The summer solstice takes place on Wednesday 21st June and will mark the longest day – the high solar point of 2017. In times gone by fires would have been lit on hill tops to mark the highest point of the sun. For Druids the occasion is still special and will be considered a ritualistic time symbolising power, success and health. There are special incenses and herbs associated with this time of year – St John’s Wort, Elder, Fennel, Verbena, Chamomile and lavender. You can mark the occasion at home by lighting candles in orange or gold colours representing confidence and joy. (more…)
In Sanskrit there are 53 names for turmeric, demonstrating just how revered the golden spice is within Indian culture. One such name is ‘Jayanti’ which means to win over diseases; its medicinal history goes back 4000 years. Whilst the spice has been used in Chinese medicine and in Ayurvedic healing the modern world of medicine has been slower to catch on, but in the last 25 years over 3000 studies have been published bringing to light all manner of abilities that the active compound ‘curcumin’ has on health. It has been shown to be anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidising, anti-bacterial and anti-microbial as well as having cancer fighting potential. More studies with humans are needed to fully realise the potential on a medical level, but we already know that cooking with a small amount on a regular basis affects our bodies over time on a genetic level, so adding some into your recipes can only be a good thing. (more…)
Many of you will instantly recognise Fearne Cotton and with good reason as she has been on our television screens since the age of fifteen when she was spotted by the Disney Club (ITV). And of course for her ten years spent hosting live shows on Radio 1, initially alongside Reggie Yates and then alone, and including the coveted delivery of the Top 40 show. She is currently filming Celebrity Juice (its 16th series).
Fearne is an active user of social media and is ranked amongst the world’s 250 most influential ‘tweeters’, she lives in London with her family and her first book was published in June 2016 called ‘Cook Happy, Cook Healthy’. She has now followed this up with a new book titled ‘Happy: Finding joy in every day and letting go of perfect’. (more…)
It is the perfect opportunity to give thanks for the things that have happened in our lives, and equally to say goodbye to the past in order to leave room to welcome in new opportunities and people into our lives.
In the UK the Spring or Vernal Equinox takes place on the 20th March 2017 at 10.28 GMT. Equinox of course stands for equal night and day, and the time marks the mid-point between winter and summer – Mother nature is re-born, the Sun God returns and brings with it fertility and new life. (more…)
Automatic Writing is a skill associated alongside mediumship, whereby the medium acts as a communication channel for a spirit in the form of writing to pass on information to the living, very often in an attempt to deal with ‘unfinished business’. By the Second World War the form of divination was waning, but it saw a revival in the 70s, but during that phase it was more about angelic wisdom and messages from wise masters. The authenticity of the communicator was often evaluated based on the hand-writing style that the medium found themselves writing in.
There have been times in society when automatic writing was considered more of a treatment than a divination, the belief being that they were just writing down what was trapped in their sub-conscious, and that getting these thoughts onto paper was a valuable form of therapy. (more…)
Our beautiful lonely planet is 4.543 billion years old, we the upright ape have existed, as far as we know, because we do have very short memories, for a mere 200,000 years. We have done an incredible amount of damage in that short time, to our planet and our fellow creatures, not to mention each other. Wild animals don’t do that, they just take what they need and no more. Even predators, and we are essentially predators, take what they need and no more. That includes male Lions who kill cubs to force the females to breed and produce their offspring, as a genetic mechanism for diversity, they do not kill for kicks or fun, or access to resources, and the effect is positive on the gene pool. We can always learn something from the wild animals who are still managing to live around us, they show us how to live in harmony with the planet and its bio systems, how to live in daily connection with the Great Spirit, the essence of creation, the creator, God or Allah to Christians and Muslims, The God and Goddesses to Pagans, we all have a name for it. (more…)
Many of us will look at the New Year as a way to make changes, and in some cases that even means taking a long hard look at your relationship! In relationships it is easy to get to a place where you think you know what your partner is thinking or feeling, so much so that we forget to ask and just make assumptions. Of course this can lead us to feel neglected, taken for granted or just misunderstood.
In the New Year why not make a point of having more productive conversations, the ‘conversation map’ outlines an approach that is based on ‘mindfulness techniques’. Rather than falling back into familiar patterns – one of you shouts, one of you goes on the defensive…, this approach allows you to talk in an open way whilst being truthful, without the situation becoming tense and quarrelsome.
Let you partner feel how they feel. Even if you think it is irrational – don’t go out of your way to prove to them that it is. Accept their feelings and ask questions so that you can better understand their position. (more…)
Have you heard of ‘Hygge’, pronounced ‘heurgha’ – well, it is a Danish concept, it doesn’t really have a direct translation but is about taking pleasure in the small things in life – gentle soothing things. It is the difference between a so so day and a special day. It could be as simple as burning a candle, having freshly brewed coffee, or spending time with those you love.
It is easy to dismiss this idea as just another lifestyle fad, but the Danes have actually been embracing hygge since the 18th century, it is only now with a wave of new books that they are trying to spread the word on what it means to a wider audience.
Hygge in essence is enjoying life’s simple pleasures. Studies do show links between feeling gratitude and our overall wellbeing. Perhaps Denmark being voted the happiest country in the world on a regular basis has a lot to do with how they integrate hygge into their everyday lives… (more…)
If you missed the first part of Martyn’s journey, then please click here.
But how can we connect with our inner soul voice without the need to meditate for hours on end or go to a spiritual retreat for six months? The answer is so easy and straightforward; try this method at home yourself:
- Take 5 or 10 minutes to be still, calm and meditate, at a time to suit you, pick your favourite room and make sure you are not disturbed.
Happiness is something we are all striving for in our lives. It is our best guide in our decision making process and that includes considering how our decisions will affect other people’s emotions. However often it can feel like an unobtainable goal. We create visions of what our life would look like if we were happy – if only I had that new job, if only I could travel more, if only I had more time, if only I had love in my life – I would be happy… However that feeling of happiness can still elude us when the outcome of those choices plays out.