Don’t you just love Jeff Brown’s ability to cut through the bullshit?

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‘EVERYTHING is not a gift. There may be valued transformation that arises from many experiences, but that doesn’t mean that EVERY experience is a gift. If we lean too far in that direction, we will deny trauma and victimhood all together, something we have been mistakenly doing for centuries. No, everything is not a gift. Some experiences are horrors, and it is all we can do to heal from them. To suggest that someone MUST find the gift in them, is to add insult to injury. It is also to create a culture that welcomes all horrors, because, after all- “everything is a gift.” Let’s keep it grounded- sometimes, it’s a gift. Sometimes it’s a horror. And the only who can decide that is the person who had the experience.’ -JEFF BROWN

How Is Your Heart Doing? By Omid Safi

In many Muslim cultures, when you want to ask them how they’re doing, you ask: in Arabic, Kayf haal-ik? or, in Persian, Haal-e shomaa chetoreh? How is yourhaal?

What is this haal that you inquire about? It is the transient state of one’s heart. In reality, we ask, “How is your heart doing at this very moment, at this breath?” When I ask, “How are you?” that is really what I want to know.

I am not asking how many items are on your to-do list, nor asking how many items are in your inbox. I want to know how your heart is doing, at this very moment. Tell me. Tell me your heart is joyous, tell me your heart is aching, tell me your heart is sad, tell me your heart craves a human touch. Examine your own heart, explore your soul, and then tell me something about your heart and your soul.

Tell me you remember you are still a human being, not just a human doing. Tell me you’re more than just a machine, checking off items from your to-do list. Have that conversation, that glance, that touch. Be a healing conversation, one filled with grace and presence.

Put your hand on my arm, look me in the eye, and connect with me for one second. Tell me something about your heart, and awaken my heart. Help me remember that I too am a full and complete human being, a human being who also craves a human touch.
I teach at a university where many students pride themselves on the “study hard, party hard” lifestyle. This might be a reflection of many of our lifestyles and our busy-ness — that even our means of relaxation is itself a reflection of that same world of overstimulation. Our relaxation often takes the form of action-filled (yet mindless) films, or violent and fast-paced sports.

I don’t have any magical solutions. All I know is that we are losing the ability to live a truly human life.

We need a different relationship to work, to technology. We know what we want: a meaningful life, a sense of community, a balanced existence. It’s not just about “leaning in” or faster iPhones. We want to be truly human.

W. B. Yeats once wrote, “It takes more courage to examine the dark corners of your own soul than it does for a solider to fight on a battlefield.”

How exactly are we supposed to examine the dark corners of our soul when we are so busy? How are we supposed to live the examined life?

I want us to have a kind of existence where we can pause, look each other in the eye […] and inquire together: Here is how my heart is doing. […]

How is the state of your heart today?

Let us insist on a type of human-to-human connection where when one of us responds by saying, “I am just so busy,” we can follow up by saying, “I know, love. We all are. But I want to know how your heart is doing.”

Omid Safi is Director of Duke University’s Islamic Studies Center. He is the past Chair for the Study of Islam, and the current Chair for Islamic Mysticism Group at the American Academy of Religion. Reading above is excerpted from the OnBeing blog.


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‘A body is a field of moving energy and a system of information, as life continues its fluctuations, we tend to gather attachments, burdens, and sorrows. We hold them so tightly that they become embedded in the body, causing changes and disruptions in the flow of our system while also limiting the access to the best possible version of ourselves – this sometimes manifests itself as ailments or disease as well as a lack of belief in our own power and a lack of understanding of the universe.

When someone enters a purification process such as meditation, the practice of yoga asanas or clean healthy eating among many other things, the body begins releasing these knots of attachment, freeing up the blockages in our system of information, allowing our field of energy to return to balance and move more freely and powerfully. This causes changes in our body, not just physical changes such as the healing of disease or ailments, but immaterial and internal ones as well, such as believing in oneself more, the growth of love, and the aspiration to grow into more wisdom. Really, there is no separation between the internal and the physical, they move together as one under the leadership of our mental contents.

Sending love to all beings. May we all reclaim our power and purify the burdens that cause us limitations. May we all grow into unconditional love.’

-Yung Pueblo  

https://www.facebook.com/yungpueblo

Health-a Buddhist Perspective by Chogyam Trungpa 

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“Our basic work is to become full human beings and to inspire full human-beingness in others who feel starved about their lives. When we say a full human being, we mean a person who not only eats, sleeps, walks, and talks but someone who also experiences a basic state of wakefulness. It might seem to be very demanding to define health in terms of wakefulness but wakefulness is actually very close to us. We can experience it. We are touching it all the time. Although the usual dictionary definition of health is, roughly speaking, free from sickness, we should look at health as something more than that.

According to the Buddhist tradition, people inherently possess buddha nature, that is they are basically and intrinsically good. From this point of view, health is intrinsic. Health comes first, sickness is secondary. Health is. So being healthy is being fundamentally wholesome, with body and mind synchronized in a state of being which is indestructible and good. A great deal of chaos in the world occurs because people don’t appreciate themselves. When you don’t punish or condemn yourself, when you relax more and appreciate your body and mind, you begin to contact the fundamental notion of basic goodness in yourself.”

-Chogyam Trungpa (painting by Beth Nicholas)

Beyond Illness

BEYOND ILLNESS: NOTE TO A RECOVERING FRIEND

7ebe48e69c655cd30be46e7275723246‘Your illness is not against you, friend. The aches and pains you feel in your body are not punishments. You did nothing wrong. This day is not an indication of weakness or failure. You are receiving yet another invitation – to slow down. To rest. To take each moment as it comes. To let go of all that which is unnecessary, including perhaps your search for answers. To reassess your priorities, to remember that which is primary. To turn towards the present moment, this moment, the only moment there is, your true home, your resting place, your place of connection.

To stay rooted here, in the present scene of the movie of your life. To stop rewinding the movie into past scenes of regret, missed chances and wrong turns. And to stop fast-forwarding the movie into future scenes of pain or sorrow, further missed chances, unattainable goals or even death. To come right back here. To befriend uncertainty, rediscover the thrill of not knowing. To say YES to this moment, even if you feel like a NO. To include the NO, too.

To use your aches and pains, not be used by them; to meet the sensations in your body with gentleness and curiosity, not to resist or try to make them go away. To sink deeply into the moment; not to try to escape it – and to allow yourself to want to escape it too. To trust the intelligence of this incredible body, its extraordinary capacity to heal and deal with anything that comes its way. To admit that you are exhausted from the struggle of pretending to be a ‘me’, tired from trying to fit in, trying to say the right thing, trying to be a success in the world, trying to hold it all together, even trying not to try.

To find a place of humility, and even gratitude, amidst the rubble of the old dreams. To let go of your idea of ‘How Life Was Going To Be’, and to embrace ‘How Life Actually Is’. To rediscover a sense of sacredness, where you are, how you are.

This just may be your invitation to awakening. Drop the word ‘sickness’; see this as a path of deeper healing, beyond the physical. A calling to Truth. Always a beginning, never a defeat.’

– Jeff Foster

Cleanse and Begin Again

“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks. Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in where nature may heal and cheer and give strength to the body and soul. Keep close to Nature’s heart…and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” ~John Muir

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Lyme Treatment: My Favourite Supplements

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As someone who has fought and won many battles against Lyme disease, I wanted to share some of the supplements that really made a difference for me. I haven’t listed the more common supplements such as Vitamin B12, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D as most Lymies already know how critical these ones are. The supplements listed below were used in conjunction with a Lyme M.D, conventional medicine and lots of meditation, prayer and rest.

I’m not a medical professional, my advice is based on personal experience, research, doctors’ advice and trial and error. Everybody’s body is different and has different needs, especially when it comes to Lyme and your co-infections.

My doctor always suggested that I only introduce one new supplement at a time so I could track its progress and correctly identify the side effects. This was particularly important for my tummy as I have Leaky Gut and other food allergies thanks to three years of prolonged ABX use. Please check with your doctor before taking any of these are they may have contra-indications with certain medications.

 Cistus Incanus- Can be consumed as a tea or in pill form. Dr Klinghardt recommends this as a more natural way to breakup biofilm in the stomach. It is made from a flowering plant said to contain antibacterial and antifungal properties.

Glutathione- I’m only familiar with the nebulized or in pill form, although I believe you can also receive it in IV and injection form. It is an excellent antioxidant and a super supplement for detoxification.  Post Lyme, I still use this in pill form if I know I will be having a quiet drink or two. This supplement is so beneficial, whether you’re healthy or not. And let’s be honest, most people could do with a little detoxification.

Pau D`Arco-  It is a natural antifungal supplement made from a the wood and bark of a South American tree. It has a range of uses but it’s excellent for fighting yeast infections such as candida. This can be taken as a supplement or drank as a tea. I was encouraged to drink one cup per day to harness its antifungal properties.

Co-Enzyme Q10 & Flaxseed Oil: These two should be taken together. My doctor recommended Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) for stamina and to help with fatigue. CoQ10 is a vitamin-like compound that helps in the production of the body’s energy. It is also a powerful antioxidant and helps fight free radicals. CoQ10 is fat soluble, which means it requires fat to be absorbed, so it should be taken with flaxseed oil which aids absorption.

Curcumin/Turmeric: It’s a naturally occurring compound derived from the Indian spice turmeric. It’s known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities. We used it to help with my inflamed tummy due to Leaky Gut and pumping copious amounts of ABX in there. I used it in pill form, two pills, two times a day. I also used it in many of my soups and stews in its herbal form. A wonderfully natural supplement that can be used long term and is usually well tolerated.

Grapeseed Extract: While off ABX and on herbal treatments, I used this to treat the cystic form of Lyme. Containing bioactive flavonoids such as Resveratrol, I was told that it has antifungal properties. Pulsing is the best way to go. I found two weeks on, two weeks off to be most effective. I didn’t experience any strong herxing on this supplement which is an additional bonus. But of course, everyone responds differently to medicine.

Olive Leaf Extract: As the name suggests, this supplement is extracted from the leaf of the olive plant. It is used to stimulate and moderate the immune system. It is known for its antioxidant powers and has anti-microbial properties too. If you can’t stand the taste of the liquid form (like me!), take it capsulated.

Toxin Absorb Max- Another top supplement for detoxification and the removal of heavy metals. Consisting of clay and charcoal, you take four tablets before bed with a large glass of water. It provides a very natural but effective way to detox. Use with caution if you are having tummy problems.

Astra 8 Immune Tonic Although it contains eight key herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, the largest herbal component is Astragulus which is said to support your immune system. It is also an antiviral. It also has Siberian Ginseng which is said to be beneficial for adrenal support. Definitely check with your doctor before starting this as it is not suitable for all autoimmune diseases. I responded very well to it and found it helped with energy and fatigue. Again, I pulsed this supplement two weeks on, two weeks off.

Colostrum: Probably my favourite supplement, despite hating the flavour with a passion. I used the powder version, mixed with orange juice to mask the milky flavour. You can actually buy a pill version too which would have been a smarter choice for me. Interestingly, this was recommended to me despite being dairy intolerant as it is usually very well tolerated. Bovine colostrum is a type of milk secreted by cows within the first few days of giving birth. It is rich in antibacterial compounds and proteins known to help stimulate the immune system. It’s also recommended for gastrointestinal issues such as chronic diarrhoea and stomach inflammation caused by strong or long term ABX usage.

 When researching any supplements make sure you take the time to check the quality of the supplements. Don’t waste your money on cheap versions that contain inferior or lower level ingredients. Buy the best supplement you can within your price range.

I’d love to know what your favourite Lyme supplements are. Please leave a comment below.