Inspiring Enchantment & Illumination with Tarot & Intuitive Guidance

The Muse and the Daimon

The Muse, nae poet ever fand [found] her,
Till by himself he learn’d to wander

Adown some trotting burn’s meander

An’ no think lang [long].

— Robert Burns, “Epistle to Willam Simpson, Ochiltree

from 19 May, The Celtic Spirit, by Caitlín Matthews

Thank you to our friends who are sharing their answers to yesterday’s exercise. We complete it here, as we come to the end of Chapter Four, Recovering a Sense of Integrity. And then, my friends, it will be time to take a big, big leap of faith.

But first, our last three questions in the exercise:
4. List five skills that would be fun to have.

5. List five things you used to enjoy doing.

6. List five silly things you would like to try once.

Before we take the next step, I would like to share a lovely bit of synchronicity with you. Every day as a part of my morning meditation practice, I read from the beautiful book by Caitlín Matthews, The Celtic Spirit. Yesterday’s entry seemed to me a powerful message about the importance and deeper meaning of the artist dates. Since I struggle with those, it was a revelation. I am excited to it with you here.

Courting the Inspirer

We frequently read about the muse, the female form that inspiration takes for men. She is courted by artists who know that they cannot create alone, who need to be folded within her embrace before the creative spark leaps the synapse of potentiality.

We hear less about the forms that inspiration takes for women, who are no less inspired as artists and creators than men, although the inspirer most often appears to them in male form. The inspirer of women is the daimon (DYE-mone), the quicksilver spirit who, like the golden muse, brings the wealth of the imaginal realms of creation to our world.

Sometimes the qualities of our muse, or daimon, are seen to temporarily reside in or become superimposed upon a living person, someone who shows us how desire, joy, love and inspiration fuse together in creation. Sometimes the muse or daimon is seen not in a person but in a place which fires us with inspiration. The embrace of nature becomes the embrace of the inspirer. In an act of participation as intimate as making love, the creator walks with the inspirer in the place of making.

When the inspirer is absent from us, we feel as empty as if a lover had gone. To woo the inspirer, we must go faithfully, time after time, to the threshold places where our soul is exposed to beauty – go without expectations to cloud our coming, without demands or extortions to coerce the erring inspirer to visit us again. Venturing into the frontiers of creation, we come to meet with the one who makes our heart’s wish leap into verdant life again.

What are the forms of your inspirer? Who most resembles your muse or daimon in the world?


I invite your comments and thoughts on this, and will see you again tomorrow.

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  • May 20, 2009, 9:55 am Beth Owl's Daughter

    Let’s see… skills I wish I had…
    . herbal medicine
    . get much better at time management
    . wood craft – building and carving
    . HTML literacy
    . astrology

    Used to enjoy:
    . I Ching
    . Camping (too tough on my back these days, unless I “princess camp.” Ha! You can imagine!).
    . Bicycling
    . Lots more gardening than I do (in the summer), because the ticks are so bad that now I can’t even fill up the bird feeders with getting some (seriously! That’s what happened YESTERDAY!)
    . lots more live music, concerts, and even opera! (yes, really!)

    Five silly things I might try someday..
    . skydiving
    . make a short animation film
    . I love Rob Brezsny’s idea of standing by the roadside with a handmade sign, “Please help! I want to give,” and handing out dollar bills to people who stop.
    . spend an afternoon asking for directions in a made-up foreign language.
    . get a makeover a la What Not to Wear (as soon as someone wants to hand over the $5,000 Visa card!) 🙂

  • May 20, 2009, 6:19 pm Thalia

    Five skills that would be fun to have:

    play guitar
    ride a unicycle
    climb trees
    surfing
    (accurately!) predict the weather

    Five things I used to enjoy doing:

    fencing
    ice skating
    dressing up
    walking around the woods at night with friends
    taking day-trips out of state

    Five silly things I would like to try once:

    a corndog
    curlian photography or whatever it’s called, one of those spirit-reading-energy things
    teach the cat a trick
    go up in a hot air balloon
    sing in the supermarket

  • May 20, 2009, 6:25 pm Thalia

    Your ‘princess camping’ made me laugh. I do an event every year, my only time camping, in a tent made over from a car port to look like a Roman temple (yes, with columns and a faux-marble finish) with a full-size loungy Roman-type bed inside. None of that roughing it crap for me, thanks!

    In theory, you ought to be able to put together a short animation film with Flash. It’s oddly counterintuitive to get used to as a program, but it’s not necessarily something that requires some kind of special equipment. I mean, this is from when I worked as an animator about 10 years ago, so, who knows how out of date that advice is now.

  • May 20, 2009, 6:28 pm freak22

    4. List five skills that would be fun to have.

    -knowing how to use a quarterstaff
    -painting
    -playing a musical instrument
    -the ability to finish what I start (yeah i am a Gemini my b-day is Friday)
    -building furniture

    5. List five things you used to enjoy doing.

    -climbing trees
    -hiking in the woods
    -riding horses
    -swimming in the ocean
    -going out to clubs with my friends

    6. List five silly things you would like to try once.

    -skydiving
    -surfing
    -singing in a public park for no reason
    -make a short movie
    -white water rafting

  • May 20, 2009, 6:31 pm Thalia

    Oh, and oh yes, about the daimon stuff:

    Never heard of him.

    If I had, I’m sure he wouldn’t look anything like this or even like this, oh me oh my heavens no. Oh dear, and ah well.

    (One need not bother pointing out that I am completely and utterly nuts, or that my taste in men is, well, special. I am well aware of this by now, thank you.)

    Yeah, I got her other book, the one just about daimones (In Search of Women’s Passionate Soul: Revealing the Daimon Lover Within). Seriously, for real, I can’t recommend it highly enough. It honestly, seriously, changed my life. And I have bought copies for several friends, too.

  • May 20, 2009, 10:39 pm Star

    Skills I wish I had

    * piano playing
    * guitar mastery
    * drawing people and perspective
    * lace crocheting
    * decorator style

    Used to enjoy
    * watersking
    * nude sun bathing
    * volleyball
    * sewing my own clothes
    * coloring

    Silly things to try once

    * wearing sexy clothes in public
    * living in a mansion with servants to take care of everything
    * having a personal massage therapist and daily bodywork
    * wearing a cool hat with every outfit
    * trance dancing naked with many silk scarves of all colors swirling around me.

    I had a realization yesterday that I have been eccentric all my life and always got the feeling it was a bad thing to be. I never fit in very well and was often my own best company. Yesterday, I decided I LIKE being eccentric and am glad that I am this way.

    Star*

  • May 21, 2009, 2:51 pm pilgrim

    beth! i love opera. love it. it’s amazing. you know- the met opera does these live in HD simulcasts and they’re amazing. next year in january you can go to a local theater and watch bizet’s Carmen live from the met stage.

    i’m already getting excited about the free HD simulcast here in san francisco- opera at the ballpark in two weeks, puccini’s tosca.

    there’s a bright straight line connecting donizetti to the grateful dead, i always say.

    but i digress. i wanted to post quickly about the muse.

    the day before yesterday i took time to get to work early so i’d have time to walk the labyrinth.

    it was quiet in the garden in the early afternoon, brilliantly sunny and beautiful, and there was no one else there. i opened sacred space sitting in a shady spot with st francis on one side of me and a gently smiling buddha on the other and entered the labyrinth sometime later, as i was walking inward, i saw someone out of the corner walking down the path toward the labyrinth, dressed in white; i didn’t turn to look, stayed with my meditative journey, and was aware of someone entering the labyrinth to walk too. then i felt a rush of spirit entering me, turned to see the person, there was no one there.

    skills i wish i had-
    herbal medicine is on my list too
    piano
    household repairs
    skateboarding
    matting and framing my photos

    used to enjoy:
    surfing
    rollerblading
    performing live theater
    collage art
    singing alto in the master chorale

    silly things-
    i do them all the time!