"I’m very skeptical of those who rush in with their hopeful visionary flags on high
I feel deeply cautious to subscribe to narratives that speak to keeping our focus strictly on the light
I’m disturbed by those who have a six week solution and a buy now button for ascension
I do not trust those who are so seemingly certain about any one stance or one way
I feel safest with those who speak openly about their humanity and usher us into the raw unfiltered mess of discovery
The grief and fear and overwhelm and mystery of it all
Those who make room for feeling lost and lonely — openly wondering how they can discover a deeper belonging
Those who let themselves get angry and sad so that they can flush the energy through fully and wash the debris from their truth
I’d like to make a whole lot of room for all of the uncomfortable feelings— without shaming them as a low vibration, but honoring them as an essential part of the resurrection sequence
A life/death/life sequence that loops and undulates in waves
This is a tenuous time full of intensity and uncertainty
I would like to turn the volume down on this love and light business and embrace the dark mystery that is upon us all
Let’s please learn to tenderly hold the one thing that we can trust: the truth of how we feel
Let’s not deny what’s real, but harness it
As we patiently integrate all of the pieces as they arise, a natural momentum emerges with its own guiding intelligence
How can we stay grounded while grieving?
How do our fears call us to act with newfound intention?
How can our tears open the way for our eyes to see anew?
How can this heartbreak open new circuits to love even deeper?
What whispers arise after our last roars are emptied out?
How can we best huddle in this collective nightfall?
What dreams appear when we stop knowing so much?"
~written by Danielle West
Notes on Violet Leaf
Although Violet leaf is really a plant that belongs to spring, I promised last week that I would talk about her as she’s a beautiful medicine to use with castor oil packs and she does offer specific benefits that we need during this time
The best known violets for medicinal purposes are the European varieties. The most popular is the sweet violet or Viola odorata. Her common name is pansy
Her petals vary from deep violet to white. Her flowers are quite fragrant.
Medicinally, violet is a gentle but potent remedy.
Common blue violets have deep purple blooms and heart-shaped leaves. We may find little blue violets in our lawns and also in meadows and damp woodlands.
Violet is classified as an alterative (or "blood purifier"), which means she helps the body restore optimal functioning by aiding metabolic processes, especially the elimination of waste products.
Violet stimulates the lymphatic glands, helping the body get rid of bacteria and other toxins. She’s especially useful for swollen glands. Over time, violet can help clear stubborn problems like eczema, psoriasis, and acne
Violet also supports the immune system, helping to clear infections of all kinds. Soothing and cooling, she helps reduce fever and inflammation. She can be useful in treating sinus infections, bronchitis, sore throats and coughs
Violet leaves can even help to shrink growths such as cysts, mastitis, fibrocystic breasts, tumors and cancers. She’s most effective when taken both internally and used externally as a poultice or in a castor oil pack.
This fall, you can order dried violet leaf herb from Mountain Rose Herb or Frontier. Next spring, when you’re out walking, take a few moments to gather some fresh, wild Violets.
Not only will you be getting a dose of a potent cleansing remedy, but you’ll be adding some beauty to your life at the same time!
I am a skeptic because I am a feminist
People often confuse skeptic with cynic. They are not the same. Skepticism is about questioning everything, but more importantly, following one’s questions with systematic investigation aimed at discovering the truth, or the best approximation of the truth currently possible. In other words, when I say I am a skeptic, I mean that I try to question the world using the scientific method.
I am a skeptic because I am a feminist
Like many people, I have to thank my mom for all my best attributes.
I took religion fairly seriously when I was growing up. I attended a Catholic school, and in preparation for confirmation in grade 8, I took an early bus every day to attend mass before school. I was dedicated.
But at the same time, I had my very first job. I was stuffing envelopes for an organization led by my mom: the Catholic Network for Women’s Equality. Every morning I would sit through a very conservative sermon. Every afternoon, I would read fliers asking relatively simple questions: Why didn’t the church treat women as equals? Why couldn’t women be priests?
I would have never considered these questions on my own, but once raised, they wouldn’t leave my mind. I was 13 years old and discovering, for the very first time, that the world might not be just. I was indignant.
So I had a series of meetings with my priest. They all followed a fairly similar pattern:
So why can’t women be priests?
That’s just is the way it is.
Because I said so.
I grew frustrated. And I was 13 years old. So the last meeting ended with me yelling (and I am still sorry for this): “Well that is just F***ing stupid!” I was not welcome back in the church.
And although I handled the situation with all the maturity expected of a 13 year old, I had learned one of the most important lessons of my life: always ask why. Don’t accept the status quo. “That’s just how we do things” is not a good enough reason.
I learned to question authority. I learned to question my assumptions. I learned not to be satisfied with the easy questions: who, what, where, when. To get the answers that really matter, you have to ask “why”.
That lesson made me a nightmare for my teachers. My respect for authority was broken. My demands for rational explanations clashed with an expectation of thoughtless conformity.
But it also led to the most exciting period of my life. No longer trusting answers that were handed to me, I learned how to find answers for myself. Although I had one of the first modems on our street, it was so slow that most weekends I would take the subway downtown to spend hours in the reference library. I learned something about the scientific method and how to research. I learned to ask questions. I learned to love science.
I am a little ashamed to admit that, upon being accepted to medical school, these fundamental skills temporarily abandoned me. There was just so much to learn, and all of it coming from people who seemed to have so much knowledge, that I reverted back so simply accepting handed down wisdom. That was a mistake.
I rediscovered the importance of questioning everything early in residency. I had been following guidelines religiously. (Yes, that should have been a clue.) But then one day I read the background science on pediatric UTI, and I realized I had been hurting children unnecessarily. Then I read the science on home glucose monitoring in type 2 diabetes, and I realized I had been hurting more patients. Then came home blood pressure monitoring. Then came thrombolytics in stroke.
Time and time again, the best answers from science seemed to clash with what I had been taught, or what I read in guidelines. The lesson that I had learned as a child, thanks to my wonderful feminist mother, was as valuable as ever. Never accept the status quo. Always ask why.
So I was a skeptic because I was a feminist.
If you can sit quietly after difficult news,
If in financial downturns you remain perfectly calm,
If you can see your neighbors travel to fantastic places without a twinge of jealousy;
If you can happily eat whatever is put on your plate;
If you can fall asleep after a day of running around without a drink or a pill;
If you can always find contentment just where you are…
…..You are probably a dog.”
story told by Jack Kornfield not sure who original author is.