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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: shamanic

RESPONSIBLE MANIFESTATION

Mimi Young

responsiblemanifesting

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

2018 to 2019: Ring Out The Old, Ring In The New

Mimi Young

happynewyear

Empty glasses are scattered around, evidence of the mirth in our home these past few days. Messes were made; every pan, wooden spoon, and bowl in the kitchen was used. Today, with strong tea, was a cozy day in, the kids out to play since Vancouver is having a mild winter so far, and the adults at home (my partner and I), are transforming leftovers into soup, lazily reading new books, and leisurely packing for some days away in the woods, with the laundry machine's hum as a playlist of sorts.

Being the ritualist that I am, I am also considering how to bring in 2019. Which elements to weave in? Which spirit allies to name and invite? How to write my intentions, held carefully on sacred paper? This can't fully happen until I tune in and contemplate about 2018. 

2018, for me, was marked by a bursting heart and outrageous manifesting. A year full of surprises - terrifying, joyous, fulfilling. It was the year where I said goodbye to my day job, and leapt into the unknown. The year, if I were to define it as the Earth Dog year (not to truly end until the beginning of February to welcome in the year of Earth Pig, or Earth Boar, as some call it), was also defined by an increase of self-attunement, to self-dote and offer tenderness, clarity and breakthroughs, and even some luck. I felt held and seen, and I also had the immense privilege to hold and see others. As a recovering perfectionist, I learned to let go, let be, and let flow. Life is so much better without the strive towards perfection; rather, it’s an openness towards wholeness. Through embracing the whole human of myself, I released impoverished mindsets. In 2018, I danced til dawn to the Full Moon on a number of occasions, made time for what really mattered and continues to matter. And of course, the 'what' that matters are actually 'who's. I softened, and in the areas that were hardened, I discovered that the hardness was pain that turned to gold. 2018 was a remarkable realization of just how much I had outgrown 2017.

And while all the aforementioned centred around me (I can only speak from my perspective, after all), 2018's glory must be credited to people. Right people, right heart-place, right time. People who defy the coldness and the vacancy of unexamined, narcissistic, half-asleep lives. People who understand the value of a 5 minute long hug, who listen rather than who are impatiently waiting to speak, people who lovingly challenge because they believe and refuse to let fear make the final call, people who spread hurt-so-good laughter, people who invited and included, people who smile with every living cell, people who live what they say. Some were family or friends, many were clients, others strangers.

Ceremonie turned 3 a few days ago, on Boxing Day. As she enters into this year of being three, I am reminded of the Empress archetype in Tarot. Her corresponding number within the Major Arcana is three. Combining the fertile, nurturing Empress' energy with the warm, prosperous Earth Pig, I'd like to share my intentions for 2019. I am sharing because my life and my one-woman-company isn't just about me. Ceremonie is about CONNECTIONS - people, spirits, and the mystery of ALL THAT IS. This is why I am here. 

Here goes…

May the year 2019 be salt-of-the-earth good. 

May we be real, and experience authenticity's freedom. 

May luck be waiting for us, and follow us, too.

May the year come with a few happy surprises.

May we learn to be children again.

May we mother and father ourselves in the ways our hearts ache for.

May we honour the Divine Feminine in ALL and also nourish the Divine Masculine in ALL. He is needing Her love. We are needing Their love.

May we ride the beautiful, wild waves of flow.

May we be free to make mistakes - not ones of devastation, but worthwhile mistakes, so we learn and grow.

May we have all that we need, and have some extra to share. Even though abundance mindset says we can have our cake and eat it, too, it's far more meaningful to have our cake, and to share it. A bite of sweetness is more pleasurable than a plateful, when shared with people who ARE the sweetness of life.

May we not get sucked up into social media seduction. Conscious living cannot be defined by popularity, by pretty packages and pretty feeds, by the poetic words, by things and more things, or trips and more trips. May we commit to see and resist illusions. Illusions fuck with our heads and mute our hearts.

May we have the strength to say NO and YES, and the wisdom to know when to say what.

May we know our personal worth — unchangeable and eternal.

May we check ourselves; because there is a BIG difference between deserving and entitlement.

May we meet challenges with courage. And when we don’t understand, lean in with curiosity.

May we not make any more excuses. Let's be radically accountable.

May we attend to our gut's biodiversity AND our communities' diversity. Our health depends on both.

May the loving spirits guides and our ancestors hold us and lead the way. May we honour them and make them proud.

May we make new friends and extend our family.

If you follow this feed, and we haven't yet met in person, I hope we do that in 2019. Better yet - not hope - I look forward to meeting/serving you in 2019. I can’t wait to expand the Universe together.


Ready for 2019.

Yours,

Mimi Young
founder, shamanic medicine teacher + ritualist


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Image credit: Iulia Agnew for Ceremonie

SUMMER MYSTIC READS

Mimi Young

recommendedoraclecards

Summer Solstice is just under two weeks away. In honour of the energies of Summer, I am feeling the call to engage in activities that feed me and fuel delight. For me, there is no substitute than being in the company of a good book or divination/intuitive deck. For those who speak the language of StrengthsFinder, I have Intellection as my no. 1; mental activity is my greatest pleasure.

It's been since last winter that I published a post on my recommended readings (and a year between that one and my first one). I've decided to include a few beloved Oracle Decks that I have found to be helpful when I needed a key to assist with unlocking my deepest truths, as well as a book written by a friend that I can't wait to begin reading.

As mentioned before, though I hold the belief that there is no greater truth than our own personal understanding gained through experience, there exists published bodies of work that can assist us as we navigate through life. Books and Oracle Cards can be wise friends and compassionate teachers, and often with these creative works can we ask the forbidden questions or tread dark terrains

Again, the titles below are not in any way comprehensive nor complete; and they may not be new/recent publications. They are simply a list of helpful, even challenging books that have stretched and nourished me in one way or another...

Womb Awakening by Azra and Seren Bertrand ...because we were all formed from the Womb and emerged from there. The book invites us to recognize, honour, and heal from the source of the Divine Feminine.

Quadrivium: The Four Classical Liberal Arts of Number, Geometry, Music, & Cosmology by Miranda Lundy, Daud Sutton, Anthony Ashton, Jason Martineau, John Martineau ...because the sacred exists within the highly technical. Math has never been so beauty and intelligent.

So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo ...because the topic of racism is nuanced and complex, and Oluo succeeds in clearly articulating without sacrificing depth.

The Kuan Yin Chronicles by Martin Palmer and Jay Ramsay, with Man-Ho Kwok ...because I can't help but ask myself as a WOC of Asian descent, after reading this book, how much of what I believe and what I understand from my own culture is also appropriated, as in the multi-faceted narrative of Kuan Yin's history.

The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity by Esther Perel ...because she brilliantly presents the case for complexity in human intimate relationships, as well as the call for understanding and compassion around them.

Hekate: Her Sacred Fires edited by Sorita D'Este ...because I cannot get enough of my muse, the extraordinary, eternal and universal Goddess, and her role as lightbearer, keeper of secrets and the keybearer to access them, initiatrix, world soul, mistress of crossroads, plant medicine healer, witch, and beholder of serpent mysteries.

Wildfire Within by Chantal Russell, owner of The Well On Bowen ...because I hold great regard to this beautiful human inside and out, whom I hold the honour of calling her friend, and the powerful story she tells of her child's birth, the discovery of disease within her, and the restoration of the sacred feminine within her. (Please note I have not yet read this book from cover to cover. It is on my top 3 that I will be diving into this summer!)

Iris Oracle Deck by Mary Elizabeth Evans of Spirit Speak ...because her raw, highly intuitive images rendered without any reservation, offers the same type of immediacy in tuning into your depths.

Rumi Oracle Deck by Alana Fairchild and Rassouli ...because there is never a time when I felt the card I drew, along with Rumi's words, have been untimely. This deck is so in-tune, without exaggeration, it acts as a key to whatever you wish to unlock.

Archetype Cards by Caroline Myss ...because as a plant spirit medicine practitioner and ritualist, my work involves understanding archetypes as universal patterns of behaviour in the tradition of Carl Jung's term, "the collective unconscious".

 

Happy Reading!

All good things,

Mimi Young
founder + plant spirit medicine practitioner

Follow us on Instagram and Facebook!

 

image credits: 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

shamanic plant medicine interview

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!

THE WINTER ABYSS

Mimi Young

katebellm_yule2016

This achingly beautiful winter piece, custom written by our UK-based guest contributor, Alena Walker (her bio at the end), functions as dream, prayer, and love song to our glorious Mother Earth. Paired with photographer Kate Bellm's tropical compositions that drip our internal, humid longings, the images provide luminous portrayals of what humanity yearns on Mothernight, the eve of the darkest day of each year, Yule (or Winter Solstice). Together, may we reflect, give thanks, cast spells, shamanically journey, dance and sing to Gaia, our Mother, Grave, and Womb. 
-- Mimi xo
Shamanic Practitioner + founder of CEREMONIE


In winter, the thickest feeling of stillness surrounds us. In a single moment we are struck by the abyss that unfurls on the horizon. The whole world is holding its breath. Lessons don’t come only in moments of fertile beauty, in the tingle of sunshine’s sweet kiss or with the adrenal prick of hairs that engulf our flesh when we stand on a cliff edge, faces borne against the wind.

Change comes in moments of solitude, when you bury yourself in the bosom of Mother Earth, relentless in the pursuit of no clear direction. Your every step squelches in the muddy underfoot that glues you to forest floor and ice chaps your lips, freezing your breath and numbing your core.

We drift like ice sheets as we walk under the treetops’ thinning veil, which falls like a tapestry, mottled and merciless to the blowing gales. Leaves may tumble from great heights, but on the ground they become a rolling blanket worn on the shoulders of earth’s frosted floor. Let the sky cry! Let the world overflow in its tears and strip as bare as the branches while you swim in the current.

In these moments we gain clarity and connection; our identity changes at the influx. This is our opportunity for recollection and balance. Only with the darkness can we appreciate the light and only then can we appreciate its beauty.

The finite gives birth to infinite worlds in the bloom and break of growth and rebirth. We are spirits carried by the wind, picked up as soil and seed and carried across the plains in search of ourselves. It’s a change that happened because we chose to move towards it.

When left to its own majesty, Mother Earth offers everything that we need.

katebellm_wintersolstice

The darkness is cabin fever
And we get restless in the night
In this ever-stretching blackness
We swallow our sight

We brace the cold with brittle bones
We gather in the still
Release all that empties us
Sip what makes us full

We shed our skin like crumbled leaves
Spiked umbrellas to the sky
Winter is our secrecy
Seek with smoke-stung eyes

The trees are shaved to skeletons
Our bodies like cocoons
An endless offering of frequencies
Pared of all its bloom

Our breath bellows to the celestial
As we plead and redefine
We are great seeds buried in the brisk
With pockets full of moonshine

 

katebellm_shamanicritual


Words by Alena Walker, writer, fashion editor, and stylist born in rural Northern Ireland. A cultivator of local and international experiences, nature draws Alena close and allows her to tell stories through photography, paint, poetry, and prose. As a natural roamer and soulful artist, Alena describes her work as inviting consciousness and exceeding boundaries, "...where conscious consumption and environmental activism form the bedrock of my focus. I work only with ethical designers and I'm trying to make an impact on the world by creating consciously." 


We will be offering another story from our guest contributor next month! For more information on plant spirit medicine, shamanic beauty and aura care, and all things shamanic, vibrational, and witchy, connect with us via Instagram or Facebook. Wishing all a joyful Yule filled with ritual, love, insight, and joy.