Club SÖDA NYC: SEX, LIES & ALCOHOL

Discover the truth about you and booze at Sex, Lies & Alcohol…our next Club SÖDA NYC event with Biet Simkin and special guest Betsy LeFae.

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“Sober isn’t lame. Sober is brazen, hilarious, kingly, free; Sober is a spiritual quest riddled with madness, authenticity, and true love.” The Sober Life

What are the stories you tell yourself about booze? About why you drink, when you drink, and what people will think if you don’t? About how alcohol makes you feel? About the role drinking plays in your friendships, your career, your dating life, and in the bedroom?

Our collective myths around drinking are ancient, worn smooth like old money. Learned from watching our parents drink, our peers at college drink; from how they drink in books and movies, from Cosmos in Sex and The City. New York is a drinkers town, right? Work hard, play hard. Alcohol a stimulant, a way to relax, a marker of sophistication, of camaraderie, the key to connection in a crazy world.

But what if some of the stuff what we thought we knew about booze, some of the stories we just swallowed, was a lie? What if we were actually more confident, more relaxed, funnier, sexier, and a better friend…sober?

Sex, Lies & Alcohol, the next Club SÖDA NYC event from The Numinous and Guided By Biet, will begin with a group discussion to debunk some of our most deeply ingrained drinking myths—including one of the big ones: that you have to drink when you date, and that sober sex lacks passion.

Celebrated meditation coach Biet Simkin will then share her favorite sober flirting techniques, before bringing the group together with her signature Center of the Cyclone meditation experience.

To finish, intuitive coach Betsy LeFae will guide us through some simple exercises to help us tune in to the voice of our intuition, of our TRUTH, to help us navigate beyond the half-truths we harbor around booze—leaving us free to approach our future drinking choices with more clarity, confidence and integrity.

Refreshments will be served.

Sex, Lies & Alcohol, will be held in NYC on August 23 2016. Click here for details and tickets, and sign up for our newsletter to see how the conversation unfolds.

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ABOUT Club SÖDA NYC

Club SÖDA NYC is a social experiment from The Numinous and Guided By Biet—a new space for the sober curious to investigate just how good life can get when we re-frame our relationship with alcohol. Far from “boring”, what if choosing a more sober life meant being “high” all the time?

This might not mean total abstinence from alcohol, either. The power of positive drinking can be a beautiful thing. A sacrament, even. But an occasional cocktail to celebrate life can also be a slippery slope into the kind of habitual drinking that becomes a substitute for sustained, self-generated joy; that dulls our awareness; that only exacerbates feelings of anxiety and emptiness; and that ultimately separates us from a true sense of self.

A series of meet-ups, talks, workshops, and other events, Club SÖDA NYC could be for you if:

– You drink to feel good, but it often leaves you feeling worse

– You want to drink less, but think this will mean the end of your social life

– You want to drink less, but think this will mean the end of DATING

– You want to cultivate a healthier relationship with booze

– You want to attend high-end, high-vibe events where alcohol is off the menu

– You love how good life feels when you don’t drink, and want to connect with other people who’ve discovered this too

– You want to experience getting crazy high on your own supply

And a caveat: Club SÖDA NYC is NOT an addiction recovery program – although it may be a stepping stone to AA for some people. If you think you might need a higher level of support to address a drinking problem that’s negatively impacting your life, or in dealing with any underlying emotional issues that may be part of this, we also have the resources to connect you with people who can help.

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ABOUT BETSY LEFAE

Intuition Coach Betsy LeFae holds a BA in psychology and has nearly two decades of combined experience in social work and intuitive consulting. An expert educator in intuitive development, she teaches that our body is the tool through which we can learn to hear the messages constantly streaming from our intuition and, as a facilitator of the mind-body connection, how maintaining regular practices is an effective way to keep the channel clear. She has been featured on Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, NPR, Vice and Refinery 29, and was named one of the top psychic mediums in New York City by Time Out New York.

 

 

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THE TEMPLE OF VENUS IS OPEN!

Last night saw the launch of The Temple of Venus, a Numinous community art project in collaboration with energy healer and artist Elyssa Jakim – and we want you to get involved! Image: Victoria Keen Goddess Tribe series

Welcome to the #summeroflove, Numis! We’re beyond excited to announce The Temple of Venus, a community art project dedicated to the Goddess of beauty, love, and abundance.

Based in Williamsburg, BK, and created in partnership with energy healer and artist Elyssa Jakim, the Temple is an interactive altar celebrating our community, the power of love, and the energies of the divine feminine. And the CRAZY serendipity leading up to the launch makes us feel like Venus herself basically MADE US DO IT.

Housed in a private residence (in what is actually called the “Venus” building!) and open to all, we are inviting healers, seekers and modern mystics to contribute their offerings and wisdom throughout this two-month period, creating an ever-evolving container charged with positive vibes.

Open from 7/7 through August 19, the planet Venus will also retrograde in artistic, playful Leo for the second half of the project – creating a cosmic portal for healing our attitudes to love, money and beauty through creativity.

The altar room itself will be a space for meditation, prayer, contemplation and healing, while a second space will be available for larger group gatherings and workshops. And if you just want to come make an offering to Venus and soak up the healing energies, the space will also be open for drop-in appointments each Wednesday between the hours of 3 and 5pm. International offerings by mail or Skype are also welcome!

Any donations collected will go towards the maintenance of the space, after which all funds will be gifted to The Doula Project.

Want more info? Contact us: [email protected], or connect with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter with your questions and suggestions.

All events will be listed at Thenuminous.net/events – here’s a taster of what’s lined up to date:

7/10: Reiki 1 workshop with Elyssa Jakim

7/15: Be Here Now(ish) screening and open discussion

7/18: Tarot readings with Lindsay Mack

7/31: Full Moon Sacred Drum Circle with Wild Soul Healing

8/12: Flower Crown making workshop with Aurora Botanica

NEW YEAR, NU YOU: DEVELOP YOUR PSYCHIC ABILITIES.

We all have access to the sixth sense – so will this be the year you work on developing your intuition? Doing so could be key to creating a life that’s aligned with your highest purpose in 2014. Ruby Warrington reports on a growing trend.

When I interviewed Alexa Chung for the UK Sunday Times at the end of the summer last year, she told me a few stories about what she felt were her natural psychic abilities. Like the notebook she’d found recently in which she’d written, aged 16; “I’m going to be a TV presenter, but I don’t want to be.” About how when she first walked into her apartment in NYC’s East Village, a voice in her head told her; “I live here,” and how she often has to ask people what’s up “because I can feel all their shit, and it’s like ‘you have to tell me what’s going on because it’s killing my mind!’”

There was also a recurring pre-cognitive dream (where you dream something and then it happens) about escaping the 2006 Tsunami in Thailand. She described how, as events were unfolding, she thought she was having the dream again – only to realise that it was actually happening. A double Scorpio with Pisces ascendant, Alexa’s chart shows something of a natural mystic – but actually, haven’t we all had similar experiences? Isn’t everybody “psychic” to some extent?

Yes, says Louise Androlia, the gifted intuitive responsible for our monthly Tarotscopes. “The 6th sense is for us all – in fact we’re all very tuned in as kids. Having had an imaginary friend or pet as a child is a classic example of somebody just being very energetically sensitive. I think whether this carries on into adulthood just depends on the rate we forget.” Lisa Rosman, a Brooklyn based intuitive, agrees; “it’s our natural birth right to be able to tune in on deep levels to each other as well as what yogis call the ‘divine intelligence’ of the universe. But the less we have to communicate on that level, the less we do.”

She believes our reliance on modern devices – from computers to clocks – is partly to blame. “Rather than merely using cell phones or the Internet as shortcuts, we’ve been using them as a substitute to true communion with ourselves and each other. And yet in our dreams and disorders our deeper wisdom is still, always, clamoring to be heard.”

So will 2014 be the year you work on developing your psychic abilities? Betsy Cohen, a.k.a. Psychic Betsy, hopes so. This month she launches a six-week course titled Trust Yourself: Intuitive Development through Awareness, designed to “help you become your own psychic. The whole class is centered around the fact that your body is an instrument through which your soul speaks.” The goal, rather than learning how to read for other people; “is about learning to trust your own higher voice, because if you want to create anything – abundance, good health, relationships – it’s about bringing that awareness and taking action from the inside out.”

We’ve all said it a million times; I should have listened to my gut. When I attended a psychic development workshop last year, the tutor pointed out that; “often the only time we know our intuition was right is when we don’t listen to it and everything goes wrong.” And, as Lisa puts it; “Really, what I do is direct my clients to who they truly are – where they’ve been and where they’re going; what their natural strengths and challenges are – so they can step on a path that really works for them.”

With even the Mail Online reporting on the rebranding of psychics to “intuitive therapists,” the idea of tapping into our own inner knowing is very much in the zeitgeist. “The conversations about psychic ability now are all about healing ourselves and helping others,” says Louise. “The idea that it’s about predicting the future is very outmoded, and not at all productive because the future is totally fluid anyway.” The point of attending a class says Betsy, “is about getting confirmation in a group setting that what you think you’re hearing, seeing or feeling is valid. It’s about building your confidence, so that outside of class you’re more likely to trust yourself.” I had a taster of this when I attended the weekly Willamsburg Spirit Séance Betsy hosts each Thursday – where she explained to the group how messages from spirit might appear to us, and encouraged us to share anything that came through.

Louise studied Psychic Development and then Tarot at the College for Psychic Studies in London. Founded in 1884 to facilitate formal investigation into the psychic and mediumistic phenomena that were such a topic of debate in the Victoria era, far from a real life Hogwarts, she describes the collage and her fellow students as; “as ‘normal’ as it gets. People expect me to say that it was full of women in cloaks, but as a lingerie designer I was definitely the most ‘crazy’ person there.” Instead, she was surrounded by “teachers, social workers, GPs, accountants. A group of amazing people aged 25 to 75.”

That the idea we can all tune in to a higher power and affect each other’s energy with our minds alone should seem in any way weird, is baffling to Louise. “The fact we live on a gigantic living, breathing circular mass, in a totally infinite and pretty much unknown space surrounded by other planets and moons is actually the most ridiculous thing I can think of! The idea of being skeptical of ANYTHING is so odd to me, since the fact we even exist is so bonkers. So why not learn about the energy that’s around us and allow it to help us?”

Numinously put, but still, many people shy away from delving into their psychic or intuitive abilities – “mainly because they’re afraid to look inside themselves,” says Betsy. Alexa Chung even joked that; “if you spend enough time with me, it is creepy” – but that’s because, as Betsy points out; “We’re all afraid of dark places. I was scared of my abilities in the beginning, but going to classes myself was like getting headlights, so I could actually see the road I knew was in front of me. And driving in the dark is not a good idea!”

The idea of encountering ‘evil’ spirits or visions of horrific future events can also deter people from tuning in; “but it’s all about intention. Are there darker forces? Absolutely. But you’ll only attract them to you if you’re fearful of them. I always think about Cesar Millan, the dog whisperer, and how he can transform a dog’s energy with his energy, which is always calm and assertive. It’s about a shift in thinking towards; ‘I have the power’. Which, in the spirit world, we always do.”

And owning this power can be key to affecting positive change – both in your own life, and the wider world. “We can feel very helpless in the face of events that are seemingly out of our control, from the people we’re dating to the fact we can’t exactly write to President Obama and tell him to take all our troops out of Afghanistan,” says Betsy. “But by taking responsibility for our own lives, based on what we know is for our highest good, we’re automatically empowered and actually in a position to change the world in one of the only ways we can.”

http://vimeo.com/81863053

Psychic Betsy’s six-week class, Trust Yourself: Intuitive Development through Awareness, begins January 11 in New York City. For more information click here.
@PsychicBetsy

HOW PSYCHIC ARE YOU?
Louise Androlia shares five ways your soul may already be speaking to you.

  • Smell – Have you ever suddenly had the scent of, for example, your grandmother’s perfume waft into a space? This is called “clairolfaction,” and is a way of connecting to people who have passed.
  • Knowing that someone is about to call before they do – This is you being tuned into the energy of friends and family, so you have just picked up their intention.
  • Collecting a mood or feeling from a person or a space – This is an example again of being tuned into a person’s energy, which is all a psychic ability is.  When you feel sad because your friend is, that’s a perfect example of ‘tapping in.’
  • The ‘gut’ feeling – This is your intuition, or your inner voice, at work. When you really know that you ‘know’ something, it’s the energy of the Universe that is outside of you and inside of you.
  • Songs – Often when you get a song in your head from nowhere, it’s a useful gift – making a point of listening to the lyrics often gives you a useful message that you needed.

www.louiseandrolia.com
@Louniverse

PSYCHED! BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE WEEKLY WILLIAMSBURG SPIRIT SEANCE

It’s 6.45pm at Betsy and Bryan’s place, and Bryan is “taking care of the space” ahead of tonight’s Weekly Williamsburg Spirit Séance. The altar is set with a few crystals and a candle, and thick coils of smoke from some heady Copal incense mingle with the savoury scent of the sage “smudge stick” he is using to clear and prepare the space.

The event, which Betsy, a.k.a. Psychic Betsy, has been hosting on regular Thursdays since Fall 2011, begins at seven sharp. “On the email it says not to ring the bell before 6.50pm,” says Betsy, “and we pretty much keep to schedule.”

Betsy and Bryan on their terrace with Pie Pants.

When you read the word “séance” the first image that springs to mind probably isn’t a cute hipster couple dressed head-to-toe in white. In fact, most people I told I’d be attending tonight replied that they’d be “petrified” to be in my shoes. “Well most people have seen The Exorcist,” jokes Betsy, “but think about it. If you believe that Spirit is actually a benevolent force that connects us all as human beings, what is there to be afraid of?”

Even better, what might I discover about my own “magnetic and psychic powers” (as it says on the flyer) tonight? Describing the weekly séance as “like my pro bono work” (a $10 “suggested donation” sure beats her regular $270 hourly rate) Betsy says she established the event because she wants to encourage this kind of exploration in people. “I always wanted to teach psychic development, and the idea is for everybody in the circle to see what messages come through for them too.”

It’s safe to say that despite the butterflies gathering for a flutter flash-mob in my stomach, I’m now “psyched” for the event to begin.

Sage, Copal, a rattle and a sacred fan.
Crystals decorating the altar.

We all have the power
The séance is open to nine bodies each week, and once this evening’s group has arrived we are swiftly seated, ready to begin. Betsy kicks things off with a talk about the nature of Spirit and the different ways we as humans can all receive messages from the “other side.”

How we receive messages
Betsy tells us she is mainly “clairaudient” – “meaning I hear things, literally like a voice in my head” – and “clairvoyant”, meaning she also receives messages as images. But they can also come through as smells (clairscent), a taste in the mouth (clairgustance) or even just a feeling or sensation (clairsentience). “So how do you think you connect?” is her question to the group.

And how to interpret what they mean
So once you receive a psychic impression, the trick is to get into the feeling you associate with it. The image, sound, smell or whatever is just a symbol for the actual message that wants to come through, explains Betsy; “and then you have to share it, to see if it resonates.” In other words, don’t be shy, “or get embarrassed that you might be wrong. Because there is no wrong answer, you might just need to do some more interpretation.”

You can’t judge “success” on how a person reacts #1
Audience prepped Betsy begins with a short prayer calling in the spirits, followed by a guided meditation to welcome a more receptive energy. She then goes from person to person to deliver a short reading from whoever has come through for them. First up is David – likely, I’ve got “a feeling,” the least receptive person in the group. “I didn’t want to start with you, but Sprit had other plans,” laughs Betsy. As she explained before the session, “how the first person reacts tends to be how the group then reacts.” As she goes on to describe a distant dead relative, David, predictably, plays dumb.

I’m getting…the color purple?
As she goes around the circle, Betsy encourages us to share any messages we might also be getting – “learning to trust what you’re seeing is the hard part, but it’s all about practise,” she reminds us. And so, when a vivid curtain of purple unfurls in front of my mind’s eye as Sarah (who seems way more into it than David) is getting her reading, I dig into the associations that come up.

Firstly, it’s undoubtedly Silk Cut purple” – a very specific shade of magenta used to advertise the brand of cigarettes I smoked when I was trying to be cool in middle school. And as for my feelings about Silk Cut…well I always thought cigarettes looked chic, but were kind of gross at the same time. The sensation in my body is a conflict between wanting to smoke, and feeling disgusted by it. “Are you…trying to stop smoking Sarah?” I pipe up timidly. Is this how it works?

You can’t judge “success” on how a person reacts #2
Sarah shrugs her shoulders and shakes her head. Oh well, I tried! But it’s only after the event that another person in the group comes over to tell me that just this week they decided to give up smoking weed…interesting as Silk Cut was the brand of tobacco I first learned to roll a joint with. OMeffingG…I’m psychic!!

Bryan preparing to sage the space after the event.
Betsy can also bend spoons with her mind.

Manifesting fireworks!
Finally it’s my turn, and Betsy wants to tell me; “I’m seeing flowers turning into fireworks…” And as she says the word, what d’you know – a kick-ass firework display starts up outside the window. And it doesn’t stop. For my entire reading (in which my Grandfather, a renowned workaholic, comes through to tell me not to neglect the fun-and-family loving part of me – thanks Gramps).

We’re all kind of bowled over by the…coincidence? “You know it’s you doing that…” Betsy laughs at one point, as the swhooshes and whoops outside get almost too loud for us to hear her speak.

Who knows, but I’m sold. If there is something out there, the fireworks incident is enough for me to believe that I’ve connected with the Universal oneness in some way tonight. On the way home, I check my Instagram feed – and sure enough, people are all like “what the hell, random fireworks over the East River…” I want to comment to them all; “you’re welcome. Just another reminder that life’s a celebration, right?”

The Weekly Williamsburg Spirit Séance is every Thursday from 7-9pm. For more information and to reserve your space click here

www.psychicbetsy.com
@PsychicBetsy

PSYCHIC CLOSET CLEAR OUT: ROOM FOR A WHOLE NEW ME

If the contents of your closet reflects who you really are, what to do when nothing’s working any more? Call in your friend Psychic Betsy to help intuit what should stay and what really needs to move on.

“Who IS she?” Photograph: Megan Gustashaw

The past two years have been a time of major transition for me. A move to NYC, a radical change in my daily working life and a slow and steady slide to the other side of 35 are the obvious, surface things. But internally, things have been shifting too. With Pluto (planet of transformation) squaring Uranus (the future, individualism, radical and progressive ideas) since June 2012, I get the feeling I’m not the only one (you can read more about THAT whole situation here) but one of the major tell-tale signs that I’m no longer the woman I used to be is that peering into the labyrinth that is my closet, I often can’t find anything to wear.

In fact, it’s more like taking a trip down memory lane in my Facebook photo archive. That dress I wore to rave the summers away in Ibiza. The jacket that felt so sharp when I landed my first proper newspaper job, but which I haven’t actually worn since 2007. If what’s in our wardrobe is really a reflection of the person we are, at times it’s been like grappling with a case of multiple personality disorder. I look inside, and it’s like…who IS she?

It had got to a point where I’d just wear the same things ALL THE TIME, waiting for precisely the right meeting, party or dinner date when a 1980s sweater covered with gold sequins would obviously be just the thing. In the meantime, with so many perfectly good clothes waiting to be worn (I mean we’re talking a lot of designer goods here too people) I hardly felt justified buying new stuff to bridge the gap. Clearly, it was time for the closet clear out to end all closet clear outs. But where to begin?

Ruby, are you in there?
It makes me look like Kate Moss, right?

Our personal style is ruled by Venus, and in my case that comes with a serious case of Pisces sentimentality, not to mention a heady dose of fantasy and self-delusion (of course I looked like Kate Moss circa Glastonbury 2005 in that vintage beaded vest). I was going to need external help with this – and who better than my friend Psychic Betsy? A gifted intuitive who specialises in finding practical tools to aid in your personal and spiritual development, I felt that with her help I would finally be able to cut the crap and find the real me.

Before she arrived, I did a brutal edit – anything I hadn’t worn for 12 months or more was up for the chop, as was anything that had been making me feel like an imposter in my own skin. Together, we then did a short meditation to set an intention for the session – basically, to make space in my wardrobe for the new, updated Ruby. We also visualized all the clothes I got rid of finding their way into the hands of women who would rock them like they deserved to be rocked.

And as we began working through the pile, several things quickly became clear. No. 1 – I am no longer the good time girl who danced her way through my 20s and early 30s in a blur of cocktails and fashion forward frocks. “’I used to wear this in Ibiza’ is coming up a lot,” Betsy pointed out. And having got deep into a decade-long love affair with the infamous party island (to the point I even edited a magazine there for two whole summers), there was obviously part of me that still felt very attached.

Taming my inner hedonist has been a conscious choice – mainly because these days I want to be more present for the highs that show up in my life – “but I don’t want to say goodbye to the fun times forever,” I whined. The answer from Spirit? “But you have fun in other ways now, and don’t you need new clothes for that?” Sayonara, frilly pink mini dresses and tiger print crop tops.

The old me: cocktails and frilly pink frocks

It also became obvious that in certain cases my “sentimentality” was masking some serious lack mentality. We unearthed numerous “placeholders,” things I was hanging onto for dear life because I might need them one day – rather than setting the energy in those particular items free to come back to me in new and frankly waaaay cooler form. Now this was a concept I could get my head around. But in some cases, saying goodbye to things that had been with me for years was as painful as kicking old friends to the curb. “So take a photograph. That way you can keep the energy of them close, but make room for new friends too!”

Anything I spoke about in the past tense was also a straight up “NO,” but of course there were some things I was seriously on-the-fence about. “So let’s do a little intuition 1-0-1,” suggested Betsy, who then had me close my eyes and picture another woman wearing and loving the item in question. “How does that feel, in the space right below your belly button?” Well good, actually, expansive and happy. “And now imagine yourself putting it on.” Stifled, stale and tight. This was getting easier by the minute.

As little as an hour later, virtually everything on the pile was ready to be packed up and shipped off to my local clothing exchange store – save for a few items I had got a very strong sense I should pass on to my friends Gabby and Gala (the three of us recently formed a sort of fashion maven holy trinity on an impromptu trip to Gabby’s favourite store, Reformation, on the Lower East Side). Maybe it was Betsy’s presence, but I just *knew* they’d love them.

The sense of clarity, lightness and relief I’ve been feeling since has been liberating to say the least – as a friend recently confided to me, “purging (as in, energetic purging) might be my secret favourite thing.” Of course there are huge gaps in my wardrobe that now need to be filled, but how much fun is THAT going to be? And of course, there’s a fittingly serendipitous P.S.

When I took my haul to the exchange the woman next to me was unloading a job lot of Helmut Lang samples, including just the black jacket to replace my faded “placeholder.” I walked out wearing it, with a cheque for $142 in my pocket for the rest of my swag. And when, the next day, I found myself with five minutes to spare in Soho, I wandered into the Jerome Dreyfuss boutique. I’ve been on the hunt for a new wallet, as Gala has a theory that an upgrade can help attract abundance into your life.

#abundance

And what do you know, after weeks of searching (it had to be red and the right size for my mini Marc Jacobs handbag – not an easy score) it turned out they had just the thing. But it was from last season so they had to fetch it up from out back, and it also happened to be on sale. For precisely $142.

Betsy Cohen is available to assist with your psychic closet clear out too! To make an appointment, go to www.newyorkcitypsychic.com