Yes, the rumor is true. I have a thing for words. Big ones. Little ones. Private ones. National and global ones. I like them in English. In Greek and Hebrew. A few of them in Latin.
My traveling vocabulary is, admittedly, pretty small. I can introduce myself, order dinner, and ask for the bathroom in Spanish, Italian, Hungarian, and (more or less) in French.
Some of my favorites are very old words living, as it were, into new layers of meaning.
The word for the moment is Ritual. And, yes, it’s Shiloh Sophia’s “fault”! You see, there’s a new painting about to start. The journey has already begun!
I started by washing all the paintbrushes in my studio. This is a really big statement of intention! Next came journals. The one for writings and notes and reminders. The one for art journaling. Both all labeled and shiny.
Then, I started watching videos. And writing. Here’s a question that keeps following me around and appearing in my dreams:
What called me to this circle?
The first answer, which is already written in my journal, is sabbatical. I have been blessed by intense certification journeys through Color of Woman and Motherboard, one right after the other. So much new-ness. Now I need me-ness.
I am claiming this need, despite the fact that my tradition is skeptical at best about ritual. Especially those that are visual or kinesthetic. I’m here to roll around in Ritual, body, mind, and soul. And learn!
Which leads us to the photo.
One canvas. Size huge. (48×60″!) Blessedly, it was already warming up in the basement, bought with anticipation during a major sale.
A bit of, dare I say, holy water, carefully carried home from Italy.
Thirteen intentionally invisible circles, “drawn” on, if you will, with a clean paintbrush and that very water, holding space for the 13-moon journey, just beginning.
And an unexpected volunteer from my closet!
Each of us was invited, as we begin, to consider having a special shawl or scarf to wear when doing the writing and reflecting rituals along the way.
This invitation, kind of surprisingly, was a bit of a challenge for me. The fuzzy, handmade shawl our fearless leader was wearing in the video was lovely. It was also a decidedly impractical choice for one who lives in Georgia where some of those 13 moons will predictably be hot and then some.
I have a scarf I love, scattered with red roses. A stunning gift from a dear paint sister when we were in Italy. I don’t know if The Velveteen Rabbit has been translated into Italian but this particular option seemed concerned about getting quite as “loved” as seems likely on such an adventure.
At about that point in the pondering process, another need appeared. My right knee, which has been cranky of late, reminded me rather loudly that I really need a way to carry my cell phone around, just in case I need help.
For a person who lives in leggings and paint shirts, and is quite particular about being, in the words of Winnie the Pooh, just right when it comes to temperature, this presents a bit of a challenge.
Que inspiration! My collection of denim jackets was calling to me. You already know which one volunteered.
Easily washable. Perfectly sized pockets. Willing to bid the sleeves farewell. Great lapels for pinning things. Literally made of Red Thread. Excited about the possibility of being spattered with paint. It feels so right, I had to take it off for the photo shoot!
I have no idea what comes next. Except that I will be changed.
And the hope that, if I am able to be changed, the enormous challenges of our world are also able to be changed. So be it.
ps… The Ritual journey has already begun BUT there is still time to join in. Just click here for more information!
pss… Thanks to Bilbo Baggins for the reminder about adventures!