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Incense Fit for the Mountain Gods

September 30, 2016

Life in the elevated levels of the Peruvian Andes Mountains can be tough and the climate can be the most diverse in the country. When storms blow, tearing across the rugged peaks, they are often accompanied by strong winds, killing lightning and damaging hail.  Temperatures vary from temperate in valleys to frigid at elevation. The presence of clouds in the rainy season can hold the daytime heat during the night, yet cloudless nights are cold. Being the longest stretch of mountains in the world, the highest summits are found in the central Andes through Peru and Chile. Rainfall is higher over mountain than valley, yet the lakes influence the distribution and rainfall amounts, sometimes producing twice as much rainfall over themselves than over surrounding terrain. With all the influence of the mountains on survival, is it any wonder they came to be regarded by the people living closest to them as powerful and sacred spirits, source of life giving water and male nature energy?  So sacred, in fact, they were given the name Apus, or sometimes, Apukuna. The Quechua living in the Cusco region of Peru, (and also Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia and Argentina) traditionally offer prayers and perform ceremonies […]

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Siwar Q’enti: Royal Hummingbird

August 22, 2016

Who doesn’t love the iridescent splendor and seemingly magical ability of a hummingbird as it floats and flits in mid-air?  As a birder and animal lover, I still get a thrill at seeing hummingbirds at my nectar feeder.  In the Midwestern United States, I usually see the Ruby-throated version of these flying jewels. Visitors to the Tuscon Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, can see many different kinds of this wondrous bird in their hummingbird aviary.  It was at the Desert Botanical Gardens in Scottsdale, Arizona where I saw for the first time a hummingbird in the wild land on a tree branch and stay in place for a good while perching over my head, all the time vocalizing its high pitched squeaky sound as if saying, “Hey, take a good look at me, I’m holding place for you.” In some Peruvian shamanic traditions, the Royal Hummingbird is known as Siwar Q’enti in the Quechua language, the language of the Incan Empire, still spoken in parts of South America today. Hummingbird is one of the most important archetypal creatures, known for its ability to fly in many directions:  up, down, backward, forward and also to stay hovering in place.  Maybe for that […]

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Master Numbers as a Guide for Higher Consciousness

August 22, 2016

Here it goes again.. I am at exit 33 and the license plate of the car in front of me reads 333. Smilingly, I turn to look at the time and it’s 3:33. This has been going on for several years now. Maybe longer, but I wasn’t conscious of it then. For many years I would see 11:11 at least twice a day, then the digits seemed to rise up. I just glanced at the time while writing this, and it was 11:11! No kidding. We are surrounded by a flux of symbols and signs from the universe. It takes trusting your intuition, experience, and some digging around to decipher the meanings. As the name states, master numbers call for mastering something – they point the way to a higher consciousness –  a higher vibration, a higher perspective. As a numerologist I get a lot of questions on the meaning of seeing master numbers and multiplying digits. What does it mean when you are seeing certain double, triple, or quadruple digits? In order to know what it means for you specifically, I would ask what is going on in your life right now? What issues are you working on at […]

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Tools of Sacred Plant Medicine Rapé

August 22, 2016

The first time Jon DeRosa arrived in the picturesque mountain town of Pisac in Peru’s Sacred Valley, it had been many years since he had practiced any of the earth based disciplines that he followed as a teenager. However, this trip which he embarked on several years ago in his mid-30’s, would reawaken this connection within him and he would soon be introduced to the world of Peruvian shamanism and the healing powers of plant medicines. Working in an intensive retreat, DeRosa learned about healing and awakening ceremonies and how the local shamans used various plant medicines to facilitate these journeys. “The experience was at once very challenging and inspiring, and precipitated a monumental change in my life,” says DeRosa. “It felt as if I was waking up, like a veil had been lifted that had been obscuring my vision for so many years.” One aspect of these ceremonies involved working with a plant medicine known as rapé (pronounced rah-PAY or HAH-pay ). Rapé is a blend of sacred, medicinal plants, seeds, leaves, trees and other ingredients, often containing a strong jungle tobacco known as Mapacho, and used by various tribes indigenous to the Amazon in Brazil and Peru. During the rapé ritual, the […]

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Mystical Blue Stone: Lapis Lazuli

July 26, 2016

This mystical blue stone has been the symbol for royalty, gods and goddesses, honor, spirit, wisdom and truth since the beginning of our history. It is said to facilitate a connection between the celestial and material realms, and assist in contacting guardian spirits. It can function as “a bridge between the worlds”. Lapis Lazuli will also enhance dreaming and journeying work, as well as help with dream recall. It is related to both the 5th (throat) and 6th (third eye) chakras. In folklore and myth Lapis was said to impart ancient knowledge and the wisdom how to use it. It is connected with planet Jupiter and brings expansion of the intellect and good fortune. It can also help in clearing out the past, and what no longer serves you; aligning you with a higher truth. HISTORICAL BACKGROUND The sarcophagus of King Tutankhamen was richly inlaid with Lapis, as well as other burial ornaments of Egyptian kings and queens. King Tutankhamen’s mask was adorned with Lapis. Figurines of  Lapis scarabs symbolized Pharaoh’s power. The stone was widely used in pendants, protective amulets, and other jewelry, and ground into powder for dyes, eye shadow and medicinal elixirs. Queen Cleopatra wore eye makeup […]

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The Art of Sacred Adornment

July 26, 2016

Have you ever considered the act of adorning yourself as a sacred act? A ritual. Something to be done with intention to cultivate beauty that radiates outward from within all day… When you consciously choose to adorn yourself with jewelry, clothes, or even scents that make you feel beautiful, you glow. You radiate from within and that radiance is contagious and you share it with everyone else in your day. We humans have been adorning ourselves since the dawn of time. From ceremonies to special occasions, why not make every day just a meaningful with the act of sacred adornment… WHERE TO START? Try to be picky when purchasing jewelry. Does the stone have a specific property that aligns with where you are at in life? Was it made from an artist or a friend who put much care and intention into the piece? Does it come from a place that means a lot to you, a sacred place perhaps? When you buy something from an artist you’re helping to support a specific person and their family. When the things you choose to adorn your body with come from someone and not machine made, there are intentions and so much […]

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7 WAYS YOU CAN CELEBRATE SUMMER SOLSTICE

June 19, 2016

The summer solstice is a time with powerful energies of the longest day of the year. The sun and Earth align in a way to assist the growth of all things to come to their fullness. We are all one, so that includes YOU as well as all of nature. Focus on themes of fulfillment, enlightenment, abundance, sharing, and the joy of living on this beautiful Earth home. All of this solar power fires up our passions, brighten our lives, and awakens awareness to the abundant potential of life. HAVE A BONFIRE OR FIRE CEREMONY Include drums, rattles, dancing and celebrating. Make it into a drum circle if you have a large group of people and inspire one another to move. A drum circle is a great way to entertain people as well as raising energy and relieving stress. Be sure to provide refreshments for afterwards as it can be tiring for some people. CREATE A SUN INSPIRED ALTAR Create a sacred space to honor the sun and all of the abundance provided this time of year. Include candles, midsummer fruits and vegetables, brightly colored flowers, sun symbols, anything that makes you feel summer. MAKE A SOLSTICE SUN TEA Place […]

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Deep Medicine of Light

June 17, 2016

Summer solstice. It is time to step out into the light of your being. To open up to share this radiance, coming from deep within you. To remember the reason why you came here. So you could shine, and allow yourself to be all that you can be. You are a luminous being of light, temporarily caught in this dream of having a body, a mind.. It’s beyond words, beyond comprehension, this magic trick we believe to be reality. I want to remind you to connect with your deepest soul medicine. Take time to connect to the root of what truly feeds you. This is essential before we can serve and help others, and to show up fully in this life experience. Besides, if you’ve never taken the medicine yourself, how can you heal others? The wounded healer is the best healer, because the medicine comes from the wound. That doesn’t mean we go out and try to heal others because we’ve experienced the same kind of pain, from a place of woundedness, but from within our own healing. Deep healing takes time and the willingness to heal.. You will know when you are ready to share your medicine, when […]

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Sacred Endings Ceremony

May 25, 2016

An excerpt from the book Living Sacred Ceremony by Natalia Karoway. Life is full of cycles. Just as a seed sprouts, grows into its full expression, produces its own seeds, then dies and returns to the earth, many phases of our lives come full circle through beginnings and endings. We have many ways to create ceremony around beginnings (weddings, baby showers, house warmings, etc.), but beyond the ceremonies held at death, we don’t often bring the sacred to our endings. Divorces or endings of friendships, losing or leaving a job, selling a house, or any other close to a cycle can be very important to acknowledge in the most sacred of ways. I believe it is important for us to ceremonially accept the blessings and lessons from the previous cycle as well as to release the challenges so we don’t find them popping up in the next cycle to work through once again. Think about dating someone with the same short temper that drove you from your last relationship or taking a job with another boss who never gives promotions. No thanks! We so often find ourselves in repeating negative patterns when we haven’t taken the time to do our […]

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Mother Mountain Herbals

May 21, 2016

The third in our trio of new product lines consists of the nutritious teas of Mother Mountain Herbals, located in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina USA.  Their handcrafted teas are made in small batches, using organically grown herbs and sustainably wild-crafted, fresh ground roots and spices. Stina Swesey, creator of Mother Mountain Herbals, says “I strive to not only provide people with products that nourish the body and spirit with pure plant magic, but to also pay homage to our great Mama Earth.”  Swesey drew inspiration while in the midst of nature.  After changing a career path that no longer served, she longed for a more simple and natural way of life. Her “therapy” of choice was hiking the hills and canyons. There, she opened to the magnificent plants around her and wondered what uses they had. Swesey says, “I started carrying field guides and read Susun Weed’s ‘Healing Wise’. It was pretty much a done deal after that. I knew my path was aligning with herbalism. Swesey absorbed a wealth of emotional, spiritual, and physical healing on her path with herbs.” One of my goals with MMH is to assist others with the same healing by […]

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Return to the Roots

May 21, 2016

Known only as Lady Fern, the enigmatic owner and creator of Return to the Roots line of elixirs, she calls herself a magician and photographer. She describes her exciting adventure of the natural world as “here on earth to laugh & celebrate all the way from the cosmic realms of the stars&rainbows.” A single mama, she heart crafts and hand blends her teas and elixirs in small batches with intention using ingredients which are home grown, ethically wild harvested or sustainably sourced.  “I am here to share a bounty of natural world explorations, feeling  and knowing the warm embrace of the inspirational surroundings of mama earth. Never am I without something to keep my hands busy & heart full of light, of love. All Return to the Roots Elixirs come in reusable 4 oz. frosted glass jars. Tumeric & Maca Golden Mylk Elixir Powder is based on a traditional Ayurveda recipe with a twist, a delicious & nourishing tonic which can be consumed daily for the aid of general health, immune support, inflammation relief, circulation & digestive aid. Simple to prepare with a bio-available formula for the use of the body. Contains Turmeric Root, Ginger Root, Powdered Cinnamon Bark, Red […]

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Healing Elixirs and Handcrafted Teas

May 21, 2016

In keeping with our goal of providing products for Mind, Body and Spirit, this month, Shamans Market introduces three exciting new lines of unique handcrafted healthy teas and elixirs. Anima Mundi Anima Mundi is the brain child of herbalist Adriana Ayales, Costa Rica native turned herbal healer. Her Anima Mundi products are based on recipes passed down for generations in her family, with ingredients sourced from rainforests in South America. As she tells it, “I wasn’t initially planning to make this a career because in Costa Rica, it’s customary to use natural ingredients for medicinal purposes. I drank tonics and teas and elixirs all day long! For us, drinking tea is like brushing your teeth.” From farm to pharmacy, her elixirs are 100% organic, wildcrafted, non-GMO, and vegan botanical remedies.  Born out of the desire to have a natural form of healthcare, Ayales’s intention is to craft high potency formulas, using ancient healing methods applied and studied by rainforest natives.  They bring a wide range of formulas for wellness and longevity. “We have over 200 herbs imported from Costa Rica, India, China, and the Midwest and everything is 100 percent organic.” As part of her own health regimine, Ayales does […]

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