Luna Nueva: Reclamando Momentos Sagrados / New Moon: Reclaiming Sacred Moments

Scroll down to find this essay in English.

Aquellos de ustedes que me conocen, saben que estoy constantemente compartiendo sobre el carácter sagrado de mis ritos, rituales, rutinas y prácticas cotidianas. Incluso he escrito algunas de estas sabidurías ancestrales en un papelógrafo y cuelga en la pared, para poder recordarme de una manera cariñosa y compasiva que tengo una gran cantidad de conocimientos que puedo aprovechar para honrar a mis maestras, linajes, incluyendo el Espíritu de las Plantas, árboles, animales, etc.

No definiré ritos en este ensayo. Me enfocaré en mis experiencias personales de pasar por mi cuerpo la  sabiduría de los rituales, rutinas y prácticas que aprendí de mis ancestras.

Me he permitido reclamar rituales como un momento sagrado, puede sentirse como una celebración [graduaciones, ciclo lunar]. O puede ser un pequeño momento sagrado, por ejemplo, cuando preparo café todas las mañanas y trato de despertar la conciencia en ese momento. Prestando atención cuando pongo el café en la cafetera. Y puedo permitirme recordar de dónde viene mi relación con el café. Este ritual viene de las enseñanzas de mi abuela. A pesar de que su relación con el café fue introducida a partir de sistemas de explotación, […] ella eligió introducirme el café de una manera poderosa. Me enseñó a conocer su experiencia con el café y al mismo tiempo cómo ella rompió un patrón al transformar su experiencia en algo que le generaba gozo; y así yo pudiera tener una relación amorosa con el café, los granos de café y la planta. ¿Les hace sentido?.

Mi abuela me enseñó a plantar un pequeño cafetal en Chalatenango, a contemplar en conciencia las formas en que cambiaban los granos de café, a notar cuando la cáscara estaba roja, ella me pedía que cortara unos granos, los pelara y los chupara. Cuando las semillas sabían lo suficientemente dulce, ella asentía que era hora de la corta. Aprendí el proceso de cortar todas las semillas de la planta, con cuidado, y compartiré mucho más con mis estudiantes sobre estas enseñanzas en mi próxima ofrenda en línea en el Programa Reclamando el Hogar Ancestral. Así que volviendo al poder de los rituales, todas las mañanas, incluso si estoy inquieta, me permito conectarme con el proceso de preparación del café de una manera que me parece sagrada. Hay otros rituales importantes para mí que están espiritualmente arraigados en la sanación con la Madre Tierra. Comparto más sobre estos en los talleres en línea que facilito.

Para mí, las rutinas se pueden reclamar como un momento sagrado que sustento con disciplina. Mi hermana Ruth me recordó que, como parte de nuestra experiencia humana, las rutinas pueden ser anclas de apoyo, y a la vez hacer lo contrario, hay rutinas que pueden adormecernos o empujarnos a volver a viejos patrones de pensamiento, verbalizaciones y comportamientos. Entonces, les invito a  intentar reclamar y reconectar con su propio ritmo, y prevenir aceptar a que las proyecciones sistémicas, culturales e interpersonales externas “definan” lo que su ritmo sagrado “debería” ser. Para mí, reclamar rutinas ha sido desafiante, especialmente durante las transiciones y las pandemias globales. Sin embargo, dedicarles espacio se ha convertido en una herramienta necesaria de sanación descolonizadora con la disciplina de cuidar de mí misma.

Un ejemplo de una rutina diaria para mí es encender una vela cada mañana y ponerla en mi altar. Hago un chequeo con todos los aspectos del Ser y escribo una cosa que puedo hacer para atender esos anhelos. Si me quedo sin velas siempre está mi fuego interior, o Papa Sol para que la luz se encienda dentro y en conexión con el Universo. Esta rutina me ancla, especialmente en los días de invierno que son más cortos y oscuros. Me permite mantener la esperanza incluso si el mundo exterior se siente confuso y doloroso.

He reclamado prácticas como momentos sagrados, tecnologías que tomo para honrar la sabiduría ancestral y el conocimiento de mi propio cuerpo. Las prácticas para mí son contínuas, adaptativas y expansivas, pueden ser sustentadas, lo cuál significa que no las aplico solo cuando estoy pasando por momentos difíciles, sino que son cotidianas tanto como sea posible para poder atender a todos los aspectos y anhelos del Ser en mente, cuerpo y espíritu. Las prácticas me arraigan en la abundancia espiritual y la interconexión con todo lo que me rodea, me conecta con el corazón del Cielo y el corazón de la Madre Tierra. Las prácticas me permiten entrar en la cueva interior, la oscuridad interior con compasión y amor, sin juicios y sin apegos insanos. Las prácticas me acercan a integrar las dualidades de la vida.

Mi propia definición de rituales, rutinas y prácticas puede ser diferente o similar a la de los libros de texto. Aquí, estoy hablando de mi propia verdad y conocimientos heredados. Todos estos momentos son sagrados y todos tienen el propósito principal de apoyarme en mis viajes de sanación.

En las ofrendas y enseñanzas individuales y grupales, comparto formas más específicas de reclamar, sustenatar y crear rituales, rutinas y prácticas descolonizantes para que cada estudiante encuentre una sintonía con su propio ritmo en los viajes de sanación.

¿Cómo definen ustedes los rituales, las rutinas y prácticas? ¿Cuál es una rutina saludable que su cuerpo anhela estos días?

¿Existen pequeños o grandes rituales, rutinas y prácticas que le arraigan en el amor y en la conexión interna?


New Moon: Reclaiming Sacred Moments

Those of you who know me are aware that I am constantly sharing about the sacredness of my rites, rituals, routines, and practices on a daily basis. I  have written some of these ancestral powerful pieces of wisdom on a piece of paper and they hang on a wall so that I can remind myself, in a gentle compassionate way, that I have a wealth of knowledge of where I can draw from which honors my teachers and lineages. Some of the wisdom comes from tree Spirit, plant medicine, animals, etc.

I will not define rites in this essay. I will focus on my personal experiences of passing through my body the wisdom of rituals, routines, and practices I learned from my ancestors.

I have come to reclaim rituals as sacred moments. It can feel like a celebration [graduations, moontime] Or it can be a tiny tiny sacred moment, for example, my morning ritual of when I make my cup of coffee and how I try to bring awareness into it. By paying attention when I am putting the coffee on the coffee maker,  I can allow myself to remember where my relationship with coffee comes from. It comes from the teachings of my grandmother Virginia. Even though her relationship with coffee was introduced from exploitative systems […], she chose to introduce me to coffee in a powerful way. She taught me to know about her experience with coffee and how she allowed herself to transform that relationship so that I could have a loving relationship with coffee, coffee beans, and the plant. Does this resonate with you?

She taught me how to plant a small coffee garden in Chalatenango and how to contemplate in awareness of the ways the coffee beans changed. When the skin was red, she would ask me to pick a few beans, peel them, and suck them. When the taste was sweet enough, she would confirm that it was ready. I learn the process of picking all the beans from the plant, with care, and there is much more I will share with my students about these teachings in my upcoming online offering the Reclaiming Ancestral Home Program. So going back to the power of rituals.  Every morning, even if I am restless, I allow myself to connect with the coffee-making process in a way that feels sacred to me. There are other rituals important to me that are spiritually rooted in healing with Mother Earth. I share more about those in the online workshops that I facilitate.

For me, routines can be reclaimed as a sacred moment that I do with discipline. My sister Ruth reminded me that as part of our human experience, routines can be supportive anchors. Inversely, there are other routines that do the opposite that can numb us or push us to go back to old patterns of thinking, speaking, and being. So, I encourage myself and invite you to try as well to reclaim and reconnect with your own rhythm, groove and not let outside systemic, cultural, and interpersonal projections “define” what your sacred rhythm “should” be. For me, routines can be challenging to reclaim especially during transitions and a few ongoing global pandemics. However, putting in the work has become a necessary decolonizing healing tool with the discipline of showing up for Self.

An example of a daily routine for me is to light a candle every morning and set it on my altar. The purpose is to check-in with all aspects of Self, and write one thing I can do to tend to those longings I feel. If I run out of candles, there is always my inner fire or Papa Sun so that the candle is lighted within and with the Universe. This routine anchors me, especially on darker, shorter winter days. It allows me to stay hopeful even if the outside world feels confusing and painful.

I have reclaimed practice as a sacred moment, an ancestral technology that I use in honoring the ancestral wisdom and my own body knowledge. Practice for me is ongoing, adaptive, and expansive and it can be sustained, which means that I don’t come to it when I am having a hard time only but on a daily basis as much as possible so that I can tend to all aspects and longings of the self in mind, body, and spirit. Practices root me in the Spiritual abundance and interconnectedness with everything around me. It connects me with the heart of the Sky and the heart of Mother Earth. Practices allow me to enter the inner cave, the inner darkness with compassion and love, free of judgment, and attachment. Practices bring me closer to integrating life’s dualities.

My own definition of rituals, routines, and practices may be different or similar to that in the textbooks. Who knows? Hear me, I am speaking from my own truth and inherited knowledge. All of these moments are sacred and all have the main purpose to support me in my healing journey.

In the individual and small-group offerings and teachings, I share more specific ways to create and sustain decolonizing rituals, routines, and practices so that each student finds a tune with their own rhythm in their healing journey.

How do you define rituals, routines, and practices? What is one healthy routine your body is longing for these days? 

Are there any small or big rituals, routines, and practices that make you feel rooted in love and connected within?



Copyright © 2020-2021, Erika Murcia | Todos Los Derechos Reservados

Mesoamerican Teachings: ancestral survival liberatory Spirituality

I took a lot of time to write this piece. There are no words to describe the feelings of sorrow, pain, loss, and devastation from the deaths of so many Black and Brown people in the United States and around the globe. Pain that has been enacted due to anti-Blackness, imperialism, racism and white supremacists. May the Spirits of these Black and Brown unjust killed people rest in power. May their Spiritual energy come back from the womb of Mother Earth to give us strength towards healing and collective liberation.

I want to appreciate the Spirits of my ancestors who have visited me in my dreams the last few weeks to give me permission to speak up and share their wisdom with gratitude and humility so that we can continue to work towards politics of solidarity and healing.

In this altar, I burnt sage and palo santo as an offering to honor my lineages.

During these times of deep reflection and transformations around the world, I’ve been having powerful conversations with my collectives. We have been reflecting and dialoguing on these questions:

  • Why do we want to survive this current and future chaos? What do we need to survive? What does solidarity mean to us?
  • How can we show up to amplify Black peoples’ power, stories, and struggles right now?
  • Why is it important to be in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement?
  • What are the survival skills mama, mamita, and our communities have taught me? How can I offer these survival skills toward collective liberation? How can we learn anti-racist practices locally and globally?
  • Where do I truly want to be? On which side of the imposed borders [mental, racial, social, geographical, etc.] will my physical and spiritual presence be more effective/useful?

There is no right or wrong answers. We are all at different moments in our learning and healing journeys. We are committed to aligning our mind, body, and Spirit towards the liberation of Black, Indigenous, and people of color. Towards global decolonization.

Military dictatorships, civil wars, massacres, disappearances of community members, sexual violence, human rights atrocities, post-traumatic stress, etc. in Latin America and the Caribbean – all these problems are rooted in colonization, imperialism, and patriarchy. In other words, white supremacy and anti-Blackness.

I have been connecting with my sacred Spiritual praxis and values, and embodying them through poetry, adapting cantos that I grew up singing with the grassroots faith-based communities in the ’80s and ’90s in El Salvador.  Most of these cantos are compiled in the El Pueblo Canta book which was [and is] a Spiritual storytelling tool that popular movements created to reclaim practices of love, faith, and peace in defending their dignity of belonging. Singing connects me with my roots, my lineages, my relatives, our Abuelo Sun, our Abuela Moon, our relatives Trees, animals, all part of the Creation, as we all belong to Mother Earth.

See, growing up in critical Spirituality was the cornerstone of my family and community’s survival. Our Spiritual praxis was rooted in the liberation theology framework to support class liberation for the peasants’ popular movements of that time. These movements included Indigenous liberation, and nowadays queer communities are reclaiming a liberatory Spirituality in Central America as well.

In Indigenous cosmology a balance in dualities is crucial, therefore change is a spiral and is ongoing, Mother Earth is crying for deeper transformations now. Many of these structural struggles are prevalent nowadays because Mesoamerican economies continue to be dependent on capitalistic systems of free trade; these continue the culture of extracting resources that destroys Mother Earth – and us as a result of her destruction.

This framework supported the facilitation of very hard conversations. Mama was one of the millions of women facilitators in grassroots faith-based communities. She combined readings from the Biblia Latinoamericana, with cantos and people’s stories to guide the conversations. She was committed – she believed and acted towards justice and the liberation of all.

To break it down [or simplify it], the reflections focused on three main elements: a) awareness, b) reflecting, c) acting. The faith-based collectives met weekly and there was at least one per barrio. Mama believed in the power of collective ceremonies. After reading, the participants sang, and whoever was hosting would share a cup of coffee or whatever was available.

Consciousness-raising was about people being empowered in their dignity as human beings. People would argue the need to center our lives in resistance of the bombings led by state terror and U.S. military intervention. Answering hard questions: what are the causes of the civil war? Why are we, as peasants/Indigenous communities, historically marginalized? What resources do we need to move forward with popular education, healthcare, childcare, and rebuilding houses? Folks shared their hopes that the civil war would end and bring about peace. We named the causes of our problems – how structural sins like poverty exist, and also how peasants were demanding access to land, organizing to demand an end to human rights atrocities, and mobilizing to defend families and communities. Finally, the faith-based communities talked about the urgent need to transform that unjust reality. Mama would guide the dialogues in ways that allowed each person to commit to taking actions in being part of that change. Anger, rage, fear, laughter, togetherness, prayer were feelings and actions that constantly were expressed during these Sacred reflections.

Some of the great outcomes of these faith-based conversations included strengthening cooperatives, creating committees, and embracing youth voices as they volunteered as popular educators of each escuelita. There were also doulas and promotoras de salud who facilitated health visits directly in people’s homes. Mama was doing her part – she traveled with groups of women to San Salvador the capital, visited nonprofit organizations and churches to tell our villages’ stories, and requested donations to rebuild the houses, pipelines, clinics, and other talleres for the well-being of our people. These faith-based communities centered Spiritual Healing, life and collective well-being.

How can these Mesoamerican Teachings guide us as we move toward a global Spiritual liberation? How can a liberatory Spirituality framework lead us toward undoing anti-Blackness and support our collective liberation? How can Black, Indigenous, and people of color build and strengthen solidarity during an unprecedented time of living in the middle of a global pandemic and structural policing? What are the Spirits of your lineages and Mother Earth asking you [body, mind, Spirit] to do now? How are you all tending to your spiritual needs right now? Saying “I am not racist” is part of the problem within non-Black communities, so please let’s try do more than that.

I want to amplify the voices of Black and Indigenous communities locally and globally below:

  • Become a monthly donor with Birth Detroit, and join our #SAFETYCircle. Safety is the foundation of Birth Detroit. We know birth center care improves health outcomes and enhances the birth experience. All families should have access to a full range of safe birth options (birth center, home, and hospital). Leseliey Welch shares in this video more about her story and how she and her team began this amazing labor of love.
  • Support Canasta Solidarias, a fundraiser to support impoverished families impacted by storm-season and COVID-19 in El Salvador. This campaign is organized by a small group of locals who source street vendors and coordinate with community leaders to deliver solidarity “baskets.”
  • Buy a book at a local Black-owned bookstore in your town or city.

Many of you may be asking yourselves: how do I begin to amplify Black, Indigenous, and people of color voices when my body is in “flight, freeze, fight” mode? As a self-Healer, I practice and sustain daily rituals to build boundaries to protect me from all the toxic energy enacted from the systemic violence surrounding us. I am embracing life in abundance and staying away for any type of scarcity pattern. You can also begin there, in your inner-home. Recognize your deepest fears, shame, emotions, thought process, joys, visions, values, and find ways that work for you to release them, to unlearn the ingrained limited beliefs about yourselves. How do I release, connect, and heal? I dance it out, I smudge it out, I sing it out, I laugh it out, and I cry it out.

Finally, if you are an action-oriented person, here are a few resources in English and Spanish that folks have shared with me. These are for you to engage, educate, and disseminate [at your own pace] to continue decolonizing from the toxic roots of anti-Blackness, racism, and colorism in Latin America, the Caribbean, other Spanish speaking countries, and within the U.S.

In solidarity.


Let’s go everybody to the banquet

Let’s go everybody to the banquet,
to the table of creation,
Everyone, with their chair,
has a place and a mission.

Today I wake up early,
Community waits for me,
I am walking up the hill very happy,
I am in search of your friendship.

God [Mother Earth] invites all poor people
To this common table for faith,
Where there is no capitalist greedy
and nobody lacks “nourishment.”

God [Mother Earth] is inviting us all
to transform this world
into a table of solidarity;
Working and praying together,
sharing all the resources


Email: sanadora.nomadicspirit@gmail.com


Copyright © 2020-2021, Erika Murcia | All Rights Reserved