about. Like no words exist. Like there is only mycelium and no mushroom. The grief that tears us apart and leaves our bodies so acclimatized to conflict and pain, that we invite more pain into our lives just to learn how to process it. Because we are used to it. Because we want to understand. Because sometimes we lose our vision that anything else can exist.

It’s time to talk about the pain that feels unspeakable. Because the truth is:  it’s there, whether you address it directly or not. Give it voice. Let the vulnerability of your admissions of fear and terror and loneliness breathe life into what it means to be alive and wounded in these times.

This is your work to be done in the shadows.

The third card I pulled is the guidance and awareness to hold for the future: 7 of pentacles.

Pentacles are earth. They are the ground: sturdy, home, work ethic, natural discipline and practice. The seven of pentacles is a card where we look at what we have built. Notice what we have accumulated. Evaluate what we have earned. We do this in order to decide: is it worth it? What am I gaining from this process? Have I built as much I expected I would?

Often we get caught in traps of evaluating our worth by the standards of capitalism: how much money am I making? Do I have security? We are taught to understand security to mean things like savings, insurance and home ownership. This is the rubric we are taught to understand success from within colonial capitalism, but these things do not represent deep true security. How clean is our water? How nourished are our spirits? Where does our food come from? Are we able to speak our truth and be grounded in the value of both our voice and our ability to listen? These things are just a small part of what true security looks like.

The 7 of pentacles appears when it is time to evaluate and it encourages us to understand our worth and the worth of our work to be situated within the world of the elements: spirit, water, earth, fire and air. Our souls, our feelings, our home, our passions and our truth. The 7 of pentacles encourages you to focus on deep security and measure the value of your work with these ideas in mind.

These should be the guiding principles you work from moving forward.

———-

Thank you so much for your tarot guidance, Andi! We’re so grateful for the compassionate revolutionary healing energy you’ve shared with our community!

If you’re a tarot reader, blogger, or enthusiast and would like to share space with us here at COM|PASSionate REVOLT drop us a line! We would love to have you around the playshop!

———-

Andi’s writing and online tarot card offerings can be found on their website: www.andigracewrites.com.

{Image Credit: www.andigracewrites.com}
{Image Credit: http://www.andigracewrites.com}


Andi is a gender-fucking-fishnet-femme currently growing food, slipping on ice and falling in love on the un-ceded territory of the Sinixt people (otherwise known as the west Kootenays of BC). They are a visitor on this land where they are making a home in a queer and trans landsteading project called the homostead. They are a settler whose family lineage descends mostly from Northern Scots (on their father’s side) and German Mennonites (on their mother’s side). They are a poet, facilitator, tarot card reader, youth worker, sex educator, community organizer,  photographer, blogger, gardener, herbalist, amateur astrologer, kitchen-witch and a formerly extroverted, former yoga teacher.

 

COM|PASSionate Events

Oh, hello, you perfect queer compassionate rebel pineapples, you!

You’re a motley, majestic, perfect bunch, the whole lot of you! 

{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399703791739/}
{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399703791739/}

EVENTS

Get out, take care of yourself and heal in community!

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Don’t forget there’s lots of upcoming ways to get involved!

RECOMMENDATIONS

{Image Credit: www.thecrazyherbalist.com}
{Image Credit: http://www.thecrazyherbalist.com}

We’re so excited about this workshop! It so in line with our beliefs and intentions to link healers and healing and covers the important topic for practitioners working outside of the standard institutionalized and medicalized healing modalities. Such a gift! Come play, donate, support, and heal if you can! RSVP required for location– get on it! ❤

In sweet sweet pineapple love,

The COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community<3

———-

*Events are put on by the CR Community/CR Community members. Other events are by friends of the CR Community or of interest to the CR Community. Feeling a little nervous about getting out and involved? Email us and if we can we’ll make some introductions so you have a friendly face to say “Hi” to when you get there!

**Most of these events will be local to Southern CA (unless we notice an event that sets us off into road trip dreamland.) If you want to do a COM|PASSionate event round-up for your local area let us know!

***Are you an individual, meet-up or community group that has some COM|PASSionate events of your own? Email us for details on how to submit your event to our calendar!

****Have your own story about healing or thoughts on healing? Are you a queer vegan healer? Want to talk to your community about ways you’re living consciously and connected? Do you want your blog, org, or event to be featured on one of our running series or want to do an interview introducing yourself to the COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community? Are you a unicorn in a pony world disguising your magickal star dust sprinkling mane to live amongst the commoners?

Pitch us a blog series or interview idea!! Contact us at compassionaterevolt@gmail.com!

———-

There are photographs in this post that were borrowed lovingly from the internet and do not belong to us. All are linked and credited to the best of our abilities in hopes of attracting more traffic to the photographers and websites who have blessed us with this imagery. The inclusion of a photograph here should not be interpreted as an assertion of the subject’s or artist’s identity or beliefs. If there is a photo included here that belongs to you and you want it removed, please email compassionaterevolt@gmail.com and it will be removed promptly, no questions asked.

Musical Temperance: Harbour Lights

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My original intention this week was to write about the difficulty of making friends in your 30s. I’ll save that topic for next time (because let’s face it, I’ll still be socially awkward in two weeks).

{Image Credit: }
{Image Credit: }

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for myself and my loved ones. Some of us have been flailing, some of us caretaking everyone around us, some of us desperately trying to keep it together, and all of us pushing through what seems like an impossible time. On more than one occasion I’ve been amazed by our resilience and capacity to not only endure, but bravely navigate through the dense fog in our lives.

I had a heavy conversation with one of my best friends yesterday about the strange direction our lives have taken in the past few years and our sincere appreciation for each other’s support. In high school she gave me equal doses of love and tough love whenever I thought my world was going to end (translation: getting dumped) and now we’ve had the beautiful and sad opportunity to sit with each other through identity altering grief.

Many of us mistakenly believe that growing up is solely measured by our ability (or inability) to be self-sufficient. We feel accomplished when we can set our bills to autopay without fear we’ll overdraw or when we can work through life’s curveballs on our own.

wholehearted

I believe, however, adulthood is additionally marked by our ability and willingness to accept and offer support for ourselves and those around us. Most of us struggle with one or the other (or none if you are a well-adjusted human being, unlike myself). For me personally, I try to always be the first person to offer support to my friends and family and yet am often the last person to accept it. I am that stubborn, sweaty idiot attempting to carry 15 bags of groceries up the stairs because I swear I can do it all by myself, I don’t need help, even though you just offered and one of the bags has split open and spilled out boxes of Eggo waffles out in front of you, I don’t need help.

In order to offer and accept support, we first need confidence in the space we hold in our relationships. We cannot give without knowing what we have and likewise cannot ask for help without knowing what we need. There’s much more room here than we first assume and as we settle into ourselves, we may be surprised by the capacity of our emotional expanse and its ability to house our struggle, our desire to love and help, and even our loneliness.

This week my playlist is a bit conflicted, much like me. It’s true, I’m still struggling with the desire to “go it alone” and save everyone. However, in quiet moments like these, I realize how much I appreciate the connectedness between people deliberately sharing their spaces together. At first glance, my choice in songs this week may seem disjointed. The crunch of Brittany Howard’s guitar seems to stand out above the quiet four-part harmony from Mumford & Sons. When this playlist is listened to in its entirety, however, these messages begin to form a cohesive story. We all want to be recognized as our own fully formed narrative. Not only do we desire to see these beautiful connections in the world, but we want to be part of it.

———-

Kristel is a sometimes angsty writer from Hawaii who now lives in Los Angeles, CA. She claims she’s a Marketing Director at a web design agency, but she spends most of her day in front of the computer while wearing pajamas.

Musical Temperance is her small attempt at creating the perfect soundtrack to help her survive an extended quarter-life crisis. Additional musings and playlists can be found at kristelyoneda.com.

Tarot Tuesday: Creating Space

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Morning, loves!

Today on the playshop I want to talk about creating intentional space for your tarot adventures! Here are some of our favorite ways to clear your physical and energetic space as well as your deck:

  • Before you pull take a moment to settle in. This might not always be possible. We know there have been times when we need a card immediately and juggle a bit to find space at a tiny crowded coffee shop table! Generally though, we try to find somewhere that is both energetically and physically spacious. Pulling on your bed? Take a second to flatten out the top sheet. Pulling out doors? Dust away debris or put down a towel. Pulling in front of your computer around work (definitely, not something we do way more often than we’d like to admit)? Push aside your keyboard, stack your papers, clear your post-its.
  • If you believe in a little energetic clearing take some time to burn sage or palo santo, light an oil burner, or perhaps sit with your deck wrapped up, close your eyes, and take a couple deep inhales and open mouthed exhales. Open yourself up to what you might need.
  • Pulling with others? Help clear the space together. Sit in a moment of silence while you both contemplate what it is you want to pull around and how you want to pull.
  • Know your spreads before you shuffle. These can be spreads you make on your own. However, placement is important to the meaning of your pull so make sure that you are contemplating each spot as you shuffle.
  • Some folks feel like there is a certain way or amount of times you have to shuffle. I’m sure my high school AP Stats teacher would have a few things to say about this. I say shuffle for as long as you need to contemplate your question|s  and trust your gut intuition. I also like to cut for every person pulling or cut for every card position. It’s up to you but be a conscious participant in trusting the relationship between your subconscious, your energy, and your deck.

These are just a few of our favorite ways to get ourselves ready to pull! You can read more about building intentional space here. How about you? What are your favorite ways to get ready to pull tarot?

Trusting the shuffle,

Traci

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Traci {She|Her|Hers|They|Them|Theirs} is a yoga teacher, therapist and amateur tarot enthusiast! They try to believe in the power of their inner Magician, stay inspired by the Fool’s spirit, understand struggle through the lens of The Tower/Disaster and always stay reminded that, “The Star Awaits…”

COM|PASSionate Events

Happy Friday everyone!

We hope you’ve had a lovely week. We hope that you’ve given and shared loved in your healing journeys. We hope that you’ve been supported and honored in your ongoing transitions.

It can be easy to get swept up in the speed of the week and the changes of day to day life to the point that it becomes difficult see where your feet touch the ground. Sometimes everything seems like a complication.

We ran into this piece traipsing about the under side of Pike’s Market in Seattle during our Gender Odyssey excursion and thought, that’s what we want. _J4N34BCAjn-gXTim8q1QJG4AuSSIxGWiZLDKE-Sj7gSo take a breath, slow down, simplify, the week is coming to a close. Have an extravagant weekend. Give and consume love with gluttonous hunger. See the complications as little hors d’oeuvres of lessons and gifts. Choose to take in beautiful moments of experience until your belly is so full you have to pause to take a nap and digest it all through the sweetest of dreams.

 

EVENTS

Get out, take care of yourself and heal in community!

  • SATURDAY 9.19.15 Greet the Day Yoga, Deep Dog, Yorba Linda*
  • MONDAY 9.21.15 Summer Flow, Deep Dog, Yorba Linda*
  • WEDNESDAY 9.23.15 Midweek Mindfulness Practice, Deep Dog, Yorba Linda*
  • THURSDAY 9.24.15 Bones + Breath Yoga, Deep Dog, Yorba Linda*

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Don’t forget there’s lots of upcoming ways to get involved!

{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/126100858286278533/}
{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/126100858286278533/}

 

In extravagant gratitude,

The COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community<3

———-

*Events are put on by the CR Community/CR Community members. Other events are by friends of the CR Community or of interest to the CR Community. Feeling a little nervous about getting out and involved? Email us and if we can we’ll make some introductions so you have a friendly face to say “Hi” to when you get there!

**Most of these events will be local to Southern CA (unless we notice an event that sets us off into road trip dreamland.) If you want to do a COM|PASSionate event round-up for your local area let us know!

***Are you an individual, meet-up or community group that has some COM|PASSionate events of your own? Email us for details on how to submit your event to our calendar!

****Have your own story about healing or thoughts on healing? Are you a queer vegan healer? Want to talk to your community about ways you’re living consciously and connected? Do you want your blog, org, or event to be featured on one of our running series or want to do an interview introducing yourself to the COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community? Are you a unicorn in a pony world disguising your magickal star dust sprinkling mane to live amongst the commoners?

Pitch us a blog series or interview idea!! Contact us at compassionaterevolt@gmail.com!

———-

There are photographs in this post that were borrowed lovingly from the internet and do not belong to us. All are linked and credited to the best of our abilities in hopes of attracting more traffic to the photographers and websites who have blessed us with this imagery. The inclusion of a photograph here should not be interpreted as an assertion of the subject’s or artist’s identity or beliefs. If there is a photo included here that belongs to you and you want it removed, please email compassionaterevolt@gmail.com and it will be removed promptly, no questions asked.

Core Work: Changes

banneryoga

Changes

“There’s many reasons
we are
what we’ve become

I’m going through changes
ripping out pages
I’m going through changes now

I knew it once
but I forgot
I’m going through changes now

We want everything but
what we’ve got
I’m going through changes now”

~Langhorne Slim + The Law

It has been oppressively hot, especially these last few weeks of summer. It hasn’t rained here in Southern California in a good long while.

I’m sitting here in front of my computer while the rain pours down.

I woke up to a text/wish from a partner that we were cuddled up enjoying the downpour from somewhere other than where we were. I cooked breakfast with a partner as we reflected on the changes rumbling at the fault lines in our world. They were starting to shift the plates in our universe in a way that made the landscape look ( at times terrifyingly and at times divinely) different from the one we intended to build. Sometimes, as happens, you have a profound moment of clarity over tofu scramble and coffee.

I looked out the window at the rain. I confessed to my breakfast company that while there was nothing that should make me feel particularly incredulous about that morning’s weather, something deep down in my bones felt awe and disbelief. What is it in our bodies that tells us our moments of discomfort will never end? Sometimes it’s a heat wave, sometimes that moment when you’re so sick (hungover from substances or life), or when you’re in a particularly dark period that something in your gut makes the definitive statement this is just the way things are going to be: forever.

For me the discomfort recently has been transition– ironic given the nature of my work and the number of times I process with folks around how we are all ALWAYS in transition (Side note for anyone I’ve said this to: please know, I don’t rescind the truth of this statement but I do know how ridiculously uncomfortable it is, like a deep down crawling feeling under your skin). I had a particularly frantic day yesterday. There was a power outage so I had to transfer my work space to a temporary location. I rushed back to teach my yoga class transferring my awareness from computer brain to mindful body. When I got to the studio it was a particularly busy day as one class of students got out and the next class transitioned in. I had a meeting around transferring part of my practice to a new space. I had a family meeting around transitioning our family meeting to a new time.

Towards the end of my long day yesterday I felt like an angry little tea pot. Whether it was the heatwave, the growing saturation of the clouds, the pressure cooker of managing the discomfort of change, or the push towards the next plateau of life, I could hear that deep guttural squeal of steam starting from core center. As I sipped my coffee to the rain’s calming meditative rhythm, I was able to take a full breath past my throat, down into my chest, deep down into my gut. I flipped the spout of my teapot so it wasn’t squealing, I turned off the stove, my world got a little quieter, and I had a few insights:

(1) Things always change; the weather, the seasons, our lives. Things were bound to turn around.

(2) Yesterday, at the end cap of the heat wave with the clouds pushed to their breaking points, something in my subconscious said it was never going to be cool or rain again, ever.

(3) The tension I felt in my person had some functional marking points, but at its core it was based in my desire to be somewhere other than where I was (read: not in transition) and the belief that I would never be anywhere else than where I was (read: in the discomfort of transition forever).

The only thing that changed this morning, other than the precipitation, was that I had evidence that change was a constant. To a certain extent I would be in transition forever, but I wouldn’t necessarily be in the discomfort of it, as long as I chose to be in a little bit of healthy debate with my sometimes nay saying and catastrophizing bones.

In case you’re needing a little reminder that core work starts when we can create spaciousness and safety around leaning into these moments of transition (read: life), know that from the time I started this post to the typing of these last few sentences, my playlist has re-started, the rain has stopped, and a sun streak just came through the clouds.

In case you’re someone that needs an appropriate soundtrack to help shake the dust off that old belief that it is discomfort that is permanent and constant rather than change a little playlist help:

Ripping out pages,

Traci

———-

Traci Medeiros-Bagan {She|Her|Hers|They|Them|Theirs} is currently in the depths of intentional core work to build a conscious practice. They are a therapist, yoga teacher, and human in progress. Information about where, when, and how they share this journey with community can be found at compassionaterevolthealing.com

Tarot Tuesday: Support

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Morning Revolutionaries!

We had such an amazing weekend at Catalyst Con West having “exceptional conversations about sexuality.” We learned some new things, engaged in conversations about things we’d been contemplating ourselves, explored who we are trying to reach from this little corner of the universe and just what the best way is to reach each other!

We’ve been really lucky to have been able to have done quite a bit of “conferencing” this summer. Sure, our hearts were a little broken that we didn’t make it out to Amorous Revolt last month, but between Gender Spectrum, Gender Odyssey, and Catalyst Con we really can’t complain. Going to such a smattering of conferences, these little intentional bubbles of community conversation, got us thinking about how important format/structure are in our offerings.

We may want to share information but if we don’t know how to get it to those we’re trying to reach it doesn’t get anywhere. We may want to make space for conversation but if we can’t build cultures of safety and openness they aren’t going to happen. We may want to offer support to others around us but if we’re not mindful of how we do so we may not be helpful.

Support

This spread is to shed some light on how to offer intentional and appropriate support to others. It reminds you that you sit at the base of any support you offer, and, therefore, that energy towards your own self-care is a worthy act. Lastly, it checks in with the “heart of the matter” and any underlying reminders or intention informing our desire to support others that we might not be aware of on the surface.

Shuffle your deck as you contemplate the concept and function of support. When finished, cut your deck for as many people or groups you are drawing a card for including yourself (for example: if you want to draw for two others you will cut three times all together). Think about a person or group during each cut and then re-stack your deck. Set out your cards as shown in the diagram. Your last “heart of the matter” card can be the last card that you draw or you can flip over your deck and take the bottom card.

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I played a bit with this spread and this is what I got. My heart warmed as I flipped The Star card as my heart of the matter. I absentmindedly ran my finger over the tattoo in the crease of my right elbow that holds the words: “The Star Awaits” underneath a nod to “Disaster” or “The Tower.”

In a time when I know I need to put consciousness to support the individual changes I’m experiencing as well as honoring my desperate desire to support those I love around me in ways that make sense to them– the star card reminds me to have “hope and peace of mind.” The Wild Unknown interpretation offers the reassurance:

“Even though you can’t find concrete answers to life’s many questions up there in the sky, you can’t help but feel comforted and renewed. Such is the energy of the star card. It is not about actions or situations, it’s simply about connecting to the parts of you that feel hopeful and serene.” 

When I sit in places of hopeful serenity it suddenly becomes clear where I can support others, whether they need something functional or just for me to be nearby energetically, it clears up what part of support I’m truly offering for them and what parts are about my own need to ease anxiety through my inclination for service.

Support is an animal of delicate constitution in need of very specific care taking. This spread is an offering to this important healing but complicated practice.

In support and service,

Traci

———-

Traci {She|Her|Hers|They|Them|Theirs} is a yoga teacher, therapist and amateur tarot enthusiast! They try to believe in the power of their inner Magician, stay inspired by the Fool’s spirit, understand struggle through the lens of The Tower/Disaster and always stay reminded that, “The Star Awaits…”