Last year I was in Thailand studying dance, ritual and Tantra at the Mystical Dance School of my teacher and friend, Monika Nataraj. One of the first rituals of the curriculum was Self-Marriage.
As a group we were guided in a ceremony.
We honored the goddess within.
We honored the god within.
And then we were married to ourselves!
It was truly a potent experience, with Monika officiating the ceremony like a holy mother figure guiding us to true self-love and completeness, with our feminine and masculine sides in divine union with each other. Doesn’t that sound great?! What a relief to know we can have this inner unity.
The inner union and intrinsic wholeness symbolized by a Self-Marriage is a truth I’ve desperately needed to come back to in my journey of intense grief accompanying my divorce.
I was struck with a realization—I wanted to rewrite my wedding vows from my marriage, devoting them to MYSELF!
How would I adapt them, I wondered? Only one way to find out.
I took my pen to them and here’s the result:
Jena’s Self-Marriage Vows
1. I vow to love myself unconditionally, with all my heart and soul, forever. I belong to the Mother Earth. 💓💓💓
2. I vow to honor and protect my freedom as a sovereign, whole and complete, self-reliant being. 🌊🌊🌊
3. I vow to be aware of my projections, to own my shadow, and to remind myself of my higher Self whenever I forget who I am. I vow to embrace all of my shadow and all of my light, with compassion. 👸👸👸
4. I vow to constantly grow and evolve, and to be transparent with my desires and intentions. I vow to support my growth and evolution, in whichever direction I choose to go. 🧭🧭🧭
5. I vow to foster my vision and enthusiastically engage in a co-creative dance with existence, in service of Pachamama, Mother Earth, and her future generations, and the health and wealth of my family and Tribe. 🌲🌲🌲
6. I vow to honor the needs and desires of my holy sensual animal body temple, for nourishment, rest, rejuvenation, and sacred pleasure. I vow to embrace the full scope of my sensuality and sexuality in the spirit of Erotic Innocence. 🌬️ 🌬️ 🌬️
7. I vow to be a loving and devoted parent to my inner child. 🌹🌹🌹
8. I vow my devotion to the unity of the divine feminine and divine masculine within. ♾️♾️♾️
9. I vow constantly see life as sacred, and to celebrate the sacred every day, in prayer, song, laughter, music and dance. 💃💃💃
10. I vow to honor myself as a medicine woman on the path of the medicine wheel, as an embodied spirit, here to heal the world, and build peace and harmony. 🌎🌎🌎
11. I vow to have transparency with my life journey with my community and chosen family, who are my safe haven, and the fellow weavers of the new reality that we are co-creating together. 👭👬👭
Voila, the self-marriage vows.
Oh yes, I do!
Now I may kiss the bride! (Imagine me smooching myself. Haha.)
These vows are no joke commitments!
I take them on, and I invite your witnessing as I give them my best shot.
My ex and I were really proud of the vows that we crafted together, from which mine have been adapted. We vowed to love each other forever, not to marry forever, knowing that things change in time. That was wise!
However, the inner marriage really is until your last breath.
My inner god and goddess will be consorts until the end. My body and my mind will be dancing together until the last track.
They say the best way to get over someone is to get under someone else. Right now, that “someone else” needs to be myself. I’m talking radical Self-love, BABY! That includes self-compassion, self-care, self-pleasure and more.
It’s my birthday coming up and that seems like a good time to speak my vows out loud in a personal ceremony. I’ll let you know how it goes!