Why Phoenix?

I wrote this post in Czech originally, but after a while I thought this was something quite important so I should bother to translate it properly since Google translate wasn’t really doing it.

Wherever you came here from, you probably noticed my on-line name which is Em Phoenix and I feel like there should be an explanation to it so that you know what it means to me. In case you care, of course. So there you go.

Em is pretty obvious. It used to be „M.“ but then I felt that I want to stress out how I pronounce it. So it changed but it’s not meant to mean Em as Ema, I’m still M., as for the first letter of my actual name but meaning also a lot of other things. I’m into minimalism (you can read why here) and I saw a picture once that said „Minimal is m.“ and I thought that was just fantastic idea. It rang a bell in me and for a while I had that as my blog description and logo. Me being „m.“ made all sense (I actually originally used it in small letter, too.) But moving onto the phoenix!

I’ve always liked the fire and the sun. Campfire flames and candles. My fantasy was always rich enough and I’m a dreamer so I felt (I still do) like there was some magical connection that empowered me like nothing else, perhaps with the exception of hot water, which is a great combo of the two elements. (go long hot baths!)

I have always enjoyed the fire shows and those cool alternative people spinning in a fierce rhythm, blazing poi’s. I had such a respect for them. I wanted to be able to be a part of it, and to get lost in the rhythm of drums. Drums and Fire = instant meditative state. (That’s why I, a few years later, when I decided that I will probably never be a poi-girl myslef since I don’t have enough time to meet up with the people, at least I bought a djembe.)

Of all Marvell and other supernaturaly powerful characters I have always been most taken away by firebenders, guys who could control fire, and when I first met Jean, her omnipotence and fearlessness had me totally fascinated. How fantastic would it be to be so powerful and immortal, not having to fear anybody or anything, but being able to fight for whatever or whoever I loved…

In time of puberty, when I got charmed by magic and was trying to break into the world of people who practice it (or they said so :D), I was fascinated by anything associated with fire, and anything that linked me to it made me thrilled, even the dumb internet tests like „which element are you?“, or the characteristics of my sign – Leo – which vary but they share one main thing – Leo is a fire sign .

So I tried to learn how to see the aura on my fingers 🙂 Although I don’t think I ever saw it, still I enjoyed imagining controling it to make a shape out of it and so. I still nowadays imagine it sometime as a ball of heat and flames in my hands, it’s my favorite meditation visualization.

Or I warm my hands over a candle or fireplace, or I sometimes imagine doing that when I’m cold and there is no fire – power of mind and that stuff 🙂 It might sound silly but I’d swear my autumn and winter spleens always mysteriously disappear when I feel the warm rays of sun against my skin. I think most people have it like that but they don’t realize or think about it that way. I like the idea that I am solar-powered 😀

I used to like dragons when I was younger, dinosaurs, too, not only but also because they resemble them, and dragons are animals of fire. But over time I wasn’t so excited about them, something wasn’t quite right. And then I learned about phoenixes and they fascinated me. I didn’t think of them as something resembling me, I was too inexperienced, nothing really happened to me, I couldn’t relate. That came much later but I always liked them a lot.

The first one I really became to love was probably Fawkes from Harry Potter. I think that was the first time I realized that phoenix is not just a creature of fire, it also has many other fascinating properties. I  looked him up on internet and there was so much more to phoenixes and I became addicted to them. Immediately I knew that this is my kind of amaizing creature and an inner animal, if you like. I realized that it is also a symbol that I was in need of.

Phoenix was like myself, or at least like my ideal self. Passionate, wild, untethered creature, full of fire that burns in both his heart and his body. All his emotions get instantly wildly manifested in his plain appearance, no hiding, all freedom. He is literally indestructible. Constantly renewing himself, so powerful, burning brightly, so that everybody sees him, then dies and from its own ashes he is reborn, full of energy, enthusiastic, fresh, cleansed, begins again as a new yet the same creature, even more powerful now by the experience of his own death which is something super-supernatural and no other creature can survive that, let alone being able to start again even more fierce and bright.

Phoenix is respectable, beautiful and according to Rowling he can carry really heavy things and his tears heal the wounds of the body and his singing heals the soul (ok, that probably doesn’t apply to my horrible singing but you know what I mean 😀 – even the idea that my presence could lift people up and my words could help and heal and that I can take a lot is wonderful and so appealing). He elevates everybody’s mood just by his presence, inspires and gives hope, he is its symbol, a symbol of renewal and a better tomorrow. All that „When you fall, get up again,“ and „Burn bridges behind you and start again with a clean slate“ is the philosophy of a phoenix and also a perfect „excuse“ (I prefer reason) for not completing a project that I stopped liking. I just burned out in that field, it is no longer appealing to me, so let it be and focus on something else now. Constant movement forward onto something new, no regrets for things finishing because you do appreciate the time you could enjoy them and the beauty of perishability.

The first time I consciously applied this philosophy was my blog. In 2009, I came to the moment when I could no longer freely blog where I was, stuck with a stalker on a stupid site that did not allow blocking of people. I went therefore to another free platform and started again, backing my old blog to my computer and then deleting it completely from internet.

I thought I will miss my old nickname, I didn’t want to change it but then the stalker could easily find me again so it had to be done. That was another reason to go for „M.“ – it is ungooglable (what a word!).

And I thought about the adress, too. This gave me the chance to start over, I had to burn my old me and become a new virtual person and suddenly I couldn’t think about anything better than a phoenix to resemble that. Sadly, just „phoenix“ was taken, so I went for „phoenixrise“. I liked it also because by that time I have read a book where a kid silently fights the drug dealers and gangs in his part of town by spraying graffiti like „Dealers out“ and when they burn the local drug addict recovering centre called Phoenix, his mum who works there and is not gonna get frightened or bullied plants flowers into the ashes to show that they will not give up on it, while he sprays „Phoenix rising“ on the walls around the estate. That idea of not letting the bullies and generally any shit of life take you down, to refuse to be silenced, is powerful to me and I deeply adore anyone who does that (and I try to live like that myself while being an example to those who are too scared).

So I  began anew to be a much better blogger while I’m in it, I chose the phoenix as the symbol of it and that was the start. Then I was invited to play RPG online where my character would have a supernatural ability and there was no question – I must be the phoenix! 😀 And you have no idea how much I enjoyed it. The world into which I got there still remains my dream world, and often I go to bed dreaming that I am this Em Phoenix, redheaded kinda steampunk crew member of a dreamy airship Destiny floating through space, who discovers her ability to bend the fire to her will and explores it on the go. Sometimes she’s too emotionally unballanced, she looses the grip and explodes (somewhat literally) but over time she learns to use it, to have fun with it, create, protect her friends and fight off the villains.

Phoenix is in my heart and on my mind so much that I’m sure that if I will ever have tattoo, that’s it. Because as much as I do change my passions and interest and styles now and then, phoenix will always go along with it perfectly. I only have to decide on the perfect style which is pain in the bum because I change that much 😀 But even if I never find „the one“, I don’t mind. I don’t have to have it tattooed 😉 I will always be kinda fiery and explosive nature, and I will forever fight for the ideals until it burns me and kills me again. And every time I fall, I’ll find a reason to start again with new strength and energy, new life, new thinking, new habits, new me.

Or at least I hope so.