MY MYSTICAL LIFE: OBONJAN DREAMING, AND A SOLSTICE PICNIC

Getting excited for a summer of healthy hedonism…

 

:: MONDAY ::
I’ve been pretty upfront on here about my journey re-framing my relationship with alcohol—a.k.a. to treat it (and use it) like the powerful psychoactive substance it is, rather than a knee-jerk way to feel “good” quick. And crystals have played a major role in this—namely amethyst, the “sobriety stone.” I’ve been carrying a piece on a key-chain for the past year or so, a pivotal time on my path to semi-sobriety. A key-chain which actually broke the week I launched Club SÖDA NYC our meet-up group for the sober curious—signaling that its work with me was done!

And you know, I’ve felt myself slip back a few steps in the months since…so I bought a new one last week ahead of the Memorial Day weekend (PRIME day-drinking danger zone). And yes I had a couple of beers. But literally two, thus achieving the ever-elusive but perfect “2-drink high”—opening the doors of perception just enough to land some killer insights about my life and my path going forward, but closing them tidily up again before drunkenness (and hangover / self-doubt territory) set in. Yay AMETHYST!

Amethyst clusters from $18, The Hoodwitch

:: TUESDAY ::
Which also got me in the mood to plan our next informal Club SÖDA NYC event—a sober solstice picnic in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, June 19. Invite below—come!

 

:: WEDNESDAY ::
Last week amazing Alexandra Derby posted on the subject of “Cash and Consciousness” in her new weekly vlog A Beautiful Answer—after watching a new doc called The Beginning of Life at the UN (yup, she got invited to a screening at the United-freaking-Nations, which is how important important people think the message of the film is). You can watch Alexandra’s take here, but the overall theme is: “money” = how grown ups frame “nurture” (since money provides for all our needs) = lack of nurture in childhood = poverty consciousness in grown ups = the poverty we see in the world (since our perception shapes reality). Are you with me?! And so the call to action is: time to invest (love / support / and or money, as needed) into the nurturing of the next generation, globally. To tackle poverty consciousness—and therefore a society that creates the poverty we see—at source. The Beginning of Life came out today.

:: THURSDAY ::
Getting super excited for…Obonjan! Booked my flights today for this summer-long private island festival in Croatia (yes you read that right), where I’ll be giving a talk on healthy hedonism July 29. Full report PLUS details of a Numinous discount coming on next week’s newsletter. Here’s the link to sign up!

:: FRIDAY ::
In Berlin for some hang-time with my fam

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: DARING GREATLY, AND MY SOUL MISSION IN 2016

Daring greatly, a new favorite movie, some high-vibe gifts, a LOT of cosmic reading, and a 1/1 NYC tradition…

 

:: MONDAY ::
In Berlin, celebrating Christmas #2 with my brother and his family (inc. my baby nephew Henry, see below!) Already deep into my internal review of 2015 – a majorly transitional year for me and pretty much everybody I know – I spent most of the time between swigs of gluhwein with my nose in Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly, which I have finally got around to reading since “daring greatly” is essentially what the lessons of 2015 have suggested I will be spending most of 2016 doing. A favorite take-away for you today – Brene’s definition of spirituality: “Not religiosity, but the deeply held belief that we are inextricably connected to one another by a force greater than ourselves – a force grounded in love and compassion.” So simple, so heart-shudderingly effective.

Me and Baby Henry

:: TUESDAY ::
Bagged an actual bone fide upgrade into business on the flight back to NYC! But then I should have seen it coming – I’d been seeing angel numbers all day. We even departed from gate 22 at Heathrow, the number for manifesting your highest ideals and desires 😉 I had been planning to use the flight to get back on top of my email inbox, but decided to kick back and enjoy the hospitality instead. Which meant discovering The End of the Tour, a film telling the story of the five-day interview between Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky (Jesse Eisenberg) and acclaimed novelist David Foster Wallace (Jason Segal). MUST SEE ALERT for some of the best quotes on celluloid about life, the Universe, and everything.

:: WEDNESDAY ::
Returned home to some bonus holiday gifts in the mail, woot! From Numinous contributor Wolf Sister, a dark and mysterious chunk of Nuummite crystal (a personal power stone for accessing inner gifts, um hello daring greatly) and a vial of her signature Wolf Juice crystal tincture. And from Yarnlight Collective designer Adam Jones, a healing energy-infused meditation shawl from his latest collection (see main image). Just perfect since one of my other 2016 intentions is to finally learn TM.

:: THURSDAY ::
With my mind on those intentions, I got stuck into the plethora of cosmic year-ahead reading material that had been landing in my inbox all week. Namely, Louise Androlia’s 2016 Tarotscopes; The Astro Twins 2016 Planetary Planner; Gala Darling’s Radical Self-Love Almanac; the new year ‘scopes from Chani Nicholas; Hannah Ariel’s new year mantra from our own weekly newsletter (sign-up in the side-bar); and Felicia Bender’s reading of 2016 as a Universal “9” year in numerology (check back here tomorrow to read her post). Phew that’s a LOT of information! And having crosschecked a lot of the info, for me so much of it comes back to one key theme – as summed up by my “Secret Soul Message” from Louise’s Tarotscopes: “It’s time to get super friendly with your fears” (a.k.a. daring greatly).

:: FRIDAY ::
That’s today, and here’s the plan: my husband (a.k.a. The Pisces) and I will be engaging in what’s become something of a 1/1 tradition since we moved to NYC four years ago – a four/five-hour mega-walk over the bridges and around the edges of Manhattan, talking out and writing down our intentions, hopes and fears for the new year and sending them into the Hudson river as we go. As well as the daring greatly, here are a few that have already come up for me this week:

Be the lynchpin in healing some of my family’s “stuff”
Get my US drivers license
Get coached
Forgive and accept my binge / purge personality
Go to Hawaii
Get back off sugar
Learn to take better selfies (see main pic)
Retrain my inner perfectionist to work for me instead of against me

How about you? For me, the new year isn’t about “wiping the slate clean” or a “new start,” but a man-made opportunity to check in with where I’m at on my journey and make any necessary adjustments to the co-ordinates. Happy sailing, tribe.

MY MYSTICAL WEEK: EMAIL APNOEA, THE FLEXI FOOD, AND MY FAVORITE NEW THING

Another week without WiFi, and have I been suffering email apnoea too?

I heard the term “email apnoea.” If “sleep apnoea” occurs when the airflow becomes obstructed during the night, email apnoea is when your inbox makes you so tense, you forget to breathe. I was catching up with my friend Fran at Soho House in London, and she was telling me she’d been feeling so close to burn out, she was concerned it was affecting her health (duh, yeah) – triggered by the realization that her email apnoea was getting out of hand. Something I’d been experiencing myself, having spent the past two weeks living in a house with no WiFi. I mean Jeez, can you imagine?! My email sessions – a check-in at Starbucks here, an hour in an internet café there – have felt like an adrenalin-fuelled race against time.

Fran and I were actually at a talk by naturopath Dr Nigma Talib on how to eat for burn out. Top take-aways: no sugar, protect your sleep like it knows where the bodies are burried, eat regular meals, take B vitamins, Magnesium, and Rhodiola (Nigma’s favorite herb for fighting fatigue). Not exactly stuff we haven’t heard before, and actually I prefer Fran’s solution – a temporary move to Berlin! My brother lives in the German city, and I’ve seen first hand how the slower pace of life and more HUMAN approach to work (i.e. unlike our iPhones, there’s literally only so much our brains can process in a day), means people (how radical) actually have time to breathe.

I met the Flexi Foodie. A.k.a. Julie Montagu, the yogi and plant-based food author (whose book, Superfoods, will be out in the US next month), and star of that Bravo show Ladies of London – about American expats infiltrating the British socialite set. Based on the latter, I’m ashamed to say I had a few judgements about Julie before we met. After all, anyone who goes the reality TV route is a wannabe Kim Kardashian, right? Uhhh, SO wrong.

Julie might have married into the British aristocracy, but her story is one of throat-choking triumph over tragedy (plus she’d come straight from teaching a hot yoga class and ordered a white wine spritzer to re-hydrate, love it.) Julie got into yoga when her husband Luke suffered severe withdrawal coming off mis-prescribed anti-depressants – symptoms of which he still experiences daily, SEVEN YEARS LATER. You can read the full story when I write it up for November’s issue of Red Magazine, but, hello Numis, yet ANOTHER message to meditate before you medicate.

I bought the raddest sweatshirt. When I first heard about the label Aries Arise, obviously I was obsessed. I even interviewed the designers for the site – and then, I didn’t hear much about them. Until I swung by Liberty department store and found this baby! Emblazoned with yin-yang symbol, a little sequinned alien face, an awakened evil eye…and basically made by Aries, for an Aries like me.

New. Favorite. Thing to wear 24-7.

Aries Arise sweatshirt, £111, Goodhood

BODY GLYPH: A CEREMONY FOR MOTHER NATURE

“Nature sustains us, and is a living force to be remembered and to be honored. She clothes us in sunlight and shadows, leaves and sand, flowers and geometry. This is the beauty of life off the runway and beyond seasonal trends.”

Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg 

When I first saw Oliver Halsman Rosenberg at a party on the roof of the Standard Hotel this summer, I knew it was only a matter of time before we’d be featuring him on the site. The NYC-born artist and global nomad wore bones around his neck and silver paint on his face, and is the living embodiment of the consciousness-expanding message of his work, “body glyphs” which use the human form as a canvas for messages divined from the world of the unseen.

Described as; “vibrational mantras manifested on skin,” Oliver’s latest project, Ceremony, is a collaboration with the photographer Polina Sirosh. Begun in Tulum, Mexico, on the cusp of the Mayan calendar change in the winter of 2012, the project continued over the summer of 2013 in Berlin.

Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg
Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg

HOW DID THE CONVERSATION ABOUT THIS COLLABORATION START?
I was in Tulum as part of a Design Hotels’ “Pop Up Ashram” project at Papaya Playa, where Polina was living with her husband Claus and two kids (in an amazing home in the jungle right on the beach). She saw me doing my body glyphs at an event there, and proposed we do a shoot. At first it was for fun, but we got such magical results that I moved into her guest hut and we continued to work together for a few months; shooting on the beaches, in the jungle, on ruins, and in cenotes.

WHERE DID YOU SHOOT AND WHY? 
Polina lives in Berlin part of the year, and she invited me to continue working on the project with her there. We used her house as a base and a studio, and then we would drive out into the amazing forests and fields that surround the city. We both have an attraction to the purity of nature, and for this series we wanted to explore and be inspired by the landscape.

Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg
Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg

HOW LONG DOES EACH PAINTING TAKE, AND WERE THESE ALL PRODUCED ON SITE?
Each painting takes three-four hours. Because I never know how Polina will ask the models to pose, I need to cover practically every square inch. I used her rooftop as the studio. It had an amazing view of the city, and created quite a meditative space under the expanse of the Berlin sky.

YOU HAVE DESCRIBED TO ME BEFORE HOW THE PAINTING PROCESS IS ALMOST LIKE ‘CHANNELING’ AN ALIEN LANGUAGE – WHAT’S THE MESSAGE WITH THIS PROJECT?
The calligraphy I do on the body is a language, it’s poetry, it’s math, it’s energy, and it’s meditation all at once. It’s always unique and un-premeditated. Often I just sit with the model, and based on her vibration different patterns emerge on her skin. One model I started to paint with King Tut colors and patterns unconsciously, and it turned out she was part Egyptian. For me it’s just a precious gift I have that I am trying to take care of, and explore in creative ways with creative people. I think with this project, Polina and I both wanted to communicate to the world is that Mother Nature is precious, perhaps the most precious and magical resource we have. And that the body the temple where we worship her. So this project is a celebration of all things natural.

Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg
Photo © Polina Sirosh/Oliver Halsman Rosenberg

WHERE WOULD YOU LOVE TO SEE A WOMAN WEAR ONE OF YOUR ‘PIECES’?
Polina often talks about a fantasy she has about being able to wake up in the future, and instead of wearing clothes, just step inside some machine that prints a fresh pattern of mine on her every morning. As far as seeing women wearing my pieces, I am really curious to see what the designers ThreeAsfour come up with for their next season’s line, which will be based on some textile patterns I created before I went to Berlin in Aug. But I guess the ultimate would be to see my future beloved wearing an otherworldly bridal dress at an altar out somewhere in nature.

Catch Oliver’s body glyphs in person as part of NYC fashion group threeASFOUR‘s PERFORMA 13 event on Nov 10th at The Jewish Museum (RSVP only). The glyphs also feature in the threeASFOUR Fall 2014 collection, premiering Feb 2014