Category Archives: Meditations

Flying Planes on Magic Mushrooms/Psilocybin

Many of my friends don’t quite understand what I do but they reassure me it’s something they would never attempt. Airplanes are one of my favorite places to eat mushrooms of the Cubensis variety. There are a few reasons that I’ve observed and will detail below. This may help you see things from my perspective.

Pre flight ritual: Roll all the weed left, smoke then go to the airport with super munchies

First, when do you eat the mushrooms? Well I think I’m familiar with my body and know I have about 15-20 minutes before I start feeling the on set of the mushrooms.

This sets up an ironic perfect time to eat them, take off. As the plane takes off you begin your takeoff as well. Important part I didn’t mention to the Magic, you must have a window seat. This is essential to enjoying the flight. To get even more specific flights around 5:30-6 get nice orange sunset hues bouncing off the clouds and what not. If you really want to go the extra step be sure your window is facing the west coast.

 

How much mushrooms are you eating on a flight?

It doesn’t feel right telling people how much they should be eating, especially on a flight. I’ll make a suggestion but knowing your own comfort level is the key here. I usually eat about 1- 2 grams mixed in with some nuts and berries for a 2-3 hour flight so I’m definitely walking off that plane still in the clouds.

Lovely Sun and Psilocybin hitting the same 

Why do you do this and is there a difference in the effect/flight?

The first time I did it was by accident, I forgot I had a little on me before I hit security so I just ate em. Turned out to be the most comfortable flight I’ve ever taken.

Growing up I’ve been haunted with ideas of planes crashing so it took a while to get that stuff out of my head but from time to time I’ll get a little nervous because of the turbulence. One thing I noticed instantly when I was on cubensis was that the feeling of my stomach dropping when the plane dips was no longer happening. It felt as if when the plane dipped my body didn’t lag it dipped right along with it…hmmm that was a cool observation. Being “one” with the planes movements eased my mind. It made a obvious difference in flight ease and relaxation.

The view, the last flight was quite spectacular as the clouds were heavenly. I really wanted to fly into them. At one point I forgot I was on the plane with other people. My eyes were adjusting to the lighting outside so the contrast created an interesting lighting effect upon glancing back to my left. It was as if the plane were a cave and the light source was my window. When I would peek over my shoulder back into the plane I only could see darkness. To paint a picture of what was happening, my eyes were locked on the clouds, phone in my left hand ready to take photos, hoodie over my head, listening to my own songs “this is soooooooullllll” vibrating through my headphones. Safe to say I was feeling great, the lady sitting next to me dosed off and could careless about what I was doing. Sometimes people can disrupt my selfie flow.

Initial takeoff
I can feel you now, (neo voice)

The sound is usually muffled when flying so that adds to the quietness of the whole experience. Even if there are people talking the effect of being so high (in the air) gives a silence that I really appreciate.

Last but not least, breathing deep seems a bit more rewarding on a flight too. It feels like I just sink deep into my seat then zone all the way out. The plane transforms into my personal spaceship for a few hours.

Would I recommend a rookie to do this? Nah this is for those that know themselves well enough to handle a trip on a trip.

Introducing the Cube Podcast coming soon! Getting my equipment list together!

Malcolm X Park x Bali Daisha

Washington DC … my friend Daisha made note that I’m in Dc quite often these days. It’s a nice in between place before getting to New York! In about a week Daisha will be flying off to Bali for a 6 month yoga teacher training. Im excited for her to start a brand new adventure. Traveling let’s us see life from a different space. We had to link up once more before she goes and it happened to be a drum circle popping off at Malcolm X park. The energy was high and the circle instantly brought back memories of Central Park drum circles I would go to years ago.

It was great to seeing those I rock with the most as usual! It took us 5 minutes to setup the camera for these lil shots so appreciate it! The people walking up the steps watched us fumbling around with iPhone cameras and negro rigged tripods had a laugh. We made plans to link up on that side of the world once our planets align!

The Mystical Breath

The Spiritual Teachings of Hazrat Inayat Khan

Volume VII – In an Eastern Rose Garden

THE MYSTERY OF BREATH

To a mystic the subject of breath is the deepest of all the subjects with which mysticism or philosophy is concerned, because breath is the most important thing in life. The very life of man is breath. He lives in the presence of breath, and in the absence of breath man is called a corpse. After death the organs of the body are just the same as before; the only thing that is lacking is breath.

Breath is that within ourselves which keeps all the parts of the body in connection with one another, working together, depending upon one another; it is that which enables man to move, to put his muscles into action, to keep the whole mechanism of the body at work. There is no other force or power concerned with all this than the power of breath.

Mystics know that it is regularity of breath that brings good health; that irregularity of breath is the cause of all illness. Many teachers and students of physical culture know that it is not the exercises and practices of this culture that cause the muscles to develop, that impart strength and vigor to the body. They know, as did the ancient mystics in India, that it is a matter of the breath. To practice for one moment with the help of the breath will do more than a whole day’s exercises carried on without considering the help of the breath. In the latter case the muscles cannot be developed, whereas in the former case the physical body is easily developed with little physical practice. That this is true, is easily shown by looking at the porters at railway-stations in India. If physical labor were the only thing needed to develop muscles, would they not all be veritable Sandows?1

In India we can study particularly well how men work with heavy things. Sometimes a man will carry on his shoulder a burden that it would ordinarily be impossible for a man of his physique to carry. Yet such a man cannot only lift it, but he will walk with it. And when one watches him one will find that the secret lies in his way of breathing. If he did not breathe correctly he could not possibly carry such a weight over the shortest distance. There was in India a man called Rama Muti. He could lift elephants and stop motorcars running at speed. When this man, who was not extraordinary in build, was asked where he got his gigantic strength, for he looked like an ordinary human being, not like a monster, he said, ‘You know, and yet you do not know. The secret lies in the breath, which is all power.’

Read the full article on https://wahiduddin.net/mv2/VII/VII_13.htm

Giant Golden Buddha

I’ve been thinking and getting more encouragement to begin sharing some of the good stories I have in the book of life. Many of them experiences everyone can relate to and some not so relatable one of a kind. I think I will be doing a podcast “Introducing the Cube” and I want to start the first episode talking about that one time my friend Jenny surprised me by bringing me inside a temple in China town that I’ve walked past every day after eating a handful of mushrooms. I like the way the audio sounds on iPhone so I may wing it from the good ol X for now but either way be on the look out for the cubes.

How to Become a Psychedelic Therapist?

 

As recent trials of psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy enter the last phase of testing, the coming need for many trained therapists and guides seems inevitable. Until recently, the only opportunity to train and work legally as a psychedelic therapist was in clinical trials. That will likely change over time as expanded access becomes the next step for current trials (evaluating MDMA and psilocybin) and if psychedelic-assisted therapies become FDA approved.

Many people are looking for information about psychedelic therapy and opportunities to become guides or therapists after reading Michael Pollan’s new book How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us about Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence [1]Providers are seeking trainings to become more informed about psychedelic experiences. They also want to know how to become certified to administer psychedelics in clinical trials and potentially post approval.

Still, there remain many unknowns about what training programs outside of the drug sponsors will be acceptable by FDA to dispense MDMA or psilocybin post-approval. FDA has never regulated psychotherapy, but medical devices often require training in a certified program. Demonstration of competency and maintaining of the acquired skills is required for compliance with regulatory agencies. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is one example of a specialized device with specific training requirements. It’s not yet known how FDA will regulate trainings for psychedelic-assisted therapies.

When Can I Offer Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy?

The FDA may approve MDMA for PTSD treatment as early as 2021, as MAPS has projected based on an optimistic (and likely realistic) finding of significant and positive results from two on-going Phase 3 trials. If so, thousands of therapists and doctors will be needed to meet the increased demand and opportunity for greater access. PTSD can be a difficult to treat condition with many individuals not accessing or responding to available treatments, so this call for expanded access will be an exciting opportunity to provide care to a much larger number of people who are currently suffering.

The next likely candidate for FDA approval after MDMA is psilocybin for the treatment of depression. In late 2018, the FDA granted Breakthrough Therapy designation for psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression, which will help expedite its approval as long as results from clinical trials remain positive

What are the Options for Training in Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy?

Despite many unknowns, some training programs already exist, and many more are expected to become available.

In 2015, the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) started a formal training program called the Certificate in Psychedelic-assisted Therapies and Research. The hybrid residential, in-person and online curriculum is a roughly 9-month course with rotating guest lecturers and a weeklong retreat. This program is broad in focus, interdisciplinary, and covers classic psychedelic medicines (e.g., psilocybin, ayahuasca, peyote, LSD) as well as the newer medicines (sometimes labeled empathogens or entactogens) like MDMA and ketamine.

To enroll in the CIIS certificate program, interested individuals must fill out an application, complete an interview, and receive an offer from the program’s selection committee. Applicants are required to be a licensed mental health or medical professional, counseling attorneys, or ordained or commissioned clergy and chaplains. The tuition cost is currently set at $10,000. There are several information sessions scheduled throughout the year to explain more and answer questions about the program. Each cohort generally starts in the Spring and graduates in December.

More substance-specific trainings also exist. In anticipation of Expanded Access approval, the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) has now posted an application for the MDMA Therapy Training Program with an invitation to apply. Training is currently prioritized for providers who would likely qualify for the Expanded Access program. If accepted by FDA, more clinics will open for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD treatment during expanded access. Requirements for clinics and providers are provided as is a forum for providers to connect with others who are interested in starting up MDMA clinics.

While no strict criteria have been released about who would qualify, the MAPS website states that at minimum one person in the therapy team pair must be licensed to conduct psychotherapy. While the other person does not need to be licensed, they “must display training in therapeutic relationship, ethics, and traumas.”

Each clinic also needs a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) license, which requires a licensed medical provider who can prescribe (e.g., medical doctor (MD), doctor of osteopathy (DO), or other eligible prescriber). MAPS encourages interested providers to apply now in preparation for the expected post-FDA approval. The cost for training and supervision is currently set at $9,000.

Other industry drug sponsors, such as Usona Institute and COMPASS Pathways, and researchers at various universities have devised their own trainings and ways to prepare clinicians to work on clinical trials of psychedelics. At this time, there are no details posted on websites about what the trainings consist of, but journal publications have described procedures, such as the Usona Guide Manual [2].

What Do You Learn in the Training Programs?

The CIIS program is approximately 180 hours and covers a wider range of topics related to psychedelic therapies. More time is spent on historical and philosophical aspects of non-ordinary states of consciousness, including non-substance induced ones as seen in Holotropic Breathwork and deep meditation. The learning objectives are focused more broadly on psychedelics and empathogens, rather than specifically on MDMA-assisted psychotherapy [3].

The MAPS program is a 5-part course with didactic training and experiential learning components. Trainees start with online e-learning modules covering MDMA pharmacology and its clinical safety profile, an introduction to the MDMA Treatment Manual [4], and some basics about clinical trials. A week-long, in-person training follows where MDMA session videos are viewed and discussed with the therapists who treated the study participants. The next parts involve role playing, observing MDMA sessions, and then treating a patient with supervision and evaluation from the trainers.

Some parts of these two programs overlap significantly. For example, the weeklong in-person retreat for both programs focuses on MDMA-assisted psychotherapy and are taught by Michael and Anne Mithoefer, MDMA study therapists and lead instructors at MAPS.

What are the Experiential Learning Components of Trainings?

Dating back to the first research studies of LSD in the 1950s, a first-hand experience in a non-ordinary state of consciousness has been perceived valuable for administering psychedelics. It’s thought that by understanding the drug effects, the therapists can more readily establish empathetic rapport and presence to support a person’s therapeutic process. They can also be better able to respect the power and significance of these experiences.

For indigenous communities, it’s deemed essential that shamans or ceremonial leaders have personal experience with the psychoactive plants they give to others. But in Western medical practices, it is rarely the case that doctors are encouraged (or even allowed) to take a medication to understand the effects a patient would feel.

Thus, psychedelics present a new challenge for psychiatric medical training. If there is value in having a personal experience, then how can providers legally pursue an experiential learning component to their training? To date the evidence of potential benefits of doing so remain anecdotal due to lack of approved controlled research.

CIIS’s program is an “above board” program with no use of illicit substances. MAPS, however, received approval in their sponsored, FDA-approved studythat allows trainees in their program to receive one dose of MDMA in a clinical setting if they also are eligible for the research study as a participant. As with all clinical trials, participants in the approved study must meet criteria to enroll and provide data to assess potential benefits or harms. Even if they meet the basic inclusion criteria, trainees are not required to undergo an MDMA session. Some might have conditions that would counter-indicate the use of MDMA. For example, pregnant women or individuals with cardiac disease would be excluded. Trainees may also simply not want to take a drug.

As alluded to earlier, Holotropic Breathwork is one alternative to reach a non-ordinary state of consciousness without consuming any substance. Through accelerated breathing and stimulating music, a person can enter into states similar to ones induced by drugs.

CIIS incorporates Holotropic Breathwork as experiential learning in their program. Therapists may consider alternatives, but they should do so while considering carefully the legal and ethical guidelines of their licensing board and professional organizations. Psychedelic Support and its partners do not encourage or condone the illegal use of substances.

Given this reality, other possible alternatives for experiential learning do exist. They include attending plant medicine ceremonies in other countries where it is legal, shamanic drumming/chanting practices, or extended meditation. Research is needed to understand if first-hand exposure by therapists impacts patient outcomes, and if so, what type of drugs or experiences are best for training. We encourage therapists exploring this new area to consult with their colleagues and even seek out legal counsel as they deem appropriate.

What Can I do Now?

If becoming a psychedelic therapist is of interest to you, then there are things you can do now to help figure out if this path is right for you and if so, prepare for the future. You can start by reading books and articles about psychedelic-assisted therapies. If you want hands-on experience supporting individuals undergoing a difficult psychedelic experience, one great way to do so is to volunteer for harm reduction services at festivals.

Already a health provider? Network with other professionals interested in this topic and attend psychedelic conferences. If you are a clinician, consider joining a Psychedelic 101 and 102 Introductory Course by Psychedelic Support providers, Dr. Elizabeth Neilson and Dr. Ingmar Gorman. Check out our website Psychedelic.Support to view a current list of organizations offering professional trainings related to psychedelics.

Lastly, educate yourself and share what you are learning with others. A new profession is evolving, and more opportunities are becoming available for those who wish to pursue a career in psychedelic medicine.

References

  1. Pollan, M. (2018). How to change your mind: what the new science of psychedelics teaches us about consciousness, dying, addiction, depression, and transcendence. London, United Kingdom: Penguin.
  2. Cooper, K. (2014). Guide manual for pharmacokinetics of psilocybin in healthy adult volunteers study (Unpublished manuscript). University of Wisconsin, Madison.
  3. Phelps, J. (2017). Developing guidelines and competencies for the training of psychedelic therapists. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 57(5), 450-487.
  4. Mithoefer M. (2017). A Manual for MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy in the Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, Version (8.1).

Kemetic Ka Ba Ra System

Kemetic Ka Ba Ra System

“Mastery of Passion allows divine thought and action.”

This chapter is about the Sefer Ba Ra (seven souls of Ra), also known as the Arats or Cows, through which the life-force energy (Sekhem or Chi) flows from the Self and sustains consciousness and ones being. The Life-force moves through the Sefer Ba Ra with the intention, direction, and focus of Consciousness itself.

Without the Sefer Ba Ra there would be no multiplicity, levels, or nature to existence: there would be only singular non-dual existence with no expression. It allows for the expression of individual existence and spiritual energy to be used for sexual energy to allow beings to interact with one another through a individual mind and body. Consciousness is the tool which the Self uses to create and interact with itself in the form of Creation.

Already you can see from this small paragraph that there is much more to an individual being then what is normally known; most people understand life to be about acquiring possessions, relationships, having children, etc, without knowing why, how, or who “I Am”. This is part of how creation operates. When there is a shift in the individuals intention through introspection or insight into Self, the direction and focus of consciousness shifts, sexual energy transforms back into spiritual energy and the individual is lead to self-realization and yogic union with the NTR / Ntru.

The Sefer Ba Ra are seven energy centers through which consciousness operates and exists in time and space. This is also represented by the Seven Cows of HetHeru through which the Single Bull of Amun reproduces life. The first three steps (1-3) are the most readily understood by the average person.

For example, the first step represents the idea of being an individual person who must eats, drinks, thinks, and acts, to survive and enjoy life. The second step represents the idea of being an individual person who must have sexual experiences, sensory pleasures, relationships, and desires in order to enjoy life. The third step represents the idea of being an individual person who must assert their will-power, assert their individual identity (ego), and act as an individual in the world to enjoy life. These three levels are the ordinary levels of an earthly being and many people do not grow past these levels of consciousness.

The steps show consciousness centers, and each carries with it a level of experience and development in which the consciousness interacts with creation as an individual being. This means for example that a persons second step (sensory consciousness) may have developed an experience of pleasure derived for a specific sensory pleasure (example: chocolate), and when the consciousness desires pleasure the second step might exert energy on the individual to pursue chocolate.

To acknowledge that one who cleanses the first three Cows understands, I will now give a new way of looking at the normal consciousness levels as they operate through an enlightened mind.

The first level becomes; “I am not an individual, I am the eternal The NTR and I am provided by self, even if I don’t eat or drink and my body decays, I will not die, thus I do not need to fight to survive.” The second level becomes; “sexual energy is only a manifestation of the spiritual life-force coming from my true self, thus I do not have to pursue sexual experiences, relationships, desires, or actions, in order to survive and enjoy life.” Third level becomes; “I am not the body or mind, thus I am selfless, thus I act selflessly and do not have to assert my individual will or interest, or act as an individual, in order to live and enjoy life.”

In order to experience the higher levels(4-7) one must, through Smai Tawi (spiritual yogic practices) and Shedi (spiritual intelligence through study), begin to understand themselves to be more than an individual human who experiences only birth, disease, old age, and death. The pressure of individuality makes it impossible for a person to realize their higher consciousness levels. For that reason they cannot be broken down in the same way as the first three were above, because the average person would not be able to understand that level of consciousness intellectually. This book is designed to show one how to heal, open, and harmonize, which leads to attaining above average physical and mental health as well as spiritual enlightenment.

Over-View Of: The Kemetic Life-Force Energy Teachings

At a number of temples The Ntr Khnum is seen creating seven Ka for the Per Ahh (Pharaoh). These seven aspects of the personality (Ka) represent the seven chakras, the seven endocrine glands, the seven aspects and instincts of creation existing within an individual and creation itself.

These are: survival (adrenals), Generation (Gonads), nourishment (the spleen), nurturing (the thymus), conscious development (the thyroid), creativity (the pituitary), and aspiration for unconditioned experience (the pineal).

Sefer Ba Ra- Cows – and Glands are three different ways to describe the same thing. The glands are the most important aspect of the body and are largely misunderstood. The glandular system is responsible for secreting hormones that regulate the body’s development (Youth, Puberty, and Old Age), that trigger sexual energy fertility and reproduction.

If these glands are working properly the body is healthy or if there is an obstruction then there is illness. The glands if obstructed, are blocked by pus or mucus, known in ancient Kemet as Ukhudu. It must be understood that this obstruction arises due to an even more subtle mental obstruction in consciousness, these obstructions are related to what are called “fetters” “sins” or “negative yoke”, and are related to intense greed, lust, anger, hate, resentment, etc.

Obstruction of these glands can result in subtle or gross (physical) disease and mental imbalances. If the glands are balanced one will have Life, Vitality, and Health, and if they are obstructed one will be susceptible to mental or physical disease.

egypt book of the dead | Egyptian Hieroglyphics Book of ...The purification of the glands opens new levels of consciousness, heighten the senses, and enable physical and mental expansion. This allows a person to turn disease into health, lethargy into vitality, and confusion and agitation into clarity and lucidity.

When a gland is imbalanced through blockage or impurity, it [causes] less energy (Sekhem) to flow through the body, this causes physical and mental impairment, which limits expansion in consciousness in the mental-physical chakra consciousness which is impaired. To understand this you can look at it as a lamp. If the wire has an obstruction anywhere in it, this can weaken the light from the bulb or causes no electricity to pass from the socket to the bulb. The socket is the Self (the source of energy), the mental- physical consciousness which exists in the spine is the wire (conduit for electricity), and the bulb is the light and activation of the mind.

Those whose centers are unopened or impure, generally move in life toward physical and mental ignorance and negativity, get themselves into negative situations they could have avoided or prevented; feel, think, and act ignorantly and carelessly, and live a self-destructive or unfulfilling life.

A person whose centers are opened and they are pure, generally are moving in life toward physical and mental knowledge and mindfulness, get themselves into liberating situations in life, and feeling think and act in an enlightened and healthy manner. This showcases how the energy of the supreme being works to support the pure and destroy the impure, without judgement, through each individuals own Sefer Ba Ra and Sekhem, according to that individuals actions in this lifetime.

Actions can either purify a person of negative karma and work to open the centers, or actions can strengthen bad karma and work to imbalance them. This chapter will show you how to work with your  Sefech Ba Ra and open them to experience the highest vibration of consciousness, which creates life, vitality, and health within an individual. Each Sefer Ba Rais a Consciousness unto itself. This means that as the consciousness shifts from the different levels through the day and through life, the consciousness level at that stage results in different levels of feeling, thought, and action, inspired by different aspects of consciousness.

The purpose of life is not to gain desired mental or physical experiences, but to reach a higher consciousness in order to experience unlimited oneness, expansion, fulfillment, inner peace, and happiness.

Positive Development

Each of the Sefer relates to aspects of life and consciousness which are to be mastered through Self. The manifestations of particular levels in life require you to experience, so as to master the experience. This brings a return to ones whole basis and nature and this occurs through the activation of harmonizing of the 7 Ba Ra with Ma’at (Truth and Harmony.) This is the positive and correct movement of purifying the Sefer. One should gain a greater oneness with the 42 precepts and the teachings of Ma’at and practice of MaaKheru.

Negative Development

Disease occurs when energy does not move freely and purely up the spine to the crown or from the physical world back to the causal realm (Self). First what occurs is physical disease or dis-ease which blocks the energy through either a dormant or active disease, or disharmonious feelings thoughts and actions (toxic character, personality, or lifestyle). This causes Sekhem to be blocked at particular levels as it moves up the spine. It is blocked by dormant or active mental disease due to impure mental impressions, conditioning, and attachments. This movement effectively blocks pure connection with the self. One should cease practice until they can redirect themselves to a higher pursuit and endeavor and resolve to overcome their ignorant conditioning, impressions, and attachments.

The Sefer — The Consciousness – The Realms of Existence

The Sefer are consciousness centers or conduits and realms of existence through which consciousness moves. They represent all of the consciousness levels as well as the levels of the Ta, Duat, and Pet Realm. Thus the Sefer and the consciousness encompass the path and attainment of Self-Realization and Self-Mastery, enlightenment, and ascension.

Sefer 7 – unconscious mind – Pet Realm
Sefer 6-4 — Subconscious – Duat Realm
Sefer 3-1 – Conscious – Ta Realm

 

Read the full article here at SevenWorlds 

The deeper meaning behind waistbeads

The African Waist Beads, Meaning, Significance, And Uses

Waist beads
Source – AfricaAnswers 

 

We would make bold to say that African waist beads were more commonplace a couple of generations earlier, certainly a lot more so than they are right now.

There was, in fact, a rather innate fascination with waist beads that existed, especially for some younger women who longed to reach the age where they could adorn some. Hidden from view underneath the modest female clothes that were favored in those times, the beads peeked out at random intervals, surprising and enticing an onlooker.

Although some people remained unaware of their significance, the allure of a beaded woman was practically undeniable.

There are many varied reasons we have come across as to why African waist beads were/are worn. Common folklore attributes it to the definition of a woman’s waist; in essence, that it helps them to maintain their figures.

Traditional Ghanaian culture though had a more practical usage, where the many strings of beads around the bikini line were employed as an anchor to strap the menstrual cloth.

beads-arounf-waste-africa

Some other varied uses or significance of the waist beads include;

  • As a symbol of femininity and sensuality, only the partner a woman chooses would have the honor of seeing them fully.
  • As a sign that a woman had reached marriageable age and could now have suitors
  • Strung with bells, to show that a woman was still pure as at the time of marriage.
  • Worn on babies during naming ceremonies, some say; to accentuate their waistlines and hips as they grow.
  • As a weight measure; when gaining weight, the belt of the beads climb up and when you lose weight, it falls elegantly on the hips.
  • Upon addition of precious stones, waist beads take on healing or rejuvenation qualities; depending on ailment or what needs to be enhanced (i.e. love, physic powers, balancing), various semi-precious stones can be included in the design of your waist beads.

These days, only a few people maintain the culture of adorning these beads on a daily basis, but a vast majority are likely to put them on during special occasions. Most of the significance of the tradition is also now mostly redundant.

The women who adorn waist beads in this day and age, use it more for ornamental and beautification reasons, or simply to check their weights, so it may be wise not to read too much into a woman’s decision to wear them.

All we know is that waist beads when worn properly are beautiful things and since they have been around for quite a while, a lot of people evidently agree.

Origin of the waist bead

While there’s so much history behind waist beads, it’s generally agreed that the existence of waist beads dates back to antiquity, as far back as the 15th century.

In fact, many scholars are of the opinion that the history of beads began in ancient Egypt (North Africa) where they were donned by beautiful women as a status symbol. They were simply called ‘girdles’ at the time.

In West Africa, many historians believe the tradition of waist beads was popularized by the Yoruba tribes, notably in Senegal and Ghana (notably the Ewes, Ashantis, Krobos, Ga-Adangbes) where they speak of nobility, femininity, and affluence. Today, countries like Ivory Coast and Sierra Leone have also adopted the waist bead.

Waist bead colour: Meaning and Significance

Generally, colours play very important roles in our lives. While some people easily get drawn to bright colours, some certain colours, on the hand, literally get on other people’s nerves.

Though the meaning of the colour of a waist bead varies from culture to culture, tribe to tribe, its significance is considered very important and powerful in many African communities. Choosing the right colour of beads remains as important as its design, weight, length, and flexibility.

Below are the meanings of some bead waist colour:

  • Brown – Earth and stability
  • Gold – Good health, power and wealth
  • Green – Abundance, fertility, nature and prosperity
  • Red – Confidence and vitality
  • Turquoise – Communication and self-awareness
  • White – Light, truth and purity
  • Yellow – Energy, joy and happiness
  • Black – Power and protection
  • Blue – Loyalty and truth
  • Orange – Courage, self-confidence and vitality
  • Pink – Care, beauty, love and kindness
  • Purple – Royalty, spirituality and wisdom

The waist bead bears different names in different tribes. In Nigeria, the northern part of the country calls it Jigida while the Yorubas (the people of Southwestern Nigeria) call it Bebedi. In Igbo, it is called mgbájị́.

The waist bead is also identified as Giri-Giri, Yomba, Jel-Jelli, Bin Bin, Ileke Idi and Djalay Djalay in some other tribes.

 

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