New Online Class: Trance, Mediumship, & Divination Intensive

Over at Impact Shamanism, Khi is gearing up to teach a 12-week online Trance, Mediumship, & Divination Intensive!

 
 

Since ancient times, witches, root doctors, magicians, shamans, diviners, and spiritworkers in every culture have been able to skillfully work with non-ordinary states of consciousness – trance states – to receive information, explore different planes of existence, communicate with unseen helping spirits, and re-weave the threads of fate.

This class is especially helpful for:

  • people who are ready to go deeper on their personal healing paths,
  • tarot readers, palm readers, astrologers, and other types of diviners who are ready to sharpen and expand their skills,
  • witches, healers, mediums, magicians, and root doctors eager to engage their helping spirits and the Spirit world more fully in their practices,
  • and artists, visionaries, and other creatives ready to plumb the depths of their internal landscapes toward inspiration and creative expansion.

In this 12-week intensive, participants will:

  • gain applicable skills in multiple forms of trance including dreaming, mediumship, embodiment, shamanic journeywork, and visualization,
  • deepen intuitive divining skills across multiple platforms,
  • meet and develop relationships with personal helping spirits and learn to interpret their symbolic language,
  • learn how to troubleshoot and resolve energetic patterns in our lives and environments,
  • and explore ways of incorporating skillful trancework into their current spiritual practices.

Classes will be held live via online video conferencing every other Tuesday evening (beginning July 11th @ 8-10pm EST) and outside resources (readings, online videos, etc.) will be provided weekly. As the subject matter is broad and deeply transformative, active participation through daily exercises, completion of weekly homework assignments, and participation in the private Facebook group are strongly encouraged.

For those unable to join the live webinars due to time zone constraints, recordings will be available. 

Khi Armand, instructor, brings a wealth of knowledge to the course from his background as a professional hoodoo root doctor, Houngan Asogwe in Haitian Vodou, macumbeiro in Brazilian Quimbanda, and spirit-initiated shamanic healer. Holding an MA in Performance Studies from New York University and a BA in Ritual Anthropology from Hampshire College, he is the author of Clearing Spaces: Inspirational Techniques to Heal Your Home and Deliverance: Hoodoo Spells of Uncrossing, Healing, and Protection.

Course Fee: $275

(Listen to hear Khi speak on trance and mediumship skills in Episode 24 of On Sacred Ground.)

Register here.

Class size is limited to 20 participants so early registration is encouraged.

What past students have said about this intensive:

"I took Khi Armand's class on Trance, Mediumship, and Divination and it was one of the most transformational experiences I have had. Khi has a way of meeting you where you are in your journey while at the same time encouraging you to push out of your comfort zone. In the process he inspires confidence in your own abilities and gives you the tools to continue to grow and learn long after he is done teaching you. I highly recommend any time you can spend learning with him."

"Working with Khi in such an intimate setting invites his magic and helpers to come into your life to assist the process. There is an abundance he extends beyond experience, and the offerings he gives provide pure, transformative energy.”

“You open pathways and show us how to bring the True Hallucinations.”

"I have a greater confidence in my own intuition and ability to interact directly with spiritual beings."

"I think I would have been even more interested to study with you if I had known the breadth of your studies/worlds because they are deep.”

"I think that is my fave part of your teaching style - you drop pppearrrrlllsss of wisdom that are so exciting, and I write them down with such glee. They just stream out and it's a joy to be on the receiving end of that.”

"I got so much from participating, from techniques on how to apply discernment to new clearing techniques and accelerated spiritual development. Big. Huge. Steps forward."

House Cleansing, House Spirits, & Spirits of the Land

From the archives of the City Conjure Blog, by Khi Armand:

The spiritual work of tending the home is found in every culture around the world because the home is an extension of the body. One can be spiritually cleansed in their personhood but be living in a space that isn't at all conducive to wellness. There are all kinds of factors at play when it comes to a dwelling's ability to support us in our endeavors - building layouts, history, spirits attached to the space, other entities (both benign and not-so-much), land spirits, local influences, and those sharing the space with us. Unfortunately, almost all of the protocols inherent in the building and care of homes and buildings as found in world traditions have been entirely abandoned by those of us living in the West, leaving yet another door wide open to us experiencing dis-ease and disharmony.

Chinese Feng Shui is a popular (and highly effective, I might add) form of architectural and design orientation and remediation.

Some Northern European towns still adamantly plan city projects and construction away from known local hotspots and dwellings of little folk, or non-human and rarely seen races of people that live under the earth.

Some African cultures, like that of the Dagara, build their homes on a foundation of ash made from the dirt and remains of their ancestors, forming the basis of their home's protection.

Besides the multitude of ritual acts that went into traditional European house building and barn raising, innumerable charms and fetishes have been remembered from this and other regions for warding off evil, inviting prosperity, and maintaining peace, all directly tied to the power of the home as an extension of the bodies of those living there.

I’m unfortunately a bit too busy to be a receptionist for every dead person that shows up on my doorstep.

I’m unfortunately a bit too busy to be a receptionist for every dead person that shows up on my doorstep.

After moving into my current abode, I found myself battling a number of energetic issues that I'd never faced before. Between a passive-aggressive house spirit (a conscious entity comprised of a former roommate's own familial traumas), a building layout that seemed to direct lost souls directly to my bedroom, and all-around difficult energy to push, cut, and wade through on a daily basis, I was getting convinced that I'd have to leave. After turning the house spirit into an ally through almost a full day's work of journeying to help resolve the family history entangled in it and crafting unique wards prescribed by my helping spirits for keeping hungry lost dead at bay, there was still something inherently "off" about the space that my usual house cleansing techniques couldn't remedy.

While journeying to speak with my spirits on a separate topic, one of my helping spirits dropped a corn kernel into my hand. The symbol repeated itself the next day with ears of corn catching my eye at the local grocery store. Upon divining, my spirits indicated that offerings made to the land spirits on my block would bring a big improvement. Being a healthy shaman and spiritworker for me has meant regular grounding exercises, intense dancing in ritual space, and other actions that directly draw on the energetic resources of the land for support. $1.29 later, I was walking around my Brooklyn block sprinkling corn kernels at spots that seemed "hungry," all the while apologizing to the spirits of the land for the actions of my species and expressing my desire to be in good relationship with them.

I returned home and sat down to answer some e-mails but quickly found myself completely overwhelmed by what I can only describe as an energetic "whoosh" from beneath me to high above and the feeling of being far beneath the ground for a period of at least 20 minutes. The land spirits here are hungry and even a cursory look into the industrial history of Williamsburg, Brooklyn (home of NYC's only chemical and nuclear storage facility) can give us a clue as to why.

Gratefully, my home / land issues were brought to an end and things feel entirely different her. Now the house spirit gets a mug of tea every Sunday (he's fancy). The land spirits -- albeit an ongoing project of resolution far beyond one person's ability to handle -- get red wine and corn monthly. And my maintenance rites of smudging and cleansing are far more effective.

But what would it look like if the relationship between humans, land, and the spirits that dwell between us were tended again on a grand scale?

I've found that the most effective housing and building remedies are uncovered through divination and / or shamanic journeying, but most folks have beloved go-to rites that they employ at regular intervals in the spaces that they inhabit. In the hoodoo tradition, the most beloved rite is a floorwash -- a literal washing of floors and other surfaces with a infusion of botanicals and minerals of choice. It works equally well for homes as well as businesses and other spaces, though there are many popular variations based on the purpose of the space.

Chinese Wash is the most popular preparation for cleansing spaces among practitioners of hoodoo.

Chinese Wash is the most popular preparation for cleansing spaces among practitioners of hoodoo.

How to Perform a Spiritual Cleansing of Your Space

Pour a teaspoon, tablespoon, or more of Chinese Wash into a bucket of hot water, depending on the size of the premises. (In a pinch, a strong tea of Lemongrass might do the trick.)

As led by Spirit, you may desire to add an additional infusion of herbs or curios with cleansing properties to this floorwash as well - Hyssop, Florida Water, and Sea Salt are all great options in accordance with their correspondences in hoodoo lore. A capful of Ammonia can be added, but bear in mind that it's known to really strip away everything in the space, so only do this in the case of serious spiritual grime (and be prepared to do some spiritual rebuilding of conjurations particular to your home). If an Uncrossing bath has been performed, a bit of the run-off captured from the bath can be added to the floorwash as well.

Pray over this infusion, intending that any and all harmful energies in the space will be removed. You can add a commercial detergent as well, depending upon the needs of your space. With a mop, squeegee, or sponge, cleanse the space from the back room to the front or main room. If multi-floored, start by cleansing the top floor and work your way down, ending with the groundfloor and always working from the back of the space to the front / entrance, including with each room. As you cleanse, pray and intend that your space is made clean and new. Some find reciting Psalm 23 to be very appropriate for this rite.

If the space is carpeted, lightly wetting a broom and sweeping it over the carpet in the same fashion works just as well. Make sure to give the entryways of the home and of each room extra attention.

When finished, pour the leftover scrub water into your front yard or dispose of it at a crossroads. I like to throw it toward the West, in the direction of the sun's setting (bringing an end to any crossed conditions), but many prefer the East as per tradition.

Now make a new floorwash, but this time using conjure and condition oils and / or an infusion of botanicals, minerals, and curios that speak to the things you’d like to attract into your space. Some ideas include Basil for protection, Mint for money, Rose for love, Lavender for peace and harmony, or other favorite allies as you are led by Spirit. Mop or scrub from the sidewalk, outer hallway, or up the steps into the entryway of your home, again paying special attention to the home's threshold. Pray and intend that those things you desire are present in your life and visualize with confidence that you have them already. Pour this floorwash in your backyard (if living in an apartment, down your toilet will probably suffice).

Now take a conjure or condition oil that is intended to aid with protection and anoint all doors and windows leading to the outside world in a five-spot pattern – one dab in each corner and one in the center. Intend that your space is protected from any and all harm and that all blessings that you receive are kept.

Some folks follow this up with the sprinkling of such preparations as Peace Water for harmony at home and the inviting of peaceful spirits or Four Thieves Vinegar for protecting the space.

Performing this rite at regular intervals can make a huge impact on your space's harmony and ability to support productivity.

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How to Use Hoodoo Condition Oils

Fiery Wall of Protection.jpg

Condition oils are probably the most popular tool used in the tradition of Southern Conjure. They are the magical potions of our time - liquids imbued with mysterious ingredients that are meant to have an effect on our experience of reality. They are certainly one of my first introductions to Hoodoo - once I came across a few formulas, I had herbs stewing in jars stocked with my family's olive supply almost immediately. Of course, it took years for me to arrive at my current formulas, and it's always a thrill to create new ones - but that's another post. 

This one's for the folks who might have one or more condition oils but don't know how versatile a tool they have at their disposal. Though far from comprehensive, it's good to start with the basics:

  • Dress / anoint yourself. For oils meant to remove conditions such as Uncrossing and Cut & Clear, apply a bit of oil to the center of one of your hands. Rub your hands together and wave them downwards through your aura from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet. You can do this multiple times if you feel the need. For drawing oils - meant to attract something to you - dab a bit on your finger and dress or anoint yourself. If you're naked (for instance, right after drying off after a shower) you can move upwards, pressing your finger to the soles of your feet, the back of your knees, and anywhere else that feels right. For Crown of Success oil, a condition around which there are traditional hands-on techniques for application to the head (see The Black Folder), you might want to make sure you anoint your own head. For Nature oil, meant to help ensure virility, be sure to anoint yourself (safely) near or around your genitals. Oils for attracting money or objects might be rubbed on the hands, and Blessing oil might especially lovingly applied to the forehead of oneself or a loved one
  • Dress / anoint objects. Objects can be anointed with condition oils for the purpose of affecting those who touch or see them, or for imbuing them with an energy. Fiery Wall of Protection oil can be used to dress the doorways of a home or office, Blessing oil for anointing an ancestral heirloom, or Reconciliation oil for dressing a gift for a sweetheart (and even the gift's packaging). Mojo bags and other magical objects are often anointed with condition oils as well, either at the time of their creation, at fixed intervals, or both.
  • Dress a candle. Hoodoo condition oils are one of the primary tools used in the tradition for fixing candles (imbuing them with intention). Practices around this vary widely and differ with candle type and even the particular intention. If you're new to dressing candles, feel free to simply dab a bit on your finger and simply rub it on the wax. If you want an in-depth exploration of candle fixing, stay tuned! Feel free to check out The Art of Hoodoo Candle Magic in the meantime.
  • Add to bathwater. Though condition baths are commonly crafted from dried botanicals, minerals, and sometimes essential oils, why not simply dribble a bit of one or more condition oils into a warm water for similar use? Works just as well.

Condition oil use is definitely a place where imagination is your friend. Happy anointing!

Exploring Your Specialties: A Divination Exercise

Every spiritual practitioner has specialties. What are yours?

Every spiritual practitioner has specialties. What are yours?

From the archives of the City Conjure Blog, by Khi Armand:

In the world of magick and conjure, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the variety of methods and tools that can go into spellcasting. Of course, one should always be focused on getting results, but there’s also the matter of having fun along the way. Having a routine or methods that you build upon are highly suggested for working effective magick, but not stretching beyond those boundaries can leave your magickal practice stale and uninteresting. Magick works best when Younger Self (our subconscious, or our creative inner-child) is given room to explore (without going overboard into a cosmic mess). In my own experience, the injection of one or two new tools or methods into a working can greatly satiate the needs of my creative inner-child while giving our work an enlivening new boost.

Effective magick is rarely about that rare root or herb that you’ve heard about but haven’t been able to get your hands on. It’s usually about having the proper intention for the goal at hand and choosing the best avenue for manifesting it.

The directions a practitioner feels pulled toward are often good indicators as to what may be that inspiring new step for for them in their work . Some folks feel an immediate resonance upon their first seeing a Solomonic Seal while others’ love of mason jars naturally extend into a proficiency with container spells. A lot of folks are already aware of their particular affinity for particular types of medicines – I’m more of a plant person than a crystal person, for instance, but have tons of friends who can spot a crystal and its metaphysical attributes from a block away. Such knowledge often forms the basis of our personal workings, whether  crystal grids or traditional flora- and mineral-based mojo bags.

So what do when you’re looking to branch out and not sure what direction to go in?

Exploring Your Specialties: A Divination Exercise

For this exercise, you’ll need:

  • a multi-faceted divination tool like the Tarot or Runes (I prefer the Tarot because of the rich imagery it provides)
  • a pen and pad
  • about 30 minutes

Ask your divination tool (or the higher power you consult through them) “What specialties of mine would be best to explore in my spiritual work at this time?”

Then, pull 3 cards (or runes, etc.). Close your eyes and allow the traditional meanings of each divinatory sign to wash over you like a fast-moving river. When you feel calm and ready, begin with the first – write down the images and impressions that come to mind both from your original understanding of the card or rune and your own intuition.

For example:

9-of-pentacles.jpg

Pulling “The Moon” might be a sign of your affinity for lunar magick and that incorporating moon phases into your workings might give them a boost. It could also indicate an affinity for doing work that helps to calm or ground turbulent emotions – you may feel inspired to try your hand at making dream pillows or learn techniques and tools for grounding, centering, and banishing.

The 3 of Wands may indicate an untapped affinity for working candle magick (many conjurers see Wands representing candles, Pentacles representing talismans, Swords representing incense, and Cups representing oils and baths). catherine yronwode’s recently published Art of Hoodoo Candle Magic would be a great resource if this is the case. With ships arriving in the background, you may  feel inclined to explore moving candle magick – the kind where one or two candles are moved closer or further away from one another over a period of hours or days. I personally associate the 3 of Wands card with road opening work – the kind that gets energy moving and invites general good fortune where there’s been ill-luck and stagnancy.

The luxurious 9 of Coins may suggest an affinity for talisman-making, or even the crafting of magical bath products such as as body scrubs and butters. It could also indicate your ability to do work that helps individuals build their self-esteem and sense of joy within the world.

Of course, these are just ideas. For each divinatory sign that comes up, make a list of all the words and images that surface in regards to it and then, start small. Don’t over-research; consider these as avenues for your inner-child to start exploring and see where your magick takes you this winter.

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