Tag Archives: mental health

Alejandro Jodorowsky Explains How Tarot Cards Can Give You Creative Inspiration

 

Excellent article and video on the tarot by Alejandro Jodorowsky.

“The practice of cartomancy, or divination with cards, dates back several hundred years to at least 14th century Europe, perhaps by way of Turkey. But the specific form we know of, the tarot, likely emerged in the 17th century, and the deck we’re all most familiar with—the Rider-Waite Tarot—didn’t appear until 1909. Popular mainly with occultists like Aleister Crowley and Madame Blavatsky in the early 20th century, the tarot exploded into popular culture in the new age 70s with books like Stuart Kaplan’s Tarot Cards for Fun and Fortune Telling, and by way of cult filmmakers like Alejandro Jodorowsky.

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Since its relatively recent popularization, “fun” and “fortune telling” have more or less defined most people’s attitude to the tarot, whether they approve or disapprove of either one. But for artists and poets like William Butler Yeats, T.S. Eliot, and surrealist director Jodorowsky—whose film narration is perhaps the most poetic in modern cinema—the tarot has always meant something much more mysterious and inspiring. “The tarot,” says Jodorowsky in the short film above, “will teach you how to create a soul.”

After studying the Major and Minor Arcana and the suits, and puzzling over the symbols on each card, Jodorowsky discovered that “all 78 cards could be joined in a mandala, in just one image.” Learning to see the deck thus, “You must not talk about the future. The future is a con. The tarot is a language that talks about the present. If you use it to see the future, you become a conman.” Like other mystical poets, Jodorowsky’s study of the tarot did not lead him to the supernatural but to the creative act.

And like many a poet before him, Jodorowsky explored the journey of the Fool in his 1973 film The Holy Mountain, a “dazzling, rambling, often incoherent satire,” writes Matt Zoller Seitz, that “unfurls like a hallucinogenic daydream.” Jodorowsky’s cinematic dream logic comes not only from his work as a “shamanic psychotherapist.” He also credits the tarot for his psychomagical realism. “For me,” says Jodorowsky in the video at the top, “the tarot was something more serious. It was a deep psychological search.” The result of that search—Jodorowsky’s singular and totally unforgettable body of work—speaks to us of the value of such an undertaking, whatever means one uses to get there.

Or as Jodorowsky says in one of his mystical pronouncements, “If you set your spirit to something, that phenomenon will happen.” If that sounds like magical thinking, that’s exactly what it is. Jodorowsky shows us how to read the tarot as he does, for psychological insight and creative inspiration, in the video above, addressed to a fan named John Bishop. Spanish speakers will have no trouble understanding his presentation, as he quickly slides almost fully into his native language through lack of confidence in his facility with English. (The video belongs to a series on Jodorowsky’s YouTube channel, most of them fully in Spanish without subtitles.) Selecting a translation on YouTube yields rather garbled results.”

Read more: Article

Biological Influence

 

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I stumbled across an episode of Forum with Stanford neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky the other day, and the show was so stunning I HAVE to share it. The influence of our biology on our decision-making is profound, and I find it fascinating.

Apparently, our brains are wired to become aggressive and angry when we’re fearful; to default into “us and them” mentality (which causes a host of social problems), and to make decisions based purely on smell and hunger. You gotta listen to it. We are homo sapiens. It’s so easy to forget while running our errands, getting to work on time, raising our kids. But WE ARE ANIMALS, and our biological impulses have a HUGE influence on our behavior.

Dr. Robert Sapolsky is a professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University, and has spent a lot of his life around primates and studying their behaviors. He finds interesting correlations with human behavior, and discusses them at length in his new book “Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst”.

Here’s the audio of the show. It really takes off eight minutes in… let me know what you think!

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July Astro

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Astrologically, the first days of July have been emotionally rough, and the best way through it has been to Feel our Feelings. The Sun is in Cancer which is the most emotionally sensitive sign of the zodiac. It directs our attention to unresolved family/home issues that need to be addressed and purged. Also, the Moon has been traveling through Scorpio the last few days – bringing up our deepest psychological knots to be healed. Mercury and Mars have been barreling through Cancer too, adding some extra urgency and heat. PLUS on Saturday, Chiron (the wounded healer) turned retrograde – activating the vulnerable place of old pain each of us carries. I mean seriously!! How much more can we take??!!

Be gentle with yourself this week, and take time for solitude if you need it. I do a lot of journaling during times like these, and often find nuggets of wisdom through reflection and dreams. As a wise friend once told me, “if you treat yourself like a precious jewel, everything will fall into place”. I find the deepest truths can be found in our recurring patterns. Is there something you need to sacrifice in order to release suffering?

 

 

Currently:
Mars opposing Pluto (the warrior faces Death, read this piece by Austin Coppock)
Mercury into Leo 5:20pm Pacific TODAY.
Full Moon in Capricorn this SUNDAY, July 9th (just work all weekend)
Venus in Gemini, Mars in Cancer (not happy) until July 20th.

So basically, next weekend could be the sequel to last… the Full Moon this Sunday is at the same degree as Pluto – so we will have a Full Moon conjunct Pluto which is also intensely emotional – but highly transformational. Pluto wants to help us rebirth ourselves by clearing out toxic sludge; it’s catharsis.

“Catharsis (from Greek κάθαρσις katharsis meaning “purification” or “cleansing”) is the purification and purgation of emotions—especially pity and fear—through art or any extreme change in emotion that results in renewal and restoration. It is a metaphor originally used by Aristotle in the Poetics, comparing the effects of tragedy on the mind of a spectator to the effect of a cathartic on the body.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catharsis

From Katie Sweetman:

July 2017 Horoscopes
http://empoweringastrology.com/july-2017-horoscopes

Pluto in Capricorn: Sign by Sign
http://empoweringastrology.com/pluto-in-capricorn-sign-by-s…

 

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“Sirens by the Sea” by Victor Karlovich Shtemberg (1863-1921)

Alanon meditation

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The Language of Letting Go” is one of my favorite books of wisdom. Today’s sentiment really resonates with me, and I want to share it 🙂

Happy Monday!

Powerlessness and Unmanageability

“Willpower is not the key to the way of life we are seeking. Surrender is.

“I have spent much of my life trying to make people be, do, or feel something they aren’t, don’t want to do, and choose not to feel. I have made them, and myself, crazy in that process,” said one recovering woman.

I spent my childhood trying to make an alcoholic father who didn’t love himself be a normal person who loved me. I then married an alcoholic and spent a decade trying to make him stop drinking.

I have spent years trying to make emotionally unavailable people be emotionally present for me. I have spent even more years trying to make family members, who are content feeling miserable, happy.

What I’m saying is this: I’ve spent much of my life desperately and vainly trying to do the impossible and feeling like a failure when I couldn’t. It’s been like planting corn and trying to make the seeds grow peas. Won’t work!

By surrendering to powerlessness, I gain the presence of mind to stop wasting my time and energy trying to change and control that which I cannot change and control. It gives me permission to stop trying to do the impossible and focus on what is possible: being who I am, loving myself, feeling what I feel, and doing what I want to do with my life.

In recovery, we learn to stop fighting lions, simply because we cannot win. We also learn that the more we are focused on controlling and changing others, the more unmanageable our life becomes. The more we focus on living our own life, the more we have a life to live, and the more manageable our life will become.

Today, I will accept powerlessness where I have no power to change things, and I’ll allow my life to become manageable.”

It’s not what you think

Fantastic insights depression and the death of Chris Cornell. I also found this study that links addiction to childhood trauma:

http://upliftconnect.com/addiction-is-a-response-to-childhood-suffering/

IF YOU ARE STRUGGLING, PLEASE GET HELP. Asking for help doesn’t mean you’re weak, it’s a way of taking care of yourself and the people that love you.

The First Ten Words by Rich Larson

Chris Cornell, 1964-2017

Chris Cornell died early Thursday morning. His band Soundgarden played a show on Wednesday night at the Fox Theater in Detroit. Two hours after the show ended, he was gone.

For two days, I’ve been working on a piece to pay tribute to him, and it’s been a struggle. Usually when I have a problem like this it’s because I’m staring at a blank screen trying to figure out what I want to say. That’s not the problem this time. The problem is I have way too much to say.

I’m not going to sit here and claim to have been a huge fan of Soundgarden. I didn’t dislike them, I just had to take them in small doses. I was a fan of Cornell. I love “Seasons,” the solo song he had on Cameron Crowe’s movie, Singles. It’s a droning acoustic song about isolation and the…

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April Rewinds: Astro Report

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Lots of retrogrades (and introspection) affecting us this month, giving us the chance to review our growth since the start of the year. We are slowing down, making sure we have solid foundations.

April 5th at 10:06pm (pacific): Saturn Retrograde in Sagittarius.
April 9th at 4:14pm: Mercury Retrograde at 4° Taurus.
April 10th at 11:08pm: Full Moon at 21° Libra.
April 15th at 3:18am: Venus (currently R) goes Direct in Pisces – exalted!
…and Jupiter Retrograde in Libra until June 8th!

And TODAY, Sunday, retrograde Venus in Pisces is squaring retrograde Saturn in Sag at exactly 27°. Partnerships are being seriously reevaluated this week. Relationships regarding love and business are tested to see if they can withstand the pressures of long term commitment. Saturn doesn’t fool around. Are you willing to do the hard work necessary to keep your pledge to another person? If yes, the relationship has a strong center and will probably be a lasting one. But if they are castles built of sand, they will diminish.

This is an important time to take inventory of what’s working and what’s not working, and to gauge the commitment level of each person. This tension will be accented by the Full Moon in Libra tomorrow, and Venus’s’ stationing at the end of the week.

There are four planets retrograding together this week. That’s pretty amazing! I can’t remember the last time this happened 🙂 In general, all of us need to:

  1. Re-evaluate things you’re committed to.
  2. Re-examine your VALUES and adjust if necessary. What’s most important?
  3. Start with getting grounded; take each day as it comes.
  4. Don’t expand into future worries – but deal with what’s in front of you right now.
  5. Be in the present.

The great RE-VALUE is here.

 

From Empowering Astrology:

“The planet of love and relationships has been retrograde since March 4. During this time we’ve had to take a deeper look at value, money, power dynamics, and how we connect with others. Retrogrades are merely times to integrate and reflect. The tide pulls in and out. Retrogrades are a yin phase, a time to reflect on the shadow. Venus Retrograde has put us through our paces and as it stations in Pisces on April 15, conjunct Chiron and square Saturn, we will have to face old pain around relationships and value and endeavor to move on to the next chapter of our lives.

Lastly, tomorrow’s Libra Full Moon will hit home on a lot of these deeper Venus Retrograde themes we’ve been sorting through over the last four weeks. Use the full moon to face or confront something you’ve been needing to confront. Use Saturn to set a boundary. Use Uranus to break from an old pattern. Use Pluto to leave something behind for good. Use Jupiter to have the faith that there is something better out there.”