Shake and Bake 61 – The Stepping Out of Silence Edition

I’m late! I’m late! For a very important date!

The White Rabbit by spoiltgraphic

The new moon fell on January First.  I had EVERY INTENTION of creating a post to wish you a grand and wonderful new year… but the world was full to bursting and I didn’t make it to the typer at all at all.  So… belatedly…


Wishing you joy and wonder and adventures galore.

It has been a slow emerging for me into the world of words on any pages other than the Scribble Book.  I’ve been thinking and scribbling my way towards a post about the Vipassana Course I attended in December.  It was fabulous and hard and wonderful and… I WILL post about it.  I promise.

I’ve been spending some time playing in my Night Ravings book.  The place I keep track of the passing moons, of dreams and strange research into this or that.  Looking at this whole idea of Living by the Moon.  About what I want to accomplish. What I want to explore.  Why I want to “track things” and how and whether it should be private or public.  Meaning… should I even continue with these check in posts on the blog.

I believe the public nature of these check ins gives me added impetus to … DO THEM.  I have always responded best to … doing things for others.  Even if it is only an imagined other.   I have no illusions that you await each post with bated breath – but still, I hate to disappoint.  I once did an entire show on the Fringe circuit for ONE audience member.  She came, she paid, she saw the show.  It was kind of wonderful actually.  To tell an intimate story to her – all alone in the theatre.  I’m OK with small audiences – and I’m so glad you take the time to come here and see what I’m up to.  Merci.

But… I blather.

I also think that – though it is still a bit discombobulating to do these check ins by the moon as opposed to WEEKLY – that this will help me truly feel and mark the passing of each moon this year.

I’ve also been seeking ways to also use these posts and my private “paper chickens”  (daily check ins) as a way to be aware of the Elements and of the Random Sacred as it appears in my life.

Time was spent after the retreat revamping my paper chickens.  I’m liking the new template. So far.

I’m questioning my obsession with tracking the DOINGS each day.  Though they are things that I know make for … a better day and a better me – I can get depressed by the LACK of doings.  Like… no yoga in eons and my poor neglected guitar.

On my travels, last month, I got to spend some time with the fabulous Lady K and she asked me if the tracking was helping me.  I said I thought it was.  She asked me “how?” and I said the main thing seemed to be that… adding it all up at the end of that first year helped me to honestly see that I ACTUALLY DID STUFF.  So often I feel that weird sense of… nothing happening.  The hours and hours and hours spent writing seem to melt away when at the end of the year there isn’t some big list of “things published” or even submitted.

Novel writing is … hard.  For me, anyhow.  It is hard and a tad lonely and it takes me… hours and hours and hours.  Years.

It was nice to see that I DID work.

And… hell… of course I work.  I work every flippin’ day.  But if I’m not tracking it somehow… giving myself a little star for getting my ass in the chair… I look backwards at the end of the month and think… “What the hell did you DO?”

I’ve been wondering if the problem might actually be with that looking back. But that’s a topic for another day.

And that said… I continue to track my Doings in my paper chickens. But I’m thinking that I might stop posting them here on the blog.

Do you think that posting them here is … silly? 

Let me know.  Leave a comment or drop a line.

I keep rethinking what I would like these posts to BE.

I want them to be…fun and perhaps informative.

I want doing them to help me as I find my way through this year – through the Work and through the personal aspects of learning more about the phases and energies of the moon and the Five Elements (Earth Air Fire Water and… Quintessence)

And I would like for them to be…  not TOO abjectly humiliating.

I originally began these check ins when I discovered Havi’s Friday Chickens over at The Fluent Self.  I think her idea of “covering the good and the hard in my week, visiting the non-preachy side of ritual and self-reflection.” is sound.  But I’m still seeking my own way to do it.

I liked the idea of doing them on Friday and thereby marking the transition between the “work week” and the “week end”. I am hoping that doing them on the quarters of the moon will help me mark these lunar transitions that are so much more… elusive… in this world ruled by the sun, the clock and the work week.

I came to appreciate Havi’s laying out of the “hard” and the “good” as a way to review the haps of the week and to increase my awareness of all the blessings in my life.  I want to continue this and see if I can also use this shaking out of the week to see different Elements at work in my life.

I’m thinking of incorporating the elements (and some correspondences) into the shaking out of the week.

I was looking to use the alchemical symbols for the elements but… being a tad technically challenged, I just couldn’t figure out an “easy” way to get them in here, so I’ve turned to the Greek alphabet instead.  Spent some time trying to find an example of Greek Letters used to represent the elements and was stumped… so I stared at them and decided on the following.  Then I put this in as a search and found a site to back me up (The Digital Rambler).  Who knows if it is “right” but… It works for me right now.

Here’s what I’ll be going with:

Θ (theta) earth – home – touch

Φ (phi) air – relationships – scent

Χ (chi) fire – work – hearing

Ξ (ksi) water – health – taste

Ψ (psi) quintessence – spirit – sight/vision

Now that I am doing the check ins in the rhythm of the phases of the moon – they will also each have their own… particular…focus.

Right now, I am feeling the following energies connected to the phases:

  • The New Moon is a time for dreaming and visioning. For setting intentions and goals for the month ahead.
  • The First Quarter marks the shift into ACTION – to move ahead on the intentions and visions.
  • The Full Moon marks the height of energy for the month – a time of great creativity and productiveness but it is also a time to take a pause and take stock of the strengths and the flaws of intentions set at the New Moon.  A time to correct our course, and to let go of things that are no longer needed or that are blocking our motion forward.
  • The Last Quarter marks the time of rest and reflection.  We can still gently correct our trajectory for the month, but we also begin to turn our hearts to the intentions for next new moon.
  • The WAXING moon (New to Full) is a time of intuition, action and forward motion.
  • The WANING moon (Full to Dark) is a time to fullfill intentions, carry out plans (finish things up), examine results and release or revise.

I’m hoping the posts will reflect this.

So… Here we are… entering the First Quarter of Wolf Moon 2014.

January’s moon is also known as Quiet Moon, Snow Moon, Cold Moon, Chaste Moon, and Moon of Little Winter.  I like Wolf Moon this year because I keep hearing rumours of a black wolf roaming the neigbourhood.  I haven’t encountered her yet, but some nights I imagine her walking the alleys….

I spent some time in the Night Ravings book and came up with the following thoughts/correspondences for this moon ….

Θ – The earth is frozen and life moves underground.  Sluggish, but alive.  Take time to rest.

Φ – The air is crisp and clear.  biting and dangerous in the cold.  It brings clarity and brightness.  Watch for what comes on the breath.

Χ –  A time for passions and hungers to grow.  Simmer and stew.

Ξ – Full moon this month is in Cancer – a water sign.  A sign for home and hearth.  This feels like a good time to get my food issues in line – bigger breakfast and lunch, smaller dinner.  Balance.  Plant based… and so on.  After the holidays indulgences.

Ψ – Spirit/Quintessence – another moon of deep silences and snowy walks – go within.

These aren’t really… correspondences… I suppose but… it is something.  Something I came to on my own.

I’ve been finding references to the “Power Flow” of each moon.  Again, I choose to feel it for myself – here on this spot, in this body.

This feels, to me, like a time to settle in and continue with the work on Sanctuary. Time to begin the revisions.  And also – to continue to work on myself.  On deepening the Vipassana practice and seeing where it takes me.  With the cold – I also feel that this is a time to … conserve energy.  To protect and hold close the things that truly matter.

What ARE those things?  People, I would say.  People and my true work here.

For the New Moon – I noted my intentions in my Night Ravings book.

I will keep them private for now, as they were all quite… personal.

I also set some long term intentions to look back on in six months.

For this First Quarter – I intend to follow up those intentions with ACTIONS

Time to get to work!

Hopefully I will have much to report come the Full Moon.

I will also add back in the Hard and the Good next time.

But this is long enough so… I’ll stop here, for now.


This one’s a tad long.  Sorry about that.

How’s your year going so far?

I hope wonder visits you this quarter.

May you be happy, peaceful and free.

Thanks for stopping by.

Here’s some beauty and some jellyfish kisses from the live “jelly cam” at the Vancouver Aquarium.

Go easy ~p

4 Comments on “Shake and Bake 61 – The Stepping Out of Silence Edition

  1. Glad the stoicheia post was helpful! Personally, I’d change the attributions of the elements to the five senses around a bit, though. Going by Cornelius Agrippa’s Scale of Five (, the elements might better be corresponded in this manner:

    Fire: Sight
    Air: Hearing
    Water: Taste
    Earth: Touch
    Spirit: Smell

    So, really, it’s the spirit/fire/air ones that’d be switched up. Fire brings illumination, which is allows us to see. Air transmits sound waves, which allows us to hear. Spirit (Agrippa has “a mixed matter”, since it’s not really an element per se, but something beyond that) is the essence of something, which is hard to sense on its own; however, one of the most traditional ways to do this is through burnt offerings like meat or incense, the smell of which is what pleases the gods or passes into something to consecrate it. Thus, Spirit might better be associated with smelling than seeing.

    Just my $0.02, though; your mileage may vary, so if your system works, then all the better for you. I like your plans; very well-organized. Good luck!

    • Thanks so much, polyphanes. Your $0.02 is much valued and makes a heck of a lot of sense.
      I’m truly feeling my way through all of this – and seeking wisdom along the way.
      I’m glad I found your site.

  2. Pam! Thanks for the post. I don’t care how you do the ‘chickens’ just keep doing them please. I like coming here to read and get inspiration.

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Starting Over

Because there's never enough time to do it right the first time but there's always enough time to do it over

Ailish Sinclair

Stories and photos from Scotland

Cathy Standiford

Historical fiction, poetry, essays

Keeping the Dream

The Healing Journey and Covert Abuse

Starting Over

Because there's never enough time to do it right the first time but there's always enough time to do it over

Ailish Sinclair

Stories and photos from Scotland

Cathy Standiford

Historical fiction, poetry, essays

Keeping the Dream

The Healing Journey and Covert Abuse

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