HOW IT FEELS FOR A TRANS SOUL TO COME HOME

As the 2018 Leo Lunar Eclipse asks us to stand up in our fire and be truly seen, childhood abuse survivor and joyous healer, Danny Brave, shares his journey and reveals how it feels for a trans soul to come home …

Danny Brave. Photo by Tommy Venus.

“I remember the moment
when I came home to
my body

what a lovely reception 
that was
(though emotional) 
. . . ”

While working with a sexual empowerment coach in 2015, this was the beginning of a poem I wrote entitled “coming home.” In the exercise that inspired it, I visualized that pieces of my soul were perched over my head.

My coach then instructed me to reach up with my hands and pull these pieces of my soul back into my body with my hands. After a few minutes, the coach then instructed me to call my soul back into my body by placing my hands on my heart and saying my name out loud, three times: Katie. Katie. Katie.

And I burst into tears, because I felt in that moment a tiny piece of me came home, along with a deep knowing that I had never actually, up until this moment felt at home within my body. Not once in 28 years.

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:: MEETING DANNY BRAVE :: 
This session took place just a month after recalling memories of my father sexually assaulting me as a child, an event which completely altered the course of my life. The memory shattered the fabricated reality of the cheerful, healthy relationships I thought I had shared with my immediate family members up until this point.  

As a result, my journey home into my body has also felt, and still sometimes feels, extremely challenging. In fact, at times, this would be an extreme understatement.

Between July of 2015 and now I have, almost relentlessly, uncovered countless repressed memories of being sexually assaulted and abused in a multitude of ways. Not only by my father, but also my mother and grandfather, along with some deeply questionable evidence that I was not in fact a woman.

I remember being in the thick of my repressed memory recall and looking in the mirror and talking to myself, and hearing a voice in my head say to myself, “I want to be a boy.” I thought I must be insane, and shut that voice down for an entire year before I would allow it to re-emerge and accept it as truth.  

Fast forward to today. I now know that my true name is Danny Brave, and I am a gay trans man. I discovered the trans part in June of 2016, but was too terrified to come out until that November. And the gay part I wasn’t even too sure about until about a week ago.

Photo: Tommy Venus

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:: I WANT TO BE A BOY; I AM A BOY :: 
The reality of my gender identity came crashing down that June, when I decided to, once again, look my inner child in the mirror and have a conversation with them and really listen this time. This is a practice I had adopted from the amazing work of Louise Hay as I found it to be deeply healing (and for those who are brave, I cannot recommend it enough!)

I asked my inner child what was wrong, as I had been feeling deeply depressed, and I had long hair at the time that felt droopy and heavy. I asked what I could do to help them feel better. In response, I heard the voice of my inner child scream: “I want to be a BOY!! I AM A BOY!!  I want to cut off all of my hair!” 

It was that same voice I had heard a year ago, a voice that I could no longer ignore or discredit as crazy: this was the real me, the one who as a kid tried to pee standing up, who felt confused about why he did not have a penis, the one who loved dancing, singing, and fabulous shoes, and had dreams of being a visual artist.

This moment in the mirror was the moment I finally decided to listen to myself. Two days later, I cut off all of my hair and immediately felt so much better, so much more like me. I began to realize that I could not visualize myself in the future as a woman without wanting to die.  

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:: FROM TERROR TO TRANSITION :: 
At this time, I had dug myself into a hole by moving to a small town an hour and a half outside of Los Angeles, where I was making little to no money, had no car, and no health insurance, let alone access to trans health care or support groups.

I was terrified, and had created this situation out of that same terror. I knew I had to get back to a city to gain access to support for figuring out my transition. I thought my choice would be Los Angeles as that would be the most convenient, but shortly after moving to LA and not being able to land a job with decent pay, I took the little money I had left and moved back to NYC in August of 2016.

It was in NYC that I was able to take my old job back, and gain access to the support I needed to come to terms with myself and transition: trans masculine support groups and free therapy via the Center on 13th Street (for which I am forever grateful). I came out in October 2016, and lost a majority of the “close” friends I had at the time.

In the winter of 2016, I met up with a friend from one of my support groups and told them I was having suicidal thoughts and that I couldn’t get out of bed. They gently pointed out to me over a cup of coffee that not being on testosterone was “not working for me,” (to put it mildly) and I started hormone therapy shortly thereafter, in January of 2017.

Every week since then (with the exception of one month during which I completely panicked) I have been injecting myself with a needle filled with testosterone (also simply referred to as “t” within the trans community).

This simple act is slowly but surely transforming me externally into the person I have always been internally, which feels a bit like becoming sane and going crazy at the same time. I am going through a literal and a figurative process of transformation in order to become the person who I have also always been. Quite a trip!

Photo: Tommy Venus

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:: WHOLE, LOVING, JUICY :: 
Last week I had a more triumphant and joyful moment of homecoming, when I attended a dance class with my loving partner (who is also a trans man) shortly after having anal sex for the first time (for hours on end, I might add).

Something so essential about who I was clicked into place while with him: I felt like my soul actually landed it my body. It felt really good, and really whole and loving.

Running late for the class, I looked into his big, beautiful eyes on the train on the way to class and felt he was really seeing me for the first time, and I him. Beneath the boobs, we were, and are, two gay men, despite all of the “ma’ams” and “misses” and the lifetime of being perceived differently by everyone, including ourselves. Our truth felt so simple in that moment, and I felt truly beautiful in his eyes. Really real, and really me.

Looking in the mirror in the dance class, I could see how recently my arms, wrists, and fingers had gotten so much more masculine looking, and how flat my chest looked with my binder and the grey t-shirt I was wearing. This made me smile, as did acknowledging how much I love to dance—always have, always will.

I glanced over at my partner in the mirror, and saw a beautiful person who was somewhat scared to be themselves out in the world, but who was doing it anyway, just like me. I saw someone who was willing to go outside of their comfort zone to try something new, something they always wanted to do, like take a dance class, or write this article, and the simultaneous nervousness and courage behind his eyes made my heart swell.

Then I looked at his juicy butt doing the warm up and felt my genitals wake up once again in my stretchy pants. This also made me smile. I realized and accepted in this moment that I was gay—that I REALLY was a man who liked men (cis and trans). Always have been, always will be. And that despite all of the incest, I always have been and always will be a deeply sexual person (after all, my Venus is in Scorpio).

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:: IT TAKES COURAGE TO ENJOY IT :: 
It has taken years, a village of trans allies, sensitive artist friends, therapists, Reiki attunements, shamanic healers, dance/movement therapy teachers, sexual alchemy teachers, yoga trainings, sexual empowerment coaches, random acts of kindness from strangers like the lady in the Starbucks who told me that who I was was really beautiful and that the world would love the real me, and thousands of dollars worth of credit card debt to get here. But damn, I did it. I’ve done it. I’m here.

And I love sex. Yes, I love sex! says the man who had his first orgasm from masturbation when he was 27 years old, because he thought sexual energy meant being hit, yelled at, and penetrated without consent. Says the man with a female body who didn’t want to look down or touch himself there because it would mean realizing that my mind and body did not match. Says the man who was, as a child, anally raped by his father and grandfather and molested in a bath by his mother, and taught by the Catholic religion that sex was a sin and that my body was something to be ashamed of. Says the man who was not allowed to share a bed with his boyfriend when he visited his parents’ house at the age of 26, being not-so-subtly shamed that they lived together before marriage.

Yes, I love sex. And I have reclaimed sex to the extent that it now makes me feel alive, loved, present, powerful, and best of all, real. What once made me feel terrified now allows me to feel safe. It takes me from that idea of myself in my head perched above my body to actually being an embodiment of self. It is teaching me to trust life again.

In the words of Bjork in her song “Big Time Sensuality”: It takes courage to enjoy it. I hope that everyone who has been through what I have gets to experience this particular kind of courage.

I hope that everyone gets to experience the pleasure of coming home into their own sexuality, their own body. 

Tommy & Danny. Photo by Lyndsey Kamide.

Danny Brave is a Writer/Public Speaker/Educator on the subjects of Gender/Transgender, Overcoming Trauma, and Ascension/Spiritual Living. He is a Master Shamanic Reiki Practitioner/Psychic Healer specializing in helping people of all genders, ages, body types, and races overcome the effects of child abuse/sexual assault via various healing modalities which he has come to term “Brave Healing Arts.” He conducts monthly LGBTQIA & Allies Community Healing Circles at Maha Rose in Greenpoint, Brooklyn (1st or 2nd Wednesday of each month). He is 100% sober, vegan, and loves to paint, take photos, dance, and pet dogs. 

NUMINOUS TAROTSCOPES: FEBRUARY 2018

Your Numinous Tarotscopes February 2018 are here, cast by Melinda Lee Holm using the Starchild Tarot … 

 

AQUARIUS // AQUARIUS RISING 
Six of Swords
Happy solar return, Aquarius! Following the great cosmic integration of January, the cards have a wonderful gift in store for you this month – the power of acute discernment. The sixes always indicate a shift, usually subtle or even invisible as seen from the outside, but profound and world-changing as experienced from the inside. You will not only be able to see clearly what your options are this month, but also to make decisions based on this information. Sixes correspond to sephiroth of Beauty on the Tree of Life, leading me to always consider – what is the true beauty of this suit? And the beauty of Swords, of Air, is that it allows us to consciously choose our path.

Take a moment to survey your surroundings this month in every situation. Get a good lay of the land. Draw on the wisdom you received in January. Were there any nuggets that were especially surprising? Challenging? Freeing? Did you discover something new about who you are and what your place is in this world? The Universe leaves us a trail of breadcrumbs as we feel our way along our life’s path. This month is one of those wonderful times when you come up over a crest and can trace the trail forks all the way down the hill. Which path will you take? Will you be alone or in a group? Will you be the leader or is there an elder guiding the way? What will you take with you and what will you leave behind? Most importantly, how can you make the most of this journey?

Your stone for February: Fluorite

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PISCES // PISCES RISING 
Eight of Wands 
Well, Pisces, you have definitely come out of the energetic cave you resided in for January and are ready to create some structure! Now, being in the suit of Wands, this will be an evolving structure, a structure that moves and adapts with you and your environment. Wands represent Fire and Fire is a living, breathing entity after all. Think process docs and working methodolgies – structures that guide creation and allow it to unfold more effortlessly as oppossed to containing or limiting it. I know, I know, structure is not really your cup of tea. You prefer to go with the flow. But what if you had the ability to expand and strengthen your flow by using your instincts to guide and shape the canal? This month, you do!

Take time over the next 4 weeks to look at ways you can use restrictions and limitations to allow your beautiful creative spirit to flourish. Test out different methods, ask friends and colleagues what works for them, and keep track of the results of your experiments. Do you feel open? Are you more productive? Do you come up against feelings of rebelliousness or constriction? You are intuitive and compassionate by nature, Pisces, and these qualities will help you in this quest to find a structure that works well for your style. Be patient with yourself, be ready to stumble and even fall. This is incredibly important work that will help to kick your manifestation and productivity into high gear.

Your stone for February: Citrine

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ARIES // ARIES RISING
Page of Wands
February has you playing with Fire in the best of ways, dear Aries, as the Page of Wands steps in to twirl you around the cosmic dance floor this month. When the Pages arrive in our lives, they come to reconnect us to our inner child to rediscover the power of their element as if for the first time. We forget what we know (or thought we knew) and feel our way through, discovering how the elemental power connects to who we are now at this moment in time. With the Page of Wands, this is a major reawakening and reinvigoration of the creative and intuitive power of Fire. The Pages may be the novices of the Court, but they supply us with immense opportunities for growth and refinement.

And with this novice energy coming in your native Fire element, this could very well be a chance to grow in ways that alter the very core of identity. How you create, what you create, for what purpose and based on what innate knowing are all up for reassessment this month. You could find yourself tapping into new esoteric practices for opening intuition or getting familiar with a new artistic medium. Identify strongly as a musician but always dreamed of painting? Always made a living working for someone else but had a hunch you’d be better off on your own? Ready to get serious about that weird thing you’ve always had where you know what your friends are about to say and see how far you can develop the gift? Now’s the time, Aries!

Your stone for February: Labradorite

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TAURUS // TAURUS RISING
Ten of Crystals
Lucky you, Taurus! It looks like whatever collaboration you got into last month has really paid off in one way or another. The Ten of Crystals indicates you are about to have a February full of abundance, one of those months when things just seem to line up. When we speak of abundance in the metaphysical realm, of course, we are talking about the full spectrum – emotional, physical, and spiritual abundance. This is a profound feeling of “fullness” and, being in the realm of Earth, it should feel very comfortable to you indeed. Tens are the pinnacle of the numbered cards. In the tens, we reach the greatest development of the suit. But with that development comes a little nagging sensation in the back of our consciousness that it is time to look ahead to starting the journey again. The ten demands a return to the Ace.

So drink this in, dear Taurus. Your love of comfort will be indulged this month and you can feel free to lay back into it with no guilt – just make sure that you keep one eye focused on how you will use this newly unlocked level of your life as the new ground floor of the next phase of your mastery of Crystals. This is the suit most closely associated with the stuff of our daily lives, the currency we need to engage with to live in this material world. Stay cozy, but stay open to the approaching new lessons of the Ace of Crystals that the appearance of the Ten promises.

Your stone for February: Aventurine

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GEMINI // GEMINI RISING 
Eight of Swords 
There are three eights in the mix this month, Gemini, but only one that lands in the sign’s native element. Congratulations, my Mutable Air babes, that’s you! The Eight of Swords is here to allow you to ruminate your way into a new mental framework of life. After the work you did last month to even out any imbalances in your day to day, this month is shaping up to be a welcome rest in the realm you are most comfortable in. It is time for some restructuring in your handling of Air. Structure in Air is a tricky concept. It can be difficult to even notice that it exists, but we all have subtle (and not so subtle) armatures built up that dictate the reaches of our thinking. February will illuminate these armatures and present an opportunity to re-shape them.

The most effective way to enact change in the structure of Air is to simply notice its workings. Let your mind wander, let the thoughts roll through, say what’s on your mind, and be sure to take note! Mental note is fine (this is a Swords month after all). The simple act of noticing your current thought and communicaton patterns is a huge step in making changes that can help to make the element of Air work for you instead of getting swept around by it. You don’t have to make any judgment calls on the patterns you see. Seeing patterns that have been invisible until now will provide all the clarification you need on how to best move forward. Sit back, watch your words and thoughts float by, and see the new structure taking form.

Your stone for February: Aquamarine

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CANCER // CANCER RISING 
Four of Cups
Sweet Cancer, your super power becomes your solace this month as you enter a period of stability in the emotional realm. As the cardinal Water sign, your innate comfort in the watery places is high, but sometimes it can seem as though you are being swept away by emotions instead of floating peacefully on their waves. February brings a welcome visit from the Four, the first chance at a solid three-dimensional shape in the numerological world, the comfy place to rest where you can kick up your feet without fear of falling over. This Four of Cups moment is especially sweet for you, Cancer, because it is reassuringly familiar. These moments of emotional comfort have visited you throughout your life and been your guiding light when the seas have been rough.

These periods of stability are a great time to take stock of what is going on in your emotional world to see if there is anything that requires adjusting, toning down, or amping up. We see more clearly when we’re on solid ground. We can make more grounded observations and decisions. You will be able to be less, well, emotional about your emotions, which is a particularly great gift given the pressure of romance this month brings. Romance gets the lion’s share of attention among emotional states, but you know better than most that the full spectrum is really where it’s at. Stick to your guns and avoid the hype. You can trust your heart’s ability to find True North.

Your stone for February: Rhodochrosite

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LEO // LEO RISING 
Queen of Crystals
Oooo, Leo! This is some exciting stuff right here. Queen of Crystals to follow Transformation last month? I envy you. And I hope you really dug deep to clear out all the dusty nooks and crannies and shook out all the rugs, because the more clearing you did last month, the more space you’ll have to grow your personal vision this month. That’s what the Queen of Crystals is here to help with – building your creation, the thing you’ve been nurturing and molding and privately willing to come to life. It might be that screenplay you’ve been working on for years, the home renovations you never quite get around to completing, the business you’ve been dreaming of starting. Whatever you see as your “baby” is The Thing.

This month, it is imperative that you carve out time to devote to The Thing. The Queen works alone, so you won’t have to deal with anyone else’s whims or schedules. Steal 10 minutes when you get up in the morning, take lunch alone, forego happy hour and use that time and energy to build something that is truly and uniquely yours. If this sounds exhausting, then you need to take a closer look at what The Thing is. When you find what is in true perfect alignment, what lights your heart on fire and will be a part of the better tomorrow you envision for yourself, the prospect of devoting so much time to it will not be daunting, it will be exhilerating.

Your stone for February: Carnelian

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VIRGO // VIRGO RISING 
Oppression
Well, Virgo, there is no sense in sugar-coating it – February will likely prove to be a challenging month for you. This is one of the “scariest” cards in the deck and it does earn its reputation in some respects. Oppression is no picnic. It indicates that we are being held down and back by forces that seek to limit our progress and our evolution, to dim our light and steal our hope. However, when this card appears it is actually a spark of promise. So often we move through life completely unaware of what is holding us back. This month, my dear Virgo, you will have the opportunity to stare it square in the face and take back your power from its grasp.

What is it that is oppressing you? Where is it coming from? What ideas about who you are and what you can be have you internalized that are limiting your development? It’s easy to spot things outside ourselves that seem to be standing in our way, it’s more difficult and much more effective to seek out the internal drains on our confidence and drive. What stories do you tell yourself about what you are and are not capable of? deserving of? entitled to? You have the power to release yourself from these boxes you’ve been living in. You have the power to clear your temple of all that would seek to destroy it. This is your story. All words are magic and you’re writing the narrative.

Your stone for February: Nuumite

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LIBRA // LIBRA RISING 
Seven of Crystals
There is a restlessness about the Sevens, a somewhat impatient asking of “what next?” after the accomplishment of the Six. You’ve done the work, Libra, so don’t stress. This month, the Seven of Crystals is here to soothe your worries and reassure you that what you are building is in fact growing and taking form. If you are having trouble identifying just what it is that you have begun building, take a look back at what insights you received with the Two of Swords last month. Did any decisions come to light? We create things every day in our lives, sometimes without even knowing what we’re up to. Your dedication to being a good partner can sometimes obscure your view of how powerful you are on your own.

So, what IS next, Libra? Where will you go from here? What new seeds do you want to plant? If you’re feeling impatient waiting for the last round to grow and bear fruit, why not plant another garden while you wait? Or, if you are eyeing what will soon come to fruition with trepidation, afraid you lack the talent, skill, or determination to follow through on what you’ve started, then take this month to rest, study up, and refine. Everything comes and goes in phases, Libra. The Moon shows us her phases clearly in the sky, waxing and waning as she calls to us to be patient with ourselves and our animal bodies. It’s happening. Let go and live your life.

Your stone for February: Green Calcite

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SCORPIO // SCORPIO RISING 
Knight of Crystals
It’s time to step up your work game, Scorpio! The Knight of Crystals, teen dream of the element of Earth, is here to give you the will and the drive to do just that. The suit of Crystals rules over the material world, the stuff that we live off of and on and from. Whether it be finance, home, career, or simply our day to day routines, this suit grounds us and makes it possible for us to live in these human bodies on this planet. It can seem like mundane, not-at-all-magical stuff, but our relationship with Earth has everything to do with the magic and mystery you hold so dear. Conjuring is the art of making the immaterial appear and exist in this three-dimensional world. The Knight of Crystals has the energy to help you push the boundaries of what you believe you can conjure.

The Knights are the Fire of their element. How can you embody the Fire of Earth, the imperative for form and function that these elements hold? What project or process in your material world requires your protection? This is not simply about getting more done, it is about improving the quality of the work, refining the method to make it more productive, seeing where that work energy can be best spent for the greatest rewards. Knights are prepared to put themselves at risk for what they serve. What will you risk yourself for? What great work will earn your youthful and heroic devotion?

Your stone for February: Black Onyx

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SAGITTARIUS // SAGITTARIUS RISING 
Eight of Crystals
How does that song go? Work work work work work? That’s you this month, Sagittarius! But don’t despair, you’ll love every minute of it. Or most, anyway. You had a wonderful dose of emotional cleansing last month, so you should be good and ready to put your nose to the grindstone. Be on the lookout for major insights into how to make your workflow more efficient and productive that leave you wondering how you could have possibly not seen it before. This newly streamlined methodology will allow you to reconnect to what you love about the work you do, why you began doing it in the first place. When I say “work” I am not necessarily talking about your job or work you do for money. Some people’s purpose is connected to how they make money, but these things may or may not be aligned for you. The Tarot is concerned with what is considered your Life’s Work.

February is all about getting your hands in the dirt. Release any tendency to procrastinate and any resentment about what type or how much work you have on your plate. Once you get started, the work will flow easily. When we are presented with energy of the suit of Crystals, we have great opportunities to make adjustments to the structure of our every day lives. This suit connects us deeply to the power of the Earth and our true nature as its animals. You’ll be surprised by what forms emerge when you dig in and start actively forming the clay of your life.

Your stone for February: Ruby

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CAPRICORN // CAPRICORN RISING 
High Priestess
Wow, Capricorn, you are on a roll with the deep, mystical vibes! Last month The Moon got you in touch with the deepest corners of your psyche. This month, the High Priestess arrives to empower you to step into your ancient Divine power and clean house in your temple. This energy should appeal greatly to your Earthy, independent nature. The High Priestess marches to the beat of her own drum. Or rather, she meditates, floats, downloads, and intuits. Her acute intuition allows her to be incredibly self-sufficient, relying only on her deep connection to her own inner knowing and to the Divine for guidance. One of the secrets to this connection is her impeccably maintained temple. The High Priestess teaches us that we must maintain our temple if we want to achieve higher states of consciusness.

How is your temple doing these days, Capricorn? When I ask that question what comes to mind? Is it a structure, a place in nature, your physical body? The first step to perfecting your temple is to identify it. No matter what your living situation, you can define a temple. It can be as big as a church or as small as a satchel in your pocket. What defines a temple is that it is an entity maintained by you that you feel safe within and use for devotional purposes. Incredible insights and rapid expansion of intuitive powers are available to you now. What will you discover? Could it be that the oracle you sought on your journey was inside of you all along?

Your stone for February: Moonstone

 

THE 2018 LEO FULL MOON LUNAR ECLIPSE WANTS YOU TO WIELD YOUR POWER

The 2018 Leo Lunar Eclipse wants us to get raw, harness our magic, know our power, and be ready to wield it, says Sandra Sitron

Photo: Ivan Diaz 

Full Moon :: January 31 2018 :: 8:27 am EST :: 11 degrees Leo

A ancient beetle creeps slowly across the pavement. Its hard shell deflects predators and it goes mostly unnoticed. It moves along until it has crept completely out of sight.

Beetle medicine is potent and magical. The beetle is small but steady. It helps you understand your real power. Raw. Unabashed. Intimidating. Talented. Let those parts of yourself rise to the surface. Hold your boundaries, as if you have a hard beetle shell. Stand firm. Carry on. Know your power and wield it.

The message of the 2018 Leo Full Moon Lunar Eclipse is wrapped up in beetle medicine: Don’t be afraid of your truth. Instead, step into it. even if it doesn’t seem important or it might be uncomfortable. At the end of the day, all you have is your integrity. When you’re aligned in integrity, then you have nothing to fear.

Leo and the beetle have a lot in common. In ancient Egypt, the beetle was mythically responsible for the divine manifestation of the morning Sun. Leo is the sign that’s associated with the Sun. Both Leo and the Sun teach us how to divinely manifest our essence onto the world.

With aspects to Venus and Jupiter, this Leo Full Moon Lunar Eclipse is supporting you. As eclipses go, it’s a relatively easy one, but it’s still an eclipse. If you have planets in fixed signs, Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius, you may be especially impacted. See your way through to full completion of the cycle that started with the Leo New Moon Solar Eclipse August 7th. What have you been learning since then?

Stay the course until this is finished. You may need to conserve your resources so that you don’t burn out. Luckily, at this eclipse, the Sun and Moon form a T-square with focal planet Jupiter who can help us feel supported and optimistic. Laugh your way through this one. Remember that your goal is growth.

The beetle pushes the Sun out into the world with steady strength. Leo pushes you out into the world, saying, “ Get out there!” Get recognition for your accomplishments. Vulnerably share your talents. Share your fire. When you do, it’s inspirational. Take your everyday experiences and use them as a tool to inspire others.

Even if you feel like a regular old beetle, you can have an impact of mythical proportions, as long as you remain steady and bright … 

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Jupiter in T-square with Sun and Moon
A 5-pointed star gleams brightly.
Stay connected to the goal. If you can remember to be optimistic about the goal, you’ll feel connected to the path that you’re on now. This is such a helpful aspect. It’s a buffer, reminding you that you’re supported, all is well, and expansion is possible—no matter what else is going on.

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Venus opposite Full Moon
Flower petals drift on the breeze.
Pull the softness close and rub scented petals underneath your nose. You get to enjoy yourself, is it possible to remember that? If you hold onto the affirmation, “I see beauty,” it will uplift your mindset. Make space for harmony and beauty because they can be good friends to have on your side at this Leo Full Moon Lunar Eclipse. They’ll help you celebrate how far you’ve come.

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The study questions below are to help you get deeper into what the 2018 Leo Full Moon Lunar Eclipse means for you. Use them as journal prompts. For the most accurate reading, look to which house holds 11 degrees Leo in your chart and use the question for that house.

New to your birth chart? Calculate your chart for free HERE.

Aries or Lunar Eclipse in the 5th house
When does fun inspire you?

Taurus or Lunar Eclipse in the 4th house
What makes you feel emotionally secure?

Gemini or Lunar Eclipse in the 3rd house
Who do you think of as your brothers and sisters?

Cancer or Lunar Eclipse in the 2nd house
What will help you trust in abundance?

Leo or Lunar Eclipse in the 1st house
It’s time to show up. What does that mean to you right now?

Virgo or Lunar Eclipse in the 12th house
If you were to create a daily practice of love and compassion, what would it be?

Libra or Lunar Eclipse in the 11th house
How can you honor your progress?

Scorpio or Lunar Eclipse in the 10th house
What is the goal that you most desire? What does achieving that goal feel like?

Sagittarius or Lunar Eclipse in the 9th house
What truth will you teach about today?

Capricorn or Lunar Eclipse in the 8th house
What contract are you ready to get out of now?

Aquarius or Lunar Eclipse in the 7th house
What do you want from partnership? How can you give that to yourself?

Pisces or Lunar Eclipse in the 6th house
What habits and daily practices need to be refined?

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here.

NUMINOUS WEEKLY HOROSCOPES JANUARY 29-FEBRUARY 4 2018

Get this week’s astro symbol for your sign in our Numinous weekly horoscopes by Sandra Sitron …

 

Aquarius :: Aquarius Rising
An iridescent shell. Mother of pearl. Multi-colored and glossy. You are ready to spiral into a new unknown. Take beauty with you. Take harmony with you. Take gentleness. You’re stepping into a new phase of partnership and you’ll need to remember that pleasure and beauty belong to you. You deserve to create peaceful relationships. You are allowed to enjoy yourself. Let it be easy.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Pisces :: Pisces Rising
The mother bird flies back to the nest with food for her baby. It’s time for a redo. You’ve got to retrace your steps so that you can take better care of yourself. Do a little review. What self-care is working? What perfectionism residue is blocking you? Become more diligent about your time management and make innovations. Take care of yourself with more appropriate daily practices.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Aries :: Aries Rising
Running with sparklers. Feel fired up. That will revitalize you. Have fun, be playful and express your true self. You could find yourself on a creative streak this week, so make time for it. The important thing is to make sure that you honor who you really are. Then you’ll feel the full joy of this adventure.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Taurus :: Taurus Rising
A mill on the river. Churning through water to create energy and make bread. It’s okay to slow down and become focused on the task at hand. Take care of the work. Make the bread tenderly and efficiently. While you do so, take care of yourself emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Gemini :: Gemini Rising
Stomping down grass. Puppies like to turn and turn before they lay down to rest. Why? Maybe they are aligning with the magnetic field of the earth. Maybe they just like to spin in circles. The important thing to takeaway from this is that you’ve got unconscious internal operating systems that are fueling your every move. You’ve got habits that comfort you. Reevaluate why you do the things you do. Maybe your research will lead you to ideas that are as fresh as new grass.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Cancer :: Cancer Rising
Eating flower petals. They just look so delicious. Embody sensuality. Embrace beauty. Express yourself through movement. Getting grounded right now will help you in every area of your life. Most of all it will help you find mental stillness, so that you can confidently express your true nature. Create a ritual of seeing the inherent beauty in your environment. This is a meditative practice. Start exactly where you are.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Leo :: Leo Rising
A ship with many sails cuts across moonlit waters. Gather up your energy and drive forward. It’s time to sail. But remember that you can’t move forward without attending to your emotions. Make sure you are being honest with yourself about how you’re feeling. The ship represents your identity and the sails are your motivation. The moonlit waters symbolize your emotions. Work with the emotions so that you get where you want to go.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Virgo :: Virgo Rising
A bowling ball and a butterfly. There’s always more than one way of going after what you want. Choose the method of your approach. Fast, heavy and direct? Or meandering, gentle and soft? Neither way is right or wrong. But you do need to make sure that the way that you choose is appropriate for you right now. Be intentional.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Libra :: Libra Rising
Clothespins on the line. Hold together. Don’t do it alone. Form a group and increase your strength. Yes, this can be political. Take a moment to focus on how you will take action for the future you want to see. Get outside of yourself, get out of your head and take action. You need to inspire yourself.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Scorpio :: Scorpio Rising
A train goes along the tracks. You build the tracks and then you follow the path. Creating the structure is what opens you up to new possibilities. Take advantage of an opening in your work to envision fresh possiblilities. You might be able to see exactly how you want to structure your work. Develop the plan.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Sagittarius :: Sagittarius Rising
The barrel of gold at the end of the rainbow. There is magic all around you. Go seek it. Search for your truth, your freedom. Believe in the possibilities— even the most absurd option might hold a reward. Open your mind and begin a new exploration. An adventure.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Capricorn :: Capricorn Rising
The clean line of the horizon. Your goal is to achieve a level of perspective so that the view ahead is spacious. Look all the way to the horizon. Create mental space by letting go of any stagnant emotion or outdated pattern. Clear and release so that you can look forward to the future. It’s a transformational process. Embrace it.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: 4 WAYS TO PRACTICE EMOTIONAL WELLNESS

How often do you tend to your emotional wellness? A new program I designed for The James Hotels puts the spotlight on emotional and spiritual wellbeing as part of a holistic approach to health … PLUS four ways to boost your emotional wellness today.

This week saw the launch of Four Bodies Wellness, a program I created for The James Hotel group here in NYC. The brand approached me when they realized how important the concept of wellness was to their guests; could I create a program that spoke to the needs of a busy, city traveler, who wanted to feel their best?

Around the time we began this conversation, I’d been diving deep into the philosophy and practice of shamanism, as research for my first book. And one conversation I’d had with modern shamanic practitioner Marika Messager had really resonated with me: “Shamanism is very holistic. It’s working on your physical body, your mental body, your emotional body, and your spiritual body,” she told me. The idea being that perfect health is the result of all four bodies being in alignment.

This spoke so hard to something I’d been preaching since I launched The Numinous—which is that the ancient human technologies for emotional and spiritual healing that I cover on this platform, are often the missing piece in the wellness puzzle. 

So many people come to “wellness” because something is off physically—they’re overweight, have digestive issues, or are fighting some other chronic illness. The next tier of entry is often mental stress and anxiety—what leads many people to meditation, for example. But it’s always been my belief (based on my intuition, my experience of “curing” my own disorders, and my extensive research into alternative healing practices), that the root cause of so many physical and mental issues is often an emotional and / or spiritual imbalance.

It’s a theory that’s been proven to me yet again as I dig into the research for my next book, Sober Curious, which is a look at ways to reframe our relationship to alcohol and other addictive substances and behaviors (out January 2019). How a deficit of emotional and spiritual care and understanding is at the root of the majority of addictions—now widely recognized as one, if not the, leading health crisis in the US.

This is conversation that obviously goes way deeper. Addiction, and the myriad health issues that spin off of it, are by no means reserved for those privileged enough to be staying in fancy hotels in a luxury city like New York. Addressing the lack of access to alternative, holistic options for the millions of low-income and working-class individuals in this country living with chronic disease is something I feel super passionate about—and if anything, I’m grateful to The James for giving me a platform to talk about this.

To bring the Four Bodies Wellness program to life, we partnered with fitness studio Aerospace NYC (Physical) to create an in-room workout that uses body-weight alone; meditation studio Inscape (Mental), who are offering all guests one-month’s free access to their app; and kundalini yoga leader Guru Jagat (Spiritual), who’s recorded three kundalini meditations to beat jet-lag and boost radiance for the in-room TVs.

My Four Bodies Wellness partners: Guru Jagat, Michael Olajide Jr of Aerospace, and Inscape founder Khajak Keledjian

And for the Emotional body? The Numinous has curated a special menu of “Readers on Room Service” for each property (The James NoMad, The James SoHo, and The James Chicago), which allows guests to book 1-2-1 sessions with some of our favorite holistic wellness practitioners: astrology readings with Bess Matassa; tarot with Alessandra Calderin; happiness coaching with Sah D’Simone; hypnosis with Shauna Cummins; sound healing with Gian Arjan Singh; and reiki with Sydney Wippman.

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So how can you tend to your own emotional wellness today? Here are four of my favorite practices that don’t cost a thing:

1//Make friends with your feelings. We’re generally taught that “good” feelings are, well, good, and “bad” feelings are to be avoided at all costs. Worse, that feeling bad means there’s something wrong with us. This is what creates shame, often the fuel for numbing out with addictive behaviors, for example. But guess what: ALL your feelings are part of you, they are all equally valid and deserving of your love and respect, and they all have something valuable to tell you. It’s when we ignore or disavow the more difficult or painful feeling states that they “act out” to get our attention (perhaps manifesting as mental distress or even a physical ailment). How to befriend your feelings? How about literally talking to them? Like: “Hello again fear, what are you here to warn me about?” Or “Disappointment, it’s you! How could I have managed my expectations better?”

2//But don’t be ruled by them. Big feelings can feel super overwhelming and be quite bossy, making out like we have to act on them RIGHT AWAY and do everything they say. And while, yes, our feelings are literally the messengers of our soul, it is also in our power to digest the information they have for us, that then for their assistance, and choose the most empowered action for us in the moment. Talking it out with a true and trusted friend can be super helpful with this one.

3//Practice cognitive resonance. In psychology, the term “cognitive dissonance” is used to describe the mental anguish that comes from acting out of alignment with our belief systems—or you could say, “going against our nature.” And it’s amazing how many situations we actually compromise our beliefs in order to fit in, do the “right thing,” be liked, etc. Cognitive RESONANCE on the other hand, is when we align our thoughts, our words, and our actions, so that, ultimately we are living in truth and harmony with who we truly are.

4//Listen to your dreams. Speaking of shamanism, Marika Messager also reminded me how: “(in shamanism) there is no doubt that there are many realities, and that the reality we live in is equally as valid as the dream reality.” Our dreams (also the state we access when we go into a trance, with hypnosis or deep meditation, for example) is literally where our subconscious mind speaks to us. Meaning our emotional and spiritual self. Keeping a dream diary and noting the FEELINGS attached to different images etc., can give deep insight into situations you feel confused or overwhelmed by in your waking life.

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To celebrate the launch of Four Bodies Wellness, Numinous readers can also get up to 20% off rooms at any James Hotel! Just use the promo code “COMMUNITY” when booking. Click HERE to discover more.

HOW TO MAKE A BEAUTY VISION BOARD

Aquarius Season is the perfect time for radicalizing our routine and reimagining reality. Start manifesting the magic with a beauty vision board, says Eunice Lucero. 

Photo: Our Satellite Hearts

Everyone from Olympic athletes to Wiccan high priestesses has acknowledged the power of visualization for manifesting your heart’s desires. What we constantly pay attention to gets charged with energy, and we align with that energy, for better or worse.

Harnessing this energy for our beauty manifestation can be particularly potent—just watch as your visions materialize before your very eyes!

Being of mixed heritage, I had a touch-and-go relationship with my looks as a child. I always felt my “halves” were the wrong kind of each, and like a puzzle walking around with pieces that didn’t fit right. My skin wasn’t “Asian enough”, my nose wasn’t “white enough”, my abnormally light green eyes reminding my Catholic schoolgirl classmates of “the lizards on the street.”

It wasn’t until I saw pictures of Kate Moss’ first Calvin Klein campaigns in the ’90s—gawky and lost, with her trademark bird-like street urchin quality, quirky nose and stringy hair—that I really felt it was okay to not look like the rest of the world.

As I began plastering all my notebooks in cutouts of Obsession and cK one ads, my outlook started to change. My face—my strange, strange features—now suddenly made sense! And eventually, I became a beauty editor, hired on the spot after a detailed email on how makeup should enhance your quirks and not mask them.

Think of your beauty vision board as a constant reminder of your life map—your soul’s North Star. Look for photos of women you identify with, and ask yourself why you admire them. Chances are there’s something in them that reminds yourself of your own beauty, your own potential. Let’s get started … 

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1// Clear your photographic space.
 Alongside other forms of detox, visual clearing is key to manifestation. Light up your incense of choice, and still your mind as best you can. Then, start deleting any images of yourself that aren’t aligned with how you want to feel, and empty the Trash Bin immediately. For actual photos, thank them and keep them for posterity in storage. Get rid of any photos that are particularly painful, hurtful or traumatic, and dispose of them outside your home.

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2// Free-fall towards your vision
Take a pen and paper, and begin writing as fast as you can about anything that pops into your mind about your beauty visions. Stop as soon as you’ve filled the entire page—and be surprised at what jumps out at you.

I started one of my free-fall sessions with an emo entry about how my eyeglasses kept people from seeing my true self (hello, 15-year-old angst!), and then ended up rambling about how, in fact, I wanted to be free to see the beauty in the world without any hindrances. Quite a change in perspective, right?

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3// Tap into the tingle
Speak in present tense, internalizing the feeling of already having or being what you desire. I personally love the phrase “I adore myself”—it sparks images of the Star Tarot card, a.k.a. the card of self-care (and ruler of Aquarius), as I instantly get flashes of being immersed in a divine spa session of some sort.

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4// Collect in white heat. 
Applied to your journaling—“write in white heat; revise in cold blood”—means any form of self-censorship or judgment is not allowed, especially in the beginning. Same goes for vision-boarding.

Whether you’re going digital (Pinterest, Instagram) or old school (magazines, newspaper clippings) doesn’t matter; choose the media that speaks to you most clearly and let yourself get lost in that judgement-free zone!

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5// Curate in cold blood. 
Now that you have a good pile, or have mentally and emotionally exhausted your intuition in the gathering process (in a good way), you’re ready to edit and map these images out.

Take a look at your images and see if there’s an underlying theme, color or concept. You can title them after certain events or occasions but even more powerful is to give them a state of mind. One I’m absolutely loving right now? “Why I’m a 2018 Beauty Icon.”

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6// Display it!
Make sure you see your vision board at least thrice a day. Make it your iPhone wallpaper, display it on top of your work desk, tape it on the inside of your closet or gym locker. Infusing it with daily energy helps strengthen your alignment to these goals, and puts you deeper in sync with your personal road map. You can also prop it up on an altar and surround it with manifestation crystals (clear quartz, rose quartz, carnelian) for an added energy boost.

Finally, thanking your board when you first see it in the morning will realign your neurons into a gratitude mindset, opening you up to a constant flow of positive energy. 

NUMINOUS TAROTSCOPE JANUARY 25 2018: FOUR OF SWORDS

The Four of Swords arrives just in time for next week’s Lunar Eclipse to help us check our egos and dive deeper into who we were really are, says Melinda Lee Holm.

THE TAURUS WAXING QUARTER MOON WANTS YOU TO GET REAL

As we prepare to catch some serious Eclipse Season crazies, the Taurus Waxing Quarter Moon wants us to root down, nourish our bodies, and get real, says Jennifer Racioppi

Photo: Autumn Goodman

Waxing Quarter Moon :: January 24 2018 :: 5:20pm EST :: 4 degrees Taurus 

As we build towards the first of this year’s eclipses on January 31st, we’ve officially entered the cosmic season of unpredicatability, rapid change, and energetic intensity …

Thankfully, the Waxing Quarter Moon in Taurus, a sign known for its stable, grounding principles, forms an earth trine with disciplinarian and lord of karma, Saturn, now firmly footed in Capricorn.

It’s time to steady ourselves before the storm as we deeply tune in to our most embodied, feminine wisdom …

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:: The Cycle ::
As it makes its 29.5 day journey through the entire zodiac, the Moon cycles through four distinctive phases: new, waxing, full, and waning.

This cycle’s tone was set with the January 16 New Moon in Capricorn. Now, as we wax towards full, intensity is elevated and we’re asked to exert ourselves on behalf of the goals and intentions we set at the New Moon.

As your New Moon seeds begins to sprout, now’s the time to aggressively pursue your desires, and also watch out for any curveballs that will help you refine and course correct.

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:: The Transits ::
With the Sun in revolutionary Aquarius right next to feminine Venus, this Taurus Waxing Quarter Moon exemplifies progressive impulses.

At the same time, Mercury, the planet of communication, meets up exactly with Pluto in Capricorn, deepening our ability to see, feel, and understand how we might deceive ourselves on our path of personal development. Use the nourishing, grounded energy of stable Taurus and Saturn to help root down.

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:: The Square ::
With the Sun in Aquarius asking us for progressive changes, squaring the Moon in Taurus, a sign that resists change, we may feel gridlocked. And with the Mercury-Pluto combo revealing shadow tendencies, it’s possible to want to resist the truth that’s presenting itself.

That said, the best possible way to work with this Taurus Waxing Quarter Moon is to embrace radical honesty. Look towards the future (Aquarius influence) while staying nourished, in your body, and connected to the moment (hello, Taurus!)

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:: The Opportunity ::
As we move beyond the first new moon of 2018 and straight into the eye of the eclipse season storm, it’s essential to digest the truths revealing themselves to us now.

The Jan 31 Leo New Moon Lunar Eclipse will further illuminate our soul’s direction, clearing away blocks, and opening up new doorways to potential. In the meantime, use this Taurus Waxing Quarter Moon to get comfortable with reality.

While it might not be what we want, we can’t deny the fact that we know what we know. Tap into innate feminine wisdom by slowing down. Accept the truth.

And then continue to steer full steam ahead in the direction of your desires …

For more Moon wisdom or to book a coaching session with Jennifer visit Jenniferracioppi.com. And to learn more about how to work with each Moon phase, check out Moon Club, our community of lunar-loving cosmic change makers! 

NUMINOUS WEEKLY HOROSCOPES JANUARY 22-28 2018

Get this week’s astro symbol for your sign in our Numinous weekly horoscopes by Sandra Sitron …

 

Aquarius :: Aquarius Rising
A row of flowers. Focus and bloom. Determine what needs to be done and make it happen. You know in your heart what you’re ready to bring into the world. If you prune your schedule and stick to your priorities you’ll be able to take action and then celebrate.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Pisces :: Pisces Rising
A fountain of melted chocolate. Get in the flow. Dream, imagine, and emote. Connect to your spirituality. This practice is sweet. It can feel like a treat. You just have to make space for it. Find some quiet space where you can focus inward. Reflect and invigorate yourself through your imagination and emotions.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Aries :: Aries Rising
Bowling. The ball has already been put in motion. The path is clear. Now you can let the situation build momentum and wait for the outcome. Hang tight and wait to see what happens. It’s a game. And regardless of the result, you’ll soon be able to take aim again.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Taurus :: Taurus Rising
A buoy bobs on wavy waters. You are staying afloat. And not only that, you are secure. You’re not going anywhere. The waters may be rocky, but it actually isn’t affecting you. You have a job to do, so do it without overthinking anything.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Gemini :: Gemini Rising
A magical being makes a path through a forest. You can take the usual and make it unusual. Trust in your imagination and find something that inspires you. If you are bored, remember that there are always new things to explore, no matter where you are. Invigorate your mindset and find the magic in your life.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Cancer :: Cancer Rising
Opening a book. It’s a special moment when you are poised to enter into a new story. There can be a moment of anticipation. You have closed the old book and you’re opening a new one. Symbolically let go of an old emotional burden. Make a fresh start. Look for opportunities to change your story.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Leo :: Leo Rising
Standing in a castle turret and letting down your hair. This is not a fairy tale. You wouldn’t want it to be anyway. Yes, be romantic and magnetic. But don’t get caught up in an outdated or dramatic relationship pattern. Say what you want and need. Communicate clearly. Listen well. This will help you keep yourself grounded in reality.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Virgo :: Virgo Rising
Anteater. You’ve adapted so well to your surroundings. What do you need to do next? Maybe you need to refine your processes even more. Find out what could be organized or simplified so that you can maximize your efficiency.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Libra :: Libra Rising
Cotton candy. Is it even food? What’s it made of? It actually doesn’t matter because it’s pure fun. Put reason and practicality aside for a little while and focus on enjoyment. You must brighten up your routine or else you’ll quickly become unbalanced. Fun and playfulness are in order.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Scorpio :: Scorpio Rising
Emperor penguins march in a line. Tender and maternal animals that have adapted to extreme conditions. They’re here to teach you dedication. Take responsibility. Hold yourself accountable. You need to be able defend and protect what’s important to you. The process can be beautiful and loving. But at the root, the labor of love you have taken on is about dedication.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Sagittarius :: Sagittarius Rising
Flags and streamers floating in the wind. You’ll show up in top condition if you feel excited about the cause. Pump yourself up with excitement. Get curious. Use that desire to learn as a motivating factor in your pursuit of excellence. The flags and banners are meant to remind you that this is a special time when you can compete at a hight level. Just remember that it’s your choice.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Capricorn :: Capricorn Rising
Rowing a boat in the moat that surrounds your fortress. You can fortify the walls, but the truth is that security is an illusion. You’ll feel happiest when you trust yourself. As you row the boat around your fortress, revaluate how you’re trying to create security. Maybe your mindset is keeping you trapped. Find a practical way to set yourself free. Let security become a state of mind.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: USING INSTAGRAM AS A TOOL FOR SPIRITUAL GROWTH

With awareness and the right intention, we can use Instagram as a tool for spiritual growth. Here are four new practices to start today, says Ruby Warrington

Photo: Caitlin Mitchell

1//We all want to be seen
Scratch that: NEED to be seen. One of the most basic human survival mechanisms is making others aware of our presence. Babies do it by screaming their heads off. As grown-ups, we got all kinds of ways—selfie culture / vulnerable social media shares being one of them. But it can be such a double-edged sword, man. Where does the human need to be acknowledged, witnessed and appreciated for our unique contribution end … and insecure attention-seeking begin?!

As I wrote about in this post, literally being seen on my feed does not come comfortably to me. And yet, when the same post got more comments and likes than I’ve ever had, it felt really good. Like goosebumps good. Which is pretty messed up. Getting this kind of validation from what is essentially a big room full of faceless strangers is exactly what makes IG so addictive—and also potentially damaging for our self-esteem. If, that is, we begin to rely on being seen and heard in IG world versus doing the often much more complex work of forging truly supportive connections in IRL.

The lesson: look at the places where you feel ignored or perhaps have not dared to speak your truth, and find ways to practice asking that your actual, offline needs to be met.

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2//People are feeding on your feed
You’ve probably heard the term “energy vampires”, which is used to describe emotionally immature people who literally “feed” off the energy of others. Lacking in empathy and often believing that the world revolves around them and their needs, these individuals believe they must take everything they can get from others and that giving anything in return will only deplete their own resources.

Since it can seem like energy is literally quantified by numbers of followers and likes on IG, the platform is essentially a big old buffet of delights for anybody feeling “less than” and looking to fill their tanks. Those perceived as both energetically stronger AND open and vulnerable become fair game, and the feeding frenzy can take many forms. Overly familiar love-bombing. Demanding DMs. And at the scarier end of the spectrum, trolling and overt bullying.

The lesson: boundaries, basically. You do not “owe” anybody a response in the online space, especially if you’ve never even met them. In the words of Gabby Bernstein: “forgive and delete”.

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3//Life is not a competition
Except when patriarchal hierarchies make it feel that way. We’re basically brought up being taught to compete: at school, at work, in looks, in love. In a society based on the belief that there is only “X” amount of wealth, success, beauty, etc. to go around, thus designed to keep a small percentage of the population in positions of power, the internal narrative goes: if I want my share (of wealth, success, beauty, etc.), I must fight for it.

Sadly, since it is literally a numbers game, Instagram has the power to suck us back into this narrative—subtly feeding our insecurities (see points 1 &2), and fueling the belief that if one person has “more” than us, we don’t have / are not “enough.”

The lesson: notice when competitive feelings come up, and use them as a prompt to give gratitude for three things you love about YOURself and YOUR life.

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4//Not everything is for everyone
I recently found this quote from Zadie Smith about why, as a novelist, she’s not on IG or Twitter: “it gives me the right to be wrong … I want to have my feeling, even if it’s wrong, even if it’s inappropriate, express it to myself in the privacy of my heart and my mind. I don’t want to be bullied out of it.” Because none of us have all the “right” opinions and answers all the time, and, as Smith is pointing out, it’s the complexities of human nature that make the best art.

Complexities we need to feel safe to explore for ourselves—and which, if expressed on social media, can cause some pretty intense reactions when taken out of context. Meaning out of context of us being whole, imperfect, sometimes confused, very much still learning, human beings.

The lesson: use your journal to work out more conflicted feelings about news stories, relationships, and elements of your own personal growth. Turn these words into poetry or stories that are just for you—THEN decide if you want to share.

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I realize this post kinds of makes it sound like I am anti-Instagram, which I am definitely not! It CAN BE an amazing tool for discovery, connection, entertainment, spreading love … and, as with everything in life, it carries a high and a low vibration. And can benefit from being approached with care.

Essentially, IG and other social media platforms are like the wild west of human consciousness, as they’ve opened up whole new ways of interacting with each other and being a person in the world.

So be vigilant, keep your integrity high, and above all, focus even more time, energy and love on the people you actually “like” in real life.

AQUARIUS SEASON 2018: RADICALIZE YOUR LIFE

Aquarius season 2018 means it’s time to charge up your space-suit and pave the way for radical change, says Bess Matassa

Shake it up. Wake it up. Get your freak on and break on through to the other side, astro babes. Aquarius Season 2018 shatters the fabric of the known and paints it stranger, wilder, and more wondrously weird than you could ever imagine.

‘Tis the season to tear down these brown paper walls, ignite your neon light-bright consciousness, and streak the sky with 50 shades of panoramic vision and then some.

You’re flesh and blood, babes. But you’re utopian megawatts and scintillating stardust, too. And out beyond the edge of the known, it’s time to electric slide …

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The keyword: Voltage.

The song lyrics: You gotta know it/It’s electric/Now you can’t hold it/It’s electric/Come let me take you on a party ride/And I’ll teach you the electric slide

Check out Bess’ Aquarius Season Playlist, complete with renegade rhythms, extraterrestrial beats, and voyages in sound.

GCDS styled by Anna Trevelyan

 

The color palette: futuristically metallic and newborn neon. Lightning bolt lemon, aluminum sparkle, plastic white, and greenlit chartreuse.

The style: astral voyager meets 60s utopianism. Mile high platforms, coke bottle glasses, aerodynamic mohawks, puffer jackets, and political pins and patches.

The scents and flavors: innovatively invigorating wake-up calls and outer space treats. Pure matcha, wasabi peas, starfruit, peppermint, astronaut ice cream, and aldehyde-based perfumes.

The healing: collectively cool and renegade radical. Love-ins, ecstatic dance, breathwork, plant medicine, and intrepid voyages without the map.

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Sensuous Invitation of the Month: A Change For Your Uranus Placement

Aquarius’ ruler is a mercilessly maverick change-maker who urges us to smoke out the soft wood and renovate our structures with both foresight and freshness. Since the planet moves erratically through the signs, you can look to your Uranus house rather than sign to discover your secret code for banging on the system …

New to astrology? Discover your Uranus placement HERE.

Uranus in the 1st house
Aquarius Season invites you to strip away old identities and skinny dip into a brand new you. // Your Change: Makeover. Radicalize the face you put forward in the world.

Uranus in the 2nd house
Aquarius Season invites you to release the parking break on your self-worth and seize your true value with all your senses. // Your Change: Cutting-edge cuisine. Shock your palette and treat yourself to everything from an Impossible Burger to a Cheetos Macaron.

Uranus in the 3rd house
Aquarius season invites you to sing your strangest song to the whole wide world. // Your Change: Foreign language. Lose the subtitles and get comfy with being lost and found in translation.

Uranus in the 4th house
Aquarius season invites you to build your own house on your back and reinvent what roots mean to you. // Your Change: Home renovation. Tear down some physical walls to celebrate emotional expansion.

Uranus in the 5th house
Aquarius Season invites you to express yourself don’t repress yourself with creative visions fit for a crazy queen. // Your Change: Costuming. Don anything from wigs to wings and tap into the “you” that transcends it all.

Uranus in the 6th house
Aquarius Season invites you to refresh your body from the inside out and vigorously reinvent your routine. // Your Change: Cleanse. Clear out your internal system with a good juicing.

Uranus in the 7th house
Aquarius season invites you to widen your partnership horizons and break free from your humdrum modes of relating. // Your Change: Blind date. Sidle up to someone completely unknown and be ready to receive whomever arises.

Uranus in the 8th house
Aquarius season invites you to take a leap towards intimacy with complete faith and wild abandon. // Your Change: Sexploration. Mix up your usual bedroom antics with new partners, toys, or simply an untapped inner fantasy.

Uranus in the 9th house
Aquarius season invites you to rediscover the magic in every single possible road and then set off with a wide open heart. // Your Change: Route home. Get lost in your own city and discover innovative pathways and belief systems in the streetscape.

Uranus in the 10th house
Aquarius season invites you to stand up for your right to be your own authority, right the hell now. // Your Change: Side hustle. Either quit your day job or add a radical passion project to your night shift.

Uranus in the 11th house
Aquarius season invites you to become a lightning rod for social change and trust in your own futurity. // Your Change: Public speaking. Tap into a much larger sense of sea shifts by awakening the collective consciousness either politically or personally.

Uranus in the 12th house
Aquarius season invites you to melt the walls and surrender your static sense of selfhood to be birthed anew. // Your Change: A nickname. Experiment with blurring the edges of your container by switching up your moniker.

Bess is available for private readings and astro-themed events. Connect with her at bessmatassa.com

THE 2018 CAPRICORN NEW MOON WANTS YOU TO CHART YOUR COURSE

The 2018 Capricorn New Moon marks a powerful fork in our roads. Face up to yourself, draw clear boundaries, and chart your course into a brand new reality, says Sandra Sitron

Photo: Beat Schuler

New Moon :: January 16, 2018 :: 9:18pm EST :: 26 degrees Capricorn

Walk along the mountain path and navigate craggy edges. Arrive at a fork in the road …

It’s time to plan. Map out your desires. What do you want to achieve? How do you want to feel? When you’re done looking at the big picture, you’ll know which way to go. For now, wait at the fork.

The Capricorn mountain path is earthy. It smells like soil and new grass. It’s drenched in shadow for a moment as the Sun and Moon meet for the Dark Moon. But your dreams for where you want to go aren’t in the dark. Seed them. Take the time to imagine them.

How have the last few weeks of Mountain Goat effort have felt? Examine everything you’ve learned in the past that might inform your future path. Maybe now you’re better informed and you can make a solid plan.

Capricorn filters the world through goals and ambition, and helps you decide which ladder you want to climb. If you are burnt out or overwhelmed, it’s time to encourage yourself come up with a better system. If you are feeling stable and surefooted on your mountain path, the goat is leading you in the right direction.

With Jupiter and Mars in Scorpio making a supportive angle to the Capricorn herd of planets, your medicine comes when you turn toward your emotions instead of hide from them. Face yourself honestly. What has been working? What isn’t working any longer?

If you are being tested, it’s because Capricorn limitations are asking you to get clear about what you truly want. What will you say “yes” to? What needs a solid “no”?

The Capricorn Moon can help you make a new plan grounded in realism. As we move into Aquarius season you can take this plan and make it even more visionary so that you surprise yourself into a better reality … 

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New Moon square Uranus
Confetti falling from the sky, some of it on fire.
Exciting changes, some of them you’ll want to celebrate, some you’ll need to manage. Study yourself. What are your hot buttons? This is a moment to have a fresh awakening around how you get emotionally triggered. 

You may find that you want to take action on this New Moon, although the time is better suited to planning. Find outlets for your energy. Exercise, have a dance party, try breathwork, or do something creative. Give the fire somewhere to go. 

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New Moon sextile Mars and Jupiter
A fat squirrel prepared for winter. 
All of your preparations are supporting you. You are ready to work with any issue that needs to be healed. It might even be easy.

Take some quiet to investigate and plan. You know instinctively what you need. Watery Scorpio can help you tune into your intuition so that you know how to best put your Capricorn plans into action.

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The study questions below are to help you get deeper into what the 2018 Capricorn New Moon means for you. Use them as journal prompts. For the most accurate reading, look to which house holds 26 degrees Capricorn in your chart and use the question for that house.

New to your birth chart? Calculate your chart for free HERE.

Aries or New Moon in the 10th house
When it comes to work, when do you feel most like yourself?

Taurus or New Moon in the 9th house 
What value do you want to infuse your achievements with today?

Gemini or New Moon in the 8th house 
What are you ready to finally let go of?

Cancer or New Moon in the 7th house 
Which of your relationships needs more balance?

Leo or New Moon in the 6th house 
What will help you feel healthier today?

Virgo or New Moon in the 5th house 
What—or who—always reminds you how to have fun?

Libra or New Moon in the 4th house 
What is your vision for your most nurturing home space?

Scorpio or New Moon in the 3rd house 
What do you turn to when you need a new way of thinking about something?

Sagittarius or New Moon in the 2nd house 
How can you show appreciation for your resources?

Capricorn or New Moon in the 1st house 
What is the first step of your plan for your new direction?

Aquarius or New Moon in the 12th house 
How can you love yourself even more?

Pisces or New Moon in the 11th house 
What do you need most from your community?

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here.

NUMINOUS WEEKLY HOROSCOPES: JANUARY 15-21 2018

Get this week’s astro symbol for your sign in our Numinous weekly horoscopes by Sandra Sitron …

Capricorn :: Capricorn Rising
A lightening bolt flashes through the sky. You’ve had some time to ponder. Now you have a chance to know the answer. Get clear about what you need and where you want to go. Take some time to sit in solitude and reflect. What would make you feel perfectly happy? If you open up the space, an epiphany will come through like a lightening bolt.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Aquarius :: Aquarius Rising
Looking out at the ocean, waiting for your ship to come in. Waiting can be uncomfortable. The discomfort can be dissolved if you stop waiting and start dreaming. Use your ability to daydream as a fountainhead for your creativity. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, try embodying the feelings you want to feel. This is how you use your imagination to get where you want to go.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Pisces :: Pisces Rising
A butterfly lands on a branch. You are in a state of transformation. The butterfly reminds you that you’ve come a long way. You can never go back to what you were. Get to know the new you. What do you want and need now? You can’t go back to hanging out with your caterpillar friends. It’s time to build a community that understands you in your new form.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Aries :: Aries Rising
A countertop in an industrial kitchen. Get ready to start prepping. There’s real work to do, customers to feed, and time is of the essence. So where will you begin? What’s your plan? The more clarity you can create around the steps and the process that needs to be executed, the easier this will be. And although it’s time for planning, it’s also time for action. So get to work.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Taurus :: Taurus Rising
Taking aim in a game of pool, the ball goes right into the pocket. You can be exact. As long as you know what you’re shooting for, you’ll reach it. Take some time to get clear about your goals. Set intentions for yourself. What do you want to aim at? The most important question to ask is– why do you want it? What motivates you? The more inspired you feel, the better.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Gemini :: Gemini Rising
Sitting on top of the mountain. Peacefulness, forgiveness and reflection. When you sit quietly at the top of the mountain, you have the best perspective. Take a moment to review and see if there’s anything that you’re now ready to let go of. Or maybe there’s someone that you can forgive? Let old pains die away, so that you can move forward with a lighter load.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Cancer :: Cancer Rising
Using a spade to dig in the garden. Plant seeds for fulfilling relationships. Look within. Clearing aside any worries, fears, or resentments, what is the pure vision that you would like to grow? You have the chance to start fresh. As you move aside the dirt to plant your seed vision, forgive yourself for missteps taken in the past. You are exactly where you need to be.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Leo :: Leo Rising
A bouncing ball. You can get into a rhythm. Have fun with it. Start to notice how you want your daily life to be. Set yourself up with health goals and make adjustments to your time management. This is your chance to restart your habits. Remember to be playful and enjoy yourself in the process. Anything that doesn’t feel like a game won’t last.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Virgo :: Virgo Rising
Powder blue sky. Running in circles and then falling on soft grass to look up at the sky. Watching the clouds form imaginary animal shapes. What could it be like to be as playful as a child? Your worries might fade like passing clouds if you could just easily let your mind wander. Find a ritual that helps you connect with your playful spirit and watch your creativity magnify.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Libra :: Libra Rising
Cutting fabric to sew a pillow. Use the materials at hand to create a pillowy support for yourself. Deep emotional issues may need clarification. Do you feel safe to be emotionally vulnerable? When will you truly feel at home? How can you ease the mother-wound? You have a light inside of yourself that can be a guiding light if you slow down. Meditate. All the guidance you need is inside of you. You just have to get silent so that you can hear it.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Scorpio :: Scorpio Rising
Cleaning the whiteboard. Start fresh with a new equation. This is an exciting moment because you can truly reset your thought patterns. You just have to be very clear about what you want to believe instead. Use your mind waves to help you manifest what you want. Notice the old story line that’s been blocking you and choose a more appropriate one. It’s time for empowered new beginnings.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

Sagittarius :: Sagittarius Rising
A precious gem sparkles in the sunlight. It’s time to get grounded. Remember that you’re made of earth so you must take care of your earth body. By loving your unique form you’ll be able to cherish yourself. And from cherishing yourself you’ll build a new type of abundance in your life. This week is about setting intentions for abundance and also for hope. Begin by getting grounded in your body.

Want more wisdom? Book a reading with Sandra here or follow her on Instagram.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: MANIFESTING ABUNDANCE IN 2018

Some spell-crafting and cosmic intervention sure—but manifesting abundance in 2018 for me mainly means getting real, says Ruby Warrington

Photo: Caitlin Mitchell

Like a lot of us, I have high hopes for 2018—meaning it can’t be any worse than 2017. Mind you, I also had high expectations last year: it was the year my book came out, after all. And while that has opened all kinds of doors and bought a ton of blessings, it was also the hardest, most vulnerable, and most humbling experience of my life.

Add a backdrop of total political fuckery, a raging tech / iPhone addiction, family health issues, and a steady stream of natural disasters in the news, and I ended last year with a nervous system that felt shot to pieces. Um, anyone?

2017 was the first year I naturally lost weight due to stress (having taken matters into my own hands and starved myself during my traumatic teens). It was the first year I got fillers, as it felt like I began aging on fast forward. It was the year I made my first actual enemies (one of them a celebrity, who got so mad about something I didn’t even do, she sent me emails threatening to ruin my career).

There was plenty more, too, but this post isn’t about how shit last year was—because two weeks in to 2018, and I’m already feeling a MASSIVE shift. Maybe it’s because Saturn has gotten the fuck off my ascendant (moving from Sagittarius into Capricorn in December last year), or that all the all the planets are currently in direct motion (!!!), but things have just been … going my way.

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Projects are popping, my Numinous and Moon Club communities feel supportive and vibrant (I love you guys!), and I’m about to begin work on book #2. My nervous system feels healed, my actions calm, directed, and SOLID. So why the rapid turnaround?

Cosmic omens aside, here are three ways I’ve been actively manifesting a killer 2018:

// I DID A WISHCRAFT SESSION
At the end of last year, amazing hypnotherapist Shauna Cummins suggested I try her Wishcraft experience—which is kind of like a witchy, uber-directed intention-setting ceremony.

During the session, Shauna had myself and Numi assistant editor Bess (SUCH a great exercise to do with a colleague or friend) write out 10 things we love about ourselves / life in general, to get us in the mindset of abundance. Then 10 things we wanted for ourselves in 2018. Then five things we love about The Numinous, and five things we wanted for this platform.

We then did a guided hypnosis where we journeyed to the END of 2018, and envisioned ourselves celebrating the year just gone. The purpose of this was to trick our subconscious minds into believing these things had already come to pass—increasing the chance of them actually happening.

Using these ideal future outcomes, we identified three words or concepts to summarize our core desires for the year ahead. We infused these into candles to be lit again each day over the holidays, to plant our intentions deeper. Two weeks into the year, I’m already seeing results. Shaunacummins.com

// I’M MAKING SPACE FOR WHAT’S “MINE”
Meaning I am literally removing anything from my diary, my work, and my personal life, that is not 100% aligned with my intentions for my Self and my mission. This was something that came up a lot with me and various members of the Numi crew last year—how the more things we said “no” to, the faster the things that were a big “yes” for us showed up.

Which is easier said than done. Already I can hear you going “what about my resonsibilities to my family / friends / job?” Or, “How is doing less going to pay my credit card debt?”

But it was spending a week with no WiFi or cell reception over the holidays, that I was able to really see how being available and in “respond” mode all the time—thanks to email, text, DM, FB messenger, ETC.—leaves very little space for manifesting abundance when it comes to what YOU want and need.

In my book, I talk about how to cultivate healthy “higher selfishness”—something that is counter to everything we’ve been taught about how things work. We’ve learned: push / work hard to get what you want. Give to others before you serve yourself. Be accommodating if you want to be accepted. Ugh, the GUILT of putting ourselves first!

But the fact is, our bodies, brains and consciousness weren’t designed for the sheer volume of “other people’s needs” (family, friends, boss, AND refugees, disaster victims, etc.) that we interact with daily in the Now Age. It’s on us to be discerning about who and what truly deserve our time and energy, and to get okay with closing the door on the rest.

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//I’M GETTING REAL
A large part of why 2017 felt so harsh for so many of us, is that the veil was well and truly lifted. On a personal, a political and a global level, situations stacked up to remind us that NO, everything will not turn out okay if we just keep preaching “love and light!” That it’s on us to pro-actively co-create our desired reality with literally every choice we make and every word we speak.

In 2018, with Saturn coming home to its own sign of Capricorn, it’s like we’re experiencing a collective “Saturn Return”—a.k.a. the mother of all reality checks. Which means no more blind eyes and heads in the sand. Unsettling? Maybe. But this is also our moment to “grow up”, take responsibility, and face the facts head on.

In my daily life, this already looks like picking up the phone more often to check the facts, versus trying to read between the lines. It means being a lot less “nice”, and knowing it’s okay if not everybody likes me. It means telling people what’s really going on for me (the people who actually need to know, anyway). And it means asking for what I’m worth, and not settling for less because I’m scared it’s all I’ll get.

None of it comfortable or easy. But if 2017 taught me anything, it’s that comfort and ease are earned by our willingness to get real, confront our demons, and actually ASK for the support we need.

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“My Mystical Life” is returning as a weekly column, after I had to take a time-out to deal with the overall overwhelm of 2017. It’s good to be back. Here’s to manifesting abundance in 2018 and beyond!