If you’re like most people, the first thing you do in the morning after waking and going to the bathroom is turning on the coffee maker for your daily cup(s). Coffee is a highly acidic stimulant and drinking it first thing in the morning is the equivalent of slapping your kidneys with a paddle. A far more balancing way to start your day is to drink a cup of hot water. Hot water cleans out the toxins that have accumulated in the GI tract overnight, cleans the colon by inducing the need to go to the bathroom, and wakes up the digestion by strengthening the digestive acid which has remained dormant as you slept. So put away your coffee maker and take out the kettle. Your kidneys will be grateful.

And, if you want to take this one step further which is what I have done for many years now…try this:

Take this tonic in the morning upon arising as a way to ensure a youthful inner body.  Remember, both unfiltered apple cider vinegar and honey are high in potassium, which keeps the arteries and soft tissues of the body supple.  Historians believe that a vinegar and water beverage consumed when wine was unavailable contributed to the stamina and fortitude of the ancient Roman army.

1 teaspoon honey

8 ounces pure water

1 teaspoon unfiltered apple cider vinegar

Dissolve the honey in warm water.  Add apple cider vinegar and stir.

Serves 1

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Just Keep Driving

This is an editorial that I came across of Alan Cohen’s that I thought that I would like to share with you-all…  I hope that you enjoy it.

As I was driving around a bend on a country road, a huge dog jumped at the car window and started barking vehemently.  After my initial surprise and a moment of fear, I took a breath and realized I was entirely safe and protected.  The dog stayed quite close to the car for a while, but I just kept driving calmly.  Soon he could not keep up with the car, and he retired from his chase.

I saw our encounter as a metaphor for the way troubles jump at us in life.  Suddenly, unexpected beasts seem to lurch at us from out of nowhere, and we may be tempted to become afraid and run or counter-attack.  The answer, however, is usually very simple: just keep driving.  Who you are ( a spiritual being) and where you live (deep within yourself) is entirely protected from any passing event.  We fuel the upsets of life by getting into the ring and battling them.  If you just keep moving toward you chosen destiny, any worldly difficulty will eventually drop away.  You are bigger than anything that bothers you.

I love the story in the film Tucker: The Man and his Dream.  In 1947 Preston Tucker developed an automobile that was many years ahead of its time, with a range of features that have since become standard equipment.  Because his invention posed a threat to other auto manufacturers, he was squashed and falsely accused of crimes.  As his trial was being conducted, Tucker doodled.  Eventually, Tucker was acquitted,  and he showed his sketches to his wife – schematic plans for a new kind of refrigerator with the potential to revolutionize the industry.  Tucker wasted none of his precious time.  Why bother with a trial when you can be creating things that will change the world?

Pay as little attention as possible to your troubles, and as much attention as possible to your dreams.  You will receive more of whatever you invest your energy in.  You are bigger than any dogs that bark as you pass.

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Lately I have been inundated with with information about the amazing things that turmeric can heal. It is truly mind-blowing. If you are not taking this miracle spice you should start.

Turmeric has been shown to reduce tumors, reduce inflammation, reduce your risk of all kinds of diseases… The benefits are so many.

Turmeric grows wild in the forests of South and Southeast Asia. It’s one of the key ingredients in many Pakistani, Indian, Persian and Thai dishes and has incredible medicinal value, too.

Here are some of the benefits when ingested with your food as a spice:
1.  It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.
2.  When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.
3.  Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.
4.  It may prevent melanoma and cause existing melanoma cells to commit suicide.
5.  Reduces the risk of childhood leukemia.
6.  It’s a natural liver detoxifier.
7.  Turmeric may prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.
8.  It may prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.
9.  It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.
10.  Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.
11.  Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.
12.  May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.
13.  Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.
14.  Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
15.  Boosts the effects of chemo drug paclitaxel and reduces its side effects.
16.  Promising studies are underway on the effects of turmeric on pancreatic cancer.
17.  Studies are ongoing in the positive effects of turmeric on multiple myeloma.
18.  Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.
19.  Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.
20.  May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.

Here’s how to use turmeric!

1. Spice up your food.

Add this spice to anything, besides sweets, for a new flavor and a ton of health benefits. You can use turmeric to add some zest to cooked vegetables, eggs, and meat dishes. You can also add it to boiling water you’re using to make pasta, rice, soups, and more.

2. Drink it as a tea.

Bring four cups of water to a boil. Add one teaspoon of ground turmeric and reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes. Strain the tea through a fine sieve into a cup, add honey and/or lemon to taste.

3. Use a turmeric supplement.

I like to take a tumeric supplements a day in case I am traveling and am unable to cook with it.  Here is the supplement that I am taking:  Gaia Turmeric Supreme.  I always order it from Amazon.

4. Mix it with castor oil for a skin detox.

Castor oil with tumeric powder is a powerful toxin releaser for your skin. For women, it is great to apply to the breast and under arm because it will pull out harmful toxins from the lymph nodes and fat cells of the breast.

I started taking it for the OsteoArthritis benefits and have definitely seen results.  But there are so many other things that are just better for taking it.

Try it…You will like it!

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 I love a good cup of Butternut Soup on a cool fall day!  Here is a great recipe.



2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons good olive oil

4 cups chopped yellow onions (3 large)

2 tablespoons mild curry powder

5 pounds butternut squash (2 large)

1 1/2 pounds sweet apples, such as McIntosh (4 apples)

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 cups water 2 cups good apple cider or juice


Warm the butter, olive oil, onions, and curry powder in a large stockpot uncovered over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, until the onions are tender. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pot.

Peel the squash, cut in half, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into chunks. Peel, quarter, and core the apples. Cut into chunks. Add the squash, apples, salt, pepper, and 2 cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes, until the squash and apples are very soft.

Process the soup through a food mill fitted with a large blade, or puree it coarsely in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pour the soup back into the pot. Add the apple cider or juice and enough water to make the soup the consistency you like; it should be slightly sweet and quite thick.

Check the salt and pepper and serve hot.


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Are You Perfect?

Most people would answer a resounding “NO” to that question.

After all, “Nobody’s perfect,” right?

Yet I bet the last time you experienced holding a newborn
or being with young children, you noticed how they naturally
and effortlessly express their Essence.

They are magnetic. Alive. Authentic. Vibrant. Energetic. Spontaneous.

Because when we are very young, we are deeply connected
to our innate perfection.

We are whole. Singular. Aligned. Complete.

Then as we go through life, most of us tend to unconsciously
absorb the limiting belief systems and coping behaviors of our
environment to fit in and survive as best we can.

And little by little . . . and sometimes suddenly . . . we lose
touch with the fundamental perfection we were born with and
may even completely forget that part of ourselves.

The good news is that underneath all that “stuff,” we are
fundamentally still perfect. That purity and perfect pattern of
us still exists.

And we can tap into it at will and create a life beyond what
we may even think is possible right now.

Taking time to just be with yourself to contemplate life can bring you back to your perfection.

As you experience the perfection of you . . . more and more . . .
your nervous system automatically begins aligning all your
beliefs and behaviors to express and support your fundamental
wholeness. . . your Essence.

And as this happens, the world around you also begins to
shift . . . mirroring back to you the ripples of your Essential
Frequency. . . unimpeded by past conditioning, habits, thoughts
and non-useful ways of being.

You’re free to truly create what you choose.

Take a moment today to contemplate your perfection folks.

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APOLOGIES TO THE DIVINE FEMININE (from a warrior in transition)

I found this article in my wonderings and thought that I just had to share it.  I hope that you agree….

I apologize for my inability to distinguish the benevolent warrior from the heartless warrior, a reflection of my own confusion dealing with the battlefields of yore. When I opened my heart too wide, I was vulnerable to attack from warring factions. I was conditioned to believe that I had to stay rigid, focused, prepared for any eventuality, in the desire to protect myself and others from attack. But I went too far, and closed too tight, and eradicated the bridge between our hearts. I am seeing this now and I am sorry.

I apologize for my perpetual absence, a reflection of my own inner absence, my inability to connect from a heart jammed tight by unresolved emotions that I did not have the tools to work through. I still lack many of these tools, but I am open to their emergence.

I apologize for my inability to distinguish relationship from war. Like a warrior in enemy territory, I would sneak in and out of your life in the night, plundering and selfishly taking what I needed, then crawling back to the other side of the abyss with the spoils. I gave little back for fear that I would become vulnerable to attack. I had war on the brain and I could not see the river of love waiting on the other side of the battlefield. I now recognize that love is the antidote for the armoured warrior, but I could not drink the antidote in my driven state.

I apologize for not seeing you, my eyes blinded by congealed rage and unshed tears. If it is any consolation, and I imagine it is not, I could not see myself either. I saw only that which served my hyper-vigilance, my warrior focus. My mirror was a battlefield.

I apologize for my ungrounded materialism, my power driven tyrannies, my obsession with accumulation. Somehow I imagined that accumulation would protect me and those close to me, but I failed to recognize that it just perpetuated the madness. I also apologize for my egoic abuses, a reflection of my own misguided ego, pumped up to deal with an inherently competitive world. I couldn’t distinguish the healthy, confident ego from the cocky, unhealthy ego. I went much too far in the wrong direction.

I apologize for a sexuality that was objectifying and disconnected from the heart. I know you longed for real intimacy, a merging of our souls along the heart-genital highway. But there were too many defences around my heart, and no bridge could form between our souls. There were moments when your loving ways freed me from my body masks, but I had no template to stand in that heart-fire. I am sorry for this, for I know that the path you longed for was the path to God.

I apologize for my horrifying acts of violence, a reflection of my own congealed rage, my own inability to distinguish real enemies from friends. There are no words that can undo what I have done in those moments of madness. I know this, I do. I would hide my face in shame, but that won’t make things better. I need to own my misdeeds, and then find a way to believe in my capacity to move from a more loving place. I call out to other male warriors to be accountable for the actions of our gender, not in a way that is self-hating, but in a way that is courageously self-honest and genuinely compassionate. The heartfelt warrior acknowledges the error of his ways, and has the courage to do all he can to make amends over time.

I apologize for my inability to develop a conscious relationship. You were right there with your beautiful heart on your sleeve but I was too attached to my individualism and afraid of this unknown terrain. I know the forests, the marketplace and the ways of the outer world so well, but my inner geography is foreign to me. You called me to a place I was ill-prepared to go, although I sensed, below the surface of my bravado, that you called me home.

I am grateful for your willingness to believe that who I was in those rare moments of vulnerability was the real me. You were right- the real me lives inside of my heart- but a few moments now and then was the most I could handle. I saw you as dangerous, for in your presence I began to taste a surrendered way of being. Nonetheless, your faith in my goodness kept me going through many a battle, and restored my faith in life when I most needed it. You were the light at the end of a barbaric tunnel, and I am blessed.

I am grateful that you stuck with me through thick and thin, and I also understand those times you had to give up and let go. I now recognize that there is meaningful difference between a love-ship and a relationship. Love alone is not enough. Without a shared willingness to become conscious, there can only be frustration. I was so often impossible, clinging to my unconsciousness like a soldier clings to his weapons. I recognize the courage it took for you to keep your heart open in the presence of my resistance. You had every right to seek an authentic relationship, as your spirit was ignited in its presence. Your beautiful heart had every right to be met in its openness and willingness. I am grateful for the time you gave me, a moments respite from the hiding places I mistakenly called home.

I am grateful for Grandmother, for no one saw my tenderness more clearly. I am grateful for Mother, for choosing to bring me into being and for nourishing my body until I could find my feet. I am grateful for Mother Earth, for grounding my expansion and enlivening my spirit. I am grateful for the Divine Mother, the real Mother of us all. I now feel her divine presence, so close. Fiercely compassionate, she was always right here, breathing life into me, holding me safe. I sit in her lap as she breathes me.

I look forward to the day when the only thing that ignites relationship is two souls calling out to one another, two soul-hearts beating in the same direction, a whisper of longing that bridges one essence to another. I want to want you not because it gratifies my ego, not because you are outwardly beautiful, but because your very presence invites my Godself out of hiding. I want to touch you with my heart on my sleeve, to know chemistry between us that is not gender identified, but that is essence sourced, loves liquid lava flowing from the heart to the genitals to the great beyond. In this love-struck world, relationship will always be experienced as spiritual practice, a devotional expression of our God-self.

I had always believed that sensitivity is impossible to hold to in a harsh world. Yet in this moment, I feel sensitive, but without the fragility. I am still wearing armor but there is a shift in the direction of my intensity. I can linger in the heart-space a little longer than I once could, I am softening in places. After so many lifetimes with weapon in hand, a tenderling warrior is being birthed in the core of my being. He is confused, but he intuitively knows that this is the way home.

Please don’t give up on me or my fellow warriors. Forgive us our misdeeds, or, at the least, be open to the possibility that we will change as the trail expands to meet our shifting intentionality. The day will come when our warrior spirit loses its harsh edge, and comes into alignment with benevolent action. Some of us are already there, and many more of us will follow. The road to transformation is dependent on a bridge between genders, a benevolent bridge that celebrates our differences with respect and kindness. That work must begin with healing the rifts along the gender continuum, working hard to heal the collective heart until one day we can stand on a bridge across forever, hands held together, hearts open and alight, embracing the sacred masculine and divine feminine living at the heart of us all. I will meet you there.

May you feel the love of the Divine Mother crashing down on your heartfelt shores, graciously lifting you up above the madness of the world, nestling you in the grateful arms of those you have nurtured. Those of us who have received your blessings may not always acknowledge it, but your acts of love have landed within us, growing us stronger and infusing us with love’s light. Thank you.

© Jeff Brown, 2010 (www.soulshaping.com)

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Declaration of Inner Independence

Today we celebrate the birth of our free nation.  Yet even more important than national freedom is internal freedom.  We may live in a democratic society, but unless we are free of the inner bondage of fear and separation, we are not truly free.

Today, break free of the power you have given to others to make or break your life.  While others may invite, suggest, guide, or influence you, ultimately you alone must live with the choices you make, and so you must choose in accordance with your heart’s guidance.  If you have given any person power over your life, take back your power now.  No one can hurt you, and no one can save you unless you ordain it.

Today, declare a revolution of consciousness.  Oust the old dictators of self-doubt, attack thoughts, jealousy, and the replaying of old negative patterns of thought and feeling, and replace them with a belief in yourself, trust in the wisdom of life, positive visualization and speech, and the willingness to be grand.

Today, move beyond human politics, and find unity at the core of your being.  At the center of yourself, all states of consciousness within you merge into wholeness.  Your economy is based on love: the more love you give, the more you have.

Today, let the world know that you are a sovereign and powerful nation, comprised of all the experiences and wisdom you have leaned over a lifetime.  Raise the lamp of liberty high, that all may know that you stand for truth.

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