Sunday, 19 July 2015
Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master, grant that I may not
so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love; For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.
St. Francis Prayer
Jesus, rightful Advocate of peace,
Elegant Champion of reconciliation,
Your victories echo harmoniously.
You taught me the way towards peace,
My assurance of congenial oneness.
Teach me to carry the torch of peace,
That it may reside within my heart
And radiate in my surroundings.
Through the Grace of Your power,
Transform the world into a Heaven.
You are the only hope of mankind:
You are the most gracious Peace Maker!
Thursday, 16 July 2015
Common names include rose geranium, old fashion rose geranium, and rose-scent geranium. "Rose geranium" is sometimes used to refer to Pelargonium incrassatum or its synonym Pelargonium roseum – the herbal name. Commercial vendors often list the source of geranium or rose geranium essential oil as Pelargonium graveolens, regardless of its botanical name. Many plants are cultivated under this species name.
Pelargonium graveolens is an uncommon species native to South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Pelargonium comes from the Greek pelargos which means stork. Due to the shape of their fruit, pelargoniums are also known as stork's bills.
Pelargonium graveolens is an erect, multi-branched shrub, that grows up to 1.5 m and has a spread of 1 m. The leaves are deeply incised, velvety and soft to the touch. The flowers vary from pale pink to almost white and the plant flowers from August to January. The leaves vary in shape and scent, which may be strongly rose-scented. Some plants are very strongly scented while others have little to no scent.
There are many cultivars which have a wide variety of scents, including rose, citrus, mint and cinnamon as well as various fruits. A lemony, citronella scented cultivar is meant to repel mosquitos.
Both true species and cultivated plants may be called rose geranium – often called geraniums. These plants have great importance in the perfume industry. A modern analysis listed the presence of over 50 organic compounds in the essential oil. Commonly known as geranium oil, sold for aromatherapy and massage therapy applications, it is cultivated on a large scale and distilled for its scent. They are also sometimes used to supplement or adulterate more expensive rose oils. The essential oil is an ingredient used in a "natural" hemorrhoid treatment. As a flavoring, the flowers and leaves are used in cakes, jams, jellies, ice creams, sorbets, salads, sugars, and teas. It is also used as a flavoring agent in some pipe tobaccos.
The Meskwaki (Mesquakie) Indians brewed a root tea for toothache and for painful nerves and mashed the roots for treating hemorrhoids.
GERANIUM OIL USES
Geranium oil's fresh aromatic scent helps balance mind and body, one of the most preferred in aromatherapy because it slows several skin conditions such as acne, eczema and blemishes, helps maintain overall health of the body and is less sensitive on the skin.
Geranium oil is used in herbal medicine because of its astringent properties, a substance that causes contraction of the tissues and stops bleeding. Geranium oil has the capability to make gums, muscles, blood vessels and skin tissues contract, which is why it is used in numerous anti-ageing and anti-wrinkle creams.
Acne/Anti-Aging - Geranium oil has excellent astringent properties which contract tissues due to its astringent properties, helping to keep skin young and healthy. Regular use of geranium oil on your skin is effective in fading scars and blemishes. It improves blood circulation in skin cells, helping to eliminate the appearance of scars and dark spots and equally distributing melanin.
Anxiety/Stress - The sedative property of geranium oil reduces stress, anxiety and depression. Use by massaging on the body, or inhaling the vapor of this oil. A drop of this oil, added to your bath water, provides a soothing effect on your skin, making it glowing and healthy.
Arthritis/Rheumatism - Geranium oil is a mild analgesic. Used as a massage oil, it has proven to be extremely effective in reducing pain and inflammation, relieving aching muscles. Mix with a carrier oil and apply topically to the affected area(s).
Cuts/Burns - Geranium oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties which helps to speed up healing of wounds by inducing blood clotting, making it an excellent remedy for treating cuts and burns, as well as a variety of other skin problems. It also keeps toxins from reaching the bloodstream through open wounds.
Deodorant - The variety of scents make geranium oil an effective deodorant, as the fragrance is long lasting. Properties that regulate sebum production and antibacterial properties, contained in geranium oil, help to eliminate body odor and bacteria.
Detox - Use of frankincense increases the rate of urination and eliminates toxins from the body, making it useful for detoxification. It also aids in digestive function and helps inhibit excess gas in the intestines.
Eczema/Athletes Foot - Geranium oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties making it excellent for treating eczema and fungal infections, such as athletes foot. To treat athlete's foot, add five drops of geranium oil to warm water and sea salt (keep in a dark bottle). Massage on feet twice daily.
Fever - Geranium oil works as an antibiotic to reduce fever, lower body temperature, and fight infection from viruses and bacteria, such as flu. It also reduces toxicity of the body through perspiration, cleaning out glands of any foreign toxins that can result in a variety of skin conditions.
Hemorrhoids - Add 1-2 drops of geranium oil to a small jar of cold cream or one teaspoon of wheat germ oil for treatment of hemorrhoids.
Insecticide - The terpene content of geranium oil makes it a natural insect repellent. It can also be used to relieve itching from insect bites.
Insomnia - For an excellent night’s sleep, as for anxiety and stress, use of geranium oil for its sedative properties, relaxes muscles and releases tension.
Menopause - Geranium oil aids in stimulating the adrenal cortex and is often used to balance the generation of androgens during menopause.
Menstruation – As a blended massage oil or diluted in the bath, geranium oil can alleviate pain due to menstruation. It also helps regulate the production of thyroid hormones and the release of ova.
Oral - Geranium oil's antiseptic qualities help strengthen gums, prevent bad breath, cavities, toothaches, and canker sores.
Pain - Geranium oil, used as a massage oil, reduces pain and inflammation to relieve aching muscles.
Sore Throat - With frankincense oil’s astringent, tonic and antiseptic effects, it is used to treat sore throat.
Geranium oil is generally safe and said to have few side effects when used properly. In some rare cases, geranium oil may cause skin sensitivities and one may experience certain side effects. When used in massage, geranium oil should not be applied directly to the skin, but diluted with a carrier oil such as olive oil, jojoba oil, coconut oil, or sweet almond oil.
Performing a skin test before use is recommended. Put a drop of geranium oil on a small portion of your skin and wait 24 hours. If any sign of skin irritation occurs, discontinue use.
To prevent undesirable health results, one should seek a doctor’s or natural holistic practitioner's advice before orally taking any type of essential oil.
As with other essential oils, geranium oil should not be taken during pregnancy, or by infants and children under the age of six.
Monday, 13 July 2015
Dear God, I pray for happiness
I come to You in my hour of need.
I ask You to touch my mind and uplift my thoughts,
change my seeming realities that I’m thinking about
my life, change my opinion of what is and what can be.
God, I ask that You give me a sense of well-being again.
I pray that You help me find my smile, both on my face and
in my soul. I pray that I have a cheerful heart. I pray that others
are drawn to my happy smile, my positive attitude, and my face
that shines with joy.
Dear God, I know that you have created me and everyone else
to be happy, to find joy and laughter in the different stages and
experiences of life. I pray that I express You in my expression
of joy. God I cannot do this by myself, so I turn to You, and
I surrender. In Jesus Christ’s name, Amen
Sunday, 12 July 2015
|Flowers of the Boswellia sacra tree|
As one of the highly sought after oils, frankincense is used in many Christian and Islamic faiths mixed with oils to anoint newborn infants, initiates, and members entering into new phases of their spiritual lives.
Frankincense, (also called olibanum), is an aromatic resin used in incense and perfumes. It is obtained from four species of the Boswellia. The English word is derived from Old French "franc encens" (high quality incense). Resin from each of the four species is available in various grades, which are dependent on the time of harvesting.
The essential oil of frankincense is produced by steam distillation of the tree resin. It has a balsamic sweet fragrance, while the Indian frankincense oil has a very fresh smell.
Frankincense is mentioned in the Bible as one of the three types of gifts the wise men gave to baby Jesus of Nazareth. Exodus 30:34-36 - Then the Lord said to Moses, “Take fragrant spices—gum resin, onycha and galbanum—and pure frankincense, all in equal amounts, and make a fragrant blend of incense, the work of a perfumer. It is to be salted and pure and sacred. Grind some of it to powder and place it in front of the ark of the covenant law in the tent of meeting, where I will meet with you. It shall be most holy to you.
The lost city of Ubar (sometimes identified with Irem), rediscovered in the early 1990s, is believed to have been a center of the frankincense trade along the recently rediscovered "Incense Road".
|Frankincense olibanum resin|
Recent studies have indicated that frankincense tree populations are declining, partly due to over-exploitation. In addition, burning, grazing, and attacks by the longhorn beetle have reduced the tree population. Conversion (clearing) of frankincense woodlands to agriculture is also a major threat.
Frankincense essential oil is obtained by steam distillation of the dry resin and is characterized by a balsamic-spicy, slightly lemon, fragrance, with a conifer-like undertone. It is used in perfumes, aromatherapy, and as an ingredient in some skincare products.
Frankincense resin is edible and is used in traditional medicines for digestion and healthy skin. For internal consumption, it is recommended that frankincense be translucent, with no black or brown impurities. It is often light yellow with a (very) slight greenish tint. It is often chewed like gum, but it is stickier.
In Ayurvedic medicine frankincense, commonly referred to in India as dhoop, has been used for hundreds of years for treating arthritis, healing wounds, strengthening the female hormone system and purifying the air. In Somali, Ethiopian, Arabian, and Indian cultures, it is suggested that burning frankincense daily in the house brings good health. Frankincense oil can also be used for relief from stings such as scorpion stings.
The health benefits of frankincense oil are attributed to its anti-inflammatory, astringent, antiseptic, carminative, disinfectant, digestive, diuretic, and expectorant (loosening mucus from the lungs) properties.
Frankincense oil blends well with carrier oils such as basil, jojoba, sweet almond, avocado, patchouli, rosemary, sage, and any of the citrus oils.
Massage Oil/Cream (for every-day use) - Heat equivalent amounts of coconut oil and lanolin, gradually adding warm rose water. Beat the mixture thoroughly, and add a tablespoon of frankincense to create an invigorating massage cream.
Chest Rub - Heat 1 ounce olive oil in a small sauce pan. When the olive oil is warm, add 2 teaspoons of beeswax pellets, stirring until melted. Add 4-5 drops of frankincense oil, blending completely. Pour the mix in a tiny jar and allowed to cool just before putting the lid on and store at room temperature. Add vitamin E oil to the mixture for longer shelf life.
Toner - Frankincense oil can be added to water and used as a toner or refresher. The oil will float on top, shake well before using it.
Liniment – Combine 1/2 cup coconut oil, 2 teaspoons beeswax pellets, 5 drops frankincense oil, and 5 drops of a citrus oil. Melt the coconut oil and beeswax together in a small saucepan on the stove for 1-2 minutes, turn the burner off (can be heated in microwave, or a double boiler). Add the coconut oil and beeswax. Stir until melted. Allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes, add frankincense oil.
Put in a container and allow to cool completely. When it is completely cooled it will be a solid (but when applied to warm skin it will liquefy again). Makes it perfect for massaging onto sore muscles and joints. Keep in the fridge for a longer shelf life. Also, adding vitamin E oil to the mixture helps to preserve it.
Bath Soak - Add 3-5 drops of frankincense oil towards hot running water. Soak sore muscles and aching joints. It will also open respiratory cavities to assist in cold and flu relief.
FRANKINCENSE OIL USES
Acne, Fine Lines and Wrinkles - Frankincense oil is an alternative solution to chemical based products, for skin problems such as acne, stretch marks, and reversing the signs of aging skin, promoting healthy cell regeneration. When used on a regular basis, your skin is healthier and mild acne will fade away. Frankincense oil is rich in natural healing properties helping to prevent cell oxidation and keeping oils in the skin naturally balanced, while decreasing skin inflammation.
Anxiety & Depression – As an inhalant frankincense oil in a vaporizer or nebulizer (also can add to shirt collar, or massage behind the ears) is very effective as a sedative that induces relaxation to assist in relieving anxiety and stress, giving one a feeling of comfort and peace.
Arthritis & Rheumatism - Frankincense oil helps to prevent cartilage tissue breaking down, inhibiting inflammation. Mix with a carrier oil and apply topically to the affected area(s).
Cancer - Frankincense oil offers a natural solution to fighting infection and curing diseases. Researchers have discovered cancer-killing properties of frankincense oil and its ability to target cancer cells in late-stage ovarian cancer. Frankincense oil contains various active agents, which support the immune system, making it highly beneficial in destroying cancer cells.
Frankincense is also a potential treatment for other cancers such as prostate, colon, brain, beast, pancreatic, and stomach cancers.
To be effective, use 100% pure therapeutic grade quality essential oils.
Cold & Flu - Frankincense oil breaks up phlegm and can relieve bronchitis-related congestion. Use frankincense oil in a diffuser or nebulizer to treat colds and respiratory blockages. You can also inhale the scent by adding a drop or two onto a cloth, or add to bathwater, or applied as a chest-rub.
Cuts - Use frankincense oil to prevent infection by diluting (using distilled water and 4-5 drops of frankincense oil) and applying to the affected area, to stop bleeding and speed up healing (also for insect bites and boils).
Digestion - Frankincense oil acts as a stimulant to speed up gastric juices, acids, and bile, allowing food to pass properly through the intestines.
Hair Growth - Frankincense oil is wonderful for the hair as well, fortifying roots and combatting dandruff or dry scalp. When combined with various other essential oils, frankincense oil can boost hair growth, relax the mind and reduce stress. Massaging frankincense oil, heated with coconut oil, assists in strengthening weak roots as well as encouraging hair growth.
Menstruation - Frankincense oil can be used to regulate the menstrual cycle of premenopausal women and regulate estrogen, reducing the risk of uterine cancer.
Oral - Frankincense has antiseptic qualities that can help strengthen gums, prevent bad breath, cavities, toothaches, mouth sores, and other infections.
Frankincense oil is generally safe and said to have few side effects when used properly. In some rare cases, frankincense oil may cause skin rashes, nausea, and stomach pain. To prevent undesirable health results, one should seek a doctor’s or natural holistic practitioner's advice before orally taking any type of essential oil.
Before ingesting edible frankincense oil, it should be diluted with coconut oil, a teaspoon of honey, or a glass of water. A drop or two can also be placed under the tongue.
Performing a skin test before use is recommended. Put a drop of frankincense oil on a small portion of your skin and wait 24 hours. If any sign of skin irritation occurs, discontinue use.
As with other essential oils, frankincense oil should not be taken by individuals with a history of bleeding disorders (may increase the risk of abnormal bleeding), during pregnancy (may cause bleeding), and children under the age of six.
Saturday, 11 July 2015
Friday, 10 July 2015
Thursday, 9 July 2015
"The comfort zone is the great enemy to creativity; moving beyond it necessitates intuition, which in turn configures new perspectives and conquers fears." ~Dan Stevens
Life is meant to be experienced; it's meant to be LIVED. Life is where we learn, love and grow; and we can't grow if we remain in a state of disengagement. As Eleanor Roosevelt so aptly put it, "Life is meant to be lived, and curiosity must be kept alive." But for many of us, we tend to become complacent in our situation of feeling a quiet pleasure or security. We enter the comfort zone, a state of mind, where we feel at ease and in control; a sense of familiarity. We feel that scarcity, uncertainty and vulnerability are minimized.
What keeps us from moving forward to new experiences and the adventures of living life? What keeps us in our mind-made prisons?
Whether it is consciously or unconsciously; it may simply be conditioning – learned behavior, a sense of unworthiness – perceiving failure or rejection. The bottom line is FEAR – that's the hideous monster that keeps us from stepping outside the box and moving forward in a new direction, towards a new goal.
Fear and anxiety are emotions induced by a threat that is perceived as uncontrollable or unavoidable. It may be in response to a specific stimulus happening in the present, or to a future situation, which is perceived as a risk to health or life, status, power, security, or, anything we hold valuable.
Fear can be learned by experiencing or watching. Fear is not just a matter of personal history; a person may learn to fear regardless of whether they themselves have experienced it or not; or if they have observed the fear in others.
Fear of the unknown is one of the reasons that people don't make an effort to move forward. Many people are afraid of the unknown, which can branch out to many areas such as the next ten years, tomorrow, or even the hereafter – afraid to take the path they want, because of what may lie ahead. Many people would rather remain in a familiar situation they know than to move on to something new; even if the current situation is unhealthy, such as an abusive relationship. People will make excuses, trying to convince themselves that what they currently have is good enough – they settle! Their way of life is known and familiar, but this can lead to procrastination, keeping one from moving forward to a healthier life situation.
Fear isn't always a negative entity. Of course, stepping out of our comfort zone raises anxiety and generates a stress response, but the result is an enhanced level of concentration and focus. A fear response can generate an appropriate behavioral response, causing a change in our brain chemistry and ultimately changing our behavior, thus serving our survival.
Take a look at this cute little video of a goat who stands up to the bull. The goat has no sense of unworthiness, nor is he experiencing any fear in this moment. I'm not sure what lead up to the confrontation, but it is no doubt the goat has decided to take the bull by the horns, so to speak!
We, too, must first make the decision that we are tired of being where we are, and to do this we need to strip away what we have been taught.
It wasn't something I was conscious of at the time, but looking back over the years, I can see where my life had been a series of stepping out of comfort zones. At first, there was great fear, and I would continually walk around the idea in my mind for quite some time, before I wholly desired to take that leap of faith and make a change.
I was an extremely introverted child; shy and withdrawn. I became the scapegoat for everything that seemingly went wrong in the world. No matter how hard I tried, I never felt that I had a place in my family. Other than school, and the occasional babysitting jobs my parents would commission me for, I would spend my time in my room listening to music, reading and daydreaming of better times ahead. My sense of unworthiness would carry me into a dark world of depression for years after. I couldn't take it any longer, and by the time I was fourteen, my overwhelming sense of unworthiness, of course, caused me to become too fearful of failing and making things even worse for myself. By the time I was sixteen, I had made the decision to leave. I was going to get out come 'hell or high water'. This decision opened me up a little more and brought me out of my little world of self-protection. I spent months planning, and just after my seventeenth birthday, I escaped!
I did return back to my family after a year or so, but soon realized this was a mistake. It would be years later that I would come to the realization that I was carrying this sense of unworthiness with me into every situation and relationship thereafter. However, each time I stepped through the fear and doubt and moved forward into the unknown, it would become easier and it changed who I once was. Later, when I was in my late twenties, I left an abusive relationship of eight years. This is when I finally woke up and came into my true self!
There is no longer a sense of feeling less than anyone else. I make the decision immediately before getting entangled in a situation of how I am to be treated. There is no longer a need to escape anything.
Now, following a spiritual path, I turn toward grace with a knowing that everything has been given me for my growth.
With lessons of forgiveness and a healthy dose of self-love, looking back, I am truly grateful for all of the lessons life has brought to me. If it wasn't for each person and each situation, I undoubtedly wouldn't have realized the courage that existed within me. I have grown with each scenario passing through my awareness; gaining knowledge and strength on the journey.
"Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I would like to see you living in better conditions." ~Hafiz
I used to have a comfort zone where I knew I wouldn't fail.
The same four walls and busywork were really more like jail.
I longed so much to do the things I'd never done before,
But stayed inside my comfort zone and paced the same old floor.
I said it didn't matter that I wasn't doing much.
I said I didn't care for things like diamonds and furs and such.
I claimed to be so busy with the things inside the zone,
But deep inside I longed for something special of my own.
I couldn't let my life go by just watching others win.
I held my breath; I stepped outside and let the change begin.
I took a step and with new strength I'd never felt before,
I kissed my comfort zone goodbye and closed and locked the door.
If you're in a comfort zone, afraid to venture out,
Remember that all winners were at one time filled with doubt.
A step or two and words of praise can make your dreams come true.
Reach for your future with a smile; success is there for you!
Related Video: Famous People Who Failed Before They Were Famous
"Dan Stevens." BrainyQuote.com. Xplore Inc, 2015. 30 May 2015. http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/d/dan_stevens.html