Working with the Full Moon

The full moon was upon us last night - did you feel it? I certainly did, and the more and more aware I find myself becoming to the natural cycles of the moon, the planets, the sun, the seasons and the Earth - the more I recognize that how I feel and how I react to things is strongly connected to nature’s cycles. So… the more aware we are of the natural cycles (especially the moon and the seasons), the better we will be at learning how best to work with them. Since we are in the full moon stage (this runs from the actual moment of the full moon for 3 or so days afterwards), let’s talk about how best to work with the full moon.

The full moon pours down a tremendous amount of energy, which has the effect of amplifying the energy around (and within) us. This includes emotions! Some people will tend to feel more emotional overall, or find that they react more strongly or quickly that they usually would. This includes the positive and negative emotions. So… you may react more strongly to an experience than you usually would - meaning you could feel angrier, or more upset or, conversely, much happier.

So, being aware of when the full moon is coming, there are a few things you can do to work with this strong energy:

1) Cleanse Your Crystals - Crystals will, over time, pick up and absorb energy from what they encounter. So, it is a really good idea to clear them to reset them to their natural vibrational energy. This can be done the night before the full moon, the night of, or the night after.

How?

  • Gather up all of your crystals and set them out on a windowsill or a table that will receive the moon’s light at some point over the night. Even if it is cloudy, the moon’s energy will clear and recharge the stones.

  • Make sure you are grounded - take a few deep breaths, feeling your feet connected with the ground/Earth.

  • Set your intention to “clear and cleanse” any unwanted energy from the crystals. I usually sweep my hand over the crystals, sending the intention “allow the full moon’s energy to”… “clear and cleanse, clear and cleanse, clear and cleanse”.

  • Leave the crystals out overnight and let the moon do it’s work!

  • In the morning, before gathering up the crystals, spend a moment to give thanks to the moon for doing this work.

  • Just one important note! Some crystals are light sensitive (rose quartz, amethyst, turquoise…), so you would want to move them away from the direct sunlight before it gets strong.

2) Bask In The Moonlight - This is a wonderful grounding and recharging exercise which can help to bring to you a state of peace and calmness. Stand or sit (inside or outside!) facing the full moon. Visualize the moon beam coming into the top of your head, and moving down through your body and into the Earth. Slow your breath down and allow yourself to be filled with this beautiful healing Yin energy, drawing in a little more with each breath. Always end with the moon’s light moving down through your feet into the Earth.

3) Be Grateful - Make a list of all of the things in your life that you are grateful. You can start with the people in your life, the actual things in your life, and always include the things about yourself that you are grateful for (your qualities, your accomplishments, your experiences…). And then being grateful for where you are at in your life, in your journey, right now (yes that means acceptance!). By doing this you are shifting your emotional state into a positive one - and the full moon will help to amplify this, so it is a great time to acknowledge gratitude.

4) Send Healing Vibes - to those who need it. You can channel the beautiful healing energy of the moon to others. Similar to basking in the moonlight - you can sit or stand facing the full moon. This time, visualize the moon’s energy coming into the top of your head and filling your heart. Once your heart is full, visualize someone who you feel needs some healing energy. You can send this energy from your heart to them or you can place them within your heart to bask in the glow of the moonlight. Release the image of this person (or this works on animals or land too!) when you feel they have received the energy. To close, draw the moon’s energy all the way through your body and down into the Earth. And, I like to place my hands at my heart and give thanks to the moon with a smile:)


So, there you go! A few tips to help you work with the full moon’s energy. Keep your eyes out for other moon cycle and seasonal cycle tips to come!

Five Crystal Must Haves (plus a few others!)

Crystals crystals crystals... a lot of people ask me which ones should I get? There are so many out there, so it can be overwhelming. The best place to start is by using your intuition! If you're looking for ones that look nice (and really a lot of us choose crystals because they are just so darn pretty), then pick those ones. If you find yourself drawn to some because they felt good to you to hold in your hand, then pick those ones. 

If you are looking for a starter set to use in your home, on your person, or to build crystal grids with, here are the ones I highly recommend.

1) Quartz (clear). It is the master healer. A clear quartz crystal can be set with any intention at all! It can also be used to amplify the energy of other crystals, so it is great to have around. Use it in any form: pointed quart can help to direct energy in/out of your space, or your grid. If you are using quartz points, you will want to have four to six of them to work with. Tumbled quartz or quartz clusters are really useful in all applications as well.

2) Rose Quartz. I LOVE rose quartz. Use it for anything related to love, self love, acceptance, nurturing, peaceful and loving energy. This one I recommend tucking into your bra (if you wear those things!) or as a necklace hanging near your heart. Send that loving energy into it and let it work for you. As for what form of this crystal? Choose the one you are drawn to.

3) Amethyst (another form of quartz). So great for calming the mind, balancing emotions, enhancing intuition and connecting to spiritual energy. Any form of this crystal whether in clusters, points, raw or tumbled works well. You will find many types of amethyst, ranging from clear with purple tinges to chevron amethyst (also called dream amethyst), which is a white and deep purple banded one. The choice is yours.

4) Citrine (yet another form of quartz - catch the theme here?). Your INNER SUNSHINE! Works on your power centre - self confidence, abundance, joy, motivation, self expression. Sounds fabulous, right? It also releases heavier emotions that may hold you back. This ranges in colour from yellow to rust coloured or brown. Go with your intuition on how to choose this one. I use both tumbled and raw citrine, depending on which one I feel will serve its purpose at the time.

5) Hematite or Black Tourmaline. These are both strong grounding and protective stones. Hematite is also great for reducing pain and inflammation. Black Tourmaline is commonly used to grid your home for protection and reduction of EMF radiation.

And, to cover all your bases, I suggest you consider including a some of the following:

6) Something GREEN! Who doesn't love the colour of green? Abundance, health, heart chakra, connection to the earth - all of these are connected to crystals of green hues. Some of the ones I like to use are fluorite, green calcite, green aventurine, moss agate and malachite.

7) Something BLUE! One of the most problematic chakras I see in people is the throat chakra. We want to work on opening this up with clear expression of your truth, help with finding your direction in life, reducing headaches and calming the mind. I tend to use blue calcite, lapis lazuli (one of my favourites!), sodalite and blue lace agate.

8) Selenite. This crystal has an infinite number of uses AND it is super affordable. It has exceptional clearing and cleansing properties for your space, for your mind and energy stagnation in the body. You can grid your home with it for protection too. One of the things I use it most for is for clearing and cleansing other crystals. I'll be posting another blog soon with more details on the how's, why's and when's of cleansing crystals.

I hope this helps give you guidance on choosing crystals to get you going, or to expand your crystal collection! Keep in touch if you have any other topics you want on here.

Spring is in the Air - Time to get ready!

As April arrives, we enter into the energetic transition from winter to spring. Spring is the season of renewal, regeneration and rebirth. It is also the time where, after the dormant period of winter, plants and trees are being uncovered from the blanket of snow. They are waking up and ready for new growth and new life to emerge. Internally, our bodies are working on rebuilding and cleansing of various organs and systems, most importantly of which is the liver. The liver is responsible for cleansing toxins and impurities of the blood and internal organs.

Energetically speaking, spring is the time for transformation; cleansing out the old and making space for the new. This is where the term “Spring Cleaning” comes from. Not only can we clean out the space around us, but it is the time to clear and cleanse our mind, body and soul. It is the time to reconnect with the Earth and strengthen our systems. The following are the steps you can take to do this:

Clear and Cleanse - your personal space

Clear out your space both physically and energetically. Feng Shui is a technique for creating an environment of balanced energy in your personal space.

Clean the areas of your home that don’t get much traffic. Literally, clear out the cobwebs, remove the dust. Clean your windows and open them to allow the older stagnant air move out and be replaced by fresh air.

Purge items from your home that you do not use, will not use or are not serving any good purpose. Give these away to someone who will gain benefit from them. The act of giving itself will transform your energy.

Once you have physically cleared the clutter and cleaned your home, it is time to clear the energy of that space. Space clearing can be done in many ways including traditional burning rituals which may include sage, smudging or incense.

Clear and Cleanse - mind, body and soul

Old stagnant energy, thought patterns, and stress can build up in the body and block important energy pathways in the body causing illness and disease over time. It is always a good idea to work on clearing out old energy that is stored in the mind, body and soul; but in springtime it is especially important to take the time to do so. This means spending some time focusing inward and connecting with the Earth. As most things come from the Earth and return to the Earth, we can use the Earth’s grounding and healing energy to help to clear out stagnant energy patterns in the body.

Energy clearing techniques can include breath work, grounding exercises, meditation, qigong, physically connecting with the earth, and removal of energy blockages via energy healing, reiki or qigong healing treatments.

This is also a good time to pay attention to your eating habits. Eat seasonally, locally and organic where possible. Focus on foods that will help to cleanse your liver. If you are doing a liver cleanse, gradually introduce this to your system if you have never done one before.

 

Combatting Stress and Illness through Qigong

What if I told you that you could learn a simple, yet powerful, practice of gentle moving meditation that you could do to heal yourself of any ailment? Well, its true. It takes some time and dedication, but the practice of Qigong is one of the most powerful self-healing practices ever developed.

What is Qigong?

First of all, let’s break down the Chinese word itself. “Qigong” (pronounced “chee gung”) is made up of two words “Qi” and “gong”. Qi means vitality or life force energy. Gong means accomplishment or skill cultivated through practice. So when you put the two together, Qigong means ‘cultivating energy’. It is the practice of moving energy through the body to promote health, healing and increase vitality.

Qigong was initially developed over 5,000 years ago in China, and is the origin of Tai Chi. The practice of Tai Chi is based more on martial arts, whereas Qigong is based on healing. There are thousands of different styles of Qigong and millions of people all over the world practice Qigong daily. They practice it for these simple reasons: they want to feel good and live a balanced and healthy life.

Qigong is a highly effective health care practice, and is becoming more widely known in the western world as an important form of alternative complementary medicine.

Qigong is one of the cornerstones of traditional Chinese medicine. It is based on the same principals of acupuncture, but you can do it yourself! The idea behind it is to balance the energy in the body. When energy in the body is out of balance, that is when we get ill.

Qigong involves breathing techniques, visualization, gentle body movements and sound.

In essence, it is a moving meditation practice, focused on moving and balancing the Qi in the body. The movements are gentle, and the wonderful thing about it is that they can be easily adapted to anyone, no matter physical ability or age. While some Qigong styles and movements can be complex and difficult to learn, I have found the style of Spring Forest Qigong to be very simple to learn and yet very powerful.

Spring Forest Qigong is a powerful and easy to learn practice that works on healing the whole body.

A friend of mine introduced me to Spring Forest Qigong two years ago in Calgary after I had suffered a severe concussion. I was, at that time, spending my time in dark and quiet rooms, and unable to leave the house without severe symptoms. I tried all sorts of medical intervention to try to heal, but progress was excruciatingly slow. Through the practice of Qigong and meditation, I saw significant accelerated recovery from the brain injury. Amazing! Even the medical specialists and practitioners who were skeptical of me practicing Qigong have come back to report that they are amazed with the success I have had in healing myself, when their methodologies were not working.

I have continued my practice and training with Spring Forest Qigong, because it works! It works to heal and prevent health issues from developing in the first place: anxiety, pain, digestive issues, depression, reproductive issues, sleep, chronic conditions, illness, disease… you name it. I have also been trained to use Qigong methods to target specific health issues in treating others and have seen incredible results.

Feeling the Earth Beneath your Feet

Being grounded. I hear that terminology a lot. In fact, I find myself saying it a lot. But what does it really mean and how do you know if you are truly there? You know when you meet someone and they appear calm and being in their presence feels good? They are likely well grounded. They have found a peacefulness within, and the chaos of emotions, situations and people around them just flows around them, leaving them unaffected. Doesn't that sounds like a wonderful place to be? It is. Let's discuss how exactly one gets there.

For me, a lot of it comes to visualization and recreating the memories I have from childhood. Those days where the only thing that mattered was what was happening in the moment. Its that feeling of the cool grass between your toes. And I'm not referring to the perfect turf-like pesticide and herbicide-doused grasses. I mean the grass that has bare patches, and clovers and dandelions growing out of it. The moistness of the rain making the soil squish up into your toe nails and layer the bottom of your feet with muddy tracks. It may not be a childhood memory for you, but we've all been there at some point.

So I stand, barefoot, finding a good comfortable stance and close my eyes. Focusing on the feet and really feeling their connection to the ground. Visualizing roots growing from the bottom of the feet deep into the earth, holding me stable and strong. Imagine the moist grass and soil oozing up in between the toes. Then, bringing attention upward, I imagine the sun's rays beating down on my head... on my skin. As I breathe in, I visualize the warmth of the sun penetrating through every cell of my body. Exhaling, I push that warm glow downward through my body and into the earth. On the next inhale, switching directions and I pull up the earth's grounding energy via the roots, feet, and up the legs into the body. Exhaling, pushing that energy up through the body and outward to the sky. And repeat...

Once you get the rhythm, the visualization, the sensations, you become the connection between earth and sky... sky and earth. That feeling, of connection, of being one with all things surrounding you, that is the feeling of being grounded. And the amazing thing is that you can go there whenever you wish. Try this one, or find the visualization that works for you, and feel free to share!

Coming Soon

 

I look forward to posting about energy healing and Qigong practices on this blog. Check back often to see what's new.

In the meantime, I leave you with this quote.

"Our bodies communicate to us clearly and specifically, if we are willing to listen."  — Shakti Gawain