Know Your Self
By Shirley Lenhard
My first journey during the descent into darkness between now and the climb out toward the light of the hearth fires on Imbolc is taxed with the first “Goal of a Witch” – Know Your Self. So before I began my journey and mediation every evening this past week, I began to ask myself what this means, precisely; Know Your Self. And I reflected on who I am now, who I was, and who I intend to be along with each and every step in my spiritual evolution.
I have been called a daughter, a sister, a wife, a friend, and even, in some situations, a mentor. But! Is this who I am? I needed to delve deeper into who I am and knowing my Self. This requires me to view my style of play in all situations and in all things; not just in my craft and practice. I must look at my ego and see how it is that I interact in the world external of me and how I might impact the greater good as well as taking my own inventory. I have a mantra that I repeat to myself when I see things askew in the world and that is “How you play one game is indicative of how you will play every other game.” What does that even mean? Is that who I am? I think, most assuredly, yes! Yes, that is precisely who I am.
This is another challenging practice for me to open my Self up to examination. This goal requires me to look closely at my values and personality while taking inventory of my morality and ethical standings. During this inventory, I must be mindful to practice kindness and self-care so that I grow and understand who I am and what it is that I stand for and against.
During the week that has since passed I believe that loving myself, first and foremost, should be my constant style of play, and will strive to achieve the balance between my practice, my craft, and my secular life – which are three very intertwined yet separate parts of my life. Taking inventory of my moral compass and my ethics has been very telling since Mercury is in another retrograde. Communication among friends has been clouded and most people who I have encountered have had two very different reactions during this retrograde – one is to argue for the sake of arguing and getting nowhere – and the other is to stand still in the midst of the turmoil and continue repeating oneself without any forward momentum. Neither side progresses. Retrogrades have that ability to cause upheaval and in keeping with the first goal, I discovered that I am not a “right fighter” I have no need to be right; what I do have a need for is dialogue that is truthful AND kind; without both, I will no longer enter into conversations that continue to escalate and end up with no resolution.
Know Your Self. I believe that taking inventory of ego, morals, ethics, and styles of play is a continuing duty for any self-exploration. Experiences and questioning a comfortable life will absolutely lead to knowing my Self. I believe that this Goal is a lifelong commitment and will change as I grow.
Wishing you all well during the descent and hope that the darkness reveals some truth for you
and some light for your path.