Sunday, June 22, 2014

Syncronicities and Kali

I've been having a cluster of synchronicities of late, so much so that I have to laugh, and I try to figure out the "meaning" of it all, although I think interpreting synchronicities, like interpreting dreams, is not a one, or even two, or even three dimensional matter.  Also,  interpreting a synchronicity, like interpreting a dream, is archetypal and collective, but it is also "site specific" and very personal.

I've been negotiating for years about a collection of masks for someone.  I admire her work and dedication  very much, but I have found her very difficult to work for.  Well, impossible, for me at least.  She cannot make the collection she wants in leather, and so, in the course of this project,  I've made 5 sample masks, drawings designed to be especially carved by Balinese artists in wood, created a blog for her, researched and archived the unique symbology of her project, even made an elaborate latex mask to see if that worked.  Many hours of speculative work, completely unpaid.  Nothing seemed to please her, and nothing ever seemed clear to me.  The  only mask she seemed to like is one I made 4 years ago, a "Black Tara" mask, and although she had previously rejected it and asked for  masks that were very specific in their traditional symbology, suddenly she sent me pictures of this mask (which I had sold to a collector)  and said she wanted it. 

The Tibetan Black Tara is very much related, in meaning, cross-cultural origins,  and in appearance, to the Hindu Kali. 

Serene Zloof performing Kali

Photo courtesy Lena Grace
Interestingly, a mutual acquaintance of ours is a woman who bought a number of the original "Masks of the Goddess" collection 6 years ago, and I'm pleased to say has been using them  in her own work with the Goddess and her community. One of the masks that she owns is the mask of Kali, a mask I made in 1998 using my own face as the base.  That's a potent mask, and has been used in some significant performances.*  I myself have danced with fire in it, invoking Kali with dance and spoken word.

Anyway, this commission wasn't going to work.  I found myself walking around the house muttering to myself "The heck with this, she can drive someone else nuts!"  Maybe she feels that way about me too.   I decided to withdraw from the project. 

Within a day of making this decision, but before sending an email that released the project, I received a strange email from a woman who wrote that Lena (the woman who owns the Kali mask) had lent her the Kali mask, and she was making a musical about the Goddess.  She further went on to give a link to a mask maker ("with integrity" she said) who she was using for her musical, a woman who makes her masks out of latex and not leather.  I didn't much like the "with integrity" comment, wondering if that meant I somehow lacked it, and I also did not bother to inform her that the Kali mask is made of matter.  What is significant in this is that within a day of my deciding to not pursue the project any further, I get an email from someone who, not knowing about the situation, gives me a link to another mask artist, one who does not use leather, which I immediately passed on appropriately, and hopefully all are now happy and this artist will pick up where I left off.

Later that day I was driving to do some errands, and I noticed I had been humming a song.  It was Tchaikovsky's "The Nutcracker"!

Personally, this synchronicity has a lot of, well, internal significance.  Making masks is what I do, my mastery gained with experience, training, endless repetition, study, and always the help of the spirits.   The process is always infused  with synchronicity and the collective mind.  Magic, in other words.  I realize that what I was doing was compromising in too  many ways, and I had  lost my desire to do the project.    A worthy project, but not for me to do.

So, Kali stepped in! 

Within a day of all this, by the way, still pondering what the meaning of this was for me, I received this from a group email: my experience, or interpretation, of working with both Synchronicities and with The Goddesses, there is personal work, transformation, that they offer, and they are also often reflections of a greater, integral reality.  Kali, Black Tara, is, for me, about releasing what has to go, has to be cut away with Kali's sword, in the world, or perhaps, in more simple ways, within our lives.  I do not blame anyone in this, rather, the piece of this that is for me has to do with the ways that I do not respect, or trust,  my own knowledge, experience, and gift.

But when we work with Kali, when we work with the Goddess, we work with a great power rising in the world, the Dark Goddess striving to transform and heal.  And She works with us, whether we realize it or not.  I think, as I work now on a new Kali mask, that greater meaning is what I'm going to meditate upon...........
Performance 2000, Photo courtesy Tom Lux


Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Wow! I would love to repost this, Lauren. It really shows the way that synchronicity can act as a guiding force.

lauren raine said...

You're welcome to.......still trying to figure this one out! thank you...........