Tai Chi Y2D150: in the greening

I was able to do tai chi outside today, on the front lawn of an old farmhouse that’s been in the same family for five generations. The big maple trees are all at least a century old, unlike the fifty or forty-year old teens in my own back yard, and they conveyed a quiet strength and shelter as I worked through the forms.

The bugs were fierce.

I found myself in the middle of Snake Creeps Down, and instead of attacking the opponent to the east, I was swatting my arm… And then my head… And then my arm… And then brushing them away from my feet. Gaah.

Even as someone practicing to be a Druid, I don’t seem to enjoy being in certain kinds of outdoor situations. And yet…

And yet, once I’d finished my tai chi and the Druidic work for the day, I must admit that the bugs troubled me rather less than they had. I don’t think that they were bothering me any less; I think I was just less bothered by them. And more than physical attainment in tai chi, I think this is what I get from the work far more than anything else: the mental and spiritual calm that follows the storm of movement that is tai chi. After the whirlwind, the silence.

I’ve once again forgotten to bring my charger on this trip, so there’s a good chance that there won’t be further updates, as I warned. But — hope springs eternal — maybe I’ll find a way forward.

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  1. Or at least I would if I actually took it at all seriously. But since it’s crazy talk, I clearly don’t, right? 😉

    • Dear Quin,

      That’s one of the things that I think is important to know about magical work generally: it’s ok not to believe in the work most of the time — but you have to believe in it while you’re doing the work. The more dangerous the work you’re doing, the more critical it is that you believe 100%

  2. On bugs. This is going to sound like crazy talk. And it is, I freely admit.

    I started working on the Celtic Golden Dawn material sometime in springtime. I was meditating often for the first time, and my whole outlook on life was a little bit different. A little bit magical.

    As the first mosquitoes of the season started to appear, I decided to try an experiment. I prayed to the “God of Mosquitoes”, and offered to make a deal. As long as none of them bit me, I wouldn’t kill any of them.

    The funny thing is that, for about six weeks, it actually seemed to work. Other people would complain about getting bit; I would just kind of smile blandly and say, “That’s too bad.” Of course, I wasn’t being Mister Outdoorsman; but sometimes bugs bit my girlfriend when she stayed over, and not me. Anyone spying on me when I was alone would have been, several times, treated to the amusing scene of me attempting to capture a mosquito in a tupperware container to safely take outside and set free.

    Then one day I started a garden in my back yard. I don’t know if it had all been a coincidence the whole time; or if I killed one by mistake; or if I just made such a tempting target that they couldn’t resist anymore. I got really, really bit up that day; and ever since then, they’ve been at me with a vengeance.

    Now, it was just a little bit before I started that garden that my CGD practice had tapered off to more or less nothing. And so your comment kind of makes me wonder… is there a slim chance that CGD practice actually makes you a little bit (a) bug-proof, or at least (b) insensitive to bug bites? (In other words, maybe I was getting bit that whole time and I just didn’t realize it.)

    Something to pay attention to as I start up my practice again.

    • Dear Quin,

      Thanks for writing. I totally get where your crazy talk is coming from, and I don’t think it’s as crazy as you think it is. I mean, it’s crazy, but it’s not that crazy. 🙂

      The promise to avoid killing mosquitoes in exchange for not being bitten, though: when you begin again, you might consider a more general promise not to kill mosquitoes outdoors, and that may be enough to get you off the hook, to some degree.

      As for whether or not CGD works to keep mosquitoes and other bugs away, I don’t know. I think that, in general, the work attuned us much more thoroughly to the natural world than most other systems of energy work I’ve practiced… And the result is that we’re not exactly immune, but more along the lines of “resistant.”

      I definitely was getting bitten last night, right up until the point where I did the Central Ray work — and then the bugs stopped bothering me. It was pretty nice. I can’t speculate about why, just that it happened. It’s pretty nice.

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