Full Moon Rituals and #Tanka #WednesdayThoughts #WWWBlogs

The moon shone last night

Like a beacon in the sky,

I watched, mesmerised,

As she glided serenely,

Granting my dreams and  wishes.

I took these photos last night, from the window of my study, as I was editing one of my almost finished novels. It’s not full yet, the Harvest Moon will be tomorrow, 1st of October, but it was so mesmerising that I started on my monthly full moon ritual, which I’d like to share with you today.

Firstly, I’d like to say that although I haven’t copied it from anyone, I can’t say I’ve invented a ritual to the full moon, which is something that has been happening, in one way or another, probably since the first human looked up and saw this beautiful planet (I know some experts say it isn’t a planet, but others do, and I’m not going to get into a semantic or scientific argument here, I’ll just go ahead and call it a planet, because I want to endow it with all the majesty it deserves).

I usually feel energised and optimistic around a full moon, especially as I’m able to watch it shrink and grow every night, as I live in the south of Spain, where the sky is often clear. So, I seize this welcome enthusiasm to boost my creativity and I also reflect on the past month and plan my goals for the month ahead.

I’m going to share my own 3-step ritual, which I’ve developed over some years. It works for me, and maybe it will work for you, as it is, or with some adaptations to your lifestyle and preferences.

I use the words goals and wishes interchangeably, depending on my mood, but I think we’re all aware that a wish is a goal without a plan and a wish really needs to have a plan to happen.

I open a notebook I keep for this sole purpose and follow this simple but empowering process.

Step one: Major Goals / Wishes

I think carefully about what I want to accomplish in the coming months and write down three goals or wishes with three main words only (articles, prepositions etc. don’t count).

It’s really important to be specific and clear. This step usually takes the longest because often we’re not really sure of what it is we want exactly, and that may be why we never achieve it!

Here are three examples:

  • Balance Mind and Body
  • Finsh my Ongoing novels
  • Improve my relationship with my sister

This first step is the most general, but it’s important think carefully about what you want to achieve and be specific.

Step Two

Take each goal and set three sub goals. That means three things you must do to achieve the major goal.

So for example for goal number 1: Balance Mind and Body, your three sub-goals might be:

  • Take a 30 minute walk
  • Eat a healthy diet, and
  • Challenge your mind to grow

Step Three

The next step is to take each sub goal and write three more sub goals for each one.

So the whole thing would look like this:

1.     Balance Mind and Body

1.1 Take a 30 minute walk 1.2 Eat a healthy Diet 1.3 Challenge your Mind to Grow
1.1.1 Buy suitable shoes and clothes

1.1.2 Set a time for walking

1.1.2 Prepare a playlist or audiobook

1.2.1 Find out about sensible diets

1.2.2 Buy specific book/s

1.2.3 Plan a weekly diet

 

1.3.1 Listen to a Ted Talk and comment

1.3.2 Read a self-help book

1.3.3 Learn a new language/hobby

2.     Finish my ongoing novel

2.1 Set a time to write 2.2 Activate my creativity 2.3 Read a variety of genres
2.1.1 Collect notes and outlines

2.1.2 Reread everything I’ve written

2.1.3 Plan my next steps

2.2.1 Start writing morning pages

2.2.2 Interview my characters about novel

2.2.3 Journal with questions before sleeping

2.3.1 Read similar books to my own

2.3.2 Read latest bestseller

2.3.3 Read a completely different genre

3.     Improve my relationship with my sister

3.1.Make Contact regularly 3.2 Set up a monthly meeting 

 

3.3 Understand my negative emotions

 

3.1.1 Send weekly text-message

3.1.2 Phone every 8-10 days

3.1.3. Remember significant dates

3.2.1 Invite her to a family lunch

3.2.2 Ask her to go shopping with you

3.2.3 Visit a common relative together

 

3.3.1 Investigate about sibling relationships

3.3.2 Write an imaginary dialogue with sister

3.3.3 Learn about meditation and relaxation

All in all you have 39 general and specific goals, which will help you achieve your dreams/wishes/goals.

I don’t usually prepare a chart like this one, I did that for your benefit, so it would look clearer, but I’m actually thinking of using it myself!

What I do is write each goal and sub goal on a new page and include notes as I revise, which I do regularly, including new ideas and acievements.

At least once a month when there is a new full moon, I revise my goals, reset or modify and do the same process all over again.

It does take time, I usually take a couple of evenings at least. You’ll find that most of the time is devoted to thinking and writing goals with clarity, there is a great power to writing it all down and holding yourself accountable for what you do to fulfill your dreams, because it’s not enough to just look at the moon and wish, you really have to do something about achieving it, too!

Finally, I’ve learnt never to be hard on myself, sometimes things don’t work out as planned, life happens, there are hold-ups and changes of plan, that’s why I revise and go ahead. Life is a journey, not a destination.

#MondayBlogs Permanent and Transient Art and Literature #Haiku

Folded_020/025 by Fernando M. Romero

Even lines, stable comfort,

ground and release me

into transient bliss.

****

Interdependence of Permanent and Transient aspects in art and literature

When I travel, I make a point of visiting art galleries and museums and I visit local art galleries regularly.

I love visual arts, and although I’m no expert, and my tastes are very eclectic, I have my preferences regarding what interests and inspires me and what illicits no response.

As a writer, linguist and teacher, I work mainly with words, not images, although I find images inspiring, but only if I can identify a narrative.

A picture must tell me a story or make a statement which is meaningful to me, in order to feel a connection.

This perceived story or message may or may not have been the artists’ intention, and yet once the work of art has left the artists’ hands, it becomes subject to the viewers’ reinterpretations.

Geométrico Trip South at Fundación de Artes Plásticas Rafael Botí, Cordoba, Spain.

 

I went to an art exhibition yesterday, which I enjoyed. I was also lucky enough to meet and speak briefly to two of the artists. I’d like to share with you my thoughts on permanent and transient aspects in visual arts and literature, which were inspired by the artists and their art.

Fernando M. Romero discussing his works in Cordoba 3rd February, 2018

 

The theme was ‘Geometrical Trip South’ by four Spanish artists.

I was especially impressed by the work of artist Fernando M. Romero, who was born in Cordoba, studied Fine Art at the University of Granada, and is currently working on his MA at The Royal College of Art, London. UK.

Fernando combines geometric shapes, associated with Cubism and the more abstract Tachisme, a style of painting adopted by some French artists from the 1940s, involving the use of dabs or splotches of colour.

Tachisme was a reaction to Cubism and is characterized by spontaneous brushwork, drips and blobs of paint straight from the tube, and sometimes scribbling reminiscent of calligraphy.

I was impressed by Fernando Romero’s work, and I was intrigued by the combination of a permanent, recognisable background, splattered with ephemeral, abstract, blotches on. over, and around the solid geometric shapes.

I connected with his narrative and perceived a clear message; the coexistence of permanent and ephemeral aspects in our lives and how both are necessary and even complimentary. In fact, one cannot live without the other.

A perfectly designed geometrical world, would be unbearable, and yet a world in which everything were temporary would be stressful. I need to know that although some things are short-lived, others will accompany me for the duration, and hopefully outlive me. Isn’t the artist in search of a tiny piece of eternity?

Grid_001 (Lacock Abbey) 2016 by Fernando M. Romero

 

I was also attracted to the simplicity and minimalism of the artist’s use of black and white. Less is more, as the work of art expresses the simplicity and the essence of the message: The artist is free to experience and create an ephemeral moment, because it exists within a permanent environment.

Can this concept of permanence and transience also be applied to literature? And if so, what does this mean to me as an author?

I think it is also not only applicable, but present in literature.

It means an author can make use of a permanent and universally acknowledged corpus of linguistic theory and literary history in order to produce a novel, which is a product of his/her transient and ephemeral imagination.

This creation might become part of a literary canon, or it may slip through the cracks and dissolve into a timeless, barrierless universe, as two modes of being, transient and permanent, coexist and interact.

Personally, it means I am fortunate enough to be able to make use of a language that has a solid, albeit flexible linguistic system I use to recreate my own stories, which are built on other well-known novels and characters grounded in our conscious knowledge and memories, as well as our collective unconscious.

My contemporary version of other literary movements, such as Gothic Romance and themes in Victorian novels, is however ‘stained’ and splashed by my transient, sometimes irreverent brush strokes, in my own reinterpretation and rewriting of Neo-Victorian fiction, and I’m not going to apologise for my literary ‘Tachisme’.

You can visit the exhibition in Córdoba until 1st April 2018.

How do you believe literature combines permanent and transient aspects?