Sewing as a Sacred Act

Sewing as a Sacred Act.

by Polly Lind 2013

Bobbin and cotton

Up in my tower that has views down the valley, with pins, needles, and thread,

 I weave magic in to the fabric that I lay out on my ironing board.

Creating sacred designs, with Gods, Ancestors, Snakes, Toads, and Hares,

And Piwakawaka whispering in my ear, laying my soul bear.

With fabric, sharp shears, iron, bamboo and interfacing,

 I create doorways where spirits, magic and the divine, when invited, come through.

With pins, charms and wool stuffing, I create pillows that induce sacred dreaming,

and witches ladders to keep the not wanted at bay.

With incense, sewing machines, cotton and thread, I dance with the fabric of the divine,

and I will until I am dead

My sewing a sacred act, of offerings and service,

I will my surrender to the whirling of the bobbin, touching the magic,

imbuing the divine,and emboldening the spirit.

Up in my tower with views down the valley, I offer my sewing as a sacred act.

Shadow, Deep and Community

 

Usually I try and find a story of sorts to begin these posts, but alas this time there isn’t one.  This idea, or revelation came to over the last couple of weeks and it is about the 3 types of magical work that I do, or that I perceive I do.

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Shadow Work:

This is where magic is used to work on yourself, inner work if you will.  Work to understand, heal and grow in a psychological personal sense.  It is about working with the darker aspects, as well as the lighter aspects, of yourself that come into view as you live a magical life.  It has always been my belief that if you are not working on this as a part of your magical life, then are you really living a magical life?  But having said that, living a magical life is not and should not be entirely focused on the self, hens these two other type of work which are a part of my practice and magical life.

For example this year I have been making a concerted effort to write more because all through my schooling I was told I was lazy and stupid, and then when it was discovered that I was dyslexic, as an adult, I had to overcome the common understanding that dyslexic people while not stupid could not write.  Hence the magical blogging and writing on a fairly regular basis.

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Deep Work:

This is not always overtly magical as so often reading and study is not seen as a magical act, but that I suspect depends on how your framework looks.  Deep work is about deepening your understanding through reading study and practice of your path, your magic and your connection with the Divine and the Spirit world.  As Kris Hughs from the Anglesee Druid Order said, it is when your eyes are Black with the magic of the ovate.  This can happen when you are deepening your understanding of the above be that reading, study, practice or ritual.

For example this year I learnt about trance-meditation, connected and unconnected magic, which I have then put into practice and now have a much strong connection with Spirit, the Divine and a clearer connection with a Spirit Teacher who I have been working with for years.  I also leaped into the abyss with gay abandon but that is not something will be sharing here.

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Community Work:

This for me has a strong connection with Surrendering to service.  it is the service you provide, not just to you magical or pagan communities but also you wider community.  It is talking to the little old lady at the bus stop with an empty cat carrier and offering her an ear, and sympathy because she has just had her very old cat put to sleep.  It is about helping a new pagan discover what their path and spirituality is.  It can be about organising or talking part in a beach clean-up, or helping friends move house.

For me part of my community work is helping others find their magical and spiritual paths, and talking to people at bus stops..

Of course there is crossover.  Deep work can bring up Shadow work that needs to be done and Community work that could be an aspect of your Deep work as you find yourself offering your services in the name your God or Goddess.  You get the picture right?

So there you go, three types of magical work that are key to living a magical life, or at least how i am living my magical life!

 

 

Surrendering to Service

Surrendering to Service has taken me quite some time to come to terms with, to be comfortable enough with to actually see what surrendering to service looks like versus what I thought it looked like.  It is as though, like Perceval, I started out on my journey thinking and believing it was one thing but realising that it was, while something similar, actually quite different to what I originally thought and believed.   This all of course, was one of the things that came about during the workshop on the Grail Quest I did several weeks ago, which I have posted about previously.

So what is Surrendering to Service and for that matter what is this Service, and whom is it service to?  These are quite complex questions to answer, never mind that I had to understand that Service was not servitude.  It was an entirely different view and understanding that I was being encouraged?  asked? to surrender to.

I can remember a friend of mine back when I knew not that much, talking to me about surrendering to the will of the Gods, to which I pulled a funny face at that thought, ‘No Gods are going to be telling me what to do?’  I suspect now that this was a reaction, to a now outdated framework that I had learned from my various accidental interactions with Christianity.   You see I had attended Sunday school as a young child.  At the end of the street where my Nana lived was a Catholic church, and one of the nuns who taught at the school there, which I didn’t go to, was called Sister Pauline, and given that was my name, I thought she was very cool, thus I invariably turned up on Sunday mornings for her Sunday school classes, even though I was not enrolled or Catholic.. but there you go Sister Pauline was pretty awesome.

I also went to an Anglican boarding School during my High School years, while only being nominally Anglican. My family only ever went to church for funerals and as Kiwis were not particularly religious anyway.  I certainly was never christened, and this was brought up by the Father of said Anglican boarding school several times, but I always refused. In many ways the Anglican faith is a lot more ridged than the Catholic faith, sort of *wiggles hand* However the point here is, that while spending time in these strong Christian institutions I apparently learned that surrendering to God was in essence Servitude to God. After all, Nuns had to give up everything, sex, money, possessions, personality, (although Sister Pauline had a truck load of personality from what I remember).  Nuns gave up everything to marry God. Thus surrendering to God, and indeed service to God, in my mind was servitude, in that kneel in front of and tell him how unworthy you are kind of way.

But as it turns out I’m such a Heathen, oh wait, no that’s not right, I’m a Witch *coughs*.   I never had to recite any lords prayers backwards, or have sex in a graveyard, although there was that Convent fire- escape once . . . left funny bruises, and I still grin when I think about it,  *coughs* but that is besides’ the point to.

The point we are talking about here is surrendering to service and how it is nothing like the image I had in my head of Nuns surrendering up themselves to servitude just so they could marry God.  Surrendering to service for a Witch, well for me is nothing like that.  But having said that this Surrender is certainly not easy, nor is it simple or everyone would be doing it.

Also why on earth would the Gods want a simpering subservient submissive sleeping bumpkin when they have spent a lot of time putting things in my path that has caused me to do some very deep personal psychological and magical work on myself which has meant that I have become a very strong, confident and outspoken women who can swear like a pirate when sewing, and stare down the most uptight business man until they yell uncle…  *coughs*..  Actually to put that in a less egotistical seeming nut shell, why would the Gods expect you to be somebody you are not in order to surrender service? This is not to say that being submissive doesn’t have its own power, but that is a whole other kettle of fish, and today the fish is Spiritual Service.

This all brings another thought to mind.  For years I have been telling various people who I have helped in a spiritual sense, be that house cleansing, card reading, or just passing on those messages you sometimes get, that its “part of the job description” or more to the point  “it’s all part of the service” could it be that I have already being unconsciously serving?  And perhaps this time it is about serving more consciously.   About stepping with conscious thought into service, or choosing to Surrender to Service.