Though the initial stirrings of this post occurred in early December 2015, it seems that it was only due to manifest now, three full months later. The seeds had been germinating, but I knew I couldn’t force it and trusted that it would unfold in due time. It is said that timing is everything and, while this post is not about astrology itself, today happens to mark the day of a powerful New Moon Total Solar Eclipse in the sign of Pisces, which has the potential to affect us all in deeply significant ways. One of the best articles I read about this eclipse discusses the event as a moment of profound choice which will reset the course of our lives for the next 19 years, and offers us the opportunity to look back at what was going on in March 1997, as well as this past September, to see if we can find a common thread. Without getting too detailed as to the themes of this eclipse, the Pisces/Virgo axis, to me, feels like the place where illusion meets reality, a place that I admittedly know all too well. Given that, and the symbolism of the dates, there is no coincidence that this was the right timing for me to write about yet another topic dear to my heart: Inspiration and the Role of the Muse.
While it is unfortunate that I destroyed my journals from adolescence in the fall of 2008, I realized, when searching for clues as to what was going on 19 years ago, that I still had access to my creative writing from that era. Looking back, it was in my early teens that my first official muse arrived swiftly, intensely, and unexpectedly. I recall not understanding what, how, or why, but that from one minute to the next, I was flooded with emotion and imagery, compelled to create, to write like I’d never written before. Though there was effort involved, there was an aspect that was effortless; touched to my very core, the words somehow found the page. By 16 years old, in March 1997, I was in the thick of it; so inspired by my muse, this young and impressionable teenager had literally written an entire book of poetry.
From that muse flowed another, and another, and another, until a palpable pattern of muses emerged over time. As grounded as I have always been in my capacity to write, practically everything I've written for the majority of 19 years has been from a place of projection, rooted in pining for and blatantly romanticizing the intangible, the unavailable, the impossible. While on one hand, the inspiration catalyzed by my muse would be constructive in terms of my creativity, on the other, its effect on me was often extremely destructive; a double-edged sword. Just as the illusion of my projections allowed me to experience the most sublime inner landscapes and extraordinary emotional highs, the contrasting reality would inevitably come crashing down and plunge me into the dark depths of my own personal hell.
What I have learned, through these experiences, is that the muse, though potentially a palace, if abused or relied upon, becomes a prison. The more you try to capture it the more it captures you; pleasant and inviting at first, only to become all-consuming and detrimental to one’s very sense of self. One of my biggest difficulties this lifetime has been to understand the true role of the muse, to detach from the muse itself and to integrate the understanding that my projections have served to highlight the qualities and attributes I've struggled to see and to accept within myself.
That said, I feel that for me, the big lesson of this eclipse - a lesson which I have consciously observed starting to find resolution as of last summer - is to transcend the duality of the prison/palace, to own my projections, and to channel my creativity in a way that serves to ground my dreams into reality. I now understand that I can be inspired and use that inspiration to be of service to the whole, to share my passion and intensity with the public instead of making it about one person and burdening them with the weight of that passion and intensity. The very proof of that is this blog.
Lastly, I am coming to terms with the fact that, for the majority of 19 years, I gave my muse of the moment the responsibility of my experience; both the responsibility of my happiness and that of my discontent. I am coming to terms with the fact that, for the majority of 19 years, I asked my muse of the moment to hold pieces for me, pieces I was not able to hold myself. Though beyond grateful for my many muses, and for all they have inspired in me, taught me, and carried for me, I am now ready to be responsible for my own experience of life - responsible for my own happiness and discontent - and I am ready to reclaim the pieces they have held for me, understanding at long last that all the beauty, grace, strength, power, confidence, courage, authority, sensuality, sexuality and light I have admired and appreciated in them, is in me, too. Almost two decades later, at 35, I am finally not only seeing that but am now ready to embrace it with all my heart.
Ultimately, all of this has been part of a priceless journey in remembering wholeness, in forgiveness, in finding strength in vulnerability, and in truly loving myself