“Natalia Clarke is a transpersonal psychotherapist, writer, poet, nature lover and intuitive practitioner. Her interests lie in human psyche, transformation, nature spirituality, spiritual self-awareness, earth-based spiritual practice, Scotland and UK travel. She is a fiction and non-fiction writer and a poet with a passion for nature, Scotland, emotions and magic. She writes about intuitive living, magical practice, nature spirituality and soul relationship with the land.”1
After reading Natalia’s most recently book, Intuitive Magic Practice, I experienced an huge shift that reconnected me to my intuition. Her gentle guidance and experience-based wisdom brought me right back into center, and since then I’ve been prioritizing maintaining receptivity to my inner voice. As much of the book is written from her perspective as both a psychotherapist and experienced intuitive practitioner, I wanted to find out a bit more of Natalia’s thoughts and insights. I had a few questions on mind about Natalia’s practice and advice, and I was absolutely delighted when she agreed to do an interview for Musing Mystical.
What are some of your earlier memories of feeling connected to your spiritual self?
Ever since I was very young, I felt like I was a part of nature. Whenever I was in the forest, I became a tree; when I was swimming, I was a part of it. When I laid on the ground or walked barefoot, I felt at home. It is that feeling of belonging to the wild and natural that felt like nothing else; expansive and joyous, which we now might call a spiritual experience.
One of my earliest memories is running through summer rain with my mother, barefoot and soaked through. I still remember the feeling of warm rain on my body and that felt very otherworldly to me and completely natural. Other instances I recollect are fishing on a river in remote places in early hours of the morning with my father. The silence felt incredible with spirit all around.
How does your intuition speak to you?
Often my experiencing intuition at play would be either auditory, visionary or a feeling/sensation in my energy feel or in the body. Auditory can be a sound, a birdsong, a whoosh of wind. Sounds would be followed by an image or a color, for example. With all of that there will be a feeling that speaks through me and I feel it physically. It is not necessarily an emotion, but a sense, a nudge and then a narrative would unfold through words or a poem would be put together (I write poetry intuitively). It depends what intuition is there to serve. This is how it is with magic or a message coming through that relates either to myself or someone else, or a project of some sort. In life I do check-ins with myself on how things feel whenever I need guidance or help deciding or starting something.
Do you have a practice for when you start feeling disconnected from your intuition?
Intuition is not something one connects to once you learn to live and function that way naturally through practice. Intuition will always be there whether we are aware of it or not. Sometimes we are aware but ignore it and other times we might not be aware, because we are not used to operating via our emotional/psychic system and use our habitual ‘mind’ modes of living.
What I have learnt is that intuition is always there, it has always been there, and it can be used as a skill, a tool to navigate your world, including practicing magic. Once allowed it speaks to you rather than you speak to it, if it makes sense, so I cannot say one disconnects from it rather there are periods of silence, rest when you don’t experience a message, a sign, a voice. In those periods I don’t do anything. I wait when it comes. I speak about doing things when I am called in my book. I am what I call a Witch-in-waiting, waiting to serve once I am spoken to, directed, but this is another topic on how traditional witchcraft might work.
What role do you feel creativity has in intuitive magic?
Creativity is a big part of magic generally, but particularly in intuitive form of practice. It is that playful part of you, an artist in you that gets engaged and the whole thing comes alive be it a spell, a ritual, an offering. Creativity can be introduced with incorporating drawings, words (poems, devotionals, incantations, and spells) or making something – an altar set-up or a spell preparation and choosing your objects. Creativity brings intuitive magic to life and makes it colorful and meaningful and individual to you.
How do you prioritize self-care in your life?
The answer is intuitively. Either my intuition, my body, my emotional or a mental state would always tell me when I need to slow down and by this point in my life it can come with very specific instructions on what I need to do and how to take care of myself in that moment. I never not listen, and I just follow the message.
It can be via my physical body manifesting some symptoms and slowing me down (this one is often when things get bad, which is not often these days). It can be a dream with a clear message or a voice saying, ‘not today’ (auditory). Restlessness often tells me I need to stop too. Generally having your self-awareness switched on (mindfulness is another way of describing it) at all times, which comes naturally over time with practice, will be helpful.
How does nature support you in your spiritual practice?
Nature is everything to me. Everything in nature makes sense. I make sense, my life does, my relationships do, and it provides deep meaning for me. I was born to witness nature, that’s my reason for being here, I often think. This might be a cliché, but I can not survive without it and often experience feelings of profound grief when I either have to leave wilderness or when I don’t have any nature around me. I become numb, disconnected, and bereft. I am sensitive to the sounds of trees being cut and would spend days in a state of anxiety.
What advice do you have for those hoping to reconnect to their intuition?
My advice would be to give it a try. Trust that you know the answers you seek, and you have always known. You cannot fail and can only learn and grow. Treat it with curiosity. It wants you to hear yourself and give yourself a chance. Intuition is of you and about you. It is centered in the heart of things and waiting to help.
How do you feel psychology and magic can support one another?
The main thing is awareness. As it is with psychology of making unconscious conscious it is with magic when we are aware of intuition and let it speak, it helps us know ourselves better, what we do and why, it helps us see the patterns of our defenses and behavior. It is being present with intention. Why do we do what we do? Both psychology and magic provide deep understanding and acceptance of ourselves (strengths and limitations, all of it) and every witch must know her own depth and weaknesses and, therefore, embracing the whole. Psychological work is about ‘making whole’, coming back home to yourself once you learn things and choose not to judge and instead become curious and accepting of all that you are.
Has your intuition ever guided you to do something that was totally different than what your mind was saying?
This is very often the case due to our conditioning; I believe. It is also the reason why people dismiss intuition so quickly, as the mind can be a powerful master. Our thought patterns can be so ingrained in our psyche that it feels impossible and even fooling to even consider operating in any other way. The mind will always seek to take over, because that is what we are used to, trained into doing.
However, mind is only as powerful as we give it credit and it is in many ways automatic. It doesn’t have the ability to discern like heart/intuition can. The mind only does what it knows to do repeatedly and that is where training yourself into feeling and sensing comes in rather than continuing to use thinking/mind alone. This is a big topic with a lot of psychology behind it and an interesting area to explore for all of us to understand mind vs heart, thinking vs feeling, logical vs spontaneous and creative.
What I did over time when studying and practicing was pay attention, not automatically dismissing ‘other ways’ and potentially changing the course of acting based on something different. It can be useful to learn to use both, they both have value, but when one is in power and control all the time and the other is silenced, it is difficult. A lot of work needs to be done to understand how the mind works and allow the intuitive side to participate too before they can be brought together to serve the same purpose – helping us live a fulfilling life.
Why do you think creating a spiritual practice based upon intuition, as opposed to set rules or ritual, is so refreshing to one’s spirit?
It is honoring what you already know, what your soul always knew, and spirit always supported. It is different and refreshing because it promotes giving yourself a chance to play a part and if rituals and rules can support and include it then it is even better. It is inclusive, as I know sometimes, we might feel we must follow, we should do this and that because it is the rule and someone else said this and that. We might not want to be seen differently or daring or ‘out of the circle’, so to speak, which links in with how we learn to behave psychologically as children, for example. It takes practice and experience and enjoying the journey of exploring both – the traditional and unique and making the whole thing your own.
What is your favorite thing about writing a book?
I love the intuitive element to writing. Sometimes you think you go one way and then it takes you in another. Ideas flash and exploration begins. Characters or concepts take on a life of their own and, as a writer, you follow. I like how alive and immersive the process is. It is an interesting way of expressing yourself and sharing experiences. When I write I have no concept of time and space, nothing else exists and I love that. When writing this book, I felt joy being able to share my ways of practicing and show the element of exploration, curiosity, and play that can go into it.
What is the most challenging part of being an author?
Writing is hard work and a balancing act of so many things. The challenge is to convey the message you intended and be sure and satisfied that you expressed and said all that was relevant and important and hope the audience would find it inspiring, helpful, and interesting. Writing is challenging, but also a rewarding creative and often spiritual experience like no other.
Can you tell us a bit more about your next book, Baba Yaga, coming in December 2021?
This book was written completely intuitively, which makes it one of those glorious projects for me as a writer. I wrote it via listening to the deity. She spoke through me, which was challenging, as she speaks in codes and symbols and a different language all together. I enjoyed the challenge of translating the message and putting it across in a way she would approve of. In many ways I had no choice in this, as I was asked to do it by her and hope it comes across as material that you would not find in fairy tales or traditional sources. This book is about what Baba Yaga wanted to say herself rather than what has been told about her since the beginning of time. It is a devotional and personal understanding of the deity in a book that suggests a way of working with her.
A channeled Baba Yaga book? Wowza! This sounds amazing. I look forward to reading this one as well! If you would like to stay in touch with Natalia, you can follow her blog: https://rawnaturespirit.com/. Intuitive Magic Practice will be released on May 1, 2021; you can purchase a copy here.
Alanna Kali is an astrologer, numerologist, and pioneer spirit that loves to explore life through the lens of depth psychology. She has a passion for studying the humanities and social trends. Her academic work is centered upon reuniting body, mind, and spirit through eco-psychology. She loves reading, spending time in nature, and travel.