Spring 2013 Newsletter

Spring 2013 Newsletter

Moon and Lotus
Kamala Quale, MSOM, LAc
(541) 345-2220

IN THIS ISSUE:

 

Time to Detox

Detox is on my mind this month. Internal spring cleaning goes so well with clearing out the external environment. Detox and immune boosting go hand in hand.

Check out the detox tips in this newsletter, and join me for a Saturday detox and qigong retreat at the Moon and Lotus yurt near Lorane on May 4th. From 10am – 4pm.

Healing continues with the Saturday qigong retreat in June which includes walking qigong and sound and color healing. Both the May and June retreats end with group acupuncture.

By special request, I am also offering a special summer solstice Walking the Dipper qigong with optional overnight lodging at the yurt and morning qigong practice.

For complete information see the Spring Taoist Yoga/Qigong Retreats section.

Detox - Do I need it?

If you have allergies, chronic sinus problems, digestion and elimination issues, joint pain, headaches, or are healing from chronic or major health problems, knowing how to detox on a regular basis can be a very important part of your healing.

Whenever you feel stuck physically or emotionally it’s a good time to get things moving and clean house.

What are the benefits?

When you keep the body cleared out and free-flowing, you increase health, vitality, focus and emotional balance. You feel better and are able to handle life’s ups and downs with more grace and flexibility.

The other organ that benefits is the brain. The brain is the like grand central station. It directs activity in the nervous system and bodymind in general. When the brain is working well we can focus, remember, and move with more balance and coordination.

We can train our brains to quiet restless thinking and calm anxiety loops. This helps us respond rather than react to stressful life experiences and relationship. Both detox and Taoist yoga/qigong are great for brain support.

What internal organs am I focusing on?

The main organs of detox in the body are the kidneys, liver, intestines, lungs and skin. All of these organs filter out toxins and help us eliminate.

Good circulation of blood, energy and sensation in the body help these organs function optimally to heal health problems, prevent illness and increase vitality and focus.

What are the important elements of detox?

Nutrition, movement, focus, determination and mindfulness are essential parts of the process.

See Tips for Self-Care for nutrition tidbits, and tips for meditation for determination and mindfulness ideas. The Retreats section has info on how you can get hands-on practice in these methods.

 

Kamala Quale Smiling
Photo: Kamala Quale

 

Tips for Self Care

Drink lemon water to detox and improve your health

I am going to ask the people who come to the Movement and Detox retreats to start their day with a glass of hot water and lemon. Read this section to find out why.

Lemon water is a great addition to your diet, and has been recommended by both ancient and modern nutritional systems. Lemon water helps us adjust the acid/alkaline balance in the body. Maintaining an optimal ph level in the body is fundamental to feeling healthy and avoiding disease.

Many of our ailments start with our bodies becoming too acidic. Problems that start with aches and pains and lead to more serious conditions like diabetes, heart problems and cancer can have this root.

We all have a pH balance that is determined by the amount of acidity and alkalinity that is present. On a scale that goes from 0 to 14, 7.4 is considered ideal. If you are below 7.4 you need to adjust your diet to bring you back into balance.

In general 75-80% of our diet should come from alkaline foods and drink, which includes mostly vegies and fruits, and 20-25% from foods that are acidic like most protein sources and dairy.

What we eat and drink contributes to and fixes the acid/alkaline balance of our bodies. The tip for self-care today is to drink lemon water. Although citrus fruits may seem acidic externally, when they metabolize in the body they make it more alkaline.

Lemons have a ph level of 9.0. So adding it to water and drinking it daily can raise your ph balance. Lemon juice stimulates the digestive system, liver, gall bladder, and lymph flow, thereby helping you flush toxins and absorb nutrients. Lemons are also rich in vitamin C.

This antioxidant helps the body neutralize cell-damage and increases wound healing. Lemon water and drinking water in general helps clear the skin and increases water metabolism so can help with bloating and swelling.

Hot water with lemon in the morning is a great way to get your system going and can be a substitute for coffee, which is acidic in nature. During the day I like slicing a lemon and letting it float in a quart jar of water. It attracts my attention during the day and I drink more water.

When the jar is empty I fill it back up. Make sure the lemons are organic. Wash the skin well and then slice. Fresh lemon is best, but If you don’t have them you can get organic lemon juice.

Ann Louise Gittleman, author of “Fat Flush for Life” recommends combining the juice of half a lemon with 1 cup hot water. If you don't want to squeeze your own lemons, you can substitute 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Make sure to use 100-percent organic lemon juice.

You can spice up this drink and further rev your metabolism by adding a pinch of ground cinnamon and a pinch of ground ginger. Lemons will keep for up to 10 days at room temperature, so you can shop for them weekly.

You also can store fresh lemon juice in an ice cube tray without losing any of its potency.

 

 

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Tips for Meditation

"The firmness of a person’s resolve makes him great. However lowly a person may be, he can become great by his determination. If you have a firm resolve to realize your goal, you shall become great. Without a firm resolution, you cannot achieve anything." Shrii Shrii Anandamurti

Determination is one of the main qualities that will help us achieve our goals. Whether we are talking about personal healing and detox, being a better partner, supporting our family, or serving our community and growing into our full spiritual potential, firm determination is necessary to keep us on track. I’d like to share a couple of references on this subject by spiritual teachers that I respect.

Firm Determination was listed as the first (of seven) secrets of success in a teaching given by the Tantric spiritual guide and social philosopher, Shrii Shrii Anandamurti, who is quoted above.

In Timmern, West Germany in 1979 he talked about the importance of having a goal that comes from a place of inner truth and staying with it even in the face of difficulty. He listed some of those difficulties as either judgment or appreciation from others, fear of responsibility or failure, riches or poverty, long life or death.

I recently saw strong determination listed again in a book on Buddhism that I’ve enjoyed reading lately called “Training in Compassion: Zen Teachings on the practice of Lojong” by Norman Fischer. The author is a Zen Buddhist priest who teaches at the San Francisco Zen Center.

He writes in a very accessible and direct way, and makes the teachings applicable to everyday life. In regards to strong determination he says, “To practice strong determination is to intentionally stay connected to our higher goals and to remind ourselves that we truly are spiritual practitioners, we are heroes, we can make effort, we can do what needs to be done to live a noble life.”

He suggests composing a short speech for oneself in this regard in bold and forthright language, and repeating it frequently. It can sound like “Well, I might look like a merely ordinary person, but I am not. I am a spiritual warrior, a spiritual hero, and though this may not be apparent to others, inside it is clear to me. . . . I’m going forward.”

You may ask (as I do), what is a mere human being to do if he or she encounters resistance to firm determination? Anandamurti points to the need to face our fears of responsibility, failure and judgment. Norman Fischer suggests that we acknowledge our shortcomings (without judgment, blame or guilt) and remind ourselves that we have a powerful energy inside us to accomplish this task.

I remind myself that I follow my path one decision at a time. How can my getting up this morning be a part of my path, and set me in the right direction for the day? How will this food choice affect me? Can I look at this difficulty or challenge with acceptance, and as a way to keep my heart and mind open?

My wise husband believes that firm determination is an attitude and a process that should not be confused with the outcome of any specific actions we take. When we make a decision or when something happens that we do not expect, we can keep checking in with our overall attitude towards our goal and decide which step we want to take next.

If you have any ideas about firm determination and how it plays out in your life, let me know. We all have something to share and teach others. I’ll include the comments I can in another newsletter. Email me at: kquale@moonandlotus.com

 

Spring Taoist Yoga/Qigong Retreats

To Register: email me at kquale@moonandlotus.com or call (541) 345-2220

 

Movement and Detox Retreat

Saturday: May 4th, 10am – 4pm Qi character for the vitality of life.
Qi - the vitality of life

Join me for a day of cleansing and healing. You will learn easy and creative ways to use specific Taoist yoga/qigong and hatha yoga practices, as well as nutrient dense juices and foods to do an internal spring cleanse and maintain good movement and detox practices for life. Let go of stress, move your body and improve digestion of both food and life experiences.

Instructions for the day will start when you get up and we will have the special nutrient dense drinks for lunch while we talk about nutrition that helps you detox and improve acid/alkaline balance. The day will end with a group acupuncture treatment (optional but highly encouraged) to keep your energy moving and immune system humming.

Location: Moon and Lotus yurt, 30 minutes SW of Eugene near Lorane.

Fee: $65 ($60 if you pay for May and June retreats in advance-$110)

 

Physical and Emotional Balance: Walking Qigong, Sound and Color Healing, Group Acupuncture

Saturday: June 1, 10am – 3pm

Join me for a day of physical and emotional balance. Learn natural and creative ways to release stress, tune up your brain and replenish your vitality.

Walking forms of qigong build balance, flexibility and mind and body coordination. They are fun and expressive, and help the brain stay healthy. The Jin Jing Gong system of qigong has 12 different walking styles, and we will practice five of these.

We will also calm our minds and replenish our vitality with traditional sound and color practice, along with meditation and group acupuncture.

Location: Moon and Lotus yurt, 30 minutes SW of Eugene near Lorane.

Fee: $55 ($50 if you attended the May 4th Movement and Detox Retreat.)

 

Summer Solstice Dipper Qigong

Big DipperFriday: June 21, 8pm – 10pm

With optional: 8am – 10am

The Big Dipper constellation is highly significant in ancient Taoist yoga/qigong cosmology. Join us for a celebration of the longest day of the year and participate in Walking the Dipper qigong. Weather permitting we will practice outside in nature as dusk begins, with a little warm-up qigong beforehand. Those who would like can camp or stay in the yurt overnight. In the morning we’ll have breakfast and morning practice.

Location: Moon and Lotus yurt, 30 minutes SW of Eugene near Lorane.

Fee: $20 for qigong. Additional $25 for overnight and morning practice.

 

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