In the storm of the world, in the midst of a world that is quieter (sometimes) and lonely (sometimes), I turn to my feelings.
This was not always the case. I was told by my mom when I was in my turbulent twenties that I didn’t need to talk about all of my feelings. That doing so would complicate my life, that it would drive people away from me.
From that, I understood that being stoic was the goal. Being easy on others was the point.
And in doing so, I left my feelings in the far away space of my self. I forgot about them. I forgot how to name them and how to, well, feel them.
But feelings and emotions are gifts.
Expressions of being human in hardness. Being fragile in all the things that happen. A willingness to admit impact. Both good and not-so-good.
When my magick feels dim, when my energy is scattered, I first ask: how do I feel right now?
The Dance of Feelings and Emotions
For me, that required education first. After all, with all of the muscles of holding back feelings tense and unsure, I needed to learn what feelings were. How to name them in order to claim them.
And the difference between emotions and feelings. I’d always thought these to be interchangeable, but they’re not. Feelings are what we feel — hunger, pain, tiredness — in the body. Emotions are what we express and experience based on our experiences.
So, I might be tired and a related emotion might be sadness because I interpret that to be how I feel when I am sad.
Emotions are the loneliness I feel when I am separate from beloveds and my body may ache or tense. Emotions are also the weight and the story I create based on what I know and what I think I know about something happening.
Signposts. Signals. Signs. Omens.
I don’t need to know this in my brain, but I do want to find this in my body. I want to listen to what my body says and ask it what it needs more than what it believes.
What do you need sweet body of mine?
When you are tired and sore, what can I do?
And since I am the WORST at knowing what I need, this is not a practice that comes naturally. But the practice is one that will feed me. It will show me the way when I am lost.
Naming and Knowing Feelings
In the morning, before I get out of bed, I will do a meditation practice. It allows my body to settle and come into focus with whatever the meditation is. I never know what I’m going to do (thank goodness for apps) and yet it’s often what I need that day. Or find I need. Or will need soon.
For example, the other day was about how self-improvement is a joke. Really. And I had a moment of tension in my body before it began. I mean, I want to improve myself. I want to get better at who I am.
But the emotion that I’m creating in that moment is complex and based off the stories I tell about that feeling. If I stop improving, I will not be better than I am.
Or…maybe it’s not just about going somewhere else to be a vision of myself that I think is the point of it all. Maybe it’s about being with this wondrous, alive body right now. Perfect as it is. A mystery. A revelation at times.
Just as I am.
I explore my body and the way it arrives in that moment after meditation. What feels good? What feels out of balance? And before I start to create stories of why I’m feeling that way, I move right into: what do you need today?
It’s such a simple question on the surface. And also the most nourishing magick I can do.
Naming what I feel and then moving to what I need.
A spell. A prayer. An offering of myself to myself. Everyday.
Today, I woke up, meditated, and then moved into the scan of my body. My heart felt tense and sore from the week/year/lifetime. I asked the feelings what I needed.
I decided that offering myself space looked like removing a few things that I had deemed important to accomplish today. I just didn’t do them. I let myself have space.
And then the universe or godds or whomever was also listening and watching offered me more space. A call I didn’t want to do was cancelled. Space.
Just for today or tomorrow or someday soon, I invite you to ask your body what it feels and what it needs.
Allow its wisdom and its wonder to hold you and nourish you.
And if you’re looking for some community in the holding of your heart, I’m offering a course with the magick of Aphrodite. Click below.