Friday, April 24, 2009

#1 Ritual - Letting go

4/24/09 Fire Ritual
I did a fire ritual donated by my friend Amy. It seemed fitting for the first ritual as fire can be cleansing, a new beginning, and leaves fertile ground for things to grow. The ritual consisted of burning artifacts or representations (writing on strips of paper) things I want to let go or bring into my life. I wasn't sure first where to have it. I was getting desperate and thinking I would have to burn each one by using a candle, a little anti climatic. It dawned on me that it would be perfect to have it at my friend Tanya's. Tanya is such a spiritual adviser/mentor that it was perfect. Additionally she has a great big backyard and a fire pit. I was so glad that Amy got to participate too. I picked up Amy around 7:30pm after I had went out and bought the wood. We went and picked up a bottle of wine and some cheese. When we got to Tanya's she was still out purchasing some things. When she got back she showed up with a good spread. We had chips, dips, olives, cheese, crackers, and wine when we were done. It was really nice. We sat and chilled for a bit catching up before we built a fire up. Tanya and I were wrapped in blankets around the fire due to a bit of a night chill. We found it hilarious that Amy was still in a short sleeved shirt and high heels. She recently moved from New England so 40/50 degrees felt pretty warm to her still. We wrote on slips of paper and took turns sharing how what we wanted to let go of and then we placed it in the fire. We waited until the whole slip of paper burnt completely and was extinguished before we went on. The burning of the paper seemed as meaningful and symbolic as the actual sharing was. The slips would burn in many different ways. Sometimes until only one word would show, or sometimes very slowly. We seemed to find it symbolic/fitting of what we were actually sharing. In the circle was Tanya to my right, her daughter sitting next to her, and Amy on my left. I was honored, touched, and inspired by everyone's sharing. My own sharing was very cathartic. It made the experience so much more to have people to witness what I wanted to let go of. That they were people that I cared a lot for was a bonus.

Some of the items I shared and burnt to let go of included:
Doubt - self doubt seems to be preventing me from reaching my full potential. I like what my friend Tanya says, "you have to get out of your own way.

Perfectionism- Things will not fall apart because I don't do things perfect. I will not be any less of a worthy person. Letting go of the fear that I will be judged poorly if I don't always appear perfect, letting some of my defenses down.

Letting go of fear/anxiety - I don't need them except in a flight or fight situation :) (psychology joke....lame) There isn't really any reason why I need to carry around worry, fear, and anxiety about my life. I need to try the best I can in any given situation and not worry past that. I have done what I can.

Sensitivity - I shared how my sensitivity is both a strength and weakness. I talked about how I want to maintain my sensitivity but to harness it more positively so it doesn't take me over and I take things so personally.

Bringing in:
An open heart - not afraid of being hurt

Being more authentic

I also let go that I finally graduated - It doesn't really feel real but I need to put it out there and realize that it is finished, I can celebrate, and move on from here

We all shared how light we felt after completing all of the sharing and burning. It was quite a wonderful experience and a great start! Thanks again to Amy, Tanya, and Tanya's daughter for being witnesses, participating, and being so supportive.

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