Writing Creatively With Spirit

A journey of psychic discovery


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Countdown to Cameroon – 27 days to go

21st August 2013

Encyclopedia of Spirituality by Timothy Freke

Encyclopedia of Spirituality by Timothy Freke

It was a fairly quiet day in terms of preparation. I went to the gym and did a good workout. I ate three Moringa seeds and sprinkled a teaspoon of the powder on my vegetables. But alas ruined the effect when I found a bottle of ginger punch in a cupboard which had been there so long it’s now morphed into a beautiful liquor. Two and a half glasses later I vowed to do better tomorrow.

I also ordered a copy of Malidoma Patrice Some’s book Healing wisdom of Africa. I was prompted to this after reading Timothy Freke’s book The Encyclopaedia of Spirituality again.

I first read the book ten years ago at the start of my conscious spiritual journey. It’s a brilliant book in many ways, but what struck me on second reading is the total absence of any reference to Africa.

If this was the only book you read on Africa you could be forgiven for thinking that Africa does not exist, and has never had any influence on world spirituality and spiritual practices.

 

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Countdown to Cameroon – 28 days to go

20th August 2013

Moringa seeds

Moringa seeds

The body preparations began yesterday with the first of three visits per week to the gym. Today was a rest day – only a walk and back to the High St. (About 2 miles)

Instead of malaria tablets I’m using Moringa seeds and powder. Moringa has been shown to build immunity against malaria which is only one of its many health properties. Other include: reduces high blood pressure, cures diabetes, reverses failing eyesight, and helps blood to coagulate. It’s brilliant with weight loss, and even turns grey hair black. It is actually called the miracle tree.

Moringa leaf powder

Moringa leaf powder

So I reckon I can use Moringa as a one stop for all my aliments. (I’m not suggesting I have all of the above, but I’m hoping it can save me a few pounds on hair dye and help to reduce my visits to Specsavers).

Still on the body preparation front – I’ve booked to have my Yellow Fever vaccine on Friday. I tried to persuade my GP to let me have the vaccine for free, as I have made no claim on the NHS or her practice for nearly twelve years. But alas no. I have to play £50 like everyone else!  I’m also cutting down on my sugar intake. Though with jam making season around the corner, and the fruit trees laden with plums, apples and blackberries, this could be challenging.

Admin wise I got my passport photos done and collected all my papers into one pile. I’ve decided to send my application for the visa by special delivery and go to collect it from the embassy when it’s ready. This is because the only other option for returning my passport is a stamped addressed envelope. I’m not keen to risk using ordinary post this close to departure. Even my post man advised against it. Tomorrow I’ll try and find a good deal on the train for picking it up.

Spiritually I’m doing more shamanic journeying. They’ve become part of my daily routine. I’ve been having some amazing experiences which I will, when I can find the time, record in this blog.


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Countdown to Cameroon – 29 days to go

I decided to focus on visa application today. Fortunately the letter of invitation arrived. Next was a look at the Cameroon Embassy website to check the process and requirements. (See below) It’s been a while since I traveled to anywhere requiring a visa. I was more than a little taken aback by the list. There was more that didn’t apply to me, but there was enough that did to make me want to throw my hands up, hold my head and cry. But I’m beginning to do process quite well.

So off I went to the bank to check the state of my finance (internet banking not working) only to find I’d lost my bank card. Well, left it in an ATM last week is a more accurate description. So one more task to add to the list – report lost card.

Then I ordered travel insurance and printed off my travel ticket details. I fear a few trees may have been sacrificed for this application. That was enough for today. All this came on the back of a full workout at the gym followed by a Zumba class. Yes, the body preparation has begun. More about that tomorrow.

Tomorrow I’ll do the photos, check out postal money orders and re-book my yellow fever vaccine.

  • (A)   Documents to be submitted:
  1. A passport valid for at least 6 months.
  2. Two completed application forms.
  3. Two clear passport-size photographs taken frontally.
  4. A stamped self-addressed envelope if you require the visa to be posted back to you.
  5. A legalised letter of invitation with the Cameroon Police from either the host/contact/partner in Cameroon (accompanied by a legalised copy of the Cameroonian National Identity Card or Residence Permit).
  6. Return or continuation ticket.
  7. Bank statement (at least £1, 000), except where a tour operator/travel agency is organising a trip.
  8. Visa application fee.
  9. Travel Insurance.
  10. Marriage Certificate for mixed couple and a letter from the Cameroonian partner.
  11. Child’s Birth Certificate and a letter from one or both parents allowing the child to travel.
  12. Application Procedure
  13. Completed applications should be lodge at the reception desk of the High Commission between 9.30am to 12.30pm, Monday to Friday, except on bank, (public) holidays in England and Cameroon.
  14. The presence of visa applicants at the High Commission may be required for purposes of identification.
  15. Passports are generally ready for collection within 48 hours. Collection is between 2.00pm and 3.30pm every working day. Request for accelerated processing should be justified. If not, it is the normal waiting period, which applies.
  16. Application Fees: 

    1 day to 3 months = £62

  17. NB: In cash or postal money order please. The above amounts are subject to variation.

Sanitary Requirements

Compulsory vaccines:

  1. Yellow Fever
  2. Cholera (If coming from affected area). Proof required at port of entry.

Recommended Vaccines

  1. Typhoid
  2. Meningitis
  3. Malaria protection


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Countdown to Cameroon – 30 days to go

Now that I’ve got Never on Sunday to publication stage I can begin to focus on the preparation for Cameroon. Only 30 days to go and still a lot to do.

I still have to apply for my visa, which I can’t do till I receive some papers from the project. Despite two reminders I haven’t received anything yet. I’m working on the principle that they were leaving me alone to focus on completing the book. Hope the stuff comes tomorrow though. I’d like to start that process asap.

I’m going to arrange to get my yellow fever vaccine within the next few days and begin shopping for things I need to take.

A friend of mine who’s going to work in Liberia said she got a great mosquito net from Sports Direct for £24.99. I’m going to check them out tomorrow.  Please let me know if you know where I can get a better deal.


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Never on Sunday – would you read it?

Never on Sunday by Penny Dixon

Never on Sunday by Penny Dixon

It’s been a while since I wrote a blog. This is because I’ve been busy editing and working on completing my latest book Never on Sunday. It’s already created a bit of controversy as the pastor who first gave me the idea to write it didn’t want to be associated with it. He said that although he personally thought it was brilliant that his church board wouldn’t approve. In addition,  the first person I approached to proof read it for me said she had to pray about it. She came back and said, based on the description of the book, she was unable to read it.

I’ve attached the book cover (Thanks to Pam Neaves of Mint Creative Solutions) and the description of the book. (See below) I would love to know what you think. Would you read such a book? Would you at least be curious to look at it?

It’s a difficult job being the head of a church in these times.  Pastor Brown’s focus on meeting the deadline for his new book distracts him from what’s going on in his congregation. Yet beneath the songs of praise run deep sexual passions that struggle to find expression in ways that are acceptable to the church.

As members of his congregation attempt to reconcile their religious beliefs with their sexual urges they grapple with issues such as infidelity, erectile dysfunction, pre-marital sex, abuse within marriage, and more.

His members face a number of challenges which Pastor Brown tries to guide them through; but who will guide him when the bomb lands in his own house?

These stories are touching in their ability to connect with what is real. They illustrate of the powerful redemptive nature of forgiveness, and confirm that true love is the only way to heal. 


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The Way of the Shaman – Journey to find my life purpose

Saturday 3rd August 2013

Of Water and the Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some

Of Water and the Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some

I’d just finished reading Malidoma Patrice Some’s book Of Water and the Spirit and was so envious that he knew what his life purpose was so early in life that I decided to do a journey to try and find mine. I’ve been asking since January to be helped to remember what it is.

I set the intention three times – ‘my intention is to journey to the lower world to meet my animal guides and to ask them to show me my life purpose.’

I felt very apprehensive as I walked to my usual axis mundi, and the journey down the roots of the tree was slow and laborious.

Both the eagle and the jaguar were waiting for me. They bowed to me as before and I told them why I’d come. I began to gibber away about what I’d been told before about being a high priestess in Egypt, about being a writer, a healer and a shaman. I rattled on for ages while they patiently listened and didn’t interrupt.

‘So can you tell me,’ I ended.

‘You said you wanted to be shown,’ jaguar reminded me.

They both looked kindly at me, before eagle flew off.

‘Where’s she going?’ I asked jaguar.

‘To keep watch,’ he replied and indicated to me to follow him.

I was expecting something akin to what I’d been reading in Malidoma’s book – some kind of initiation. We walked through a clearing, through a forest and past the mouth of a cave. All these things are in Of Water and the Spirit.

Each time I thought the jaguar was going to show me something, but he just kept on walking till we came to another much bigger clearing.

It took me a while to work out that we was standing in the middle of a massive heart. Gradually the outside of the heart filled with men of all different shapes, sizes and ages. Although of different races they were predominantly black.

‘You are to heal men my opening your heart to them,’ the jaguar said.

I wanted to scream ‘NO! NOT THAT! THAT’S TOO PAINFUL!’ I looked around at all the men and began to cry. I wasn’t just crying in the journey, I was also crying into my blindfold. I felt as if my own heart was breaking.

All I could think of was that it would mean no happiness for me – men constantly coming and going in my life. The jaguar tried to reassure me that all would be fine.

‘But what about the women?’ I asked, ‘Don’t the women need healing too?’

‘When the men are healed, the women will be healed too,’ he carried on in his soothing way. ‘The women are strong but they look to the men for leadership, they look to the men for love. The men need to heal. It’s why you came.’

All I kept thinking was, ‘what about my own happiness,’ while the jaguar went on about the importance of the men healing.

Then all the men disappeared and were replaced by prepubescent boys. My heart went out to them and I sobbed (I must find a less clichéd word) literally and figuratively. Then they were replaced by the men, then the boys. They kept interchanging.

‘How am I going to do this?’ I asked the jaguar.

‘That’s for another journey;’ he answered softly, ‘this one was about your purpose.’

‘Where’s the eagle?’ I enquired.

‘She’s gone to check out the way,’ he said before the call-back tempo made me realise how quickly 30 minutes had passed.

I was still crying when I returned, with a heaviness that made it difficult to move. It wasn’t really what I’d wanted to hear or to see. It felt (feels) like too much at too big a personal cost.


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Countdown to Cameroon – Drowning in paperwork

After the initial rush of activity things slowed right down while I collected, distributed and received many pieces of paper. These included copies of my police check and passport, a contact form, my CV, my flight details and a letter of intent. I’ve filled in a questionnaire about why I want to go and what I have to offer and sent it to the project coordinator in Cameroon.

I’m waiting for a few more bits of paper to begin applying for my visa, which I’ve been advised to do within the next ten days. I also need to book my yellow fever vaccine. I think I’ll do that within the next ten days as well.

On Sunday I’m going to spend some time with a friend to learn how to make effective video blogs. I may even post some of my practice ones here.

Of Water and the Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some

Of Water and the Spirit by Malidoma Patrice Some

In the lull I read an amazing book by Malidoma Patrice Some, Of Water and the Spirit. It’s given me fantastic insight into indigenous African spiritual practices. It’s also a brilliant history book. Although he’s not Cameroonian I learned a lot from him about pre and post colonial Africa through the eyes of someone who straddled both worlds.

Of Water and the Spirit spurred me on to complete my own book Never on Sunday which is currently at the publication process.