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Warm up a cold winter and indulge your creative side
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All Shiny and New!

Welcome to the First Edition of “Under the Dancing Moon”

This is my new monthly offering for providing you with mystical musings, magical ideas for creative living and monthly updates on upcoming workshops, shows and other things going on at my studio in the Alton Mill Arts Centre.
 
This 'official' newsletter is a 'seed dream' I have wanted to get under way for awhile and … well, like Nature itself, sometimes we just have to be patient and let things find their own time to fully develop. First of all, finding the right name for my new project was important …
 
Grandmother Moon has always held a special place in my heart as the ultimate symbol of the sacred feminine - the supreme creative muse. Some of you may know that ‘Dancing Moon’ is part of my medicine name.

"PULSAR" - Sacred Geometry Mandala by CJ SheltonI didn’t understand why Spirit bestowed the honour of the moon on me until I began fully exploring mandala art in earnest about six years ago. The majority of my professional life had been focused on creating highly detailed representational art that was technically good but somehow lacked soul. When I was given my new 'name' during a deep shamanic trance journey (long before I ever knew what a ‘shamanic journey’ was), I couldn’t make sense of either its meaning or purpose but it proved to be the prelude to life taking me on an even greater journey ‘down the rabbit hole’ to discover that ‘soul’ was key to finding, and creating, a more authentic path.
 
The Moon is of course the ultimate mandala – not only is she round in shape but she circles around us, influencing our lives with her waxing and waning, her gentle urgings, yearnings, pushings and pullings. She is present in the tides, she is the changing seasons, she is our turbulent emotions.
 
Nature continually provides us with examples of balancing correspondences - light/dark, male/female, increase/decrease, etc. Ultimately, the moon’s role is as counterpart to the sun. The sun is male fatherly energy and so logically the moon stands as a maternal or female influence. More intriguing though is how the moon wields her power. She produces no actual light of her own but must rely on the sun's light to reflect or mirror her image to earthly eyes.
 
Moonlight on water

This method of projecting light makes the Moon a symbol of subtlety, clarity, reflection, and intuitive deduction, all gained through passive means. Where the Sun boldly and often unrelentingly blazes down on anything in its path, the Moon softly wraps 'around', illuminating all in her incandescent glow, one that quietly gives birth to magic, mystery and myth. We are free to be ourselves “under the dancing moon”, unjudged by that benevolent face as we joyously surrender to our deepest dreams and desires … the dancing moon therefore is the light of our own souls, a reflection of the Divine Source.
 
Some of the ideas we associate with the moon are: time, cycles, wonder, shadow, balance, renewal, mystery, emotion, intuition, fertility, transition, femininity, perception, progression, receptivity and illumination. Take a moment to savour each of these words … what do they evoke for you? I encourage you to use these musings as a jumping-off-point into broader personal observations about beautiful Grandmother Moon. I guarantee the ‘lunar depths’ you dive into will instill within you inspiration, creativity, and magic.


Winter's Gifts .... winter is a time of deep creativity, a time that embraces the energy of the dark side of the Moon where the most sacred of treasures lie. Click on the live links in this email to learn more about upcoming workshops in my studio over the next couple of months ... they may be just the trick for sparking any “seed dreams” lying dormant within. Of special note are my new drawing sessions called "Seeing With New Eyes" and a new series of workshops based on the Celtic Wheel of the Year. I have also recently updated my website with lots of new images and information so please be sure to check it out.
 
May you enjoy the dance! See you next month.

CJ Shelton
Artist & Shamanic Practitioner

Dancing Moon Designs
Illuminating the Creative Spirit ...

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THE STORY BEHIND THE PIECE ..."Scent of the Moon" pays homage to the beautiful mother fox that had a den on the hillside next to the parking lot at the Alton Mill. The first spring I was at the Mill she had six babies in one litter and we often saw them rolling and tumbling around on the hillside as they played. Mother Fox would sit at the top of the ridge with her nose raised skyward but always with a wary eye on her little ones. She was very large, sleek and healthy with a big bushy tail. We didn’t see her again after that year, probably because too many cars in the parking lot were making her nervous and she decided to move her den. Foxes are like that ... they come and go about their business discreetly, invisibly and with little fuss, a little bit like the Moon.

The original artwork for this piece recently went to a new home but greeting cards are still available with the image of Mother Fox.
 
PIZZAZZ!
Need a little 'pizzazz' to help beat the winter blues? Be sure to visit the PIZZAZZ! show in the new Headwaters Gallery at the Alton Mill that features work by myself and some of my colleagues. Now on until February 2, Wednesdays through Sundays, 10 am - 5 pm at the Alton Mill Arts Centre
 
Art in the Round Intro to Mandala Making
Upcoming Scheduled Sessions:
Sun. Feb. 8
Sat. Feb. 22
Sat. March 8
Sat. March 29

**NEW**  "Seed Dreams" Intention Mandalas
Sun. Feb. 15
Four Worlds Celtic Knotwork
Sat. March 1

**NEW**  "Seeing With New Eyes" Drawing with CJ
Morning or afternoon sessions Wednesdays & Sundays ongoing throughout February and March (pre registration required)

 
The Celtic Wheel of the Year Workshops provide inspired and magical ways of engaging with Nature through learning about 8 seasonal festivals once celebrated by the ancient Celts.

UPCOMING

**NEW** Celtic Festival of Imbolc Workshop
Sat. Feb. 1

**NEW**  Celtic Festival of Ostara Workshop
Sat. March 15

 
Shamanic Sessions
By appoiintment Wednesdays through Fridays at the Alton Mill and twice monthly at Breakthrough Centre in Brampton

**NEW**  Mandala Interpretation
Explore the 'language of your soul'. Private sessions using the MARI system (Mandala Assessment Research Instrument) are now available by appointment in my studio at the Alton Mill. Visit my website to learn more about this fascinating process.
“What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves? This is the most important of all voyages of discovery…”
~ Thomas Merton
Copyright © 2014 Dancing Moon Designs, All rights reserved.


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