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Ritual-based beauty for your inner shaman. Ceremonie integrates shamanic and other earth spirituality rituals with plant science to offer safe and effective skin solutions and increased well-being.

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Ceremonie offers the latest news and musings on beauty and skincare, shamanism, spirituality, wellness, rituals, vibrational therapy, healing modalities, and other ways to raise our vibration.

Filtering by Tag: ancestors

WHY WOMEN STRUGGLE MAKING DECISIONS AND WHY THEY SHOULDN'T CARE

Mimi Young

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Could decision paralysis be a symptom of internalized patriarchy?

What do these questions have in common?
Do I study XXX or YYY?
Do I relocate to LA / Tokyo / Shanghai / Paris / quiet place in the middle of nowhere?
Do I have a baby? Or a subsequent one?
Do I marry this person?
Do I quit my office day job in a cubicle that pays fairly well and begin a new career in permaculture?

I don't mean to diminish the importance of the process of making these decisions, but these decisions can't possibly ever be "right" or "wrong". And when we cannot reconcile the "rightness" or "wrongness", we experience anxiety and confusion, because we have been trained to believe there is always one right answer. Somewhere deep within us, at a cellular level, many of us hold the view that making a wrong turn in life can lead to catastrophic ruin. We aren't only afraid of the unfamiliar, or our love of homeostasis, we've also inherited the belief that choices can lead to punishment and death. Looking back to our personal history and generations back, the stories told by authorities (church, state, culture) often share a theme that is so deeply ingrained in our psyche.

The theme is: There is ONLY one "God". “The Father”, he created Man (coming directly from the Divine), and Woman was created from Man’s body (thus, not directly from the Divine) for the sole purpose of being his “helper”. “Father God” is jealous, angry, and punishes those who have disobeyed. If you obey him, your reward will be granted to you after you die (entrance to heaven).

Well, isn't that a convenient story to tell if you're in power: They told us that "God" put men in power; they must know what’s best for us.

I would argue that while many of us are living fairly secularized lives, and don't necessarily believe in the idea of 'sin' and 'hell', but we are, at a cellular level, terrified of punishment via a poor decision (disobedience). And lo, what's a poor decision? Well, basically everything natural and life-giving according to patriarchy. This "God" does not like competition.

Who would have guessed that any of the following are decisions that could lead to death?
For being in relationship with plants.
For being in relationship with animals.
For understanding that we are stewards of Earth, and not her pimp.

Who would have known that our ancestors were killed for:
Looking to the Moon and her phases to understand our biology?
For finding pleasure in their bodies outside of procreation?
For loving humans rather than loving gender?
For creating art in the name of the Goddess?
For dancing & drumming?
For remembering their ancestors ?
For listening to their dreams?

Who would have known that we could be killed for:
Refusing to marry or for refusing to have sex.
For having a different skin colour than those in power.
For eating a fruit that leads to wisdom.
For talking to a Snake.
For simply being a Woman.

Whether you are a Woman, a Man, or non-binary, the fear is that we could potentially make a choice that reveals we are aligned with Spirit rather than the Machine of Patriarchy. And should you choose Spirit and her sacred Dance of Life, then you and your ancestors were told that you are a witch, a heathen, a whore, a nasty woman, stupid, corrupt, or any other name that harms your credibility, and often, were killed.

I was having a conversation with a dear friend, who is currently going through the agonizing process of evaluating and considering having a baby. (She's given me permission to share this, in fact, asked me to!). I offered her my opinion: yes, it may be helpful to write down a list of pros & cons. Have a weighty spreadsheet of ideal astrological times to conceive. Biohack to immortality with the hopes that your child will escape illness. We can plan, plan, plan. But when we become enslaved to it, it's the Machine that's the master. The Spirit will move in ways we cannot predict. There will be infertility, miscarriages, infant health issues, learning disabilities, bullying, racist classmates and their racist parents, shitty teachers, shittier in-laws, video game addiction, bros texting your daughter, BUT, no one can plan for falling in love, for the healing of our own internal child, learning from the younger generation, new friends, building a legacy, emerging out of outworn archetypes into brilliant new ones, leaning into others, letting go of perfectionism, bedtime giggles, and just having fun.

Do you dance to music? The kind in front of your mirror when no one is looking. Would you agree that how you move your body is dependent on how the music is sung, played, mixed, and feels? So in essence you are dancing because of the music? Would you stop and analyze the BPMs of the track, need to accurately define the genre, ramble on its related trivia, and agonize what would happen if you danced a misstep or two? Or do you just feel and move in ways that feels natural?

So if life is a sacred dance, how about just being in flow? If you knew that you aren't going to be punished or die for making decision B rather than decision A, and your heart had its way, what would you choose? Because the paralysis is hurting you. Choose Spirit, your Spirit. And when you do so, the Goddess will cheer, for you are sovereign and free.

Also cheering you on,

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist

If you enjoyed this post, and would like more, please feel free to share with your friends. I also welcome you to follow Ceremonie on Instagram or the email list! My neurofeedback work can be found via Open Minds Performance, also on IG.

HOW DO WE HEAL INTERNALIZED COLONIALISM?

Mimi Young

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Colonialism isn’t just about destroying and taking over an existing local culture, exploiting the land and people, and maintaining domination.⁣

Colonialism is also about eradicating the people’s memories, exploiting and twisting those memories, and ensuring any effective connection to the past is severed so the conquered are left crippled and dependent on the dominating system. Let them forget who they were (past) so they do not know who they ever will be (present and future).⁣

This is most noticeable in the myth of the angry, jealous, and punishing, father god who cannot tolerate us having any form of connection to anything / anyone other than himself; he needed to invent an enemy - the devil - as a method to instill fear and preserve amnesia. What signifies the devil may differ, but common symbols are:⁣

  • Menstruation ⁣

  • All relating to the feminine and redness (further symbolizing menstrual blood, sexuality, creative kundalini energy, life force, celebration)⁣

  • An ‘emotional’, ‘wild’, ‘erotic’, or ‘uncontrollable’ woman⁣

  • Snake and Dragon - creatures of death-rebirth-death, beacons of luck and prosperity (because any success must be credited not from you or any other source of abundance other than the father god)⁣

  • Dancing⁣

  • Pleasure ⁣

  • Nature as subject rather than object (consider how wolves, hyenas, coyotes are villainized; consider how honouring the trees and the moon is taught as being associated with ‘demon worship’ or as ‘idolatry’)⁣

  • Diversity (patriarchy teaches that war is the solution to differences of opinion — it is a ‘shut them up’ rather than ‘talk it out’ method; and makes the assumption that diversity is ‘bad’)⁣

  • Revering your ancestors and maintaining that rooted connection to the very people who made it possible for you to be here ⁣

  • Any honouring of plant, animal, mineral, elemental spirits⁣


Examining devil symbols is a method of cultural shadow work that can help revive our collective / personal memory. For me, the access points have been menstrual honouring, plant spirit medicine, and ancestral connection.⁣ What are your ‘devil’ triggers? They are your portals to take you back to your soul remembrance.

In service,

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist

If you enjoyed this post, and would like more, please feel free to share with your friends. I also welcome you to follow Ceremonie on Instagram or the email list! My neurofeedback work can be found via Open Minds Performance, also on IG.

RESPONSIBLE MANIFESTATION

Mimi Young

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For the last two months, I've been probing the shadow side of the spiritual notion called the 'Manifestation Principle', and the potentially dangerous misuses of the Law of Attraction, particularly by leaders, healers, and teachers in the wellness and spiritual community. (For those who are just joining this discussion, feel free to read April's story HERE and May's story HERE).

I closed last month's newsletter with the question of what does the term 'manifesting' mean to me and what does it look like in my own practice, since I offer an Aura Mist product that is called Transcendental Meditation Mist, set to the frequency of Manifestation. I'd like to use this month's newsletter / blog post to share.

When a practitioner of earth magick and shamanic healing performs their craft, the first commitment is to harm none. The second is to see oneself as part of a greater, vaster expression of Life, some of which are Seen and others Unseen. The practitioner honours both these Seen and Unseen dimensions, and humbly accepts that she cannot possibly be aware of, see, or understand it all. She knows that this Mystery is what makes magick magickal. For this reason, when she sets off to connect with spirits, to do divinatory or healing work, or casts spells (energized intentions done in a traditional or ritualized container), she firstly acknowledges the process and outcome are collaborative, and that she cannot take full credit for the positive or healing that transpires. Put it another way, she knows she cannot succeed alone.

For me, I call in my loving ancestors (named and unnamed), plant spirits and animal spirit allies, the directions and elements, the stars and planetary bodies, archetypes, and sometimes other specific entities when I engage in rituals. I have cheekily called these rituals 'staff meetings'. But in all seriousness, that would actually be incorrect. It's more like me approaching my board of directors. I seek their wisdom, their counsel, their blessing - not the other way around.

We may work together to bring clarity around a certain wound in a client or a situation, and discover ways to restore harmony. We may call for a blessed door to open. We may ask for protection, provision, and prosperity. But whatever we do, it's done in the spirit of the commitment of harming none and always in the context of teamwork.

Which brings me to the idea of the manifestation principle. What's problematic about this spiritual idea is that some use it as a decoy to flex their muscles (delusions of grandeur) or as a disguise to judge or exploit others of lesser means or lesser privilege. This violates both commitments of magick practice.

So what exactly is the Aura Mist formulation I've named Transcendental Meditation Aura Mist, set to the frequency of Manifestation? It's designed to be a tool a committed seeker or practitioner uses to assist with inner clarity. The plant medicines of Lemon and Peppermint offer this wisdom (and yes, all plants offer medicine, not only exotic ones from far away places - stay tuned - I'll be discussing this in another newsletter / blog post). The Aura Mist is designed to promote a sense of bewildered awe of the Great Mystery and consequently a sense of compassion that radiates from the inside out. Frankincense has been used for centuries to support this. Recent studies indicate that Frankincense has a profound effect on Gamma brain waves, the brain waves associated with big picture thinking, compassion, and bliss - what is conventionally accessed via longterm meditation can be accelerated via this plant medicine. The Aura Mist contains Palo Santo, which is the 'networking' or 'social' wood. The smallest drop of mist or smoke has the ability to hail spirits.

Considering the aforementioned, the synergy is designed to provide the necessary conditions and ingredients to participate in the collaborative process of manifesting. The more I work in and with the Great Mystery, the more I realize how little I truly know, and whether I know anything at all. This waking, consensual reality is undeniably a brief and limited taste of something inexplicable and limitless.

As much as we each need to take radical responsibility for the choices and the stories we live out on a daily basis, part of the responsibility is also to realize that we are merely co-creatrixes/co-creators, and not all knowing, absolute beings that can objectively say we have "manifested" our [insert desirable thing / experience / outcome]. This is not to diminish the commitment, the grit, and the long hours of dedication to our goals, but is simply a reminder that if we are using any spiritual principle for self-deceit or misrepresentation, then it would be wise revisit the Golden Rule.


Lastly, thank you for reading and for being part of this space.

Yours,

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist

This article was first published on my monthly newsletter. If you enjoyed this post, and would like more, please feel free to share with your friends. I also welcome you to follow Ceremonie on Instagram or the email list! My neurofeedback work can be found via Open Minds Performance, also on IG.

Image credit: Iulia Agnew for Ceremonie

UNDER THE NEW MOON: DECOLONIZING, GROWTH, MANIFESTING

Mimi Young

Sometimes, my own fears and irrational habits surprise myself. I have internalized oppression of general Chinese/Taiwanese culture (not to mention cultural purging that modern China has experienced) and Christian patriarchy; being a female in a white-centric worldview also adds nuanced complexity. So many painful and limiting layers. So much living small and self-oppression. But I'm hopeful. I think the first step is awareness, then release, and lots and lots of patience and self-love. I find using shamanic and ritual-based practices effective in identifying the limitations as well as work through them. (For those who know me and my work, I’m all about integrating the spiritual with practical, everyday life. Spirituality without real-life application is lip service).

I did a powerful New Moon ritual last month and invited spirits allies I have a relationship with, and my deceased grandfather (who had escaped China during a tumultuous and pivotal time and fled to Taiwan to seek political freedom) to surround me with support. It was as much of a spell to commit to personal growth as well as a surrender of me being comfortable enough to walk with my demons and call them my friends. You’d think my personal and professional work shamanically journeying would make me more open to Spirit, but this lesson of trust, trust, trust, is something I am still learning how to do.

I then wrote down some goals - all of which were completely impossible to achieve in my rational mind. They were (in my mind) lofty goals - some likely would take a year to achieve. I had deliberately put down ambitious goals because it was a challenge to live big - to show up in a way where I am not downplaying who I am, where I can embrace where I came from. What's incredible is that I just reviewed my goals these past couple of days (as I prepare for a New Moon ritual tomorrow), and all but 2 goals (there were 8) - have manifested - shifts in how I relate to work, to my relationships, to my health. I am overwhelmed with breathless awe and inexplicable gratitude. I am also pinching myself ever so often wondering why I waited so long to show up fully. What was I so afraid of? How can I call those demons ‘bad’, when the devil’s work in whispering lies is to invite us to explore our greatest truths? Releasing duality, layer by layer, is so liberating. As I let go of what I cling to, my hands are freed to invite new, prosperous, and loving realities in.

Happy New Moon, beloved tribe.
 

Mimi Young
founder + plant spirit medicine practitioner

For those in the Vancouver area, I would love to see/meet you at an upcoming Ceremonie Workshop!
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Image credits: Me, taken by Heather Pennell of The Essence Oracle