ayurveda, Inspiring Quotes, Meditation, Moon, Ritual, Uncategorized

Solar Eclipse

There has been a frenzy on the internet about the solar eclipse. People driving long distances, camping, eclipse parties, the desire to pick up eclipse glasses to watch the event, makes me think of the acronym FOMO or fear of missing out. ūüėā¬†It”s been fascinating to watch.

What we perceive and what we understand depends upon what we are.

~Aldous Huxley ‚ėÄÔłŹ¬†

The Sun (Surya) that illuminates our world, its our source of light and cosmic power. It is often a symbol of the universal Father, of rebirth, strength, health, passion, vision and even the light of our soul. The Moon (Chandra) is often a symbol of the universal Mother, ¬†immortality, ¬†eternity, enlightenment, the dark side of nature or the soul. When the moon shadows the sun, it is occluded from our vision and the Sun’s normal functions are suspended. ¬†This is energetically powerful.¬†Historically eclipses bring about sudden, unexpected and often times of undesirable events. When I think about our current political unrest, the rise of terror and hate, natural disasters, threats of war. It seems to be intensifying daily and these types of events are magnified near eclipses.

In Vedic astrology, the Sun represents our soul. Our soul is what travels from lifetime to lifetime. Metaphorically, during the time of the eclipse our soul is hidden from ourselves. I will take the time during powerful eclipse energy to go inward to focus my energy on my spiritual practice, chant a mantra, pray, play the singing bowls, visualize peace from within and then out. I will journal and pay special attention to my own professional status, personal ambitions, self-realization, will, optimism and relations with my father.

Wisdom of the Native cultures such as the Navajo believe that the moon and the sun are sacred the way they were created, and you are not supposed to watch the moon or look at, stare at it for a long time. It affects your mind and your body. Especially for women who are carrying a baby. It is said that if a pregnant woman sees an eclipse of any kind, be it solar or lunar, it might affect the mind of the woman or also in the future it will affect the health of the baby. An eclipse either lunar or solar, is a sacred time where the sun, the moon and the earth is kind of like in an intimate position when they line up, it‚Äôs such a profoundly sacred event that it is inauspicious to view….. out of respect and reverence for every man, woman and child. Its also of common practice to abstain from eating and even drinking water, its a time to just go into the house until it passes.

Ignorance is the night of the mind. A night without a moon by which clearly to see. ~Confucius ūüĆô

The Maya found eclipses to be disturbing. Although many representations of eclipses appear in Mayan art, such events were generally understood to portend bad tidings.¬†Solar eclipses, known as chi’ ibal kin, or ‘to eat the sun,’ were a particular cause for distress among the Maya people. Mayan priests went to great lengths to predict eclipses and calculate all manner of astronomical phenomena. The stars are powerful forces, the sun and the moon in particular are the most powerful luminaries in the heavens in relation to planet earth.

We can never tell how these once in a lifetime events can affect us, until later on. Whatever you choose to do during the eclipse, may it not only affect your life in a positive way, but also, create more awareness globally.

Peace and love to you, now and always!

Michelle

Balance Hormones, Blood Sugar, Boost Energy, Healthy Body, Healthy Mind, Inspiring Quotes, Meditation, Uncategorized, Weight Loss

Food Is Power

Food provides us with more than just nutrients Рcarbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins and minerals. Food is a condensed form of energy. This energy is very powerful because it gives the human body life sustaining energy from the food we take into our body. When you eat, you process and absorb the forces of nature that is contained within the food. Plants are amazing because they store light through photosynthesis. Eating plant food  releases energy and nutrients from the plant and absorbs to the body. Taking in fresh, whole, live, organic foods creates a physical and energetic force that interacts with the body on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level. Now thats powerful!

Rawsta

Compare this to feeding the body processed foods that contain chemicals of artificial colors, flavors, preservative, pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and genetically modified organisms (GMO’s), this can undermine the health and quality of your life. Add the problem that when we eat these sorts of foods we experience an extreme that includes cravings, because our body is not getting the sustenance it needs to be in balance.

Some people use food as a way to control negative emotions and weight. Fad diets and strict calorie control is horribly restrictive and destructive to our body, mind and soul. These sorts of habits lead to food cravings, mental and emotional imbalances as well as sustenance abuse and other extremes like dieting, fasting, gorging,  starving, bingeing/purging. Another way people use to control or hide emotions is by other addictive tendencies, like using drugs or alcohol.

Sustenance is a way to nurture and support the body for balance, vitality and health.  If we are abusing our body by becoming obsessed with restricting our body through conscious control or dieting or using drugs and alcohol, this can lead to mental and emotional imbalances like irritation or explosive temper, weight fluctuations and digestive issues all related to stress.

One way to create balance and soothe the digestive system without imposing calorie restriction or hiding by using drugs and alcohol is to focus on easily digestible foods like soups and pureed foods. Choosing these foods that are easily digestible instead of restricting the body tends to be kinder to your body and helps balance your mood, blood sugar and weight more easily.

Some great food choices are:

  • soups
  • pureed foods
  • fresh organic fruits
  • fresh organic vegetables
  • sprouted seeds
  • soaked nuts
  • pinto beans
  • bananas
  • lemons
  • squash
  • carrots
  • golden beets

It is important to note that our liver and kidneys must work harder to process chemicals from non-organic foods and therefore eating pure, clean, organic food is critical. It is also important to note that when you eat meat, you take on the animal’s energy, including the energy of how it was raised and the fear and trauma of the animal being slaughtered. This is very powerful.

Sugar and caffeine and stress contribute to hypoglycemia and adrenal exhaustion that affects 70-90% of individuals in the United States. This is because sugar and caffeine create temporary bursts followed by crashes that lead to low energy and has hard core effects on your blood sugar, pancreas and adrenal glands. White flour and white sugar are so devoid in essential minerals, vitamins, fiber and water that this further depletes the body.

Stress creates more of a deficiency in the body. Inviting stress reducing practices into your life will help restore and maintain balance within the body for optimum health and vitality.

Create balance through non-food practices:

  • meditation
  • self care
  • self love
  • martial arts
  • vigorous exercise
  • walking in nature
  • sit ups

Making small steps in changing your diet and lifestyle is important to creating a balanced body, mind and spirit.

To regain your personal power think about this: 

I am receptive to Divine energy moving into every cell of my body. I am committed to expressing my creativity, to accepting my responsibilities, and to making decisions that are balanced and supportive to my spiritual growth. I am guided and receptive to Divine will at all times. 

You have the power to transform your life, to live in complete harmony with nature and to create the life you have always wanted! You can start by trying this three day raw food cleanse!

Create balance within, then without!

Love,

Michelle

Antioxidant Power, Cardiovascular Health, Desserts, Gluten Free, Healthy Body, Heart Health, Immune Boosters, Inspiring Quotes, Lower Cholesterol, Recipes, Weight Loss

Huckleberry Cheesecake

Huckleberries are relatives of the blueberry and the cranberry they are high in antioxidants, vitamin C, manganese, iron and a good source of vitamin A.  They are a good source of vitamin B and helps speed up metabolism and potassium keeps skin, nerves and muscles happy and healthy by regulating water balances and eliminating wastes.
Huckleberries are medicinal for the blood and liver, they help manage serious illnesses such as heart disease, eczema, lowering cholesterol, muscular degeneration and diabetes by lowering blood sugar levels, they also have bacteria fighting capabilities that are particularly useful in countering urinary-tract infections.  Huckleberries are also safe for diabetics to eat!
Wow.
There have been many clinical studies done to show that the huckleberry promotes eye health, especially against diabetic retinopathy and cataracts. However, back during World War I, the pilots in the Royal Air Force in Great Britain swore that eating huckleberry jam or drinking huckleberry cordials prior to flying night missions over Germany significantly improved their visual acuity in the darkness.
This time of year you will probably have to use frozen huckleberries, but that’s okay, your cheesecake will still be delicious! If you don’t have any frozen huckleberries, no worries, you may always use some other kind of berry!

Huckleberry Cheesecake:

Crust:

1 1/2 cup pecans or almonds
1/2 cup shredded coconut, dried
7 dates (soaked)
Process crust ingredients in a food processor and press into bottom of a springform pan. If it feels too wet, place in dehydrator while you are preparing your filling to remove excess moisture.
If you were blessed with an abundance of huckleberries, place some fresh ones on the crust so you may have bursts of fresh huckleberries in your pie!

Filling:

3 cups cashews (soaked)
1 1/4 cup almond milk
1-1 1/2 cup huckleberries
1 cup huckleberry honey
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tablespoons vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup coconut oil (melted at low temperature in dehydrator)
2 Tablespoons lecithin
Blend first seven ingredients in vitamix or blender until smooth. Add coconut oil and lecithin last. Pour mixture on top of pie crust. If you desire, you may choose to reserve two cups of the huckleberry mixture and add two tablespoons of chocolate and two tablespoons on vanilla, mix in blender and pour on top of huckleberry mixture in pan. Swirl it and twirl it to make it beautiful! Place in freezer for two hours or overnight before serving or in the fridge for 6 hours or overnight so that it may set. Serve and enjoy!
Tip: If your mixture is too thick add some date soak water. If your mixture is too thin add some coconut oil or more cashews.
All of life is a journey; which paths we take, what we look back on, and what we look forward to is up to us. We determine our destination, what kind of road we will take to get there, and how happy we are when we get there. ~From A Little Book of Happiness
Love,
Michelle
ayurveda, Healthy Body, Inspiring Quotes, Recipes

Chipotle Kale Chips

Kale is one of the mightiest members of the brassica family of cruciferous veggies, a kin to cabbage, broccoli, and bok choy. All of the siblings are rich in sulfur-containing phytonutrients, which promote health and fight diseases. Standing out as a powerful anticancer food, kale like all cruciferous veggies, triggers out livers to produce enzymes that detoxify cancer-causing chemicals in the body. Kale is one of the best sources of antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E, as well as the precious B-complex posse, including B1, B3, and B6. Chock-full of minerals such as calcium, iron, manganese, and copper, this superstar even contains the essential fatty acid omega-3.  Kale reduces pitta and kapha.
Woot Woot!

Kale Chips

2 bunches kale, de-stemmed
1 tablespoon himalayan salt
1/2 recipe black pepper cheese
1-2 teaspoons chipotle (to taste) (this may imbalance pitta constitution types)
you may want to try other herbs or spices
 

Cashew Cheese:

2 cups cashews (soaked for two hours)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup lemon juice (fresh pressed is the best)
3 cloves of garlic or 1 teaspoon hing (asafoetida)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper (or white pepper if you prefer)
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1/4 cup blessed water
 
De-stem kale and tear into chip sized pieces (keep in mind that kale shrinks a lot). Massage salt and positive thoughts into kale so that it starts to release moisture, this also makes the kale easier to digest. Then let the kale relax while you make your cashew cheese.
 
For the cashew cheese, place all ingredients in a Vita-Mix or high speed blender and process until you have a smooth, creamy texture. Add more blessed water as needed.
 
Add cashew cheese to wilted kale and massage! Now, your chips are ready to go into the dehydrator! Dehydrate at 105 degrees overnight. This creates a scrumptious, buttery kale chip!
Experiment with different spices, try a BBQ rub instead of chipotle. Have fun!
 
Warning: Kale chips are highly addictive, you may want to double or triple your batch!
In art and dream, may you proceed with abandon. In life, may you proceed with balance and stealth.
~Patti Smith
Love and Bliss,
Michelle Berry
Healthy Mind, Inspiring Quotes

What are your values?

Question: What are your values? I have made two lists here. Pick five from each and write about your personal values. How do these values play out in your life? How do these values drive you to make decisions? What are your personal priorities? How does your personality shape your personal values?

List 1: Equality (equal opportunity for all), Inner Harmony (at peace with myself), Social Power (control over others, dominance), Pleasure (gratification of desires), Freedom (freedom of action and thought), ¬†A Spiritual Life (emphasis on spiritual not material matters), Sense of Belonging (feeling that others care about me), Social Order (stability of society), An Exciting Life (stimulating experiences), Meaning in Life (a purpose in life), Politeness (courtesy, good manners), Wealth (material possessions, money), National Security (protection of my nation from enemies), Self Respect (belief in one’s own worth), Reciprocation of Favors (avoidance of indebtedness), Creativity (uniqueness, imagination), A World At Peace (free of war and conflict), Respect for Tradition (preservation of time-honored customs), Mature Love (deep emotional and spiritual intimacy), Self-Discipline (self-restraint, resistance to temptation), Privacy (safety for loved ones), Social Recognition (respect, approval by others), Unity with Nature (fitting into nature), A Varied Life (filled with challenge, novelty and change), Wisdom (a mature understanding of life), Authority (the right to lead or command), True Friendship (close, supportive friends), A World of Beauty (beauty of nature and the arts), Social Justice (correcting injustice, care for the weak).

List 2: Independent (self-reliant, self-sufficient), Moderate (avoiding extremes of feeling and action), Loyal (faithful to my friends, group), Ambitious (hard-working, aspiring), Broadminded (tolerant of different ideas and beliefs), Humble (modest, self-effacing), Daring (seeking adventure, risk), Protecting the Environment (preserving nature), Influential (having an impact on people and events), Honoring of Parents and Elders (showing respect), Choosing Own Goals (selecting own purposes), Healthy (not being sick physically or mentally), Capable (competent, effective, efficient), Accepting my Portion in Life (submitting to life’s circumstances), Honest (genuine, sincere), Preserving My Public Image (protecting my “face”), Obedient (dutiful, meeting obligations), Intelligent (logical, thinking), Helpful (working for the welfare of others), Enjoying Life (enjoying food, sex, leisure, ect.), Devout (holding to religious faith and belief), Responsible (dependable, reliable), Curious (interested in everything, exploring), Forgiving (willing to pardon others), Successful (achieving goals), Clean (neat, tidy), Self-Indulgent (doing pleasant things)

I will think about my list and you think about yours!

Cheers and many blessings!

Michelle

Healthy Mind, Inspiring Quotes, Meditation

Perspective.

Pretend for a moment that you are running a marathon, and that part of the path includes an obstacle course. You are expected to run at a fast pace, navigate several hurdles that lie before you, and leap over them with speed and grace. Now imagine that you are walking up to one of those hurdles. Lie down on the ground in front of it. Look up at it. It sure does seem daunting, doesn’t it? Now stand up. In fact, stand on top of it and look down on it. ¬†That’s the actual view you will have when you sail over it. Some successes are all about your perspective.

Inspiring Quotes, Recipes

Eggplant Bacon

It’s that time of year when eggplant is growing strong in my neck of the woods! Since it is the only time of the year I really eat it I enjoy it immensely! We will make eggplant bacon, ratitullie, eggplant steaks, vegan eggplant parmesan, and the list goes on….. Here is a simple recipe for eggplant bacon, its ¬†great on sandwiches or just to snack on! Its really great to make an ELT, on a raw cracker bread with lettuce, tomato, and a cashew mayo and mustard. Its heavenly and I am getting hungry just thinking about it!

Eggplant Bacon:
6 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
1/2 teaspoons chili powder
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon Tamari
2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 clove garlic (optional)
salt to taste
2 Eggplant
extra pepper to season top of eggplant

Blend first 10 ingredients in blender.
Slice eggplant and place in large bowl.
Pour blended mixture over eggplant land let marinate for a couple of hours.
Place eggplant on dehydrator trays, pepper the top of eggplant if you with and dehydrate for 24 hours, flip halfway through.
Voila! Eggplant bacon!

  • Raw eggplant is very low in saturated fat, cholesterol and Sodium. It is also a good source of vitamin K, Thiamin, Niacin Vitamin B6, Pantothenic Acid, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of dietary fiber, folate, potassium and manganese.
  • Cooked eggplant is low in saturated fat and cholesterol. It is also a good source of vitamin K, thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, potassium and manganese and a very good source of dietary fiber. This food is very high in sodium and a large portion of the calories come from sugars. Cooked eggplant will cause more inflammation then raw eggplant.
  • It is interesting to note that the raw eggplant contains magnesium, phosphorus and copper. Many Americans are low in magnesium and do not get enough in their diets. Phosphorus is also an important brain food. Every time we have a thought, reading, meditating or using our brain we burn phosphorus.

Freezing is another great way to preserve your eggplant if you cannot eat what you have fast enough.

  1. Wash, peel if desired, and slice 1/3-inch thick. Prepare quickly.
  2. Blanch, have water ready and boiling with 1/2 cup lemon juice. Place eggplant in water and boil for four minutes.
  3. Drain, cool and package in freezer bag. Seal and freeze. If you would like to keep your eggplant ready to use as “steaks” place freezer paper between each eggplant to keep them separated.
Risk more than others think is safe.
Care more than others think is wise.
Dream more than others think is practical.
Expect more than others think is possible.
~Claude Bissell
Have a beautiful August!
Love,
Michelle
Anti-Aging, Anti-Cancer, Anti-Inflammatory, Antioxidant Power, Balance Hormones, Boost Energy, Cardiovascular Health, Cleansing & Detoxification, Eye Health, Gluten Free, Healthy Body, Healthy Digestion, Heart Health, Immune Boosters, Inspiring Quotes, Recipes, Skin Support

Simple Sweet Smoothie

Spring is just around the corner (I think – its still snowing here in Montana).
This is a great time of year to cleanse your liver. A congested liver can affect hormone production and create imbalances in the body including unwanted weight gain. If you are not feeling well, have allergies, fatigue, anxiety, depression, menstrual irregularities, joint pain, rashes/acne, constipation, irregular bowels, frequent colds, palpitations or insomnia, cleansing your liver may be the ticket towards better health.
A great way to cleanse your liver is to participate in a juice cleanse. Or you can do a three day raw food cleanse.
beet smoothie
Here is a great energy boosting smoothie for a great way to start your liver cleanse as well as a great smoothie for pre-work out nourishment.

Simply Sweet Smoothie

  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup strawberries
  • 1 thai coconut
  • 1 cup beet juice or (1/2 beet blended)
  • 2 Tablespoons Pure Synergy or Vitamineral Green
  • 1 teaspoon bee pollen
Put all ingredients in a blender and voila! Superb!
Simple Sweet Smoothie
Beets are a blood tonic and are good for anemia, the heart and circulation. They purify the blood, alleviate constipation, aid the liver, and promote menstruation. Beets reduce vata and kapha.
A starchy vegetable, beet roots are high in natural sugar. The greens have notable amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, and phosphorus; they also contain vitamins A, B-complex, and C.

Health Benefits of Beets:

  • Boosts Energy
  • Rich in nutrients
  • Blood purifier
  • Immune system booster
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Stimulates liver function
  • Natural colon cleanser
  • Supports capillaries
  • Prevents macular degeneration
  • Prevents cataracts
  • Natures viagra
  • Creates a sense of well being
  • Used as a stomach acid tester
  • Contains pectin polysaccharides for digestive tract health
  • Lessens tumor cell growth & contains betacyanins which counteract cancer
  • Source of anthycyanins, carotenoids & lutein/zeazanthin which helps prevent or even cure macular degeneration and other eye related issues.
  • Reduces cholesterol & triglycerides

Beets are natures viagra? Seriously? Yes, seriously! Beets were used by both the ancient Greeks and Romans both medicinally as an aphrodisiac and as a culinary herb. Medicinally, beets contain high amounts of boron, which is directly related to the production of human sex hormones. In addition the natural nitrates that would improve overall performance.

Go ahead! Give this beet smoothie a try! For great info on energizing beet juice, click here!

Why is it that one day eating a beet turns your urine pink, whereas another day and another beet produce magenta stool? According to nutritionist Jeffrey Bland, PhD., pink urine may indicate an iron deficiency while magenta stool indicates adequate iron. What color is your poop?
Inspiration has unlimited power,
Michelle
The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent, not of passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious.
~Tom Robbins, Jitterbug Perfume
Healthy Mind, Inspiring Quotes

Painless, Not Numbness

Who am I? What am I doing? This is what most people struggle with. They have so much noise and distraction and soul pain in their life that they cannot experience the exquisite beauty of the inner experience of peace. The common tendency is that if you have a little bit of pain in your soul, turn the music louder, eat more food, take some drugs and alcohol…so you can go numb. Painlessness or numbness is not happiness, because painlessness and numbness do not provide us with meaning. We have a deep longing within us for connection with God…the more we live in alignment with love and the divine will, the more the divine alchemical process of spiritual transformation takes place so that we can be in full surrender to the Divine and awaken.
~Rabbi Gabriel Cousens, M.D.
Love Orchids
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Sunshine Juice!

Last week was my birthday and my family was awesome enough to give me some new equipment to create great photos and video. Thank you family! So today I have been experimenting!!

Now I have never created a video I actually wanted people to see but I have dreamed for the last couple of years to start creating videos to share what I am learning and know because I tend to be somewhat of a hermit. Its time to break out of my shell and share a little!

www.MichelleBerryShaffer.com

Reasons You Need To Be Juicing:

  • Energy – When people start juicing regularly, people feel more energy, maybe its because the energy is not being spent on digesting food or smoothies or maybe because its because the body is getting a concentrated batch of vitamins and minerals in their natural form but with the extra nutrition the body’s performance will improve and more energy will be available.
  • Maintain Healthy Weight – I don’t like to preach weight loss but when you juice regularly its easy to loose those extra pounds. First because you have more energy to exercise and second because fresh organic juice contains no synthetic chemicals or preservatives because its entirely as nature intended it to be!
  • Detoxification – This is a big one! Everyday our liver works hard to clean and detoxify our blood. Our blood carries oxygen throughout our body and helps with all of the bodies processes. Poor blood quality equals low energy.¬†A diet full of unhealthy food and synthetic chemicals makes it hard for our body to function at a high capacity.
  • Improved Sleep – Who doesn’t like to get a good nights sleep? As many people are stressed and are getting inadequate nutrition, this drains the body of important vitamins and minerals and interrupts our natural sleep patterns. Juice makes it easy to get high quality nutrition right when you get out of bed or during anytime of the day!
  • Disease Prevention – Disease thrives in a dirty environment that is filled with toxins, bacteria and carcinogens. When we eat a plant based diet full of organic, whole, unprocessed foods and juice we are effectively giving our body the protection it needs to fight off and defend the body against dis-ease.
  • Enjoy life – When the body is healthy and the mind is clear it is easy to get all of the juice out of life as our relationship with our body improves, our relationships with others also improves!

Click here to watch my quick video about: Good Morning Sunshine Juice

Sunshine Juice Recipe:

  • 2 Grapefruits
  • 6 Carrots
  • 1 cup Pineapple
  • 1 Golden Beet
  • 1 inch Ginger (optional)

Juice the grapefruits with a citrus juicer and run everything else through your regular juicer (I use a GreenStar).

This juice would also be a great addition to your 3-Day Juice Cleanse or your 7-Day Juice Cleanse!

Grapefruit Juice

To keep the body in good health is a duty, otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear. ~Buddha

Juice On!

Love,

Michelle