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Enlightened alchemist magician


How do you ignite the spark of initiation? Becoming an enlightened alchemist magician. The archetype of a magicianappears to create from nothing something mysterious and wonderful. Expression of miracles and feeling spellbound by seeing miracles are not always an illusion. Examples of priest, faith healers, shamans, witch doctors and others creating something from nothing.

Alchemist specialises in alchemy of transforming the impossible into the possible. They tune into their intuitive powers and follow their instincts. Intuition enemy is the ego because it uses rational, conscious human thought of acceptance in present with human terms. Example of mothers and their children have a knowing that child is not well even when not in the same vicinity. Carl Jung said about intuition, intuition gives outlook and insight; it revels in the garden of magical possibilities as if they were real. This experience is subjective. It comes from the internal person’s awareness. Common phrases are a hunch, a gut feeling, follow my heart etc. Often the intuition appears woo woo or stupid to others from their ego or rational brain it wouldn’t be the right choice.

I refer now to the description of the Enlightened alchemist magician. Enlightened archetype referred as the sage. The sage has wisdom with no bias, based on a higher dimension of knowledge or elevated consciousness. Imagine you were in a dark place and restricted in what direction to take. An old man has a bright light, instantly appears, lighting up the space. Now you have a clear vision of where you want to go. The expression of a lightbulb moment or inspiration comes like a flash.

Break this down to practical application on how to adopt this Enlightened alchemist magician to have access to initiation that leads to intentions that create nothing to find your dreams.

Enlightened person root is their attitude. Attitude attracts or repels different energies. Arrogant person believes they are always right. Their self importance will cause barriers from the internal mind that cannot grow. If the king is arrogant, the people suffer. The biggest problem we ever have in our life is our self. It is NO one responsibility BUT OUR OWN. Enlightened person looks at the bigger picture than their self. Wise old man has an open mind on the journey, understands in their search for truth no one is right or wrong. (Paradox, but enlightened person accepts this in their life even uncomfortable at times). Practical advice: look at a situation with fresh eyes of leaning and understanding and the mask of reality will reveal opportunities for mental wealth and growth.

Alchemist is a scientist in life, discovering new ways to change. Ancient times they endeavoured to find the recipe for making gold. Practical advice: If you don’t change, your world will not change. We have a choice on how to feel and on how to think. Mental wealth will only embrace your life with feelings made of gold and thinking swimming in gold. Chemistry of your internal world is a choice of purifying your soul with love or corrupting it with fear. You are the alchemist.

Magician has vision with mysterious abilities to create nothing into something or make things disappear. Transformation is a key ingredient of their life and acts. They appear to have secret knowledge. The word occult literally means hidden wisdom. The church in the dark ages persecuted the magicians, witches,etc, because they wanted total control in Europe of state and religion. Practical advice: Change life with a magical perspective of having faith in the impossible by changing ideas holding you prisoner. Secret wisdom love yourself unconditionally and the entire universe unconditionally and miracles will happen attracting mental wealth in life.mental wealth

Build and fortify Compassion and Empathy for others

Section from my forth coming book Compassion transcends the loss of a loved one

I would say these two qualities are the principal markers of love. It is essential having these skills because loss especially death is a part of life. The transition to a new life is the hardest journey to transcend when you lose a loved one. Others around you that have these gifts is always a blessing you will never forget. Building these skills into your core is the greatest gift you can give to those in distress and yourself.

The empathy and compassion should always come from unconditional love. The loss of a loved one can never be replaced, any sacrifice you make for them either financial, time or energy is a kind gesture from the heart that will always be treasured. You can’t measure empathy, compassion, or love because it is everlasting with no limits. An acronym for empathy will help you understand this powerful quality in transcending the loss of a loved one for yourself and others.

E = Engaged with the person feelings and thoughts

M= Mouth closed make no comments, listen intently

P= Perceive their suffering

A= Affection when appropriate

T= Time is measured by compassion

H= Heart to heart communication

Y=Yoga recenter the body, mind, and emotions to be available for others

Engaged with the person feelings and thoughts


The connection cannot be superficial because the suffering individual will pick up on your vibration. If a person is drowning you don’t throw them a rope and walk away. It will take effort on your part to be committed being absorbed with them intimately. Feelings are natural so be genuine and validate them. Don’t say sorry because its not about you it’s about them, say I see you are very sad or angry recognising their pain. Their thoughts may blurt out unpleasant words, don’t take it personally recognise the suffering underneath that crusade of pain by their comments. Grief transforms a person personality to characters you may have never seen before. Language and actions of the familiar person you know disappeared and it may shock you, give them space to vent or cry.

Mouth closed make no comments, listen intently


This may take self-control and will power to do for many. The rescuer wants to save them and save themselves from the anguish. Remember you cannot bring their loved one back to life and ignore this great loss. The pain I suffered from innocent comments at my wife funeral are still with me today. The truth is nobody knows how others feel and you cant compare your grief with theirs because it’s their pain not yours.

Perceive their suffering

Death is complicated because human relationships are complicated. The death of a child is different from the death of a parent, but both will suffer, and the relationships connected to them will cause different losses. Empathy is 100% about their loss so don’t compare to your own because they are not the same although they may be similar. Loss of a loved one has many facets not just one dimension. What have they lost? The roles of the dead love person fulfilled could be from taxi driver to lover. Psychological losses to emotional support are the new memories shared of unconditional love. The introvert losses could be that one special friend impacted more on them than the social butterfly who has many friends at their beckon call. The financial losses, structure of life losses, hopes and dreams losses, list is limitless. Perceive their suffering not your own, feel it, be it and live it and your soul will join their suffering in harmony together.

Affection when appropriate

Affection comes in different sizes and frequency depending on the culture and the grieving person historical narrative. Affection definition is being warm, tender, and loving. The root of the word comes from the idea desire, inclination, wish, intention. Boundaries create safety and security for the person space. Appropriate is the boundary from their world not yours. You might be naturally affectionate embracing all unconditionally, but the grieving person may not be that inclined. Remember grieving has many forms with a mixture of emotions brewing inside the psyche. For example, if the person is overwhelmed with sadness, anger may be following closely behind. Your touch could spark a reaction to a full-blown outburst leashed against you. Gauge the situation its what they need NOT your needs of affection. The simple reminder to ask yourself who am I in relation to them. You might be the partner best friend, but you are not close to the surviving partner. Affection you want to give is because you lost your best friend not thinking of the feelings of the other. The root of the word is intention, ask why do I want to do or say this? Other extreme is to avoid all contact, but what if the grieving person is an affectionate person and you are not. Empathy is about identifying the other person needs from inner drive not the thinking mode. This is good reminder for those who struggle with affection to help you understand the important role affection has on a grieving person. When a partner or child is lost all intimacy stops instantly. Imagine your partner or child passes on, that affectionate embrace is lost forever. Your geniune embrace may be the only one they received that day or week.

Time is measured by compassion

Time is the biggest loss when a loved one dies because the human element of time is linear. The past, present and future is wiped away in an instant and all you have left is memories and relics or items of the loved one. Compassion is mentioned frequently in this book as the new companion to help the grieving one transcend the loss to a manageable size. Life will never be the same and empathy remembers that fact. Never fall into the trap of repeating cliches time is a healer, time heals all wounds, move on, get over it, etc because that is not true. Validation of another suffering is not contained by time and moving on. The expectations of others who project their life on to otherss are not aware of the grieving person universe. One of my relatives lost her husband over 40 years ago when her 4 children were young, and her husband is very much in her heart despite marrying again, and it still pains her at times. The significance of time in a person life is totally subjective not objective. For example, have you forgotten all your childhood stories even those painful events? The intensity of pain may be a background memory, but it had imprint on the psyche. From a spiritual and philosophical perspective life has darkness and light, to see the light you need to have the darkness even though it’s painful.

Heart to heart communication

 “If I had a friend and loved him because of the benefits which this brought me and because of getting my own way, then it would not be my friend that I loved but myself. I should love my friend on account of his own goodness and virtues and account of all that he is in himself. Only if I love my friend in this way do I love him properly.” ― Meister Eckhart

Empathy that heals comes from the heart not the ego. Ego job is to navigate the human body and will ignore love to get its own needs met. It is important too feeling into(empathy) because emotion has no thoughts because it is energy of life and universe. For example, why does the father run into the burning house to save his child it’s the heart not ego? Heart to heart communication is not cognitive in the true sense but emotion is active listener feeling every drop of sadness from their heart connecting to yours. Compassion energy from your resources will be depleted after heart-to-heart encounter. Refill your emotional energy by being compassionate to yourself because if you don’t, you can’t have effective empathy for others.


Yoga recentre the body, mind, and emotions to be available for others.

Grief effects the whole person so yoga can help you refill your compassion after episodes of showing empathy to others. Yoga recentres the body, mind, and emotions. The yoga will open the heart and release unwanted residue of emotional energy and helps you be present for others.

Grief effects the whole person so yoga can help you refill your compassion after episodes with showing empathy to others. Yoga recentres the body, mind, and emotions. The yoga will open the heart and release negativity and helps you be present for others.

The vital skills of developing self-awareness with emphatic understanding facilitate good relationships with others. Empathy and compassion are always available regardless of what the internal struggles and external struggles humanity has in life. The beauty of self-awareness provides an opportunity to live in our bodies and have somatic empathy for ourselves and others enriching life. Embracing compassion and empathy is like the soothing balm that gives comfort and support to a fulfilling relationship eternally with ourselves and others.

Searching for the sacred eye


I am started working on a new book which originally was going to be a short story for Christmas but it has to be a novel now. The video will be overview of the story give you a flavour of what to expect. Enjoyed writing my last novel and excited with this new project. I love the renasscience especially the culture and art it inspires me to a different world. of awe. not sure when I finish the book but im sure one day it will be a movie as i can see the adventure in my imagination .

searching for the sacred eye

Discussion about Psychopath

Excerpt draft from my forth coming Psychological thriller Compassion for a Psychopath ( End of the book )

I hope you enjoyed the journey with Maria on her quest through the early years of her life. The stages of life from childhood have a huge impact on our personality and choices. It is very easy to judge others behaviour but not understanding why they acted is more complicated. The influences in a person life can either be for positive change or lead to negative consequences. Understanding a person motives both in their subconscious and conscious will give a different perspective of the situation. The actions of others reveal much about our core beliefs and how we would act. For example, if a young man is exposed to his father repeatedly being abusive to his mother the young child has at least two perspective on how he may treat his wife and other women in the future. He may copy the example of his father believing that behaviour is acceptable or he may vow never to treat a woman in abusive way going even going to opposite of allowing her to be abusive to him. The conditioning of our childhoods are programs we carry throughout our lives. 

The flexibility of behaviour is possible for individuals to change because of neuroplasticity. The first important ingredient is being aware of our thoughts and actions reflecting on why. The Psychopath have tendencies to be narcistic and self-indulgent of grandiose illusions of importance. Difficult for them to accept their behaviour as ruthless and uncaring. There egos use confirmation biases and not taking responsibilities for their actions. The compassionate side of them is turned off. The Psychopath has learned to act in a way of self-preservation often from circumstances not choice. The emotional intelligent they have is external of others not themselves. Their perception and intellect can be highly polished understanding human nature. The compassion for them is viewed a weakness unless it is for there advantage. The differences of degrees of each Psychopath will be variable. 

According to many of the top career paths for Psychopaths ar

  1. CEO
  2. Lawyer
  3. Media (Television/Radio)
  4. Salesperson
  5. Surgeon
  6. Journalist
  7. Police Officer
  8. Clergy person
  9. Chef
  10. Civil Servant

Maria(Psychopath) journey of her step father being involved with the church and sales had a strong influence on her growing up. Her mother had a background of being a strong femine role model in a loveless marriage looking out for herself. Ignoring Maria emotional needs influenced her perspective as a child because of isolation with no attachments. The internal programming of a child serves the brain as the modulator of behaviour for the future self. The stress Maria had to endure as a child affected her brains emotional intelligence of the prefrontal cortex. This decision processing area of executive function damaging her pathways of neural  patterns from limbic system. For more information on how brain effects our perception is in my book What are you afraid? Take the Fear out of Fear available on amazon.

I have also written several Posts about Psychopaths on my website include Personality of a Psychopath, The birth of a Psychopath, Feelings of a Psychopath and a female Psychopath. There are many great books and stories about Psychopaths for you to investigate so you can come to your own conclusions.

Compassion For a Psychopath “Preface”


The definition of Psychopath according to dictionary is

“a person having an egocentric and antisocial personality marked by a lack of remorse for one’s actions, an absence of empathy for others, and often criminal tendencies”

Contrast to that personality trait with compassion the same dictionary defines compassion as

“Sympathetic consciousness of others’ distresses together with a desire to alleviate it”.

The fascination I have with human behaviour has been my quest over the last four years. I have been drawn to the Psychopathy in helping me understand the mind of these individuals from a Psychological, biological, and neurological perspective.  Sadly, the Hollywood movies and media reports that all Psychopaths are dangerous and a menace to society. The truth of the matter, there are various degrees of the personality trait and not every Psychopath is a danger. The personality of a Psychopath is not a simple equation of cause and effect. There are genetic, environmental, and other factors that influence the Psychopaths personality and behaviour. 

The foundation of many personality traits is in biological mechanisms. Modern science helps clarify the brains of different disorders with MRI technology. A Psychopathy academic scientific paper came to this conclusion after examining the data. Its is called:  Brain Basis of Psychopathy in Criminal Offenders and General Population by Mathew Hudson.        “Normally functioning individuals with high psychopathic traits have structural and functional brain characteristics that are similar to violent offender with high psychopathic traits. These characteristics include both fronto-limbic cortical atrophy and enhanced brain activity in affective circuits while seeing violence. Altogether these data show that integrity and function of the frontal and insular cortex associate with both extreme and benign variations of antisocial behaviour, providing neurobiological support for a common neural basis of antisocial behaviour with different severity.”

The story of Compassion for a Psychopath is to help the reader understand the consequences of a Psychopathy behaviour because of their abnormal brain wiring. The key difference in Psychopathy actions is rooted in a lack of empathy and compassion. Severity of each individual Psychopath behaviour vary greatly. In the right environment many can perform in an acceptable way in society but when the pressure is on, the personality changes especially with cognitive dissonance.

I have endeavoured to make the story as authentic as possible taking the reader on a journey of discovery in the mind of a Psychopath. When I was writing the book, I did much research to bring the story to life. In the world of my imagination, I hope will give an experience of roller coaster of feelings and sensations for the reader. Writing the story, I could visualise the scenes because I used real places and time frames in history. Added to the story is many references to music because music stirs the emotions and very much part of what I could hear in my imagination while writing the story. One day I would like to see the story as a movie because I want the world not to just be glamourised with violence of a Psychopath but to have compassion for them who don’t have the joy of being present in the human body with empathy and compassion.

Compassion For a Psychopath

Working on my novel for some months and have completed about three quarters so far. I am hoping to finish it before I start my Degree in October. Here is the first chapter draft for free , enjoy the read.

Chapter One

You Shall Not Murder

The minister animated with fire and brimstone exhorting the congregation at a small church hall. His veins swelled with passion, shouting to the flock with a scathing message of hatred against the heathens in the world. The sweat poured down off his face at the climax of the sermon with the audience in fear of his piercing eyes looking for his next scapegoat in the congregation. 

“The blood of Jesus dripped down on the ground of Golgotha for all of you miserable sinners. God gave Moses the Ten Commandments at Mount Sinai as a divine revelation… You Shall Not Murder.”

After he said these words, he smashed his fist down on the podium. The children in the audience moved closer to their parents in fear of the minister’s retribution of anguish. Young Maria was in awe of her tyrannical father. It intoxicated her soul, watching with his fury leashed against the congregation. Young Maria’s ears fixated. Every word bellowed out in the ghostly atmosphere, with dark shadows. The imagination of Maria’s mind transcended to the crucifixion of Jesus hanging in the scorching sun. The sky was a dazzling blue, cloaked in stillness with serenity. Scorching sun blazed on thirteen bodies randomly pitched on the hillside left to die slowly. Maria watched the victims hanging, gasping for breath. The sweat, blood and tears slowly dripping from their swollen bodies. Maria walks towards Christ in her imaginary world and looked up, gazing into his eyes. Her hero bravery fascinated her, and she examined his scars and punctures wounds on his body. She touched her masters’ legs, stroking them, feeling the heat of sun on the skin. She heard a voice behind and turned around and looked up at an old man hanging on a torture stake. He whispered in a soft voice gasping for air,” He is dead, my child, go home”.

Maria awakes from her imagination with a nudge from her mother.” Listen to your father Maria, people are watching you”. Maria looked around the audience with her eyes wide opened. She noticed a young girl in a seat watching her and she gave a friendly smiled. Maria noticed the warm invitation of the girl. The sweet child was sitting next to her father with no one nearby. Maria focused her attention on her father again being drawn to his theatrical performance preaching from the stage.

Maria’s father continues his sermon “Jesus said, you shall not murder and whoever murders shall be liable to judgement…. You will go to the fire of hell.” He paused and shook his head in disgust. “Our men died in Vietnam, Kuwait, Iraq, Bosnia, and for what?”. 

The audience, many of the families, felt the minister’s pain because they also lost close family members during the many wars. Over the decades, many never returned home, leaving an empty place in the family’s hearts. Suffering didn’t stop for some in the community after the war when the battered solders returned to their families. Bloody nightmares haunted a few young veterans night and day. The release of anguish disturbed the sanity of the young men and their loved ones. A tsunami of emotions ripped open the hearts with the call of duty lead many of the soldiers to suicide to escape the unending battle.

The minister composed himself, clearing his throat, shook his body and dried his eyes with his handkerchief that had the pattern of the American Flag. The American flag triggered the minister into a frenzy of emotional again elaborating him into a childlike state. He launched into another character of a pure patriot lighting up his body with his voice echoing the last verse of the nation’s anthem. 

“Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand

Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!

Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven have rescued land

Praise the Power that has made and preserved us a nation.

Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,

And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”

And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave

Over the land of the free and the home of the brave! ”

He continued in his sermon, “God bless America and all its citizens who can go to bed at night because our boys fought for our freedom. The freedom of Christ gives each one of you dear sheep the privilege of seeing your boys in heaven.”

Patriotism filled the church atmosphere of the small suburban town. The rain persisted shadows of cascading torrents lashing against the creaky wooden windows. A tear slowly drips from Maria’s mother’s face on to her lap. Katya remembers the pain of her first husband’s death while listening to the new husband’s sermon. Maria couldn’t understand why her mother was sad, because her stepfather had the congregation in the palm of his hand. 

Katya’s mind reflected to a time before Maria was born. She was fleeing her hometown during her country’s civil war. Remembering the days living in Serbia with her first husband. He was a loyal Balkan soldier who fought in the Bosnia and Herzegovina war. Katya recalls the time of them both fighting together and watching the thousands die in their homeland. They both knew about the execution of local people who worked and lived in the community for decades. The pain in her heart congealed to bitter anger of frequent sour, stagnant outburst through her life. When the pain in her present life escalated, she would spew out prejudice and hatred, blaming the Bosniaks having to flee her homeland.

The Patriotism Katya felt in the small American church touched her inner spirit as memories of the past flooded her body of stench of death and torture running through her veins. Her daughter Maria never heard her mother’s truth. Young Maria never understands her mother’s inner pain because of the walls of her mother’s heart were solid, never allowing the daylight of love in. Maria knew very little of her mother’s inner world of reality because her mother was distant and unforgiving to her. The young child’s connection to her mother’s world was through pain and anger. 

The adrenaline of the audience peaked again as the minister retold the story in the bible of Judas, one of Jesus’ trusted friends who betrayed him. 

“Judas, during the moonlight, came with an army and the crowds followed Judas, filled with hatred and violence. Judas went up to his master Jesus as the stars above witnessed the passion of the devil’s accomplice, Judas embrace the Lord.”

The minister cried in an ecclesial fashion as the passion of Christ filled his heart with animation of heavenly aura. Maria, spellbound again by the incantations of her father. She became bewitched by the supernatural charisma her father displayed. Maria’s stepfather took a long deep breath and looked straight at Mari’s eyes and said” Jesus said to Judas… my beloved friend, why did you do this to me after all what I have done for you… you will burn in hell my friend for your betrayal”

Mara went into a religious trance again, seeing Judas in a transfiguration, her entire world transmigrated 2000 years in an instance. She imagined watching justice being served in front of her, watching Judas’s body roasting in a fiery bonfire with fireworks colouring the darkness of hell. Her mother noticed her daughter in a lucid state.

“Maria, you are going to be punished for not listening to your father and Jesus is not happy with your behaviour.”

Maria quickly came back to reality as her pupils opening wider with her breathing slowly increasing back to normal. Her face muscles relaxed. Her eyes shined radiantly, displaying an angelic personal appearance in serenity resembling a little angel waiting at the gates of heaven. 

The minister looked up at the celling with his arms stretching out and said” God we are all sinners, and we deserve to be punished for our errors, PLEASE forgive us”…. There was a stillness in the congregation of awe and fear, with a minute of silence. “Now we will praise the lord with our hearts full of conviction singing Christian warriors fight for Peace on earth”.

When the service finished, two war widows walked casually towards the minister. Their eyes filled with tears and sorrow, but their lips and breast revealed another story. The sparkle of their jewellery wrapped around their necks revealing the voluptuous energy illuminating from the women. They were seeking validation with rapture of intimate consolation from the messenger of God in their presence. The minister’s passion consecrated his ambience, looking for his next conquest to release his sexual tension of suppressed frustration.

“Oh, minister Barrington, we connected to your spirit during your service. For the love of God and country we praise you for a passionately delivery.”

The minister cleared his throat and held his arms out like a shepherd rescuing two little lambs.

“Your men were brave, and the Lord is taking care of them. Know you are safe with me” As he embraced them both, he pulled them tight to his chest with their breasts being lifted in unison against his body. He looked into their eyes, full of lust and desire. His mouth salivated, and he cleared his throat and whispered into their ears, “God told me to look after you two beautiful girls”

One woman said,” Minister Barrington, we would love you to come over for dinner”

The minister said, “Please call me Michael, after all I am only human, like you lovely girls. May the grace of God bless you both, as he works in mysterious ways. I wondered who is going to cook tomorrow evening because Katya has to work the late shift. So, what time shall I come over my darlings?”

The younger woman was eager to please the minister even more and gave him a kiss on the cheek and said seductively,” About 8pm honey, we will see you then”.

Maria watched her father from a distance, and was familiar with his masquerade of pleasing the different women in the church. Maria always wanted her father’s attention but never received the warmth and attention he showed to other women, especially in church. He was a false reincarnated Christ in church, but he reverted to the ways of the devil in his miserable dungeon at home.  

Katya noticed her daughter Maria watching her father and grabbed her hand. 

“Stop staring, you know its rude, come.”

The delegated Katya had to collect the tithings from the church collections after each service because her husband was always busy. He said it was church business, but Katya knew his schemes of conniving with the flock for his earthly sensual pleasures. Katya walked towards Dante, a tall, slim, dark, handsome man with olive skin with a youthful look. He was always polite to her at every church service. His gentle voice interesting lured many women to listen because of his Italian American accent. He was an immigrant from Europe who came with his family to America twenty years ago. When his parents arrived in America, he was a young boy growing up. His parents mixed with Italian communities, speaking little English only when necessary. He had a little girl with dark brown hair and brown eyes standing next to him quietly.

 Dante said “Hello Katya, you are here to collect the collections. Please give me one moment, my dear friend.”

He walked towards a small room near the main auditorium. Inside this room was a safe with the church valuables. Dante carried a leather bag that contained all the collections from the service.

“Katya, here is the collection for you. I neatly wrapped it for your husband to take to the bank. I have put the money into different amounts of dollars so it will be easier to count.”

Katya thanked Dante for his kindness as she took the bag off him.

Dante said,” My daughter Kate would love to spend some time with Maria. You have a beautiful daughter. Maybe we can organise one day for both of them to play together” Young Kate looked at her father with excitement and smiled at Maria.

Katya replied,” I will check with my husband first, and Maria always has so much to do at home. I can’t stop now. Please forgive me Dante; I need to go”

Dante said as Katya was walking away,” no problem, we can talk about it again. I beg the master love and happiness for you both”.

Katya walked to the safe room, with Maria quickly glancing around to see where her husband was. She noticed he was busy talking to one of the church members, who was a local police officer. Recently, the police officer caught the minister speeding. Mr Barrington’s charm and audacity was trying to convince the police officer of his innocent by a little white lie.

Katya went into the safe room with her daughter, closing the door shut behind. She opened the bag and took some money out. Mrs Barrington hid some cash inside her bra, concealed from any suspecting individual. 

Katya said to her daughter “We need to keep this money because one day we are going to leave this corrupt town and be free of your wicked stepfather” Maria knew it wasn’t safe to answer back because she learnt in the past not to question. The anger of her parents unleashed on Maria when she questioned them, causing her pain and shame. She loved her stepfather strangely, because she always got what she wanted from him, apart from his affection. When he was drunk, he taught her how to control and manipulate people and encouraged and trained her to try it out at school. 

“Wait her please Maria. I need to use the bathroom. Keep tight hold of the money and don’t move or else.” Katya rushed out of the room, leaving Maria all alone with the money. Maria locked the door and opened the bag, and noticed all the coins and notes in the bag. She noticed a few loose dollars bills so took them out and hid them underneath her clothes like her mother’s example. She quickly zipped the bag and unlocked the door, waiting patiently for her mother.

Katya came back and said to Maria,” Hurry, we need to go before your father gets in the car waiting. Katya pulled her along by her arm as they both hurried outside the church into the dark night in the pouring rain. The rain washed away some of the gravel path in the church cemetery next to the church building. The flags that were tied around a few gravestones flapping in the wind. The noise sounded like a bird’s wing injured escaping a fierce predator. Both of them ran towards the car in the carpark that was crowded by the parishioners vehicles.  

Maria sat in the dark, damp shadow, all alone in the back seat. She was watching the rain bounce off the windscreen from her seat. Katya was in the front seat in complete silence, with the sound of heavy rain hitting the roof of the car piercing her ears. It caused a flashback, reminding her of the bullets bouncing off the cars during the Bosnian war. She could hear screams of innocent prisoners begging for shelter from the bullets as the heavy rain cascade off the metal roof in the old secluded garage in Serbia. Katya faced filled with rage with her blood pumping fiercely like a boxer in round one full of energy. She clenched her fist that became a pounding instrument of death with a shiver through her spine, causing pent up pressure of anger and fear. Then suddenly Katya screamed out like a force of lightening in Serbian,” Shut Up, be quiet or I’ll muzzle you like a dog”.

Maria sat still, holding her breath, knowing her mother could explode at any minute into anger hurled towards her. This was her safety strategy in a confined space, trying to disappear from the mother bear. Young Maria never reacted to her mother’s words because this was one of many episodes of flashbacks.