But what do I DO with my taboos?

with Jenafer Joy

We’ve been talking about taboos here in the magazine for months and months now.

And it seems there are public taboos: taboos the revolutionaries on the team are excited to bust and bend.  And then there are the private taboos we each have as individuals.

It’s the private taboos I’m most fond of exploring. The places where we (simple fallible humans) simply get stuck in a story. Usually it’s something we really wish was different, something we have shame about.

In the oh-so-intentional communities, everyone is “doing their work”. We dig around and we unearth messy, murky, sticky stories. Some stories sting like electricity, some make us feel like puking. Some are equal parts repellant and fascinating. Personal taboos are just stories…with energy.

So, then what?

Once you’ve named them, what in the world do you DO with your taboos?

That’s what we’ve been exploring in our Cosmic Cowgirls courses. We’ve been finding that just naming, just labeling a story, just bringing it to consciousness…isn’t enough. We have to work it, express it…we have to walk it. We have to go “into the woods” with whatever the story is and engage it – for real. And let it transform – for real.

Into the Woods

I’m kind of annoyed about this. It would be way quicker if we could just grab a pile of post-it notes and go on an labeling binge. But the Wild Hag, our own wildness, wants to dance with us. She has important things to show us that are hidden all around those charged stories ripe for change.

There may be other ways to unpack story. But art is the one that’s been working for me and the Cowgirls. Art is what we do with taboo. We use the alchemy of the journal or canvas and we…walk it out. Like an adventure.

Brave Intuition

Sometimes it’s a quick walk – one where the journal both creates and records a powerful change as complete. (All in One Cauldron + Ledger – it chops dices and purees!)  Here’s an example of a mini potent journal exercise I created in honor of the new year. And yes, despite it’s simplicity, it had a strong impact on a story of mine.

[Not seeing it?  Find the video on Youtube here: http://youtu.be/zJ92Y69ZftA]

More often though, it’s – not – a quick walk. More often, we need weeks and months of marinating in an inquiry to loosen the information that’s around our taboo.  Luckily, this is JUST the kind of taboo-doing we know how to do!

What have you been doing with your Taboos?


 Got some personal taboos you’re ready to walk out?  Saddle up for:

  • LEGEND: We’re just getting rolling on this six month transformation ride.  Registration open through January 20th details: HERE
  • BRAVE INTUITION Storywalking with Jenafer Joy. A 10 week  art journal course on Baba Yaga starts February 16 details: HERE.

Photo on 3-8-14 at 9.24 AM #3
Brimming with the quirky enthusiasm that prompted her nom de plume,  Jenafer Joy rides bareback at the center of a Creativity Revolution. Using every trick in (and out) of the book – vibrant paintings, whimsical writings, and an unwavering faith in every person’s innate intuitive genius – it is impossible to spend time in her presence and not fall in love with yourself, with the whispering of your muse and with Jena’s heartfelt and contagious love of the creative life. Jena has been in the healing & creative arts leading Inspired Inquiry courses since 2003. And she is still pinching herself at the luck of being at the helm of the Cosmic Cowgirl Community as one of its three directors since 2010. You can find links to everything she’s up to on her website www.jenaferjoy.com and can always find her paintings and a ridiculous pile up of journal pages on Facebook at The Art of Jenafer Joy.

Author: jenaferjoy

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1 Comment

  1. Brilliant and right on as usual Jenafer Joy and I’m digging out my art pencils and journal as soon as I finished writing this!

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