Smoke Before Fire

It guided me and shone
Surer than noonday sunlight over me,
And lead me to the one
Whom only I could see
Deep in a place where only we could be.

O guiding dark of night!
O dark of night more darling than the dawn!
O night that can unite
A lover and loved one,
A lover and loved one moved in unison”

– by Saint John of the Cross, from “The Dark Night of the Soul”

 

When all is empty and there seems like nothing left to draw strength from, there are two options: we can go further into the Abyss and risk becoming lost, or cultivate the small spark inside ourselves to light the way out. We can do this through prayer…and when it becomes bright we begin to feel good about ourselves, some hope for the future and uplifted. We become enveloped in the fiery love of Hekate: something not given lightly. The point of power is the solar chakra, below the sternum and above the navel; manipura ‘city of gems’ for it is here that we see the ‘diamond in the ruff’, the potentiality of what we can manifest. She dances in circles, with Her torches spread out creating a whirlwind of fire that is golden. The sparks travel like electricity throughout the rest of the etheric body, jump starting our consciousness through meditation on Hekate Sol (soul), a black-horned Goddess with golden hair shining like a brilliant sun. Author Jade Sol Luna likens this energy to Hekate Scorpio, “the fiery Goddess of beauty and delight”. She is reminds us that there is bliss on the path to freedom, it is not all the desert of illusion, to not ignore the beautiful moments or take for granted the miracle of ourselves.

“The spiritual path is not just about renunciation, austerity, detachment, denial, death or deprivation. It is about seeking a higher beauty and delight than what can be found in the forms, objects, events and experiences of the outer world. This quest for inner delight leads us to Hecate Scorpio” (Luna, p77-78).

I had been an almost pack a day addict for 15 years. It was a big part of my personality; my smoking style has been commented on in the past, as an ‘aggressive smoker’ leaving the butts annihilated by my rough handling. In my earlier Gothic days of youth I smoked Indian cloves, southeast Asian bidis, sometimes placing them in my ultra long black holder; but only when I was wearing my vintage 30’s black velvet coat to match. I was very stylish with my multi-colored Fantasias highlighted by the long finger nails I kept, often decorated with multiple rings at the end of every finger. I loved having the excuse to take a break from homework, dishes, LIFE… go outside, alone and contemplate the world as I sucked on my stogie. I didn’t care that my fingers and clothes smelled, that the toxins were depleting my body of much needed oxygen; I never gained too much weight either, fluctuating in a 15 pound medium over the course of 10 years. I knew I would have to quit someday, it wasn’t until I found out I was pregnant when I firmly decided to quit. I could do it for the child, but not myself.

And now 30 pounds heavier and exhausted from my toddler, it has been 4 and a half years since I had a cigarette. I have even tried to have another since then; it tasted horrible and didn’t satisfy in the least. My body has changed in some positive ways though: food tastes better than ever (part of the weight gain I bet), the world has more scents as well, sometimes not so good but at least I am using my nose better. I also noticed I no longer wear rings or keep my nails perfectly manicured, but mainly because they are always in dishwater, playdough, meatloaf, or some other mess having to do with being a mother. On the rare occasion when I DO want to take a break, I still go outside but instead of suffocating my lungs, I fill them with the golden fire of Hekate’s breath… building power within myself to manifest wherever the energy leads itself to. Sometimes when it all seems like too much, She reminds me to just breathe and let the light in.

 

Luna, Jade Sol. Hecate 2: The Awakening of Hydra. India, U.S.A.: Tara International/JSL Press. 2009.

“Hecate II: The Awakening of Hydra” on Amazon

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