Channeling Aphrodite

AphroditePhoto Credit: Dusty Wasp, Trapdoor Studios

 

Last month, I had the pleasure of attending Marianne Williamson’s Aphrodite training. I’ve probably heard Marianne speak hundreds of times by now, but I still cried when she walked on stage looking like a total goddess. There was such an exciting and intense energy in the room, and I felt beyond grateful to be in attendance with so many incredible women, many who had crossed oceans to be there.

Over the weekend, Marianne spoke in-depth about what it means to really embody the Greek Goddess of love and sexuality. The Goddesses are all archetypes, or inner patterns, that most women can relate to and use to better understand their own desires and tendencies. Aphrodite has always been the goddess I most identify with. I’m a Scorpio, so love and sensuality are my jam!

Just like Aphrodite, I love to be in love! If I could design my perfect life, it would, of course, include being madly in love, writing books, and traveling the world with the man of my dreams. I’m a person craves adventure and excitement over tradition. I was never that girl dreaming of my wedding day, so I don’t relate to Hera, the Goddess of Marriage, who only cares about finding a husband and feels incomplete without a spouse. Maybe someday I’ll fall in love and meet a man who will change everything, but the truth is, I’ve always felt as though perhaps I was missing a girl gene since I don’t have a strong desire to have children. In that respect, Demeter, the maternal goddess, who only wants a man to make a baby, definitely isn’t my archetype. And as a woman who despises housework and doesn’t have a domestic bone in her body, I’m hardly Hestia, Goddess of the Hearth, who loves to keep house. However, as a girl who always received praise from my father for getting good grades, I will say, I do have a little Athena (the Goddess of Wisdom) in me. Athena is the “father’s daughter,” with a strategist’s mind and a strong desire to achieve.

Although I definitely embodied Athena in school, Aphrodite has been the dominant archetype throughout my life. As far back as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to wear make-up and dress sexy. I even remember wanting to wear an off-the-shoulder dress to my first Holy Communion. As soon I hit puberty, I became total jailbait, enjoying the attention I received from grown men. Now that I think of it, it was probably the Athena in me that kept me focused and out of trouble.

After college, Aphrodite totally took over. For years, all I cared about was being in love and having fun! Just like me, Aphrodite is wild! She loves to play. She loves love. She loves romance and passion. Aphrodite falls in love often and she falls in love easily. It is said that Aphrodite seeks out emotional intensity and adventure over permanence, which answers the question I get all the time, why am I still single.

Unfortunately, Aphrodite isn’t always understood or accepted, especially in certain religions and cultures (even in Western culture). A couple years ago, I was dating a man from the Middle East. When we broke up, he tried to “whore-shame” me, telling me he wished I could be like his mother and his sister, who each had only been with one man their entire lives, which wasn’t unusual for his culture. Early on in the relationship, a girlfriend of mine had warned me, “Amy, you love to be wild! You will never fit into a Middle Eastern household.” I tend not to over-generalize about an entire ethnicity, but it’s true, the two of us did experience a bit of a culture clash. While the notion of having been with only one man my whole life is sweet, I suppose, it’s a tad unrealistic at my age. Aphrodite is not exactly a virgin goddess, after all.

However, after that relationship, Aphrodite, as Marianne would put it, “stayed in her temple.” It wasn’t that I agreed with this man’s point of view or that I was ashamed of my Aphrodite. I love this part of myself! However, I felt this man had been so cruel to me during this break-up (he was a Scorpio, just like me….and Scorpios sting when they are hurt) that I decided I needed to be more careful about the men I let into my life. In the past, I noticed a pattern that I usually (not even consciously) take three-month intervals between boyfriends. After this boyfriend, I was celibate for six whole months, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Aphrodite isn’t going to mess with just anybody. She will only appear to men she deems worthy.

Being a highly sensitive individual, I was really shaken by that break-up. It wasn’t a coincidence that around this time that I took the book I was writing off the market. If someone who knew me on a deep level, someone I had given my heart to, had judged me so harshly, I wondered how strangers would perceive me. I felt maybe I had shared too much, that perhaps the memoir was just a little too personal. I even deleted the entire blog I was writing at the time, which had also been problematic in my relationship. I decided I didn’t want to be an open book anymore.

Before I continue, I do want to say that I feel a bit ashamed I let someone get the best of me like that. The man for me is going to be able to handle both my Aphrodite and the fact I write dating columns. Thank goodness, the universe self-corrected and put me back on track!

Six months after that breakup, I met a man, who, in the twinkle of an eye, made Aphrodite want to come out and play again. We only saw each other for six months, but Aphrodite was back in full effect during that time. I always feel more beautiful, happier, and more like myself when I’m embodying this goddess, but once again, she’s back in her temple–and has been for the last six months. (I’m not sure what’s the significance of these six-month increments; maybe that’s my new pattern). Even with the countless dates I went on this summer, Aphrodite never felt moved to make an appearance. I suppose she is being more selective or protective over me, but I do hope Aphrodite finds a worthy playmate soon.

When Aphrodite is not in love, she can carry her intense passion over to creative endeavors. Equipped with Athena’s wisdom and Aphrodite’s creativity, passion, and lust for life, I couldn’t think of two goddesses I’d rather have on my side as I finish the final draft of my memoir.

When You Know, You Know

Pepperdine Pinboard

One of the keys of manifesting your desires is dwelling in a state of knowing. We’ve all heard the expression, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” However, Dr. Wayne Dyer says the reverse is actually true, “You will see it when you believe it.” I can recall two times in my life where I had this inner sense of knowing I would achieve what I set out to accomplish.

I remember being a sophomore in high school and seeing a picture of Pepperdine University in Malibu. I immediately knew that was the college I was going to attend. Whenever anyone would ask what were my plans for after high school, I would tell them I would be studying at Pepperdine. My mom told me, “Amy, stop telling people you’re going there! We might not be able to afford that expensive school.” I thought to myself, “Don’t worry Mom, I got it covered.” I studied hard, got good grades, and applied to Pepperdine for early admission. Not surprisingly, the school gave me a partial scholarship as well as some student grants, making the tuition affordable and making my dream to attend the oceanside school come true.

Fast forward many years later to adulthood when I decided to write a memoir. I felt I had a story inside of me that needed to be told. I never really questioned whether it would be published—that just seemed like a given to me. However, sometimes when I would tell people I was writing a book, they would often say things such as, “You know, the publishing industry is dying,” or “Publishers aren’t taking risks on new authors these days.” I didn’t listen. It’s human nature for people tend to project their own fear on others. They mean well—people think they are being helpful by warning you of the challenges you may face. Personally, I’ve always been more of an encourager and would never try to discourage or dissuade anyone from achieving his or her dreams. My response would more be like, “You’re writing a book! That’s so exciting! I can’t wait to read it!”

That being said, it wasn’t the fear my book wouldn’t be published that got in the way—it was the fear that it would be! I started to question whether I wanted people to know all my deep dark secrets, secrets I had swept under the rug. So, after all that hard work, I took my book off the market, figuring it hadn’t been a complete waste of time because writing the memoir was very healing for me. About a year and a half ago, I left the pages on my laptop with no intention of trying to publish the book.

This past September, I wrote a blog about “Owning Your Story” to promote Gabrielle Bernstein’s Spirit Junkie Masterclass. I felt like a bit of a hypocrite. Here I was telling you to own your stories and that your stories are your power when I had hidden my own. The thought crossed my mind that maybe I should revisit my memoir, but not now, I wanted to focus on creating a digital course first.

The universe must have been listening. About a week or two after I wrote that blog, I was sorting through the messages on my LinkedIn account. Among the messages of men offering me money for sex (maybe I should change the name of my blog) and free trips to Dubai, there was a message from the Vice President of a publishing house asking to see my book proposal. Within days, the publishing house offered me a contract. It was as easy as I always imagined it would be!

A Course in Miracles says that anytime you deflect a miracle, it will be held in a trust until you are ready to receive it. Maybe I had deflected a miracle when I put my memoir on the shelf. And maybe the timing hadn’t been right back then. Now, a little older and wiser, I feel as though the universe gave me a nudge to finish what I had started. Am I still scared? Yes, of course. But, now more than ever, I believe in miracles. I trust that I am being guided and that the powers that be and the angels above are on my side.

“Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait, and wait without anxiety.” ~ACIM