My Sacred Friends,
In the last SACRED WEEKENDS (Issue 5), I talked about the relief of admitting that “these are dark times,” and how we could take that as a divine invitation to bring the light everywhere we go.
That sense of relief—and devotion, is evidently a collective experience, because so many of you messaged to say “I relate.”
It’s in the relating that we exhale.
One of my beloved GF’s texted me:
After I pleaded with her to get on a ferry and come hug meeee, I replied:
We should talk about pain comparison and joy guilt.
I’ve been seeing a lot of this sentiment in our community: “Feel guilty for singing, don’t want to party too much right now, feels wrong. When I feel happy, I immediately think of everyone who’s suffering.”
You know what that is? LOVE! Inclusiveness. Unity Consciousness! Decency.
And it could also be: The ego mind-bind keeping us small, denser energies trying to pull us down.
This is where we pause for consciousness. When those heavy emotions show up we can inquire, “Is this my heart expanding or my fear flaring up?” It’s probably both. Complex times = complex emotions.
TURN PAIN INTO A PRAYER
I’ve been following this female journalist in Gaza, Bisan. She begins her reels with, “It’s Day 76 of the war in Gaza and I’m still alive.” (I hope none of us ever has to start a post with, “I’m still alive.”) This week she posted a photo of a tiny bowl of noodles from her tent encampment, captioned: “this is my breakfast lunch dinner.” I was scrolling and eating my Shepherd’s Pie. I whispered to my full plate, “I dedicate this to Bisan.” Deep breath. Choose prayer over despair, prayer over despair.
We can turn the edges of our privilege and shared pain into an offering. Offer it up, up, up. Move it out of your mind’s grip, down through your heart and outward. That way, the energy keeps circulating. Love moves. Fear stagnates.
HONOUR YOUR OWN PAIN
Sometimes if I’d had a bad day I’d think, “Well at least I’m not living in a natural disaster area or war zone.” Or, “At least I’m not taking beer cans back to the store… to get a refund… in order to make bus fare… to get to work… to get my paycheck.” (Like I used to.)
Sometimes, comparing your pain to others’ is an act of compassion (heart expansion). And sometimes, comparing our pain to others’ is a form of self neglect (fear flared up).
Denying your personal pain won’t lessen other people’s suffering. And weighing your woes against atrocities doesn’t necessarily make you a more responsible citizen. It might just weigh you down.
Honour your own pain. It’s your experience. Have it. That kind of self awareness serves us all.
PLEASE RESPECT YOUR JOY
Hemming in your joy doesn’t help any cause. WE NEED YOUR JOY MORE THAN EVER. We need you to prioritize your wellness so that you can think clearly in the chaos. The virtue of Joy can hold suffering and hope. People who can bear the polarities are leading the healing.
Also! Joy and happiness are very direct routes to gratitude. And gratitude is an extremely powerful (and underestimated) energy that can inform new realities. Be grateful. Excessively so.
Thank you for your joyful service.
The dark within my dark
Is where I found my light
The fruit became the doorway
And now it’s open wide.
— Trevor Hall, The Fruitful Darkness
HOLD UP! JANUARY IS *NOT* THE NEW YEAR.
…not actually. Not seasonally, not energetically, not for thousands of years according to the LUNAR NEW YEAR. So stay in your jam jams and hold off on the resolutions.
BACK STORY: GREGORIAN vs. LUNAR
Scientifically, a year is a complete cycle of seasons—from one spring equinox to the next spring equinox.
The calendar that most western nations use is the Gregorian solar calendar, thanks to Pope Gregory XIII who decided to refine the Roman calendar to “correct” the seasons. (How very possibly patriarchal?)
Personally, I dig the Maori approach. They tracked the stars and the natural signs and decided that, Yep, it’s NOW the new year! That is so intuitive and punk rock.
The Lunar Calendar is 354 days, give or take (because nature is flexible)—which is why they fall on a different day every year. Over the centuries, the lunar calendar has been mashed with the Greogroian calendar to make it more socially practical, “lunisolar”, and integrated into Chinese, Vietnamese, Hindu, Hebrew and Thai calendars. Except a lot of lunisolar traditions and religions defer to the Lunar Calendar for some of their holy days. (I know. Confusing.)
Holidays and festivals determined by the Lunar Calendar: Easter, Rosh Hashanah, Ramadan, and the Lunar New Year—which is next up on Saturday February 10, 2024.
THIS IS THE WHOLE POINT: The Lunar New Year begins on the first new moon of the year. And THAT is why many consider it the most natural and energizing time to commence with a new year!
We want to synchronize our lives with the flow of the planets. Flow, not grind. January is a time for closure, cleaning, nesting, incubating. And especially because we’re currently in a Mercury Retrograde (until January 2, 2024,) which is a time of “backwards” energies and letting go, this January is reeeally not ideal for resolutions or pushing big new things forward.
Personally, I never vibed with January 1 as a new year. I felt slightly slothy in comparison to everyone else starting Q1 objectives and “New Year New You” launches, while I was still in my fun bun reviewing my previous year and NOT hitting reply on anything. When February came ‘round I felt fresh and sparkly, ready to commit and kick it… but was apologizing to my team for being “a month behind.”
None of that anymore! I follow my inner reason and the seasons. I clean things up in December, I sleep a bit more, I pull back on pushing. I pencil in the coming year, but I don’t pressure myself to come out swinging until February.
In many traditions, ten days before the start of the lunar new year, houses are cleared out, scrubbed, and swept to remove any lingering bad or old stale energy. Yessss. That’s what January is for!
LUNAR NEW YEAR 2024 is SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 10 at 2:59 pm PT.
AND SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, February 8, we’re doing a ReNewYear Masterclass for planning. Don’t plan 2024 without me! We’ll tell you more about it when we start to stir after the holidays.
NYAD. We know from The Kids Are Alright (also an excellent film) that Annette Benning plays a great warrior lesbian, slightly self-centered but deeply feeling. She nails it hard as Diane Nyad. And Jodi Foster playing Nyad’s loyal coach? Super hawt.
I remember watching on the actual television when I was a kid, Nyad crawling out of the ocean with jellyfish-stung lips and the crowd cheering. Perseverance BEYOND. Super inspiring.
I’m late to the party but… TED LASSO. Be still my heart. With colder weather, a lot of writing finish lines, and the heaviness of war, I’m doing some conscious zoning out. TED LASSO is sweet, hopeful, not violent whatsoever and just… deeply comforting.
A Sentiment for Blazing
Close your calendars
smash clocks and barriers
with your better knowing
throw soft light on
the doom clingers
I started the Heart Centered Membership almost four years ago (whut?!) and I am not the same person I was when I hit “send”. Get this: I was so over-identified as an introvert that didn’t even do zoom calls! Cringe. Sorry about that phase. I’m so over myself.
Jump cut to now: Zoom calls on my two Thursdays a month with our heart people are my favourite few hours. Just pure zing. And I’ve claimed a few things: I teach about healing. And I want our Heart Centered ecosystem to be a refuge for people.
Many mystics have predicted a wild ride for humanity in 2024-25. (As if the last few years haven’t been bronco enough.) I can feel it in the ethers, can you? It doesn’t have to be disastrous, it could be beautifully uniting and expansive. That’s the timeline I’m choosing. Either way… we need to hold hands and keep showing up courageously.
PLEASE POP INTO THE NEXT HEART CENTERED CLASS!
Our First Heart Centered Class of 2024!
HOW TO STAY OPEN WHEN YOU WANT TO SHUT DOWN:
14 Questions to help you discern + soften.
A journaling circle with Danielle + Community
When did you start to close down? And why? And what are the effects of not being open? Because here’s the thing: OPEN HEARTEDNESS IS OUR NATURAL STATE.
WE ARE SOCIALLY CONDITIONED TO BE CLOSED.
Open is better, my love. Being closed down is the Inner Child’s and ego’s survival mechanism. And we really need to get out of survival mode. Having a closed heart and mind keep us on edge, block opportunities, and exhaust us.
Here’s what we’re covering:
- The extremely false and damaging social messaging that the more judgmental we are, the stronger we become… We’re going to erase that.
- “Opening up” and “closing down” can both be loving OR fear-based moves—there’s a way to tell the difference.
- How openness helps us fortify our protection and healthy boundaries.
- Re-learning how to open up to prana—life force energy, is how we restore our sanity and health… and societies.
- How to have compassion for the parts of you that have closed down.
- To be open to and inclusive of others, we have to be open to the parts of ourselves we’ve been pushing away.
- Then we’ll do a journal circle on 14 Questions to help you discern, open and soften.
- Live Q+A’s and chat function will be boomin’. Cameras on or off, come as you are!
- Class runs about 75 minutes. You’ll leave with journal prompts and any links and resources that are shared in class. The replay is yours to keep!
- Classes are free for Heart Centered Members + Masterminders.
- Or! Drop in for $20—which you can use toward the membership if you choose to join after class!
- Team D on holiday break
- Saturday, December 23, 2023 to Sunday, January 7, 2024
- We’ll pop into email@example.com from time to time in case you need us
- Mercury Retrograde
- Wednesday, December 13, 2023 to Monday, January 1, 2024
- Remember the shadow period afterward: seven days after Merc goes direct on the 1st, retro energy is looming and lingering. Take it slow. Go easy.
- Next Heart Centered Class is Thursday, January 4, 2024 at 12pm PT l 3pm ET. SIGN UP HERE.
- SAVE THE DATE: Thursday, February 8 is the ReNewYear Masterclass
- Moon Phases
- Dark of the Moon (always 2 days before the new moon): Thursday, January 11, 2024 at 3:57 am PT l 6:57 pm ET
- Full moon: Thursday, January 25 at 9:54 pm PT l 12:54 pm ET
- Ideal support: The Write + Burn Practice
Rest in Love and Trust.
Thank you for being here.
THIS WEEKEND FEATURE IS…
When I first met Miki Agrawal she was just prototyping The Tushy and she told me her business plan. An off the shelf kind of bidet? I was… doubtful. Joke’s on me because I’ve installed Tushy’s in three different bathrooms and gifted two of them.
Bidets are common in Europe. Clean butts are happy butts. Try a Tushy.
THE LINK UP
❤️ Next LIVE Class with Danielle: How to Stay Open When You Want to Shut Down
💡 The Heart Centered Mastermind
🌿 THE NOURISH SYSTEM: prioritize your wellness
🗓️ Free + Clear Course: how I review my year
🕊️ Bisan, journalist in Gaza
🎶 THE FRUITFUL DARKNESS by Trevor Hall