A SENSORY EXPLORATION OF TAURUS SEASON

A luscious monthly exploration of the cosmic energies for Taurus Season by Cara George & Bess Matassa of Mojave Rising

Image: Astromatcha

Taurus season coaxes us off the battlefield and into the boudoir as we relax into wanting what feels good to want – while already having everything that we need. This Venus-ruled bovine beauty reminds us that Venusian pleasure seeking is never frivolous, and that fully inhabiting our desire is the gateway to an unshakeable belief in our own value.

It’s a month for languishing in the simple “this-ness” of things as you sink your teeth deeply into what you love. Your diamonds don’t need to be appraised. Your love needs no justification. And baby, you’re always, absolutely, worth it.

The keyword: Succulence.

The song lyrics: “They say our love won’t pay the rent/Before it’s earned, our money’s all been spent/I guess that’s so, we don’t have a plot/But at least I’m sure of all the things we got” – I Got You Babe, Sonny & Cher.

Check out our playlist, complete with country crooners, slow jams, and classic rock.

The color palette: Think beautifully basic yet voluptuous hues that mix Dallas rodeo with a feast in the Scottish highlands: camelback and denim blue paired with crushed grape, burnt copper, and emeralds.

Rodarte 2016

The style: Comfortable luxury that molds to the body like a second skin: jeans and a silk blouse, linen dresses, leather jackets, faux fur in pale pink and tan.

Klydie Thomas

The scents and flavors: Ripe, rich, and classically decadent. Freshly grated truffles, high-quality olive oil and creamy burrata or St. André cheese, full-bodied floral essences, mulled spices, slow roasts, and tobacco.

 

Sabatino (olive oil shot)

The healing: Taurus Season is about straightforward, sensuous engagement with the abundant world. Lay your body directly on the dirt in a park or botanical garden and trust in the hard ground and juicy sunshine’s capacity to deliver exactly what you need. Select fabrics that beg for tactile engagement and literally dive into them. Take a scent making class, celebrate with an elaborate tasting menu, or enjoy a night of poker or blackjack as you place bets while knowing you’ve got nothing to lose because there IS no limit on your value.

Sensuous Invitation of the Month: COSMIC MANICURES BY SIGN

By the end of April we’ll have five planets retrograde in earth and fire signs, and there’s no better moment for digging into our interior dirt and engaging in some emotional landscaping. This month asks nothing less from us than our radical faith in the earth’s endless cycles of sensuous generation and mercilessly loving deaths, and reveals to us that we always instinctively know when it’s right to root down and when it’s time to tear away with our gorgeously manicured hands to create anew.

Nails by @ciaomanhattan2012

:: TAURUS ::
Savor a brand of solidity that’s also buoyant and responsive. Try scented polishes that move you towards a dynamic sensual engagement that’s anything but dull, or experiment with how much nail art each digit can handle until they’re bursting with life.

:: GEMINI ::
Take a break from your endless information gathering as you settle into sweet sensations without having to ask why. Play with iridescent, prismatic shades that are also textured.

:: CANCER ::
Birth your inner fantasy life into the physical world. Ground your little mermaid visions with incandescent shell toned nails or midnight colored blues and violets, or meditate on a desirous inner vision of your nails and team up with a talented artist to bring it into being.

:: LEO ::
Marry your urge for illuminated recognition with an abiding trust that you’re always already enough exactly as you are. Affix luxe diamond and ruby nail gemstones, or sport a “fuzzy” coat that appears so fluffy that you could sink comfortably into your own nail bed.

:: VIRGO ::
Soothe your mutable Earth sign’s impulses towards ordering and discerning with a fixity of feeling that takes the world at face value. Try classic, metallic glittery shades or solid gold.

:: LIBRA ::
Pair your brand of high-minded, idealistic love with a more carnal flavor that doesn’t need to strive to capture the goods. Play with acrylics and release into the “realness” of the fakeness as you celebrate the infinite value of artifice and ornament, or try “opposite” colors on different nails.

:: SCORPIO ::
Relax your urge to penetrate to the depths and instead relish the simple goodness of the luscious, flowering surface of things. Celebrate the steady unfurling of spring blooms with fresh green and pale rose shades, and choose a signature shade on your ring finger as you wed yourself to your own worth.

:: SAGITTARIUS ::
Sample an earthen rootedness that seeks depth over breadth. Fuse your Amazonian streak with bonfire colors and animal print decals, and practice blending into your animal pack with browns and russets that are equal parts expansive and fixed.

:: CAPRICORN ::
Engage in a different brand of “building” that allows the world to do its work upon you. Revel in the slow unfolding of a paraffin wax treatment, or activate your refined, sophisticated flavor of sensuality with a “velvet” manicure.

:: AQUARIUS ::
Drop back into your body as you swap out endless futurism in favor of the delectable present moment. Pair your eccentric, cerebral edge with Taurus primitivism by trying tropical neon nail art, or keep your nails clean and bare to get ready for dirt digging.

:: PISCES ::
Practice “landing” as you learn to value the material as much as the mystical. Commit to a monochromatic mani in a bright kelly green or chartreuse that marries your deep sea diving to the color of land vegetation.

:: ARIES ::
Fuse your action-oriented potency with a yin vibe that knows when to hold ‘em. Choose an in-your-face shade and then dial the color back just a notch; turn saturated magentas into peachy pinks or glossy corals that are equal parts emboldened and receptive.

A SENSORY EXPLORATION OF PISCES SEASON

Welcome to The 12th Sense – a luscious monthly exploration of the current cosmic energies for your sign, by Cara George & Bess Matassa of Mojave Rising. THIS MONTH: create an altar for Pisces season…

We often speak of the Pisces/Virgo axis with a world-weary sense of psychic overwhelm; these highly sensitized signs are associated with the hollowed out, solitary feeling that we’re all just miniature specks. Yet one of the most sparkling, sunken-ship treasures of this axis is the capacity for these signs to elevate and transform our everyday experience.

Pisces season asks us to find pageantry in the minutiae and the slow unfolding of our lives. And with the North Node and Jupiter now in Virgo, Saturn in Sagittarius squaring the Pisces New Moon on March 8, and Mars primed to enter Sag territory on March 5, we’re being asked to activate a proprietary blend of pragmatic mysticism in order to find a different way to pray: one that allows for a sensuous seamlessness between our higher selves and our everyday environment.

And so this month, we invite you to set up an altar using seemingly frivolous objects, and to mix them with the most obviously sacred and self-consciously important. From boudoir vanities to austere, sacrificial shrines, we can dialogue with the divine using lipstick tubes, found objects, and sacred tomes alike.

Watch in wonder as your steak knives, lingerie, old love letters, and spice cabinet being to whisper that they’re worth believing in and that you’re worth believing in, too. And in the midnight hour, you’ll start to feel your own power in all its glamorous, gentle, ferocious divinity.  

Keyword: “Veneration”

Song Lyrics of the Month: “Life is a mystery/Everyone must stand alone/I hear you call my name/And it feels like home”

Now click here for a Piscean Playlist and read on for our tips for creating an everyday altar for Pisces season by sign.

 

:: Aries ::
Pisces season invites you to experiment with trusting in your potent, singular identity without having to prove it, and to calm your passion for friction as you revel in a strength borne through soft-focus edges. Select a precious object that you consider to be fiercely, distinctively “you” and experiment with placing it under a piece of fabric or inside a box as you move towards a faith in its inevitable survival – without visible proof. Throw down a symbol of strength or toughness and infuse this item with gloss and glitter. Think hot pink boxing gloves or a tool belt filled with feathers.

:: Taurus ::
Pisces season invites you to loosen up and play with the concept of security as you widen your field of value. Place an object that you treasure deeply next to one you consider meaningless and challenge yourself to see the worth of each. Celebrate your love of sensuous feasting with some Piscean synesthesia; mix a scent, taste, and color in a textured vessel to create a potion that feeds all facets of olfactory and visual delight. Think lavender ice cream or a rose margarita served up in a vintage Old Hollywood gold-leafed goblet.

:: Gemini ::
Pisces season invites you to celebrate the world’s dazzling array of information sources as you revel in the possibility of not having to understand it all. Place books in languages you don’t speak, maps of places you’ve never been, and menus of cuisines you’ve yet to sample on your altar as you honor global wares in all their jet-setting mystery. Take a walk and discover a found object of unknown provenance to add to your spread. Think Basque rock lyrics, maps of Pompeii, or an eccentric plant you pass every day without knowing its genus.

:: Cancer ::
Pisces season invites you to loosen your highly personalized grip, and to practice honoring feeling nature of everything that surrounds you. Choose a souvenir from childhood or a deeply charged object from a former emotional situation and experiment with blurring its boundaries; place it alongside brand new objects, melt it down or burn it, and venerate its remains. Or leave a treasured object exposed to light, wind, rain, and snow on a balcony or near an open window and watch its gentle erosion and changes through time. Think everything from exes’ love letters set aflame to Malibu Barbie through the seasons.

 

:: Leo ::
Pisces season invites you to challenge attachment to your tastes, and to rediscover a sumptuous internal fantasy life that needs no hook in the external world. Place jewels or makeup on your altar that aren’t quite your style, or look for an otherwise “ugly” object you can recognize each day for its unexpected, evolving shades of glamour. Pen letters to yourself or to an imaginary lover as you move towards your passionately internal world. Think those earmuffs from Aunt Linda you thought you hated, or a sweet message to your 5th grade self decked out in sparkly decals.

:: Virgo ::
Pisces season invites you to expand your love of divine detail and order as you practice embracing the gorgeous messiness of mixing, matching, blending, and fusing. Place a collection of essential oils on your altar and experiment with instinctually mixing them into a fragrant concoction. Or spend the afternoon decanting newly discovered wines in preparation for a tasting party that celebrates both individual flavor profiles and taste collisions. Think frankincense meets orange blossom, and full-bodied Spanish leathery red meets crushed-seashell Loire white.

:: Libra ::
Pisces season invites you to sample in-betweenness rather than having to choose, and to wander through shifting perspectives as you soften your search for the ideal with tender non-judgment. Play with the visual as you move your altar to different heights and lights and watch for changes in the shadows throughout the day. Adorn your altar with candles in recognition of the hybrid interplay between states of solidity and liquid. Think melted wax at midnight and firm, luminous clarity by daybreak.

:: Scorpio ::
Pisces season invites you to mix the intensity of penetrating and purging with the sumptuously tender act of allowing. Place an object on your altar that you’ve been hoarding but which causes you pain to look at. Repurpose this pain as you lay your object atop a luxe satin pillow, or wrap it in your favorite fluffy sweater or decadent piece of lingerie. Watch the boundaries between pain and pleasure dissolve. Think that caustic performance review shredded atop a heap of blue-violet hydrangeas, or purifying that garter belt gifted by the one that got away in preparation for a girl’s night out.

:: Sagittarius ::
Pisces season invites you to stoke your adventurous wildfire without having to externally seek in the physically nomadic world. Let the sounds of the ambient environment form the backdrop for an altar peppered with woodsy incense as you watch scent and smoke travel through space without having to leave your room. Think tripping out to the sounds of traffic on a regular weeknight as you burn Palo Santo and tobacco.

:: Capricorn ::
Pisces season invites you to relax into the sensation that not everything has to be accomplished or take effort. Place the remnants of a project that’s partially complete on your altar and honor where you are in the process. Bookend it with a jar of sand as you realize that you don’t have to build a castle to enjoy the shifting, soft sensations of all these tiny grains. Think rainbowed sand art placed in the bathroom you’re mid-renovation.

:: Aquarius ::
Pisces season invites you to break down rational systems of thought and to move towards the realm of irrational sensation as you blend your radical streak with Piscean mystical dreaming. Take an object apart and value its constituent pieces in a place of prominence. Or construct an altar to items that make no “sense” together but which carry an intuitively emotional charge. Think Ikea furniture instructions surrounded by talismans gifted from friends, and wondrously weird snapshots of your past and potentially future selves.

 :: Pisces ::
Invite yourself to explore the Virgo sitting opposite as you ask your slippery fishies to venerate the process of discernment, boundary construction, and divining what is singularly precious from the sea of possibility. Strip your altar down and practice choosing just one valued object from your bottom-drawer jumble of treasures and trash. Or add every precious item possible and then ritualistically remove them over the course of a week until only one beloved piece remains. Think fistfuls of plastic jewels from that lost weekend in New Orleans slowly untangling themselves, or a fishbowl containing a solo geode exposed to the light.

To find out more about Cara George and Bess Matassa and their work, visit: MojaveRising.com

MODERN FAMILY: A HIGH-VIBE HOLIDAY SURVIVAL GUIDE

In her holiday survival guide, Erin Telford has some tips for staying zen when you’re home with the fam… Images: Ofir Abe via Behance.net

 

“If you think you’re enlightened, spend a week with your family.” – Ram Dass

Nothing is truer than this statement, since THIS is the real spiritual work. Take it off the mat, take it out of the personal development book, take it off the cushion – family time means time to walk the talk.

If you are mentally steeling yourself for holiday family time this year, know that you are not alone. We always revert to children when we go home, no matter our actual age. And this inner child will always re-experience the same unmet needs for attention, affection, allowing, acceptance or appreciation.

This inner child may even be coming into a family gathering with an expectation of feeling old hurt. This child may unconsciously be watching and waiting for familiar signs that he or she is inadequate, unwanted, or less than.

And if these wounds haven’t been addressed and healed, even if there isn’t an overtly toxic situation to navigate there will always be people present that push these buttons.

The trigger might be a casual remark about your job or relationship status, your parenting style or appearance. The deeper the wound, the more power these off hand comments can have to throw you off your game, creating a spiral of anger and insecurity. Happy holidays!

And we’re talking deep, subconscious stuff, the kind of stuff it’s hard to see coming. One minute you’re “fine,” the next, an insecure little girl who wants to lash out teenage rebel style – or else go hide in her room.

With this in mine, here are a few tips to keep in your back pocket while you navigate…

:: EVERYONE IS FEELING IT ::
And truly doing his or her best (even if it doesn’t look anything like it from where you’re standing).

What if everybody was overtired, over sugared, feeling small, feeling ugly, feeling overweight, feeling anxious, feeling insecure, nursing old wounds, hurt by something that was just said to THEM, grieving, feeling lonely, feeling sick, trying to stay sober.

There are any number of reasons that people don’t act the way we wish they would, especially when our usual routines and coping mechanisms are taken away. They are trying with everything they have just as you are.

:: FORGIVE YOURSELF FIRST ::
If you lose it, if you feel petty, if your buttons get pushed, if you respond exactly the way you didn’t want to, if you fall into old unhealthy patterns of relating, if you get sucked in…you are ALSO doing your best. Here is my prayer for you: A Prayer to Release Your Burdens

I forgive myself.

I will no longer be held hostage in my own mind.

I will no longer replay events and wonder if I could have/should have/would have done more/been more.

I did all I could do.

I gave it everything I had.

I acted with all of the tools that I have and to the best of my abilities.

My intent was always love.

I forgive myself.

Say this in the bathroom when you sneak off to get away. Say it into your pillow at night.

:: WE CAN’T CONTROL HOW WE FEEL BUT WE CAN CHOOSE HOW WE DEAL ::
You are not a victim. You are an adult who has created a cozy little corner of self-love, proud achievements, acceptance for your authentic self, and emotional stability back home. HOLD ONTO THIS VISION.

If we walk into a situation feeling insecure and anxious, we are already poised to get knocked off our center. No wonder, then, that first obnoxious or critical comment already feels like the famous Last Straw.

It’s important to remember that what’s been said is magnified by the open wound we’re already re-experiencing. It’s like the salt jar accidentally fell in. So we can pick up the gauntlet and do battle, we can withdraw, or we can decide to eat/drink our feelings, depending on our personalities.

Or we can pause, we can breathe, we can excuse ourselves, and we can physically shake it off with a jog around the block or a brisk walk. Our call.

:: FOCUS ON GOOD SLEEP, EXERCISE, WHOLE FOODS, MEDITATION, PRAYER :: 
…but since it may not feel that easy to maintain your usual high-vibe routine, you can also ground and own the holiday space with this simple visualization. It will help shift the energy wherever you are to support you and help you feel comfortable:

Imagine a column of golden light in the center of the space you will be in. This column extends from the center of the Earth to the heavens.

Place a golden rose at the top of the column with three words that signal your intention for your experience. These can be words like Stable, Peaceful, Relaxed, Strong, Joyful, Happy.

Imagine writing your name on all of the walls in the space or hanging pictures of you smiling and having fun.

This exercise helps you to set the energy of the space to a vibration that supports your highest good. And I wish you the absolute loveliest holiday season and strength for any challenges that come your way!

SACRED ADORNMENT: THE ART OF DRESSING FOR YOUR SPIRIT

Dressing for your spirit – that’s the art of sacred Adornment, says Kitty Cavalier. Photography: Anna Dabrowska // Illustration: Mara Gonzalez Telman

Adornment and ornamentation of the human body is a practice that goes back to the beginning of time. It is something we humans have used for thousands of years to express how we feel, what we think, and what we choose to honor. When you think about our ancestors showing up to a Full Moon ceremony, what do you envision them wearing? Some mud encrusted, tattered frock that’s been worn for weeks?

Perhaps. But in most cases, our ancient granddaddy’s and grandmama’s would pull out all the stops. Ceremonial beauty rituals included things like bathing for days, massaging oneself with fragranced oil and herbal salves, face painting, and ornamenting the entire body with glittering shells and earth gems. After all, when the Gods themselves are your Friday night date, you better damn well get your glow on.

Creating beauty with the human body has always been and will always be a way of expressing reverence, tribute and prayer. For example, when a person gets married, she or he will think nothing of spending a whole year focused on their appearance. We get dressed up for holidays, birthdays, graduations, job interviews, etc., all as a way of expressing our inner experience of celebration with outer beauty.

With all the pressures of fashion trends and societal beauty norms however, it is easy to fall into the trap of adorning oneself solely to please the voyeur, rather than express the spirit within. But true adornment isn’t about impressing anybody, it is about leaving a unique impression on the world.

Here are five easy, rock-solid ways you can use The Art Of Sacred Adornment to cast your unique spell…

1. Make Your Beauty Routine A Ritual
As you line your eyes or mascara your lashes, remember that you are drawing well deserved attention to the portals of your soul. When you rouge your lips, be aware that you are bringing red, the color of passion and power, to every word you speak. As you paint your fingernails, remember that every stroke of the polish is a prayer of adornment for all the magic your hands create every day.

2. Create A Sensation Based Wardrobe
Stand in the middle of your closet. As you look around, notice what catches your eye and creates the sensation of lust and desire in your body. When you put that garment on, notice how it feels. Does it make you feel delicious, sexy and turned on? Does it make you feel powerful? Does it make you feel good in your own skin? Challenge yourself to assemble your outfit without looking in the mirror once, basing every decision not on how things look, but on how things feel.

3.  Create Your Own Color Psychology
Some schools of thought teach that red is a “power color”. I say, your power color is whatever the f*ck you want it to be. For example, wearing ultramarine blue makes me feel both sexy and slightly androgynous, depending on the item. That makes me feel powerful, sometimes. Other times it is the softness of a cream lace kimono and vintage pink camisole makes me feel powerful. Maybe neon yellow is your power color, or wearing all black makes you feel romantic. However a color feels to you is how it will make you feel to the rest of the world, when you are the one that is authentically wearing it.

4. Go outside your comfort zone
A fabulous way to practice adornment as prayer is to stretch a little bit beyond your comfort zone, every day. This will be different for everyone. It could be something as simple as switching out your regular sneakers for a pair of classic, chic Chuck Taylor’s. Or if you’re a notoriously glamorous dresser, maybe your challenge is a pair of slouchy Levis. As in any area of life, the richest magic always lies just outside our comfort zone.

5. Keep It Simple, Starlet
At the end of the day, practicing adornment doesn’t mean you need to start parading the streets in a gilded carriage. (Unless ya want to – I know I do!) Sacred Adornment can be as simple as caressing every inch of your skin with warm, glistening coconut oil after a shower, or clearing off your nightstand at the end of the day to light a candle. Any time you intentionally honor all the beauty that you are, you become a living, breathing, prayer.

HOW TO NAVIGATE YOUR SPIRITUAL ROADMAP

Hit a bump in the road? Never fear, says Shaheen Miro. Your soul created a spiritual roadmap for you to follow in this life, here’s how to navigate yours…Images: Benoit Paillé via Behance.net

Life is filled with twists and turns, some that take us deeper into our soul journey, others that lead us off-track for a while. I have found on my own path that we are never truly lost, but that there will be moments of feeling like we’re in the dark. Usually this happens when we’re ignoring our intuition, and not honoring our spirit.

But before you came to this wild and crazy world, you created a map for yourself – a charted path your soul is here to live out. Nope, this doesn’t mean that everything in your life is set in stone. Rather, your spiritual map is a blueprint that guides you towards opportunities for growth, and chances to explore the deeper regions of your soul.

These key co-ordinates on your map are points of power that help to ignite your spiritual fire, so you can paint the world with all your unique colors. To experience your own divinity, and to live out your creative purpose.

Bumps in the road
Your map is filled with lessons and sacred moments. These may manifest as physical obstacles, dealing with health, safety, and security. You will also encounter moments of darkness, and depression. Maybe you will battle addiction, challenging relationships, a questioning of beliefs, upheavals, or fear.

At times you will even question your own soul purpose, and ask why the hell you embarked on this journey in the first place! But rest assured, you are here for a reason…and that reason is to simply dance, flow, and slow grind with the Universe.

Your map is also filled with strategically placed people, places and events. And like all geographic maps, you have created exit points, and alternate routes to help traverse any bumps in the road.

Now you’re probably thinking…damn, why would I make things so hard for myself? But you aren’t meant to struggle, simply to learn. The truth is you probably forgot you’re a total badass filled with enough light to outshine any darkness. Moments of opposition are here to remind you that you are living, learning, and that you are in control!

Navigating the Map
The fastest way to get back on track if you feel you’ve veered off course, is usually to literally stopping what you are doing with your life, and move in a completely different direction. This will invariably activate your spirit and lead you closer to a feeling of wholeness.

I know there is at least one area of your life that could use a good change. So how about you override your current plan, chose to link into your spirit, and experience something else? Ask yourself this:

Does this current path feed or deplete my spirit?

Hmm, now this can be a tough question. You may need to meditate on it for awhile, so talk to Spirit, connect with your guides, and carve out some time for stillness.

What to Do When You are Lost
Navigating back onto your soul path all starts with one small step in the right direction, but you must take action. Don’t just say: “I wish I could…” Begin to do it!

Fear is often the only hurdle. Fear that you will fail. Fear that you won’t be good enough. Fear that you might lose everything. Fear that you might actually succeed. Let me tell you a secret: fear is usually an indicator that you are getting close to something good.

So make love to your fear. Test your fear. Punch your fear in the face if you need to. The most brilliant adventures usually start off down a dark, ominous, strangely intimidating path. So take a few steps forward and see what happens. At which point feel free to say, “Hey Universe, give me a damn sign so I know where to go next!” – and just witness what shows up.

Know that it’s also okay to make a U-Turn. Maybe you went for something that felt right. Now it doesn’t. Say thank you for the experience, and move on.

Look for markers along your journey. Is there anyone, or anything that stands out on your adventure? Reoccurring events all bear significance…good and bad. Chronic situations are indicators that you aren’t paying attention. Anything that sends a tingle up your spine is an invitation to honor your spiritual artist.

How to Refuel on Your Adventure
Being low on fuel feels like depression, opposition and discomfort. You will feel drained, mentally, emotionally, spiritually…and most often physically. So how do we refuel?

Stillness. Prayer. Meditation. Creativity. Spiritual Cleansing. At our core we are all sensitive, fluid beings, and being inundated with the chaotic voices of the outside world will drown out your own navigation system, and lead you further and further from your destination.

Commit to a daily meditation practice of at least 10 minutes. Learn to listen to your breath, as this is the beat of your soul. When you follow the rhythm of your breathing you release toxins, and purge the “ish,” so you can see more clearly.

Prayer is a way to express to the Universe and your own spirit what you want and need in life. Prayer is also a sacred moment to give gratitude for the things you have. Gratitude that will active good energy, and allow you to flow with your highest good.

Creativity isn’t just painting a picture, or singing a song. Creativity is about all kinds of expression. So ask: what does your inner artist want to experience? What form of expression makes you feel alive?

Spiritual cleansing is the literal act of clearing away the debris from your Aura. Using sacred ceremony to release these stuck energies will allow you to glide forward, unencumbered by the weight of any unnecessary baggage. Burn sage. Take a sea salt bath. Use the Gypsy’s Aura Elixir!

Off-Road Adventures
If you take anything from this, let it be the affirmation that this is YOUR life, YOUR map, and YOUR adventure! Be a bitch if you have to. Say “no” to the things that wear you down. Say “no” to the relationships that are limiting you. Say “no” to the job that’s depleting you. Say “no” to the friends who aren’t vibing with you.

And then take this adventure off road. The destination isn’t the point, it’s all about the journey your spiritual map has in store for you.

Shaheen Miro is an Intuitive Consultant, Energy Worker, Artist, and Spiritual Nomad. Find out more about his work at ShaheenMiroInsights.com and @ShaheenMiro

MY MYSTICAL WEEK: KUNDALINI HEAVYWEIGHTS, THE POWER OF SAGE, AND A BOX OF TREATS

Will I ever be hardcore enough to be one of the kundalini crew, asks Ruby Warrington?

I HUNG WITH THE KUNDALINI HEAVYWEIGHTS. So kundalini yoga is generally one of those things I do because I don’t want to. I figure anything that makes my ego flip-out the way this practice does has gotta be good for furthering my personal ascension goals – plus I’ve experienced some of my most profound life realizations on my sheepskin. Like full-on psychic visions about the best next steps to take in life. So when I learned that Guru Jagat (a.k.a. the woman spearheading the current kundalini global takeover bid) was hosting a retreat with her Rama Institute in Glastonbury last weekend, OF COURSE I extended my recent stay in the UK so I could go.

Here’s a sampling of the kind of stuff that went down:

Daily 4am sadhana. Literal translation: “spiritual exertion towards an intended goal”. My translation: “a battle of ego over sleep-deprived mind, and absolute evidence that kundalini yogis – who practise sadhana every morning – are the most hardcore of yogis.”
My first 2.5 hour meditation. About 4.30am on Saturday morning, Guru Jagat announced she’d had a download that we were going to do the “Master’s Touch” meditation that morning. Here’s a video. We did this for 2.5 hours (but faster, without music, and with our hands held in the ‘crossed fingers’ position). TF for her caveat that anybody “new” to kundalini was welcome to nap if needed.
Shopping for Jupiter rings. One think I love about the kundalini community is that they’re generally dripping with jewels – and the first opportunity we got we headed to Stone Age, a high-vibe crystal jewelry store in Glastonbury town. Wearing a ring on your Jupiter finger (the pointer finger) is said to symbolize power, leadership and authority…which is interesting since most women were saying they don’t like wearing rings on that finger because it feels “ugly” and “clunky.” Hmmm!
A trip to the top of the Tor. As in, the hill that presides over Glastonbury – and which is also the axis of the mythical Earth Zodiac (which, never fear, I will write about at length in another post!) Cut to bemused stares from the ‘regular’ tourists, as our 40-strong group moved from seated meditation in the grass (substituting sheepskins for black trash bags to protect our kundalini whites)…to insane selfie excitement in the natural wind machine created by the ruins of St Michael’s castle (see below).

I BOWED TO THE POWER OF SAGE. I actually had to leave the retreat early (which means I missed seeing Merlin’s Cave, the crop circle excursion, and the final 4am sadhana AT THE TOP OF THE TOR), because of an electrical issue that needed sorting in my London home. My shower had been giving off a *tingle* of electrical charge (eek), and the electrician had already been in twice to figure out what was causing it – to no avail. He needed to do a deep dive he said, and un/rewire my entire house to get the bottom of this one (see dollar signs stretching to infinity in my mind’s / third eye).

I figured I might as well do my bit, so I picked up a GIANT bunch of sage at Star Child Original Medicinal Botanicals in Glasto and smudged my place the night before – paying extra attention to the bathroom. I mean it could easily be an energetic problem, right? Ghost of tenants past making a watery plea for freedom? And what do you know, 15 minutes into the job, my man Shane had found and fixed the problem! He was scratching is head over how he’d missed it before…while I smiled inside cos I figured I’d essentially smoked that mo-fo out.

I RECEIVED A BOX OF TREATS. One thing I miss about my “old life” in the mainstream media is the constant stream of free beauty products I used to get sent. In fact, there was a whole other lesson in ego eradication when the supply dried up once I left my old staff job. But when I returned back to NY, I was amazed to find a box of beauty goodies from Blue Mercury awaiting me – and even better, the majority of them were all natural!

Perhaps they were a gift from Jupiter, planet of abundance, who just moved signs into my house of health and wellbeing. Or from Venus, Goddess / planet of beauty, as a thank you for honoring her with our Temple of Venus art project this past month. I mean, these are the kind of questions a girl has to ask when goodies appear from out of no-where. And my fave product in the box? A chemical-free nail lacquer from Smith & Cult in a shade of poppy red called Kundalini Hussle – of course.

EAT, PRAY, DANCE: THE ONLY FOOD RULES YOU NEED

Certified health coach Robyn Youkilis is the creator free video training series The Rockstar Roadmap, which she designed to prove it’s possible to love food and still lose weight and get the body you want. If, that is, you follow The Rules (and say a prayer or two).

Image: Mathilde Francois Girbaud ad campaign SS 05

1. If you’re dining alone you must eat with ZERO distractions. Turn away from your computer, close the magazine. You may look out the window and listen to music, but do whatever you have to do to enjoy your breakfast, lunch, dinner or even just a snack in peace. I know, it’s boring. You want to cry. It just feels so lonely! But it also feels great to learn when you’re full and to be able to end your meal at exactly that time, which will never happen if you’re not 100% in your body while it’s eating. How about you get a Buddha and eat with him? I have a large black stone Buddha that sits on the corner of my desk with a few other trinkets, and every day I dine with him. Of all the food rules, this is one is the hardest (that’s why I got it out of the way first!), but it’s also EVERYTHING. But please don’t stress if you’re not able to do this for all your meals.

2. Tea is your new best friend. “But I thought YOU were my new best friend Robyn!” Well I am, but so is tea. Herbal tea, that is. Ginger will help with digestion, nettle is good for digestion, mate gives you energy and run will clear your mind.But mainly, as you try to become your healthiest you it can takes a while to calm the cravings, which are usually based in the need for a calming moment. That’s why I call a tea a hug in a mug.

3. Breathe, God dammit. Half the time this is the answer to stopping cravings and getting back in the moment. There, you’re cured! Just kidding. But seriously breathe DEEPLY. None of us do it enough.

Breathing will help:

  • energize you
  • lift your spirits
  • keep you from making less than stellar decisions (in food and life)
  • help you feel connected to something bigger than you
  • calm you the f*** down
  • calm the situation around you the f*** down
  • make you a happier, shinier and more likable person (promise)

4. Eat greens until they’re coming out of your ears and mix them up (okay, that’s two rules). I can already hear you…but I have a salad for lunch and a green with dinner most days (and if you do, that’s already awesome)! Well, I want you to have more. Find a way to get them in your breakfast, lunch and dinner. And I’m not just talking kale smoothies. I mean mustard greens, dandelion, sprouts, purslane, bok choi EVERYTHING GREEN. Don’t know what to do with them? Shred them and have them raw with a simple dressing massaged in or steam or sauté them with olive oil, garlic and lemon.

5. Healthy fats are your friend. Avocados, nuts and seeds (small amounts, like way smaller than you think), coconuts, oily cold water fish should be welcomed onto your plate on a daily basis. As the former Snackwells queen, I’m still getting over my fear of fat too. Personally, I was never heavier than when I was eating fat free. When I began eating all the yummy, healthy and satisfying fats listed above (in moderation), I lost not just the 20 lbs I put on, but another 10. Oh, and your new glowing skin will thank you too. Remember, fat is not a four-letter word (it’s not, it’s three).

NB: these girls are not following The Rules

6. Chew your food until it’s liquid. I know this sounds like pure insanity but trust me, contrary to popular belief, your stomach does not have teeth. Half the time pesky digestive issues (bloating, less than frequent pooping, etc) can be solved by chewing more. And you don’t have to sit there counting. Until liquid is good/great enough.

7. Start your day with a prayer or blessing and end your day with a prayer or blessing. Not into the spiritual thing? Tough. It’s been proven that individuals with a spiritual practice of any kind (concentrating on your breathing is already a spiritual practice by the way) are happier, healthier and most likely to be living in the body they desire. It can be something as simple as; “Thank you for today.”

8. Smaller plates, smaller forks, smaller everything. I know, I know. The idea of eating my lunch or dinner off of a salad plate used to feel pretty lame too. Eventually I got used to it, and you will too (promise). I found a smaller plate that I loved (these can vary a lot so shop around, look for 6-8 inches with a border – we tend to want to stay within the lines). Now, a regular dinner plate (and the amount of food that typically accompanies it) looks enormous to me. This switch can sometimes be the easiest rule to follow because all you need to do for this one is swap out a physical item.

9. This is your life and it’s not meant to be painful, restrictive, unpleasant or unfun (I made that word up), but it’s also important to remember that as human beings, we do better with accountability, support, love and goals. So keep it real, girl. I am here for you, yes, but most importantly, you are here for you.

10. With that being said,  here’s a song to dance to! If you’re somewhere you can’t actually dance, then just close your eyes and dance in your mind. If you’re in bed reading this, use the song to sit up and meditate too and if you happen to be working out right after this GO FOR IT. Dancing is FREE. It relieves stress, lifts the pressure and gets us moving and back in our groove.

The Rockstar Roadmap with Robyn Youkilis is a free video series about getting healthy and losing a few pounds while NOT giving up your life to make that happen. It all kicks off on May 14, and you can sign up here.