Asking yourself, “M’k. Cooooool, Trickster Teachers- but what actually is a Spirit Medicine?”
Well, plants have spirits just like we do.
It’s kind of like online dating. You’ve got the profile and the pics, and if you decide you like those you swipe accordingly. But, someone's profile and their presence are two very different things. No well angled selfie can make up for a mismatch in presence.
What keeps things interesting is the mystery which arises from a meeting of Spirits.
Often, a plant’s medicinal properties relate to their Spirit, like a chosen career path which reflects someone's values. But sometimes, the Plant Spirit doesn’t relate to the properties of the plant, think librarian by day, dominatrix by night. Again, this is part of the mystery and complexity of Spirit which makes getting to know a plant a dynamic process.
Spirit Medicines are the essences of the plant, minus the physiologically impactful chemistry of other kinds of herbal extractions. No scent, no flavor, just lots of room for the Plant personality, their presence.
Think: I just met you, don’t know shit about you, but I know we are having each other’s bebes.
OR I just met you, but I know our karma is thick OR I just met you, and I already don’t like you.
While there might be common denominators in the experience of Plant Spirit which folks can agree on, each plant and human encounter is unique. Your buds can agree on the attributes of a mutual friend, but she def has a different relationship with you than she does with your other friends, right? Like some personalities, a particular Plant Spirit might be great for your friend, but be an agitating force to you.
What makes working with Plant Spirits really, really fun is you get to relate to a whole new community. Engaging with plants in this way is being species queer, pushing the edges of what it means to be human by listening, and with curiosity, relating with botanical beings.
A few tips for getting acquainted:
Why would we want to relate to Plant Spirits? Well, whether you have noticed or not, you are very much a part of an ecosystem. We spend most of our time being very human centric, and ultimately, we suffer from feelings of disconnection and isolation while we simultaneously destroy what we depend on for life.
When we open our eyes to the richness of life beyond the human sphere, we see the vastness of the web we are a part of. This is a chance for us to feel awe, to receive teachings and to become stewards, custodians, collaborators with our world.
Yep, it’s like that.
Plant Spirits generously help us along the way to find our courage, to transcend our self-limiting attitudes, and to help us heal deep wounds so we can show the F up.
A Plant Spirit Meditation:
Find a place you can chill for at least 15 minutes. This could be outside in front of a plant you’d like to get to know, or inside with a flower, leaf, root, photo of a plant, or your Trickster Teacher vial of choice.
Firstly, don’t forget your manners. Introduce yourself (internally or aloud) and let the plant know you’d like to be it’s bud.
If you’re working with a Trickster Teacher, drip a drop in your palm and either hold it or put the drop on your forehead/ heart/ belly/ womb/ etc.
A plant part or photo you can hold or simply have nearby.
Or, you can just be with a live plant.
Now, close your eyes and get curious. See what comes up. Maybe it’s a sensation, maybe it’s a color, a memory. Maybe it’s your to do list. Pay attention with your 5 senses. It’s ALL information, so stay open to anything that comes your way as a message.
Stick with noticing what comes up, you can even set a timer for five minutes- which will feel looong.
After you’ve gone on your plant journey, slowly open your eyes. Notice how you feel. This is a good time to write down your insights or thoughts, or to make a drawing. The plant meeting might have you humming a song.
Congrats, you’ve just gone on your first plant date!
This is just the beginning. You can repeat this process with a few more plants, and get to see the differences in how they feel. This is a process of building relationships. Let me tell you, when you get thick with a plant, they have your back in a particularly profound way that is hard to describe. Let it sink in, sweet human.