MY MYSTICAL LIFE: AN INVITATION TO CHOOSE PEACE, EVERY DAY

Our #TuneInPeaceOut initiative is an invitation to choose peace, every day and in every way…

:: MONDAY ::
Got to see Deepak “the don” Chopra speak live for the first time, at the launch of his Radical Beauty book with nutritionist Kimberly Snyder. TOTALLY get why he is who he is. The charisma! The effortless way with a deeply spiritual insight! A fave takeaway were his quotes about our relationship to our bodies: “Your body is an activity, not a thing. It’s not a sculpture it’s a river.” And how, since our cells are in a continual process of rejuvenation: “I’ve had this jacket longer than the body I’m wearing today.”

:: TUESDAY ::
Another day, another book about feeding our body right with Nicole Centeno’s Soup Cleanse Cookbook. Nicole is the founder of Splendid Spoon, one of our sponsors at Club SÖDA NYC, and she’s all about the healing power of soup. As Nicole tells it, souping changed her life (a low-calorie way to stay fuller for longer, the mindfulness of making soup, AND a totally practical way to cook and eat big batches of seasonal veg). All I really need to know is, my body just sort of gives me a big, cozy hug from the inside just looking at some of her recipes—which feels like an intuitive “yes” to a lot more souping this fall to me.

With Juquille, Eddie, Jaytaun, Tyrell and Raheem of the Urban Yogis, and Erica and Prince of Life Camp.

:: WEDNESDAY :: (Lots to say here, you might want to go make a cup of tea first…)
So roughly three weeks ago, I had the idea for #TuneInPeaceOut—an initiative to celebrate the UN’s International Day of Peace. This following some work I did with my coach Cherie Healey, when I was thinking about the big, underlying message of The Numinous. “If I gave you the loudest megaphone in the world, and put you on top of the highest mountain, what would you say to the world?” she asked. The words came immediately: “Can everybody just stop fighting. We’re all human. We all have the same needs, and the same fears. Please can we remember that we’re here to help each other work it out?”

Because essentially (besides me just being a massive pacifist), all the practices, philosophies, and ways of healing that we cover on The Numinous are about forging a deeper connection to our true nature—and therefore a deeper sense of connection to ourselves, and to each other. Two things I believe are fundamental to any conversation about creating more peace in our (inner and outer) world. This since a) connection to self is what fosters the resilience needed to respond to life’s trials in a calm, non-reactive way; and b) it becomes pretty much impossible to want to harm somebody once you recognize that we are all part of one big human family!

And then “Summer 2016” happened. Week after week we were slammed with reminders of the rampant divisiveness, hatred and violence in our world right now, and often stemming from a place of separation, of “us” v. “them.” Which is not exactly anything new. Bombings, shootings, rape, hate crimes, and other acts of terrorism are happening all over the world, every day. But what struck me was the emotional charge in the way we responded to the events of this summer. How personally we all took each heart-wrenching episode of violence and injustice.

I think this is because we’ve reached a tipping point in how we consume our news. It used to be that we first heard of such inhumane acts as mass shootings and racist police brutality from people in suits, reading from scripts, in newsrooms far away. Now, this information first reaches us via our social media feeds—the same place we connect with our family and friends, and share our own lives with those we love. As a result, it has become impossible not to empathize with the people being violated against as we would our own brothers and sisters, parents, friends, and colleagues. The veil of separation dissolves…and we are reminded that we are all part of one big human family.

And with this, comes the remembrance that it is all of our responsibility to look out for one another. To speak up. Literally. Like, “WTF, that’s not how we do things in THIS family!!” No matter how scary, or how uncomfortable this might feel. And to take whatever (non-violent!) action we can to change up the status quo.

The above is pretty much how I introduced my event in NYC for #TuneInPeaceOut, which ended up being one of 20 or so IRL gatherings held by the Numinous tribe globally. Earlier in the day I also hosted a live webinar with Bri Luna from The Hoodwitch and my dear friend and collaborator Alexandra Roxo (you can listen to the recording here), in which we spelled out what this initiative is really all about—empowering all of us to use our voice and take action to choose peace, and help create more peaceful communities from the ground up.

After all, as a friend in the UK pointed out on one of my posts about #TuneInPeaceOut, since it was inaugurated in 1981, it would not appear that the UN’s International Day of Peace has actually done much to end—or even lessen—violence. Since September 21 was subsequently declared a day of of ceasefire and non-violence in 2001, US military spending has increased dramatically—rising from under $400 billion to almost $800 billion in 2011 (there has been a slight drop during Obama’s presidency, but spending is projected to increase again in 2017). I see this as yet another reminder that it is actually on YOU AND ME to demand a different way of resolving conflict. That the power, truly, must be claimed by the people.

This message is why I partnered with the amazing Urban Yogis for my event tonight, since here are some people who are walking the freaking talk. Based in Jamaica, Queens, a neighborhood where violent street crime fueled by prejudice and lack of opportunity is a way of life, the courageous and progressive human beings behind this initiative are bringing the tools of yoga and meditation into their local community. The results? Less reactivity. Less violence. More listening. Increased feelings of self-worth, leading to more empowered and empowering lifestyle choices.

And, most importantly, the slow chipping away of stereotypes (about the “kind of people” who do yoga, for example—or who perpetrate violent crimes) that are the sick, Monsanto seed of so much separation, fear, and hate.

“Real change needs all year round effort, not just a day,” my friend noted. And I could not agree more. Which is why it is my sincere hope that the conversations sparked by #TuneInPeaceOut will continue today, tomorrow, and every day going forward. That we will continue to choose peace every step of the way. On our webinar, we asked people to share what this looked like in their lives, and what they do to bring more peace to their communities, so we could all be inspired by each others efforts. I’ve created a post with the transcript from our chat. Check it out here—and add your feedback in the comments, so we can keep the conversation alive.

:: THURSDAY ::
Pulled the above card in a mini meeting oracle deck reading with my girl Lisa Barner. Thanks for listening, angels.

:: FRIDAY ::
And all that said, with the Moon in Cancer today, sign of nurture and self-care, I shall be mainly tuning in…and peace’ing out.

MY MYSTICAL LIFE: CONNECTIVITY CONSCIOUSNESS AND A CALL TO SHAKTIVISM

Is it enough to “be the change we want to see”? This week’s call to “shaktivism” got me asking…

Photo by Natalie Reyes, Mexico

:: MONDAY ::
SO MUCH LOVE for the 90 beautiful souls who joined from all over the world for our Virtual Full Moon Ritual, with Alexandra Roxo and Elyssa Jakim. We cast a circle of love and light, got the lowdown on the current cosmic energies, did a journalling exercise to get into our deepest desires for the next Moon cycle, and sat in a guided meditation to light the fire in our solar plexus. The vibe was ELECTRIC—but above all, in a week where the divisiveness and separation in our world has been brought yet again to light with the UK’s deeply saddening vote to leave the EU (more under “Friday”), it was a small example / reminder of how, beyond politics, we ARE united, and how connectivity consciousness is alive and thriving. Our virtual Full Moon rituals will be happening monthly—watch our Instagram for links to sign up.

:: TUESDAY ::
A delivery from lovely Bri Luna (a.k.a. The Hoodwitch), who collaborated with artist Robin Eisenberg on this rad collection of pins. Um, could they get any more Numinous?! My fave is the palm tree crystal ball, the perfect talisman for, say, manifesting a move to LA?

Crystal Baller enamel pin, $10, The Hoodwitch

:: WEDNESDAY ::
When I got invited to a Full Moon comedy show, I really had no idea what to expect. But what I GOT was a night of whip-smart laughs from an all female line-up of comics, united by the theme of la luna. Hosted by Sara Armour and Jessica Brodkin, an actual life coach and energy healer, there was also an appearance from brilliant/hilarious astrologer Kristina Belich (who also managed to include some actual real life astro insights!) FUN. And gonna be a regular happening in NYC, so sign up for our newsletter where we’ll post details of the next event.

:: THURSDAY ::
Launch party at comprehensive health clinic The Ash Center for Rebecca Gordon and Stephanie Marango MD’s new book on astrology for wellness, Your Body And The Stars. Surprise / fascinating insight of the night—until only a couple of months ago, Stephanie had been living the wrong chart—i.e. not knowing her real Moon and Rising signs. She claims discovering “the truth” of her chart has given her a whole new perspective on her life path, and obviously we’re planning a tea date to discuss this in more depth. But I was also kinda distracted by the results of the Brexit referendum rolling in, which leads me to…

:: FRIDAY ::
“Shaktivism” is the name of one of my favorite new Instagram accounts, and it’s a term curator Jessica Fish describes as “spiritual practice + activism…the power of the divine feminine to heal, empower + transform individuals + society.” A huge theme for this year, since world events occurring in real time can make it hard not to feel like what’s the freaking point of yet another heart-opening guided meditation, when what’s really needed is campaigning and direct action.

But what does this really look like, in our everyday lives, in the now? What are the actions we as individuals can take TODAY to keep building towards the “consciousness shift” we hear so much about—the shift to a more open, loving and accepting global society? I’m asking because these are questions I am constantly asking of myself lately.

So what do the answers look like in my life? Constantly returning to the idea that a true “shift” has to happen one mind at a time (even if this means many minds awakening to the damage animal agriculture is doing to the planet / humanity after watching Cowspiracy, for example); consistently promoting the concept of self-healing as the way past limiting beliefs that foster feelings of fear, otherness, and even hate; and starting initiatives like Club SÖDA NYC to encourage people to stop using alcohol and other ways of numbing out to hide from the truth—that it is our human responsibility to be the change we want to see.

But I want to do more. Don’t we all? And so I want to hear from you too—what would you have a platform like The Numinous do?

If you didn’t already, check out the below poem by spoken word artist Lisa Luxx, which I commissioned to inspire the light-worker massive after it became evident Trump would win the Republican nomination. In it she states: “If politics show us the apex of hatred, there is equal measure in the depths of love.” In other words, if current events are shining a light on the fact this is, and by the laws of nature always will be, a planet of polarities—then in the name of the cosmic balancing act we all walk in this life, the time to embrace the path of the shaktivist is now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPNLoF4e3Kw

MATERIAL GIRL, MYSTICAL WORLD: THE HOODWITCH

Gabriela Herstik talks magick, ritual and the numinous nature of the Cosmos with The Hoodwitch

Bri Luna, a.k.a. The Hoodwitch, is mesmerizing. A double Taurus babe, her energy is infectious – strong, aware and unapologetic. With The Hoodwitch, a platform preaching “everyday magic for the modern mystic,” Bri has founded a channel to help us all tap into our own sacred goddess energy – and shop for some bad-ass crystals. Oh, and we’re obsessed with her latest project – a collection of pins created with one of our favorite artists, Robin Eisenberg.

In celebration of her birthday month, we sat down with Bri for the inside scoop on her magick and her mission. Read on below…

Enamel pins, $9-18

The Numinous: Okay so – can you tell us a bit about how honoring your heritage has played into your personal brand of magick?
The Hoodwitch: I believe my being multiracial is strongly reflected by my approach to ritual and spell working. My approach draws on elements of both of my Mexican and African-American ancestry, and I’ve really enjoyed utilizing aspects of traditional folk healing from both, as well as working with other practices taught by others I’ve met and learned from on my path that I feel resonate with me.

TN: What’s your personal definition of a “witch”?
TH: You know whenever I’m asked this question I laugh a bit, because there isn’t a “one size fits all” answer. Every woman is a Witch. She may not know it, or maybe she does.  But to me, being a Witch means more than spells and candles. To me, it means freedom. The power to boldly and unapologetically embrace nature, heal yourself, and heal your community. To respect the seen and unseen realms. It means the freedom to be your most authentic self. To embrace ALL aspects of whoever that may be, and fiercely. That is the Witch.

TN: What’s the most important thing you’ve learned on your journey with spirituality?
TH: That we never really KNOW anything for certain. That there are galaxies upon galaxies in the Cosmos, and here we are floating on Earth thinking we have all the answers. I’m in a place spiritually where I choose to embrace the unknown by saying it’s okay to not know.

TN: What advice would you give baby bruja Bri?
TH: That not everyone is going to understand you, and that’s okay. Stay true to yourself, because in another 10-20 years everyone else is just going to catch on to what you’ve been doing all along haha. Also, don’t cry over boys because it’ll give you wrinkles!

TN: What’s one thing you do every day to channel your inner goddess?
TH: I like to take very long beautiful baths – my daily ritual to connects me to the Goddess within. I enjoy being surrounded by candles, while listening to soft music. Depending on the purpose of the bath, be it for attracting or self-love, aura cleansing, or just simply relaxation I’ll add in ingredients that are reflective of those purposes. Essential oils, milk, salts, or flower petals. I just enjoy the beauty of it.

Ugh – in love! Read on for more insight into the mystical world of this material girl…

 

:: MATERIAL GIRL ::

My label
“Whatever was in your grandmother’s closet. I love vintage clothing.”

Vintage Dress, $258, Nasty Gal

My shoes
“When I wear shoes, I love my metallic Nike Cortez or Vintage Peggy Bundy fluffy heels.”

Nike Cortez Sneakers, $69.99

My fragrance
“Byredo Casablanca Lily Oil.”

Byredo Casablanca Lily Oil, $550

My jewels
“I love adornments. Real gold jewelry and, of course, very large vintage Navajo turquoise rings and squash blossom necklaces.”

 

My pampering
“Every two weeks I receive manicures to sharpen my signature stiletto point nails. I also enjoy massages.”

My home
“My apartment in Seattle overlooks the city and I enjoy opening all of the windows to allow plenty of fresh air. I enjoy adding many earth elements, such as plants, large crystal clusters and, of course, candles.”

The Hoodwitch Large Celestite Cluster Egg, $180

My food
“I live for authentic Italian food! I enjoy comforting meals. I’m a Taurus, so food is a very sensual experience. It’s about indulging in all of the senses! Needless to say, I take my dining experiences very seriously. I also love fresh raw oysters!”

:: MYSTICAL WORLD ::

My awakening
“I light a candle and say a prayer or affirmation of gratitude, setting intentions for the day.”

My sign
“Taurus sun and moon.”

Brooke Gregson Taurus Necklace, $2,340

My mantra 
“I am grounded, content, and calm, in the arms of the Earth.”

My healer
“Mother Earth. The ocean’s waves are purifying and cleansing. I enjoy doing meditations in the desert sun with a large Quartz crystal and planting my feet firmly into the soil of a forest.  All of the Earth’s elements are my healers.”

My reading
“Well, I collect and sell rare/vintage occult, and metaphysical books. My favorite authors include Doreen Valiente, Carl Sagan, and C. W. Leadbeater.”

Shop for vintage books on Bri’s Bruja Workshop

My transformation
“Honoring my intuition.”

My mission
“To provide everyday magic for the modern mystics of the world!”

www.thehoodwitch.com

STARCHILD TAROT INTERVIEW: PLUS 5 DECKS YOU NEED TO KNOW

Tarot is having a moment. And with more artists than ever bringing forth new versions of the classic Tarot, it’s never been easier to unleash your inner reader and find a deck that sings to you! Whether you’re a witchy mama looking for something a little more macabre, or a Kundalini goddess in search of some high vibes, there is a deck out there with your name on it.

To aid your search, we’ve rounded up five hot off the press tarot obsessions, kicking things off with an interview with the goddess behind The Starchild Tarot, Danielle Noel, about her special edition Akashic Records deck. By Gabriela Herstik.

Starchild Tarot creator Danielle Noel

The Numinous: First off, we love that you’re including the Akashic Records as a card in the major arcana of your new deck. What will the card represent?
Starchild Tarot: Thank you! I have always thought of the Akashic records as a source of mystery and divine information. At first, it was a somewhat abstract concept to grasp. When I was younger and just beginning to understand its significance, I imagined ancient manuscripts containing hidden and sacred knowledge, and thought, “how can I access this?” Now I understand the ‘Akashic Records’ as an energetic source which contains various frameworks of spiritual truths, with information pertaining to yourself, your life paths, incarnations, and the Universe at large. When you work with the cards, you have access to this information too, and are essentially connecting with the endless possibilities available to you.

The Akashic Records card of this special edition comes after the traditional 21st card (The World/The Universe), as a bridge beyond this holistic key, which I think connects well with how we are evolving at this time on our planet. I truly believe that a shift is currently taking place – energies are being enhanced and polarized, insights and sacred knowledge are rising to the surface like never before, and we are being forced to really think about our own enlightenment, mortality, and collective consciousness. This card taps into the acknowledgement of yourself as more than a physical being. It encourages you to take note of your own karmic imprints, and to consider the sacred knowledge that is being offered to us all at this time.

TN: Your imagery is super feminine and dreamy. Do you think that sort of energy in a deck makes it easier for the reader to access the Akashic Records?
ST: Certain sacred spaces and forms of sacred geometry are very activating, which is why I incorporate particular sites, colours, and symbols throughout this deck. This one also has a lot of pastel hues (pink and corals in particular) which connect with the heart chakra. My intention with each image is to inspire your imagination and intuition, through the layering of various visual triggers and healing modalities.

TN: Do you have a favorite card in this new deck? Why? (We won’t tell the others!)
ST: I have to say I really love the “Akashic Records” card. The image seems like one of the strongest visual portals that come up, and I’m curious to see how people will respond to it. Each symbol, colour, and portion of that card plays significant role in its interpretation. I have a deep fascination and love for Thoth and the emerald tablets, as well as the history of Atlantis, so those keys are also embedded in the image.

TN: What else is different about the new deck?
ST: There are a lot of new cards, which came from the desire to keep making new “gateways,” and the style for this deck is also slightly different than its predecessor. I added a lot of hand painted layers and watercolour textures, and it is much less “collage” based and more illustrative. Some of the cards from the original Starchild Tarot have remained in the Akashic edition, however, they have each been modified with painted overlays and new details.

Throughout the Major Arcana I have also added “Spiritual Keys” to help each reader along their journey into the Akashic records. These categories (Chakras, Gemstones, Guides, Symbols, Astrological/Planetary) can be used to expand your knowledge when working with a specific card, or to apply meditative and/or magical practices throughout the use of the Starchild Tarot. I have also added two new spreads in the guidebook (The Akashic Spread & Metatron Spread).

TN: Is creating collages on the cards a meditative experience for you? How does it aid your own journey with the Tarot?
ST: Meditation and energy work has been a huge part of my life over these past few years, and creating the cards has gone hand in hand with these explorations. I always start with the backgrounds which are ALL familiar to me in some way or another. Many of them come from photographs from my own travels, or of sacred sites from around the globe.

Our planet has so many activation points, with many of the great monuments working as chakras within the energy grid of Gaia. To acknowledge and respect these points honors the interconnectedness of us all, as they illustrate our history and spiritual evolution. The Tarot is a simple yet complex visual representation of ancient stories and concepts, and I think about this when I am creating the images. Somehow, they act as smaller pieces to a much larger cosmic puzzle.

The Hoodwitch, a.k.a. Bri Luna, as The High Priestess

TN: How do you choose the incredible real-life women featured in your decks?
ST: I’ve been lucky to have crossed paths with some amazing women and light workers, and when I began creating the decks, I thought that by integrating these guides, the energy of the cards would be enhanced through the powerful intention and co-creation that was put into the imagery. They are mediums, tarot readers, energy healers and others, who all share a common love for the Tarot and Magick overall.

TN: Which deck did you learn on, and what other decks are in your practice today?
ST: The first deck I ever purchased was a second-hand copy of ‘The Aquarian Tarot’ – I found it at a local flea market, and strangely, it had two Ace of Swords! After that, I learned on the ‘Tarot of a Moongarden’ and the ‘Thoth’ Tarot, but there are so many decks that I now love and appreciate. I also love that more and more people are tapping into the Tarot as a tool for self-healing and learning, and it doesn’t surprise me that it’s become so popular.

I think this comes from the “waking up” process that’s happening – there is a need for more spiritual outlets, as people are recognizing the importance of introspection, and the existence of more than what we see “on the surface”. Currently, the decks I use the most are my own, The Aquarian Tarot, The Klimt Tarot, Spiritspeak Tarot, The Goddess Tarot, and the Thoth Tarot.

TN: What’s the one thing that you want people reading your cards to know?
ST: There are many hidden layers and symbols in this deck. These were added as activation tools, so I am curious to see how they will be received. I have put a lot of love into this project, and hope that each person who reads the cards will be able to build their own relationship with the images and interpretations. That is my intention: I hope you feel supported and cared for when using these cards.

I would also like to point out that this new deck is not a replacement of the first, rather a special edition that opens up new insights. I am going to be re-releasing the “first edition” in the new year, so both decks will be available for sale, along with my future Moonchild Tarot, which is the shadow companion to The Starchild decks. I’m also working with a writer, and together we are creating a very special Oracle deck that I can’t wait to share in the not so distant future!

Starseedtravels.com

:: 5 MORE DECKS YOU NEED TO KNOW ::

The Wild Unknown Second Edition 
The Wild Unknown has quickly become a cult classic and with good reason. The wilderness inspired deck speaks to our innermost existence with its beautiful imagery, so it comes as no surprise that the Universe seems to be vibin’ at a higher frequency (read major excitement) at the release of the Second Edition deck. Although most cards remain the same as in the first edition, the cards illustrator Kim Krans has chosen to revisit are absolutely stunning – and help infuse readings with a colorful new energy.

The Four of Swords is bathed in a radiant blue green aura, Temperance is complimented with a sweet rainbow background and The Lovers scream “relationship goals” now more than ever, with cotton candy colors woven behind the two geese. The icing on the cake? A new, more in depth, fold out guide to each card. Although the old saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” reads true most of the time, we’re happy The Wild Unknown chose to ignore it on this occasion.

Thewildunknown.com

The Fountain Tarot

The Fountain Tarot
Deeply cosmic, The Fountain Tarot speaks to our unyielding need to find a deeper connection to the Universe we inhabit, and the souls who walk alongside us. The journey to this fountain of bliss starts as soon as you open the silver holographic fantasy of a box the cards reside in. From here, a greeting stating “you are the breath and voice of Universes” on the inside cover, sets the tone.

Designed and written by Jason Gruhl, Jonathan Saiz and Andi Todaro, the surreal imagery of each card allows an exploration of the sacred point where inner purpose meets outer expression. Perhaps most notably in The Fountain card itself, number “infinity,” which invites us to “surrender to that which you are, whole and perfect.” An invitation to remember that at our core, our true self is so much greater than we recognize.

Fountaintarot.com

The Serpentfire Tarot sixth edition

Serpentfire Tarot Sixth Edition
The colorful, dreamlike landscape of the Serpentfire deck by Devany Wolfe is unparalleled – and so totally Numinous. This deck is a beautiful tribute to the Goddess in us all, with an exploration of Kundalini energy woven throughout. These cards are for the dreamers, the seekers, the weavers, and those who feel an affinity to the Universe around them, even (especially) when it seems almost too big for their grasp.

Collages appear in some capacity in almost every card, from The Lovers personified as two wolves howling at a cosmic pyramid exploding with jewel-toned bliss, to The World being held over a Goddesses head with the Moon phases interlaced on top. This is no mundane magick. From the exquisite sacred geometry collage on the back of each card, to the brightly colorful, vibrantly infused and completely otherworldly art created by Wolf, this deck is truly spectacular.

Serpentfire.ca

The Spirit Speak Tarot

Spirit Speak Tarot Deck
If you’re into the more macabre, DIY, gothic look, the Spirit Speak tarot by Mary Bean Evans is right up your ally. With an alluring, sketchy quality, the illustrations for this deck resonate at their own slightly darker frequency – inviting you with a wink and a dripping dagger to step into that which is unknown. But feminist imagery, a clear love for the occult, and a really beautiful take on the Universe and the Cosmos also appears throughout.

So whether you pulling a bone hanging precariously atop a dagger to form a scale for “Justice” or a long-haired queen cradling a rune and her wand as “The Empress,” the Spirit Speak will quite literally…speak to your spirit. Let’s just say if the friendly monsters under your bed were into divination, they would have this deck on lock.

Spiritspeaktarot.com