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Exploring the Complexity
of Ceremony 


"Do the best you can until you know better.
Then when you know better, do better.
Maya Angelou

Ceremony is the word we use for the set of practices that have healed us, supported us, and connected us to ourselves and our community. Ceremony can be passed down, borrowed, reimagined, and filtered through an individual perspective. Recently, we have been sitting with the question of how we talk about and practice ceremony as white settlers. What are the different relationships with ceremony that exist that we need to explore and navigate to ensure we do no harm?

When we first started Seeking Ceremony, one of our commitments was to not appropriate rituals or ceremonies that did not belong to us. We've been doing lots of work to better understand our own history and connection with ceremony, as well as the experiences of others. What we've come to realize is that we will never, and can never, know it all. Experiences are like stories, and as much as we pride ourselves on being storytellers, one person's lived experience is not something that can ever truly be experienced by another. We rely on tools that support people in their own journeys, and hopefully connect us to one another along the way. 

We strive in our work to look through the lens of ceremony as being a universal experience, while committing to being non-appropriative of traditions that aren't ours or histories we don't belong to. However, the truth is much more complex than that. For many communities, ceremony was stripped away or criminalized by people who look like us. We need to better understand how we can practice ceremony in our own lives while still honouring the roots, the histories, and the complexities that exists. 

We will work to be more exacting and intentional in our language - more attune to how our white privilege shapes how we connect to, and speak about, ceremony. We will do this imperfectly, and we will learn, and we will do better. 

With love, 
Megan & Kate

The Complexities of Canada Day

Here in Canada, we find ourselves in a complicated and powerful era. Change is afoot and we are doing our best each day to rise to the challenge of looking at ourselves and the world around us with a more critical eye.

Today is Canada Day. Rather than celebrate the way you used to, we invite you to create a new ceremony or ritual that honours this important time in our lives. 

1. Acknowledge the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Indigenous people who once inhabited the land you now live on. Reflect on the impacts of colonialism and consider how you can engage in reconciliation in a more meaningful way. 

2. Listen to Canadian music that represents a different Canada than you might have been exposed to. Thank you Felicia Chang for introducing us to this CBC Reclaimed playlist on Spotify

3. Connect with the land. Take off your shoes and socks and put your feet in the earth. Thank the land for holding you, and commit to doing one thing for the ground beneath you moving forward. 

4. Research or consider differing perspectives on what it means to be Canadian, accounting for lived experiences that are different from your own. Practice listening, absorbing, and sitting with a perspective that might be uncomfortable without defending or explaining your point of view.  

5. When you celebrate, celebrate what's possible. Light your sparklers, acknowledge the past, and make a wish for the future of our country.  

"I’m celebrating the fact that we have a voice and that we’re using that voice and we’re creating that change. Let’s use this day to change the world."

Metis actor and singer Tom Jackson


Modern Rituals for Life & Death

Ceremonial is a tech platform / app that empowers care providers with the ability to co-create ceremonies and rituals with their patients and clients. With a focus on beginning of life and end of life experiences, we're focusing on the seemingly invisible moments connected to birth and death, including IVF, miscarriage, postpartum, diagnosis, treatments, living funerals, vigils, and death anniversaries. 
Attention celebrants and care providers, including birth doulas and death doulas! Sign up for early access and help us shape our offering so that it meets your needs.

Launching August 2020

Want more ceremony inspiration?
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