Once upon a time a Goddess set me ablaze. She spoke my name and touched my third eye. Then my body was consumed by flames. I went up like a matchstick. The flames were bright, red, and golden, like the colors of my hair. Somewhere between burning up and watching the flames dance over me, I imagined how beautiful and terrifying I must look from the outside.
Although the conflagration was all consuming, there was a coldness. No, not a coldness exactly, a cooling that was just underneath the burning. The cells of my body were alight with a power I didn’t understand and, still to this day barely comprehend. She gave me a clue to what this fiery ordeal meant, but Her words were confusing and I was sent on a spiraling, whirling, frustrating journey of self-discovery and re-discovery that would take, is taking years to unfold. Why would a Godd whisper words of power to me if I wasn’t supposed to know to uncover their hidden meaning?
I sat with an elder from the tradition I was practicing when this event occurred and asked what this Goddess’s words meant. Sharing what I took the meaning might be, I painstakingly recounted every detail I could remember, assuming that nothing was minor or unimportant. My Elder quickly responded that I was not on the right track with my assumptions and they implored me to keep looking. Years went by and I was still clinging to this memory. Feeling this internal burning, with no answers to quench the fire, and no clarity on why I burned so deeply. Confused and sometimes angry, both at my Elder for her lack of help and with the Goddess for opening this unexpected floodgate, I set it aside, as best as I could. I had been forever changed but I didn’t know how and I didn’t know why and I didn’t understand.
The Godds don’t always give me clear answers or direct instructions. The certainty of blind fanaticism has it’s appeal on some days, I suppose but much like the Good Witch in “The Wizard of Oz”, I find that the Godds often just point to the road I should travel along and wish me well. Rarely do they explain that I already possess the answer or I already hold the tool I need. So much trouble and heartache could have been avoided for dear Dorothy Gale, if only the Good Witch had said, “Well love, click those shoes together and they will take you home”. But she didn’t.
The answers to our quests and our questions are often annoyingly simple and obvious and right in front of us. However, we might not be fully ready to comprehend their depth, energy, or meaning. And so, the winding path through the dangerous woods must be followed. The allies must be gathered along the way. Liars and cheats must be exposed, flying monkeys must be dealt with repeatedly, and our shadows must be faced. it seems only then that will we be ready.
My experience with Her is still a mystery. I understand more now because I have walked further down the path. I understand more because I continue to listen to Her, to connect with Her, to take Her queues. Slowly, ever so slowing, hints become clues and clues become patterns. Meaning is revealed as my capacity for understanding deepens. Here the magic in my life resides.