SPREAD ‘EM: SEX TAROT 101

Looking to add some spice to your divination practice? Alessandra Calderin gives us a crash course in Sex Tarot 101, and uncovers how you can start casting cards between the sheets …

Art: Serpentfire Tarot

The Tarot is a mirror and a tool that reflects archetypal imagery that spans the spirals of the human experience. It allows us to connect to ourselves (and our Selves) because we intuitively understand these images. Sexuality is as primal and instinctual in us as the need to eat, sleep and breathe, and so the cards can reflect the ways in which our power, intuition, and connection manifest through our sexuality.

So WTF is a “sex tarot” reading?? There are so many ways to draw cards and create spreads to explore sex and desire! Here are 4 ways to get started …

Art: She Wolfe Tarot

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1// Pull a “desire” spread. Pull cards asking what your subconscious desires are, what might be blocking them, and how to work through that block. The possibilities are endless!

Start with a simple 6 card spread:

Card 1: What is my heart’s desire?
Card 2: What is blocking me from fulfilling it?
Card 3: What is my deeper unconscious desire?
Card 4: What is preventing me from seeing this?
Card 5: How can I balance and integrate these desires?
Card 6: What can I shed to make space for their fulfillment?

Art: She Wolfe Tarot

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2// Do a sacral chakra reading. Explore the seat of your sexuality by diving into the 4 “sides” of this chakra. The more you look at the pelvis and your desire as linked to your creativity, the more you start feeling how they ebb and flow together, and the more tools you have to work through both.

Card 1: Front of the sacral chakra. How does your sexuality appear to others? What is your exhibition style?
Card 2: Right side. How do you manifest sexuality and creativity in the world?
Card 3: Back. What experience of your sexuality do you hold onto?
Card 4: Left side. How do you receive creative inspiration, the desire of others, and pleasure?

Art: Serpentfire Tarot

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3// Masturbate with the Majors. You can also use Tarot for masturbation and sex magic practices by meditating on the archetypes of the Major Arcana or court cards.

Choose whatever cards are ruled by planets or signs that show up strongly in your birth chart, where the Moon is hanging out, what astro season we’re in, or just pull a Major and start working with it at random. You might even choose one you have trouble with (like when I pulled Justice- I was bummed by how unsexy that card might be on the surface, but there was powerful medicine in that feeling and the resulting meditation!)

Most recently, for the Super Blue Blood Moon in Leo on 1/31 during Aquarius season, I meditated on Strength (because Leo rules it) and The Star (because Aquarius rules). I let those two figures guide me as I touched, explored, played with my hands and my favorite toy (Njoy Pure Wand). As I was getting ready to orgasm, these two images reassured me that my sexuality and desire were a gift, and sacred sources of feminine power.

Art: She Wolfe Tarot

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4// And channel the deck’s sexiest cards to unlock pure magic! I could probably make an argument for the sexual energy of every card, but this is a good place to start. Explore how you feel about these cards and the kind of pleasure they channel, or isolate the pack and draw one as your teacher of the moment.

*She/He pronouns refer to the archetypal genders of masculine and feminine energy. These figures are figuratively gendered, but anatomically genderless.

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:: Strength :: In the Thoth, Strength is actually called Lust. Some interpretations say it’s the taming of desire, but I would say it’s more like mastery over desire. Taming connotes that there is too much desire and you need to control it. In this context, I see her as the master of her desire in a world that denies her that power. Your desire becomes sacred fuel the moment you master it.

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:: The Empress :: The Empress is receptive. She is how I learned to receive pleasure without having to think about reciprocating in that moment. She allows herself to be fully nourished, filled to the brim with love, pleasure, and affection, but she also rides and caresses like a goddess. She bestows the gift of her mouth upon you and it’s like drinking an unearthly elixir with her kisses and nibbles and expertly executed oral.

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:: The Emperor :: The Emperor might be a surprise for this, but as the Empress’s counterpart, he allows her to unleash. He’s like a very good Dom, providing the container for every expression of kink you might wish to explore safely. You want to be tied up, spanked, penetrated in out of the ordinary ways? He reads your body language, pushes the edges, and knows your limits before you even need to utter a safe word. The master of boundaries, he’s here to teach you how to consent so enthusiastically you forget what ambiguity feels like.

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:: The Moon :: The Moon represents the wild woman running naked in the woods and howling at the Moon- the deep waters of sexuality and mystery. She is a shapeshifter. A wolf. A mountain lion. She visits you in the dead of night and brings your to orgasm in the dream realm, and when you wake up the memory is hazy but you know something powerful has been touched inside you. She breathes underwater and is as mysterious as the bottom of the sea. You know her without words.

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:: The Devil :: The Devil can sometimes deal with a repression of desire, and to me has always had a BDSM vibe to it. I think this one depends on your relationship to that kind of imagery and sexual practice, but as a Capricorn (The Devil is ruled by Capricorn), and a big fan of power play, The Devil can sometimes be a freeing card. Reclaiming the divinity and balance of the shadow, of words like slut, whore, bitch, freak, breaks the chains that bind us to our own fear and repression. It’s a balancing act. The Devil reminds us that there are more layers and sides to it.

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:: The Lovers :: The Lovers feels like an obvious one because you have to love all the sides of yourself like a lover before you can love anyone else. Getting there is anything but obvious or easy, though. Use a mirror. Look at yourself. This is the real shit. The deep work. It takes a lot of unraveling and excavation to be able to love your body and yourself just as you are. Your best Lover will look back at you eventually.

Art: She Wolfe Tarot

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:: Queen of Pentacles :: Queen of Pentacles is the master of the home and body. An independent woman, she knows what she likes and moves through the material world with the grace of an angelic ballerina. Queen of Wands is known to be the most sexual queen in the deck, but Queen of Pentacles knows pleasure like no one else. Part earth angel, part water nymph, she creates the primordial mud that those Dead Sea masks get their magic from.

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:: Knight of Cups :: Knight of Cups will go down on you first without being asked. Inviting this kind of energy into your bedroom, the person who will massage and caress you slowly, who dreams of drinking you like you’re water in the desert, is clutch in truly sinking into pleasure. Find you a man (or woman or non-binary) who can give it to you good.

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:: Page of Wands :: Page of Wands is bursting with potential energy, often creative and sexual. She’s ready and willing to try new toys and discover what she likes. She’s the teen who just discovered her clitoris and hasn’t been told there is something wrong with the amazing feeling that swims through her body when she touches it. She just got her period and is ready to finger paint with her blood. She will make out behind the bleachers and let herself love completely. She writes love songs and sings them without the slightest bit of embarrassment.

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:: Ace of Cups :: Ace of Cups is a pure gift of water, love, communication, and intuition. I often see it as an invitation to masturbate with more loving intention. To swim in your waters and to practice accepting the water gifts from elsewhere.

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:: 10 of Cups :: 10 of Cups is a literal orgasm. It could be something that feels as good as an orgasm, a self pleasure practice that’s out of this world, or a partner that takes you to the places of rainforest waterfalls and fireworks.

Alessandra is an intuitive healing facilitator, tarot practitioner, yoga teacher, writer, poet, comedienne and performer based in New York. She will be teaching her Tarot Immersive later this month and currently teaches yoga at Three Jewels, focusing her attention on energetic sensitivity and the pelvic floor. Explore her offerings at Boneseed, and follow her on Instagram.

WHAT CAN GODDESS APHRODITE TEACH YOU ABOUT LOVE?

As Pisces season brings on the deep emo vibes, George Lizos tells us how the Goddess Aphrodite can help us start calling in the flavor of love we need right now …

Photo: Joanna Nix

Meeting Aphrodite … 
Growing up in Cyprus, the island where Aphrodite was reputedly born, my childhood was saturated with the art, stories, and myths surrounding the Goddess of Love. Everywhere you looked she was there, posing in her seductive nakedness in statues and paintings.

As an adult, dissatisfied with my love life and drained of feminine energy, I travelled back to my homeland with a single desire in mind: I wanted to know love more deeply, more fully. 

I drove to Aphrodite’s Rock, the beach where, according to Hesiod’s myth, the Goddess was born of the sea foam and washed upon the shore. And as I walked into the calm, cool water of the Mediterranean Sea, I felt layers upon layers of sexual shame, limiting beliefs around love, past hurts and resentments, all washing off of my body.

Right then and there, I met Aphrodite. And love finally made sense, for the first time.

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What can the Goddess Aphrodite teach you right now? 
Embodying Aphrodite invites us to accept and honor romantic love in all its meanings and layers. The four ancient epithets she’s been given mix the sea (sensual love), land (erotic love), and sky (spiritual love) energies. Read on to discover which of the four qualities of Goddess Aphrodite is currently missing from your life … 

Photo: Zara Walker

1// Ourania (Sky element; Spiritual love): This is the spiritual, romantic essence of love, that’s best experienced when a couple is “in love” with each other. The experience of falling in love transcends the ego’s perception of love, helping us realize that in spiritual truth, that all is love. Call upon Ourania Aphrodite if you’re having trouble committing to, or falling in love with, a partner.

*How to Call Her In: Mentally place a pink rose within your heart. Visualize the rose blooming slowly and radiating pink light, allowing the energy of Ourania Aphrodite to replace any blocks you have around being vulnerable and opening your heart.

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2// Chrusee (Sea element; Sensual love): This is the love towards oneself that’s fundamental for healthy romantic relationships. It also includes the act of adorning your body with beautiful clothes, jewelry, oils, and perfume. Call upon Chrusee Aphrodite if you’re struggling with low self-esteem, lack of self-love, and body confidence.

*How to Call Her In: An unorthodox yet powerful way to embody Chrusee Aphrodite is by taking away all external body adornment props (i.e. jewelry, clothes, perfume), and facing yourself naked in the mirror. Closing your eyes, visualize your body emanating a bright golden light that reflects its inner, perfect beauty. Open your eyes and accept this new perspective as your truth.

Photo: Hal Gatewood

3// Peitho (Land element; Persuasive Love): Playfulness, flirting, teasing, and being able to seduce a partner into meaningful romantic and sexual experiences. Call upon Peitho Aphrodite to attract vitality if your love life is feeling dull and stagnant.

*How to Call Her In: Buy or create a blend of rose, frankincense and myrrh essential oils. Add three drops in your palms, rub them together, and then use your hands to clear and energize your aura. These three oils were traditionally used for seduction by Aphrodite’s priestesses; instilling your aura with them will give you the inspiration you need to spice up your love life.

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4// Philommeides (Land element; Erotic love): The love of bodily pleasures and intimate sexual connection between lovers. Call upon Philommeides Aphrodite if you have a low sexual drive, have trouble enjoying sex, or lack sexual chemistry with your partner/s.

*How to Call Her In: Just as the name suggests, to embody Philommeides Aphrodite you need to learn to love and accept your genitalia. Spend time observing, exploring, and pleasuring yourself. Educate yourself in your own sexual rhythms, needs, and desires. Make peace with them, accept them without judgment, and let them guide the way in your sexual encounters.

Photo: Michael Paz

Once you’ve channeled your personal Aphrodite, amp up the vibes with a beach ritual to honor romantic love in all its expressions. **And you can download the Orphic Hymn to Aphrodite HERE to infuse your ritual with even more magic!

-Sit or stand on the shoreline, at the point where the waves crash on the sand, and close your eyes. If you don’t have access to the sea, just visualize yourself there and you’ll still benefit from the meditation.

-Breathing in and out, ground yourself and allow your body to adjust to the fluid energy of this in-between place. Reflect on what it means to be at the meeting point of sea, land, and sky, which captures Aphrodite’s multi-layered essence.

-Either mentally or verbally say, “I am Aphrodite,” over and over again. The ‘I am’ statement invites the essence of Aphrodite into your present moment.

-When you establish a connection with the goddess, spend some time reflecting on your willingness to honor both earthly and heavenly love. Do you reject one or the other? Do you feel guilty about either? Are you willing to accept both in your life?

-With eyes closed, open your arms wide and receive the Aphrodite qualities you need in your life right now. As the hymn ends, hug the energy into your heart by gradually bringing your arms and hands to your chest.

-End the meditation by thanking Aphrodite for her continued presence in your life, and ask her to keep guiding you in embodying romantic love to its fullness.

George Lizos is a spiritual teacher, author of Be The Guru, and the creator of the Mermaid Bootcamp. He works with the angelic and elemental realms helping lightworkers find, follow, and fulfill their life purpose. To learn more about George visit georgelizos.com, and follow him on Instagram.

THE RICH WITCH: 6 WAYS TO GET WHAT YOU REALLY WANT

How to find out what we truly desire, and what we think we should be going after? Rich Witch Lara-Rose Duong has 6 ways to get what you really want right NOW …

 

What do you truly want? What gets that fire in your belly roaring? What gets your heart thumping?

With Uranus in retrograde and the Lion’s Gate Portal open, we are being called to go deeper within and return to our truest “I AM” so that our more prosperous selves can shine.

A Rich Witch is prosperous when she lives out her truest “I AM” desires. But how to find out what we truly want? Hint: it may or may not be a f*cking Porsche.

When we move in sync with our desires, we are full of hope and vigor. We are alive. But temptation from the outside world can leave us feeling like we’ll never be enough until we have all of the toys with all the bells and whistles—whether it’s the latest iPhone, next season’s McQueen, or equating your value with numbers in the back on or social media.

As a Rich Witch, the quality of your life is measured by your own heart—and success is defined on your terms. Maybe you really do want a Porsche. Maybe you truly do want a closet full of McQueen and Louboutins. Or maybe you don’t want those things at all.

The beauty of living for your truest desires is that YOU get to decide what makes your life rich, full, and prosperous. It’s time to quit keeping up with the Joneses life and embrace your unique path as a Rich Witch.

Follow these simple steps to jump start your truest “I AM” desires and get what you really want RIGHT NOW! 

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1// Only say “YES” to what sets your soul on fire. If you’ve been giving your energy to people, events, and projects out of obligation, you’ve been voting “YES” for more of that to come your way. If you don’t get that instant “OH, YEAH!!” feeling, turn it down. It’s time to start voting for what you really want to grow in your life. It’s these little tweaks that spark huge change. For example, if you’re a creative soul, start saying “YES” to date nights that spark your creativity—rather than hitting the club, head to a paint + wine night. This will nurture your ability to listen to your TRUE desires, give them space to breathe, and spark huge change.

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2// Block time off for pure joy. Get as good at booking time in your weekly schedule for as much FUN as obligatory “must dos.” You don’t have to know what you’re going to do with that time, but show up with an open mind and follow your impulse. You may have the urge to move it to accommodate another meeting. DON’T. Honor your fun time the same way you’d honor another commitment. You can start off with 1 hr a week and work your way up to a whole afternoon. Pretty soon, you’ll be so excited that you’ll know exactly how you want to use that time.

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3// Rev up your manifesting mojo with a prosperity altar. Build a dedicated sacred space for your inner desires to come to life in the auspicious SE corner of your chosen room (ideally an office or living space rather than a bedroom or bathroom). Let it be as simple or extravagant as you desire. Add items that symbolize the elements. Use your imagination!

The basics of a prosperity altar include:
—An abundance crystal like citrine or pyrite. 
—A “Magnetic Money Honey Jar.” Add a few select items that make you feel rich to an empty mason jar—like something made of gold. Adding cinnamon to this jar amps its potency. Activating it with the crystal magnetite will help you manifest your intentions.
—The Goddess Lakshmi or your chosen abundance deity. You can also add Ganesha to help you remove any obstacles from your prosperity path.
A Money Tree Plant that you can watch grow like your prosperity.

Call your inner desires into your life by writing them on notes to place in your Money Honey Jar or at Lakshmi’s feet, and remember to refresh and tend to your altar regularly to keep the energy flowing.

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4// Vote with your money, honey. Where you put your money honey is a “vote” that you want more of that in your life. Take some time to see how you’re voting with your Queen Cash. Are there regular expenses that you really don’t desire or require? Example: if you love to sweat it up through dancing, shift your monthly gym membership to the hottest dance studio in town.

PS: Make the payments feel extra juicy by placing your money on your prosperity altar at Lakshmi’s feet first.

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5// Remember what you wanted as a kid. Not the same as the “What do you want to be when you grow up?” question. The focus is here is to remember what you valued when you were growing up. When you were a child, your main currency to give was your time and your presence. You would play with your whole heart. Laugh with your whole body. Take some time now to remember what experiences made you feel totally present in the moment—the moments where you didn’t want to be anywhere else in the world. This is your new barometer for what to say “YES” to in life.

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6// And FINALLY … Don’t wait another second to start living your “I AM” desires. When you close your eyes and imagine your most prosperous life, how do you feel in that life? Let those feelings be your compass as you start taking action right now. This could mean anything from giving yourself permission to take more naps, to riding rollercoasters more often or wearing a daring shade of lipstick. This is the fastest way to make your life feel full and prosperous, RIGHT NOW.

Join the conversation with Lara-Rose Duong in the Rich Witch Circle on Facebook and follow her on Instagram

CANCER SEASON 2017: SUMMER NOSTALGIA FOR YOUR MOON SIGN

Cancer Season 2017 invites you to dive into your deepest, sweetest desires, and dance into your own becoming, says Bess MatassaMain image: Ilse Moore

Dim all the lights, strip it down to bare skin, and get ready to become your heart’s own private dancer … Cancer Season 2017 marks the zodiac’s violet-colored midnight hour. The moment when our secret emotional treasures are revealed, and we learn to protect the soft, crab meat that lives inside our shells.

It’s a Little Mermaid energy of precious pining for the incarnation of our most tightly held fantasies, and the risky beginnings of living these vivid dreams on the land up above.

So slip on your water wings and prepare to wash all the way back home onto your own shores. You belong to the night. You belong to all your past lives and all the ones you’ve loved. But above all, you’ve got to belong to the longings that live inside of you. Surf’s up.

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The keyword: Belonging.

The song lyrics: I never can forget those nights/I wonder if it was a dream/Those days are gone forever/I should just let ’em go/But I can tell you my love for you will still be strong/After the boys of summer have gone”—Don Henley’s “Boys of Summer”

Check out Mojave Rising’s Cancer season playlist, complete with nostalgic nuggets, classic crooners, and sensitive night movers and shakers.

SS17 catwalk looks

The color palette: Molluscular and crepuscular—midnight blues and shimmering violets, the opalescent insides of shells, and the darkness just before the dawn.

The style: Boudoir chic meets Ancient Greece. Underwear as outerwear, lace jackets, gold bangles, head dresses, dressing gowns, bedroom eyes, and fancy slippers.

Seashell clutch by Chanel

The scents and flavors: Salt-kissed Mediterranean classics and tucked-in, pocket-shaped provisions—dumplings and samosas, mollusks, briny feta, milk & honey, succulent dark kalamata olives, black grapes, and the coastal black currant & cyclamen scent of Oribe hair products.

The healing: Homegrown, nostalgic, and nocturnal—pouring over high school yearbooks, revisiting old playlists, DIY salt bathes and clay face masks, storybook romances, and skinny dipping.

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Sensuous Invitation of the Month: Summer Nostalgia For Your Moon Sign

Cher and Winona channel Cancer season in 90s classic Mermaids

Ruled by the Moon, Cancer season invites us to return to the private bedrooms of our souls at the witching hour; our Moon signs represents who we really are when no one else seems to be watching, and how we seamlessly slip into our own skin with comfort and ease.

Below, your sign-by-sign guide to plunging into those long summer nights and returning to your innocent lunacy …

*New to your birthchart? Discover your Moon sign here!

Moon in Aries
Cancer season invites you to find comfort in igniting creative explosions. Summer Nostalgia: Blockbusters. Load up on the buttery popcorn and quicken your fiery pulse with the biggest, most badass action flicks the season has to offer.

Moon in Taurus
Cancer season invites you to relish in the sweet sensations of your beautiful body. Summer Nostalgia: Sun Goddess Beauty. Go full-on St. Tropez with all the classic seasonal palettes and procedures- spray tans, bronzers, salty locks, coral polish, and highlights.

Moon in Gemini
Cancer season invites you to celebrate giving voice to every flavor of your feelings. Summer Nostalgia: Beach Reads. Stock up on juicy paperbacks and back issues of Cosmo to share with friends on the blanket.

Moon in Cancer
Cancer season invites you to plunge straight into your tenderness, and wear it like an empowered badge of honor. Summer Nostalgia: Skinny-dipping. Whether it’s in dangerously exposed afternoon light with friends or lovers, or a midnight solo plunge, embrace what your momma gave you.

Moon in Leo
Cancer season invites you to sink your teeth into the deliciousness of simplicity and practice radically innocent presentism. Summer Nostalgia: Amusement Park Revelry. Ride your way all the way back to the sheer, thrilling joy of living with classic coasters, costumed characters, carnival fortune telling.

Moon in Virgo
Cancer season invites you to discover divinity in all the details and soothe your nervous system with embodied acts of kindness. Summer Nostalgia: Ice Cream Truck Chasing. Delight in dazzling flavor choices and the sweetness of treating your body to a hard-earned reward.

Moon in Libra
Cancer season invites you to fully embrace your romantic ideals and the prettified pleasures of aesthetic beauty. Summer Nostalgia: Classic Sunset. Embrace the pure, straightforward glory of nature’s color palette, no matter how “cheesy.” While you’re at it, throw in a pina colada and getting caught in the rain.

Moon in Scorpio
Cancer season invites you to find soul security by fully acknowledging the power of your emotional intensity. Summer Nostalgia: Backyard Bonfire & BBQ. Turn up the flames and revel in primal, smoked flavors, tiki torches, and limbo poles.

Moon in Sagittarius
Cancer season invites you to let your expansively wild visions become your mobile sense of home. Summer Nostalgia: Roadtripping. Whether it’s a quick weekend getaway, or an all-out cross country voyage, lose the maps, and let it all unfold beyond the dashboard of your nomadic dreams.

Moon in Capricorn
Cancer season invites you to love up on your deep need for quality, standards, and the richness of emotional maturity. Summer Nostalgia: Yacht Cruise. Go luxe and live the good life with classic nautical wear, caviar, and self-sufficient ship steering.

Moon in Aquarius
Cancer season invites you to find your own eccentric sense of family and revel in the looniness that drives your spirit. Summer Nostalgia: Adult Camp. Collide with new besties and celebrate renegade utopian communities with everything from paintball to craft making and sing-a-longs.

Moon in Pisces
Cancer season invites you to dive into the fantasy life and find sustenance with boundaryless dreams of worlds unseen. Summer Nostalgia: Pool Party. Get your mermaid chic on and let the no-holds-barred dream time flow with slip n’ slides, giant animal rafts, and magical multi-colored blender beverages.

Want more juicy cosmic insights and sensory explorations? Arrange an astrology reading or private event with Bess Matassa here or follow her on Instagram

HOLY F*CK: 5 WAYS TO JUMPSTART YOUR LOVE AND SEX LIFE IN 2017

In her final Holy F*ck column of 2016, Alexandra Roxo has 5 ways to jumpstart your love and sex life in 2017…Portrait: Alexandra Herstik

2016 has been a wild year for the planet and for America. For me it’s been a year of change and growth and reshuffling and purging and mourning and planting seeds and learning. I also hadn’t been single in 10 years, and have spent this one being VERY single. I’ve used this time to have a giant rethink of ALL my ideas, values, and beliefs about love and sex.

I’ve done some dating, sure, but I put the brakes on things in the name of some deep diving and learning and observing of myself and my clients, which is hard for a Piscean princess who loves to dive into romance. My birthday is just days from Anais Nin (if that means anything to you you’re prob my tribe!).

Last week, in search of my culminating thoughts about love and sex and spirit for the end of this year, I called my friend Gala Darling, whose latest love story is one of my faves! After a divorce, Gala met her adorable boyfriend online a little over a year ago and I’d been swooning over them via Insta for a while. I wanted to hear the dirt…Did she believe in soul mates? Manifesting the man of your dreams with spells and rituals? Making a list of important things in love and meditating on them? I had a lot of questions for her.

Gala said many things but what stuck out the most was: “Relationships are not meant to be easy. Marriage is not easy. They are not meant to be comfortable. They are meant to push you to see things about yourself that are not actualized. Having a soul mate is not a party!” This sentiment is way too overlooked in the twin flame/soul mate discourse. Where’s the footer that says “Hey BTW this shit hurts”?

Gala Darling and her boyfriend Garnett shot by Juliane Berry

She also reminded me that there is no certainty. Like ever. In marriage. In relationships. In any of it. People who are single think “Oh when will I meet that special someone?” And then people who are in partnership may be asking “Is this right? Is it supposed to hurt this much? Be this hard? Do I still love them?” There is no certainty but our devotion to ourselves, and our practice of keeping aligned with our heart’s needs.

So in order to do just that I’ve prepared some writing exercises for this column, to help you too rethink/ rewrite / jumpstart your love and sex life in 2017…

So get out your journal. Put on a kimono. Or silk PJ’s. Select some quiet tunes. Burn some incense.  Make yourself a cozy nest. I rec bed surrounded by blankets and pillows and some rose tea and a few candles.

  1. RETHINK YOUR “LIST”

We all make these grand lists of what we want in a partnership and we often forget that the human we imagine coming into our life will also be flawed. Just like us! Do you have some list you’ve been working on for years? Fantasies in your mind about how your partner should or shouldn’t be? This can change as you grow so def revisit every six months. So use this time to make a list of HARD YES’s and HARD NO’s, and to really meditate on them.

Ask yourself big questions like: “Could you be with someone who doesn’t believe in God? Or do you absolutely need to be with someone who wants kids?”

 

  1. BROADEN YOUR IDEA OF A SOUL MATE

Do you have people in your life you have let see the whole spectrum of your madness and beauty? Your most ugly side and your most beautiful? I believe all the people who can hold all of us and push us to our edges are our soul mates. If you’ve never let your darkness come out with anyone I say deepen a friendship with someone who you can do that with. Not in an abusive way, but in a way where the connection can go deep under the surface. That will get you ready for partnership, and if you’re partnered it will keep you deep diving into yourself.

My friend Rebecca and I really did NOT like each other when we met. I thought she was a dirty hippie and she thought I was a stuck up goodie two shoes. 15 years later we are best friends. During that time we’ve hated each other. Not spoken for a year. Had the most heinous of fights.  But had the most enlightening and fun and hilarious moments together too. She knows me in a way no one else can. Our love is as deep as the ocean.

Ask yourself: “Who are my soul mates now? Who has pushed me to the edges and helped me grow? What can I learn from these relationships about myself?”

 

  1. COMMIT TO A PRACTICE AND STICK WITH IT

If you haven’t dated in a while, will you commit to a dating practice? Perhaps you and a friend can buddy up, open an online account, make a ritual of creating your profile (which Gala says is “like casting a spell!”) Practice connecting with strangers in a non-attached way. Go on coffee dates with no agenda except chatting with a stranger. Maybe 1 out of 10 will be someone you’re actually attracted to, so keep it chill. No expectations. Treat it like a morning yoga practice!

If you’re in a relationship commit to a growth practice. Is it seeing a relationship coach once a month to make sure you are growing? Does your sex life need a reboot? Can you commit to an afternoon every other week of sexual exploration time to keep expanding there? If your relationship has become too dependent can you commit to developing and nurturing solo space?

Decide what practice you want to commit to in 2017 and break it down over the months and weeks.

 

  1. GET TO KNOW YOUR LOVE STYLES

How do you like to be loved? (If you need some inspo you can do the 5 Languages of Love quiz.) I know I mostly need to be loved with touch and kind words, and if I feel I can communicate that to my next partner they don’t waste their time buying me gifts or giving me rides or cooking for me. I told Loulou (one of my besties) about this, and now we know that we both highly value a solid compliment we pay each other loving compliments regularly! It just takes knowing and asking.

Make a list of ways you like to be loved, either within a partnership or solo. Do you need more touch? Schedule a weekly massage or trade with a friend. 

 

  1. LOOK IN THE MIRROR

Don’t make me quote Michael but um…he had a point! If you were a potential partner meeting yourself for the first time what would you think? What would you want more of? Less of? This is good to look at whether you’re single or attached. Would you prefer someone who is more available? Someone who is more financially stable? Someone in better shape? Someone who meditates daily? Well, this is a great way to see where you need to make changes on yourself.

For example, I was thinking I would just love a partner who can chop wood—so fuck it, I guess I’ll learn to chop wood in 2017 too! You can also be the partner you want to your friends. I mean, don’t make out with them passionately or anything (unless that’s how you roll!) but love your friends like you wanna be loved. Cook for them. Write cute notes. Romance your friends and yourself!

Set some goals for how you can become the best partner and self and friend.

***

If you want to go deeper with this work sign up for my Holy F*ck course where we will be using creative writing and storytelling to dive deep into our habits, tendencies, hopes and dreams in love and sex in a conscious way.  I also see clients one on one for six month periods of mentorship and on off coaching sessions. More info here.

Alexandra Roxo is a critically acclaimed filmmaker, writer, entrepreneur and mentor currently residing in LA. She recently co-founded Moon Club with Ruby Warrington (founder of the Numinous) and has been featured in Well + GoodNylon,  Out Magazine and more.

DEEP INSIDE: READING FOR THE SCORPIO NEW MOON 2016

The Scorpio New Moon is an invitation to journey deep inside—so that we may emerge reborn, says Sandra Sitron…Artwork: i MANIPULATE

 

On Sunday October 30th at 1:38 pm ET (17:38 UTC) we have a New Moon at 7 degrees Scorpio.

The Moon and it’s message: “Cradle your heart in your hands.”

This Scorpio New Moon asks you to get quiet, so that you can hear her persistent whisper…Slow down. Study yourself. Prepare to let go of that which is no longer serving you. Be brave. Trust yourself. Cup your hands around your heart in honor and protection. Be your best witness. Hold space for yourself. Listen to the quiet, still, emotions that have been buried beneath “busy-ness” and action.

Your job right now is to Be. Your job is not to Do.

Every New Moon marks a new beginning; a time to plant seeds of intention for the upcoming Moon cycle. To visualize the manifestations of the coming 28 days. And the Scorpio New Moon especially is here to show us what needs to be eliminated in order to make room for the new.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the Scorpio New Moon arrives with the season of Autumn in its fullness. It invites us to witness the trees as their leaves fall away. The leaves are ready to die, to decay, to go back to the earth. The leaves have served their purpose. The tree trusts this. There is no effort in letting the leaves fall away. The only action is to let go—trusting that the next cycle will bring new leaves.

Scorpio tells us about cycles. As such, it rules Sex. Birth. Death. Rebirth. You may not fully understand the cycle that you are moving through. But trust that you are moving. You may not understand why letting go is so important. Yet let go you must. This watery, intuitive moon is not about logic. So let go of logic and open your heart to trust.

But also, don’t expect to be shown the easy way out.

Scorpio’s ancient ruler is Warrior Mars, while her modern ruler is Transformational Pluto. She will challenge you. She will prod you. This Scorpio New Moon may poke at your underbelly. May knowingly turn your eyes to what is decaying in your life. She wants you to see what is ready to be burned and transformed. She wants to help you eliminate the old to make room for the new.

The challenge of this Scorpio New Moon is to explore our deepest, most habitually fixed emotional reactions. The emotional grooves that are scored deep into the nooks and crannies of our psyche. Want catharsis? Recognizing these buried emotions could bring a lot to the surface. Releasing them could set a fresh new cycle in motion. So show up courageously. Look closely at your wounds. Don’t shy away from intensity.

Look at the part of your life that you are trying to control. Scorpio rules letting go AND control. Can you loosen your grip?

Ask: what are your thoughts and feeling about this area of your life? Is there some fear there? If so, is the fear triggered by a thought? What is the thought? Why do you believe the thought? What proof is there? When was the first time you thought this? What was going on in your life at that time? Is there another thought that could replace it? How would you like to feel instead?

Free up some time this weekend to just sit quietly and see what comes up. Scorpio archetypes are the Detective, the Researcher, and the Psychologist. It is the job of all these archetypes to search and uncover. To reveal a hidden truth. Do this with your emotional self. Take a steady, close look beneath the surface.

Then slow down. Trust. Witness. Let go. Cradle your heart in your hands.

Read on for the cosmic aspects at play PLUS New Moon self-inquiry by sign…

***

NEW MOON CONJUNCT MERCURY
The pitter patter of rain.

Chatty Mercury joins the Scorpio New Moon to help communicate to you what you are ready to let go of. These communications may be quick and persistent, like the pitter patter of rain. All you have to do is allow the message to come through. Mercury is bringing lots of ideas and new information. Areas of your life that you think you have all figured out may be ready for new interpretations. Get ready to start up a conversation with your highest self.

NEW MOON TRINE NEPTUNE
Finding your way through the maze.

Dreamy Neptune is in a harmonious Trine aspect with the Scorpio New Moon. This energy will help you open up to your intuition to receive a message from across the veil. The symbol promises that if you use all of your senses and follow your best hunch, you will arrive at your destination. Let your third eye help you navigate.

SUMMARY
You are ready to go inward. Explore your deep feelings. Let the unnecessary fall away. The leaves have fulfilled their purpose. Let them go, reflect, and prepare for the next cycle.

***

NEW MOON SELF-INQUIRY BY SIGN :: For a more accurate reading, see which house in your birth chart contains 7 degrees Scorpio.

Aries or 8th House
What desires are you avoiding? What is blocking you feeling into what you truly want? What do you see when you lean into the feeling you would like to have right now?

Taurus or 7th House
Are you holding on to any assumptions about relationships that you are ready to let go of? Where did these ideas originate? Can you see how they are no longer serving you?

Gemini or 6th House
Is anything preventing you from making healthy choices for your body? What is one habit you can let go of this week that feels aligned with your goals for your health?

Cancer or 5th House
What is blocking your creative self-expression? Why are you allowing this to persist? How might you bring more creativity and fun into your life?

Leo or 4th House
Take a moment to tune into yourself and have your notebook ready: If your inner child could talk to you, what would she tell you right now? Is there a pattern she is holding onto that she is ready to let go?

Virgo or 3rd House
What is coming up for you mentally right now? What are the ideas that won’t go away? How can you pay attention Do you see any assumptions that are influencing you in relation to this topic?

Libra or 2nd House
What is blocking you from realizing your self worth? What limiting beliefs are behind any instances of poverty consciousness (“I am not enough / There is never enough”?)

Scorpio or 1st House
Let yourself breathe more fully, and see if you can get more deeply in touch with yourself. What is blocking you from expressing your unique energy in the world? How can you step past this?

Sagittarius or 12th House
What is the dominant feeling surfacing for you right now? What’s it like to feel this way? Journal on this feeling and then ask yourself: What can I let go of in order to heal?

Capricorn or 11th House
Jot down some hopes and dreams for your future. Who in you might interfere with your goal? (Can you give a name to the part of you that may interfere? Can you have a conversation with that part?)

Aquarius or 10th House
Where would you like to be ten years from now in regard to your career? Can you imagine how you might get there? What must you let go of to realize your greatest ambitions for yourself?

Pisces or 9th House
What deeply held beliefs have you found yourself questioning? How could you chose to see things instead? How could this help you progress on your spiritual path?

TEMPLE OF VENUS: CRAFTS TO CONNECT TO YOUR INNER CHILD

Elyssa Jakim’s monthly Temple of Venus column returns with some crafting inspiration to connect to your inner child this Pisces season. PLUS: a bonus video featuring a love potion!

 

It’s Spring! Well, almost. And I don’t know about you, but with the current swell of deep Pisces feelings I’m ready for creative play – and all I want to do is craft.

Over the last year, I have crafted more than since I was a scrap-booking sixteen-year-old. Teaching at Fairy School (an after school program for connecting children to their magic), I found myself making magic wands, fairy houses, bird-feeders, magic necklaces, and it was wondrous. Even cuter was how many of the parents exhibited a desire to craft too. “I want to go to Fairy School!” they’d say.

This is a perfect illustration of how crafting helps you connect to your inner child; to a sense of play and wonder. Crafting slows us down, asking us to consider just how sparkly that bead is, just how cuddlesome this fabric feels. It’s a meditative mindful practice that’s also easy and fun. Crafting invites us to re-enter our childhood mindset and to view each moment through innocent eyes.

This summer, Numinous founder Ruby Warrington and I created the Temple of Venus, a space that created room to explore the feminine. An essential component of this space was craft. We held flower crown and silk dying workshops that were full of giggles, music, sharing, and sisterhood. These events filled up, and I saw the women who attended leave with a sense of vigor and playfulness.

Healer Camilla Blossom Bishop pointed out to me that when we do craft projects, we nurture a deep feminine part of ourselves – our womb space, which is the seat of creativity in the body. Venus loves this approach to connecting to the unadulterated feminine essence, but it’s wonderful for men too, because we all hold feminine and masculine polarities inside of us. Even better, crafting is also a great way to get to know others, because you bond on a deep and innate level.

With that said, here are some easy-peasy, aesthetically pleasing, joyful and invigorating craft projects for you to try at home!

:: MAGIC WANDS ::

You will need:

  • Sticks (small pieces of driftwood are nice)
  • Glitter
  • Wood glue
  • Paintbrush
  • Thick paper such as cardstock

The magic wand is a Fairy School staple. This technique was invented by Maha Rose founder and Fairy School Teacher Lisa Levine and these wands will have you connected to your inner elemental in no time (the photo below is of the beautiful wands she makes).

Put the wood glue in an easy-access container like a glass jar (this way you can save and reuse it easily). Brush glue onto your stick in a stripe around the wood, starting at one end of the stick. Fold your cardstock in half and hold it underneath the stick you as a glitter catcher. Pick a color of glitter and sprinkle the glitter on the glued portion. Pick up your folded paper, gathering up the glitter that has fallen onto it, and siphon it back into the container. This saves a lot of glitter and keeps the colors from mixing. Repeat with another stripe. Repeat. Repeat. If you’d rather go off the grid and not do stripes, you certainly may. You can get extra creative and add strands of beads, feathers, flower petals, or anything else you fancy to your wand.

Note: stray glitter often abounds, so it’s a nice idea to do this craft on a tablecloth or newspaper and to follow up with a vacuum.

:: VISION BOARD ::

You will need:

  • Stack of magazines
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Poster board

Vision boarding is the ultimate girl time activity and a powerful manifestation exercise that gets you in touch with your desires – especially following a New Moon! But whenever I do it, I’m surprised by what my board reveals to me, and I exclaim (inwardly or outwardly): “Oh wow, that’s what I’m desiring right now.” For the vision board is a visual representation of your dreams — the things you want to achieve, obtain, and experience. It’s great to do this with a group of pals and let the love flow.

Start by flipping through the magazines and pulling images you feel drawn to. Then cut these into pleasing shapes and glue them down to your poster board. As I learned from Sara Goff who runs a group called Vision Board Soiree, there are two ways to do this:

1. Pull intuitively whatever images make you feel really good.
2. Know what you want on your board and look for those images.

Most people will find themselves tending toward 1 or 2 (1 Is more Ying, 2 Is more Yang). Make a conscious effort to mix up these two techniques and see what happens. You can also announce to your friends what you’re looking for – “I want a yacht!” – and have them help find it (this asks you to speak your desires aloud). You can also suggest an image to someone if you feel like it’s for them. This way, everyone interacts with each other’s boards.

If you get an image that’s almost right but you’re not sure, dump it. You gotta LOVE it like those perfect jeans. When your boards are completed, share them with one another, discussing your experiences and discoveries. I once did this with a bunch of art students and it was like a mini art history critique, but the most positive, supportive crit in history!

A Vision Board Elyssa made last year

:: MERMAID RATTLE ::

You will need:

  • Small glass container with lid
  • Little bells
  • Yarn
  • Beads, shells, crystals, glitter, and any other things that you find pretty

Nature spirits (mermaids, unicorns, angels, fairies, dragons, gnomes) love when we sing to them, and this rattle will give your song an extra dose of magic. I just made one of these babies last week in a water healing gathering held by Camilla Blossom Bishop. Ours were mermaid themed, but you can use them for any element or elemental.

You can get creative with your container. Light blue and clear are nice, but even a salt shaker will do. Open the container you chose. Put beautiful tiny objects like beads, shells, crystals, glitter, feathers, and any other pretty things inside, but leave some space for them to move around. Shake as you go to assess the sound it creates, and adjust to your liking. Now close the lid tight. Tie a piece of yarn around the shaker at lid level and tie bells onto the ends. Send a loving intention to connect with nature spirits into your shaker. Behold, you are ready to rattle and roll!

:: MORE CRAFTY RESOURCES ::

If you’re looking to make a professional Flower Crown, check out my girl Rawan Rihani, founder of Aurora Botanica. She led a workshop at the Temple of Venus, teaching us that nothing feels more luxurious than a bed of fresh flowers in your hair—and it smells so good too! Okay I’m gushing.

Cara Marie Piazza is a genius of silk and dye-ing materials, and her workshop at the Temple of Venus knocked our socks off too. Silk and flowers together spell sensual feminine paradise and Cara’s joy for the art is infectious. Plus, the things she creates and teaches us to make are unspeakably beautiful.

And for something even more delicious, Alexandra Roxo and I give you two very simple recipes for love with this Valentines Video: featuring a love potion and raw chocolates.

Need more Venus inspiration? Check out Elyssa’s last Temple of Venus column on a Meditation for Manifesting True Love.

AN HONEST RELATIONSHIP: HOW TO LOVE AND BE LOVED

Step fully into your light for an honest relationship that shows you how to love and be loved, says Hannah BierArtwork: “Lovers” by Marina Gonzalez via Behance.net

They told me that true love was sweet and sticky. They told me that if I manage to stay obedient and pure, a Prince will come and save me. He will wear tight-ass leggings and put me in a castle, where we will have mediocre sex until the end of time.

Well, my dating life used to be land mine after land mine and I know all too well about the brain fuck of modern societies’ views on romantic love. And it’s time to stop shitting ourselves and get real about what truly enlightening love looks like.

Here’s what you need to know if you want a mindful relationship where you’re free to love fiercely and be loved rapturously:

1. LOVE THEM SO MUCH THAT YOU PISS THEM OFF
Relationships that are either dysfunctional or incredibly boring share one common trait: the lovers dance around one another trying not to piss each other off. The truth is, the best thing you can do is to be your wildest, most obnoxious self, especially around the people you want to keep in your life.

We’ve been through tremendous amounts of family programming, plus the societal conditioning that piles a ton of limiting beliefs on top of the unhealed trauma we’ve amassed over the years. As a result of our lived experiences, we develop vices and behavioral patterns for dancing around our true fears and desires. It becomes easier to surround ourselves with people who join in this dance with us, and to never even try to get off auto-pilot.

Being your awakened and audaciously high-maintenance self means dancing in the way of your lover, and interrupting their pattern. It means being the one who loves them enough to not enable them to keep re-living their past. So do not restrict your own beautiful range of expression to accommodate their sleep-walking.

Just being you, you are going to piss people off who’d rather not wake up—especially those closest to you. But it is an act of fierce love to make them deal with their shit instead of trying to make it easy for them.

It is your business to love, not to look the other way. But too often this is misunderstood, and people make it their business to keep the people they love comfortably numb. If you want to support the spiritual evolution of a person you’ve come to care deeply for, let yourself be difficult and speak your truth.

2. TELL THE TRUTH
The #1 reason relationships end is because the lovers prioritize their own sense of comfort over the relationship. The glue for any mindful relationship is emotional intimacy, for no intimacy means no connection, and therefore no point to the partnership.

In order to keep the juices flowing, you need to continuously gather the courage to say the things you almost daren’t. You have to have the courage to be vulnerable and to make yourself look like an idiot. You have to value the relationship more than the desires of your own ego.

You can either be comfortable or be loved. Because if you don’t step up and show yourself in all your messy glory, it is simply hard to love you. We need to see you, to be able to love you. Don’t blame your shallow conflicts about who bought the wrong toilet paper for the deterioration of your relationship.

Every conflict is an opportunity to stand up and tell the real truth. To throw your lover on the bed and to show them how deeply you want to be with them. Fuck them until they know how much you love them. Or to keep screaming and making up stories, so that you can stay comfortable and lonely. It is completely up to you to show up and give it your all.

3. HOLD THEM THE WAY YOU WANT THEM TO HOLD YOU
It is your job to see people for who they truly are. We all have a tendency to downplay our brilliance, to dim our lights, so that we can keep living within what feel like safe boundaries of being. If we never reveal our true nature, we will never make ourselves vulnerable, and we won’t be subject to any criticism.

But you know this won’t work.

By covering up what we really want and settling for something less, we are directing our creative force against ourselves. Playing small is lethal, because every heartfelt dream contains the energy to make it happen. If we pull back instead of going full blast, the energy intended to help you take massive action ends up being trapped in your body where it will slowly kill you.

Don’t let the people you love hurt themselves like that. See them for the genius they truly are. Remind them of how you see them and make a vow to only speak to their higher selves.

How do you want the people you love to show up for life? Don’t you want them to be empowered as creators, infinitely brilliant artists, and deeply loving souls? Hold them the way you want them to show up. Humans are forgetful, make it a habit to remind people of what they really need to understand about themselves.

This, is fierce love.

TEMPLE OF VENUS: HOW TO WORK WITH GODDESS VENUS

Sexual healing, and access to your abundance mindset. Elyssa Jakim introduces a new monthly column devoted to the Goddess Venus…

Portrait: Keith Barraclough

In the summer of 2015, the Numinous and I teamed up to create an interactive art installation and event space called the Temple of Venus. As an altar to the goddess Venus the installation served as a healing space: the events at the Temple were a way to address our questions and questings regarding love, sexuality, beauty, money and everything else Venus touches. So why did we choose Venus? Who is she? How might the goddess inspire and impact your life? How are you already an embodiment of Venus? All questions I want to answer with this column!

Six months after creating the temple, Venus has not stopped working with and guiding me. And so this is a space for me to share some Venetian wisdom each month, to help get our juicy, abundant, sexual, prosperous selves truly flowing.

Venus is the Roman goddess of love, beauty, sexuality, abundance, desire, fertility, and finances. She is known as Aphrodite in Greek mythology. Astrologically, the planet Venus (don’t you love when your goddess is also a planet?) rules relationships. So, for example, if you’re born with Venus in Scorpio, your way of being with and relating to people is imbued with the energy of a fiercely loyal and passionate Scorpio.

Artist: Katerina Alivizatou

Goddess Venus teaches us to be accepting of all facets of our womanhood and sexuality. In fact, one of the qualities that separate Venus from the Aphrodite myth, is that Venus was also the goddess of prostitutes. She allows for sexuality to be fluid, to exist in a space without judgment. In her brilliant book, Ecstasy is Necessary: A Practical Guide, celebrated tantra teacher Barbara Carrellas offers the reader a “sexual permission slip” or a series of permissive statements about how one can choose to regard sex.

A particularly strong one is: “I give myself permission to talk about sex as a safe, sane, and consensual act that brings health and pleasure to the world.” Venus celebrates this perspective. I find Venus to be a powerful goddess for sexual healing because she shows us that sex is beautiful. She shows us that sex is a gift of pleasure from the Divine, and she helps us tap into that pleasure.

When preparing for a ceremony in the temple with Lyndsey Harrington and Kat Hunt of Moon Church, we decided to invoke the goddess Venus and tune into her energy in order to decide how to best serve her with our ritual. We were flooded with her essence: it felt orgasmic and ecstatic, yummy and beautiful. She told us that she loved milk, honey, pearls, gold, kisses, and roses. And Kat said that she felt it showed that as well as the goddess Venus, the other Greek and Roman gods and goddesses are waiting for us connect with them.

This message was eye-opening to me. I realized that in much of my goddess worship and ceremony, I had never thought of the Greek and Roman goddesses as vital, present, divine forces waiting to help us. I’d worked with the Divine Mother Mary and Kwan Yin before but never with a Greco-Roman goddess directly. What I’ve since learned is that Venus is so ready to bestow her love and magic and beauty upon those who are willing to invoke her with an open heart. And that she can help you tap into your sexual and goddess essence and your sense of worthiness in such deep ways.

In fact, Venus is a symbol of the divine feminine (and remember we use the Venus symbol “♀” to mean “female”). Venus was born of the water, and water is a sublimely gorgeous metaphor for the female principal. Water receives, it takes in. It is abundance, it is creation, it is sensitive, it is psychic, it is adaptable. As women, as birthers, we are able to tap into the deep waters of creation and imagination.

Water is our element, and the goddess Venus reminds us to claim all of its gifts. In working with her directly, we learn how to be better receivers, better lovers, and better mothers to ourselves and others. And the planet Venus has a twin flame: it is the planet Earth. May this column honor the waters of Earth and the fires of our twin planet to create cosmic balance and upliftment for all.

Up next month: A Venus-inspired meditation for calling in your soulmate.

WEEKLY TAROTSCOPE: AUGUST 16-22

The Queen of Wands brings pure positive fire energy to the week ahead, says Louise Androlia. In our weekly tarotscope video, she share’s how to work this magic in your world…

You can also check out last week’s video here – did Louise’s reading resonate for you? Share with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!

MANFESTATION STATION: HOW TO DESIGN AN ALTAR

A cosmic radio tower for broadcasting your wishes to the Universe, manifestation expert Emily Tepper shares how to design an altar that’s perfect for YOU…

From “Fluorescent Virgins” by Pilar Gordillo via Behance.net

GO WITH WHAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU
We live in a time with unprecedented access to information and advice – including this article! And while it’s amazing to be able to approach altar design by tapping into different covens and styles and belief systems, the point is to put YOU and your desires at the center of the altar. After all, it is there to act as a radio tower for the divine as experienced through YOU.

WORK WITH SYMBOLS
When choosing artefacts for your altar, think less less about the object itself and more about what it symbolizes for you. Yes, crystals, candles and other sacred objects all look beautiful and bring their own super-powers, but to truly personalise your altar include a few items that are completely unique to you and your situation. For example, if you want more dates and your ideal date is a day on the beach, you could place some sunscreen on your altar. Or if you want to call in more financial abundance, write yourself a check from your dream client.

Numinous founder Ruby Warrington’s altar from summer 2014

FEEL INTO IT
Having trouble finding a symbol for what you want? When you’re manifesting something, the trick is to focus on creating the physical feelings of having that thing in your life before it actually materializes – that way, the Universe will pick up on the signal (feeling) you’re putting out, and send the corresponding object / event your way. So choosing your symbols, what image / object comes to mind first when you’re getting into the emotional essence of your hot beach date? Or having unlimited funds in the bank? But remember, the symbol can be anything – there are no rules!

PAY ATTENTION TO PLACEMENT
As a rule, you can work with the energy flow of your altar by placing objects and symbols relating to the things you want to call in to the right – and things that symbolise the all the things you want to  clear / move away from to the left.

Numinous Tarotscopes writer Louise Androlia’s altar

HAVE FUN!
Seriously – even the witchiest witch experiences work better when they vibrate with joy. And while often ritual work is about accepting things as they are and then shifting them to a better place, improvement and ascension happen in a gradient from bad, to not as bad, to pretty good, to awesome! Make creating your altar about enjoying this ride.

TAKE A MINERAL BATH AFTER YOU INTERACT WITH YOUR ALTAR
Altar and ritual work can be a bit of an out there experience, and minerals calm the spirit and bring us delicate souls “back into the body.” My personal favorite is a mineral rich blend of dead sea salt and kelp powder (also good for growing my mermaid tail back). But seriously, it’s important to honor the process of re-grounding after communing with the spirit world and that’s important. It’s what being a material girl in a mystical world is all about, after all.

What’s on your altar, and why? Share your altar pics with us on Instagram and Facebook, tag #NuminousAltars, and we’ll include them on our altar Pinterest board to inspire the Numinous community!

HEART’S DESIRE: A NEW MOON SEX MAGIC RITUAL

Time for a really radical approach to self-love…The anonymous writer behind sex positive site Girly Juice shares her recipe for a New Moon sex magic ritual

Image: Conrad C. Jones

Sex energy is powerful magic. It’s pure joy and ecstasy, particularly at the moment of orgasm. It taps you into your Source so easily, quickly, wholly, and pleasurably, it can make your head spin. Sex educator Annie Sprinkle calls this “medibation”: a synthesis between masturbation and meditation. Two of my favorite things!

Lately I’ve been doing masturbation-magic rituals in the hopes of manifesting my dream sexual relationship, so I focus on the wonderful feelings and visualize someone else being there with me – working, as always, to feel the feelings I want to feel with them in the now. But you can do this kind of ritual in the service of any desire, so long as you can stay focused on it and use it to get into the feelings associated with it.

Preparation
I like to set the scene by lighting a scented candle, putting on some music that reflects the mood I’m trying to get into (for me, R&B slow-jam playlists on Spotify are a godsend), and cleaning up the space in which I’m going to get busy. If your intention is to meet a new partner, tidying up your bedroom and bed is a way of symbolically and literally making space for that person to enter your reality.

Wear whatever clothing makes you feel gorgeous and in tune with your desired feeling(s). That may be nothing at all, or a silky vintage slip and high heels, or a pair of leather handcuffs and a rose quartz pendulum necklace, or even a boss-lady pantsuit…So long as you feel fantastic in it (and can comfortably masturbate in it!), it’s fair game.

The Orgasmic Pentagram by Sergio Saucedo via Behance.net

Crystals
I was fascinated when I heard several months ago about rose quartz dildos, a brief trend in the world of sex toys. Rose quartz is, after all, the crystal of love (including self-love), so it makes perfect sense to use it in this sort of ritual!

You can find rose quartz in various different shapes and sizes, including dildo-esque massage wands, but I have a heart-shaped piece so that’s what I use. The smoothness of a tumbled stone makes it ideal for sliding over your lips, nipples, labia, anywhere that’s craving attention. Visualize the stone spreading love energy to every area it touches.

If you’re comfortable inserting the crystal vaginally and keeping it there for the duration of the ritual, you can do that too. It’s powerful to feel love energy radiating out from literally inside you. But be careful: while it can’t get “lost” inside your vagina, you might have trouble removing the crystal later if you insert it too deeply. (And please, never put a crystal in your butt!)

Other crystals can also work beautifully. Red ones, like garnet and ruby, may increase the flow of sexual energy and pleasure in and around your root chakra. Just make sure to research any crystal before inserting it into your body – some crystals dissolve in moisture. If you’re not sure, put a condom on it. And, obviously, avoid putting anything rough or sharp in a sensitive area. Smooth stones only!

Other tools and toys
In addition to any crystals you have on hand, you should use any tools or toys you normally like to use. Keeping it simple, with just your hands, may feel the most organic and connective, but there’s nothing wrong with using vibrators or other toys to help the process along – we live in the modern age, after all, and we should take advantage of that fact! I’d recommend avoiding any really loud vibrators, though, because the noise can be distracting when you’re trying to focus on a feeling or an image.

Image: Steven Ratcliffe via Behance.net

Visualization
While you pleasure yourself, visualize what you’re trying to manifest. Give yourself over to that visualization fully, so that the feelings of it wash over you. It can be helpful to say affirmations out loud, stated as if you had already achieved what you’re trying to manifest. For example, in my rituals for manifesting my ideal sexual partner, I might say things like; “This is the best sex I’ve ever had!” or “You’re very good at that!” It can feel a little silly, but any self-consciousness usually melts away once I fully surrender to the fantasy and the pleasure.

Timing
Take your time; don’t rush. “Edging” (repeatedly approaching orgasm but then backing off before the actual climax) can help build arousal levels and sexual energy so that the peak will be a bigger explosion. At the eventual moment of orgasm, whenever it finally happens, hold the desired image in your mind and maybe speak a word or phrase that encapsulates what you want – if you’re coherent enough to manage it!

When you’re done, take a few minutes to catch your breath and bask in the feeling you’ve created for yourself. This is also a lovely time for deep, meditative breathing, because all the delicious neurotransmitters traveling around your body will be making you feel extra calm.

Do you ever use your orgasms as a tool for magic-making and manifesting? I want to hear all about it!

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