Writing Creatively With Spirit

A journey of psychic discovery


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Biography

Late summer flowers in Cannon Hill Park

Late summer flowers in Cannon Hill Park

I may be venturing into new writing territory. I was asked today to consider writing a biography. From fictional stories to real life ones. Interesting. Anyone out there with experience of biography willing to offer me some advice?

I need to do a Shamanic journey to seek some guidance on this – feels a little outside of my comfort zone.

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Love is Not a Reward

The long silence has been the result of getting my head down and focusing on completing 3 major pieces of writing.

Love is Not a Reward - Stories and Sourcebook

Love is Not a Reward – Stories and Sourcebook

I’ve come up for air. I’ve been going through the proofs of the two Love is Not a Reward books – text and source books. They will be available for sale soon, just a few more corrections and they’ll be on the shelves.

Also, I’ve just completed the first draft of a play. I won’t mention the title at the moment because it might change. It’s out to readers so I can breath for a few days. Initial responses have been very favourable, though the indications are that more work will be required to make it ready for stage. 

I am, however, very excited by suggestions that it would work as a radio play, and also as a book (narrative). One person even mentioned film.

Does the spiritual work affect my writing?  Absolutely!! Particularly the subject matter. Even the colour of the cover for Love is Not a Reward was shown to me in a shamanic journey.


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Birmingham shamanic group

2014-02-14 04.56.22Having looked for and not found a shamanic group in Birmingham, I decided to start one. We’ve had one meeting so far with voice, drums and journeying. It was very healing.

There were 3 of us. Our next meeting on February 25th will have a 25% increase in participants. Yes, there will be 4 of us.

The format is that I do a little teaching session on the principles of shamanism followed by the experiential work. Last time I looked at the place and purpose of ritual.

From small acorns great oaks grow. Watch this space. Let me know if you’re interested in joining us.


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One year on

10th January 2014

An idea lives on

An idea lives on

One year ago today (10th January 2013) I started this blog to share with others the strange phenomena that had happened with my second novel, (i.e. things I’d written about started to happen in real life) see below and also see about. I wanted to see whether engaging in psychic development would have any noticeable effect on my future writing.

It has been an amazing year.

Crystal ball

Crystal ball

Circles – I began going to psychic development circles on Mondays and Thursdays. The Monday classes were focused more on using tools such as cards, crystal balls etc to give messages. The Thursday classes focused more on connecting directly with spirit (mediumship) in order to give messages.

I had many fantastic experiences. I realised that I could give messages using just about anything from cards, crystal balls, photographs, coloured ribbon, to plant leaves, flowers and scrunched up bits of paper. I learned that these things are just props, something to focus on until the connection with spirit is so strong that you don’t need them anymore. In the Thursday sessions I built my connection and learned how to do it without the props.

PICT2188I was given many amazing messages from others in these sessions. I also learned that a trained and experienced circle leader can see inside your meditation. It was in one of these sessions that I was directed to look more closely at the Maroons in Jamaica. Several messages from different people lead me to push past my fear and explore shamanism. I first met one of my animal teachers at a Thursday circle.

The Amadeus Centre, West London

The Amadeus Centre, West London

Shamanism – My exploration of shamanism took me to a workshop at the Amadeus in London in June. It was called The Way of the Shaman. It was incredibly intense and I came away knowing that shamanism was the spiritual path for me. It lead to a new category of the blog by the same name.

Earl Purdy and me - awesome man

Earl Purdy and me at A Course in Miracles Conference – awesome man 

Workshops – In between the circles and the shamanic workshop I attended a number of other developmental workshop. These are recorded under Developmental Events.

 

 

 

Dreams – Once I began the circles my dreams became much more active and in some cases predictive. Many of these are recorded under Dreams. I was incredibly grateful to everyone who made suggestions on how to interpret them.

Graves at Brompton Cemetry

Graves at Brompton Cemetry

Stepping stones – Sometimes things would happen that didn’t fit into any of the categories. Things like seeing things flash before my eyes, or hearing voices that instructed me to do certain things (am I scaring you now?) like when I was told about Tom Seligman. The information lead me to more information for the research for the book I was writing. Another lead me to West Brompton Cemetery in London.

Countdown to Cameroon – From the research I developed a curiosity about my African ancestry. I took a DNA test which showed that my ancestors were from Cameroon. In October I set off to find them and had an adventure that surpassed all my expectation.

African Ancestry DNA kit

African Ancestry DNA kit

Writing – And what about the writing? As well as the many thousands of words of blogging I wrote two more books.

The first, Never on Sunday was published as an ebook in August and in December in hard copy. Both are available from Amazon.

Never on Sunday by Penny Dixon

Never on Sunday by Penny Dixon

The second book, Love is Not a Reward is current out to readers for comment. The ones I’ve received so far are favourable. This is the one that’s linked to the parenting course that I’ve been writing for the polytechnic in Barbados. It’s due out in about three months time.

Trying to get over the shock

It wasn’t all hard work in Barbados

So has the experiment worked? Did the psychic development influence my writing? The only evidence I have is that things I’ve written in both Never on Sunday and Love is Not a Reward have happened in real life. I’m still a little spooked by it because I never know which things are going to manifest in real life. Maybe that would be true prediction, true prophecy.

Where to now? – Well, the writing continues. I have at least eight books in my head waiting to come out. Spiritually I will be focusing more on shamanic practices and will write about these as much as I can.

Dancing with the juju man

Dancing with the juju man in Cameroon

Back to Cameroon – I’ll be going back to Cameroon later this year so will be writing about that too, along with anything interesting that happens in my spiritual, ancestral and writing world. I hope you will continue to drop in from time to time.


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Cameroon Experience – Take care the juju man

Sunday 22nd September 2013

Where to begin? Start at the beginning, go to the end and there stop! Can’t remember who said it but it’s probably the best plan for this blog.

My escort

My escort

I went to church. We were a little late getting there as my escort was on Africa time, but we were only ten minutes late due to some gentle prodding from me. I think they’d just sung a song and said a prayer by the time we arrived, and were splitting into seminar groups.

Young people had a choice of four as did the adults. I attended the one entitled ‘no limits with faith.’ I think the title ‘seminar’ was misleading. My understanding of splitting people into seminar groups is that they can explore a topic in a more interactive way than in a big group.

Not so here. It was 30 minutes of mini preaching by a young woman with a round, well scrubbed face, sensible clothes and the mandatory head wrap. I was the only woman in the church who didn’t have her hair covered. Also the only one wearing jewellery and make up. Of the 60 or so members the women out numbered the men by 3:1.

About ten minutes into the seminar my mind began drifting and I looked around at the other groups. (We were in different parts of the room). Pretty much the same thing was going on in the other groups, and I noticed a number of members who wasn’t even trying to hide their boredom.

I was thinking that at least it was only 30 minutes and that we must be coming near the end when the pastor announced that there was 15 minutes left. I almost groaned out loud. As he announced the 8 minutes left mark I wondered how seven minutes could have gone by so slowly.

That torture ended only to be replaced by a televised sermon, beamed live from Nigeria, by the founder of the ministry. Two hours was more than I could stand. After the lengthy testimonies I tried to keep up with his sermon with the many Bible reference, before consciousness abdicated and I drifted in and out of sleep.

It wasn’t that I disagreed with anything he was saying. I believe that if God is protecting you nothing can harm you. I believe that if you surrender your life to spirit that you will be provided for in every way possible in order to fulfil your life purpose. I just didn’t need to be told it in so many different ways in two hours.

After the sermon I was invited to stand and be welcomed to the church formally. I was also invited to meet the pastor after what turned out to be three hours and twenty minutes service.

‘How was it?’ he enquired as I sat opposite him as if being interviewed.

‘Long.’ I replied.

He seemed a little taken aback and said that today was a special meeting; normally they finish at 11 a.m. which would have shaved a whole hour off.

I couldn’t promise that I’d be coming back, but said I’d think about it.

Rick, my escort, invited me to have lunch with him. I got to try the local dish that I’d heard so much about, cornmeal fufu. I was convinced it was going to be like Jamaican turn cornmeal, but alas it was a much stodgier, more tasteless affair.

I enjoyed the pumpkin leaves it was served with though. So much so that I bought some in the market later to use as part of the meal I cooked for the house.

He’s part of the housekeepers household and gave me the opportunity to ask if there was a picture of the man who is buried at the front of the house we’re living in. I was curious to see if his was the face I saw on my drive into Kumbo on my first day.

The man in the photo they showed me didn’t have a beard, and the face I saw definitely did.

‘Did he ever have a beard?’ I asked.

‘He did once,’ said the housekeeper who knew him well.

His was exactly the type of beard I’d seen, and I was convinced it was the same man. Maybe he was just welcoming me to his house in the way everyone keeps welcoming me to Cameroon generally, and Kumbo specifically.

We spent a while talking about his mother who is a visionary, and why Christianity is on the rise in Africa, yet declining rapidly in the West.

Prison shop and disused hen house

Prison shop and disused hen house

He then took me on a mini tour of Kumbo. I fell in love with and bought some material from a seamstress who will make me several garments as soon as I can tell her what I want.

We had an impromptu tour of the prison grounds with its farm, fishing lakes and pig farm before heading to the administrative centre, and the town hall which guarded by a lion. Pleasant as it was it was nowhere near as interesting as seeing Squares in the daytime (where we had that delicious fish on my birthday).

Lion like

Lion like

My treat was seeing some juju dancers and getting to dance with one of them. The bells on their ankles reminded me of Morris dancers, but that’s where the similarities ended. They were masked and remained so throughout. They danced to drums and xylophones, big wooden ones that I realised were the ones also used in the funeral rituals Malidoma Patrice Some writes about.

When they finished we wandered down to the palace which was fairly quiet as most people had been watching the juju dancers.

Juju dancers

Juju dancers

Rick pointed out a doorway with many symbols around it and said it was the home of the jujus. I took a picture and was trying to peep into the dark cave- like room when I heard someone shouting at me.

I looked up to see a man running towards me.

‘You can’t go in there?’ he said sternly, and said something to Chima that I didn’t understand.

‘Why?’ I asked curiously.

‘Because it’s secret. You shouldn’t be taking photo or going in there.’

‘I was only looking,’ I protested. ‘Why is it secret?’

Dancing with the juju man

Dancing with the juju man

He just repeated, ‘because it’s secret’ and spoke to Rick again. Chima later explained that he was asking him why he hadn’t explained to me that I couldn’t take pictures or go in there.

‘So why can’t I go in there?’ I wanted to know.

‘Because that’s where the serious juju men live. The ones who can say some words and disappear in front of your eyes. The ones its best to run if you see them. They’re the ones that can do serious things to you.’

2013-09-21 21.07.00‘But I was dancing with them just now, they didn’t seem that scary,’ I protested.

‘They are the ones in training. They haven’t been initiated yet. Once that get initiated things change, they learn how to do some serious magic.’

The interesting thing is that just a few doors down from the juju house is a mosque. Religion and magic side by side.

It was getting close to the time when the market would close so we headed back on a bike, our third of the day. I’m getting used to them now. After haggling over a whole hand of plantains we went back home where Rick proceeded to kill the chicken we were going to have for dinner.

Killing the chicken for dinner

Killing the chicken for dinner

A day-to-day thing for him, it was pure drama for us. I passed on choosing which one of the hens to kill. I didn’t want to look into its eyes and risk seeing it pleading for its life.

It’s such a long time since I saw a chicken being killed that I asked if I could film it. As Chima pulled the knife across the chicken’s neck a cock crowed. As if it knew one of its kind was laying down its life to feed some hungry people.

As I was up to by elbow in frying chicken someone said, ‘This is Banner. He’s the natural medicine man we told you about.’

Nearly ready for the pot

Nearly ready for the pot

He was apparently in a bar across the road and wanted to meet me, but as I couldn’t go to him, he came to me. There I was, hugging this man in my own kitchen and arranging to meet him tomorrow.

It’s been a long time since I ate chicken so fresh. Chima and the housekeeper joined us for dinner. It was a real community affair. It fed eight of us comfortably.

Tomorrow I begin my first day of teaching.


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Countdown to Cameroon – 17 days to go

Sunday 1st  September

It should have been a day of bee-like activity of preparations for Cameroon. I was awake at 5.45 a.m. and raring to go. I did my cards, A Course in Miracles lesson, journal and a 30 minute shamanic journey. And was in the gym by 8.30 a.m.

Not having been all week I gave 100% in a 45 minute spin class followed by abs and upper body work. A quick blast in the steam room and I was ready to pick two pounds of blackberries from the grounds at the gym.

The healing Wisdom of Africa by Malidoma Patrice Some

The healing Wisdom of Africa by Malidoma Patrice Some

After making a crumble from the blackberries with apples and plums from my garden, I was just fit for a snooze. I resisted, however, because my attention was completely caught by Malidoma Soma’s third book which arrived a couple of days ago.

The Healing Wisdom of Africa – finding life purpose through nature, ritual and community is providing many answers to the issues that are arising in my shamanic journeys. It was probably the best preparation for Cameroon for today.


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Countdown to Cameroon – 18 days to go

Saturday 31st August

Already it’s the last day of August and my journey is becoming more real. I have little flashes of excitement but I know more of that will kick in once I’ve completed all the paperwork.

I posted my visa application on Thursday afternoon, so theoretically it should be ready for collection on Tuesday. I haven’t decided which day to go down to London yet.

Next week will be shopping for the essentials such as wellington boots and a mosquito net. I think I’m going to need a bigger case than the one I usually travel with.

I’ve started getting my audio visual equipment together but I need to do a couple of practice runs with video blogging. I may have a go tomorrow.

I have to confess to being fascinated by the book on IBOGA – The Visionary Root of African Shamanism. Maybe my preparation would be a bit further on if all my spare time wasn’t spent with my head in the book.

Somehow it feels more important that I learn about the properties and effects of this power plant than about the geography and customs of Cameroon. (I guess in learning about Iboga I’m indirectly learning about the customs and beliefs of Cameroon).