Exploring Our Tla Twein (What’s that??)

Quartet EbookCoverDo you find yourself drawn to a particular animal – a spirit animal – or to certain mythological characters, a hero from a folk tale, or a real-life hero whose journey seems to call to you? A saint or a diety? Even a tree or flower? A tarot card?In my fantasy novel, The Earth Woman Tree Woman Quartet your Tla Twei is one of these – a mythological character whose form you must take in order to travel to Ninas Twei where the Tsin Twei, the Dance of Life takes place. Where all the species on earth dance together to ensure the continuance of life on earth.

Except humans.

Humans have lost their ability to join the dance.  But some humans can observe the dance by taking the form of their Tla Twei.  They are the ones working to bring humanity back to the Dance.

In thinking about the Tla Twein outside of their role in the novel I realized that we have many of these characters in our lives.  We even have cards and books designed to help us find which ones we are “like”.

But I want to take a different approach to the exploration of our Tla Twei.  Instead of pulling a card that tells me about my animal (or character from mythology, etc), I want to notice the animals and heroes, the characters that I’m drawn to, and find out why.

440px-Harriet_Tubman_by_Squyer,_NPG,_c1885I stumbled on this approach one day as I danced in an InterPlay class and wondered why I’m so drawn to Harriet Tubman, a real-life hero.

Her courage frightens me.

How could she go alone down into the woods of the south, singing her spirituals so that the slaves would hear her, know she was there, and would gather their courage and follow her to freedom?  Alone.

How could she risk her life, risk being caught, being tortured, being returned to slavery? Alone.

There is bravery in numbers. Most of the time I’ve been brave I’ve been with others. But venturing out alone?

I came to an understanding.

I was drawn to Harriet Tubman because she had a quality I want.  She had the courage to strike out alone to do what is right. It still frightens me. I haven’t acquired this quality yet, but it sits there waiting for me.

And then there’s the other Tla Twein in my life. Why did I spend my childhood playing Robin Hood? What is it about wolves that draws me in – and so many others?  (I find wolf lovers everywhere I turn, including among my very young piano students.) Why do I feel that the oak trees of my childhood home were my mothers? Why am I so drawn to Kuan Yin? Is there a growing point for me behind my infatuation with each of these beings?

I am presenting a workshop where we can explore our Tla Twein using InterPlay forms and other arts to dig beneath the surface of our selves and find new growing points.  Are you interested? Let me know at connie@deephum.com.

The Earth Woman Tree Woman Quartet is now available in a paperback print version. You can order it at many independent bookstores or buy it at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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