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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: plant medicine

A LITTLE ABOUT ME...

Mimi Young

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My name is Mimi Young, and I am the owner of Ceremonie and a spirit medicine practitioner. I smell things. People's auras, spirits, messages, warnings, omens, and things I am still not totally clear on. The term to describe this is called clairolfaction. (If you hang around with me long enough, you may find that I sometimes ask those in the room with me if they smell something in particular. I ask this because sometimes it’s unclear to me whether the scent I pick up is actually a physical aroma that belongs to the environment - say smelling coffee at a coffeeshop, or not, say smelling a distinct tree that is tied to specific spirit or ancestor that no one else in the room will perceive). My experiences in shamanic journeying didn’t start until I was well into adulthood while on bedrest while pregnant with my second child. (More on that HERE).

Being a Taiwanese-born Canadian, I grew up with a blended world view of East and West, Old and New, supernatural and natural. This is why my medicine work includes multiple modalities and spiritual practices, including core shamanism, plant spirit medicine, botanical healing, and Chinese divination. I have had an alinear life path that includes careers in graphic design and branding, handcrafted soft goods, literacy and numeracy education for children pre K through to high school, and most recently, as a neurofeedback practitioner to support personal optimization.

There is a common thread here, however. I have always been drawn to healing via learning and appreciating beauty. Whether I am designing wares, am leading a workshop, supplementing a child's education, or helping a client harness their neuroplasticity so they can unblock and access their full potential, the root of it all is through learning and embracing beauty that is all around us and in us. I am passionate about helping others see their own potential to accomplish what they desire. I feel very fortunate to be able to bring in many different languages and disciplines to make this possible.

Other things about me: apart from the work I do above, I am a mother of two beautiful beings who are my greatest teachers. I am also a lover of tea, cooking (and eating), electronic music, and old things with a story behind them. I live with my partner and boys in a historic fishing village called Steveston, about an hour outside of downtown Vancouver.

On a given day, you may find me writing curriculum for an upcoming course or leading an event, at a client's office blessing and cleansing their space, embarking on a shamanic journey on behalf of a client, fulfilling shamanic skin and aura care orders, offering neurofeedback sessions, but also a variety of less romanticized, but equally important activities -- driving my boys to their after school activities, bookkeeping and doing taxes, doing laundry and matching up socks, fiddling with something around the home that needs repairing, picking up essentials, hosting playdates for the boys and other kids in the neighbourhood, chatting with my partner about our weekly 'operations'. I check my smart phone calendar as well as my astrological calender. Call my human friends as well as call on my spirit allies. Clean the house with vinegar and baking soda, as well as frankincense and sage. I'm sharing all this because living a conscious / spiritual life (whatever you want to call it), is rooted in mundane while remaining in awe of it. Paying bills and mopping floors is as much valuable as peak experiences. One does not need to go anywhere to find beauty and love. The TWO most powerful ingredients in any spell or ritual is LOVE and GRATITUDE.

I am also active in my own growth and expansion. These past several months, I have found immense potency in dream analysis and shadow work, as well as my continual love for plant spirit medicine.

Thank you for reading and being here. I hope to serve you and continue to serve you.

Yours,

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.

Image credit: Iulia Agnew for Ceremonie

SKIN FOOD: CHICKEN SOUP WITH TRADITIONAL CHINESE HERBS

Mimi Young

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People often ask me what I do for my skin, and I’ll be doing a deep dive on how I approach skin at my upcoming workshop, SACRED SKIN + CYCLES, at The Well on Bowen Island on Wednesday, November 21. There, I’ll share:

  • Practical skin science

  • What your skin truly needs through Traditional Chinese Medicine face mapping

  • How to nourish your skin with plant medicine

  • Form practical beauty rituals

  • How to harness the Moon’s cycles to support your skin

  • We will end with a powerful, group shamanic journey


I’ll also be sharing a list of my favourite, most effective skin foods that promote elasticity, clarity, moisture, and radiance. Until then, below is a recipe to my skin food ‘secret’: Taiwanese-style herbal chicken soup. It provides necessary nutrients, but also considers core TCM elements that look beyond the physiology of the skin and into the spirit. Everyone in my household drinks at least a bowl (often more) a day, regardless of time of the year. I may adjust the herbs, but the recipe below is an evergreen one. It functions as a stand alone or a versatile base, such as adding some cooked noodles or veggies to a bowl of the soup.

TAIWANESE-STYLE CHICKEN SOUP WITH TRADITIONAL CHINESE HERBS

  • 1 whole organic raw chicken

  • 2 small pieces of raw pork (such as the kind you use for fast fry pork chops)

  • 1/4 cup mirin (Asian cooking wine)

  • 1 Chinese honey date or 2 Chinese red dates

  • 1/4 cup Asian almonds

  • 1 slice of ginger

  • 1 clove of garlic

  • 3-4 dried anchovies (the soup will not taste fishy; the umami and depth it offers is incredible!)

  • 1 tsp of chaga powder (chaga can add bitterness; use sparingly)

  • 1-2 slices of reishi mushroom (also use sparingly)

  • 4 slices of dried astralagus

  • 1 piece of snow fungus

  • Optional: 1 tbsp of dried goji berries

  • Roughly 3+ L of alkaline water

Add all ingredients in a soup pot (clay or cast iron pots make the most delicious soups!) and bring to boil. Sieve out the froth and excess oil as it comes to the top. Turn heat to somewhere between high low or low medium for about 3 hours, keeping the lid on pot for as much as possible so as to not allow the soup to evaporate. (If you need to add a bit of water partway through, do so). Turn off heat and allow the residual heat to continue cooking the soup for another 2 hours. Add sea salt to taste.

To register for the upcoming SACRED SKIN + CYCLES workshop, click HERE.

Happy cooking (& sipping)!!

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!



Image credits: Pinterest
Disclaimer: Mimi Young is not a medical doctor. Please consult your medical professional if you have any specific health needs.

CEREMONIE'S CONSECRATED PAPER

Mimi Young

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When I write intentions to be used in ritual or spellwork, I craft them on paper that has been especially designed to support the work. I hold the belief that the paper itself is the sacred container for these intents, and to honour these intentions, the very words’ environment should be held with respect, beauty, and reverence. While early Taoist (Daoist) sorceresses wrote their sigils (an inscribed symbol that contains meaning and power) on rice paper and through ritual, ingested the papers containing these sigils, I follow certain aspects of this ancient Chinese tradition of my ancestors of long, long ago.

The notable parts for me are to:

  • write with intention, choosing my words carefully

  • when applicable, include any symbol or sigil to heighten the energy

  • choose special paper that is consecrated and dedicated to contain these intentions

  • when choosing the paper, to consider the ornaments/decorative elements of the paper, as well as the significance of colour

When I began taking my craft seriously, I searched far and wide for the right type of paper that held that space, and I simply couldn’t find it. I was looking for a specific energy, and even though beautiful paper abounds, none of them felt right. Simultaneously, I was also considering how to package my Ceremonie Skin + Aura care products with the same degree of respect and honour for its contents and in turn, for the people who would be using them in their own daily ritual and practice. Since I formulate, produce, and package each and every jar to order by hand, it was paramount to me that the paper that held it all together was approached with meticulous care, integrity, and purposefulness.

Having an undergrad in graphic design, I decided to create my own. It would be used for Ceremonie products as well as ritual work. I approached Hemlock Printers, a local family-owned boutique printing house located in greater Vancouver. I chose them because they were the first FSC certified printer (Forest Stewardship Certified) in North America and are known for their exacting standards. They loved my idea. And so I began my design process… and it began not in a sketchbook, but reclined, eyes closed, hands holding stones, and incense burning in the background. That’s right — I shamanically journeyed to inquire about the consecrated paper design process.

It turned out that my spirit allies and the larger plant spirit network also loved my idea. I felt so supported with their excited chatter, each expressing their enthusiasm and blessing. We discussed that we would design two sheets of ceremonial paper together. Each sheet would consist of multiple layers of plant visuals, and much of which would spotlight Fern, the queen of the primordial plant kingdom (or shall I say ‘queendom’?), as well as my personal grandmother spirit. I saw hints and flashes of what the finished papers would look like, and returned back to this consensual reality to begin the work on my computer.

The process was gentle, pleasurable, and truly felt collaborative. I felt the spirits’ presence as I played with gradients, opacities, and pantones. The brown signifies the remembrance and reconnection to Earth and the barely-there copper hue honours my own Chinese roots and uplifts the element of Metal.

The finished sacred papers were two large sheets that can be further trimmed down to suit the exact dimensional needs of each of the specific skin + aura care products. I designed the papers in such a way so that there are 8 different variations I can cut and wrap the papers around the bottles and jars. 8 is a significant number in Chinese numerology - one that symbolizes wholeness, integrity, and prosperity. I wanted the papers to pass on these vibrations to each and every individual who would be using these.

Recently, at the end of a Money Magick workshop, I was tidying up the materials at the end, when most of the attendees buzzing on the energies and plant aromas, had left for the evening. A few were still there and had mentioned how much they enjoyed writing on the Ceremonie papers that I had passed around during one of the exercises, and asked me where I purchased my paper. I hadn’t up until then, shared my story, and proceeded to. I was so touched because the three of them, mouths dropped open from the story I had just shared, then unanimously asked me to tell it again on this blog, saying that such a story of magic and intention should not be kept to oneself.

It is my hope that whether you ever attend one of my workshops, retreats, use Ceremonie products, or none of the above, that if you do practise earth-based magick or forms of ceremony, that you are reminded that the materials you use can be and should be approached with intention, dignity, and deep respect. I say this because the materials themselves are collaborators, and when the relationship comes from a place of honour, the real magick happens.

Below is a simple recipe on how to consecrate any paper you find for your own craft:

  • Find paper (can be found, purchased, upcycled).

  • Light candle.

  • Smudge self and environment with White Sage or a smokeless smudge blend that contains it, such as Ceremonie’s Sacred Smudge Mist.

  • Light incense (preferably Sandalwood or Palo Santo).

  • Invite spirit allies. This can be done with a rattle or simply by spoken word. Be clear about WHY you are inviting them.

  • Smudge the paper with White Sage.

  • Invite spirit allies to bless the paper.

  • Using just a touch of sacred oil (15 ml carrier plus 4 drops of Frankincense or Cedar), apply the oil (you need very little of it) onto your index finger and run your finger on the four corners of the sheet of paper. It is to energetically anoint the paper, NOT to make the paper oily.

  • Say aloud the full intention of the paper consecration ritual. For eg. “May this paper be the sacred container for my written intentions.”

  • Visualize the spirits and the light from the candle supporting this process.Feel the energies increase.

  • When you feel the process is complete, say, “So mote it be.”

Happy New Moon!

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!

CANNABIS, HEALING, AND SPIRITUALITY

Mimi Young

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"Only plants have consciousness. Animals got it from them. " -- Dale Pendell

 

Canada and the USA is nearing its end of another prohibition era. The mass public in recent years, has shifted its perception of Cannabis (mainly known as Marijuana prior to 2010, but as the stigma around Cannabis vapourizes - pun fully intended - the name 'Marijuana' had to go through a bit of a rebranding with its more scientifically acceptable, Latin name, Cannabis, the heroic neo super-herb), partly because the West's established shamanic authority - the westernized medical doctor - has now deemed it worthy - when the old world's doctor - the original shamans, have all along considered Cannabis sativa, indica, and ruderalis, along with other plants, to be great teachers.

 

And this is where I would like to point out something: Ginseng, Astralagus, Gingko, Reishi, Lions Mane, and so many other healing plants and mushrooms have been exploited and marketed with exaggeration to heal virtually every illness of the human body. Are we any healthier today as we were when certain aspects of Traditional Chinese herbalism made its entry into the West? If we were to fast forward a decade, where will Cannabis leave us? (Hint - if the plant and her medicine story is appropriated and taken out of context, I am skeptical that resolution can take place).

I ask this because I don't think the role of plants have ever been to allow us humans to exploit them. I believe in relationship. The plants support us, and we support them: As we experience the benefits of what plants offer, we support their proliferation, and so forth. However, are the plants here to be objectified, in other words, to "serve" us one-dimensionally? And more specifically, only the active compounds are valued (since that is how the medical community measures validity), and as if the support of our physiology is the only thing that is noteworthy. In other words, are we sick today because illness resides exclusively in our physical minds and bodies? Or even if we are not sick, are the plants here merely to support functioning so we can work longer hours? (Think about caffeine and sugar's roles in keeping the human worker working). Why are plants that can numb pain, decrease anxiety, and give us energy the only forms of socially acceptable medicine? And why are most modern humans resistant to becoming truly intimate with the whole plant - and can value the plant beyond its individual active compounds, or even beyond the mere synergy of compounds?

It is with hopeful optimism, that the future (and the now) of plants are in the examination and integration of their consciousness into human healing. This is why before, when a stoner who claimed their minds are opened is now seen with more of an intellectual appreciation: via euphoria, people objectively see patterns (verbal, behaviour, symbols, etc) drifting into new ones, and increase their creative resilience for problem solving so they can engage in new processes of clarification. In other words, plants can now be valued for their prevention of neurological, emotional, and spiritual atrophy. Though it's paramount to mention the other side of the coin, there are the seekers who are always seeking - the ones who are seeking constant peak experiences that they are reluctant to walk down the proverbial mountain to return to baseline. Even in spiritual communities, there is a hunger that longs for more and more sensationalism. (This is why teachers in exotic places are always seen as "more spiritual" than the ones in your backyard or dramatic experiences are viewed as "more light-filled" than everyday cultivated habits of connection to oneself...) This is the danger of spiritual caffeine - of becoming lost in the powers of a plant's glory.

I ask these questions as I am in the process of writing an experiential curriculum titled, WOMEN, WEED, & WISDOM: Exploring Cannabis in Ritual and Shamanic Spirituality. Where is this 'right relationship' along the spectrum? How can we honour the plant and allow Cannabis to assist us in the areas of consciousness, wisdom, and integration? How does one create ritual and ceremony around consumption? What other wisdom-keeping plants work well with Cannabis, or possibly even can substitute her? And from a shamanic perspective, how do we communicate with and use Cannabis to undress, reveal, and divinate?

If you're in the Vancouver area on Wednesday, July 18 evening I would love to hang with you at outdoors - in ritual, in compassion and support, in plant wisdom. Click HERE for more info.

Big love,

Mimi Young
founder + plant spirit medicine practitioner / teacher

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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!
Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!


Image credits: Me, taken by Heather Pennell of The Essence Oracle

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE NUMBER FOUR IN MYSTICISM

Mimi Young

Photo credits: Me taken by Heather Pennell

Photo credits: Me taken by Heather Pennell

The number four holds important meanings to the shaman and mystic.

There are 4 ages: the child, the adolescent, the adult, the elderly.

There are 4 winds, 4 seasons, 4 divisions of time: day, night, month, year.

There are 4 key phases of the Moon: New, Waxing, Full, Waning.

There are 4 elements: Earth, Air, Fire, Water. In Taoist and Feng Shui traditions, the correspondences of Winds/Directions/Element/Sacred Creatures (thereby another 4) connect the following: The Azure Dragon of the East represents Wood, the Vermillion Phoenix of the South represents Fire, the White Tiger of the West represents Metal, and the Black Turtle of the North represents Water. (Some also hold the belief of a fifth principle Earth/Qi /The Void, which would be represented by the Yellow Dragon of the Center).

There are 4 parts to green things: roots, stems, leaves, fruit.

There are 4 core faculties (in Tarot, it is expressed in such a way that relates to the elements): To Know, to Will, to Feel, and to Materialize.

4 is seen in Wiccan ritual, in mandalas, in contemplative labyrinths, at crossroads, in shamanic prayer.

Anyway, why all this analysis of 4? The simple answer is because it’s the foundation of the Earth’s power and grace. The slightly longer answer is because when I am “stuck”, I often find resolution by allowing the potency of the number 4 to teach me; that is, the orderly expression of Gaia to speak to me. The number 4 invites us to manifest our goals by taking practical steps. It reminds us to integrating our wisdom into the whole of our lives. 4 invites all of us to befriend the bright side of King/Yang energy to support the vigour of our dreams and plans while still honouring the dark, mysterious power of Queen/Yin potencies.

I should also mention that many Asian cultures (including my own Chinese and Taiwanese background) view the number 4 as 'bad luck', as the word 'four' share similar phonetics of the word 'death'. (In many parts of Asia, the fourth floor of buildings are skipped, much like the thirteen floor of many buildings in western countries). I personally think the homophonal qualities of four and death is actually very beautiful, as the fourth holds the end of a cycle, the unknown, and transformation in the most mundane of mathematical quantifying. That said, I do not disrespect the symbol of 4 in those cultures, in fact, I recognize just how much Asia, no matter how secular it has become, still reveres the power of symbols in their every day lives.

Bowing to your light (and darkness),

Mimi Young
founder + plant spirit medicine practitioner

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!

 

INTERVIEW WITH A SHAMAN

Mimi Young

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As mentioned on Instagram, I've been a regular listener on Julie Parker's The Priestess Podcast for quite some time. She curates beautiful, relatable content on mysticism, alternative healing modalities, the Divine Feminine, conscious business, and so many other topics that I care deeply about. It was an IMMENSE honour to be interviewed by Julie on shamanism, plant spirit medicine, and my work here at Ceremonie. We had such a fun time chatting (including my interpretation of how Adam and Eve from the biblical story of Genesis is rooted in shamanic expression, my childhood, and even the unusual name for my favourite doll), that I completely lost track of time!

To listen to the podcast, please click HERE.

Big love,

Mimi Young
founder + plant spirit medicine practitioner

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!