Thursday, February 28, 2008

Moving On

So this will be my last post here. I feel that I may lose readers, but that is okay. I will gain others, plus those who are friends and want to support me and share in the conversations at hand, will follow no matter how many kinks in the road. Although I am loathe to leave my nice pretty 6-months of archives behind...the case however, becomes: if you want to continue reading about my various (mis) adventures, insights, stories, and life in general, you will have to adjust your channels. You will from here on find me at Somatique, and I'll tell you why... It's very simple. I feel that I have, here been stumbling for a place to find a firm footing. A means to finding my way out and not just around the corner in yet another hall of mirrors to falsely recognize myself in. Oh, there I Am! No, no. Hmmm. Ah! There I am, that for sure is me! I felt like I needed a fresh start. So Invitations all around. I look forward to seeing you on the other side of the looking glass.

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Last Bite

I had reservations about posting this because most of the niche I have carved out here is associated with Raw Food nutrition. And I was frightened (big surprise) about how I would appear if I actually put this out there… but I am always afraid of actually saying what it is that I am experiencing for fear of judgment, and this needs to stop, so my apologies if this dismantles anyone’s idea about me but the following is pure and sincere, and so must out. And thus...

I have become very annoyed by seeing that every cookbook on health begins with Hippocrates. “Let Food Be thy Medicine and Medicine, Thy Food…” It always appears somewhere, usually in the first twenty pages, if it wasn’t the opening quote. This concept attributed to Hippocrates, was what drew me into food and nutrition long before I knew who spoke the words. This goes to show how true and natural concepts become pervasive, especially when one is looking for it. And I know that this is a truth. That food heals. But so do our thoughts… and it has gotten to the point that no matter what I put into my mouth, I am in judgment about it. I rationalize, polarize, and vacillate into extremes out of the need to control something! Let me have control over one tiny part of something… let me get out of this fear that unravels and twitters behind every thought, every action: nothing is sincere anymore, or at least, sometimes, it feels this way.

Food has become so many things for so many people. It is not merely what provides sustenance, for many it is comfort, love, acceptance, a drug, an obsession, another means of control, another way to abstain from any sense of being, a numbing shot against pain or grief, pornographic gastronomy.

There it was, on the top of page 30 in Sally Fallon’s Nourishing Traditions: my ultimate issue.

“The desire to abstain from animal products, found so often in those of a spiritual nature, may reflect a longing to return to a former, more perfect state of consciousness that was ours before our souls took embodiment in a physical material plane […].”

I find myself in this struggle of what I relate to in my spiritual sense and my fear and buffering against the joy and the sorrow of the physical body. The compassion for all living creatures, the love in their eyes and innocence, mixed with my craving for animal protein. Most of the time, meat tastes dead to me. But then I can remember a bacon-wrapped date that dissolved in my mouth with such exquisite sweetness, such tender, melt in your mouth, salty, crispy sublimity, it had a density which made the tongue giggle all on its own. And I don't even like pork. But there was such attention put into that meal, that night, in Marin County, under palm trees and lanterns, sharing wine amongst friends.

It’s not that I think raw food is not of benefit to my body, but I have developed so many food-rules for myself, that I feel like I am just using raw as one more way to control what goes in my mouth. I have a very bizarre eating disorder. I’m not bulimic, although I have made myself throw up …more in the last 2 years than ever in my adolescence. But I definitely have a binge-purge pattern going on, especially when I look at my food journal. I didn’t think I starved myself… but some days, I eat hardly anything at all… and wonder why I am so maniacally famished into downing too much pasta or potatoes the next: my body is screaming for quick glucose. I am realizing that I have royally screwed up my relationship with my body. I stopped seeing it as sacred: it was the enemy.

Whenever it comes to food, thoughts about said bacon-wrapped bounty are always essential (in what way, who knows?) … But I think it is also what thoughts and intentions I use in preparation. One of spiritual my teachers, a small Indian man with a gravelly voice would stand over his pot of rice or sautéing ginger garlic onions, and say: “You are so beautiful. You are the most wonderful onions. Look at you, look at how beautiful you are.” The tomatoes blushed in response. The same man also said that whenever you truly enjoy something… not out of craving-aversion-lust-compulsion: but genuinely enjoy – it all turns to soma. And no matter how healthy something else is, if your body is in judgment or in fear-hate-compulsion about it, it becomes ama … undigested matter = dis-ease.

Somewhere between nineteen and twenty-six years old, I had developed a love-hate relationship with food. A need to stuff myself with the most sublime things, coupled at other moments with anything that would do to make me numb, send me into a carbohydrate induced coma, just anything to not feel. Now, to be clear, this was not fast food or ice cream. I was a health foodie, all-organic everything. Whole grain, (spelt, buckwheat, barley, brown rice, quinoa) what’s-it and every manner of vegetable. I had an adventurous palate, within reason (no chicken feet stew or sweetbreads has made it past my lips, and I’m pretty sure that won’t change). But then again, organic pasta was always enough to send me down that dark spiral, where the fog rolls in on the east coast of consciousness and nothing but the blur and heft of fullness can be felt. Here, I didn’t have to think about school or sex or the unfairness I always associated with be female, I could just disconnect from any sub-sensual method of being alive and slip away into a useless stupor; a drug just as powerful as anything you could inject into the bloodstream, by needle, and almost as fast. I was addicted to not feeling. But like any addiction, it never really makes you feel good for very long, and when the fog cleared, the sun always rises the next morning and the pain (which I had pushed so deeply into my sinews, my feminine parts, places I knew that at least, I would never look, into cavernous brokenhearted hotels, muscles, curvaceous fatty deposits that I had never had before) was still there. I am a self-admitted food snob Spiritual egoist, South beach (tried it), Zone (tried it), Macrobiotics (tried it), Ayuveda, Vegetarian, Vegan(tried it), Raw food(tried it): glutton(tired of it). And am so sick of all the labels.

Someone recently asked me, have I ever tried just letting my body have whatever it actually wants? No judgments no second-guessing and after really thinking about it… no I haven’t. I have never actually let my body, not my neuroses, pre-programmed food-abridged rule induced conceptualized intellectualized rationalization, make a single decision in my life. I am beginning to suspect (har) that my issues with food will not go away with being thin or healthy, because they are 100% of the mind.

M has been on this wonderful kick of picking “intention” cards for the week – one of these for me was : I Love My Body.

…maybe I should just try that for awhile. And talking to my mom, she says: wow. I think you think too much. And she says, whenever I start to think too much, I should just breathe. Whenever you see yourself spiral into old thoughts, trying to find someplace in the head where its safe... just breathe. Ok. I will. I'll breathe. Love and Breathe.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Fastfood Footprint

This is kind of a shocker, well, for the uninformed fast-food nation, at least. But in the debate on global climate change, this especially concerns those from the side who choose to keep eye and ears closed, who believe that SUV's aren't capable of damaging the climate as much as scientists attest ... well they're partly right. The SUV consumer obsession in America just took a backseat to Wendy's, MickeyD's and the Whopper, watch how in Jamais Cascio's Six Degrees: The Carbon Footprint of a Hamburger.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Stairway to Heaven

These are the kinds of things that just make my day.

I found this picture in an article at The architect described it thus:

"We created a secret staircase, hidden from the main reception room, to access a new loft bedroom lit by roof lights. Limited by space, we melded the idea of a staircase with our client's desire for a library to form a 'library staircase' in which English oak stair treads and shelves are both completely lined with books. With a skylight above lighting the staircase, it becomes the perfect place to stop and browse a tome."

Now, I have to add a loft in my future houses ... because for someone such as myself, who has a hard (nay, impossible) time leaving a bookstore without a purchase. A tome of this ilk would be welcome indeed; complete with a round room at the top of said stairs: a perfect writer's room.

I wonder if they have it organized by genre or subject or author... or color??

Happy Thursday.

The Tugging

I feel a butterfly tugging, a monarch
of sinew, the mucous arm of the husk,
the cocoons’ warmed & hollow beckoning:
just one more dream.
I follow the first rays of sunlight
out into blue, grey, & green
like a Suzanne Vega song,
a Kerouac humming
on a wide & open road.
Lured by a first glimpse,
until I am strong enough to let
go, & no longer need the thread
To lead me out. I grow outwards
like a fiery crown, afraid to look down,
to see the world offered
like a plum.
The rare softness of damage,
I remember, like a bruised strawberry, the
sweetness is fermented & bloody.
Numbs the tongue so that resistance
becomes like language: easily
drowned out, gagged or confused
by the excesses of darkness.
Frightened of true
speaking, or speaking Truth,
our own in particular. In glances
off armor, off convex & mirrored souls,
the sole reason for flying is not
for fear of dying, but freedom to
love not so lovelessly, to live outside
the smallness of a body,
to not bruise so easily.
Wet between fingertips, the membrane
of birth, new ideas, of my Self,
dry their wings in sunlight.
A space without earth is
harder than it looks.

Lindsay Rose (c) 2008

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Dreaming of Mary Oliver

Wild Geese
by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting,
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

How to Discover If You're a Girl

If you haven't had the introduction -- let me do so now: *ahem, everyone, meet Margaux of Size Ate:

A clip to inspire:

Some Background:

Changes, Changes

You might have noticed that I have changed the structure and style (and color) here on this episode of "this old blog" -- And it was purely out of a desire to make things appear more streamlined and clean. I am a colorful chamaelon, and needed to shed a skin, time to make way for new. I guess the little pre-spring heatwave has gotten into the blood already. And yet, this new look still feels like it retains the energy of the older colors and intentions, just quieter. And I feel like I need that right now. But there are lots of new things, so look around. One thing in particular: that I'm very proud to say that I am now an affiliate of Angela Stokes' Raw Reform and I so happy to be helpful to her and Mr. Monarch in any way. And now, for your daily (er.. weekly, uhm, monthly? Aha: whenever-I-feel-like-it) Thinking Man (or Woman)'s Excerpt.

The following is an excerpt from Gnosis & the Law:

"When the word personality is used by the Masters, it does not mean the I AM Presence but the soul as it was developed by man in his many re-embodiments and is manifested now in its totality as his personality. For a better understanding of this, let's bear in mind that man in each and every re-embodiment, creates for himself a personality--the conscience--which is the result of all the experience of that particular life. The soul is the totality of the conscience of all re-embodiments on this planet, since the The Fall of Man. This soul however, should not be confused with the I AM, which is man's real soul, and which was given to him at his creation, when he went through the Seven Spheres, but which was withdrawn later, leaving to him only a microscopic part of the original, and which he tries now to augment via repeated re-embodiments." (The Maha Chohan, in a special letter to his students, June, 1964)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


So, yesterday, after reading my blog, my dear M informs me that it was a bit of rambling, wasn't it? And re-reading it, yes, completely unfocused and garbled and morose, really. But I'm glad I got it all out. Now I can sit down and readjust.

I spent yesterday afternoon reading and cleaning out my computer ... going through old documents, .jpegs, etc and wondering: do I really need this anymore? I come from a long line of pack-rats, and although I can be grateful that I don't have a garage with 40+ or even 10+ years of backlog; my computer does take on a lot of damage in terms of using it hide and tunnel old thought patterns. But sometimes I find good things too. Like Goal setting documents that I wrote one day and disappeared into my hard-drive, folder within folder. Like one of those russian dolls that has a smaller doll on the inside.

I also found old journal entries, spiritual experiences, dreams. I have always had journals, but I have never been any good at keeping them. This blog had tried to come into existence for 3 years before I finally started to actually post with any regularity or any vim.

Today I found a quote I had written in my journal in 2006, by Emerson, and he wrote:

The Gods we worship write their names on our faces, be sure of that. And a man will worship something, have no doubt about that either. He may think that his tribute is paid in secret, in the dark recesses of his heart -- but it will out. That which dominates will determine his life and character. Therefore, it behooves us to be careful what we worship, for what we are worshiping; we are becoming.

And this really made me think, as it must have back then, otherwise, why would I have written it down? I find myself asking: What do I worship? On what alter to I regularly offer thoughts and prayers? Do I prostrate, do I bleed or sacrifice? And I have a confession. I am a terribly egoistic little girl. I try to control things that are beyond controlling, I never ask for help, I don't breathe as deeply as I could and I am scared most of the time. That is all true. I use food and knowledge to distract myself from feeling and progressing. From moving forward. I am afraid. They make for wonderful excuses and mind-numbing apathetic body-gloom. But then again. I know all is well. My soul doth magnify the lord. Om, shanti, shanti, shanti. And because I am choosing it to be so, it will get better.

I have meditated since I was five. It was part of my daily routine and part of our community (TM, fairfield, etc.) and although I left TM behind almost eight years ago... I have always been an advocate of what finding time with one's self can manifest. I am ashamed to say, over the last 3 years, I have even let that slip and do it haphazardly, and boy -- I'll tell ya: I can tell the difference.

I tend to make grandiose promises. I'm really good at planning, tend to be poor at execution. I tend to talk and talk and talk until the desire snuffs out and then I don't have to do anything. Ay, there's the rub.

There are so many things I want to do, but one step at a time. Time to readjust. I am beginning to get so excited about doing the Juice Feast. I can't wait to start. But I am, because I need to prepare. I am trying to read as much as possible. Blogs, juicing, knowledge... I wish I could absorb it all -- just let my body lie along the pages and pore, by pore absorb it like a sponge... words and grace drinking in. *Sigh.

In A Course in Miracles it reads that "health is the result of relinquishing all attempts at using the body lovelessly."

And I am guilty of using my body lovelessly. What wonder could be seen, what gifts unfurled if I could just live and let go...

There's a Native American parable, but I forget which tribe it is actually attributed to, where the Creator (Grandfather in some circles: daddy-mommy-god in others) amasses the clans of his animals and offers the following:

"I want to hide something from my human children until they are ready for it. . . . It is the realization that they create their own reality."

"Give it to me. I'll fly it to the moon," says the Eagle.

"No," says he Creator. "One day soon they will go there and find it."

"How about the bottom of the ocean?" asks the Salmon.

"No," says the Creator. "They will find it there, too."

"I will bury it in the great plains," says the Buffalo.

"They will soon dig and find it there," says the Creator.

"Then put it inside of them," says wise Grandmother Mole.

"Done," says the Creator. "It is the last place they will look."

And so this comes to me while I am reading Rumi and nearly cry when I come upon shining nuggets, like the chants to the steps of the Sufi dance of Universal Peace:

"Come, come whoever you are. This caravan knows no despair.
Even though you have broken your vows, perhaps ten thousand times,
Come, come again."

So, all right. I will come again.
Maharishi used to say: desire and let go, the universe will take care of the rest. Ok, that too. I am wake and I will look inside with more love and more patience, and promise that I will walk this path and again, have more patience. And Trust, which is the hardest of all: I will Trust the process. The light can take it from there.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Spring Mud & Letting Go

Good Monday to you all. I hope it was a fine weekend in your part of the world...I have so much going through my head that I don't know where to begin. So first things first: M and I are heading up to Jackson Hole the first week of March to take care of some wedding things: florists, caterers, etc. He is also planning on taking advantage of the 400+ inches of snow Jackson Hole Resort has been inundated with so far this winter. I am looking forward to a massage or two and maybe a little spa weekend for myself. This is spring break and we were going to head into the heat, but wedding agenda takes precedence, un/fortunately, so into the snow we go!

Another item of business beginning the first of March is the Global Juice Feast. This is the beginning of Kapha season in the Ayurvedic calendar (roughly the time from March through June), when we tend to be blocked, sluggish and congested. Not surprisingly, liver, kidney cleansing and support are recommended during Kapha season and it is not a coincidence that the Christian ritual of Lent evolved from a long period of fasting. This is the time when you begin to take in the lighter, more bitter foods. This is why spring shoots are so wonderful, they are astringent to the system - they help cleanse and remove excess toxins and wring out stagnant water from the system to help escort more oxygen, flexibility and lightness to the body in preparation for the summer season of activity. Mother Nature knows best. Thus, I am beginning a 92-day juice feast on March 1st, 2008. I am looking to completely re-set my body-clock. I am excited and yet, in all honesty, terrified. Even though I did a mini-juice feast (10 days) in October and knew within 3 days how wonderful it was -- my little ego mind is always so terrified to be out of control or to be moving forward up the evolutionary spiral. Once I do embark on anything positive, my body-mind does jump on the bandwagon, it's the beginning it that causes fear. I'm sure I should be on the AIM program and a million other "get-out-of-your-own-way" technologies, and I'm certain I will -- when the time is right.

I am having the hardest time "not-doing only being" -- my head goes into a tailspin wondering what I can do now, now, now to provide myself some purpose. Do I become an artist- writer- nutritionist- teacher- permaculturist-yogi-traveler-photographer-hippiecommune-ist-fill in the blank what-what? Yes, it seems, now that I have stopped chasing what I *thought* I was supposed to be, hoping I'd discover what I really am and who I really am, I am struggling with letting go of it all. And for those of you who know me, that's pretty much par for the course. Letting go Trouble? Nah, really? (har, indeed).

How does one move from the head into the heart? For some it maybe a simple decision, well, for anyone, it is just that, but getting out of the academic nature of the mind is difficult for me; I've been trained to operate this way, six and a half years of university work (BA and MA time alloted) will do that to a person.

Thinking is great, wonderful, necessary, but I wonder if its really as cracked up as its meant to be. I find that it gets me stuck in ruts, down back English roads deep with spring mud. And I can just see myself lifting the hood, checking valves, pushing, kicking the tires, trying to dig my way out, when a shepherd walks up the hill with his flock of sheep whistling a tune, a contented smile on his face and there I stand dumb founded, not realizing that in that moment I am standing witness to the solution. Which is this: you cannot solve old problems with old thinking, old methods of transportation or archaic reasoning...

The question is, why can't I just go and hoof it on foot like the smart ones? Just abandon the vehicle that is causing so much distress, let the elements take it down into its pieces, until rust and moss return it to its most basic attributes and go off on my merry way
(** I do hope you all realize this is a metaphor, and that I would never just leave a car to rot in the middle of nowhere...) with a walking stick and a smile?

I still haven't caught on it seems, because I know I'm not walking, yet. I can tell because the scenery isn't changing much; its the same old thoughts, same ruts. And I'm stuck. Maybe you remember watching Winnie the Pooh as kids, when he eats too much honey and can't get out the
hole .. er.. front door of his dear worrisome friend, Rabbit's House... but I'm not gorged on honey, I'm overstuffed with thinking, thinking, thinking. Painted into a corner, immobilized and _________, pick any cliché that suits you.

This is why I am looking forward to the feast -- I have no where to run to -- having dealt with compulsive eating in the past, I know that food is a very effective numbing agent. But I have to confront my fears about myself and so this spring is the year I am finally choosing to do something about it... did I mention that I was terrified?

Ok. Onwards.
Habitat. Where do we find ourselves living? In the mind, in the heart? In our body? On the planet? Are we ever really in these places with any sincerity or, like destructive termites, we chew up and spit out our surroundings until we have to take over someone else's turf? In this case -- the deer have had their habitat chewed up and spit out by developers, lawnmowers and "civic landscapers."

I remember living in Iowa and walking through our 22 acre property before moving away at 14 years old, and in the long grasses under locusts trees and grand oaks, there would be deer beds. And if you've never seen one, it usually consists of folded grass and padded mounds of earth and droppings. You know when you've walked into one, because the energy changes. You're standing in someone's bedroom. I never get tired of seeing wild animals. Living in the mountains of Colorado I find a lot of jaded persons, who've seen so many, hell -- it's just another deer. I hope I never get like that.

Speaking of over development:

This is Moscow. Today. Someone mentioned it looked like Sauron's wasteland from Lord of the Rings.

When I see this, it breaks my heart.
It breaks my heart when I drive through Denver ghettos and see the bars on the windows of ranch-home developments. Their backyards fenced in from the highway and the open land across the road that could be full of local gardens or wildlife preserves is being pummeled by cattle that will become beef that's recalled too late, due to poor farming practices and a dull sense of human compassion...

So. This blog wasn't meant to be depressing and my apologies outright if it appears that way. It was more a chance to step back and look forward into something brighter. And we all have to do it our own way. For me, it's learning how to navigate my own mud. Learning from the earth how to heal myself is primal and integral, Now. Not later, no waiting, just Now.

So I am juice feasting. For me, for the planet, for everyone else who needs help getting out of a rut. And while I'm in Jackson, maybe I'll get one of those clay mud wraps and make it useful instead of letting my mind insist that life is a burden. It's not, it's just the darkness talking. But here comes the sun and here comes the juicy life and all the brilliance I cannot at this moment fathom. I know it's coming... like Matt Monarch says, the future is so, so bright.

love and light all. namaste