Today is supposed to be one of the most depressing days of the year, known as Blue Monday. Based on a calculation of weather in Northern Hemisphere, debt levels & ability to pay off debts, time elapsed since New Year's Resolutions etc. - it is probably a bit of hype too, but there is an element of truth in it, as many people struggle with the New Year and also with Springtime, because they become anxious that nothing in their lives will change for the better. Often the 3rd Monday in January, it is a time when the hype of the turn of the year has died down and IF you set resolutions, you might well have already abandoned them. You may even have a sneaking feeling of futility creeping in or even already suffered disappointments and setbacks early on in the year.
Some new year, you might be thinking! Can we please start 2019 again?!
Then welcome to the year of the Earth Pig!
According to ancient wisdom we entered the Earth Pig on 22nd December 2018 at the Winter Solstice. Other schools of thought consider the Chinese New Year (in ancient times known as the Spring Festival) to be in February or end of January, but I work with the age old systems which honour the powerful fundamentals of yin and yang. So, the day which is the first day after the longest night of Winter, is the energetic New Year.
Does life sometimes feel like way too much hard work? Not the hard work that ends up in a definite achievement or specific output... that type of hard work is very satisfying.
Am talking about the type of hard work that just seems relentless - no matter what you do, life feels heavy and things just aren't happening... you feel stuck, misunderstood, resentful and afraid... almost aaaaallll the time....
I have just returned from an epic 1 day workshop with the inimitable & gracious Stewart Pearce, all about the power of the voice and sound to transform our energy and connect to spiritual energies. I had never heard of him before, but saw a post on Facebook and was immediately intrigued. Clearly, as a Feng Shui consultant, it is really important that I keep my energy field vibrating highly with plenty of peacefulness and joy and optimism, with which to work with my fabulous clients. :)
Did you know that Feng Shui is one of the "8 Branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)"? The ancient Chinese were masters of holistic thinking, with a natural understanding of how all aspects of life are interconnected to achieve optimum health and wellbeing. The other 7 'branches' of TCM are energy work (meditation & qi gong), movement (t'ai chi, moxibustion, cupping), diet (nutrition), Chinese Astrology (cosmology), bodywork (tuina massage/acupressure etc.), herbal medicine, and acupuncture.
Not many people want to add Chinese symbols into their home as they can look a bit out of place. I never ask a Feng Shui client to use many 'trinkets' at all - maybe a Buddha statue or a red paper charm here and there and a symbolic piece of Western (or Oriental) artwork, but otherwise Feng Shui is about unblocking energy in the environment, not adding 'stuff'.
“We are all like the bright moon, we still have our darker side.” Kahlil Gibran
With the full moon approaching on the 29th April, I thought it would be lovely to explore which plants only blossom at night and look particularly beautiful under a full moon. Years ago when I lived in Bristol, I had planted an area of my garden for evening delight, with fragrant white Nicotiana plants and night-scented stocks...
Do you moon bathe?
History is saturated with myths and legends about heroes & heroines overcoming odds, miracles being performed and wizards & witches performing alchemical magic. From David and Goliath to the legend of Arthur & Merlin, and both the Pagan and Christian Easter traditions, humankind instinctively reaches for the seemingly miraculous. Or at the very least, the chance to be re-born. Re-shaped. Resurrected.
Don't we always do the 'tourist thing' when our overseas friends come to stay?
Eco-warrior extraordinaire and looooong time friend Katja Wiese was speaking at the Lush Summit at Old Billingsgate a few weeks back, so I jumped at the chance to catch up with her.
We dined at Darwin's Brasserie in the Sky Garden, naturally... and had a beautiful dusk walk around Tower of London and over Tower Bridge.
I took some epic photos from the viewing platform of Sky Garden for my digital scrapbook and also to use as illustrations to point out some basic Feng Shui influences in our stately capital, The City of London.
What with it being Valentine's day and all, I thought I would share a lovely story about a Buddhist client of mine in Highgate, London.
She had commissioned me to help her organise her home office more effectively in terms of aligning desk to good direction to suit her horoscope and colours to balance the energy there and throughout the flat etc.