The Alchemist Grove 09. Books

Books are magical to me. Words have their own magic power, they can materialize our deepest feelings, our secrets, as well as they allow us to have access to other people thoughts, inner world. They are this simple but effective mean to communicate knowledge, from centuries ago, or the latest discoveries. They create a culture, they bring us to confront our own beliefs to others views, they offer us answers, as well as new questions. And the most magical work of all: we needed to learn how to decipher these symbols on the pages to access this knowledge. In our own language, and later, if we were inclined to, in other languages, with their own logical, their own culture. If this is not magic, tell me what is!

I love to write maybe as much as I love to read. I am always thirsty for new knowledge, new understanding, new horizons. I usually don’t write the same thing in French or in English. They are two completely different languages in my mind, as if I gave each of them certain attributes. I became aware of that when I first started to really feel confident enough to write in English. I didn’t express the same range of emotions, I didn’t even think the same way than I do in French. And I embraced that fact, because to me they both express a part of who I am, and they complement each other really well. This year, it’s a different approach, as each stage of the journey is written either in French or in English then translated in the other language. I just go with the flow. If I feel like writing in a language on a specific topic, I do it, then I translate it, adding most of the time some changes because it fits better with it.

I spent time trying to know myself. I had the opportunity to live life changing experiences that questioned everything I was, had or believed in. I think about it as if I was standing in the middle of ruins, completely naked. I had to know what I needed to go on, to go back to my life my journey. What I held dear, what made me willing to go on, what I could count on, who I needed in my life. Who I was, really, when everything was taken away from me. When I had no control on what was happening in my life, but that it still was mine, I still had to get on track and go somewhere. Each of these experiences were journeys in themselves. And I started to put my thoughts and feelings on paper, to allow my mind to summarize it, to allow my overwhelming feelings to settle down a bit, to allow me to have a clearer vision of the situation I was living. I could write into journals, or write poetry, or just leave my thoughts online, but I put into words what I was living. I practiced the magic of letting go by putting things down.

Now and then, I go back and read what I wrote during those times. And if I recognize myself in these texts (after all, *I* wrote them), I also feel a distance with the one I was then. My feelings have evolved, my life did too. If I am the same at the core, I am both far more complex than I was, because I learned, experienced, felt a lot since then, and simpler too, as I got rid of a lot of useless perceptions or ideas. I know who I am because I know what it took me to be here and now.

And I know that if I need to, I can always look for a book that will give me, if not the answers I think I need, at least the keys to access to a new understanding. I don’t wait for someone to appear with the knowledge I need in my life. I reach it, I look for it, I pursue it. And, usually, I get it. I follow the flow of my intuition, of my mind wandering, and when I feel I need to dive deeper, I look for someone who mastered or at least went deeper in what I am interested in. I love to explore others thoughts, the way they perceive the world surrounding them, the way they put into words their own vision, their own explanation of the world, and share it with whoever wants to receive it. I don’t do that as a scholar, I just take what, to me, makes sense to my own reflection, what leads me in the path I am right now.

This week I decided to print both my twin journeys (the Alchemist grove and Le Bosquet de l’Alchimiste), and to put them in their own books. So that, in a few years, I will be able to read them and to remember, probably with tenderness, compassion and amusement too, where I was in my life path this year. I also keep a journal, on which I don’t write everyday, but where I log things that seem important to me, in order to both step back and remember.

So this week, pick a notebook, a book, open a new document on your computer, and take care of the front page of it. You may wait for the title, it may came later, you may want to ad embellishments, doodles, or keep it simple. Do what seems comfortable with you. Choose your ink color(s). I go with black, adding some claret and teal here and there, when I feel like it. There are no other rules than your own. Have fun, do it with love for yourself. Because you deserve to have your story written, and the future you will enjoy the growth you experiment. What a beautiful gift to yourself!

The card

This card is probably the one I love the most so far. I obviously had to go with a stack of books, as I have a lot of those everywhere at home hahaha. I wanted them to look ancient and precious, but I didn’t want to be exclusive, or to narrow the idea of knowledge, so I decided to invent an alphabet for the titles and authors name. Don’t try to wonder who it may be, I went as it came, so no references at all. I also had to add some embellishments, always with this idea to make them precious, almost sacred. And I tried to give their covers a leathery aspect. Because this kind of books obviously need a leather cover. I wanted their pages to look almost as parchments, thick and old paper. And feel as if they were read a lot. Of course, I had to had some sparks of magic, to express my vision of books. I am really happy with the result, it’s both soft and powerful. I hope you like it too!

My journey

I now have a clearer vision of what I want this part to be (after 8 weeks, it’s about time!). So the left part is more of a story telling inspired by the card and topic of the week, while the right part is more of a meditation or guide to help you reflect on the week.

Our journal

This may be a good base for your own journal, your own journey. You can print it or copy the prompts that you want to reflect on, do what you feel like doing. Remember: no rules but your own!

Our stickers and cards

I really need to show you what I did with those… I’ll try to do it this week!

I wish you a wonderful week. If you feel inclined to, I would really love to see your notebooks, books and/or front pages, you can send a picture of it to me via the contact form. Have fun, keep an open mind and be compassionate with yourself. You deserve it.

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