• Michelle Simkins

Plant Spirit Ally Challenge Day 30: The End

Here we are at the end of the 30 Day Plant Spirit Ally Challenge, and what a time it’s been! Of course, I say “end” because it is, officially, the end of the 30 Days, but for many of us the challenge isn’t really over because we haven’t yet finished all the activities: and I think that’s just fine. The idea of the challenge was to immerse ourselves in working with a plant spirit regularly, and even those of us who didn’t manage all the activities in 30 days have, I feel, fulfilled that purpose.

When I was organizing the challenge, I couldn’t have predicted how deeply reading all of your posts on social media would touch my heart and spirit. I have learned so much from every participant, not just about plants, but about people: how open-hearted and spirit-led we are all capable of being when we take the time, how readily we can learn directly from nature. The whole experience has been truly humbling and gratifying.

I had originaly planned to write an article with tips for how to format your "Materia Magicka", with links to Materia Medica pages you could use as templates and adapt … but none of that feels right now. Even the term Materia Magicka smacks of lists and charts. And the experience has been too personal, too nuanced, to record in such a surface-level manner. Even the “correspondences” activity yesterday felt too reductionist for this experience. Because the challenge has been about so much more than making magic, or creating lists of the qualities of our plant ally, hasn’t it? It’s been about real connection. I feel like each of us could take all our notes and pictures from the daily activities and create entire volumes on what we’ve learned from our allies.

So instead of tips and templates, I’ll just talk about what I would like to do. I’ve taken notes in a simple spiral notebook, as well as posting briefly on social media about my experience: how I chose one plant from among all the ones who were speaking to me, what I saw and felt when I meditated with lemon balm, etc. With these notes, I think I’ll create a document on my computer, add pictures and embellishments and format it in a way that pleases me. And then I might print it all out and keep a physical copy in a binder, so I have something physical to hold and remind me of my work with lemon balm. But of course I need to finish the challenge first!

I’ll be keeping track of everyone who participated on social media over the next several weeks to see what people create to commemorate the challenge - if they make anything physical at all. It’s entirely possible there’s just too much in our hearts and minds to put together in one place, and instead what we’ll each be carrying forward is a new bond with a plant spirit, and with our fellow participants who shared so much of themselves over the past 30 days. Thank you all so much for joining in this challenge, for being vulnerable and authentic and beautiful. The experience has shifted everything for me, and for my plans going forward with Hagstone Publishing, in wonderful ways. Maybe we’ll do it again next year, with adaptations for what we learned this month.

#PlantSpiritChallenge #30DayPlantSpiritAllyChallenge #naturespirituality

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