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Owning your Destroy

Guest blog by Toko-pa Turner

For as long as I can remember, New Age gurus have been telling us to “stay in the light.” They tell us to meditate, generate and emanate positivity, warning us that we create our own reality and negative thinking begets negative results.

But if you’ve ever found yourself cringing before all that Spiritual Correctness and wondered what was wrong with you, I am here to tell you that you aren’t broken and you don’t need fixing.

As an Ambassadress of the Darkness, it is my duty to sing the praises of wrath, rebellion, grief and destruction. I am here to champion the wild, unapologetic  power of nature. I am here to urge us all to drop our composure like sandbags and get stirred up into the real storm of living.

While the New Age movement has awakened many to the power of creative intention, it has simultaneously pathologised the negative emotions, striking them from our social palette of acceptability and is driving us all into repression.

First of all, what if those negative emotions aren’t wrong, but totally right? What if the real problem is the misguided attitude that we need fixing in the first place?

When we try to live up to impossible images of spiritually enlightened, all-knowledgable, selfless superhumans, the dark side of our nature just gains in power. Like shoving a beach ball under water, you may succeed in disavowing your unsavoury bits for a while, but it’s so destabilizing that, when you least expect it, that ball always bursts out from under you.

Negative emotions don’t cease to exist because we’re ignoring them. They just find other ways to express themselves. Sometimes we lash out inappropriately, have confusing crying fits or feel protractedly numb. Most commonly, we slip into depression and, if left to fester, become prone to accidents, physical disease and crisis.

True creative responsibility for one’s life involves more than positive visualisation and action towards our dreams.  It also means destroying that which is no longer relevant.  Destruction is the counterpoint to Creation and, like the day setting into night, summer falling into winter, life circling towards death, for one thing to be created, another thing must be destroyed.

In the Hindu tradition, the Goddess Kali is worshipped as both the creative and destructive, womb and tomb aspects of the Great Mother. In one of her four hands she holds the head she’s just severed, which fills a goblet with blood. She is often wielding a scythe, surrounded by a snarling fire,  adorned with bones, and dancing on a bewildered corpse.

Far from the flaccid suggestion that when something isn’t working we must “let it go,” Kali is the ruthless power behind ‘negative’ emotions which clears the way for new life.

She is the boundaries Anger wants. She is the pounding of Grief’s river, rushing us to new lands. She is the freedom Anxiety shakes for. She is the siren of change that Boredom signals. She is the bliss that Fear promises.

Owning Your Destroy means not only taking a metaphoric machete to the outdated stylings of your stuckness in present time, it also means rewriting your stories of loss. Those things you feel have been taken away too soon, done to you and never been your privilege, are places of untapped power.

As we clear even excellent things from our lives which no longer serve us, we are preparing our possibility space for the unimaginable blessings waiting to be born there.

Just as fire can transform food from its raw form into something digestible, our darknesses are radical transformers. Instead of airbrushing our personalities, they coax us to exaggerate our blemishes, lean into our stagnancy, wounding and limitation.

If we really want to evolve, all we have to do is be exactly where we are. It’s only once you can own your sad, stifled, regretful, pissed off self, that you can blaze up your loving ferocity and have at ‘er.

A writer, musician and considered an authority on dreams, Toko-pa has been interviewed by CNN News & BBC Radio, and her Dreamspeak column has appeared in publications across Canada and the United States, including Synchronicity Magazine, Vitality Magazine, Aquarius, and Nelson Daily News among others.



Want to learn more about Kali? Watch this TEDX talk by Chameli Ardagh


  1. LOVE IT……..roarrrrrrr

  2. Mysticdragon A says:

    LOVE IT……..roarrrrrrr

  3. This is exactly what I needed. Thank you.

  4. Fiona Moger says:

    So much unrelenting power here.  Thank you xxx

  5. finn says:

    WE  bought the ticket…We take da Ride.   Love that.   any desire for a videographer collaborator in the Love Brigade? 

  6. Peggy Harris says:

    I Love This ~ To be real is to grow!  Thank You <3<3<3

  7. Katy_checkley says:

    oh wow, thankyou for sharing this, I had been stuck under my rainbow of happiness, all the while feeling like I was broken or evil or something for continuously not ‘feeling it’, and feeling bad for being negative.
    Everyone around me was grinning and mine was more of a grimace, desperatley trying to be somewhere Im really not at the moment.
    Your words have helped me, thankyou xx

  8. michal says:

    “it also means rewriting your stories of loss. Those things you feel have been taken away too soon, done to you and never been your privilege, are places of untapped power.” can you explain more about how to do this? Am struggling with things done to me…

  9. Thank you so much for writing to me!

    I am immersed in creative projects and will not be checking this e-mail account very often.

    If you need something done the best thing is to e-mail Suzan at

    I wish you a wonderful day!

    With Blessings Always

  10. Annika says:


  11. Hi Maxima, I write a great deal about this subject from different perspectives, but here’s a link to one article in which I go into it in depth. I hope you enjoy it:

  12. Your talk is shivershakingly good, Chameli. I think you, sister, for your powerful mirror!

  13. Thank you for your inspiring comments, Anna – how amazing to notice the relaxation that comes from our fierceness being validated!

  14. Thank YOU Shana <3 So right you are, that the more we shed those layers of darkness, the more beautifully ourselves we become. YUM.

  15. Thanks SoulJuice – what a great reminder – that the demons we face are loving allies underneath their fierce exterior <3

  16. Yes Linda! Rumi says that when we learn that our breaking is how we blossom, one day we will long for our suffering. SO not there yet 😉

  17. Thank you Rafhara, for reading and contemplating so deeply with your beautiful heart!

  18. rafhara says:

    Toko-pa Turner: “As an Ambassadress of the Darkness, it is my duty to sing the praises of wrath, rebellion, grief and destruction. First of all, what if those negative emotions aren’t wrong, but totally right? What if the real problem is the misguided attitude that we need fixing in the first place?I am here to tell you that you aren’t broken and you don’t need fixing.”
    Thank you so much for that, it takes a lot of darkness as a woman (or for me) to really understand, deeply in my belly that destruction is good and natural. It was so much connected or projected to the masculine (they destroy, not we and I see that often in women) What a good opportunity to meditate on that, to compromize, to tell an intellectual story about it, only to NOT experience this pure anger, this destructive force, which is so pissed off, and doesn’t want to hear one more word inside of us. It is very clear that we have in nature many forces that often are destructive like earthquakes, thunderbolts, floods and we don’t argue with them they just are as they are and nobody is discussing them (OK we try even that). Thank you for bringing this forth Toko-pa this is so true, having the courage to face this destruction inside of me and being the witness of both sometimes the negative scary side but always the positive side. It comes for a good reason I HAVE to trust that as a woman. Love is not only a pink heart. This is so life changing for a woman. It is as important as compassion for me. I bow to you and to Chameli for making this experience possible in a “safe” place – in the tempel with lots of women. halleluja.

  19. Linda says:

    I love that this is being offered to the world.

    And I’m thinking of the epic story of Inanna. She was queen of the world, and in her fullness, she turned her ear to the underworld, and her sister Ereshkegal.

    Inanna chose to go to the underworld. She sacrificed an article of clothing at each of the gates where she was challenged, and went to her sister. Ereshkigal promptly hung her on a meathook, where she remained for several days.

    She was rescued, thanks to her maidservant and her maternal grandfather. What was required to set Inanna free was to sympathize and mirror Ereshkigal. When E. moaned “Oh I’m sad,” the response was “Oh you’re sad.”

    To be able to return to the world, Inanna promised to send her consort to the underworld for half the year (hope I’m remembering this part right).

    The point is that Inanna made a conscious decision to make the descent, as a necessary part of her own growth.

  20. Sheila says:

    Thank you sooo much! I just finished a blog about “turning someone into a toad!”
    “They” have changed the way we spell Streghe, and talk only about being a door-mat! I wonder what the Goddess Feronia would say to those who can’t face themselves peering through the looking glass!
    Glad to see that duality is purely mental….If you refuse to allow me space to expand my heart…you’re gonna have to face the guilt you’re sending….three fold!
    Blessed Be! Sheila

  21. SoulJuiceTV says:

    fabulous! thankyou! loving the dark is loving the all …. and as i read your great post i had a huge thought …. based on my knowing of GANESH to be the god that not only REMOVES obstacles but also PLACES obstacles in the path if its the wrong path, maybe ganesh is in cohorts with kali and they r both lovingly guiding us along the BEST path for each of us? of course, all this god speak is metaphorical, but wow, so powerful. life is such an amazing journey. it’s also like a trip to disneyland … some buy tickets for the roller coaster … some for the ferris wheel …. bottom line is … the fact we are all human, means …. we bought the ticket…. we take the ride ….. pass the popcorn pls 🙂

  22. Shana says:

    Aaaah Thank you for this! I too believe in embracing our darkness. As I sit in another round of darkness I find truths I was avoiding. I find love I had been stifling. I find parts of me I have shunned or doubted.

    It is intense to sit here and not feel pretty! And yet I do see beauty in the intensity of my heart deepening and reaching out to others with honesty.

    Sometimes, when I come through the darkness, I miss the richness and rawness of this place.

    Right now I breathe deep and do my best not to resist.

    Thank you Toko-pa. I feel more able to face my day after reading this.

    With love,

  23. Oooh Chameli – I can’t wait to hear/see your Tedx talk! I’ve been watching some of your videos today, feeling powerfully resonant with the being that you are are. Come over for tea under the moon!

    Thank you gorgeous beings, for reading these words, and for sharing them (!). It makes sense that so many of us are vibrating with the call to fierceness, as the time has come collectively, to cut through the extraneous constructions of persona and get to the urgent issues of our fundamental well-being as a species, as a planet.

    I am so glad we have a place like to gather and hatch our uprising.

    So many blessings <3

    Also, please have a listen to my music at

  24. Mahana says:

    aaahhhhh, fire trough my veins, hairs up, body electrified….JAY KALI MA!!!

  25. anna says:

    yes!!! thank you so much for this.. and i’m really looking forward to the “kali and the fierce feminine” talk too..this is exactly what i have been in recently, calling back in that fierce, wild, destructive, beautiful part of myself that i try not to own, that i have been afraid of and have judged..who always, of course, comes back to make her ways known to me, as she has recently, again…i am curious and turning toward her in a new way, building a relationship with her that honors her fierce power and gets far clearer about what she holds and what she knows. reading this post, i felt my body relax, and a spaciousness open up inside me, in relation to this naming of our collective experience. thank you!

  26. MaryBeth says:

    EXACTLY! I tell people the similar things, to not only accept our supposedly “dark side” but to embrace it. Anger in itself is not evil, only when we allow it to control us, otherwise it can empower us to protect ourselves or others.

  27. Dagmar says:

    very very good !!

  28. awakeningwomen says:

    Love this piece Toko-Pa, it is so aligned with how we practice with the full range of feelings in the Awakening Women community.
    Kali and the fierce feminine was the topic of the TEDx talk I gave last week, will post it soon:)

    I bow

  29. Joy Tanksley says:

    oh YES! Thank you for this. Such truth and so beautifully stated.

  30. Maxima says:

    Love this! Thank you so much for sharing it. I’d love to hear more about working with the “dark” emotions in ways that help them to move and do the work they came to do.

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