If you previously received an email for Tai Chi 24, please note there is a change in time and location.
The Taoist 100 Day Program
Follow through on your New Year's resolutions! There is a tradition in Taoist Internal Arts that even seemingly unattainable goals become possible in 100 days of concentrated training. Our 100-day program, open to all, is an exercise in individual discipline with community support. Program participants set a small number of goals, and devote the traditional 100 days to their fulfillment. Some examples are:
Meditate 20 minutes daily
Do Tai Chi or Qigong one time daily
Run 30 minutes daily
Loose 10 pounds
Write in journal daily
Although we usually start at the Chinese New Year, if you are interested please email Wendy right away if you would like to participate in the group. Commit yourself to the Taoist way of change by sending a $40 commitment fee to Wendy DeGraffenried 375 E. Chickaloon Way, Wasilla, AK 99654.
100 Day Program details here.
The Winter and Your Kidneys
An overview of kidney health from a nutritionist's perspective with tips on kidney health, symptoms to look for, and the function of our kidneys in overall wellness, by author Nishanga Bliss.
Traditional Asian medicines teach that winter is the time when the energy of the kidneys predominates and it is beneficial to nurture these organs. The kidneys are known not only to govern urination but to be the root and foundation of the body's energy, showing that the ancients understood the functioning of the endocrine system and recognized the location of the adrenals on top of the kidneys. Kidney energy governs metabolism, reproduction, development, and aging. Weak kidney energy often shows in low back and knee pain, bone problems, frequent urination, and fear. Kidney nourishing foods include all beans (even string beans!), especially those dark in color, seaweed, parsley, millet, wild rice and other dark grains, walnuts, black sesame seeds, yams, organ meats (only from sustainably raised animals, of course), oysters, clams, crab, lobster, and pork.
The kidney energy governs the deepest forms of internal fire and water in the body. If our internal fire, known as kidney yang, is weakened by chronic stress, overwork, or aging, symptoms such as coldness, pallor, low back and knee pain, impotence/infertility, frequent urination, low libido, edema or asthma might ensue.
Kidney fire naturally declines with age, and traditional medicines have many remedies. Foods which nurture the yang include warm spices such as cloves, fenugreek, fennel, anise, black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, rosemary, dill, caraway and cumin, as well as black and aduki beans, lentils, oats, spelt, sweet brown rice and quinoa, citrus peel, dates, cherries and raspberries, walnuts, parsnips, parsley, mustard greens, winter squash, cabbage, kale, onions, garlic, leeks and scallions. Animal foods are powerful yang tonics and people with yang weakness should eat 1-3 servings of high quality animal foods a day, including organic or pastured chicken, organ meats (especially kidneys), lobster or crab, shrimp, wild salmon, trout and lamb.
Our deepest internal water, our yin, can also become depleted by stress, overwork and aging. When our internal coolant gets depleted, we may experience dizziness, ringing in the ears, dry mouth and throat, thirst, low back pain, night sweats, menstrual irregularities, agitation, irritation, nervousness, insecurity and fear. Wheat and wheat germ, bulgur, tempeh, millet, barley, rice and amaranth, beans, asparagus, eggplant, potatoes, and beets, seaweeds, raw cheese, goat cheese and cultured organic dairy products such as yogurt and kefir, shellfish, sardines, organic or pastured eggs, duck, pork, organ meats, and fruit such as apples, berries, lemons, grapes, mulberries and melon are all wonderful kidney yin foods. One should avoid too many warming spices, excessive exercise (especially Bikram yoga!), and stimulants.
An even more esoteric, yet fundamental, aspect of the kidney energy is the storage of the jing. The jing is our deepest essence, akin to the energy savings account of the body. The quality and quantity of our jing determines our health, lifespan and aging process. Our daily energy is drawn from the air we breathe, the food we eat, and, when these are insufficient for our needs, from our reserves of jing. Jing is depleted by stress, fear, overwork, excessive ejaculation or childbearing, toxin exposure, and excessive sweets or protein in the diet. Jing cannot be replaced, but it can be enhanced through meditation, tai qi, qi gong and yoga, and by eating certain foods, many of which are high in essential fatty acids, B12, and vitamins A and D. These include chlorella, spirulina, blue-green algae, barley and wheat grass, fish, liver, cod liver oil, kidney, bone and marrow and the broth made from these, placenta, almonds, raw milk and cheese, ghee, nettles, royal jelly, bee pollen, chicken, mussels, and herbs such as gouji berries, tu ci zi, shu di huang, gui ban, and lu rong (ask your herbalist about these!). Of course, only high-quality, organic or pastured substances will truly nourish the jing. In addition, appropriate jing tonics should be selected based on your constitution and energetic patterns.
From: Eat Real Food by Nishanga Bliss
3450 16th Street San Francisco CA 94114
ph 415.252.8711 fax 415.252.8710
Metal Rabbit Horoscope
February 6, 1951 to January 26, 1952 (Metal Rabbit)
February 3, 2011 to January 22, 2012 (Metal Rabbit)
People who are born in the year of Rabbit with the element of Metal have good interpersonal skills. They like to have competitive friends. They are the right candidates to have intimate relationships with. However, opposite from the Earth Rabbit people, Metal Rabbit people, are quite "short sighted", in a good way. They are very earnest to every task assigned to them, and they never fantasize nor attempting the unrealistic goals. However they are extremely stubborn in a love relationship, "giving up" is not in their dictionary.
Suggestions for Metal Rabbit People:
Metal Rabbit people need to "think twice" before make any decision on quitting a job. Take some holidays and think things over. Learn to preserve wealth and never gamble.
Start by collecting bones. A chicken carcass, the center bone of a lamb roast, small bones from chops, big bones by the bag from the Farmer's market or your meat CSA, any or all of these will do. Put them in a
big plastic bag in your freezer. Whenever you eat sustainable meat or any meat, add those bones to your collection. If you are shy when dining out, tell them the bones are for your dog.
When you have enough to fill your crock pot or stock pot � to 2/3 full with bones, go ahead and empty your bag into the pot, cover with cold water and add 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Let it sit at room temperature for an hour, letting the acid begin to bring all those good minerals out of the bones and then bring to a boil and simmer for a really long time. For mostly chicken bones, cook at least 24 hours. For mixed bones or others, 2-3 days is good.
Let your stock cool a bit and then strain. Don't worry if it looks disgusting at first, strain in a fine strainer and then place the stock in a container in the fridge until the fat hardens a bit at the top. Scoop most of it out, as this is not the finest fat from the animal (I give the extra fat to the
city for composting) and pour the stock into jars, old yogurt containers or ice cube trays and freeze, labeled for later use. With stock and cooked beans in the freezer I know that soup, the staff of life, is always close at hand.