Transitions and Cycles

For the past month or so I’ve been struggling with the fact that, for all intrinsic purposes, this blog is dead.

It’s no surprise to subscribers here and I have been accutely aware of it for awhile. My run of posts regarding the Glen in the Spring were an attempt to not only talk about my experiences there but to also put some life into the blog, to use the Spring energy to renew things. For some reason it did not stick. I wandered off. I stopped writing. I started to beat myself up by reminding myself this blog is over 5 years old and yet it never really seemed to go anywhere, never seemed to grow.

During the harvest festivals thoughts of the blog would come and go. What did I want to do about it? Was it worth keeping? Should I simply close it down after so many years? Up until Samhain I could not get a clear answer.

During Samhain and more importantly, the days immediately afterwards, I always do several readings. For my readings this year the weather was wonderful and so I ventured back out to the Glen. Even though I’ve not posted here, I’ve continued my visits to that magical wood. I go to refocus, to commune and to give back to the spirits there. It’s been a wonderful, evolving relationship.

With a wonderful chilly, Fall breeze playing amidst the branches of the sun-lit autumn forest, I took to the woods and brought my cards with me.  One of those spreads was, of course, about this blog. For it, the pendulum chose the Faeries Oracle and the reading is below. For this reading I chose a “conversation style” of reading. I ask a question. The deck responds. I ask another and so on until the conversation is over. Even as I was shuffling I felt that the conversation would be three questions total.

BlogReadingSamhain2015The first question? What do I need to know about this blog? Death. Well, nothing like cutting right to the chase, eh? Of course, Death is speaking of where the blog is currently. All things come, grow and die in time. It is important to acknowledge the fact. A point of transition as well as a point of acceptance. The blog as I’ve known it is done.

Second question: I don’t feel it is right to shut the blog down. (I actually tested this with a bit of dowsing and the answer was a very solid, “No way!”) So, what should I do next? Mickle a’ Muckle.

Mickle has always struck me as two things, being merry and being in the Now. This, in turn, reminds me of my work with the writings of Eckart Tolle and blending them into my work with the cards, spirit and magic. Mickle says to “lighten up” and to look at the Now and to something unusual or adventurous that is coming around because of the Death card. See how he is facing the Death card?  “One thing leaves, another arrives, it’s the way of it!” Mickle says to me.

Final question: I heard the wisdom of those two answers and asked, “So, for the betterment of myself, the blog and my subscribers what is the very best next step to do?” Lady of the Harvest. Ah-hah! Another “transition” card but more importantly this card spoke to me about the rituals involved with transition, with moving forward into something new from something old. The Lady of the Harvest is about releasing the past, all that has occurred (or not occurred) and moving forward to the next new phase. I also felt very strongly that in order for this to happen, a ritual needed to occur. A ritual to help acknowledge the omega and the alpha.

I needed, within myself, to let the blog go. Not to really turn it off, not to stop posting but I needed to internally acknowledge that whatever I had hoped for with this blog, whatever I had been trying to do, whatever I had been attempting to express was over. It was this energy, this acknowledgement that I had been resisting and which, in turn, was causing the energy blockage.  The energy for the blog had swirled and slowed and stopped. There was nothing wrong with it.  It just was.  It was time to let it go and to work on something new.

Now, since I’ve had this blog for five years, it took quite a bit for me to work through the energy of the Death card and that full reading. I’ve been circling it and fighting it since Nov. 1st and here we are, fourteen days later! After another wonderful stroll through the Glen today, I found the words I needed to write this blog and to take the first steps needed.  Hence, this post!  ( I also had to acknowledge the fact that I began this blog with the Faeries Oracle and it I would now be ending it as well with them!  See my second post here which was the reading I did for starting the blog.)

To be clear, I am most certainly not done here. This is not a “Bye and thanks for all the fish” moment. However, things will be a bit different around here.   How?  Well, I’m not really sure.  When the muse comes back to me, when I understand what I am supposed to be doing here the second time around, you’ll see it here. Oh, and the Muse will come back because, most importantly, I’ve done what was necessary by letting the transition begin. (I also have asked real nicely a couple of times which always helps!)


I want to thank every single person and spirit that has interacted with me here. If I have, in some way, added a bit of magic to the world with the telling of my stories and my readings, then I can call the past years a success.  I really hope you stay with me for another 5, or  6 or, dare I say it, 10?  I also hope you enjoy the upcoming transition.

The blog is dead.

Long live the blog.

Blessings, Peace and Light!

Initial Introductions are Given

Settle yourself in, dear reader, for this is a rambling post.  I had thought to break into two smaller posts and perhaps I should have.  Do let me know if posts like this are too long!

I was able to break free for half of an afternoon.  The weather was rainy and I had nearly opted not to go.  However, after dowsing a quick weather forecast, I was informed that, contrary to the forecasters, I would not have much to worry about in the way of rain and thunderstorms.  So, tossing on my hiking shoes and grabbing my supplies, I headed out.

My work with the boundary was mostly finished.  Any extra details would need to wait until Autumn as the undergrowth had simply become to thick to make any kind of decent survey and to get an exact perimeter on a map.  I knew it well enough in my head and my intent for this trip was to simply get to know some of the local spirits of the place and to reconnect with Nature.

TrailThe day was cool and damp.  Rain fell intermittently but there was no concern about getting drenched.  Coming in at the trail and saying hello at the boundary marker, I was quickly “waved in” after a quick hello to the trees there.   Because of the weather, the park and the woods were deserted.  If it were not for the occasional sound of cars, I could have easily been in remote forest.  Leaning against one of the trees I asked if it knew where I should go.  I immediately saw a “mental movie” of me crossing the stream and walking back towards the first spring that came up and out of a rocky, limestone shelf.  I couldn’t get much clearer than that!

I pulled out my rods and began.  First, I was taken to the abandoned tent I had found earlier.  I wanted to check the site again and the rods agreed.  Because of the excessive growth and lack of clear sight lines, I missed the fallen tree where the tent had been.  Of course, the rods put me back on track and led me directly to the site.  Everything was the same as it was and I re-arranged the tent in it’s bag to be more visible, placing it next to the pot.  The site was still well hidden, even more so with the increase in growth all around it.  Someone would have to know it was there to find it again.  I wondered if the tent would ever just “disappear” one day.

Moving away from there I strolled easily down a game trail towards the creek and crossed it.

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On Being Responsible

Cloud SpiritAn interesting thing occurred to me on the way to the next post.

I had spent a handful of days writing up a very lengthy post about my last session in the glen.  I knew I wanted to share that wonderful visit but I had also decided that I would go into lengthy detail about my initial communications with the fey and spirits there.  I had the post all done, had entered the final pictures and was doing a final edit.  I typically like to write up a post, edit it a few times while taking lengthy breaks between.  Yesterday, I had wrapped everything up and would give it a final read in the evening then post it.

Then I got home.  I went to sit down and as the post came up I was hit with a massive wave of “do not post this.”   Now, I’ve had the blogging equivalent of stage fright  before and this was not it.  I wanted to post it.  However, something else was telling me “it’s no longer a good option.”

I did a bit of dowsing and the sticking point seemed to be the details I was including.  It was, basically, too much info.  This then  struck up an interesting internal discussion for me because it has made me consider what should or should not be posted publicly online.

As I meditated and delved a bit deeper into the “why” behind the push back I got a bit more information.  Now, I want to stress that I’m still digesting all of this.  This was the first time I had written that detailed of a post.  I did feel that it could make for an interesting topic for either discussion here or, perhaps, internally with a reader.

It came down to these key points…

  • The writing is not a waste as I can use it for my own records.  It may also prove to be later fodder for a book. (Thanks to a long time friend for that suggestion!)
  • The internet is a very, very big and open place.
  • I am a fan of posting information on the internet.  I have learned immense amounts online about subjects I’m interested in, from camping skills, to crafting, to organization tips.  I think it is important to add to that pool of knowledge with whatever skill set you have.  However, this interesting analogy came up in my inner vision.  There is a need to be responsible about what you post.  There is posting the instructions on how to start a fire in the woods and then there is posting information on how to make fireworks.   I thought it was a bit ridiculous but I was being told that my latest post, with it’s included details, was more along the lines of the later.  I still don’t understand it but that is what I kept getting.
  • I was under an obligation to remain responsible for what I put out there.
  • Some things, it appears, are meant to stay secret until one is ready to experience them for themselves.
  • I could post about my last visit, of course, but I would need to omit and edit with a different focus.
  • Mercury retrograde is, as always, hilarious.

And, for the record, this is not some epic lead up to “but you can buy my advanced blog post for eleventeen dollars…”  That is not what this is about.  This is about dealing with responsibility and the ethics of this level of work.  My next step is to possibly do a reading on this.  If I get more insight, I will share it.  And, also, it would appear the next post for the glen will be a little delayed.  I have a re-write to do.

I am curious to hear other’s thoughts.  Has anything similar ever happened with your writing or with your work?  Were you ever told, “No.  You cannot share that.”

If you wish you can, of course, comment here or you may email me at alongadifferentpathATgmailDOTcom

An Abandoned Camp, an Encounter and a Gift

I’ve been writing and posting more often as I am striving to get up to date with my work in the glen.  With this post, I will be caught up and can, hopefully, stay up a bit more “on-time.”

My latest adventure was a short one.  My goal had been a casual stroll through the woods and, much like my first post on the subject, allowing the rods to guide me to different locations.  I should have known better than to assume it would be “casual.”  Led by the rods I was off trail again.  I was surprised when I came around the brush and there, 20 yards away, with the rods pointing firmly towards it, was what appeared to be a beat-up orange tarp draped over a branch.

Drawing closer I could see that it was not a tarp and was, instead, a tent.  It was part of a small campsite that had been, very nicely I want to add, placed in-between the branches of a massive fallen tree.   The tent was not set up and looked to be windblown and then draped over a branch.   As I approached, I could see evidence of some soda cans, a plastic Gatorade container and an energy bar wrapper.  I asked the rods if it was safe for me to approach and they said it was.

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Navigating Mercury Retrograde with a Smile

It was mercury retrograde that made me a believer in astrological influence.  When I first started this path so many decades ago, astrology had been placed in the “yeah, mayyyyybe?” file folder.  I was experimenting with runestones, talking to spirits, but the idea that spinning planets out in space can influence patterns here on Earth was just a bit much.  Heck, when I write it out I still find myself scratching my head a little.   Then, I had a horrible and frustrating two weeks.  Nothing was working.  Everything I tried to push forward collapsed inwardly or became a tangled mess.  Transportation plans were a mess and my car broke down.  I was a member of a pagan group at the time and I was whining about my past 14 days when someone said something like, “You know it’s mercury retrograde, right?”  They pointed me to an excellent astrological reference and urged that I look into it.

Cassini_apparentSo, I looked it up and cross-referenced the astrological tidings with my journal I was keeping at the time.  The correspondences were amazing.  Here I was trying to plow forward with a bunch of yang energy during a tidal flood of yin energy!  In the end, it caught my attention.  What finalized the deal for me is when I would have a mercury rx period marked on my calendar and I would watch other people’s lives and plans go into a tailspin.  I started keeping internal notes and started reading what I could on how to work with the energy in a positive way.  In the end, and after navigating several retrogrades, I like to think I understand it a bit better.  (This works up until the point where you FORGET about the upcoming mercury retrograde which, when you think about it, is hilarity in and of itself!  See my previous post for all of that.)

Because of that last post, I decided to dowse out what I could of the coming retrograde period.  On a scale of 1 – 10, this upcoming period registered a 5 for me personally.  On a global scale it registered a 7.5 – 8.  Due to this,  I thought I would hurry up on my idea of sharing some of the ideas that help me get through a mercury retrograde instead of waiting till next week.

I won’t be getting into the astrological details.  I’m not an astrology expert and you can find lots of information in several places online.  I’ll list two of my favorites at the end of the post.  The goal of this advice is to be practical, simple, day to day navigation during a mercury retrograde.  Do with it what you will.

What are the key things that Mercury effects?

  • Communication
  • Formal agreements and Contracts
  • Travel and transportation
  • Coding and computers
  • Emails
  • New endeavors
  • Straight Thinking

Any and or all of these items will go a bit bonkers during a mercury retrograde.

Key things to remember regarding Mercury Retrograde as it approaches.

  • Bottom line – It is not a time for expansion.  It is a time for reflection, staying put and cleaning out or up old messes.  Anything that is begun during this time period will end up being a mess, will tangle or just be forgotten about when Mercury goes back direct.  Slow and steady wins this race.
  • If a trip, plan, party, etc is to occur during the retrograde but it is planned BEFORE the retrograde period then it should go rather smoothly.  (Tickets purchased, hotel rooms booked, cars rented, etc) There will be hiccups but getting all the “ducks in a row” before the retrograde starts will ensure things will go much straighter than they would if you didn’t!
  • For some reason, you will have a ton of what sounds like great ideas during this period of time.   Alternatively, you might meet a bunch of great people or have a great first date.   The crucial thing to remember is to not act on any of them!  Write them down, list them, archive them and, when the retrograde period ends you can go back over the list and see how you feel about them.  (During the retrograde period this will kind of feel like torture but if you do this, you will see what I mean in a few weeks.)
  • Find loose ends and tie them up!
  • Double check your car and get an oil change.
  • Back up important files on your computer, especially things you might be working on “right now.”  Double check your virus protection on your system.  Give it a good scrubbing.
  • Go over and review any and all plans during the time period.  Take some time to get as many little details sorted out as you can.
  • A retrograde period seems to have a peak time at the beginning and end.  Things tend to settle in the few weeks between.  A week or so before the energies begin to get a little cross-wired.  At the end points, you will begin noticing all sorts of things beginning to go haywire and you may start hearing friends and family say things like, “Oh my god, what is going on?  I can’t get anything done!”  In between that, depending on other astrological connections occurring, the dust settles a bit, kinda, sort of.

What to do during a retrograde period for peace, harmony and sanity (for yourself and those around you.)

  • Focus on settling back and working on things that have been half-forgotten or dusty.  Some examples are…
    • Cleaning out closets, sheds, filing cabinets and email inboxs
    • Bringing out old craft projects and sorting out whether you still want to do them or not!
    • Sorting an old collection.
    • Turn energy inward and work on clearing out your internal spaces.
    • Redo an old something.  A project, a story, a plan.
  • As you work on cleaning out older projects, plans etc, you might have the idea of starting something up again.  This inspiration is good and very much part of the retrograde energy.  However, trust me, unless it is life or  death, DON’T DO IT!  You’ll be wasting your time.  As stated earlier, place it on the list and check it again in a few weeks.  If it still sounds good, go for it then.  Write it down and then go back to that nurturing yin energy of cleaning out and sorting.
  • Plan on taking that trip or going to that convention!  It’s ok.  It’ll be fine (especially if everything was wrapped up well before the retrograde started.)  However, do grab extra maps, batteries, an extra phone charger, etc and be ready for some delays here and there that might seem a bit out of the norm.  The idea here is to be mindful of the prevalent energy and which leads us to the next step.
  • Use this time to practice patience and trust.  I know, I know, it’s a big one but just do it, ok? just think of the improvement you’ll have in five weeks!  Don’t push at anything unless you just feel like testing this whole “mercury retrograde thing.”
  • Do internal work.  It’s a perfect time re-assess where you are and who you are.  Just don’t take any action on it, not yet anyway!
  • Watch how it effects others.  Many years ago my workplace decided, right in the middle of a Mercury RX, to launch a new initiative and to have a large, full company meeting about it right away.  It was an absolute disaster and the effects of it were one of the reasons the company collapsed years later.

In regards to dowsing and oracle work

  • Be mindful of the energies occurring.  Information and communication are bit jammed up.  As long as you stick to review processes, cleaning and simple planning things tend to go well and, dare I say it, productively!
  • Now is the time to assess and review energetic connections.
  • Now is NOT the time to start that new dowsing project or that new oracle blog!  (Yes, this is the voice of experience…)

Here are some great astrological sites I’ve found that have helped me along the way.

I hope this is helpful for someone.  Just remember, internal not external, review instead of advance.

Good roads!


Hunkering Down

From the Cambridge Dictionary — “To hunker down is also to be prepared to stay in a particular place or situation for as long as necessary, esp. for protection or to achieve something:

After the events of last weekend, the week continued to throw odd frustrations and oddities in my way.  By Wednesday morning, I’d had enough.  I had awoken to the feeling I will call “being at sea.”  I’ve never woken up while floating in a boat but I imagine it’s similar. You feel ungrounded, floaty and just a bit “off.”  Something did NOT feel right and I wanted to get to the bottom of it.

I got out the pendulum and asked a few questions and was directed to my Wildwood tarot deck for some advice.  This reading was one of those readings where I started with one card and it grew, organically, into four.  My question was,  “What is my best path of action in relation to the energies around me right now?”  I followed this up with the simple statement, “I am looking for a conversation and advice.”

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A Lesson in Not Knowing

(A brief warning, this is not a happy story.  However, I present it as an illustration of what sometimes occurs in a spiritual/magical life.  I felt it was important to do so.  There are things that occur and you are left with only a sense that “something” occurred but given no hard data, no magical entrance of a spirit teacher to explain it all out for you.  Oftentimes, these are sad things.  You are left with only enough information to make out a dim sense of what it “might” have been about.  This is one such story.)

Occasionally, my intuition will kick in and give a very loud warning that is very hard to ignore.  It is hard to describe.  When it occurs in my life now it is an overwhelming tightness in my shoulders and a mounting sense of dread.  It happens very quickly and I get information on what to do just as fast.  I jokingly refer to it as my “spider sense.”

The first time I realized I had it was when I was very young and we were taking my father to the airport for a flight.  We were in a hurry as he was late.  It manifested differently then.  I remember being very nervous, distraught and did not want to get into the car.  I was also very nauseous.  Being, I think, 7 years old, I voiced my concern but it was misinterpreted by my parents as a small boy not wanting his father to leave on a long trip.  On the way there, we were nearly in a fatal accident when a semi-truck flipped over an overhead overpass and landed directly in front of us!  We were unhurt but ever since that day it drove into me the fact that intuition is a very real thing and the importance of paying attention to it no matter what.

Whenever I am driving, I will sometimes feel a strong jolt of information that says, in short, “Do not continue the way you are going.  Take a different route.”  I always hear it but there have been times in the past where I did not listen and wish I had.  To be fair, there have been a few times when nothing dangerous occurred.  However, there has ALWAYS been something occur along the route I had been warned not to go whether that be a near-miss from a running cat, a herd of deer running across the road or a drunken walker stumbling along the side of the road.  Even then, I wonder what would have occurred if I had not been on edge while driving that route and ignoring my intuition.  As I grew older I stopped being stubborn about it and simply turned when my intuition told me to turn.

A few nights ago, I was driving my family home from a wonderful Mother’s Day visit.  It was dark, rainy and we were on the highway.

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