We’re highlighting a bunch of our favorite artists, healers, and other luminaries who will be teaching workshops at the BUST School for Creative Living at the BUST Holiday Craftacular on December 8 and 9 at Brooklyn Expo Center in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, New York. One of the teachers is Jordan Catherine Pagán, a Brooklyn-based healer, medicine maker, and expert in all things Reiki, herbal medicine, and Tarot. We caught up with Jordan to chat about her career, the roles that nature and Tarot can play in the healing process, and the classes she’ll be teaching at the Craftacular. We hope to see you all there!
Tell us a little bit about your work.
I am the healer and medicine maker of Ostara Apothecary, based in Brooklyn, NY. I create plant and stone medicine to heal on multidimensional levels, drawing upon my Yaqui heritage and connection with the natural world. I have a range of handcrafted Tarot- and goddess-inspired herbal elixirs, seasonal remedies, and flower essences. I am a Reiki Master, 13th Octave LaHoChi Master, and I also practice Pranayama Breathwork and Tarot as tools for soul transformation. A follower of the flowers, I find a way to incorporate them into every one of my sessions, using fresh flowers and my flower essences. I lead monthly Breathwork healing circles and herbal medicine classes around NYC and online, and maintain a private practice.
What inspired you to start your career in healing?
My own healing journey of 10+ years! I was suffering from PTSD and chronic pain and the traditional, conventional ways of healing (talk therapy, physical therapy, medication, etc.) weren't working. Out of desperation, I turned to more "out there" ways of healing—breathwork, reiki, Tarot, flower essences and herbalism—and to my great surprise, it started working. But I never thought I would become a healer myself, until friends started asking for readings and what reiki was like. But I wasn't convinced until one of my teachers suggested I get attuned to reiki. Once I did, everything changed. I felt like I had a superpower shooting out from my hands. Still, I had to be nudged pretty hard by the Universe to put myself out there and do this for real. I have a Master's in Art History, and never in a million years thought I would be working with plants, flowers, angels, ancestors, and Tarot for a living. But it's been the best thing ever. It hasn't been easy at times, especially in the beginning, but I've grown and expanded in ways I never thought possible. And I have found that a lot of what I studied in school prepared me for what I do now, especially with the Tarot. And finding ways for all my passions and modalities to complement and work together is a thrill, and the greatest surprise. And I'm so grateful that it resonates with people.
What is your creative process like?
I get inspired by everything—my clients, the people I meet, the plants that present themselves to me, no matter how ordinary. The Universe is always speaking to us and we just have to listen and be aware. I jot down notes in my phone and day planner on the go—I always think I'll remember but I'm so busy it'll get pushed to the back of my mind otherwise. And I make the most of my time doing ordinary things. For example, like most people in the city, I have commutes that range from 30-90 minutes, and I use that time to meditate. It doesn't matter if the train car is packed and I have people pressing up against me. I put in my headphones and get into higher vibrations using visualizations and sometimes mantras. It takes some practice, but it is more than possible! When I'm in that mindful state, I can receive inspirations for new medicines, offerings, workshops, and writing. You can also walk and meditate, which I sometimes do as well. I make sure to get out in nature as much as possible.
What advice do you have for people who are pursuing a career in healing?
Take the time to really master your healing modality (at least a year) and learn how you work with it and experience it on a personal level. Any healing modality takes time to really understand and integrate into one’s life and personal practice. One must build a personal relationship with the work. People seek healing for very real, heavy issues, and it’s a great responsibility to help them through it. Make sure you have the foundation and knowledge base to truly serve them. That said, when it's time to take the leap into doing this full-time, you may never feel truly ready—at a certain point, you'll just have to go for it.
Tell us about what you’ll be doing at Craftacular.
I will be offering two Tarot classes: Tarot 101 and Unlocking the Secrets of the Tarot: Decoding the Signs and Symbols (a deep dive into the Tarot for moderate and advanced readers). I will also have a booth at the event, offering my handcrafted small-batch plant elixirs, flower essences, and seasonal remedies.
What else should our readers know about you and your business?
My work, whether that's a plant elixir or healing session, is about expansion and clarity. It's about bringing the spiritual into the physical, because that's where we live. My medicines and healing modalities are practical and easy to incorporate into real, daily life. Spirit is in everything we do, no matter how routine or mundane. There is no separation, and our job as humans is to remember that we are powerful and come from love. This is the work I am committed to doing, and while there is no easy fix, shortcut or magic cure, it is possible.
For more information about Jordan and Ostara Apothecary, you can visit her website at ostaraapothecary.com.
Join us at the BUST Craftacular and the School For Creative Living 11a.m.-7p.m. on Saturday, December 8 and Sunday, December 9 at Brooklyn Expo center in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Admission is free; learn more and purchase class tickets here.
Photos courtesy of Jordan Catherine Pagán
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Lydia Wang is a writer, a Pisces, and one of BUST's digital editors. Find her on Twitter or say hi: firstname.lastname@example.org.