USE YOUR BIRTH CHART TO MEET YOUR SHADOW SELF

With Pluto stationing direct on September 30th, it’s time to meet your shadow self—and you can use your birth chart to come face-to-face with the skeletons in your own closet, say Ruby Warrington and Bess Matassa

Photo: Karl Saare

Ruler of Scorpio, the planet Pluto urges us to dive deep into the more Numinous realms of being—which can feel downright scary, depending on how comfortable we are with our more primal urges and shadowy desires.

Pluto governs the parts of ourselves we tend to keep buried under layers of social conditioning, but which are aching to be witnessed in all their gory glory.

But there’s no need to be afraid of these less fragrant parts of ourselves. And in fact, the more time we can spend acknowledging, loving, and socializing them, the less likely they are to leap out of the shadows and bite somebody’s head off. And our birth charts are a great place to begin.

There are several key placements in each and every chart that give clues to the more shadowy parts of our beings, giving us the opportunity to unlock our own secret basement rooms and hidden passages. Read on for 7 ways to use your birth chart to go behind the veil …

*If you don’t have your birth chart, you can do yours for free HERE.

>>>

The 7th House: Hello, shadow self
Known as the house of relationships and sitting opposite the 1st House of self and personal expression, the 7th House can also represent the parts of our nature where we’re in denial. Planets here can show aspects of ourselves that we’d rather not “see,” and which we project onto our life partners (in marriage, friendship, and business) instead. We may also seek relationships with people who embody these traits in order to “complete” us. For example, Mars in the 7th House could represent suppressed or unacknowledged anger, meaning we seek partners who either express their anger easily—or know how to push the right buttons to help us to express ours!

>>>

The 8th House: How we dance with our demons
Ruled by Scorpio herself, the wicked witch of the zodiac, the 8th House is where we walk the tightrope between the two worlds. In our earthly lives, planets in the 8th House can show how we access our psychic powers (for example, the Moon here suggests strong gut feelings, while an 8th House Mercury may mean we actually “hear” voices from the other side). The sign ruling the 8th House meanwhile (look for the sign it intersects at the bottom), shows our relationship to our shadow self. For example, Leo ruling the 8th House has no problem expressing its demons—while Cancer here may need to find a safe place to let it all hang out.

>>>

The 12th House: Let go and let God
Representing the most profound depths of the chart, this house is often described in vague terms such as “the house of self-undoing,” or “secret enemies,” and you can think of this zone as the underground cellar of your chart. Any planets living down there are sometimes kept under lock and key—while they may rise up and “possess” you from time to time. For example, Pluto or Mars here can lead to repressed anger and control impulses that suddenly break out of the cellar and threaten to smash all the china. Meanwhile, Venus here marks an invitation to notice where you deny yourself pleasure. If you’re a 12 house astro babe, your work is to embrace whatever planets hang in this basement, and invite them into the main house for a midnight snack.

>>>

Neptune: Your inner spiritual guru
Neptune is the planet ruling mystical Pisces, representing our spirituality and our connection to the higher realms of existence. The sign and house containing Neptune in our birth charts shows how and in what areas of life we experience this connection most strongly, and also where we may seek to “merge” with the Universal oneness—or lose our sense of “self.” The biggest emo of the zodiac, Neptune also shows our sensitivity, and where we may try to escape from the “real” world in search of something altogether softer and more forgiving. Any kind of mystical or dreamlike experience, from being guided into a Shamanic trance, to losing ourselves in music at a concert, will have Neptune at its helm.

>>>

South Node: Your soul’s old clothing
Have you ever slipped into some threads that feel oh so comfortable but just a little bit stretched out? Think of your South Node placement as your house clothes. Whatever sign and house its in represents an old way of being from another lifetime. This time around, channel your North Node placement for a soul upgrade. The North Node may feel itchy and challenging and take some breaking in. At first, you may not even recognize yourself when you embrace this behavioral pattern. But you’ve got to risk slipping into this new party frock and and heading out on the town to really fulfill your mission.

>>>

Chiron: Your secret superpower
Often called the “wounded healer,” you can think about this placement in your chart as a deeply painful spot that needs you to apply the energy of allowing. Dress that wound, love up on it, and let it break you open towards the human experience of tenderized acceptance. Along with Saturn, Chiron is all about something we think we never received and/or don’t deserve. By element it shows us what we perceive as our weakness (ex/Chiron in Earth, connection to the pragmatic, material realm; Chiron in water, fears around surrendering to our emotional tides). But unlike Saturn’s hard work energy, which compels us to apply effort to overcome this placement, Chiron doesn’t respond to “work.” Instead, we must move alongside and with this energy, and use it as a gateway to connecting with others. Sweetly attending to this touchy-feely place lets us tap into our empathetic superpowers.

>>>

Pluto: Where you glow in the dark
This planet of hardcore soul collisions and amped-up intensity, which rules the badass energy of Scorpio, shows us where we can practice grip and release. It gives the house it inhabits a glow-in-the-dark kind of light, where we illuminate our life and death battles, and what we’re willing to protect at all costs. Its gift is to reveal to us where we’re most carnal, and to help us mine this intensity for juicy gemstones. Can we learn to live with what lives inside of us, even the inkiest dark matter we’d rather discard? Harness this energy to fight for exactly what you desire, while noticing when your primal beasties can be slightly softened.

PLUTO RETROGRADE 2017: A GUIDE FOR YOUR SIGN

The planet of power, transformation, and absolute intensity can make us want to run and hide. Fear not, says Patricia Clark Hippolyte! Pluto Retrograde 2017 is a super potent moment to embrace our shadow side and let it out into the light…

Thursday, April 20th :: Pluto Stations Retrograde :: 19 Degrees of Capricorn

Thursday, September 28th :: Pluto Goes Direct :: 16 Degrees of Capricorn 

All retrograde cycles allow us to return to the scene of the crime, so to speak. “Why am I dealing with this again?!” you may wonder. That’s the point of a retrograde—any issue that comes up for you will have to be dealt with three times over before you can learn the lesson.

Picture it this way. You’re driving along and go over a speed bump. Then, you put the car in reverse and go over it a second time. And then, you put the car in drive and go over the bump a third time. Simple enough! Except when it’s a Pluto retrograde. This presents a considerably more challenging situation…

Pluto can have bad reputation in the cosmos. But this relates merely to the “lower octave” of the planet’s energy. For example, we’d all like to think we take the higher ground, but we also all have stress, jobs, family, and partners that wear on us. And sometimes we make decisions from a place of insecurity, and end up living a life of deceit rather than face the shit storm. Life is not as pretty as we’d like it to be. We don’t want to admit that it’s complicated and messy so we lie: to ourselves, and to others. This is unrefined Pluto energy.

But Pluto doesn’t lie, people do. You’ve heard the saying “the house always wins”? Well it’s the same with Pluto. This planet’s influence can lead us into shadiness OR it can invite us towards transformation by asking us to step into the darker version of ourselves, the shadow self.

With Pluto transits, it can feel as if the elephant in the room can no longer be avoided. And if you’re willing to surrender to Pluto’s challenges, you can harness his transformational edge. Pluto protects us, keeps us on our toes, and magnetizes us to objects of desire. And after Pluto has taken you down, down, down, there is an immense potential for personal growth.

Cause without the darkness…there is no light, right?!

>>>

To discover what lessons Pluto retrograde has for you, check out where Pluto retrograde is backing up in your birth chart right now. This means look to the house with 16—19 degrees of Capricorn. 

When Pluto transits a house, it makes for some interesting transformations relating to that particular area of life. Think change, regeneration, and perhaps a little bit of secrecy and subversion. Pluto digs up what we’ve buried. But don’t worry—these changes are inevitable and necessary. Embrace whatever is surfacing!

>>>

:: Capricorn Rising—1st House :: Changing how you see yourself and reshaping your personality. Getting a grip on unconscious drives and urges to control people, situations and, well, … EVERYTHING!

>>>

:: Sagittarius Rising—2nd House :: A value system overhaul—both psychologically and materially. Don’t buy the McMansion just yet. You may yet discover it’s not what “luxury” truly means to you.

>>>

:: Scorpio Rising—3rd House :: Intensified thought processes and conversations. Be wary of black and white attitudes that bypass the gray, and rule out the opportunity for productive discourse.

>>>

:: Libra Rising—4th House :: Grappling internally with problems from childhood and family … it’s always Mom, isn’t it! On the outside, changes in your relationship to home—repairing your living space or moving entirely.

>>>

:: Virgo Rising—5th House :: Intensified relationship patterns—either the beginnings of a magnetic new relationship or the break down of old patterns in a current relationship. If you have children, there may be some power struggles!

>>>

:: Leo Rising—6th House :: Transformation of your health and daily routine—physical regeneration through good dietary choices or a possible breakdown of poor dietary habits.

>>>

:: Cancer Rising—7th House :: Embarking on an “amazing ’til it isn’t” relationship or being challenged to change your present relationship. Seeing power plays in partnerships for what they really are.

>>>

:: Gemini Rising—8th House :: Be careful with any joint possessions or other people’s resources—think your spouse’s or employer’s. Also a time to get familiar with any unmet desires.

>>>

:: Taurus Rising—9th House :: A great moment for absorbing and learning from experience, and gaining new knowledge. What beliefs have you been blindly holding onto, and where are you getting woke?

>>>

:: Aries Rising—10th House :: If you know where you’re at with your career, there’s a good chance of success at this time. If you’re uncertain, there’s a high chance of a total change of path.

>>>

:: Pisces Rising—11th House :: A perfect time to seek out more like-minded friends who will aid you in your transformations. It’s also a good moment for prioritizing actions that truly give back.

>>>

:: Aquarius Rising—12th House :: A game of psychological chess with yourself! It’s time to deal with old patterns and behaviors that worked in childhood but don’t translate now (read: no more tantrums on the floor!)

>>>

Patricia Clark Hippolyte has been seeing stars for well over two decades. With international private readings and intensive three-day courses, she reveals astrological ciphers that help people work with their current and future planetary involvements. Though the stars often shine a painfully bright light on the realities of daily life, remember: starlight is better than no light at all.

SHADOW PLAY: READING FOR THE SCORPIO WANING QUARTER MOON

Embrace your shadow and be led into the light, says Jennifer Racioppi in her reading for the Scorpio waning quarter moon…Artwork: Bethany Harper-Walsh

Waning Quarter Moon :: January 19, 2017 :: 5.13pm EST :: 0 degrees Scorpio

As the moon sheds her light, she invites us to shed barriers to our truth. Waning moon cycles help us connect deeply with our intuition so we can eliminate what’s not working within and access our marching orders before the next New Moon. This particular waning moon phase feels extra potent—as Mercury clears his shadow it represents a rare time in the sky when there are NO planets in retrograde. Things may happen fast. Embrace change, and allow the process of dissemination to bring you closer to your truth as we prepare for the upcoming new moon in Aquarius.

***

:: THE SUN::
The sun in community driven, alternative-minded Aquarius, asks us to transcend the boundaries of our limited thinking and embrace new ways and new beginnings. As we enter the post-Capricorn phase of 2017 (Capricorn represents our drive and determination to be our absolute best) the sun in Aquarius ushers us into our internal revolution. Aquarius represents rebellion and revolution—so no wonder we no longer feel driven by the discipline of the Capricorn sun. If you feel keen to shaking things up, explore it! The Aquarian influence might just lead you to something better. Embrace your friends, have fun, and don’t shy away from technology while the sun travels through Aquarius until Feb 18th.

:: THE MOON::
In astrology, the moon represents our subconscious and our feminine side. With the moon moving through the fixed water sign of Scorpio, our attention drifts inward. Psychological truths and secrets pull us into our emotional depths. It behooves us to allow our emotions to rise to the surface. Bust out your journal and get your secrets off your chest. Embrace your shadow side! Indulge your sexuality while embracing intimacy, and exploring the shadows of your mind.

:: THE SQUARE::
With the sun in the fixed air sign of Aquarius squaring the waning Scorpio Moon, we can expect to feel a bit at odds with ourselves. On the one hand, we have the Aquarius sun asking us to embrace our community, and to push forward with agendas for change. Yet the moon in Scorpio drives us deep within ourselves. While the Aquarian influence wants us on social media connecting with our tribe via technology, the Scorpio moon prefers a journal, and perhaps a cathartic conversation with a close friend who guards secrets like a rabid watchdog. It’s up to us to reconcile our need for privacy and intimacy while staying connected to our tribe this quarter moon.

:: THE MESSAGE::
It’s by investigating our shadow that we find our light. With one week before the Aquarius New Moon, and all the planets direct, this waning moon phase provides us a precious opportunity to look within and clean out any resistance before we embrace the first New Moon of the new year. The moon in Scorpio urges us to pull back and look within—as uncomfortable as this may feel. Remember, the moon moves fast and soon she’ll be in upbeat Sagittarius, making a great and resourceful sextile. Until then, she travels through Scorpio, a place she goes to deep to excavate an essential truth. Don’t resist the darkness this Scorpio waning quarter moon—it’s leading you precisely where you need to go.

For more Moon wisdom or to book a coaching session with from Jennifer visit Jenniferracioppi.com

BEST OF THE NUMINOUS 2016

In the face of heart-wrenching challenges that left many of us feeling very troubled (read: angry, confused, and afraid) we remained committed to the deeply magical acts of connecting and co-creating. From transforming difficult emotions into empowered action, to the pure pleasure of crystal dildos, we give you the Best of The Numinous 2016. Cause we gotta have faith, cosmic crusaders…

 

 

1. A Message of Hope from Miki Agrawal: Thinx Founder Miki Agrawal shares her post-election thoughts for how to change hearts and minds.

 

2. Dream Project: The Story of the Dust II Onyx Tarot: When Courtney Alexander couldn’t find a deck that spoke to her on a soul level, she decided to create her own.

 

3. How to Work with Your Spirit Animal—A Total Guide: Wolf Sister teaches us to tap into the animal kingdom by learning to work with our spiritual beasts.

 

 

4. Holy F*ck: Holding Space for My Shadow Self. “Just like our sexual self doesn’t have much space to roam in this world, neither does our shadow self…” says Alexandra Roxo.

 

5. Why Are All the Lightworkers Moving to LA?: Fern Olivia breaks down why life on the Left Coast is calling.

 

6. Cosmic Calling—Astrology for Entrepreneurs: When it comes to astrology for entrepreneurs, it’s about knowing your cosmic career signature, and following a few hard and fast rules, says Rebecca Gordon.

 

7. Empowered Action in the Face of Trauma: Recent world events have stirred up many intense emotions. Louise Androlia shares her wisdom on how to use our feelings as a catalyst for empowered action.

 

8. Fashion as Self-Love: The Story Behind KE7H3R: “Everything, even fashion, is a transference of energy.” Janelle Corpuz Hethcot talks sartorial style as self-love with Ruby Warrington.

 

9. Hello Chakrubs: Yes, That’s a Crystal Dildo: Forget the battery-operated vibrator and pick up a high-vibe, soul-opening crystal sex toy. Chakrubs founder Vanessa Cuccia shares her story with Gabriela Herstik.

 

10. Casting My Spell—Confessions of a White Witch: “I see writing as a spell, decorating my home as a spell, singing as a spell. Whenever I express myself I am casting MY spell.” Shaheen Miro shares what it means to grow up and embrace being a white witch.

Want more Numinosity in 2017? Sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Instagram and Facebook so you never miss a post.

HOLY F*CK: HOLDING SPACE FOR MY SHADOW SELF

“Just like our sexual self don’t have much space to roam in this world, neither does our shadow self…” says Alexandra Roxo.

Which is a mask, which is a shadow, and which is my truth?

Last week in my Holy F*ck salon I felt a heaviness as we gathered on the call, and so I asked: “How many of us are in pain today?” To which everyone replied: “Me.” Some quietly, some more boldly. We were about to do a round of storytelling around transcendental orgasms, but instead I decided: “Fuck talking orgasms today. Let’s talk shame. Sorrow. Rage.’”

I myself was in the deep throes of having let my shadow out to speak her voice at Burning Man, having been silenced for months. I’d literally called on my WHOLE healing team to help me process the experience. Coach Perri Gorman. Intuitive wizard Luke Simon. Michael Ventura, who’s been working with me on this for three years! And a psychologist I met at Burning Man, Justin Hartery.  Plus all my besties. LIKE WHOA IT TAKES A VILLAGE, and I’m so grateful I have help when I need it.

Somewhere during Eclipse season, at the Temple on the “playa”, some old wounds had gotten a fresh surface scrape. As a result I was oozing blood onto everything in my life. And as my wounds and the wounds of all the ladies of the salon were given a voice on that call, I realized—just like our sexual selves don’t have much space to roam in this world, neither do our shadow selves. But when they come knocking we have to answer.

We put on happy faces left and right and keep our shadow tucked away. We don’t want to “be a downer” at a party. So we tuck those feelings away. They get judged, while the “positive” feelings get center stage. Sometimes these are the shadow itself behind a clever mask, and sometimes the positive feeling is holding its hand over the “negative” one, creating a carefully curated dialogue.

“Who, me? No! I’m not insanely horny today! I’m great! Been meditating and doing Bikram!”  Or….”I’m fine! I’m not grieving the fact my dad forgot my birthday for the 18th year in a row. I’m a grown up. I should be over it by now, right?”

We walk around as if “doing okay” and “keeping it together” are badges that will earn us Love and Life Merits. We live by “shoulds.” I “should” be grateful. I ‘should” be strong (p.s. I have eliminated SHOULD from my vocab and I challenge you to do the same).

One shadow that surfaced in the salon was the overwhelming shame of being single. Of showing up to weddings and dinner parties alone. Of having people ask you, “Are you seeing anyone?” before asking about your work, your passions, your friends.

Another that floated into our call was about being in your 30’s and having your parents still supporting you. Many women I love deeply are supported by their families as adults, and since society says this is wrong, it creates yet more shame. When in truth their tribe is caring for them.

On the flip-side, another of my own shadows has been wearing the “Independent Woman” costume (ahem armor) that serves me so well at times, but had become hard to pull off, creating a tough barrier to deeper connections and vulnerability’—until it got ripped off at Burning Man that is.

As we gave these feelings a voice, they were like orphaned children being held tightly for the first time in a long time. How beautiful it was to each other say: “I pretend it’s okay. But I’m in pain.” As we each cried, the rest of us just listened. And I got to thinking…

What if we did this at dinner parties? What if we could eschew some of the socialization that keeps us separate and lonely by keeping these feelings—our truths—hidden away? And what if when I said: “I just feel ugly today”—instead of you replying, “Girl, you’re beautiful!” you just honored my feeling?

What if we just held space for that feeling like two wild witches on a Full Moon in the woods, and watched her fly around the room until she disappeared out the window and into the stars to be at home with all the other parts of our souls? And then we ate spaghetti with marinara sauce until it made our lips red, and talked about where we want to travel before we die and danced to Bowie.

Dancing with my shadows at Burning Man

How about we reclaim old rituals for honoring the shadows together, and make some new ones of our own? How about I just listen as you speak every fear to me…and I don’t try to fix them. I don’t offer you a solution. I don’t tell you “Everything is going to be okay.” I just hear you and see you and witness you and hold you.

After all, we came here to be wild. We came to make “mistakes.” We came to try things and fail. We came to let our hearts be smashed to bits and to carefully sew them back together. We came for glory. And we came for failure.

They tell us to keep it neat and pretty. To “be the light.” But your shadow is your asset. When you hide her away you teeter along as a half version of yourself, dragging a corpse of old, half-acknowledged feelings around. And so next time shame or grief comes calling, answer her. Make her a temple. Throw her a party. Give her center stage for once.

Will the shadow start running the ship? Most likely not. But if this fear exists, then create a container for these feelings. If you know rage could cause chaos, then take her moshing at a concert. Or give her a punching bag at a boxing gym.

In my Holy F*ck salon that day, I made a pledge to my group and we made a pledge to ourselves:

“When you cry I promise not to comfort you. I promise not to usher away your feelings with my ideas of what’s “right” and “wrong.” When you scream, I promise not to shush you and tell you it’s going to be okay. I’ll admit I don’t know if it will be, but I’ll listen and stand tall with you, and be by your side.”

I pledge this to you now and welcome you to share this with the people you call tribe.

This column is dedicated to those Wild Women and Men who are willing to go there with me and grieve and mourn and rage and laugh and cry and dream with me. Who don’t shut me out when things get ugly, and who aren’t afraid to get down and dirty in the name of growth and change. You know who you are.

Alexandra Roxo is a Spiritual + Creative Mentor, Writer, and Filmmaker living in LA.  Find out more on alexandraroxo.com and instagram.com/alexandraroxo/

HOW TO WORK WITH YOUR SPIRIT ANIMAL: A TOTAL GUIDE

Tap into the wisdom of the animal kingdom by learning how to work with your spirit animal, says Wolf SisterArtwork: Erin Petson

 

A spirit animal is a reflection of you, and is there to remind you of your inherent wisdom. They represent archetypal energies, typical traits that are personified by a specific creature. Acting as our allies, teachers, guides and protectors, if a spirit animal is showing up in your life, it has a message for you and wants to work with you.

Think, what are this animal’s strengths and how does it act? This is the message for you.

To work with your spirit animal is to step into the power you need most in any moment. This can help you feel more grounded, give you the confidence for a job interview, make you feel more alluring for a hot date or give you the strength to ask for help when you need it. Above all, it can help you to feel more confident, proactive and supported.

:: WHO IS YOUR SPIRIT ANIMAL? ::

Spirit animals have an energy you will resonate with and feel drawn to, sometimes inexplicably. This doesn’t have to be specific to an animal either, it could also be a deity, super hero or even a celebrity! Yes, you could count Beyonce or Mary Magdalene as your “spirit animal.” There will be something familiar about your animal, and they’re there to teach and guide you in a direction that supports you.

Maybe you already have a strong affinity with a particular spirit animal, but if you don’t feel like have the connection yet here are some tips to help you to activate your connection.

A Vision Quest
In the morning, take some time to meditate and invoke your spirit animal to show itself. Create a presence of awareness throughout the day and look out for signs that could represent your animal. Your spirit animal is likely appear to you in a series of synchronicities, where you may literally see it everywhere—on street art, the internet, magazines, books, posters, gifts you receive from friends, dreams or even a chance encounter with the animal itself.

When your animal wants to be seen, it’ll make sure you notice it so keep your eyes wide open. Journal your encounters as these encounters are all insights into what is being revealed to you. You may come into contact with more than one animal, but the animal you see most often is the most prominent message. Think of the additional animals as the supporting acts.

Meditate
You can connect with your spirit animal through meditation, while a guided shamanic journey will lead you to your animal and hold space for you to communicate more deeply with them. There are guided meditations available online (search: “spirit animal guided meditation”) and workshops that hold space for you to meet your spirit animal. Check event listings for sessions in your area.

Dreamtime
Before you go to sleep, ask your spirit animal to reveal themselves to you in your dream. Your intention could be, ” Spirit animal, who serves my highest and best good, please come to me in my dreams tonight. I am open to your wisdom. Thank you for your protection and guidance. You will be remembered in the morning.”

Repeat this invocation as you fall asleep. Make sure that you have a pen and paper by your bed for when you wake up in the morning, and write down what you remember as soon as you wake up and the memory of the dream is still fresh.

Oracle Cards
One of the quickest ways to connect with your spirit animal is to use an animal oracle deck (we love the Wild Unknown Animal Spirit deck). Connect with the deck and draw a card (or a few cards) to represent what serves you. You can take guidance from the reference book that accompanies the deck but I would also recommend journalling how this card makes you feel, use your intuition to find the meaning. Meditate on the card and see what messages come through to you from the unseen realm.

If you draw an animal that makes you feel uncomfortable, brings up a phobia or a feeling of dislike, this animal can represent your shadow side. This could symbolize something in the animal’s character that you’re avoiding in your life. Take this as an opportunity to tune in to what may need healing in your life. Remember, if this animal is showing up for you, it is there to be seen, and it’s because you are ready. Even if you don’t think you are…

:: HOW TO WORK WITH YOUR SPIRIT ANIMAL ::

Act Like Your Animal
Use the animal’s instinct as a guide for what action you need to take. How does your animal think and act?

Here are a few examples: Stand strong and committed like the bear. Be sensual and independent like the cat. Do some Vinyasa yoga to connect with your flexibility like the snake. Howl at the moon to embody the wolf. Share your wisdom as a teacher like the owl. Seize an opportunity like the magpie.

Check out youtube or some David Attenborough documentaries to study the characteristics of your animal. Have fun with how you embody your animal, no-one else needs to know, and watch to see how people respond to you after you’ve been channeling the ways of your animal.

Dress Like Your Animal
Wear the colors and patterns of your animal to connect with their spirit. This can be a subtle act, for example wearing leopard print underwear to honor your inner wild cat. Let your hair loose to unleash the lion in you. Think of black as the color of mystery and transformation. If your animal is colorful then it’s a sure sign that you need to been seen.

Eat Like Your Animal
Food nourishes us and gives us energy. Animals use food to do this in the purest way, no fad-diets! They forage or hunt for what their body needs and eat specifically to adapt to their environment. Use the dietary habits of your animal as a guide for what will nourish you at the moment. If your animal is a herbivore, try a plant-based diet and see how your body feels. Birds have a very fast metabolism to enable them to stay light so that they can fly, eating little and often. Maybe the message is simply that you take time to slow down to eat.

Meditate With Your Animal
Using a guided meditation, journey to connect with your spirit animal. Ground yourself and when you’ve connected with your animal, visualize the animal’s energy merging with yours. Feel yourself integrating its strength and wisdom. Set the intention to embody the animal’s empowerment for the day ahead. Working with animals is very grounding, so know that your energy will be protected by the animal as it serves you.

Animals are wise and gentle guides. They haven’t forgotten their connection with earth and with us, and they need our help to protect and heal our planet. As always, the healing journey begins with us. This is an invitation to call on your natural superpowers and work with animal instinct to create the change in your life that you’ve been waiting for.

CASTING MY SPELL: CONFESSIONS OF A WHITE WITCH

“I see writing as a spell, decorating my home as a spell, singing as a spell. Whenever I express myself I am casting MY spell.” Shaheen Miro shares what it means to grow up and embrace being a white witch…

I have always had an intimate connection to the unseen – as a child I could feel the pulse of magic in the world around me. I spent my time wandering through the shadows of trees, marveling at the menagerie of creatures forming, looming, and dancing on the ground around me. I gathered stones, flowers, and found objects to create charms for change and good fortune. I spent my time talking to invisible forces…the spirit of the river, the rocks, and my little calico cat.

A little fairy on the edge of dreamland, roaming between worlds, and unraveling mysteries, sometimes I found myself lost, and confused by things I could not put into words. The loneliness of abandoned buildings made my spine tingle, and spirits of the dead danced in and out of my awareness – difficult things for a child to articulate.

My mother and grandmother were my advocates. Strong, beautiful women with big hearts, strong hands, they were brave witches who honored this path, and these gifts.

And so we explored the tangles of nature together. Singing with the plants, and soaking up the light of the moon. My grandmother always spoke of angels as divine helpers who could be called upon at any time, and my mother gave me the gift of the Tarot as a small child – her way of helping me cultivate and hone my blooming psychic abilities.

To some, my story may sound fantastical, the musings of a child captivated by fairytale visions. But all myths are rooted in reality, and I’ve simply always been aware that magic is alive and well in the “real” world.

As such, I never “grew out” of my exploration of the mystical world. I learned to read between the lines, to see the space beyond the eyes. In every moment, in every situation, and in every person, I can see a bead of magic. How we are all made of the same light and shadows – divine beings on an arduous and essentially liberating earth-walk journey.

I have found magic in books, in stories, and in art, and my life has become a pilgrimage to reclaim the folds of the mystical world, while remaining grounded here in the physical. Because this is where magic has the most power.

To quote Stevie Nicks (a weaver of spells through songs): “The stars are apart of us.” Witches know the ebb and flow of the Moon, and we hone and honor this powerful tide of energy in the understanding that we are equal parts spirit and flesh. Our bodies know the grace of the seasons, and the tides of the Moon, and when we channel this energy we become super-powered.

As such, the Moon has always been my muse and my teacher. I spend time soaking in her milky light. I talk to her, expressing my deepest wishes, and my heaviest regrets. My mother and I wander out into the landscapes of the moon and light candles in honor of her light and glory. The moon has become a portal to our inner world, and even when we are apart we know that the Moon connects our souls.

How else do I live it?

There is nothing like wrapping myself in an aura of black chiffon, and letting my wings catch the wind as I spin and spin in the moonlight. A little white witch taking flight into the mystical; transcending my body, and moving through time. I feel alive in the cool hush of the night. Night sounds are prayers that awaken the soul. Witches know the night holds mysteries, and so they seek refuge in her subtle energy.

And the white witch knows the power of magic lies in the ability to evoke what is cradled within. Spells become nothing more than a rhythm of expressing and exploring intention. We mingle with, and call upon the latent potential of objects. Calling on the spirit of botanicals, igniting the influence of candles, and mingling with the essence of crystals.

The Shadow self has also become a teacher for me – for there are gifts to be found here, in the parts that are suppressed, feared, and therefore unacknowledged. When you reach into the dark, you can pull out treasures and heal what’s stuck. So when I encounter the dark, I try to communicate with it. To see what my Shadow Self has to say.

I call myself a White Witch, because I know I am the night and the day. I seek to understand the dark, rather than fear it. To do this, I must know and honor my intuition, seeking out the patterns of the Universe unfolding around me. In omens, cards, and tea leaves. And it’s when I ignore the messages that I find myself falling off kilter.

This is why owning the word “witch” is an act of power. Sometimes it can feel easier to grow numb to the whispers of the magical world. To put your head down, and do what you are told. To act “normal.” But you are not living if you are not expressing, and you are not expressing if you are not telling the whole story. So now I find my power in being “different” – and stepping into the flow of my eccentricities.

For me, witchcraft is a way of life, an inborn desire to truly live. This also means following my creative impulses as an act of scared communion. I see writing as a spell, decorating my home as a spell, singing as a spell. Whenever I express myself I am casting MY spell.

This applies to all the powerful ones, the thought leaders, the rebels, the eccentrics, the artists. The ones who operate in the Earthly realms from a deep seated desire to bring their inner world to life. Magic asked them to channel their vision into being. All they needed was to be their unique expression. And the world changed because of it.

Witches know they do not have to explain their doings. They just do what feels right. Whatever feeds their spirit. And since this takes real bravery, witches don’t do well with fear.