Posts Tagged ‘ayni’

A dear friend was heading out of town. Before leaving he installed a state of the art alarm system to safeguard his home. Twenty four hours later we were digging a hole to call on protection from a higher order.

I do not have a recipe I conjure up if I need protection however once an intention for ceremony is set a co-creative dance with Spirit begins.

With little time to prepare I began gathering elements; a quartz crystal, red hot chili peppers, rose petals, sage, candles, beer. Sort of like Cooking Channel gone rogue.

The heart of ceremony is held in our intention. For this ceremony our intentions were to call on Spirit to hold this home, and all who dwell in it, in divine protection. As we hold this intention for ourselves we ask that all beings be safe and free from harm.

Our intention was then blown into the quartz crystal and planted in the center of our offering in the Earth.

Shadow of Crystal Pointing North

White candles were rolled over each other to strip clean our luminous fields of the roots of fear. Where do we not feel safe? Where do we feel threatened? Why do we need an alarm system anyway?

The candles too became part of our offering.

I love sage. What would ceremony be without sage? Especially in its native desert home. So a bed of sage was laid around the crystal to clear a path of good intent.

Can you see the crystal pointing up in the center?

You can smell the goodness!

If you are looking to keep harm away a red hot chili pepper will do the trick. Set like daggers, they built an energetic fortress that seemed to say…BACK OFF BUDDY! (or use any euphemism you may see fit)

All I know was nothing was invading this space.

A Chili A Day Keeps Fear Away

A Chili A Day Keeps Fear Away

The fire of our red hot intentions were soothed with herbs, sweets, dark chocolate and coconut yet the most important ingredient we bring to ceremony is our heart. And what better element to hold the intentions of our heart than the beauty of the rose.

Although there was no plan on how to use the rose petals this revealed itself as the ceremony unfolded. The white rose petals, holding the purity of intent, the blessings of the Apus and Divine Masculine energy, were laid in a clockwise direction around the outside of our offering.

White Rose Petals for Purity of Intent and the Blessings of the Apus, the Divine Masculine

White Rose Petals for Purity of Intent and the Blessings of the Apus, the Divine Masculine

The red rose petals, representing the blood of Pachamama and the Divine Feminine, centered themself at the very heart. As the colors fell into divine order the balance of Feminine and Masculine came into ayni, right relationship. As these dualities of energy come to balance it is the Masculine that protects the source of creation in the womb of the Feminine.

Masculine and Feminine in Ayni

Masculine and Feminine in Ayni

To send our intentions to the Upper Worlds of Spirit our offering was covered in cotton harvested from the Earth.


Four gold candles, the color of protection, were placed in each of the four directions to anchor our intentions.

Our offering then burned.

We fed the land with white rose petals and beer to weave ourselves more deeply to Pachamama and offer gratitude for our prayers.

The ashes lay under the full moon and night sky of stars until buried the next morning.


Ceremony is the language through which our soul speaks. As a call for protection rang from the heart a ceremony manifested as never before. When we set out with good intention, ideas, inspiration and guidance will come through Spirit. We need only listen.

We are at the frontier of shifting paradigms both personally and collectively. It is a time to follow your own heart into ceremony to meet the birth of a new world order.

The only recipe to follow is the one within.

“This is what rituals are for. We do spiritual ceremonies as human beings in order to create a safe resting place for our most complicated feelings of joy or trauma, so that we don’t have to haul those feelings around with us forever, weighing us down. We all need such places of ritual safekeeping. And I do believe that if your culture or tradition doesn’t have the specific ritual you are craving, then you are absolutely permitted to make up a ceremony of your own devising, fixing your own broken-down emotional systems with all the do-it-yourself resourcefulness of a generous plumber/poet.”
Elizabeth Gilbert

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We are opening up
in sweet surrender
to the Luminous Love Light of the ONE.


Laying in a bed of healing dirt from Chimayo,
our intentions are held by our Divine Mother, Pachamama,
who manifests in form as our Earth Mother.
Our form returns to her.
We are ONE with our Mother.
Help us Creator to understand the Laws of Nature
so we may come to know our true Nature.

Lizard holds what is ready to die so we break free from what binds us.
A sunflower at the end of its life cycle found while running in Santa Fe
reminds us of the cycles of birth, death and rebirth.

Help us Creator to surrender to these cycles within us,
to trust and honor Death
so we may be reborn.

A shell holds seeds of a sunflower,
the symbolic seeds of our own awakening.


Prayers are blown inot kintus placed
in the four directions for balance.

White rose petals hold the purity of our prayers
and honors the wisdom of the Apus and the Light above.

Red rose petals honor Pachamama
and weaves our bellies more deeply
to the belly of Pachamama.
May our heartbeat be one with our Mother.

Yellow rose petals opens the channels of communication with Spirit
so we may deepen the trust in our intuition
and see through the eyes of our heart.

Sweet offerings feed our prayers.


So excited was I to see cotton growing alongside the road
in Garfield, NM last week that
I stopped to take a picture
(this city girl is new to rural living!)
Thank you Pachamama
for the abundance of your gifts in ceremony.

As above, so below
as cotton grows from the ground
and appears in the sky above
in the Land of Enchantment.


This cotton covers our prayers and intentions
and represents the Upper World where dreams and visions are born.
A sunflower sits in the center as our
also sitting as seeds below in the heart of our despacho.


Flower blesssings of red, white and yellow rose petals along with
sparkles, sprinkles, gold and silver sugars feed our dreams in the Upper World.


Our despacho is folded and tied up like a gift.
It is never too late to add a prayer or intention for
a forgotten prayer holder is tied outside to
hold our prayers through time and space.

It sits on my altar with my mesa
as it waits for the fire.

PicMonkey Collage

We are stardust,
We are golden,
We are billion year old carbon
And we’ve got to get ourselves back to the garden.
Joni Mitchell


Sat Nam

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Iva Peele, a Sacred Lodge Sister from We The Women, is currently creating The Road to Q’ero: A Journey Home, a film of the ceremonies and teachings from where our despacho ceremony is from. She receives messages directly from Lorenzo, a Q’ero paqo mesayoq, or shaman priest of the Andes. He speaks of the despacho in this way. “The most important ingredient in an offering is the feeling of love that comes out of your heart. The material ingredients can be things like fruit, flowers and incense. Let’s start this journey by becoming better friends with the mountains and opening our hearts.”

Despacho Ceremony in the Apus (Mountains)

Despacho Ceremony in the Apus (Mountains)

I fall in love with every despacho I make. And it is love that holds each and every one of you in this ceremony. I love and honor the call of your Soul that brought you here. I love and honor the leap of faith that each one of you makes just by showing up with your intention. I love your heartfelt desire to awaken your connection to Spirit, to deepen your connection to the knowing of your own heart. This takes tremendous courage, to walk fearlessly in the direction of a wide open heart.

As we weave our virtual tribe from one heart to another I share a message to inspire us on this journey from Sacred Lodge Sister, Carla Goddard. Take a moment to listen to her Message for 2012 from a journey with the fire. Let us hold each other in love as we set our hearts right, or in the words of the shaman, restore ayni. For when our hearts are in right relationship from within, we are then able to create that in the world around us.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit

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A dear friend held an art reception recently called “Love Letters” showing local artist’s interpretations on the theme of love and honoring the days when the hand-penned letter was a form for expressing love. I have been on a personal quest of the very same theme while I sit with the intention of integrating the Sacred Feminine and the Sacred Masculine within. These aspects meet in the heart and ultimately merge on the waves of love. Pieces of this discovery were expressed in my blog post “Love Ramblings”.

Collage of Love Ramblings

Collage of Love Ramblings

The day before the exhibit, while walking in the woods, the idea came to submit something to the show. Funny since I am not an artist. So for that reason I decided to take action. It was an edge, a limited way of thinking about myself. From the ramblings of my blog post I created a collage on a piece of cardstock, one side blank, the other covered in white glitter. Art can show us something in a new way and when the art is something we create ourself, the vision can be profound. What I got to see were two very different expressions of love. One, a Soul tortured in love, words serving as a bandaid to make sense of confusion. The other, a luminescent shimmer, transparent and clear.

As art reflects life, I see my attachments to both dimensions in love yet the truth resides in neither. So I offer this art to ceremony. To transcend my attachment to the tortured soul and my clinging to the luminous.

Collage in Ceremonial Despacho

Collage in Ceremonial Despacho

AHO my friends! AHO!

PS…Next New Moon Despacho opens February 20th. Stay tuned!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit

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As a young girl I was very bright. School subjects came easy to me. I excelled on standardized tests receiving straight A’s through every quarter of elementary school. Upon graduating from the 6th grade I received a medal for academic excellence. Why do I tell you this? Bear with me a moment.

I entered middle school at 12 years old. Everything changed. I remember deliberately marking test questions with the wrong answers. I did not want to be seen as smart. Coming of age in the ’70’s I somehow had an understanding that a boy would not want a girl who was smarter than he was. So I began dimming my light. Because getting a boy to like me began to rule my world.

Not only did I learn to dim my light, I also learned that my value was to be found in doing not feeling. In fact my feelings were often dismissed, denied, punished and ignored. This is how I came to hold the masculine and feminine within me, the force of the masculine held dominion over the feeling of my feminine. Feelings were something to be controlled since I came to identify them as the messy, ugly, weak and shameful parts of who I was.

This pattern continued into all my intimate relationships with men. I dimmed my own light, diminished my own power and dismissed my own needs in order to receive the love I so desperately longed for from a man. I know I could look to the relationship with my own father in all of this but I don’t see this as being solely related to my upbringing or childhood wounds. It reflects a larger paradigm of a relationship to the feminine, a relationship to power and the imbalance between these two forces that struggle not only in my heart but in the world around me.

Within my mesa (a shamanic medicine bundle) sit Pachamama and Pachapapa, two amulets representing the power of the Sacred Masculine and Feminine. If we strip the essence of these sacred aspects of who we are to their core, the masculine is our doingness, the feminine our beingness. Pachapapa has gone missing, along with most men from my life right now, yet in this falling away of the masculine in the world around me I am engulfed in an uprising of women, held and supported in ways as never before. As my relationships to men and women shapeshift around me, so too is the world within me transforming.

The action of our masculine essence is necessary, but when the mascculine takes action without regard for what the feminine may be feeling, sensing or needing, action becomes an empty clamoring of a distorted sense of power. As this pattern of operating continues, the disparity between action and feeling grows wider. Our energy is diverted to maintain the demands of a dominating masculine infrastructure suppressing the voice of a crippled feminine. Under extreme conditions, any sense of what the feminine may want, feel or need is so deeply buried, the cry has gone silent. Although the feminine may have been buried, she is far from dead. For the power of the feminine is in her endurance. Her time has come. And she is rising.

Gryphon Tarot

Gryphon Tarot

To bring peace to any relationship a dialogue is needed, for it is not dominion over the masculine that the feminine seeks. To create an internal harmony of our sacred duality, interdependence is needed. Our actions need to be informed by the feeling sense and intuitive power of the Divine Feminine. In order to bring balance back to our Earth, balance to our environment, we must bring balance back to the Sacred feminine within. How do we hold our own feelings in value? How deeply do we trust our intuition, the power of our felt sense of knowing? When the fundamental trust of our feminine is restored, we can allow our actions to be informed from our felt sense of rightness, or what shamans call ayni.

There are no easy answers or quick solutions to bring harmony to our world as old infrastructures of power quake in the rising reverence to the care and plight of our Earth Mother but in the words of Ghandi…We must be the change we want to see in the world. 

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit

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Fresh Air
Morning Practice
Restorative Yoga
Bare Feet on Sand
Soul Community

A simple list.

I intend for this list to grow. Add something new everyday if I can.
I invite you to do the same. Start noticing, each and every day, what nourishes you.

What puts a smile in your heart?
What gets your juices flowing?
What brings you to center?
What stills your mind?
What calms your heart?
What connects you more deeply to your body?
What connects you more deeply to Spirit?
What brings your life a sense of purpose and meaning?

We will bring this list to our next New Moon Despacho.
We will feed, in ceremony, what nourishes us.
Let Spirit guide us to shape a life
that nourishes each and every one of us,
each and every day.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit

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~Welcome to the New Moon Despacho Ceremony for October 26th~

(Click on Image for More Detail)

~Create Sacred  Space~

~Perform Purification Ritual~

~Offer One Qintu (prayer holder) for Mother Earth with Prayers of Thanks~

~Offer Seven Qintus into which Prayers of Intent to Release the Victim, Powerlessness, Limited Belief are blown in~

~Blow Intent of Qintus into Image of Cuti Despacho~

~Prepare for Ayni Despacho Below~


(Refer to previous blog post GET READY FOR CEREMONY for further instruction if needed)


(Click on Image for More Detail) 

~Offer One Qintu (prayer holder) for Ayni Despacho with Prayers of Gratitude blown in~

~Blow Prayers of Gratitude into Image of Ayni Despacho~


~Bury or Burn All Qintus from CUTI DESPACHO and AYNI DESPACHO~
(Please note: Make sure to burn qintus from Cuti Despacho outside of your home, not in indoor fireplace) 

~Close Ceremony with a Prayer of Thanks~

(Both Despachos are held and anchored with the kuyas of my mesa)


Elements of Cuti (Kooti) Despacho: Our prayers are laying in a bed of salt and hot peppers to combust the heavy energy that gives shape and form to the victim, to places of powerlessness and limited belief. The intent of our despacho is held in the horseshoe crabs who to me represent the ancient roots of these paradigms in our systems. Black feathers take our prayers into the darkness of the unseen to transform. The gift of the snakeskin holds all within, offering the medicine of shedding that which no longer serves us.

Elements of Ayni Despacho: A winged maiden holding a cornucopia of Mother Earth’s bounty sits at the center of our Ayni Despacho. She is surrounded by a corn husk frame representing the lineage of this tradition. An abundance of flowers overflow representing beauty. Our intent of gratitude is held in a small heart stone in the center so our hearts may open to receive the blessings of gratitude. The base of our despacho is held in red rose petals to honor Mother Earth, or Pachamama, and also contains seeds for the blossoming of our prayers. Sugar and corn were laid around the center to feed our intentions with fruitful sweetness.

AHO my friends! AHO!

Karen Chrappa
Author of A Structure for Spirit

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