Jasmine Virdi

Jasmine Virdi
Cosmic Sister Emerging Voices Award
with MAPS Canada

Congratulations to Cyprus-based Cosmic Sister Emerging Voices Award winner Jasmine Virdi (@jazz.virdi)!

Jasmine is a writer, editor, and proofreader who raises awareness about the benefits and risks of sacred plant medicines and encourages people to make informed choices about their therapeutic potential and transformational capacities. By sharing the socio-historical context in which these substances emerged, Jasmine hopes to help people integrate them into their lives in a safe and meaningful way while protecting indigenous ethnobotanical practices and their environments.

“Plant medicine has made me more aware of the crises of our planet,” she says. “I feel a heightened responsibility to take action in a way that serves the Earth, the collective, and the higher calling of my soul.”

Jasmine’s father is Indian, and her mother is Cypriot and Italian. Born to an English-speaking family and raised in southern Cyprus, Jasmine felt as though she never cleanly fit into any culture. She found belonging in conversations with nature in her Mediterranean island home, birthplace of love goddess Aphrodite. “When your heritage is such a mix, what does ‘native’ even really mean?” she says. “I see this as a struggle many contend within a globalized culture.”

Since 2018, Jasmine has been a writer, editor, and social media coordinator for the fiercely independent Synergetic Press (@synergeticpress), where her passions for ecology, ethnobotany, and psychoactive substances converge. She has published articles on multiple online platforms, including Psychedelics Today (@psychedelicstoday), Lucid News (@lucidnews), Entheonation (@entheonationrising), and OPEN Foundation(@open_icpr). She will speak at Psyched2020, 7th June at 10:30 AM EST (psyched2020.com).

Jasmine earned her M.A. in English Language and Linguistics at the University of Glasgow and later attended the Interdisciplinary Perspectives of Ayahuasca Winter School, led by Professor Luís Tófoli, at the University of Campinas, Brazil, which included an ayahuasca ceremony.

“The primary message that emerged from the ayahuasca ceremony was, if higher meaning is not worth devoting your life to, then I don’t know what is,” she says. “The mindful, integral and culturally aware use of psychedelic plant medicines can help us build a better world, connecting us with what truly matters.”

Jasmine’s work with plant medicines, particularly Hikuri (peyote), has helped her carve out a path of greater meaning and purpose; taught her about the importance of ceremony, intentionality, and nature; and showed her that prayer is “essential to intentionally give thanks and acknowledge the abundance we already have.”

“In a globalized, disembodied world we all have to set about healing our relationship to the land and, moreover, to our ancestors,” she says. “My experience with Hikuri ceremonies and with temazcals (sweatlodges) showed a beautiful commonality—the purpose of enacting such rituals was not only for individual healing, but for collective healing.”

June 2020