Happy New Year of the Earth Dog. It’s time to take ACTION!
It’s the Year of the Dog according to the Chinese calendar – a year for ACTION.
Not only that but it’s the year of the Earth Dog. For each zodiac year (tiger, rabbit, rat, pig, snake, horse, ox, dragon, sheep and dog) is not just associated with an animal sign, but also one of five elements: Wood, Water, Fire, Metal and Earth. 2018 meets the element of Earth.
As we welcome new beginnings, how can we go about building Energy to promote Action, with the trusted support of Earth?
Let’s start by cleansing the old and welcoming the new.
Out with the old, in with the new.
In Chinese tradition, tired and negative energy is accumulated throughout the year and stored. As Chinese New Year marks a new beginning, it is customary to spend two days prior to the big day to give homes a thorough cleanse and invite Chi – life force – into our homes. By clearing the clutter, families removing the negative energy to make way for good fortune.
We too are made of energy – our personal energy.
Our personal energy must be aligned with the universe. It must be constantly replenished and cleansed to avoid imbalances that might impact our health, relationship with others, and overall wellness. After a year of hard work, challenges and stress, it’s time to clear the old and welcome the new. It’s time to start afresh!
As luck would have it, Mother Earth has all the new Energy we need!
The Greeks refer to Gaia, which means Mother Earth. She is fertile, nurturing, grounding, strong and constantly transforming as a way of honouring Nature’s changes and to maintain harmony, wholeness and balance.
As Mother Nature heals, nurtures and supports all life on this planet, we must return to her offerings if we want to care and protect our personal energy.
Here are just some of the ways we can do this:
Nature has generously offered us thousands of different crystals and stones with many different properties, exquisite beauty and strong healing potential.
From cell phones to satellites, crystals are critical elements of practically every high technology item in the modern world. They’re used in industries including fashion, cosmetics, and medicine to name a few. At the same time, crystals’ extraordinary ability to store, transmit and transform energy is equally critical in the pursuit of health, wellness, and deep spirituality. Inspired by the Earth and its wisdom, we have chosen Amber to share with you.
Amber isn’t really a crystal but it’s considered to be one because of its strong connection to Earth and its metaphysical properties. It’s a tree resin that has been fossilized from ancient evergreen trees. The oldest Amber discovered on Earth is about 320 million years old. Imagine the incredible wisdom and powerful energy this Amber holds!
Known as the ‘Stone of Universal Manifestation’, here are a few of the properties attributed to the ancient Amber:
- Holds warm, healing and wise energy
- Fossilized resin from prehistoric trees which holds accumulated wisdom on the Earth
- Powerful environment cleanser (for computers and radiation fields)
- Dissolves negative energies and transmutes them into positive forces
- Acts as a protective personal stone
For this special Earth year, I have sourced and selected some truly stunning and rare amber, which I will be showcasing at Wellness Garden’s Crystal Healing 101, in collaboration with Mind Body Soul Asia. You’re welcome to join this special event to learn more about Amber amongst other powerful crystals.
- Incense Traditions
Incense and holy smoke have been a part of daily and spiritual life in nearly every culture on Earth for tens and thousands of years. Our ancestors used incense for healing, nourishing the spirit, connecting to the divine, and uplifting the soul. It is now popular in Western countries too, and is part of many people’s wellness shopping list.
From the aromas that inspire, delight and connect with our ancient wisdom we chose Sandalwood Incense.
The sandalwood tree, Santalum album, grows in Asia and East India and the incense is made from the wood of the tree. Burning sandalwood incense stick releases a fragrant, woodsy odour. The warm soothing aroma of sandalwood can help you to relax the mind and promote feelings of peace and serenity, as well as ease various ailments of the digestive system.
Sandalwood is also known to stimulate the Root (seventh) Chakra, improving self-identity and trust. In the Ayurvedic healing tradition, it promotes energy and enthusiasm, increasing your self-esteem and zest for life.
Remember to opt for 100% natural incense sticks and protect your lungs. Don’t burn incense every day or in a closed space.
- Forest therapy
In our prehistoric existence, we shared an intimate relationship with nature where it provided our shelter, food and also the medicine for our survival. As humans, we were once incredibly in-tune with our surroundings but sadly nearly every step in human history has been accompanied with a leap in environmental degradation and separation.
Much of the health and energetic imbalances we suffer are from this divorce from nature, from the source of life.
But we can change things. We can reconcile our relationship with nature. One of the ways this is possible is through Forest Therapy. Who better to share with us the benefits of Forest Therapy than Jasmine Nunns, Hong Kong’s first certified Nature and Forest Therapy Guide, and founder of Kembali.
“I had been searching for a word that represented the sense of reconnection we experience when we feel whole, but such a word did not seem to exist in the English Language. Having spent some time at the Bali Green School, I learned of ‘Kembali’, which means ‘to return’, a coming home. For me, this is what Nature & Forest Therapy is all about, a return to our true nature, through the reconnection of the natural world.
Nature & Forest Therapy walks help us remember what our ancestors practised, to hold reverence, awe and respect for Mother Earth. It helps us hold up a mirror to see how nature is reflected in us, just as much as we are reflected in her.
The walks are designed to reconnect with Self, Others, and Nature.
To connect with Self, we rediscover our senses. Remembering we have more than just the traditional 5 senses! We uncover what values are truly important to us, and spend precious time with ourselves, in full acceptance of the Forest.
To connect with Others, we hold council, within the Forest therapy Walks. Council is as much about sharing, as it is about learning to listen, just as so many of our ancestors did, sitting around a fire.
To connect with Nature, we begin to remember the language of trees. It’s asking more than how we can benefit from being in a Forest environment, but how the Forest receives us.
To end our walks, we honour the space the Forest has held for us, with a tea ceremony of foraged aromatic plants and offer our gratitude in different ways.
The simple act of stepping outside has been an awakening experience for some people. They simply didn’t realise how much they needed to switch off from auto-pilot – their strategy to ‘get through’ the day.
Others have expressed the discomfort, surprise, and tenderness of the experience of when they feel they have communicated with a tree. The innocence of the dialogue that can be had is what most children can teach us, but as adults, we seem to have forgotten.
One participant offered that it felt like ‘returning to the essence of being a human being’.”
To plan for an active and positive 2018, let’s reconnect to one of our greatest sources of energy and balance – Earth Element, Mother Earth – where strength, power, and clarity are made available to us in its most natural form.
Here’s to 2018 – your year of positive energy and action!
Manipura Wellness Practice
Recipe of the month
As we enjoy one the coldest winters in the past few years, we cherish homemade soups – bowls of warmth and good ol’ fashioned nourishment.
Here’s one of our favourites adapted from The Australian Women’s Weekly Cookbooks on soups – Watercress and lemon soup. It’s simple, easy to make and delicious!
Watercress, a mineral-rich green leafy vegetable, is a cruciferous plant grown for centuries. The nutritious watercress falls under the Brassicaceae family. Its health benefits are amazing due to its high content of vitamins and minerals. Here are a few:
Watercress contains more vitamin C than an orange, more calcium than milk, more iron than spinach and more folate than bananas. The phytonutrients are where the health benefits of watercress are contained.
Watercress is a gift from Earth and is a beneficial food that supports our body to be healthy and active.
WATERCRESS AND LEMON SOUP
50g olive oil
1 medium brown onion chopped coarsely
2 cloves garlic, crushed
¼ cup arrowroot (for thickening)
400g watercress, plus few leaves to garnish
2 litres of veggie stock
¼ cup of lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot place the olive oil; cook the onion and garlic, stirring until onion softens
- Add arrowroot; cook and stir until mixture bubbles and thickens. Gradually stir in the stock; cook and stir until mixture boils and thickens. Add watercress and lemon juice. Bring soup mixture to a boil; simmer, uncovered for 2 min.
- Place the mixture in a blender in batches and mix until smooth. Return to a large pot, season with salt and pepper.
- Serve with crusty bread and garnish with watercress leaves.
Enjoy, invite friends to join you, and here’s to your health and to Earth for providing such goodness!
January, February and March Events
Meditation with Kirtan at IMI Central
6.15-7.15pm, 15 Jan and 12 Feb
In this unique blend of Kirtan, the usage of powerful yet gentle mantras, techniques and guidance Cristina aims to help you to develop a simple mindfulness or meditation practice.
To secure your seat book now by calling 2523.7121 or email: [email protected]
Kirtan joins ‘Yoga Stops Human Traffick’ event to support Odanadi Foundation at Kita Yoga,
6.00-7.00pm, 10 Mar
We are delighted to continue to offer this yearly special session as we join forces with Katherine Camilleri and ‘Yoga Stops Human Traffick’ to support Odanadi Foundation. For more information on the phenomenal work of Odanadi Foundation, visit www.odanadi.org
Venue: Kita Yoga, 1 U Lam Terrace, Sheung Wan
Admission: To secure your seat book now by email: [email protected]
Bach Flower Remedies and Crystal Healing at Wellness Garden
A beautiful wellness project created by Mind Body Soul Asia – Wellness Garden — brings multiple events to navigate Self-Discovery, Personal Development/ Growth, Empowerment, Healing, Raising Consciousness and a More Meaningful Life.
Crystal Healing 101
Date: 07 March from 7-8:30pm
Where: Caelum Green Flagship Store
90-92 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan
Bach Flower Remedies
Date: 28 March from 7-8:30pm
Where: Caelum Flagship Green Store
90-92 Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan