11 episodes

What role do spiritual and wellness rituals play in our fast-paced, secular world? Join journalist-turned-guinea pig Nelufar Hedayat as she tries a new ritual in every episode. From following the Muslim call to prayer to sacred readings of Harry Potter, Nelufar dives in with the help of a different spiritual guide each week to see if these practices can actually make us feel better. 
Ritually is a Project Brazen production. For more original storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we make shows that change how you think about the world around you. 
Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for Ritually and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

Ritually Brazen

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 19 Ratings

What role do spiritual and wellness rituals play in our fast-paced, secular world? Join journalist-turned-guinea pig Nelufar Hedayat as she tries a new ritual in every episode. From following the Muslim call to prayer to sacred readings of Harry Potter, Nelufar dives in with the help of a different spiritual guide each week to see if these practices can actually make us feel better. 
Ritually is a Project Brazen production. For more original storytelling, search for the Brazen channel on Apple Podcasts or visit brazen.fm, home to all our podcasts, documentaries and newsletters. At Brazen, we make shows that change how you think about the world around you. 
Don’t stay in the dark. Subscribe to Brazen+ on Apple Podcasts or at brazen.fm/plus and get exclusive bonus episodes for Ritually and all our shows, as well as ad-free listening and early access to new podcasts. For the latest from Brazen delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters at brazen.fm/newsletters.

    A Feminist Call to Prayer

    A Feminist Call to Prayer

    As a progressive Muslim woman, Nelufar struggles with patriarchal interpretations of Islam and the constraints of organized religion. So with the help of feminist spiritual practitioner Sarah Zaltash, she tries a new ritual to deepen her connection to Islam: following the daily call to prayer. It’s a practice that unites 1.8 billion Muslims around the world. But this version is different — radical, actually! — because it’s in a woman’s voice. Will waking up at dawn every day to hear Beloved Sarah’s call help Nelufar feel more connected to Islam?
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    • 38 min
    An Exorcism to End Nightmares

    An Exorcism to End Nightmares

    When Nelufar is haunted by violent, terrifying dreams, her parents step in with a series of Afghan pagan rituals to cleanse her energy and ward off evil. With their help, and some added perspective from mystic Jewish priestess and dreamwork scholar Rabbi Jill Hammer, will Nelufar finally be able to tackle her nighttime demons? 
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    • 36 min
    A Sacred Text: Reading Harry Potter

    A Sacred Text: Reading Harry Potter

    What makes a text sacred? And can our favorite secular books become as holy to us as the Quran or the Bible? With the help of Vanessa Zoltan, an atheist chaplain and co-creator of the podcast Harry Potter and the Sacred Text, Nelufar and Producer Sarah try out the ancient ritual of florilegia. It was used by medieval monks, and it’s a lot like keeping a quote journal. Will this practice help them create their own personalized sacred texts? 
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    • 35 min
    Tipping One Out: Using Libations for Connection

    Tipping One Out: Using Libations for Connection

    Nelufar is feeling burnt out and disconnected — especially from the earth, which fuels her sense of activism as a vegan and environmentalist. Will a ritual rooted in African traditions help her rekindle that connection with the natural world? All she needs is a cup of water, and a few tips from Black farmer and spiritual activist Leah Penniman. With her unwitting and let’s say… skeptical… boyfriend Matt along for the ride, Nelufar takes this ritual on a road trip to find out. 
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    • 29 min
    Using Tarot to Make Decisions

    Using Tarot to Make Decisions

    Nelufar is facing some big decisions in her life and turns to a tarot reading from UK-based Jen Cownie for guidance. Will this centuries-old practice help her figure out what to do? With Jen’s help, Nelufar discovers tarot is less about telling the future, and more of a choose- your-own-adventure book where she gets to pick an ending that empowers her. 
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    • 31 min
    An Abortion Journey

    An Abortion Journey

    Last year Nelufar had an abortion. The decision to terminate her pregnancy wasn’t difficult, but the process was. Though studies show abortion pills are safe and around 95-99% effective, in Nelufar’s case, they didn’t work. Shaken by her experiences seeking what should have been routine healthcare, Nelufar turns to full-spectrum doula Sara Bakr for rituals to help her heal from the trauma of medical gaslighting. At a farm and retreat center in the English countryside, Sara and the community who live and work there support Nelufar to process and move on from the experience.
    If you're pregnant and want to talk with someone about your options, you can contact 1-888-493-0092 in the US and Canada, or the British Pregnancy Advisory Service at 03457 30 40 30. For more resources and a confidential talkline in the UK, check out abortiontalk.com/talk.


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    • 40 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
19 Ratings

19 Ratings

mspassell ,

4677546 stars!!!

A fascinating adventure into what people believe and the way they live.

Hoshitoo ,

Getting personal

Nelufar is taking us on a journey of unexpected rituals and it’s beautiful, vulnerable, personal. Tak!

Jmama14 ,

So beautiful and engaging

I hope this show becomes ongoing. I need this in my weekly routine

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