GUIDE TO THE GODDESS MAIA

As we move towards Spring’s peak, it’s time to delight in the playfully creative energies of the Goddess Maia, says Rebecca Farrar …

Photo: Mari Lezhava

From the flowers blooming (aka plant sex organs!) to the weather warming, May is a month for delight and desire …

Named after the Earth Goddess Maia, or Maja, who represents passion, wishes, and playfulness, the month of May brings a slow burn after Ostara’s April spark. With the same root as the word “majesty,” Goddess Maia represents the peak of spring’s fertility and blooming.

Throughout history, May has been a month of celebrations, and in Roman, Greek, and Celtic traditions, Goddess Maia has represented sexuality, creativity, and growth. In ancient Greece and Rome, the first and fifteenth days of the month were particularly sacred for honoring her. And in Celtic traditions, Beltane or May Day rituals focused on feeding the senses. During the holiday, unmarried men and women jumped over bonfires wishing for partners and fertility, and the Maypole was originally a tree tied with flowers and ribbons, which represented the wrapping of female energies around the phallus. 

Goddess Maia also has an asteroid named after her. Astrologically, Maja is currently hanging out in tight conjunction with Neptune in Pisces. Making for a dreamy and romantic month ahead in May 2018 … 

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Tap into your own playful and sensuous Spring nature by finding Maia in your own chart. Wherever she’s placed, you’re invited to offer your wishes for more blossoming this month.

Below are questions to consider for reigniting creative sparks and growth with Maia’s help …

**To find Maia/Maja in your chart, go to astro.com, enter your birth information, choose “Extended Chart Selection,” scroll down to “Additional Asteroids,” and type in 66.

1st house// Where do I lack purpose or intention in my life? How can I become re-inspired?

2nd house// What makes my heart beat faster? Is it specific people, activities, being outside?

3rd house// Which books, media, or resources provoke or scintillate me? Conversely, which ones dull my senses or excitement?

4th house// How do my emotions put me into contact with my artistic process? How can I use them as fuel for my own fire?

5th house// Where and how do I experience my creative spark? What makes me shine and light up?

6th house// What habits or routines help me stimulate my imagination? How can I add them into my day-to-day rituals?

7th house// Have I been putting aside my own creativity because I’ve been focusing too much on others? Instead, can this relationship put me in touch with my own muse?

8th house// What kindling is missing from my inspiration fire? Do I need more nurturing, community, or time alone?

9th house// How can I re-create my own life vision and come more into alignment? Are there places I need to expand into or explore physically or emotionally?

10th house// Where have my passions been left behind in place of responsibility? How can I commit more to my own passion projects?

11th house// When and where do I come into contact with my creativity in the world? Is it through others or alone?

12th house// How can I move out of wishful thinking and fantasy around something I care about? What concrete actions can I take?

Photo: Caique Silva

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And no matter where the asteroid is in your chart, here are ways to connect to the seductive Spring goddess this May …

// Style // Show some skin, or your favorite body part- whatever makes you feel sexy

// Food //Sensual and decadent foods such as figs, truffles, or dark chocolate

// Workout // Think playful and sexy … pole dancing or Zumba

// Home // Add a romantic touch with flowers, soft colors, candles, or fairy lights

// Healing // Sacred sex practices alone or with a partner

WHY THESE ARE THE PERFECT TAROT CARDS FOR MAY 2017

Stressing out about scheduling the month ahead? Put your planner aside & lay out the perfect tarot cards for May 2017, says Melinda Lee Holm.

May is a fertile season for embracing your power and exploring duality! Throughout this month, we will be asked to examine what kind of power we value, how we can expand our vision of our own power, and how to embrace, honor, and cherish aspects of ourselves that seem in opposition to one another.

Meet this month’s guides for creating, manifesting, and coming into balanced relationship with all that is …  

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:: 5/01  International Workers Day—7 of Pentacles :: 

The month kicks off with May Day or Beltane- a traditional northern European holiday celebrating the coming of Spring with rituals of fertility, abundance, and heaps of flowers and foliage. In 1904, it was also designated as a day to demonstrate for laborers’ rights.

The Rider-Waite image of a worker tending the vines is a perfect guide for honoring both the abundance of nature and the beauty of labor. Pentacles are the suit of Earth- that wonderful grounding element that connects us to the physical world and our animal natures. In the 7, the work has been done, the soil turned, the vines tended, and the result is a healthy crop of pentacles. Clad in marigold and sky blue, the figure revels in his power of creation in partnership with the Earth and the intuition that led his hand.

Calling in the 7 of Pentacles: 

  • Get your hands dirty! Gardening connects us to the fecundity of the Earth and to labor. 
  • Work hard, but don’t overdo it – end your work day at a reasonable time. 
  • Light a candle in an earthy scent like tomato vine or moss. 
  • Eat fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables. 

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:: 5/03  Mercury Stations Direct- The Magician :: 

Rejoice! Mercury stations direct on the 3rd, bringing to a close 3.5 weeks of (often unexpected) insights about the recent past (and a lot of panic about glitches in technology). Now, armed with all of the new information we’ve dredged up, we can get start pressing forward with newly laid plans by calling on the Tarot’s great manifestor- The Magician.

In Golden Dawn teachings, The Magician is associated with the planet Mercury, so there is a natural alignment here that can really help push things along if we listen closely to the messages received during retrograde. Drawing on the power of the Earth and the Heavens, The Magician taps into his natural attunement with the Universe to vibrate his vision into existence, opening infinite possibilities. With a little guidance, you can step into his enchanted shoes!

Calling in The Magician: 

  • Use your magic words! Write down goals in the present tense as if they have already been achieved.  
  • Wear Pyrite jewelry – the stone is a master of manifestation. 
  • Dress for your dream life.
  • Eat foods seasoned with cinnamon – the spice accelerates mastery and magical abilities. 
Check out Melinda’s custom pieces of Tarot-inspired jewelry ! Pictured above: The Initiate in Pyrite.

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:: 5/14  Mother’s Day- 6 of Cups :: 

Whether you are a mom or share a connection with a biological or chosen maternal figure, this is a day for honoring and appreciating the feminine nurturers around and within us. We can often get stuck in a role of mothering or being mothered, and have trouble balancing our giving and receiving. This Mother’s Day, we call on the 6 of Cups to remind us to care for our care givers, and to take in the love we need to replenish ourselves as caregivers.

The 6 of Cups carries the energy of emotional harmony and balance. The figures in the card are out of balance proportionally, but the larger figure seeks to restore harmony by giving a flower-filled cup to the smaller figure. All of the cups bear a single white flower, which strongly resembles an enlarged jasmine blossom- the flower of purity and sensuality. The lesson here is that true and pure beauty is found through actively balancing the relationships in our lives.

Calling in the 6 of Cups: 

  • Perform random acts of kindness – and receive them gracefully from others!
  • Carry a Chrysocolla, the Goddess stone, to replenish the energy of the Divine Feminine. 
  • Wear jasmine perfume. 
  • Care for your mom or moms, biological, legal, or chosen. 

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:: 5/21  Sun Enters Gemini- The Lovers :: 

Twin season! The Sun’s entry into Gemini brings openness and flexibility to any stale routines, and teaches us to see all sides of an issue and not to press too hard for a solution that isn’t working.

The myth of Gemini follows a pair of twins with the same mother, but different fathers. Since one has been fathered by the god Zeus, he is immortal. When his mortal brother dies, he begs his father to keep them together and Zeus obliges, making both twins immortal, living together for eternity in the constellation Gemini, separate but perfectly paired. In our mortal lives, Gemini teaches us to allow conflicting sides of ourselves to co-exist in harmony. We can be a business mogul AND a dreamy poet, a driven creator AND a grounded homemaker. To find how to live in this duality, we look to The Lovers.

The Lovers shows two figures standing beneath a bright angel. Early interpretations positioned this card as indicative of romantic love, but modern Tarot scholars view the card’s energy as one of perfect pairing and ideal relationship- whether romantic, professional, or creative.  The core of the wisdom here is to see that excellence – in relationship or in ourselves – can only be achieved when each part is celebrated for its individuality and not consumed by the whole.

Calling in The Lovers:

  • Wear contrasting colors. 
  • Make an exquisite corpse drawing or poem with a friend.  
  • Explore foods with savory/sweet combinations. You can start with cayenne spiced chocolate or prosciutto wrapped melon and go wild from there! 
  • Include others in activities you would normally do alone like reading with a friend, or walking with a group … 

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Want more tarot magic? Book a session with Melinda here, and make sure to follow her on Instagram and Facebook. 

ROUND THE MAYPOLE: WHY BELTANE IS THE SEASON TO BE SEXY

Does the Beltane maypole really represent the phallus? Elyssa Jakim uncovers the Pagan roots of pole dancing, and has some sexy tips for spring… Image: Ania Powalowska

The wheel of the year is turning toward Beltane. Traditionally celebrated on the first of May, this wiccan/pagan holiday conjures up the famous image of the maypole. I wasn’t told until recently that the circling maypole is an inherently phallic symbol—decorating and dancing around, well, a large penis. So much the better! Beltane is about fertility, sexuality, and abundance. This time of year, we are beginning to really dust off our bodies from the stiffness of winter, to come home to our sensuality. We’re moving from April showers to May flowers. It is all about blossoming. As such, it is the perfect time to celebrate sexuality fertility.

I’ve been getting this hint in strange ways in my inbox all week. Emails about “my orgasm type?”, an offer for a month of erotic tips, a request from a friend to be interviewed about love, a video about how to be a conscious and loving parent. It’s seems like we’re all tuning into this energy (subtly and not so subtly) so why not embrace it?

And so, because it’s fun, I’ve gathered a few tips to help you love up your sexual self and celebrate Beltane! I’ll also be offering a by-donation Beltane ritual at Species by the Thousands in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, on May 5, if you want to keep the juiciness flowing through the coming Full Moon period.

:: SPRING SEXY TIME TIPS ::

Light some genital candles. Seriously. Penis and pussy candles, sold at Enchantments among other places, are extremely powerful. They come in red, white, and black—my preference being the white ones, for healing and purification. You can light each candle with the intention of stepping into your sexual power, fully embodying the divine feminine and masculine, celebrating the goddess and the god, and clearing old sexual hurts.

I recently lit a penis candle as a way to “say goodbye to the old dicks” in my life, and heal past sexual relationships, wishing all old lovers light. I then lit the pussy candle with the intention of fully honoring and loving her, of stepping into my sexual power and sensuality. Of course, which candle you light and how you light it will depend on your sexual preferences and history and your intuition. There is no right or wrong way to do this.

Love up your whole body. Get some shea butter, coconut oil, or any nice body moisturizer that you enjoy, and use it to anoint every inch of your body. Go slowly, celebrating each part of you, telling yourself how beautiful you are, noticing small details and marks, and breathing through the experience. This process may not be easy, as we all have so many stored, often hidden, feelings about our bodies – which in turn store feelings that may be released through this practice. My advice is to go slowly and gently, play soft music and offer yourself as much compassion as you can. And don’t worry, it’s largely lovely and enjoyable!

Do something romantic for yourself. Buy yourself flowers. Take a bath with essential oils, rose petals, crystals, and candles. Take yourself out on a date and get dressed up for yourself. Then take yourself home and make love to yourself. And if you have a partner, do all of this for them too!

Play a secret, sexy game. Whenever you see someone you’re sexually attracted to, check in with your genitals and see how they feel. Intentionally connecting our visual cues of attraction from our eyes to our sex center is so healing and opening for us. This one is great for the subway. Oh, and throw in some kegels too, why don’t you?

Go out dancing. The Earth gods and goddesses (not to mention the fairies) just love dancing. So go dance for them! Dance for your body, and dance!

Happy Beltane all. I hope that by loving up your body and sexual essence your inner fire can melt away those last vestiges of winter, making you be ready for a spring that’s full of play.

Have you been feeling the Beltane awakening? Share your spring rituals with us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook!

Elyssa’s Beltane workshop takes place at Species By The Thousands on May 5. For more information visit Elyssajakimwellness.com