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Archive for November, 2011

Claiming My Spirit-Centered Christmas

by ClareShale Mountain Star

As a teen my perception of the Christmas celebration was skewed dramatically by the gross consumer obsession that I saw reflected in the gift-giving traditions of my culture. I rebelled against this perception that I had of Christmas as much as I could, making dramatic anti-consumerism cards and sculptures as gifts for my parents.

In general the holidays were a stressful and anxiety-filled time for me because I was so busy protesting it all. (Which was of course the perfect thing for me to be doing at that point in time; I was doing my job as a Teen!)

When I began my own family, though, I began to soften my opinion; and especially as I deepened my awareness of the ancient pagan roots of the holiday, I really started to wonder what it might mean for me in my adult life to celebrate Christmas.

Having small children, as you may be aware, tends to make deep contemplation of historical, philosophical, cultural and spiritual phenomena a bit challenging. This is especially true around the Christmas season when there are a thousand things to do. Basically, for me, up until now it has been all about “Christmas Survival.”

This year though, I am finding, is different – because my kids are actually getting older.  No one is potty-training and everyone sleeps through the night in their own bed! Now it is truly possible for me to think about a subject for more than five minutes at a time; and Christmas is even more important than ever, because all the kids are Aware that it’s happening – so I’m needing to step up my game!

I know it seems like I’m yammering on, and I kind of am, so I will get to my point.

With all the traditions, reasons to celebrate and ways to move through this time, I am feeling so happy about being able to “Focus with Intention” on the parts that resonate most with me. There are many different kinds of holiday energies floating around out there right now. I’m finding it takes a bit of effort for me to stay grounded with my actions, awareness and even finances all geared towards celebrating Christmas in a way that really resonates with me and my family, but it’s so worth it.

This is our first year lighting an Advent Wreath; the kids are so excited to light the candles. My 4 year-old is especially thrilled with the whole idea…it’s just so super-cute to see them get geared up for such a seemingly simple act. I know for them the season holds an incredible magic.

I am thankful that I can relax and explore Christmas a bit this year, and I am so thrilled to find that I have the inner resources to discover what is special for me about this time amidst all the possibilities.

Good Yule!


Honoring Yourself

Your Truth is your Abundance.

How do you connect in to your Abundance? Do you give yourself time and sacred space to go within?

Do you give yourself the space you need to feel into the desires of your heart, soul and whole self?

So often the “old ways” of society have taught us to always be active – always do something – reach outside one’s self, connect externally – be a full time care-giver for others.

All of this is important, and has its own place and special gifts – but truly we cannot be there in our most helpful capacity if we do not first take care of ourselves.

We are able to be of the highest service when we not only are seeing to our basic needs, but when we are carving out time and space to cultivate and become our highest selves – our most conscious, expanded and aware versions of our already magical beings.

The more you honor your Self, and carve out that time and sacred space for your dreamtime, the more you feel your connection to All – and the more you allow your creativity to flow. From being in a relaxed state of abundance, you are opening to the epiphanies that are ready for you to tap in to.

You are your own well of abundance.

What will you do to create your space today?

Please add your comments here, we’d love to hear from you!

Astra Spider & ClareShale Mountain Star: 


Abundant Heart: Breakthrough Success in Your Life and Art


Blog – www.abundantheart.wordpress.com

Twitter – www.twitter.com/abundantheart

Facebook – www.facebook.com/abundantheart

LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/pub/astra-spider-clareshale-mountain-star/35/a05/598

Love Universe-ity

by Astra Spider

If Earth is a school (and she is) – then the Universe-ity is Love.

Love is the finest institute of Higher Learning. Once we get an A++ in the subject of Love, everything else flows effortlessly.

Love has taught me not to judge and not to worry. Love has taught me to love my Self first, and fill up on Love energy so entirely that it has no where left to flow but out.

Love has taught me that animals are the greatest teachers of neutrality – which is the same as Universal Love.

Love has taught me so much! Has it taught me to remember it all, 100% of the time? Nope, because that is MY responsibility! That reminds me: Love has taught me that I am responsible for my life (and no one else’s).

Am I listening to my greatest teacher? I Am.

By talking to my heart, loving my Self, and remembering that I am responsible for my life, I am giving space for others to do the same.

It is a process – and when all is flowing, Woohoo, doesn’t it feel good!

When all is not flowing, I am quick to take a look under the hood and tinker with the equipment; till I remember to simply fill ‘er up with the most powerful and healthy petrol – the all-purpose, neutral, environmentally friendly energy of Universal Love!

What a gas!




Horses: Healers for the Heart

by ClareShale Mountain Star
I have loved horses my entire life. At a young age, after having shown a persistent interest in riding, my parents finally allowed me to take lessons. I stayed committed to the sport for years and I am, to this day, in love with horses.

As a healer I know that horses have great capacity to facilitate shifts on many levels – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.   Horses are emotional mirrors for us; they reflect what is going on inside of us in a neutral, immediate way so that we can process through what we are really experiencing. This is one reason why, for example, one sees Equine Assisted Therapy used to help people with autism, down syndrome and in recovery programs for all kinds of issues. Physiologically, the movement created by the walking gait of a horse so closely reflects the walking movement in humans, that many physical therapists use “Hippotherapy” (from the Greek ‘hippos’ meaning horse) to support development of nerve and muscle reflexes in patients dealing with cerebral palsy, as well as many other physical challenges.

As an equestrienne I have experienced, and continue to benefit from, those horse-inspired shifts. I wanted to share with you briefly the stories of two special horses. There have been so many, but these two really helped me feel my own Truth as a child.

I met my very first pony-love when I was about seven years old. His name was “Popcorn;” a dark brown liver/chestnut tiny little guy. He could be a challenge at times, but was really a great teacher to many children. On one specific occasion I was attempting to put his bridle on, and he just stepped on my foot and leaned in – he just wouldn’t get off no matter how much I pushed and pushed. I got sooooo angry; it felt like this well of anger had been opened up in some mystical way. I finally freed myself and had to storm out of the stall and just cry and cry. Looking back on this experience I can clearly see that Popcorn was intentionally helping me access my deep anger, the kind of anger most kids really aren’t allowed to express. It felt great to get that out and to cry in the barn. After I was done processing, we made up with a peppermint and a hug, and I got that bridle on in the end.

The next horse I wanted to share about was called “Sugarfoot.” She was such a sweet soul, a white Appaloosa with black spots. After having spent the whole summer with her, riding daily and playing in the fields, I was leaving to head back to school for the fall. On that final day I led her out to the pasture one last time and said good-bye, watching her walk into the grasses. Later, as I was saying my goodbyes to the humans at the barn, my heart was just about to burst and of course I was crying (again). Just then, trotting through the field, was Sugarfoot – rushing to the fence as though she could feel my sorrow and wanted to say farewell one last time. She called out to me in her horsey way and the beautiful compassionate act made me laugh and smile. I knew that we would always be connected, no matter the distance. I can still feel her with me now.

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