Thursday, October 28, 2010


I am still in Portales, New Mexico, soaking up the hospitality of my friends, Penny and Carol. I am very much at home here because their home is imbued with loving energy. They brought me here for the Holidays on the first Christmas after my divorce when I was feeling unloved and unlovable. And they have participated in my subsequent healing.

I have spent every Christmas since then in their welcoming embrace. And it is interesting to be here now without the need for healing. Today I feel like a whole person and while I enjoy their food, and their hospitality, and their Wi-Fi; this time it feels like I contribute as much as I take.

They have also seen my transformation, in snapshots, once or twice a year, and it is humbling to see myself through their eyes. Today I am thinner (if not thin), tanned and sporting longer hair and a measure of self-assurance. My gifts of insight, and Shamanism, and breath-work have been heartily received and appreciated.

Let me say a word about the length of my hair. It feels good and it came to me when I embarked upon my summer of joy that I should “let my free flag fly”. I am connecting myself back in time, to the 1970’s, when I was in my twenties. My hair was long and the world was open to me; anything was possible. It was only after that point in time that I came to limit myself and shut down and shut out many of my own personal gifts.

Just lately, I am hearing from others that there is a point in each of our lives when we have have felt free, and powerful, and unlimited. A friend talked to me about remembering the time before she entered junior-high and how it felt to be completely secure and fearless, before learning about the roles she would be required to play; before the world imposed its ideas about separation from each other and the whole of creation.

Since time is merely a man-made construction, that other personae is still alive somewhere living life to its fullest, full of joy and freedom and creative energy. If we each have this suppressed part, I think today you and I can reclaim that lost piece and use it to give us new life.

So, just a short while ago I was going through some boxes when I chanced upon a photo of myself when I graduated from Indiana University.  It was 1976 and I wore the assurance and hopefulness of youth.  I am carrying that photo with me on this journey and it has (to me) an uncanny resemblance to the Osho card that keeps coming up for me entitled: The Rebel. 

The photo and the card are my traveling companions; we commune with each other and I am reminded of the things I have lost and now re-found.  These two items are totems, sacred objects that witness my progress along with some other objects:

There’s the beautiful piece of raw turquoise from my friend and teacher, Karl; a chunk of white quartz given me three decades ago by my friend, Cheryl; the potted grapevine from my house in Healdsburg; a rock from Dean and Kelly’s “sanctuary”; the tie-dyed sarong from this summer’s mini-Q; the abalone shell from my teacher, Lloyd; the pipe, blessed in the lodge of Dawson No Horse; a stalk of living bamboo and the beautiful painting of "awakening", both gifted me by Meredith.

Sitting in the Airstream, I am surrounded by totems and gifts of the heart. I am truly blessed, and living in grace; preparing to launch myself into the expectant arms of another new moon; another re-imagining.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


It is storming in Portales, NM this morning like the sky is heralding the end of the world. The lightning and the thunder are a contrast to the calming and grounding energy of the place and I am happy to be resting in this slower and healing vibration.

 From my camping spot in Santa Fe I was able to take in a 360ยบ view of the sky and the surrounding high desert. The sunsets were amazing every day and I was able to watch the movement of thunder storms sweeping into and out of the area.

One morning I was awakened early by a huge gust of wind that threatened to tear my awning away from the Land Yacht. When I went outside into the chill morning air to rescue the awning, I was greeted by a sky full of misty clouds colored red and pink by the still un-risen sun. The whole canopy of the sky was lit up and vibrating.

While I was in Santa Fe I also experienced the nice synchronicity of being able to sit with Adyashanti for an evening Satsang and then a half-day Intensive. This felt like the completion of a sacred circle for me, since I had personally worked with his book and his teachings to a great degree over the past year. I have employed his suggestions for using “self-inquiry” to notice and dissolve the conditioned thought patterns that have kept me from experiencing the fullness of my true Self.

So I felt like I already knew this teacher, and sitting in the auditorium with him felt like coming home. Something he said made an impression: He suggested that one way of looking at spiritual enlightenment is “standing on your own two feet”. One piece of this idea involves releasing your dependence on teachers and gurus and workshops, in order to discover your own inner guru.

This idea echoes the teaching of Linda Star Wolf of Venus Rising who tells me to discover and nurture the “inner-Shaman” to direct my own spiritual journey. And the process of shamanic journeying involves tapping into the riches of the inner self to heal past woundings and to propel me into the truth of my being.

We are all on the edge of exciting new ways of seeing and being. I am grateful for the teaching and direction of others and for the support of a wonderful spiritual community whenever I land. But it is clear that I am responsible for my own work and for my own well being. So standing on my own two feet feels like an appropriate call for this time.

While I am in the process of working on my books that feature prominently the use of the Tarot in the stories, I draw an occasional card for myself from the Osho oracle deck. I recently drew “New Vision” and sensed immediately that this is also a card for all of us as we move into our next imagining. The card shows a vibrant and strong being rising out of a crippled and beaten down figure that is rooted to the ground. The new self is growing wings and preparing to shoot himself into the heavens; the tip of a pyramid points the way upward and forward.

“New Vision” partners with the card, “Guidance” which also shows two different figures. One self is reluctant and afraid to pay attention to the clear guidance that points to the light. The other figure is a winged angel that launches itself toward the light without any reservations.

This is who we are. We are turning away from the old patterns that do not serve us anymore, and we are becoming our own guru, our own shaman, our own teacher. We are standing on our own two feet.

Thank you to all the dear souls who have given me their blessing for my journey.

On the road in Portales, New Mexico with Penny and Carol.

John Berry Deakyne
The Sedona WordSmith

Friday, October 8, 2010


Dear Friends,

I hardly know where to begin. Some of you have expressed concern that I haven’t blogged for two months. Let me just say that I have been mightily distracted by the warm winds of summer and the intoxicating touch of another.

But the advent of autumn opens a new portal for me and the disappearance of the Moon points me toward the resumption of my journey. Yesterday I pulled my Land Yacht out of the Rancho Sedona RV Park after at least three days of oppressive stormy weather complete with thunder, lightning, hail, and tornado warnings.

I was greeted by blue skies and white tufts of cotton candy clouds as I headed up the mountain to Flagstaff. The white tops of the San Francisco Peaks confirmed the abrupt change of the season, so I pulled onto Interstate-40 and headed for Santa Fe. Some of you already know that I am on a pilgrimage to Isis Cove and the Venus Rising Institute outside of Asheville, North Carolina. I have already started the Ministerial training they offer and I am anxious to experience the energy of the community of like-minded folks that have gathered near their headquarters in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

One of the highlights of the summer was the first installment of the Shamanic Breath-work training which was held at the Sanctuary of Sedona in Cornville, AZ. The teaching and ceremonies and exercises presented by Brad and Star Wolf were truly transformative.  Our hosts, Kelly and Dean, provided an energetic and healing space for each of us to do some heavy lifting.

I also had the extreme privilege of co-teaching a six-week series of workshops this summer with my beloved friend, Meredith Star Raven, entitled “The Earth School for Souls”. We had a remarkable gathering of co-journeyers who created safe space for each of us to undertake a chunk of our own sacred curriculum.

So I haven’t been inactive this summer, I just haven’t been writing.

I am stopping in Santa Fe now to finish up the publishing pieces of my first novel, “The Tower Card”, and to begin the revision of my second novel, “The Devil Card – The Redemption of Lucifer.”

On the eve of the New Moon I gathered with a group of dear friends in the living room of Sig and Sarah. I made my good-bys there and they all laid their hands on me and gave me their blessings for my journey. Fifteen months ago I pulled my Airstream into Sedona not knowing a soul. I sat in classes at the Unity Church for three months before I ever spoke in a group. Today I am overwhelmed by the unconditional love and high vibration of the souls I have pulled into my awareness at this time. I pray I have given them a small piece of the great gift they have given to me.

So I have been asked, “Why would you leave such a place of light and comfort for the insecurity and scariness of the great unknown?”

That is hard to answer. Sometimes you just have to trust the part of yourself that seems to know something you can’t quite put into words. We call it guidance, and sometimes it shows up in bold letters on the wall, and sometimes it’s only a “still small voice”. Either way, it’s important to pay attention.

And I’m reminded of the lyrics to the song by Cat Stevens that inspired the name of this blog in the first place: “There’s so much left to know, and I’m on the road to find out.”

More to come – and more often. On the road in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

John Berry Deakyne
The Sedona WordSmith