February 03, 2015

Our life journey, illuminated by meaning, becomes a pilgrimage : connecting us to our inner self, to each other, and to what is sacred in the world. JL.

‘In sacred travel, every experience is uncanny. No encounter is without meaning.’  Phil Cousineau ‘The Art of Pilgrimage’


'The Time Of Your Life' lyrics by Randy Newman in 'A Bug's Life'
'Isn't it a bit surprising
How one's fortunes ebb and flow
And only to the enterprising
Does the magic fortune cookie go
Believe me
It's the time of your life so live it well.'

YOUR LIFE JOURNEY IS A PILGRIMAGE, on self respect and being respected.

Your Life Journey is a Pilgrimage, graphic by Jacky lloyd with Talisgirl Charms Winged Seed charm.

'Pilgrim n.: A traveller that is taken seriously' (Ambrose Bierce) 

How do we get people to take us seriously as we travel along the path of our daily life, without that ‘official’ designation as Pilgrim?
There’s an African saying:

'The chameleon says that
others respect you if you
respect yourself and that is
why it walks like a king.'

We take on many weird and wonderful personas in order (we think) to make others like us: ‘funny’, ‘smart’, ‘cool’, ‘fashionable’, ‘dominant’, ‘smiley’, ’nice’. But if these outward expressions are not who we actually are in that moment, one way or another it will always show.

To be taken seriously, we must be able to express our authentic self. Others will instinctively respect us for that integrity. Integrity, quite frankly, is a ray of pure sunshine in an obfuscating world.
Taking yourself seriously is not about being unwilling to laugh at yourself, nor about being dogmatic or dull, it is simply about finding the courage to accept and express the person you are. Letting it shine through.

Life demands that we operate on many simultaneous levels. Walking around like an open book is not going to be effective when life itself calls us to play a role that is 'bigger' than we are (mother, leader), but we ourselves must know our feelings and learn to generously integrate our authentic self in balance with our public self.
'Generous' here meaning: to err on the authentic side of the scale! (which equals self respect.) Being an effective mother or corporate leader is about the integrity of a whole person, not of a role player.
Nelson Mandela's warmth and integrity made him shine brighter than any other leader of his time.

The charms I make, charms-with-meaning, are always about life travel as pilgrimage: finding an authentic way to travel wisely through your life. So let me rephrase that Pilgrim quote to the following: 

Pilgrim n. – A traveller who takes their own life journey seriously.(Talisgirlcharms)

Nothing official here, just seeing the sacred in the secular, the secular in the sacred of your own daily life.

That’s where the joy comes in – when everything in life has value. You are no longer just thinking about yourself in isolation, but of yourself in relationship to everyone, everywhere and everything you come in to contact with.

Life no longer deals you blows, or gives you a ‘lucky break’: it brings you the challenges you need to  discover who you really are. Integrity is what allows you to get the best out of the breaks and the curve balls.
Your friends, family, groups, and favourite places, things you love or hate: these are all clues to who you are. How do they change and affect you, what do they tell you about yourself and what you want in life?

A life lived with mindfulness (the ‘mother’ of self-respect) is the life of a pilgrim who sees their whole life as having value. Every major event is a sort of wayside ‘shrine’ at which to  reflect and learn.

As a life pilgrim you are able to see that you are wonder-full, and life is full of wonders.

The accumulation of mindful experiences into life-wisdom will be the greatest reward you can achieve in life. 

Pilgrims traditionally wear or carry a symbol which helps others to recognise them as being on a special (spiritual) journey, but also to remind themselves each day and through the tough times, to be mindful of the purpose of their journey.

I’ve created a charm symbol for a life pilgrim, a  symbol  both secular and sacred, as one is always within the other. It is to remind you to be mindful, every day of your life journey.

Winged Seed silver charm (front & back) for life pilgrims, from www.talisgirlcharms.comWinged Seed silver charm for a life pilgrim, from www.talisgirlcharms.com 

  •  A seed is both abundance and potential. 
  •  Wings symbolises the spiritual aspect, therefore spiritual abundance and spiritual potential.
  •  A winged seed is on a journey to find a fertile place to grow, and these ‘places’ are the experiences life gives you.( also that the search for earth is grounding, balancing your winged/spiritual journey.)
  •  Winged seeds have a revolving spiral flight motion, an analogy for how our life evolves, never the straight road we think we’d like it to be, always a series of cycles, every cycle another version of a wayside ‘shrine’ on our journey.

The Talisgirlcharms Winged Seed charm is a symbol for a pilgrim, conscious traveller, life-traveller, for daily mindfulness, for true self respect; however you feel comfortable (authentic) calling it.

When you start to live your life as a pilgrim you will find your self respected, you will love life more,and you are on the path to life wisdom.

Jacky Lloyd , life pilgrim, learning to walk like a chameleon.


Jacky Lloyd
Jacky Lloyd