At this moment in life the weather is changing and metamorphosis is happening all around us. The trees, plants, water, and the earth echo the changes that happen within our hearts. Letting go, allowing the death to creep in through dormancy into the heart of the mother earth. Returning to the deep soil for reflection and preparing for winter to take us into the time of slow movement, rest, creativity, and focus inward.
As life shifts all around us and many demanding thoughts come in from the media bombarding our sense of peace and connection to what matters, I only know how to bow in gratitude for being surrounded by those such as you who make my life better every day.
In this moment I only have gratitude for every day that I arise on this earth to live my passion. It was not always this way for me, and I remember writing the poem below in 2012 during a time when I was ready to make the ever-pressing change the earth and my heart desired. After two years of healing and education in herbal medicine with plants, I left my job in 2014 after an autumn of releasing and letting go of all that was causing me turmoil and pain. Heading into my passion of being an herbalist, yoga teacher, and answering the call to helping others in the crossroads of their life through the modalities I have and continue to learn.
For the past three years, I have been gifted support from my family, friends, and most importantly the plants. I am so appreciative of the continued opportunities to serve my purpose offering herbal consultations, creating wild crafted herbal medicines, teaching and learning yoga under the Dharma lineage, releasing blockages from those who work with me, learning music, healing with many different plants, integration sessions of plant medicines, traveling creating community, and most importantly serving my home community of DC.
Today, with all that is going on in the world, I want to write to let you know that I love you! I am so appreciative to have this family to share my gratitude for the plants. I am finding so much solace in morning herbal teas, sacred meditations with plants, walks in the mountains, and the changing colors of autumn.
by: April Rameé
Leaves change and fall
Hearts break and split
People lose hope
As the weather turns from sunshine to rain
Those we love break down and die
With the autumn changes
Tears flow and memories of summer fade
The bittersweet beauty of autumn
Rings hard in the collective unconsciousness
Calling us to reflection
Cementing truths unbreakable
Impermanence rains supreme
Bow down to nature
For no matter where you are
Concrete jungle to remote landscapes
You are one with Mother Earth
In the after glow of Burning Man, Pedro and I are continuing our travels in a slow methodical way. We spent two days in Lake Tahoe in Kings Beach area, our favorite place of Tahoe and then discovered a sweet little town on the North Yuba River where we camped a couple miles north of right on the river. Allowing the constant movement of the water to cascade over our thoughts, replenish our bodies, and the connection with Gaia to fuel our soul. Days spent lazily on the river rocks slabbing and enjoying the juxtaposition of warmth of the sun and cold of the river.
How could anything be more enticing? All along the way the mountain asters sway in the breeze enticing me to the areas that we stayed. Aster has been my plant ally since it came to me in a dream in May. The essence of the plant has been working with me through my dreams and it is so wonderful to see it blooming, taste it, and create a flower essence of the plant while in the Rocky Mountain National Park. I feel it has connected me with my soul in a deeper way, created ease in work, and created a bridge between DC and where my travels take me.
Aster was used by Native American tribes to burn the flowers and leaves in Inipi (sweat lodge) Ceremonies, to revive the unconscious, to treat mental illness, nosebleeds, headaches, congestion, for smudging and as an additive to smoking blends. The dried blossoms were also snuffed for similar purposes, or the vapor inhaled as a steam. Aster tea was used to treat earache, relive gas pains, stomach aches & fevers. The flowers and the roots were both commonly used. An aromatic nervine in most cases preferred over valerian. “http://www.herbcraft.org/aster.html”
As a flower essence Aster is for those whose hard-working efforts create the feeling that they are isolated and that progress is small and difficult, this flower essence changes the feeling of pursuing a goal to feeling as if you are drawn to it. This is the essence of choice for performance anxieties. It seemed to me that the Aster awakened a core part of the spiritual identity, the ability to be true to oneself, and in turn to radiate that truth as a form of love and higher consciousness to others. The Aster seems to quicken the events happening in one’s life in the physical world while bridging to other spiritual dimensions. It is as though the seemingly disconnected threads of one’s life become more vibrant and reconnect to form a larger whole. “http://www.flowersociety.org/WishUponAster.htm”
Now we are in Mt. Shasta area sleeping on the mountain under the stars with the tent open. The large pines stand over top of us as silent giants in the sunset. There is not much to say other than I am so blessed to be on the road, dipping into the creative part of my soul, connecting with plants, my partner, and my true soul.
As I lay here I am unable to go to sleep and this message comes to me. One that I have always had before, but been afraid to share. I think it comes from the mtn. and aster…
I think oh this would be a good blog post but something stops me. Why share? So I wonder sometimes what is the point of sharing in this “ego driven” minefields of personal opinions. Then I wonder where that negativity and judging comes from. Those who want to put down the age we are in? Am I trying to be a guru or famous? No. I am sharing opinions because at some point in life I wanted to be a writer. Or all the encouragement from others to write a novel about my life is kicking in. Or I am up late pontificating about life with no one to direct my thoughts to. What better way than to share in the current moment? Most importantly it is a challenge for myself to step out of my comfort zone and be intimate with the world around me and engage in the current paradigm. Hopefully, to add a field of mines that explode joy and a glimmer of truth that you are supported. FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS for that is a true challenge and hard work. They come easy but not as you expect easy and light to appear. It comes with dedication and hard work but not the hard work that makes you cringe like being at the job you despise. The type of hard work that is grimy, dirty, and full of wonderment so when you look back and you can say “wow i did that somehow!!” That is the moment you realize the impossible happened with ease and grace. When you realize only the divine could have stepped in and became your tool within the trenches of determination for a dream to be realized. That is when others ask you how did you do it and you can only respond with joy, wonderment, and encouragement for them to follow their dream. For life is a path, we all walk it, sometimes alone, sometimes in joy, many times in challenges, but we can choose which road we want to experience the hardships of life…one towards your dream, or lost in the abyss so easily fed to you at this time. The choice is yours. Both are hard and both are easy. But you have heard this all before…SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?
Dreaming with Aster,
Warrior of the Light & Founder of Antler Alchemy
Driving up the coast of the Pacific Northwest we venture off into Washington state by way of the mountains, with one goal in mind…take the ferry to Orcas Island! The ferry ride was amazing with binoculars looking out I see the vast expanse of the Pacific Northwest. On the ferry we made plans to find an Eagle Feather, have a private sound healing with Tom Kenyon (which didn’t happen but we drove around hoping to find his abode 😉 and overall seeing the magical forests of this land we have only heard about but never visited.
Photo by Pedro Gil Rosas
Arriving onto the island is like stepping into a pristine old cedar forest, the trees are humming and the forest is alive with fairies and magical beings. On our way to a hike in the forest a large bald Eagle flies right over our car so close I could almost put my hand out and touch the wings. The majestic being graced our time on the island.Deep in the forest I give thanks for being there by playing the flute and of course find my way off the path, but not stepping on any special plants, I see a large shelfmushroom waiting there to be harvested! I sat with the dead tree and themushroom, playing music and asking if it is okay if I can harvest the mushroom. I am granted with a yes!
The picture with the mushroom and the flute above is the large beauty I was able to bring home to create into this special medicine I have to offer.
Before I left I was able to sit at the base of the largest cedar tree I have ever seen on a perfect throne created by a fallen sister cedar tree. In this space I looked up and gave thanks for all that the Earth offers in so much abundance. There is so much abundance in the Earth and I personally think that those in power want to make us think there is a lack, but if you really walk this Earth you will see only abundance.
Photo by Pedro Gil Rosas
NOW LET’S TALK ABOUT REISHIMUSHROOM MAGIC!!! What is it good for?
ReishiMushroom is great for longevity and is known as the king of mushrooms in the east. This is accomplished by boosting the health of the immune system and preventing certain abnormal blood vessel formations. Certain antioxidant properties of other organic compounds in reishimushrooms neutralize free radicals, which can cause chronic diseases and premature aging. Reishimushrooms have the ability to prevent cancerous tumor growth by the active ingredients can seek out and neutralize cancerous cells within the body. Reduces inflammation, heals headaches, asthma, bronchitis, and other chronic respiratory conditions.Reishimushrooms have been proven to improve the efficiency of blood flow to the heart and lower blood pressure and certain elements of reishimushroom can reduce the level of “bad” cholesterol in your system, further protecting you from strokes and heart attacks.
In addition to lengthening life, traditional medicine also suggested reishi for energy-boosting. As we age, our energy levels do tend to drop, but adding a boost of life and spirit in our golden years would be wonderful. Try reishimushroom extract and see for yourself!
SO HOW DID I PREPARE THE TINCTURE?!?!
On the solar eclipse in 2017 I prepared the mushroom to sit in the 190proof organic sugar cane alcohol to pull out the constituents of medicine of the plant that is soluble within alcohol. After sitting for four months, receiving prayers and daily shakes, the medicine was pressed on the Full Moon on June 9, 2017. Then I spent all day on the full moon cooking the mushrooms in water to pull out the water soluble polysaccharides and other delicious medicinal constituents. Then they were combined to make this beautiful double extracted medicine.
Check out the picture below, at the 1/2oz and 2oz bottle sizes for sale in the store online today!
The waters are the main focal point since the beginning of my flight into Bogotá. I flew over and saw the beautiful mountains but wonder where all the water is? I step off the plane and the first thing my friend asks me for is a part of the water I carry to combine with other sacred waters from around the world. Next we arrive to the Lagoon Madre Cambia to bless the waters there, I ask for permission to be on the land, and share my humble, simple plan to spend my time in Colombia with no intention other than to observe.
During a Kogi song and prayer I vision appeared. I could see and feel the trickle of two small streams of water from the top of Mother mountain coming down under the growth of humanity into the lagoon. When I shared this meditation with my friend, he mentioned that is how the Lagoon is sourced from the Mother and Father mountain in the area.
Here is the video of the music I meditated to:
Crying a greater part of the way to Playa Blanca, Colombia was unexpected. Watching as I pass miles upon miles of beautiful ocean inaccessible from the road because there are miles upon miles of concrete creating walls that no one can go around, not even rain water. Diversion of rivers, pollution of the water and in some cases there is concrete just for the sake of there being concrete. Here I am paying money to be transported on a bus that is guzzling resources and emitting tons of gas to get to a local beach that everyone can go to, however, the beach is beside me along the road yet I nor anyone in the local community has any access. The waters of the mountains and the rains are not able to get to the beach due to the blockades of concrete. I can feel the destruction of the cycles and reflect on how this is common around the world. Of course the beach on Playa Blanca is beautiful even as I watch every one cram themselves into the ½ mile portion of beach that is open to the public. The process to get there was an hour long, hot, dry and ironic scene with people drinking bottles on bottles of plastic filled with soda rather than water.
In stark contrast, I now sit atop the Sierra’s and I see the flow of the water in the river cascading down the beautiful mountaintops with non-exclusive access to the purity of the water. There are decided places where water is diverted by small pipes to lead to homes, where they allow the water to run freely into a concrete pool allowing any overflow to feed the gardens, which are providing food. While this seems to be the perfect condition I still see the plastic and the trash though, it may not be as much as most places it is still there. I see the lack of compostable toilets and wonder where the shit is going after it begins its flow down the bucket flush toilets. I see the water run off the dishes and clothes that are being washed, but what type of soap are they using, are they taking note of what they are releasing? Even in pristine areas where they continue to close off from the outside world to prevent the abuse of Mother Earth it seems to be in its own way still contaminated by abuse.
I think abuse to the earth is inevitable at this moment as many people abuse themselves. It is fucking hard. It is not pretty and easy to overcome. It is so hard to learn to break the abuse cycle. I know, I lived it, and I live it. It is one of the hardest things I have ever worked on in my life. There is so much pain and abuse it can be overwhelming. There really appears to be no end in sight, but I am here to tell you that there is always an end that starts with a new beginning. Each step we take.
I am saying nothing new and that is part of the reason why I do not even want to speak most of the time because no one is listening. I only know how to live this existence at the moment and work on continuing breaking the cycles of abuse. Are you coming with me? Are you ready? Are you ready to let go of your comforts and be even more comfortable in life than you can imagine?
I know it is hard to be happy all the time. It is weird to not feel as though you need to worry about the next day, the future, where money is coming from, where food is coming from. I know it is strange to really be in control of your day-to-day life. It takes so much work, time and effort. People ask me what I do for work and I tell them I live, because it is a full time job when you do it right. I couldn’t ask for a better job. This work doesn’t feel like work, it feels like heaven on earth. I can feel my heart continuing to open each and every day. I can feel worries fall away, and I can feel abundance in every moment. The gift of life is truly more important than anything I could ever imagine. To really live this understanding is different than to know. Knowing it is surface level and can lead to lack of real movement and depression. I have been there too and sometimes wallow there in that space of hopelessness. Understanding the gift makes it easy to shed abuse, love myself, and love the people around me in all of our faults and follies.
Message from Mother Earth:
I love you all. I love every part of you. Love me back and spend your days in my arms as I shower you with abundance. Destroy the concrete you have put over me, the hard edges you have created and allow my waters, which are my emotions to run freely back to the sources. Allow my waters to bathe you in beauty and release your abuses. Stop abusing me so you can live without abuse. Let me create the hard layers you walk upon. Of course you can use my resources to create beautiful structures and live within, but let them be ones that crumble back into my existence when you are gone. Let me show you the abundance and love you as creatures walking upon my back deserve.
Don’t you know I can devour all your trash and everything you created in less than an instant? My heart is made of fire and lava that can melt anything you have created. My waters, representing my emotions, can surge to a point of rage where I can reclaim everything you created and wash it out to sea. I can recycle the gifts you use to create the world into a new precious metal. I can devour you whole. Why not live in harmony with me so you can prosper and your children’s children can prosper? Choose the opportunity to harness the powers I yield by creating harmonious structures and life.
Heal the abuse created by “THEY”. Wake up and realize YOU are THEY! There is no person in power who has control over your life and your resources. Only you have the power! There is no fucking “THEY” there is no “I”! There are no corporations, politicians, and people with all the money. “THEY” are an illusion a source you give away your power, so you can live in continued abuse because it is so much easier to push the responsibility on someone else. It is so much easier to be a victim and to be abused than to stand up and take back your power and take back your heart and live each day according to your purpose. That is hard. And your purpose is not to accomplish anything. Your purpose is to live in harmony and love yourself. Wow! That is a fucking tough job. Let go of all the illusions do not allow yourself to become the victim.
Life happens, so there will be pain only because so many people believe in this disillusioned paradigm. Let it go and step into the shade of my trees and watch as a family of trees sway peacefully in the wind. Living for such a long time tapping into the resources deep into my earth. Changing the hard matter into fruit for those to eat and for medicines for you to use. Notice as they take the minerals from the earth and the air and transmute them into usable materials.
What do you transmute? How is your body creating harmony on the planet? Learn this and you can understand how to live in harmony with yourself and others and the planet.