We had the good fortune of connecting with Angelica Aghora Shivashakti and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Angelica, how do you think about risk?
Taking risks in my life has shown up in various ways. I believe a lot of it started when I decided to try out for dance and cheer. Getting in front of judges and having 2 minutes to prove yourself can be super scary and nerve wrecking. Those moments of self doubt can creep in easily and stop you from doing something you love, thankfully I always believed in myself enough to go for what I wanted. I’ve invested in different business in direct sales/network marketing when I hardly knew what I was doing, planned a homebirth with my one and only child, swam in the open ocean with dolphins, have picked up strangers to drive them where they need, have done public speaking or acting, and traveled alone to India so I could meet my guru and start a new lifestyle that was completely foreign to me. Here are some of the many risks I have made in my life that I lived through and had such an impact on who I am today. Although I have had my fears of failure, fear of not being good enough or straight up getting eaten by sharks, I faced these different opportunities with courage and manifested them because I wanted a life of adventure and learning! If I let the prison of my mind dictate everything I do and have no spontaneity I fear I may not be actually living my life or expressing my potential. So instead of living in fear I feel we should be afraid of powerlessness and fear itself! There are things that I wouldn’t know about myself if I didn’t just jump and try it.
Today, I have decided to become a successful artist licensing my designs to work with brands and have goals to be a textile artist and building that brand as well as my brand of making dreadlocks. Having dreadlocks in our society can be taken as being dirty, unmotivated, or outcast of an impression. I find many people just don’t understand why and they make judgements because they themselves just don’t know how to find their own uniqueness in our society. In a society that teaches you what is “normal” and what is not but what is normal anyway? Choosing dreadlocks helped me to get rid of the feeling of caring of being judged by others and it helped me to let go of my ego and identity that was mostly given to me. Since I am not what people think of me and more than just my body, dreadlocks are not only a statement of empowerment but wearing them is also directly involved in awakening your consciousness! Dreadlocks are also called, Shiva jatas. They impact your thinking, encourage happy, blissful, relationships, balances body temperature, and promotes longer stronger hair and scalp health. One cool thing is the hair’s connection to the nervous system and that has been studied by neuroscience at John Hopkins University. Basically the ends of each hair follicle have cells that collect information and send messages to the brain! How cool is that? In the Vedic tradition and yogic sciences I have learned that your whole biology thinks. From the ends of your hair to the tips of your finger nails. The longer the hair, the better. With these understandings, the choice to wear and make jatas has been so healing and empowering. I am grateful to be able to share that creative space with my clients and celebrate them even if wearing them is just for play or simply because they like them.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I like to use my hands and create wherever I can to make things and people beautiful. Can be as simple as laying food down on a plate, planting succulent arrangements, making beaded gemstone hangy charms for the garden, making and decorating dreadlocks/jewelry, and drawing or painting. I am super excited to learn about licensing my artwork because I have always imagined myself working with other artists and designers as well as seeing my own work on fabric and anything you can possibly print on. I want to share the beauty of the world and culture with people through patterns and color to brighten up their days and also take them into my inner world. Usually the results are surprising when I do it from a playful space. It has taken me quite some time to be able to play and believe in myself though. A lot of self doubt, self hatred and self denial has been a powerful theme in my life and since artists create from the heart I would make things and then destroy them when I didn’t feel good enough. Self sabotage was easier than sharing the delicate and vulnerable spaces of myself until now. Through my spiritual path and with lots of awareness and healing I have been able to see myself as a unique person who has much to give and share. The biggest lesson for me was to drop the self limiting fears, to not take life so seriously, and to appreciate and love myself more. I now know that life manifests through my inner space and all my beliefs not my desires. Changing my beliefs and perceptions about life, myself, and others, I clearly see how it changes my life! When I feel the love of nature, of God, and for myself and then working from that headspace I find It always makes beautiful art! I am only expanding my love through my art and if someone appreciates my work then I know they are feeling that love too. I decided to donate 10% of my proceeds to support charities I believe in and that has been the most powerful motivator as a creative because I am so passionate about enriching the world to be a better place.
I want the world to know that we don’t have to fight or be violent for love, for acceptance, for peace, or for what we want. What we want to manifest all comes from a powerful feeling of trust, surrender and self love and to understand that when we are living in the past we aren’t in the present and cannot create the future. The world is much better with art and love and bliss! I got to where I am today by having loving, and not so loving friendships, a compassionate guru, and from taking classes from people who are successful and who inspire me. I have Shaktilocs for dreadlock making and in the beginning stages of my art brand so if you are feeling the vibe please give me a follow and stay connected, I appreciate you <3
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take a friend to Point Loma to explore the history a bit, to Sunset Cliffs for a nice nature walk finished with a picnic at sunset and possible concert at the Belly Up or even just local to OB at Winston’s for a chill vibe. Would totally want to enjoy the food and vendors at the OB farmer’s market and Octoberfest, Mission Bay for the dog beach and hangouts and downtown SD or Little Italy for the yummy restaurants. I like the vegan options at Breakfast Republic and crave their Jammin’ Benny sometimes, like right now! Balboa Park is a must and I haven’t even seen what all it has to offer, so museums and more historical exploring would for sure be on the list. Nowadays I like to find Hindu or Buddhist temples to visit and would definitely go and participate in a ritual or meditation. SD has so much to offer, something new and fun is always around the corner, I really love it.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I give thanks to my sweet daughter, who has been one of the biggest motivators and teachers in my life. She is why I have changed so much about myself and continue to do so that I can be the best example and model for her. Huge shoutout and so much love and gratitude for my guru, Bhagavan Sri Nithyananda Paramashivam and sangha at Kailaasa’s LA Nithyanandeshwera Hindu Temple for continuously raising me to higher cognitions with sacred teachings, guidance, workshops and programs gifting me with immense healing and transformation over the last 5 years. I stand tall and empowered today, words cannot describe the powerful experiences and transformation I have had. Living Enlightenment and Guaranteed Solutions are books that I recommend to all! So many gems and life solutions there and it is available for a free download (in many languages ) or you can pick up a hard copy for free at a near by Nithyanandeshwera Hindu Temple Lastly, I would like to thank my parents for always loving me in every phase I have been in and for always accepting me and supporting me. I have the best life!