Wednesday, February 20, 2013

How to Use Google Calendar as a Spiritual Diary

I have a number of posts from my old spiritual blog, The Four Realms, that I want to migrate to here. This is the first.

I assume many Wiccans and Pagans keep a diary or journal. I myself sometimes post to the private online journal Penzu, and sometimes in my hardbound journal. And with a diary, you can look back and see what you've been doing and thinking, so as to track your spiritual progress (or non-progress, as it may be.)

The problem with these type of journals is it's hard to get an overall view or spot patterns and trends. Also, sitting down and composing a paragraph is sometimes intimidating or takes up too much time. So, in addition to my traditional journaling, I've been tracking stuff in my Google Calendar as well. Sometimes, this entries are all I do. Sometimes they serve as notes to when I do write the long-form entries in Penzu.

First, I started by creating a new calendar called Diary, and colored as I saw fit. Then I started adding significant spiritual events. But, over time, I started adding more and more stuff. This is not only helpful, but coincides with the concept that one should not have a spiritual life and a mundane life, but should be one and the same.

Things to Add
  • Practices such as meditations, rituals
  • Positive and negative personal interactions
  • Spells and successes
  • Acquisition of sacred objects and books
  • Daily Tarot Readings - I tag these as "DTR"s
  • Creative pursuits
  • People you've met
  • Encounters with the divine
  • Communion with nature
  • Things that weighed heavily on your mind
Put Things in Context

Another thing that helps is context. I have other calendars in view, such as personal events and appointments and U.S. holidays. But I've added other stuff as well that helps put spiritual and personal diary entries in context.
  • Wiccan Holidays
  • Phases of the Moon
  • Moon Signs
Some calendars can be found by going to the "Other Calendars" box in the lower left, clicking on "Add" in the lower right corner of the box and selecting "Browse Interesting Calendars." Then you'll get to a page with three tabs near the top: "Holidays," "Sports" and "More." You will find Phases of the Moon under "More."

Unfortunately, with the other two, I don't have links. I found them and added them, but forgot where I found them. If you're net savvy enough, I'm sure you'll manage.

These contextual elements not only benefit looking backward, but forward as well. By seeing the future Moon phases and signs, you can prepare yourself accordingly. This is especially helpful with scheduled personal events. You can see in which phase or sign things sit such as business meetings, doctor visits, and social gatherings. It may even influence when you schedule these events.

Other things to try

Since you can create multiple banners, and color code them, I thought about color coding things as positive, negative, or neutral. Or, you can create a calendar for each of the elements, color them accordingly, and tag them to the bullets where you think they had the most correspondence. Such as, blue/water for personal interactions, yellow/air for creative or intellectual pursuits, green/earth for communion with nature or actions toward sustainability, and fire/red for passionate or bold events.

Things to look for

Once you have all your events and all your context, look for the following:
  • What do you see happening during waxing and waning times. Are you more meditative during waning? Are you more productive during waxing?
  • Do your bullets align with the Moon signs.
  • Did your DTRs pan out for that day?
  • Are there clues to why you had times where you were depressed or spiritually dry?
  • Are there clues to why you had times where you were happy or spiritually ecstatic?
  • How did your spirituality correspond to the current season?
If you like this concept and have other ideas of what to post as well as other tweaks such as color-coding, please leave comments.

1 comment:

  1. That's some very detailed journaling, Bill. Good work.