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Archive for the ‘Happiness’ Category

Flavors

181694064_4b90f35e40_m.jpgphoto by uncommonmuse via flickr.com

The move to raw foods has changed my perception and maybe even my ability to enjoy flavors. I am really wondering if it’s increased my actual ability to taste more varieties, subtle complexities and depth of flavors. The insulin rush, numbing out and compulsive eating coming from the habit of eating primarily noodles and breads has moved backstage to this new experience of flavors. And the new raw foods have become simply what I look forward to because the flavors are so much more interesting.

Eating one of those pre-cut up raw collection of cruciferous and other vegetables mixes you can buy in a grocery store can become a real experience when you don’t add any topping and just offer yourself an opportunity to just enjoy the flavors present in that moment of each bite. Each one has a pretty different culture of flavors packed in there (radishes, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, etc).

Right now I am enjoying a simple grapefruit, my new all time favorite food. My enjoyment of them keeps growing, weeks ago I noticed the flavor being better than any candy I had ever tasted. Today again something about the dry tartness or richness and complexity of the flavor is reminding me so strongly of the darkest and finest chocolates I used to eat years ago. Except the flavor is just lingering and lingering, it is pretty odd in fact and especially to feel like I have eaten so many and never really consciously remarked about it, instead just inhaled another one of these beautiful creations. Physically they are very interesting too, don’t forget to explore that.

I hope you are enjoying this blog and I hope you don’t pass up an opportunity to slowly devour the largest pre-cut selection of vegetables you can find one day, just sitting there and enjoying all those bites and then noticing afterwards how you feel. I had the opportunity during a long car ride where I was the passenger and a most captive audience, with nothing else pushing to especially distract me.

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Kiva.com

08-02-2006 15.05.09, originally uploaded by robysaltori. One of my favorite blogs, MyMoneyBlog.com, just did a piece on Kiva.com. I once saw a documentary on Kiva, I just had no idea it was so easy to participate. You get to loan 25 bucks to a low-income entrepreneur in a third world country, interest free. That is essentially like the charity you give, the interest you might have gained on your 25 otherwise. The person borrowing does pay interest of 10%, that is much less than they would otherwise.

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Yesterday I craved greens and I had more than my usual amount of greens. Started with 4 cups of spinach in a smoothie with banana and apple, then had about 6 cups of Massaged Greens (see recipe), then ended the day with a 4+ cup salad of mixed greens and a tomato. That was about 14 cups of greens. Snacked on things like guacamole, nuts, grapefruit, hummus…

Can I afford to eat like that? It definitely seems more expensive because we are not used to eating that much of that or this. Though think, things I don’t eat are pretty expensive (meat, dairy, cheese, chips, cookies, ice cream, prepared frozen foods, soda, beer, wine, candy, pizza). I rarely buy packaging.

Whether it is cheaper depends on what habits you might let go of over time and what habits you might gain. I am not certain if it is cheaper for me, although it definitely seems cheaper and I have read that it is for people in general. It first felt expensive to buy 3-4 avocadoes, now I found a place I can get them for about 59 cents each and I buy 4-6 a week. It felt expensive because I used to think even one avocado was a splurge. Even if you are paying 1.39 each for your avocado, my gosh think of what you are no longer buying once your cravings switch.

It seems amazing to me that a plant spends a portion of its life making this incredible fruit (really its like a miracle), many hands spend hours growing it, picking it, hauling it and living off of that could be cheaper than living off mass manufactured product. Is it cheaper, it has to do with what you would do otherwise.

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by will_1520 via flickr.com

I just started a new blog, not at the cost of this one, more likely it will enhance this one. Blogs are the most fantastic thing for people who love to write, I encourage everyone to start a blog about anything you want to learn about, if you like to write. It can be like reference-able notes and I think you don’t even have to publish it.

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Tulips, originally uploaded by Sumalee.

I have been very curious about losing weight on RAW. Really one of your comments inspired me to think, because I am struggling with the same things. Loosing weight takes so much mental and emotional strength (for some people more than others). When I do lose weight I find it takes time to read/talk myself into that position. Like you are going to devote your thinking life (for some time) to it at the cost of thinking about other things.

Anyone can lose or gain weight on any diet. The reason to eat raw is that it sets your body and mind free from all the toxins, acids, wound up, burnt, torn apart nutrients in cooked foods. Filling your body with live enzymes and still unbroken complete nutrients, is filling your body with life. The enzymes are the work people of your body, they are going around fixing things, when you eat something with no live enzymes to use, yours have to leave what they are doing struggle with the burnt up complicated food and then get pooped out! They are gone now. Plants come with enzymes specific to them, that is how they break down into the soil, they are biodegradeable because of their specific enzymes. My experience with being only primarily raw, yes I am still irritable at times, etc. now that the sun of spring has hit my face I got a little acne, yes still human it turns out.

I get irritated reading the raw authors who make it sound like you are going to sprout wings and start flying, we are all just what we are, the best we can do is come to terms with that compassionately and go from there. When we can openly and kindly listen to all our stories, including the one about that muffin, this thing, that one, all about how we get there…eventually we reach a point where we see it coming and we are just tired of it and ready to try something different this time. There is always struggle because there is always change, unpredictability and not only do we not like that, we repeatedly fool ourselves into thinking things can be permanent so we get suprised, at least we can be aware of what is healthy and what works if we can try hard to listen kindly and with an open and curious mind.

If we listen with a judgemental mind we won’t hear the whole truth and we will have that much less to go on. Have you ever had a mean boss? Do people tell that boss everything? Line up outside their door? Nope. Ever had a kind boss? I like the boss with whom I could earn a living selling coffee to all the people happily waiting outside her door.

I have lost weight along this path so far and I have lost cravings and so have many others, still we are so complicated – I am sure the final answer isn’t just go RAW. Going RAW is like, ok you want to build a gorgous treasure filled house and now you have a hammer and some boards, what you do with all the tools you DO HAVE, that is mental and emotional work, time and energy, compassion, supportive friends and family or at least a good shrink! It is just invaluable to know someone who is willing to listen to all your problems, struggles, and victories with compassion. Then books, the right books are just vital. Go find them. Find the ones that turn you on. Mine are in my book review category if you want a diving board. Once you are in the pool, the water feels great. Jump. Jump now and in the next moment and the next, always as present and aware as you can be, listen with an open heart. You have to be willing to fail.

The fact is we are constantly changing. It seems like we get so certain of who we are (this good or bad thing) that we can’t listen to who we really are, who we actually are in this moment. It is frustrating when you are not “allowed” to be who you are, it makes you feel so unloved and rejected and non-being. Still we are just sitting there being ourselves. I think of a one year old who is just not layered with all that thick judgement that happens, just sitting there being this beautiful little person. That is really all we are. It is nice we when can get a glimpse of that.

Did I just say in all that if you want to lose weight get really ok with how fat you are? I think I just said that. What do you think, is that making sense?

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I have now burnt out my third kitchen appliance motor. The smell is so familiar and awful really. I have learned to just take it outside immediately till it cools off. This one last gasped then choked on a cucumber drink…it made a nice chunky soup after its emergency evacuation from the blender…actually it was something of a break through for me. I am now gaining an affection for cucumbers (recipe: blend 3 peeled cucumbers (organic), 4tbl. agave nectar, one lemon, 1 tsp. sea salt.). Officially it is a drink involving a sieve, I liked it chunky. I can’t remember who inspired it, I am still a little upset over the motor.

I am also gaining an affection for quality industrial motors. I found a Cuisinart food processor with a 10 year warranty on the motor. I ordered a K-tec/Blendtec HP3 Blender, it got better reviews by my various sources than the Vitamix.

I suppose it is fairwell to a fated piece of equipment, the one that really brought me into the raw…kind of a sad moment…I had sort of become attached to it and it was a gift. Sigh.

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On Thinness

Have you ever noticed for a moment, that feeling of being thin? I believe we have all felt it whether consciously or not. Like you put on your loosest pants and there you are, all free and it feels great. It is a fleeting moment of whew I am not so HERE, especially around the waste! Not so tangled and so here in a lot of ways: here pressing on the earth, here pressing on my lungs, instead there is a light featheriness, like the greens on the carrot top. For a moment it is as though my existence and absence will be less imposing. I am wondering if gaining weight is a way of clinging to the earth. Like being hooked on being on the planet, like at least I can stay here…when the reality is we can’t. We can use it as a way to run from the reality of impermanance.

Most times I feel like the carrot, sometimes I feel like the carrot tops. I think anyone can feel that way, like when you put on a loose fitting set of clothes, doesn’t that feel great? Like you are less of an imposition, less imposing, and less imposed on, just here having no effect.

Thin Privilege

We can see what can happen when someone feels unwanted, isolated, and outcast. Coincidentally something happened in my office the same week that brought to my attention an experience an Asian American was having and how defensive he had become after having been labeled incorrectly for so many years. He was so angry at someone’s assuming he was Asian (and not American) he came back to complain. It is easier to gain compassion realizing when someone is going through some crap. Anyway, the respect, when people feel respected that can be very powerful for a society’s health.

That brings me to the thin point, overweight people are going through pointless societal pressures…getting ignored, treated like less and it is just so wrong.

Just because a person is having a thin diet does not mean they are “better”. I recognize that a lot of privilege comes free with being thin. Everyone deserves respect, we are all just looking for a little respect, to feel accepted…I know I will make assumptions sometimes and at my job today we are having such a hectic business, yikes. We have to be compassionately approaching ourselves too, otherwise how can we approach others with compassion when we aren’t even skilled at giving it to ourselves. Best of luck out there! Awake in this moment.

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