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Owning And Healing Our Ugly

Updated: 18 hours ago

I wanted to change the title of this post because I was positive that no one would read it with its current header. Those of you who found this post, and then had the nerve to actually click on the link to read it, are to be congratulated for your courage and willingness to engage in a healing process that cultivates deep fulfillment - the type of fulfillment that we want, but are unwilling to do the work in order to achieve. THANK YOU so much for proving to me that you exist. Having ugly is not the problem because everyone has ugly. It is our unwillingness to own and heal our ugly that keeps us, as well as our families, communities and society, from thriving.

I promote and practice what I call "Mental Massage" during the month of July to actively engage in Mental Health Awareness Month for Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant People. However, Mental Massage is always different for me on July 4th because I cannot ignore our country's history and legacy.

Juneteenth march for freedom

Having celebrated Juneteenth National Independence Day on June 19th, during the previous month, I realized that I needed to create a ritual to help me get through the 4th of July. My ritual consists of restorative meditations and practices to help me to heal myself and my ancestral line.

My ritual generally begins with the lighting of red candles (representing perseverance and the healing of the root chakra) which I place on my ancestral altar, and the burning of sage for cleansing. My ancestral altar has evolved over the years and includes healing rituals that I learned from Indigenous People and healing practices from around the world. An ancestral altar is personal and is best created based on what resonates with a particular person/culture, but since many people ask me about how to get started, I will include a few suggestions for creating your own ancestral altar. You may want to include:


☥ Pictures of transitioned and benevolent family members with whom you had a

close connection or who inspired you in some way

☥ Pictures or statues of representations of your Spiritual Guides

White pillar candles

☥ A picture of an Indigenous Person with whom you had a close

connection to keep their memory alive and to pay homage to the original

inhabitants of the land we now call America (you can include an owl, raven or

other bird feather preferably and respectfully purchased on Indigenous ☥ Pueblo

land if you do not know any Indigenous People). You can also find these feathers

on hiking trails, etc.

White rose flower

☥ White candles, white flowers and a vessel of clean water that is changed bi-


☥ Cleansing incense to burn such as white sage, palo santo and frankincense tears

☥ Healing crystals, at least one sound bowl and small chimes such as Tibetan


☥ A simple ritual in which you honor your ancestors and call out their names

Keep in mind that simply sitting in silence and sending love to our ancestors, whether we know them or not, is a powerful, grounding and healing practice. Many of us may not know who our ancestors are, but they know who we are. We can let silence be the bridge that connects us to our unknown ancestors.

I begin my Qigong morning routine and then have a green smoothie and healthy breakfast. I read and listen to Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer's testimony which is both powerful and painful. I send her love and gratitude. Next, I read the Declaration of Independence which attempted to justify demanding freedom from the British while at the same time enslaving my ancestors and violently referring to our Beloved Indigenous Brothers and Sisters as "merciless Indian Savages."

Pensive Black man in the city looking for truth

I accept the truth about the foundation upon which our country was founded which is the pathway for healing. I then read and listen to Frederick Douglass' "What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?" This part of the ritual was inspired by a presentation I experienced during my Vanguard Social Determinants of Health Fellowship with BMe Community (an organization focused on narrative change). It helps me to connect in with our history and culture and remember the sacrifices my ancestors made so that I could sit in comfort and write this post. I send love and gratitude to Frederick Douglass and to all of our freedom promoting heroes and sheroes.

A raven flying

I highly recommend sharing these suggestions (which ends with the Sky Meditation) with everyone, particularly our White Allies who are asking what they can do to cultivate healing and change. This ritual helps to destroy willful ignorance which must end before change can begin. We cannot skip steps in the healing process. We also cannot change systems and processes until we change ourselves, because systems and processes are created by us. The people in power or people that we vote for are all still people who need to look at and transmute the ugly in order to make better decisions. Will we ... ALL of us actively engage in the ongoing process of owning and healing our ugly?

Cleaning crew

At this point in the ritual, my higher self kicks in to help me through the pain of what I've read and heard and reminds me that no problem can be solved at the level that it was created. I must elevate my consciousness and lift myself to the level of the answer. So after a good cry, doing some more Qigong and spending time sending love and gratitude to those who made sacrifices for me (while asking them for guidance), I step outside, hop into my lounge chair (or lie down on the grass or hop in a hammock), and practice the Sky Meditation for at least 30 minutes.

It is important that we infuse healing rituals into the processing of trauma, emotional pain and anguish to help us heal and transform the pain that we feel.

Sun shining through the clouds

I go through the sky meditation technique quickly in the video, but please slow down between transitions from clouds to sky - at least one minute per focus area.

In addition to teaching you to transcend thoughts so that you can make the best decisions for yourself, the Sky Meditation also improves mental focus and acuity. It calms and centers you and opens the door to gain wisdom from and heal your ancestral line. I hope you'll memorize the technique and practice the Sky Meditation often. Healing our world begins with healing ourselves.

Black rocks balanced in water

Acknowledge ☥ Process ☥ HealBe Well Be Radiant

Self-Care is like a treasure map that leads us to the truest part of ourselves.

Epilogue ☥ Your Treasure Map For Self-Care

Thank you for taking the time to actively engage in your own self-care. If you have ever spent time at a hammam ☥ steam room ☥ sauna, you will notice that it is a comfortable space because you are wearing minimal or no clothing and you can just be yourself. However, after a short time, it starts to get hot, and you begin to sweat. This is a good thing because you are helping your body to eliminate toxins. If you want to detoxify your body correctly you will:

☥ Breathe slowly and deeply to help your body adjust to the intensity of the heat.

☥ Sip water every 15 minutes to stay hydrated.

☥ Have a piece of fruit ☥ pumpkin seeds ☥ favorite healthy snack available.

☥ Take a shower after excessive sweating.

☥ Go into a cold room/take a cold plunge/cold water rinse off to cool down before doing

another sweat and to stimulate your lymphatic system.

☥ Go for a walk in nature, spend time in meditation ☥ contemplation, have a healthy meal

and give your body some time to complete the healing process (which could include

sending you messages through your intuition about your next steps).

As you journey through ☥ interact with the blogs ☥ other content on, you might have an insight that causes you to suddenly feel mentally ☥ emotionallyhot” -- which could show up as:

☥ “Ah-ha” moments

☥ A hop-in-the-bed-and-cry-yourself-to-sleep or fetal position crying time of intensive


☥ Intense feelings of anger/regret about something in your past

☥ Disorientation caused by the realization of truth

Strong reactions such as heightened senses, vomiting; an urge to release emotions

such as yelling/screaming, going outside for fresh air/to take a walk, punching a

boxing bag/pillow; a feeling of tightness in the chest, etc.

When we face ☥ transcend our challenges, they no longer have power over us.

If you find yourself having a strong reaction, I encourage you to flow with it while helping your body to release mental ☥ emotional toxins by using the same five self-care strategies listed above for releasing physical toxins. Your body talks to you all the time, but unconscious adherence to social conditioning can mute its messages.

Strong reactions are your body’s way of letting you know that there is a deeper issue requiring your attention.

Keep revisiting the content ☥ utilizing the five self-care strategies until you no longer experience the strong reaction, release fears and have identified ☥ transformed ☥ removed the root cause of the issue. You will find additional strategies throughout this website that you can add to your mental health self-care toolkit.

Self-Care Sustainability Suggestions

A Cross-Cultural Healing Haven – read this blog to understand the purpose of and the meaning behind its organization ☥ symbols.

☥ Revisit the content periodically and make a note of if/how your perceptions have

evolved. Check out our blog page for an experiential healing journey.

☥ Check out the other pages on

Home - watch the videos. Click on the images in the Spiritual Guidance

section. Each image has a story that might assist your self-care journey. Learn

about other spiritual practices.

About - Learn about my background ☥ reasons for co-creating

with Spirit. Explore healing through the image carousel and videos.

Shop Kamitology - Purchase and download vital tools for your personal growth

☥ development.

Reclaiming Our Humanity - Help us develop and disseminate video courses.

Rise TV - Practice breathing and movement exercises and deepen your

understanding of healing through the experiences of community members.

Check back periodically to discover new/re-experience the content.

Journey - This is your invitation to own the journey to radiance. Experience the

journey and download healing resources to share with your friends, family and


When you share healing, healing comes back to and flows through you.

About Sharing ...

During my first presentation to an all-Black audience, I introduced 20-year-old research on the hazards of sitting. I presented the research because I noticed that people sat for way too long at convenings and realized that the information was not disseminated to Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant communities. I was determined to intentionally include this research, often surprising participants by getting people up to stretch. After more than 13 years of intentional work, Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant People are just barely beginning to normalize conscious movement. We still have a long way to go, and it is important that we share what we know as much as we can to prevent the disenfranchisement of wellness information to Black ☥ Indigenous ☥ Immigrant communities.


Copy/Paste Version Of A Full Citation Example: 

Hubbard, P. S. (2020, September 27). Owning And Healing Our Ugly. PHYLLISHUBBARD.COM. <>

Please do not keep to yourself. We will not co-create a better world until we heal our current, past/childhood traumas. We will not love others until we learn to love ourselves.




About Dr. Phyllis SHU Hubbard's work as a Health Warrior


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