Burn the Effigy of False Stories – Winter, Fire, and Marzanna

At 4:30 PM the sun starts to go down. It is cold outside. I light a candle for my evening meditation, a real karma-burner that allows me to open the lotus blossom of my heart. Feel its fragrance, be inside the chambers of where the oldest stories I tell myself are hidden. I look at that flame every night and I focus on the process: it is a pleasure to burn the old life inside me because it is too painful to carry anymore.

Most people spend their entire lives crawling. This is a fact. The mind is a series of patterns on which we are sent messages from our subconscious. These stories are older than our childhoods, and our karma is to figure out why we came to this planet to suffer the same story over and over again. Why we seem to be the victim of our life instead of the hero is patterned in our subconscious tales of lack, fear, hurt and pain that we were brought to from the human condition. From the suffering that we seem to be doomed to follow.

Its a fucking pleasure to burn that story. I want to throw the entire chapter of my false identity into a pit of flames and never hear words from that place again. I want a working heart and a loving soul.

Fortunately for me, I have Kundalini Yoga, and the teachings of Yogi Bhajan. Tonight my teacher explained to me that all of those stories are from fear. That the way of the heart-centered warrior is not to fight and suffer and lose and be an animal. But to be gracious, regal and gentle with my soul. It is easy to be numb, to be harsh, to be critical and to hate. It is the hardest thing in the world to face fear with the open lotus of the heart.

Yogi Bhajan

“Repeat after me : I love myself, I trust myself, I am myself. LOUDER, Until I believe you…” – Yogi Bhajan

Tonight, I read about the goddess Marzanna. She is a goddess from Poland who represents the seasonal rites of Winter. She is the death that needs to happen in order for Spring to bloom. The Slavic root of her name, mor, or mors, means death. Some German studies have likened her to mare, or nightmare. She visits and brings death, nightmare, phantoms, visions, hallucinations. In other words, she is the bringer of the dark days without sun or sky so that the soil of the Earth is clear for a rebirth.


Marzanna. Ugly doll of death, harbinger of Winter. 

There is a tradition in the Czech Republic to burn an effigy of Marzanna during the vernal equinox of Spring, on March 21. A likeness of Marzanna is brought through the town on that day and burned on a pyre of herbs, flowers, and stones. This is a community passing of Winter and the welcoming of Spring. When she is burned, it is considered bad luck to touch any of her ashes after she has been put on the fire. You don’t want that old story carried around with you any more than you want six more weeks of cold. The time for death and mourning is passing and we don’t have time for the baggage that follows that season. Don’t look at Marzanna once you are done with your ritual. Don’t carry any more of her stories with you. You don’t need them anymore.

In the next few months, I’ve got a lot of burning to do. The old habits, the old stories, the old triggers. They need to die quick deaths so that life may regenerate in my soul. May the following weeks bring you a burning process that clears the cosmos for your destiny. May the false piece of yourself that you keep identifying with die out. May you feel the lotus blossom of your heart open and may that burn bright in the harsh conditions. May your baggage fall into flames. May you regenerate with love and understanding so you may be strong and carry your community through the Aquarian Age.

Sat Nam.

Burn the death goddess

May your Goddess serve you to burn the stories.

Spiritual Journalism

I was sitting in Starbucks last week, overhearing a conversation between an Atheist and a Christian.

Here’s how it went.

Atheist : Point.

Christian: Counterpoint.

Atheist: Strongly worded point.

Christian: Louder Point.

Atheist: Even Louder Point.

Christian: Interruption.

Atheist: Not wanting to offend, but really can’t participate in a rigid dogma that has strict guidelines.

Christian: Not wanting to sound rude, but denial of something that is omnipresent isn’t representing the truth.

Atheist: (drinks coffee)

Christian: (Goes back to typing)

And what did we learn? Everyone enjoys engaging in a vivid debate with people who don’t share their beliefs. But no one wants to learn from the other. Our experiences of our spiritual dimensions are what shape us, and the more we share the better we understand our communication with our higher selves. No one wants to share the stories, only the limitations of a singular mode of celestial communication.

Here is what I hope to do with this blog:

1. Explore spiritual practices, lifestyles and themes. Write about those experiences.

2. Find a connective allegory for those experiences. Create more questions. Make the process relatable.

3. Use new media to chronicle these themes. Share and delight.

4. Highlight some soulful personalities, spiritual explorers and conscious givers in this world. Learn from them.

Here are some of my biases:

1. What practices are “spiritual”?

I don’t know yet, I’ll follow curiosity on that one.

2. What practices are “religious”?

I wouldn’t define this as a religion blog, but I am not discounting parts of religion as a way to trace a story.

3. What practices are “personal”?

I’m a Kundalini Yoga freak and I have an altar. Other than that perhaps my bias stems from our modern fascination in alternative lifestyles.

4. How do you define “soulful” when you can’t define the soul?


Either way, I’m hoping this blog grows into “This American Spiritual Life”. I hope you discover new avenues of connection with your higher self. I hope not to teach you anything, but to entertain and delight your curiosity about different spiritual elements. I hope to create a new path of spiritual journalism.  I hope you believe in the beauty of your soul.

Sat Nam

P.S. Sat Nam means “Truth is My Identity” A Kundalini Yoga Aloha.