Here are all my recent Nature Mirror photo collages so far. Started them this June and have been posting them on Facebook, but wanted to have them here on the blog too.
They are in a slideshow, with thumbnails below. Click the thumbnail for a larger image.
Many bloggers before me have answered this Hamlet-like question, do I catch up with all that has happened up until now, or do I just carry on, one post at a time. It was the same dilemma I faced as a child, given a beautiful bound daily diary with its own special lock and key. I wrote in it faithfully for the first week, then it faded to weekly, monthly, rarely, never…. and the shame I felt when I picked up the diary, knowing I hadn’t filled up the dated pages, but – horrors – had just left them blank, letting time pass.
Yet there is the other example of all those dead boring diary entries from the 18th and 19th centuries, featuring weather reports in one line, still sunny today, or rain again. So what? So is daily and regular best? Only if there is something to say.
But now I face the dilemma, dear reader. Do I catch up and give highlights of all that has happened in the past since the last posting, or do I merrily continue on with what is in the now right now?
You know I’ve decided: I’m carrying on.
We celebrated the arrival of the book and cd In Love with the Mystery, and Ann signed dedications to all the people who had pre-ordered. Now we are planning launches in Victoria and Vancouver in early November.
I’m really thrilled about this whole project and felt truly inspired to write this reflection on it:
Ann Mortifee, A Contemporary St. Hildegarde
by Carol Sill
A contemporary St. Hildegarde whose visions find expression in an integration of the arts, Ann Mortifee has done it again with her extraordinary book and CD In Love with the Mystery.
Perhaps her most complete and integrated expression, a natural development from the masterful Into the Heart of the Sangoma, In Love with the Mystery reveals Ann’s core of wisdom and meaning that she has found in the inner life. A mature integration, it is born of the completion of her life now with her soul mate husband Paul Horn. Through this relationship a new love of the mystery has revealed itself. But make no mistake, as a woman whose inner guidance has taken her around the world (both inner and outer) many times seeking the truth in all its forms and manifestations, Ann Mortifee herself is a force of nature.
What strikes me most is the way she seemingly effortlessly expresses the depth of humanity’s greatest aspirations and most profound seeking. She is a contemporary shaman, whose work reveals a personal integration of the world’s highest meditation teachings and new age spirituality with depth psychology and the hard-won truths of existence. Her expressions are not wishful thinking, speculation or theoretical. They are lived and breathed in the life of a woman today.
“Sacrifice all your resistance on the altar of your own becoming,” is something that she is doing each day. Her voice is the voice of experience.
Musically I compare her to Hildegarde because her inspiration comes so much in sound, and In Love with the Mystery reveals an intimacy with the essence of sound’s source and the celebration of this that music affords.
The progress of the recorded pieces acts as a complete mystery process, enabling the listener to sense and feel the divine relationship: from aspiration, to removing barriers, to contemplative silence, then ecstatic union, and knowing celebration. Each of these is expressed and explored in music which speaks to the body, heart and soul. It bears much more than just one listening. Move with it, dance with it, or sit and contemplate with it: this music opens the heart.
Her book, on which the lyric of the music is based, offers rich images to enhance the inner contemplation of each of the passages. It is a book to be opened and savored again and again, as each time another facet reveals itself. Ann’s inspired words bring home simple truths and profound contemplations in a stunning revelation of what it means to be human in these times of profound transition and change.
To me, In Love with the Mystery ranks with the work of the great mystics and seekers: poets like Rumi who whirled and spoke poetry in his love for Shams Tabriz, or saints like Hildegarde who heard, saw and felt the Divine. The whole work is a synaesthetic feast, an offering for the Divine Beloved.
This fresh bright air inspires me to let you know everything that’s been happening in the past few months.
Over the summer I made some videos with my granddaughter Ember, who wrote, directed and produced these little gems of fun. We made them in 3 sessions and had tons of fun.
The last one was done when she and Cora were here last week. All the ideas are hers, and the prep for it all also, including storyboard and editing decisions. Plus the descriptions for titles and for the youtube posting too. I did the tags, the camerawork and sometimes the voice of the mother and grandmother, plus helped her with the editing.
Here they are in order of production!
Mixed Up Fairy Tale
Muffin the Fantastic! Parts 1 and 2
Habitat: with Ember and Cora Dickson
The air changed just as we entered September, and my mind is slowly returning from the summertime haze. Its been a lovely summer and here are a few highlights – more to come next post.
We went to Portland for a week, dogsitting while friends of friends went to Northwest Sufi Camp.
Around that time the article I’d written while we were housesitting for my cousin at Nanoose Bay came out in Heartbeat, the Ruhaniat newsletter (published as a pdf online.)
The theme is Sacred Nature.
The In Love with the Mystery book and CD Project is now at press, with delivery in a week or so. It’s great being part of the Eskova team helping to make this project happen! We’ve put out a few newsletters with info, plus created the website for Ann Mortifee, with info on this latest project.
Keeping in Touch #1 – announcing the book project
Keeping in Touch #2 – features the new video
I’m looking forward to the upcoming Women’s Mindfulness and Intimacy workshop with Nancy Mortifee, once again at Cascadia in Roberts Creek BC. Three days on the beautiful Sunshine Coast! Sept. 24th -26th.
Click on the flyer to view the info full size
Connect at the Cascadia site
See Nancy’s info at Mortifee Training.
Editorial work for Ann Mortifee’s new book and cd project, In Love with the Mystery, has been extremely satisfying and a personally deepening experience. Ever since I had the opportunity to work with curator Pavel Alejandro Barrios Sosa on the English translation of his catalogue essay on the group exhibition in Cuba, Los Artistas Majos, I have been yearning to editorially go deep into the meaning and implications of words on a poetic level. Ann’s project brought this to me, and it has been a great joy mining her words to ensure they are saying what her heartsoul was pouring out through her. Along with her exquisite inspired writing, there is also a beautiful music CD that accompanies the book, featuring Ann and her husband Paul Horn and friends.
The book is now available for pre-order, and it is absolutely beautiful. Photos by the renowned Canadian photographer, Courtney Milne are integral to the stunning design by Diane Jensen-Feught.
Find out all about it here on Ann’s new site.
Nancy Mortifee and I put together this new site for Ann’s work, giving her an updated web presence and a place that could be easily added to when her workshop and appearance schedule changes, and as the reviews and interviews happen around the book and other events. Just waiting for the video to come into place and it will be wonderful.