While gifts to celebrate your love is a lovely thing (especially if they’re made with love and harm neither the planet, nor its inhabitants in the process), it is experiences which really bond you with your lover, your friends and yourself.
The idea is to create an experience which is representative of the flowering of your relationship, to symbolically plant a seed of intention in your individual and shared future. It offers opportunity to dig down to your foundations and take guidance from your soul, sharing introspection and intention and let things go.
There is no strict way to do it, you can adjust this to suit your lifestyle and preferences, but as a guideline I thought we'd share our ritual.
Last year, my blogger buddy The Notepasser wrote a piece which shared '50 Valentine’s Day Experience Gifts That Will Make You Happier' (read HERE) and it resonated with me. The best money I’ve spent in my couple is the few dollars it cost to take a train out to the forest to hide in our hammock in its midst, or borrow a bike from our city bike system to whip around town like first time tourists, wandering in and out of cafes, restaurants, and shops to collect picnic items to enjoy wherever we pleased.
This year, I wanted to work our spirituality into the experience and we decided to practice a ritual my mother taught me. It doesn’t require you to subscribe to any religion at all, it’s a symbolic practice which allows you to check in with yourselves and your significant other, setting intentions and letting go of any bits of the past which no longer serve your collective happiness.
The idea is to create an experience which mimics the flowering of your relationship to symbolically plant a seed of intention in your individual and shared future. It offers an opportunity to dig down to your foundations and take guidance from your soul, sharing introspection and intention and letting things go.
There is no strict way to do it, you can adjust this to suit your lifestyle and preferences, but as a guideline I thought we'd share our ritual. (If you’re single this ritual works to set intentions for yourself and the future you’d like to create as well).
Rather than a bouquet of flowers, we made a pot of tea with the Lavender Dream flowering tea (because lavender brings luck to lovers, especially if given as a gift which this was) from Numi’s Enchanted Blossoms collection. While the flowering tea blossomed, we wrote words of love on the outside of the glass pot with removable oil pen (you can also use sticky notes instead). This idea is an adaptation of Dr. Emoto ‘s studies of water, which were built on the idea that positive thoughts and words affect the molecular structure of water positively and that negative thoughts and words dp quite the opposite.
His experiment was simple, he wrapped bottles of water with written notes, stating a negative ("you fool") or positive ("thank you") message in various languages. The water was then frozen and the crystals of the frozen water examined. The water which had positive words written on it created a magical sort of snow flake type crystal. Conversely, the water which was exposed to yelling and negative expressions created malformed crystals.
Thus, sharing the blossoming tea which had been infused with loving words allows you to welcome both positives into your body and partnership as you relax into the ritual.
The inclusion of tea in the ritual is not only symbolically bonding, it also gives you time to sit with your partner and write out your hopes and intentions for the days, weeks, months or years to come, alongside a list of what you’d like to let go of. You can make a list, write a letter, or even draw a symbol while thinking of these things. What matters is the purpose you put into it. Take your time and fill your heart with all the love you have for that person (and yourself). There is no way to do this ‘wrong’.
BURN, BAKE OR BURY
When you’ve both completed your list, you can decide as a couple whether you want to share your words or not, the magic works no less or more either way, it’s completely up to what feels right to you in that moment. Sit facing eachother, light a candle, and meditate / pray together hands held in front of you (for as long or short as you like) allowing the words of hope and promises for the future to resonate within you. When you’re ready, get a large pot (we did this on tile to ensure no wood or carpet was set fire to). Using the candle, light the words you wrote on fire, catching the ashes in the pot.
What you do next is completely up to you. You can collect the ashes and keep them in a jar, take them to your favourite spot in nature and release them into the winds or bury them, bake them into a cake (you may want to write your intentions on edible paper in this case), or plant them into the soil of a plant you keep at home so you can watch it bloom as your relationship grows.
Photo: Shane Woodward