Digital mysticism: A virtual healing guide for the pandemic-stricken times
Healing through the screen
For many, 2020 has proved either deeply monotonous or unfathomably difficult. It's safe to say we could all do with an extra-special boost right now. If an Insta yoga class or sourdough starter is no longer doing it for you, fear not — we've rounded up the best online options for a more unique, esoteric healing experience. Whatever the pandemic is doing for your personality type, there's something here to help you feel calmer, more connected and centred.
BEST PRACTICE FOR... INTROVERTS
As an introvert you like spending time alone or in small groups. Though you have a tendency to take things very personally. This can get a bit overwhelming. What you need is a bit of perspective...
Tell me more? For the uninitiated, tarot card reading is the practice of using a deck of 78 'tarot' cards to gain insight into the past, present or future. During a reading, you can choose to ask a specific or general question. Cards are then drawn and interpreted to hopefully give you some answers. However, spiritual guide and tarot reader Giselle La Pompe-Moore is keen to stress that she doesn't see tarot as a "fortune telling" practice. Rather "tarot allows us to reclaim power and agency," she explains "as we get to use the choices, thoughts and lessons from today to shape what comes next."
BEST PRACTICE FOR... EXTROVERTS
Ah! The agony of not being able to socialise, attend events, and generally live your best extrovert life. But this break from the world could be good for you. Now is the time to take a deep dive within and better understand your true self, minus the crowds.
Tell me more? According to pioneering psychologist Carl Jung, archetypes form the basis of all unlearned, instinctive patterns of behaviour, existing in what he called the "collective unconscious". In layman's terms, this is the idea that there is a shared wisdom, or source of knowledge, that we all have access to, but very rarely tap into. (If it takes you a minute to comprehend this, you're not alone!) Perfect for an extrovert who wants to understand themselves a little better away from the noise of the world, and then use that knowledge to take charge of their own destiny.
CORD CUTTING MEDITATION
BEST PRACTICE FOR... FEELERS
Everything feels personal to a feeler. If you have a tendency to hang onto things, emotionally, how about stepping outside that sensitive, feeling state and protecting yourself from the emotions of others.
"My experience of working with Cord Cutting is extremely profound — I see it as a reclaiming exercise", explains Shamanic healer Lucy Porter who runs online pay-what-you-can sessions via cult London wellness destination, She's Lost Control. As the name suggests, it's a process of cutting emotional cords with people, places or habits that no longer serve you. In a session you are guided through a step-by-step journey to meet the source of your unhelpful energy attachment, visualise energetic cords being cut and then enjoy the emotional release this can bring. "Working online really is Collective Community Release work," Lucy says. "It's what we need at this time."
BEST PRACTICE FOR... JUDGERS
Always observing other people's behaviours can be emotionally taxing. You need to step away from your daily routine of fretting over non-mask wearers and connect with something a little more out there. Maybe even something you would normally judge...?
Tell me more? Also called an Out of Body Experience (OBE), Astral Projection is a phenomenon in which a person perceives the world from a location outside their physical body. It assumes the existence of a soul or consciousness called an "astral body" that is separate from the physical body, but through which one can still observe the world. After an OBE, many people report an inner awakening of their spiritual identity, a transformation of their idea of the 'self', and a decrease in their fear of death. Astral Projection specialist (she even has an Msc in it) Jade Shaw runs regular online workshops, or if you're looking for some Insta-guidance, check out Astral Projection Bros.
BEST PRACTICE FOR... SENSORS
As a sensor you prize common sense and practical solutions above all else. So, naturally, the pandemic is driving you slowly mad.
Tell me more? Using an assortment of gongs, bowls, and other seemingly magical instruments, a skilled sound healer will help you enter a trance like, meditative state, where you will forget the woes of the world. "I was sceptical initially," explains practitioner Aaron Horn, "but the feedback from people enjoying them online has been incredible". Look out for free recordings and events with Aaron, as well as Aisha Carrington on Instagram — or reach out to them for a special 1:1 sound journey. My personal, favourite way to hit the reset button — expect to end a session feeling calm, connected and pretty spaced out (in a good way).
A CACAO CEREMONY
BEST PRACTICE FOR... OVER-THINKERS
The exhaustion of over-thinking the pandemic (not to mention all the other stuff 2020 has held) has left you exhausted and close to burnout. What you need is a break from that epic, logical brain of yours.
Tell me more? Cacao is a safe and accessible plant medicine, dating back over 4000 years. Often referred to as a 'heart opening' medicine (possibly because of its high levels of theobromine, a mild stimulant that's believed to temporarily boost mood), a cacao ceremony will give you a much-needed disruption from your incessant thoughts, allowing you to connect with your deeper 'felt' wisdom. Kasia offers at-home packages with raw, ceremonial grade cacao from cooperative families in Ecuador, and an online guided ceremony. After mixing and blessing the cacao, the ceremony is conducted much like a guided visualisation meditation, with Kasia steering you through your unconscious and towards your heart. "Online ceremonies are great — they give you an opportunity to form your own relationship with the medicine," she explains.
NATAL CHART READING
BEST PRACTICE FOR... PERCEIVERS
With your constant observations, you tend to be flexible and thrive in times of uncertainty. However, you too could do with stepping back and forming a better overall understanding of your place in the world right now.
Tell me more? A birth/natal chart is a map of where all the major planets and astral bodies were located at the time you were born. Most people know their star sign and associated personality traits, but a full natal reading looks at all the astral placements in order to give further insight to your strengths/weaknesses, and purpose in life. Check out Yasmin Boland's free, downloadable reading, and Francesca Oddie's 1:1 specialist, tailored sessions.
BEST PRACTICE FOR... INTUITIVE PERSONALITIES
Your wild imagination means you naturally see possibilities and opportunities and are often a few steps ahead of everyone else. Now though, you could do with letting go of always trying to solve everyone else's problems.
Tell me more? Reiki translates to universal or spiritual energy and is thought to be a powerful pathway for healing. During a traditional, IRL Reiki session, a practitioner will place their hands on or above different areas of your body, in order to conduct energy from their body/spirit to yours. Online, a practitioner takes much the same approach, only from afar. Jasmin Harsono, author of Self Reiki, says distanced Reiki works just the same: "Universal energy is present within us, time and space is not a factor." Sushma Sagar, author of Find Your Flow (out Dec 3rd) explains that Reiki can "lift and support you — physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually". You may find you feel more centered and still, even after even just one session. Check out Jasmin and Sushma for online treatment sessions and packages.