One of my favorite places to be is by the ocean. I suppose that’s why I was born here in Maine.
There are many reasons why we’re drawn to stand at the edge of the sea. The natural beauty. The negative ions from flowing water that help us feel less stressed and more joyful.
The power and magick of edges, the places where two disparate elements meet.
The sound of the waves. The grounding sensation of bare feet in wet sand. All this and more.
For me, the shoreline is a place of creative inspiration. A day at the beach refreshes, restores, and empowers my body, mind, and spirit.
Sometimes this means bringing my journal along and writing in this place of power. Other times, a visit to the sacred waters lets new ideas seep in, to marinate in the salty seawater of my blood. After this marinating process, the words eventually flow forth, like the waters of the ocean crashing onto my favorite beach.
When I first received the calling to lead transformational writing retreats, the vision was of a group writing near the ocean. This was soon followed by the notion of giving back – the plan is to donate part of the proceeds of each retreat to organizations cleaning up the oceans. This feels aligned with my devotion to the Goddess Yemaya.
Yemaya is the Yoruban Mother Goddess of all living things, and of the Earth’s waters. She began as the ruler of rivers, and is now worshipped as the Goddess of the sea, particularly in the Afro-Caribbean traditions. Yemaya is nurturing and also fierce. She loves to dance, and Her graceful motions are reflected in the rhythm of the waves, and of the storms on the oceans.
Water is the realm of this powerful and gorgeous Goddess, and water is often associated with emotions and with our subconscious mind. She cleanses us of sorrow and helps us to connect with our more sensual side, and She is also a patron of healing. Yemaya is often depicted as a mermaid.
I have been drawn to water since I was a small child, even though my Mom couldn’t swim at the time and was afraid of being immersed in the water. As I’ve grown, I’ve discovered that my love of swimming and of water in general connects me to a spiritual lineage of mermaids. My daughter and I claim ourselves as quarter mermaid, and thus we are daughters of Yemaya, even though we are of Celtic descent.
Personally, I also associate Yemaya with a connection to the non-physical realms. During the warmer time of year, my wild witchy sisters and I love to visit the ocean at the new and full moons.
Swimming in the sea as the full moon rises is a profound experience of connection to All That Is. Swimming under the stars with no moon at all is also deeply magickal. Immersing myself in the ocean’s waters helps me to center myself in the cosmos, floating freely, unattached to the solid ground of the Earth. I feel Yemaya’s loving and protective presence as I revel in my mermaid roots, delighting in the flow of the living waters all around me.
To me, immersing myself in the living waters that are Yemaya’s realm allows me more inner space to connect with the other realms. This means channeling, crafting relationships with my angels and guides, and expanding the space for hearing my intuition, my heart’s wisdom.
The ocean is a magickal place, where the energies provide a gap for my consciousness to slip into, through into the other realms, with ease and grace. I swim through these realms as I do through the waters of this physical realm.
I am profoundly grateful to Yemaya for Her willingness to hold me gently in Her watery embrace.