Nature is beautiful, but nature is also cruel. Nature is as still as it is also violent. Albert Einstein, the interesting scientist that he is, loved nature. Though many would categorize him as an atheist, he believed that there was a power higher than humans and science.
When you look at nature you may see pretty flowers, beautiful trees and exquisite birds. But what do you really see with your minds eye? You'll see an interconnected network of symbiotic relationships between plants and animals and species that mingle within its own "tribe."
Planet earth is an incarnation of polarities. There is no light without the dark and there is no masculine without the feminine. The natural laws of life rule human nature. Those who try to change humanity by going against nature will lead us to a path of pure destruction. The battle of the artificial and the natural world are here. And I, until the day I die, will choose nature.
As always, inspired by the sun,
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I believe nature holds the secrets to life. In some ways, the path to spiritual enlightenment is similar to the blossoming of a flower. People who find themselves lost or insecure must start somewhere, from the acts of planting the seed to growing the roots, discovering who you are, and blossoming your soul, takes time.
The path to spirituality comes when one opens their mind to the opportunity of change. Staying rooted with fear, and being scared for something new, will not allow a flower to grow. People fear change because they know they will detach from old things, people, habits or ways.
Many people refrain from spiritual change because of fear, but also because of skepticism, logic or chronic self-judgment. The biggest barrier to spiritual development is the need to change habits, specifically mental and emotion habits, breakdowns and anxiety attacks.
It’s about changing one’s mindset and balancing the thoughts between the head and the heart. Based on my life experience, and what I was taught via theEight Limbs of Yoga and the Yoga tree, I believe spiritual development is similar to the growth of a flower.
Humans love flowers. Nature needs flowers and they are some of the most beautiful creations on this planet. In order to blossom and be beautiful inside, you must take the road less traveled, which looks a lot like the flower’s growth.
Stage One – The Seed
Planting the seed is the first step to growth. If we want to grow flowers we must plant the seeds. People who are lost may think about change. They also think about what they need to do in order to change or break patterns. This may go through the avenues of seeing a therapist, signing up for a yoga course or visiting a healer.
Thinking is planting the seed into one’s mind about change. Much energy spent in this stage revolves around thinking and researching options.
Seeds are hard and tough and the ego and darkness wants to hold you back, but through listening to one’s higher self they evolve to seedlings.
Stage Two – Seedling
In nature, a seedling is a young plant birthed from a seed. A seed is actually planted into the ground and the seedling is the first sign of life sprouted from underground. Gardeners may cover seedlings, but if left covered for too long, the seedling dies. In order to thrive, seedlings require air and light.
I equate this stage to the actions taken toward spiritual change. This stage takes time and is not easy for most. A person may find talking to a psychologist works for the first weeks but then realizes this type of therapy is not right for them. A person may switch therapies, but the actual commitment towards getting help is the first sign of life for the soul to sprout from the underground and bask in the riches of potential and the light.
Seedlings are delicate. This represents the vulnerability some feel by exposing themselves and releasing the darkness from within. Seedlings are in a development stage, and this is exactly what stage two represents – development and growth. And the person has two choices, to continue the path of growth or to remain covered and rooted in old ways.
Stage Three – Leaves and Stems
Seedlings grow and develop leaves, stems and roots. It’s a vegetative stage where the stem thickens, the leaves grow taller and the roots spread.
Spiritually, this stage occurs through breaking patterns and allowing one’s soul to grow and breathe. Someone who’s been doing meditation or yoga “religiously” for six months will feel, look and think differently than they did six months prior.
Stage three occurs when people let in more light than darkness. They may struggle, but each time they do something for their soul they are thickening their backbone, growing their wings and staying grounded.
Stage Four – Flower Buds
The budding stage occurs immediately when the flower bud forms. The flower then goes through a stage called heliotropism, which means the leaves and buds move to follow the course of the sun throughout the day.
It takes a while to bud, but a person is budding when the therapies are working. Like a flower, they follow the light. They are seeing progress and results and are nearly independent. They start to expose the light from within and their mindset has switched.
The person may have doubts, as that is normal, but they are almost in bloom.
Stage Five – Bloom
Once a flower blooms, the flower is independent from heliotropism and blossoming can take several days, which happens from the outside toward the middle point. Once the flower blossoms, it eventually ripens, which allows the seeds to fall to be planted.
The blooming stage occurs when a person is in check with his or her emotions and mental state. The mindset changed and the old ways of doing things, or over-reacting, are in the past.
The person feels, sees and breathes in the light. Their roots are so deep that they stay grounded in times of chaos. Their backbone (stalk) is as strong as a tree, so the branches may sway but are rooted and cannot be swayed back into old ways of doing things.
Externally, the person looks different and most claim they feel different internally.
The bloom stage is spiritual liberation. It’s the “end” of the journey from darkness to light. The person knows that learning, wisdom and change never has an end, but knows how to remain strong during tough times.
Once they continue this path, their seeds fall into the earth, helping other souls to find their way to the light. Replanting those seeds also aides them on their future problems. They know problems will never go away but are equipped with the strength, knowledge and tools on how to better handle life's problems.
Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is a trainer, health coach and author of Finding Om: An Indian Journey of Rickshaws, Chai, Chapattis and Gurus. Kovar has undergone various spiritual experiences throughout her life and now shares her experiences with the world to inspire people to break patterns, reach their potential and cultivate a thoughtful life.
Every solstice and equinox Mind Body Soul Food offers free distance Reiki to anyone who wants more light, love and energy in their life or for a particular situation.
The world is shifting and this tumultuous energy will be here for a while. It's time to bring more light and love to your inner world so you can grow, expand and positively effect humanity.
Many people still need to heal personal wounds and spring represents a re-birth, an awakening of energy as nature and humans transition from hibernation to revival.
If you would like Reiki sent to you (or to a humanity problem) please fill out the form below by Sunday March 19th. Please state your full name, location (this helps direct the energy to the right "Susan Smith" & no more than 5 sentences about your situation or what you Reiki for in your life.
Since this energy is about revival, I will Reiki specific humanity issues including Yazidi women who are sold into sex slavery for ISIS, European/global terrorism/crimes against women in Europe & planetary issues including the rhinos who recently were attacked in Paris zoo for their horns.
Please fill out this form by Sunday March 19th.
The winter solstice represents the shortest day of the year. It signifies the time of gaining light into our life. We are in that upswing to the spring solstice, and surely my intuition gravitated towards this.
I find it interesting that each solstice the people who request reiki all somehow are interconnected on their needs. During the healing session, my heart and gut were pulled at the most. Most of us need to do something in our life to fulfill the human need of love. Or some of us just desire more love in our life.
I felt there was a connection between the heart and the gut. The gut, "our second brain," is ruled by our navel chakra, which is our power center. I was guided to continue strengthening the gut, which interestingly, fulfills our heart (and vice versa). As this is the time where we begin gaining light, I was reminded to tell you to bring the light to your heart and power center.
At the end of each reading, I throw the goddess cards to help give me feedback about the reading. Lakshmi and Sedna popped out of the deck as I shuffled the cards. These two cards indicate that our needs will be met if we ask for it and pursue action. It reminds us that everything will be okay, but we must do our part. Please click the links to read the actual meaning of these cards. This gives you insight on this knowledge can apply to your life.
The next 3 cards I threw in order included Saravasti, Ostara & Damara.
You can click on each link to read the meaning of each card. But the thoughts that popped into my head are fertility. If you want to bear children, it is important to focus on this, but this also means fertility in ideas, business adventures, creative pursuits or doing something new. Combined with Saravasti, doing something whether a hobby or a business idea that we've longed to do, completing (or at least trying) can help fulfill our heart (and our souls, spiritually). Creative pursuits are ideas taken from the source and are our gifts to the world. Don't be afraid to try something new.
Right now, in the darkness of winter, we need to plant the seeds for spring. Ostara is in the present moment position, and she represents spring. This is the time to plant the seeds for fertility (on whatever capacity that may be that can / cannot include bearing kids) on idea so it opens more in the next solstice. (Remember, change takes time and ideas take many seasons to grow).
I was guided to also say you should touch base with your inner child. Let your spirit be free, cut cords from things that no longer serve you, and do something fun. Maybe you need to overcome childhood issues, or remove yourself from the behaviors we learned from our parents, either way it's time to cut those cords so you too can enjoy life. With the new year just days away, these goddess can help us plant the seeds for any new and creative ideas we may have.
If you have any questions please ask. But know that your heart and gut are important. The more you take care of yourself (emotionally, mentally, physically and spriitually) and the more you choose yourself, the more love, light, energy and strength comes into your heart and power center.
Merry Christmas my friends. Until the next solstice, let the light shine in.
Are you going through an awakening process? Many people around the globe are experiencing some form of awakening right now. Your awakening may differ from another person's, but know that in some capacity we are shifting into Age of Aquarius.
I believe that in this New Age humans should tap into the ancient wisdom of our elders, stories and belief systems. As we awaken energetically, we need to realize that life consists of ebbs and flows.
Much of what we learn in spirituality (and read through the mainstream) is that everything is light and airy. Many believe that once we ascend we are “saved from the darkness.” I’ll try to say this as eloquently as possible. It’s bullshit.
Planet earth is an incarnation of polarities. The dark (hate, evil, violence) will never go away. We must ascend ourselves energetically and become our own warriors to deflect, and battle, the darkness (struggle, obstacle, challenge, unimportant people) that comes our way.
This year, I picked up a pack of Doreen Virtue’s goddess cards. These cards deepened my spirituality. The more different goddesses popped up in my readings, the more I realized how much we can learn from goddesses (and gods too).
Whether they’re in a love triangle, or overcoming betrayal, these energetic beings teach us important life lessons.
With an aware, wise and balanced mind, you too can overcome your obstacles, guilt and heartaches with the story behind every goddess. The biggest lessons from all these goddesses are that they can be found (and connected to) in nature. They've risen above the
Here are four examples of goddesses who overcame (or represent) struggle that we may encounter throughout our human experience.
Healing from Love
Most humans will experience heartache at least once in their life. This does not always mean romantic love, but any relationship. Isolt can ease your heartache. She is a Celtic goddesses who was caught in a tragic love triangle with her husband, King Mark of Cornwell and a noble knight named, Sir Tristan. She was courageous in respecting her husband but also acknowledging her love for the knight.
She reminds us that regardless of the situation love is real and powerful. She can be found in the forest and amidst the trees. I was once in a love triangle and know how agonizing the pain can be. But Isolt teaches us that some romantic connections are here for lessons no matter what the rational mind thinks.
Endings and Beginnings
Those who do not understand the natural cycles of birth, death and rebirth fear Hindu Goddess, Kali. In this life, we continuously shed the old and welcome the new But, how afraid are you to change? Kali pushes us out of comfort zone, not only to grow, but also to fulfill our soul’s mission. She reminds us that when one door closes, another door opens.
Label and Judgment
This gospel Goddess, Mary Magdalene, has been labeled everything in the book from being a prostitute to a sinner. Instead of worrying about what everyone said about her, she chose to do her work from a higher level of consciousness. Mary teaches us to deflect the critics and “nay-sayers.” If we constantly listen to the people at the bottom, we'll never rise above our struggle.
Sedna is an Alaskan Goddess and daughter of the creator-God, Anguta. While at sea, he throws her into the ocean. As she held onto the boat, Anguta cut off her fingers and Sedna sunk to the underworld. Her fingers transformed into seals, whales and walruses, which were hunted by the Inuit people for food. This story teaches us that betrayal is part of the human experience. What we can do is channel our “loss” or story into something greater that can help mankind.
These are several examples of how Goddesses can help us in real life situations. These brief stories also teach us that life is not perfect and neither are people. The divine is here to help. All we have to do is ask.
Who is your favorite Goddess? What story did she teach you?
Insight on the Journey to Health & Healing: Finding Om 1 Year Anniversary Message + Free Book Giveaway
October 14th is a special day to me. In 2014, it was the first day I arrived in Germany to embark on a 15-month adventure of living in Germany and traveling in Europe.
While in the Lagos, Portugal (a place I've always wanted to go) I picked up pieces of my soul while launching my first book, Finding Om, a travel memoir that includes tales in Australia and India in search for change, growth and empowerment.
One of the most important lessons I learned through this journey is the maturation of the soul; exiting drama, being honest, questioning things and aligning my dreams with my soul purpose. Of course, traveling is a fun adventure and journey, but I feel as if I don't travel just for travel sake. I travel to discover things about the world, a country's culture and things about myself. I do love adventure, but there is something more to adventure than just posting a selfie on Facebook of doing something cool. This book resembles the first steps to change and doing things opposite that many young females do to "find" themselves or make themselves feel better through drugs, random sex, materialism and self-confidence.
I did not expect that writing (in general and) this book would be so healing. It brought me to further acceptance of my past and healed pieces of past relationships where I became attached to guilt, sadness and personal blame. I realized that my past is relatively innocent compared to most people - so why be so hard on myself?
I believe in the power of writing. Writing, specifically in a journal, is old-school (I get it), but much more powerful than a computer. Not only have people been writing with a pen and paper for centuries, but there is something that we can improve upon when we exit the overuse of technology.
To celebrate "my baby" turning one year old, I am offering a Finding Om giveaway - writing style. This past year has been a challenge and ultimately one year of growth by hitting tons of barriers to where a trip to Burning Man revived the strength of my soul.
Sadly, I can't read your pen and paper notes (if you'd like you can send me a picture), but for this one-year anniversary giveaway I'm doing it based on writing. If you'd like to be one of 5 winners, please fill out the form below with one of the two topic choices by October 31st.
-What's been your favorite personal growth journey? (This can include anything from a trip, hiking, meditation, reading a book seriously anything that has evolved your life).
-Why you deserve a free copy. And how can this story help you? (Maybe you're unemployed and need some inspiration. Or just love to read memoirs).
This giveaway is open world-wide - with your choice to choose a print or ebook - with one exception. Print copies can only be shipped within the USA. Thus, if you live abroad you can enter for an ebook which is available for all mobile devices. All entires will remain private.
First, thank you to all who messaged me for the 10/3 distance Reiki session. I hope that the intelligence and higher power of Reiki was sent to provide healing and the confidence to walk forward in life.
Well, I must say this was one of the most interesting healing sessions I’ve done. Some disturbances occurred before and during the session, which I feel were part of the healing session.
The most fascinating part is that everyone who emailed me seems to be in some mode of transition (physically, emotionally or spiritually) that requires personal healing. Letting go, starting something new, unemployed, releasing anxiety, needing to make big decisions – nothing seems rooted and just okay. Everyone is going through some form of transition.
My original intentions were to sit on this bench (that no one ever goes to) that is surrounded by trees. Since a leaf-blower guy was on the other side of the fence, I walked to another bench that is partly private.
I felt attracted to some yellow leaves and placed the leaves around my crystals and Palo Santo. I commenced the healing and cleared myself of energy. The leaf blower was in the distance, and so it was distracting but not horrible.
I listened to Reiki music with ear buds, and began to Reiki the group as a collective. The leaf blower guy then came into the garden. Between the music in my ears and the buzzing of the blower, the noise got so overwhelming I had to move.
While reiki-ing the group, I walked two-minutes down the road to a private staircase – where I never see anyone. I know this because sometimes I read on those stairs for quit some time. I sat on the stairs and set up my leaves and crystals. A house does reside next to the stairs and out comes a family dragging suitcases in and out of the house, walking past me to go to their car.
God, should I move again? Since this was the third location, I had a strong urge to stay put. I thought, “Aweee, why are people in my way?”
This nagging thought to stay put kept rummaging through my head. A message came through. It said, “There will always be disturbances and people in your way. You need to proceed with this healing session regardless of who’s around. Strength comes when you block the outside world and do what you want to do.” So, I sat there and completed the individual Reiki. The family was quiet and did not talk to me, and I was able to block them out.
A big thing as I moved through healing people is that I had a lot “pull” on my gut. The gut is the “second brain,” the place of our intuition. The navel chakra is our power center. I kept getting reminders that we need to build ourselves up, spiritually and in our inner world regardless of what people think. In Japan, they call this area the “hara,” and if you’ve ever seen older Japanese movies and when the spiritual guy stabs himself in the stomach – he does this because he’s killing his power center.
I also felt some pull from the heart, which is something many of us are lacking in modern society as we give up our power to someone / something else and put ourselves second, or avoid the things we love because we don’t have time.
The other fascinating part of the healing is that I had one request to send love and light to the koalas in Australia. Now, I lived in AUS twice and I have a deep love for these animals. My body and third eye was “sucked” into these creative and into the eucalyptus trees.
I kept receiving a message that everyone on this list needs to spend more time and be inspired by nature. Now, some of this has been my path (connecting food with nature) to get people to evolve themselves by learning from nature, but my guides told me that the planet needs our help just as much as we need help in our own lives. And it’s that symbiotic relationship that can evolve us. Nature can help and inspire us. And we can help nature.
I concluded the healing session with a Goddess Card reading. (Sorry for the blurry picture! I dropped my phone in a latte while trying to photograph it for my travel blog, so my camera is ruined!)
I asked for feedback about what people should know about this reading. (You can read more about these goddess online with a Google Search).
I shuffled the cards and two cards popped out of its deck. The first was Nemetona a Romano-Celtic who is guardian of the groves (trees) and inspires those to either visit an ancient site, build an altar in their home, go on a spiritual journey / retreat or space clear naturally with something like sage in order to connect to the Divine. Being outside in nature is very representative of Nemetona. The big message about this card here is to connect to our roots (something ancient) and nature. It’s interesting because for a year now I am drawn to Bath, England and apparently she was worshipped there.
The second card that fell out of the stack is the Indian Goddess Lakshmi. Lakshmi is the goddess of beauty, light, wealth, good fortune and love. This card signifies that everything will be okay, but you need to step into the light and get rid of the old “bag lady” fears you have about your future. Stop worrying about money and start visualizing abundance. Lakshmi works with Ganesha (the remover of obstacles) to overcome challenges. She is here to protect you and your family. How I interpret this is it doesn’t mean you wont experience obstacles but see them as a challenge not a barrier.
The three cards I pulled were:
Freyja (Nordic earth goddess) – BE BOLD and do something daring – make a big life change, appreciate your body, be flirty!
Guinevere (Celtic triple goddess) – True love (soulmates could be on their way, if your romances aren’t being met, you need to fix this within you / take steps to alleviate this, renewed passion is stirring etc., great love is within you)
Aphrodite (Greek goddess) – Inner Goddess – do something fun! Awaken your soul through dance, self-care, expose your feminine side & balance your male and female energy.
After that, I noticed bush branches that were cut. I felt compelled to pick them up. As I looked at the small branches, I noticed how balanced this bush is. The leaves on the right are the same shape, size and angle as the leaf on the left. I placed these branches along with my list in the sunshine for the rest of the day.
If you have any questions, comments or feedback – please contact me!
In my recent blog post, "The Spiritual Significance of the Fall Equinox: A Time for Reflection & Balance," I share my insight to the spiritual meaning behind the Fall Equinox.
While contemplating about the fall season, I've noticed that the transition into fall has been tough for many people and the planet. Since fall signifies balance (and in celebration of one of my favorite signs Libra), I've decided to balance the art of giving and receiving. I am offering free distance Reiki to anyone who wants some extra light in their life.
If you are not familiar with Reiki, I explain more about Reiki on my personal website. Reiki is basically energy. We use energy. We expend energy. We eat energy. And we can use energy to aide us through any situation.
On October 3, 2016, I will conduct the Reiki healing session using a method that I've learned called a proxy-list. This is ideal for dealing with multiple (or mass) people / situations. I will write everyone's information on a list and then provide Reiki as a collective. Then, I will go down the list and send Reiki individually to everyone's session using the sacred Reiki symbols.
I will perform the healing in a cute and quiet (my favorite) garden in Seattle, and "set up" my space with crystals and my Tibetan singing bowl. The picture of the garden is below & holds it's own special energy. After the healing ceremony is complete, I will send additional light and love and conclude with using my angel cards to give me "feedback" about the healing session, which I will share with all participants.
You can use Reiki for basically about anything. Are you desiring a new job? Does your car need a "tune up?" Are you suffering from chronic pain?
If you want to send healing to someone, it is best to get their permission first. Sending Reiki to pets is okay as pets are naturally intuitive and open to receiving.
If you would like Reiki, please take the following steps:
-Fill out the form below. Please send no more than 1-3 sentences about the situation you'd like Reiki.
-Send your situation by 10/1/16 (Please no later than 9am PST 10/216).
-Allow yourself to be open to receive on 10/3/16.
-Stay posted for "signs" or messages that come your way. (Example, if you are desiring a new job and then someone sends you an email w/ a job opening. Its a good idea to apply for that position. It does not mean it will be the "one" but its part of the path.)
*Please add your location. There are a ton of John Smith's and Shirley Schmidt's. This helps connect to the right guides & guardians.*
**I will not accept Reiki forms for lottery requests or "aide" being sent to any hate organizations. This is the internet so this disclaimer will not accept requests for anything that hurts people, animals or the planet.*
What am I hear to do? What are my gifts? Do I have special talents?
Of course, we all do. The beautiful part of human life is that we are all born with a special gift. From astrologers to believers in God, it is said that no two people are born alike. From an astrological point of view, no two people are born with the same birth chart. Because of this, we are all individually created and given certain gifts to serve our soul's purpose.
I am going to write a separate blog about HOW to find your soul’s purpose. But, the purpose of this post is to understand how we can recognize and embrace our gifts and talents. With society progressing the way it is, many of us desire to be someone or something else other than accepting what we are currently good at.
When we detach from our ego and listen to the callings from our higher self, we can evolve into powerful beings that can touch lives and change the world. Here are five ways you can embrace your talents and gifts.
Come out of the Closet
What closet are you hiding in? Some of us have gifts, talents and interests that are not accepted. Luckily, times have changed and we can pursue our talents much easier than even a decade ago. Ever since I was a teenager, I loved astrology, electronic music and the metaphysical world. I hid in many closets as people type-casted me as “weird” or a druggie for liking certain types of music.
Society, parents and peers pressure us to conform to humanity like everyone else. Because of this, we shelter our gifts and store them into a closet. An east Indian friend of mine desired to be an artist and he was excellent at art. However, his parents demanded that he go to school for software engineering because that is where the money is at. So you can see the confliction this person had between his gifts, desires and societal pressures.
Do The Work & Stop Procrastinating
Wouldn’t it be amazing to quit your job and focus on your passions? Sure, we all dream of it, but reality is that we live in an economically abundant society that is expensive. It’s unrealistic for most people to think about quitting their job to make jewelry or paint. Social media consumes so much of our time that we forget how much time we spent wasting the day away instead of doing our work. We have time somewhere, even if its once per month.
Some of us need to do internal work before pursuing our gifts. Whether it’s a lack of confidence or self-esteem, sometimes we need to work on our inner-world before sharing our gifts.
Detach from the Ego
The online world can be quit disgusting sometimes. Most comments are ego-driven and posts are vanity-related. You need to develop a sound mind and detach from your ego in order to know that you can’t please everyone. Bad comments, reviews and thumbs down does not discredit your work, gifts and talents. We can’t please everyone, but know internally that your gifts and soul’s purpose is on the right path. Stay true to YOU and your inner world.
Live from the Heart
A lot of people live from their head and not necessarily their heart. When sharing our gifts, be true to you and your heart. The energy we think moves into our hearts and the work is poured out through our hands. Remember no other person has your same life path or birth chart. Stay in check with your heart to let it guide your talents.
Embrace the Emotions
If you get excited about what you produce, than know you are on the right path. Sometimes we are so excited about something that when we release it to the world it doesn’t produce the results that we hoped for. Timing can be important as the mysteries of life sometimes give lots of recognition to something we barely worked on where something’s we work hard on gets barely any thumbs up.
Process your emotions as you go through your journey, but remember many things in life are a test. Keep persevering and do not give up even when you are at a low point. Sometimes we need to experience things to develop and strengthen our chakras.
How do you embrace your talents and special gifts? I'd love to hear it!
I have to admit something. I am a European at heart. I grew up with Ukrainian and Polish immigrant elders, persecuted from World War Two, and once I lived in Germany, I became attached to my European roots.
On many levels, I knew my soul spent lifetimes in Europe. Sometimes I joke it’s why I ‘ve felt so out of place in America. Europe changed me in ways that I cannot describe. I became more logical and spiritual at the same time.
How does that work? To see the persecution and destruction of people and places makes one realistic about human nature and mankind. We’ve evolved as a specie, but have a long way to go.
Upon returning to Seattle, I spent the weekend rediscovering Seattle’s historic Pioneer Square district. To me, Pioneer Square is a European-oasis dotted between the Amazonian jungle of mile-high skyscrapers and the cannabis-infused district of SODO.
Intuition guided me to the popular Arcade. Ironically, I never explored the basement and the nagging voice in my head said, “Go downstairs!”
I stumbled upon The Hidden Alchemist, a quaint window-front style shop “hiding” in a narrow strip of space between a brick wall and a faux storefront. Dried herbs and roses dangled from the windowsill as the homemade incense basked in bath of aromatic oils. Copper pots hung out on the exposed brick wall as change jingled inside a prayer giving shell.
My soul reminisced with memories of Latvia, Estonia and Poland where many people still believe in ancient herbal remedies.
Shop owner, Sunny, is like a reflection of myself. Spiritual yet logical, I knew there was a reason why I was so attracted to this place. After much conversation, she admits that she has a very balanced approach to life that integrates logic.
Sunny is a Master Clinical Herbalist, which means she has trained to create compounds from scratch. As a compound herbalist, she creates mixtures that use specific herbal combinations to aide certain functions.
Sunny’s in-depth knowledge and wisdom proves (to me) that she is meant to heal the world through herbs. She’s created tinctures for over 20 years and operated a business for seven years.
Curious, I wondered if her interest in herbs was random or came from what I term a soul’s calling. Sunny expressed that always had interest with herbs. She started her first garden at the age of six and grew chamomile along with other herbs. As she aged, she gifted herbal presents for holidays and special occasions.
Her passion and knowledge comes alive in the shop where visitors can watch live tinctures drip into a basin or consult Sunny in the ever-so-therapeutic meeting room.
Sunny hand makes every product in her shop. Teas, muscle rubs, tinctures, lotions, beverages, energy shots – you name she’s got it! She makes her products in small batches, ensuring every product is fresh with an appropriate shelf life. She uses organic, chemical-free and handcrafted herbal tinctures and natural skin care products.
Everything she touches is with care, including her handmade business cards. The alchemist, the ultimate creator, is the being of light that can heal the world and the people.
Sunny is also author of a lavender cookbook, “The Culinary Lavender Cookbook of Delicious Desserts and Luscious Drinks," which autographed copies are sold in store.
Besides the shelf setup and the antique-looking birdcage perched outside of the door, the most attractive part of the shop are her affordable prices. Fifty cents for a tea bag? Three dollars for a wellness shot? A couple bucks for a package of homemade incense? Where am I? I felt as if I transported to Romania, a place where unadulterated mainstream consumerism exists.
As a homeopathy consumer, I find more value and authenticity in her products compared to similar items sold on the mainstream market.
Sunny also trains apprentices on how to become compound herbalists. It’s a long and arduous process, but like traditional yoga, it’s the old-school method where the guru teaches the pupil. Isn’t that so refreshing (and so European) that something like this still exists in a world dominated that is pumping out health coaches every three days with online certificates?
Sadly, Pioneer Square, like the rest of Seattle, is changing. The Hidden Alchemist lost their lease and Sunny will relocate to Fremont in August. Right now, she has an indiegogo campaign to save her small business.
All guests are welcomed into the shop and handed a small sample of freshly made tea. My favorite tea is the Just Breathe and Peach tea.
I pretty much recommend everything but I love love love the incense (green tea, wisteria, honeysuckle, lilac and lavender are my favorite).
Rummaging through her shelves is similar to a scratch and sniff booklet. Every smells so fresh that your mouth waters, disguised as your brain thinks its edible food. I recommend sniffing (and trying) the lilac bath salt and goat milk soap.
The lotion works wonders on dry skin. Each lotion is made with coconut oil as a natural moisturizer and my favorite is the Honeysuckle.
Discover more about Sunny & The Hidden Alchemist at http://www.thehiddenalchemist.com
Do you enjoy goods from an apothecary? If so, what is your favorite item?
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Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com