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     Awen Environments

                                                inspirational living arts

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Shungite: a Look at the Healing and Protective Powers of a Russian Mineral from Karelia

Posted on April 11, 2015 at 3:33 PM Comments comments (1)
I've been using the Russian mineral Shungite for almost a year now and felt it was time to share my experiences. I am reluctant to write about anything until I've had personal experience so I felt now was a good time to do so after many months of seeing how it has affected me and everyone in my home including my pets. I have continued to order more pieces in a variety of forms to help harmonize and balance the challenging energies in my home and also to improve my health and energy level. 

Given that I am extremely sensitive to all things in my environment, having this stone around me has greatly increased my energy level and eliminated many problems I was having with fatigue and constant migraines due to stress from varying sources. Despite the fact I live a pretty healthy lifestyle and know alot about earth energies and alternative healing modalities, I could not seem to determine what was causing my exhaustion and contributing to the health issues of my son and our animals until I began reading more about Shungite and realizing what the cause might be and that a solution did exist.

I originally purchased three pieces of this stone last summer knowing very little about its properties and I instinctively felt it necessary to carry it with me everywhere I went. Gradually I began doing more research on Shungite. What I found out intrigued me and I eventually purchased different forms of Shungite and larger pieces for my home in order to begin working with it from a geomancy perspective, as well as to purify my water and food. I wanted to see if my experiences were similar to what had been written and seemed to be well documented and researched. 

Though relatively little is known about this stone in the US, the Russians have known about the healing properties of Shungite for centuries in the town of Karelia, the only place on earth where this healing mineral is found. Peter the Great of Russia was said to have ordered his soldiers to each carry a piece of Shungite with them into battle in order to purify their water. This mineral, which was formed billions of years ago is formed from varying amounts of organic compounds. What's unusual about this stone is that it contains fullerenes which were named after Buckminster Fuller who designed the geodesic dome which is a spherical geometric structure of circles. These fullerenes which may have originated in the cosmos, have bioenergetic properties capable of healing and protecting the human body and all life forms. 

Written records of Shungite go back centuries from various rulers and nobles of Russia who knew of the healing powers of this powerful stone often referring to the pure spring water that sprang forth from the the natural Shungite stone found in the landscape of Karelia. The Russians have since spent many years doing research on the powerful healing and protective influence of Shungite in the areas of water purification, illness and protection against harmful rays such as cell phone radiation and harmful energies such as geopathic stress emanating from the earth. They have found the fullerenes in Shungite work both at a cellular and whole human body level to restore balance and well being. Shungite has repeatedly been proven to protect human life as well as restore health to those with a wide range of illnesses, many which now stem from our modern day life. 

Since learning of this stone, I have used Shungite in a wide variety of ways. I now have a small disk for my cell phone to neutralize the harmful rays and I've noticed that my phone no longer heats up or gives me headaches when I talk too long. I also have a large pyramid placed in strategic points in my home to neutralize the entrance of electricity into my home, as well as areas of geopathic stress which I am aware of. Because constant exposure to electricity can not only interfere with our sleep patterns, but also create damage to our immune systems over long term exposure, Shungite helps to neutralize these harmful rays and enable you to sleep better and allow your body a healthy environment to recover from stress. I have also been wearing a Shungite pendant which helps my own energetic field to remain balanced despite whatever toxic energies I may encounter in my daily activities. I now use Shungite pieces to purify my water on a daily basis and a plate to neutralize and restore the natural, healthy qualities of food including neutralizing GMOs. 

The change in my energy level and the restoration of health of my son and my animals has been very noticeable. I no longer have the constant migraines which plagued me and I believe were caused by all the unwanted emanations traveling through my home resulting from living in a highly populated suburban area. If you live in a highly populated urban or suburban area you are constantly being bombarded on a daily basis from electricity and WIFI reception all around you, not to mention toxic chemicals emanating from neighboring properties which also affect the well being of the land that you live upon. The pyramids are best to neutralize geopathic stress areas and electricity entrance points into your home and the round orbs are best used for sleeping or meditation areas.

Imbalances of land energies due to redirected water, fault lines or toxins held in the earth can also be a leading cause of illness, depression, fatigue and unhealthy vegetation on the land. When the land is not well, animals will be susceptible to a wide range of health problems including cancer, thyroid imbalances and many other illnesses, as well as being plagued by insect infestations such as fleas. A normal, healthy animal is capable of fending off fleas and other parasites because its immune system naturally repels these pests but when the land is unbalanced or bombarded by toxic rays, they cannot. By drinking Shungite infused water and having this stone in your home, the natural strength of your animals' immune systems will be restored over time by combining this with a healthy diet and other life supporting habits.

If you would like to restore health and well being to your life, Shungite can be ordered directly from the mine in Karelia, Russia at very reasonable prices and delivery only take a few weeks depending on your location. Please contact Anastasia at www.store.shungite.com and if you mention "Clarissa" in the coupon code, you will receive a free circle pendant with your order. A wide range of products are available and their customer service is great. 

Blessings of Health and Vitality!


2015 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.


References:

Martino, Regina, Shungite: Protection, Healing, and Detoxification, Healing Arts Press, 2014.

Restoring the Light: a Look at Belladonna

Posted on October 11, 2013 at 10:35 AM Comments comments (4)
If you practice homeopathy, there are surely remedies that are your favorites.  I have several, but the one that always helps me with extreme situations is Belladonna.  When I first began my studies in homeopathy, my teacher talked about the pictures of several remedies and one of them was Belladonna. What I always remembered about her lecture was how  Belladonna,  because it was made from the vibration of a poisonous, psychotic plant, had the ability to "restore light from darkness."  That picture has always stayed with me over the more than 15 years that I've been using homeopathy. Over and over this concept has presented itself in a variety of interesting ways and I know for that reason this is one of my allies whose capabilities never ceases to amaze me.
 
Most recently I had an extreme situation that occurred after having my 7 month old shiba inu puppy spayed after being vaccinated with a rabies shot one week prior.  I will never know exactly what caused such an extreme reaction in her behavior, whether it was the combination of the rabies shot with the morphine that was used after surgery, or whether the anesthesia itself caused a shift in her consciousness.  It is possible that all of the things together combined with her sensitivity, caused such an extreme shift in behavior that we thought we'd never have our sweet, fun loving puppy back with us.
 
Although the rabies vaccination passed without any noticeable problem the week prior, as soon as we picked up Sachiko (Japanese for child of happiness), we noticed she was very lethargic and in a great deal of pain because every time we even touched her, she cried out.  She refused to eat anything but a small treat that evening and even that she eventually threw back up. She slept through the night, probably due to her pain medication, and the following day she raced around as though she was back to normal. It wasn't until evening of the next day that we noticed an unusual change in her behavior. Sachi started to become extremely irritable and began growling at our other dog.  She also began twisting and contorting her body in obvious discomfort.
 
Other extremes have included when my son was a toddler and he developed such a severe headache that he was sobbing and asked me to take his head off because it hurt so much.  Another was when he was in kindergarten and came off the bus one day severely traumatized by an older child who had bullied him.  His mind became delirious as he raved and only Belladonna could comfort him.  In both instances, my son went from either extreme pain or emotional trauma to tranquility and sleep in a matter of minutes.  It's hard to imagine this type of response, if you haven't experienced it yourself.
 
Repeatedly Belladonna has worked in a variety of ways and situations where perception and/or pain were severe with an extremely sudden onset.  Despite Belladonna being a psychotropic plant in it's original state, the energy pattern held within the homeopathic remedy is able to transform the person or animals from a state of darkness to one of light, clarity and health.  It simply is one of my greatest allies.
 
Blessings of Health and Clarity!
 
2013 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 
 

Natural Remedies for Pet Wellness

Posted on May 22, 2012 at 11:11 AM Comments comments (6)
Every spring I see the common yellow signs posted on people's lawns for the beginning of the attack on insects that our society wages.  Unknowingly, well meaning people are perpetuating cycles in so many ways that only continue to harm this planet, as well as themselves and their pets. 
 
There are so many alternatives to chemicals that are commonly used on lawns and on pets.  While there's no doubt that fleas and other parasites are annoying and harmful, there are many insects which are vital and beneficial to a balanced landscape.  You cannot harm one without affecting the other so you must address the underlying issues.  The only way you can do that is by understanding why your pets or your landscape are susceptible to parasites and disease.
 
Our battle with fleas is a perpetual cycle of using chemicals which create long term problems for our pets and long term dependency on products that never really resolve the problem, in addition to being costly in terms of pet care.  I had been going through this with my rescued cats for many years until I learned about a wonderful product called CedarCide  made from cedar trees which actually eliminates flea problems in your home and on your pets and is harmless to your animals, your furnishings and you.  Rather than using spot treatments which are absorbed into the skin and create a build up of toxins in your pets' internal organs, cedar spray is a natural treatment which does not have any known residual effects.  The healing, purification and protective qualities of the cedar tree have long been known to Siberian and other ancient cultures around the world.   
 
Another product which I have used with success is human grade diatomaceous earth which is a powder made from once living tiny sea creatures.  This powder contains silica which is beneficial for creating healthy skin and fur, and it helps rid the intestines of unwanted parasites.  It can also be used by humans for a variety of health problems and to support the well being of the skin and other organs.  While this powder can be sprinkled on pets and carpets, I prefer to give it internally and use the cedar spray for topical treatments. Interestingly I've noticed alot of horsetail plants growing in my gardens which are a natural source of silica and are apparently needed by my landscape to restore balance. 
 
Addressing problems such as fleas and parasites with your pets is not just about fighting pests, but also about focusing on the wellness of your land and your use of chemicals and other toxins.  Parasites are drawn to unwell areas of imbalance.  Animals that become stressed due to poor unnatural diets and exposure to land that is sick will be more prone to parasites whether they are fleas or internal worms which eventually lead to degenerative diseases. 
 
Planting garlic, chives, tansy, mints and other medicinal plants in your gardens and in various places around your property is a great way of cleansing and protecting your land from parasites.  A word of caution when planting mints, however, because they can easily take over.  Distributing ashes from burnt herbs is another method of protecting your landscape.  Juliette Bairacli de Levy discusses this in her book  Herbal Handbook for Farm and Stable.  It has long been known that animals succumb to disease when the land they inhabit is unwell.  In ancient times, indigenous cultures would allow their animals to graze on a piece of land observing their health, before dermining whether to build their homes in a particular place.  They knew that if their animals became sick, they too would eventually succumb to disease themselves.
 
Homeopathy can also be used to combat internal parasites and typically the symptoms your pet is displaying, aside from the parasites, are an indicator as to the type of remedy which can be used.  Some of these remedies include Sabadilla (a Mexican plant), Cina (a plant called wormseed or Artemesia which grows locally in WNY), Pulsatilla (wind flower) and Cuprum Oxydatum Nigrum to address a variety of different worms such as tapeworms, hookworms and roundworms.  While these remedies may take a bit longer to eradicate the parasites, they are not invasive to your pet and also address underlying issues that caused your animals susceptibility and compromised your pet's immune system in the first place.
 
Having become more familiar with the network of people around this country who are currently rescueing and attempting to relocate the tremendous overpopulation of dogs and cats in shelters, it would be great if these caring individuals and organizations would become more familiar with alternative forms of pet care.  These products are not harmful to animals and are less expensive overall, as opposed to various traditional veterinary methods, and they allow the rescuer or pet owner to develop their own healing abilities for the long term benefits of these animals and the overall well being of everyone including this planet.
 
Blessings from the World of Nature!
 
Copyright 2012 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 

Eight Days with Aslan: a Lesson on Nutrition

Posted on November 10, 2011 at 1:50 PM Comments comments (11)
Aslan  (Turkish for lion) came to me in the Fall of 2008.  He was part of a late litter of kittens that had been born during the  Autumnal Equinox to a feral mother that I had been feeding.  I named him Aslan because he looked like a tiny lion and I wanted him to have a strong name like the character in The Chronicles of Narnia  novels by C.S. Lewis.
 
I knew that if I didn't trap these feral kittens soon and take them in, they probably wouldn't stand a chance during the harsh winter in Western New York that was forthcoming (click picture to view video on feral cats).   
 
I had Olivia, Aslan's mother spayed and took in the three kittens which I eventually all neutered through a local program called Feral Cat Focus  which seeks to help these homeless feral cats.  Their focus is on educating the public as to the problems that unneutered animals can create and provide a solution to controlling the numbers of homeless abandoned cats that create feral colonies.  They also want people to recognize that while some may see these cats as a nuisance, these homeless animals are in fact, providing a service to their local areas by keeping down the rodent populations.  Feral cats should also be treated humanely and not cruelly disposed of.  The key to these overpopulation problems lies with the former irresponsible owners, not with the animals themselves who are merely trying to survive given the circumstances they've been dealt.
 
I knew the timing of these kittens' birth was significant because the equinoxes are times of balance between light and darkness here on Earth, though it would take me 3 years to find out the message behind Aslan's coming into my lifeDespite his name and being feral, Aslan was always more sensitive and on the fragile side.  Because of his soft and particular nature he became very special to me.  He was also incredibly handsome with distinctive slanting eyes that made him look very exotic.  I've noticed this fragile nature quite frequently with the long haired cats.  There must be something in their bloodline that causes them to not be as hardy as other feral cats.  I'm absolutely certain now that Aslan would not have made it through that first winter, had I not taken him in.
 
One week after the tragic Zanesville massacre in Ohio and three days after I posted my  last blog  in which I made references to C.S. Lewis' character Aslan, my own Aslan collapsed suddenly.  There had been no real warning, except that I'd noticed his disinterest in food a few days before.  A trip to the vet confirmed that Aslan was severely anemic and possibly in the throes of feline leukemia.  I was devastated when the vet told me there was nothing that could be done except start him on a program of corticosteroids. 
 
Reluctantly I submitted Aslan to one injection, but after reading later about how harmful these treatments can be, I decided to discontinue the medication learning that it could essentially destroy an already weakened immune system.  I knew I was taking a risk, but I felt he would be better off if I discontinued in the beginning, rather than subjecting him to the daily pills only to find his immune system deteriorating as a result.
 
I've come to realize that conventional medicine's answer to many problems where there don't seem to be solutions, is to use corticosteroids.  They temporarily give a boost to the person or animal's immune system like a jump start and seemingly alleviate problematic symptoms, but in the long run they only further weaken an already compromised body. 
 
Holistic veterinarian Dr. Pitcairn discusses feline leukemia and other illnesses in his book, "Dr. Pitcairn's Complete Guide to Natural Health for Dogs & Cats."  He proposes improving the diet of your pet and feeding more raw foods including meats and vegetables, along with various nutritional supplements, as well as using cell salts  and homeopathy.  I knew that focusing on Aslan's nutrition was the only way to go which would hopefully strengthen his immune system and help him overcome his illness.
 
"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated....I hold that, the more helpless a creature, the more entitled it is to protection by man from the cruelty of man." ---Mahatma Gandhi
 
Interestingly, Aslan's collapse coincided with my reading of Jane Goodall's latest book "Harvest for Hope"  which discusses the importance of making better choices regarding the foods that we eat in order to improve our own health, help save the planet, as well as support and demand more humane treatment of farm animals.  I knew that this book was no coincidence. 
 
Many years ago, while attending a retreat at Farm Sanctuary  in Watkins Glen, NY I learned the awful truth about the corporate farm industry.  It's not a pretty sight and it was the reason I became a vegetarian again and have remained so for almost 20 years.  I simply could not eat any more animals that had suffered and endured under deplorable conditions.  The images stayed in my mind. Given what I eventually learned about energy, I came to realize that the consciousness of these abused animals would become my own and I am far too sensitive.  I also knew that all the toxic food (including ground up cattle) that was being fed to farm animals in conjunction with all the antibiotics they were injected with, ultimately was no way to treat my own body.  The same applies to our pets.
 
"The question is not, 'Can they reason?' nor, 'Can they talk?' but rather, 'Can they suffer?'" ---Jeremy Bentham (philosopher and animal rights activist)
 
Despite all that I learned so many years ago, I still was astounded at the truth and insights that Jane presented in her book regarding the food industry.  There was so much I had no idea of regarding GMO's and decisions based purely on profit by corporate interests, despite the devastating effects they would have on the human (and animal) population, as well as the destruction of this planet. 
 
If you read Jane's book, you will see that there are seemingly no limits as to what a corporation will do for the pure sake of profit.  Her book is a huge wake up call for all of us.  If we don't heed her warnings, it may be too late for us all, as life as we know it will cease to exist.  We simply do not have inexhaustible supplies of fresh water and cannot afford to further contaminate this planet with all the chemicals and animal sewage generated from factory farming (click picture above for information regarding your turkey dinner).
 
While I'm certain that Aslan carried inherited blood deficiencies within his body from the feral colony that he originated from, I'm fairly confident that had he been given a better, more healthy diet, he probably would have lived a much longer life.  Despite all I know about the farm and food industry, due to my financial constraints and the amount of animals I have rescued, I have been unable to provide the highest quality of food that I would like. When your responsibilities are high and you're doing what you can to save the animals that no one wants, you're lucky just to provide them with food and care.  
 
Nevertheless, Aslan's message to me was a strong one and I realized that all the commercial dry foods out there are not the best for our animal's health despite their convenience.  Cats and dogs simply aren't designed to eat dry food.  Most are filled with chemicals and offals from the meat industry from animals that have lived miserable lives.  And that carries forth into the bodies of your pets lowering their immune systems and manifesting the myriad of diseases they are afflicted with today.
 
Aslan's collapse, Jane's book and the subsequent things I learned during his last 8 days, taught me a valuable lesson.  It was time for me to change my own diet and that of my animals in whatever way I could manage because if I didn't, more than likely there would be more animal deaths to follow and possibly my own health could suffer. 
 
I immediately immersed myself in all my books about plant medicine, homeopathy and flower essences in order to turn Aslan's health around.  One of my favorite books is Juliette Bairacli de Levy's  "Common Herbs for Natural Health" in which she describes the medicinal uses of many plants found growing wild in our own backyards.  Juliette spent a lifetime working with medicinal plants and creating the holistic veterinary movement during which she wrote many books including a wonderful one for farm animals called "The Complete Herbal Handbook for Farm and Stable" which is filled with useful information which can also be applied to our domestic pets.
 
I learned that I had many plants (and vegetables) easily accessible that were known to stimulate and purify the blood and counteract anemia including parsley, chives, lambs quarters (local wild plant), nettles, dandelion as well as strawberries and pumpkin.  Chamomile flower, which surprised me, is not only calming but also an anti-inflammatory.  I felt it would be a perfect replacement for the steroids because they would naturally realign the body.  I began making teas of various plants to give Aslan throughout the day.  I also took several of the nutritional plant foods and combined them with liver and fish oil or sardines which I pureed and syringed several times daily. I alternated with various cell salts, flower essences and the homeopathic remedy pulsatilla which I felt was appropriate because of Aslan's sensitive disposition.
 
While Aslan had initially become very cold and lifeless, gradually the warmth returned to his body and life was restored to his eyes.  He was once again able to urinate on his own and he began drinking water again.  He would actually jump up on my bed and sit there looking all regal and pleased as can be.  I became truly hopeful that he might recover fully.  However, despite his miraculous recovery, he still was not eating on his own and on the 7th day he collapsed yet again.  Apparently, his condition had progressed too far to be reversed permanently.  
 
I was devastated at facing his impending loss once again.  Unfortunately, often by the time you notice something wrong with your cat, it's usually too late.  Had I caught his condition earlier, the outcome might have been different.  Though I made several more attempts to feed Aslan, I could tell it was time to let him make his transition.
 
So, on that last day I kept Aslan comfortable and supplied with fluids as I watched his awareness diminish and felt him getting ready to leave his body. I know that I could have had him euthanized the day of the vet's appointment, but I will never regret the decision I made to try and help him recover both for the amount of knowledge that I gained and also the valuable, quality time that I spent with Aslan during the last 8 days of his life.  I know we developed a special heart connection that could only have been established under such extreme circumstances given the many animals in my care.  This last week was for Aslan and I will never forget his will to live, his resilience and the loving companionship that he gave me right until the end.  His passing was peaceful in his own home and on his own terms.
 
Many years ago, an Abysinnian cat I had rescued and named Simba was diagnosed with a heart condition and asthma despite his young age of 3.  I knew nothing at the time of alternative methods of healing and so I followed the vet's recommendation to give him heart medication and corticosteroids.  He took constant daily medication and still was prone to bouts of asthma attacks.  The day he suffered a severe attack, I struggled to get his medication in his mouth and I'll never forget the look on his face-- it was as if to tell me "no more."  I rushed him to the emergency clinic only to have them tell me they had placed him in an oxygen tent and a decision had to be made immediately to end his life. 
 
The last time I saw Simba, he was struggling to breathe with a forlorn look of fear in his eyes for the unfamiliar surroundings.  I always regretted my choices and wished I had known then what I know now because I would have done things very differently.  And while the final outcome would have been the same, I know the quality of Simba's life (and death) would have been significantly better.  This time I had the opportunity to make the right choice for Aslan.  Different cats, but the similarities between their personalities and the situations were there.
 
At the time of this writing, Olivia (Aslan's mother) and his brother and sister, Indigo and Violet, remain in good health.  In memory of Aslan born feral September 22, 2008 died a member of our family November 2, 2011.  You are in our hearts... 
 
Thanksgiving Blessings to All!
 
2011 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Animals: Our Divine Companions and Co-Creators

Posted on October 22, 2011 at 10:42 AM Comments comments (2)
I seem to always be inspired to write when something tragic happens whether in my own life or something I've heard about.  This article is no exception.  As I write these words the tears well up again as I recall the tragedy that occurred this week.  I feel a tremendous sense of loss concerning the  massacre of exotic wild animals  that happened in Zanesville, Ohio, something that goes beyond anything personal that I can attribute it too. 
 
We may never know what possessed Terry Thompson to release the animals in his care or take his own life, but I would like to believe that, overwhelmed with his responsibilities both financial and physical, he could only give these animals one last chance at freedom.  I believe the burden of caring for so many exotic animals became too much and he could see no way out of his dilemma.  I'm certain that he made mistakes, but I can only hope that a greater good can come out of all of this and that some have chosen to die so that others may live. For now the hearts and spirits of these animals are free from the mental, physical and emotional constraints that man had put on them for so much of their lives.
 
I am reminded of these words from one of my favorite children's movie:
 
"When a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backwards." 
-- Aslan from the movie The Chronicles of Narnia
 
The traitors are those who profit from animal misery in any industry.  I think that events like the story in Zanesville are perhaps the only thing that will wake up humanity to the suffering and plight of animals in captivity.  This story is tragic in so many ways because these animals were either bred in captivity or taken from their homes in the wild in order to be someone's playthings.  Terry had apparently found most of these exotic animals at auctions and was willing to give them a home.  It was a daunting task that should be required of no man.  People had tired of their responsibilities and so left them to another.  It's a familiar story whether its a wild lion or a domestic cat. In the end, the last caretaker of these magnificent animals freed them into an unfamiliar world and took his own life out of desperation. 
 
Though believed to be based on public safety, no doubt the decisions made during the 18th and 19th of October were based on fear, control and a lack of understanding of the value of creatures of this magnitude. Of course there was danger to the public at large, but couldn't the town have been issued warnings to stay inside until these animals had been properly tranquilized and transferred to other centers?
 
To senselessly kill a majestic lion or rare bengal tiger or a beautiful wolf is unfathomable to me.  The fact that those who shot these creatures appeared to sense no remorse and did not question authority is so alien to my own philosophy of life and the respect that I hold for these creatures.  This event is truly a sad statement of the lack of emotions and apathy found within our society with regard to animals in general. Or perhaps some of those who so willingly shot these magnificent beings were filled with excitement similar to those who mercilessly kill lions and other animals in canned hunting situations.  What thrill could there possibly be in taking down such a magnificent being?  I will never understand. 
 
While there's no question that there are many, many people who truly honor and value animal life, still so many animals are held in tortuous captivity around the world for entertainment at the whim of man, as well as kept in unhealthy and inhumane conditions to supply our countries with food, not to mention all the domestic animals that get abandoned on a daily basis around the world when they become a burden.  A perfect example are the streets of the Ukraine where a culling is now being done of homeless cats and dogs that are being hoarded into  traveling crematoriums  where the animals are burned alive in order to clean the streets and prepare for a 2012 soccer tournament.  I can only imagine that the general population does not agree with this government action and is appalled at what is taking place.
 
This weeks tragedy came right after I had completed an amazing book called  Mystery of the White Lions, Children of the Sun God  by Linda Tucker who lives in South Africa and has created the Global White Lions Protection Trust to protect and restore these majestic rare beings to their sacred homelands in Timbavati.  The book is filled with insights into the origins of man, geomancy relating to the sacredness of the land along the Nile River reaching from Timbavati to Egypt, and the lessons that the sacred white lions have come to teach us as messengers of a time and a knowledge long forgotten.  After reading this book and hearing of the tragedy in Ohio, I was even more profoundly affected by this senseless loss and the necessity for all of us to change our relationship with the Animal Kingdom before it is too late.
 
I truly believe that if we all knew what took place within animal shelters, factory farms, circuses, etc. and within other countries we would all make different choices in our lives with regard to the food that we eat, what we chose as entertainment and whether or not we'll carelessly drop off those kittens and puppies that were so cute when they were born, but we unfortunately could not find a home for.  I have written before of the plight of domestic cats left to their own demise who eventually create overpopulated feral colonies.  It is truly a sad sight to see with countless exhausted females constantly breeding and many late born kittens faced with a brutal winters in areas like Western New York.
 
For many of us, animals are our companions.  They comfort us during times of stress or sorrow and they also take on many of the emotional issues we are challenged with, often taking on the illnesses or diseases that their human companions have acquired.  Cats, for example, experience all the diseases that humans do.  I am told that one local holistic veterinarian in our area is overwhelmed with the sick animals that are brought to her and simply cannot keep up with the demand.  What are these animals telling us?  The Earth is sick, our animals are sick and so is much of mankind.  Animals have been put on this Earth to be our companions, to help us and guide us through so many things.  They are not put here to solely be our food, our toys or our beasts of burden. 
 
There have been many references to seemingly unusual relationships that humans have had with animals both recent and throughout history.  Is the archetypal feral child of the story Tarzan who was raised by apes so implausible?  There have been many true stories about abandoned children that have been raised by animals in the wild.  Perhaps it's time we give animals a different perspective and not see them as creatures over whom we have dominion and are inferior to us, but as beings with similar emotions, instincts and wisdom to that of humans.  I believe we have much to learn from all of them.  Kevin Richardson's groundbreaking work as  The Lion Whisperer  in South Africa is a perfect example of the possibilities that exist when man collaborates with animals.  His work with families of lions goes beyond what we as humans have thought to be possible.  His love for animals began with the tiniest of creatures when he was a child.
 
This relationship that we have with the animals starts at the ground up from the tiniest of creatures in our own backyard to the king of the beasts, the lion in the wild lands of Africa.  It also includes the food that we eat.  If everyone were to see the many forms of animal suffering, perhaps they would think twice about where they buy their food or using rat poison or spraying their lawn with chemicals. Secondary poisoning  is a significant cause of health problems and/or death of cats and dogs who have come into contact with poisoned mice, birds and other animals.  Not to mention the birds of prey and other predators it can kill.  I have witnessed one of my cats go through an agonizing death due to what I suspected was poisoning from a neighboring property and believe me it is heartbreaking to watch.  No animal should have to die that way.
 
Over the summer I had the opportunity to witness the suffering of a mouse that had found its way in my gardens.  It kept running in circles around my flowers and never strayed far from me so I knew it had somehow come into contact with some form of poison, probably pesticides from a neighboring property.  I decided to catch him so that he wouldn't be eaten by other wildlife, thereby creating secondary poisoning. 
 
I never thought I would witness what I did during the last 6 days of this creature's life.  Because I value the life of all creatures and do not kill anything, I gave this mouse a remedy for poisoning hoping it might turn the situation around.  Although initially I was hopeful, eventually the poison ran its full course and the little mouse went through convulsions arching its head and neck and falling over constantly.  It was truly a heartbreaking sight to see because I knew this little guy was trying to live.  In the end all I could do was give him a safe place to die and some kindness, which most people wouldn't have done.  As a wildlife rehabilitator for many years, I do not make judgments as to what animal life has more value.
 
Until we realize that all of our choices and actions have consequences, many times unseen and unknown, we will continue to have suffering on this planet by those very creatures who are here to help balance the energies of the planet, be our companions and bring beauty and wisdom into this world.
 
"Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again."
--excerpt from "The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe" based on C.S. Lewis' book "The Chronicles of Narnia" 
 
Blessings of Awareness from the Animal Kingdom!
 
This article is dedicated to the 49 animals that lost their lives in Zanesville, Ohio, USA between October 18-19, 2011.  May their deaths not have been in vain and may their spirits roam free once again in their homelands.
 
Copyright 2011 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 
 

Death and Dying: Hope's Final Chapter

Posted on July 23, 2011 at 12:25 PM Comments comments (6)
Our little cat Hope continued to be my teacher throughout her short time with us.   As I have written in previous  posts, Hope came to us under difficult circumstances and we both faced these hurdles together.  Her strong personality and unusual health challenges presented a new level of learning for me in terms of animal illnesses, as well as how to cope with them.
 
Hope's dying was no different.  Throughout the time she was with us, I made three appointments with our vet to have her put to sleep and all three times I cancelled and was glad I did.  The first two times she bounced back and the last time, I just felt she needed to die in her own time. 
 
In the US and other developed countries, we live in a world that shies away from death.  We really don't want to see the process, particularly with our animals.  In the wild, animals die under a variety of circumstances-- some slowly and some quickly but it's always a natural part of the cycle of life.  In the human world, we have a tendency to put our animal companions to sleep when they start showing signs of aging rather than letting them go through the dying process. 
 
My experiences with both wild and domestic animals has taught me how important it is for an animal to chose its own time to die.  My vegetable garden has also taught me that in the dying of certain plants used as green manure in a garden, other plants live and grow stronger because  they nurture the soil and the system as a whole.  The plants that die and create fertile soil are equally as important as those that eventually bear food.  What's missing sometimes is our understanding of this process of timing and collaboration, combined with our judgment of what death is.  Death is simply transformation into another form of energy and what's often lacking is our understanding as to how it all fits into the overall scheme of things.
 
"Despise not death, but welcome it, Nature wills it like all else." 
   --Marcus Aurelius
 
A friend of mine once said to me "dying is alot of work," as we were discussing the issue of when is it appropriate to euthanize a pet.  Having experienced many of her beloved animals passing, her view was that while it's sometimes stressful to experience, it was nevertheless important not to interfere and to do everything you can to make them comfortable while they're doing their final work.  Despite the fact it's emotionally very difficult for me to view an animal dying and it never gets any easier, I agree with her.  I also don't advocate pain, but I think it's important to go through all the steps of letting go.  Our animal companions need to go through their dying process and we need to go through it with them.  Euthanasia is the simple, relatively painless, way out for both of us.
 
 
One day it became clear to me that, although she was still eating, Hope was beginning to leave.  It was a slow, steady process and although several times I questioned my decision to let her die in her own way, I stayed the course with her.  I remembered my own words written in my last post about the Garden of Life.  I simply couldn't second guess myself because intuitively I felt we both had to go through this process toward completion. What I experienced during those nine days was a wide range of emotions for me and a series of changes within Hope. 
 
Due to her Alzheimer's condition during the last few months, Hope's personality had changed significantly and she would go through her boughts of being disoriented and unfamiliar with me as well as the other cats.  She had also lost her affectionate personality which was so sad.  Her mind was elsewhere and sometimes she would wander aimlessly.  I felt she was already detaching from the confines of her body and she would spend most of her time sleeping.
 
As I saw Hope go through various different phases during the process of her leaving, I too, experienced a wide range of emotions.  I thought of the parallels between our lives.  Although the time Hope had come to live with us was just 11 months, there was such a similarity between our lives.  There was no doubt Hope had been through alot when she came to us and despite that, she was one of the sweetest cats we've had.  It was as though whatever humans had done to her, she still had faith in them.  And whatever challenges she was presented with, she remained resilient-- determined to overcome yet the latest of health issues.  Although I hadn't experienced the health issues she had, I had experienced a tremendous amount of personal and professional challenges over the last 10 years and regardless of what I was hit with, I pressed on determined to live my life authentically by staying true to myself and my beliefs.  And with Hope's passing, I felt a new chapter of my life beginning.
 
I was also reminded of another death I experienced with an injured songbird that had died almost exactly 10 years ago.  The process was the same.  I would see and feel the energy of the bird move through its body, stretching its wings to fly seemingly to pass at that moment and fly one last time.  But to my surprise, the bird would then pull in its wings and continue breathing.  This process went on for many hours until finally it took it's last flight, spreading it's wings and then its spirit was gone.  At the time this happened, I had no idea that a tiny bird could go through such an elaborate process of dying, but each time I could feel the spirit's pull on the body that kept it here on earth.  Hope went through this same process.  I could see her life force moving through the lower chakras of her body which held her grounded on earth and she would move her legs as if to run away.  This process went on for several days alternating with vocalizations and periods of deep sleep despite the fact she had stopped meowing for several months. 
 
Several years ago while talking to a friend about the last few weeks of her father's life in Hospice, she told me that her father relived his memories of WWII during that time.  She was astounded by his ramblings because he had never spoken about much of these experiences during his lifetime.  It had all been held within the confines of his body and mind.  I felt that during the death process he was releasing much of these painful memories and this in effect was releasing imprints held within his body.  I believe animals experience this same thing.
 
There were many nights I thought (and hoped) Hope would pass, but she didn't and I questioned what I had allowed her to go through.  Euthanasia would have been much quicker and yet, I truly believed she needed to complete this part of her journey.  Hope had had such a wide range of health problems.  I was convinced that in going through the death process, she would in essence be bringing to completion all the issues she had been resolving here on Earth during this lifetime. 
 
I had been working with homeopathy to release the imprints held within her body and there had been many.  Vibrational medicine is the key to the lock of that which is held deep inside all of us.  I've never had an animal resonate with and be helped by so many different homeopathic remedies as with Hope, each one releasing a different level of imbalance from her body.  I also used a wide range of flower essences with Hope, particularly in her final moments.  Because Hope did not want to be touched at one point, I gave her a high potency of Arnica (leopard's bane) to help with her transition.  When she shifted again and allowed me to pet her but became restless and no longer ate, I changed over to Arsenicum Album.  Both of these remedies in high potencies can help ease the transition of a dying animal's final moments. 
 
Hope had been unique, both in her living and her dying.  She also had immediately been accepted by the other cats who nurtured her during her stay with us.  It was as if, they had known her all along.  I've never seen a new cat be accepted so easily by others.  All the vibrational essences I had used with Hope-- both homeopathic and flower/mineral essences, had been clearing her energy field throughout the last year of her life right through to the last remedies used for her transition.  Who knows how many lifetimes, these remedies may have cleared?  Hope also affected the imprints held within her family of origin-- the cat clan she had been born into.  Whatever she had inherited from her ancestors had the potential to be cleared by the use of all these vibrational essences.
 
In the end, I was right there during Hope's passing.  Although her eyes had been closed for the last few days, she opened them widely one last time as though seeing the light before her and took one last breath.  And then she died in peace in the comfort of her warm, snugly sleeping bag in the last home that had shown her kindness. 
 
I will always remember Hope for her enthusiam, tremendous affection and love for life.  Despite being blind and deaf during her last months, Hope managed to play like a kitten once more right up until the last few weeks of her life tossing her toy mouse around, much to our amazement.  It was truly inspirational to know that her senses were still so acute that she managed this feat one last time.  Hope died as she had lived-- an inspiration to us all.
 
"Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul and sings the tune without words and never stops at all."   -- Emily Dickinson
 
Blessings of Hope!
 
Copyright 2011 Awen Environments.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Gardening with Nature: In Defense of Dandelions

Posted on May 17, 2011 at 12:39 PM Comments comments (6)
Despite this progress, I was extremely disappointed to still see a familiar yellow warning sign displayed in one of  the public flower gardens recently in the town where I currently reside. This particular garden dedicated to world peace with the sign "May Peace Prevail on Earth" in various languages, was created by a girl scout troup project and is located in the center of the Village of Lancaster.  It is a beautiful small garden when in bloom. 
 
Given all the information that's out there concerning how detrimental pesticides are, not only to the environment, but also to people and animals, I would hope that townships (including school districts) within WNY and around the U.S. would start becoming more progressive in their gardening and lawn care approach. Even so called 'natural' lawn care products are just a play on words and their advertising very misleading, as these products still contain chemicals that are harmful to life.  If they didn't, they wouldn't require a yellow warning sign, now would they?  The 24 or 48 hour waiting period may be over, but the chemicals are carried by the air that we breathe and seep into the ground water and they affect all life including butterflies, bees and songbirds.  Couldn't those funds devoted to pesticide and herbicide maintenance be put to better use?
 
I happen to differ from most, as I see the beauty in dandelions and they are welcome guests in my gardens and on my lawn because I know how valuable they are to creating healthy soil and providing nectar for bees and butterflies. I admit, it's hard to be a non-conformist in a suburban area and eventually I have to get my lawn mower out when the grass gets too high, however I do allow them time to bloom.  Allowing the dandelions time to fulfill their destiny is not the sign of someone who is neglectful-- quite the contrary.  I happen to love my yard and all the flowers that grow there.  And I enjoy seeing the mass of yellow color.  As mentioned in a previous post, the bees are in dire need of our help and the more food sources and habitat that we can provide them, the greater their chances of surviving.  Bees have to travel longer and longer distances just to get enough nectar because there aren't may wild spaces left and well manicured lawns provides little nourishment.  After a long winter, the bees are desperate to find sources of nectar and the dandelions are usually the only ones available.
 
The bright golden color of the dandelions is also linked with the third chakra (energy center of the body), the solar plexus which is associated with our emotions, creativity, personal power and instinctual or "gut reactions."  These rays of sunshine are some of the first flowers to bloom in the spring time long before all the cultivated gardens begin to blossom.  Their color and healing gifts are needed by Nature and by man.  Not only do the bees need the nectar, we need the vibration of the color yellow to re-energize our body after the darkness of winter.  Unfortunately, we always destroy that which we do not understand.  It is the habit of human nature.
 
Interestingly, the European colonists brought dandelion seeds with them and planted them in their gardens many centuries ago.  They were used for food sources, medicinal properties and their roots were roasted and ground into coffee. Dandelion tea is used as a blood purifier and is a great tonic to use to cleanse your system in the spring time.  It contains a variety of different minerals including iron, calcium, and magnesium to name a few, as well as various different vitamins such as A, B and D.  Much of this knowledge has long since been forgotten. 
 
With the advent of extensive advertising and chemical companies seeking massive profits, the entire image of dandelions has become that of disdain by most of society.  It is truly unfortunate and saddening because what the dandelion can do for man's body, it also does for the earth.  I'm certain that their proliferation is directly related to the amount of toxins in the soil.  The more we fight them, the greater their need to do their job.  Not only are they aerating the soil, but they are also providing much needed nutrients.  That's why you'll always see them popping up their yellow faces in my gardens.
 
We need to look at generally accepted beliefs with new perspectives and not assume that just because we've been led to believe certain things (mainly by corporations seeking profits) or because we've always been doing something in a particular way, that it's the right way.  Our current mode of thinking is not what will change the current weather patterns or stop the degradation of this planet or improve our health, it is looking at our environment with new eyes and the wonder and open mindedness of a child.  Haven't you ever wondered why young children think dandelions are beautiful and bring them to you to be placed in a vase?  Children see the beauty that is all around them before they are indoctrinated into a certain set of belief patterns based on society's norms at any given time.  Our attitudes and beliefs are learned behaviors largely driven by what is seen in advertising and projected as acceptable at that moment. 
 
Dewdrops and the morning sun,
Weave your garments fair and bright,
And we welcome you to-day
As the children of the light.
 
Children of the earth and sun.
We are slow to understand
All the richness of the gifts
Flowing from our Father's hand.
 
Welcome, early visitants,
With your sun-crowned golden hair

With your message to our hearts
Of our Father's loving care.
   
(Excerpt from Dandelions by Frances Ellen Watkins 1825-1911)
 
In Native American traditions, the earth is considered to be our 'mother' because she is a living being and provides for us in all ways.  Isn't it time we stop the war against this planet and start making peace with all life, including the insect kingdom and seemingly unwanted flowers?  Peace starts right in your own backyard.  Though May 11th (Sierra Club's Dandelion Day) has already passed, why not join the growing number of people in honoring all that grows naturally on your property?  You'll be glad you did.
 
Blessings of Sunshine!
 
 
2011 Copyright Awen Environments.
 
Source:
Green, Emily, Concern Grows in Weed War, What Price Freedom from Dandelions? The EPA is Rethinking a Long-used Herbicide's Cancer Risk to Humans, LA Times, 2002.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Homeopathy and Alzheimer's: Hope's Story Continues

Posted on May 3, 2011 at 9:56 AM Comments comments (10)
As would be expected, my lessons from the little stray  cat Hope that I took in last year have continued, as my journey with her is accompanied by learning, inspiration and yes-- sometimes exasperation.  For those of you who did not read the previous story of how she came into my life,  here   it is.
 
Several weeks ago, Hope gave us another scare.   Just when things were going well, she started meowing incessantly day and night.  This went on for 3 weeks until I was at the point of no return.  I had tried flower essences and they only seemed to work for a few days at best.  It seemed that she was wandering around aimlessly in search of something and often times her meowing was so severe, that you'd think someone was trying to harm her.  The loss of sleep was really starting to get to me. 
 
Despite having recovered from her last episode, a persistent ear infection simply would not go away and this seemed compounded by what did in fact, appear to have been a type of mini stroke which had left a number of after effects.  When the homeopathics did not work, I  took Hope to my vet and she was given antibiotics which eventually resolved the ear problem, however, she had developed a permanent head tilt called torticollis which he felt was due to a stroke.  I usually only resort to antibiotics after I've tried other methods to stimulate the immune system.  In Hope's case, she simply couldn't overcome this ear infection without them. 
 
I had noticed that since her last collapse, Hope also did not seem to be able to see anymore and the vet confirmed that this could also have occured due to the stroke.   Her whole body had changed and it was amazing to think that she was still around.  The meowing seemed to coincide with the restoration of balance in both ears combined with what seemed like hearing loss resulting from the stroke.  What else could go wrong for this little cat?
 
I decided to give Hope another dose of her original remedy Lycopodium which I have used with great results with stray and feral cats who suffer from health problems related to malnutrition and being homeless.   Whether Hope's condition had already deteriorated or the remedy caused her to express underlying symptoms, I will never know, however, what I experienced with her next was truly overwhelming at the time. 
 
Sometimes when you chose a remedy, the animal or person will display new symptoms which will lead you in the direction of the right remedy and/or the cure.  Hope's meowing stopped for several days after giving her Lycopodium, however, what happened next took me by great surprise.  It led me in the direction of another level of understanding of Hope's complex health condition and also the abilities of homeopathy to deal with a wide variety of problems.  Suddenly one day she started drooling excessively and then vomitting bile and even piddled right in front of me on the kitchen floor.  Since I felt she might get worse, I put her in a kennel and monitored her.  Several hours later I heard her howling and found her foaming at the mouth, delerious and her head twisting and contorting around in the air as though spirits or some unseen force was trying to attack her.  I panicked thinking she was in the throws of death.  I didn't know how to alleviate her pain and suffering and since it was late at night, the only option was a trip to the animal ER which I didn't want to do.
 
Once again, I decided to talk to a friend who uses homeopathy with her cats and she suggested I use Aconite which is a remedy for trauma and shock.  Because I was in the middle of the situation and was unable to think clearly, I hadn't thought to consider this.  It is a remedy made from the flower Monkshood and I've used it often for wildlife that have been injured and severely traumatized, so that they become handleable.  It made sense to me, however, the problem was that I couldn't even get near to Hope, as she was in such a state that it seemed that she might attack me.  So, what I decided to do was just get some drops on her skin which would eventually absorb the energetic vibration of the plant. 
 
In the meantime, I went through my homeopathy books again and reviewed one of the remedies I had used previously on Hope during her first collapse.  One was Belladonna, another plant remedy.  The plant itself is toxic and psychotropic if ingested, however, if taken in the form of homeopathy which is just the energetic vibration, it can produce amazing results.  I had seen it with Hope in the past, with my son, and with myself.  It's one of those remedies I just love to use because it is typically used with sudden onset and extreme conditions.  Well, Hope's symptoms were all pointing in the direction of Belladonna so I tried it once again and left her alone.  I checked her later in the night and she seemed to have calmed down.
 
What struck me so severely during this experience was the sudden change in Hope's disposition.  She had gone from a cat that was extremely sweet, clingy and docile to one that was vicious and out of control with glaring eyes.  Then it dawned on me that she felt I was a threat, similar to a wild animal, because she did not recognize me anymore.  The Aconite and Belladonna had worked to calm her, but there was more going on with her.  That's when I realized that Hope was acting like she had Alzeimer's disease and so I did some research and found out that cats, do in fact, experience Alzheimer's just like humans do.  All the patterns which she had been displaying, including the incessant meowing were all related to her diminished mental capacities and her lack of clarity regarding her surroundings.  During my research, I also found homeopathic remedies that have apparently helped in managing this disease in humans.
 
After things quieted down, the next morning I found Hope much less agitated, however, I still could not touch her.  She actually moved away from me, cowering in the back of the kennel and flinching if I even so much as touched her.  She also had develeped a severe nasal discharge.  She looked a wreck and for 2 days she would not eat, but I had begun administering Natrum Sulphuricum which is a type of salt remedy which I had never used before.  Hope was displaying many symptoms relating to this remedy including the alternating between melancholy and periods of mania, all which formed her  constitutional (entire) picture.  Natrum Sulphuricum is one of several remedies suggested for working with Alzheimers disease and it seemed right for her.  I literally didn't have much hope at this point due to the severity of what I'd seen and the fact that Hope wasn't eating, so once again I scheduled an appointment with my vet to put her down if she still hadn't eaten by the 3rd day.  She had improved in that she was once again allowing me to hold her, however, she seemed to have absolutely no interest in eating anything and that is always a pretty strong sign for me.
 
As a last attempt, the morning of Hope's appointment, I decided to syringe her with some baby food and suddenly she walked over to the food bowl and began searching for more to eat.  I couldn't believe my eyes.  It was as if she suddenly remembered what food was.   Not only did she regain her appetite and start grooming herself, but she also began playing with a toy mouse as though she was a kitten again.  It was truly an endearing sight to see and worth just one day of seeing her so happy again, regardless of what lay ahead in her future. 
 
As the days progressed, Hope continued to eat with our other cats and put weight back on.  It has been over two weeks now and although still fragile and at times wandering from room to room seemingly searching, she has continued to improve and is definitely living comfortably now and no longer meowing.  She has some days that are better than others and when she seems to be going downhill, I just redose her and she improves. Due to her diminished hearing and sight, Hope seems to rely more now on the realm of vibration paying attention to what she smells and feels, as her other senses have become more acute.  Overall, I know that Hope is still here to teach me about the resilience of animals, overcoming seemingly hopeless situations, and a deeper understanding of the miraculous powers of homeopathy.
 
Spring Blessings!
 
2011 Copyright Awen Environments.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Plant Medicine: Flower's Journey, an Easter Story

Posted on April 15, 2011 at 11:24 AM Comments comments (9)
So much of what I learned about Nature, the plant kingdom, and alternative therapies, I learned because of another animal companion, my rabbit Flower.  Easter is almost here and it's a time when I remember our special bunny who was born on Easter Day.  We got her from a local farm when my son was just a toddler, along with another bunny we named Jewel. 
 
We had gotten both rabbits several weeks after Easter and I remember thinking how unusual it was that the farmer made a point of telling me when they were born.  As it turned out, Flower's life was an unusual one, as she eventually did come back from near death and she touched everyone in her journey of living.  This bunny taught me about the power of plants to heal and to never to give up even when it seems like the situation is hopeless. 
 
Because our bunnies had been raised on a farm (some for food), they were not as domesticated as those you would find in a petstore and they enjoyed their freedom.  Flower and Jewel used to live in our screened in gazebo which became more like a bunny condo filled with hay.  Since we didn't have an appropriate barn at the time, this seemed like the best alternative, however, after many weeks of happiness inside this spacious home, they managed to chew a hole in the screen and escape.  We found them shortly thereafter, but I will never forget the blood curdling scream let out by Flower when I placed her back in her enclosure.  She was extremely unhappy and she didn't hesitate to tell me so. 
 
Eventually both rabbits escaped again and we only saw glimpses of them around the yard.    Rather than constantly chasing after them, I decided to let them roam freely in the garden, but I knew I was taking a chance.  Eventually they both disappeared, but I felt intuitively this was what they both wanted-- their freedom.   They had made their choice and I felt strongly about that.  They seemed to be around because many of my flowers and other medicinal plants had been eaten, but we never managed to get a glimpse of either of them.  Unfortunately, we never saw Jewel again, but after many weeks, Flower reappeared. 
 
One day my son was playing outside when suddenly he found Flower lying injured underneath some hedges.  Initially I thought she had been hit by a car and gave her some homeopathics for injury and trauma.  But, despite my constant attention and trying various remedies, she simply was not getting better, so I took her to a vet.  The vet noticed that Flower had been bitten by some animal, probably a cat, but the injury had occured some time ago and had healed somewhat.  She felt her weakness was probably due to pasteurella, a bacterial infection transmitted from the saliva of cats which is usually fatal. 
 
The vet didn't think she'd live.  As if this wasn't enough, upon closer examination a vet tech found fly larvae living under the skin  where the wound had closed over.  The fact that Flower was even alive, was a miracle.  Despite her severe condition, I wanted to give her a chance, so the vet did surgery on her and I left with antibiotics and a glimmer of hope she would recover.   I thought if she had made it this far, didn't she deserve another chance?  I truly believed she wanted to live and had found us for a reason.
 
As I began doing everything possible to help Flower regain some of her strength, over the following weeks I realized that what had saved her had most certainly been the many medicinal plants in my gardens such as red clover, echinachea, dandelion and violet to name a few.  Because I allowed native and other medicinal plants to grow freely, there was much available.  I knew that she would never have survived, had she not had access to all these plants because they helped eliminate the toxins from her body and boosted her immune system.  So, in addition to the rabbit food I had to syringe her with daily, I began giving her all the raw medicinal plants that she would eat. 
 
Just when I thought Flower was getting over the biggest hurdles and regaining her strength, she developed a huge tumerous growth on her nose which I suspected might be cancerous.  Interestingly, the previous owners of the house had also died of cancer.  I'm sure it was in the land and the underlying energy patterns of geopathic stress that had existed there. 
 
This time the vet was adamant that I either put Flower down or have a biopsy done on her growth.  I chose to do neither.  I didn't want to put her through more stress after all she'd experienced and I also didn't want to put her down.  She had overcome all odds and I felt she might be able to do it again, so I took her home and began doing research on medicinal plants and alternative treatments for cancer.  I learned that the violet which is commonly found in people's lawns and backyards, is one of various medicinal plants that have been shown to help overcome cancer. 
 
I also learned about an old Ojibwa tribal recipe called Essiac Tea which consists of slippery elm, burdock root, sheep sorrel and turkey rhubarb root and I began syringing her with this tea slightly sweetened with honey.  Interestingly I noticed the burdock and sheep sorrel was already growing on our property. To my amazement, Flower eventually recovered  and the growth disappeared.  The only sign of her illness became the permanent tilt to her neck which caused her to remain handicapped, but she was happy and healthy otherwise.
 
Flower demonstrated an incredible will to live and overcame all odds given her by veterinarians.  The best she was expected to live if she survived the pasteurella infection was 2 years and she lived to be 4.  She might still be alive today, if we hadn't moved to another house where she became one of many victims of a cruel and abusive neighbor.  Flower's death could have been prevented, but in looking back, I think she chose her time.  The sequence of events and the circumstances surrounding her disappearance were all too unusual.  Because of her handicap, she had never strayed far when she was allowed loose in the gardens, however, one day she disappeared and never came back.    We suspected our neighbor, but could never prove it.  It wasn't until the following year when two of our cats were seriously injured and we eventually found our beloved cat Guinnevere dead of a bebe gunshot wound behind our neighbor's home, that we knew who was responsible and that it was time to move.  Although too late for several of our animal companions, we eventually found a new home with wonderful new neighbors.  
 
Had we moved sooner, Flower would probably have lived a full life, but I know that while she was alive, she enjoyed her freedom and was happy.  During that time she inspired us all and  led me on a path of greater knowledge of the power of plant medicine and the power of an animal's will to live.  Flower also touched many people's lives along the way who in some manner contributed to her recovery including many veterinarians and friends who offered advice and/or services which included acupuncture,  lomi lomi and chiropractic treatments to help her regain her mobility and strength.  Everyone in my family was awed by Flower's tremendous will to live including my brother who helped contribute to her vet bills.
 
In memory of Flower, our miraculous bunny born on Easter, March 27, 2005, adopted  April 11, 2005 and died May 11, 2009.  May she inspire all of us to overcome all odds and seemingly insurmountable obstacles that we may be faced with both presently and in the coming years.
 
Easter Blessings!
 
Copyright 2011 Awen Environments.
 
 

Gardening with Nature: The Wisdom of Insects

Posted on April 3, 2011 at 11:56 AM Comments comments (7)
"Nature is full of genius,
Full of the Divinity;
So that not a snowflake
Escapes its fashioning hand." 
--- Henry David Thoreau
 
So often we fail to look at the details of our  world which generally include some of the tiniest creatures on Earth.  We assume that because something is small, it is insignificant and yet some of the most innovative and community oriented creatures are the bees and other members of the insect kingdom. 
 
Many believe that as humans we have dominion over all life and can eliminate the smaller kingdoms randomly and with great fervor, if they so choose.  However, without insects such as the bees and other pollinators, our food supply as we know it, would cease to exist.  Rudolf Steiner spoke of the incredible spiritual wisdom and ingenuity of bees in his series of lectures contained in the book "Bees."  He also accurately predicted the dire situation we now face due to our exploitation of them through modern beekeeping practices.  It doesn't take a genius to conclude that destruction of natural habitat combined with heavy use of pesticides within our culture and interference from human generated electromagnetic fields such as cell towers, have all contributed to their severe decline.
 
“The more you investigate these creatures and the manner in which they live, the more you will come to the conclusion that there is a great intelligence in how they work and what they accomplish.”
         —Rudolf Steiner
 
Spring is fast approaching and this is the time when traditional home and garden centers promote their arsenal of pesticides, chemical fertilizers and everything imaginable to zap all those pests many don't want in their gardens or perfectly manicured lawns.  You can't target one form of life without affecting another.  All those so-called weeds and tiny, insignificant little beings that the majority of the population so mercilessly destroys are part of a very finely tuned system of balance that exists within Nature.  The only way to begin healing our physical bodies, is to change our individual  thoughts and actions toward the seemingly insignificant plants and creatures that inhabitat this planet.  Healing starts from the ground up and no one is impervious to it.
 
I had an opportunity to learn a valuable lesson from the insect world several years ago while my son was just a toddler and I was spending a tremendous amount of time within my gardens creating huge areas of wildlife habitat.  One day I suddenly felt a strange sensation on my leg and I began developing a tremendous itching all over my body.  I felt that I must have been stung by some bee or wasp, but this type of reaction had never happened to me before.  It became overwhelming as I waited for my son's father to get an antihistamine from my parents' home nearby, in order to relieve the itching.  My reaction was so severe that I forgot to consider an herbal poultice.
 
Within a short amount of time, I began to feel my entire body begin to shut down.  I was having difficulty breathing and I could feel my heart becoming constricted.   I knew I needed help fast and so I dialed 911.  By the time my son and his father returned, the paramedics had already arrived.  It was that call that saved my life.   The paramedics had responded immediately giving me oxygen and steroids to relieve the inflammation.  The man who saved my life told me that he had lost a young man just 6 months earlier for the same reason.   It wasn't my time.  I knew that, but it wasn't until much later that I learned what the message was for me.  A message from the insect kingdom about my own energy field.
 
It took me a while to recover physically after the onslaught of steroids on my body, as well as from the fear of working again in my gardens.  I had to overcome the fear though.  The thought of not spending time in my beloved gardens, was unimaginable.  Gradually, as time went on I became increasingly comfortable again working amidst the insects.   However, the following year I was stung again, but this time I had my Epi-pen and was able to inject myself, later driving to the ER.  It took me longer to recover from this incident, however, because I developed a severe reaction to the steroids this time.  Later that summer, I was stung again but this time there was no reaction other than swelling.  Each time I was stung, my vibration had changed, as I eventually came to find out in Steiner's book.
 
It was at that point I began to question what the message in all of this was.    At the time, we had a huge blackberry patch that each morning would be filled with yellow jacket wasps  nectaring on the delicious fruit.  My son loved picking the berries.  I had found a yellow jacket wasp nest buried in the ground where I had been stung the previous summer.  They were abundant on this property and there to revitalize the land that had been neglected for many years.  Insects bring a vitality and different vibration to the land, and yet they are persecuted by many each year as soon as the weather gets warmer.  In order to understand them, you have to develop a greater spiritual understanding of the perfection that exists within Nature, as insects communicate via the realm of vibration and unseen energy fields.  Our understanding can only come from observation and walking quietly upon the Earth.  Then they will tell you their story or as in my case, they will blatantly draw your attention.
 
As I had considered why I was repeatedly being stung and what the wasps and bees were tryingto tell me, I realized that most times I was going into the gardens filled with anger regarding my personal situation which I knew inevitably had to come to an end.  Gardening was my way of dealing with these intense emotions.  I would repeatedly take all my thoughts and feelings into the gardens where they were being felt by all of Nature.  The insects were stinging me because they felt threatened.  As I realized what I had been doing, I began to develop a greater respect for these tiny creatures and a greater understanding of my own chaotic energy field.   It was then that I decided to face my biggest fears.   I knew that I had to walk into the blackberry patch at the height of activity in the morning and test out my theory.  
 
One morning I made a conscious effort to be grounded and at peace with only thoughts of the beauty around me as I entered the buzzing blackberry patch.  To my amazement, I was able to pick all the ripe berries I found that morning without one bit of antagonistic attempt from the wasps or bees.  I did this repeatedly for the remainder of the summer, always being conscious of my thoughts while amidst these creatures and nothing happened.  No one stung me.  I had proven my theory.  Since that time I have spoken to various beekeepers who have all confirmed that it's very important to be aware of your own energy while working with the bees, so as not to be stung.  It was thereafter that I found Steiner's book and learned about the incredible complexity and soulfulness found particularly within the bee hive.
 
We cannot change this Earth and our environment, unless we change our own ways.  Becoming aware of our individual actions, as well as what we put out into the universe is a big part of healing this planet.  Thinking that you can put even the slightest targeted chemicals into your gardens or in and around your home without it having an affect on all life, is simply avoiding the real issue.  We must also begin making an effort to acknowledge the subtleties within Nature and the fact that there is a complexity and perfection that exists. All emotion is absorbed by the atmosphere and grounded within the Earth.  If we all made a greater effort to infuse this planet with positive emotions and stop destroying that which seemingly gets in our way or is there to teach us a lesson, this planet would begin recovering from years of abuse and mismanagement.
 
"Forgiveness is the fragrance the violet sheds on the heal that has crushed it." --- Mark Twain
 
Spring Blessings!
 
This article is dedicated to the sacred bees which bring beauty and  Nature's bounty into our lives.  May  we change our ways so that the bees recover from all that man has brought upon them.
 
 
*Copyright 2011 Awen Environments.