Accept the mystery…Continue reading Photoshoot: *season of the witch*
The high priest would not reveal his vision. Instead, he insisted he saw the same thing that was originally seen by the high priestess years ago. But when Autumn tried asking him specific questions about it, he refused, and insisted on moving past it as if nothing had happened. She knew that he was hiding something, most likely for her protection, or maybe it was for his own protection. It was haunting her, possibilities of things he had or had not seen. Unfortunately there was nothing she could do.
And so this brings us back to the day of Autumn’s arranged marraige. In her last final attempt to be saved, she had snuck into the priest’s office and for the last time begged him for a way out. He would never tell her what he had seen, and he regretted ever taking her on a second spirit quest in the first place. It was not an easy choice for him but he was a man of honor. Autumn’s life was out of his hands and his job as priest was to be a guide, not a boss. She was waiting for someone to tell her what to do, just to avoid any guilt or consequences of her own actions. What she really needed to do was be brave enough to make her own choices.
What happened to Autumn that day, when she ran out of the church after being denied by the priest and forced to face her unchosen fate? No one knows. They have not seen her since she ran away that day. Of course rumors spread like wildfire: she found a richer family to marry into, she found a new priest to take her on yet another spirit quest, or she jumped into the ocean and chose to live with the mermaids. Her parents knew she was safe and alive, as she wrote them letters, but could never disclose the full truth.
Several years — decades — later, a young girl named Blossom found herself in a somewhat similar situation. Her arranged marraige would come to fruition in merely a few days, something that would ensure stability for the rest of her life. And yet she never felt so lost. The young girl, instead of seeking an authority figure, decided to seek answers in nature.
Blossom took a walk through the woods and stumbled upon a rugged home she had always noticed from a distance. Assuming it was abandoned, she trudged through the overgrown greens — and was absolutely shocked to find a perfectly groomed garden resting peacefully behind the house. Letting curiosity get the best of her, she decided to knock on the door. Nothing. A few more knocks… and she spotted eyes peering through the window blinds.
Finally, the door gently creaked open and an old woman with grey hair and wrinkles greeted her kindly, “hello, young girl! What are you doing in this part of the woods? It’s unsafe, especially with the evening approaching… are you lost?”
The older woman looked into young girl’s eyes and recognized a part of herself. It was like looking straight into a mirror from the past.
“I was going for a walk to clear my mind,” Blossom explained, “and stumbled upon this beautiful garden, so enchanting. Is it yours?”
“Yes,” the older woman nodded, “I grow fruit, vegetables, and herbs that I use to make teas and cosmetics that I can sell to the townspeople.” She was bare-faced and wearing a light sundress, “I never go into town without a full face of makeup and heavy cloak.”
“Are you alone?”
She let out a great laugh, “impossible! I’m always surrounded by life, I can’t get away from it. Even when I’m not in the town, I always have the plants and the animals.”
“What about your husband?”
“Let me tell you a little tale,” she grinned, “I was set to be given away like a piece of property. There was some type of ‘off’ feeling I could not shake, but I was so concerned with following my destiny and being supported by the heavens. My high priestess took me on a spirit quest, yet as years passed I kept feeling like her vision was incorrect or misread. As my fate came closer, I panicked and convinced my high priest to take me on a second journey, for confirmation. This time I knew for sure that he had seen something different, but he refused to tell me! So my only option was to go on my very own spirit quest.”
“What do you think he truly saw in his vision?” Blossom inquired, wide-eyed. “Is this it? Is this your true destiny you are living out?”
“I will never know what he saw,” the woman explained, “I used to be very fixated on it, until I realized I was putting too much of my own power into other people’s hands. No one in this world, whether priest or priestess or whatnot, knows what it best for me except for my own self. And I have realized it is so much more difficult to listen to your heart rather than the people who surround you, yet it is one-hundred percent worth it. You have to make your own choices and stand by those consequences, rather than living through victim-mentally, exploiting the privilege of blaming others for your own failures. You have to be strong enough to live for yourself.”
And there she was, as you can guess — Autumn — living out the final season of her life. Her story was written and could never be erased. But this does not mean it was the end for her. Something she had learned in her wise old years was that as soon as you believe your life is set and that there is no room left for change — that’s when destiny takes over and powerfully evolves your soul.
The man was not only a priest, but High Priest, and it was of a secret mystery cult. A few years before her eighteenth, Autumn embarked on a spirit quest — a coming-of-age that everyone within the religion went through sometime around age thirteen or fourteen. It is a time of seclusion that involves fasting, praying, and disciplining oneself until an enlightenment is reached. It is done with the guidance and care of a High Priest or Priestess by the young seedling’s side in order to ensure a safe spiritual journey. Working as a bridge between Heaven and Earth, the High Priest/Priestess can channel information about the soul’s purpose and what his/her destiny is.
During Autumn’s spirit quest, she took her journey with the trusted High Priestess of her church. It was an incredible, life-transformative experience. She learned so much, but most importantly of all, who she was destined to spend eternity with! From then on, she fell completely obedient to discipline. She wanted to be Heaven’s perfect angel; she wanted to be completely pure, devoid of defiance. She craved constant reassurance that she was always on the correct path, never straying against intuition, not even for a second. Her greatest fear was living a life that had not been written in the stars. A slave to the planets and suns was who she strived to be.
After some time, Autumn found herself in a spiritual blockage, as if her soul had reached a plateau. It felt like a few of the stars in her sky were slightly out of place. She told herself that she was content, yet a very small part of her had a lot of anger from some unknown reason. It the part of her that needed to be disciplined, and it was indeed locked up in heavy chains. Only rarely would it escape in sharp flashes that caused an exponential amount of damage in a minuscule amount of time.
Desperate for more answers, Autumn sought out her High Priestess who had taken her on the spirit quest, and begged her for another round. Unfortunately she refused, claiming that it would be an abuse of power. She did, however, encourage the eager starseed to continue seeking within because that is where all the answers lie. With a sigh and an eye roll, Autumn carried on and continued doing her best to keep zen.
And then she met the High Priest, merely months before her destiny was about to be set in stone. He was actually a nomadic priest, traveling the world to teach others his wisdom, but when he came around to this area something made him decide to stay and become High Priest. From the moment she met him, she heard sirens in her head as if they were warning her that her whole life had the potential to destruct and transform into something entirely different beyond her wildest imagination just because of one person. Yet she confidently smiled upon greeting him, knowing that her outstanding discipline would never let her life come crashing down — for she was born an angel who never strayed from the path that was meant for her, blindly following the light at all times. (Or so she thought…)
She asked him if he would take her on a spirit quest, explaining how she wanted more answers and needed reassurance that she was on the right path. At first he resisted but with enough persistence he finally agreed. And so, they fasted and prayed together in the church until he could see a clear vision.
to be continued…
I wrote some fiction, a little short story. It’s mainly based on some of the books I have been reading lately. Hope that others can possibly relate or find inspiration through it. Here it goes…
Her name is Autumn, and this is reflected through the natural golden and reddish highlights in her hair. Just like the season, her personality reflects total transformation. It is difficult to get to know her without letting a part of yourself die and another part of yourself be reborn.
She sits on the grass and stares at her reflection in the pond. Today is her 18th birthday and she is supposed to be at the Sunday church service with her family, finalizing the agreements of her arranged marriage. Instead, she is hiding from everybody. But there is no hiding from herself, as she continues to analyze her own reflection. Why am I so broken? She ponders, why can’t I just be happy?
It is only a matter of time before Autumn faces her inevitable fate and walks herself over to the church, sighing all the way there. Instead of walking in through the main entrance, she sneaks into the back where she finds her priest sitting in a small room where he is preparing for the sermon. The door is slightly cracked open and she gradually invites herself inside while knocking.
“Your family has been looking for you,” he tells her. He is a man who holds himself with power and authority, yet still treats others like his respective equals. Unlike other men who have lost their youthful spirit by his age, he is playful and humorous. However, anyone who misjudges him for a lack of seriousness or underestimates his command for honor will surely regret it.
“I just can’t do it!” she bursts into tears and throws herself on the bench next to the priest, “I can’t live like this!”
“Why not?” he shakes his head, “There is no need to fear. You’re marrying into an extremely wealthy, political, famous family; you will be safe for the rest of your long life.”
Autumn pauses for a moment before looking into his eyes with total desperation, “run away with me!” She pleads, “let’s run away together!”
The priest instantly chuckles and bows his head, “I don’t think so, young girl. You have a great imagination.”
“Stop pretending already,” she huffs in frustration, “You’re a religious man, undoubtably. So can’t you see that there is something out-of-this-world here, something beyond earthly matters? Don’t you teach your flock every week to follow their hearts?”
“I think the heart of the matter is that you have demons inside of yourself that you need to work on. As do I.” The priest stands up, clears his throat and adjusts himself. He excuses Autumn out of the room and tells her he has business to attend to.
And so she is left alone to face a destiny she cannot agree with. Her soul feels too unsettled to roll with the punches. There is too much energy inside of her. She was born to forge a path that she creates, not one that is simply given to her.