The human connection to crystals and stones spans time, cultures, continents and religions. Ancient Sumerians included crystals in their magic formulas; Egyptian pharaohs had their headdresses lined with malachite in the belief that it helped to rule wisely; while native American shamans used them for divination and healing. Their curative properties are mentioned repeatedly in ancient Vedic Hindu texts and referred to in the Old Testament of the Bible; while the mysterious black stone at Mecca (possibly a meteorite) forms an intrinsic part of the Islamic pilgrimage.
The Black Stone of Mecca
In 1880 Jacques and Pierre Curie discovered the piezoelectric property of quartz – when squeezed or stretched, a voltage is produced across the crystal’s face. These days crystals are utilized in almost every form of technology. Liquid Crystal brings us the clarity in our computer screens, quartz keeps watches ticking, and electronic grade crystals are used in cell phones, clocks, games, television receivers, radios, computers and navigational instruments. But although science readily accepts the vibrational qualities of crystals, when it comes to the less tangible realms of crystal therapy, the suggested positive vibrations of gemstones is often relegated to the fringe of ‘new age;’ even though it is a tradition that is about as ‘old age’ as you can get. We have been communing with stones in one way or another for as long as we have roamed the earth. Continue reading →
Chocolate truffles at Alchemy, photograph courtesy Suki Zoe
A few years ago my friends had a ‘decadent dessert party’ and we all took along a dessert of our choice, not surprisingly there was a lot of chocolate – including my own triple chocolate cheesecake. What had started as a very chilled affair suddenly turned into a mad crazy night of dancing, Continue reading →
“The beauty of the Eco Lodge is that it can be enjoyed on so many levels , hide away from the world in a secluded mountain paradise, or put yourself out there as you immerse yourself in the nature, culture and community.”Continue reading →
It is said that eyes are the windows of the soul, and the first thing I notice about Daniel Aaron are sparkling blue eyes that radiate calmness, compassion and knowingness. As the creator of Radiantly Alive, he aims to uplift our world through unique and powerfully transformative yoga experiences. But if you are picturing a white robed, long haired guru in sandalwood beads speaking in mantras, think again. Daniel is very much a modern day yogi (he prefers “human potential guide”) who also happens to make awesome raw chocolate, delves in astrology, runs yoga teacher training programs, and facilitates raw food chef courses. Continue reading →
Fivelements, Puri Ahimsa sits at the end of a narrow country lane surrounded by rice paddys and fields of ripening corn. Thatched circular buildings with conical roofs reach for the sky, the gardens are filled with lush foliage, and the gushing of a fast flowing river intermingles with birdsong. It is the ideal setting for a healing sanctuary and from the moment I enter the spacious grounds I am immediately aware of a shift of energy, a kind of higher vibration.
I have a traditional Balinese healing treatment that is a mix of reflexology and chakra balancing with Pak Dewa, a wonderful and powerful energy healer. At times the session is painful and I shed tears, but by the end my spirit is soaring. Afterwards I sit on the verandah drinking ginger tea and reflecting on my life and my need to restore balance.
This led me to Desa Seni a boutique resort/arts village in Caggu that offers a variety of yoga classes. I have practiced yoga in many beautiful places around the world but the Desa Seni experience is unique. Traditional wooden houses from all over Indonesia have been transplanted into a fairy tale like setting with pretty vegetable gardens, lush tropical foliage and an atmosphere that creates a sense of well being from the moment you enter.
They are handed out gleefully by cashiers the length and breadth of the island, used once and abandoned. Their fate − to float down rivers, ride the waves, wash up on the beaches or smolder in black smoky fires.…. In Bali there is no escaping plastic bags. But there is always hope, and a small company called Bombastic Plastix is hard at work turning plastic trash into funky fashion accessories.
Recycled products often get a bad wrap (no pun intended) because they are produced poorly with little thought for design. But Bombastic Plastix has turned recycling into an art form and their products – bags, purses, wallets, are attractive in their own right, regardless of their ‘greenness’. Let’s face it, most of us want to do our bit to save the planet but there is nothing wrong with looking good while we are doing it.
It all started a few years ago, on Bombastic founder, Sam Miller’s kitchen floor. He was a man on a mission, armed with an environmental conscience, a keen sense of design, a heap of plastic bags and an iron. Through trial and error he discovered a way to fuse plastic bags into sheets of plastic fabric, which form the base of all his products. “Its hardly like we are using all the plastic in the world,” he tells me, “but at least we are using some of it; and we are taking something that has a service life of 30 minutes and converting in into something that lasts years.”
Check out the website, its great fun and really informative, and you will love Sam – he is one super cool dude!