Blog: 3 Benefits of Guided Imagery

My podcast guest this week, Ajmu Ayinde, spoke so beautifully about the holistic framework of hypnosis, his journey and, experiences, He focused on Transpersonal Hypnotherapy and shared with us how holistic this modality is in its application, touching upon aspects of us as a human being seeking help. He mentions guided imagery which reminded me of the research and applications I learned from Belleruth Naparstek, a leader in this field.

Guided Imagery is defined as: “sometimes called guided meditation, visualization, mental rehearsal, and guided self-hypnosis) is a gentle but powerful technique that focuses the imagination in proactive, positive ways. ”

What I learned from her research is that we don’t need specifics to get a specific result. For example, when one has to undergo surgery: instead of affirming the surgery and ‘all will go well’ with the use or need for minimal blood transfusions as an affirmation, she found it was more effective to focus on feeling well using indirect sentences. We need very little to incite our natural inherent ability to heal. So, instead of specific affirmations, she used more generic thoughts such as ‘watch the team that watches over you, notice how your body is cooperating.’ These more indirect sentences actually showed a decrease in the need for blood transfusions during surgery. She found that imagery in this fashion puts the wisdom of our hearts to work. I love this, that our bodies have an inherent ability to heal. Hypnosis accesses this part of us too.

Her website contains many CDs for a variety of ailments that I highly recommend.

3 Benefits of Guided Imagery: 

  1. Delivers complex coded messages to our deep subconscious;
  2. Uses symbols and metaphors which our subconscious responds to;
  3. Well-designed imagery can get us out of our head; we can access our intuition, memories and amplify our energy filed.

Many yoga practices and various healing modalities utilize guided imagery. Guided imagery allows us to enter into our entire being, not just the head or mind.

truthseeker08 / Pixabay

We want to catalyze our inherent intelligence to awaken our own healing power. Cool, huh? I think so. I have experienced many guided imagery sessions at the end of a yoga class. It helped me get out of my head, relax more deeply. In the long run, that’s healing!

Remember to share and all comments are appreciated. Enjoy.

Judith

 

Podcast: Holistic Nature of Us: Meet Ajamu Ayinde, Certified Hypnotherapist

Description: Another spoke on the wheel of healing modalities is hypnosis and hypnotherapy. With a long and rich history of application and science-backed research, hypnosis has a place in complementary and alternative medicine as well as within the western medical model. Meet Ajamu Ayinde who explains the use of self-hypnosis, and the holistic framework for Transpersonal Hypnosis. He shares his journey and an inspiring story of how this modality helps. Join us for an intriguing discussion.

About My Guest:  Ajamu (Ah-ja-moo)  James Ayinde (Eye-in-day) Ajamu is a Certified Medical Hypnotherapist and Transpersonal Hypnotherapy Trainer.  He graduated from Trinity College in Hartford with a BA in Asian Studies, emphasizing multicultural education and Performing Arts. His MA is in Motivational Psychology, emphasizing sports performance.  Certified in Clinical Hypnosis since 1995, Ajamu specializes in hypnotic childbirth preparation, pediatric hypnosis, and cancer support. He was honored as Therapist of the Year by the International Association of Counselors and Therapists in 2004 and he received further honors from the National Association of Transpersonal Therapists in 2012 and in 2017 for his work with athletes and pregnant couples, respectively.  He sees clients in Carmel, NY and worldwide via Skype.

Transcript: Ajamu Ayinde

Blog: Giving Thanks to our Body’s Communities

 

 

 

I began my journey with yoga in the mid to late seventies, a time when the ecology movement was just beginning. I had to travel to a YMCA to get to a class on a gym floor. I was taking tap and jazz dancing lessons at that time. My teacher was on vacation so I did the 30-day routines, following the instructions religiously. When she returned and I resumed classes she couldn’t get over how limber I was, somehow different, even my breathing was better. She asked what I had been doing. Not much except I was given a yoga book and decided to do the program while waiting for her to come back. She was impressed. I was too. I didn’t realize there could be a difference between traditional dance warmups versus yoga but there was. This feedback and observation have stayed with me ever since.

Years pass and I became a lecturer at the local University and incorporated my basic yoga routine from those first classes in each of my holistic studies classes. Athletes from basketball players to soccer were often inflexible. Athletes train for their sport and those muscle groups works really well but what about the rest of their body? Hamstrings were tight, backs couldn’t bend well. So many students commented on how much better they felt after a yoga class. Athletes were awakened to the fact that though they were good at a sport their bodies were not in as prime condition as they thought. This led to discussions and I only hope to inspiration for these young adults to value their body differently.

During this time I came across Mantak Chia’s book Awaken Healing Energy Through the Tao. He reminds me of the importance of respecting our body in its totality, not just a machine that we prod on and on. Every organ system is a community of cells, a neighborhood if you will, that functions in harmony with every other system creating an intricate interplay between all parts, united to serve the whole. When we are young, we give the body little thought except for cosmetic reasons or athletics. As we get older and see how the body can run down, we may step up to the plate and take better care. Often, as I have seen in my nursing career, folks often wait until an alarm bell sounds before making changes. We all do this, get disciplined, life interrupts, then we go back to our habits again.

This week, my podcast guest, Eaglemoon Raes, reminded me of Mantak Chia’s meditation, one that asks us to focus on each organ system and give thanks to that community.

Meditation:

truthseeker08 / Pixabay

    1. Sit quietly
    2. Place feet on the floor, back comfortable, breathe
    3. Bring your awareness to your heart. Feel your heart’s love.
    4. Feeling this love, focus your attention on each organ system: brain, eyes, ears, nose, mouth etc. all the way through your body.
    5. When done bring your awareness back to your breath and give thanks for your breath of life.

“These vital organs are intimately connected to our mind. Our body is the filter for all our perceptions, feelings, thoughts, as well as the storehouse for our memory, our very sense of identity.” (p. 21, Awaken Healing Energy through the Tao, by Mantak Chia)

Giving thanks for our bodies seems a timely reminder. Enjoy.
Remember all comments and shares are appreciated.

Judith

 

 

 

 

Podcast: Holistic Nature of Us: Meet Eaglemoon Raes, Holographic Healer

Description: Our physical bodies are composed of trillions of cells organized into community specialties. Though every cell may have the same program capabilities, a cell in the eye knows to turn on eye function, not liver function. Complex and even mysterious we have not unlocked the mysteries contained within our own bodies. Tai chi experts suggest we give thanks to each community in our bodies for the incredible integration that occurs.

Eaglemoon  Raes gives us stories and practical examples of how our body is like nature and what healing successes she has seen. Inspiring and miraculous, I hope you will enjoy this discussion. She discusses and refers to Holographic healing: which “accesses patterns of energy and makes changes directly at that point, rather than “running” or channeling energy. The patterns are biological information fields which form an active, constantly resonating matrix. This matrix and its interconnections provide a continuum for rapid, coherent intercommunication throughout the body. The vibrations and waveforms in this matrix can be changed, so a practitioner can collapse the current reality, such as an injury pattern or some stuck situation within the body or emotions, and introduce new information to produce new possibilities that are more useful.”

About My Guest: Eaglemoon Raes is a licensed Avatar® Master and Wizard. In addition, she is known to be a
gifted healer and has been trained as a Usui and karuna™ Reiki Master/teacher, a holographic
healer, a Guided Self-healing practitioner, an EFT practitioner, and is a certified hypnotist.

Transcript:  Eaglemoon Raes #29 

Blog: The Hidden Value of Goldenrod

 

 

 

Goldenrod, sweet goldenrod, also known as blue mountain tea, fills the countryside with golden yellow color as summer moves into its third act. These flowers are attractive sources of nectar for bees, flies, wasps, and butterflies. It plays host to many beneficial insects and repels pests. Most species are native to North America.

Did you know that Thomas Edison studied goldenrod extensively in his search for native plants with rubber content? It seems he was asked to find a more “local” source of rubber for his friends, Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone. At that time, in the 1920’s, these entrepreneurs and automobile pioneers had to rely on tropical sources of rubber which could be a problem if strife hit those countries. Unfortunately, Thomas Edison could not extract enough rubber-like substance from goldenrod to make the endeavor worthwhile.

Here is in this country Goldenrod was used by the Native Americans to treat wounds. The early settlers used it for several types of ailments as well. I make a salve using goldenrod flowers and leaves. Its one of several ingredients in my salve and I have a lot of testimonials for its effectiveness.

Botanical name: Solidago sps: Solidago has about 100 species of flowering plants in the family Asteracaea

Parts Used: aerial parts; does not usually flower till the second year; blooms continuously from July through fall in most regions;

Where Found: native to North America; one species, Solidago virgaurea is the only one native to Great Britain.

Uses: aromatic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, diuretic, astringent, One of the chemical components in goldenrod, the saponins, seem to be helpful with the Candida fungus which produces various types of fungal infections and thrush. Goldenrod leaves are most commonly used in tea form. Note it is difficult to find goldenrod in the health food industry as a tincture or capsule. This plant has an unfounded reputation as being the cause of hay fever. Please note:

Toxicity: None known. Goldenrods are often blamed for causing hay fever because they flower during allergy season. However, the true culprits are ragweeds (Ambrosia spp.). Goldenrod flowers are mainly insect pollinated, so the flowers are showy to attract insects and pollen is relatively heavy and sticky compared to that of ragweed. It is unlikely that the wind-blown allergens affecting hay fever sufferers include appreciable amounts of goldenrod pollen.”

Ragweed is wind-dispersed and makes it the likely culprit for hay fever. So many folks insist that goldenrod is the culprit for their hay fever allergies. Yet the seed patterns do not seem to support this claim.

Schwoaze / Pixabay

Whenever I take students on field walks I can usually find ragweed nearby, thriving next to goldenrods.

Goldenrod and others support wildlife and diversity. Galls form on stems and when left alone after summer bloom, they can provide homes and food to other wildlife. Downy woodpeckers and Chickadees, in particular, search for galls for winter food. Many bugs form the galls for their young. When deadened stems are left in fields, they provide food for many.

My podcast guest this week, Jane Seymour, describes and educates us on the role many meadow plants play in maintaining a holistic ecosystem. Meadows, fields demonstrate that many parts play a role in supporting the whole. Remember fields, whose appearance seems messy and haphazard, have a beneficial focus, most of which is hard to see. However, in my backyard meadow, I sit and listen to various bees create a hum that’s soothing on a hot summer’s day. I love the deep mustard yellows of goldenrods too, placed among the pinky purples of joe-pye weed and the purples of woodland asters as if some invisible impressionist painter stole in during the night. And, I watch the wildlife, the birds and other critters who hide out here.

Food, shelter, habitat, goldenrod fulfills an invaluable service to our community. For without our plants and plant communities, our insects suffer. If they suffer then we will too. We are all connected by an invisible web and while mysterious and splendid, we have much to learn. Nature is here to teach us.

We appreciate your comments. Please share. Thanks.

Enjoy your day. Judith

 

 

 

 

Podcast: Holistic Nature of Us: Jane Seymour, Wildlife Biologist, Steward of Belding WMA, CT

Description: What’s happening to our birds and bees? Essential to the health of our ecosystems, many suffer the loss of habitat, food, and shelter.
Jane is the steward for The Belding Wildlife Management Area here in CT. Beautiful meadows attract a variety of insects and other wildlife. Managed nearby forested areas keep the ecosystem strong and healthy. But, let’s get back to the birds and the bees. What do they need and how can we help? Jane’s expertise and tips are practical and timely.

About My Guest: Jane Seymour is a Wildlife Biologist and steward of the Belding Wildlife Management Area in Vernon. The Belding WMA was donated to the State of CT by Maxwell Belding who then set up a trust fund to help manage the habitats and provide environmental education. Received a Bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Conservation from the University of Massachusetts, and a Master’s degree in Natural Resources from the University of Connecticut while researching habitat use of American kestrels.

Transcript:  #29 Jane Seymour 

Blog: An Attitude of Gratitude: 3 Simple Steps to Take Today

 

 

My Native American elder friend, Grandmother Kitty, Nakota Sioux, who has passed, would often remind us to do everything with ‘an attitude of gratitude’. Being grateful for every aspect of our lives ‘in the moment’ shifts something deep within. Is it easy? Sometimes yes and sometimes not. We have to redirect that which bothers us for just a moment and when we do, our breath becomes our ally.

I woke up today realizing how the sun is traveling the morning sky differently from just one month ago. A kingfisher clicked across the backyard while other birds quietly sang their morning song. I usually begin my day with a warm glass of water with lemon juice. I felt grateful for the clean water I am able to easily drink. And that took one minute, maybe a few breaths of awareness.

Cultivating a mindful practice takes some diligent effort. Yet feeling grateful for something, our car, our job, our family, for being able to get up and walk where we choose and everything in between gives us an easy starting point. So here are 3 easy reminders:

  1. Choose to be grateful for this moment.
  2. Pick one area: grateful for the drink in hand, the food on your plate, your family. You get the picture.
  3. Focus on your breath, taking one inhalation breathing in gratitude for self and exhaling gratitude from your heart for others.

My podcast guest this week. Deb Sodergren, practitioner, teacher and author and owner of Up Vibrations, encourages her clients and all of us to breath deeply and

studioessen / Pixabay

be grateful. So stop right now and take a deep breath with me. Savor this one moment and breath again with the mindfulness of feeling grateful.

One of my favorite teachers, Caroline Myss, reminds us that every thought, word, and deed carries our name into infinity….pretty amazing!  Today I would like to end with gratitude. A reminder for me and a reminder for you….may the gratitude we feel for our precious life and all we share sail up to the moon and reach beyond the stars and bless all.

Remember, please comment and share. You are appreciated

Enjoy, Judith

Podcast: The Holistic Nature of Us: Meet Deb Sodergren

Description: This podcast takes another look at holism from a practitioner’s viewpoint who experienced an out of body experience at the age of four. Meet Deb Sodergren as she shares her story, her wisdom about healing. Join us for an uplifting holistic discussion for health and well-being.

About My guest:  Deb is an Energy Body Vibration Expert/International Speaker/Author and owner of Up Vibrations, LLC. She graduated from the New England School of Metaphysics in 1998 and is a nationally certified as a Reiki Master Teacher and certified to teach Metaphysics and Meditation. She is also an Infinite Possibilities Certified Trainer. “My philosophy of healing is based on taking care of my clients with alternative healing modalities and sometimes with traditional allopathic medicine to ensure that the individual’s whole self is being maintained and balanced. I bring to my practice a deep understanding of the human energy field and the body, mind, and spirit connection as well as extensive training in the areas of Reiki, meditation, chakra balancing, vibrational medicine, channeling, death & dying, infinite possibilities mindset and others.

Transcript:  #28 Deb Sodergren

Blog: Plants Clean up our Environment: How Phytoremediation works

 

 

Plants help in so many ways. Got a cold? Drink peppermint or ginger tea. Can’t sleep? Make a cup of chamomile tea. Want to cook with a wild edible? Harvest some nettles in spring, throw chopped leaves into a pot of soup, or steam like spinach and add to rice, pasta, veggies.

We forage for plants all the time. Some of us go to supermarkets where the harvesting is done for us and we can pick and choose. Some of us like wilder varieties and harvest from our land and gardens. We marvel at meadows that sway and glow with a variety of colors. Trees and shrubs contribute too to our gathering, whether wood to burn, wood to use for product, berries to eat, nuts to gather. So much in our natural world supports us.

But let’s go deeper. We have many areas in our country contaminated by toxic wastes. Watersheds are polluted. Soils are denatured and rendered unhealthy. Air can be dense with toxic fumes. How do we clean these basic elements up and leave a cleaner legacy for our children and future generations? My podcast guest this week, Kat Van Deusen, an ecological engineer has created a firm with partners that do just that: they clean up toxic spills with plants.

She states: Many of our undeveloped lands in these states, specifically New York and New Jersey, have soils and waterways contaminated with:

PCB’s
Petroleum products
Dry cleaner fluids (particularly toxic)
Metals
Landfill waste

These sites are termed Brownfield sites. Our traditional way of dealing with contaminated sites is to extract the soil, remove it. Then the question becomes where do we dump this toxic soil? Other techniques for water breaks down the contaminants and then sprays them into the air. Is that further contributing to air pollution?

Kat is unique in this field. As a trained scientist she uses the skills and tools from her education. However, her grandmother taught her something about working with the plant kingdom in more traditional, esoteric ways. Kat has a knack for scouting out an area, observing plant species present which often leads to a hidden toxic dump site. How does she do this? The plants tell her, she replies.

How does she work?

  1. She evaluates the landscape or Brownfield.
  2. Evaluates plant and tree species present; these two steps are complex as our topography undulates, has curves and slopes.
  3. If she has to replant the area, she uses plants/trees in multiple steps to prevent further contamination into water or lowlands.
  4. Specific plants/trees can eat up contaminants, metabolize them, which results in the expiration of water vapor into the air that is no longer toxic.
  5. First successors like cedar trees, pokeweed do this efficiently.
  6. Does it work? Groundwater is repeatedly tested and these scientists note an 80% reduction in contaminants in the soil and water.
  7. Cattails (Typha latifolia), Phragmites are great at protecting habitats. Have you observed these plants around waterways near our highways?  While some may consider Phragmites to be invasive I find it interesting that these plants are part of nature’s clean-up crew. Dandelions are soil stabilizers. Did you know sunflowers are planted extensively around Chernobyl? They absorb the radiation from the soil. Fukushima sunflower project is underway.


Kat concluded our interview by stating nature has effectively engineered a way to create balance and the renewed hope of cleaning up our mess.

Lastly, she gives thanks to the plant kingdom for their guidance and when done, she often feels she receives their blessing.

She states: “The true measure of a scientist is to allow themselves to be open to all possibilities not the empirical.” This philosophy allows the scientist within and her scientific curiosity to blend with her matrilineal ability to perceive plants differently: which plants give a clue to a problem, which plants can literally eat up toxins and bring healthy renewal to our land. Her projects are unique. Her approach is innovative. Her results are measurable and positive.

Most of us love plants, nature in some way. Today our science is helping us get back into nature with more awe, respect, reverence even for the intelligence that is right there often in our own backyard. What have you observed in your gardens? We enjoy your comments.

Oh and please share. let’s get the word out. Together we can make a difference.

Thanks, Judith

Podcast: Holistic Nature of Us: Meet Katrina VanDeusen, Ecological Engineer

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Description: What is phytoremediation? It’s plant-based solutions to healing toxic spills on our land. Katrina, ‘Kat’ VanDuesen explains how our invaluable plants clean up toxic waste and contamination whether metals, radiation, oils and other contaminants. Serious health issues, as well as health issues within our soil, water, and air, are well documented from some of these very toxic spills. Ecological environmental applications work. Kat tells us how nature has solutions.

About My Guest: Katrina. VanDeusen is an Environmental Scientist with over 20 years of broad-based professional experience in environmental applications developing multi-media remediation strategies for both public and private sector clients in the New York City metropolitan area.  Her technical experience includes Phase I, Phase II Site Investigations, Preliminary Assessments, Ecological Evaluations, Remedial Investigation, Remedial Alternatives Analysis, Environmental Site Assessments, design of bioremediation systems, due diligence, legal support, wetland delineation, hydrology assessments, sensitive habitat multimedia sampling, community and habitat surveys, ecological engineering/restoration for both hazardous and non-hazardous sites.  Ms. VanDeusen’s technical writing skills include Preliminary Assessment reports, Remedial Action Workplans and reports, Site Investigation and Remedial Investigation reports, NEPA reports, Phase I and Phase II technical reports, environmental liability assessments, Vapor Intrusion Reports, wetland delineation and ecological restoration reports.

Transcript: #27 Kat VanDuesen 

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