Lessons from the Dark

Lessons from the Dark

It has been a while since I have written I have been enjoying a much needed break from all the extras in life. After the wild ride 2020 has offered us up, I have been spending time with my family, friends and clients and in quiet contemplation and reflection as i truly believe this time of year is meant for. 

This time to nourish myself and take care of my body has offered a great many lessons, including some deep transformations of family patterns and bodily manifestations of these patterns, which only seemed fitting after teaching a course on Ancestral healing and medicine. I am still working at it as we all are but I can feel the shifts with the eclipses and solstices.

I know from speaking to many of you,  that either you or those you know are also experiencing such things. It may show up in an emotional pattern, a dis-ease, a traumatic accident. All of these things are coming up to help us shed the last vestiges of Jupiter and Saturn in Capricorn which as an earth sign is focused on the physical, our structures and habits and patterns. Each awakening of a pain, illness or broken bone is an opportunity for us to learn and shift. Bones and teeth particularly hold our oldest patterns from our ancestors and even our past lives. So though I know it can be hard and painful and seem so bleak when we initially discover experience these pains and traumas, remember that it is always darkest before the light and with some quiet reflection and the desire to learn from our situations we can begin to shine our own light on the darkness and discover the medicine that resides there. 

So I invite you all to sit a little in the dark and get curious see what is there for you and with love and compassion begin to light your inner light on the situation asking what you need to learn from this and what support you need. If you are having trouble awakening your own light, you can try lighting a candle and asking the spirit of fire to enter into you heart and burn away the fear, and hucha there and once it is gone ask the fire to help grow your inner light, a bright clear light that is part of who you are as a person and what the world needs right now. 

And of course if you need more support I am always here for a session to help you find out what it is the dark is trying to tell you and how you can awaken this light to help transform these pains into crystals. 

With so much love and Gratitude,

Honouring the Ancestors and Releasing the Baggage

Honouring the Ancestors and Releasing the Baggage

My favourite of the cross quarter festival is upon us. The last of the harvest festivals as nature prepares for her long slumber through the winter. It is a time of magic, mystery, ancestors and spirits. In many cultures this time of year was a time to honour our dead loved ones and release what no longer serves us preparing ourselves to rest and refuel our bodies, minds, hearts and spirits. As this was the final harvest festival it was the practice amongst those who celebrated Samhuinn to leave any remaining food in the fields and gardens to the spirit world. In that way creating balance and nourishment for all. 

This year is an especially powerful year as we have a blue moon as well. A blue moon refers to the second full moon in a month and is a modern invention but this still has not occurred since 1944 and we only have a full moon on Samhuinn ever 19 years. The energy of the full moon adds to the power of our intentions to release what is no longer serving us.  Below you will find three rituals which you can do separately or together. The first is to help you release what you need to to prepare for your own dream time. This is best done in the window of the full moon in the next few days. the other two are rituals to connect with your ancestors and can be done in the next few weeks as the dates of Samhuinn would have been based on the harvest and the moon and not the Roman calendar. 

Skeleton Dance

The fall is such a powerful time for release, All around nature is releasing things and so deep within us we also feel this desire to release. On top of that as the moon begins to wane and shrink down it also encourages us to release. 

I have affectionate called this practice the skeleton dance in remembrance of the old disney cartoons. It was taught to me by my teachers Lena and Jose Stevens and it originates from a Siberian practice. You will need room to move around and shake. I highly encourage you to give your all to it. The fiercer you can shake the more you will get from it. Shaking also happens to be a great reset of your body. 

I have recorded an audio of it for you to listen to. You will find it below

Dumb Supper

This is one of the easiest ways to honour your ancestors and is such a great thing to do if you have kids. At Dinner time on Samhuinn, Halloween or Day of the Dead when you are setting the table you set an extra place for the ancestors and fill it with food. You then can eat your meal in silence thinking of those who have passed or you can share stories about them. When dinner is over you simply take the plate and put it outside to be offered to the nature beings who are connected to our ancestors. 

Connecting to your Ancestors

This simple ritual is something I do every year and since offering my course on Transforming Ancestral Trauma it has become a daily practice. All you will need is a candle and some memento that reminds you of your ancestors (a photo, keep sake, snack, drink,…)

You begin by creating a little altar for your ancestor. Placing their photos and keepsakes around the candle.

Take a moment to ground yourself with a few deep breaths.

Light the candle and ask your ancestors to come and surround you.

When you feel their presence you can ask them a question. Like what do I need to know? What do I need to release? How can I connect more with you?

Then take as much time as needed in silence or you can do automatic writing allowing the messages of the ancestors come to you.

When you feel complete thank your ancestors and blow out the candles and write down the messages you got.

Much Love

How to Support yourself through the autumn

How to Support yourself through the autumn

I absolutely love the Autumn, perhaps it is my Northern heritage or the return to school after spending 24 years of my life in school, but when the sun’s intensity diminishes and the leaves begin to change and I feel that urge to pull out my sweater and scarves my whole being feels nourished in a way that no other season provides.

In Chinese Medicine the fall begins with the earth element which rules the stomach and spleen and helps to nourish us and bring us together  in celebration of the harvest and the memories of the delights of summer. A healthy transition into the earth aspects of our being allow for an easier transition in to the metal element and the season of the lungs and large intestine, grief and letting go. This year with Covid, loss of livelihoods and recognition of lost BIPOC lives and the fires on the west coast of the US the grief we all hold is almost more than many can bare and it is extra important to build up a strong earth foundation that will transform into pure luminous metal. In Shamanism, the fall is also associated with letting go and beginning to dream a new dream and it is the best time to call upon your ancestors and spirit guides for help. So let’s dive into how to support yourself through this seasonal change.

We will begin with the earth element which rules our digestion, our four limbs, our sense of taste and our ability to manifest our dreams into reality just as we turn our food into amino acids, lipids, carbohydrates and qi to build and repair our bodies. The earth element is supported by eating regular meals without distraction, avoiding damp, greasy, overly sweet and processed foods while emphasizing warm, gently spiced whole foods, especially root vegetables which feed us the essence of the earth itself, time spent with loved ones and in communion with the earth and mindfulness practices that help prevent us from ruminating on worries. One of my current daily practices that is deeply supportive of the earth element is to go for a morning walking meditation along the water. This moves my qi and my four limbs, allows me to let go of my worries and spend time tapped into the earth. Here is one of my favourite guided walking meditations if you want to try. Another thing I am getting back into is making Chai, you will find a recipe here that will help warm the body, soothe the mind and nourish the soul.

The Earth’s transition into Autumn varies depending on where you are located but here on the West Coast of Canada it is around thanksgiving. It is the time when the tree’s leaves have fully turned and begun to fall and the final harvests of the land have been completed. This marks the turning inwards of the earth and all her children. In the modern Western world we don’t tend to turn inwards at this point and we can pay for it with colds and flus, exhaustion and grief. The metal element rules the lungs and large intestine, the skin, nose and the somatic experiences of our bodies. It is most closely tied to grief and the loss of our dreams, our loved ones and ourselves. In a world fixated on being more productive, doing more and pushing through, we are not customed to stopping to let go of what no longer serves us and honour what we have lost in our lives. This year especially many have lost so much and it is especially important to stop and take the time to let go. I will share a ritual below to help with this. Letting go allows our dreams, our old beliefs, and patterns fall and become the fertile soil that will nourish our new dreams, just as the trees drop their leaves to nourish the new growth of the spring. In order to support your lungs and large intestine, it is important to breath, breath deeply and exhale fully, taking up a breathwork practice can be incredibly beneficial, Making sure we get lots of fibre and water to ensure regular bowel movements supports the large intestine, eating white pungent foods will also nourish the metal element, getting lots of rest, going to bed earlier and waking later and of course keeping bundled up with a scarf around your neck will help prevent wind cold attacks.

Along with Diet, seasonal living and of course Acupuncture, my other favourite way to work with the elements is to create rituals to honour the transition that I am going through and so for the fall I like to work with the concepts of letting go, creating a new dream and connecting to my ancestors and guides who are especially strong in the fall as we move inwards and into our own dream time.

Autumn Ritual

What you will need:

  • a candle
  • some paper
  • a pen
  • something that represents a dream you have
  • pictures or objects connected to your ancestors and/or guides

Instructions:

  • Begin by finding a quiet space and clearing it with a broom, smoke or flame.
  • Take a few deep breaths to center yourself
  • Create sacred space by visualizing a circle around you or call in the four directions
  • light your candle and ask for the support of great spirit
  • Call in your ancestors and guides one by one first honouring them for what they do for you and then asking for their support this season, placing their objects around the candle
  • write down what no longer serves you and ask for this to be released and then hold it over the flame letting it go
  • feel the space that has opened up in your life and body
  • now begin to dream about what you wish to call into this space. visualize it and feel into what your life will be like with it.
  • When you are done, thank your ancestors and guides and asking for their continued support
  • Thank great spirit and blow out the candle
  • release the directions or unwind your circle
  • go about your day as if this future is already here

 

May this fall be deeply nourishing to you and yours. Please feel free to reach out if you need any support and if you wish to learn to connect with your ancestors and clear deeper patterns in your life my new course Transforming Ancestral Trauma: Understanding where you come from so you can remember who you are begins on Tuesday Sept 2020.

 

Many Blessings,

 

Immune-Boosting, Earth-Nourishing Chai

Immune-Boosting, Earth-Nourishing Chai

Once the signs of autumn roll in I immediately start craving chai. It has been a favourite drink of mine for a long time but especially after living in India and daily finding the Chai wallah on the closest street and sipping on the warm, sweetly spiced beverage. Here is my version that I make at home. You can adjust i based on your preferences either doing a base of black tea if you want a little kick or some medicinal mushrooms if you want something more rejuvenating (chaga and reishi are my favourite) or a simple herbal base like red rooibos. You can also adjust the spices to your liking making it more heating and spicy with chilies, ginger, black pepper and clove or more neutral and sweet with cardamom and cinnamon. You can sweeten it with honey, maple syrup, sugar, xylitol or stevia and add any animal or alternative milk based on your preference. 

Immune-boosting, earth-nourishing Chai

Ingredients
  • Base- two bags black tea, two tablespoons medicinal mushrooms or other adaptogenic herbs or one tablespoon red rooibos
  • 3 cups Milk- Goat, cow, sheep, almond, cashew, oat,…
  • 3 cups water
  • thumb sized piece of ginger – peeled and sliced
  • one tablespoon spice mix (cinnamon, clove, chilli, cardamom, black pepper, fennel, fenugreek, allspice, nutmeg,….)
  • sweetener- honey, maple syrup, cane sugar, xylitol, stevia
Instructions
  1. Pour water and milk into a pot and put on medium high
  2. Peel and slice ginger and add to water
  3. Collect what spices you like and grind in a mortar and pestle (I usually make lots and keep extra in a jar)
  4. Add spices to the pot
  5. If using medicinal mushrooms or other herbs add now
  6. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer for 10- 20 mins
  7. Add black tea or rooibos
  8. allow to steep for 5 mins
  9. strain into a cup and add sweetener as desired
  10. Enjoy!!
Spring Equinox Drum Journey

Spring Equinox Drum Journey

On Saturday I lead my family through a spring equinox ceremony in order to support us in these times of change and transition into the spring. Part of it was a drum journey to take us into the spirit realms to gather a message, support, encouragement, inspiration in these times. I recorded it to share with you so that you all may connect with spirit and bring forth what you need at this time. 

Find yourself a nice quiet comfortable space, lie down or sit up tall and follow the drum.

Spring Equinox Blessings to all

Marika

A Love Letter to Mother Earth

A Love Letter to Mother Earth

Dear Mother Earth,

It is with all my heart, body, mind and spirit that I thank you for all that you do for me, for all of your children. Every minute, of every hour, of every day you nourish us without question or asking for something in return. Yours is the unconditional love that is written about in tales and songs, that makes me wonder if I am worth of such love and care. You offer us power, peace, love, support and beauty but though you are a benevolent being I know you are hurting and lashing out at us disrespectful children, forever sucking at the teet till mother has no more.

I know I have not always been good to you and chosen the easy, disposable, fast way of life. But without you I would be lost, You are my connection to this human body, you are one of the most amazing things in this game we are playing, you are spirit manifest in pure form, shining your light and love on all of us. It brings me great sadness when I see the abuse committed to you, just as we abuse each other and ourselves. If only we all woke up and remembered connection is the greatest medicine and how sitting upon you and breathing you in settles our nervous systems, relieves our stress and reminds us we are not alone.

I sat up on you this afternoon and offered you up my gratitude and prayers. I prayed that I always keep my connection to you and that our relationship grows stronger everyday and that all beings may work to create such a relationship. I know that in a mutual relationship of care and respect we can thrive all together. We are your stewards and in sitting with you and witnessing the miraculous way in which you work, we can create a way of being that is based in unconditional love and respect and through your love and support we can heal the pain and loneliness that lies deep within.

I am so blessed to live in a place where I can be with you daily and am in constant awe of your beauty, power, strength, support and nourishment. Thank you for being the role model you are to me, for feeding me, for the beauty you break me open to, for listening to my prayers, pains and discomforts and offering me your love and support. I love you so much!!!

With endless love and gratitude,

Marika

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