A GUIDE TO SPIRITUAL MONTAUK

Want a more meaningful beach retreat this summer? Colleen Kelly, Bret Caretsky and Madeleine Murphy of the Montauk Juice Factory, share their guide to spiritual Montauk…Images: Elayne Safir

Montauk: it’s the energy vortex of the East Coast summer. The air is special up here, charged with a cosmic energy that engulfs and transforms you the moment you cross the stretch. So if you’re planning a visit to The End, make the most of the vibes with our top 7 ways to elevate your mind, body and spirit—allowing the blend of salty air and sacred land guide you on an inward journey to the deepest part of yourself.

1. Ground down. Meaning kick off your shoes (and socks) and feel the earth. Enjoy a long, barefoot beach walk is gonna feel extra special since the sand between your toes in Montauk is made of small fragments of clear quartz, leaving you feeling instantly clearer and stronger. Let the negative ions seep into your skin, and balance out the positively charged toxins in your body.

2. Be a litter picker. During your stay, if you see any loose litter blowing down the beaches pick it up and recycle—to give Mother Earth the signal to continue to give back to you throughout your visit.

2. Get salty. Visit the Montauk Salt Cave for a holistic and rejuvenating wellness experience surrounded with the healing energy of pink Himalayan sea salts and rocks. Designed to clear toxins from our lungs and nasal passageways, this magical place is deeply restorative for the respiratory tract and spirit. Check out their website to see what salty healing events they have going on. If you’re lucky you may even stumble upon a Kundalini class with our good friend and gong queen, Jen Frasher.

3. Salute the sun. Watching the sunrise or sunset can lessen anxiety, stress and depression, since it encourages us to slow down and be conscious in the moment, as we observe every streak the sun has painted in the sky. Soon your mood will match the colors—bright and vibrant—and you will naturally have less headspace for irritability and worry, and more for beauty and joy. We recommend checking out the beaches at Navy Road where you can watch the sun set over the water in the summer months. Visualize the energy from the sun spreading from your crown to the rest of the body while letting the sounds of the water relax your inner being.

4. Get tribal. Weekly drum circles are held on the beach, but you’ll have to ask around to try to attend one. It’s worth the legwork to connect to the rhythmic beat, tap into your primal side, and unleash your inner wild.

5. Unplug and create. If you’re looking for a place to get quiet and seek inspiration, try the walking labyrinth—a hidden gem built by a local community group. Overlooking Fort Pond Bay, this intricate path of stones is a beautiful spot for walking meditations, contemplation and mindful moments. Every step is a chance to remind yourself of something to be grateful for; to let go of something that is holding you back; or to just be fully present in the moment.

6. Get your flow going. Yoga is obviously a yes in Montauk! Our favorite is Yoga Lila (which means “divine play” in Sanskrit) for creative classes in a beautiful, inspiring studio—or try their SUP yoga classes if you are a drawn to the water.

7. Make some magic. A definite date for the diary is the Montauk Magic Retreat. Hosted by Numinous contributor Fern Olivia and rockstar shaman Alyson Charles in a private home by the ocean, you can enjoy daily movement and meditation, beach hikes, chanting, chakra and aura cleansing accompanied, by plant based cuisine and MJF cold-pressed juices. July 20-25 2016.

8. Pay us a visit. This isn’t just a shameless plug! Swing by 12 South Etna Avenue to fuel your body and your high-vibe vacay with high-integrity juices and smoothies. Our organic, nutrient-dense juices are made with intentional, purpose-driven recipes to make every cell in your body rejoice.

Inspired by our cosmic surroundings and natural environment, we also offer the MJF Apothecary—a rad self-care line of botanical beauty formulas that are holistic, gentle and effective. Drawing on the wisdom of the earth, the power of the ocean and the magic of the same functional ingredients we use in our raw kitchen, every product is 100% organic and handcrafted in small batches—all designed to keep your Montauk glow shining even longer.

Join The Montauk Juice Factory and Kalisa Augustine for a special Spirit Animal 101 workshop July 16 2016. Learn what a spirit animal is and how to connect with yours, followed by a shamanic journey with sound healing crystal bowls, guided visualization, served up with high vibe raw food and juices. All the details are at this link! 

PIECES OF ME: WHAT IS A SOUL RETRIEVAL CEREMONY?

Maggie Harrsen of Puakai Healing explains how our soul can become fragmented when we experience trauma, an what exactly happens in a Soul Retrieval ceremony. Images: Prince Lauder

 

HOW DO I KNOW IF MY SOUL NEEDS RETRIEVING?
To first understand if a Soul Retrieval Ceremony may be beneficial for you, it is important to know the signs of Soul Loss (see below). During Soul Loss a piece of our soul, our light essence, flees the body in order to survive a traumatic or shocking experience. Examples of situations that may cause Soul Loss are: all forms of abuse (emotional, physical, sexual), death of a loved one, divorce, separation, natural disasters, accidents, surgery and any distress during rites of passage.

THAT SOUNDS PAINFUL…SO WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF SOUL LOSS?

Soul Loss could manifest in any of the below:
A feeling of being lost or incomplete
Chronic depression, anxiety or grief
Feeling disconnected from all of life
Feeling “out of body”
The sense that you haven’t been “the same” after a certain event
Chronic illness and ongoing misfortune
Blocked memory
Lack of joy
An inability to make decisions
Addictive behavior patterns
Being disconnected from your intuition
A loss of energy

IF OUR SOUL FRAGMENTS WHEN WE EXPERIENCE TRAUMA, WHERE DOES IT GO TO RETREAT?
According to the Qero paq’os (healers) of the Andean mystical tradition, when a soul part flees our body it goes to the Ukhu Pacha, the place of the underworld where Pachamama, our Cosmic Mother lives. Being our Earth Mother, she is able to keep these parts of our soul safe until we’re ready to receive them back. It is my belief that in order to fulfil our soul’s particular mission on Earth, we need all of our soul parts restored and within us!

It is also interesting to note that in indigenous cultures, if a little one falls and breaks a limb or witnesses the death of an elder, the healer will perform a ceremony on their behalf right away. In Western culture, the understanding of our energetic body and the spiritual causes of illness are not so recognised or well understood, so restoring all the parts of our soul can often mean going back decades.

HOW SHOULD YOU PREPARE FOR A SOUL RETRIEVAL CEREMONY?
In the Soul Retrieval Ceremony we are working within the luminous energy field (the energy bubble that surrounds and informs the physical body) so the only preparation is in our intention, as this is what drives energy. And in a Soul Retrieval Ceremony our intention is simple – we are calling back any lost soul parts that are ready and willing to return to the individual right now.

When we create sacred space and have an openness and willingness for healing to occur, it simply happens. My role in ceremony is holding this space for individuals to heal themselves. The most important element for me is trust – to build trust with my client and create a space in which they feel safe to completely open, like a blossoming flower. It is through our own courage and will that we are able to heal ourselves and, in turn, heal the Earth.

WHAT EXACTLY HAPPENS IN THE CEREMONY?
The ceremony takes place either inside a space or outside in nature. The client will lay comfortably on the ground with blankets and pillows and I will sit at their side. I will begin by preparing sacred space, using the smoke of the Palo Santo wood and other various rituals, and then I will gently guide the client into a relaxed place of stillness. They will remain laying down – resting and focusing on their breath for the duration of the ceremony.

Together we will set our intention and go into an altered state of consciousness through the sound of various instruments, including a rattle, drum and bells. As the healer, I journey outside of time and space to my guiding spirits who assist me in locating and understanding why these light essences, or soul parts, originally left.

They are then brought back and restored to the individual through my breath, as I blow them into their heart center and crown of the head. We then move into the transmutation sequence of the ceremony, where the client absorbs the light of their soul into every cell of their being. During this time, I play various high vibrational instruments and music. To complete the ceremony, the client gently sits up, sipping a glass of water and I share my healing story, focusing on the gifts that were restored. The client may also share any visions, sensations or experiences they had during their ceremony.

AND HOW DO PEOPLE FEEL AFTERWARDS?
Since we are all unique as human beings, everyone feels differently after a Soul Retrieval Ceremony. Some individuals may feel sleepy and some are buzzing with energy. Some feel emotional. Some feel a shift in physical sensation and perception. Some feel nothing. Many feel deep peace and relaxation, and most individuals report a sense of being grounded and “in their body”. Individuals often express they feel at home again. In the days and months after a Soul Retrieval Ceremony most individuals report significant life changes.

SUCH AS…
I have heard people report all of the following:
A sense of spiritual harmony
Greater wellbeing and vitality
Healing of physical dis-ease
Clarity/remembering of the soul path
Unconditional love for the self
Restoration of individual gifts
Depression replaced with joy
Renewed relationships
An ability to be their authentic self
Courage to follow their dreams
A deeper connection to the natural world

Find out more about Maggie Harrsen and Puakai Healing here, and check out the details of her upcoming Hamptons retreat, which takes place July 27 and 28 2015

SISTERS OF THE BLACK MOON: HOW TO BE A SUMMER GOTH

Gabriela Herstik meets Goth queens Sisters Of The Black Moon, and delivers some style tips for dressing the part in the summer heat…

Sisters of the Black Moon first opened their “matte black gates” in February of 2010, when a road trip turned into an epiphany. Founders Sara Larocca-Ramm, Alecia Marcum, and Rachel Hunt found the path they were on was no longer serving them, they decided to shift course – and so the numinous universe of SOTBM was born.

With a careful edit of designers, all with an occult and metaphysical aesthetic, SOTBM has cultivated a community of like-minded people while creating an ethical shopping experience. Think everything from exaggerated black capes to quartz and moonstone jewelry and constellation candles.

But perhaps most notable is SOTBM’s own unisex label – the current theme of which is EMBERS, with the emphasis on more structural pieces than previous collections.

We love the Moon-white crop tops and floor length skirts with harness details, and the stark black cloak dresses and in sheer, airy tunics. For all the dramatic undertones, there’s a sense of ease and versatility to the collection, which is designed to take the wearer from day-to-day tasks to gatherings and rituals held under the full moon.

More than anything else, the goal of Larocca-Ramm, Marcum and Hunt is for the souls who cloak themselves in SOTBM to feel confident, comfortable and empowered – a nurturing energy that’s amplified when you learn all three women are mothers. Check out our edit of their online store below, as well as 5 styling tips for summer Goths!

:: Play with proportions ::
When it’s sweltering out, the last thing you want is layers of fabric clinging to your skin. Play with proportion instead. Shorts or a skirt with chunky black boots are a sure fire way to look dark and not overheat. A good pair of leather ankle boots or combat boots will look extra edgy, especially when you’re showing a little leg.

:: Go sheer ::
Goth doesn’t mean layering on the heaviest black fabrics you can find. Instead, try layering sheer fabrics over one another – a great look, especially when they’re both in airy black. If you’re feeling extra spunky, a sheer top with a sheer bra is an empowered look.

:: Light leather ::
Whoever said leather isn’t for summer was completely misinformed and needs a talking to! Leather looks sexy when the sun’s out; plus, it’s the ultimate form of fashion rebellion. A leather choker feels especially appropriate with 90’s inspiration in full swing, while a good pair of leather shorts is equally sexy-tough.

:: Makeup mania ::
If you really don’t want to cake on layers of foundation, commit to your summer Goth look with a bit of smudged black eyeliner, a slinky cat eye and some dark oxblood lipstick. If you’re more adventurous try a full-on black lip and some striking brows. Oh, and never tan. Meowww.

:: Always accessorize ::
Keeping your outfits simple and adding dark accessories is the ultimate way to stay Summer Goth. Tie some long black sleeves around your waist, grab a vintage black wide brimmed hat and load up on occult inspired jewelry. Think onyx and quartz, paint your nails black, grab your favorite pair of pointy black boots or heels and you’re off!

SistersOfTheBlackMoon.com

Maude Nieblungen Shroud Dress, $264
Paula Hagerskans Branch necklace, $466
Paula Hagerskans Cone Ring Moonstone, $340
Moonshine essential oil blend by Naked Eye Beauty for SOTBM, $34
Peg & Awl Constellation Candle Block, £23