Observation of seemingly obvious tasks can offer insights.
I master-batch my soap dough. I use a dedicated crock pot to melt hard oils and butters; 76 degree fahrenheit coconut oil, Shea butter and cocoa butter are semi-hard before melting. In order to combine them with liquid oils this requires changing their temporary nature.
I use a dedicated crock pot for a simple reason – I was taught while studying meditation we sit in the same position, wear the same meditation shawl and sit on the same mediation pillow all made of simple cloth. I asked my teachers repeatedly, “why?” The over-riding answer was, because it helps to achieve a deeper level of meditation. I cannot speak to those slightly superstitious and less scientific answers like “your energy is infused into the objects,” all of which I listened to with a large dose of skepticism. How are these people, who dedicate their lives to a peaceful existence, not grounded in fact?
I have come to understand we operate on many levels – conscious, unconscious, sub-conscious and automatic, just to name a few. We do things based on prompts and routine like brushing one’s teeth. After so many years of doing a task, we have reflex behaviors like Pavlov’s dog, and no longer think of the task.
We can also create muscle memory. Those who participate in sports understand this type of memory that is built into the very fibers, tendons, connective tissue of the muscles change, alter and adapt to the skill; this muscle memory can grow talent; this is an application of an idea to the very tissues of a human being. Sit with that concept for a moment.
Do you see how magnificent and alchemical this process is, at its core? This could be renamed, simply, magic.
To have a dedicated crock pot is not to propose that the structure of the crock pot changes, but my response to the object changes. It is now a prompt of creation. A doorway into unknown worlds. A tool I use to open up ideas inside myself, or open myself up to the ideas in another dimension and pull them into our reality, our dimension.
My crock pot is now part of my ritual; part of my process, to opening that door only I can see. It is no longer the object I create over-cooked chicken, or a lazy dinner, but incites action in my mind/body that help me see the door to the room filled with ideas.
To have a truly smooth soap, be it bar or soap dough, the melted oils and butters need to be in a certain state; to marry to the liquid oils, to unify them into a temporary nature. If not joined in this ideal state the results will not be smooth, on so many levels. The same can be said for relationships, eating, health… all things.
I observe my nature must be patient, as calm as morning lake, undisturbed with the process if I wishto be invitedthrough the doorway into the room of creativity where my nature will changed, temporarily.
Making soap in the desert can be tricky, but also work to a soaper’s advantage. Large buckets of oil are easily melted by being left in the sun for only a few hours. Like the winter season in the colder states where the bulk of the day is spent inside, the bulk of the day is spent inside during the summer months. During this time inside, many soaps are made, molded and dreamed up.
Much has happened this last week, as much happens so regularly I forget to bring it to the foreground. I will make a greater effort to do this in our upcoming year. I am also working on new videos to show you how each of the Sorcery creations is made. Check out the videos collection that is on the youtube Sorcery Soap channel now.
The temperatures in the low desert have dropped after some rain, which is how temperatures tend to change here.
After looking around Soap Queen’s site I ran across some mentions from Anne-Marie I had not noticed before. This created some cheer here at Sorcery Soapery, just to be acknowledged by the Queen of Soap is an honor.
The other news for Sorcery Soap is a new soap called Boudica.
This soap is based on the ancient fierce Queen. Boudica (d. AD 60 or 61) was a queen of the British Celtic Iceni tribe who led an uprising against the occupying forces of the Roman Empire. She did not abide by the customary roles of a woman in her time, but did what was necessary to defend, protect and avenge her family.
This soap is scented with Rhubarb and Fig fragrance which is sweet and sharp, and each loop of these chains are hand made from cold process soap with great intention to the user of this soap, as well as each key, heart and bauble. The pink hearts are dusted with Flash Dance from Mad Oils. A new soap for the upcoming holidays will be available by Valentine – in celebration of the change of the seasons, ready for Imbolc – the midway point between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox.
This soap is made with Meadowfoam oil, which is one of my new favorite oils, for all the great qualities and it’s unique ability to help stabilize the other oils.
Imbolc (ihm-olk) Imbolg or Oimelc
Traditional date: Feb 2
Actual astrological date: Feb 4 in 2016
Midpoint between Winter Solstice and Spring Equinox
Second Celtic fire festival (female)
Gaelic or Welsh “Imbolg” means “spring” (have not confirmed)
Festival of Lights, St Brigid’s Day
Celebrates the quickening of spring, the end of winter, time of abundance of milk
Time of planning and hopes, fire and purification are prominent factors
Ceremonies involve water, candles pledges and planting a hope or a seed, making candles
Burn your Christmas tree and light candles
Colours: Red, orange, white
Evolved into Groundhog Day: Scots looked for serpents leaving their winter holes. A Gaelic hag goddess, who rules the winter months, Cailleach, gathers her firewood for the rest of the winter. If the day is sunny, she gathers a great deal of wood, thusly the winter will continue for some time. If the day is rainy, she will not gather much wood and the remaining winter will be short.
The other new creation from the Sorcery Soap are Gnome Soap Cookies. Each little cookie is made with a custom cookie cutter (I made it) and scented with Mad Oils Velvet Peppercorn fragrance oil. Just enough spice to remind you that gnomes are slightly mischievous. These Sorcery Soap Cookies will be available by the new year.
Here’s hoping your holiday shopping is over, that all goes smoothly in your near future and that you have an abundance of creativity in your new year.