can cosmic healing wash away the horrors of 2017?
It was worth a try. From soul songs to womb blessings, we attempted to get a little transcendence.
It goes without saying that this year has not been a barrel of laughs, and it's not looking like improving anytime soon. Maybe some zen can help. And where better to get some of that than on the island of Ibiza, where it's still warm in Autumn, and where something called Cosmic Pineapple, which has been happening since 2014 in various incarnations, was taking place. It promised a way to connect better with the self, with others and with the world around us on a deeper level, which all sounded ideal. It was being held at Pikes, a hotel where much decadent partying took place during the 70s and 80s, where the likes of Grace Jones and Freddie Mercury spent time letting loose poolside. Now it's where a 12-hour cosmic healing journey took place, as all kinds of practitioners offering different routes to transcendence gathered to give a taste of their services, and i-D was there to try them out.
On a balmy Ibiza afternoon, Cosmic Pineapple kicked off with an opening ceremony to "call the directions" -- north, south etc., to get some of their energy and whatnot. We all sat in an area near some tennis courts, designated the Cosmic Activation area. An Ibango drumming tribe played some rhythmic tunes, while a woman named Carly SuSu -- who also sells eco glitter -- led the direction calling. The crowd was made up of sinewy tanned people wearing tunics. We learned that with each "direction calling" a foamy microphone box was to be thrown from person to person, with each speaking a word into that comes to mind, in connection with the particular direction. We were calling east first -- "sun' "love", "fire", "connection" were shouted into the microphone in quick succession. I was panicking a little because "Pizza East" was the first thing that came to mind, and I was aware I'd not settled into the healing experience just yet, but that's ok because 12 hours of cosmic experiences were ahead.
"I'm panicking a little because "Pizza East" is the first thing that comes to my mind, and I'm aware I've not settled into this healing experience just yet, but that's ok because 12 hours of cosmic experiences are ahead."
Piña coladas and restoring balance
To loosen up my zen potential I got a piña colada and returned to the Cosmic Activation area to kick off with some group meditation. It was very relaxing, and I was able to continue sipping my piña colada without fear of seeming indecorous, because everyone's eyes were closed. Afterwards, I was geared up for the rest of my healing journey, so headed over to speak with a man called Bruno, who was offering an experience with something called the Chromassonic System that promised "to harmonise energetically the human body" according to the pamphlet he gave me. It also said that "it increases physical and physiological performances" and "restores balance and give back personality", all things I was desperately in need of. Needless to say I couldn't wait to get going. I followed Bruno into a room and was instructed to lie down on a bench under a rectangular machine that hovered above the bench, shining a line of different coloured light bulbs onto me. A high-pitched droning noise was coming from somewhere, and Bruno placed crystals all over me and said I was welcome to doze off. I relaxed and let the combo of lights and drone sound do their thing. Unfortunately, however, Bruno had to clear out of that room because another healing experience was due to start, so I just got a taster session, but I'm hopeful it somewhat improved my personality.
The soul song
Next I was off to get my "soul song", which sounded like a song I definitely wanted to hear. I was completely soul song ignorant until this point, but basically, for the similarly uninitiated, it involves the channeling of music to uncover things about yourself and help guide you in your life direction. Instead of a tarot card reading, you get your own catchy tune. A woman named Lex Empress is the singer of soul songs -- sinewy, yes; tanned yes; willowy and bohemian-attired, certainly. She was lounging on a wooden bed in an outdoor area, covered in fur pelts and blankets, microphone in hand. To her right was her soul song partner Gillean, all golden tousled curls and colourful woven vest, ready at his keyboard. I arrived to catch the end of another girl receiving her soul song. I was up next, and yes it was slightly awkward sitting there on my own directly in front of the bed, being sung to -- but only for a moment. Because really, what's not to like about getting your very own song. But what did the words mean? The girl before me had a kind of pep talk soul song about being a strong, independent woman. Mine seemed to be saying how unhappy I am with the state of the world (true), how I need to get on a train or plane and go somewhere (back to London, or another hol?) and how I need to "get out of the system" (go freelance??). It was intriguing to say the least, and left me with a lot to think about.
Into the womb
By now I was really getting into the swing of my healing cosmic journey, I was relaxed, I was feeling quite zen and was four piña coladas down. So, I was perfectly ready to embrace the Womb Blessing Ceremony. I headed to the dark candlelit and crystal-filled room where it was already getting started. A circle of women lay sprawled across kilim cushions. I found a small space and sat down among them. The women on either side of me had many large and comfortable looking cushions, and I had one small lumpy cushion. Normally this would have filled me with intense annoyance to experience such an injustice, and I would have some choice words for those ladies, which I'd say in my head. But, my new found sense of calm meant that I didn't care in the slightest -- not at all, I didn't even dwell on it for a moment, just rose right above it. I settled in for some good old fashion shamanic drumming, while a high priestess led us all on a journey through our labia, into our vaginas, left turn after the cervix and into our wombs. Once inside our own wombs we were free to hang out, swim around, check on our fallopian tubes and just spend time getting to know our insides. It was super relaxing and I must say quite cosy. But it did drag on a little bit and my mind wandered and all that interior chat inspired me to make plans for rearranging my flat.
I absolutely felt connected to the universe on a much deeper level at this point, I had barely looked at my phone for hours, and my healing journey wasn't even done. I joined a group in another room for some sound healing, which involved meditating while listening to the chill noises produced by what I was told are specially made crystal singing bowls. These were being gently banged and rubbed with stick things, as the sound healers described the effects on the mind created by the particular bowl composition. I found out that these crystal singing bowls could be mine for between $500 - $1500 depending on the type of crystal involved. Cosmic healing may not be cheap, but an elevated mental state has its price.
A bit of time to reflect and disconnect from the slog of daily life definitely has its benefits, even if that's just a bit of mental space and no Instagram for a few hours. And Cosmic Pineapple has good intentions, as well as tangible ones — the event raised €6000 for Help Refugees, Love Support Unite and the homeless project in Ibiza. I wouldn't hesitate to take this cosmic journey again.