Energetic cleansing, Protection and Shielding


One of the most common inboxes I get on social media is from people asking what they can do to protect or shield themselves or how to cleanse or get rid of funky energy from their space or home.

There are many ways we can protect ourselves. Raising personal power and using it to protect ourselves and our environment is one of the most empowering things we can learn.  Knowing how to recognize and disperse negative or psychic attacks, how to return  the energy to the sender or deflect it away are all ways we can make sure we feel safe within our selves and our environment.

Knowing that what we put out come back to us, means we need to protect ourselves in such a way that we are not throwing around energy with ill intent.

The easiest way to protect yourself is by visualizing a cloak of light, colour, or even powerful energy around your self. Imagine yourself putting on a psychic armor, just like a beetle had a hard exoskeleton to protect its fragile insides( animals and insects have much to teach us about protection and energetic armour); we too need to find a way to protectively surround our aura and shields our space from outside attacks.You can add to this daily practice by purposely deflecting, or returning to sender any attacks sent your way.

There are some really common herbs and spices that are really powerful herbs when used with the intent of protection and shielding oneself.

The first one that comes to mind is cloves. Cloves have a very strong protective energy; they can also be used for banishing and releasing certain energies from your life.

Ginger root is another one that is great for building your own psychic powers as well as being great for deflecting or returning to sender, negative energies/ attacks sent your way

Salt is great for sprinkling around doorways and windowsills with the intent of sealing your personal space and protecting it from attacks and negativity.

Peppercorns are also a protective spice. They works by deflecting negative power back where it came from. It is also good for helping raise your own power.

 If your more of a crystal witch, Black tourmaline crystals and smoky Quartz are both great at absorbing negativity and physic attacks as is jet and onyx. Any black crystals are great for absorbing and deflecting.

You may read sometime in both fantasy and no fiction books where witches traditionally wore rings of amber or jet or both on their power fingers? This is because jet is a great for deflection, binding and protection and by simply raising your hand with intent; you are deflecting any negative attacks and sending the negativity back where it came from. Amber is used to break spells, absorb negative energies and keep you safe.I wear both of these stones as rings for this purpose. 

There are many ways  you can use the herbs for protection include

• Sprinkling them on windowsills and around doorframes,

• Making up little spell bags and hanging them throughout your house or even wearing one or carrying it in your pocket.

• If your having issues at night while sleeping, I would suggest making a psychic protection dream pillow/ amulet using the herbs listed and any other you may intuitively feel drawn too, just use a small bag of pouch and add the above herbs and place it under your pillow to protect you while your sleeping. 

AS well as protecting and shielding ourselves there are many different ways to clear a space. It may be our home, a specific room or a workspace, or perhaps someone has been in your home and left behind a funky energy?

I will share a collection of ways below and hopefully you will find a method that feels comfortable for you. 

 

Broom or Besom– A very simple and effect way of cleansing a space is with a broom. Sweeping away the negative energy and the physical dust and debris is a symbolic as well as a physical act of clearing a room, an area, bench, workspace or table. I like to make a point of picking up the pile of dust and blowing it into the wind outside with the intent of scattering it to the wind and helping it move away from me and my space.

 

Movement and Noise – Moving your body by dancing, stamping your feet, banging pots, pans, drumming, chanting, banging sticks and vocalisation all help create energetic movement which helps disperse negative energy away from an area. If you are someone who loves music, singing, drumming, dancing or movement you may like to include these in your personal cleansing ritual. 

 

Smudging and Smoking – Smudging and smoking both use the smoke from sacred herbs and resins to purify the air, an area or people. Smoking usually refers to the use of green leaves (most commonly gum leaves) being set on fire and the smoke created used for cleansing, clearing and purifying. Aboriginal Australians use this method a lot in their rituals. Smudging on the other hand uses dried leaves and herbs and usually requires a “smudge stick”. A bunch of herbs, often white sage, but can also include rosemary, lemon myrtle or any other cleansing or purification herbs you wish to add. To can make your own by finding the fresh herbs, tying them in bundles using cotton and then hanging them in a sunny dry place for about 10 to 14 days. 

 

Incense/ Herbs and Resins – Like Smudging, incense uses ground herbs and resins to cleanse and clear an area. The great think about incense though is there is so many varieties and variations you can work with. There is incense available as sticks, cones, loose incense which is burnt on a charcoal block or sprinkled into a candle flame. I use a lot of herbs in my magical spaces as there are herbs for awakening our psychic powers and intuition as well as herbs to clear and create sacred space.

Sources and suggested reading-

Green witchcraft II Balancing light & Shadow by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)

( Oracle card from Cheralyn Darcey’s Flowers of the night Oracle. Ritual Candle from http://www.nativeantiquity.com)  

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A return to Study.

Last week saw me being very brave and attending an away from base Study period at Swsi TAFE in Campbelltown in Sydney.

Earlier in March I had seen an advert on Facebook with an  opportunity for Aboriginal and Torre strait people to study Graphic design at the Campbelltown campus and I jumped at the chance to further my studies and get some real qualifications behind me .

I have been very lucky and had so much more success than I had expected over the last few years with my Reading cards. I have had speaking opportunities and magazine articles, I have been commissioned to create art works for government publications  and programs and I have suprised myself with my willingness to explore, learn and extend myself out side my comfort zone. 

But I also am the first to admit, I do not have any formal qualifications. I am a self taught contemporary Aboriginal Artist and I am very new to the world of computers, design and photoshop. I need to take opportunities to advance my skills when they become available so I applied, enrolled, and last Tuesday I boarded a plane and headed off to Sydney. 

As most of you know I have a tribe of children who range in age from 19 down to 3 and I do spend a lot of my time being available to each one of them when they need me. But last week was all about me as I kissed my husband goodbye, picked up my bags and closed the door behind me. Instead of the normal butterflies of fear and anxiety I was smiling and looking forward to my first big adventure in a long time. 

Touching down in Sydney after a very turbulent flight,  I swear I saw lightening at one stage! We arrived at around 6.30 pm and I needed to make my way to Terminal 2 carasel 6 before 6.45 to meet our driver who would be taking me and my class mates, who had journeyed from all over NSW to participate to Rydges hotel in Campbelltown. Luckily I wasn’t the only one who had trouble finding the pick up post 

It took around 20 mins of looking lost, walking for miles and juggling my baggage from hand to hand before I finally found the right place and was greeted by a very smiley bus driver who was holding an iPad with SWSi written on it in big black letters. This was the place now to wait for the others who would be traveling with us from the airport. 

I was imaging there would lots of us. I mean who wouldn’t take the opportunity to study in Sydney? As it turned out there was only 4 of us that would be needing the bus. So we followed our bus driver ourside the terminal to see the biggest, shiniest coach I had every seen. We all kind of looked at each other and then at the bus driver before bursting out in laughter. We felt like we were about to go on tour as we handed over our bags to our bus driver and hopped aboard. 


The trip to the hotel room took around 45 mins so we arrived and checked in just in time for dinner. 

It was twin share so I found myself rooming with a lovely lady from near Dubbo. We dropped out bags and decided to go and find where we were meant to dine. 

The hotel had an awesome wagu steak burger, complete with pickles and ranch Mayo. I felt like indulging in some comfort food and the burger did not disappoint. 

The night ended with three of us heading off to find the closet supermarket so we could get some bottled water for in our hotel rooms. I wasn’t brave enough to to drink the tap water.  

After trudging through a park, past the fast food outlets that lined the highway and cutting through a massive car park we finally found the mall just before Woolworths was closing and with our shopping in hand and much chatter we all headed off back to the hotel. 

My first night away from home was the hardest. I missed my little pumpkins and found it hard to get to sleep, but soon enough it morning and I was super eager to check out the complimentary continental breakfast selection. I found myself quite comfortable in my unusual surroundings. As the sun rose through the glass walls of the hotel restaurant I dined on scrambled eggs, mushrooms, English muffins, fresh fruit and fresh juice. 

It reminded me of many years spent doing exactly  the same thing before I met my current husband and my life took on a very different path. 

I would be lying if I didn’t say I loved it. 


It was a gorgeous sunrise and I watched as the empty streets below me slowly filled with people making their ways to taxis, work and the normality of everyday activities. 

There is something about city life that I have always found fascinating. Even though I am a country girl at heart, there is something almost enchanting about the hustle  and bustle of a place that never sleeps. 

As my mind swam back to the task at hand I remembered where I was and what it was I was meant to be doing. 

We had been instructed to meet in the lobby to get transported to the TAFE so I headed off to meet my classmates 

The first day of  classes where fun and all of us were pretty impressed with the  size of the monitors in the computer room at the TAFE.



We got to take some cool things home with us as well. 

On the Thursday night a group of us went out to dinner to celebrate my 40th birthday as it was my birthday on the Friday which was the last day of course. 


It as lovely meeting everyone and getting to know each other better, there was so many talented people. People who I would of never met with out the common thread of the course pulling us together. My class mates, were generous, inspirational, courageous and so very welcoming and to think that we had all been brought together through our mutual need to up skill and learn more about graphic design.  

I was sad when the time came to board the bus and head back to the airport in anticipation of the flight home.

I had missed my little family but I had also loved the opportunity to learn new skills and in the process learn more about myself. It was a huge reminder of the importance of taking time out to nurture myself and do things I enjoy just as Laura. Not having to be mumma 24/7 because parenting is hard and after 19 years I am needing  to remember who I am outside of parenting as well at times. 


I made it home by 9.30 the night of my birthday with Krispy Kreme doughnuts and was greeted with a surprise birthday cake and a table covered in hand made cards, beautiful decorated by each child and some beautiful little presents. 

I am super excited about going again in June and  I have two more block after that and then I will have obtained a Certificate 3 in Design fundamental and I will be going on to do the diploma of graphic design . 

It’s amazing how much fun you can have when you decide to try new things and end up loving   every moment of it. To all my classmates see you in four weeks and thanks for the laughs, the stories, the sharing and the memories. 

Simple Floral infused oils. 

  
With spring in the air here in Australia, the flowers are bursting with fragrance. The weather has been warm with some afternoon thunderstorms so everything is fresh, fragrant and blooming. 

Since it’s only a few weeks until spring exquinox, I thought it was a good time to start preparing some floral waters and oils for creating perfumed oils and lipbalms and other sweet smelling creations. 

Creating simple flower infused oils is cheap and easy and they smell really pretty. 

You will need to have a few things ready! 

Jars – clean and preferably glass with lids 

Flowers– they can fresh or dried. It really doesn’t matter. If using fresh flowers you will need to pick them after the morning few has dried or make sure that you dry them on absorbent paper before using them. You do not want any water in the mix! 

 Oil- you can use any vegetable oil. You really don’t need to be fancy. I use cold pressed organic olive oil because that’s what I have here in my pantry. But any oil will work. 

You are not limited to flowers, herbs and spices work great with infusion as well. 

Some examples of what you could use in your infused oils-

Jasmine, orange blossoms, lavender, calendula, cinnamon, vanilla, bay laurel, lemon myrtle, gardenias. Anything with a strong scent.  

Start by filling your jar. This is dried jasmine from a vine outsider bedroom window. I pick it when it flowers and leave it on a dry sunny surface inside until I have enough to use. 

  
Then you fill the jar with oil. You need to make sure the oil completely covers the flowers. 

  
We did the same thing with the orange blossoms. Because they were fresh, we made sure they were dry and only used open blooms and petals

  
Fill till covering the flowers and then push the flowers down do they are really submerged. 

  
Then your oils are ready to start the infusion process. Find a nice warm spot and let them do their stuff. 

This will take close to a week and you will need to open them each day and make sure that the oils is still covering the flowers. After 5 days the oils are ready. If you want a stronger smelling oil you can repeat the whole process using new flowers in the same strived oil. 

I like the smell after 5ish days so then you need to strain the oil. Do this with clean muslin over another clean jar, top oil and flowers onto muslin, gather the top and let the oil drip into the jar. Be sure to squeeze the muslin to get out all the oils and fragrance. 

Then rebottle and store in a dark space and it will last for around 3 months. If you want to make it last longer you can add beeswax to create a solid perfumed oil and then it will last you till next spring, 

I will be sharing some solid perfume recipes over the next few weeks that you can use your infused oils in. As well as some lip balms and bath scrubs. 

  

Update – what’s happening in my world. 

As some of you may already know I had a very busy February with the release of my Oracle deck – the Dreamtime reading cards published by Rockpool publishing. 

I also presented at the Health and Harmony expo at the gold coast at the end of January and at the Brisbane Mind, Body, soul festival at the end of February. Which offered me the opportunity to share my Aboriginal spirituality and culture along with how to connect with nature. 

Because I am new to the journey of an Artist/author I feel like I am still working on how to balance my career, work hours and the demands of a family of 5 children.  Its a work in progress at the moment. To ease done of the pressure for me I have decided to use an online art store to create my prints and home decore products. My society6 store front is now where the majority of my new works will be listed like these ones 

 

 

  

and you can order them as prints, canvases and many other products,  internationally ,at very reasonable postage costs. The website often offers free international postage as well. So just keep a look out. 

I plan over the next 12 months to move ahead with workshops focused on introducing others to my Dreamtime reading cards and instructing on how they can be used as a tool when looking for receiving your own messages from nature. I am so excited to announce I will be joined by my beautiful friend, mentor and fellow Rockpool author and artist Cheralyn Darcey who will also be sharing an introduction to her Australian Wildflower reading cards and sharing her extensive knowledge on flower reading. 

If you would like more information on our workshops such as pricing or minimum number requirements pleasecontact either me or Cheralyn so we can forward you all the details you need.

We are hoping to being this to your state or city so please message is if you would like to host a workshop. 

  

So there you have it. I am now a published author/ artist, I now have my artworks available to purchase anywhere in the world and I am happy to share my knowledge and help others gain a closure connection to this beautiful country Australia. 2015 is  already more than I had ever dreamed. I am so excited to see where it takes me. 

Appropriate sharing – Cultural knowledge in the public domain.

“He who does not understand your silence will probably not understand your words. “ ~Elbert Hubbard


One of my biggest challenges since I made the decision to base my career on my Aboriginal heritage and spirituality has been in the area of sharing knowledge.
I have spent the majority of my 39 years advocating for Aboriginal rights, equality and inclusion of our culture in all areas of our communities.
For 12 years I was a member of the NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group. A volunteer group that works with the Department of Education, the Board of Studies and the Minster for Education to ensure that Aboriginal culture is included in the school curriculum, that Aboriginal language and learning modalities are included as best practice models in all levels of education and that Aboriginal communities all over NSW have a voice and input into how our Aboriginal history is taught in schools.
During my time as a Local and Regional President as well as a state representative for this organistion, I learnt so much valuable knowledge from the dedicated Elders from all over NSW who made the sharing of their culture and the education of others their priority. My biggest lesson was when to share and when to know that something was not for discussion in the public domain.
I was silenced more than once when I went to excitedly share something, only to have a more knowledgeable hand placed on my shoulder and a shake of the head from someone who knew what I was about to share wasn’t appropriate.
At first I felt angry, I had so much to share and was so excited to finally have somewhere where I had a voice. I felt like that voice was being gagged at most of my attempts to share.
It wasn’t until one of the Aunts took me aside and explained that I didn’t need to prove who I was or my right to be speaking for my people. They had all known who I was and who my family was, when I first told them my ancestry. I sat there kind of embarrassed. A red glow spread over my cheeks. I hadn’t realized that I was trying to prove anything. But, I was 20 something at the time and my skin wasn’t as dark as I wished. To look at me most people wouldn’t know that I have the Aboriginal Heritage I am so proud of. I had come in to prove a point and I was failing miserably.
The lovely, wise old Aunt took me under her wing and helped me use my voice at the right times in the right way without having to share pieces of my family’s history, culture and spirituality that were not mine alone to share.
I was blessed, growing up, with a very large family circle. I knew from when I was old enough to ask, the names of my grandparents parents and their parents. I was not only told the names of my ancestors and the great Aunts and Uncles who where also related. I was told where they had lived, the paths they had taken when they had left the ancestral home and where the majority of them were all living now. I knew who had passed, where they had passed and where they were buried.
Our family tree was something that was valued most in my family growing up. Knowing whom everyone was and where he or she had come from was knowledge that was shared freely and we were encouraged to take note.
I didn’t realise that something as simple as knowing my family tree was something that so many did not have access to. I was too young to have learned of the assimilation act or the stolen generation. I did not know what I was being taught was a blessing; a privilege and that everyone had not had the same opportunity.
Fast forward to last year when I decided to submit to a publisher an Oracle deck I had illustrated and written the guidebook for. The cards were inspired by my Aboriginal Culture, spirituality and my childhood growing up in the beautiful valley I was born in.
There were many times during the process of that card deck creation that I had to ask myself the question of who owned the information I was writing about and whether it was culturally appropriate to share it.
I decided that I would only share experiences, observations and interactions that were my own. If it was told to me on a public forum or was something I knew most people in my family had also been privy to, then I was comfortable sharing it.
One of the cards in the deck is a card called Campfire. Its keyword is “ Story Teller” and its meaning is to remind us all that each one of us has a story to tell. Traditionally, intergenerational learning happened on a daily basis. The whole environment was the classroom and learning was a life long process of learning to live in partnership and in service of that environment.
Growing up with many cousins and brothers and sisters you would think that we all had the same experiences. And while in some part that is true, it is the lessons we each learn from those experiences, the questions we each ask and the interest we have that will ultimately decide what we will learn, what we will discover and what we then go on to share with those around us.
The hardest thing I have encountered and I know my children have also had this happen at school, is that what we share is dismissed or not seen as being important enough. Or worse still told we are wrong.
There is a belief for some reason in the public arena that cultural sharing only has significance if you are sharing things that are seen as “secret knowledge” or “ sacred knowledge” things such as family creation stories, sacred sites, initiation knowledge, lore, rituals or magical practices. It doesn’t even have to be the persons sharing’s traditional practices, the public seems to still want to take the knowledge and share it freely.

Simple basics of Aboriginal Culture like the importance of the family, family ties, language, story through art, intergenerational learning, the connection to the land, the seasonal changes and the energy, understanding and spirit of place and Country are somehow made less significant.
Yet to me these are the very cultural components that I myself feel safe sharing. They are the things I have experienced, know like the back of my hand, observed and lived through. It is these things that I will pass to my children first and foremost. There are other members in my family I am sure who have other observations and knowledge to share and it is not my right to share their knowledge for them.
There is also the issue of Women’s business and Men’s business. I am a daughter. My mother had no brothers and my grandfathers mother died when she was quite young meaning my Grandfather was raised by his granny. I have learnt a lot about some of the male practices from my traditional land but it is not something I would ever feel comfortable talking to anyone else about. It would be wrong and culturally inappropriate as a woman to share any of the male specific knowledge. I am only privy to that knowledge I believe, so I can share itwith my son as granddad is not here to do that for me.

I may know some of the “ Important Cultural knowledge” as well for my family but that is not something I am comfortable putting in a public forum.
The quote I used at the start I think explains perfectly the way I feel about sharing knowledge that is inappropriate or not your right to share.
If you don’t know that it’s culturally inappropriate to share information that is gender specific, family lore or secret business then you probably wont understand the reasons why either.

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When can you celebrate success?

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When is it okay to celebrate your success?

Will you even know when you have made it to a place that deserves celebration if you didn’t expect to succeed?

These are the kind of questions I found myself contemplating last night while I sat at my kitchen table with a friend I had not seen for over 18 months.

It felt weird to talk to someone who had moved away from my circle at a time when I was still very lost in the fog of postnatal depression.

We sat at the table with our cuppas and I hesitantly handed her my copy of my Dreamtime reading cards and started to tell her about the last 18 months and how these cards had come into creation.

It was that light bulb moment. As I watched her touch the cards and read meanings from the guidebook she smiled with such excitement and I started to feel really uncomfortable.

I felt myself starting to feel I need to explain. I started telling her all the reasons I could think of why it wasn’t that bigger thing, about how many other people had done so much more, about how I hadn’t really celebrated having my submission accepted, signing my contract, or submitting my final edit, about how nervous I was of having to speak in public and the mountain of other excuses for why I hadn’t acknowledge or allowed myself the space to really celebrate, to let myself feel real pride and to feel like I had achieved so much more than I ever dreamed.

Why? she asked me. “Why are you not screaming from the rooftops… Look what I have done! I created an Oracle deck, I came back from a place I felt most vulnerable and I used that experience to grow, to help others and I have created something really unique, and special and that is all my own work. ”

My answer was I don’t know.   But I do know..

Its because I am too scared that I will get excited too early and then will just feel let down when its not really as great as I had hoped or I will fail, say the wrong things or stumble and embarrass myself or worse let someone down, not live up to others expectations and then it will all just disappear.

And it was in that admission to myself that I realised that I had let fear stop me from living in the moment.

That I had allowed my fear of the future to stop me from enjoying the successes when they happened and they are not moments I can do over.. You don’t get a second chance to get your first publishing contract or hand in your first complete work and I have let these milestones slip by un acknowledged and that isn’t how I imagined it would happen. But then again I didn’t imagine any of this. I never really believed dreams could come true and I didn’t know as I took each unsteady step along the way, that the path would eventually bring me to this point.

So starting today I have decided that I will allow myself to be proud. To celebrate each achievement as they happen. The great, the small and the trivial. I am a published author of an Oracle deck based on my Aboriginal culture and spirituality and its illustrated by me. It’s a physical manifestation of my life spent on my little hill in my magical valley and its something I am very proud and honoured to share my Dreamtime reading cards published by Rockpool publishing with the world.

So I will raise my coffee mug in a toast to dreams coming true and I will allow myself to honestly acknowledge that I have done a great thing.