Sometimes, your neglected truth comes hurtling towards you, seemingly out of nowhere. You stand petrified, like the poor, defenseless beast that you are, against the glare of this oncoming force. Why me, you ask: the standard cry of the perpetual victim. And then, intuiting that you knew all along, you finally surrender yourself to listening intently to the messages that have been trying to get through, warning you of imminent danger, warning you of allowing untrustworthiness and malice into your life. The messages come from deep within, and from without. This desert has been warning me for some time now. People who hadn’t silenced their instincts had been warning me too. But sometimes it is necessary for obstinate ignorance to lead you by the hand to teach the lessons that need to be learned.

I ignored this desert’s omens and signs until finally, it guided me, unwittingly, to invoke the Great Raven, the Trickster, the Morrigan, the bringer of strife. If your eyes are closed, resolved this dusty place, you shall be forced to see what you know in your bones to be true.  And through this heavy medicine-magic of the shadow self, the light got in.

Bodhi in north Joshua Tree, 2015

I dreamed I was with child. But I feared giving birth for I knew that the smiling face of one I had mistaken for a sister, of one who swore they wanted nothing more than to help me through the pains of childbirth, plotted to steal the baby.  In this dream,  a heavy and sinister darkness surrounded me, a fog that I could not feel my way out of. Soon after these visions, Doc and I found ourselves in this black fog in our waking lives. It whispered to go this way and that and we followed, stumbling, trying to find our way to the light. But we were encircled by the darkness of lies. Despair took hold as I watched the one person I know with an unfailing clarity of sight falter like I did. The lies and deceit did not abate and yet we could not apprehend them. They disappeared like clouds at the slightest touch. And soon I realized that I had known all along that this would happen. I realised that Doc had been warning me, that the still, small voice within had been warning me but I was too afraid to listen. Too afraid to see that sometimes, to trust and take another at face value is a fatal error, not when that face is a mask, and all around and inside you is warning you of danger.

At last, I resolved to endure the pain of opening my eyes to this mendacious darkness, to pulling off the mask of the false smiles and tricksy manipulations. And instead of pain, there was relief. Relief at finally paying heed to my highest good and my deepest self; relief at listening to the voices of truth warning of the swampy mire of lies; relief, on the winter Solstice, of allowing the light in.

Throughout this past year, my abiding intention during the moon cycles has been to let go of what no longer serves me. In my naiveté, I thought that this was just the superficial ‘bad’ habits I struggled with. I did not realize that I was also ready to face and let go of much deeper ingrained habits and patterns that kept me fearful and cloistered in the darkness, allowing energies of deceit and malice to seduce and enchant me. This desert heard the cries of my deepest self, even if I did not, and guided me, guilelessly, to invoke the medicine of that powerful Trickster so that I may find my way out of the dark fog and into the newborn light. I am awestruck by this harsh but necessary medicine.

And so I find myself facing this New Year with Doc, both of us bruised, battered and exhausted. The black fog had descended so thickly about us that we had almost begun to lose sight of each other. But the light has got in.  

The winter winds have been raging wildly in the desert. I listen, and hear what it says: this too shall pass.