October has always been one of my favorite months. As a child growing up in New Orleans I fondly remember the thrilling sensation of the first cold front (like what we’re experiencing this morning!), the crisp air, shorter days, and the animated decorations of ghosts, werewolves, vampires, mummies, and monsters perched about town. The ghost stories told by friends at late night slumber parties added to the feeling of mystery in the air. Sometimes I felt a little scared- but not scared to death, scared to life, as this time of year I always felt a little more alive and awake. To this day, I love the ambiance of October and the sense of heightend imagination that comes with the season.
In honor of this whimsical season, our theme this month is “Myths & Stories To Inspire.” I am grateful that in this era of great rationality and science and technology, our imaginations are still engaged by story, myth, and art. You see, many of the world’s greatest teachings are like buried treasure hidden inside our own stories and in the myths of different cultures. These stories have the power to awaken truths within us that are universal no matter what language or culture we come from, and help us to get to know ourselves better. Indian mythology has so many yogic and life teachings woven into it. And the familiar figures of Halloween from our own western lore are rich in symbolism and meaning and help us to shine the light on our own shadows.
Ghosts, for example, represent, among many other things, an unbalanced attachment to the past over the present, and an unfulfilled longing to live life more passionately. Vampires represent a tendency to greedily use and suck other people’s energy. Frankenstein’s monster represents a part of us that can become unnaturally warped by technology, while werewolves represent the untamed expression of our instinctive animal nature. Mummies symbolize our capacity to sometimes numb ourselves to the world, going through the motions of life, half-dead. Rather than supressing or hiding the darkest parts of our nature, to express these aspects of our consciousness through story and costume and even humor can be incredibly therapeutic.
We’ll be sharing some fun stories with you this month that we hope will help you shine the light on your own life. We’d also like to invite you to the 5th annual Anba Dlo Halloween Festival at The New Orleans Healing Center Saturday Oct 20th, filled with fun, music, art, dance, and imagination! Wild Lotus will once again be the home of the Sacred Music Room where I’ll be offering a session of mantra music from 9-10pm. Hope you can join us.
Please check out all the wonderful happenings we have this month. And visit our freshly updated website for all the latest.