Stress and your centre that controls it.

A girlfriend is very distressed by the problems caused by getting her mother in to a nursing home and now as her mother is deteriorating, our friend is choosing to sleep each night close to her Mother. This is immediate stress, palpable and public but also needs to be addressed for her immediate and long term health.

My  cousin has suffered from Arthymic  heart problems for many years ( possibly starting when he was drafted to serve in the Vietnam war.) Long term stress, that was not delt with at the time. He needed to get a job  on his return home and his wife was quickly pregnant.

Last week a friend confided to us, that he also had the problem, like s trapped butterfly beating against  his chest, I was trying to think how could I help. I understand that each of these situations carries  the results of long-term stress we are often unaware it is building within.  Until the body throws disease at us. So I thought about stress, how it enters the body/mind?  How to control it, and how  we can take back that control?

In yoga we do a posture to align the pituitary,thyroid and thymus glands. Meditation is a tool to control stress, but as my friend does neither of these I wanted to think of a different  approach. So below are  my musings and possibly a solution that would help others.

Meditation painting by Lorraine Willcock

Meditation painting by Lorraine Willcock

Each Yoga class contains a Prana section, Focussing on correct breathing techniques. We understand the importance of breath and how it does calm the body releasing the emotional detrius that we hold in the body in the form of tension.

The master glands are thought of as the hypothalamus and the pituitary, from the pituitary gland hormones are secreted into the bloodstream. These are the hormones to calm your body now often  called the “feel good hormones.” Your body is well able to deal with passing stress, . Normally when we face stress, the body reacts by reacting in ” fight and flight or freeze mode”. Then finding time to rest and relax and recover.  If it becomes  long term,  deep trauma or a chronic situation your adrenal glands become overburdened and exhausted.

It’s as if the body has got stuck, the memory returns, after all it is held in your cellular memory. And if you take no steps to address these memories, or to find time to de-stress, your body will warn you with a minor illness,  in bed for a day with a cold or a migraine headache.If you still you have  not addressed the cause of stress or trauma, your body will try to protect you  by creating a much more serious illness.

Doctor Ben Johnston and Alexander Loyd have described this in their book ‘The Healing Codes.’ “The hypothalamus serves as a central processing unit for the whole brain. It has connections to all of the limbic System – the emotional centers of the brain. In fact, it has nerve connections to virtually every part of the brain and connects to the rest of your body through the hormones that it manufactures and releases through the pituitary.  Here is a short list of some functions  the hypothalamus controls:

  1. Arterial blood  pressure
  2. Body temperature
  3. Regulation of body water by thirst and kidney function
  4. Uterine contractility
  5. Breast  milk
  6. Emotional drives
  7. Growth hormone
  8.  Adrenal glands
  9. Thyroid hormone
  10. Sex organ function

Physiologically, the effects of stress result in change in all of the above organs, especially in the adrenal, cortisol, glucose, insulin, and growth hormone release.”wwwthehealingcodes.com

Here is simple way to break the pattern of stress . You can do this daily.

Sit comfortably in a chair your feet flat on the ground (maybe a pillow under your feet if you cannot touch the ground) push your tailbone into the back of the chair.

Feel the floor beneath you, straighten  your spine, allow your shoulders to drop into a comfortable position, your head just floating on your neck.Close your eyes and imagine that your chin is parallel to the floor. begin to deepen  your breathing,mentally saying  “This breath is slower, this next breath a lot slower and deeper.”

Now move your mind to your feet and the sensation with your feet resting on the floor, sink into the feeling, no analysing no judging, just move your mind from your left foot to your right foot, perhaps you can notice there is a difference between the two.

Just hold your mind at the bottom of your feet be aware of how you touch the floor. bring your mind to the sensation of bottom on chair. Just feel the weight of your body on the chair. Settle your mind until it becomes calmer,  quieter.

Now travel your mind up your spine feeling the sensation of your back resting against the chair. Now go to your chest_ the sensation of your chest rising and f alling with breath. Again you are not judging or analysing, just being with the sensation.

Bring your attention to your arms, to the space where they  rest on your lap or on your thighs. Rest your mind at this place.

Now mind moves to your face. Notice the sensations of the muscles in your face. Are they relaxed or is there tension there? Without judging or wanting to change anything just be aware of the muscles in your face.

Now hold all of this  in your mind the sensation of your feet on the floor, your spine comfortably erect, hands resting on thighs. How is your spine, the muscles in your face?

Again

not judging  or  trying to change anything simply being aware of how you feel.

Once more go back to your breath So that this breath is slower. From behind your closed eyes, just move around your body mentally. Resting. Now move in your mind to the space around your body, flowing to an awareness of the room around you. Be still let your breath come slowly.

When you are ready, slowly open your eyes, coming back into the room around you. Take a few deep breaths. And I’m sure you will feel so much better and more centred. You may wish to practice this before sitting in meditation.Meditation

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In Praise of Men

” Residents are recovering after a severe hail storm on Anzac Day 2015 “www.batemansbaypost.com.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Hail stones the size of golf balls OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“Moruya SES :”Crews said residents reported stones the size of cricket balls had fallen earlier in the day.”www.batemansbaypost.com.

Men, Men, There they’re everywhere, men in every shape and colour, Some wearing shorts some in  jeans, carrying clipboards, toolboxes, backpacks, sacks or chainsaws. Hairy legged ones in shorts and tea shirts, others in work shirts and cotton pants.In crocs with  their stomachs slouching over there Waist band. Young eager ones driving four wheel drives, ladders strapped on top be side their ever-present surfboard. This plethora of men descended on our village to help and repair.

A balmy sunny afternoon turned into a raging black sky ever darkening until a hailstorm crashed it’s way in with deafening noise and hail, from finger nail to cricket ball size. Hail stones smashed windscreens  crashed in to parked cars dinting duco. they crushed the chimney on our roof, shattered the evacuated tubes and solar panels for heating. Older homes fared the worst, as windows made brittle by sunlight and salt, smashed easily.  Rain lashed into shattered sky lights and all of this took 10 minutes.  Now we’re lucky enough to have men in all  shapes and sizes climbing ladders using chainsaws and all that noisy equipment they love, leaf blowers lawnmowers.  Don’t misunderstand I am  thankful that they were so available in fact, windows are being replaced 8 o’clock at night.

And today in the sunshine is it almost seems like a dream except the men, in all  shapes and sizes in workbooks, workwear knobbly kneed, skinnylegged overweight Summer trim, some bearded, some clean shaven and that means the top of their head. Some ponytailed and somebody was A thank you for everyone for this collection of  men, looking so busy and are so busy and there is much laughter it is the camaraderie and the joy that I really write about and that I am so thankful for.

After the hailstorm had past and it was simply a light rain it was the men who are the first  in the street, with their torches, checking windows of homes of people they knew were not in the town. These night watchmen  called  the neighbours to find out where keys were kept,access it check for water damage.The  very next morning on our dog walk I noticed that many other men were driving around, just to see that everyone was safe. caring for and reassuring the elderly.  So men- skinny,  knobbly kneed sporting tradey’s crack, or gentlemanly demeanour, tall, short, broad shoulders or slumping, I thank you for your humour, your concern and most especially for being there. Thank you for looking in your toolboxes and your back sheds and finding plastic tarps  and gaffer tape to cover the whirligig so it wouldn’t leak, and  pop riveting the chimney support that had broken  on our roof.

The common question “Did you get any water damage?”

Thanks to the men in our little village the answer is no.

http://www.batemansbaypost.com. ” April 25. Crews said residents reported stones the size of cricket balls had fallen earlier in the day.

The Moruya SES unit received 12 calls for assistance and unit leader Peter Collins said the damage ranged from broken windows to damaged roofs.

“Two teams, with help from the Batemans Bay unit, worked late into Saturday night and most of Sunday on temporary repairs,” Mr Collins said.

“The older-style corrugated asbestos roofs suffered particularly severe damage, with some of the roofs that we patched having 20 to 30 holes in them.

“When I arrived at Potato Point, there was still hail as big as golf balls littering the streets.

“I also had reports from residents that hail as big as cricket balls was seen earlier.”

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About pain and writing.

Originally posted on cancerkillingrecipe:

They say writing can be painfully hard. I agree. And I will add: Especially if you have gout. Ouch! :) !
I’m right handed. My right hand hurts from writing and gout related inflammation. Is all swollen.
So I google: “Painful writing” and found some uplifting info.
First of all – they say that most of the writers have some pain in their hand and wrist from writing, even if they are healthy. So I’m feeling little bit better. I’m not suffering alone.
And there is some more:
Roger Angell, writer and editor for “The New Yorker” said: “Writing is hard even for authors who do it all the time”.
Well, I thought that only I have a problem. Thank you Roger!
And Elmore Leonard, American novelist said: “I try to leave out the parts that people skip”.
I think this is brilliant! Thanks Elmore! This can save me lots…

View original 134 more words

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Meditators Diet 2

Years ago when my cousin was first diagnosed with arthymic heart beat I turned to Dr. Dean Ornish’s book on reversing heart disease.

Chosen by Forbes as “one of the seven most powerful teachers in the world”, Dr. Ornish’s work is changing the face of medicine.”

Then mum was diagnosed with bowel cancer again I looked at food.  How to slow the growth of her tumour , yes she had it and to other cancers in her bowel removed in 2000. (Then Meditation of course) Mum is now still vibrant at age 91.

A panel of people will guide you through the work I had to research on my own. Find Out All the Details About this Health-Changing Event and Get Ocean’s ‘Real Food Action Guide’ Here.

http://www.foodrevolution.org

See part of my email below.

So I encourage you to attend this Free conference.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 2.18.31 pm

Your eyes that are reading this need the nutrition of fresh green vegetables.

Your legs that carry you into your future,  muscles need pumpkin, eggplant,sweet potato, mangoes,dates,meat and garlic are all good rejuvenators  for muscle.

The fresher the food the healthier  will be.

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Children and dogs.

Walking our dog this morning we came around the curve in the path and were delighted to see the neighbour pushing a stroller with small child sitting up in it, her daughter and another little boy. (As it is school holidays at the moment the seaside village fills up with more children, dogs, extra cars, surfboards and the sound of children’s laughter. )

Childhood innocence

Our neighbour  explained that she was giving her sister In- law some extra time in bed. Her little girl introduced herself and said “My name is Georgia and there are many Georgia’s at my school.” The little boy introduced himself and explain that he was Georgia’s cousin. He then reached for her hand.   These two delightful little ones stood side by side in the morning light. I was immediately struck by the sense of connection. His simple gesture had made us all smile, and brought us all closer together.

The children were interested in the name of our dog and were telling us how yesterday they had visited A cheesemaking shop, and they were able to pat the calves. The openness of these children enabled all present to make a connection.

This is the process of meditation to once more go back to our child like innocent state. To make the connection: once more with the depth within- beyond time and space.

This morning we shared in the joy of small children, and their innocence and openness. The patience of our dog as these little people tentatively reached out to pat him, stepping back when his wet nose met their faces. And yet they were open enough to the moment,to their connection their awareness and their openness to all-around was delightful embracing and magical.

As James Redfield author of the Celestine Prophecy and the Tenth Insight tells us

” Each species presents a different message as the creatures linger, revealing themselves,. If we watch carefully and spiritually, identifying with their movement and focus, we can remember an aspect of ourselves long forgotten. We suddenly sense new abilities of perception, discernment- an approach to life that we need, miraculously, at this very point in our life’s journey.” as our dog is around all day I sometimes fall into the trap  of seeing only the negative aspects . He has a very loud  bark, he needs a bath etc. He continues

“The appearance of these creatures is a reminder of who are, of  the consciousness we have known and lost and are ready to embrace again. We have only to protect the wilderness and then to enter it sacred world with alertness and respect. There the truth of how to approach our lives, how to handle any situation, will come to us-A gift from the animals.”

http://www.celestinevision.com

And I will add the gift of children and their deep sense of connection. The meditation of living in each moment. As the Fellow says “They are open.”

“The things that we preceive as beautiful may be different, but the actual characteristics we ascribe to beautiful objects are similar. Think about it. When something strikes us as beautiful, it displays more presence and sharpness of shape and vividness of color, doesn’t it? It stands out. It shines. It seems almost iridescent compared to the dullness of other objects less attractive.”
― James Redfield, The Celestine Prophecy     http://www.goodreads.com

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Easter around the world.

Carol Kuruvilla  tells us  “The word Easter has been linked to Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring and new life.”

We exchange  The Easter egg as the symbol for new life  and the Christian promise for eternal love and eternal life. The image of the butterfly, new life, rising from the death of the caterpillar is also being used to remind us ,that where there is life there is hope.

“For Christians, Easter is a celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ — and arguably the most important date on the religious calendar. Easter marks the end of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting and reflection. The day holds the promise of victory over death, a new life and the forgiveness of sins.”

Young goddess photo by Frank Kovalckek Flikr.com

Young goddess photo by Frank Kovalckek Flikr.com

 lightChristians  believe the Christ – ed one came to the Earth to bring the light of Peace to the Earth and over come the old Testament teachings of an eye for an eye.

Carol writes “Since the Jewish calendar is based on lunar cycles, Passover falls on 14 Nisan, the 14th day of the first full moon of spring. Christians in Asia Minor used to remember the crucifixion on the 14 Nisan, and celebrate the resurrection on 16 Nisan. But this meant that Easter could fall on any day of the week. On the other hand, Christians in the West celebrated Easter on the first Sunday after 14 Nisan.

In 325, the Roman Emperor Constantine I gathered bishops from around his empire at the Council of Nicaea to hammer out a solution to this and other debates raging in the early church. The council decided that Easter would be observed on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the spring equinox.

Easter celebrated in western countries, there’s no escaping the Easter Bunny and his colorful basket of eggs. But across the world, Christians have developed many interesting ways of marking the holiday. In Sweden, young girls dress up as Easter Witches and travel from house to house looking for treats. In some parts of Latin America and Greece, Christians burn effigies of Judas, the disciple who betrayed Jesus. In Venezuela last year, some protesters used the holiday to burn an effigy of their president, Nicolas Maduro. Bermudan Christians fly brightly colored kites on Good Friday to represent Christ’s ascension to heaven.

In Spain, some Christians don cloaks and pointed hoods to participate in eerie night-time processions. The parades are organized by local religious brotherhoods. The participants — called penitents, or sinners — carry crucifixes and religious icons through the streets to act out the Easter story. According to centuries-old tradition, the penitents wear capirotes, or tall pointed hats, so that their neighbors don’t know the identity of the sinner behind the mask.

By the 16th century, scholars had realized that the Roman Empire’s Julian calendar was out of sync with the solar year — and that Easter was falling further away from the spring equinox. In an effort to close the gap, Pope Gregory XIII introduced the Gregorian calendar. But because of old religious rivalries, Protestants in Europe were dead set against the change. It wasn’t until 1752 that England adopted the Gregorian calendar. On that day, the country skipped forward 11 days overnight, going from Wednesday, September 2, to Thursday, September 14. The Gregorian calendar is still the most widely used civil calendar today.

Eastern Orthodox churches (Armenian, Greek and Russian Orthadox) still use the Julian calendar to calculate religious holidays. As a result, while most of the Western world will celebrate Easter on April 5 this year, Orthodox churches are celebrating on April 12.

The word Easter has been linked to Eostre, an Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring and new life. Other scholars trace the name of the holiday to the Latin phrase “hebdomada alba,” which means “white week.” According to tradition, new Christians were baptized into the faith on Easter while wearing white clothes. The phrase evolved into “eostarum” in Old High German, becoming “Ostern” in modern German and “Easter” in English.

But in many other languages, the word for Easter is still deeply tied to Passover, the festival that celebrates the exodus of the Jews from Egypt. Jesus was crucified soon after he arrived in Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover feast.

The Orthodox Church calls Easter “Pascha.” In French, the holiday is known as “Pâques.” In Spanish, it is “Pascua,” and in Dutch, “Pasen.” So beautifully explained, so all I need to do is wish you and yours a sacred and safe Easter.

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Wild Women are a blessing – International Women’s Day.

Sunday last was International Women,s Day. 8th March.

As I could not find a lot of articles, celebrating the day in our newspapers, I’ve written my own. I believe in celebrating successes,  for too many people live lives of desperation.

With the help of one woman author I respect.“Though her soul requires seeing, the culture around her requires sightlessness. Though her soul wishes to speak its truth, she is pressured to be silent.”

― Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype

As I believe all people are born talented and have come to contribute, something that they alone can give.  This does not and cannot fit the modern mould of being a certain shape, size, etc

“It makes utter sense to stay healthy and strong, to be as nourishing to the body as possible. Yet I would have to agree, there is in many women a ‘hungry’ one inside. But rather than hungry to be a certain size, shape, or height, rather than hungry to fit the stereotype; women are hungry for basic regard from the culture surrounding them. The ‘hungry’ one inside is longing to be treated respectfully, to be accepted and in the very least, to be met without stereotyping.”
― Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype

“When we lose touch with the instinctive psyche, we live in a semi-destroyed state and images and powers that are natural to the feminine are not allowed for development. When a women is cut away from her basic source, she is sanitised, and her instincts and natural life cycles are lost, subdued by the culture, or by the intellect or the ego- one’s own or those belonging to others.”

Any time we spend time in our inner silence we are guaranteed increase of blessings. For this we do not need to do anything , only go within and listen. But we have been taught otherwise and come to rely on the busi-ness of our lives, and are often defined by this. The cost is we loose the wise woman guide within. And the cost to the wider world is immeasurable.

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“When a woman is frozen of feeling, when she can no longer feel herself, when her blood, her passion, no longer reach the extremities of her psyche, when she is desperate; then a fantasy life is far more pleasurable than anything else she can set her sights upon. Her little match lights, because they have no wood to burn, instead burn up the psyche as though it were a big dry log. The psyche begins to play tricks on itself; it lives now in the fantasy fire of all yearning fulfilled. This kind of fantasizing is like a lie: If you tell it often enough, you begin to believe it.”

“A women’s  issues of soul cannot be treated by carving her into a more acceptable form as defined by an unconscious culture, nor can she be bent into a more intellectually  acceptable shape by those who claim to be the sole bearers of consciousness. No that is what has already caused millions of women who began as strong and natural powers to become outsiders in our own cultures. Instead the goal must be the retrieval and succor of women’s beauteous and natural psychic form.”

Traditional psychology is often  spare or entirely silent about deeper issues important to women the archetypal, the intuitive, the sexual and cyclical, the ages of women, a woman’s way, A woman’s knowing, the creative fire.

Through Meditation we seek the contact and the blessing of Grace, to enter our lives and calm the storms within. Mantra and music give us a pathway in to this sacred place Clarissa Pinkola Estes describes it as

“She comes to us through sound as well; through music which vibrates the sternum, excites the heart; it comes through the drum, the whistle, the call and the cry. It comes through the written and spoken word; sometimes a word, a sentence or poem or a  story, is so resonant, so right, It causes us to remember, at least for an instant, what substance we’re really made from, and where is our true home.

“When women reassert their relationship with the widest nature, they are gifted with a permanent and internal watcher, a knower, a visionary, and  an oracle, and inspiratrice , an intuitive, a maker, a creator, an inventor, and a listener, who guide, suggest, and urge vibrant life in the inner and outer worlds.When women are with the wild woman, the fact of that relationship glows through them. This wild teacher, wild mother, wild mentor supports their inner and outer lives no matter what.”

So though meditation, yoga, story telling, art, poetry painting dance, movement or stillness, craft we remember how we can awaken within the very depths of our being wonder, magic and medicine.

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