Aroma.

A scent can bring on a flood of memories, influence people’s moods and even affect their work performance instantaneously as smell is intimately linked to the parts of the brain that process emotion and associative learning.  The olfactory bulb is part of the brain’s limbic system which has access to the amygdala, which processes emotion, and the hippocampus, which is responsible for associative learning. Aromas can have positive effects on mood, stress reduction, sleep enhancement, self-confidence, and physical and cognitive performance.

An odor has no personal significance until it becomes connected to something that has meaning. In the initial encounter, we begin forming nerve connections that intertwine the smell with emotions. No other senses have this kind of deep access into our nervous system. Pick a distinctive odor, then pair that aroma with a calming meditative session. After a few sessions, the odor itself will elicit a relaxed state, even when we don’t have time to meditate.

We can use naturally occurring aromatic compounds in essential oils made from plant extracts to help relax, to provide mental clarity, to help cope with emotional conflicts, and to energize physically, emotionally or mentally. By incorporating these scents into our everyday life, we improve the way we feel about and respond to life. Two of my favorite products right now are La Luna Alchemy’s Ritual Oil, an essential oil blend created for each moon sign, and Apothecanna’s Stimulating Body Oil, a spicy citrus scented oil which also contains healing CBD (cannabidiol) to soothe muscles after morning Mysore practice. Connecting body, mind and spirit in harmony with nature in every thought, action and moment of our daily life is the Yoga. Stay bendy yogis, Namaste.

 

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Yoke.

Today is International Yoga Day which celebrates Yoga as a holistic way to achieve equilibrium of the body and the mind. Yoga is so much more than the physical practice of asana (postures) that we associate with here in the Western world. Rather it is the journey of discovering the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and nature. When we devote ourselves to the practice Yoga, it moves off the mat and towards a lifestyle that is in harmony with the universe. Today, as you engage with others, look deeply in their eyes recognizing the divine in everyone. Be present. Be kind. Be compassionate. That is the real yoga. Be love yogis, Namaste.

Oriental Broccoli

With the summer solstice upon us, now is the time of year we begin eating more locally grown vegetables from our weekly farmer’s markets. Along with eating more veggies, I focus on consuming them raw and over the last three years my repertoire of raw food recipes have grown substantially. This is an easy one to try if you have never even considered raw foods and it’s super tasty. Bon appetit!

broccoli

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 dates
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup Nama Shoyu (I’ve also used wheat-free Tamari or Bragg’s Amino Acids)
  • 1/4 cup sesame seed oil (or extra virgin olive oil)
  • 4 cups chopped broccoli
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds

PREPARATION

  1. Combine all ingredients except the broccoli and sesame seeds in a blender and puree.
  2. Combine the broccoli and sesame seeds together in a bowl and stir. Pour the puree over the broccoli and toss. #noms

 

 

Agua.

Water is life. Without water, there is no life. Our body composition is more than half of this simple but remarkable essential molecule, H2O. We use water to clean everything including our bodies internally and externally. Water is worthy of our attention and time, not only from an ecological perspective but also for our own healing. Take the time to care about the water you drink, from the container that holds it to the energetics it contains. Avoid drinking from plastic cups or purchasing plastic bottled water as these contain BPA (bisphenol A) which has been shown to disrupt the endocrine system and affect the brain and behavioral development in children.

Equally important is the energetics of the water. We have seven main energy centers of the body, called chakras, which align the spine, starting from the base of the spine through to the crown of the head. All chakras are associated with a color and vibration. The heart chakra is green with a vibration at 528 Hz, the frequency for healing and DNA repair. Place water in a glass jar and fill a bathtub while playing a recording of 528 Hz or the F singing bowl so the water is constantly being vibrated by this love frequency. Water your houseplants and fill your pets’ water dishes with this loving healing water. Take a ritual bath with this water using La Luna Alchemy’s Ritual Bath placing the crystal on your heart space (Anahata chakra) while soaking. Feel negative energies release as its qualities open your heart, expand your consciousness, prompt peace and hasten healing. Love loudly yogis, Namaste.