ASK A SPIRITUAL CEO: 6 WAYS TO GET REAL ABOUT GROWING YOUR BUSINESS

Overwhelmed by the nuts and bolts? Maha Rose founder Lisa Levine shares 6 ways to get real about growing your business without losing your magic mind …

Photo: Kinga Cichewicz

QUESTION: I am super creative and intuitive but have major blocks when it comes to planning, structure, and managing the financial side of my business. That stuff literally makes me fall asleep! How much of this should I try to do myself, and what should I try to outsource? I also want to allow my business to build organically, and worry that too much planning will get in the way of this. What’s a good balance to strike?”

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LISA SAYS: 

#1 Let it grow organically. You can’t rush spirituality. You can dedicate yourself to building your business but there is still a natural evolution that you must flow with.

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#2 To partner or not to partner. When I had my jewelry business, I really wished I could have had a business partner so I could focus more on the creative side of things. But in the end, I never found that person. The same goes for Maha Rose. I have lots of amazing people I work with but at the end of the day, I am the end of the decision making chain.

But it all depends on how you work. I love working with people but I also like having the final say. Actually, God(dess) is making the decisions and I am putting them into action. If I had a business partner, what would happen if the message they were receiving was different from the guidance I was receiving? A business partnership is like a marriage, and I’m in one of those already! So I choose to work on my flexibility and compromise in my personal life instead of at work.

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#3 Get help! Definitely and no matter what. We can’t and don’t need to do it ALL alone. So think about what that help could look like. Try to get as organized as possible and really visualize where you need help so you can ask for exactly this. This is actually still a challenge for me. I know I need help and lots of it all the time, but because I do so many different things I’m not always sure where to ask for help first. Sometimes it seems like it may be more work to train someone else rather than just do it myself—but this is rarely the case. Help can also be someone who assists you in structuring it all. Every type of help exists.

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#4 Get MORE help! I have a few very talented healer and artist friends who operate so much from their right brain (the non-logical side) that it would be hard for them to really succeed on this earthly realm without help. If this is you, it’s good to recognize this without judgement, and to allow people help you in all areas requiring left-brain logic. So may differently-minded people are embracing spirituality now, you don’t have to be a one person show. Operating within a bigger structure means you can focus on the parts you are good at.

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#5 Engage with your community. This is another reason healing centers exist. In this day and age of social media and online connections, real life experiences are still so powerful. Sometimes when we are engaging in just the digital side of things it is hard to find inspiration and connection to the people who can help us grow the most.

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#6 Have fun and eat the frog! No matter what your business is, and even if you are choosing to focus on the creative side, there will still be a certain amount of “nuts and bolts” things that you have to do. Eat the frog, means … do the thing you are avoiding doing! Do it first thing in the morning to give you the feeling of having accomplished something big. Once you’ve done that one difficult thing, you can play in the magic for the rest of your day …

Got a question for Lisa’s monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions.” 

ASK A SPIRITUAL CEO: 8 WAYS TO RECAPTURE THE MAGIC

Are you a full-time healer whose mojo feels more 9-5 mundane? Maha Rose founder Lisa Levine shares 8 ways to recapture the magic …

Photo: Sorin Sirbu

QUESTION: I’m full-time in the healing arts, and found this path through a lifelong obsession with all things mystical and witchy. Now that it’s become my main gig, I struggle to keep connecting to the mystical practices that have always supported me, which have now started to feel like just more work. How can I keep parts of this world sacred and separate, so all the healing magic I’ve always loved can still serve me off-duty?”  

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LISA’s ADVICE:

#1 Stay present to your needs. There are certain tools for certain times in our lives. Tools that served us for many moons in one capacity, may need to shift over time. Magic comes from staying in the present moment and listening to our intuition and our connection to Spirit. “What do I need right now?” is a good question to ask ourselves. It may not be the same every day. A practice that’s become your full time gig may need balancing with other activities in your off time.

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#2 Know that our relationship with ANYTHING will have ups and downs. Think about a romantic relationship. There are the weeks where you’re totally in love and in the magic and the flow, and then there are the weeks when you aren’t, when it’s off, challenging, feels out of alignment or just bad. Do we leave the relationship when it is in a dull or difficult period? That depends on our level of commitment. If we are committed to somebody or something we ride through the waves of challenge or disinterest. We don’t abandon the puppy when it turns into a dog.

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#3 The Universe loves commitment. I felt this when I got married. There are different things that we can work through when we commit to something. Our relationship to our work is not unlike our relationship to our partner. Sometimes magic, sometimes not. Stay in it and move through the __________________. Commit to seeing what’s on the other side…

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#4 Find ways to keep the spark alive. Speaking of love relationships, how about romancing your practice? Get a new tarot deck, give your crystals a bath. Take them outside and talk to them under the stars. Be creative. Show how much you care.

Photo: Carlos Dominguez

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#5 Seek fun. If you spend all day with your tarot decks, after work you need a different way to connect your magic. If a practice you used to heal part of yourself is being fully explored at work, try something different after hours: painting, dancing, singing, running, cooking. Follow your heart, make FUN your guiding principal as you explore the other healing arts.

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#6 Receive. Get a reading, get a massage, get a reiki treatment. Chances are, if you are giving lots of energy through your work and not receiving back, you may just be tired, making it harder to connect to the magic. RECEIVE. Healers, I can’t say this enough, RECEIVE! The more we receive the more fun it is to give. The more we then have to give. Also you will most likely be inspired and learn from other peoples’ ways of doing things. It keeps the journey feeling like an adventure.

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#7 Vacation. I’m an all-in mama CEO to my baby Maha Rose, but it is important for me to step away from her. And I mean far away from her. She can grow without me and I can grow in other ways outside of work. With distance comes clearer perspective. When we are so in something all the time, our nose in it deeply like a book, it can be hard to see the bigger picture.

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#8 Gratitude and perspective. Back up and see how beautiful and magical and amazing it is that you get to be doing this work for your living. Thank you Goddess, thank you Angels, thank you Guides. Think of the jobs you were doing before and wishing that you could be doing what you do now for a living. Think of all the jobs you could be doing for a living that you don’t have to do. We are so blessed and so fortunate. Remember this to keep perspective.

Got a question for Lisa’s monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions.” 

ASK A SPIRITUAL CEO: 9 STEPS FOR TURNING YOUR SPIRITUAL HOBBY INTO YOUR HUSTLE

Longing to work your mystical magic on more than just nights and weekends? Maha Rose founder Lisa Levine shows us how to turn a spiritual hobby into a main hustle, and start sharing our super powers every day …

Lisa Levine at Maha Rose South in Mexico

QUESTION:  “I recently started opening up about my empath side on social media and have been warming up to the idea of pursuing my reiki healing as more than just a hobby. Ultimately, it would be ideal to get paid for my services. But how do I even get started?” 

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LISA LEVINE: You’re in the process of waking up. You’re discovering your spiritual powers. Others are discovering your spiritual powers and gifts. You feel called to share them. Other people are asking for them! taking the leap and working out the best way to go about monetizing this process and transitioning into a full time mystical business can be daunting and confusing.

Read on for my tried-and-trusted 9 steps in turning your spiritual hobby into your main hustle .. 

#1 Make your own path. Your route is unique. Follow your intuition. The answers and the guidance live within you. Don’t worry or model your route after others’—your path is unique and yours only.

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#2 Give a lot! And be open to receiving. The best way to gain confidence in your work is by doing a lot of sessions. I’m talking hundreds. Exchange is important but don’t get stuck on it: give, give, give. When we are starting out, the experience gained is a big part of the exchange. That said, let there be an exchange. Be open to receive! Your clients/friends can make you dinner, take you out for tea, give you feedback—not just “that was amazing,” but ideas about how could it be even better. Allow constructive criticism to be your friend so you can constantly improve the services you are providing.

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#3 Take cues from the Universe. When people start wanting to pay you for your services this is a tip from the Universe that you’re ready to start charging for your work. Accept the money graciously and begin to price out your services. Many practitioners I know have a hard time receiving money in exchange for spiritual work, so find a price that may make you slightly uncomfortable but that you know is right. This is how we up-level. Get comfortable with this discomfort.

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#4 Become your own marketing department. First off, let people know what you are doing. I recommend emailing your friends and family for starters: “I just finished this course in Reiki, crystals, etc. and am ready to begin offering sessions. The first X number of sessions will be offered at a special rate of X.” Get people in the door and onto your table.

Secondly, gather feedback and testimonials. When someone tells you something amazing about their experience with you, ask them if you can share what they’ve said as a testimonial. This is better than gathering testimonials way after the session happened. Even if the client was to say the exact same thing it won’t have the same vibration as when they share with you fresh after the experience.

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#5 Be organized: you are your own manager. Call out your inner Virgo! Gather emails, keep client lists, get on top of session dates and times, and other important information. If you are looking to turn this hobby into a full time hustle, then act like it’s a business even before it IS your business by being organized. Then you won’t have to add the foundation after you’ve already been in business for some time.

Lisa balances her hustle with flow

#6 Stay in touch, a.k.a. don’t be a stranger to social media. Totally necessary. But keep it fun and keep your unique expression. We are all artists—see social media as a way to create a 4-D picture of your business. Have fun and share from the heart. Don’t let it own you, and don’t obsess over numbers. If it isn’t feeling like a healthy relationship, take a break!

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#7 Get out there LIVE. This is still the best way to meet people and perspective clients. You live is better than you on social media. Call me old fashioned, but I still believe real, live interactions are the best way to form lasting and meaningful relationships—including client relationships.

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#8 Be patient and let it grow organically. Quitting your day job can put too much pressure on your new found hobby/hustle. Like a garden, allow it to grow organically and be patient. It takes time to build our strength and ability to hold space for many people. Feel into how many sessions a week that might look like for you now, and imagine how many people that would be in a year and in five years.

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#9 Have FUN! We have spiritual businesses because we are connected to the Universe and we want to be of service and do good in the world. Let’s imagine a new paradigm of doing business: without stress, powered by the Divine as the motor , and with the Universe as CEO. What if we were just along for the magical ride?Business can be beautiful!

Got a question for Lisa’s monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions.” And make sure to check our her Intro to the Art of Running a Spiritual Business on March 22nd at Maha Rose for some in-person wisdom!

ASK A SPIRITUAL CEO: 8 REASONS TO CHARGE YOUR WORTH

Caught up in feelings of guilt about “for-profit” spirituality? Spiritual CEO, Maha Rose founder Lisa Levine, tells you how to lose your money-making shame and charge your worth …

Lisa Levine, embracing her worthiness

Q: “I would love advice on making money in a spiritual marketplace. How do you make money when a majority of spiritual people that you know and talk with (aka your audience) are against spirituality-for-profit? Like, what if my audience expects me to do things like tarot readings for free because … well … they’re spiritual in nature.”

Lisa Levine: Why should we charge for our spiritual work? This is a tough one, but totally necessary to confront if we want to fully embrace our calling.

Here are my top reasons for trusting in the value of exchange and getting comfortable with charging your worth  … 

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#1  This is the work that God/Universe/Goddess has called us to do. If it’s a part time, just for fun, thing then yes, let it be a hobby and keep your day job. But, if the Universe is calling, really calling you to do this as your full time, overtime, everyday gig then it’s necessary to be paid for it. Simply for practical reasons. The Universe doesn’t want us to suffer in exchange for doing what we are called here to do.

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#2  It’s all about exchange. If we don’t receive something for our work then there is an imbalance in the Universe. The person who received a reading or session from us will be indebted to us in some way. This is not a good situation to be in. We want freedom and we don’t want anybody to owe us anything! It doesn’t have to be money. It could be an amazing meal, painting your house, watching your dog … get creative. But receive.

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#3  Charging money teaches us how to receive. My first massage teacher, Elaine Marie, told our class, “You’re all going to have to get used to charging money for love.” As healers, we love to give. And it’s much more comfortable, as when we are giving we are also in the position of power. To receive, we actually have to be vulnerable to allow the money, love, meal, house painting in. This can be more challenging. But this is part of our work as spiritual healers, and mastering it we can teach others how to do the same.

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#4  If we don’t receive, we will burn out. Then we can’t do our work in the world. How do we know when we are burnt out? The two biggest signs are that we feel tired and / or angry. If we want to do this work we must learn to receive: financially and energetically. If we don’t allow others to support us, we will get depleted.

Lisa’s money musings

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#5  People value things they pay for. Especially in the western world. We receive more when we pay more. Sometimes, if we receive something for free we don’t value it. I was seeing an acupuncturist for some time who cost $300 a session. You can be sure I did every piece of homework he gave me and took responsibility for my part in the healing process.

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#6  Money asks us to balance our feminine and masculine. I have found that most men find it a lot easier to charge for their services than most women. The feminine aspect loves to give and love and nurture, so it can feel awkward to charge for something that just flows through us naturally. But the masculine understands the business side of life and work. If you are using your time and skills, you charge for them. Period. Access your masculine business side for the business side of your business. Then, in session, access your feminine flow. We all have both. Let them marry to make a strong spiritual business.

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#7  We want to do this work for a long time. There’s a lot of work to do, and the Universe needs us to be in this for the long haul and for us to be supported in building our career. Look at what stories you may have about needing to struggle or work inordinately hard to achieve success or stability. Rewrite those stories!

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#8 Growing your business is part of your spiritual work. The more you practice your skill (Tarot, Reiki, etc.) the better a practitioner you will be. And through this practice, you will also learn about all the other energetics surrounding spiritual work. There are times when you can give your gifts freely and there are times it is important to charge. Pay attention to your intuition. Most spiritual work requires us to be in business for ourselves, which opens up a whole other Universe of opportunity to grow and evolve. Keep up with your own spiritual work. This will feed you the most, allowing for clarity and and awareness to grow.

Got a question for Lisa’s monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions”

ASK A SPIRITUAL CEO: 5 RULES FOR CONSCIOUS SOCIAL MEDIA USE

Addicted to likes … while practicing non-attachment? In her first “Ask a Spiritual CEO” advice column, Maha Rose founder Lisa Levine shares her top 5 rules for conscious social media use …

Lisa gets social at Maha Rose. Photo: Annie Forest.

Q: “I know that to grow my business I need to be active on social media, but the more time I spend on Instagram the less connected I am to my deeper spiritual experience of life – which is also vital for my work. How can I reconcile both worlds? Instagram in particular is so addictive! It’s easy to get sucking into living from a place of what to “share” next. I also find myself distracted from my spiritual process by wondering which parts of my own journey will also make a good post, rather than being fully present with it. Help!”

Lisa Levine: Social media is such an amazing tool for small business, incuding independent healers, teachers, and artists. What people are able to grow through connecting in this way is inspiring!

But it can be a double-edged sword. Here are my top 5 rules for navigating the social media wilds while having fun, staying grounded with ourselves and each other, and preserving some of the mystery …

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Rule #1 Use it, Don’t be Used by It. Remember that social media is a tool. As spiritual seekers, our goal is freedom. Attachment to anything is the opposite of freedom.

When you know (or just suspect) you’ve had your fill, get off the screen and meditate, draw, dance, spend time with real live humans. When I find myself overstimulated and overstretched, I slow down, make extra eye contact, and focus on listening. During staff meetings at Maha Rose, we ask that people don’t have their phones open so we can be as present as possible with one another.

Photo: Annie Forest

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Rule #2: Know Your Triggers. Social media allows us see every aspect of people’s lives, and this information can trigger feelings of jealousy, competition, and feeling less than or left out.

I’m not exempt. If I feel myself getting triggered by things I see in social media, I stop engaging and spend some time with that emotion. I ask myself: where is this coming from, and what do I need to address in myself?

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Rule #3: Let the World Move On. The challenge of having your own business is deciding when and if you clock out. And social media is a 24 hour, 7 day a week medium. If you’re not on it, it keeps moving without you, and this can trigger a feeling of needing to be on it all the time.

Practice letting the social media world move on without you for some hours of the day, or even a day or two out of the week. I take regular hiatuses from social media, whether it’s just to disconnect for the second half of the day, or when I’m hosting a retreat, so I can create a bubble of magic space and healing and preserve that energy.

Notice the difference that break makes in your life. Also, notice if it is hard as hell. Social media addiction is REAL. Soon, there will be support groups helping people to get off social media. It’s designed to be addictive. More breaks!

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Rule #4 Recapture the Magic. Nowadays, we share EVERYTHING! And it feels good to share our revelations, and our “a-ha” moments with others.

But let yourself preserve a little bit of magic and mystery. There are revelations that might just be for you, or to be shared in an intimate setting with people who have signed up fully to receive this information, rather than anyone and everyone who happens to be scrolling by.

I love to share, but I do keep some things out of the spotlight. We generally don’t photograph in our workshops because we want them to feel really super sacred. And there are things in my personal life I don’t share. It’s good to keep a bit of mystery.

Photo: Annie Forest

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Rule #5 Pay Attention to Your Intentions. As healers and teachers, our business is US. What are you using to sell yourself? Your beauty, your sexiness, your children? Is that connected to the work you do? If it is, great. If it’s not, maybe question why you are posting it.

Really ask yourself, with every post, what your intention is. To uplift and inspire? Or something else? Everything has a vibration—even social media. Pay attention to the subtle underlying nuances.

Got a question for Lisa’s monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions”

9 TIPS FOR RUNNING YOUR SPIRITUAL BUSINESS

Want to mix your magic with your mojo? Lisa Levine, founder of renowned Brooklyn healing mecca Maha Rose, shares her top 9 tips for running your spiritual business …

I’m an artist and a healer who fell deep into the magic, challenges, and medicine of running a spiritual business. My path was anything but straightforward. After graduating from art school in 2002, and setting myself up as a massage therapist in my hometown of Pittsburgh, I decided to dive headfirst into the fashion world making jewelry.

This dive brought me to my knees and I searched for tools to maintain my sanity- yoga, then meditation, then Amma. My path with her and the practice of devotion brought clarity and a different sense of purpose. I closed my jewelry store in Williamsburg, completed acupuncture school, and officially opened Maha Rose in 2013 (though the roots date back to 2007). It’s been a wild ride and a beautiful one, ever shifting, quickly evolving.

I’m always learning and seeking to be of service to others in finding their path and purpose in this life. Read on for my top tips to keep your spiritual biz magically real …

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1// Cultivate a Beginner’s Mind. When we sign up to serve the divine, we are signing up for a lifetime of school. The Universe is always asking us to evolve, and the uncomfortable places are the places of learning and growth.

2// Commit to the Dirty Work. As a healer, the most important healing work we do is our own personal work. Do your spiritual and healing work, and everything else will radiate out from your own heart and fall into place.

3// Lean Into the Fear. Running a spiritual business is a calling- an agreement between you and the Universe. When you offer your life in service to the divine, opportunities will present themselves. If they make you feel excited and a little nervous, you are probably on the right track.

4// Find the Thing That Gets You Hot. My teacher David Elliott says, “The holy spirit is hot.” You can tell when you are in alignment with your path when your temperature rises, the hair on your arms and legs stands up, your senses sharpen, and your heart flutters: you’re on your path.

5// Head In the Stars, Feet On the Ground. Many of us healer/artists have resistance around legal, governmental, and financial structures. But if we signed up to make magic in the earth realm, we have to play by the rules of that realm. Free up the rest of your energy to make more magic by doing the work, calling the lawyer, buying the insurance. When the foundation is solid, then you can play and dance and heal for the rest of the day and night.

6// Trust Your Social Media Intuition. When you’re overwhelmed with how and what others are doing on social media, go inside and listen to find your unique expression. Play with social media and interact with it if it is uplifting and inspiring, but walk away if it is making you feel down or depressed.

7// Receive. Receive. Receive. Many healers are very comfortable in the role of giving but less comfortable in the role of receiving. When we are giving we are in the position of power. To receive we need to be open and vulnerable. This is challenging. But we must have this sacred exchange so we don’t get burnt out. Know that you don’t have to do this work alone. Who are your advisers? Who are your mentors? Who’s done this before you who can help you on the path? Let people support you.

8// Treat Money as Energy.  My first massage teacher said to us, “You’re all going to have to get used to exchanging love for money.” It may feel weird at first, but we must charge for our time and because this is our life’s work. Figure out what works for you- this could be keeping your day job and doing work on the side, or bartering. But know that there must be an exchange. Otherwise, there is an imbalance in the Universe that leaves people owing you. And then things get super funky and weird in the energetic realms …

9// Don’t Push the River. When I first starting giving Reiki treatments, I still had my jewelry company and if I had immediately started pressuring myself to make rent and pay all my life expenses, it would have taken a lot of magic away from my sessions. You can’t push spirit. Let is grow organically and keep the magic as things evolve.

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And remember, we are channels. Just like healing energy comes through you, let your business do the same. Rather than thinking “I have to [fill in the blank],” think “We (the Universe and I) are [fill in the blank] together!” Just show up, and be available for the magic, healing, light, and love to move through you …

From January 2018, Lisa Levine will be writing a monthly “Ask a Spiritual CEO” column for The Numinous, in which she will respond to readers’ spiritual business Qs. Got a question for Lisa? Email [email protected] with the subject line: “Spiritpreneur Questions”

OUR MOON MAGIC RETREAT WILL HELP YOU FIND YOUR SOUL PURPOSE

Numinous founder Ruby Warrington introduces a very special Moon Magic Retreat with her and Alexandra Roxo—a weekend deep dive to get aligned with your soul purpose (for real!)

Last year, Alexandra Roxo, Elyssa Jakim and I teamed up with Maha Rose North to host our very first Numinous retreat—a weekend deep dive into our love stories, and a celebration of sacred sisterhood. This year, Alexandra and I are back July 21—23 with a very special MOON MAGIC RETREAT: A DEEP DIVE TO DISCOVER YOUR SOUL PURPOSE.

To say last year’s weekend upstate was life-changing is an understatement, as that weekend kicked off a year of the most profound growth for me. In the following months, I collaborated with Alexandra to create Moon Club; I have overcome my fear of public speaking; I published my first book (!); and I have got clearer than ever about my unique gifts and contribution to humanity.

Most recently (and most importantly, actually) I received an email from my mom telling me how she believes the work I’m doing with my life now is healing the “mother and woman” wounds for the females in my family lineage. This note came from out of the blue, and I know in my heart, soul, and bones, that it was our retreat that fully aligned me with this very personal mission. (You can read more about how and why I know this here.)

Never before have I experienced such spiritual alchemy. Sure, Alexandra, Elyssa and I were the anointed “leaders” of the experience, but the circle of love, support and growth we created with our retreat sisters affected me to my CORE. It also made me understand how any time a group comes together with the intention to truly create a shift, we are all equal participants in the process. We each have a unique and vital role to play.

And this year, Alexandra and I have set the stage for a weekend that takes this theme even DEEPER. The big important message of my book, is that the time has arrived in human history for us to become equal participants in healing the mother & woman wounds of our Mama Earth. And that this mission, should you choose to accept it, will bring you more purpose, more fulfillment, more abundance, and more ADVENTURE than in your wildest dreams!

So, are you with us?

The full itinerary for this year’s retreat is below, with pricing options and details of a special FULL MOON DISCOUNT that’s valid through midnight Friday June 16!

Accommodations at Maha Rose North

FRIDAY NIGHT—Opening Ceremony: FINDING YOUR SOUL PURPOSE.
Ritual with Alexandra and Ruby to open the container for a weekend spent deepening your relationship to your purpose and your mission with ritualized intention. Set your intention for the weekend and drill down into your Soul Purpose, with a group ritual and 1-2-1 coaching.

SATURDAY MORNING—MATERIAL GIRL, MYSTICAL WORLD: ASTRO 101 with Ruby
Learn how to open up astrology as a tool for aligning with your Soul Purpose, using your birth chart as a blueprint to tap your unique mission in this incarnation! Ruby will also share insights from her own journey of marrying of the material and mystical, and living a life of total alignment.

SATURDAY AFTERNOON—HUSTLE & FLOW WORKSHOP with Alexandra
How to do your Spiritual Hustle while keeping the Mystical Flow alive! Alexandra will share her medicine on helping you align with you Soul Purpose through partner work, writing work, and some deep investigation of your path. We’ll finish with a Shamanic Journey that takes the work offline and majorly deep. Some things we will touch on: How to Run a Spiritual Business, How to Deal with “Haters,” How to Keep it Mystical in a non-mystical workplace, and all kinds of other goodies!

SWIM BREAK!

SATURDAY EVENING—NEW MOON FEAST + FIRE RITUAL.
Ritualized plant-based feast to celebrate the Leo New Moon! We will break out into groups to do some deeper work on our Soul intentions, finishing with a Moon Fire Ritual to anchor in what energy has moved and what we need to release moving forward. After dinner we will do a potent releasing ritual with an outdoor fire.

SUNDAY MORNING—STORY MEDICINE: TIME FOR A NEW STORY.
Share your story. We want to hear from your heart. You blocks. Who you wanna be. Who you’ve been. Throughout the weekend you’ll have found the story you want to share today. Could be letting go of an old one or calling in a new one. Ritualized, intentional story-telling is both a cathartic release and an opportunity to feel connected to others by our shared human experiences. Let’s close our experience using the power of words as spells, to create the lives we want to live.

CLOSING BRUNCH.
A final festive feast to fill our cups and share about the weekend before we return home ready to shine bright like a DIAMOND.

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:: EXCHANGE :: GET 20% WITH THE CODE “MOONMAGIC20” THROUGH MIDNIGHT FRIDAY JUNE 16th! Payment plans are also available. Contact [email protected] for details.

$750 for workshops + food + lodging. ($600 WITH DISCOUNT)

$650 for workshops + food + camping. ($520 WITH DISCOUNT)

Book Retreat + Lodging Options Online

$550 for workshops + food—book own accommodation offsite. ($440 WITH DISCOUNT)

Book Retreat Only Online

See you there—we’re so excited to be sharing in this journey with you!

Hammocks among the trees at Maha Rose North

THE SOFTER IMAGE: HIGH VIBE NYC DANCE PARTY

The Softer Image is a new NYC nightlife experiment from hip healer & mystic Luke Simon. On a mission to help folks “get turnt while staying woke,” we needed to know more…

 

The Softer Image is an exploration of new ways to party. Imagine, nightlife that expands your consciousness and improves your health. Let’s get wild without getting sick. Let’s get turnt up while staying woke. Let’s get psychic not blacked out. People want to let go and feel the Spirit so they turn to spirits. Our pop up party uses healing and holistic cocktails to open the human energy field to fun on a cosmic level.

THE NUMINOUS: What was the idea behind A Softer Image? Why do we need a party like this?!
LUKE SIMON: I wanted to start hosting a high vibe party because so many people in the city now are doing healing work and are no longer drinking. Or maybe just don’t like the spooky energy at bars, but still want to go out, dress up, dance and basically celebrate life.

We have so many amazing workshops, sessions and classes now, but there was this reservoir of vibes building up in me that just wanted to be free and have fun! Spirituality doesn’t have to be about serious self-cultivation and restraint. My higher self constantly urges me to DANCE through life. But when I try to do that at a club in NYC, it doesn’t even really start ’til 1am, and then I have to take off the next day of two to recover my sleep. Not to mention if there are drink and drugs involved.

TN: What’s your vision for the night?
LS: As I’ve honed my vibrational sensitivity, I’ve been dreaming of people hanging out in a beautiful space with great music and an elixir bar. The idea of Portals fascinates me—they say Stone Henge was one, and many cultures have used physical spaces and group energy to open up to the Universe. I was also intrigued by the idea of group trance, rituals and spells in the context of a party. Because a party basically is a ritual—the intention is FUN, and everyone brings their energy to the ritual in their own way. Partying is sacred!

TN: As you know, with our Club SÖDA NYC events we’re encouraging people to get high on their own supply. But nightclubs still feel flat to me without alcohol! Is it really possible to go wild on the dancefloor totally sober? 
LS: The Softer Image comes after a lot of personal experimenting with how to feel good in a healthy way. It’s a gathering for people to explore this question for themselves: can they have fun without alcohol? And also, what are the other, softer substances that can also help us let go of our inhibitions and have fun?

Softening has been a huge theme on my personal journey: softening the mind and trusting the flow. But also, letting go of the aggressive reaching for things that make me feel tense. Yoga has taught me about “arriving” to every moment, and “abiding” in my body and in my heart. The deeper healing I have done in the past years is all about softening the edges and releasing all that still tries to leave this moment—which alcohol, ultimately, facilitates.

TN: What’s the music policy? Have you got a theme song for the night?
LS: The song “Now that we’ve found Love what are we gonna do with it?” keeps coming to mind! I am so amazed by all the spiritual energy in the air and how much people are transforming. But I feel there is still this seriousness and strictness that we can integrate with a little celebration and release. What do you do with the Love and the Freedom once you get it?! You want to celebrate, but where? The Softer Image will be popping up around cities to give people a place to be their high vibe self and have fun in a beautiful, playful, temporary zone.

TN: So what can we expect on the night?
LS: Kate Falcone is creating a beautiful pink tinted interior, and the first gathering features Shauna Cummins leading us into a group trance to manifest our desires. She calls the work “Wish Craft”! Light being and wellness coach Sah D’Simone is manifesting the high vibe bar with balancing and softly altering herbal tonics, superfood snacks and juice blends. And I will DJ, along with Bryce Hackford.

The Softer Image is happening October 20 2016 from 8pm at a private location in lower Manhattan (TBA to ticket holders). Entry is $20—but Numinous readers get $5 off with the code “NUMI” Click here to get your ticket and follow @thesofterimage on Insta for more info.

A NUMINOUS RETREAT: RE-WRITE YOUR LOVE STORY

Love-centered astrology, meditation into the heart space, water ceremony, creative writing, crafting, sharing, and play…it’s our first Numinous retreat! And an invitation to Re-write Your Love Story.

Friday, July 15th- Sunday, July 17th

The Numinous Presents :: Re-Write Your Love Story

A Holy F*ck + The Temple of Venus Women’s Retreat

Location: Maha Rose North – Catskills, Upstate NY

Love, dating, sex, partnership: where do you stand on these Venus-rules issues? What are the stories you have inherited and internalized about love, and how would you like to re-write them?

Join Numinous founder Ruby Warrington, with contributors Alexandra Roxo and Elyssa Jakim, for a weekend of discovery and creativity tailored toward telling your True Love Story. During this magical weekend, we will delve into our femininity and sensuality. We will release old wounds that may be blocking us from getting the love we want, to manifest the love we do want. We will balance our career driven warrior women with the open-hearted goddesses we are.

Think: love-centered astrology, meditation into the heart space, water ceremony, creative writing, crafting, sharing, and play.

Read on for the actual schedule…

Healing space at Maha Rose North

:: FRIDAY ::
3:30pm – 5:30pm: Arrivals.

6:00pm – 7:00pm: A Welcoming Feast and meet & greet.

7:30pm – 9:45pm: Workshop 1 HELLO HEART. Let’s get real about where we’re at with sex and love, setting our intentions as individuals and as a group. An open discussion and sharing circle with live coaching, led by your guides for the weekend.

:: SATURDAY ::
7:30am – 8:00am: Morning Angel Meditation led by Alexandra.

8:30am – 9:30am: Breakfast.

10:00am – 12:00pm: Workshop 2 RE-WRITING OUR LOVE STORY led by Ruby. What are the fairy stories we tell ourselves about love? What are the myths about romance and dating that we’ve absorbed, both individually and as a collective? And what fantasies have we bought into about what it means to be a sexual woman? In this workshop we will delve into our birth charts, using storytelling and journaling exercises to excavate these often limiting beliefs, examine how they may have shaped our love story to date, and re-write the script of a more authentic, fulfilling, and heart-centered future love story.

12:30 pm – 2:30 pm: Lunch & personal Time. Journal. Lay in the grass. Sing in the woods. Cry. Be.

3:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Workshop 3 DO IT LIKE A DOLPHIN led by Elyssa. Lemurian water ceremony with mermaids and water fairies in the nearby lake. BYOB. (Bring Your Own Bikini)

BYOB (bring your own bikini) for the water ceremony

6:30 pm – 8:30pm: RITUAL DINNER aka PRIESTESS FEAST There was something to the way the Greeks and Romans did it. Though we won’t be communally purging this time, we will be lighting candles, wearing beautiful dresses, and ceremonially celebrating together.

8:30pm – 10:30pm: Workshop 4 HEART 2 HEART RITUAL led by Alexandra. Let’s get deep into what’s holding us back, clear some shit out and hold space for release and clearing in the heart and womb space. We will work with the Mother Mary and Mary Magdalene energies and archetypes, balancing our own polarities of Divine Feminine energy. Ending with a burning ceremony.

:: SUNDAY ::
7:30am – 8:00am: Morning Angel Meditation led by Alexandra.

8:30 am – 10:00am: Workshop 5 GET WHAT YOU WANT We’ve talked to our hearts and our wombs, we’ve the cleared old stories out. Now what? Let’s manifest our true heart’s desires, and and cultivate our sensual sides. This workshop introduces concrete tools for manifesting true love and partnership to incorporate into your daily practice. Followed by live coaching.

11:30 am – 1:00 pm: Workshop 6 FAIRY BRUNCH A date with your inner Wood Nymph
led by Elyssa. We will call in our fairy spirits to bring sexiness, play and fun to our love lives
over brunch!

2:30pm – 3:30pm: CLOSING RITUAL We will pull our energies together to seal the deal, sending our prayers into the earth and heavens with a candle that we can all take home.

Accommodation at Maha Rose North on The Numinous

:: PRICING ::

Retreat with all meals and two nights lodging | $640

Retreat with all meals and camping | $600

Retreat with all meals | $520 (guests to arrange own accommodation)

Sign-up online here. EARLY BIRDS! Book with a friend before June 17 and both receive a $50 discount. Installment payment plans are also possible—please contact Maha Rose to inquire on: [email protected].

:: BIOS ::

Ruby Warrington is a writer, curator, creative consultant, and founder of The Numinous, an online magazine where “material girl meets mystical world.” With 18 years’ experience in lifestyle journalism, she was formerly Features Editor for the UK Sunday Times Style magazine, and her writing has appeared in numerous publications on both sides of the Atlantic. Ruby has also been an astrology enthusiast since she discovered, aged three, she’d been born in the year of the Dragon. Her first book, a volume of “mystical self-help,” will be published by Harper Collins in Spring 2017.

Alexandra Roxo is a filmmaker, writer, and creative intuitive coach. She has been making films and shows about her spiritual journey with the Divine Feminine for the last 15 years, including the hit show Be Here Nowish and as a writer for the Numinous. Her work has been featured in Vogue, The New Yorker, i-D, Dazed, The Wall St Journal, London Times and more. She has been leading group rituals and women’s circles, high priestessing weddings, and facilitating creativity healing workshops off and on for 10 years.

Elyssa Jakim is a Reiki master, ceremonialist, and intuitive. She is a co-founder of Fairy School, held at Maha Rose, an after school program connecting children to their magic. She likes to connect adults to magic too, and has been known to incorporate fairies, unicorns, and mermaids into all aspects of her life and work. Elyssa co-created The Temple of Venus with The Numinous, a community art space and later monthly column focused on healing issues around love, sex, femininity, and everything in between. She received her Reiki Mastership with Lisa Levine, founder of Maha Rose.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: YOGI SWEATS, AND A SHAMANIC CLOSET CLEAR OUT

Time for another shamanic closet clear out – PLUS sound baths, breathwork, and the latest in the plant-based revolution…

 

:: MONDAY ::
Skype date with beautiful yogini Shona Virtue (above) – a.k.a. one of the main reasons we are RE-LAUNCHING OUR YOGI SWEATSHIRT LINE! Shona picked up a couple of the original (v v limited edition, pretty much sold to friends-and-family only) sweats, and has been on at us to make more ever since. So we listened. And they’re going on sale reeeeeealy soon! The pic is a behind-the-scenes peak from our photo-shoot this week. Sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know when they go on sale – and maybe win one too!

:: TUESDAY ::
I hadn’t actually planned anything special for Eclipse night, and so I figured a last minute invite to a sound bath meditation hosted by Well+Good co-founder Melisse Gelula and her friend Summer Rayne (real name) sounded just about perfect. Plus the sound bath itself was being performed by Sara Auster – whose name had literally crossed my radar three times in the past week. It was beautiful, and a precursor to further group meditations in Summer Rayne’s Brooklyn apartment. So let’s just talk about the apartment for a moment…The girl is plant CRAZY, and has created an actual. Freaking. Urban jungle in her home. Full story (on her basically teaching me how to cure my “black thumb” – since I seem to kill anything green that enters my auric field) + pics to follow in a future post…

Sound bath good to go

:: WEDNESDAY ::
Psychic closet clear-out! I first enlisted the help of a psychic to help me to an energetic blitz on my closet a couple of years ago, and having moved twice since then things had been getting kind of messy again. Enter Colleen McCann, a stylist-turned-shaman, who essentially does this FOR A LIVING. To kick our session off she read my crystals (yes this is a thing), and used my birth chart details to map my Ba Gua – kind of feng-shui-meets-human-design (I know!!) to map the power places in my apartment / wardrobe. Then we hit the rails. Not enough red (my power color), and everything needs to be reorganized by clothes for my behind-the-scenes vs. front-of-camera life (to invite more “front of camera” opportunities in). To finish, Colleen ran her hands over every piece – and anything holding any extra dense energy had to go, to create space for more high-vibe alternatives. Including a pair of McQueen stilettos, beautiful but wicked painful relics from my “old life” (and which are currently sitting in the Eleven Consignment boutique on NYC’s First Avenue, just FYI).

VERY SPECIAL CRYSTALS in Colleen’s Shamanic “mesa” (medicine bag) + neon pink nails #materialgirlmysticalworld

:: THURSDAY ::
JUST YES RAVI DEROSSI – the vegan restaurateur dedicated to bringing plant-based eating to the hipster masses. Like in his East Village tiki bar Mother Of Pearl, where vegan chef Daphne Cheng has just launched an entirely meat-free menu of bar snacks and small plates. I met Daphne there today to talk future Numinous projects (she also hosts supper clubs at her space Exhibit C – sign up for info about what we’ve got planned) and got to sample a ridiculous Edemame Spring Rolls and King Trumpet Mushroom Crudo. #plantpower #futuroffood

:: FRIDAY ::
Date-night with Erin Telford – because, Breathwork. I’ve written many times about how much I love this incredibly healing, vibe-raising, multiple-crygasm inducing pranayama workshop, but it’s not something I do on the regular. Rather, my body will just be like “GO. NOW” whenever some stuff has come up that needs to be breathed out. Like, y’know, the Friday night following a FULL ON Pisces New Moon Solar Eclipse…Click the pic below for Erin’s upcoming Breathwork schedule 

 

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.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: WORKING WITH THE HIEROPHANT, AND MY FAVE NEW SMOOTHIE

Dream diaries, a past life regression, and how the Hierophant became my favorite new guide…

My new smoothie + current desk buddies: Chalcopyrite (Peacock Ore) and Pyrite

:: MONDAY ::
New week, favorite new smoothie (which is basically a high-vibe rip-off of the Truth Chakra smoothie at the Jivemuktea cafe – as in there’s no agave and they also use soy milk). Recipe (makes enough for 2):

1.5 cups home made hemp milk (here’s a post with my recipe)
1 cup filtered water
1/2 a frozen banana
2 tbsp almond butter (I use the Wholefoods fresh churned stuff)
1 scoop Sun Warrior Vanilla vegan protein powder
1 tsp psyllium husk
2 tsp ground flax seeds
Half a pack of frozen blueberries
An ice cube or two

OMFG

:: TUESDAY ::
With the Moon in dreamy Pisces, what better day for my friend Aly to tell me I really need to get into a dream diary practice – i.e. write down whatever I can remember from my dreams the minute I wake up. “But my dreams just aren’t that vivd,” I told her – to which she replied: “well don’t judge them!” And she’s so right. The way to get your dreams to show you more, is to pay more attention to them – by keeping a dream diary, for example. Aly’s been doing it for years, and she’s received whole book-loads of info about how the Universe works. You can read some of her dream wisdom on her new website.

:: WEDNESDAY ::
Moon in Pisces also meant perfect timing for my first past life regression, since Pisces rules our dreams and inner visions. I’d booked in with Morgan Yakus at Maha Rose (where they were also brewing the most incredible ginger, rose petal and nettle tea), who uses hypnosis to access past life information stored in the subconscious. Once we got down there, I retrieved some really good stuff – mainly about my mission and my karma in this lifetime. And yes I saw some past lives too – like being a kinda bohemian prophet in California in the 1960s, and meeting my husband for the first time in a Medieval court – where he literally appeared as a “knight in shining armor.” Hmmm. Sometimes in a trance state, it’s hard to say where cosmic consciousness ends and romantic fantasy begins…!

:: THURSDAY ::
I sent this email:

Hey Danielle – I just received my Starchild Tarot Akashic deck, thank you SO MUCH!!

I think “my” deck has finally found me. I am head over heals about these cards…(+ the fact it’s the 3rd time the Akashic Records have entered my field this week)

So of course I smudged them and pulled a card right way. Question: What will my book bring to this planet? What I am creating?

Only…The Hierophant!!

Thanks again for your beautiful dharma Danielle xxxx

:: FRIDAY ::
Goal for the weekend – work out how to get an “8-hour massage,” which my friend Deborah was telling me about over tea this week. Apparently, this was a treatment enjoyed by the Egyptian pharaohs – designed to bring about a kind of trace state, and access psychic information from deep, deep within the body tissue. “It’s totally doable, you just need to switch out the therapist every two hours,” said Deborah. Unless you’re Mariah Carey that is – who paid her masseuse $1500 for the treatment back in 2012!

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: A DOSE OF STORY MEDICINE

The story behind our new event series – Story Medicine…

A couple of months back, Aly Derby and I hosted a Meditation for Peace at Maha Rose in Greenpoint, as part of a global synchronized meditation for the International Day of Peace. It began with Aly leading a guided meditation to tap us into the oneness energy of the event, and afterwards we both shared some stories around what had come up for us. And then so did everybody else in the group, and the conversation flowed, and the stories became more personal. We all left feeling connected and uplifted, and with the glow of having been heard.

This event was the inspiration for Story Medicine, the monthly gathering Aly and I will be hosting at Hub 17, a beautiful and expansive community space below the new lululemon flagship store on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. As Aly wrote beautifully in the blurb for the event:

“When we come together we create community; and when communities share our stories with each other we weave unity. In every experience we share, there is a valuable lesson for someone. And listening in itself is a gift – it’s when our stories are heard that we become healed. In this simple yet profound exchange we find ourselves uplifted, connected and more inspired by our own lives than ever before.”

As a “reserved” Brit, when I first started attending Moon rituals, and healing workshops and events I used to silently dread the “sharing” segment – when we’d go around the circle, and participants would be asked to talk a little about where they were at, and their intentions. Not least because I would often get so emotional! But if I’ve learned anything on my numinous journey, it’s that often when I cry is when I know it’s working. The healing that is.

So with Story Medicine we’re making the sharing the main event. Each month will have a different theme, and as with the Meditation for Peace we’ll kick off with a guided meditation from Aly. Then, each person in the circle will be invited to share a story related to our theme – which could be a story from your own life, a story you heard which has inspired you, or even just the story of what happened to you today.

Our first Story Medicine event will take place December 3, and you can get more details and sign up here. Since it’s right after Thanksgiving, we’ve chosen GRATITUDE as our theme. So, what does being thankful really mean for you?

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: THE MAGIC OF PLANTS PARTS 1 & 2

The week that showed me there’s no denying the magic of plants…

Medicine woman: Deborah Hanekamp

Magic of plants part 1. I’m completely fascinated by the whole plant medicine revolution that’s happening right now. The concept that thousands of people, often the opinion-formers and change-makers of the world, are being sought out by the consciousness of Mother Earth via these medicines, and experiencing vast awakenings.

In fact, I was joking with my friend the other day that the current financial system won’t collapse because of dodgy bonds and unchecked “quantitative easing” – but because all the bankers will end up doing Ayahuasca, and quitting their jobs to make a positive difference in the world instead!

To date, I have not been called to sit in a ceremony myself. The stories of emotional and often physical intensity frighten me, and I know from past practice that I am capable of having similarly (third) eye-opening experiences using alternative, gentler methods.

But still, the fascination remains, and so when I learned about Deborah Hanekamp’s Medicine Readings, which she described as being as close as you could get to a ceremony without actually drinking Ayahuasca, I was obviously super intrigued.

Cut to Tuesday afternoon, when I met Deborah for a reading at my fave spot, Maha Rose. She began by asking what I was working on (as in emotionally), and from her questions about this I could tell immediately that she is a gifted intuitive, with an open and true connection the subtle realms.

I was then asked to lie on her treatment table, and begin a steady tri par viloma (three-part) breath. For the following hour Deborah would invoke the spirit of the plants using scent, in the form of sweet floral tinctures, healing stones and different sound instruments, including her own voice as she sang the haunting “Icaros,” traditional Peruvian medicine songs.

All the time I felt very much in my body – while I was shown, with incredible clarity and in the form of deeply held memories rising effortlessly to the surface of my consciousness, the very root of the issues I’d been grappling with during the recent eclipse period. Tears flowed freely as I was able to make sense of situations that my psyche had chosen to keep hidden from me until now, but in understanding and putting these pieces of my past together, I also felt a sense of forgiveness.

Coming out of the session, I was aware that I’d actually been in a trance-state – my body felt slow, my blood thick, as if I’d be dosed with a heavy anesthetic. One designed to null any pain, allowing me to face the truths that arose without flinching, or looking away. Writing this now, I realize this is probably very similar to what happens in a plant medicine ceremony.

Deborah then told me what spirit, the Grandmother consciousness of the plant, had shared with her during my reading, all of it deeply relevant. We finished the session with her giving me a prescription for a special bath I was to prepare for myself in the coming week, along with a crystal, a meditation, and a mantra to work with.

They say that when you are ready, the spirit of Ayahuasca will find you. And in a week of much confusion, actually, following the two eclipses, last weekend’s Blood Moon, and in the final throws of this Mercury Retro period, she offered herself to me in exactly the form I needed.

Check out more about Deborah and her work at Unityessences.com

Magic of plants part 2. I also watched the brilliant documentary Cowspiracy this week – which has totally cemented my commitment to being vegan. This is something that goes beyond health, beyond all the completely unnecessary bloodshed, and even beyond environmental issues for me now (although, if you need any more convincing, check out this ridiculous fact sheet). For me, this taps into the evolution of consciousness.

Because okay, how’s this for theory. Animal agriculture is by FAR the biggest contributor to the destruction of the rainforests – responsible for 91% OF AMAZON DESTRUCTION. How freaking cool, then, that the Amazonian plants themselves are fighting back – the Ayahuasca revolution opening so many influential minds to the wider implications of this issue.

The broader message of this film + my interaction with plant consciousness with Deborah this week have made me more aware than ever of the connection we as humans share with every other living being (animal + vegetable) on Earth, and the responsibility of love and care to our extended “family” that comes with this.

Also, you can think about it from a karmic perspective – with so much environmental destruction in the name of using flesh for food…doesn’t it make a sick kind of sense that our addiction to animal protein (because that’s what it is, since all tastes besides breast milk are acquired) could be what brings about the extinction of our species?

Wow – big stuff. But it’s not too late! As one commentator in the documentary puts it: “No other lifestyle choice has a father reaching and more profoundly positive impact on the planet than choosing a plant-based lifestyle.” Amen to that.

From the streets of LA…where they’re all about the magic of plants!

 

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: INTO THE AKASHIC RECORDS.

This week I met the Dharma Punx, connected to my witchy mama, and got guidance from the Akashic Records….

I opened the Akashic Records. Or rather, my friend Elyssa did. A gifted intuitive, the Akashic Records are Elyssa’s latest “thing”, and as soon as I started talking to her about a particular crossroads I have found myself staring down on my journey, she suggested a session.

For the uninitiated, the concept of the Akashic Records speaks to a metaphysical “library” or “filing system” that holds a record of every word, deed, thought and action, of every soul, in its every incarnation. So yeah, unless you want to spend the next two hours in a total head spin, don’t even try to picture this as a physical thing. Just go with it as a cosmic concept!

This article has more about the Akashic Records, but the idea is you can open them up to get specific information about certain people and situations, and the role they have to play in your current incarnation and your soul’s development. I mean why would you NOT want to spend your Wednesday evening doing this.

First, Elyssa asked for my current legal name – “as that’s how spirit registers your soul” – before opening the Akashic Records by reciting a special prayer, and calling in the masters, teachers and loved ones (departed ancestors) “assigned” to my soul in this lifetime.

This is the cosmic “team” Elyssa then consulted every time I asked a question, and the answers that came through just FELT so right. I always think the best kind of psychic readings pretty much support and validate your own intuition about whatever situation you’re facing, and that’s exactly what I got from my Akashic gatekeepers.

Oh, and I recorded the reading on my iPhone – and it ended with me going “Yay!” at 1.11.11 #angelnumbers

I hung out with the Dharma Punx. I’ve wanted to connect with this sober Buddhist meditation group since I first read about them in i-D magazine about five years ago. And since drinking a lot less (if not all out sobriety) is on my current consciousness-raising to-do list, I figured the time had come to go see what they had to say.

And it seems like I’m not the only one – I have never seen Maha Rose in Greenpoint, where they host a regular Monday night session, so packed! (p.s. SO psyched to see our favorite healing center featured in the NY Times this week too)

The session went like this: 30-minute guided mindfulness meditation, 30-minute “Dharma talk” on a core component of the Buddhist teachings, Q&A.

This week’s talk was about how happiness is an inside, in the moment job, and can never be found in the pursuit and attainment of external things (including booze, I guess was the implication). My takeaway by the end of the night? Meditation is a powerful way to recognize and cultivate the serenity required to STAND IN THIS TRUTH. Amen. (And time to pick up what had become a seriously lapsed practice).

I connected to my witchy Mama. If you read last week’s column, you’ll know I’ve been experiencing the The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up (thank you Marie Kondo), and while tacking the “Books” segment of the process, I unearthed this little gem.

The inscription inside reads: “Christmas 1972. To Nancy, all my love, Louby xx”- the “Nancy” in question being my mom!

Now, I always knew she was a hippie. I think my first solid food was pureed aduki-bean stew. But if I ever doubted where I got my mystically witchy tendencies, I no longer need to consult the Akashic Records on this one.

Containing recipes for all sorts of “Remedies, Spells, Elixirs, Cordials and Aphrodisiacs”, below is a taster of the kind of wisdom contained within.

Aphrodisiacs
If thou wilt that a woman bee not visious nor desire men, take the private members of a Woolfe, and the hairs which doe grow on the cheeks or eyebrowes of him, and burne it all, and give it to her to drinke, when she knoweth not, and she shall desire no other man.

Err, come back modern medicine, all is forgiven…