Sunday, February 23, 2014

Our Energetic Circuitry

"He who lives in harmony with himself
lives in harmony with the universe."

~Marcus Aurelius

 This week I want to introduce you to the energy centers of the body that Jin Shin Jyutsu refers to as "Safety Energy Locks". I am sure that many of you are familiar with the Chakras from Yoga and other healing traditions. A chakra is defined as a wheel, or vortex of energy. There are seven major chakras that flow through a human’s energetic system. All of these major chakras are on the Main Central Flow Pathway and make up our energetic blueprint connecting us to Source energy and our soul purpose.
      Interestingly, Safety Energy Locks have the same definition! They are defined as vortices of spiraling energy. To my way of thinking, they are some of the "minor chakras" on our energy map. They mark the locations of intersecting energetic pathways or meridians often at skeletal junctures.
      I have many clients ask about this curious name-Safety Energy Lock. Jin Shin Jyutsu recognizes 26 pairs of these energy centers in our bodies. These areas are much more than fixed points and encompass and area approximately the size of our hand. Each one of them has a specific meaning that is expressed through its number and is closely related to its placement on the body. They act like the circuit breakers on the electrical system in our homes and lock when the flow of energy in a pathway is too much, too little or stagnant-to warn and protect us from further disharmony. When one or more of these safety energy locks become blocked, a local disruption can occur, eventually resulting in disharmony of the energetic pathway completely. Just like in your home electrical system, if an outlet is overloaded, it blows the breaker that feeds that outlet, but does not shut down the whole electrical system. If the breaker is not reset, you can just shift the plugs to another outlet. This outlet will also break as it becomes overloaded and the process will continue until the entire system shuts down. A single breaker switch shutting down is a warning that you have overloaded the circuitry and attention must be paid to what you are doing. It is just the same thing with the energy system of our bodies. These twenty-six Energy Locks serve as breaker switches. If enough are blown over a period of time, disharmonies will occur in your physical, emotional, or mental well-being.  Another picture that describes for me what happens in the body, it to imagine our highway system of roads. Where many roads intersect there are overlaps and junctions, referred to in many cities as "malfunction junction". All it takes is one accident at the junction to slow traffic from coming and going in many directions! The openness and flow of energy through our safety energy locks determine our health, balance and well-BE-ing.
     Jin Shin Jyutsu teaches us to heed the warning of pain-which is our indicator that something is out of order and energy locks are shutting down. By simply holding the stuck energy center we can unlock the flow of energy and return ourselves to harmony. It really is that simple: Hold the pain and clear the stagnation!

"Life’s challenges are not supposed to paralyze you,
they’re supposed to help you discover who you are."
~Bernice Johnson Reagon

Find Relaxation Every Day

"Taking time out each day to relax and renew is essential to living well."
~Judith Hanson Lasater

Nothing like a sunny vacation in the middle winter to illustrate the value of rest and relaxation! Instead of simply slipping back into our everyday routine, my goal is to remember to find relaxation in every day.
Many of us lead busy stressful lives filled with all sorts of demands on our time and energy. We run from one commitment to another, caught in the treadmill of work and family responsibilities. It becomes increasingly important that we remember how rest and relaxation help us to reduce stress and tension. When we hold stress and tension  in our bodies, we get more and more out of balance. And when we are out of balance,  regenerative healing does not occur.
But we are lucky! There are many ways to re-energize and ease stress without taking a vacation all of the time. Consider a daily walk, yoga practice, meditation and/or JSJ Self-Help routine. And on a weekly basis, consider bodywork or energy work.
For me, my weekly Jin Shin Jyutsu Session is like a mini-vacation on an island of balance and bliss. It is an opportunity to unplug and have some nourishing downtime. And as a caregiver, it is a great chance for me to simply RECEIVE! When I had my session this week after returning from the beach, I closed my eyes and imagined that I was on a sunny beach, breathed deeply the salty air and felt rejuvenated once more as my body, mind and spirit harmonized.

"Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day
is the rest we take between two deep breaths."
~Etty Hillesum

New Beginnings in Every Breath

              New Beginnings
"The most sacred place dwells within our heart,
where dreams are born and secrets sleep,
a mystical refuge of darkness and light,
fear and conquest, adventure and discovery,
challenge and transformation.
Our heart speaks for our soul
every moment while we are alive.
as the whispering beat repeats:
be...gin, be...gin, be...gin.
It's really that simple.
Just begin... again."
~Royce Addington 
 The turning of a New Year is always the perfect time to take stock in our lives, to reconsider the choices that we make and to step forward to be the change that we wish to see in the world. But I invite you to see each breath that you take as an opportunity for renewal and rebirth...all day and everyday.
     Breathworker, Danae Shanti says,  "Consider this idea: The way we breathe is the way we live.  If our breath is open, deep and full then our lives have a more flowing, buoyant quality, full and rich with connection." And isn't THAT what we all want?!
     70% of body toxins are eliminated through breathing, it is important for us to learn to breathe freely and fully. When we breathe in this manner,  we have the ability to eliminate stress, anxiety, irritation and anger. We experience a reduction in depression, insomnia and general fatigue. We see improvements in our blood circulation, lung capacity, digestion and elimination. And when you combine the use of your breath with holding your fingers and the results will astound you.
    The practice of Jin Shin Jyutsu teaches us that with each breath we are made new, imbued with a new awareness of our limitless life energy and awakened to our ability to partake of  Effortless Reality.
    Read more about the Jin Shin Jyutsu practice of 36 Consious Exhalations and thepractice of holding fingers to harmonize body, mind and spirit. 
"Begin today.
Declare out-loud to the universe
that you are willing to let go of struggle
and eager to learn through joy."
~Sarah Ban Breathnach

Healthy Pizza

"We are indeed much more than what we eat, but what we eat can nevertheless help us to be much more than what we are".
~Adelle Davis 

     Since June, my husband and I have made a big change in our diet. We cut out gluten, grains, potatoes, and SUGAR! It has been an amazing journey and we both feel better than ever. One thing that we really missed was easy food, like pizza! I kept reading about cauliflower pizza, which didn't really sound like a good thing. But one day a friend who eats like us was raving about a pizza recipe that used cauliflower as a main ingredient in the crust… So I decided that it was worth a try and it was fantastic!
     IT was so amazing that this pizza has become a one of our favorite meals each week. If you can still do cheese, you are in luck! Watch this video for step by step instructions by Dr. Berg! I started with Dr Berg's instructions but have modified things a bit. 

Basic Pizza Crust Recipe 
2 cups grated cauliflower
2 cups grated cheese
2 eggs
I like to add 1/4 cup of flax meal to the mix. 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Mix the above ingredients. It will be wet and sloppy. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit your pizza pan or stone. Spread the mix on the parchment paper and shape into a thin pizza crust. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes.
Prepare your toppings. I have made this with either a pesto or tomato sauce. I like to sauté the meat and veggies that I use on top (usually sausage, mushrooms, and onions). And top with grated cheese.
Return to the oven. I drop the temperature to 350 degrees and bake for 15 minutes.
This recipe makes one regular size pizza.
"You don't need a silver fork to eat good food."
~Paul Prudhomme