2022 the year we learn to listen to love
Week 11--in which we explore the strange mystical pretzel called time
Friends, soul writers, mystics, and lovers of prayer,
A strange thing happened this week.
A very strange thing. Strange but at the same time thrilling and perfect.
It happened because I’m in the early stages of developing a witch mystery school that will open this summer. Ever since The Return of the Witches pilgrimage last summer, I’ve known something more was coming, but didn’t know what. I sensed the witches from the past wanting us to go beyond hearing their stories and into their healing medicines, but I had no idea what that might look like.
Cue Joan of Arc.
It’s a wild story, and I’ll tell it in full another time, but the gist is Joan rode into Suzi von Mensenkampff’s meditation last month and started dictating a list of things all in 12s. From astride her white charger, Joan ordered Suzi to contact me: “Janet will understand.”
And guess what, I did!
When Joan calls, rest assured, I get to work. So as I read and reread Joan’s long list of things in 12s, I began gathering resources from a wild range of disciplines including moon astrology—natal and Black Moon Lilith—the Chandra system, depth numerology, sacred geometry, mystical teachings of the bees, mediumship, and information coming through the James Webb Space Telescope which looks back billions of years in time.
Time leapt to the forefront as the sacred fulcrum of this mystery school.
Time, not in the patriarchal straight line of Chronos time from birth to death or cause to effect, but Kairos time as a mystical spiral that sees into the past and the future all at once.
At the same time that I was beginning to gather resources for this nascent mystery school, Perdita Finn and I were putting a spring intensive together, The Long Story of Our Souls.
I’m just a tad excited about this because it’s the first time Perdita is teaching the mystery and magic of reincarnation.
I’ve hosted Perdita more than any other mystic. Each time, a first. In March 2020, I hosted her first intensive on the rosary. In February 2021, I hosted her first on working with the dead. Then last May, in preparation for the pilgrimage, I invited Perdita to share her unique understanding of The 15 Mysteries of Joan of Arc.
If you were in any of those intensives, you know that when Perdita teaches, alchemy happens. You are a different person when the intensive ends.
So when 2022 dawned, I asked Perdita if there was anything she wanted to teach. Of course, there was: Reincarnation.
Perdita said she’s finally ready to help people discover the long long story of their souls.
So we started to plan. One day, I told her about Joan and the ideas I was developing for a year-long witch mystery school and how time was emerging as the central pin of the whole thing.
“Time?” she said, “Time! If you want to understand time, you must read Time Loops by Eric Wargo."
Now when Perdita, or any mystic I adore, tells me to read a book, I get that book.
So all this week, this strange delicious wonderful week, I’ve been reading Time Loops. For hours on end. Stopping every few sentences to stare off in space as one more nugget from the mystery of time settles into my startled brain, unravelling any remaining vestiges of patriarchal conditioning.
The basic premise of the book is that precognition is not a premonition of something that will happen, but rather information flowing from “our future’s past.”
It’s a language pretzel that does make my head hurt, but slowly I’m seeing that the witches of the past are not only alive and speaking to us in their future; the witches of the future, in what Wargo calls the “Not Yet,” are alive and speaking to us from our own future--which is their past.
In other words, the mystic witch I am to become in this lifetime already exists. And she knows me and helps me and sees me because I am her past.
I know this is wild, and it’s taking me days to slowly digest it. To help me hold onto the mystical insights that are flooding in, I began to draw time as a mobius strip, like my logo above.
I drew me in the middle looking back at witches in the “once was” and then turning and looking at witches in the “not yet.” These two rivers overflowing with symbols, ideas, perceptions, insights, dreams…converge in the center, in me, in my “possible now.”
And then the big AHA came.
Maybe you see this coming and sense it’s really a DUH, but it has taken me four days of intense mind-twisting reading to suddenly see that The Long Story of Our Souls is exactly this time pretzel.
This mobius strip of the story of me in this lifetime in relationship with and receiving information from the me in the past (and many versions of me before that) and, at the exact same time, the me in the present in relationship with and receiving information or impressions or something from the me in the next lifetime, and so on.
It's staggeringly gorgeous.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I had asked Perdita to write a message for today’s Notes from the Field. She was in the midst of a wild New York snow storm that was playing havoc with the power, so she said, let me send you an excerpt from my upcoming book on the dead that will be published in 2023.
And here it is.
Readers of these Notes from the Field, we are the first to get to read this!
In perfect timing, I didn’t read this until after my 4 days in the wormhole of Time Loops.
As a young girl, I sailed with my mad pirate of a father through the Elizabeth Islands, a tiny archipelago off the elbow of Cape Cod. Together we explored hidden harbors, rocky beaches, lighthouses, sheep-filled pastures, remote little villages, and even, secreted behind barbed wire, an abandoned leper colony. We’d hit the tides just right and tack our way through the channel at Woods Hole to arrive at Tarpaulen Cove, a thin lasso of sand around blue water, just as the sun set.
We’d sail all day on a long reach out at sea and drop anchor at Cuttyhunk, a motley collection of weatherworn houses huddled by the shore with a one room schoolhouse and a giant turkey parading down the street. Once when I was seven, my father rowed onto land early in the morning and hid pirate treasure in the dunes and left a map for me to find tacked to a scrub pine.
Each island has its own character—some are piles of barnacled rocks and others hilly heavens hiding the mansions of millionaires. Yet each of these islands, despite their differing topologies, shares features and ecologies in common. Birds carry seeds back and forth from one to the other. The tides ebb and flow along their shores in the same rhythms with the moon. They are continuously being created and recreated from the same energy beneath them.
They are different and they are alike. They exist simultaneously. Beneath the water they are one.
Our past lives are like these islands spread out across the ocean. Each exists separately, distinctly itself, and yet simultaneously part of a larger whole.
We each have big lives and small lives. We have lives where we have lived in mansions, fishermen’s huts, and hidden away in forgotten leper colonies. We have lives that are far off and hard to see from where we are standing right now.
Sometimes the smell of a flower in bloom wafts along on the breeze and we wonder where it is growing. Sometimes it is the smell of fire. In our dreams at night, we swim in the oceans of our unconscious, arriving at long-forgotten beaches, staring up at steep cliffs, feeling sharp shells and soft sand beneath our feet as we reach the shore.
How does reincarnation work, people often ask.
Stuck inside of linear notions of time and narcissistic fantasies of evolutionary or spiritual progress, we think we should be getting better and better, new and improved, every day and every life. How do we keep hierarchical systems of domination from transforming the entangled mysteries of reincarnation into lineages of inheritance and fundamentalist notions of reward and punishment, heaven and hell?
What if the genealogies of the soul are a vast and complex archipelago of islands?
We have all been so many things—saints and sinners, victims and executioners, heroes and fools. We have been animals and trees, weeds and flowers, mountains and streams.
The transmigration of the soul was, before the advent of agriculture and patriarchy, how we understood the natural world. The flowers died in the fall and bloomed in the spring. The tides receded and returned. The moon waxed and waned. The seasons spiraled around themselves. One person died and another was born. In some indigenous cultures the word for great-great grandparent is simply “child.”
We have been Life. We will be Life. We are Life's children.
- How would we approach our lives if we knew that we had more lives than we can possibly imagine?
- What would we do right now if we knew another life was waiting for us after this one? What joys would we claim? What prayers would we say? What would we do differently?
- How would any of us live on this earth if we knew that we would never leave it?
- What if we knew that we would never leave each other?
Imagine a map and on it are all the islands of your soul. Let us explore that map together and find out where the treasure is hidden.
I think Eric Wargo would LOVE this image of time as an archipelago of sensations and memories bursting out of the past and the future in what appear to be random outcroppings, but are really one massive interconnected consciousness as he describes it “dispersed across time.”
So your story, your story in this lifetime and in all lifetimes, is dispersed across time.
But that leaves us with the question of how do you perceive past lives? Ah! There’s the magic we will explore in The Long Story of Our Souls.
Because our souls drop clues on each “island” in the archipelago. Let’s get in a wooden sailboat with Perdita and go visit some of those islands. I think I can promise you’ll be a different person when this intensive ends!
We open Tuesday, March 22 and meet for 4 Tuesdays (Wednesdays for the UK Watch Party) and close with a sacred celebration on Sunday, April 16.
Be sure to watch the delicious video Perdita and I made for you and read the full description of this radical intensive. An adventure you can find nowhere else.
It's all on this page on my site:
to visiting the archipelago of our souls' long story and bringing home our most sacred treasures,
You can read and share all my Notes from the Field from the blog section on my website.
Come hear me read Notes from the Field on YouTube. I love speaking directly to you and Hyldemoer loves chiming in.
facebook: janet conner prayer artist
YouTube: Janet Conner