In the west we rarely give ourselves the time we need to mark change. Henna painting offers us an ancient cross cultural art that can reintroduce the benefits of ritual and self expression often found lacking in our lives.
Ritual provides important therapeutic social and psychological functions which assist individuals in processing, growing and embracing change in their lives.
When an individual faces a great change, such as a becoming a mother or wife, moving to a new town or a change in career, additional psychological and social needs arise. Psychologically, we need to consciously and unconsciously let go of the old and let in the new. Socially we need to feel support and acknowledgement of our new role or identity from our peers and community.
In times like these we look to henna as it has been used for 100’s of years. It is not just beautification we seek in the act of hennaing; we are trying to create a special moment outside of our ordinary day to day activity, a moment that says ‘Hay! I am changing.’ Our friends come together and share the moment with us, giving their support in this nurturing event. This is the gift of the henna.