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Heaven on the Ceiling

October 21, 2012 , , , , , ,

When we identify ourselves we use memory and words to describe our personalities. We play different roles in our lives, which can be broken down into archetypes.  Understanding the ancient pantheon or modern breakdown of archetypes at work will reveal your true motives and those of others.  The use of astrology in art is a way to place different aspects of life in alignment with different personality traits.  In the Renaissance it was suggested that by painting the gods and goddesses that rule each planet of the birth horoscope on the bedroom ceiling as a reminder of the many forces at work, a student of magic/medicine would be well served.  The plants and medicines were ruled by planets, and the maladies each had a planetary influence as well.  To practice medicine was to be in tune with all that science could offer and all that folk medicine could prove empirically.  Symbols work directly in the healing arts just as they do in religion.  Beyond words, meaning conveyed through amulets, talismans, astrological paintings, and other magic objects goes to work at a subconscious level.  What is your environment saying to you?

To unplug from our own daily delusions through meditation and retreat is healthy.  Carl Jung built his stone tower to surround his soul with art that directly symbolizes his inner being.  To be fully individuated was the intention behind building the tower by hand in Bollingen and living/decorating it with the symbols that had meaning to him.  Living off the grid, and on the water Jung was able to create a retreat that embodied his own psyche.   Using his own nature combined with the spirit of the place Jung built a living evolving hermitage. He was interested in alchemy at the end of his career.  He was an esteemed shrink with many followers, yet when he went symbolic alchemical on them they did not appreciate the work he had decided to pursue.  He was in a position to do as he pleased.  The publication of The Red Book after his death has revealed how much he did exactly that.

If you had a place on the water with funds devoted to your building of a retreat what kind of temple would you construct?  If you had your choice of materials and colors how would you design your surroundings?  If there is no lakeside property in your holdings, do you have a corner of a room, or a space on your window sill to set aside as your own altar or sacred reminder?  Is there an inherited item that belongs in the spot, or does it need some art created by and for you?  Do you successfully use your gifts as they arrive, while always developing a deeper, more confident, content sense of  yourself in this world?  Do you have a big backlog of inherited symbols that do not belong with you at all, but are still hanging around in your life?  How much of your environment feeds your soul? Can you find a place for personal art and meditation, whatever that means to you?  Do you have a few minutes each day to be still and know?  These small steps can be a change in direction toward a full happy life.  Find a space and a few minutes.  See what you can do with them.

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