Blog Archives

Food As A “Work Of Art” Enlivening My Life


tropical fruit, granola and smoothie

breakfast of tropical fruit, granola & smoothie in grenada

I always look forward to meals, especially my morning smoothies, which really get me over the hump of waking up – something that can be a bit of a challenge and a process to take “smoothly”. ;)

Since I went vegan about 8 years ago, my whole relationship with, and experience of, food is so enlivened. I don’t remember loving food so much, nor consciously understanding the whole picture connection of it as a source of overall well-being even beyond just myself. Each meal is nature’s “work of art” and making meals has simplified into a lively whole food experience that is circle-of-life-encompassing.

These reflections nudged me while I was having lunch and so I was inspired to share this for whatever reason. And now, having just finished my lunch, my tummy is feeling so content right now and I am feeling clear and ready for today’s creative process of painting.

mixedvegetablesI am enlivened and blessed by the foods that Mother Earth provides. And today that was a “bowl of gratitude” filled with a beautiful salad of baby kale, broccoli and sunflower sprouts, heirloom tomatoes, avocado, cucumber, strawberries, and a touch of sauerkraut, all sprinkled with hemp seeds, chlorella, and fresh pepper.

I find making meals to be simple and quick (the more simple and quick, the better – not only for time efficiency, but in terms of assimilation) and I see how every day is a cohesive experience of all aspects of my life working in partnership to support optimal results.

Yet no matter how simple a meal may be, it is exquisite in nature whether intentionally created into a work of art, or simply realized as the work of art it truly is – much like our beautiful temple bodies.

My personal motto is “creating life as a work of art”, as you can see by the title/theme of my Blog. I see every thing as an integral part of the “painting of experience” I am creating each day, with each stroke of color having great meaning and depth. The more clearly each color is expressed and chosen, the more vibrant the “life picture”.

And I do LOVE vibrant colors, as one can tell by viewing my painting portfolio. The colors of my creations mirror the spectrum of nature’s miracle wonders and bounty.

Everything is always so filled with synchronicity, as not long after I felt guided to share this short thought today, someone sent me this video below that seems so fitting. Perhaps a different song choice would have reflected the beautiful images even more so, but nonetheless these are stunning images of fruit and vegetable sculptures that mirror this sentiment I am sharing.

I hope you enjoy these “works of art” as you contemplate your own life’s creation.

Celebrations of Connection & Integrative Healing – Earth Day & Beyond


tania marie

Me on the sanctuary grounds doing the nature walk with the attendees

I’m always reminded of the unification we share as a collective through synchronous events and experiences that take place. This has been a constant reflection in my life, which I carried through to yesterday’s APRL Earth Day Celebration (Animal Protection and Rescue League) with a healing meditation I led.

When I was first approached about the event I felt right away that I wanted to be part of it and knew what I would like to bring as my contribution to the group – a healing meditation of connection, unification, and integrative healing from the inside out. It was a way I felt I could support others to connect mindfully with their center, the Universal Source, and the Earth, by grounding and anchoring within and without, while sending and receiving healing love in partnership with each other.

My weekend, like most, was spent out in nature and focused on nature…taking a beautiful hike Saturday, which ended in a picnic lunch and relaxation to the sound of the waves at the beach, and then concluding with a nature walk at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary yesterday, which was on the grounds where our Earth Day event was held.

great blue heron

Great Blue Heron at the sanctuary

The event also included inspiring and educational talks by the speakers of the day – all focused on ways to live with conscious awareness, compassion and honor for the Earth and each other, an inside look at Dave Simon’s eye-opening, upcoming book, “Meatonomics,” a preview trailer of the amazing upcoming movie, “Unity” - a film for all who hunger for a deeper meaning to existence, and a more unified way of living with one another, with all expressions of life, a vegan spread of contributed dishes by all that attended, and concluding with a healing meditation I contributed to seal the resonance of unification.

food

vegan potluck at the APRL Earth Day event

Today, I join in energetically with everyone in continuing my own personal Earth honoring and am happy to see and feel so many others connecting collectively in celebration of our beautiful Gaia’s gifts of life. On our own we can powerfully affect change by embodying the change, and yet together the bar is raised to our limitless potentials. Every day is opportunity to live in awareness and to continue our consistent presence of being the change we dream and desire.

Right now, the house here is infused with fragrant aromatic scents from tangerine blossoms from our garden, and peppermint and oregano plants (gifts from yesterday’s events provided to the speakers) which takes me away to the outdoors and visions of wild fields where animals and faeries spread their magick freely. My desk and studio/office is filled with crystals, stones, and shells from the Earth and my animal companions. The kitchen counter baskets are overflowing with organic fruits to make a fruit salad with (including our last harvest of tangerines), and the sun is shining warmly through my window.

flowers and herbs

My tangerine blossoms, peppermint and oregano plants

I can find my connection and be aware of all the natural, free, and simple Earthly beauty that surrounds me daily, realizing and having gratitude for the gifts that my human senses provide me in tangible and pleasurable ways. And alongside them, gratitude for my personal heart and soul feelings and beliefs that provide me inner peace and need not any proof beyond their connective experiences, regardless if that experience is mine alone.

I’ve always been one to pay attention to the visions, messages, signs, and voices I receive, especially when they seem random, as those are the times I’ve learned to trust even moreso, despite there being no rhyme or reason to them, or despite nobody around me feeling the same way. Following through with the intuitive nudge has been a process of supporting, and the more I have and do, the more the fluidity of meaning and threading of the tapestry of life, seamlessly melds together.

My waking and sleeping dreams and visions are always very lively and powerful, revealing integrative messages. And it seems more and more people are having the veils drop between waking and sleeping life as well, and bridging the subconscious and conscious through dreams remembered and revealing what has been hidden. More people are connecting via dreams, working with and supporting one another, and are experiencing unity consciousness.

flowers

flowers on the sanctuary nature walk

Whenever I dream of people, many times about people I’ve never actually met in person in this life, or people showing up after years of no contact, or out of the blue without any conscious thought about them, in my experience it always has a message for the person or pertains to their needing support that is taking place in my dreams, or in some cases, is a cry for help that I hear. Through what some may call my Piscean dreamy state I find my channels of connection to more easily meld into receptivity with everything and everyone that is around me.

An example of this happened just a few nights ago when a dream revealed a friend I haven’t seen in maybe 6 years, and only keep in touch with sporadic emails. I couldn’t remember the very involved dream after I woke up, but what I was left with upon waking was a very strong imprint of him and the feeling, which prompted a need to check in on him, which I did.

Sometimes it may seem silly to us and make no sense, causing a feeling of doubt, or we end up brushing it off because of fear of our power or what it might mean to really be “in tune.” However, in time we learn to trust there is a reason for things and to support that, as later the meaning always reveals itself, even if not immediately, sometimes in very big ways as well.

In my trusting and simply saying hello and wanting to check in on my friend, I learned he had actually put out a cry for help, of which by my simply acknowledging the connection and following through with it, made a difference to him. He responded,

great-blue-heron-flying

Great Blue Heron flying

“WOW, what connection you have. Your email came at at time when I needed it so much. I usually don’ t get into the needing, but I fell into that trap lately with life overwhelming me with having to face new directions. I have been doing OK up until recently, then fell into a lower consciousness. I sent out a spiritual ‘help’ call that night, since I was needing some uplifting and support. You are so wonderful to have connection with and received my message. THANK YOU so much for responding and lifting me up so I can get back on a higher level. You remind me of where I was and where I am going. Thank YOU.”

Things like this remind us that we are not separate and our ignoring the connection we have to everyone, every being, and everything, doesn’t change the fact that it is true. What it can do, however, is affect change in varying ways, depending on our choice to listen or not. My experience is that when I listen it has a life-enhancing effect for all concerned. And this “listening” pertains across the board to all of our choices we make to act and be consciously aware and unconditionally compassionate. When we embrace this way of living, we open the channels to receive and experience the abundance of life and the fulfillment that comes along with it for the highest good.

I know many others experience the same kinds of things, as the dream experience I shared, and that even more than admit it actually do, but likely don’t note and/or sometimes even acknowledge it. We are all so connected and when we open to the truth of this and are ready to receive and give the flow of that clear channel that is available always to us, the more our experiences reveal an inter-connectedness and synergy that starts to make greater sense, as well as deepen our feelings of inner harmony despite not having a clear explanation of things – it just clicks. It also allows us to be of service and to support one another and co-create with greater channels of understanding and clarity of communication.

AND, it will also allow us to start to hear the voices of the “voiceless.” We begin to understand the ways that animals communicate nonverbally and what they have to share that is valuable to the cycles of our life journey. Then, too, do we start to hear all of the plants and all consciousness that is sharing this experience with us. Our sensitivities heighten in a way that will support the changes we dream of, as we come to recognize the reality of our connection and what that means.

ducks

Ducks at the sanctuary comfortably resting and unafraid

I was just reading a Buddhist teaching, which spoke a truth I share, regardless of what line of thinking and belief it stems from, as it is a Universal way of being in my eyes and heart. It talked about the life of all beings – human, animal or otherwise – as being precious and all having the same right to happiness and that all the creatures of this planet are our companions that we share this world experience with. I was sitting with this in my heart feeling how simple life is to me and feeling that unity of connection.

Right at that moment two large ravens landed outside my window and starting chattering loudly and after a minute of getting my attention they flew off.

bee-and-flowers

bee friend doing his thing

Ravens powerfully speak to the crux of esoteric secrets and understandings becoming exposed to the light of our own consciousness through consistent unveiling of inner depths and active utilization of inner drives. They are powerful teachers of mystery and magic. Their intelligence and speaking ability has led them to being legendary ultimate oracles as well as are known to be messengers between heaven and earth, relaying messages back and forth from other dimensions and planes of existence. They help to reveal meaning from within the darker places and shadows that are misunderstood so that we can become aware and create the change needed within that will reflect in change externally as well. Their incredible perception helps us to change the perspective from which we are viewing ourselves and our challenges, when we feel perplexed by knowing what to change. You can learn to understand the meaning of symbols and messages buried deeply in all that surrounds you by working with Raven energy. People have come to fear the Raven guide at times because it causes us to take responsibility, dedication and persistance at greater depths to develop strong willpower, embrace transmutation, and exercise intention.

squirrel

squirrel saying hello

Introspection, Self-knowledge, Courage, Magic, Mysteries, Shape-shifting, Creation, Divination, Wisdom, Truth, Answers, Secrets, Messages, Instruction, Change – all part of Raven Medicine.

Raven is a beautiful example of “being in tune” with the deeper meanings and messages and how we can bring things to light and together when we connect the importance of our inner and outer “nature” reflecting each other.

I believe we all have access to these wells of understanding, feeling, and experiences that bridge the separation between any and all duality. On days like today, when a day of celebration comes into the awareness of many, it is a reminder of the power that unification can be and helps drive home the message that integration is our means to wholeness, from the inside out.

We are all connected and our living, breathing Earth beats to the same rhythm of our hearts, as does the life force energy in everything embodies a consciousness that Universally has no boundary.

ripple

the ripple effect :)

Yes, “be the change that you wish to see in the world,” as Gandhi so beautifully expressed. Truly embody that change daily, walk the walk, and watch the ripple effect that inevitably follows. Open your heart to receive and to give to yourself so that you may give to and receive more fully from others. This includes gifts of abundance on all levels, being able to hear and supportively respond to each other, and even to be able to receive and hear the Earth and Cosmos in totality when they resonate their tones and frequencies that take our presence and consistent awareness to hear.

Celebrating Universal connection and exercising the power of integrative healing is a moment to moment, integral experience that is invaluable to practice on this beautiful Earth Day and beyond.

Remember the life you have chosen…..

Please Don’t Cry Mother Gaia!


Today I wanted to highlight Sonya Oak’s lovely short story ebook: Please Don’t Cry Mother Gaia! which mirrors my own heart’s reflection and work towards creating a return to compassionate harmony on Earth and throughout the Cosmos.

Sonya contacted me while she was writing this, to ask permission to use my article information, which helped confirm her understanding of what Mother Gaia is: Gaia – Earth Mother and Turtle? Ancient Wisdom For Conscious Living” - http://ezinearticles.com/?id=1341797. She so graciously listed me along with other contributors in her bibliography, but it is she who I would like to place the spotlight on, as I LOVE her story!

Please Don’t Cry Mother Gaia! is a quick and colorfully sweet read, which she is granting rights to others to post, copy, distribute and embed freely, at no charge. Her intent was to create a story about Earth and animal rights issues, as well as health and veganism that is more playful and easier to digest, while still maintaining the integrity of the information that is serious at the core. And she managed to do just that! Her story is sweet and presents the information in such a loving, endearing, magical way through the eyes of the animals, Earth and beyond. A great and easy, quick read for children and adults alike.

I love the energy of it, which emanates in such a positive and compassionate way! I think it’s great, and as I am a child at a heart, this touches the child within me and us all, at a vulnerably innocent level without intrusive rhetoric. Things don’t have to be complex to make a difference.

Thank you Sonya for being a part of spreading this light and love, sweet sister, in an accessibly easy way. I hope that many will discover the messages you share from your heart to theirs.

For more about Sonya Oak visit: http://creatorblessings.com/about_me.html

Here is the link:   https://acrobat.com/app.html#d=Pw1tP7IpC2gBSOZBYy3FLQ

My Vegan Journey and Then Some


My personal journey led me on a natural progression
to follow a raw vegan diet, which for me was simply a process of
becoming aware that my body was telling me what my soul already
knew and desired. A time for change and evolution was to take place for
me. I realized that my body had reacted cellularly, even before it could
register mentally.

Eating products from animals would affect my stomach, making
me feel ill and certain products would also make me cough with extreme
and irritated congestion. As a sensitive and empath, anything relating to animals would affect me greatly.

The more I opened myself up to embracing who I was, acknowledging the
path I was on and where it was to lead me, the more it manifested in my life
clearly, as to the steps I needed to personally take in terms of everything, including my conscious food choices. This helped to align myself with the choices that were most supportive to living the life that I believed in and came into this life to express. It also simultaneously helped to raise my vibration and provide better clarity and vibrant energy. It increased my sense of connectivity, depth of compassion, unconditional love, joyful exuberance for life, as well as supported creative inspiration, and channeling my authenticity, as a direct reflection of my chosen spiritual nature.

This was “MY” path and time, for change and understanding on a
whole new level, which would start to take shape in my dietary choices. For me,
my diet, health choices, lifestyle, beliefs, service and creative expression were starting to
all interweave and become cohesive. I believe in being consistent with my spirituality and honoring what I feel in my heart and what I soulfully believe. And I can’t tell you how much my experience of life has changed with this choice. Life gets to be as bright,
colorful, beautiful, succulent, and as vast as the variety found in Mother Earth’s natural beauty. And the array of veggie delights are no exception!

It was just simply time for me to experience life in a different way and
to live and choose consciously. And so for me, while the trigger was a message from my physical, the core driving force for my decision was heart-felt and spiritual. I see life to be about consistency and walking the walk and so I do my best not only to be the change I want to see, but to live by what I believe and feel in my heart is right for me.
That is what works for me and it’s important, to me, that I be consistent with the
energy I am putting out there and what it is I am sharing with others. So what
you see, is what you get. There are no “behind closed doors” behaviors and thoughts in my world.

I feel that part of my journey is to live my life openly so that
others can feel safe to do the same. It’s not about right or wrong, but about
being true to yourself, whatever that means. I feel it is important to listen
to what our bodies tell us and to go with what feels natural. Part of knowing
and understanding what is natural is to understand what is authentic to you and
what is not, and to find that right balance.

It is increasingly important to become more conscious and to be more proactive in decisions and choices, to listen more to ourselves and to keep informed, but with a wise filter that takes in only what feels right and is not just accepting of whatever the
majority is doing. So many of us don’t know why we do certain things, and never even think to stop to ask the question why, as we are much of the time on auto-pilot. We just
do it because it’s what we’ve always done, or it’s “just the way it
is,” or it’s what we’ve been shown or taught, or it’s what everyone else
around us is doing.

And sometimes we think change is too challenging and believe a sense of loss or isolation will happen, or that it’s just too hard or timely to figure out how to do it differently. These beliefs, while valid because you believe them, are the very and only thing that holds you back from the change. As what lies on the other side of the wall you can’t see over, holds more joy, freedom and fulfillment than what you think you have now. The only hurdle is the decision to step over or stop straddling the wall, if in fact that is what you want. And there are many to help support you, moreso than ever before. And the process is so much easier now than it used to be, because so many are paving the way, which energetically creates an open path for everyone else to easily follow.

I follow what I am feeling as true to my heart and authentic self, as much as possible, in the moment, and if in question as to where those thoughts or behaviors came from,
then I ponder their source and explore their authenticity to my life. Is this really a me thought or feeling? Does this feel right to me? Does this match the authentic me I have come to know? Is it consistent with everything I believe in and my passionate service? Is this the desired result I want to see in the world around me? How will my authentic decisions affect not only me, but the collective? Does it matter to me that my decisions create an effect on the struggles, pains, traumas and tortures of all other beings that walk this Earth with me?

In learning to follow my natural flow, I also realize that just like nature and the Earth, we all go through cycles. Some of us more than others. And it is important to listen to what your body and intuition is telling you. Doing things just because you are good at discipline doesn’t always produce the most benefit to your life. Doing things because it is your heart’s passion and consistent with your core beliefs and authentic self, will reap abundant fulfillment without feeling a sense of loss. And along with this, there are times our bodies and paths energetically need certain things more than others. Not because some doctor, the FDA, commercial, or article you read said so, but because your body, heart and soul needs so.

This leads me to vary the percentage of raw vegan and cooked vegan foods I may
intake at any given time. I have been vegan since 2005 and raw since
2008. I find that I mainly fluctuate between 85-90% raw (lately more like 50-50 with changes and needs in my life), depending on how I feel and circumstances I desire to put myself in. That is, I balance raw with vegan cooked foods, but if I do cooked I always try to choose very healthy, light, organic options including things like steamed veggies and rice, tofu, beans, etc. I allow myself a few vices too, when I have a craving, and
usually if i honor that, then I’m not in need of having it all the time. I have found
this balance to be very healthy, to feel good, and keeps me grounded and at optimal functioning, as well as maintains a level of tolerance in my body that enables me to travel and be in different social situations when needed.

It also supports honoring my body’s natural rhythms and needs, which allows me to flow more and to not be so structured. It feels good to keep a balance and to simply listen to what the body needs at any given moment and not what the mind thinks it needs. There
are times outside of balancing that I can be very extreme, briefly varying
my percentages even more, depending on what my body is relaying to me, if
I’m traveling and at social events or outings. I will then supplement the
balance of my diet choices with very healthy, vegan cooked foods. Yet, I always
make healthy, conscious, preferably organic choices.

I personally believe, and have experienced, that vegan foods really support more conscious, clear, healthy, harmonious and loving vibrations for individuals and the collective planet. Any small shifts towards some vegan foods, in your own way and timing, can be extremely transformative and effective in your life and for the Earth. And supplementing at least some raw vegan veggies/foods or green juices can increase all of that to an even more optimal level and when needed, can produce miraculous results in reversing illnesses, shifting behaviors and emotional challenges, as well as create clearer channels of creative inspiration and vibrancy.

No matter how I swing, I ALWAYS maintain a 100% strict vegan diet across the board, which means I never consume any animal products, and I make every conscious effort not to purchase any commodity that comes from, or has been tested on, animals.

For the sake of being open, I also have personally opted to leave all alcohol out of my life (not touching any for the last 6 years )and have never once in my life touched a cigarette or any form of drug or mind-altering substance. These are all personal choices and my chosen path because they authentically mirror “my” beliefs and what is authentic to me and my heart and what makes me feel I’m operating at my optimal. Everyone has their own path and it is not for any of us to judge what that path is. For myself, I have just never had any resonance towards certain things since I was a little girl and part of that stems from my desire to utilize my own capacity and abilities to go to desired states of experience. Interestingly, I have been told that some of the art I create is similar to what some have seen in their altered states. Hence, I have no reason personally to go there. My inner world, imagination, dreams, and “travel” are crazy enough as it is!

For me also, a high raw diet is what feels most balanced and healthy and I can instantly feel the difference when I stray off of that, unless cooked vegan foods support more of the energy I’m needing. I also prefer simple, light raw foods and unless I’m out, I don’t
do too much of the complex or high nut raw meals. My body operates much more
smoothly with low nut density and less complexity, but do enjoy gourmet foods
when I’m out or feasting with friends!

I follow what my body tells me, consciously, and I find that the less I try to create rules, the more my body falls into its natural rhythm and doesn’t have to do the extremes as often.
And, if it does, I allow it and by doing so it quickly gets back into finding a new, healthy balance, which is ever-changing as I am, because I honored it.

Being vegan, or for that matter a vegan raw foodist, is not as hard or
challenging as one would first think. There is always a way to simplify things
and there are so many restaurants and services available these days that truly
help make life more convenient if you don’t have enough time yourself to
prepare or shop for meals and ingredients. I find restaurants to be very
accommodating if you simply ask! Asking is the key and most chefs are much more
than willing to do what they can to help your dietary needs and a lot of times
find it an adventurous or exciting task to step outside of their normal routine
box of menu items to explore their creativity. Chef and delivery services are
another option, as well as local meetups and potlucks.

I used to live in Reno, where I did not have all the plethora of options as I do here in Southern California, but I STILL managed to get what I needed, whether thru personal chef services, ordering out-of-state weekly meal boxes from such places as “Seed” in Northern California or Rawvolution in LA, getting quick and easy recipe books to do myself and asking local chefs to help out. If I can do it, anyone can. Maybe if you have a friend or friends interested as well in switching diets, you can each take turns making meals. Make them in servings that can be enough for each of you to share and it will cut down on the amount of time to prepare yourself.

There is so much variety to explore out there in terms of food, life and experience. Part
of the key is in being open to change and trying new things, to explore new
horizons and possibilities and above all to live life with conscious choice.

Sometimes we neglect to ask ourselves the questions  like, “Why do I do this?” and don’t follow through with the answers. Perhaps because we don’t want to really know the answers for fear of what that might mean to our lives as we’ve known them, or that we might find ourselves alone, which never really is accurate, as the moment you make a decision and act upon it, suddenly you draw in resonating others that mirror the new choice.

If we stop to be curious for a moment, we may hear a different voice speaking through that could energetically change the way we see and experience life, may affect our
health, draw in interesting synchronicities and like-mindedness from others on
similar paths and wave-lengths and expand our awareness in
totality.

Everyone has their own journey along the path of life and everyone is operating on their own time, which is EXACTLY as it should be. Yet, everything is happening in
synchronicity and cohesiveness and unravels perfectly. The beauty of life
is choice. With choice, there are eternal possibilities and such is ALL THAT IS
- it is eternal and ever-changing. What would be the purpose of life if we were
all the same? So while I celebrate the beauty of the creatures of our Earth, I
also celebrate the beauty of every human who shares it with them.

Nutrition can be a spiritual experience and enhances your spiritual nature.

Conscious choices are empowering choices.

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