7 WAYS TO TAKE A SPIRITUAL STAYCATION

Think you have to join an ashram or book a flight to Bali to get elevated this summer? Just step out your apartment door and start your spiritual staycation … Main Image: Darby Society 

How do you want to feel this summer? Kick-start your summertime spiritual journey this Memorial Day weekend with a local choose-your-own adventure that’s perfect for Gemini Season’s curious explorations …

***Want the perfect on-the-go guide to cultivating the 7 intentions below? We’ve teamed up with Jessica Caplan & Ally Bogard of SoundMind to offer Numi readers a special $11 discount on their digital meditation series with Code: numinous. 

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:: GROUND ::

Play: Find creative inspo at your local corner store.
Who says you have to journey into nature with a capital “N” to conjure earthy vibes? Meditate on the origins of all the luscious provisions in a local shop. Think about the rich dirt that the ingredients came from, the changing weather conditions the plants experienced, and the trip they took to arrive all the way here.

Taste: Host an impromptu afternoon picnic in a local park using only the shop’s ingredients or other farm-to-table delights.

Style: Earth Goddess Chic. Locally-crafted threads, flowy maxi skirts, strappy sandals, bangles, and undone locks.

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:: MANIFEST ::

Play: Let the streets become your tarot deck.
Pay attention. As you travel through your day, notice left behind objects and pieces of so-called “trash.” Let the tiny things you’ve found become tools of divination. Treat them like a tarot deck. What do they reveal about your life right now? How can you use them as intention-setting totems for what you’d like to manifest?

Taste: Bento boxes, tapas platters, buffets, fortune cookies.

Style: Modern Mystic. Body-con jumpsuits punctuated by pops of crystals, gems, and feathers.

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:: LET GO ::

Play: Travel to a neighborhood you’ve never even heard of and get totally lost.
Shut your phone off and leave the maps at home. Ride the train to the end of the line or wait at an unfamiliar bus stop and hop on the first one that arrives. Get out whenever you’re pulled towards a place name. Experiment with walking more slowly than you normally would through the streets. Smell the air. Is it different from your home turf? Get completely lost. Trust that you’ll find your way back home when it’s time.

Taste: Speak to a stranger and ask for directions to their favorite snack spot.

Style: Urban Nomad. Delirious mixes of prints and patterns, caftans, and colorful combat boots.

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:: APPRECIATE ::

Play: Do something unabashedly touristy
Suspend your ideas about “good taste” and your identity as an insider. Wait in line for a show that everyone wants to see. Snap pics at the most Insta-worthy spots. Hop on a tour bus or ferry. Get unapologetically joyous as you innocently open yourself to the experience, however corny it may seem.

Taste: Crowded, famous, family-style spots with your city’s classic dishes.

Style: Sporty Spice. High-tops, sparkly backpacks, primary palettes, and logo tees.

:: ACCEPT ::

Play: Descend into a crowded street.
Step directly into the fray and let yourself be swallowed up. Get jostled and brushed. Feel it all. Annoyance. Rage. And then … a delicious sense of your own status as a tiny speck in a dazzling whole. Notice a shade of lipstick or a colored fabric that makes someone’s eyes sparkle. Crowd surf on the crush of humanity. Let the street corner become an ocean tide as you’re lifted and carried. Accept whichever direction it takes you.

Taste: Street cart eats. Savor whatever flavors come your way without thinking twice.

Style: Beach Beauty. Raffia, halter tops, and neutral palettes perfect for drifting.

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:: FOCUS ::

Play: Look out from a vista point. 
Ascend to the top of a high-rise or trek to a viewing point, and gaze upon the kingdom. Focus in on a singular structure far down below. Think of the effort it took to build it, its history, and the people who are inside right now. And then, look beyond the structure and past the borders of your city. Imagine everything that exists beyond the edges, and your own future possibilities.

Taste: Ceremonial epicurean delights. Get fancy with foodie insider spots and a full-on feast fit for a queen.

Style: Off-duty Boss Lady. High-waisted jeans, button-down silk blouses, killer heels, and gold accents.

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:: SLEEP ::

Play: Meditate on the distant sounds of traffic.
Tuck back into your apartment at the end of the day and release completely into the white noise of the city. Bathe in the sounds of life going on without you. Let the distant shouts and rush of traffic reveal a buzzing city’s heartbeat that lives without you needing to make any effort. Let the feeling of having nothing to prove carry you to sleep.

Taste: Open the windows wide and just breathe in the crazy mashup of scents.

StylePure nakedness.

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SoundMind is the labor of love of vocalist/sound therapy practitioner Jessica Caplan and yoga/meditation teacher Ally Bogard. Both practical and ethereal, the series combines intuitive, intentional sound with breathwork, guided meditation, and visualization. 

5 SIGNS I NEEDED A SPIRITUALITY DETOX

When your practice becomes a crutch it could be time for a spirituality detox, says Victoria Cox. Artwork: Elayne Safir

I’ve been fascinated with the esoteric side of life since I was a little girl, but in recent years I’ve been delving a little deeper. Kundalini yoga, tarot, energy healing, astrology, crystals, meditation. You name it, I’ve probably tried it.

And lately I began to notice that whenever life got more intense, I would lean a little harder on these practices.

I’d pull a tarot card every day (okay, sometimes several), check five or more astrology sites religiously, and my morning meditation schedule became a non-negotiable. To the point I began to wonder if, instead of utilizing these practices to gain a deeper meaning of life, I was using them to numb out. After all, I was no longer experiencing the blissful results and striking insights I’d encountered initially. Simply put, the whole thing was starting to make me feel neurotic.

So, what was a girl to do?

In a twist of irony, my question was actually answered during an energy healing session. After listening to me whinge about how I was working so hard on myself yet my anxiety levels were creeping higher, I was informed I was being put on a month-long “spirituality detox.” In short, it was time to cut the woo-woo and get grounded.

Here are the five signs that showed me I was in need of a spirituality detox. If anything sounds familiar, you might decide to join me…

A daily practice becomes a daily obsession
For me this was Kundalini meditation. At first, the results were impressive; I was calmer throughout the day and found myself less likely to get sucked into life’s dramas. Yet, as external challenges mounted, I became more rigid about my practice. I had to do it no matter what.

There were mornings where I woke up tired yet pushed myself through the practice, counting the seconds until I was finished. My morning “meditation” was beginning to feel more like bootcamp, and I was no longer enjoying it. As a result, the benefits I’d experienced when practicing from a place of reverence, began to ebb away.

Pursuing spirituality for personal gain
Over time I’d acquired a toolbox of sorts to deal with life’s rough patches. If was feeling anxious, I journaled about my feelings. If I was feeling uninspired, I meditated. If I wanted to create something new in my life, I would use visualization techniques.

These tools were extremely helpful in getting me through hard times, but I was starting to use them in the good times too, to satisfy my ego desires—opposed to spiritual yearnings. And then when life didn’t go exactly the way I wanted it to, I became angry. I realized that in using these practices this way, I was buying into the idea that the the Universe somehow “owed me”—and was mystically designed to reward selfishness, when actually the opposite is true.

Self-helping vs. self-medicating
I noticed a pattern of behavior that went something like this: waking up after a boozy night out I’d feel a familiar sense of self-loathing about having drunk too much. To alleviate these feelings, I would head straight to a yoga class to clear my head.

Feeling better about myself, I would then come home and have a glass of wine—undoing all the good work I’d done in class! I was essentially using my practice as a quick-fix means to feel better in the moment while ignoring the real issue (why I’d drunk too much again)—instead of a way to learn about myself on a deeper level.

Searching for the next spiritual fix
Living in New York, there are a classes and workshops offering every spiritual answer under the cosmos. Energy healing; Chakra cleansing; Past-life regression. You name it, it’s here. While this is wonderful in many ways, I noticed how the sheer abundance of choice made it feel like there was always one more thing to try.

I began to convince myself that I needed to do every treatment, attend every event. I was treating these revered spiritual arts like a mass consumer, always looking for more instead of stopping and simply asking myself what I was trying to heal.

Spiritual neurosis
I discovered that my motives were becoming completely anti-spiritual, as I indulged in a sort of metaphysical materialism. Over time my beloved practices had morphed from a source of comfort into a supposedly mystical way to manifest my worldly desires.

Instead of wanting to go to a sound-bath at the end of the week to relax, I felt I had to go—or I would be missing out on some great revelation about myself. I wasn’t. I was living my life wrapped up within my ego’s neuroses instead of living from my heart.

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Once I saw clearly how I was misappropriating my spiritual practice, I asked my energy healer what I needed to do.

Her prescription?

No mind-altering substances (i.e. alcohol) for 30 days. Stop reading or engaging with all esoteric information. Cease all meditation. Stop all energy practices or group healing

Instead?

Spend time on grounding activities such as house-cleaning. Practice intense cardio exercise. Sleep and rest. Spend time in nature. Take plenty of salt baths to detox the body and drink lots of water.

Initially it seemed like too big of a pill to swallow. But as I deleted my astrology and tarot apps from my phone I already began to feel lighter. When my alarm went off at 7am for my morning meditation I almost squealed with pleasure at the thought of sleeping for an thirty extra minutes. I relished the empty weeknights where I didn’t have some class to attend.

I knew it was the right thing to be doing simply because it felt so damn good. I felt like a child taking a month off from a very strict boarding school. Admittedly the hardest part for me was not drinking alcohol; I didn’t partake during the week, but I’ll be honest and admit that I still dabbled, albeit lightly, some weekends.

And once the thirty days were up? There were some practices, such as Kundalini yoga, that I was dying to get back into—simply because they made me feel better. But there were others, like my incessant tarot card pulling, that no longer held any appeal.

Most importantly, my experience taught me far more about myself then I’d learned in my obsessive pursuit of all things Now Age. I learned that the spiritual path is a long and meandering one; that there are no quick fixes or shortcuts.

Most importantly it taught me to listen to my heart instead of my head, and to always ask myself if what I’m seeking is in service of enlightenment or egotism.

Have you had a similar experience to Victoria? Share your thoughts with the Numinous tribe Instagram and Facebook, or in the comments below…

THE NUMEROLOGY OF 6/6

Turn your attention towards your relationships and utilize the numerology of 6/6, says Felicia Bender

The numerology of 6/6 offers a dynamic gateway of energy centered on love and relationships.

In Numerology, the number 6 is the nurturer. Its energy is all about unconditional love, service, responsibility, justice, the home, and beauty.

On the flipside, the challenges this vibe brings can be unhealthy perfectionism, self-righteousness, and unyielding control.

So how do we maximize this portal of dynamic energy at our fingertips on 6/6?

It’s a day to consider our point of view about love. Does our version of love feel like Vance Joy’s in This Mess Is Mine—“When you think of love do you think of pain?” Or are you coming from a more of an “all you need is love” perspective?

This is to say: How does love show up for you, and how do you show up for love? 

Through the numerology of 6/6 we can see ourselves more clearly in terms of what our responsibility is—and has been—in our relationships. It’s a moment where we can choose to relinquish all the “shoulds” that swim around in our heads: “I should be married by now,” or “He shouldn’t do it that way,” or “I should have known better.”

Any should that comes up in relation to love—it’s a day to rethink it. To reimagine  it. And to change it, recalibrate it, and revise it. Also, to take off any distorting “rose colored” glasses and give ourselves—and others—a break.

All the number 6 wants is to love and be loved in return. Yet what stands in the way of this simple yet driving need? Unyielding judgment stands in the way. Unrealistic idealism stands in the way. The inability to forgive stands in the way.

The numerology of 6/6 brings a great day to energetically and actively intend to worry a bit less. Its energy bolsters your efforts to “let go and let love” in the truest, most unconditional sense.  We might be moved to actively write a note of forgiveness to our ex (and to ourselves in the process), burn it, and let it go.

Or w might decide that we will never again bring up that time that s/he did that horrendous, unforgiveable thing to our intimate partner whenever we get into a fight. We may decide to make a pact to tend to ourselves as diligently as we attend to others.

The numerology of 6/6 can act like a platform for self-realization when we allow ourselves to open the heart and witness our hurts spill out onto the floor—almost like the materials you might use to create a beautiful, textured, and colorful collage.  Allow the energy of the day to support you in taking responsibility for yourself, your actions, and your responses within all relationships.

A NEW VISION: READING FOR THE SAGITTARIUS NEW MOON

See beyond limitations, and tomorrow’s Sagittarius New Moon has the potential to manifest a breathtaking outcome, says Hannah Ariel.

“When you step further into the story you came to live, not only does the mythic territory open but the self moves and the world of imagination and meaning comes toward you.” – Michael Meade.

Think broader, see bigger, explore, envision, have more faith, hold more space. The Sun entered Sagittarius November 22, and as you may have begun to experience already, this energy encourages expansiveness beyond belief – quite literally. When it comes to Sagittarius season, it makes no difference what beliefs you have preoccupied yourself with, or what you always perceived to be the case. There is a fundamental desire now to move beyond what has been experienced into what could be experienced.

Think of this Sagittarius New Moon as the moment you enter your spaceship and get to dial in the direction of your destination. Now expand your vision as far as it can go. Sagittarius is the spirit that perceives the future – pure visionary consciousness! So where is life taking you to these days? Intuitively, where is the horizon? Which story line are you following? Are you aware of the signposts? Do you see what is possible?

Luckily, this is also a Jupiter ruled Moon. Being the largest planet in the solar system, Jupiter opens our eyes to see the bright side and the bigger picture, offering the optimism and inspiration to look beyond our current circumstances. Jupiter has everything to do with opportunity, intuition, spiritual journeying, good fortune, and benevolence.

Because Sagittarius is mutable fire, experiences may take on any of these themes and manifest in a number of forms. Be prepared to spread yourself out a bit more than you’re accustomed to. Set yourself free. The archetype of the constellation itself is depicted as the archer after all, with its arrow pulled back ready to fly. Intend to seek out opportunities that will restore your faith in the boundless potential of your life.

Look to what inspires you and get inspired to go in that direction! Hold the vision in your mind like that arrow shooting toward the sky because with a Jupiter moon, nothing is quite out of reach – hit or miss, with Sagittarius it’s the experience of a meaningful journey that will expand your consciousness and, in fact, show you something even better than what you originally intended.

But let’s look at what exactly Jupiter is up to, to really get the message of this Sagittarius New Moon clear. As Jupiter continues on its journey through Virgo (since August) it is now nearly conjunct the North Node – an evolutionary portal that is currently asking us to be more discriminating on the daily. Jupiter in Virgo wants to heal our relationship to our physical reality by first fixing our attention on the details that aren’t adding up; our routines, our habits, the little things we say and do.

It’s our destiny to understand how we can take practical measures to change what no longer works, and instead organize ourselves around specific, tangible goals. With the South Node (the wisdom of our past life experiences) in Pisces, we can trust the subtle nature of the divine to show up in this process – it’s just a matter of defining which vision, which belief structure, you are looking to serve.

Without honoring the energy of the Jupiter/North Node conjunction in Virgo, New Moon intentions can easily slip through our fingers. It could be easy to accidently let go of control all together at this time, and instead of experiencing a divinely guided reality, be left to clean up a mess you don’t remember making!

Jupiter is also making a square aspect to the Sagittarius New Moon, suggesting there may be a blind spot; it’s in our best interests to pay extra attention to anything we may be prone to overlook. In contrary to the expansive nature of this New Moon, it can be a time where foresight will pay off in a big, unexpected way. A square in astrology is a transit that can amplify the potential of the energy available – when used in the right way – so there is capacity now for an outstanding outcome.

As Mercury will have just entered Capricorn, a cardinal earth sign, it is indeed a favorable period to carry out solid plans. Make good use of the thoughts and visions that are coming to you now. As you have an idea, apply it. Get grounded in it. Understand the potential of its real-life application and see how successful it can be.

One other aspect we will feel very strongly, exact around this Sagittarius New Moon, is the Mars in Libra opposition to Uranus in Aries. If you recall, at the October 11 New Moon in Libra, it was the Sun that was in opposition Uranus – reminding us how uncomfortable we are in certain positions, and ultimately liberating us from roles we’ve played one too many times.

Now, here comes Mars to take action on what’s been uncovered. What breakthroughs in identity have you had? How has your self-perception shifted, especially within your relationships and the people you are attracting? These realizations will act as your best friends during this Sagittarius New Moon, as this opposition will be sextiling it from both sides.

Act out the internal changes and realize every breakthrough and breakdown has opened us up for the journey to come. Fire needs space to breath new life into. Taking action to clear what’s in the way only creates more room for more expansive, meaningful opportunities to come to life for you. Now that’s a whole lot of beneficial astrology, so remember; Make inspired intentions, serve them well, and they will serve you. Bring your imagination to life.

To book a personal reading with Hannah Ariel contact: [email protected]