Now that my school finals are done for the semester, I have a little free time to do things like take out the trash, call my friends, and post to my blogs. YAY!!!! These are all things that desperately need to be done. And, truth be told, I had intended to do these things on Thursday... What happened to Thursday? Well... My time was taken over by a series of important and hilarious learning experiences. Which now comprise the basis for this post. Isn't it great how interconnected everything is?
On Thursday, I set out with the goal of stopping on the East Strip (aka Hawthorne Street) to pick up some more obsidian beads. I ended up getting a short reiki-like calming/grounding session through the use of my palm chakras in a Samurai Sword and Cutlery shop. I went in thinking I'd find a nice kitchen boutique (the storefront doesn't really advertise the Samurai part of the deal). The young man behind the counter had a martial arts hair style where all but the crown of his head was shaved bald. At the crown, he had a very long ponytail of hair. He was showing the other store occupant how to play a bamboo flute, which he made himself.
Just looking into this man's eyes, you could see that he is a fire personality. That he uses martial arts to channel and control that fire. It's been a long time since I met a guy my age with that level of self-awareness. I must be running in the wrong circles... Anyway, we got to talking, and I learned that he's survived a car fire in which he was both injured and burned quite badly. The fire is definitely a part of him now. And the big chunk that is missing from his arm is a testament to his strength of character. The fact that he uses that hand as he does his uninjured one is an attribute to his healing abilities.
Since I've also been through my share of traumas, the conversation was personal, and for me became unsettling. To help me re-ground, the young man performed a calming/grounding for me through my hand chakras. This is something similar to other energy work that has been done for me in the past-- but always it was the energy of water that was used to calm, to sooth, to heal. This man used his fire. It was amazing to me that fire could be grounding, could sooth. But it did. We changed the topic after this, and I find that I've made a friend where I least expected it. And I have a new and growing perspective on the Southern Elemental-- on Fire.
I did also make it to the bead store, where they had some rainbow obsidian, and a lot of onxy, and only one black obsidian option. I found-- yet again-- that when I stop to tune in to my intuition, I know the rainbow and the onyx were not what I'd come for. I was looking for a stone to help me stay grounded and connected. To open my throat chakra and help me connect mind, heart, and voice. I have a piece of black obsidian that does this for me in my sacred circles, and had just made a pendant for the same purpose out of sodalite, clear quartz, and a small snowflake obsidian bead from my stores. This combination of awarenesses prompted me to do a little research when I got home.
In my books, I found that obsidian is a VERY strong stone for grounding/opening and awareness-building. What's more, it is a truth stone, connected to both fire and water. Since obsidian is stone heated to molten glass in the center of the earth, which runs in rivers out of volcanoes and then re-hardens into rock again.... (this is my interpretation, please use a reliable scholarly resource for any specific definitions of how obsidian is formed!)... so it is both a liquid and a solid. It is born of fire.
Two lessons in one day-- Thursday-- focusing on the calming and grounding/centering properties of fire. I think I'll devote a meditation to this some time soon. There is always more to learn. And, before I post this, I'm going to look up the lunar aspects of Thursdays. Just for fun.
What books was I using for my informal research? Well, a strange variety, really:
A Handbook of Chakra Healing by Kalashatra Govinda (English Translation) ISBN: 1-56852-472-2
The Crystal Bible by Judy Hall ISBN: 1-58297-240-0
Green Witchcraft III, the manual by Ann Moura ISBN: 1-56718-688-2
Anything by Ellen Dugan (I enjoy her writing style, and she often includes useful associations of color, lunar phase, etc-- but she's definitely a "personal taste" author, and you take what you think you can use --from her personal experiences and suggestions-- into your own practice.)