Monday, June 27, 2011

Garlic And Honey: Herbal Remedies With A Culinary Twist

Cory Trusty is an herbalist and organic gardener living in Central Florida.  She is also the 
owner of Aquarian Bath, which produces a line of all natural soaps and bath products that are unscented or lightly scented, made only from pure essential oils and are palm-oil free. We thank her for contributing this informative article to the Mind Body Spirit Odyssey.
                                                                                                               ~ diane fergurson



Garlic is a common kitchen herb with many medicinal uses. It can helps resolve colds, coughs, sore throats, and sinus infections. Externally it can be used for skin infections. For chronic concerns, Garlic helps reduce blood sugar and high blood pressure. It is also helpful to treat Malaria and boost immunity for AIDS. It is famous as a de-wormer. I remember my grandpa taking it powdered on everything. The fresh garlic is the most potent to use medicinally, but I am just not one of those people who can handle a raw clove. The first time I tried raw garlic was in Belize. One of the locals was taking it raw and suggested I try it. Too strong for me! I could barely stand it. The last time I tried raw garlic was when I was really sick with a head cold. I chewed, swallowed and abruptly started into a cold sweat, drooling and was about ready to throw up. I given up on raw garlic for myself. Now I use either cooked garlic or garlic in the sweet medicine form: Garlic Honey.


It's very simple to make Garlic honey for medicinal or culinary use. All you do is chop up a whole garlic bulb: peel and chop the cloves. Chopping helps release the most potent chemical ingredient in garlic is Allicin. Allicin is created when Alliin reacts with the enzyme Alliinase, which is activated when garlic is chopped or crushed. After your cloves are ready, put them in a clean pint jar. Cover with honey. I used raw wild flower honey. It takes a long time for the honey to seep through all the chopped cloves. So pour slowly.




You can use a knife or a chop stick to get the air bubbles out from among the chopped cloves. The next step is to cover and label and date your jar and put it up in a cupboard for 2-4 weeks. You can use the honey with or with out the garlic at the end of this time. The shelf life of Garlic honey is 3 months. You can take this honey by the spoonful or add it to tea if you have a cough, cold or sore throat.



I love making coleslaw dressing with garlic honey. You can give it a try:

3 tablespoons of herbal vinegar of your choice
3 tablespoons of Virgin Olive or Coconut oil
2-3 tablespoons of garlic honey
1/4 teaspoon mustard seed
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Mix the above together and cover with 4 cups of shredded cabbage and 1 cup of shredded carrot. Toss and chill for 2 hours before serving.

~ Cory Trusty, Aquarian Bath

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Mind Body Spirit Artist Series: Alison Fennell

Chances are, you will find yourself with a very wide smile while viewing the delightful watercolor illustrations by Welsh Artist Alison Fennell.  We are quite happy that this internationally known, very accomplished, magical illustrator agreed to spend some time discussing her work with the Mind Body Spirit Odyssey.  Thank you Alison!
                                                                      ~ diane fergurson


MBS:  Can you tell us a little bit about how you got started in art?

Alison:  I come from a family of miners and shopkeepers in the Welsh Valleys and I was born in Merthyr Tydfil in 1966.

My grandfather began to paint when he retired and I can remember the smell of oils in his sunny front room where he painted. I did art at school but didn't re-kindle my interest in it until after I left University with a French degree and worked in tourism in France and then in administration for a local builder. I saw an art exhibition locally in 1994 and the artist was there. I asked if he did classes and he did so I signed up. That was the start and his name was Arnold Lowrey.

MBS:  What kind of an artist was Arnold Lowrey? What was it about his work that touched and inspired you to want to explore being an artist?

Royal Lion
Alison: 
Arnold Lowrey is a Welsh painter predominantly known for his spontaneous and emotive watercolours, although he also paints in pastel, acrylics and oils. What appealed to me about his work was the explosive and fluid way in which he painted. He worked wet into wet which is superbly suited to watercolor and produces very daring and expressive effects. This is what attracted me to it. I didn't want to be painting fussy, stilted paintings with a slower medium as I considered oils to be. Arnold lit the fire for me and from the first weekend watercolor for beginners workshop I took with him in 1994 I was hooked!

MBS:  It sounds like he was a very important influence on you.  Looking back, what are some of  the things you learned from him that have carried over in your work and philosophy today? 

Alison:  To use tube as opposed to pan paint. Tube paint is moist and easy to get onto your brush making stronger impressions than pan paint which is hard to load onto your brushes. Use the best quality materials you can - ie use Artist's quality as opposed to students quality otherwise you are working against your tools and materials. He also showed me how to lift paint out with a damp brush. This is super useful for creating the illusion of soft water ripples in waterscapes and seascapes. He also used the flat end of a brushes handle to scraped away paint in sharp lines to create realistic branches and twigs with verve!
Arnold was very emotive and you can feel that in his work - if you aren't passionate about what you paint there is no real point to painting is there?

MBS: Fast forwarding...how did your career unfold from the time you were studying with Lowrey until present day, as a professional illustrator?  How did that develop?

Alison:  I got lucky by being published by a major UK greeting card and poster publisher called Beechwood Publications Ltd. I had spent a year sending off my artwork designs to UK greeting card publishers and had bagged 13 rejection letters before receiving a phone call one November 1997 morning. It was Beechwood and they invited me to bring my portfolio up to London to show them. From that my work was then available in major card shops in the UK. It boosted my confidence no end. Then in 2001 the Royal Cambrian Academy in Wales selected 2 of my originals for their annual show and the selection panel was headed by the late Sir Kyffin Williams (R.A. (Royal Academy member) so this was a major achievement for me.

Last year I collaborated with an American poet Marnie Jones - to have our very first children's illustrated poetry book published. Marnie wrote and I painted and the book is called "In the Morning". It is now available in several Public Library systems in South Wales and has sold internationally in small numbers so far. At present we are searching for a publisher to take it for us and we plan a sequel called "In the Evening" in 2011.

MBS: So you went right from learning to paint to submitting them directly to card companies?  Did
you do any shows, sell or have exhibits before then?

Alison:  I painted for about a year before doing that and I did exhibit at the South Wales Art Society and the Makers Gallery in Cardiff where I had a tiny show - which was fun:)


MBS:  Animals feature so predominantly in your work (that I have seen).  Did you always paint animals from the beginning?

Alison:  I only started painting animals in May 2010. Before that I was mad on flowers for years and landscapes too. I loved the intensity of florals - the opportunities for drama in the colors of petals and leaves was intoxicating for me. For many years I had lots of people and colleagues ask me for floral paintings and as I enjoyed doing them.  I built up quite a body of work and then had another exhibition in Cardiff which sold very well.


MBS:  Do you work in a particular format? A specific size...large, small...or does it depend on the project?  Also, any favorite materials..paints, paper etc?

Seagull
Alison:  Yes - right now I only work in 8x10inch format as frames for this size are readily and cheaply available from popular shops - so framing is easy for people.
My favourite paper is Fabriano Artictico 100% cotton rag paper in 90lbs weight. It is hot pressed and super smooth showing up all my brush strokes and allowing expressive granulations and runs to show which I love.
I use tube paint, always have and always will I guess. My fave makers are Winsor Newton, Sennelier, Rembrandt and Schminke.

MBS:  In addition to your work as an artist I also see that you also have a background in Reiki and Reflexology.  What is the connection between spirituality, your artwork, and the natural world?

Alison: Since learning to practice Reiki and gaining my 1st and 2nd degrees in it I have treated myself, friends, family, animals and plants. I see that every living thing is driven by the universal life force or ki/Chi. In animals eyes I see that they are sentient beings and should be considered as such. I hope for faster progression in the changing of the human mindset to respect and care for animals at a higher level.  This is why I gain great joy from painting animals and more specifically using my art sales to fund animal charities and rescues and their work. They increase awareness of their needs and rights as well as save animals.

MBS:  Can you tell us a little more about your artwork and connected charity work?

Alison:  Essentially I feel an excited urge to capture the essence of what I see in a subject - be it an animal, flower, cityscape or a face. It is that thrill of creating how I feel about the subject on papaer that is what art is for me. I suppose it is all about how much love I feel for a subject - yes - even buildings can be loveable!

In my charity work I could paint for every animal that is currently suffering at the hands of humans. I have lots of energy for this and feel empowered that through my eye and brush I can help put funds into the coffers of charities all over the world. I also hope that through seeing my painting of say a bee or a fox that people may see more and more how beautiful and integral all animals are in our world and not just things apart that live out there somewhere.


Moon Bear Prince
Question 8:  Is there any charity in particular that you are affiliate with?

Allison:  Yes - I am currently working in collaboration with Animals Asia Moon Bear Rescue . I have chosen them because I don't think I have ever seen such cruelty in the way these bears are kept in cages and in tortuous conditions for up to 30 years. It is an unimaginabley horrible industry.

MBS:  I know many artists who are very hesitant about selling their work online. You sell very actively on Etsy.  Are you on other selling sites are well?  How has selling online worked out for you as an artist? Any advice you can give to other artists who are thinking about selling their work this way?

Alison:  I am also on Folksy, Misi and Dawanda. It has been the best thing for me as an artist. You have a shop that has global exposure open 24/7. No need to go knocking gallery doors and asking them to show your work and them have a 33% plus cute worof it too. I would strongly recommend internet selling. I place a copyright symbol across my work too as this prevents the riskrof anyone taking your work and claiming it is their own.  As I sell my work unmatted and unframed shipping is very reasonable and easy to do.


MBS: What is a typical work day for you? Do you keep "hours" and go to work painting like a 9-5 job or are you less scheduled about it?

Alison:  My typical day starts at around 7:30 am when I get up, have breakfast, get showered and dressed and the check all emails and Etsy. I respond immediately to thank any one who has bought from me. That is the first thing I do and never delay it.

Then I paint until about 10:30 am and have a break for tea and toast. I check emails and social networks and sales again and either paint or blog or make my handmade cards etc until 12:30ish. After lunch I usually I have a little hour sleep as painting is mentally demanding as is all the social networking that I do as part of my business. Then I prepare packages that need to get to the post office before 3:30 pm and take them down the road to my local branch. Packing everything takes such a long time because I like to do it very well with lots of fuss and prettiness. I create the best parcel I can with extra things in as I imagine how the person is going to feel when they get it. I want them to have fun unwrapping and enjoy the contents !

After that I take the dog out for a walk. Dotty is my Jack Russel and I love her. We walk around the village for about 40 minutes and when I come back it's time for tea and biscuits again. Then I paint until 6:00 pm. Usually working on new images or commissions. Also I pre-cut watercolor paper and printer paper down to my sizes. I buy them large in bulk to save money and so cut them all myself. After I have had my evening meal I do some errands around the house and watch the news then its back to work for a while - doing paperwork like tax /accounts and records etc.

Then another walk for the dog for 30 minutes. Then I paint all evening until about 9pm. I like the evening painting session as I know I don't have to go out again and the household is usually quieter! I live with my parents at present and my sister plus her 3 sons live opposite so in amongst my working day all sorts of things happen and phone calls come and a variety of interruptions occur. Sometimes I get fed up with the phone going but over all I love working at home as I can rest when I want or go out the back garden and look at my mother's flowers or chat to her etc. It is a great set -up.

The only thing that is a problem is space. I have a tiny room in which my whole life is based. My studio space is less than 3feet square!  I have recently fixed up a makeshift shelf and bought lots of translucent letter trays in which to stash work and reference images as it gets very messy and I lose things in the piles.


MBS:  Has there been any major crisis point(s) in your life and how have they impacted on how your life is heading today?


Alison:  As I mentioned above, I am currently living at home with my parents.  That's because in 2008 I was diagnosed with a life-threatening inner ear tumor. I lost my house, my job and my partner (we split up) all in 3 months. It was a complete closing down of my life as I had known it but didn't know then that it was the biggest break in disguise. I took 2 years to recover from the 12 hours of neurosurgery I had. The tumor was benign and so far no signs of it ever coming back. I was partially paralyzed but with time everything has come back.  My parents looked after me. During my convalescence and obvious free time ( I had to quit my job due to my ill health) I began painting again and little by little I started to sell in 2010 on Etsy. That was the start of me finally realizing my dream of making a living from my art, which as of 4th March 2011 I am!

MBS:  What is the significance of March 4, 2011?

Alison:  I picked that date to sign off as unemployed and to start my own business as I had enough confidence that I was selling enough to keep me afloat and because it was a new moon and auspiscious to start a new endeavour on!


MBS:  Looking back over your career is there any advice you have for those who wish to (seriously) pursue an artistic path?


Alison:  Keep painting things that really stir you. Do not use the word "should" as this kills creativity.  If you only like painting telegraph poles - paint them. Don't feel that you "should" be painting still lifes. I would recommend having a sketchbook in which to doodle and just let yourself play around with things. I have enjoyed reading load s of art technique books, watching demos on DVD and Youtube and also attending classes. Get a scanner and keep a high res copy of all artwork. I wish I had done that in the early days (I have been painting for 17 years) as some of my best works have now been sold.

Also, think about doing a painting blog. People LOVE to look over your shoulder and see how you put that paint on the paper. It also makes you feel more productive when you then have a blog post that you can Tweet about.

Don't be an art diva and feel that your art is too precious to sell or ask ridiculous prices for your work. I have decided that though I love my paintings - I want to live by my art and so price them so that they are reasonable and within people's reach.

Thank you Alison!




You can find Alison's work online at:


www.eastwitching.etsy.com
www.petalessence.etsy.com
www.urbanmeltdown.etsy.com
www.magicalmenagerie.misi.com
http://www.folksy.com/shops/gypsychick

http://alisonfennell.blogspot.com

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Additional interviews from our Artist Series:
Emily Balivet
Laura Milnor Iverson
Joanne Miller Rafferty
Jude McConkey
Atmara Rebecca Cloe

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Reflections at Midsummer

Here in Vermont summer comes on rather suddenly, almost without introduction. Only two days ago we had to turn the heat back on in the house and there was an overnight frost warning. At least we didn’t have snow! I think this sense of suddenness is due to the fact that spring is such a tenuous season for us… we suddenly notice a swath of bright fresh green across mountains, and the appearance of flowers, while at the same time keeping our sweaters within reach and our winter blankets out. During the early days of summer we alternate between 80 degree days and 50 degree days, sometimes not feeling the warmth of a day until well into the afternoon. At what is known as “midsummer” we have just realized that yes, warmth and sunshine have returned to our lovely state. Even though winter has its beauty, it does tend to get long up here, and we are all grateful for the return of summer.


It seems fitting then, to actually celebrate such a time as this, not just for the outward abundance of life that is all around us, but also to reflect on where we’ve been during the first half of the year. It is of benefit to recognize not just the blossoming that is everywhere, but the progress and growth we have made in our individual lives. 


In ancient China people saw summer as the most yang time of year, for its elements of heat, light, and dryness. At the time of the Summer Solstice, yang energy was at its peak and then diminished until the Winter Solstice. Yin was born at the Summer Solstice, and reached its peak at the Winter Solstice. This portrays a sense of balance that we can see clearly when thinking in terms of light and dark halves of the year, and this sense of balance was an important element in celebration.
The birth of yin was celebrated around the time of the Summer Solstice, and thus, it was a time for people to honor the feminine – yin is generally associated with the feminine, dark, and the earth. Many worshipped the goddess Li, and outside the walls of the Forbidden City the emperor led ceremonies at the Altar of the Earth.


How might we create a sense of balance for ourselves, or honor the feminine, at this time when yang is peaking? Yang is a very outward, external energy… We can honor the yin by going within in introspection. The yang of summer is very hot and fiery – we can counter it by doing things that bring coolness, perhaps taking a dip in a lake or simply standing in the water at the edge of the ocean. In China this is also a time of choosing to eat healthy and light – noodles become more popular than dumplings and actually sell out during the Xiazhi festival, celebrated during the Summer Solstice. 


I live near a beautiful little waterfall, accessible by a wooded path along a river. If the weather here is hot and sunny, I think the Solstice would be a perfect time to walk down to the falls – perhaps with a picnic of cold noodles and fresh juice, sit quietly in meditation, and then slide into the cool, yin waters of the pool beneath the falls. I hope that wherever you are, you too get a chance to honor the feminine, and find balance within yourself and the world around you, celebrating the natural rhythm of time’s passing and nature’s progress.
                                                                                          

~ Nellie Levine 







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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mind Body Spirit Odyssey Summer Reading Picks

If you enjoy reading, any time is a good time to pick up a book.  During the summer months however, our everyday schedule often changes... easing up a bit... allowing us some extra time to read and relax.  This summer whether you'll be reading using the traditional book format, or using your Kindle, iPad, or NOOK, here are some suggestions from our Mind Body Spirit Odyssey Book Review Group for you to add to your list.  Covering a wide range of interests, I'm sure you'll find at least one selection to enjoy!  Be safe and have a good summer!
                                                                                                             ~ diane fergurson

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

From Abby Horowitz:

Sastun
by Rosita Arvigo
HarperOne

For anyone interested in the healing powers of plants, Sastun tells the story of Rosita Arvigo and her apprenticeship with a renowned Mayan healer.  The narrative is compelling and full of wonderful information.  I love this book.

Rosita subsequently published 2 wonderful books on Rainforest Remedies.

The Maya Way To Heal Your Body and Replenish Your Soul
100 Healing Herbs of Belize




Healings Mantras
by Thomas Ashley-Farrand
Wellspring/Ballantine 

This amazing book was written by one of the few Western experts in Hindu and Buddhist mantras.  It offers an in depth collection of mantras, their uses, and instructions on how to use them. A treasure trove of powerful information!









Spiritwalker
by Hank Wesselman
Bantam

I read this book back in 1995 when it first came out.  It is the story of one man’s spiritual journey into the shamanic realms. Hank Wesselman is an Anthropologist whose autobiographical account of his experiences will keep you riveted. A great read! 







~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

From Christina Dudley:


by Paul Coelho
HarperCollins
A story of obsession - wherein the narrator embarks upon a search for his missing wife and finds himself in the process. A meadering story about discovery, love, and enlightenment.






by Ibn 'Arabi, with forward by Sheikh Muzaffer Ozak Al-Jerrahi  
Inner Traditions
This text is an excellent resource for quiet, contemplative solitude.  If you're finding yourself alone on a summer day, pick up this book and indulge in the silent Being of Now.
by Daniel Quinn
Bantam/Tuner
"Teacher Seeks Pupil.  Must have an earnest desire to save the world.  Apply in person."









~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~



 From Nellie Levine:

Reiki: A Comprehensive Guide
by Pamela Miles
Tarcher

I'm on my way to completing second degree Reiki training this summer, and recently read this. It's a great, level-headed and straightforward book that explains what Reiki is and what it does, and offers sound advice on how to approach Reiki practice, for self and others. It is written for those who are already practitioners, as well as for those considering it. There is a big emphasis on how Reiki helps chronic conditions, and how those with such conditions benefit from learning Reiki for self-treatment. Miles also addresses the issue of research, and how as Reiki grows in use among many hospitals, it is gaining more and more respect in the medical community.



Turning Your Mind Into an Ally
by Sakyong Mipham
Riverhead Trade

If you've been putting off beginning a meditation practice, or if you simply want to strengthen your existing practice, this book will offer you helpful guidance, inspiration, and instruction. Written to a Western audience, Turning Your Mind Into an Ally has a very accessible voice - Sakyong Mipham gives us examples of stumbling blocks that we can all relate to, and his sense of humor helps us approach our practice with kindness for ourselves. Although it's very much a beginner's book, I am glad to know this book is on my shelf and I can open it up whenever my practice needs a little boost in discipline.


Vodou: Visions and Voices of Haiti
by Phillis Galembo
Ten Speed Press

 Haiti is still suffering from the catastrophic 2010 earthquake. Through the devastation the news showed us images of the hurt and newly homeless, the survivors, and the dead, of this poor country; yet the story has since faded into the background. Vodou: Visions and Voices of Haiti is a book of beautiful photography and insightful words that shows us an undeniably indomitable spirit. Published years before the earthquake, it depicts a rich, steadfast spiritual faith that underlies life in Haiti. Enjoy the beauty in these words and images, and remember Haiti! The people of this country still need our attention.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


From Diane Fergurson:

A Discovery of Witches
by Deborah Harkness
Viking

This book renewed my faith in fun and intelligently written fact based fiction.  The author, Deborah Harkness, is a professor of history with numerous awards and fellowships.  This is definitely reflected in the quality of her book. "A Discovery of Witches" literally has it all. You will not want to leave this story for even one minute once you begin!  Adventure, mystery, romance.  Interesting historical information on magic and alchemy.  A 1,500 year vampire.  Witches, daemons, Oxford University, the Knights Templar and the American Revolution...all rolled into one terrific story. A fabulous read that you can learn something from too.  Doesn't get any better then that!



The Celtic Way of Seeing
by Frank MacEowen
New World Library

"The Celtic Way of Seeing" takes you on a beautiful journey.  A journey through the mind, the eye, the soul and the heart of Irish spirituality.  Through the retelling of the traditional story "The Settling of the Manor of Tara" MacEowen explores man's connection to the Universal energies through the four basic spiritual directions (well, five if you count the center) - that are contained within the Irish Spirit Wheel or mandala.  What I enjoyed most in this book was the author's exploration of the similarities between the Celtic belief system and a variety of indigenous cultures and traditions.   "The Celtic Way of Seeing" is wonderfully written.  A true joy to read again and again because something new always seems to find you.  After I finished "The Celtic Way of Seeing" I immediately ordered and read some additional books by Frank MacEowen.  I love them too!




Parabola Magazine
Summer 2011 Issue: Giving and Receiving

For those folks who may not be able to find the time to read an entire book this summer, I recommend picking up or downloading the Summer Edition of Parabola Magazine.  Founded in 1976, Parabola explores the traditional myths, symbols, rituals, and art of the world's religious and cultural traditions. Every issue explores one of the facets of human existence from the point of view of many world religions and spiritual traditions with essays and images.  The Summer 2011 issue focuses it's articles on "Giving and Receiving"... something we can all benefit from.



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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Moon-In-The-Water

"Moon-in-the-water is a favorite Zen metaphor for human experience.  It is used to demonstrate how human experience is created not only by external objects, but also, and equally as much, by the nature of the mind and the structure of the senses.

In the metaphor, water may be seen as subject (mind and senses) and moon as object (external objects).  There is no moon-in-the-water if there is no water or if the moon does not rise.  Moon-in-the-water happens only when there is water and when the moon rises. However, neither moon nor water waits for the other:  the water does not wait to catch the moon's image, and the moon does not wait to cast its rays on water.  Moon-in-the-water is created equally by water and the moon.

Thus, experience does not happen to us, but is created by our minds and senses and the external objects perceived by them."






Taken from the book, "Moonscapes" by Rosemary Ellen Guiley

Photo credit: "Colorado Water Landscape Night Sky Moon" by Julie Magers Soulen




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Mind Body Spirit Odyssey Book Review: Fantastic Voyage - Live Long Enough to Live Forever

"Live Long Enough to Live Forever."  That's a bold declaration - perhaps even the indictment - of the book by Dr. Terry Grossman and Ray Kurzweil.  Readers will no doubt recognize Kurzweil's name from his famous text, The age of Spiritual Machines, and Dr. Grossman is the founder and director of the Grossman Wellness Center (formally the Frontier Medical Institute) and is widely considered an expert on nutrition and anti-aging therapies.  The text was a joint effort between the two scholars, and addresses numerous concerns regarding both our spiritual and our physical aging process as human beings.

 The text gives an overview int the radical, life-changing modalities of modern science addressing anti-aging and life extension - an emerging field that some consider to be on the fringe of Western medicine.  The authors, however, intend to change all that.  In this compendium of health data, introductory scientific definitions,  and even preventive tips, Kurzweil and Grossman provide both layman and advanced students with a definitive guide on how to practically apply every day life extension techniques to enhance current daily living and achieve greater longevity.

The reader may be skeptical, perhaps even overly cautious with the text at first.  With only a glance, its pages can seem full of daunting details and definitions of such things as RNA and protein blockers, starch inhibitors and fibrinogen, just to name a few.  A closer evaluation, however, will reveal sections that provide tips on how to make smart, healthy eating choices in younger and middle years to prepare and perhaps even prevent the entropy associated with the cellular decay of old age.  Some parts of the text actually give lists of foods and/or supplements that might be beneficial for those looking to enhance their current health, as well as prepare for the future.

The book also gives an overview about the importance of spiritual health and its essential role in the preparation for longevity.  One section delineates an array of precise techniques for meditation, and describes the role that meditation can play in the alignment of the spiritual and the physical.  The authors maintain that spiritual health is every bit as essential for balanced living and longevity as is proper nutrition and exercise.

This book is a must read for anyone interested in the study of anti-aging and life extension, but should not be undertaken lightly.  Its pages are chock full of important information, lists and techniques that - when applied with care - can no doubt render the desired benefits of longevity.  Furthermore, every reader concerned with health and wellness overall should undertake this read - it is indeed a fantastic voyage.
 
"Fantastic Voyage - Live Long Enough to Live Forever"
By Ray Kurzweil and Terry Grossman, M.D. Publisher:
Plume (September 27, 2005)

Reviewed by:  Christina Dudley

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Reading The Mind Body Spirit Odyssey on Your iPad with Flipboard

If you have an iPad and enjoy the Mind Body Spirit Odyssey, did you know that there is a really cool way to access the blog and keep current with our articles by using the Flipboard App?  All you have to do is download  Flipboard, hit edit, select a blank square that says "add a section", type in Mind Body Spirit Odyssey and our blog will appear as one of your selections (it's in the last row lower right in the photo).  I recently discovered this totally by accident, and was simply blown away with how beautiful our material looked!

Flipboard will give you the ability to read our content in a magazine style format which will update every time we post something new.  As you can see from my sample page on the left, below "The Zoe Report" on the bottom left - next to "In a Creative Context", I also added The Mind Body Spirit Marketplace our Fan Page on Facebook. The Marketplace magazine updates every time someone posts something new on our Facebook Page.

 The Mind Body Spirit Odyssey has articles going back for over two years and there really is a variety of interesting material to read.  Lifestyle and diet articles, interviews with authors and healers, book reviews, interviews with visionary artists, inspirational prose and stunning visual collection of artwork and photography!  If you are an iPad or iPad 2 user...definitely give it a try!  It's free, why not?
                     ~ diane fergurson






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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Baby in Your Dreams?

I had a dream the other night that I was carrying around a baby.  A chubby, healthy, adorable little baby. Everyone who saw the infant immediately fell in love it.  In my dream I carried this baby with me everywhere I went.  I fed and changed it.  Watched over it.  Nurtured it.  Toted this child around with me constantly, no matter where I went or what I was doing. 

I've been interpreting dreams fairly accurately for myself and others for a long time, and I know enough about the symbolism involved that I immediately knew that my "baby" did not literally mean a "real" human infant.  Although the symbols that are involved with dreams may vary from person to person, due to points of reference and cultural beliefs, most primary symbols remain pretty constant.    

A baby in a dream, for example, symbolizes an idea or project that is in it's infancy or beginning stages.  If your project or idea is still small, and you are nurturing it's growth and continually working on it, then in your dream you will be "caring for your baby".  In your dream if you are dropping the baby, then you are dropping a valuable idea or project...it's a warning.  Bathing and changing the baby means cleaning up any mistakes or messes you have made, and sometimes starting over.  Too many babies in your dream refers to taking on too many projects or having too many ideas, goals, responsibilities or problems to effectively handle at one time.  If you loose the baby, it means that you are loosing sight of your dreams and ideals.  You may want to step back and re-evaluate what you are doing in your life.  If you kill the baby, you are sacrificing something that is important to you and may want to ask yourself if your decision is really worth it.

If you are interested in dreams and what they may be try to tell to you, and good book to pick up is "The Mystical, Magical, Marvelous World of Dreams" by Wilda B. Tanner.  This is an older book (originally published in 1988), but it came highly recommended to me by some serious dream folks at the New Age Center in Sedona some years ago. It is very practical, reliable, and easy to understand.  As an aside, it really is important to be very careful what books you purchase on dreams, metaphysical topics or spirituality in general.  Make sure the author is experienced and credible.  I've read outstanding books by exceptional authors on many subjects, and others that have been just downright goofy.

Getting back to my dream baby... Yes, I knew exactly what my dream was referring to.  It's a creative project I have been consistently working on for a long time.  It's been slow going, and the project has been slowly growing, but it is basically still in it's infancy.  Everyone who see's what I've been up to falls in love it - that fat, healthy, cute baby from my dream. I think the Universe was just sending me a message to keep going and be patient.  That things are coming along just fine!

~ diane fergurson 



                                                                             
Photo of Baby Cameron courtesy of Joy Glenn Photography

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