Posts Tagged ‘Schizandra’

Kintsukuroi: Broken Places are Golden

Thanks to Jamie for this beautiful post! I especially love Wu Wei, since Wu Wei Zi is “Schizandra,” the main character of my novel, who acts in such a manner. Also, painting discarded, old doors into powerfully intentioned and coded portals is my favorite form of art to practice. Thanks to Tania Marie for bringing this blog to my attention.

Sophia's Children

A piece of pottery that broke, was repaired with gold, and is now Kintsukoroi. Do you see the Rune symbol?(Image shared on a Kintsukoroi post on Camiimac.) A piece of pottery that broke, was repaired with gold, and is now Kintsukuroi. Can you see the Rune symbol? (Image shared on a Kintsukoroi post on Camiimac.)

I admit, the sheer beauty of some of these words calls me to them and inspires me into their mysteries!

Kismet, Wabi SabiWu Wei (the art of non-doing), and Kintsukuroi, for example. Each has its own mystery, its own invitation to us.

Kintsukuroi, for its part, is the exquisite inclination to see the potential beauty in and then make art from the shards of something that’s broken.

As Leonard Cohen sang, “There is a crack … a crack in everything; that’s how the light shines through.”

Those working the magic of Kintsukoroi piece things back together, using precious metals like gold, silver, and I’d suggest copper, because it’s beautiful.

Why do they do this? Why do…

View original post 314 more words

When Fiction Becomes Life ~ Schizandra Update

I continue to receive emails from enthusiastic readers of Schizandra and the Gates of Mu ~ readers wondering when I’ll release the next book in the series. The short answer is: I don’t know, but I’m leaning towards never. The longer answer follows:

In 2010, I alluded to a strange situation in which everything I started writing in Book 2 began to manifest almost instantly in my life. If a character developed a health issue, one or more new clients contacted me with that exact health issue within 24 hours. If I created a situation for tension and plot advancement, that situation (or an obvious derivative of it) appeared in my own life. Some “real” but faraway people on whom characters in Book 1 and Book 2 were loosely based suddenly blasted through the comfortable separation of years, re-inserting themselves firmly in my reality.

I had been participating in NaNoWriMo during November 2009, writing thousands of words per day for the first two weeks. By the beginning of week 3, the lines between fiction and life had blurred so much that I decided to regroup. I shelved the manuscript, but the synchronicity and reordering continued. Writing Book 2 opened Pandora’s Box. By February 2010, I found myself having filed for divorce and moved to Chicago. And there, the real adventures began …

Prior to moving to Chicago, I thought it was Book 2 that carried such strange power. Now, nearly three years later, I see that Book 1 has also manifested in major ways. When I first wrote Schizandra and the Gates of Mu, I knew little about many of the background topics. I researched, researched, researched for the book, but oddly enough, people who know me now and read the novel wonder if I wrote it as an autobiography. “Those characters are so you! And the crystals! Madison?!” Here’s the deal: when I wrote Book 1, I had never been to Madison and had no intentions of ever moving there. I had lived in Chicago and Sedona but had no intentions of relocating again to either of those places either. My divorce landed me, through a series of overwhelming synchronicities, not in Evanston, IL as I had planned, but in Hyde Park, Chicago where Schizandra lived with her now-deceased father. Nine months later, another series of undeniable synchronicities resulted in me moving to Madison –home of Schizandra’s eccentric spinster aunts, Rosemary and Lobelia.

In Book 2, I introduce Schizandra as having particularly good matchmaking abilities ~ perhaps the easiest of her gifts for society to accept. Schizandra and the Gates of Mu itself played a curiously persistent role in getting me together with David, who, coincidentally, had lived in Madison for many years and met me due to a tightly woven tapestry of synchronicities surrounding my living in Hyde Park. Even odder? Since he and I moved in as housemates and eventually got together, I learned that he has two spinster aunts, one tall and thin, like Rosemary, and one shorter and stockier, like Lobelia. Whereas my characters were reflexologists from Madison, David’s aunts are liberal nurses who use homeopathy! The last chapter I wrote in Book 2, before all the Pandora’s Box events occurred, has Schizandra encountering a bald giant in the desert. David shaves his head.

Then there’s the whole Shazzie connection. My (now) dear friend Shazzie of UK raw food fame, was relatively unknown to me at the time I began Schizandra. She and I became friends largely because of events surrounding the writing and releasing of Schizandra. The events themselves are far too strange to share, but suffice to say, Shazzie/Schizandra matchmakes friends as well. 🙂

No telling of Schizandra synchroncities would be complete without mentioning portal doors. Yes, Book 2’s outline has Schizandra painting portal doors at her grandmother’s house in Sedona. As soon as I shelved the manuscript in late 2009, the first of my doors appeared. I painted them into portals, and then, when I moved to Chicago, doors continued to find me. My friends Wendy and Matthew found door number 3, and then I learned from my apartment’s maintenance man that my bedroom was directly under The Motherload of Doors. Not knowing why, the building’s owner had ordered management (years prior) to save the doors. My maintenance guy immediately recognized my portals as the mysterious reason for saving them when everything else in the attic got thrown away.

In retrospect, I love how life reordered itself at the stroke of a keyboard. Some things took longer to undo and redo, but I find myself incomprehensibly happier, more grounded and delighted in life than when I began Book 2. (Or Book 1, for that matter!) I find myself surrounded by people I love in a community I love, living in a magical home filled with portal doors, crystals, Rune-coded paintings, Tarot cards and faeries. I have all but completely extricated myself from any undesired tangles, and I love my life’s trajectory. I love my life!

Because I love this life, and due to the obvious (to me and others) interconnections between this life and the Schizandra series, I feel extremely reluctant to tip over the chess board and begin anew. After “summoning” past ghosts of characters into flesh and blood, it took quite a lot of effort to re-extricate myself from people I had left behind. Given the now-recognized correspondence between people I didn’t know at the time of writing but do now know and love, I also feel cautious about putting those characters through the conflicts and challenges necessary to move a plot forward. What if the fictional health crises and dangers bleed through into my loved ones’ lives? I know it sounds nuts, but the instant manifestations of Book 2 were pretty freaky to all involved.

Writing Book 1 took a massive toll on my body, mind and spirit. It felt like an Initiation, complete with a descent into the Underworld, relinquishing all my old life, near death encounters, and fighting through the Shadows. I love the results, but having reached a happy still-point on the other side, I find myself wanting to leave all the pieces and people in their place, free to live and love without my fictional influence and orchestration.

Will I write another novel? Probably. I feel one percolating now, and I’m excited about its possibilities. Will I write another Schizandra novel? Probably not. I don’t like to say “never,” because “never” usually means “I will.” Would all fiction bleed through like Schizandra and her crew do? Maybe so. That’s why any fiction I write will include those things I most want to experience, in places I’d love to go, with characters who aren’t attached in any way to people from the past whom I may not wish to summon. I know I’m not the only one who experiences such things (1111 words right then!). Ponder “The Neverending Story,” Bruce Lipton’s “Biology of Belief” or Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle: we live in a highly dynamic, interactive world in which instant manifestation from thought can and does occur. With creation comes responsibility. May we all love and create well … honoring those times when we feel “enough is enough” and building new paradigms as Love and Life inspire us.

Peace!

Tongue Tied

I ate a lot of spicy food last weekend and earlier in the week: ginger chili carrot slaw, radish sprouts, raw garlic in a dandelion pineapple smoothie, chili and oregano fermented veggies, chipotle, cayenne… plus, some acidic foods like some new salt cured olives at our co-op, tomatoes, and balsamic vinegar. That’s unusual fare for me in that kind of intensity, but it nonetheless felt right to eat those things in those amounts. My tongue, however, does not agree! It feels raw, irritated, and pretty much any food or drink burns, even barley grass juice!

As a result, I’ve been on a mini-fast since Tuesday, eating very lightly, mostly liquids and mostly alkaline. As I’ve moved through this week of incredible outward chaos, I find myself pulling inside and anchoring to the Earth and my own connection to Spirit. It feels good, and the tongue issue has me craving more silence and simplicity in all areas. I walked a labyrinth yesterday with my friend Rainbow and her daughter Iris, and we talked about the increased sense of the “real” world as a dream. Fighter jets from the WI National Guard flew above us every few minutes, punctuating the peaceful spirit of our time together with such unbelievably loud Mars energy that even the little Aries, Iris, started screaming. Rainbow and I calmed her down by pointing to the whispering tall grasses and the special labyrinth path. The pre-Spring woods surrounding us seemed to sparkle with activity, almost as though the faeries, normally so shy of loud noises, were staking their claim on this world anyway. “No more war!” they seemed to say, and we agreed.

Try as we might — and I’ll admit we didn’t try very hard; why would we? — Rainbow and I could not feel “real” about all the crazy laws and military resolutions happening right now. It all feels very 9 of Swords to me. In the Robin Wood deck, 9 of Swords signifies “awakening from the nightmare.”

Robin Wood's 9 of Swords

As my friend Tim Glenn, reminded me once, “Of course, awakening from the nightmare means you have first been in the nightmare.” This world doesn’t even feel like a nightmare, though. It feels more like a dream that’s gone so bizarre you spontaneously grow lucid, realizing you are, in fact, the dreamer. With a bit more awareness, you realize that you can control the dream. You have influence as you create, moment by Through-the-Looking-Glass moment. I smile as I watch more and more people growing lucid in 3Dality.

Speaking of the 9 of Swords and Awakening from the Nightmare, this week seems like a good time to start calling back those parts of you that couldn’t stand living in the ugliness or density of 3Dality. Try it! The world has lightened, even to the point that faeries giggle at fighter jets. I used to need to apologize to them for running a Vitamix! Something has shifted. Like faeries, our bodies are Earth Elementals. Do you feel your body asserting itself these days? Offer some sweet scents, sunshine and melodious sounds and see if you can charm yourself into another realm. Or better yet, invite the other realm right here! Become the change you wish to see, and I guarantee, you’ll begin to see it. We are already mostly in the new reality. If you hold that as your morning, then you can shake the negatives away like a crazy dream.

I’ll share more details later, but Schizandra Book 2 (Schizandra and the Peruvian Jaguar) has also started knocking on my brain again. I realized earlier this week that its plot required a baseline awakening in order to free me to write a positive book that people could understand and embrace. A world filled with denial simply wouldn’t “get” the message, even when presented as fiction. Book 2 offers an alternate timeline leading up to 9/11, revealing aspects of the Sacred Time Continuum and the orgasmic birthing of new realities. I stopped writing when I got bogged down in explaining the illusory nature of government, the financial system, 9/11, and most of what the masses have accepted as reality since the Fall of Atlantis. I also stopped writing it because everything I wrote came true. Careful what you create! I wanted to write a positive book, and now, between Occupy, Anonymous, Facebook, solar flares and the ongoing awakening of humanity, I finally can. A tipping point of awareness has already occurred, freeing me from the need to explain what is. Rather, I can focus on what truly desires to be born.

Guess I’m not so tongue tied after all! I just wanted to post something before I snuggle back inside myself for awhile, as per Doreen Virtue’s Weekly Oracle Reading. 😉 Actually, I decided to post Doreen’s video today, because her message resonates with so much of what I’ve lately written and felt. A few highlights and then the video below:

The week begins with Taking Care of Your Body.

Midweek: Awakening Your True Self (Doreen’s message reminds me of my earlier post, Your Right to Preferences.)

Weekend: Environmental Awareness (Being aware of your own environment — a time to take care of yourself and your needs. You’ve got to go inside and be honest with yourself this week.)

I love that I’ve felt an increased presence of faeries this week, and Doreen uses her Faery Oracle Cards. Big blessings, synchronicities and much joy to you this day and always!

Door Number 12: The World Card

Door Number 12 is another commissioned piece, located in the same hallway as Door Number 11. I hadn’t planned to paint a second door there, but the patron felt so happy with Door Number 11 and the bathroom door kept “talking” to me, so we agreed it needed “to express itself.” I know it sounds weird, but all three of us discussed the vision for this door — in ordinary conversations and then in dreams. I had not planned to paint a tarot card on this one, but The World Card hijacked my dreams, reminding me of how Freya and Frigga jumped in ahead of The Lovers for Door Number 6.

The World Card, Door Number 12 by Laura Bruno

The homeowner wanted the Runes for Joy and Flow in this door, and I had intended to create something entirely different, but the World Card or “Starry Dancer” appeared every time I closed my eyes. When I began researching this card, I realized why. We had decided to make this a “backwards portal,” with the image inside the bathroom instead of in the hallway. Door Number 11’s faery dominates that space and having another full image just seemed too much with the patterned rug. A small mantra, on the other hand, seemed like a nice accent.

Synchronously, the World Card is number 21 in the tarot deck, a backwards version of 12. It’s also an upside down and opposite image of the Hanged Man Card, number 12 in the tarot deck. The Hanged Man is, in turn, associated with Odin, the “father of the Runes” who hung suspended from a tree for nine days, saw the Runes upside down, understood their meaning and claimed them as his own. The back of the Freya and Frigga portal features Odin’s Rune Song. What does all this “mean”?

Heck if I know, but it seems relevant! These portals arrive in dreams, nudges and synchronicities. The Hanged Man stands for stasis and uncertainty, masculine suspension, whereas the World Card celebrates a union of male and female and a joyful fulfillment and dance. These portals do seem to have their own order and method, so I just follow along as best as I can. 🙂

That said, I think Door Number 12 is my favorite one so far. I loved the opportunity to expand outward onto the molding. To me, the bathroom seems like twice the size with this addition.

Detail, Door Number 12 by Laura Bruno

Typically, the World Card contains images for the four fixed signs in astrology: Aquarius, Scorpio, Leo and Taurus (clockwise from upper left), which translates into a man, a scorpion, a lion and a bull. The patron really did NOT want these images in the bathroom, but it felt important to include their energy in their door. I opted for the astrological symbols themselves, which you can see surrounding the laurel wreath.

Speaking of laurel wreaths, this door also seems to tie in to Door Number 3, the Daphne Door/Tree of Life, which also features laurel leaves and a woman (in that case with only her feet dancing). In tarot the third card would be the Empress, and Door Number 3 has a Chakana (the navel of the Earth) on Daphne’s belly. These cards and the Chakana also play key roles in Schizandra and the Gates of Mu.

All these 3’s! What do they mean? I don’t know, but I find the patterns and interconnections curious and fun to explore. I don’t consider this portal series “mine.” I custom design them according to patron request and dreams, but they seem to present themselves in interesting and insistent ways.

If you look closely, you can see all the patron’s intended elements encoded into the dancer’s hair and the laurel leaves:

Runes in the hair and leaves

The bottom quote announced itself in the usual “can’t get it out of my head” way and seemed perfect in meaning and feel:

For the back, which is really the front of this door, the Gayatri Mantra wanted to go there. Trouble is, the Gayatri is long, and we had opted for mantra-side out in order to minimize the details in the hallway. I remembered that the Gayatri is preceded by an introduction of sorts: oṃ(ॐ) and the formula bhūr bhuvaḥ svaḥ (भूर् भुवः स्वः), known as the mahāvyāhṛti (“great utterance”).

We decided to include the great utterance and a red lotus, which also appears on Door Number 7, the Lovers. Interestingly, to me anyway 🙂 , the full Gayatri Mantra covers the other side of Door Number 2, The Alchemy Door.

I find these doors a curiouser and curiouser process. The more I paint, the more interconnected and layered they become. The homeowner from Door Number 10 just asked me to paint Door Number 13 in her home. Fun, but also synchronous, as I have had Dan Brown’s “The Lost Symbol” sitting around on my bookshelf for months. For some reason, I got the sudden urge to start reading it this weekend, right after the patron and I determined which door to paint. Lo and behold, “The Lost Symbol” tells a story about portals and features a very important Door Number 13! I don’t know what to make of all these things, but I do know this: I felt light and free after finishing the World Card. Here’s a spontaneous photo taken the following day:

Laura Bruno on the edge of The World

Blessings and joy to you! Thanks for sharing the journey …

Independence and Liberation Celebration 2010

I just decided to run this special again for 2010. This is last year’s Independence Day Post, but please feel free to take advantage of the $111 sale until July 14, 2010. Happy Freedom Day!

July features two holidays with a focus on Independence and Liberation: the US’s Fourth of July and France’s Bastille Day. As a child, I celebrated both days with great fanfare — holding the entire ten day period as a mystical tribute to the idea of Liberation. This mostly involved fireworks, a series of quirky red-white-blue-and-black outfits, and singing the French National Anthem several times per day. No, I’m not French and yeah, I was kind of a weird kid. 😉

As I grew older I realized this fascination with Liberation resonated deep inside my soul to the point of aligning itself with my life purpose. It wasn’t about the fireworks and kooky costumes! It was about shaking off shackles that society and our own souls lock onto us at an early age.

I never in a million years expected to offer past life readings or workshops, but the concept nagged me since 1998. Even as a practicing medical intuitive, I avoided the topic unless absolutely necessary in a session. I just felt like we could never prove the existence of past lives, and even if we could, who cared? Didn’t this life matter much more than what happened long ago?

Fast forward to November 2006: I needed to wear glasses and desperately wanted to get rid of them by year’s end. If I failed to wear them, I suffered severe migraine headaches and sometimes vertigo, and contacts were not an option for this particular vision problem. I meditated on how to get rid of the glasses by January 1, 2007, and the following message came: “Embrace All Past Lives.”

“Fine,” I thought, “I have past lives. Great, I embrace them. Let’s move on.”

But no, the message continued that I needed to bring this awareness into my medical intuitive and coaching sessions. “Oh, man!” I thought. “Come on! These people will think I’ve lost it.” But the message remained firm, and I REALLY wanted to get rid of those glasses!

As an experiment, that afternoon, I let myself tune into my clients’ past life issues, shared the information, put multiple lifetimes into context, and thought little more of it. Later that day, I got a terrible headache. It throbbed like migraines from the old days of my head injury. I took off my glasses, and the pain immediately subsided. I noticed that I could read without strain without my glasses, and I have never worn them since!

The next week, I asked those clients if they wanted to discuss the usual issues we’d been working on. They all said, “Oh, I’m done with that. After you put things into context, I realized I could move on.” These were people who had done counseling on such issues for 10 years or more, plus coaching with me for several months. Poof! No more issue.

While not everyone drops patterns quite so quickly, over the years, I have seen enough dramatic and fast shifts through past life work to recognize the value of exploring these alternate realities.

My new novel, Schizandra and the Gates of Mu shares these and many other things I’ve learned in a fun, fictional form. Schizandra should go live on Amazon and in catalogs for bookstore orders sometime this week. I have a limited number of autographed copies available beginning next week, too.

The Schizandra Special is a July 2009 and July 2010 promotion running in honor of the Independence and Liberation themes of Schizandra and the Gates of Mu. Receive a one-hour Soul Reading for only $111.

This special runs from July 4, 2010-July 14,2010. All sessions must be paid and scheduled by July 14, 2010. You can do so by emailing brunoleaf @ yahoo.com or clicking here.

The Schizandra Special is a one-hour Soul Reading designed to help you receive greater understanding and/or closure regarding stuck relationships and past life patterns. A $64 savings from my regular hourly rate. Anyone who reads Schizandra and the Gates of Mu will realize the significance of $111 and the dates. (One per person.)

Blessings and Joy!
Laura

Door Number 8: Ten of Cups

Door Number 8 began as a tall and impossibly skinny project that proved most challenging to reveal the inner vision that had begun to haunt me. I tried and tried to find a different door that would provide an easier work surface for this particular image, but it appears that the Ten of Cups wanted this door. Having completed it, I can kind of see why. There’s a lot more flow than a two or more paneled door would have allowed.

The bottom quote seems appropriate: “Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t realize you left open.” To learn more about the Ten of Cups, please click here. For some reason, the Runes down the front called out to be Schizandra Ginger Parker, and the Chinese on the right is Wu Wei Zi (Schizandra chinensis), both from my novel, Schizandra and the Gates of Mu. That surprised me, but I don’t argue with inspiration. 😉 Enjoy!

Ten of Cups Door by Laura Bruno (Front)

Detail Ten of Cups Door by Laura Bruno (Rainbow)

Detail Ten of Cups Door by Laura Bruno (Children Dancing)

Detail Ten of Cups Door by Laura Bruno (Stallion)

Back of the Ten of Cups Door by Laura Bruno

Front of Ten of Cups by Laura Bruno

This may or may not be my last door painted in this apartment. I’m honestly not sure! The remaining doors in the attic are either very large, screened, or very odd shapes. The remaining space in my apartment is similarly interesting. We … shall … see…

Many Blessings!

TBI, Lyme, Spiritual Healing and Gratitude

So many people have been writing me privately to share their personal stories of healing from TBI, Lyme, Fibromyalgia or other “Medical Mysteries” after reading If I Only Had a Brain Injury and The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide. A surprising number of readers have even shared how Schizandra and the Gates of Mu inspired their own dreams and spiritual healing. Your stories warm my heart, and I appreciate your journeys more than you know. If you would like to let other people know more about these books, it would help to post a little review on Amazon.com, so that people like you can know how the books might inspire them. The Lazy Raw Foodist’s Guide is still available in ebook only; however, If I Only Had a Brain Injury and Schizandra and the Gates of Mu are on Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk and BarnesandNoble.com. If you feel so inclined to leave a short review, I would feel most grateful!

Continued Blessings and Healing to all of you …

Laura