A Wisdom Quote (from A.B. in Kansas)
"It is not what you don't know, but what you know that just ain't so" Wisdom for individuals, cultures, religions, politicians.
A friend talked about a training session he went to on Mindfulness. What is it? It is being very present with the fullest focus on what you are presently doing. What the group was asked to do was eat a raisen. Me, I often gulp my food. Even today I have to remind myself to slow down and savor what I am eating. Not exactly mindfulness. He said afterwards that everyone understood mindfulness after they had eaten a few raisens. Texture, flavor, sweetness, the initial chewiness, then the softness as the raisen disolved in their mouths and then the act of swollowing. At some point in time all other experience faded away and there was only the raisen. Try it on any food. Its an eye opener.
Of course you can perform this mindfulness at any time with any activity. The reason it is good to start with food and the act of eating is you really want to do it and slowing down to really savor what you are eating is not hard to do.
I was recently introduced to a different approach to changing our presence in this thing we call the present or "Now". It was a game and games are a lot more fun than lots and lots of words. The lady's name is "Jane McGonigal".
How to add ten good years to your life or 7 and one half minutes a day. The simple effort to practice the game gives you a boost in the physical. emotional, mental, social and even spiritual parts of your life. For example, except for sleep, do not stay still or sedentary for more than an hour. I just, fist pumped the sky for a few seconds, snapped my fingers fifty times, looked out my window, petted my cats, and imagined shaking hands with a friend for six seconds. I got 7 and 1/2 minutes added to my life! Plus I had a negative emotion which I switched to 3 positive emotions in the blink of an eye and the negative one disappeared. Fun but life affirming at the same time. Not trying to steal her thunder but the fun and creativity she came up with to deal with a pretty serious concussion and the after effects was amazingly creative.
So while I want us to practice letting go, being aware of emotions filtering to the surface, acknowledging them and focusing on the moment, these games help build physical, emotional, mental resilience along with social connectivity (the network of people we are all a part of) and spiritual connectivity (the network of life we are all a part of).
What fun, what creativity. listen to her video on Ted.com.
Nutrition (is our food giving us the nutrition we think we are getting?)
The correct answer is, it depends. For a plant to deliver to the seed (its future generations) the amount and degree of the nutrients its DNA tells it to, several things have to come together.
Sun, water, soil, temperature. The soil is the one we will be focused on. The soil is the incubation medium for the plant. This is where the uptake of water which has, under optimum conditions, dissolved minerals, nitrogen, oxygen, carbon, and a host of trace elements. If these are all available, the plant dna does its job and we get fruits, vegetables and grains that are packed with everything we need to grow and repair our bodies. If, a big word, and filled with questions and concerns.
Fact: the health of our soil is a critical element in the nutrition we get from our food. The nutrition we do get is much less (25 to 50% less) than was available in the same food pre World War II (search healthy soil, nutrition). This nutrition gap is because the minerals in the soil is and has been depleted. High nitrogen fertilizers grow big crops but do not deliver the mineral base that the plant needs to complete their DNA instructions and create a healthy, tasty and vibrant fruit, vegetable or seed. If you can buy locally grown fruits and vegetables and grains from your farmers market.
Everything about nutrition can be condensed into one single observation. Human health is exposed to an onslaught of contaminant and weak foods. We must choose to be aware of what we eat, how our food products are grown, the health of the soil they are grown in, and what pesticides and herbicides are used to maximize a crops output.
I know, we cannot all have the depth of knowledge that this awareness requires. We have to trust, don't we?, that the companies providing the seed, the farmers growing the crops, the companies providing the fertilizer, herbicides, and pesticides are looking out for our health and safety. We have to trust that the FDA and EPA are doing their job. We have to trust that our elected representative are on the alert and demand accountability for any company's failure to protect us from harmful products. We have no choice but to trust.
But, when information comes our way that says this trust is misplaced, even dangerous, we should take great care to protect ourselves. Ask questions, research online, vote in favor of health and safety, participate as you can with watchdog groups (like PAN). Above all when you have the chance, go to the ballot box and vote for health and safety, for transparency (labeled food), and vote against those that would ignore the warning signs, the dangers, and do nothing to stop the companies that endanger our lives and our children's lives. California you have a vote coming up.
A few issues: Clean Coal, you see and hear this in all promotions for expanding our energy independence. Make no mistake Arsenic and Mercury are still being dumped into our atmosphere from clean coal. A recent study has placed Arsenic in rice and of course mercury is rampant through out our marine food chain. Pesticides, Jet fuel components, herbicides, flame retardent chemicals have been found in women's breast milk. New research has found that Genetically modified corn exposes us all to human health problems (search tumors, GE corn, roundup). The biggest failure in all of this lies at the feet of our agency that is supposed to protect us (the FDA). Since when is it ok for Genetically engineered crops to go untested for ?15? years. Since when is corporate america allowed to self regulate and self test their own products? Since when does the FDA actually oppose food labeling. Good question, only people in the FDA can answer that.