Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Calendula Flowers & the Sun

The calendula seedlings I purchased at ReUnity Resources on April 30th are blooming abundantly! It makes such a difference to purchase vital, organic plants, especially here in the high desert, where conditions can be challenging. We also want to be supporting local and small businesses as much as possible. I also look for companies/organizations that are not selling items that pollute, destroy bee colonies and have integrity, even in their personal lives. Santa Fe is such a small community that its super easy to know what's going on, for example, if a business owner is cheating on his wife, then I won't support that business.

The alchemical path teaches us to look beyond, to observe and dive into a deeper understanding of essence, the vibration of a plant, object, human being. We are beckoned to "feel" into meaning, perceive patterns and symbols....beyond the thinking mind.

In plants we observe the color & shape, as well as where it grows, to determine its healing attributes. As you can see, calendula (Calendula officinalis) has an affinity with the sun, notice the circular bright orange flowers with petals that radiate outward. I am also observing how they look very lion-like, especially in the photo below.

The sun, related to elemental FIRE, home of our beating heart and the constant drum beat within, home of passion, warmth, and direct knowing. Home of the Child, youthful abundant energy, and motivation. The spirit medicine of Lion dwells here, providing strength and courage.

As the center of our solar system, plants associated with the sun re-mind us of who we are at a core level, empowering a strong sense of self and shining bright where clouds may have obscured lightness of being.

Sunny calendulas nourish on so many levels, specifically where there is a loss of vitality and wounding. This is why calendula is so wonderful for dry skin and used in salve making. The youthfullness of their vibrant appearance calls to our inner child to come out and play, have fun in the sun and be free.

Working with plants ground and bring us into the sacred moment. By mimicking and being in harmony with nature, we then flow in the current of the cosmos.

Related posts: Doctrine of Signatures & The Principal of Correspondence

Photos & words ©Roxana Villa. alchemical image: The alchemist who has achieved illumination, from Andrea de Pascalis, Alchemy: The Golden Art. The Secrets of the Oldest Enigma

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Following Bliss

 In June of 2007 (fifteen years ago!), at the Ojai Lavender Festival, I stepped out of my shell and "officially" launched Illuminated Perfume. 

This adventure all began with a Valentines Day newsletter sent in 2007, with a focus on Following One's Bliss. My subscribers at the time were a mix of aromatherapy and natural perfume students along with customers and clients of my art and illustration business.

Shortly after the newsletter went out I received a note from aromatherapy colleague Sandy Messori of Rivendell Aromatics. She was organizing the Ojai Lavender Festival on Saturday, June 16th, 2007 and asked if I wanted to be a speaker and have a booth.

I immediately answered "Yes!" and with the kind of vigor and drive a formal goal date can offer, my focus became laser beamed.

Although I had been making perfumes for myself and clients, as well as teaching classes and attending perfume events, I had been somewhat on the fence with moving forward. The reason for my hesitancy was all the infighting and back stabbing within the tiny natural perfume industry and the deception of indie perfumers using the word natural when they were using synthetics or a mixed palette. The opportunity to both speak and exhibit at the festival provided an impetus to boldly step into a new creative venture.

Several of the perfumes I had already created Q, Aurora, Lyra, Sierra, Chaparral and Vespertina, would be part of the launch with a few small tweaks. I also decided to formulate a special fragrance for the event that would become Vera, with the story of its construction woven into my presentation. At the time I was only offering liquid perfumes.

Read the details of what transpired that day by following this link here at the journal 

The initial intention of the brand,  which continues to be one of its pillars, was/is to bring beauty and light to plant fragrance without using any synthetics, isolates or animal ingredients, hence the use of the adjective illuminated.

I am so very proud to still be offering this work and extremely grateful for all the support along the way, thank you for being part of this wonder filled adventure!

Friday, May 20, 2022

World Bee Day

Happy World Bee Day!! In May 2010 a swarm of honey bees decided to build their new home in the compost bin of our California home. This felt quite auspicious because:
  1. In August of 2009 I had joined a local group of beekeepers with the intention to have a hive.
  2. The day the bees arrived was a Friday, like today, which is attributed to Venus/Aphrodite.

Backwards Beekeepers

The gift of this swarm of winged alchemists, my code word for the honey bees, felt so very auspicious, as if I had been given a nod by the divine that the path I was intending to journey was correct. Since I had found my bee guru, Kirk Anderson in August, with the intention to eventually start a hive, the arrival of this little group of very sweet, friendly honey bees was a joyful surprise.

I contacted John Lyons, one of the expert bee mentors in the bee club, who came to help us transfer the bees from the compost bin to a temporary nuc box. Read and see pictures of that event following this link or follow the jump below titled Bee Happy. Regrettably that swarm choose to depart, but left me a bit of beautiful white beeswax.

Meanwhile one of the fellow members of the group said I could have her "bird house" bees if I came to get them. Thus, those bees were relocated and took over thee periwinkle bee hive box we had set up for the original swarm. Meanwhile, Greg, Eve and I quickly began learning the art of beekeeping.

Venus / Aphrodite

The book The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manly P. Hall states "The bee is sacred to the goddess Venus and, according to mystics, it is one of several life forms of life which came to earth from the planet Venus millions of years ago."1 The Greek Goddess of beauty Aphrodite is also associated with the planet Venus which governs Friday.

Sometimes May flowers bring us more than just floral bouquets!

Honey Bee inspired Illuminated Perfumes:

Birth date: Summer Solstice 2011
Fragrance family: Earthy amber
Notes: Dark honey & mead
"Emblematic of the warm musky scent of a bee hive"

Birth date: October 2014
Fragrance family: Herbaceous
Notes: Resin, herb, golden wild flowers
"Sun drenched meadows buzzing with bees"

Here is a list of posts exploring the honey bee related topics, mostly at the journal