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Rae Brassell
Jan 20, 2024
In General Discussions
I will clean my bones of everything I no longer wish to carry So that when the wind blows between my ribs where my heart once lived, I will hear my name whispered back to me and remember who I am; The person I was before the world Brought me darkness, confusion and pain. I will shed my flesh until, all the stories that hold me back are exposed to the light And I am once again free, For when the wind blows through my ribs and my name echoes through my soul, I will know the truth who I am, who I always was, and will always be.
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Rae Brassell
May 01, 2023
In General Discussions
Beltane is an ancient Celtic festival that celebrates the beginning of summer and the fertility of the earth. It is a time to honor both the Divine Masculine and the Divine Feminine energies that are essential to the creation and renewal of life. In particular, Beltane is a time to celebrate the power and beauty of the Divine Feminine. The Goddess is seen as the embodiment of the earth and all of its life-giving properties. She is the nurturing mother who provides for all of her children, and the wise crone who imparts ancient wisdom to those who seek it. At Beltane, the Goddess is honored in many different ways. One of the most common rituals is the lighting of bonfires, which symbolize the warmth and light of the sun. These fires are often used as a focal point for dancing and other forms of celebration, as people come together to honor the cycle of life and the power of the Divine Feminine. Another important aspect of Beltane is the weaving of floral wreaths and garlands. These wreaths are often worn on the head or around the waist, and are meant to symbolize the beauty and fertility of the earth. They are also used as offerings to the Goddess, as a way of thanking her for her many blessings. Throughout history, the Divine Feminine has been celebrated in many different cultures and traditions. From the ancient Greeks and Romans to the indigenous peoples of North America, the Divine Feminine has been revered as a powerful force of creation and renewal. In recent years, there has been a growing interest in the Divine Feminine and her role in modern spirituality. Many people are turning to the Goddess as a source of inspiration and guidance, seeking her wisdom and guidance in their daily lives. One of the most important lessons that the Goddess teaches us is the importance of balance. She reminds us that the world is made up of both masculine and feminine energies, and that both are necessary for the creation and renewal of life. In our modern society, many of us have lost touch with the Divine Feminine. We have become disconnected from the earth and from the cycles of nature, and have lost sight of the importance of nurturing and caring for ourselves and each other. But by honoring the Goddess and celebrating the beauty and power of the Divine Feminine, we can begin to reconnect with our true nature and rediscover the balance and harmony that is essential for our well-being. So this Beltane, take some time to honor the Goddess and celebrate the beauty and power of the Divine Feminine. Light a bonfire, weave a wreath, or simply spend some time in nature, connecting with the earth and all of its life-giving properties. And remember that the Goddess is always with you, guiding you on your journey through life and reminding you of the beauty and power that lies within.
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Rae Brassell
Apr 19, 2023
In General Discussions
I had a breakthrough in therapy today. I mean, I knew this, but I didn't KNOW it. Ya' know? I have value. Value that doesn't disappear with the slightest rejection. My worth is not determined by other people. This one was hard, so I will say it again. My worth is not determined by other people. I thought I knew this, but it's like a fog settles over my brain and the clarity, the real beauty of my landscape, becomes softened, blurry, and sometimes, impossible to see. I have all of this messaging that I carry around inside of me because of all of the shit I have survived in my life. Messages like "If the people around me (mainly people I look up to or see as authority in some way), are mad at me, it must be my fault. I must have messed up in a big way." The messed up thing is not that people get mad at me sometimes, it's the belief that in every little way that I feel like I don't measure up, every little way that I have compared myself to others and found myself lacking, all come rushing in. It's not that I messed up that one part of a project, it's that I am so deeply flawed, that I will never be good at anything, and everyone BUT me knows this When people are nice to me, they are faking it because they want something from me. And I experience this abandonment and rejection trauma over and over again not just with constructive criticism, but with every change in body language, tone of voice, facial expression and sigh. I not only not recognize that this is happening to me, but I automatically do it. My brain and body become hijacked by it, and I will ruminate and play it over again and again trying to discover how I messed up so I can fix that flaw within myself. Because if I fix all of the things wrong with me, someone might love and respect me. My therapist gave me a key to my cage today, and it's something I have been trying to believe and integrate. But the fear of being "high and mighty" "too good" "on my high horse" "thinking I am better than everyone" etc. is very real. I don't want to be that person. But the thing is, it's not about me. It's not about me. This is the lesson I am really learning and trying to integrate right now. I mean really integrate it, alchemizing the old outdated beliefs that I have been carrying. It's not about me. None of my abuse was about me. Not a single bit of it over my entire life. I never did anything to deserve any of it. I hold some accountability for the positions I have put myself in as an adult, and the ways that I have made unhealthy choices for myself, and how I showed up for others in my past. But I'm not talking about that. I am saying that the shitty ways people have come at me, is a reflection of their internal worlds. It had nothing to do with me. And trying to fix their issues with me, by trying to mold myself more into the image that I think they want to see, only serves to hurt myself further. It robs me of sanity, joy, and even purpose. It doesn't make me better at anything, but rather is a slippery slope of anxiety and depression. This has been a lifetime of being the scape goat, the whipping boy, and dumping grounds of others that I now have to heal, and re-write. I wasn't lacking. They just couldn't see me through their own shit. The thing is, not everyone is deserving of contact with me, not everyone will appreciate the gift of me, and that's ok. It's ok, because they are not on the same path as me. They have their own paths, with their own lessons, and their own new teachers to meet. My path, my journey, my message is my own. It has it's own value, as do I. I appreciate the reminder of my worth today. May I carry this torch to bring light to the darkness and burn away the fog before it settles in.
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Rae Brassell
Mar 31, 2023
In General Discussions
Most of us have heard of Pandoras box. The majority of people know the basic story that Pandora was given a box full of horrors, and she was instructed to never open it, just trust the guy that gave it to her to keep safe. But that young silly girl couldn't help it, curiosity got the best of her, and open it she did. Out of it flew all manner of trouble, horror, demons etc. But in the bottom of the box, Hope was waiting. I have never had anyone explain it to me in a way that makes sense, but today, I think I finally understand the meaning of the story hidden in the bottom of the box, waiting to be uncovered beneath the story that we have been told. Today, while doing my stretches, meditation, and grief work, I found something new hiding beneath my grief, pain, and trauma. I found Peace. I found Joy. And I found my lost hopeful excitement from girlhood. All hiding under the buried grief and pain. As we age, the things we "lost" about ourselves through trauma and survival can be, at least somewhat, recovered. That spark might turn into a full ass fire if I tend to it, and keep it alive, and most importantly if I continue to face all of those demons that are flying out that damn box I was given. This is how I think the story can be interpreted for modern times. Pandora was a young girl, bright, playful, strong and lithe. She loved to run and dance and play, and she was so in love with life that every day was special and filled with magic. Zeus was a major piece of shit, and used Pandora in ways that deeply harmed her, thus "giving her a box or jar filled with evil". Then he instructed her to carry this around with her, keep it locked up tight, don't tell anyone and never open it. But she couldn't help herself, she could hear things in there that made her uneasy. There were smells that made her heart race, and it was just so damn heavy. She just had to know what the hell was in that damn box that was so important to keep it a secret. As it turned out the gift that Zeuss gave her wasn't a gift at all, but a curse. She was carrying around a box full of demons, disease, fear, and pain. It was the opening of the box that made all of those things more visible, louder, and even affected the people around her more than they ever did tight in that box. (Here is the part they don't really tell you.) She faced those demons, each and every one. She looked them in the face and dealt with them head on, and as she did she began to heal from the terrible "gift" that she never asked for. What she found under all of the trauma, pain, and grief, was Hope. Hope for healing, Hope for Recovery, Peace, and once again Joy. Perhaps the deeper story is a story of healing from trauma. At least, that's how I am going to think of it from now on.
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Rae Brassell
Mar 02, 2023
In General Discussions
Not everything is as it appears. In fact, I think very rarely is the entire truth of anything easy to see at first glance. And yet, naturally most of us stop there. The first glance, thought, feeling, impression, etc. I believe that, to be able to process information quickly in survival situations our brain has developed an ability to identify danger before it becomes mortal danger. I theorize that if you have had a lot of reasons to make very fast assumptions about danger in your life, ie. childhood abuse, you most likely have multiple perception filters that trigger in various patterns very quickly. This is where complex PTSD comes into play. In a culture of child neglect and abuse that we are beginning to evolve out of, assumptions and jumping to conclusions seems to be a cultural inheritance, and, it is changeable. The brain is relatively malleable depending on age, diet, pathology etc. and therefore to some extent at least, the majority of human beings have the innate ability to change their own neural pathways. Meaning that there is great hope for the healing of various mental conditions, including complex PTSD and our fight or flight responses. Which in turn, can allow the pathway for the healing of nervous systems, and therefore, a deeper healing of the physical body. By reducing the flood of adrenaline and other hormones, the glands can begin to rest and heal, and so do the nerves themselves. The nerves are the pathway from the brain to everything in the body. Healing the nerves means that they can send clearer messages to the rest of the body, allowing for more function vs disfunction. My theory atm is that the fastest way to change your reality is literally to change your mind, by becoming increasingly curious of the world around you. For me this practice is about accepting that I actually know very little about the world that exists for each and every one of us. The thing we call reality exists, not in a 2 dimensional or even a 3 dimensional way, but in a currently uncountable number of ways. What we believe to be true must always be balanced with the understanding that we do not have the ability to perceive the majority of what is around us, within us, etc. And so, by reason, we are often actually clueless. I believe this is by design, and also I believe we are beginning to see a new evolution of consciousness, and therefore will see a new evolution of all things. That being said, it is also important to understand that while you are a tiny spark of light in a vast macrocosm of unfathomable size and energy, you are also a part of that greatness. You have the potential to be more powerful than you can comprehend. And it starts by understanding that though you may have some idea of what you call life, that is merely seeing reality through the eye of a needle. The less I judge, label or control what is outside of me, the more connected I become to the flow, the connection, to cosmic consciousness. Is this an aha moment that fixes everything? Fuck no!! This is that Aha moment that strips bare your entire life, being and sense of self. And then the work begins, and this happens over and over again, kicking your ass the whole way until you refine and distill anew. You CAN do it. But it's a lot faster and more efficient with the right help. What that looks like for me is finding the right therapist, discovering what my body actually needs and honoring that, paying attention to the wisdom of the teachers and lessons all around me, and becoming increasingly curious about myself, my reality, my connection and my growth. My wish for you, is that you find the help that you need to change your mind too.
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Rae Brassell
Feb 22, 2023
In General Discussions
I had a conversation with my therapist about anger the other day. I was in the midst of recognizing and attempting to process very big feelings, attempting to understand, and over thinking instead. She said to me that oftentimes the reason people have big anger, and therefore cannot harness it properly, is because it's exacerbated by grief. I looked at her and said "I cry too much already. I spent almost all of last week crying. I have work to do." She said to me that spending an hour or even two in the mornings, to really process grief will be beneficial to me, and reduce my reactivity. And then I remembered. I had made a daily practice of somatic movement and breathing, followed by gentle yoga, meditation and prayers. Oftentimes my body would release energy and stuck emotions. Most of the time it was grief, and she was right. I was less reactive and more centered afterward. So, I followed through on re-starting my daily practice, and when my grief came up, I observed it, I asked it why it was there, and what it had to teach me. This is what came up. Why do the judgements of others hurt so much? How do I judge myself? The judgements of others hurts because it brings to my awareness the ways in which I judge myself unfairly, but ignore. They also bring to my awareness my deepest fears, touching on some of my oldest wounding. This most painful rejection came from those I trusted, respected, and held in high esteem, and it was the most painful because I am still looking for validation from authority figures. The catch here, is that I'm 42 and an adult, but I don't "feel" like I adult very well. I was robbed of a "normal" happy, healthy childhood. I'm still holding onto the need to be loved and approved of by a "grown-up". Grown up meaning someone who I see as better than me, bigger than me, wiser than me etc. But I need to be my own authority figure. In order to do that, I need to learn to trust myself enough to be the authority figure I have needed, and have already been for so long. I need to be the loving, stable parent that I so desperately needed as a child. In order for me to be able to do that, I need to let go of attachment to the many mistakes that I made when I was younger. I have to forgive myself, knowing that I have done everything I can to outgrow the me that lived out of my wounding. I cannot go back and change anything, and carrying all of this judgement of myself is not serving my highest good. I continue to do the work of exploring, learning, growing, maturing, and developing more "wise mind, and that is all the control I have. A popular phrase is "I'm not my past.", but I call bullshit on that. I am a culmination of the entirety of my life thus far. From my genetics to my personality, everything good and bad that I have experienced, abundance and struggle. And if I am to be whole, authentic and vibrant, I must accept and integrate it all. My pain does define me, as does my joy, pleasure, growth and light. As long as I continue to beat myself up I remain a victim. I have to forgive myself in order to love myself fully. So, I'm doing that now. Rumors are an opportunity to ask myself "Is this a belief about myself, that I carry?" If yes, then I can discover why and let it go. If not, then then I can rejoice in that, and let it go. Either way, shit can be gold if you know how to work it. I know who I am, more and more; and more and more I fall in love with all of me.
In the mirror, Anger becomes Grief content media
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Rae Brassell
Jan 23, 2023
In General Discussions
The Goddess Brigid is one of the Celtic goddesses who has been venerated for centuries. She is widely associated with love, fertility and creativity, as well as healing and herbs, hearth and forges, and a variety of other mysteries. Her story inspires many, both in ancient and modern times. Brigid’s origins can be traced back to ancient Ireland and Celtic mythology, where she was named after Brid, a goddess of pre-Christian Ireland. She is known as a triple goddess, corresponding to three aspects of her power: Brigid the poet, Brigid the blacksmith, and Brigid the healer. She was seen as a source of healing and spiritual awakening, as well as a symbol of fertility, love and creativity. Blessings from Brigid could be obtained by performing sacred rituals and reciting blessings. Such rituals included sacred fire, providing and caring for the sick, blessing of animals and crops, and offering prayers and offerings. Some of the prayers involved reciting incantations and poems in the ancient Gaelic language. Many prayers were addressed to Brigid, such as “May Brigid bless me, that I may heal the wounds of heart and hand”. Brigid is associated with the hearth and forges and is often represented in works of art as a flame. This is a symbol of her role as a goddess of creativity, of healing and of growth. Brigid is also strongly linked to other goddesses, including the Irish goddess Macha and the Welsh goddess Cerridwen. All of them are sisters in spirit, as ancient cultures believed in the connections among goddesses of similar power. The legend of Brigid is deeply embedded in Irish culture, and many people work to uphold the values and symbols of Brigid today. In modern times, Brigid is celebrated at Imbolc, when pagans on the Celtic Calendar celebrate the coming of spring. Imbolc is a time of reflection, healing, rekindling creativity, honoring the harvests, and getting in touch with the goddess’s divine energy. It is also a time to renew dreams and goals and to tap into one’s personal power. People gather around the fire, symbolically lighting new candles to honor the celebrations. The goddess Brigid has many meanings; she is a protector of the hearth, a bringer of fertility, and a benevolent goddess of healing and creativity. She is a powerful figure in Celtic mythology who is revered and celebrated even in modern times. People from all walks of life are inspired by her story and are reminded of her powerful qualities through ritual and celebration.
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Rae Brassell
Nov 16, 2022
In General Discussions
I am a survivor. That phrase is so surreal to me, considering that every day in every moment I am still trying, striving to survive. I have had numerous therapists, with numerous appointments, and a lot of work has been done. And yet I continue to struggle with one very important thing. My relationship with my body. The abuses upon my body began so early that sexual assault was intimacy, affection and love. I was so far removed from any kind of connection to my body that I developed all kinds of illnesses, including an eating disorder. I had regular panic attacks that would end in my vomiting, and sometimes even fainting. Outside of blaming myself for my abuse, I never had the thought that there was something wrong with my body until middle school. I remember at this point in my life I had been in foster care for over a year, I had been separated from my brothers, thrown on antidepressants, and was in yet another abusive home. My puberty had begun and hormones began to rage through my body. I went from having a slender, fast and strong body to a swollen, cumbersome and slow body that got too hot too fast. Running made me vomit, and I gained weight. I remember vividly overhearing another girl talking to her friends, bragging about her size like she owned the newest iphone. "I'm a size zero!" she snidely announced to everyone, who of course acted like she had attained some amazing feat. Girls started to make fun of me in the locker room before P.E., calling me a whale and a fat pig. I loved food, but didn't want to be fat, and I developed bulimia nervosa. (Ages 6, 11, 13, 16) My body went from child to woman from 10-13. Looking at these photos it's so surreal to me, that the belief I was morbidly obese had a grip so tight that there was no room for any other reality. It was all I could see in the mirror, and so many people around me re-enforced that message. If everyone around you tells you the same thing, how can you believe anything different? I was told to diet, join sports, get more exercise etc. Around the same time as the bottom photo, my Dad was so "concerned" for my weight that he began making me go on bike rides with him to make me lose weight. I was already walking more than a couple of miles to school and home everyday, doing PE classes, and walking all over town to go to work or visit with my friends. If everyone around you tells you the same thing, how can you believe anything different? By the time I was 18 I was doing weight lifting, but I also drastically reduced my food intake (but still mostly ate junk), took speeders, started smoking, drinking, and I had begun to be very sexually promiscuous. During the next couple of years I experienced homelessness more than once, having sex with anyone that would touch me. I put on a bad bitch persona and totally numbed out. I just needed to survive, and to be honest, anytime anyone loved me during this time, it made me so uncomfortable that I rejected them instantly. I couldn't allow love. It was too vulnerable, and settling into that feeling made me hurt in so many ways. So I continued to self abuse. I didn't give a shit about myself until I became pregnant with my first child. I had to change. I knew I had to, but didn't know how or who to turn to. With no real support system during my pregnancy I experienced issues. How can you grow another life, and have a healthy pregnancy so dissociated? I did the best I could at the time with the resources that I had, and yet I have so many regrets that still haunt me. I found out I was pregnant at 20 years old. I have been on this journey of healing ever since, and with time and practice I continue to get better at connecting to and loving my body. But I have had so many ups and downs, weight gains, weight losses etc. The past 10 years of my life having been the most intense, and the last 2 years being the most dedicated. But at 42 years old, I am once again fixing my diet, setting reminders to take my vitamins, trying to prioritize drinking water etc. I have combatted abuse, trauma, body dysmorphia, eating disorders and addictions. I am still on this journey of a million moments, remembering to breath, center, allow, release, heal, and celebrate in love. I now allow myself expression however I need; be it dancing, creating art, having a scream, or just listening to music as I lay in full observation and awareness of my body. That last part is actually my favorite. I have met and fallen in love with so much of me doing that, especially the child within who needs so much tenderness and love. Often times I find there is another layer of sadness that needs to be held fully and acknowledged in order to be released. But on the other side of pain, love is waiting, and that love is sweet, full and constant, and I can never be denied it again.
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Rae Brassell
Aug 11, 2022
In General Discussions
The Full Moon embodies self-expression and action! It represents completion, illumination and celebration. This is the apex of Moon phases, the mountain peak. We have traveled far, and now is the time to rest, and look back on our accomplishments, or at what we have left behind, as the case may be. How much have you grown this past month, honor the small and large victories. What questions arose this past month, or need to be illuminated further? What losses need to be honored? Is it time to let go and move on, or should you build a shrine to remind us for a time of what is now in the afterworld? Those of the Aquarius zodiac sign are humanitarian, philanthropic, and keenly interested in making the world a better place. Along those lines, they’d like to make the world work better, which is why they focus much of their energy on our social institutions and how they work (or don’t work). Now is a great time to be reflecting on how this applies to not only our personal lives, but also our collective. How far have we come, what can we release and let go of, and what changes can we make going forward?
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Rae Brassell
Jul 04, 2022
In General Discussions
This years event was so much more than I could have intended. The women who came and participated were amazing, the presenters were top-notch, and the performances were inspiring. I'm so glad that I listened and followed through, because at the beginning of planning this event I wasn't sure. I had lost trust in myself, but also in the Universe guiding me into this place once again. The last couple of years had been so hard, and I had lost so much, that I was convinced that I wasn't really meant for this work. Though I see changes that need to be made to make this event even better, I am more convinced than ever that this is the path that I must walk. So many women acted as the voice of the Goddess telling me that they need these events, and that I need to be the one to bring them, that it was undeniable that this message needed to get through to me. By the end of the weekend I was so full of love and passion that I was renewed. My trust is restored. We had almost 15 women arrive a day early! I was not expecting that to happen, but together with requests that I extend the event to 4 days, we are now going to be a Thursday through Sunday event. Next years dates are June 22-25 2023.
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Rae Brassell
Mar 08, 2020
In General Discussions
The year we Gather again. 2020-2022 Two years of Gatherings that came and went, before we even had a chance. Three years of isolation, canceled events, frustration, economic struggles, and global panic. 2021 was going to be the year we ended Covid, the year we got to gather and see all of the people that we missed. It came, and it went only slightly better than the previous year. Having to cancel the Wild Woman Weekend 2 years in a row created a huge depression within me. Between the isolation, the ticket refund struggles, watching loved ones health struggles, and having had covid go through our house twice, I found myself see sawing between apathy and anger. At one point I even considered walking away from this work altogether, Yoga Trying to deal with my depression led me back down the path of Self Care. I had stopped eating right and moving my body. I went back to the chiropractor, I started making better food choices for my body, and I started going to a restorative yoga class on Sundays. I almost didn't go, but I had paid in advance. I'm glad that I went because afterwards I was asked about the Wild Woman Weekend, and if I would consider having it this year. At the time I was honestly feeling a big "no" inside my throat but I said I would think about it. Eventually I had several other unrelated people ask me this same question. "Are you going to have the Wild Woman Weekend this year?" I decided that maybe I should try again. Wild Woman Weekend This year is coming together nicely, though we still have room for some presenters, performers, and vendors! If your interested in joining us, please go to the Home Page We look forward to seeing you! Enjoy this song!
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