Little did I know when this photo was taken in front of the temple of Apollo at his temple complex in Delphi, that less than 24 hours later I would have a vision of the Bringer of Light himself while I was hiking up on Mount Parnassus. That astonishing encounter rerouted my whole life. One moment I’m a journalist writing about ego psychology, enlightenment, spirituality and quantum physics, the next I’m having conversations with the god of wisdom and healing writing his fantastical story of the relationship between the gods and man and sexuality and spirituality.
But then I had been asking for years, decades actually, for a softer life. Softer in that I was softer… more vulnerable, less left-brained and dependent upon my intellectual capacities, more emotionally available, gentler, more compassionate and less judgmental, more inclusive … in other words more feminine.
I’d taken an enormous journey towards that goal by investigating the elusive nature of the divine feminine within me, exploring why I had become so masculinized growing up in this Western society of ours, writing a memoir about my discoveries. And that process cracked open a lot of old wounding around my upbringing with an abusive alcoholic stepfather, experiencing a date rape, and various gender-oriented social insults and putdowns in my life. And I spent a great deal of time examining the social dynamics of feminine marginalization which, of course, we’re still seeing today.
I understood a great deal after completing my memoir Unearthing Venus … intellectually. But I had yet to step into the footprints of the goddess in my own being. I was still immensely emotionally guarded and had no clue how to become more assessable and feel safe about it. Until I met Apollo.
Whether I imagined this man-god or not, whether the spirit of this ancient mythological being really did approach me on Mount Parnassus that day, and whether I continued to be in communion with him thereafter as I wrote the book Apollo & Me is subject to debate even in my own mind. But that’s missing the point. I, and my life, substantively changed as a result of that engagement.
I’m sweeter, gentler, less judgmental, more compassionate … just as I always wanted to be, and I feel less threatened about being vulnerable. I was also called to move to the island of Maui in the Hawaiian Islands. Just when I thought I was about to make a move to California, the land of big egos, avocados, and sunshine, I was hijacked by the spirit of the island of Maui herself, who palpably embraced me while sitting on the golden sand beaches at Paia Bay the second morning I was on the island. “You come live here and let mama Maui take care of you,” she said.
It was an awesome feeling … as if I were being cradled in the bosom of the volcano-created island herself. I didn’t argue. I went back to the mainland, sold everything I owned, shipped my car, packed three suitcases, and here I am.
We often hear the expression, “Let life lead.” Or the expression, “Let God let go.” Or most popular of all, “Go with the flow.” All those are the expressions of the feminine nature—and are about embracing the nature of flow … embracing ease and grace. Up until now, the closest I ever got to ease and grace was naming two cats after those qualities … names which definitely fit both felines and were words whose qualities I aspired to.
Now, living on Maui, with Apollo & Me in bookstores and available online, it’s less about the message. Now it’s about living his message of what the feminine is all about. And boy, do I feel grateful that I am on my way.