BEST OF 2015: THE NUMINOUS YEAR IN REVIEW

So many fantastic contributions from the Numinati this year! Here’s a month-by-month run down of some of our favorites in a special best of 2015 review…

JANUARY :: WHAT IS DHARMA? THE JOY OF SERVICE AS LIFE PURPOSE
Author: Naomi Costantino / Artwork: Erin Petson

 

FEBRUARY :: FASHION DESIGNER TAROT
Words: The New Age Hipster / Image: Alexandro Palombo

 

MARCH :: THIS ONE TIME, WHEN I WENT TO SHAMAN SCHOOL…
Words: Wolf Sister / Image: Karolina Daria Flora

 

APRIL :: SEXUAL HEALING (A.K.A. FINDING F***ING ENLIGHTEMNENT)
Words: Hanna Bier / Artwork: Romain Gorisse

 

MAY :: 20 THINGS I LEARNED AT CRYSTAL SCHOOL
Words: Ruby Warrington / Artwork: Karina Eibatova

 

JUNE :: INSIDE CAITLYN JENNER’S BIRTH CHART
Words: Kimberly Peta Dewhirst / Image: Annie Leibovitz for Vanity Fair

 

JULY :: HOW TO CAST A MONEY SPELL
Words: Nabeel Afasr

 

AUGUST :: TAKE A LOVER WHO LOOKS AT YOU LIKE MAYBE YOU ARE MAGIC
Words: Ellie Burrows / Portrait: Mikal Marie

 

SEPTEMBER :: HOW TO NAVIGATE YOUR SPIRITUAL ROADMAP
Words: Shaheen Miro / Images: Benoit Paille

 

OCTOBER :: HOW TO WORK WITH EACH MOON PHASE
Words: Hannah Ariel

 

NOVEMBER :: PROTECT YOURSELF FROM VAMPIRE LOVERS
Words: Alexandra Roxo, Natalia Leite, and Cat Cabral / Artwork: Pa-kwan Promsri

 

DECEMBER :: THE ART OF SACRED ADORNMENT
Words: Kitty Cavalier / Photography: Anna Dabrowska / Illustration: Mara Gonzalez Telman

PROTECT YOURSELF: IS MY LOVER A PSYCHIC VAMPIRE?

Be Here Nowish creators Natalia Leite and Alexandra Roxo share their experience fending off Vampire Lovers, PLUS 5 ways to protect yourself from a psychic vampire from Cat Cabral. Images: Pa-kwan Promsri via Behance.net

 

“Vampire Lovers” is our term for lovers that come flying into your world, suck out your life force. You have no idea what’s happened, but next thing you know you feel like a fucking zombie and your friends are calling for an intervention. But these vampires are not really blood drinking creatures (although sometimes they might want to do that too). They are more like psychic suckers, energy drawers, seductive manipulators who can milk your energy, mess with your psyche, throw you off balance, and take away your power.

The people are also sometimes called “energy vampires” or “emotional vampires.” It’s an archetype we all can embody unconsciously at times, it’s just that some of us have learned to master it, using it as a form of manipulation and self-preservation.

Okay, so in theory we all know we should stay away from people that make us feel helpless or weak. But can also be SO SO sexy to allow ourselves to be completely overtaken by someone. We romanticize it, imagining Brad Pitt biting our neck and kinda wishing we were Kristen Stewart in Twilight, even if we’re aware of the dangers of completely losing ourselves in that person. We each had our fair share of experience dealing with people like this in our love lives and found ways to cope with it, which we will share in this post.

At the bottom, CAT CABRAL, a New York based alchemist and tarot reader who’s been peddling the tools of the witchcraft trade for over a decade, has shared tips on how to identify and protect yourself from Vampire Lovers.

 

Natalia: Why don’t we start by talking about meeting vampires on Tinder. You know, like one night stands, and the implications of that spiritually.
Alexandra: You mean the wild post-breakup Tinder phase that I like to call my “Slutty Spring?”

N: Exactly.
A: It was super fun, but you also have to really work on protecting your psyche because you’re exchanging energy with people so fast in those situations. And then you’re like “Wait, what? I’m tied up in a stranger’s bed again?!”

N: Right. Because the minute that you open up and surrender sexually to them, your energies are melding and exchanging whether you like it or not.
A: If they’re holding a lot of darkness you might get in a bad mood the next day and be super grumpy, wondering “Why do I feel so depressed?” or “Why do I feel so anxious?” – psychic gunk you maybe picked up up from the random person you just had sex with.

N: So how did you personally protect yourself and create that boundary?
A: Well, I had a date with this guy and we had really good conversation at dinner and then I went back to his house. I was getting bored and wondering where things were going but I kept thinking “In theory this guy’s great. He’s a lawyer, he’s attractive and also weird in a good way.” When we were kissing he was like; “I could totally see myself with a girl like you, you’re totally the type of girl I would fall in love with,” and that started weirding me out. And then his penis wouldn’t work so he just wanted to go down on me forever and that felt a little too intimate for a first date, so I said no. I did not want some stranger that I had literally known for two hours to just go down on me. Like actual penetrative sex would be less intimate because there’s a barrier of rubber.

N: That’s really sad!
A: Depends how you look at it. Anyway, so then I lost my phone, slipped on the rug, and hit my neck on a shelf, and at that point I was like, energetically, “THIS IS WRONG.” My intuition was like “Get out! Leave!” Not because I thought he was going to be a psycho killer,it was just an energetic thing. He texted me the next day, but the energy, all the way from the initial hook up to me hurting myself was just saying “no.” It took me a minute to shrug off that icky energy. And he ended up texting me like 100 times over a period of three months and I had to block him. So I guess he was a crazy.

N: I guess it’s not so relevant to Tinder hook-ups, but I learned a few things to do after a bad relationship to release that person’s grip. I had one ex who was a total vampire – her energy was so intense. After we broke up, I would just like go to the bathroom and every time I took a shit I would think about her leaving my body, like in my poop. And it really worked! I also associated her with “shit” and so that became suddenly funny and meaningless. It quickly released the emotional grip she had on me.
A: That’s amazing!

N: When I was like having a lot of one night stands, I would sort of protect myself by being the one who was in control of the situation. But there were several times I would just like leave feeling a little icky because of that person’s energy.
A: What we’re talking about now is people that seem like amazing beings, but underneath they just want to suck out the good vibes. We both dated people who did that.

N: So what do you think it the first sign of a vampire?
A: They divulge too much too soon! They tell you their sob story straight off the bat.

N: Yes! On our first date my ex is already telling me how she doesn’t get along with her family and whatever health condition she’s got.
A: Health conditions, financial burdens…

N: They think that playing a victim will make you feel sorry for them.
A: But actually, it’s trying to force intimacy too quickly. The next thing that they do is tell you “YOU’RE THE ONE.” Really quickly. I dated someone like that. We were walking down the street and she looked at me and said: “What if you’re the one?” But I actually have proof she says that to many, many girls.

N: Yeah. At what stage?
A: We had maybe been on three dates. And I fell for it. My heart was beating fast.

N: This girl I dated was immediately doing things to me that I had found out that she had done in multiple relationships in the past. And telling me that she had never felt like this before and how she was going to marry me. I was really freaked out at first and didn’t buy it. To which she’d be like: “Why are you not trusting love?” She would make it seem like there was something wrong with me because I wasn’t open to receiving this “deep everlasting love.” She eventually convinced me to give in and surrender to her. Then finally when I’m like, “Okay, I’m going to give you my heart. Here’s my heart.” That’s when she bit me.
A: That’s the dark manipulation side of the vampire lover. It’s the hook and bait. They like pull you in by telling you that you’re the one, and then they start fucking with you. It’s so crazy. It’s a formula. The worst part is…I don’t think they even know they are doing it!

N: They just want your heart, and they’re unaware that they’re manipulating you to get it.
A: I think that those are the people you have to try to watch out for the most because energetically you may fall apart after them. It took me a while to get my “vampire lover ex” out of my life. She would call me in the middle of the night. Then she would text and say “Let’s be friends.” And then when we tried that, out of nowhere she would text “I want to have a family with you.” It got creepy. I just had to block her completely. But two years later I saw her, and she was kind. People change and time does heal.

N: Yeah, after mine ended but it really took me a second to find myself and feel strong again. Taking some time out to be alone, or changing your scenery can be helpful. For a while I was scared of bumping into her, thinking she could tip me over just by looking at me, and not because I loved her or wanted to be with her, just because she had that power and I knew it worked on me for a period of time.
A: So alright, now we’ve shared, let’s hear how we can avoid falling into unhealthy patterns with lovers…

5 Tips On How to Protect Yourself from Vampire Lovers (and vampire energy in general) by Cat Cabral

1) Have a Daily Spiritual Practice: Be it daily meditation, chants, or prayer, some form of daily spiritual practice will not only ground and focus your own energy, but it will open your levels of awareness, sharpening your own intuitive skills. With deeper awareness, it’s harder for vampires to enter your space and it’s easier to spot their unbalanced and often charming yet ultimately harmful nature.

2) Sea Salt Baths On the Full Moon: An old and soothing tradition that will help cleanse your ethereal body. Once the Moon is full, she begins to wane, an excellent time for cleansing and removing negative energies, known and unknown. Fill your bathtub with sea salt and lunar herbs such as lavender and wormwood. Imagine all negative energies, people or situations being absorbed by the water and then going down the drain. If you only have a shower, you can pour the salt and herbs into a bowl, wash as usual, and then pour the mixture over your body following the same ritual/visualization.

3) Glinda’s Crystal Ball of Protection: Remember in The Wizard of Oz, how Glinda sails away in her pink protective ball of light? Before you leave your house, imagine at the top of your head a small globe of white light illuminating at first your third eye, then your throat chakra, moving down towards the heart center, solar plexus, lighting up your reproductive zone and continuing down to your feet, so that you are completely engulfed in healthy protective white light. Imagine this light expanding into an invisible sphere that nothing negative can penetrate.

4) Symbols of Protection: Every culture has unique and powerful symbols to ward off negativity such as the pentagram, crosses, hexagram, ankh, Hand of Fatima, Runes, the list goes on! Find one that has a special meaning to you and either wear it or carry it daily.

5) Banishing Rituals: Letting go is often hard when you’ve been under the spell of a particularly seductive vampire. Create a circle with salt around you and set up an altar for your ritual. Take a white figure or plain candle to represent the person and carve their name into the candle. Dress the candle with oil for banishing (olive oil can also be used). As you light the candle, watch as the wax drips down and imagine the person disappearing from your sphere of influence. Write a letter saying everything you’ve been thinking, saying goodbye, never wishing them ill will, but clearly stating that they hold no emotional/spiritual/physical power over you, that your paths are clear and will never cross again. When the candle is almost finished, burn the letter and then discard of the ashes and wax somewhere far from your house or bury it in the ground. Burn sage, cedarwood or frankincense to cleanse the space and move on with confidence.

Read more from Cat Cabral here and check out Natalia Leite and Alexandra Roxo’s hit web series Be Here Nowish.

How have you learned to protect yourself from a psychic vampire? Share your tips in the comments below!

YOGI VEGAN LEZ: ZEN AND THE ART OF CELIBATE DATING

When Alexandra Roxo signed up for a peyote medicine ceremony, she forgot to tell her girlfriend this would mean a week of celibate dating. Uh-oh…Homepage image: Fab Ciracolo 

Stuck between a rock and…a psychedelic cactus?

The night before my last peyote medicine ceremony, I was almost asleep when my girlfriend climbed on top of me and started a slow dry hump. I was jarred awake, shocked, and didn’t know what to do. No, not because she’s hideous or I’m no longer attracted to her or dry humping is gross. Not any of those reasons. But because I wasn’t supposed to be sexual / have sex for three days before my medicine ceremony! This essentially meant a week of celibate dating.

So I was faced with a dilemma. A) We’d been having a rough time and hadn’t had sex all week. B) I didn’t tell her I was supposed to be celibate for three days prior to taking the peyote and three days after. Woops. And C) Well shit, C is that I love her and she’s hot.

I found myself between a rock (or rather, a cactus) and a hard place. Also between 300-thread count cotton sheets and a hot bod. So I somehow justified that I’d let her masturbate on me or with me and it wouldn’t count. Not exactly rational but it was the best I could come up with. She finished quickly, I didn’t let her touch me, and somehow I felt no guilt about it all. Until. The next night.

I’d had two peyote ceremonies with the same medicine man before, which were both “deer ceremonies” in the Apache tradition, one in a teepee upstate and one in Mexico. Both times it was incredibly enlightening. I’d worked through deep parental issues that were a part of my Saturn return, and sung in the dark wearing a white muumuu as I released the pain of my youth.

Alexandra and her soul sister Natalia Leite at her first deer medicine ceremony

But this ceremony was different, in that I got a real ass kicking. I felt like I was gonna puke but couldn’t. I felt like I was having the worst period cramps in my life. I couldn’t lay down. And I kept seeing dark visions. Had my soul become a dark vault in the last few months? OR WAS IT THE SEX? (I mean, half sex really, but…)

Worse, after the ceremony the ass kicking continued for a full week. My GF and I’s relationship was pulled apart and rebuilt, like three times. Meaning I was crying in public again. At one point Orian and I were sitting on a bench in the park and I was crying and she put her hands over her head and commented that her shadow looked like a deer.

At that moment I got it. Everything came together. She was in on this ass kicking from the Universe too! She didn’t even know I had done the deer medicine but the plant had obviously used her lovely spirit and they’d been in cahoots all week to school and teach me.

This interconnectedness of my lessons has revealed itself again and again over the years, sometimes in a calm and magical/twinkly way, and other times in a more grotesque and “punch in the face” way. It still amazes me. This time, I’ve come to realize that managing sexual energy in times of spiritual growth can be very, very challenging.

Essentially, when I’m deep in some growth and lessons, the LAST thing on the planet I want is to open my physical body to some “poking.” To put it crudely. ‘Cause when I’m not in the sex zone, that’s kind of what it feels like. Like an intrusive visitor showing up at the very wrong time.

When I want to hold my energy close and exist in my higher chakras, I’m thinking about my angelic spirit guides and the work I’m doing here. And sex? Well, sex feels incredibly mundane. But how is this fair to your partner? And how do we navigate these moments as a couple?

I’ve also started meditating every night before bed recently. You know, releasing my day by doing visualizations and setting my dream time intentions. And lemme tell you…this can be a major buzzkill in the bedroom. The other night my girlfriend and I were kissing on the couch and when we moved into the bedroom I stopped the fun and was like: “Wait, just let me meditate real quick!” When I opened my eyes 15-20 minutes later and looked over, she was passed out and snoring with her mouth open. Dammit.

On the other hand, I find myself trying to turn the work I’m doing into “our” work. The other night, instead of meditating, I asked her participate with me as we shouted what we are grateful for. “Thank you Universe for coffee! Sunshine! An HBO Go password from a friend!” And then I guided us through some vibrational chanting.

I know this is sounding like a Christian teen sleepover or a day at a Waldorf school, but it was great. But we don’t live alone, so there’s that. Instead of that awkward moment in the kitchen, “Shit, did our roommate hear me cumming?” it’s “Did he hear us… doing vibrational chanting work and daily gratitudes??”

“Did our room mate hear us chanting before bed?”

Thankfully, taking the leap into the land of heart-warming cheesiness can be just as bonding as sex. Sometimes we tackle the bigger questions in relationships like cheating, differences in values, or whether or not we want kids.

But the small ones can be the scariest to tackle. Like telling your partner you aren’t really feeling sexual, and them being able to respect that space and not feel threatened/slighted/or like you think they’re ugly now. Being able to say; “Hi. I’m wanting to not have sex for a bit ’cause I’m tryna connect with my guides and my third eye this week.” Or “Hey I can’t have sex cause I’m cleansing/grounding my energy before a ceremony.”

And them being able to accept where you’re at, and not go parading around in Agent Provocateur panties or send you nude selfies of them masturbating or watch porn beside you at high volumes while you’re trying to meditate.

If your partner is down to respect and accept where you’re at, then maybe during this time they can do something useful with their energy too, like work on their kickboxing moves or reorganize the fridge. And then when you’ve ridden out that wave and got what you need, you can come back together roaring and ready to meld energies, have sex all night and transcend together with some candles, wine and Kenny G.

@yoga_vegan_lez

COUPLES THERAPY: DIARY OF A DETOX A DEUX

When Alexandra Roxo decided to embark on a hardcore nine-day Ayurvedic cleanse, she had no idea her girlfriend would decide to come along for the ride. Cue tears, tantrums and an ocean of emotion.

Alexandra (right) and her girlfriend Orian after the cleanse

I was a bit nervous about telling my partner about the detox. We’d only been together five months, after meeting at a karaoke bar in Koreatown where I was instantly drawn to her off key rendition of “Stand By Your Man.”  Since then, we’d been falling in love over wine, croissants, late night snacks, drunken dancing…you know, the general dietary rule breaking that happens when you’re in a state of hormone induced euphoria. So deciding to put the brakes on the fun, so to speak, was a bold move. Especially seeing as we were moving in together a week later.

But I’ve always been one to take risks and do things in extremes, so I went with it. To my surprise, my girlfriend’s response was “I want to do it too.” This caught me very off guard because a) she’s more religious about her nightly cigarettes and wine and her morning coffee than her Jewish heritage, and b) I had been planning spending the week wearing mumus and listening to Enya while journaling, and never imagined doing it in front of my lover. Not to mention the idea of us both of being hungry/grumpy/gassy at the same time! Ew. I was hoping she’d be bringing me tea and holding down the emotional fort while I was the one being “transformed.”

Before the experiment

Okay, so what’s the big deal about a silly cleanse? Well THIS cleanse ain’t for the faint of heart. It’s a full on Ayurvedic experience, which includes rising with the sun, doing daily yoga, meditation and dream journaling, eating only two handful sized portions of vegan food at meal time, drinking your weight in greens, doing a three day juice fast, skin brushing, self oil massage, garlic liver flushes, kidney flushes, oil pulling, salt water colon cocktails. It’s basically its a full time job. But I did it last year and emerged glowing like a baby’s bum and happier than I’d felt in ages, so after this #$%^ing winter it was the medicine I needed. Plus with all the falling in love stuff (loads of white bread, recreational drugs…) I felt like I was in need of a full-on detox to get back on track.

What I wasn’t expecting was the emotional upheaval that occurred. Geez, not only had I stored up a few extra pounds this winter but also like, A LOT, of emotions. Four of my close friends also decided to do the cleanse and we were group texting about it all week. The word “meltdown” came up almost daily. Why were we all crying so much? Were we pms-ing? Nope. Were bad things happening? Not really, except not being able to eat. Shit just comes to the surface when you’re doing a detox, which I guess is why some people opt to take off work or go to a spa to do it. But alas, I’m not Lilo, so the closest I came was steaming up the bathroom and chilling in some epsom salts.

Couples cleansing: a balancing act

And of course, the meltdowns melted into my relationship. It began with me announcing I needed to be alone for the week and storming off in tears, and soon I was dividing the green powder and groceries in two as if I was the star in a reality show about cleansing. I also cried pretty much every day as I released fears about all the attempted relationships gone awry in the past year. And I’ve already gone to therapy and done a peyote ceremony to try and work through that shit.

But those past heartbreaks and insecurities came rushing to the surface with a vengeance with every organ flush I did. And all of a sudden my girlfriend was angry at me! I’d “taken away” her freedom and her ability to be herself (i.e. eat when she wanted to). She grew resentful of me as I asked her; “Did you read the cleanse booklet?” and reminded her “wait, you can’t drink out of the faucet!” As she was too embarrassed to admit she was having these feelings, she just got really cold and distant until I broke down and cried into my turmeric stained hands. (As an aside: she said she didn’t cry at all, but later admitted to sobbing while watching a film about low income housing in Israel. I mean…) It’s an emotional thing, this cleansing.

Very dark green juice

In the dark alone time while staring at my garlic olive oil slurpee, I found myself challenging and questioning everything about the relationship. Everything. No stone remained unturned. The cleanse had forced me to get REALLY real with myself, and now there was no turning back and nothing to hide behind. No robust red wines, no morning coffee in bed, no trips to the bakery on the corner holding hands like we were in some 1990’s rom com. No spontaneous nights getting stoned and laughing ‘til you pee your pants and pass out holding a bag of Doritos. None of that!

You’re just raw. Real. Without frill. Looking tired, feeling grumpy, stinking of garlic and coconut oil. And actually, an honest look at yourselves as individuals and as a couple is pretty much the best gift you can give your relationship. Detoxing together as a couple is hard, but worth it. You don’t have to cleanse your colons together or scrape each other’s tongues, but making a goal and seeing each other for who you are without all the other stuff is a risk that – hopefully – will only deepen your bond.

Here are some tips for doing a detox for couples and not fucking up your relationship:

  • If you’re fully addicted, the first few days without coffee are bad. You may get evil, so maybe take this time alone to yourself and try to start on a weekend when you can scream underwater or hide in a closet.
  • Do not micromanage your partner. If you know more about cleansing than them etc, it’s easy to say things like, “wait that apple’s not organic!” before snatching it out of their hand and throwing it across the room. Just don’t.
  • Be gentle on yourself. Be gentle on each other. Ride the emotional ups and downs like a pro surfer and don’t do anything rash. Just breathe and imagine yourself in that exotic spa, staring at an extremely overpriced juice while gazing at a partial ocean view.
  • Resist the urge to send a photo text asking “does your poop look this green?” Just ask Google instead, please.

Alexandra Roxo is a Brooklyn-based filmmaker. She and her business partner Natalia Leite have a company called Purple Milk that makes all kinds of fun stuff. See more here: Drinkpurplemilk.com

Their new web series Be Here Now-ish, which chronicles the spiritual pilgrimage of two girls’ from NY to LA , will be premiering April 10 on Beherenowish.com

Follow more from Alexandra and Orian @yogi_vegan_lez 

BE HERE NOW(ISH): IT’S GIRLS GONE NUMINOUS

It’s like us, in a web series (ish). Billed as “a comedy about two down and out New York gals who go to LA in search of  a spiritual awakening,” Be Here Now(ish) follows the fortunes of Sam (played by Alexandra Roxo) and Nina (Natalia Leite), a New York City dating consultant and drug delivery girl respectively, on their journey to meet this guru-shaman Nina’s heard about and transform their lives in the process.
Continue reading “BE HERE NOW(ISH): IT’S GIRLS GONE NUMINOUS”