Category Archives: Musings

Conscious Living Expo, Perth, Western Australia 2014

Well, here I am today at my first big Mind, Body, Spirit Festival ever. This one’s called “Conscious Living” and it’s held this year at Belmont Racecourse in Perth, Western Australia, from 16-19th October.

I don’t really know what to expect. I’m hoping to see stalls selling crystals and Tarot/Oracle cards, as well as clairvoyants and psychics of all kinds giving readings. Those are what I’m going to the Expo for. I doubt I’ll be able to afford a reading of any kind, as their prices tend to start from $50 for a half-hour reading. But I want to see what’s there, and if there’s any unusual type of readings on offer, e.g Lenormand cards. And if there’s any Oracle card decks for sale there that I have yet to add to my growing collection AHEM. Or books, one must absolutely have books, of course!

The main attraction, however, is Braco from Croatia, who apparently has a soothing and healing power of people, just by using his loving gaze. For more information about Braco, read here. Here is a photo of Braco in action, taken from his webpage.

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(I missed out on the Early Bird special which included a “gazing session” with Braco, so if I really want to go see him, I’ll have to pay extra for it, if it’s not booked out already). For those who are already familiar with Braco’s Gazing, it’s his birthday on 23rd November, and he’s offering free Live Streaming sessions here.

The website for the Expo http://www.consciouslivingacademy.com/demo/index.php/visitor-information has a downloadable PDF document showing who some of the exhibitors are, as well as a floor plan. I’ve printed that out to help me get around.

Here’s the PDF document, if you’re interested:

http://www.consciouslivingacademy.com/demo/images/PDFs/CLE-Perth-2014-print-standard.pdf

So, for today, it will be just a quick snapshot of what’s happening at the Expo, then if I find anything else that’s of interest, I may expand on it in a further post. Meanwhile, enjoy the pics! :-)

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Forget the Man Shed, I want a Woman Shed!

My studio at home is shared with a host of baby Japanese Quails during the summer months, and for the rest of the time with any old thing that happens to end up in our spare room. Luckily, as a mobile photography artist my smartphone is my workspace, and I only need a physical space for when I do actual printing. When that is required, I simply lay down sheets of butcher paper on the floor, which I can whisk away again at a moment’s notice.

Having said that, our garden is big enough for a shed/caravan, so here are 10 of my favourites. I would love to have 1 to call my Studio, please!

(Source: Pinterest)

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Last, but not least, this one! :)
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Valuable Lessons

Here is an exercise in stringing together readymade Quotes found on Google Images, with my own personal story intertwined. I hope that those who read this can take away some valuable lessons about Life, particularly with regards to relationships.

I find expressing myself this way very cathartic. Exorcising my inner demons, or perhaps trying to make sense of all that’s happened to me.

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And even worse is to Continue to lie, cheat and screw with people’s feelings and emotions, after you’ve been caught. Once may be an accident, twice perhaps a coincidence, but to continue doing so is a sign of purpose and intent. Definitely not a mistake, despite what the cheater may claim.

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Perhaps you feel the need to cheat because you found someone who has an Ego problem like yourself. And you both feed each other’s Egos and make each other feel extra special? And then, after “It’s over”, why do you still think you can still be friends with Her? And what makes you believe that your spouse is OK with That? You don’t get to be friends, I’m afraid.

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Some might argue that online affairs are not “real” affairs. I call BS on that; an emotional affair, where one betrays their partner/spouse by phone, texting, sexting, email, Skype, Line, even LinkedIn, Soundcloud and various other social media sites, is still an affair. If your mind has strayed past your marital vows and you are exchanging intimate thoughts online with someone outside your marriage, that is being unfaithful. Physical contact does not have to occur before it becomes an affair.

So, if your partner or spouse starts arguing that online affairs “do not count”, beat them over the head with a frying pan ask them if all their romantic emails, phone calls and texts to You “don’t count” either.

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Like the story of the boy that cried wolf, once you find out that your loved one has lied to you, you can never be sure about anything else they say. They may well be telling the truth about some things, but how can you be sure? Even when they profess to love only you, could that be a lie too?

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If a relationship is based on trust and love, there would never be a need to lie. It’s therefore very hurtful to find out that you weren’t respected enough to deserve the truth.

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If you cared at all, you would not have even thought about cheating. Flirting with someone else while in a committed relationship is cheating. No excuses. “It only happened once” doesn’t wash, either.

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Sometimes it’s boredom that starts an affair. Sometimes it’s convenience – the spouse may be asleep and the cheater is online, and starts chatting to someone else. As they get more comfortable with each other, they start playing out their sexual fantasies, trying out new virtual experiences, even exchanging intimate selfies. The cheaters may even go so far as to leave their respective partners, or at the very least plan to do so.

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The cheater, when first confronted, will deny that he/she has cheated. Their excuses will run the gamut from “I didn’t start it”, “I can’t talk to you, but She’s a really good listener”, “It’s Your fault, you’re so cold”, “I’m afraid of you”, “You’re crazy, there’s nothing going on between us”, “We’re just friends”, “Have you been spying on me?”, “I don’t know what you’re talking about”, “You’re crazy”, “It’s just harmless flirting”, “You’re making a mountain out of a molehill”, to “It’s You who’s cheating on me”. Deny, deny, deny. Anything but the admission of guilt.

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I keep saying this to my husband. But I don’t think he’s even listening. Never did, probably never will.

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If you cheat, the consequences will always catch up with you. If he can cheat on his wife, and you are the Other Woman, rest assured that he will cheat on You too. Your time will come, alright. What makes you think you’re special? What have you got that will make him stop cheating?

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Unfortunately, some men don’t think with the head on their shoulders. So this may not even come into the equation.

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Listen up, guys! If a woman asks you a question, chances are she already knows the real answer. She’s just trying to catch you out. Why do you keep falling for this trick? Just always be honest and tell the truth, that way you’ll never have to worry about being caught out.

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Yup. I can’t believe how men don’t learn this lesson? Why do they have to fabricate a tangled web of lies, when they know they’ll only end up caught in that self-same web, like flies? Seriously, why??

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Not sure if my own personal circumstances can be categorised so easily. How about “One of us is still in denial, the other one is fed up of being continuously lied to”? Where does that road lead?

Maybe it’s a road I have to walk alone. It is what it is. Come what may…

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Living with Hope

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image(Joyful Nest by Lisa Kaus. Wooden collage sculpture licensed and produced by Demdaco)

I saw this in a shop just the other day and fell for it hard. I won’t say I fell in Love with it. Love is a word my errant husband has been screwing up for me, and using on another this past year. I don’t know what Love is these days, because if it’s my husband’s definition of it, it’s just not right, morally and spiritually. How can you love someone and have an online emotional affair with another? And with a mutual Facebook “friend”, for that matter?

Johnny Depp‘s quote has been widely copied and quoted on Facebook and on the internet. It pretty much sums up my feelings about my own situation. It might strike a chord in many of you too, dear friends.

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Oh, this is going to make my husband so mad. Mad enough to go incommunicado for days on end. Mad enough that he will say I’m digging up skeletons…well, matey, I’m not, you’re still dancing with that old skeleton, aren’t you? Her grave is still open, and I’m Hoping that you’ll have the sense to put her in it, shovel dirt over it, stamp on it, face the music and move forward. I don’t care if You’re upset by my exposé, you Should be upset. I don’t care if your friends or family find out, they Should know you’re not who you pretend to be. You’ve pulled the wool over people’s eyes for far too long now.

The Snake did not tempt Eve in the Garden of Eden this time. It tempted Adam, and boy, was he ever so keen! He still wears that same Snake around his neck, like a proud trophy. Time to put it down, boy, and walk away!

As for me, these days, I live with Hope. Hope never lets me down, as she symbolises what could be, potential, something to work towards, an ideal, infinite possibilities. I just have to believe. Hope won’t screw around with my feelings or with my head. Hope is kind and gentle. Hope will show me the way to Love again, but not the pathetic kind of Love I’ve had, no, it has to be True Love or bust. So, if the Universe is listening, I’m open. Bring it on!!

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You Don’t Get To Be Friends

After the Storm clouds have cleared
When things have settled down
And we’re on speaking terms again
And the emotional scars are healing
You say you still want to be friends

We’re not talking about Us
We’re still talking about Her
You hurt Me, you broke My heart
Yet you still want to be friends with Her
Is She more precious than Me?

You don’t come out and say it
But it is implied
She is like a drug and you an addict
You will never be able to leave her
She is in your system, you let her in

Subterfuge, furtiveness, secrecy
Computers locked by passwords
The sudden pressing of the Exit button
When I enter your room
These signs do not indicate Closure

With social media
There is no Perfect Closure
Where a hundred doors shut
A thousand others remain open
So I know you are keeping Her secret

You’re having your cake
And eating it too
Keeping ties with Her
And pretending you’re not
And reassuring me you’re mine again

Perhaps you were never really mine
If faced with two loves
And you married the first
But carried on with the second
Isn’t that disrespecting us both?

You don’t get to be friends with Her
If you really want to heal the hurt.
Unless you seal the rift
Psychically She will photobomb us
There will always be 3 in this picture

It’s not for me to take action
But it is for me to say
Look here, you need to decide
You need to free us all
From this eternal triangle

So Choose Wisely

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(7 The Snake card, from The Gilded Reverie Lenormand by Ciro Marchetti. This card symbolises The Other Woman, a sly, deceptive person, temptation, lust, seduction, a literal “snake in the grass”).

By:
AlyZen Moonshadow

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This Is Me

I just Woke Up
I haven’t changed
I might be a bit more vocal
I may express my views more forcibly
I may go out on a limb
I help the homeless
I like giving things away
I like helping my neighbours
I Abandon Art in public places
I believe in telling the Truth
I believe in Honesty and Trust
I still believe in Love, despite everything
I call Bullshit when I see it
I can see a lie from a mile away
I don’t hold back on my punches
I may not agree with you always, but
I don’t backstab you
I don’t attack you personally
I only wish for you to open your eyes
I am merely the messenger
I will be your friend if you want me
I may get “unfriended” by you if not
I don’t mind
I have no agenda
I have no manifesto
I like coffee and doughnuts
I like tea too
I am easily pleased!
I should eat more healthily
I should exercise more
I like to swim and cycle
I learnt to dive from my 11-year-old son
I buy too many Oracle cards
I can say the same about Tarot cards
I am learning to read Lenormand cards
I am Spiritual
I mind my own business
I am Creative
I am Artistic
I am a Mother
I have a First Class Degree in Music
I have an IQ of 160
I have worked in Government
I have worked in banks
I dislike materialism and consumerism
I dislike bureaucracy
I loathe greed and selfishness
I love all Animals
I collect teacups
I love Alice in Wonderland
I buy a lot of books
I love going to the cinema
I follow the Religion of Kindness
I respect what You believe
I am against war and terrorism
I am for decriminalising cannabis
I am for action against climate change
I support the LGBT Community
I believe We Are Not Alone
I believe in speaking out
I haven’t changed
I just woke up
I Am

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The Price of Affluenza

My local thrift stores often have book gems that I snap up immediately. One such book was Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth”, highly recommended reading.

I love my serendipitous trips to these thrift stores. I like to think of it as the Universe providing knowledge and information for me in a timely manner.

Another book surfaced last week, “Affluenza” by Clive Hamilton and Richard Denniss. I’ve only just begun to delve into this book, and already something has jumped out at me.

Here is an excerpt from the book:

“Nineteenth century economists predicted that the abundance made possible by technological advance and the modern organisation of work would result in the emergence of “post-materialist” humans – people existing on a higher plane, where their cultural, intellectual and spiritual powers are refined. In such a world the importance of economic considerations would naturally diminish. The 1960s and 1970s saw a flood of literature predicting a future in which technological progress would allow for us to work only a few hours a week and our main problem would be how best to enjoy our leisure. Futurists saw a future transformed by the fruits of sustaimed growth – a society in which humankind, freed of the chore of making a living, would devote itself to activities that are truly fulfilling. But, instead of witnessing the end of economics, we live in a time when economics and its concerns are more dominant than ever before. Instead of our growing wealth freeing us of our materialist preoccupations, it seems to have had the opposite effect. People in affluent countries are now even more obsessed with money and material acquisition, and the richer they are the more this seems to be the case”.

This book was written in 2005, even before the iPhone was a twinkle in Steve Jobs’ eye. And yet how relevant and accurate the statement above is today.

It seems to be the case of “The more we have, the more we want”. Today’s generation seems unable to appreciate what they already have, they always want the latest, the most expensive, the best. And they generally put themselves out to get it at all cost. Then they sit back and enjoy their latest toy…Until the next one comes along less than a year later. Then it’s a mad scramble all over again, to get THE latest toy.

When will it stop? In case the above was too lengthy to visualise, here is a simple analogy:

A city starts out as a village, which becomes a town, that grows and grows as it attracts more and more industry and with it, people. Its lanes soon turn into roads. Roads turn into highways. As more and more people drive cars, these highways get congested. So the city council decree that they need to widen the highways, from 4 lanes to 8. They say that will ease the congestion and make driving more pleasant and convenient. And so 4 lane highways become 8 lane superhighways. But what do you think happens next? Yes, now there are even More cars on the road, more people buying cars and driving, and the congestion builds up again.

“Build it, and they will come”…that saying has never been truer when reflected on today’s society. Perhaps the economists of the 19th century were correct in theory, apart for one oversight: that humans are not mature enough to make that ideal scenario a reality. We are still very much like children, squealing with delight at the latest shiny gadget and toy, we simply Have to have it, and because we’ve indulged, we’ve fed the industry that creates such shiny gadgets and toys, so they in turn create more and more for us. Then, when we find our money depleted, we shrug and simply find ways to get more money. To buy more stuff. And so it goes on.

When will we grow up? “Poor” countries don’t suffer as much from Affluenza as “Developed” countries. They literally can’t afford to be. They’re more concerned with putting food on the table for their families, staving off starvation, staying alive when wars break out. Affluenza is a disease of the haves, the wannabe-haves and the desperate have-nots.

Perhaps it’s time to step off the treadmill.
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If You Make A Mistake…

…I hope you are big enough to admit it.
There’s nothing our Ego dislikes more than to be told it is wrong, or to be challenged. It will do all it can to convince us that it is right and the other person, or even the World, is wrong, and it will defend itself at all costs, even when deep down inside, you know that is the wrong course of action. For this very reason we have to try to put aside our Egos, in order to move forward. Otherwise, the cycle repeats simply itself and you’re stuck like the proverbial hamster in the wheel.

If this sad world of ours is to have a chance at saving itself, a good place to start would be for each of us to have the sense to admit our faults, learn and move on.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m rather embarrassed at how materialistic I used to be in my “old” life. I put too much emphasis on material things, and not enough on the things that truly mattered, that of trying to make the world a better place by doing my part. I thought if I could get enough savings in the bank, then I could afford to take up worthy causes and help my fellow men and women. It never occurred to me back then, that that kind of mentality was exactly like the attitude that declared that “We’ll have children when we can afford it”. Well, guess what, if you waited for that day to arrive, you’ll never have children. Ditto helping the world. You will never have enough in the bank to start saving the world; it’s got to start NOW.

These days, I look around me and I cringe at all the people going round with trolleys laden with stuff that’s not really necessary. I know some people who spend all year buying Christmas presents for their relatives. I pass by a jewellery shop with a woman announcing extra special deals on gold, silver and diamonds – why?? You won’t die without those! TV ads are even worse – who needs an indoor abdominal exerciser for 5 instalments of $49.99, when you have the floor and ab crunches you can do for Free? Or a free mobile phone every year, when your phone can last you another 5 years perfectly well? Who really needs to change their car every single year? Seriously??!

My own vice was magazine subscriptions. I especially love Elle Decoration and Vogue Interiors, and last year I was engrossed with the idea of becoming a textile or surface pattern designer. So I subscribed to these magazines…which weren’t cheap, as they came from the UK. I also invested in Adobe Creative Cloud and a dozen books on textile designing. I admit I did enjoy the whole learning process, but ultimately the whole exercise, with a little more thought, could have been done for free through online courses or videos, instead of the thousands of dollars I spent on buying stuff. So yeah, silly me (face palm roll eyes).

What makes me sad is that many people don’t even pause in their daily stride to consider these things. They think it’s normal, because it’s what everyone else is doing. Sheep following sheep. Sheepwalking, I call it. Or, worse still, they think that to even contemplate doing something different from the norm is Wrong. That You’re wrong for wanting to rock the boat or change the status quo. And why? As I’ve already outlined above, because they are coming from the place of their Ego, which prevents them from admitting that there’s anything wrong with the picture.

Here are my favourite quotes about making mistakes, taken from my favourite source, Google Images. Each individual image remains the copyright of their creators, naturally.

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So, dear friends, take a good look around you. Can you see where the human race has gone wrong? Are you able to see your own involvement in it? Are you helping perpetuate the Lie? Are you willing to admit your own mistakes in life and move forward?

Or, do you believe the world is perfectly fine as it is, and that nothing needs changing? That the people who tell you about these things are the crazy ones?

YOU decide.

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Step Outside Your Comfort Zone

It is human nature to not welcome Change. We all want to continue living in our cosy little bubble, doing the things we are accustomed to doing and getting the same results…and yet in every one of us there is a niggling seed of doubt which asks this question:

THERE MUST BE MORE TO THIS LIFE. THERE MUST BE SOMETHING BIGGER AND BETTER, WHAT AM I MISSING? WHY HAVE I NOT FOUND IT?

Well, if you do what you always did, you will get what you always got. Only a Fool believes in repeating the same action over and over again, expecting a different result. So, don’t be that Fool. Step outside your Comfort Zone and make that evolutionary leap forward. Yes, it feels uncomfortable, strange even, you’re out of your depth, treading water infested by unknown dangers beneath it, but swim you must, for if you simply stay where you are, you will surely drown.

On a personal level, 2014 has been a tumultous year for me. For a while I struggled to find my feet, for a while I was disheartened as time after time I got knocked back in the job stakes. I was even made to feel that because I had no income I was worth less. Then I had a sudden epiphany one day, and realised that what was happening was simply the end of a Dream that I’d been in for many years. I’d actually started my spiritual awakening years ago, without even realising that’s what it was. Then the toll of daily life, work, responsibility and family commitments took over. Now I realise that That was the Dream, not the Reality. The Reality is Now, and I feel my real work has only just begun. It’s been a hard Dream to shake, it felt so comfortable and reassuring while I was in it. Everyone I knew was living in the same Dream.

But now Reality is exciting, unknown, mysterious and full of possibilities and potential. It is also exhilaratingly terrifying. You know the saying “Leap, and the Net will appear?” Well, I’d like to add to it: “And if the Net doesn’t appear, then you damn well better learn to fly, fast!”

I’ve collated some quotes from Google Images to show you what I mean:

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Today’s words to ponder are : Comfort Zone, Change, Step Out Of Your Box, Grow.

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What will You do…

What a wicked world we live in! Apathy, greed, avarice, selfishness, egoism, laziness, materialism, the list goes on and on. We as a human race appear to have lost our way, in the Pursuit of  Happiness. Know though, that Happiness cannot be bought by Money. There is no such thing as the Pursuit of Happiness, just the Pursuit of Money. Money can buy you Things, that is true, but Things don’t make you happy. Only You can make you happy, so choose to be happy no matter what, and you will have Happiness. Just look at the swamis and sidhus in India, or any of the gnostics and ascetics around the world – they live very simply, but they are happy.

I have no lessons to teach. I have no manifesto. I’m about as intuitive as a lamp post. No, that’s not right…the lamp post is more intuitive than me. I feel awkward and inadequate when in a crowd of people and everyone seems so clever. I’m just a simple person who has been blessed recently with a clarity of vision. I have had my eyes opened to where our world is heading, and sadly it is heading towards destruction and not salvation. We need to wake up now and take up just causes, there are so many good causes to choose. Pick one or two and devote your attention and time towards it. We are caretakers of the Earth, not its owners, so we need to take care of it, instead of plundering its resources for our own selfish gains. Now is the time to work together, not against each other.

Just the other day, I posted up these 2 photos on my Facebook Wall. And boy did that incite a great debate or what! I won’t go into too much detail, just have a look at these 2 photos and think about it.

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In one photo, people are queuing up for the bare neccessities of life. In the other, they are queuing up for something they don’t NEED but WANT. One shows people sacrificing their time for the benefit of others. The other shows selfish people. One is of a breadline. The other is the queue to buy the new iPhone 6.

The backlash from this simple comparison caused a “friend” to unfriend me on Facebook. She felt I was being anti-Apple, that I was offending her by “shaming people into becoming better”. Not at all, what I was objecting to was the attitude of people today, I was simply pointing out where their priorities were skewed, and that people need to wake up and do something to turn the tide. If that had been a photo of people queuing up for the Samsung Galaxy Note 4, the latest PlayStation, XBox, etc, I would have still written about it the same way. Don’t get me wrong, I like nice things too, I’m only human. But I wouldn’t sacrifice a month’s food for my family, just to feed my own Ego.

Ask yourself this question: Does our constant lust for consumables advance our society towards the greater good? If yes, how? If not, what will You do about it?

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