I’ve been sick for over a week, so this post has been a bit in coming and I am going to keep it brief. I think my foray into cemetery psychology went pretty well.
As a recap, I went to a cemetery at midnight on Halloween to meditate on the correlation between the fear of darkness and the fear of the unconscious self, those aspects of the self that we don’t like to look at too closely and that we hide. I cast my circle, lit a candle and some incense, made an offering of bread and alcohol, burned the slip of paper with a few qualities that I would like to see change, and sat in the dark with myself in a somber and tingly mood.
For the most part, it was quite peaceful. It was close enough to the full moon that I’m not sure it really qualified as meditating in darkness; it made the headstones almost glow. I breathed in the kinda freakin’ cold night air and enjoyed the solitude.
It bordered on boring.
However, there were some tense moments and one was illuminating. It wasn’t the moment when I almost burned myself on my less shining qualities. It wasn’t even the moment when something rustled and someone may have walked through causing me to hope I wasn’t about to be raped or have my throat slit. That was just standard reactionary fear, not entirely unfounded. It was actually the moment I left the car and donned my cloak, heading into a cemetery at midnight without any real knowledge of whether it was technically legal for me to be there or what I would say if I was stopped.
And, really, that correlates pretty well. I may not like all of my flaws and secrets and mistakes, but I am generally self-aware enough to know what they are and know that I am working toward a better me. I know that fear of my own darkness doesn’t help bring anything into the light. The fear comes in when I think someone might see me out of context and make a judgment based on misconceptions.
So, I’m back to things I can’t control. There would not have been much I could do if a cop came by or a group of kids traipsed through the cemetery. Maybe I would have been discounted as weird, maybe I would have been arrested. But I’m still glad I went. I can’t say it’s something I’m going to do every year, but it gave me some insight and, despite the fact that I couldn’t control the potential reactions, I am proud of myself for going anyway and not chickening out.