COM|PASSionate Events

Oh, hello friends!

We’re back from our travels and the summer is starting to cool down. It’s not here quite yet but we can feel the change in the seasons hovering just around the corner. We’re still  sweating around midday but there are these moments in the morning while we’re drinking our coffee (and moments in the evening when we’re drinking our whiskey) where you get this little crisp whisper beckoning in the Fall.

{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399701921135/}
{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399701921135/}

Take a lesson from the Fall breeze, friends. Take a moment in the mornings to look out on the horizon, take a moment in the evenings to look up at the stars, take a moment when the world feels like it’s rushing by to take a long deep breath.

Sure, it’s hot, but it’s summer! Don’t rush through it. Change is coming. Don’t be scared of it. Everything is cycle. Seasons change, identities transform, day turns to night. Sink into it with peace and contentment. Breathe it in and let it fill your lungs with stars.

{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399703599386/}
{Image Credit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/3307399703599386/}

EVENTS

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

ANNOUNCEMENTS

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

  • Long Beach First Fridays! Art Walk, Shop, and Dine! Spend some time outdoors enjoying the summer nights. Tonight’s the night!
  • Downtown Santa Ana Artwalk! Already have plans for tonight? How about Santa Ana’s September Art Walk tomorrow night 9.5.15 or September Artwalk After Party Sunday night 9.6.15???
  • OCFTM Annual Beach Party coming up on September 19th!

RECOMMENDATIONS

Is all this feeling like too much? Do you feel weighted down, discontent, lacking in access to light? We would love for you to sit in the abundance and potential of the changing seasons with us but want to validate that there are multiple things that bedevil our potential and agency which in turn instigate our scarcity anxiety.

If you’re feeling the weight of other oppressive forces getting in the way of enjoying the night as much as you enjoy the stars or breathing in the fall breeze as deeply as you soak up the summer sun, meditate on how to expunge oppression from your life while you listen to this playlist from The Collective Tarot’s interpretation of The Devil/Oppression.

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Deep breaths,

The COM|PASSionate REVOLT Community<3

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*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!

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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.

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Tarot Tuesday: Accountability + Boundaries

playshopbannerHappy Tuesday everyone!

I hope everyone had a lovely start to their August. The past month and a half has been a whirlwind of activity, re-structuring, and schedule changes for me. I finally came into a (partially body induced/mandated) slow down this weekend. It was unfamiliar and really lovely. I got to pull quite a bit of tarot.

Two things continued to come up: Accountability and Boundaries.

I got to thinking about the intersection of these two themes as I started to write Tarot Tuesday this morning. I thought about the ways that we are accountable for the time we put (or don’t put) to our healing, the type of healing we utilize, the way that we have to set boundaries for our self care versus the way we are accountable for our interactions with others, and the way that the guidance of tarot resides in between these two places.

Tarot can offer us guidance and direction for our awareness but, ultimately, it is our responsibility to integrate that information however we choose. Tarot might invite us to set some healthy boundaries, but only we will be able to truly discern what those boundaries will need to look like. With this in mind I decided to create a spread to help offer guidance on the common struggle of this intersection.

AccountBoundSpreadThis spread will be helpful if you feel like you need to set some boundaries in your life. Beyond some awareness around helpful boundaries it will support your consciousness around your place and accountability in the manifesting of these healthy structures. Card 1 and Card 2 signify the intersection while Card 3 and Card 4 support the question at hand in the stable structure of a triangle to offer specific guidance.

Here is the spread I pulled for myself:

AccountBoundTest

Card 1: Major Arcana 7, The Chariot or The Conductor (Inverted)

The Collective Tarot describes The Conductor… “The Conductor is victory, steadfastness, control, movement, strength, a plan, a direction, and riding the wave. This warrior is fierce , yet confident and relaxed.” Prior to the last re-paint of my room this reminder graced my wall and during a recent tromp through the House of Intuition in LA I flipped through the pages of The Secret Language of Birthdays and was unsurprised to see The Chariot staring back at me. In best forms, this individual is balanced, powerful, and confident in their abilities. Their power is something that is already familiar in my tarot reads and my life. The way that they showed up inverted in this spread, perhaps less than confident, less than trusting of these gifts, is also something familiar. What do I need to hold myself accountable for in the way that I set boundaries in my relationships is a conflict that is often hovering near the surface of my interactions. At the center of this intersection, perhaps The Conductor is reminding me that content is there if only I can find contentment in it?

Card 2: Major Arcana 9, The Hermit

The Hermit crosses my intersection as the central challenge. Why would The Hermit, “with the demented smile and candor of a master hold the message of challenge for me? She is both “map and compass to the human heart,” she trusts her intuition, and distinguishes loneliness from being comfortable being alone. I think that perhaps her lantern of illumination is drawing my attention to the ways that my people pleasing and friendliness can come off as extroverted gregariousness taking a heavy toll on my introverted spirit.

Card 3: Major Arcana 20, Judgment or Liberation (Inverted)

A card of transformation sits at the cornerstone of my accountability support in this spread. The center point of this transformation is taking off the mask, releasing expectation, and sinking into the truest self. It is a card that reminds us of the metaphorical truth that “the cards have been dealt,” and only we are accountable for how we decide to play them. While daunting, once this is accepted, we can find “A kind of letting go that is so vast and profound and honest that it reduces you down to your most basic raw child-like elemental self… A letting go that begins to dissolve the boundaries of our social and material constructs, so that we are no longer so separate and disconnected, but instead are more integrated and whole. Inverted, I wonder if it signifies the heartbreak that can only come from holding on too tightly to past versions of the self and how it keeps us from being accountable to our present/future integration.

Card 4 Major Arcana 15, The Devil or Oppression (Inverted)

The Devil or Oppression reminds us of difficult times where we feel drained by the way that we are confined and sometimes actively pushed down. It also requests that we stay wary that we are not oppressing others. My awareness of boundaries can often be draining, especially when I see them being impeded upon. With accountability close at hand, perhaps the Inverted Devil offers me a gentle reminder to shift my focus from others impeding on my boundaries to how I hold my own.

Overall, I really enjoyed building this spread with a theme in mind and feel like this is one I may come back to for insight into this intersection as well as the holding triangular structure supporting a central issue and challenge. While you can pull tarot in any way that feels right to you, you may also want to play with the extra information that comes with spreads or even create your own.

Happy Tuesday!

In accountability,

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…”

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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 for a Conscious Practice

banneryoga

“Subversion best describes a practice in which the power of the patriarchy is turned upon itself,

to REVOLUTION and HEALING.

A REVOLUTION that, because it is subtle and not frontal, can be effective even in the face of formidable obstacles.”

Laura S. Brown

Subversive Dialogues

I sat down this morning with an intention to pour myself into starting this blog series. It’s  been a concept that I’ve been rolling around in my head for awhile. It keeps popping up in different incarnations, taking shape, and then just as quickly as it appears, dissolving into the day’s to do list of chores, errands, dates, obligations, and general life distractions. It kept shifting and changing and I was having a hard time getting a firm grasp on it. Sitting down to write about healing challenged the time and space I was making for my own. I would get excited about a certain practice and then bunny hole into its problematic nature.

It was then that I realized that this was the connecting factor– the complications and intersections! Anything explored consciously and connected will remain in the, sometimes daunting, but always insight building, constancy of transition. It’s the intention behind this tiny queer healing space in this great big internet universe.

With that in mind, I spent the morning reading blogs about the yoga industrial complex, the appropriative nature of western yoga, and the conflicted way this practice has been a powerful source of agency for marginalized folks and communities of color (not withholding, but also not primarily focused on communities of South Asian Americans).

Healing is a complicated (and politicized) animal. The reading I did reflected a struggle that I’ve experienced often, and not just around my personal and professional yoga practice. We may want to take our own complicated healing journeys out of this but we can’t, and I would argue, that we shouldn’t want to.

We live in a culture that parses out our minds, bodies, hearts, and spirits into segregated categories. When something in ourselves or our worlds becomes “broken” or “pathologized” we don’t think first to take a breath, check in with the wound, analyze it for both positive and negative messages, and reach into our internal resources to fix it.

We go find an expert to tell us what’s wrong.

Furthermore, this external (and problematic) healing isn’t neutral or accessible to everyone. It’s one battle to accept that we need healing, another battle to figure out what that healing might look like, and an all out war to integrate it into our lives in a conscious and honoring way. Talking about healing through war metaphors isn’t an accident. It’s a place of internal conflict.

When I walk into a yoga studio I carry with me all of my intersections and all of my stories. I hold places of privilege and oppression. When I’m taking class I do my best to “take what I need,” and when I teach I often encourage my students to do the same. While I could pat myself on the back that I don’t preach asana for beach bodies, I’m also invariably awkward when pre-class conversation includes the latest high protein (read: meat) based diet and the way vinyasa flow can tone your arms. The familiar anxiety of female bonding office lunchroom chat washes over me. I often defer to silence unsure whether it’s more yogic to “observe without judgment” or start handing out copies of “Lessons from the Fat-o-sphere.

The truth of the matter is- the yoga that I’ve learned, re-shaped, and now want to share helps heal my original wound. A wound that (even with the potential for projection) I believe is shared amongst a lot of us. It meets us where we’re at. It honors our bodies and what they are trying to speak to us. It’s science and spirit and heart space. And it’s also the offspring of this bastardized arranged marriage between a need to heal wounds created by western culture itself and the inherent resistance of eastern spiritual healing. Even as the consciousness of a donation based intention and a queer folk filled playlist subverts one oppressive narrative, it makes other roots invisible.

I didn’t (and haven’t) come to a clear answer as to how to solve this. Similarly, the analysis around ways that we heal here in the west are broken into two general camps. One camp discusses the process without relevance to the history and intersections of power, privilege, appropriation, colonization, and abuse while the other often focuses only on these challenges. The latter also often holds “calls to action,” solutions to ways we can be more accountable, while individual healing journeys are often mis-routed to more activism/advocacy. This can pose a troubling conflict for those of us that are already hyper conscious, sensitive to the constant barrage of trauma in the world, and working tirelessly to find healing that works for our courageously soft and divinely broken spirits.

{Image Credit: http://bit.ly/1JMjfpR}
{Image Credit: http://bit.ly/1JMjfpR}

I noted to myself that I started this morning highly motivated to dig into the depths of healing practices. By the time I finished my consciousness raising reading list, I wanted to quit everything, wrap myself in my overpriced yoga mat, and sit in a shame corner while the rubber stink slowly filled my lungs and asphyxiated me with the weight of oppressive appropriation.

I know… not super helpful.

This isn’t a defense of privileged fragility (that’s nothing new) but rather a question of how we can institute sustainable (as well as ethical) self-care practices for ourselves. It’s a challenge around how we can hold and honor the best of what nurturing wisdom is already in existence as well as forge our own paths. It’s a request to hold awareness around roots while also grounding ourselves in our current context.

It’s faith in the healing exploration of living consciously and connected.

This blog series will be an offering to this discussion and search. A place to process the complicated, unique, unexpected, and sometimes problematic, intersections where healing happens.

In Passionate Compassion, Subversion, Revolution, and Healing,

Traci

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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

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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.

Tarot Tuesday: 4 Walls

PlayshopBannerHappy Tuesday everyone! How is everyone? My week is just starting (and also never really ended last week).

I’m feeling a lot of feelings.

I had a lot of… what’s a more positive word for conflicted experiences?

I’m feeling exhausted, invigorated, spent, and fed from a solo trip up to the queer promised land this weekend. I did a little time in the East Bay talking gender, race, and power with 11-13 year olds, and then re-processed those talks with peers over Burmese and Ethiopian food amongst a lot of young bearded and dreadlocked white folk. I engaged in triggering and inspiring conversation with other “professionals” around a community that I’m simultaneously near, in, and serve. I caught some donation based (but very physically focused) yoga. I had a quiet girlfriend night where we laughed, and cried, and hugged over roasted broccoli, whiskey, online dating, and the way not being walked to our cars after a date can make the most liberated of us feel like shit.

P.S. Just in case you need it, ladies. Here’s a (warning: very obscene but perfect) love note from Elle King.

I pulled tarot when I got into town and should have been unsurprised to see the Four of Bones staring back at me.

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“There is a lot going on in this card. Here is the cyclical structure of the seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. Here are the changes each of those seasons bring, and their constant return to the beginning of the cycle wherever we may perceive to be…. at the center.. the human heart. There it lies shielded from the elements, truth at the crossroads; the calm inside the storm.

The Four of Bones is about structure, cycles, boundaries and borders. With this card we have the power to protect ourselves and others. It represents the power of four walls. With these walls we can build a shelter or a fortress, a cozy bedroom or a prison cell. The challenge of this card is to know the power of limits and boundaries, and know how to use that power in positive ways.” 

The Collective Tarot

The mystical, strong and fluid, shifting walls of The Four of Bones stayed with me throughout the weekend, my drive home, and I suspect are still hovering nearby this morning.

I’ve been reflecting on what this trip marked for me- the cycle and the season of the year past. I thought about the space the solo nature of it serendipitously brought (as much as I intended and desired it to be a little escapist love getaway). I’ve been attempting to discern what feels like protective boundary setting and what feels like oppressive rigidity. I deconstructed the work that I saw being done in and around community and tried to find gratitude and “balance between the power of freedom and the power of structure.”

{Image Credit: https://www.tumblr.com/search/dogma%20gif}
{Image Credit: https://www.tumblr.com/search/dogma%20gif}

And, Lord Alanis knows, I’m trying my damn-dest to step up to the challenge of knowing “the power of limits and boundaries, and.. how to use that power in positive ways.” 

I stared back into the center of The Four of Bones and wondered if the heart was really “shielded from the elements?” And, if it didn’t feel that way, if this was a sign I needed to build better boundaries or “knock down some walls; loosen the hinges on {my} heart. Allow {myself} to move into the next phase in the cycle of {my} life?”

The Four of Bones (or more classically The Four of Pentacles) exemplifies the contradictory and process instigating way that tarot offers us reflection and guidance. It doesn’t give us the answer but rather challenges us to look towards places of growth through introspection. It warns us that anything to it’s extreme– to rigidity can be unhelpful– and also carries the truth of constant change. Any season will eventually cycle through to the next and (eventually) back to itself.

I’m meditating on how to keep myself in a cozy bedroom.

A shelter that protects me, comforts me, and offers me rest. I want to intentionally create sacred space and feel safe asking others into it as well as feel content and fed sitting in it alone. I want to be able to kindly and lovingly ask for my solitude as well as lean into the risk of requesting company.

It’s not quite finished but I’ve heard home improvements last for as long as you are fortunate enough to have a home.

Currently laying blue prints for my four walls,

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…”

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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.

 

Tarot Tuesday: The Fool’s Journey

Hey there Tarot Tuesday fans!

TarotTuesdayBanner

So lovely to see everyone! Traci here of Picnic Lunch, COM|PASSionate Inspiration and general blog/website upkeep. Kaeti’s still out of town so I’ll be pinch hitting on this one.

I don’t have nearly as much experience or knowledge as Kaeti with tarot, but it has been extremely powerful in my life. So I thought this would be a great time to do a post about how someone interested in tarot might get started exploring doing their own readings. Here’s my first (and only) tip:

The Fool  {The Collective Tarot}
The Fool
{The Collective Tarot}

Start at the beginning. Engage in your journey through tarot as the Major Arcana would lead you through it… from 0… with The Fool as your inspiration and guide. The Collective Tarot describes the fool as a “hopeful and trusting traveler… perhaps ill-prepared and going solo.” The Fool encourages us to leap forth into life as one would into a spontaneous roadtrip- “leaving lots of room for improvisation and spontaneity.” You don’t have to have packed everything you need (or even studied tarot as a long time dedicated student) you just need to “loosen up your expectations and open yourself up to chance. Intuition is a voice which speaks louder the more carefully you listen, and the Fool trusts her heart first in all matters. She is our first curious tendril stretched out to the universe, green and new.”

I was lucky enough to have some wonderful human guides into my relationship with tarot. They encouraged me to find a deck that resonated with me and to shuffle, pull and make spreads that felt like conversations. When I drew a card and looked towards them wide-eyed for answers they asked, “What do you see?” When my Aries nature bowed down her horns, furrowed her brow and complained in exasperation, “BUT I don’t know what the right answer is!” They smiled and said, “Sure you do, you pulled it.”

I started to slow down, to let the art in front of me wash over me and through me. I took a breath and asked myself how the cards felt? I asked myself how they made me feel? I let the images, colors and symbols link back to my own set of memories, experiences and the lens throughout which I saw the world. The cards started to come alive, to talk to me and only when I felt like I had finished conversing with them did I look back through the deck books or start to google on the internet.

Each time I pull I learn a little bit more about myself and tarot. I’ve done a bit of study here and there and still sometimes have the urge to ask those with more knowledge for validation about my understanding of the cards but mostly I’m really grateful to always come to my deck as The Fool.

This wide eyed naivete has served me well. I’ve seen things along my journey that I wouldn’t have if I knew what direction I should be looking.

So if you’re interested (but mystified) in tarot I encourage you to find a deck that you like (whether it be the colors, the pictures or the meanings), borrow one from a friend or use an online card generator. Whether you’re shuffling or clicking take a moment to set intention. As you take in your cards- take them in for what they mean to you. Then if you would like to also consult the internet googling gods- have at it! Pulling tarot doesn’t give us answers anyway- it serves us with more to process.

Enjoy your tarot readings!

Your fellow fool,

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…”

When Traci sat down to write this blog, in the intimidating shadow of Kaeti’s illustrious magick and wisdom, they asked the cards for guidance + the heart of the matter. This is what they drew…

The Code/The Emperor Oppression/The Devil {Pulled through Tarotlore and reflected upon through The Collective Tarot}
The Code/The Emperor
Oppression/The Devil
{Pulled through Tarotlore and reflected upon through The Collective Tarot}

Of course I would pull The Code + Oppression. I had finished most of this post when I stopped to draw cards. I felt pretty darn good about it.. but I thought… I should maybe add just one more disclaimer that I don’t know what I’m doing! My writing on the subject of tarot has no relevance! Use at your own risk!

I asked the cards for guidance/support. The Collective Tarot sets the scene for The Code/The Emperor as you navigating a “steam, sweaty bar on queer night. You are feeling good, looking good,” when suddenly you “lock eyes with the pretty boi at the bar.. the one with the confident gaze and all the appropriate accoutrements.” Eeks! Shut-up tarot… you don’t know me! You’re suddenly hit with a “wave of insecurity.” This card invites us to challenge the way we identify, the way we understand ourselves, the way these self claimed labels support and confine us. Am I someone who can write about tarot? What is my responsibility to communicating this healing process to my community?

I laughed a little and blushed turning away from the lascivious and familiar stare of The Code’s boi at the bar and back to my tarot deck. I’m sure they could see my breath quicken and heart rate race from across the room (read my computer screen.) I pulled once more. What was the heart of the matter?

Oppression/The Devil stared back at me. Was I the perpetrator or victim? What are the “discriminatory ideas or preconceived notions.. at play” in this situation. Oppression reminded me of something I’m all too familiar with in my personal life and work– that it is everywhere. It can question and invalidate everything we do- especially when our experiences are marginalized ones. It’s the reason why I’ve noticed that for myself, and a lot of queer folks, starting statements with “I don’t know…” is a common part of our vocabulary. The Collective Tarot with it’s always reflective and affirming hand reminded me gently to “Take comfort in the validation of your experience.”

**Deep sigh**

… and that my friends is the magic of The Fool’s Journey in reading tarot…

MHM 5: Visibility

Good Morning REVOLUTIONARIES! Happy Monday!

MHMBanner

Today’s Mental Health Mash-Up Ep5 is about Visibility. Skye and Traci will discuss the changing nature of queer/trans visibility in the media, the way we are in control and not in control of our visibility and the choices we make about our visibility that may or may not feel good to our bodies, brains, hearts and spirits.

As always you can listen here:

or visit our Lib Syn Page.

{Image Credit: http://bit.ly/1i7wwdG}
{Image Credit: http://bit.ly/1i7wwdG}

Here are links to events/info we reference in the podcast today:

We hope you enjoy and we’d love to hear your thoughts!

You can reach us at compassionaterevolt@gmail.com

www.compassionaterevolt.com

www.compassionaterevolt.wordpress.com

COM|PASSionate REVOLT FB

In COM|PASSionate REVOLUTION,

Skye (He, Him, His|They, Them, Theirs) + Traci (She, Her, Hers|They, Them, Theirs)

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Skye is a youth worker, educator, activist and white transmasculine human. Traci is a therapist, yoga teacher, educator and queer vegan femme-inist of color. They reside, practice, navigate, process, survive and flourish in the Southern California area. 

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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.

You Are A Multifaceted Jewel: Dreaming Parts of Ourselves

92b72-bannerpicWe are multitudinous beings bursting with different feelings, thoughts, beliefs, hopes, fears, desires, roles, and identities. We go by more than one name. All the versions of ourselves from different points in our histories (and futures), and all their myriad stories, inhabit our kaleidoscopic inner worlds. They have relationships with each other. We all have different aspects of ourselves that never quite fit perfectly together.

The shining multiplicity of your psyche is a unique and sacred wonder.

Oriol_Angrill_Jord_1_8_
Stellarscape by Oriol Angrill Jordà

Dreams are a place where we get to meet some of these different aspects of ourselves – or where they come to meet us. Just as many of these parts of us don’t match up with our ego or “who I think we am” or “who I want to be seen as,” these other parts of us are not completely under our ego’s control. In the waking world, where our daytime persona has a pretty good grip, we relegate some parts of us to unconsciousness. In effect, we say “that’s not me” or “this feeling doesn’t matter” or “good girls don’t act that way” or any number of dismissive things. Sometimes this dismissing is entirely appropriate or healthy, but it still has the effect of disowning aspects of ourselves. And in the dreaming world, where the ego wanders but does not run the show, these disowned aspects of self very often show up with something to say.

dead-leaves-1956.jpg!Blog
Dead Leaves by Remedios Varo

Those of us who live with trauma know a lot about this. Whether it’s the legacy of surviving interpersonal violence or the effects of navigating systemic oppression or the splitting and multiplying of self that comes with having different cultural identities or marginalized identities, we know about this. Because it’s the nature of trauma to have the effect of sectioning us off inside. We humans take advantage of our amazing and inherent talent for plurality by using it to manage chaotic, violent, or unbearable experiences: dissociating, compartmentalizing, letting different parts of ourselves share the load and take on the different burdens they’re most adapted to. Sometimes we have consciousness of this, and maintain some kind of relationship between our parts. Sometimes memory cooperates with this splitting, and our daytime selves have trouble remembering what other parts of us know – sometimes not remembering is a blessing as much as a curse. Sometimes parts of us get put in a box and stowed away for a long time, and sometimes events throw the lid off the box in surprising ways.

theundoing
The Undoing by Veronica Ebert

People are astoundingly creative in managing the multifaceted jewels of their own personalities.

In these cases, dreams can be a powerful way of coming into contact with the burdens and strengths that other parts of us carry. We see this happen in different ways, some safe and chosen, and some less so. Sometimes there is a forceful or nightmarish return to what our waking selves forget. Sometimes there is an encounter with an image that represents a certain part of you that knows something “you” don’t – a child, an animal, a beggar, an intruder – and it’s your job to be in right relationship to it, maybe taking care of it, maybe standing up for yourself, maybe just watching and letting a certain dynamic be illustrated for you to understand and consider when you awake.

It is the most natural thing for our psyches to dream images of these different or disowned aspects of ourselves. Dreaming is an instinctual way of restoring your relationship to yourself.

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Image Credit: Lieke van der Vorst Thanks for helping COM|PASSionate Community!

Also, these disowned aspects are not always wounded. There is such a thing as a positive shadow. Sometimes we disown our greatest strengths, our emergent talents – even things about ourselves that we secretly treasure but which we don’t know how to embody in waking life without great shame or risk. This can be a helpful lens for holding dreams of powerful or fascinating figures that seem so different from us at first: a wild girl with superpowers, a beautiful dancer, a strangely strong creature, a majestic stag, a supersmart scientist…! Some of the most joyful dreams are those which teach us to uncover aspects of ourselves who hold important skills and great value that we aren’t (yet) tapping into in waking life.

This is an excerpt from the forthcoming workbook for my Dreamwork for Survivors course, coming this Spring! Next week’s Dreamboat will be the following excerpt, a guide in actually doing some of this work. Follow the link below or head to www.kaetigugiu.com/dreamwork-for-survivors for more info and to get on the list to know when class dates are released.

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Kaeti is a therapist, teacher, and dreamer based in Long Beach, California. All of her work (and play!) is interested in dismantling intersections of oppression and breathing magic and radical healing into all the daily corners of her life, into all the spaces of community she helps weave.

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