✨ A Gathering Place for Magical Readers and Writers ✨

Tag Archives: journal review

Self-Love Journal, by Akal Pritam

Self-Love Journal: A Journal to Inner Peace and Happiness, by Akal Pritam
Rockpool Publishing, 925924459, 208 pages, March 2021

“Dear Soul… May you surrender to self-love, the blooming of your joyful heart, as you journey towards more inner peace and happiness… May you love yourself through the process of transformation, not judge yourself and stop that inner blooming… I celebrate your beautiful creative rhythm. I bow down to you for all that you are. You are invaluable…”1

Self-Love Journal: A Journal to Inner Peace and Happiness by Akal Pritam is a feast for the eyes and a treasure for the heart. The pages of the journal are beautifully illustrated by the author and lovingly separated by color into sections moving through the energies of the chakras and their associated visualizations.

The quote above is part of the opening 2-page invitation from the author to step into the beauty of your divinity and ability to generate and be love. This small excerpt gives clue that this journal is not like any other you may already own and this invitation echoes within the spiritual nature and capacity for self-love and acceptance inherently within all of us.

Let me begin by saying that this is not a journal I would traditionally have selected for myself. I tend more towards the crisply lined unadorned pages and leather covers. But, as is true of many things, particularly those of a spiritual nature, first choices are necessarily what is needed, nor where you find the most self-growth.

These thoughts and more have been especially relevant in my case, and what I have learned of myself simply by going through the offerings for this review would, I believe, hold true for any reader. Pritam has skillfully produced a visually beautiful space to write your inner most feelings, judgments, and transformative moments, as self-acceptance and love begin to flower in response.

One of the reasons I chose this journal for review is because I have been feeling “raw” after the events of the past year and a half, as I am sure many of you are as well. Self-Love Journal is the perfect soothing balm to begin the healing. As you move through the pages, it feels much like a cocoon from which we can again find strength and joy within; embrace the metamorphosis and emerge with the beauty and lightness of spirit of the butterfly.

Images of beautiful women in soft-colored pastels grace the pages with ample space for journaling and inspiring words of encouragement accompany image or footer of a blank space to write. Each section that denotes the transition from one chakra into the next provides the reader with basic information about the energy they will be working with regardless of familiarity with the specific chakra. These include the English and Sanskrit names, the Bija sound, corresponding body parts, affirmations and more. The entire page is dedicated to the naming of opening this center within the reader’s etheric anatomy in preparation for the work to follow.

The page directly opposite is a beautiful illustration of a woman’s face adorned with the symbol of the chakra at the center of a geometrically patterned heart. The skill of Pritam’s artistic talent shines in these illustrations with the eyes of the women depicted looking back in loving gaze, determination, and support. These felt very much like gazing into the gentle strength of a dear friend hoping to share the reflection of beauty that she sees within you for you to claim as your own.

I especially enjoyed the writing inspirations, color, and visuals used for the journaling pages corresponding to the work of the Solar Plexus Charka (Manipura):

“… I am future ancient, born now. An infinite soul of love empowered by the cosmos. Activated from the core of my true self; and invaluable, radiant, incomparable individual. I know how to serve in loving truth…”2

Much of what the focus centered around was that of stepping into your own power and owning the truth that evolves from that space. Energetically, the Solar Plexus is the seat of the individual’s strength and fuels the forms that action and will take. It is depicted as yellow sun-filled energy.

The colorings used in Self-Love Journal were actually more of a honey-gold that immediately took me to thoughts of the honeycomb, bees, and the power of the queen to command and oversee the production of the sweet nectar of honey that will nourish and sustain. This gave a very warm feel to what is often an intensely heated engagement with this chakra. This, coupled with imagery, provides the reader with a truly organic calling into the heart of the sweetness of the hive, the intricate and beautiful patterning of the comb and preparation to take on the mantle of the “queen bee”.

Self-Love Journal is truly a journal to be experienced. There is something of connection to be made by anyone, whether it is the guidance of the chakras, the inspirational statements, the beautifully rich illustrations or the overall visual beauty. And, if you are interested in supplementing your journaling with oracle or mini cards of inspiration, Pritam also has available an oracle deck (Self Love Oracle: Find Peace and Happiness through the Chakras) and inspiration cards (Let Go: Mini Inspiration Cards). I’ve just ordered the oracle deck!

Kali Journal, by Alana Fairchid

Kali Journal:  Sadhana for Sacred Introversion, by Alana Fairchild and ilustrated by Jimmy Manton
Blue Angel Publishing, 0648746751, 220 pages, 2021

On first glance at the Kali Journal: Sadhana for Sacred Introversion, my senses were overwhelmed with the beauty and majesty of the artwork.  Author Alana Fairchild and artist Jimmy Manton have taken the incredible art from her Kali Oracle Deck and interspersed the pages of this journal with the stunning images.  There are over 40 full page, full color renderings of the Goddess Kali, her ritualistic tools, and other sacred symbols.

In addition to presenting a journal that includes both lined pages and a few unlined pages for sketching or other uses, Fairchild adds general information about Kali, moon phase rituals, mantras and a prayer dance for healing.   Each of the two page spreads also includes an affirmation, blessing or message from Goddess Kali. The paper is a very nice quality and is a warm buff color that really sets off the artwork.

Alana Fairchild is a spiritual mentor based in Australia, who has published over 20 oracle decks, 30 albums of sacred music and meditations, and 13 books. Since I have a few of Fairchild’s oracle decks, this journal really interested me.  Jimmy Manton is the artist for the artwork.  He is an award-winning illustrator who is also based in Australia.  He has illustrated numerous tarot and oracle decks. 

When I initially opened the Kali Journal, I was really interested in learning more about the history of the goddess and how she represents the energy of the Divine Mother/Divine Feminine. According to Fairchild, Kali represents the “wild, gracious and transformational realm of the dark face of the Divine Mother.”1 I was intrigued and drawn in, anxious to know more about how the Goddess Kali might support me on my spiritual path. Kali is the Hindu Goddess of time, creation, destruction, power and liberation.  The very first quote was quite arresting:

Within, you have the power of the Divine Mother’s wisdom and blessing. 
Do not underestimate her. 
Do not underestimate yourself.2

Fairchild explains that “Sadhana” comes from the Sanskrit and means “to accomplish.” In this use, she is referring to spiritual practices that foster healing and support us as we move toward enlightenment. Introversion is a psychological term that means the tendency to be concerned with one’s own thoughts and feelings, rather than with external things. So, this journal is a tool to help one with accomplishing a review of one’s thoughts and feelings. 

One particular Kali yantra and mudra practice really supported me through a time when I was experiencing a struggle with my mother.  It is called “Kali Yantra and Mudra Practice to Banish Negative Interference.” With this practice, I learned that a YANTRA is a sacred geometric symbol that can act as a portal to the temple of a god or goddess. One gazes on the visual element, as you would a candle flame or other sacred symbol. The practice also included a special hand mudra and several mantas for recitation. By invoking the power of Kali and using the specific mudra, the yantra, and several mantras, I was able to realign, recalibrate, and heal myself. The next time I talked with my mother, I was aware of my own healing and an energetic shift that had taken place.

Fairchild has created a journal that can benefit anyone, from the novice spiritual seeker to a seasoned soul traveler.  You can go as deep with the rituals as you want to go or simply use the lined pages as a journal and benefit from the uplifting messages on each page. The book is an undated journal, which you can use for any purpose you want. Both covers are designed with a folded extension, so you can mark your place in your journal. I really love this feature and the cover is a nice card stock that makes this feature easy to use. 

The Kali artwork really brings alive the energy and history of Kali and inspires me every time I open the pages. Manton’s use of rich, jewel-tone colors makes each depiction of the Goddess Kali and her consorts come alive on the page.  Many of the images portray the goddess with blue skin, burgundy lips, and dark penetrating eyes.  Yet, these images are not scary or off-putting.  Rather, each one seems to jump off the page with an aliveness that is spontaneous, inspiring, and arresting. 

Kali Journal is for anyone wanting to release and heal life issues and seek the liberation that the Goddess Kali can bring into your life. I recommend this journal for anyone who wants to connect to the magic and healing power of Kali, the “goddess of fierce protection and wild grace.”3 I plan to use the journal for my weekly Saturday wrap-up and use the rituals to release the week and move on to new adventures.