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Youth Paradigm Shift DIY Divination Tools Superman Hero Archetype

fire walking

Issue 3 • 2013

HOME •Bedroom Sanctuary •Sleeping Soundly



SA's leading integrated living mag

Bamboo Why is it so Hip?

MINDFULNESS A time to retreat•Beat FLU bugs naturally

INSIDE Features

Natural Living

Mindfulness 12 Buddhism reviews 16 Discover self & sex 18 Bamboo 22 Tawang 34 Hero archetype 38 Swiss values 46 Celebrate Life Festival 51 Novalis Ubuntu Institute 54 The Reconnection 58 Taming the mind 62

Slowdown you move too fast 66 Vitamin K 70 Beat flu bugs naturally 76 Metabolic balance 83 Esse 86 Health news 88 Bedroom as sanctuary 98 Healthy sleeping 102 Celebrating winter 106




SA's leading integrated living mag


Cape Town Head Office P O Box 30946, Tokai, 7966 Tel 27 (0) 21 713 0018 / 712 4665 082 579 7915 Fax 27 (0) 21 715 2809 Fax to email 086 640 1091



Editor & Creative Director

Assistant Editor

Silke Erasmus

Lenard Roos

Executive Editor & Publisher

Studio Manager

Chris Erasmus

Kevin Rule


Marketing & Advertising Director

Garry Doel

Marianne Boulle

Issue 3 • 2013

Volume 37 • No.3

Sacred geometry 114 Fire walking 117 Coming to your senses 120

Food4Life Mindful eating Jane Griffiths

124 134

GreenWorx Phytotherapy 140 A looking-in view 147 Kuthumba 144

Advertising Sales Melody Kelly-Claesson Online Directories Marianne Boulle Accounts Tracy Lee Nash

4TheKids Paradigm shift Youth books Optimising eyes True purpose

Art 152 155 158 162

Self & Beyond Louise Hay Past life regression Divination tools The Enneagram

164 168 172 185



Directory & Classifieds 190 Books & CDs 188

Hot off the press Apps Paulo Coelho Humour

130 183 195 196

Publisher Sacred Spaces Publishing House cc Reg No 2001/014555/23 Disclaimer Opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publishers or staff. Copyright Material published in Odyssey, including all artwork, may not be reproduced without the permission of the editor. ISSN 0256-0356



Editorial editorial

Amid the polarisation and global revolutions that are under way in various parts of the planet, we felt it opportune to take a good look at mindfulness as a whole. We decided to serialise this subject matter in relation to healthy lifestyle choices that one can make and in the way that we should be eating. So, you can look forward to a profound journey of inspiration and continuing 'visual Zen' in the next few editions. We also look, in this issue, at 'Why is Bamboo so hip?' and have an interesting travel story that looks at the where and how of a rapidly-growing green resource in terms of its growing, harvesting and manufacturing at source in China. Besides that, we are also exploring the male hero archetype, through the character of Superman, bearing in mind that the ideal for humanity is to establish the true balance between both 'feminine and masculine divine'. Ironically, and hopefully humorously though, this section is rounded off with a bunch of old gentlemen (all former senior journos) riding their bikes in wobbly fashion through Switzerland. As they say, laughter is the best medicine. See page 46 for more on that. With this being the depth of winter now, we timeously look at how to naturally take care of all the inevitable 'lurgies', how the urge to hibernate and retreat is appropriately seasonal; as well as how to create a heavenly bedroom such that restless sleep is hopefully banished. We take a look at the youth which we showcase via two charming young men locally representing the 'new consciousness' in the form a growing international movement called Paradigm Shift. They are willing to ask uncomfortable questions and to explore difficult terrain. They have a fresh take on the revolution of transformation that we are all experiencing and are the promise of the future. Obviously, we have spliced many other interesting articles into this third edition of our digimag. Included is an in-depth look at divination tools, seeing that so many people turn to them for greater understanding of what is going on in the world and how we all fit into the changes which are sweeping the planet. In this regard, the tension between approaching such a subject with an open heart and clear discernment is abundantly clear. We hope you are all enjoying (in some cases learning to enjoy) this new format – and the many extras that come with it. One such was the embedded 'magazine in a magazine' in our previous issue. If not, click here for another look at what you might have missed. All that remains to be said is that we at Odyssey know this: it is important to live your life to your highest standards, to never give up and to ask for help; you will likely be as pleasantly surprised as we have frequently been. Things may appear to be falling apart, yet it depends on where you are looking.

May you all be profoundly blessed. Silke

Publishers note We are still getting the occasional call from someone who's belatedly discovered that we have switched to digital publishing;

and there are still some readers of the old printed Odyssey who've contacted us to moan about the loss in hardcopy of what more than one has called their 'favourite magazine'. We have done our best to explain, step-by-step, for the more techno-challenged how to access the magazine and/ or download it – and most seem to have successfully made the switch-over. Some, only a relative few, have said they will never do so, however. We're sorry about that, but time and life move on and we are delighted to report that the digital switch-over has worked far better than we could have dreamed. Our figures (from Issuu, the world's largest digital magazine portal) make this abundantly clear: After about eight weeks of being live Odyssey Digimag Issue 1 has had, at the time of going live, 21 206 direct reads/downloads, while Issue 2, with only four weeks of being live has soared to 38 400 reads/downloads. And these are only the numbers we can directly count – there are thousands more in schools, homes, universities, NGOs and companies from big to small who are sharing the same url (unique address identifier) or who've downloaded the magazine and shared it that way with friends or associates, suggesting the real number of reads is much closer to double or three times the numbers we can capture. These figures are just great from our point of view – and the more people share the magazine in whatever format, the better. We are living in the time of information for everyone; and our job is to bring you a selection of what's going on and available out there in a package that you like and trust. We continue to work hard on that and hope that you will continue to support us in our digital realm and to feed back to us what works for you and what doesn't, to help us in our ceaseless quest for 'continual self-improvement'.




I would like to thank you for the amazing feature on my jewellery – Goddess Bling – you placed in Issue 2. Really lovely and so honoured to be included. Helen (Silver) Smit. Visit her page here for more.

Thank you so much for the gift book by Paul Ferrini. It is the missing link on my current path inwards. As always, you seem guided to send readers exactly what they need at that moment. Blessings to you and the eMag. Heidi Hartung

digimaG MAILER I must say that the articles in your mailer I find very interesting reading for the soul, especially my soul. I have noticed that there is an awful lot that I can talk to the professionals and therapists about, especially things about my life, happiness, health and wealth. I had a quick glance through the mail, and will read through it thoroughly a little later. Have a blessed day. Quinton Abrahams

Website We asked what readers think about our new digital magazine: I love it – I'm new to this way of reading but I really appreciate the possibilities. Chris Schonenberger

Amazing People Crazy Places. 20 July 2013, Baxter Theatre, Rosebank. A selection of speakers sharing inspirational tales of how unexpected circumstances inspired them to greatness. Visit here and here for more.

Jim Carrey WATCH THIS!



What wonderful Odyssey and Simply Green Digimags. Thank you Chris & team. Yoga Teachers' Fellowship & Marina Contardo.

Explains His Spiritual Awakening

HERB FARM TOURS Allée Bleue Wine Estate near Franschhoek, one of the Western Cape’s biggest herb producers, invites foodies, gardeners, families and anyone interested in how herbs are grown to take a tour of the farm under the guidance of the estate’s resident herb expert. As from this month, Allée Bleue will host the unique, weekly tours every Friday, followed by a welcome cocktail and three-course, herb-inspired lunch. Call (021) 874 1021, email or visit here.

'The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.' Ralph Waldo Emerson


LOCAL event

I have thoroughly enjoyed the mag online – living in the UK limited how many mags I could get in a year, now I can read them online. While I love my printed mags I prefer being able to actually read the best magazine in the world on my iPad. I am happy to pay for it too, so let me know when the next one is due out and I will do my happy dance again. Simply Green and Odyssey make my day that much more fun for R&R after work. Niqui C Grover







Sleep vs Insomnia Giulia Criscuolo qualified as a pharmacist in 1992 and worked in the pharmaceutical industry for a few years until she discovered the world of complementary medicine. She loves dance and movement, trail running, mountain biking, adventure racing and yoga.

The Enneagram Frances Hills is an experienced Enneagram practitioner and counselor, as well as an Enneagram typist. She has worked actively with the Enneagram for 15 years, has run public workshops locally and internationally, and is a member of the International Enneagram Association (IEA).

Ask the Swami Steve Bhaerman is an internationally-known author, humorist, and workshop host. For the past 23 years, he's written and performed as Swami Beyondananda, the 'Cosmic Comic' which has been described as 'irreverently uplifting' and 'comedy disguised as wisdom'.

An Ideal of Hope Kevin Rule has been working as a designer at Odyssey Magazine for over 10 years, has diplomas in journalism, advertising and sound engineering and been a fan of comic books and movies for as long as he can remember. He is an avid musician having played in the Cape Town scene since '98.

Coaching Guide Colleen-Joy Page is a full time professional speaker, author and trainer. She is the creator of the internationally accredited InnerLifeSkills life and business coaching courses.

Inspiration Maria Ascencao is one of SA's highly-regarded figures in the complementary health industry. She has been a CEO and marketing whizz who built-up her own company from scratch.

Paulo's Column Paulo Coelho is one of the most widely-read and influential authors in the world. We are fortunate that he chose Odyssey himself to republish his extraordinary work in SA.

Homeopath Dr Bronwyn Roebuck is General Manager of Solgar South Africa and a registered homeopath. Having been in the CAM industry for over 10 years, Bronwyn is passionate about heath, wellness and the natural products industry.

Discover self & sex Andrew Barnes is an internationally-acclaimed tantric sex, relationship and orgasm coach, sexologist, speaker, master bodyworker and author of Heart of the Flower and Relationship Tantra. As the developer of Tantric Body De-armouring, over the last several years he has been running courses worldwide in this ever popular modality.

Meditation & Wisdom Elder Natalia Baker is an inspirational teacher, who conducts meditation and abundance classes, feminine empowerment and various enlightenment courses.

Earth & Herb Goddess Jane Griffiths, has been growing organic vegetables and herbs in her Johannesburg garden for more than 15 years. She has published several books and now shares her knowledge and tips with Odyssey Digimag readers.

Wellness & Nutrition Expert Vanessa Ascencao is a dynamic, inspirational and highly qualified nutritional consultant. She’s helped celebrities, business executives and many others transform their lives through a unique mind-body approach to health and nutrition.





The Luminarium



Architects of Air build 'Luminaria' – monumental inflatable structures designed to generate a sense of wonder at the beauty of light and colour. The monumental walk-in sculptures have enchanted audiences around the world. Since 1992, over 2m visitors in 38 countries across five continents have immersed themselves in this luminous world. A Luminarium is typically booked by an organisation such as a cultural centre or a festival for an exhibition period ranging between three and 30 days. Visitors remove their shoes before entering an airlock. Once inside they can wander freely or just lay back and enjoy the ambience of the structure. The first reaction is often one of delight at the unexpected beauty of the light. The radiance of the daylight transmitted by the coloured PVC of the Luminarium is surprising in its luminosity and makes a direct impact on the senses. Through labyrinthine tunnels and cavernous domes, visitors move in a medium of saturated and subtle hues. Vivid reflections of liquid colour spill across the curved walls which blend, resonate and transform faces and clothing. This stimulating environment can simultaneously be very calming – many people find the luminaria a place for rest or meditation. Visit for more.

2013 Spiritual Leadership award


Barbara Marx Hubbard (see Odyssey Issue 1, page 16) received Humanity's Team's highest award recently, the 2013 Spiritual Leadership award. Their Global Council presented the award to Barbara with Neale Donald Walsch, the Founder. Neale Donald Walsch commented: 'Barbara is holiness and she makes everyone around her feel whole.' Visit here for more.

Atheists go to heaven? Controversy began after Pope Francis (pictured, right) went on a charm offensive recently to build bridges with atheists. During a sermon at the Vatican, the 1st Latin American pontif proclaimed: 'The Lord has redeemed all of us with the Blood of Christ, not just the Catholics, everyone. Even the atheists.' A day later the Vatican spokesman Father Thomas Rosica added an 'explanatory note' saying that: merely being 'good' was not enough to avoid going to hell and that sinners cannot be saved 'who, knowing the church as founded by Christ and necessary for salvation, would refuse to enter her or remain in her'.

Pests 'resistant to gm crops'

Leonardo DiCaprio was involved in another significant event recently. DiCaprio organised the 11th Hour Auction along with his foundation and Christie's to protect the last wild places on Earth and their endangered species. The 33 works of art, many of which were created for and donated to the auction by the artists, sold for $31.74m. Art collectors from around the globe also placed bids by telephone, leaving DiCaprio 'utterly grateful'. The top lot of the sale was an oil on cardboard mounted on canvas by Mark Grotjahn called Untitled (Standard Lotus No. II, Bird of Paradise, Tiger Mouth Face 44.01), which sold for $6.2 million. All of the 33 works fetched three to four times the price estimated. DiCaprio has been deeply involved with enviro-issues through his foundation since 1988. At the start of the auction he remarked, 'Bid as if the fate of the planet depended on us.'


1-in-6 have no religion According to a report conducted by The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life in 2010, the largest religious group on the planet is represented by Christians with 2.2b people (32% of the world's population), second largest – Muslims with 1.6b people (23%), placing the religiously unaffiliated group in third place with 1.1b (16%), followed by 1bn Hindus (15%), nearly 500m Buddhists (7%) and 14m Jews (0.2%). People who practice folk or traditional religions are estimated at 400m (6%), while approximately 58m people (1%) belong to other religions, such as the Baha'i faith, Jainism, Sikhism, Shintoism, Taoism, Tenrikyo, Wicca and Zoroastrianism.



DiCaprio & Christie’s Raise $32m for enviro-Charity

More pest species are becoming resistant to the most popular type of genetically-modified, insect-repellent crops, but not in areas where farmers follow expert advice, a study stated recently. The crops in question are Bt corn and cotton – plants that carry a gene to make them exude a bacterium called Bacillus thuringiensis, which is toxic to insects. Publishing in the journal Nature Biotechnology, US and French researchers analysed the findings of 77 studies from eight countries on five continents that reported on data from field monitors. Three of the five cases of resistance were in the US, which accounts for roughly half of Bt crop plantings, while the others were in South Africa and India. The genes that confer resistance are recessive, meaning that insects can survive on Bt plants only if they have two copies of a resistance gene – one from each parent. Transgenic crops are opposed in Europe and other parts of the world where green activists say they are a potential threat to human health and the environment. On a side-note, Tiger Brands – producer of Purity baby foods – has recently made a decision to source GM-free maize for its products.

'Don't start your day with the broken pieces of yesterday'. Anonymous

Unashamedly Ethical

Unashamedly Ethical is a campaign promoting ethics, values and clean living which facilitates the forming of local Unashamedly Ethical communities all over the world. Founder, chairman and SA businessman, Graham Power, says, 'the campaign is built upon three pillars, around which local communities form: a challenge to people to make a public commitment to good values, ethics and clean living; an online directory of all signatories (organisations and individuals); and a presiding Ombudsman who holds all signatories accountable. Visit here for more.



Violence mounts against Baha'i faith in Iran


The Baha'i House of Worship, Delhi, India



The Baha'i International Community works to protect the rights of persecuted Baha'i communities. In Iran, where the faith continues to be viewed as heretical to Islam, Baha'is comprise the largest religious minority. Since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, Baha'is have been systematically denied access to higher education, employment and have been subjected to summary arrests and detentions. They have never been able to openly practice their religion and their freedom to participate and to contribute fully to the life of society is denied. The cradle-to-grave attacks against Baha'is in Iran represent one of the broadest and most obvious cases of state-sponsored religious persecution in the world, said Heiner Bielefeldt, the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief. Speaking recently in Geneva at a side event during the 22nd session of the Human Rights Council, Dr Bielefeldt discussed the release of a new report by the Baha'i International Community, which documents rising violence against Iranian Baha'is and the utter impunity enjoyed by attackers.

The heart intelligent 'You are invited to discover my new online newspaper, The Heart Intelligent. Every week I select and edit my favourite Heart Centered content, and does the rest. It's a great way to treat yourself to fresh articles, videos, and news that will help you have greater access to the intuitive intelligence within your own heart,' says Gabriel Gonsalves, a Heart Intelligence Coach, Seminar Leader and founder of Heart 'n Mind Consulting. He also helps conscious professionals achieve greater levels of performance and success by teaching them how to integrate the intelligence of their minds with the intuitive intelligence of their hearts.


WATCH THIS! Paint Your Faith

The Heart's Intuitive Intelligence

Cape Town based urban artist, Faith47's, latest work appears on a wall in the Austrian capital Vienna, and is titled, 'The Immense Gap Between Past and Future'.




This upcoming Arbor Month, September 2013, a greening initiative will be launched that will hopefully go beyond SA's borders, the Trees for Africa Arbor Challenge. The concept is to challenge all schools, communities, companies, government and individuals to plant and look after as many trees as possible in the month of September. Register here. The site application will allow you, as a communiTREE member, to visit your own profile and click on a Google map to set the position where you planted. This position will be shown in your profile on the global invenTREE map. The Trees for Africa Arbor Challenge will energise a new excitement and understanding of the value of trees in our lives, their role in balancing the climate, providing food and other crucial resources, enhancing vital biodiversity, and so on.

City Farm Youth Event

July 8. Oranjezicht, Cape Town. Youth-focussed enviro-workshop for 15-18 year-olds. Visit here or here.


7-11 August. Johannesburg. Decorex SA has grown extensively to become a well-known pioneer brand in South Africa's interior design landscape. Visit here.

Hypnosis workshop

Cape Town, during September. Doug Buckingham is running Hypnotherapy and Regression training on behalf of the Past Life Regression Academy. Visit here.


On Good & Evil Graham Hancock

Jane Griffiths Garden Talk 13 July. Kokstad. Jane is a TV producer, writer, artist and traveller who has been growing organic veg and herbs for over 15 years. Contact 082 560 0178.

Price of Peace

Durban. Aug 10-14. Spiritual teacher, Sunandaji, visits SA. Free. 'All human beings have only one goal: Peace. True happiness comes with self-development,' she says. Visit here.

Look & Feel Good Expo

11-13 October, Durban. 25-27 October, Cape Town. 8-10 November in Johannesburg. The expo attracts +30k beauty and health conscious, curious and open-minded visitors. Visit here.


Trees for Africa Arbor Challenge

Set in the year 2154, where the very wealthy live on a man-made space station while the rest of the population resides on a ruined Earth, a man takes on a mission that could bring equality to the polarised worlds. Directed by Neill Blomkamp of District 9 fame and stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster. Released 30 August by Ster Kinekor.






Mindfulness is a conscious approach to being in the present moment – an elevated awareness of one's surroundings and also of oneself. It is a vivid perception of one's choices, strengths, and potential. It is empowering yourself and optimising your energy in order to live a balanced, healthy and better life, each and every day. Mindfulness is a term often heard and seen at Miraval Resort & Spa in Tucson, Arizona, and it is the core concept that shapes their programs and environment. In this excerpt from the book Mindful Living, Michael Tompkins, Chief Executive Officer of Miraval, tells us more.

ul living




or over 18 years, guests have been coming

your breath and be completely in the present moment,

through the doors of Miraval. Many of them are

thus allowing any decisions you make to be as positive

seeking the classic 'spa vacation' of rest and

and impactful as possible. All of the programs at Miraval

relaxation, while some come for the beauty of the desert

share this focus: in fact, we even have a committee

setting, and others are looking for fun and adventure. All

that evaluates every activity, from mountain biking to

of our guests find these things at Miraval.

spa treatments, to ensure that each is built around the

What most often surprises them is what they were not

principle of mindfulness. The specialists who have been

seeking – a variety of tools to assist in the expansion and

drawn to Miraval believe in these philosophies and live in

improvement of their lives. Miraval has an innate power to

the moment themselves. They want the experiences they

gently magnify the best elements of who a person really

share with our guests to be meaningful and authentic,

is. How do I know this? Our guests tell me constantly in

and at Miraval it's all about the 'we', not the 'me'. Our

the conversations I've had with them, in the letters they

community of professionals work together to help you

write to me and by their return visits to dip into this safe

create a better life.

haven again and again.

We feel this is the perfect time for this book, Mindful Living, which gives us a chance to share those tools with readers who have never been to Miraval as well as guests who are looking for ways to integrate their Miraval experience into their lives back home. So many people wish their lives away, focusing on some point in the future. 'If I only had this, if I could only do that.' At Miraval, we believe that every moment should be lived one at a time and appreciated for what it is. Even in difficult times, we have a choice as to how to react; and there is always an option for another, more mindful, approach to the challenge at hand. It is our hope that we

What makes Miraval different from other spas comes down to one word: mindfulness. At other destination spas, it's often about 'go, go, go' as guests dash from one activity to the next, generally focused on food and fitness and their desire to 'get in shape' before their spa stay is through. At Miraval, we invite people to come through our gates and stop. It's not just about exercise – it's also about your breath, your spirit, your interactions with yourself and with others. I see mindfulness as the realisation that no matter where you are in life, you have the ability to tap into



can help you find alternatives for healthy eating, stress

activities led by insightful well-being specialists, dynamic

reduction, living happily either with yourself or with a

growth and development programs, outdoor challenges,

partner, and more fully enjoying every aspect of your life.

yoga and Pilates, stress-management techniques, and

Miraval means 'View of the Valley', a poignant name

nutritional counselling. All aim to help people better

for this exclusive desert retreat nestled in the foothills

manage our fast-paced world and life's daily demands.

of the Santa Catalina Mountains just north of Tucson,

Guests from around the world relish the resort not

Arizona. And although some trips take you to places

only for its luxury, but also for the deep comfort they can

you've never been before, even to destinations that few

find nowhere else – speaking to Miraval's authentic wish

others have ever seen, Miraval Resort & Spa offers the

for every guest: You won't find 'you' anywhere else. O

most inspiring getaway one can imagine – a journey unique to everyone who visits. Consistently rated among the world's top spas and

For more info visit Mindful Living is published by Hay House and available here.

resorts by TripAdvisor and SpaFinder and publications such as Travel+Leisure, Celebrated Living, and Condé Nast

Traveler, Miraval has earned its trendsetting reputation as America's destination for life betterment, where guests feel, are, and can be more. Since its beginning in 1995, Miraval has upheld a powerfully simple vision: life is more meaningful and enjoyable when your physical, emotional, spiritual, social, and intellectual components are in balance. To that end, Miraval offers more than 100 unique, life-enhancing programs and activities. Guests plan their stay filled with an abundance of choices, including innovative spa treatments, self-discovery




The Four Foundations of Mindfulness in Plain English Bhante Gunaratana Wisdom • 978 1 6142 9038 4

In simple and straightforward language, Bhante Gunaratana shares what the Buddha said about mindfulness in his instructional talks and how we can use these principles to improve our daily lives, deepen our mindfulness, and move closer to our spiritual goals. While this book is based on a classic text, the Satipatthana Sutta, its presentation is thoroughly modern in Bhante’s trademark 'plain English' style. Based around one of the Buddha's must succinct yet rich explanations of meditation, The Four Foundations of Mindfulness in Plain English can be read as a stand-alone volume either before or after the bestselling Mindfulness in Plain English. Newcomers will find it lays strong groundwork for mindfulness practice and gives them all they need to get started right away, and old hands will find rich subtleties and insights that will help consolidate and clarify what they may have started to see for themselves.

Amongst White Clouds Directed by Edward Burger This movie is an intimate insider’s look at students and masters living in scattered retreats dotting China’s Zhongnan Mountain range. These peaks have reputedly been home to recluses since the time of the Yellow Emperor, some five thousand years ago. It was widely thought that the tradition was all but wiped out, but this film emphatically and beautifully shows us otherwise. Inspired in part by the noted book by Bill Porter (Red Pine), Road To Heaven: Encounters With Chinese Hermits, and filmed on location in China by American director Edward A. Burger, the film takes an unforgettable journey



into the hidden tradition of China’s Buddhist hermit monks. One of only a few foreigners to have lived and studied with these elusive practitioners, Burger is able, with humour and compassion, to present their tradition, their wisdom, and the hardship and joy of their everyday lives among the clouds.

Our Appointment with Life: Sutra on Knowing the Better Way to Live Alone Thich Nhat Hanh Parallax Press • 978 1 9352 0979 9

This easily accessible translation and commentary by Thich Nhat Hanh on the Sutra on Knowing the Better Way To Live Alone, the earliest teaching of the Buddha on living fully in the present moment. 'To live alone' doesn’t mean to isolate oneself from society. It means to live in mindfulness: to let go of the past and the future, and to look deeply and discover the true nature of all that is taking place in the present moment. To fully realise this is to meet our appointment with life and to experience the peace, joy, and happiness this realization brings. A wonderful addition to the library of anyone interested in Buddhist studies.

How to Be Compassionate: A Handbook for Creating Inner Peace and a Happier World His Holiness the Dalai Lama Randon House Struik • 978 1 8460 4296 6

In this book, the Dalai Lama reveals basic mistakes of attitude that lead us to inner turmoil, and how we can correct them to achieve a better tomorrow. He demonstrates precisely how opening our hearts and minds to other people is the best way to overcome the misguided ideas that are at the root of all our problems. He shows us how compassion can be a continuous wellspring of

happiness in our own lives and how our newfound happiness can extend outward from us in ever wider and wider circles. As we become more compassionate human beings, our friends, family, neighbours, loved ones – and even our enemies – will find themselves less frequently in the thrall of destructive emotions like anger, jealousy, and fear, prompting them to become more warmhearted, kind, and harmonious forces within their own circles. With simple language and startling clarity, His Holiness makes evident as never before that the path to global harmony begins in the hearts of individual women and men. Enlivened by personal anecdotes and intimate accounts of the Dalai Lama’s experiences as a student, thinker, political leader, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, How to Be Compassionate gives seekers of all faiths the keys to overcoming anger, hatred, and selfishness – the primary obstacles to happiness – and to becoming agents of positive transformation in our communities and the world at large.

MODERN BUDDHISM: The Path of Compassion and Wisdom Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Tharpa • 978 1 9066 6507 4

This is an inspiring handbook of daily practice that is perfectly suited for those seeking solutions within Buddhism, as well as for encouraging practitioners of all faiths to deepen their understanding and practice of the spiritual path. With compassion and wisdom, like the two wings of a bird, we can quickly reach the enlightened world of a Buddha. Modern Buddhism reveals how all aspects of Buddhism – from the most basic to the most profound – can be applied practically to solve our daily problems and to experience deeper inner peace and happiness.

MINDFULNESS: A Practical Guide to Tessa Watt Introducing Books • 978 1 8483 1255 5

Mindfulness is growing in popularity as a technique which teaches us to appreciate our life. This Practical Guide explores how to listen to your body to reduce stress and anxiety in all areas of your life; how to focus better at work by becoming more aware of what is happening in the present; and how to enjoy life more by bringing mindfulness into everyday actions. Free of jargon but full of straightforward advice, case studies and step-by-step instructions, this is the perfect concise start to making you happier, more focused and stress-free.

Conscious Living Made Easy Robert Southard O-Books • 978 1 8469 4516 8

This book will guide you to living a full and rewarding life, a life without regret. It will help you to take control and responsibility for living life in the present, appreciating life as you live it and to set a realistic path in life for yourself. It will guide you to examining your beliefs and integrate those most beneficial to your path into your spirituality. Part of conscious living is to acknowledge that death will come. As children, we think we are immortal. Even as we get older, we think it is 'someone else' that will die, not us. Our death is far off and we have plenty of time to do whatever we want. To live consciously is to accept that death is a part of life and plan for it, while not allowing it to dominate our life at any age. Southard, after his own near death encounter, shares his experience and offers his thoughts, beliefs and meditations to help you plan for and live life in a conscious way.




Meet Andrew Barnes (pictured), a 43-year-old sexologist who is touring Cape Town as he hosts his popular Expanding Female Sexuality Workshops. We take a look.


arnes's workshops, he says, are not just about sex but a self-discovery of sex and sexuality. Also, they're not just for women, but for men

and couples, and with a four-hour duration, there's a lot that Andrew can teach you that you won't find in a book. Although not meant just for women, Barnes covers some key areas of female sexuality, from the G-spot, the vulva, the anatomy and physiology of the clitoris and female prostate gland, to female ejaculation and orgasm. The point is to teach attendees (up to 40 at a session) about the 'secrets' of their own bodies. The workshops have proven so popular that he's constantly travelling the globe educating individuals and groups about this once-forbidden topic. He's travelled to the UK and Ireland, Bali, New Zealand, America, Poland,

Israel, Germany and this is his 4th visit to South Africa. Barnes was a guest speaker at the Sexuality Conference in Cape Town in 2011 and was a guest facilitator at a post-graduate tantric sexuality course for practitioners held in conjunction with the conference. He is running a variety of workshops on his Cape Town tour in July 2013, including a four-day Tantric Orgasm and Body De-armouring residential retreat Level 1, a two-day Tantric Energetic Full Body Orgasm workshop, as well as various seminars. Among these will be: Expanding Women's Sexuality: Tantric Yoni massage; G-spot & A-spot ejaculation and energetic orgasm; and Expanding Men's Sexuality: Tantric Lingam massage. Also covered




are topics such as addiction to ejaculation, men's multiple energetic orgasm and relationship tantra which focuses on 'feeling your way together into living and loving on purpose'. During the evening seminars, working with a volunteer who will model for him, he will demonstrate anatomy and some useful techniques that support female ejaculation. All discussions are undertaken in an open and frank way,

All discussions are undertaken in an open and frank way, reflecting the maturity expected and required of those wishing to explore their sexuality as a pathway to deeper self-knowledge.

reflecting the maturity expected and required of those wishing to explore their sexuality as a pathway to deeper

than women, but women have been raised to have more


negative sexual attitudes from the moment they are born.

'Some people who come are really nervous and find

Prior to the Victorian era it was believed that women had

it challenging while most have a deep inner sense that

to have an orgasm to become pregnant. When it was

there's more to their sexuality than society teaches us,'

discovered that this was not the case, women's orgasm

he explains.

lost all of its importance. As the clitoris is seen as being

'For a lot of women, there's a strong curiosity about

for pleasure only, and not involved in procreation, most

their sexuality and their bodies. It's about understanding

of the text books from the Victorian era removed the

where we come from, what limits us and the social

diagrams of the internal structures of the clitoris and

conditioning we experience. We have to connect with

many have not re-introduced them still today.'

our body and let it relax to experience pleasure and it's important for women to be comfortable.

Barnes has done many things in his life. He's climbed mountains, is the founder of a massage training school,

'My work challenges the whole of society. Everything

has visited centres of spiritual wisdom in Nepal, India and

I talk about is based on scientific research and my

Egypt, but he's also shed tears for two years during his

workshops are very compelling – a lot of people see

early adult life, a process of grieving from the abuse he

female ejaculation in porn, but my workshops are done in

suffered as a child.

a sacred ceremonial way,' he adds.

'Like many men, I was taught to not cry as a little

The Brisbane-born sex therapist's passion for his job

boy, so this was very healing for me to be real and feel

stems from a tormented past where he was the victim of

for the first time in my life,' he says. 'My two years made

sexual and physical abuse as a child. His determination

up for the life of no tears. I allowed my body to do what

to beat life's odds has ironically taught him not only to

it needed to do and when I was ready, I just naturally

rebuild his own life but to help improve the lives of others

stopped crying; crying is healing.'

along his journey.

As a result of his childhood pain, Andrew went

'Our society generally has a negative perception about

'wild' through his adolescence and was moments from

the human body and about human sexuality,' he says.

committing suicide when what he describes as a sudden

'Our religion, education and movies all generally promote

and profound awakening turned his life around.

sexuality as something that is either seedy, dangerous

'I had what some people call a spiritual experience at

or secretive – we are taught to hide our bodies and our

the exact moment I screamed as I was about to pull the

pleasure in society.

trigger on a rifle that was in my mouth.

'Men are considered by society to be more sexual

'For the next two weeks I was in what is called an

self & sex



ecstatic state of bliss, and downloaded information from

the focus was always about the end goal which was

my higher level of consciousness 24/7, it was massive

to ejaculate rather than enjoy the journey of creating


intimacy and pleasure.'

'After the two week period, the ecstatic state left me, the unresolved pain of my life returned. However, I was changed forever. 'The Buddhists call this experience "one taste", meaning that when someone has a taste of enlightenment everything changes.' And this certainly was Barnes's experience, as he let go of his 'wild' lifestyle and began a spiritual journey which he says still has him on a high today. And why would any young adult want to abstain from sex for a week, let alone two years? After Andrew's spiritual experience at the age of 24, he made a conscious choice to abstain from the activity so he could learn how to care for his feelings and deal with his life stress. For the first year he still self-pleasured but for the second year he abstained completely. 'Like many other men, I was using sex and ejaculation as a way to deal with my feelings and the stress of life. In a sense, I was addicted to my ejaculation, and this was affecting my sexual experiences with women because

Conscious Sexuality with Andrew Barnes

His first book, Heart of the Flower – A Book of Yoni's, was written and produced in conjunction with Yvonne Lumsden, and details the exploration of 48 everyday-women's genitals who have posed for up-close and personal photographs from various angles and each women's relationship with her yoni. 'Heart of the Flower is designed to normalise and celebrate diversity at a time when labial reconstructions have reached an all-time high and women's body image is at an all-time low,' he says. Copies of this exquisitely photographed book will be available for sale at all his events in Cape Town. In his recently published book, Relationship Tantra, Andrew draws on everyday wisdoms from Tantra, health science and clinical sexology to explain how too often our cultural conditioning and brain chemistry hijack our decision-making and rule our lives. O For more details on his Cape Town tour visit here or contact Rhianne van der Linde here or 0836791297 and see advert below.

Cape Town Tour July 2013-07-01

Andrew Barnes is an internationally acclaimed and qualified Trantric relationship, sexuality and orgasm coach, sexologist, speaker, master bodyworker and author of Heart of the Flower and Relationship Tantre. Our natural state of being is one of bliss, joy, love, power and expansion. But our personal histories, life and experiences get in the way. Each of us resists this natural state of bliss at some level by protection ourselves from harm. These defences take the form of mental, physical and sexual armouring Andrew has developed a unique and powerful method to get to the source of these blocks quickly and effectively – to remove them and allow you to open to bliss more fully.

Schedule of events

Wednesday 17 July Expanding Women’s Sexuality – Tantric Yoni Massage, G-spot & A-spot ejaculation and energetic orgasm. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00 Friday 19 July Expanding Men’s Sexuality – Understanding addiction to ejaculation, full body orgasms without ejaculation and lingam massage for healing. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00

Saturday 20 July & Sunday 21 July 2 day Tantric Energetic Full Body Orgasm Workshop. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 10am-6pm both days. Cost R2 400.00 including lunch. TUESDAY 23 July Relationship Tantra – Feeling your way together into living and loving on purpose. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00 wednesday 24 July Play Party. Claremont, 7-10.30pm. Cost R500.00

Thursday 25 July – Monday 29 July Tantric Orgasm and Body De-armouring Retreat. The Blue Butterfly, Tulbagh. Cost R4 500.00 (including Facilitation and vegetarian meals) Accommodation costs are additional. Private Sessions in Claremont: 18th July 30th July. Cost R1 300.00 per 2hr session This work is suitable for all sincere seekers of truth of any gender or orientation, single or partnered. Men, Women and Couples. You do not need a partner to attend.

For info, bookings & enquiries for all of the above events contact Rhianne van der Linde: • 083 679 1297 • Book soon, as places are limited.

The Buddhist Retreat Centre

Regional Coordinators for these exciting events are: Homeira Ghanongooi Franke - JHB Taryn Edge - DBN Lee-Ann Connolly - CT

The Buddhist Retreat Centre in Ixopo, KZN offers retreats on a variety of subjects, the underlying theme of which is the practice of Mindfulness Meditation as defined in the Buddha’s philosophy. A selection of forth-coming retreats: July 12 - 14: A taste of Mindfulness on being here-now with Lisa Firer and Craig Henen July 19 - 21: Biodanza: the still point of the dance with Lisa Firer July 26 - 28: Hell is other people The magic, misery and mystery of relationship with Louis van Loon August 16 - 18: Finding and keeping your centre with Tessa Pretorius

For more info & future retreats +27 [039] 834 1863 082 579 3037

Dharmagiri under berg

• kzn

July 23 – 26 Journey into Paradox The Gifts of Contradiction Creative Writing & Meditation Joanne Fedler & Thanissara

Sep 24 – Oct 3 An Integrated Awakening Insight Meditation Retreat | Kittisaro

Oct 6 – 9 The Joy of Mindful Cooking Mindfulness and Vegetarian Cooking Daniel Jardim

Oct 31 – Nov 3 Courage to Love

Meditation & Psycho-Spiritual Inquiry Nobantu Mpotulo & Thanissara For info contact 033 701 1138 | 082 473 5525 |




Bamboo – it's the stuff green dreams are made of, literally and figuratively. A growing number of new products are using bamboo as a key component, rapidly growing the list of uses for the ancient friend-to-mankind. We take a look.

beautiful, sustainable Beautiful, versatile  T

hese days you can get something made in bamboo in virtually every consumer sector there

is – even some cars, believe it or not. Bamboo

is renowned for being a highly sustainable material, because it grows very quickly in moderate to poor soil conditions with some varieties growing up to 2m a week. The list of uses for bamboo – one of the greenest materials on the planet and, obviously one

that is both rapidly renewable and, when properly managed, highly sustainable – is long and growing (pun fully intended). It includes yoga mats, baskets, bicycles, headphones, furniture of all sorts and a host of others, some of which we'll get to shortly.



 and very green

e & very green Why is bamboo important?

Bamboo is the fastest-growing woody plant on the earth

(although technically it is a grass, its stem is woody enough to be used as a wood alternative). Its renewability

is only matched by hemp. Similarly, it is among the easiest

renewable products to grow, with varieties of bamboo able to thrive in a wide range of climates, excluding desert and, without irrigation, semi-desert conditions.

Many & varied uses Among the great many uses of bamboo, some of which you are probably familiar with, and some not so much, are:

Bamboo's renewability is only matched by hemp.

Bamboo clothing – strong, silky and soft

Flooring – Bamboo flooring is every bit as good

as hardwood and much more sustainable and vastly faster to renew.

Bicycles – We kid you not. In countries like Australia and Denmark, bamboo is being used to replace aluminium in bicycles.

Paper – A great alternative to slow-growing trees. Instruments – Musical instruments actually eat up quite a bit of wood, which bamboo can easily replace without loss of quality.

Toys – Even toys are being made from bamboo these days. Your kids can play without doing any damage to the planet.




Bamboo Warehouse fencing



Solid Bamboo

A long history These are but a few uses of bamboo, but there are many others, both ancient and new to add to the list.


Humanity's relationship with bamboo goes back literally millennia. Its uses have evolved over time, and even in the 21st century this grass – which is considered a symbol of fertility in Chinese culture and a symbol of friendship in India – has been utilised in a multitude of ways, some of which may seem rather eccentric. Here are some more uses for this amazing material:

Footbridges – Given its durability and strength, bamboo is an easily workable, light and extremely stable building material. It withstands large amounts of weight, making it suitable for footbridges in rural settings. One such example is the Kampong Cham bridge in Cambodia, which connects two islands in the region and holds the distinction of being the longest bamboo bridge in the world. The Japanese rely on bamboo as a main building component. The footbridges, made with bamboo planks and binding materials, span chasms and river systems to enable the travel and commerce of locals living in remote areas.

Waterwheels and turbine blades – Another 'green' use of bamboo is as a building material for alternative energy installations. In many rural settings, as in Yangshuo, China, bamboo is a primary material for building waterwheels for hydropower. It is also used to make blades for wind turbines.

Kitchenware – Because of its material properties, bamboo cutting boards help keep knives sharp. Knife and other utensil handles can also be made from this fantastic resource. Bamboo steamers have been used in Asia for centuries to cook rice and steam vegetables. Bamboo

Food & Trees for Africa

Bamboo for Africa Food & Trees for Africa launched the Bamboo for Africa program in September 2010. It is now internationally accredited through the Verified Carbon Standard as a Verified Emission Reduction program. This is a greening, climate change response, corporate social investment, enterprise development and black economic empowerment program. Carbon offset opportunity is offered at R75 per ton and the cost per plant which includes community training and support is R90. The proceeds from the accumulated carbon offsets are managed to support further community development programs. The program is implemented alongside the FEED program so that bamboo crops are cared for

alongside organic produce by the emerging farmers and farm managers. Minimum plantings are 230 plants or one hectare and these are currently taking place as offsets for a number of companies at the Onverwacht farm in Cullinan, Gauteng province. Bamboo provides a high-impact carbon sequestration opportunity with multi-faceted

steamers provide a healthier option than almost any other

community beneficiation, and the program is introduced to the community with plantings at public

cooking method.

schools and on open/tribal land.

Food – You don't have to be a panda to eat bamboo.

Visit for more.

Indeed, bamboo shoots are part of China's culinary history but are also eaten in India, and can be used in a number of ways you may not have thought of before, beyond the obvious stir-fries, including dried, shredded,

Air Fresheners & Odour-Absorbers – Bamboo

pickled, braised, and curried bamboo shoot. However, a

charcoal is a versatile material used for air freshening.

word of caution – some species contain cyanide and must

When finely ground and contained, it naturally kills odours

be treated before consumption. Best to source anything

in refrigerators and other small places such as closets or

bamboo-like due for the stomach from a known and

cabinets. Beyond its odour-absorption, bamboo charcoal

reliable source. Oh, and you can make beer from it too.

also acts as a dehumidifier.



Health & Beauty Products – Bamboo charcoal

Computer Hardware – Bamboo has been used

can also be used as a skin exfoliant. When heated,

even in computer hardware such as hard-drive cases,

bamboo charcoal is made into a medicinal vinegar, used

keyboard covers, computer mice and other types of

in places like Japan to treat minor skin conditions like

computer hardware. Many cases of Fujitsu brand prototype

eczema. Bamboo products like this are also known for

laptops have been constructed of bamboo rather than just

anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.

a veneer, making them more biodegradable. Bamboo fibres are used in packing material for Dell computer

Clothing – If you haven't worn a bamboo fibre


garment, go buy one right away – it is strong, but silky

And there are still many more uses, from construction

and soft on the skin. Consequently, it has become a

scaffolding (looks scary, but is actually quite safe when

popular choice in durable, air permeable, soft fabrics,

properly put up, because it has incredible tensile strength,

and is used to make bedding, underwear, baby diapers,

comparable to steel's tensile strength); fishing equipment,

blankets, bags, hats, and much more. What concerns the

including the obvious rods but also nets and their rigging;

US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is the manufacturing

folk dancing props (no kidding); weaponry, with swords

process. Because bamboo is so hardy, it is also hard to

and staves which have been used for thousands of years

refine into fibre – however, some use toxic chemicals like

as training implements in the kendo tradition of Japan

sodium hydroxide, which can cause chemical burns or

and in India for stick fighting; and even caskets for the

blindness, to break down bamboo's cells into something

greenest (and cheapest) burial imaginable.

pliable called viscose.

Truly, bamboo is one of the greenest substances on

Manufacturers claim that sodium hydroxide poses no

the planet – and you can expect it to pitch up in many

health hazard if used and disposed of properly. If

more products than have been mentioned here as things

processed in a 'closed loop' system that is supposed to

move along and the sustainability industries, along

prevent it from being released into the environment, the

with greening trends in traditional industries, become

resulting viscose is Oeko Tex 100 certified, which means

ever-more important. O

that no harmful substances lurk in the finished textile, where they might rub off on your skin.

Art & Writing Materials – Bamboo's uses extend to the visual arts where common examples include bamboo painting brushes, drawing implements, and materials used prominently in sculpture. Artwork created with or from bamboo is still very much part of a living tradition and practiced by cultures throughout the world. Strips of flattened bamboo, called slips, were used for thousands of years in China before the switch to paper and even Sun Tzu's famed The Art of War, dating to the 6th century, was written on bamboo.

Motorcycle Helmets – The durability of bamboo makes it an ideal protective covering for your head as an alternative to metals or carbon fibre. At least one version of a bamboo motorcycle helmet has passed E22-05 safety standards in the UK.

Cars – Engineers and scientists at Kyoto University in Japan have utilised bamboo in the construction of electric cars. Although not the most aesthetically pleasing vehicle, the Kyoto bamboo electric car is representative of the evolution of an emerging industry now highly dependent on plastics.



Visit for more.

Bamboo Warehouse

Bamboo Warehouse is the leading supplier of bamboo flooring and other bamboo products in South Africa, leaders in both price and quality. We supply the highest quality bamboo products, made from bamboo specifically farmed for commercial use and is therefore ecologically sustainable. See ad, right for more.









7 8 1. Bamboo computer peripheries • 2. Kampong Cham bridge, Cambodia • 3. Kyoto bamboo electric car 4. Sunglasses • 5. Helmet • 6. Bicycles • 7. Bamboo in traditional Japanese weaponry • 8. Panda's favourite food



Natural fence

Bamboo has many different qualities such as strength, resiliency and longevity. It is ideal to use to clad an ugly boundary wall or use as a wall extension. Brightfields' moso bamboo consists mainly of two different colours, namely natural and mahogany. For more info visit

Bamboo Braai Charcoal

Bamboo Charcoal is the green way of braaing. It also allows you the opportunity of taking Charcoal as a gift to your next braai. This charcoal is a manufactured from waste bamboo biomass which is extruded through a briquette machine and then heated at high temperatures in a furnace kiln. Bamboo is the fastest growing plant on earth, is sustainable and is also used in the manufacture of boards and flooring.

 20

We have 20 bamboo braai packs to give away. Email us here with your name and address by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.


A complete fencing and screening solution for gardens, patios, pool surrounds & pergolas

Suppliers & installers of quality bamboo products:

Fumigated Top node cut Lacquer finish Termite Resistant Rot Resistant Internally wired

Tel 021 448 8548 Fax 021 447 6371 Unit 1 Tollgate Industrial Centre 12 Ravenscraig rd Woodstock

 ODYSSEY 29 • 


Mother Nature

Bamboo all in one nappy

birth to potty nappy

eco disposable nappy

swim nappy

natural skincare

Great for babies, great for nature Tel: 021 782 9117

Planet-friendly, money-saver, healthy and natural and easy to use nappies and trainers. Also: 100% natural baby skincare; growing range of natural baby products – change mats, nappy bag, laundry soap, pacifiers, tethers, clothes, toys and natural women’s products. Visit here for more.

Cherub Tree SA

Reusable modern cloth nappies at their best. Cherub Tree offers a range of bamboo/cotton all-in-one nappies and accessories as well as their original pocket nappy. Enviro-friendly as well as very economical. Their one-size-fits-all nappies fit most babies from approx 3.5kg through to potty trained (around 17 kilos). Each nappy has three rows of three snaps at the front of it – these are for adjusting the nappy from sizes small through to large. Visit here for more.

Modern Re-usable All in One Cloth Nappies at their best!!

boo Moo AIO Bam


ht r Day/Nig u lo e V o bo AIO Bam Cherub Tree South Africa 0825542109 Available in Snaps or Velcro. One Size fits most. FREE SHIPPING NATIONWIDE ON ORDERS OF 10 OR MORE NAPPIES DOOR TO DOOR COURIER FOR CENTRAL AREAS ONLY.



appies Pocket N

ORIGINAL BAMBOO WATCH RANGE These watches feature a carbonated bamboo face with a genuine leather wrap around style strap, as well as a conventional single strap. The face houses a Japanese Miyota Movement, which has an estimated two-year battery life that is changeable. These watches are not waterproof but rather has a 1° water resistance and can handle everyday splashes.

Original Wrap Around Strap – The simplistic watch face has a 3,5cm width and a 4,5cm length. The strap is available in a small length (57cm) and a large length (63cm), as well as in four different colours; brown, black beige and navy.

Original Natural Single Strap – The simplistic watch face has a 3,5cm width and a 4,5cm length. The strap is available in a small length (20cm) and a large length (23cm), as well as in four different colours; brown, black beige and navy.

 2

All watches retail at R435 online (excluding delivery)

We have 2 Bamboo Revolution watches – one for men and one for women – to give away. Email us here with your name and address by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win. ODYSSEY 31 • 



Mungo creates quality fabrics from the inception of design to the final product. All of their homeware and apparel is designed, woven and made in SA using natural fibres, in keeping with the ethos of respecting the natural environment and fair trade. Visit here and here for more.





Tawang Tawang, the world of mystics and enchanting beauties, forms the western-most district of Arunachal Pradesh and is located at the soaring height of some 3 000m. It shares boundaries with Tibet in the North, Bhutan in the South West and the Sela range of West Kameng in the East. It is the home of the Monpa tribe. Niels Andersen reports on his trip to this far-off land.


he wind and driving rain were icy and the day

North Eastern part of India in the State of Arunachal

gloomy and grey, but the novice monks in

Pradesh, are Buddhists – as are almost all of the people in

their plastic sandals and maroon robes were

this region. The region is bordered by Bhutan to the West,

unperturbed. They gathered in the puddles of the Tawang

Burma far to the East and China (Tibet) to the north. The

monastery courtyard, waiting for the evening meal, in

goal of our three-day bone-rattling ride from the plains of

impish good humour. 'Which country?' 'What is your

India was the Tawang Gompa, as this very striking temple

name?' 'What is your height?' they asked us, as they

complex is known.

elbowed one another and giggled at our answers.



We had come here, my good mate Graham and I, in

Cheerful good humour seems to be part of the genetic

search of that Indian magic we had experienced some

make-up of just about everyone in the Himalayas. Even

30 years earlier. At that time we were young, single,

though people are generally poor and life expectancy

long-distance travellers, innocent of mobile phones,

short by Western standards, if you hail anyone with the

iPods and responsibility. Now, having moved to different

typical greeting 'Namaste' you will almost invariably be

continents, married and raising families, we saw things

rewarded by a dazzling smile and a ready 'Namaste' in

differently. But we had never lost that love for the


Indian subcontinent. And so we made our excuses to

Maybe its a Buddhist thing. Certainly the monks and

our families, took a fortnight off from our businesses and

novices of the Tawang Monastery, in 'little Tibet' in the

here we were – a couple of ageing backpackers looking

for the new India.

travel groups of no less than two tourists travelling with

It was certainly a different India we found in Arunachal

an approved guide, were very carefully recorded and

Pradesh. This is a region far from the clamorous and

our travel itinerary scrutinised so that police posts could

steaming cities of the south (the temperature in Kolkota

monitor our progress. The scrutiny is in part because this

was regularly around the 40º mark in early April). Tawang

is what one could almost call aboriginal India. All the way

is a remote place, even by Indian standards, and the

to the Burma border to the East is a wildwest frontier

reward for this is that you escape the crowds that are

region inhabited by people like the Bodo, Naga and Mizo.

a way of life in most of India. The town is situated at

These are traditional slash and burn and nomadic tribes

a bracing 3  000m at the mouth of the broad, fertile

who are largely animist in tradition and physically resemble

but lightly-populated Tawang Valley, about 300kms from

the people of South East Asia. For many years some of

the nearest sizeable town down in the plains of the

these people have waged occasionally bloody secessionist

neighbouring state of Assam.

struggles and most of them now have a degree of local

It's a region inhabited mostly by the Monpa people,


close relatives of the Bhutanese and Tibetans. There is also

This is not to say that travel here is dangerous or that

a sizeable Tibetan community and many of them, along

the people are unwelcoming. Far from it, but it can be

with the Dalai Lama himself, fled this way from Tibet after

gruelling and slow going on twisting hairpin roads that

it was invaded by China. A few weeks before we arrived

are frequently blocked by landslides. We chose to arrange

the town had hosted the Dalai Lama and a huge banner on

our tour through Darwa Tsering a quiet, thoughtful Monpa

the main street proudly proclaimed this fact. The Chinese

with excellent English and a thorough knowledge of the

government was predictably incensed.

area and its often torturous Indian bureaucracy. Darwa

In fact, the entire region is still claimed by China as part

arranged the RAP and provided the vehicle, known here as

of an ongoing border dispute with India. The two countries

a Sumo, which is generally a Tata, a rugged Indian-built

went to war over it in 1962 when the Chinese army invaded

4-wheel drive. It was not a comfortable vehicle and the

and briefly occupied the Tawang Valley. India now has a

tyres were remarkably bald, but the vehicle didn't miss a

large number of troops permanently stationed in camps all

beat over the next two days.

the way up to the de facto border.

Our driver was named Tenzing (a very common name

As if this low-key tension is not enough, Arunachal

in these parts). He drove seated slightly sideways, slumped

Pradesh is also restive in other ways. We noticed this

up against the door as though ready to make a swift exit,

when we passed through the border post from Assam to

should the vehicle start veering over a cliff. But he drove

Arunachal Pradesh at the muddy little town of Bhalukpong.

with great panache, deftly manipulating the gears and

Here our Restricted Area Permits (RAP), relatively expensive,

sounding the horn incessantly as you need to do if you

complicated to apply for and issued only to permitted

are to give adequate warning of your arrival at yet another



hairpin bend looming out of the mist. Like most of the

snow that blanketed the surrounding mountains. The road

drivers in these mountains, Tenzing had an acute sense of

became icy as we reached Sela Pass, at 4 150m. It struck us

the margins of his vehicle, of the oncoming traffic and the

as a ghostly place with the snow and fog partly obscuring a

edge (often precipitous) of the road. He squeezed through

small temple with strings of Tibetan prayer flags snapping

the narrowest of gaps or held back to allow oncoming

in the wind. Inside a wooden inn we sat around a bukhari,

traffic through if he judged that they had right of way

the traditional local pot bellied stove, gratefully sipping tea.

– based on who had arrived first. All this was achieved

From here the road snaked back down through the

with a total absence of rancour from any of the drivers on

mountains, past a few grazing yaks and the occasional

these crowded roads (who would surely greet road rage,

white-washed Tibetan prayer wall with fluttering flags and

Western-style, with amazement).

cylindrical prayer wheels. We reached the broad, green

The mountain scenery, once we left the plains of West

terraced farmscape of the Tawang Valley, leaving the

Bengal behind, was varied, dramatic and often spectacular.

snow behind but not the rain. It was a dark, wet Tawang

First, we climbed up into a steep, dripping jungle of wild

town that we reached in the early afternoon, delighted

bananas, bamboos and dense, mist-shrouded rainforest.

nevertheless to be released from Darwa’s Sumo. However,

Then the weather cleared and a different kind of mountain

not for the first time, nor the last during our time in India,

The entire region is still claimed by China as part of an ongoing border dispute with India. The two countries went to war in 1962 when the Chinese army invaded and briefly occupied the Tawang Valley. India now has a large number of troops permanently stationed in camps all the way up to the de facto border. landscape began to appear – dry grassy slopes with

There was nothing for it but to escape the cold of our

landscape of what seemed to be birch forests. The villages

hotel and explore Tawang in search of something warm

were mostly a modest avenue of huts made from panels

to eat or drink. We were in luck and almost beneath the

of beaten bamboo. Every so often we passed the neat

benign gaze of the Dalai Lama smiling down from a large

white-washed brick and Nissen Hut cantonments of Indian

welcoming banner in a small gompa at the town gateway,

army bases with brisk regimental names like 'Ball Of Fire',

we found a restaurant advertising Tibetan cuisine. It was

'The Magnificent 7' and 'The Elephant Regiment'. The

our first taste of what became a love affair with Tibetan

soldiers were mostly martial-looking Sikhs in crisp combat

food. In no time we were hoovering up momos, delicious

greens, matching turbans and magnificent moustaches.

scallop-shaped steamed dumplings made from barley flour,

We made steady progress of about 25km/h. Despite

containing chicken, pork, beef or vegetables, served with a

(or maybe because of) this necessarily slow progress, we

small bowl of piping hot clear soup. We moved onto fried

passed many road signs urging road users to show caution:

Tibetan bread and then gluttonously ordered thukpa, a hot

'If You Want To Stay Married, Divorce Speed', 'Driving is

and sour noodle soup and a couple of beers. The beers

Risky after Whisky' and the misspelled 'Speed Is a 5 Letter

bore the uncompromising brand name 'Hit' and, like almost

Word. So Is Deth.' Finally, after some 10 hours of tiring

all the beer in this region, had an 8% alcohol content (no

travel, we reached the charming little town of Dirang. Here

mid-strength boutique beers for these hardy mountain

the villages are attractive stone and wood houses, in the

folk). The meal cost 200 Rupees, or about $5. We felt like

Nepali fashion. This is Darwa’s home town and he invited

shoestring travellers again.

us to a meal of rice and aloo ghobi which we ate seated on a carpet beneath racks of drying yak meat.



the town’s power supply was off for the night.

scattered pines alternating with an almost European alpine

Having moved to a much more comfortable and absurdly cheap hotel ($35 double) we spent another rainy

The next morning we headed steeply up into forests

day exploring the typically narrow, shop-lined main street

of rhododendrons in rich scarlet bloom and then up into

of Tawang. Monpo pilgrims made their way down the street

the snowline buffeted by intermittent flurries of driving

toward the monastery, cutting an almost Rastafarian dash

in bizarre yak-skin skullcaps with woolly plaits protruding

battered aluminium food bowls and lids in hand, happily

from them. Tibetan ladies in their tradition wrap-around

posing for photographs and hooting with laughter when

dresses and elegant striped skirts mingled with porters

shown their photos on the backs of our cameras (digital

stooped almost double under the forehead-borne weight

cameras can certainly break the ice and solve the problem

of hugely laden baskets. Young Monpo bucks, with the

of getting permission to photograph).

sort of quiffed hair and low-slung jeans you could see

The monastery is an equally photogenic walk 3kms

in any Western city, lounged outside internet cafes or

up a windy road from town, framed by a spectacular

polished Tata or Murati 4-wheel drives, hoping for a bit of


taxi trade. A pair of monks headed back up to the gompa

mist-shrouded towns and gompas perched high on distant






with a TV and video recorder – wherever you go in India,

mountain slopes. The surrounding mountains would

you are never far from the nearest Bollywood movie or IPL

make for superb trekking, as would a sacred lake a few

20Twenty cricket match.

kilometres away. Darwa has plans to conduct trekking

What we didn’t see were any other foreign tourists, although there were a small handful of Bengali tourists in bulky parkas and beanies. Perhaps it was the late spring

tours in the near future, including treks to his home Monpa village in the Tawang Valley below. All this incipient tourism may be helped by the

Its a region inhabited mostly by the Monpa people, close relatives of the Bhutanese and Tibetans. There is also a sizeable Tibetan community here and many of them, along with the Dalai Lama himself, fled this way from Tibet after it was invaded by China. rain or perhaps it was the daunting three-day journey by

establishment of more regular helicopter flights. We were

road, but overseas tourism is still in its infancy around

lucky enough to wake on our second day in Tawang to

here. Which is a pity because there is great deal to see.

temporarily clear skies and the news that a helicopter

There is, of course, the magnificent Tawang monastery,

would, perhaps, be flying in at midday. This was a dilemma

founded in 1681 by a lama of the Mahayana Buddhist sect.

because we had hoped to go for a trek with Darwa and

The site was selected, according to legend, by his horse

perhaps take a drive up through the spectacular scenery

that had gone walkabout – hence the name 'Ta' meaning

to the sacred lake and the Bhutanese border 40kms away.

horse and 'Wang' meaning chosen. It is the second oldest

However, the long-range forecast was for a small window

and largest monastery after the Potala in Lhasa, Tibet.

of clear weather and then more rain and the certainty of

While it doesn’t have the sheer size and grandeur of the

the same painstaking three-day drive back to Guwahati. In

Potala, the Tawang Gompa is an enchanting spectacle,

the end it was a bit of a no-brainer – absorbing though the

frequently obscured by a swirling mist that streams down

drive from the distant plains was, we quickly decided that

from the snow-capped peaks of Bhutan and Tibet that

doing the journey once was probably enough.

surround it.

We were in luck and the helicopter (a heavily

The monastery is a walled citadel of some 65

subsidised service provided by the Indian government)

buildings grouped round the main assembly hall, library

arrived on time and almost empty. We shook hands with

and museum. Its gold-painted roofs seem to glow in the

Darwa and then before we knew it we were clattering

mist, a warm contrast to the white­washed walls with their

though the mountain valleys of Bhutan, heading for the

red trims. And to complete the pleasing colour scheme,

rice paddies of Assam and Guwahati, a mere 45 minutes

monks in tightly-wrapped maroon robes stroll through

away. We caught a last glimpse of a golden-roofed

the courtyard to the sound of muffled prayer mantras

monastery and then we left Tawang in our noisy wake,

from deep inside the complex and the ringing of a bell

regretting that we did not have more time to explore this

announcing the evening meal. This is a signal for the

'Little Tibet', but determined to make our way back, next

novice monks to gather under the dripping balconies,

time with our hiking boots on. O




an ideal

All images: ©2013 Warner Bros. Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.



What are the various characteristics that make a good hero? Is it his/her bulging muscles, physics-defying antics or maybe a keen intellect? Or is it something far more profound than simply being awesome because he/she can fly? The reason heroes (whether based in comic books, mythologies or even real life ones such as Nelson Mandela) have been so popular throughout the ages is because there is something so inherently good about their character that it instils a sense of hope within us and inspires us to follow their example. Kevin Rule takes a look at the archetypical male hero using arguably the greatest fictional hero of modern times, Superman, as an example.


o, first off, what exactly is an archetype?

ahead of yourself and be kind and understanding

Simply put, it is a recurring pattern of

are the types of traits that embody the essence of

character, symbol or situation found in the

this hero, not bravery or nobility, as some might

mythology, religion and stories of most cultures.

think, but rather self-sacrifice.

Alright, so what is a hero? A hero is someone

But how does our hero go from mild-mannered

who goes out of their way to help those in need

farm boy to the shining light of Metropolis? The

– perhaps a damsel in distress, as Lois Lane is so

journey of Clark Kent is much the same as any

often portrayed, or something simple like getting

archetypal hero that has appeared in religions,

a cat out of a tree. The hero will often have

mythologies and epics of the world. He is, as

personal reasons for 'donning the cape' – as is the

theorised by Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell

case with Batman and Spider-Man, whose parents

(see side bar), an expression of our personal

and uncle, respectively, were gunned down by

and collective unconscious. All archetypal heroes

muggers, and this will often be relatable to an

share certain characteristics – a fact that has

audience who has suffered similar losses. But,

only come to light this century after people like

this isn't the case with Superman. His decision to

Campbell began comparing mythologies of the

become a beacon of hope stems from the fact that

world and found that the standard 'hero's quest'

he has been brought up by his adoptive parents,

illustrates several uniting themes of hero stories

the Kents, with strong moral values: to put others

that hold similar ideas of what a hero represents,

of hope ODYSSEY 39 • 


'The hero's achievements provide us with an example which we can aspire to. In excelling the normal bounds of mortality, the hero becomes a vision of potential for his people.' – Jane Bailey Bain, author of Life Works

despite vastly different cultures and beliefs. The most

When his spaceship crashlands on Earth he is taken in

common of hero's journeys consists of three separate

by the kindly farmer Jonathan Kent and his wife, Martha,

stages: 'departure', 'initiation' and 'return'. Within these

who name the boy Clark. They raise him as their own and

stages there are several archetypes that our hero may

try and keep him and his powers safe and secret from

follow, including the call to adventure (which they may

potential government testing. These are the people that

initially refuse), supernatural aid, proceeding down a

actually give him his core values – values that will keep

road of trials, achieving a realisation about themselves

him humble despite the great power that he will discover

and attaining the freedom to live through their journey.

as he gets older. It is during his teens that Clark starts

So let's look at these stages and how the Man of Steel's

realising that he is different to the other kids at school,

journey incorporates them.

and reluctantly Jonathan reveals to him that he is not of




this world. Most teenagers can't handle homework and getting pimples, nevermind the fact that they are an alien

On his birth planet of Krypton, Kal-El (later known on

and can kick a rugby ball to the moon. But, the Kents

Earth as Superman) is a mere infant when his father

stay strong and keep their resolve so as to help their son

Jor-El and mother Lara send him rocketing through space

in his new realisation and to constantly remind him that

to the safety of Earth because their homeworld is about

they love him – a love that bonds them as a tight family.

to be destroyed (the reason for the planet's destruction

In most incarnations of the character of Superman, it is

has varied through the comics and movies, but remains

the death of his adoptive father that is the catalyst that

the catalyst for his being sent to Earth). Even before the

sets Clark off on his journey to discover who he really is.

child can understand what is happening around him he is

This is where his adventure begins and he is led, almost

subjected to a great heroic feat by his father. You could

supernaturally, to a secluded area near the North Pole

say that this act was his first lesson in sacrifice.

(sometimes in remote jungles, but most commonly the

Arctic) where he discovers a remnant of his homeworld (dubbed the 'Fortress of Solitude') and is then guided by the

Carl Jung & Joseph Campbell

spirit of his biological father to understand his powers and

Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell are two

how he can be a force for good.

INITIATION In the 1978 movie Superman: The Movie, the late Christopher Reeve gave a new generation a look at the physical manifestation of everything good about the character. Like the comic book, the movie followed the archetypal hero journey closely. After his adoptive father dies of a

of the most prominent explorers of the psychoanalytical and mythological origins for human and social behaviour. Jung expanded the work of Sigmund Freud and the unconscious mind to emphasize the mythological forces working within the individual to shape his or her

heart attack, Clark is mysteriously drawn to a crystal that

personality. He formed the concept of an

had been in his spaceship and then hidden in the barn

archetype and collective unconscious to

for safekeeping. Realising this is from his homeworld he

explain the commonality of dream images

instinctively answers the call from within to leave home and

and situations found in all people. He believed

find meaning. As mentioned earlier, he is drawn to the Arctic

individual and social behaviour had their

and heaves the crystal into the ice which then magically

roots in a common palette of characters and

builds his fortress. Inside he encounters the hologram of his Kryptonian father who then takes him on a voyage through space and time. Jor-El teaches young Clark about universal mysteries and gives him knowledge that has been acquired from all the intelligent life spanning the 'known galaxies'. This voyage takes all of 12 years and can be called his initiation, for once the sequence has ended we get our first glimpse of Kal-El in his Superman suit – the bright colours

situations the mind retains from early human consciousness development. To Jung, the archetypal hero represents the psyche's quest for individuation – the process that makes each person unique. Campbell then built on Jung's concept of the collective unconscious to encompass all

of red and blue that will give millions of people hope in the

the world's mythologies. Campbell studied

face of adversity.

the world's religions, art, and myths and


discovered common threads throughout all, including the hero. He believed that

This final part of the hero's journey has a lot to do with

mythology is the collective 'dream' of

acceptance and willingness to put aside the self for the

mankind, the 'song of the universe.' His work

betterment of others. Once a hero has returned he should be clear about what his intentions are and how he wishes to achieve them. This is also the time for him to reveal himself to the world and prove that he means no harm and is here

highlights mankind's common search, both personally and socially, for meaning and truth through the ages.

to fight for truth, justice and the...well...all that stuff. Now, imagine how the world would react to the fact that an alien superbeing is now in our presence. Firstly, he's an alien. This now proves life beyond our own planet, which would have huge spiritual ramifications. What would this do to the various religions, what would it do to the economies of the world and, perhaps most importantly, what would it mean to you and me on a fundamental level and how would we react to this knowledge? And secondly, he's a being with powers far greater than our own: faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound – a phrase the 1940s radio serials used to capture their audience at the beginning of their show (of course, since the '40s his leaping abilities

'Archetypes speak to us in a language of myths and symbols, perfectly suited to a society that has become fluent in high-tech code, instant messages, and Twitter-speak.' – Caroline Myss, author of Archetypes: Who Are You?



'My father believed that if the world found out who I really was they'd reject me. He was convinced that the world wasn't ready. What do you think?' – Clark Kent



went through a few changes right up to full-powered

the general audience. For example, Peter Parker (aka


Spider-Man) is a troubled teen who is bullied at school

But just how can he prove his well-meaning intentions

and completely overlooked by the girl of his dreams, Mary

to the general public who, these days, don't even trust

Jane Watson, until one day he is bitten by a radioactive

their fellow man, never mind a 'super man'. Luckily, a

spider and acquires awesome powers that ultimately help

terrible threat is never too far away for our hero (from the

boost his confidence and, in the end, he gets the girl.

evil corporate mastermind Lex Luthor to the intergalactic

That's something any teenager can relate to. But, how

war mongrel, Darkseid), and he is given the opportunity

does one make Superman – the mightiest hero of them all

to show everyone that he will always be there to defend

– relatable to a modern audience? Well, that has become

the people of Earth, often at his own peril. This final stage

a job for Zach Snyder, David S Goyer and Christopher

of his 'return' ultimately results in his acceptance and

Nolan who, respectively, directed, wrote and produced

reverence by the people as their champion.

the latest cinematic adventure for the big blue boy scout

It definitely seems that in modern times people are

(albeit this time sans red briefs on the outside of his suit).

looking for a hero-figure. In a market where comic book

Bringing this larger than life character to full realisation

movies have been dominating box office records, it's clear

on the screen is Brittish actor Henry Cavill, whose natural

that a large portion of the public are looking, maybe even

quiet demeanour helps him bring out a Clark Kent that

yearning, for the inspiration – whether they realise it or

a lot of people may find they can relate to in some way


or another. He has tough shoes to fill, though, as many

There are many complex and conflicted characters

people will always think of Christopher Reeve as their

that have a relatable factor that makes them popular to

Superman. But, let's face it, that was 30 years ago and a

new generation is poised for a new face and new adventures – this time far more epic in scale (see review, below, for more about the movie). Ultimately, the greatest thing about Superman is not his flight, heat vision or super speed and strength (although those are very cool), it's more the sense of overcoming one's selfish ways for a greater good, and it's always something we need more of in this world. We will leave you with this quote from the latest movie, Man of Steel, where Jor-El is telling Clark about his heritage and the reason he was sent to Earth. In a very touching moment (sincerely acted by Russel Crowe) he issues this inspiring charge: 'You will give the people of Earth an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you, they will stumble – they will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them achieve wonders.' Now, if that's not the essence of a hero – someone who inspires people and gives them hope – then what is? O

'[Man of Steel] is the most realistic movie I’ve made. There’s no tongue in anyone’s cheek. I’m not apologising for Superman in any way. I’m saying, Superman is a thing that must be taken seriously and embraced and understood.' – Zack Snyder, director of Man of Steel.


Directed by Zack Snyder

Wow. It's difficult to really put into words the feeling I got when that movie was over. I sat there right until the end of the credits and the houselights came up and just wanted them to start the movie over. Never before have I seen such a spectacle on such a grand scale on the big screen. If you're expecting a nostalgia-fest linking this movie to the Richard Donner films of yesteryear (much like Superman Returns was in 2006), then think again. This movie explores the notion that Kal-El is what he is: an alien. And having this in mind, the filmmakers seemingly made the decision to focus this movie in the sci-fi genre, rather than fantasy – and it works. Bearing this in mind, you can expect to see a helluvalot of computer-generated effects (CGI), but Zack Snyder is a master in this field, and his use of live-action shots blend seemlessly with the CGI. This is probably the thing that impressed me most, and I presume Snyder had a long think about how to go about getting it right because he's done a fantastic job. Another thing he got right is the casting. Russel Crowe as Jor-El is wise and caring while Superman's Earth-father Jonathan Kent is played with a humble endearment by Kevin Costner. Amy Adams' Lois Lane is no longer the bumbling fangirl that Margot Kidder portrayed in the Reeve movies, Adams' character is a headstrong and commited journalist who has a penchant for danger. There are some sterling performances from the likes of Diane Lane as Martha Kent and Laurence Fishburne as Editor-in-Chief of The Daily Planet, but it all comes down to the, rather bulky, shoulders of Henry Cavill as the title character. It's as if, much like Christopher Reeve, Cavill was born to play this character. He encompasses each aspect of Superman (Clark Kent and Kal-El) with such respect that his presence dominates the screen. He is emotional, stern, bold, humble and, most importantly, heroic. Unfortunately, many critics have condemned this movie, but I really feel that Snyder and co have created something that has a strong beginning and can hopefully move forward into a greater DC Comics universe that can rival the success of recent comic book movies. Top marks. Man of Steel is showing in cinemas countrywide.

Warner Bros is giving away 5 Man of Steel hampers consisting of a back pack, t-shirt and cap. Email us here with your full name, postal address details and shirt size by 30 July, 2013 to stand a chance of winning.




What Aging Men Want The Odyssey as a Parable of Male Aging John C. Robinson

What male readers are saying about What Aging Men Want. Drawing from his years of experience as a clinical psychologist coupled with his insightful interpretation of Homer's Odyssey, Dr Robinson provides men with an invaluable guide to living their elder years with meaning and happiness. (Age 70) John Robinson has probed Odysseus's journey home, distilling essential lessons to guide aging men to their homes of love, support and service to others. For all those of us aging, or planning to – this book is a must read. (Age 77) Let's face it, most of us run away into denial rather than look toward the ending chapters of our lives. To one degree or another, we all need to focus some serious thinking into these issues – and if you're over 50, it's time to start the process. (Age 66)

Two decades ago, the poet Robert Bly published a book that stayed on the New York Times Bestseller list for 62 weeks and changed a generation of men. Based on an ancient fairy tale, Iron John became an allegory for midlife men in search of an authentic life. I was part of the men's movement launched by this poet and the book I wrote at that time, Death of a Hero, Birth of the Soul, became one of its bibles. This same army of 38 million men is now marching into their retirement years largely unprepared for what aging really entails or what to do with the next 25 years of unprecedented longevity gifted them by science and medicine. Boomers, of course, believe that they will conquer this stage with exercise, attitude, and nutrition. As their problems and defeats multiply, however, aging men – and I am one of them – now discover that they are lost once again in an unknown land longing for another great story to guide them home. I have found that story. Dr John Robinson holds doctorates in clinical psychology and ministry and is an ordained interfaith minister. Along with three decades of clinical practice, he has taught extensively and published four previous books. He lives in Fox Island, WA USA.

We have TWO copies of What Aging Men Want to give away. Email us here with your name and postal details by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.

This book is available from Psyche Books. Click here for more.



The Alpha Wolf A Tale About the Modern Male Nick Clements Roger Cologne is an Alpha Boy. He has all the trappings of success – the looks, car, flat, and a high-powered job. He doesn't do relationships. He is a collector of conquests without consequence. By unexpectedly becoming a father and receiving redundancy he discovers there is more to life. He is forced to start his personal development journey. He seeks to learn more about himself as well as entering a meaningful relationship. By doing so, he moves towards becoming an Alpha Wolf. Written by Professor Nick Clements, one of the world's foremost experts on masculinity and rites of passage, this compelling story allows us to gain understanding and insight into the modern man's journey. Combining humour, wisdom and emotionally-charged stories, the book explains how a lot of men think and experience the separate worlds of work, relationships and feelings. It is full of advice and guidance for us all, and incorporates exercises and lifestyle development work which has been practiced by hundreds of people over the last 20 years. Nick Clements has worked in areas of high social need for over 30 years. He has also worked with indigenous people from all around the world. He combines these two areas of interest to create community, develop rites of passage and enable personal growth for hundreds of people. His writing reflects and advances his focus on the development of a new emotionally intelligent masculinity. He is seeking a positive legacy for future generations. He lives in the UK.

'The Alpha Wolf is an essential read for women who want to know if it is possible for their men to change from immature lads into mature men. As the book illustrates, it won't be simple, but it is worthwhile. The bumpy ride Roger makes from career-orientated, selfish user of humanity, to a caring and considerate human being is pertinent to us all. A funny and moving 'male tale' to accompany your 'chick lit'. Alice Grist, author of The High Heeled Guide to Enlightenment.

'Clements has penned a break-through book on masculinity. It is not easy to find mentors such as him and I urge men and women to take the time to read the book.' Mel Carlile, CEO Mindbodyspirit Festival, London

We have TWO copies of The Alpha Dog to give away. Email us here with your name and postal details by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.

This book is available from Roundfire Books. Click here for more.




Nature Nurture Things are seldom what they claim or seem to be when you fail to look at them carefully. The scene above is indeed a photograph taken in Little Switzerland, better known as Swiss Miniatur, where you can view the entire nation – its cathedrals, famous railways and historic buildings – almost at a glance; all one-twenty fifth of their normal size. Millions of people have visited this finely crafted collection of models in Lugano and marvelled at its patient, dedicated imagery and craftsmanship. Harvey Tyson looks at Swiss values and how we should incorporate them into our lives.


es, everyone knows about Swiss craftsmanship.

honesty, for frugality and for orthodox orderliness – all the

But Switzerland itself is not what outsiders think

things parents try to teach their children – are honoured in

it is. And totally fallacious is the mocking gibe:

adulthood in the Swiss Federation. There is zero tolerance

'Seven hundred years of democracy (from the time of

for idleness, begging, littering and theft. That is why the

William Tell) and what have the Swiss given the world?

trains always run on time. Why the clocks work. Why you

The cuckoo clock.'

can travel 100 km and not see a toffee-paper or a plastic

Yes, again. The Swiss state is highly regulated, but

bag lying on any pavement or in any field. That is why,

it would be false to extend generalisations from that.

outside of the 'international' cities like Geneva and Zurich

In fact, 'the Swiss' speak four languages and represent

which border on 'the outside world', you can leave your

at least half a dozen cultures that once existed among

wallet on a counter, your car unlocked in the countryside,

the Germanic, French and Italian-speaking peoples. The

and your R6 000 new electronic bicycle standing in the

Swiss themselves often think that they have too much

street day and night without real fear of loss.

'order'; too much 'democracy'. Is this, perhaps, because as a nation they have too little tolerance? Respect for others; respect for law; for efficiency, for



But what about warmth and tolerance? As a foreigner you may see very few smiling faces, or receive few casual greetings as you pedal the by-ways or walk through the

streets. Instead you will receive strictly polite and very

They are gardening, completely naked except for one

efficient service.

shoe – needed for spade work. They developed into

It may seem that living in the shadows of long winters

sun-worshippers of both genders and of varied sexual

and below the eternal snows of Alpine peaks makes

inclination. A sun sanatorium was built and funded by a

people cold-hearted. But my experience was that this is

pianist and her industrialist friend.

not so. To quote a single instance: I found instant warmth

During this period Monte Verita also became the home

from an unknown colleague who travelled between

of an anarchist medical doctor who invited Prince Peter

cities on his only day off from editing Switzerland's most

Kropotkin to join him with other anarchists and Swiss

prestigious Sunday newspaper to share breakfast with a

politicians who resigned from the Social Democratic Party

couple of unremarkable former newspapermen on holiday

to support a less orthodox lifestyle. German anarchist

from South Africa. Another instance: the bureaucrat who

Erich Muhsam named it 'the republic of the homeless,

arranged our tour was also no officious representative of

the exiled and the destitute'. But these plans were

government, but another instant, genuine friend.

frustrated by the arrival of a psychoanalyst from Graz

What follows are two – much more significant –

who planned instead a university for the emancipation of

examples of Swiss warmth and tolerance; examples that

mankind and a return to a communist paradise. Then the

lead the world.

queen of Bohemian life in Munich, Countess Franziska zu

Anarchy & Art

Reventlow, arrived to put an end to such nonsense. She changed Monte Verita's emphasis to liberty of the soul.

The first is a settlement on a mountain slope above

World War One saw the founding of a 'School for

Lake Maggiore, between the lake resorts of Locarno and

Art' to introduce students to all the means of expression

Ascona, where the Russian anarchist Michail Bakunin

envisaged by human inventiveness. Intellectual and

lived in uninterrupted peace in the early 1870s. After he

artistic émigrés from Swiss city-life flocked to Locarno.

left, some Swiss politicians and a local aristocrat founded

And Monte Verita saw the birth of the 'New Dance'.

a theosophical cloister on this mountainside above

Isadore Duncan came to perform there. The 'Master of

Switzerland's greatest lake, and named it 'Fraternitas' . In

the Order of the Templars of the Orient' came to organise

1900 the champions of an alternative to Capitalism and

an international conference. Societies with no national

communism renamed the place Monte Verita ('Mountain

distinctions; co-operatives intent on 'new directions';

of Truth') and proposed a new way of life involving

organisations promoting new social structures, rights for

primitive socialism, and later basing it on individualistic

women, mystic freemasonry, liberalised education, art,

vegetarian principles. Today you can see pictures at

ritual and religion all came to seek, or rather promote,

Monte Verita of these pioneers of the 'New Way'.

their 'True Way'. The culminating event was the ritual



It may seem that living in the shadows of long winters and below the eternal snows of Alpine peaks makes people cold-hearted. But my experience was that this is not so.

'Song of the Sun' in which naked women danced from sunrise to sunset. Monte Verita was acquired in 1926 by Baron Eduard von der Heydt, banker to the former German Kaiser Wilhelm II and one of the greatest collectors of contemporary, oriental and primitive art. The artists of the 'Bauhaus' school flocked to Ascona. A hotel was built at Monte Verita in the 'Bauhaus' style. 'Free' art in every conceivable form flourished. So did free dance (and a theatre for Gothic

and Red Crescent Movement are built. It is also a reminder

Egyptian dancing). So did free thought about politics,

of the universal nature of humanity. To experience this

social systems and sexual mores. Monte Verita pioneered

exhibition is also a reminder of Switzerland's greatest gift

its Videoart Festival in 1980, the first occasion for

to the world (not forgetting the cuckoo clock).

discussion on new electronic imagery, and followed with later debates on the art of cinema and digital graphics. Today Monte Verita is an institution worth visiting if only

border in 1859. No less than 38 000 soldiers were killed

to feel the 'vibe'. You may be shocked – or inspired – by a

or maimed in a single day. A Swiss businessman, Henry

museum accommodating a single, giant, circular painting

Dunant, witnessed the suffering, and organised help for

of 'The Clear World of the Blessed'. Or you can experience

the casualties. He was shocked by the experience, and felt

'Nature on Your Plate' gastronomy. Or stand below the

compelled to write about its folly and the lack of caring for

'Pole of Peace' erected in 2004; walk the meditation path;

the soldiers and innocents who lay dying on the battlefield.

attend an exhibition or concert; or visit the Japanese

It led to the founding of the International Red Cross. And,

Tea House. You might stay at the Bauhaus Hotel on the

miraculously, to the founding of its new partner-in-caring,

Mount, or better still enjoy the swimming pools, flowing

the Red Crescent.

gardens, food, wine and comfort a few minutes away at

The museum's collection of artefacts and films capture

the Esplanade Hotel & Spa of Locarno where specials are

the meaning – and meaninglessness – of most of the wars

occasionally offered in luxury accommodation.

of the past five generations. The violence, the destruction,

War & Peace



the killing and maiming of men and women are briskly displayed. So is the shivering fear of starving, instantly

The second example of Swiss tolerance is something

homeless children. And so is the humane spirit of those

you should not miss. It is the Musée International de la

who try to bring comfort. The exhibition brings tears to

Croix-Rouge et du Croissant-Rouge in Geneva. As you

the eyes of even cynical, veteran journalists.

enter the building you will see Dostoevsky's words:


The Red Cross arose out of the battle of Solferino between Austrian and Italian forces near the Swiss

We can learn a great deal from the Swiss about

'Everyone is responsible to everyone for everything.'

avoiding the horrors of war and about the underlying

It is the principle on which the International Red Cross

message of the need for mutual tolerance. O

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ODYSSEY SA's leading integrated living mag


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17 & 18 Aug, River Club, Cape Town

Moments from last year's Celebrate Life Festival. Photos by ShootsOnLine, website and Facebook page.



The 'exploding' trend in holistic living will be showcased in all its forms at Cape Town's popular annual Celebrate Life Festival. We take a look to find out what we can expect from the festival this year.


esigned to provide an affordable opportunity for exploring a multitude of life-enhancing options in a single location, the festival encompasses






presented in a relaxed and fun atmosphere. This year Celebrate Life has teamed up with Similasan, a leading European homeopathic ear, nose and throat brand available throughout SA, to add an international dimension to the program of expert presenters, informative

'This year's Celebrate Life Festival has an outstanding agenda of experts serving the health and conscious living market,' says Paul Botha. Right: World leading nutritionist, Dr Geert Verhels

demonstrations and beneficial workshops that operate alongside a comprehensive array of products, modalities and great food. The line-up of local and international experts in integrated healing, well-being and conscious living is headlined by Dr Geert Verhelst, one of the world's leading lights in nutrition, diabetes and cholesterol. A physician, medical homeopath, lecturer and author, Belgium-based Dr Verhelst's Groot Handbook Geneeskrachtige Planten is widely regarded as the authority on medicinal plants in parts of Europe. 'This year's Celebrate Life Festival has an outstanding agenda of experts serving the health and conscious living market,' says Paul Botha from Kahuna Promotions, festival organisers. 'Everyone who has an interest in their well-being is urged to experience two days of interacting with some of the finest minds in the field.' Maria Ascencao, spokesperson for Similasan in SA, said the festival highlights the exploding popularity of

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holistic wellness. 'We invite all Capetonians to explore the festival's multitude of exciting and insightful offerings,' she added. Demonstrations range from food preparation and various forms of dance and exercise to songs and music. Workshops include Tai Chi, Tarot, drumming, and the celebration of sound and sustainable lifestyle topics. Nearly 100 stall holders will display the full spectrum of holistic well-being. Centrally situated with ample free parking at the River Club in Observatory, the Celebrate Life Festival encourages you to let your soul soar as you 'spoil your body, stretch your mind and feed your spirit'. O The Celebrate Life Festival venue is at the River Club, Observatory, Cape Town, and runs from 17-18 August. One entry fee (R65/day or R110/weekend) secures access to all exhibitions, talks, workshops and demonstrations. Visit here and here for more.

We have TWO Similasan hampers to give away to give away. Email us here with your full name and postal address by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.

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birthing the new

July is Ubuntu month – the first one. Cape Town's Novalis Ubuntu Institute is not only celebrating during this month but is aligned, as its name implies, with an on-going interest in the core values of Ubuntu. Anne-Lise Bure, Novalis CEO, reports.




eyond the events and celebrations of Ubuntu

happening at Novalis. Among existing undertakings and

month itself, we at the Novalis Ubuntu Institute

ventures are:

have opened our doors and hearts to attract and

collaborate with people of like mind. Our invitation is to

Ubuntu Business Network meetings; Complimentary Exchange Markets;

unite in the cause of consciousness-raising events in Cape

Movie and Discussion (MAD) evenings;

Town. We welcome people and organisations that are in

Growing the 'Creative Field' and co-creating post-2012

harmony with our (Ubuntu) principles to use the Novalis


Ubuntu Institute's existing organisational infrastructure,

Creative Field events;

contacts and facilities to that end. The Institute's facilities

Providing a 'home base' for those already committed

are perfectly suited to operate as a conference venue of

to and active within the scope of the Novalis Ubuntu

choice for educational and training workshops, as well as


a variety of other events.

Drumming circles;

We have chosen the Ubuntu principles (see box) to

Networking luncheons;

enhance and expand existing and future initiatives that

Fundraising concerts for artists of all kinds, including

consciously promote the creation of a healthy civil society

poets and visual artists;

and, for want of a better way of saying it, to help in the

Book launches; and

creation of a 'New Earth'.

A variety of consciousness-raising conferences and related events.

Post 2012

We partner and support all who are growing a healthy

The much-discussed 2012 Global Shift has come and

sustainable community, through our own programs and

gone – and despite the comments of some, the changes

by partnering with many Novalis associates including

long forecast are now fully underway. They are being

teaching luminaries, Natalia Baker, Michael Tellinger, Linda

experienced locally and worldwide as a fundamental

Smith and a variety of yoga and other consciousness

shift from an out-dated and unsustainable way of being

raising teachers, along with organisations and groups

and doing, to live in a far more integrated, human- and

such as Metavarsity, AA, Course in Miracles, Intuition and

earth-friendly sustainable way, in every sense of the word.

Healing, The Talent Exchange, Yelders, I AM Someone,

Novalis Ubuntu Institute gladly hosts events that

Emissaries of Divine Light, The Creative Field project,

activate applied personal and social transformation

The Next Generation project, A Chance for Every Child

in line with the broadly humanistic and eco-friendly

initiative, and others.

requirements of this time. As we commit to doing things differently, we need creative support spaces for dialogue and to have the conversations about finding smart solutions. We need to help develop whole, healthy people fit to stand strong in a world that is changing with great and unprecedented rapidity. The impending necessity is to birth the 'New Earth', which will be 'green', eco-sustainable and human-friendly, as well as operate on an appropriate human scale.

Think Global, Act Local The 'Local Work for Global Sustainability' project showcases 'local is lekker' by linking civil society, government and business ventures working together to create a better world for all; along with harnessing resources, information and energy to tackle the numerous problems in our communities, from drug abuse and severe poverty, to the threat of another lost generation. Novalis alliance partners include Sofia Association

What the Institute is about

(Sweden) and The Light Centre (US) working with Novalis'

Novalis Ubuntu Institute Resource Centre Venue situated

outreach programs uplifting and enriching adult workers

at 39 Rosmead Avenue,

who care for children from severely disadvantaged

Wynberg, Cape Town, is all

about 'birthing the new', providing a venue and a hub

communities in Western Cape.

for social transformation programs, people and projects

A Chance for Every Child – Novalis' primary theme

coming together to manifest what we see as part of a

project – was initiated to do a baseline study, committed

civil society 'grand alliance' through local initiatives and

to produce an educational philosophy and framework to

shared action. Our wish is to host your projects and

inform an enrichment program for caregivers, educators

initiatives that are designed to add to, build on and grow

and youth leaders caring for the many children growing

a shared new community vision, along with what's already

up in dire and challenging circumstances.



Healing our Society Novalis Ubuntu Institute carries the torch for a powerful cross-pollinating vision to link the resources of the greater Cape Town community (along with partners from around the country and the broader international community) with those who need it most, to ensure the best chance for every child. Our core vision is to action the power, mandate and promise of our remarkable SA Constitution and its Bill of Rights in which everyone, regardless of any other consideration, is seen as equal – and needs to have the opportunity to fully manifest their true potential. The term Ubuntu has generally been applied to people and is usually thought of as being about people, and both these approaches we see as perfectly valid and true. But the term also means that we as individuals find our meaning in community and in relationship with others. This goes beyond the limits of human interactions and into our greater interaction with all the fellow creatures with which we share our world and with the eco-systems underpinning all of our planet's life, which includes us all as humanity. This elevates the term, Ubuntu, as potentially very broad in scope and in its practical manifestation, drawing in people of goodwill and alignment with this concept from right across political, ethnic, cultural and other apparent 'divides' into a commonality of purpose and deed. Ubuntu is a principle which can be spoken about at length, but is also one of those things that you will recognise when you experience it – just like love, kindness and compassion – every human being is wired to want and know these things and it is our aim to help bring the resource of Ubuntu to everyone we can reach, either directly through our own activities, or together with

Novalis & the Spirit of Ubuntu Novalis Ubuntu Institute is aligned spiritually and physically with essential principles of Ubuntu. For us at Novalis, Ubuntu represents: An ancient and universal philosophy; An African word for a universal concept; The potential for being (fully) human; To value the good of the community above self-interest; To strive to help people in the spirit of service; To show respect to others and to be honest and trustworthy; Seeing humanity as an integral part of the eco-systems; The development of a communal responsibility to sustain life; Shares natural resources on the principles of equity among and between generations; Fairness to all; Compassion for all; and A collective respect for human dignity.

our partners, existing and new. O

Come & visit Novalis Ubuntu Institute & collaborate with us in

consciousness-raising events in Cape Town.

Tel +27 21 797 1857 Fax +27 21 (0) 86 659 0478




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Who Is Solomon?




American chiropractor Dr Eric Pearl discovered some years ago, and to his own amazement, that while treating patients using chiropractic techniques, something else entirely beyond his understanding was taking place – powerful energies moved through him and his patients had, on occasions and before his eyes, remarkable healings and extraordinary improvements to even some of the most intractable physical conditions of the body. In his latest book, Solomon Speaks, Dr Pearl explains that, through the support of a high consciousness source called Solomon, he was aided and guided through the process of grounding this new energy, which he has called Reconnective Healing. The following is an extract from the book, quoting directly from Solomon as to who and what he is, and from where the information he shared has come.


e have all met before, and here we are. No accident, is it? You have to see that our lives are united in a very deep and complex manner. It's an interwoven tapestry of existence. And it's beautiful. We will work together. We will be brave in the doing of it. We are fond of names. It is of little consequence to me by which you call me forward. The name Solomon was attached to me arbitrarily through Fred and Eric's device. If Solomon is convenient, that is perfectly acceptable. Aaron likes his name very much. It's very likable. I'm very much a part of that spiritual realm that can be labelled Aaron, and Aaron is very involved in what might be labelled, as you refer to me, Solomon. I am not an entity the way you perceive. I use this body to communicate a wealth of knowledge that comes through the experience of many, many energies. I am a product of that agreement of energy. This is just the manifestation, not what it is. It is like the wind blowing through the trees. The wind isn't the sound of the trees rustling, but that sound is the manifestation of it. It talks in a language that you can understand. But in actuality, what really is happening with all of this – in this space now – is the energy transfer. That's what is qualitative. The words are recognisable, but there is another energy transfer that is going on that is deeper, that is more profound. We are entities that have amassed a great confluence of energy that is helping those who must find their way in this point in time, where things are going to change rapidly. They are here, and we are here to unveil the change and be able to help them deal with it as it reveals itself. In essence, we are all of a great entity of the same energy, so I don't want to lead you wrong in thinking that we are very distinct personalities. On one level we are; but on another, greater picture, we are of one force. We bloom in different ways. I'm trying to find a way to help you visualise. We are of a common blood. Our force has been the force of eternity. Our lives manifest this eternity in different realms. We are at one with our lives, and we are at one with eternity. I come from an energy source that has been in time. It has been in the inception of life itself. It is a plane of existence that has never been touched until recently. It has come because the alarm has sounded. It comes in a way that is fundamental to our greater understanding of the forces that operate within the universe. Our entity, as it were, is a family of energies that converge. There are many members of this



Reprinted with permission from Hay House Publishers. For more info on the book visit here

family; Fred and Eric happen to each be one, as do you. We have missions, as it were, in various planes. Our mission here is of a very urgent nature: the need for people to understand their roles in the universe. There is a great time ahead. But great struggle to it as well. We have been here for you before. We have always been here. We will be a part of That Which Is as we carry you in our hearts. We feel your energy. I am only an intermediary to greater energy. I am part of that energy, and I am handing it to you. It is there to help. I am as much a conduit as you are. We are a chain leading to the centre, That Which Is. I am representative of another facet of that energy. We are many individuals in one force field. We are expressing various facets of a greater truth as it is unveiled. You might ask if I'm a personality, because I am personable in this interaction. If I were to be here and just allow you to experience it, there would be value, but you wouldn't recognise it. So in other words, I speak through Fred – and through that, people somehow are validated, because I have no judgment issues with anyone. I am not about judging anyone. I'm only there to help them remember who they are and the greatness they are and that greatness that is in all human life-forms and the respect with which somebody should be treated. Once that is fully realized, then you do have paradise. O



Eric's Epilogue Without the wisdom of Aaron and Solomon, I don't know that I would have had the necessary determination to have brought Reconnective Healing onto the planet. When I was lost, frightened, or confused, I came to Aaron and Solomon. When I needed insight, I came to Aaron and Solomon. Fred's patience in being the 'telephone' through which I could speak with them was a godsend in that it gave me the courage to persevere through everything – the biggest obstacle being my own self-doubt. The philosophy of this work is not an 'easy grasp' for everyone. There is a commitment to this work and bringing it through in its purity that comes from an unshakable inner knowingness that there is both a need and a purpose for this. Solomon has shown me that there is a clear reason and purpose for everything, and that everything makes perfect sense once we allow ourselves to step back three feet to observe the larger picture. Solomon has shone the light when the tunnel seemed the darkest. I feel that we are more than fortunate if we discover our life purpose. And, truly, more's the better if we have the courage to live it. For Solomon and Aaron, I cannot thank you enough for allowing me to see my life purpose, and giving me the courage to live it.

'There is a logical reason for everything that is happening in this world, and beyond – and it all makes perfect sense.' Lois Pearl (Eric's late mother)

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Taming the Mind An immutable fact is that human beings through the ages have

learnt to use the mind to achieve extraordinary feats, as well as to attain happiness. Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965), the Nobel Peace Prize-winning medical missionary and philosopher, said that success is not the key to happiness. Rather, he observed, 'happiness is the key to success'. Dr Sibis Mouton reports.



o many self-help books nowadays tell us that the

says her intention is to bring 'joy to billions'. We could

mind is a magnificent tool. I agree with that; but I

summarise her 'secret' by saying that one must control

would like to propose that our minds can be used

one's thoughts and only think and speak of the good

for more than just accomplishments and the pursuit of

things that we want in life. Imagination and good feelings

happiness. And what is more, for the highest purpose, we

play the primary role. J  J Rowling, creator of the Harry

actually have to lose our minds.

Potter books, said something similar in her graduation

Many of us are familiar with the writings of Rhonda

ceremony speech at Harvard University in 2008. She

Byrne. She has now written three books in the same

stressed that we don't need magic, we just need a

genre: The Secret, The Power and The Magic. Byrne

powerful imagination to change the world for the better.

According to Rhonda Byrne, we can use the mind to

Worshippers apparently gathered at Avebury to

help us give love – and love has no limits. The force of

celebrate life and death, as opposed to the nearby

love can give us health, happiness and an incredible zest

Stonehenge site that was used to worship the sun

for life. So I conclude that the prime purpose of the mind

and moon. The site has a magical aura to it, with an

is, by love, to attract all good things into our lives. The

atmosphere of greatness and reverence so rare in our

second purpose is to give the mind wings, as it is the

contemporary world it makes one think that modern

origin of imagination, which helps us to cross new rivers

society might have lost something precious over the

and come up with fresh ideas to improve our lives.


Through the ages, mankind has also used the mind

I came across a strange story about stones and

for prayer and devotion to a higher power. I visited

extraterrestrial contact during a recent trip to South

the ancient site of Avebury in Wiltshire, England on

Africa's Drakensberg mountains. The imaginative powers

my sabbatical leave this year. The site, a remnant of

of your mind will be challenged by this one. Apparently,

Neolithic times, is England's largest henge monument. It

there is a small beacon of stones on the top of Champagne

consists of an outer circle of stones with two inner circles.

Castle Peak, the second highest peak in the Drakensberg

Originally, there were apparently 400 stones; now only

(3 377m). In 1990, an 82-year-old lady, Elizabeth Klarer,

27 are left. Some of the Avebury stones are massive: the

asked that a helicopter take her up to visit the beacon.

heaviest is the Swindon Stone, at 65 tons. There are two

Her belief was that this beacon, and another three in

closely-placed stones that may have been the entrance

Germany, Scotland and South America, were used by

to a ceremonial area (see photo top right). I heard the

spaceships to navigate celestial dimensions. On arrival,

guide explaining that, in general, the stones were used as

she walked to the cairn of stones and proceeded to repack

a portal to other dimensions.

them. Then she pointed her marble-sized ring, made of



crystal, at the cairn and, to everyone's astonishment,

to self-realisation. To be able to lose the ego and so

the ring started to vibrate. For her, this was proof that

transcend duality is what I would like to call the highest

the beacon was operating and told the guide that in the

purpose of the mind.

event of an alien invasion of Earth, this site – along with

Transcending the mind and reaching this higher

the other beacons – would be the safest place on the

purpose seems to be very challenging. Everything we

planet, as aliens would never destroy their own navigation

have learnt and worked for – our image, money, job titles,

system. If you visit the summit today, you will find a patch

status, and so forth – must be thrown out the window.

of ground where no grass grows. It is here that, in the

Now, how many people are going to do that? My common

centre of a four-metre diameter area, you will find a small

sense says very few.

pile of stones. So we can use our minds to attract 'good things'; to exercise our imagination; to think intellectually; and



So, is the idea of taming the mind fact or fiction? Is it an achievable aim, or just a spiritual ideal destined to remain eternally inaccessible?

to pursue devotional ends. How else could we possibly

It seems that it would take a surrendering of the mind

use this extraordinary resource? In order to attract good

and all our false beliefs in order to open up to the blissful

things, however, we first need to tame the mind. An

state of spirit. This state or reaching of enlightenment can

untamed mind can actually attract bad things. In his DVD

shortly be described as an unusual state of awareness

Time is an Illusion, Eckhard Tolle says that modern anxiety comes from our minds. We project ourselves into the future, where we build the most awful 'what if' scenarios. To this famous spiritual teacher, the anxiety-driven modern person is actually mentally unsound. Here, the mind represents an obstacle, rather than a resource. It leads us out of the moment, making it impossible to experience the beauty of the Now. Furthermore, if we believe our mind-made calamities, we will actually attract them. No wonder some ancient texts say the mind acts as an enemy for those who can't control it. Echoing some of India's enlightened masters, Tolle goes on to caution us against identifying with our thoughts. His advice is not to interpret, but just to be. This kind of 'taming the mind' means to 'transcend the mind'. Even Dr David Hawkins, a Western teacher of enlightenment, says: 'The mind is not really you. As soon as you have realised that, you are on your way to real freedom.' Dr Hawkins says that the ego and the mind are one and the same; the mind is actually the block

that replaces the state of our ordinary consciousness. Ramana Maharshi, enlightened Indian spiritual guru, is much more direct in his teachings on this issue: 'Everyone is committing suicide. The eternal blissful natural state has been smothered by this ignorant life.' Maybe entering this dimension is the portal to a life experienced in all its beauty and fullness. Life is such a great experience. Whether we will ever reach the real eternal blissful state, of course, is all a matter of grace. I hope you are all using your mind to gain happiness for when we are happy, we are in tune with spirit. Let's all enjoy the mystery and paradox of this life by attempting to use the mind wisely, whether we can tame it or not. O See Happenings section pg 194 for info on Sibis' workshop REFERENCES: Byrne, Rhoda – The Power (2010); Klarer, Elizabeth – Beyond the Light; Tolle, Eckhardt – The Illusion of Time (DVD – 2011); Hawkins, Dr David – Dissolving the Ego, Realizing the Self (2011), edited by Scott Jeffrey; Maharshi, Ramana – The Spiritual Teaching of Ramana Maharshi, foreword by CG Jung (1972)

natural living ODYSSEY 65 • 



Maria's Tips

you move too fast


With any luck you'll have the Simon & Garfunkel song that begins with the words in the headline above running through your mind. If so, great. If not, it comes from a song titled The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy), which you can watch on You Tube by clicking here – and listen to the lyrics because this time we are going to consider the gifts of wintering, which include going inward, slowing down and taking time to hibernate a bit. Maria Ascencao reports.





he thing about nature is that it is inherently wise. Some people think this is because it is all created, organised and driven by

a supreme and divine being, while others feel that nature is indeed super-organised but not necessarily by a divine being as such, more a benign creative impulse (a non-personalised 'god-force', if you will). Still others believe, from a rather narrow scientific perspective, that nature's wisdom is the result of literally billions of years of naturally-driven adaptive changes to both creatures and the eco-systems they dwell in. Whatever your construction on why nature is as it is, though, there is a general agreement that it is beautiful, wonderfully complex and marvelous in its interwoven relationships between the full spectrum of life, as we know it, and the planet on which we live. So, if nature is so smart, by whatever measure, and however it came to be so, should we not be listening to it a bit more? Shouldn't we step back from imposing our human ways all too often and take from nature some of the wisdom of its cycles and seasons? When it comes to dealing with the major climate cycles of our lives it may be far wiser of us to follow the wisdom of nature; to be expansive, and full of expressive outward-moving energy in summer, and, as a counterbalance, inward and more contemplative in the darker, wintery months. We do not – indeed cannot – go into hibernation as so many creatures do when winter comes round. Instead, we humans try to 'normalise' everything, using heaters and air conditioners, sealing ourselves off from nature and mostly doing our very best not to be too put out of our human-oriented routines by the seasons' impositions. Think on this for a minute or two, while taking in the lovely, restful S&G tune we've linked to this article. Perhaps you'll see the point that's being made as you take a few moments out of your busy day to slow down and feel a bit more groovy.

Winter warming

Years back, keeping warm and comfy in winter was called cocooning. By whatever name (and cocooning isn't a bad one), the season calls



for more indoor time – unless you are a winter sports enthusiast, and even then you can't stay outside in sub-zero temperature all the time. Logically, and if we follow the many examples of nature, this is a time for nurturance; cosy fireplaces, warm woolly blankets, and close connections with friends, family and loved ones. The order of the winter's day should be great meals around the family table, good company, some lovely red wine or a non-alcoholic glühwein, seasoned with cinnamon, cloves and other warming spices. Whatever your style – retreating into isolation from the business of the world, or entertaining friends and family in the comfort of your home – the point is that in the winter time, you should consider a change to your modus of being, orienting towards a more nurturing, inward way of being that reflects the requirements of the season. If we look back at human history, it is only in the last 130 years or so that electricity and instantly-available heat and light have changed how we live. Our ancestors used to gather in the dark, colder months, around a central fire and engage in those crucial personal interactions that define us as a human family – story-telling, philosophical discussions and just good old-fashioned conversation. We should consider whether all the changes our marvellous technologies have brought have been unremittingly good for us – perhaps, along the way, we have lost a trick or two which nature intended us to use.

Rest & Recuperation

We are all much busier than we used to be in these hectically rapid and changing times. This takes a huge toll on us. Winter is the obvious and appropriate time to try to calm all the craziness down a bit, taking time to read, cuddle up, or get into one of those deep conversations with friends or family which make our lives so much richer. It is also a time to try to heal our bodies from the stresses and strains of modern life. Eating healthily-prepared, organically-grown food, cooked with

tools and building blocks it needs to repair the damage

real love for the people you love, can do more good for

that our lifestyles inevitably cause. So don't forget the

you than you may realise. This is also the time to do

regular use of high-quality supplementation from a trusted

those indoor activities that you might not otherwise take

manufacturer, along with your organic food, to help your

the time to do – reading, yoga and meditation being

body put right whatever stress, toxic environmental

just a few. But even just cuddling up to your beloved

insults, poor eating habits and over-busy-ness have

or your cat/dog under a warm blanket and watching a

pushed out of kilter.

life-affirming movie will do you a world of good. Giving your body plenty of rest – including lots of sleep, which we'll get to in a minute – is important, but just as important to being in top form is giving it all the



Greeting the sun

One of the things about winter, which is less severe for

We are all much busier than we used to be in these hectically rapid and changing times. This takes a huge toll on us. Winter is the obvious and appropriate time to try to calm all the craziness down a bit, taking time to read, cuddle up, or get into one of those deep conversations with friends or family which make our lives so much richer.

from too much harsh sunlight. Likewise, in winter, we can end up getting too little sunlight. But one of the joys of winter in Southern Africa is that when it is sunny, we can spend an hour or two soaking up the gentler UV-diminished sunlight that is available on clear-skied days. It is such a balm to the body and soul that if you simply haven't in recent years taken the time to relax in the winter sunlight, you should try it out to remember what you've been missing. It's guaranteed your body will lap it up.


Part of the issue with sunlight is that it helps drive our inner biological clock, known as the circadian rhythm. It stands to reason that if you go against nature's grain, for example, insisting on rising at the same time (predawn in winter most likely) that you do in summer, you'll be creating some inner stress as your body tries to tell you to do the obvious and get up when it's light. Of course, this is somewhat idealised given our time-driven and rush-around lives. But that is the whole point of this article – to remind you that winter affords you a biologically appropriate time to withdraw and go inwards. The busiest executive can find the time to do this if they try, even if it's not every day. Adapting to your body's natural cycles, even if only at weekends, is one of the ways of staying in tune with what nature is asking of us. Some people do not know and have not realised that your body is not the same in winter as it is in summer. It's almost as if we have two very different seasonal body biochemistries and seasonal affect disorder (SAD), which is usually thought of as a problem for sun-deprived folks in the Nordic countries, is a broader problem than merely having too little sun and light in winter. SAD is also (though less frequently) caused by having too much light at the wrong times. Inappropriate light exposure also causes sleep problems as this interferes with the hormones necessary for good quality and sufficient sleep.

us in the Southern hemisphere than those who live in

In fact, anything which knocks our circadian rhythms out

northern climes, is that there is generally less sun, and

of whack can cause a cascading set of problems, including

it is less severe. We need a balanced dose of sunlight

mood issues and sleep problems.

to keep us in optimal health, including, as is written of

Getting enough sleep, rest and recuperation time,

elsewhere in this issue, maintaining the balance of key

plus giving your body what it needs to repair itself, are the

hormones in our bodies.

keys for turning those overcast winter days from 'gloomy'

Too much sun on lightly shaded skins in our harsh

or 'bleak' into an opportunity to rest in your natural

African summers is not a good thing for most people.

rhythms and cycles, and to get back into step with the

Even dark-skinned ethnic Africans can get some skin

wisdom that nature brings.

cancers and other skin problems, as well as eye cataracts

See page 102 for more on Healthy Sleep. O





There is more to your bone health than calcium. There have been some exciting breakthroughs for improved bone health, reports Vanessa Ascencao.

Bone health – Weight-bearing exercise is an excellent way to keep your bones strong




steoporosis affects huge numbers of people worldwide – and the numbers are on the rise. What precisely is driving this global pandemic on

bone weakness and poor development remains a complex and not adequately answered question. Could it be our sedentary lifestyles? Or perhaps it's our every-increasing consumption of animal products and the toxic chemicals in our food and environment, as well as the lack of key nutrients in our diet? Between 1990 and 2000, there was a 25% increase in the number of hip fractures worldwide. By the year 2050, the risk of hip fracture is projected to increase 240% and 310% for women and men, respectively. It is now well known that bone health depends on much more than just adding calcium to the diet. It's a fine balance between your diet and your lifestyle. An alkaline diet is best, since an acidic diet, or a diet that results in increased acidity, will likely result in calcium being drawn out of the bones as the body fights to restore its

Bone loss speeds up most dramatically during the first 10 years after menopause, which is the period when osteoporosis is most likely to develop. and preventing osteoporosis – but they are not the only key players. The replacement of calcium through the diet is one obvious route to take, but there is also the issue of the body's optimal uptake of any calcium provided to it. So one of the undisputed benefits of vitamin D is that it helps absorption of calcium – this link has been known for many decades. So these two nutritional components obviously go together and make up an important aspect of bone health management. But there are others, some of which we are just beginning to understand properly.

preferred alkaline internal environment. Balancing your

What about Vitamin K?

hormones, managing stress levels, limiting enviro-toxins

Although the role of vitamin K in bone health has been

and xenoestrogens (estrogen-like compounds that come

known for several decades, growing evidence suggests

from the external environment) and a good strength

that this particular vitamin plays a vital – and surprisingly

training program all add to the picture of what makes

important – role in the prevention and treatment of

for better bone health. An intricate balance of all of the

osteoporosis. New evidence shows vitamin K, specifically

above is important and the key to prevention as well as

vitamin K2, to be another key player in your bone health,

management of loss of bone density.

and may be just as crucial in helping you prevent bone

Ideally, prevention of bone loss through a nutritional

fractures as you age.

approach would begin prior to a person's age of peak

While most people are vaguely aware of vitamin K,

bone mass at 18-24 years old, for those beyond peak

not everyone is well versed in what it is, where it comes

bone mass years, age-related bone density decline is

from and how it functions in the body. Firstly, it is a

expected to be 0.5-1% annually, with an increase to 2-3%

vital nutrient associated with green, leafy vegetables.

in postmenopausal women.

According to a study by researchers from Rensselaer

Bone loss speeds up most dramatically during the

Polytechnic Institute, the Hospital for Special Surgery in

first 10 years after menopause, which is the period when

NY, Yale University, Villanova University, and published in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, has shown just how important this vitamin is in keeping our bones strong and healthy. The researchers discovered that a poorly-understood protein called osteocalcin appears to be essential to protecting bones from fractures, but that it can only be absorbed by bones through the action of vitamin K. 'This study is important because it implicates, for the

osteoporosis is most likely to develop. Nutritional factors affecting bone structure and turnover include organic minerals (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium and trace minerals), vitamins (A, D, E, K, and the Bs) and macronutrients (proteins and fatty acids). Of these, calcium, and vitamin D have historically been viewed as most important in the promotion of bone health

more than just calcium ODYSSEY 71 • 


pooled evidence of seven Japanese trials shows that vitamin K2 supplementation produces a 60% reduction in vertebral fractures and an 80% reduction in hip and other non-vertebral fractures. Researchers in the Netherlands showed that vitamin K2 is three times more effective than vitamin K1 in raising osteocalcin, which controls the building of bone. So, if you currently take calcium and vitamin D for your bones, it's important that you also get plenty of vitamin K2. These three nutrients have a synergistic effect that cannot be achieved when one piece of the puzzle is

missing. Indeed, the benefits of calcium and vitamin D are largely dependent on vitamin K. Also, there's new evidence that it is vitamin K (specifically, vitamin K2) that directs calcium to your skeleton, while preventing it from being deposited where you don't want it – in your organs, joint spaces, and arteries. A large part of arterial plaque consists of calcium

Sunshine is a reliable source of vitamin K

first time, the role of osteocalcin in giving bone the ability to resist fracture,' lead researcher Deepak Vashishth said. 'Since osteocalcin is always the point of fracture, we believe that strengthening it could lead to a strengthening of the overall bone.' Notably, osteocalcin must undergo a process called carboxylation before it can be absorbed into bones. This


Vitamin D3 Calcium is the major structural element of bones and teeth. Your body needs several nutrients in order for calcium to be absorbed and used properly. Two of

How does vitamin K work?

so the body receives maximum benefit, while vitamin K

Prior studies have linked higher vitamin K levels to improved bone health. The Rotterdam Study, a long-term investigation of risk factors for chronic disease in old age, found that over a 10-year period, people who consumed

increases absorption of calcium from the small intestine helps ensure calcium builds up in the bones and not in soft tissues. There is even evidence that the safety of vitamin D is dependent on vitamin K, and that vitamin D toxicity (although very rare with the D3 form) is actually caused by vitamin K2 deficiency.

cardiovascular death than average. This effect may be

A look at the sunshine vitamin

explained by this vitamin's role in moving vitamin K from

Vitamin D is frequently called the 'sunshine vitamin'. It's

the blood – where it plays a key role in blood clotting,

necessary for normal bone mineralisation and growth,

but where it can also eventually accumulate in arteries

maintenance of muscle strength and co-ordination,

leading to calcification, if not cycled into the body for its

cardiovascular health, and a robust and balanced immune

other uses, such as in strengthening the bones.

function. During winter, it's very possible you're not

the most vitamin K2 had 50% less arterial calcification and


from calcifying when in the presence of high calcium

these nutrients are vitamin D and vitamin K. Vitamin D

(vitamin K1) found primarily in green, leafy vegetables.


the arteries'. Vitamin K helps protect your blood vessels

process is performed by vitamin K.

Our bodies synthesise vitamin K2 from a precursor


deposits (atherosclerosis), hence the term 'hardening of

There has been some remarkable research about the

getting your daily dose. But even when the sun is shining,

protective effects of vitamin K2 against osteoporosis. A

how often do you actually see it? If you're like most

number of Japanese trials have shown that vitamin K2

people, not often – especially if you work in an office

completely reverses bone loss and in some cases even

or never leave the house without covering yourself in

increases bone mass in people with osteoporosis. The


Bone Building Menu Breakfast – Green  vegetable juice (cucumber, spinach, apple, celery and lime) and a small bowl of quinoa with mixed seeds, some honey or xylitol or chia seed porridge.

Snack – Raw almonds or mixed unsalted nuts. Walnuts are also a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids. Lunch – Chickpea and quinoa salad  tossed with tomatoes, cucumber, almonds and mint or fresh fish, or free-range chicken breast with a large raw salad with olive oil or coconut oil. Feel free to add cooked green veg. Snack: fresh fruit

Follow a regime of green juices to maintain bone health

If you are taking anticoagulant drugs, your doctor will most probably inform you that vitamin K counteracts

Dinner – Raw shredded carrot and beet salad or any salad of choice with some steamed veggies, fresh salmon or any other fresh fish. You may also replace the fish with some quinoa.

the intended effects of your prescription so make sure you discuss your vitamin K intake with your professional health practitioner. Otherwise, vitamin K is strangely but widely ignored by mainstream medicine, even though it is essential to your bone-building capacity.

Bone health benefits of Vitamin K stun researchers Many scientific studies confirm vitamin K's positive effects on bone-building processes. One good example is an article published in the European Journal of Pharmacology by Akiyama and team. The researchers actually identified a process where a form of vitamin K2, a menaquinone known as MK-4, inhibits the formation of osteoclasts. Interestingly, bisphosphonate drugs attempt to perform a similar function, but fail miserably at matching the co-ordinated performance of vitamin K. This is because bisphosphonate drugs damage and distort osteoclasts, while vitamin K helps co-ordinate the right amount of osteoclast production with other bone cells so as to achieve the appropriate balance. Bisphosphonates are synthetic drugs deprived of a biological role in bone metabolism unlike vitamins and other natural elements. How sad that this crucial distinction is usually ignored by mainstream medicine. Another study on vitamin K and fracture prevention

Best exercises Yoga – Great for the body and mind. Keeps you

supple and strengthens the core.

Pilates – Again an excellent way to strengthen

the core

Strength training – 3-times-a-week. it is  worthwhile getting a personal trainer for at least a month to show you the ropes so that you don't injure yourself, thereafter if you choose you may go on your own.

Walking – One of the best exercises for cardiovascular health and overall well-being. There is no impact on the joints and it is great to get outside with the kids, the dogs, your partner or a friend.

Supplementation – A study published in Osteoporosis International has concluded that lifetime supplementation with vitamin K1 or, even better, K2, vitamin D3, and calcium is likely to reduce fractures and increase survival in post-menopausal women. Many are under the mistaken impression that a prescription drug combined with calcium supplements is the answer to strong healthy bones, but the regular consumption of a healthy diet, along with safe sun exposure and extra supplementation when appropriate, is likely to be far superior.



had such unexpected positive results that even its lead

maximises natural minerals so that your body has the

author, Dr Angela Cheung, touted it 'surprising'. (Vitamin

materials it needs to do what it was designed to do.

K Supplementation in Postmenopausal Women with

In addition, you need healthy sun exposure along with

Osteopenia [ECKO Trial]: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

regular, weight-bearing exercise.

2008). Published in the journal PLOS Medicine, the study involved 440 post-menopausal women diagnosed with osteopenia. Half of the participants were given a vitamin K1 supplement and the other half took a placebo for two years, with 261 continuing for two more years. While bone density scans showed equal bone loss in both groups, over the four year study period more than double the women who took the placebo suffered fractures compared to the group that took the vitamin K.

Best sources of vitamin K All varieties of vitamin K are fat-soluble and belong to a chemical category called naphthoquinones, but there are two basic types of vitamin K: Phylloquinones, or vitamin K1, which is made by plants and menaquinones; and vitamin K2, synthesised by intestinal bacteria. Unlike vitamin K1, vitamin K2 does not concentrate in the liver. The body stores only limited amounts of vitamin K in the liver, so it is important to have enough bio-available K2 in the body. The richest dietary sources of K1 are green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, Brussels sprouts, green beans, asparagus, and broccoli. Green peas, romaine lettuce, and bell peppers are some of the less concentrated but still very good sources of this vitamin. Even spices such as fresh parsley, oregano, thyme, basil, black and cayenne pepper are rich in vitamin K1. Even though it is fat-soluble, there is no documented

Here are some key ways you can optimise your bone density: Eat foods rich in bone nutrients. Crucial bone nutrients are vitamin D, vitamin C, boron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, folate, silica and calcium. Foods rich in these nutrients include kale, spinach, celery, peppers, carrots, beets, wild salmon, sardines, quinoa, chickpeas, almonds, raspberries, chia seeds and coconut water. Avoid pro-inflammatory foods. Gluten and sugar are the main offenders. Ditch the cereal, granola, crackers, pasta, pizza and bread. No cheese and crackers and no cereal with milk. Eat an alkaline diet. At least 65% of our diet should come from plants (alkaline) with the remainder from protein, seeds, nuts, legumes and grains (acidic). An alkaline diet will keep the blood pH at 7.365 without removing minerals from the bone to buffer acidity. Watch your stress. When we're stressed, we produce cortisol to cope with our stressors. Cortisol increases calcium excretion and inhibits the renewal of the bone-building cells. While we can't eradicate our emotional stressors, we can change how we perceive them. Instead of asking, 'Why does this happen to me?' ask, 'What is my lesson here? How can I see the grace in this?' Take a weekly yoga class, get grounded and connect with more balanced and harmonious people.

toxicity with high doses of vitamin K, with the exception of

Limit your exposure to enviro-toxins. Heavy

synthetic K3 or menadione. Marcus Rohrer Spirulina, one

metals such as mercury, lead, aluminium and fluoride are

of the most nutrient-rich Spirulina products in the world,

bone nutrient mimickers. If bone nutrients are replaced

has announced another nutritional first: the discovery

with heavy metals, the risk of fracture increases. Have

that it additionally contains Vitamin K2.

mercury fillings removed by a biological dentist. Drink

Cyanotech, producers of Marcus Rohrer Spirulina,

filtered versus tap water. Buy lead-free lipstick. Switch to

recently undertook fresh analysis and issued the

a non-fluoride toothpaste like Tom's, Spry or Burt's Bees.

following statement: 'Based on analytical results from an

Balance your sex hormones. Estrogen helps

independent contract laboratory, (our) Spirulina provides

maintain bone density by inhibiting an enzyme that kills

approximately 15mcg/3gm daily serving or 19% of the

the osteoblasts, the bone cells responsible for growth and

Daily Recommended Value of Vitamin K2, and 75mcg/3gm

development of new bone. Check your hormone levels

daily serving of Vitamin K (including all forms) or 94% of

and use a bio-identical hormone if necessary. O

the Daily Recommended Value of Vitamin K.' The summary of our latest knowledge on the subject indicates that one of the best ways to achieve healthy bones is a diet rich in fresh, raw whole foods that



For more info visit and here.




Despite the scientifically accurate fact that one can get a cold or flu any time of the year, the reality is that winter time is when most of us have the highest chance of getting the dreaded 'lurgy'. But there are ways to ward off common viral infections such as these, and ways to treat them if you do get infected. We take a look.

Beating colds & flu – nature's way ODYSSEY 76 • 



s we have pointed out elsewhere in this issue

troublesome little monsters.

(see Jane Griffith's article Herbal Defence Force,

So assuming that you've done your best on the

page 134) it's a great idea to grow your own

nutrition front, but you still fall foul of a hacking,

natural and organic herbal remedies for general immune

snivelling and streaming-eye condition (along with

boosting and to deal with the sniffles, coughs and sore

fevers, head and body aches, and the rest of the

throats that seem come along with the winter chills.

delightful viral package), your next best bet is to try

While the flu has the capacity to genetically morph

to avoid allopathic remedies as far as possible, and go

into something truly dreadful, as it did in 1918 when it

the natural route. There are herbal and homeopathic

killed in the space of just 12 months something like 40

remedies by which some swear - other folks have had

million people, at least, the reality is that most of us are

less success on these fronts and difference usually lies

going to get at least a few doses of flu in our lifetimes.

in the degree of immune suppression (most frequently

And we'll certainly get a few colds along the way,

stress-induced) that the sufferers have.

regardless of how tough our immune systems may be.

If your immune system is really in the dumps, you

In any case, most of us live high-stress, rushed lives,

may have to go for some allopathics, just to be able to

we don't necessarily get all the exercise we should, or all

get through the few days at the height of the 'disease

the rest or all the good nutrition. The result is immune

process' (naturopaths would refer to this as a 'healing

systems that are chronically stressed and, inevitably, the

crisis', but let's split hairs over semantic arguments).

day comes when virus meets less than top-form immune

Still, natural treatments can often work well even in the

system, and a cold or flu comes calling.

presence of much more powerful allopathic treatment

The first and best thing to do is to ward of the evil

programs - check with your health professional on this

little blighters before they can get a grip. And the best

as there can be some interactions of active ingredients

way to do that is to boost your immunity every way

that result in untoward effects.

you can. Despite some naysayers, research still shows

Surprising, perhaps, to some is the fact that the

that high levels of bio-available natural Vitamin C is one

good old hot honey and lemon drink works a treat both

of the best ways to go in this regard, along with high

for symptoms and for boosting your immune system,

levels of anti-oxidants, and the latter in particular can be

assuming, of course, that your lemons actually contain

obtained form a wide range of natural sources, including

significant Vit C content. Combined with this, health

most berries, (especially blue berries and goji berries).

advisors like Patrick Holford are now echoing what

Vitamin C is best obtained from natural sources

naturopaths have been saying more less forever, which

but beware that many fruits are artificially ripened

is that you need not merely take your recommended

indoors and hence have extremely low Vitamin C

daily allowance of Vit C when you get a cold or flu, you

levels. Depending on sources, methods of farming and

need but mega doses. It is very nearly impossible to

ripening, modern oranges produced using standard

overdoes on Vit C (you might get a running tummy if you

large-scale farming methods tend to have Vitamin C

do, so it's easy to tell when you've taken a bit too much)

levels which are fraction of those produced in, say, the

in the midst of a health challenge that specifically draws

1950s using longstanding traditional methods - in some

down the body's available Vit C - and in any case, this

cases a single orange from that era had more than 50

vitamin doesn't stay active in the body very long after

times the Vit C levels of some modern oranges.

it has been taken. Most of the knowledgeable sources

So if you are going to seek natural Vit C sources (see

suggest that as soon as a cold a flu begins to bite, you

Odyssey Magazine, Issue 2, 2013, page 80-91) there are

should be taking 1000-2000mg of Vit C hourly or every

many options, but the main one is to ensure your fruit

two hours. This should be the best possible quality of

and veggies are organically grown and free of pesticides

organic Vit C in the form of a complementary health

and herbicides.

product from a reputable manufacturer. This sort of Vit C

Cold and flu viruses are similar but not the same,

source isn't the same thing as synthesised ascorbic acid

and they have a high degree of genetic mutability,

as the former has much higher bio-availability than the

making them perennial problems, with constantly

latter, and therefore far more active potency in the body.

shifting envelope genes that determine how they appear

Beyond the effects of the viruses themselves,

to the body's defence mechanisms. This makes them

there is the usual problem of accompanying bacterial



infections. Naturopaths would generally not recommend




infections, but rather riding them out using diet, supplements, phytotherapy (herbs), and perhaps also homeopathic, flower essence and other support remedies. But we can't all necessarily afford the four or five days of bed rest that would also come along with such an approach - we may need to be at that critical meeting, and hopefully be so in a way that doesn't set off health alarm bells for everyone else in the room. So a considered approach to using both natural and allopathic remedies is best. If you go to your conventional medical doctor with a cold or flu, most will give you a prescription for antibiotics, even though you may not necessarily have a significant secondary infection, even one at all. This long-standing practice is now being changed because of the development of drug resistant bacteria of all kinds, so antibiotics should revert to being used only when an infection has advanced to the point where something close to emergency intervention is necessary. This is more the case with those with compromised immune systems, those already dealing with major health problems or with a history of severe strep throat



Home remedies Salt water

- is among the simplest and most effect

treatments. Gargling with salt water is effective at reducing throat inflammation and fighting against bacteria - and it's great as a preventive too. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water. Gargle for 1 minute. Don't swallow the salt water as it will aggravate any dehydration you may be suffering. For sinus infections, which often accompany strep throat, you can use salt water as a nasal spray. It will act as a decongester and help you to breathe more easily, while actively killing the bacteria involved and rendering the sinuses alkaline and making them inhospitable terrain for troublesome bugs. * Chicken noodle soup - chicken noodle soup actually does deserve its reputation for helping stave off and beat down winter infections. Its use dates as a home remedy back to ancient Egyptian times. Partly it works because the hot broth is in itself soothing to outraged infected tissues in the throat and

clinically proven natural medicines



or bronchitis infections. Strep throat (or more formally, streptococcal pharyngitis) is

upper tracia, if made with organic veggies,

an infection of the pharynx caused by group A streptococcal.

along with healthy free-range chicken, you

The symptoms of strep throat often include a sore throat, fever,

will be given your body a huge vitamin and

cough, fatigue, and enlarged lymph nodes - the latter, along

mineral boost just when it needs it.

with a visual inspection of the infected throat are usually the

* Other cooling and soothing foods can also

primary indicators used by health professional to diagnose strep

be used in combo with hot drinks. Sorbets

throat. The infection is highly contagious but generally subsides

(using organic fruit) are excellent as they

in 3-5 days. In itself, it is mostly merely uncomfortable, making

cool the throat down and do not add extra

the general cold/flu condition that much worse. But for some,

mucus and other components that come

strep throat may be a very serious infection requiring prompt

with dairy products such as ice cream and


yoghurt, for example.

This means that while allopathic or herbal treatment for

* Rest is perhaps the best remedy of all, but

strep throat is often unnecessary in itself, as the body will

as pointed out above, not always practical. If

usually resolve the infection as long it is given the necessary

you can manage it, though, a couple of days

supplement and food support, treating the symptoms can make

in bed with plenty of sleep will help the body

for a more tolerable and quicker recovery. There are a number

focus on and fight any infection and expedite

of over-the-counter medicines available to treat strep throat,

your recovery.

including a growing number of more natural treatments. Some of

* Inhaling the aromatic steam from a

these can be considered 'home remedies'. O

hot peppermint, eucalyptus, thyme and nasturtium tea is a really effective way to clear the airways. Peppermint is a well-known decongestant, while thyme and nasturtium are warming and stimulating, helping to fight off infection and clear catarrh. Use three teaspoons each fresh or two teaspoons dried of thyme, peppermint and nasturtium, 1/4l boiling water, with the herbs left to steep in the boiled water (add them after the water is taken off the boil) for about 15 minutes, strain and then drink. Any leftover tea can be refrigerated for later use. * Another treatment is inhaling essential oils of lavender, eucalyptus, rosemary, ginger, cinnamon or chamomile, adding them to

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leafy greens and non-acid fruits to help keep

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metabolic balance



Behind virtually every healing modality and system, diet and lifestyle program there's a single overriding goal: getting our metabolism balanced again – thereby reaching a healthy, sustainable way of living that automatically moves one towards an ideal weight systematically and naturally. Dr Andreas te Reh reports.


verweight and all the chronic diseases related thereto have become the epidemic of the 21st century. The parameters of our

diets/menus have become sweet and greasy. Parents and children rely too much on modern appetisers of the food industry and the fast-food temples. And when it comes to the subject of exercise, they stick to the Micado principle: Those who move – lose. The consequences? Diseases due to wrong eating habits become a pandemic with continually rising costs. On the one hand there is the dramatically higher number of increasingly younger overweight children needing treatment, and on the other hand there are the sick, suffering from the consequences of their obesity. Not only the public is alarmed, so are health authorities around the world. But in the meantime everyone plays his or her own 'yo-yo' of guilt and atonement more or less often. People juggle between feasting, fasting and regretting – but they cannot find a healthy balance. A ravenous appetite is sometimes an addictive craving for sweet things and giving in to this temptation is the first sign of failure with regard to the previously chosen program to get rid of the fat. 'It must be the glands.' This is a standard sentence heard from people struggling to reduce or maintain their weight. Others used to smile at such 'excuses' and explained that malfunction of the glands is only



If we knew exactly what we can and should eat, we could

trained specifically for this purpose – set out to reach their healthy weight. The time seems to be ripe for such a modern approach as there is general loss of belief in laymen and experts

feast while doing something

alike with false promises of glossy slimness and fitness

for our health and regulating

With the aid of this totally different nutrition program,

our weight permanently.

programs with what appear to be promising lifestyle diets. your internal organs can benefit from a rejuvenation program even as the kilos fall away. The personal individual meal and food plan is the core of the metabolic balance program. The plan of each participant is drawn

seldom responsible for fruitless attempts to lose weight.

up individually based on the correlation of data of his

Scientific research has, however, proved that due to

or her body chemistry, with suitable and metabolically-

wrong eating habits many people do not eat the nutrients

balanced food chemistry. By means of a computer

necessary for their glands to maintain a healthy hormone

program developed solely for this purpose, the results of

balance and thereby also a healthy metabolism.

blood tests and further anamnesis data of the participant

If we knew exactly what we may and should eat,

are correlated with the appropriate foods. The result

we could feast while doing something for our health and

is a meal and food plan which is subdivided into four

regulating our weight permanently.

phases and which has the long-term healing, balance of

Does this sound utopian and unrealistic? It is not.

the metabolism and the correct weight as its aims. This

With metabolic balance (which is both a functional

individual meal framework made up according to the body

process in the body, and a name for a particular dietetic

and nutrition profile is as personal as a fingerprint. This

approach) there is now a method which is as personal

well-founded, medically safe metabolism program which

as the food cravings of each one of us. The word 'diet'

has been tested on 36 000 participants in Germany alone

is derived from the Greek word that means 'way of life'.

provides three meals with healthy, vital food for each

In the ancient world, the purpose of the former was to

participant. At the same time, it is amazingly easy and

heal the latter. Today we have forgotten this ideal, which

user-friendly – even for working people.

meant to encompass our entire way of life. For modern

This is the key to holistic maintenance of health

people, diet has been reduced to an eating (or not eating)

and permanent weight regulation. In general, people

regimen that usually is overly simplified into becoming

who have not been losing weight are not eating what

synonymous with starvation and fasting.

their body really needs. The scientific background

Metabolic balance (the dietetic approach, rather than

and the time-consuming research work on which

the functional process) is a nutrition program which

this revolutionary new idea of a personified

brings the promotion of health and holistic regulation of

nutrition plan is based, verifies what

weight together. It re-establishes our natural ability to


'keep house' again in the correct metabolic state. It is a

discovering – with great relief – in

guideline and signpost away from the seemingly endless

their own bodies. O




circle of starving and bingeing in which many people are trapped. And unlike other diets, where the body 'shrinks'

You can read up these

visibly at first and then bloats again, it helps people to

experiences, the method itself

move towards a healthy weight brought about entirely

and many backgrounds in

without fasting, starving and counting calories.

the book Metabolic Balance

The internal specialist and nutritionist Dr Wolf Funfack,



by Dr Wolf Funfack which was

of Isen near Munich, is the founder and medical father of

published in the Südwestverlag

this method which takes the individual metabolism of the

(October 2005). On the internet

participant fully into account for the first time. It is not a

you can find interesting facts on

diet standard for everyone but a personal nutrition plan

the subject and look for a certified

as a guideline with the aid of which the participants –

supervisor in your vicinity under

under the expert supervision of someone who has been

Communication, Congruence and Compassion CAPE TOWN • July 26, July 27 & 28

Empowerment and Equilibrium JHB • Aug 2nd, Aug 3rd & 4th

Bookings: 082 441 6745 or Info:

Endorsed by:

Metabolic Balance® is a unique nutritional concept that has been scientifically-proven to advance general life quality and improve the metabolic rate! (Dr. Med. Wolf Funfack) Just as people are all unique and individual, no two nutrition plans are exactly alike. Don't settle for a one diet fits all approach. You are unique and a personalised nutrition program must reflect this fact and be designed just for you! You will receive a nutritional program which is 100% personalised and actively supports your unique bio-chemistry and nutritional needs. Please contact us to help you find the name of your nearest Metabolic Balance® health professional: | Telephone 012 803 9035 |



company profile

inspiration & d Take one part dedicated scientist, one part ardent conservationist and one part astute businessman and you have the formulation that allows Trevor Steyn (pictured) to not only thrive in the South African organic skincare market, starting a product range on his own, but also to begin gaining a foothold in Europe, America and the Far East. We take a look.


y his own admission, when he started out in 2002, organic products were not even blips on the radars of the upper-end consumers who today readily buy them. Steyn says he

always had the vision of developing a global company and brand – but did not realise that he would end up with four – Esse which supplies salons and spas in SA and abroad, Botany, Africa Organics

which specialises in body and haircare products and research and development company Natural and Organic Formulations. Steyn studied chemistry at the University of Kwa Zulu-Natal and obtained a masters degree in 1997. His mentor, Professor Siegfried Drewes, inspired a passion for the chemistry of Africa's plants and his research began to focus on the extraction of active compounds from African plants and their possible use in anti-ageing skincare products. Esse – which in Latin means 'to be' – was the product of research into the active properties of Kigelia Africana (better known to the safari set as the sausage tree) that began two years earlier. Through determination – and what Steyn describes as the naïvety of a scientist trying to start a business – Esse was launched in 2002. 'It was an altruistic thing. I thought people needed a natural option and, in the process, I could help promote fair trade in Africa by purchasing sustainably wild-harvested raw materials from rural women's co-operatives that are members of PhytoTrade Africa. You can't help but become involved. We can't get caught on the wrong side of the biodiversity debate – harvesting must be sustainable and people must be properly paid.' Raw materials, like oil pressed from the seeds of Africa's iconic baobab tree, come from a supplier in Mpumalanga or one in Malawi. Marula oil, also extracted from seeds once pulp has been used for the manufacture of beer, is sourced from Swaziland and from Namibia.



Ten years down the line, Steyn has proved that it's more than possible for a business to be successful without compromising on ethics.


Ten years down the line, Steyn has proved that it's more than possible for a business to be successful without compromising on ethics.

Pietermaritzburg. He strongly believes that organic skincare will be the future of high-end skincare.

'Human skin is well-adapted to exposure to the majority

'We are passionate about offering the safest,

of compounds found in organisms living on the surface of our

most effective product possible. We believe that,

planet. We haven't had time to adapt to synthetic chemicals,

by using very high percentages of organic starting

so these are far more likely to have unintended consequences.

materials, there is absolutely no need to compromise

As our knowledge of skin is informed by new research (like the

on efficacy in the anti-ageing skincare market. Our

Human Microbiome Project) it becomes increasingly apparent that

Ecocert certification gives consumers peace of mind

skin is a complex ecosystem. Managing this ecosystem to slow

that the ingredients we use and the packaging we

down ageing and optimise skin health is going to be a focus for

choose are safe for both them and the environment.'

anti-ageing products for decades to come.' O

Growth into the salon and spa market in SA has been relatively fast, driven predominantly by the product's excellent results on skin – as opposed to the trend in the majority of organic product offerings, which has taken time to gain traction in the local

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We have a stunning Esse hamper to giveaway to one lucky reader to the value of R1 000. Click here and give us your full name and postal address details to enter.

market. Export commenced to Holland in 2010. Around 60 to 70 salons in Holland use Esse products, and expansion is now extending into Belgium. In the last 18 months Esse has secured export markets in Austria, Sweden and Asia (including Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia). The most recent target is the notoriously competitive US market which has shown a very open and receptive response to the offering of products with uniquely potent African active ingredients. In 2010, Steyn launched Africa Organics, a hair and body care brand.

choose certified organic for better, healthier skin - results driven skincare - wild-sourced African actives - Ecocert certified organic - the perfect choice for every skin

'It was our attempt to take organic to the masses at an accessible price. Africa Organics has just been completely rebranded and, although it has grown consistently and is stocked in all Dischem outlets, the primary target is America where the launch took place in March this year.' Steyn is passionate about promoting Africa's biodiversity. 'Brazil has taken its plants to the world via skin care. We have got a third of the world's plant biodiversity in Southern Africa. I want to take African plants to the world,' he says. 'Esse has always been research dominant and we will always come up with new products.' He does his own research in a laboratory in Richmond where he lives and where Esse's head office is located. Manufacturing is done in

join our recycle initiative return 10 empties and receive a FREE 100ml product* *Ts & Cs apply. mail for details



health news

By now, you probably have realised the age-old mantra, 'You are what you eat' is really true. But you need to consider not only what you buy, but how you cook it. Eating most of your food raw is ideal. But most of us are not going to be able to accomplish a completely raw diet, and we'll end up cooking some of our food. Smart food preparation starts with high quality foods and food preparation and that means saying bye-bye to your microwave. Need to sterilise a dishcloth? Use your microwave. Microwaving distorts and deforms the molecules of whatever food or other substance you subject to it. Surprisingly there is little research on how microwaves affect organic molecules, or how the human body responds to consuming microwaved food.


Why you shouldn't use microwave ovens

Is melamine crockery safe?

All of us at some or other point in our lives have used a colourfully-decorated melamine dish. Many consider melamine dishes the perfect choice for kids because they are basically indestructible. Melamine resin is fixed and unchanging unless the crockery has hairline fractures or scratches and it is exposed to excessive heat, which is why you should never put them your oven or microwave. Excessive heat can make the plastic unstable and allow the resin to decompose back into its original elements, several of which are highly toxic. Bamboo, BPA-free plastics, stainless steel and glass or china are safer alternatives.

Vaccines & you

A vaccine study published in The Lancet reveals influenza vaccines only prevent the flu in 1.5 out of 100 adults, not 60% as is largely stated in the media. So for every 100 adults you injected with this flu vaccine, you prevent the flu in 1.5 of them, but you cause a neurological disorder in 7.5 of them. Theoretically, this means you are 500% more likely to be harmed by the flu vaccine than helped by it. A new vaccine for influenza has hit the market, and it is the first ever to contain genetically-modified (GM) proteins derived from insect cells. According to reports, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved the vaccine, known as Flublok, which contains recombinant DNA technology and an insect virus known as baculovirus that is purported to help facilitate the more rapid production of vaccines. According to Flublok's package insert, the vaccine is trivalent, which means it contains GM proteins from three different flu strains. Meanwhile, there are reportedly two other GMO flu vaccines currently under development.


DIGIMAG Mangwanani’s unique approach to spa healing combines decadent contemporary wellness therapies with ancient African healing rituals that have been passed down from generations to the healing hands of our traditional therapists. The winning combination of decadent African-infused spa therapies alongside unrivalled African entertainment; authentic cuisine and personalised service makes Mangwanani an unequalled entertainment destination to be savoured.

Moonlight Night Spa INCLUDES: THREE Indulgent African-Inspired Renewing & Healing Spa Therapies Molala; Neo Maoto Foot Massage; Izimanga Full Body Hot Stone Massage; and a delectable Dinner.

PINK Teen Night Spa INCLUDES: THREE Indulgent African-Inspired Renewing & Healing Spa Therapies; Molala; Neo Maoto Foot Massage; Izimanga Full Body Hot Stone Massage; a delectable; plus receive a stunning Mangwanani PINKTeen Gift Set.

ď Ť

We have TWO Moonlight Night Spa Packages (valued at R1099 each) to give away. Simply send your full name and postal address details HERE to stand a chance of winning.


We have TWO Pink Teen Packages (valued at R1499 each) to give away. Simply send your full name and postal address details HERE to stand a chance of winning.

Hot off the Press

ESSE Builders Warehouse We all play our little part in preserving the environment. One slight ‘going-green’ effort can make a considerable positive impact on our environment. To this end, Builders Warehouse is proud to introduce our range of reusable shopping bags so that we can make a difference together. The Builders environmentally friendly shopping bag is re-useable and handmade by a small business initiative in South Africa. These bags not only flaunt different designs, but are great alternatives for single use paper or plastic bags.

Available at Builders Warehouse and Builders Express stores Nationwide.


Esse is certified organic by Ecocert France, accredited by PhytoTrade Africa and supports the Fair Trade movement. This ensures that the raw materials they use are sourced and purchased from local co-operatives to uplift and empower rural communities. Esse uses wild sourced African plants that offer excellent free-radical protection. In addition the unique natural preservative system ensures the products are biodegradable and free of parabens, petrochemicals, synthetic fragrance and synthetic colourants. Their products are packaged in recycled glass. Esse is also accredited by Beauty Without Cruelty and registered with the Vegan Society.

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Decadently luxurious range of unique candles, designed and handmade by artist Gretha Quinlan in her charming studio shop in Greyton. The candles are crafted from an imported German wax for strength, and formulated to be slow burning; causing a stir among candle connoisseurs for their exceptional carved displays of light, premium quality and longevity. Available in vanilla or unscented, these distinctive candles make for the perfect corporate gifts, wedding décor, or accessory to any event that celebrates beauty and elegance. The shop also stocks a small range of gorgeous candle holders, as well as chakra oils, all displayed against the backdrop of original paintings done by the artist. We have ONE 5kg Buddha candle/plant (valued at R900) to give away. Send your name and postal address HERE by 30 July to stand a chance of winning.



World’s first organic cream based on acupuncture & homeopathic principles launched in SA Yungskin is a new, ground-breaking, organic face cream developed using advanced technologies. It is the first and only cream to use quantum energy science and cellular stimulation principles to help restore the skin to its natural youthfulness. Yungskin was developed by renowned Homeopath, Naturopath and Acupuncturist, Dr Philip Sherwin, from Cape Town, who has more than 40 years’ experience in this field. He has ensured that all materials in the manufacturing process are fully recyclable and no testing was done on animals. Dr Sherwin, who has been lauded by Prince Charles for his contribution to the medical profession, says, 'Like every part of your body, the skin on your face resonates its own particular energy field and frequency. Similarly,Yungskin is infused and energized so that the cream synchronizes, stimulates and enhances this energy field at a deep cellular level, just as acupuncture would stimulate certain points on your body and face. Imagine enjoying the benefits of facial acupuncture without the needles and discomfort. The effectiveness of Yungskin lies in its ability to molecularly rejuvenate and regenerate your skin’s etheric energy field, thus reawakening the youthfulness and vibrancy of your cells that have been lost through ageing and harsh environmental conditions. ​The techniques and methodologies used in Yungskin set it apart from other skin products. It is completely natural just like the human skin and each jar is individually infused with energy by Dr Sherwin with specific, computerized equipment developed for this purpose. Dr Sherwin adds, 'What distinguishes Yungskin from other organic face creams is not only the energy infusion but also the love, beautiful music, incense and meditation that become part of every personal infusion session.'

For more info visit

Spindel Spindel is an energy efficient laundry dryer that saves you time and money, whilst also reducing your impact on the environment. Spindel uses superfast spin power instead of heat to remove up to 80% of the leftover moisture from fabrics in just three minutes. Now you can dry your laundry in a fraction of the time and save electricity.

 3

We have THREE jars of Yungsking to give away. Send your name and postal address HERE by 30 July to stand a chance of winning.



4 innovative and convenient sprays designed to assist your body in fighting against winter, the natural way: Cold+Flu Relief: assists in fighting sinus congestion, chills, achiness, headaches and fever ImmunoBooster: assists your immune system in fighting colds and flu and recurring infections Body Skin Tonic: assists in fighting against dry, scaly, itching and red skin Daily Multi: a daily multivitamin spray that assists your metabolism, immune and optical system and overall body health

Sprayology's range of 22 homeopathic and 2 vitamin sprays provide essential ingredients in a uniquely convenient spray form (sprayed into the mouth under the tongue, where they are absorbed directly into the bloodstream) to deliver immediate results and to replenish the body's natural resources to function at optimum levels




Faith in



We connect with Robyn Smith, co-foundeder of Faithful to Nature – one of South Africa’s original and leading online organic and natural stores. Smith claims that while the company deals in natural and organic products, what they really sell is transparency, honesty and peace-of-mind – services, she says, the market place is really craving.


t all began in 2005 when Robyn, trained as a marketer herself, wanted to get to the bottom of what really was the best night cream from

the 20 or so options facing her in a leading chemist. She figured that what really differentiated the products must be the ingredients in them. Picking up a 'green' moisturiser she was surprised to not recognise a single botanical listed in the ingredients. The disappointment and awareness of how little transparency existed in the labelling of cosmetics started a passionate journey for her, and the company was born. Faithful to Nature was one



of the first businesses globally to procure products

how many other mothers on our planet have to

against a strict set of ingredient guidelines, and by

stand by and watch their children drink dirty water

doing so created South Africa’s first truly authentic

and breathe in toxic air every day. For me it is

natural and organic store. The mission was to

inconceivable that there is any job more important

cut past the noise of greenwashing, and to check

than finding a way to motivate and inspire a greater

first-hand that every single product sold under this

respect for our natural home and ourselves. I believe

brand was truly safe for use by people, animals and

that the best way to do this is to give people real

the land that it would eventually seep back into.

and ethical information so they can be empowered

Asked, what keeps her motivated, Smith says,

to make more informed decisions. When people

'Like most woman I am house-proud and I don’t

understand the true costs that come with buying

see a distinction between my own home and the

toxic products, they stop buying those products.

natural environment around me – the planet is our

The danger, of course, is when people are fed false

home. Fresh clean water and air are not elements

information from those posing to care – and this is

that I take for granted and I don’t want to imagine

where Faithful to Nature is on a mission to make

a world where my children don’t have access to

a difference. My team and I are passionate about

these things. It saddens me very deeply to know

rallying to keep "green", green.'

The first thing you will notice when visiting this comprehensive website is that every product is clearly differentiated by its organic status and whether it is vegan/vegetarian/imported or local. In fact, Smith says that many people are not clear on the difference between natural, organic and certified organic (see box, right). Every product listed has a full ingredient list, and in some instances you will even find warnings about some of the ingredients in the products. Robyn says that information on the toxicity of ingredients is developing all the time, and that while some ingredients may still be allowed by all the major certification bodies, she feels her customers have a right to know that contentious information regarding the safety of the ingredient

Faithful to Nature interprets the Organic Status of Your Green Product Certified Organic: These products have been certified organic by a third party. This means that although the organic products may contain some synthetic ingredients, the certification body has concluded that the products are safe to use, and that the ingredients have been sourced from manufacturers that practice pesticide-free and sustainable farming. For more information on all the organic certification bodies used, go to Organic

has started to circulate. That way they can decide for


themselves if it really is a product that they wish to use.

Non-certified Organic: This means that the

Another myth in the green market that Faithful to

supplier has an organic product that has not yet been

Nature wishes to dispel is that 'going green' means

certified organic. These suppliers are using some

taking a step back in terms of luxury and choice, and

organically-sourced ingredients and, if you look at the

the wide and diverse selection of green products is

ingredient lists of the products, you will be able to tell

testament to this.

which are organic by an asterisk next to the product.

Whether you are looking for cruelty-free make-up; vegan nail polish; organic gluten-free pasta; bamboo socks or eco-friendly toys, this organic mecca has it all. Plus, every single order is shipped with a free gift; and if your order is over R250 (it would be a feat to keep it below this threshold anyway, with the wide choice) delivery is on the house too. Faithful to Nature is a business that clearly wears its heart on its sleeve, and is a business we look forward to watching closely as the market grows.

Certified Ingredients: These products have some certified organic ingredients but the products are not yet certified. All Natural Ingredients: These products use only natural ingredients. Please note that we have included soaps in this category even though all soaps contain sodium hydroxide (lye). The reason is that there is no sodium hydroxide left in the final product and it is also not possible to make soap without sodium hydroxide.

For more info visit or call

Part Natural: These products are predominantly

021 785 3268.

natural but have some safe synthetic ingredients.



tel +27 (0) 28 341 0209 or +27 (0) 28 341 0168 | | 2 Queen Victoria Street, STANFORD, South Africa

We have TWO traditional Tie Suspended Queen Size mosquito nets, with bamboo frames, valued at R2 280 each, to give away*. Send your full name and address details HERE by 30 July to stand a chance of winning.



*Delivery in RSA only.


Join the Green Revolution to save our planet, electricity and money. The price of electricity and gas are steadily increasing. Their

heating. It costs less than half to run than electrical heating

availability can be annoyingly erratic, especially during peak

and the energy is always there when you need it.

winter times. Biomass, in the form of wood and wood pellets, is

Live warm, live green and join the Green Revolution this winter.

the latest alternative green heating solution in South Africa.

Find out more at or visit one of the Calore

Biomass is a highly effective fuel for both spatial and water

stores listed below. Cape Town: Italcotto - 021 425 4192


Port Elizabeth: Selective Lighting - 041 365 2636

Johannesburg: Calore Jhb - 011 796 5098

Potchefstroom: Gas World - 018 297 4001

George: Stiles - 044 871 3222

Pretoria: Stocks Flooring - 012 809 0971

Klerksdorp: Gas Man - 018 462 3494

Namibia: Calore Namibia - +264 61 246 021

Knysna: Metelerkamp’s - 044 382 0274

Bloemfontein: Opening Soon Hermanus: Opening Soon



Any bedroom should function as a sanctuary. You should love it. So ask yourself: what do you see and feel when you walk into your master bedroom? What do you see when you first open your eyes in the morning? Does it lift your spirits? Is it a tranquil haven that melts away your worries. If not, we have some suggestions to transform it into a stress-free sanctuary. It may be a tough world out there, but in one's sanctuary, the vibe should be blissful. We take a look.



Bedroom S


he dictionary defines sanctuary as a place of

and maintain optimal health, a sleeping area needs to

refuge. And in order for a bedroom to be a place

be free of these energy fields. Ideally, this means that

of refuge one would hope that it looks like such

these electronic devices are not in the bedroom. If they

a place; bearing in mind that refuge means a protected

are there, insist that they be turned off at night. Better

place to go to nurture yourself and/or your relationship.

yet, unplug them. Try reading instead and enjoying soft

The master bedroom needs to be a room that is for and

soothing and romantic music.

about the adults in the household or the couple per say; Orientation of your bed: Orient your bed so that

so be clear about setting boundaries.

you are facing a window and you can see outside when Declutter: Minimise bedroom clutter to create a sense

you lie down. A room with a view of sky will do wonders

of serenity and to keep 'everyday life' from intruding.

for your peace of mind. From a feng shui perspective,

Therefore do not let children’s toys, work matters or

the ideal location for a bed is the command position. This

even laundry accumulate in the bedroom. Surround

means that the bed is positioned so that the door is seen

yourself instead with items that make you feel happy

from the bed but is not in direct line with it. When the

and peaceful, things associated with happy memories.

bed is in this position, it gives the sleepers a feeling of

Nothing helps to banish frazzle like a clean bedroom, let

being in charge of their space, which inevitably means

alone home. If your space is organised, your mind will

better sleep.

also be at rest. Remember that everything in our spaces is giving us

Keep it Light: The human brain responds to light cues

a message. What is your master bedroom saying to you?

from the environment, so you need to make sure

Does it remind you of all the work you have to do? Or

the daytime lighting is inviting and pleasant

does it give you a sense of calm and invite you to relax?

and the night-time lighting is conducive

Does it encourage you to watch television? Or does it

to sleep. If the overhead light in

support intimacy? Does is add to the stress in your life?

your room is harsh or fluorescent,

Or does it provide you with a safe and nurturing haven?

invest in a few lamps that emit a softer more amber

Beware Electromagnetics:



light. As evenings

electromagnetic energy is a huge factor in today's world. Computers, televisions, and other electronic equipment contribute to creating excessive electromagnetic fields around us. These, in turn, create stress. In order to restore the body




wear down, dim lighting is best to keep you from being

brighten your room and your mood.

over-stimulated before bedtime, and the most restful sleep is achieved in pitch black. Sleeping with lights on

Add a tabletop fountain: Running water has a

interferes with sleep and reduces the overall quality and

magical effect on the human ear. Both your heartbeat

amount of sleep you get. For requisite ambiance, candles

and your breathing slow down after you listen to running

are great as well, but do remember to blow them out

water for a while.

before you go to sleep. Consider a Better Bed: Eco-friendly mattresses, Soothing Scents:


sheets and pillows are definitely something to be

relaxation and good feelings, which in turn encourages

considered. We spend up to a third of our lives in bed –

sleep. Burn candles or use oils scented with lavender,

and in extremely close contact with our sheets, pillows

chamomile, and sandalwood. An aromatherapy diffuser

and mattress. A good mattress that properly supports

is great as well, seeing that diffusers waft scented oil

your spine and body can help you sleep better. When

throughout a room, adding a pleasant, sense-pleasing

your mattress is ultra-comfortable, you actually start to

aroma to the air. However, do check with your doctor if

associate it with sleeping, and that serves as another

you have a respiratory condition like asthma or allergies

way to signal your brain that it’s time to rest. Surprisingly

to make sure the diffuser is safe for you to use. Another

enough, our bedding can have unseen impacts on our

option would be to scent your bed linens with an

health and the environment, so it’s important to take into

aromatherapy spray specifically designed to encourage

account just how it’s made and what it’s made of. And we

relaxation and more pleasant sleep. Jasmine and lavender

now know that many mattresses are made and treated

are the most sleep-friendly scents, but it is best to choose

with toxins. One of the biggest bedroom pollutants

a spray that seems pleasing to you.

is formaldehyde. It’s a known human carcinogen and



continues to be used in manufacturing all kinds of Cool



products, including mattresses, pillows, carpet, curtains,

consideration. Select colours that you love and find

and paint. These chemicals can accumulate in our bodies

calming. Painting can be a pretty major undertaking, so if

over time and can leach out in landfills. To create a

you’re short on time, get your cool colour fix with bedding

formaldehyde-free sleeping environment, an organic

in shades that make you happy and vibrant furniture that

mattress and bedding are obvious starting points. So,

lifts your spirits. With regards to paints, it is advisable

finding a healthy mattress requires some sleuthing.





to remember that low-VOC paint is good, but no-VOC

Also, try natural latex. Mattress cores are typically

is better. Natural finishes such as plaster and milk or

made of either springs or polyurethane foam. If you

limewash paints are good options for walls as well.

prefer a foam core, opt for a mattress that uses natural latex, a renewable source derived from rubber trees. The

ODYSSEY 100 • 


Go Green: Some studies suggest that being surrounded

cell structure of latex allows air to pass through it easily,

by plants reduces stress levels, so add some greenery to

meaning moisture won’t accumulate while you sleep and

your space. Fresh flowers are also a wonderful way to

you’ll stay cool, dry and comfortable at night. Latex is also

naturally antibacterial, so it’s a good choice for people with allergies.

Switching up your bedding is one easy way to lessen your environmental impact and become eco-friendly while

Organic cotton and wool are also good natural

getting a better night’s sleep. So choose bedding that is

alternatives to polyurethane foam. Sleeping on a mattress

made of cosy fabrics and soft material that will make you

wrapped in organic cotton or wool ensures you won’t

long to crawl into bed and drift away on a cloud of restful

breathe in chemicals or pesticides while you sleep. Air

sleep. Non-toxic and eco-friendly sheets are available in

flows easily through wool and cotton, wicking away

a variety of materials and colours. Organic cotton is the

moisture and discouraging dust mites from settling in.

most popular material for eco-friendly sheets. Bamboo

Choosing to purchase organic cotton sheets is one of the

sheets are popular thanks to their silky texture and

best decisions you can make both for your health and for

'breathability'. Rapidly renewable bamboo grows without

the environment. No pesticides are used, meaning that

pesticides. Like bamboo, hemp requires few resources

the world around us is not poisoned by the processing

or pesticides to grow, making it a good fibre for sheets.

involved in making the fabric, and there won’t be any

Hemp sheets are stronger and more durable than cotton

pesticides or toxic residues around to irritate your

and require less processing to produce.

respiratory system and skin. Although organic cotton bedding runs at a higher cost, is it really worth it to save

At the end of the day, creating a healthy living space in your bedroom is not a luxury, but a necessity. O

a little money when you’re compromising your health and the environment? Buying organic cotton is one way to fight the rampant destruction of the planet. Many pillows are made out of polyurethane foam, so they release VOCs. Synthetic fibres also trap moisture and create a haven for dust mites. Many of the same materials used in natural mattresses work well in pillows. Wool's moisture-resistant qualities make it a good pillow filling. Hypoallergenic organic cotton is a good choice for people with allergies. Natural latex is another healthy pillow material that conforms to the body and holds its shape over time, providing continued support for your neck and head. Buckwheat is another eco-friendly pillow filling alternative. Buckwheat hulls form to the shape of your head. Manufacturers say that, unlike other fillings such as foam and feathers, buckwheat hulls don’t compress over time so a buckwheat pillow will keep its shape. The hulls’ shape also allows air to pass through freely, keeping dust mites and pollen from getting trapped.

interested in

Shui? FengFeng Shui? Find out how Feng Shui can bring love, health, happiness and success into your lives

Visit us online

Products – Tips – Consulting 084 629 5092

ODYSSEY 101 • 



Healthy sleepversus Insomnia Sleep is such an important part of your overall health that no amount of healthful food and exercise can counteract the ill effects of poor sleeping habits. Researchers have linked poor sleep to a number of health ailments, from short-term memory loss and behavioural problems, to weight gain and diabetes, for example. Giulia Criscuolo takes a look.

ODYSSEY 102 • 


Common sleep mistakes are:

three times faster in laboratory animals with severe

Using the snooze button – this interrupts your sleep

sleep dysfunctions

and can increase your fatigue. Rather get up on the

Cause a pre-diabetic state, making you feel hungry

first alarm.

even if you've already eaten, which can wreak

Irregular sleep schedule. A regular routine of going to

havoc on your weight. Furthermore, sleeping less

bed and getting up around the same time each day

than six hours per night can also radically decrease

will help promote better sleep.

the sensitivity of your insulin receptors, which will

Taking long naps during the day.

raise your insulin levels. This can lead to weight

Eating sugar before bedtime. Sugar alters the chemical

gain as the insulin will seriously impair your body's

balance in your body, which can contribute to impaired

ability to burn and digest fat. It also increases your


risk of diabetes. In short, sleep deprivation puts

Drinking coffee or caffeinated beverages too late in the

your body in a pre-diabetic state, which can lead to


plummeting health.

Sitting in front of your computer before bed time.

Sleep disturbances and sleep deprivation can also

Drinking alcohol: research shows that drinking alcohol

affect your:

makes you more likely to wake during the night,

Short term memory: Your circadian clock controls

leaving you feeling less rested in the morning. It has

your daily cycle of sleep and wakefulness by alternately

been shown that alcohol increases slow-wave 'deep'

inhibiting and exciting different parts of your brain through

sleep during the first half of the night, but then

regulating the release of certain neurotransmitters. The

increases sleep disruptions in the second half of the

part of your brain known as the hippocampus must be

night. Since alcohol is a potent muscle relaxant, it can

excited in order for the things you learn to be organised in

also increase your risk of snoring. Snorers, and their

such a way that you'll remember them later.

bed partners, often experience restless sleep leading

If your internal clock isn't functioning properly, it causes

to sleepiness and difficulty concentrating during the

the release of too much GABA. An excess of GABA inhibits


your brain in a way that leads to short term memory

Eating the 'wrong' food that disturbs good-quality

problems and the inability to retain new information.


Creativity & learning performance: Proper sleep

Dark Chocolate: though the healthiest form of

enhances performance, learning and memory by improving

chocolate from an antioxidant perspective can contain

your creative ability to uncover novel connections among

relatively high levels of caffeine that can keep you up at

seemingly unrelated ideas.

night if you're sensitive. It also contains theobromine, a

Your emotional resilience and ability to release

compound that has caffeine-like effects.

stress: Good sleepers and poor sleepers experience about

Spicy Foods before bedtime can give you indigestion

the same number of daily minor stressful events, but

that makes it nearly impossible to get a good night's sleep.

good sleepers are less disturbed by them. Poor sleepers

It is speculated that this may be due to capsaicin, an active

experience both their minor and major life events as being

ingredient in chili peppers, affecting sleep via changes in

more negative than do those who sleep well.

body temperature.

Your overall mood and mental stability: Sleep

Unhealthy Fatty Foods: when you don't get enough

deprivation can lead to symptoms of depression, and can

sleep, you're more likely to crave high-fat, high-sugar foods

even cause changes in your brain activity similar to those

the next day. But eating a high-fat diet also has impacts

experienced by people with psychiatric disorders.

on your sleep, including leading to more fragmented sleep. Impaired sleep can also increase stress-related Six to eight hours per night seems to be the optimal

disorders, including: heart disease, stomach ulcers,

amount of sleep for most adults, and too much or too little

constipation and mood disorders like depression.

can have adverse effects on your health.

Sleep deprivation prematurely ages you by interfering

Science has now established that a sleep deficit can

with your growth hormone production, normally

have serious, far reaching effects on your health.

released by your pituitary gland during deep sleep.

For example, interrupted or impaired sleep can:

Recent studies have also shown that there is a link

Dramatically weaken your immune system

between poor sleep and migraines.

Accelerate tumour growth – tumours grow two to

Disturbed sleep can also impair your ability to lose

ODYSSEY 103 • 


excess kilograms or maintain your ideal weight. Research has shown that people who sleep less than seven hours a night tend to have a higher body mass index (BMI) than people who get more sleep. This is likely the effect of altered metabolism, because when you're sleep deprived, leptin (the hormone that signals satiety) falls, while ghrelin (which signals hunger) rises. This combination leads to an increase in appetite. Additionally, sleep-deprived subjects tend to eat more sweet and starchy foods, opposed to vegetables and dairy products. Researchers have suggested that these sugar cravings stem from the fact that your brain is fuelled by glucose (blood sugar); therefore, when lack of sleep occurs, your brain starts searching for carbohydrates to keep going. Here are some suggestions that can help you get

Sleeping pills & you Most sleeping pills are 'sedative hypnotics' – a specific class of drugs used to induce and/or maintain sleep which include benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and various hypnotics. Benzodiazepines are anti-anxiety medications. They also increase drowsiness and help people sleep. While these drugs may be useful short-term, all benzodiazepines are potentially addictive. Barbiturates depress the central nervous system and can cause sedation. Newer medications help reduce the time it takes to fall asleep. These sleep-inducing drugs, including zaleplon, zolpidem and eszopiclone are said to be non-habit forming. They work quickly to increase drowsiness and sleep. If you are prescribed sleeping pills by your doctor, take them for a limited period of time and try to find alternative ways of treating your insomnia.

a good night's rest. Sleep in complete darkness, or as close to it as possible. Keep the temperature in your bedroom cool (15-20°C).


Move alarm clocks and other electrical devices away

Lose excess weight. Being overweight can increase

from your bed and avoid using loud alarm clocks as

your risk of sleep apnoea, which can seriously impair

it is very stressful on your body to be suddenly jolted

your sleep.


Increase your melatonin. Ideally it is best to increase

Reserve your bed for sleeping and not for watching TV

levels naturally with exposure to bright sunlight in the

or doing work in.

daytime (along with full spectrum fluorescent bulbs in

Establish a bedtime routine. This could include

the winter) and absolute complete darkness at night.

meditation, deep breathing, using aromatherapy or

If that isn't possible, you may want to consider a

essential oils or indulging in a massage from your

melatonin supplement. In scientific studies, melatonin

partner. The key is to find something that makes you

has been shown to increase sleepiness, help you

feel relaxed, then repeat it each night to help you

fall asleep more quickly and stay asleep, decrease

release the tensions of the day.

restlessness, and reverse daytime fatigue.

Eat a high-protein snack several hours before bed.

The following supplements have also been shown to

This can provide the L-tryptophan needed for your

aid a good night's sleep: chamomile, hops, lavender,

melatonin and serotonin production. Avoid before-bed

passion flower, valeriana, and St John's wort. Spirulina

snacks, particularly grains and sugars. These will raise

is also one of the great 'green foods' that can help

your blood sugar and delay sleep.

with insomnia as it contains protein, all the B complex

Take a hot bath, shower or sauna before bed. When

vitamins, folic acid, calcium, magnesium and zinc

your body temperature is raised in the late evening,

– all essential for calming the nervous system and

it will fall at bedtime, facilitating slumber. The

ODYSSEY 104 • 


don't exercise too close to bedtime or it may keep you

promoting good sleep.

temperature drop from getting out of the bath signals

Homeopathic remedies are also excellent in treating

your body that it's time for bed.

insomnia. Common remedies used are: Aconite, Arsenicum

Put your work away at least one hour before bed

album, belladonna, calc phos, cocculus, coffea cruda,

(preferably two hours or more). This will give

ignatia, kali phos, lycopodium, nux vomica, silicea, sulphur,

your mind a chance to unwind so you can go to

zincum metallicum. These remedies are safe and effective,

sleep feeling calm, not hyped up or anxious about

not addictive or habit-forming and one can stop them at

tomorrow's deadlines.

any time without the need to wean oneself off them slowly,

Make certain you are exercising regularly, however,

as is the case with allopathic sleeping pills. O


Isn’t it time you fell in love with your bed again?

At Sealy Posturepedic® our aim is to provide healthy, happy sleep every night, to give you a great day every day. We do this by tirelessly exploring new ways to give you more comfort, more support, and more delicious luxury. No wonder people who sleep on a Sealy are often heard saying... “I love my bed!”.

Sealy South Africa

ODYSSEY 105 • 


retreats & retreating

celebrating winter

Creating winter altar – a space of peace and spiritual nurturance

ODYSSEY 106 • 


Winter is a special time of the year when everything naturally stands still and one inevitably wants to retreat during the cold weather. It is a time when nature draws its energies inward to rest and renew itself for the coming season; a time to reflect, process, meditate, find one's centre and hibernate in stillness, to take stock of life in the comfort of your home or at a retreat. So let's remember the value of slowing down, connecting to the earth's vast changes and finding sweet moments to reflect within. Here are some rituals we suggest you add to your personal routine.

cup of tea together. Concentrate on being fully present here and now.

Make a winter altar – Create a seasonal altar and bring winter inside. Collect pine cones, aromatic greens, dried berries, or some abundant greenery. Adorn a special table with these winter delights and top it off with a string of colourful lights. Let this altar serve as a reminder that we can sink our own roots deep into the earth to find strength during the cold, just like the plants and trees.

Rest & renew – What nourishes you? Just like many animals that undergo hibernation, we also need to conserve energy and replenish our reserves. Engage in restorative activities, like enjoying healthful immune-boosting foods, naps, creative activity, journaling, yoga, meditation, relaxing with friends, or curling up with an inspiring book. Simply be, breathe, and practice gratitude. Try to practice a little bit of respectful silence as well.

Pamper yourself

Winter can really take its toll on health and, especially your skin. It is the time of the year when everything can feel under attack; really putting your skin and body to the test. Hydrate and moisturise as much as possible. Go for a massage or energetic alignment. Love yourself in ways that only you know is right for you.

Slow down & connect

Creating a cosy ambience

When the weather outside is frightful, it's time to retreat

Carve out tranquil moments to pause and connect

indoors. For many who suffer from the winter blues,

with winter. What does this time of year mean to you?

closing the doors and windows can bring about depression

Savour simple pleasures, taking a contemplative walk to

and feelings of isolation. But a few simple winter

appreciate nature, or admire the sun's reflection. Make a

decorating tips can change our physical environment,

warm beverage, rest, and soak up the long, still nights.

lift our mood, and stimulate our senses. Redesigning

Simplify things. Focus deeply on cultivating the practice of

your space can improve your emotional and physical

mindfulness in all daily activities, such as general cleaning

health, while updating the look of your home. To create a

or washing dishes. It enables one to meditate throughout

personal cosy winter retreat, focus on the senses: visual,

the day, while eating, walking, working, and enjoying a

auditory, kinesthetic (touch) and olfactory. Each sense has

r: retreat&renew ODYSSEY 107 • 


Pamper your skin in winter – the time of the year when your whole body can feel under attack from the weather

a direct pathway to stimulate our brains, and therefore,

chemical-free ways to bring the scent of winter indoors

affect mood and physical health.

while improving our mental and physical state. Their antibacterial properties ward off winter colds and flus,

Visual – As the daylight hours shorten, allowing light to

and their endorphin-producing capabilities help fight

flood our living space becomes more important for mental

winter depression. Pine oil opens the chest and helps

and physical health. Changing your décor along with the

with respiration. It increases our resistance to viruses

weather can make seasonal transitions easier on your

and bacterial infections. Vanilla is sweet and soothing and

mind and body. When choosing colour, the general rule of

reminds us of holiday baking. Orange oil, like many citrus

thumb is warm tones for cooler months and cool tones for warmer months.

Touch – No matter what the lighting, sound, or smell of the room, if the surfaces we sit on are cold and hard, the space won't feel cosy. Soften the feel of your home by using natural fabrics, and add interest to the space with a variety of textures that invite touch and stimulate the mind. Pillows made from eco-friendly natural fibres add a splash of colour and contribute to the warm feeling of the room. An area rug is also essential in winter, as it not only adds texture and depth to the room, but warms up the space from the ground up. Add texture by introducing elements of nature such as plants, decorative items such as pine cones or chestnuts, or picture frames made from recycled material or reclaimed wood.

Auditory – Adding music to our abode can help create a healing, nurturing ambience. Music has the power to conjure an emotional memory of experiences, usually positive, which provides a distraction from negative thoughts which so many are prone to in this season of self-reflection.

Smell - Our sense of smell has the ability to elicit the strongest emotions. Our olfactory bulbs are part of the limbic system and directly connect with limbic structures that process emotion (the amygdala) and associative learning (the hippocampus). Essential oils are

ODYSSEY 108 • 


Hearth & Soul Eco Farm and Retreat

Magic fynbos mountain retreat ...sleeps 25-30 people... Ideal for hosting workshops or group getaways. 140sqm function hall. Plus self-catering eco-barn with accomodation for 9-10 people • Tel 021 813 9700 / Skype sybillenagel

...renowned for its great cuisine, beautiful labyrinth, warm hospitality and an open minded way of life... | | 013 733 3045 | 083 229 3751

Be the Master of Your Own Health A 10-Day Yoga Detox Retreat

Jan 3-12, 2014 • Broederstroom

Venue: Clearview Lodge, Broederstroom, North West Province.

A Life-Changing Program -

Rejuvenate Your Body, Mind & Spirit!

Contact: Dada 072 940 4213;;

Led by Dada Dharmavedananda founder of AM Wellness Centre, Cebu, Philippines


A workshop that combines the power of the mind with the movement of the body to see and feel effective change in one’s life 86 5th Street Parkmore, JHB / Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st July 2013 / 09:00 - 16:00 Peri Zourides / 082 375 0825 / /

Jackie Freemantle Te Braake 081 073 6978 •

Spiritual Guidance • Psychic Readings • Channelings • Self Mastery • Soul Astrology Readings • Dna Messages • Aromatherapy & Reflexology & Body Stress Release • Acupressure Body Treatment • Feng Shui: Private & Individual Groups & Workshops • Numerology: Western & Eastern • Conscious Hypnotherapy • Colour Therapy: Individual & Workshops • Alstar Soul Remedies • Life Coaching & Relationship Coaching: Individuals & Groups • Healer Inner Child • Homeopathy • Soul Safaris & Animal Medicine: Individual & Groups (White Lion Global Trust) • Workshops & Training • Homeopathy Training • Management Diseases • A–Z Underlying Emotional Causes • Personal Development

Aljunaih 083 566 6856 • Huana Crystal Signatures: Reiki Oils & Sprays

Ria Rademeyer 082 561 5035 • Artwork of Guides & Guardians

Melissa Freemantle 082 621 0134 • Alstar Body Therapies • Zwanski Channelings • Alstar Tibetan Healing • Self Mastery

Cheryl Jacobs (Alstar Conquela - Northern Cape )

082 335 0932 • Quantm Scio • Colour And Sound Therapy & Alstar Therapies

Megan Joy 076 075 1936 • Yoga: Kundalini & Kundaria • Ancient Teachings Of The Eastern Masters - Classes & Workshops • Self Mastery: Classes & Workshop

Crystal Jacobs 079 975 4888 Conquela Alstar Equine, Stud Breeding and Healing Rehabilitation Training Academy

ODYSSEY 109 • 


scents, increases a positive outlook and creates a relaxed state of mind by easing nervous tension and stress. Cedarwood oil relieves stress and anxiety, as well as winter bronchitis and coughs.

Taste – Winter time is of course for soups, stews and foods that brings about a feeling of nurturance through the chilly season. Savour spicy food flavours that heat up your body and which boost your immune system at the same time. Remember, a magical aspect of food and cooking is when it's prepared and shared with others. We all know how lonely cooking for one is, so beat off winter's melancholia by inviting close friends or those you need to catch up with, over for dinner. One is always pleasantly surprised at the heart-warming vibe that is invoked when people come together to appreciate a meal prepared with love. Remember, if you aren't able to incorporate these suggestions into your home, there are many options available for visiting professional retreat centres far and wide. Doing all of what we suggest above will surely bring the zest back into your life and help springboard you into the next season of life's

A unique spiritual festival where Practitioners working with creative healing energies will converge and share this gift. A space to explore the landscape of spirituality in a new era of conscious living, wellness and inner peace

on-going journey. O

Look, feel, participate... You will have the opportunity to view exhibitions, listen to talks and participate in workshops and sacred ceremonies Experience... An array of spiritual, healing, therapeutic and holistic modalities Interact with... Psychic Practitioners, Healers, Shamans, Therapists and many more

Soulspace kids... An enchanting programme has been created for our little ones

Make winter your 'me' time for self-reflection and recharging

ODYSSEY 110 • 


When? 26 & 27 October 2013 Where? Kloofzicht Lodge, Muldersdrift 35km out of Jozi Perfect for a day visit More info: Jean – 082 949 9449

Tickets available at


The Karoo's


The private nature reserve of Bergplaas, set high above the plains of the Camdeboo in the Sneeuberg Mountain range, seems to have an entirely unique climate. It is also a place of retreat from our techno-heavy world; a place of contemplation, reconnection with the wild – and ultimately, with the self. We take a look.

ODYSSEY 111 • 


'The way we live, with our busy lives, our work rhythm and indoor lifestyle, asks

say the Princess and her collaborators, is mankind's prime teacher about our connection to the natural world which so many who live in the 'modern world' have lost. Bergplaas is a Nature Reserve where the natural cycles of life have been re-established, nurtured and returned to pristine or near-pristine condition. Bergplaas 'is a teacher of beingness'. It offers visitors and those attending workshops, and other programs offered there, an opportunity 'to heal within'. 'The way we live, with our busy lives, our work rhythm and indoor lifestyle,

of quiet and

to the great ecosystem earth and respectful of the well-being of all life,' says

recover mind and body. Today, more than ever, we need leaders and decision-

more than ever, we need leaders and decision-makers to be consciously connected Princess Irene.

About Bergplaas When, in 1998 Princess Irene first visited Bergplaas, she felt a deep connection to the place. At the time it was a stock farm, with all the usual environmental degradations that go with such intensive land use for animal husbandry. She acquired three different farms of 5  000ha and immediately removed all the internal fences, re-introduced animals endemic to the area – eland, blesbok, red hartebeest, plains zebra, springbok, black wildebeest – and then gave the land 'back to itself'. Such a conscious, mindful action has generated a deep healing for the land and all life forms which experience its primal force, say those who have experienced Bergplaas's transformation. The reserve is situated in the Sneeuberg Mountains, in the Eastern Cape, and forms part of the Nama Karoo biome. Bergplaas forms part of the recently gazetted Compassberg Protected Environment and is only the 2nd protected environment to be declared in South Africa but the largest at over 40000ha It is home to a large

makers to be

variety of birds, is recognised for its biodiversity and is an ideal place to walk and


Bergplaas is also home to various programs and initiatives aimed at allowing

connected to the great

restore one's primal connection with nature. people to reconnect, to both themselves and to nature. Among these are the Spirit of the Wild program, Meeting the Spirit of Nature Retreats, Hekademos Mind Body program and Bergplaas Wilderness Trails. They also take on volunteers under 30 while there is a self-catering cottage, or guest house, for larger groups. Away from cell phone coverage and most of the modern amenities of life,


Bergplaas offers a nearly absolute disconnect with our rapidly-paced, techno-driven

earth and

offerings and programs at the reserve have the inner space and time to re-establish

respectful of


those involved, under the guidance of Princess Irene van Lippe of the

Netherlands, can teach others what they call 'inter-being with the land'. This,

for moments

space to


oneness of all life, is alive and can be experienced and felt. It is where

asks for moments of quiet and silence, for space to recover mind and body. Today,

silence, for



ergplaas is a powerful and wild place where the interconnectedness, the

lives while offering a nurturing space within which those attending the various those connections which have been severed by modern living's demands. And beyond the place itself is the lady behind it. Her fascinating personal story, in which as a royal she broke bounds and traditions long held as sacrosanct among

the well-being

Europe's royal families, is paralleled by the reformation of this once much-devalued

of all life.'

acknowledged and respected and where people can rediscover the underlying

land and its restoration into a place of sanctuary where the spirit of the land is interconnectedness with all of life. O



Rediscovering your True Nature in Nature Bergplaas was established by Princess Irene van Lippe as a place for reconnection – of the self with the self; and of each one of us with our natural heritage. Located in the Sneeuberg Mountains, in the Eastern Cape, it is a place where we may find the peace and solace to re-establish our awareness of our inner being and an awareness of how that connects with all living things and natural places.

Our retreats Meeting the Spirit of Nature Retreat This is a 7-day retreat for those needing to reconnect with nature and rejuvenate themselves. The days are filled with morning meditations, plenty of walking, delicious vegetarian meals and time and space to experience the tranquillity and silence of Bergplaas. It's an opportunity to experience simply just being with yourself in nature and to experience the beauty that the present moment holds. Getting in touch with the absolute rawness of nature allows participants the opportunity to fully appreciate ones core values and ultimately gives you space to tap into your inner guide and intuitive wisdom. The intense power of the wilderness and the silence and space of Bergplaas connects us with all life forms that share Earth with us. This allows healing for ourselves and ultimately all life around us. This workshop is facilitated by Irene van Lippe. The Hekademos Mind Body Programme This is a 6-day educational and psychotherapeutic programme that serves people dealing with cancer or other potentially life threatening illnesses. Our teachings draw from the philosophy of Hekademia, which in modern terms would be: being connected with nature as a source of health and wisdom; aware of your mortality and immortality; and aware of the power of your own thinking. The raw nature of Bergplaas makes it the ideal location for the Hekademos Mind Body programme – people can experience the healing power of nature, enjoying the vast space and deep silence. Those battling disease and their partners learn techniques to decrease pain and increase happiness in order to enhance quality of life, boost their immune system, cope better with the stresses of the disease

and to resolve emotions like guilt, fear or anger. Healing does not always mean the body gets well or recurrence can be prevented. The program is very effective in creating peace of mind around death and dying, in order to live one's life to the fullest today. We support people in the treatments they are already following – offering an additional treatment – and are helpful in either preparing for treatment or surgery or finding balance after the treatment has finished. The sessions are led by Patricia Palmer, Barbara de Beukelaar and Cindy & Wayne Maspero. Spirit of the Wild 3 week course over a year for Field Guides and those working in nature to deepen their own connection with nature, to facilitate a deepening nature experience for their clients.

Our Wilderness Trails This unique 5-day trail is to assist in developing a type of leadership that comes from within and acknowledges the need to contribute to a sustainable future for all life. In a small group of six to eight people you will make your own way into the unknown wilderness, strolling through the fields, sleeping under the stars, bathing in the rivers and spending quality time with yourself. Living is basic and there are no distractions. You will be invited to connect to nature, to all life forms, the rocks, the plants and the wild animals, and by doing so, perhaps to evaluate your personal role in the bigger web of life. Getting in touch with the absolute rawness of nature allows participants the opportunity to fully appreciate ones core values and ultimately gives you space to tap into your inner guide and intuitive wisdom.

Contact Bergplaas Nature Reserve • 049 841 1367 •


Sacred Cere Sacred Cer Ceremony is a ritual or step-by-step process with an intent or purpose that leads to a desired change. It comes in many forms and is used for many occasions or events. A medical school graduation ceremony for example is a ritual with the intent of transitioning the student into being a doctor who can now practice medicine. Ceremony doesn't always need to be complicated or presided over by an authority figure, spiritual teacher or leader. It can exist in every moment of the day and be as simple as greeting the morning sun, asking the caress of the wind on your face to help clear your mind, or offering thanks for the food you eat. Lou Worldweaver takes a further look.






touch with both the world

around you and within

you. It helps you to reframe your perspective by taking you outside

of your normal everyday way of

seeing things. When you engage in ceremony you are asking to see, feel, hear and sense life with

greater awareness and clarity. It

empowers and supports you to find a new solution or new perspective to whatever challenge or issue you are dealing with.

Your soul's hunger for growth sparks your desire for change in your life and ceremony is a simple, powerful and effective tool to make

Top: A hogan or traditional Navajo home

ODYSSEY 114 • 


these changes happen. Being in

Blessed Beauty Way Prayer

emony remony

ceremony is to let the rest of the world drift away and to focus on the experience of the moment. The moment possesses the power and energy needed to make change possible. The quality and intensity of the change are directly related to the intent you set for the ceremony and how present you can be. These transformational moments feed your soul's hunger and set you on the path of self-rediscovery.

The sweat lodge is a ceremony unlike any other in

Great Spirit, may I walk in Beauty May Beauty be above me So that I may be a part of the Greater Beauty May Beauty be in front of me That I may perceive Beauty in all things May Beauty be to the left of me That I may receive Beauty through my inner woman May Beauty be to the right of me That I may give Beauty through my inner man May Beauty be behind me So that the only tracks I leave are those of Beauty May I touch myself, my life, and all others with Beauty May I walk this Blessed Beauty Way Great Spirit, May I walk in Beauty Navajo Prayer

The sweat lodge can be like shaking a tree to let the dead leaves fall off. Opening up in this way and letting go of old energy makes space for change and gives you a more positive and clearer mind set.

its ability to purify, rejuvenate and re-establish health on

ritual in order to increase your vibration and accelerate

all levels. The sweat lodge symbolises the Earth's womb,

your frequency. It can be like shaking a tree to let the

introspection and the feminine. The door to the lodge

dead leaves fall off. Opening up in this way and letting go

always faces the fire which represents the spark of life,

of old energy makes space for change and gives you a

your connection to spirit and the masculine. The feminine

more positive and clearer mind set.

womb energy holds the space for the change you desire

When you sit in a Sweat Lodge Ceremony, you have

and the masculine spark carries the energy to birth

the opportunity to let go of what isn't currently working

something new in yourself.

in your life and to welcome in what will work. It will open

The dance chief guides the ceremony and combines

you to new insights and balance your physical, emotional,

the pouring of water over heated rocks and the ceremonial

spiritual, mental and energetic levels. Once the ceremony

ODYSSEY 115 • 


The sweat lodge is a ceremony unlike any other in its ability to purify, rejuvenate and re-establish health on all levels

is complete, exiting the lodge symbolises your rebirth into

Establishing an intent for the day is a simple and easy

a new you and a new reality. Although it has a structure,

way of using ceremony to effectively bring change in your

the ceremony, the theme, and the participants are

life. We have included the Blessed Beauty Way Prayer

always different, therefore each sweat lodge is a unique

which comes from the shamanic tradition of the Navajo.

experience unto itself. Participating in regular sweat

For the next seven days, every morning before you start

lodges is a natural and empowering way to maintain and

your day, read this prayer out loud as a way of setting the

sustain health and well-being in your life on all levels.

tone for how you will experience your day. O

Sacred Journeys is a sanctuary dedicated to healing, growth and enlightenment through the use of Earth Wisdom. A body of knowledge, teachings and ceremonies based in Shamanism and inherited from the ancient lineage of the Twisted Hairs. We use this wisdom when working with individuals, couples and groups as a profoundly effective tool to empower and enrich you, release stress and develop a positive attitude and approach to everything you do. By living SHAMANICALLY through Earth Wisdom you nourish your soul, find a simpler way to deal with life, work and relationships and feel more connected and in balance with your world.


ODYSSEY 116 • 


Private Consultations | Relationship Counselling Shamanic Healing | Apprenticeship | Sweat Lodge Ceremonies Courses, Workshops & Retreats | Shamanic Marriage Ceremonies | +27 82 571 3306


Pain to Pleasure a life renewed 'This is my true story. It is about how I turned, in a single day, from depression, stress, anger, pills, addictions, to freedom, relaxation, energy, vibrancy, a purpose, excellence. Now, two years later, I am living my dream and bringing hope to thousands of people,' says Cobus Visser


y journey to a new life started at the end of 2011. I've had haemophilia (an genetic condition in which the blood has difficulty in clotting) since birth and as the years went by,

my condition got to a point where I was in a really bad emotional state. I went from depression, to stress, to drinking a handful of pain pills each day. I was taking up to 10 pain and other pills each day. It was as if suddenly I couldn't cope with pain. And, as if that wasn't enough, I needed to get elbow replacements (I had had an arm brace for six months and my doctor said I couldn't pick up anything heavier than 2kg), and both ankles needed to get fused. That wasn't even the end of my medical problems: I was also on hepatitis C treatment that made me sick (some of the symptoms are like those from chemotherapy). As a haemophiliac, I used some 20-40 ampules, each of 1 000 units of a blood-clotting factor, each month. Without such treatments a simple cut or bruise could be extremely painful and even life-threatening. With all this hanging over me, I came to a defining moment at a seminar, and I told myself something has to change. I thought: 'I'm dying.' This is where I discovered how powerful we as human beings truly are and how uniquely we are made. It was then that I had my first experience fire-walking.

Seek & you will find Whatever you seek you will find, whatever you ask you shall receive. I have discovered this to be true. I have learnt that you need to renew your mind

ODYSSEY 117 • 


every single day. Through a self-development course I

translates into a fear of the fire of our own passions,

was set free and discovered that anything is possible and

desires and dreams. Firewalking is one of the oldest

what my dreams truly are.

human rituals on the planet. In every culture around

From walking on fire more than 500 times without any

the world, people have used firewalking as a means of

burns, walking up to 14m on a coal bed at 950ºC, I have

healing and purifying their communities and themselves.

moved on to board and brick breaking with my elbows,

Today, firewalking is an incredible tool for modern humans

arrow breaking with my throat and rebar bending, as well

to use.

as broken glass walking without bleeding, and needle piercing through my hand without bleeding. I have gone from being a near cripple to leading what you might consider something like a 'Superman' life.


players in our belief system. The first time I watched

I have gone from 137kg to 110kg (lost 27kg) and I

someone step onto the 600ºC coals, I felt something snap. Suddenly one of my core beliefs had been turned

fifth of what I was using before) and only about one pain

upside down, bringing down virtually all my other beliefs

pill a week. My life has been transformed from where I

with it.

previously couldn't jump, to the present in which I can

The possibility of creating serious change in my life

jump several centimeters into the air. I have no arm brace

was so tangible at that moment, because the structures

any longer and, of all the improvements in my health, the

within my brain had been shattered. I had actually

best result of all is that I can now pick up my son and hold

witnessed what I knew was impossible. There was

him in my arms. That alone brings tears of happiness.

nothing for my constructs about reality to do but crumble.

For thousands of years and in all cultures, shamans

As a rule, we don't enjoy our mental constructs

have walked across hot coals to honour the element of

crumbling – it feels very threatening and dangerous. Our

fire and bring healing to their communities. In modern

ego loves being right, having things be safe. Whenever

times, it is crucial that we actively reclaim our own innate

something is not safe for the ego, it pumps out a wave

power to heal ourselves and direct our destiny, to move

of fear to deter us from changing in any way that goes

from acting from fear into a place where each action is

against its self image. And fear, as most of us know, is a

based out of love and joy.

powerful human emotion.

Ritual & transformation

firewalking and teaching that fear can actually be a great

Ritual marks a time of change and transformation. To

friend. Even after 500 plus firewalking sessions, I still feel

witness or participate in a fire-walking ritual offers a

that initial rush of fear as I step up to the fire. But I've

chance to break limiting belief systems, and provides

learned to take the fear and see it as simply energy. We

participants with the tools to make the shifts you want in

can all take the energy of our emotions – any emotions

your life to happen and to stick. Whether you choose to

– and by seeing them simply as energy we can use them

walk or not, at the end of the fire-walking seminar, you

to support us rather than hinder us on our path. With

will be changed for good.

practice, it is simple to find a place of silence within, take

are offered a 'square centimetre of chance'; a gift to


Our fear of fire is a deep-seated belief, one of the core

now take 4-8 1 000 factor blood clotting units a month (a

There are just a few times in our life when we


Moving Beyond Fear

However, I've found through my two years of

a deep breath, and transform the fear into excitement and joy.

completely transform our lives. For me – and apparently

The next time you feel fear rise in your life, tell

many others too – the firewalk is such an opportunity.

yourself: 'This is simply energy. This is simply energy.'

Joining in as a participant in this ancient, sacred gathering

With that awareness, you can make a choice about how

opens us up to deep healing and change – and offers the

you want this particular energy to work in your life. You

chance to dance with the fire of life.

can definitely use it to stop you in your tracks.

Dancing the Fire

and transform them into impetus for change. Know that

It is one of the first lessons we learn as children: fire

your belief system was inherited from your parents, and

burns. And for many of us this lesson goes in very deeply,

may not necessarily be true. The firewalk can bring these

and includes not only the sting of physical fire, but also

beliefs to the light.

You also have the choice to take your deepest fears

Fire as Teacher Walking across 13m of coals, I savour each step as I watch my feet move across the fire. I feel like I am walking above the clouds of Texas. Even when doubts come up in my life, I always go back to that moment on the coals; the feeling of total communion with the fire, a perfect marriage of my soul and the coals. Fire continues to teach me everyday – when I meditate with a flame; when I burn myself on the stove and laugh that I can walk on coals but when I'm not paying attention will burn myself on a frying pan; when I feel passion within my body and act on it. The fire has taught me to honour the flames within myself and walk through all the firewalks in my life. Because for each of us, the real firewalk, the real challenge, is to live our lives fully, with purpose and joy. It is so hard to convey what happens in a firewalking session to someone who hasn't been there and done that. To some it might seem crazy, even – or some sort of trick. But it is neither. I remember this experience: light misting rain haloes our bodies in the darkness as we circle around the red glistening coals wearing our shoes loosely on our feet. We

hold hands and chant, energy buzzing my fingers, shaking my knees against the backdrop of a hush of silence, and we all stare at the centre, a thick layer of burning charcoal chunks, 3m by 3m of contained fire to prove the impossible is possible. I look at Lori, standing solidly next to me, not knowing what to expect. In her eyes I see, even if none of us walk, even if we leave with our feet still cold from this wet grass, we are changed. And then the first woman steps forward, quiet, curly-haired. 'She is going first?' I think, as with slow grace she stands before the fiery challenge. This seems a dream, a vision as she bows respectfully to the impossible, raises her arms to her side proud as a gymnast and walks across the coals. She walks across the coals! I see her feet touch the fire I see her feet swallow the coals. I see! And I am crying and laughing, feeling my cold feet tingle. This is the power and the spirit of the life-changing firewalk. If only everyone could know for themselves the power of the fire, its capacity to teach us about ourselves and our true potential; its capacity to instigate change within us that in turn allows us to heal, even from genetic disorders and severe long-term disease; its near-magical ability to make our lives whole again. If only. O


A SUPERMANLIFE Are you ready to design your dreamlife now? Isn't this the right time, right now, to make a decision, right now? ATTENTION SPEAKERS, CORPORATE TRAINERS, LIFE COACHES, AND EXCEPTIONAL INDIVIDUALS Become a Firewalking Institute of Research and Education Certified Firewalk Instructor. Join the ranks of exceptional speakers like: Tony Robbins, Edwene Gains, Andy Harrington and T Harv Eker. All graduates of F.I.R.E. created by Tolly Burkan's Firewalking Institute, F.I.R.E. Go beyond the knowledge of skill and understanding and move into the realm of personal power and persuasion.

Contact Cobus Visser Now! +27 15 491 1309 • 082 215 7597 •

All Odyssey Readers who register get a R14 000 discount on the Course.

ODYSSEY 119 • 




SENSES Natalia Baker looks at exercising your senses so that you may find delight in the world around you, access information and touch into other dimensions.


ODYSSEY 120 • 


get so excited because my senses have come alive

electricity in the prana in the fresh morning air, becoming

in a completely new way. I have never felt them so

so sensitive to the exquisite change of light from night

intensely, beautifully, deeply, intriguingly. It started

to day, the streaks of colour lighting up the morning sky.

when I became addicted to silence. It allowed me to

They also made me reflect how dark and light play

immerse myself into every sound, sight, taste, smell and

with each other. The light from the sun sends its streaks

touch. Hearing the birds at dawn, the first duck quack

across the houses, mountains and water absorbing the

of the day on the water where I live, experiencing the

dark: they play with each other. They play the illusion of

reality and when night comes, the light gives way to the dark and the game has changed. Oh, what a sensual journey. These are days of deep joy, delight and anticipation. They make me want to dance and sing. Let me not get too carried away for there are important things to explore here. You, beloved reader, are awakening, are you not? What happens when you awaken? You start to feel again. Feeling is sensory awareness. Increased consciousness and sensitivity to everything is not only experienced in your present environment but also in the dimensions within and around you. On our healing journeys to reclaim our selves, I have seen individuals, especially women, making every effort to bring their senses alive again. If we were damaged as children, either experiencing rejection, abuse, abandonment, unworthiness, humiliation, or any other negative state, we lose our natural connection with our senses because we lose the true sense of 'I-ness'. The fact that we have to reclaim them is part of our healing. So here we are, some years down the line, having stepped into the new energy and undoubtedly feeling more whole, integrated, powerful – and may I say it? – divine. And our senses are becoming alive and well again. Have you noticed what makes you more tired than anything? It's thinking. It fact, you can get so tired you might even ask, 'What's wrong with me?' Whereas physical activity, done in a balanced way, actually draws more energy to us and moves old stuck energy out of our body, revitalising us, the mind restricts the natural flow of energy. It ruins our sensual day and makes our body sluggish. Experiencing our senses truly affects our energy levels. We become so immersed

Amazing New Meditation Cd For You To Be Powerful, Aligned, Healed, Uplifted

in the present, in the 'I-ness' of ourselves, we go through life madly in love with ourselves and the earth. Remember, we can do things on this plane which we cannot do anywhere else. There is no place like earth for biting into a juicy apple, savouring a cup of coffee, feasting on colours, stroking a cheek, giving someone a hug. Breathing into the senses can make them more alive. It opens

Integrating your divine with your human self

and expands their range and they literally tune you into non-physical realms. Let me give you some examples. Have you ever smelt the scent of an angelic presence? I was with a loved friend and the atmosphere became very still and beautiful. It felt as though we were held in sacredness. Then we both smelt the scent of freesias. It was the presence of an angel. The other night I struggled to sleep but experienced someone placing a bunch of Lilies of the Valley, a favourite flower, beside me on the pillow. When I asked who had done this the reply came, 'I am your father'. It was an intense experience which made me weep and was very comforting. Perhaps you have heard celestial music or flowing water, someone speaking to you, seeing radiant colours. Let me re-iterate: as we activate our senses

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in the physical realms so they lead us into experiences in the subtle realms. There is a further point to this. Years ago, when I taught people how to hone their visualisation skills, I discovered that whichever sense was the strongest in an individual, (in most of us it is the ability

ODYSSEY 121 • 


to see and hear), that would be the most active sense on

you tune into a troubling physical condition. You first

the inner planes. Occasionally, a person would have an

imagine what shape it is, how it feels to touch (spongy,

exceptionally sensitive sense of smell. When they were

slimy, hard and so on), how it smells, what colour it is,

imaging in an altered state of consciousness they smelt

what sound it makes (such as sobbing, whining, keening,

everything rather than seeing or hearing.

screaming) and finally, translating the sound into words.

Through breathing and engaging our physical sense we can use them in a far broader and expansive manner.

The insight you gain into the emotional/mental cause of the condition is generally very helpful. Finally, our senses are going to be very important

Try these exercises: Stimulating your senses through the

in the future because the sensitivity and awareness we

breath. Breathe very consciously making a choice

are able to invest in them gives us feedback on our

to breathe into every sense as you look at something

environment, situations, people, our experience. This is

(anything), then hear sounds around you (or choose a

felt, not through the head, but in the body, like biological

specific sound like a wind chime, music or voices), taste

antennae through which we receive information about the

something slowly and mindfully (a herb leaf is excellent),

world around us.

smell something like a piece of fruit, a spice, or simply

For example, you would use your senses like a sensor

the air around you and finally, use your sense of touch by

to assess the energy of a person. I am not referring to

stroking your skin, your clothing or the arm of your chair.

a character analysis – that is something different – but

All the time you are breathing in the experience.

their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual being. You

Using your senses interchangeably. Take a

can do this even from a photo,

bright piece of cloth, any colour but it is easiest if it is a

which has been done with uncanny

single colour, not patterned. Absorb yourself in the colour.


Using your imagination, experience very slowly the sound

remember years ago asking a wise,

it makes, its smell (not the smell of the cloth but the smell

enlightened man about a book. He

of the colour), how the colour would feel with your tactile

simply held it between his hands

sense and finally how the colour would taste.

and gave an accurate account of its





When we use our senses in this way – tasting music,

content and value. You could have

seeing smells, hearing colours – it is not some fanciful

fun extending your sensors to feel

exercise but a way in which you can develop your senses

the energy in a mountain nearby, a

most usefully. For instance, your sense of hearing could

crystal, a cave, even a planet. Have

be used to detect energies in colours or a person's state of health. I am sure you know of the exercise in which




day. O

NATALIA BAKER facilitates ALL NEW WORKSHOPS DISCOVER YOUR TRUE VOICE | R300 9.30am • 9 July | 7pm • 10 July | 7pm • 19 August | 9.30am, 7pm | 11 September

ENLIVEN YOUR SENSES | R250 9.30am 16 July, 7pm 17 July, 7pm 26 August, 7pm 4 September

AN ADVANCED MASTER CLASS IN SELF-LOVE | R500 9am - 5pm Wednesday 24 July, Saturday 3 August, Saturday 10 April, Saturday 14 September Novalis Ubuntu Centre, 39 Rosmead Avenue, Wynberg, Booking essential: 021 788 2900 • •

ODYSSEY 122 • 



Image courtesy of Mindful Eating, published by Hay House and available here.

ODYSSEY 123 • 



It seems like every day brings new affirmation and proof of the benefits of a healthy, balanced lifestyle. The top chefs at Miraval, have dedicated themselves to providing the guests nourishment for mind, body and soul. The thought of making a major lifestyle change by learning to make healthy food can be pretty intimidating. But, in the book Mindful Eating, they share the secrets of their kitchen and take the mystery out of creating delicious, beautiful, nutritious meals. You will learn how to re-create Miraval favourites in the comfort of your own kitchen, as well as how to create healthy classics of your own. Here is a selection from the book.

mindful e

ODYSSEY 124 • 


Butternut Squash Soup Miraval’s approach to the classic Butternut Squash Soup channels the warmth and essence of autumn. We incorporate reduced cinnamon-infused rice milk to balance the butternut squash, which adds a completely different dimension of flavor to the dish. Please note: Soups pureed in a blender have a richer texture. While the butternut squash mixture can be pureed with a food processor or stick blender, the texture and yield will be different from that made in a blender. Always be careful when blending hot liquids. Do not fill the blender container more than halfway full, and hold down the top with a kitchen towel as you turn on the machine. These safeguards prevent the lid from blowing off and hot liquids flying, which can result in dangerous burns.

¼ tsp vegetable oil 1 c chopped yellow onion 1 c chopped celery ½ tsp chopped garlic 5 c peeled, one-inch cubes butternut squash ¼ tsp ground nutmeg 1 bay leaf ½ tsp kosher salt ⅛ tsp freshly ground black pepper 5 c canned vegetable broth 1½ c rice milk 2 whole cinnamon

eating sticks

Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the onion and celery and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the squash, nutmeg, bay leaf, and salt and pepper; cook until the squash starts to turn brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook until the squash is fork tender, about 20 minutes. In a small saucepan, bring the rice milk and cinnamon sticks to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook, whisking occasionally, until light caramel in color and reduced to ¼ cup in volume, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the cinnamon sticks and cool completely. In batches, transfer the butternut squash mixture to a blender and puree on high speed until smooth. Transfer to a clean container, stir, and cover to keep warm until ready to serve. To serve, ladle half-cup portions into small soup bowls. Decoratively drizzle 1 tsp. of the rice milk into the center of each serving and serve immediately.

Mindful Eating is published by Hay House and available here.

Makes 6 cups; serving size: ½ cup

ODYSSEY 125 • 


Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the number one cause of death worldwide and kill two and a half times more people than all cancers. CVD refers to illnesses of the heart and the blood vessels – veins, arteries and capillaries. We take a look.

Don't become a stat T

he latest statistics released by the World Health Organisation (for 2008), showed that 17.3m people died from CVD in that year – this represents 30% of all deaths

globally. Of this, 7.3m were due to coronary heart disease and 6.2m were as a result of strokes. The WHO estimates that by 2030, heart disease and strokes will account for 23.3m global deaths. WHO also found that high blood pressure was responsible for 16.5% of all deaths. Closer to home, a report released by the SA Medical Research Council in October 2012, revealed that between 1997 and 2004, 195 South Africans died each day from CVD. Twice as many men as women died from heart attacks during this period. Indians* accounted for the highest number of CVD deaths, followed by coloureds and lastly, whites and

blacks who shared very similar statistics. However, whites died mainly from heart attacks while blacks died from strokes, heart muscle disease and high blood pressure. According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of SA, 8.6m women die every year from CVD worldwide, which translates to one-third of all deaths in women. In SA, one-quarter of all women experience some form of heart disease before the age of 60 and 34% of all life claims by women are due to CVD deaths. These statistics indicate that, currently, heart disease is the number-one cause of death in both women and men. A vast body of scientific research has explored CVD. Among aspects researched are the reasons for heart attacks, high cholesterol, hypertension (high blood pressure), strokes,

angina, arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat), atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and venous blood clots, to mention but a few. It has generally been accepted that CVD, if it is not genetic, is the result of poor diet, obesity, stress, smoking, lack of sleep, physical inactivity and excessive alcohol intake. Considering our modern lifestyles, the above reasons make perfect sense. We live our lives on the run, stressed out

ODYSSEY 126 • 


and coping to the best of our ability. We regularly indulge in fast foods; we may relax with a drink and a smoke and try our utmost to deal with the stress that assails us daily. Few of us have the opportunity to retreat to some form of sanctuary regularly to 'detox' our systems and emotions, so, faced with statistics such as those mentioned above and a deep desire not to become one of them, how do we move forward? The first part of the journey is to understand how these conditions and our lifestyles affect our bodies and our health. It sometimes appears that every second person you meet is suffering from high cholesterol so that probably is a good starting point. Simply put, because cholesterol is not soluble in blood plasma, it needs a carrier to take it around the body. These carriers are known as low-density lipoproteins (LDL – aka 'bad cholesterol') and high-density lipoproteins (HDL – aka 'good cholesterol'). The function of HDL is to carry the excess cholesterol back to the liver so that the body can destroy it or convert it

'People who ate a Mediterranean diet rich in olives showed a 30% less chance of suffering from heart disease'. Dr Ramon Estruch, professor of medicine, University of Barcelona

to bile, which in turn emulsifies fats. LDLs function is to take the cholesterol to where it is needed, but because it is a sticky substance, the cholesterol sometimes gets deposited in the arteries. The white blood cells then step in and in the process of 'eliminating' the LDL, they oxidise it. A loop is developed, until eventually, the oxidised LDL can enter the wall of the artery and create a progressive build-up, called plaque. With time the blood vessel effectively narrows and hardens. The result is a condition known as atherosclerosis that causes strokes and heart attacks. If the surface of the plaque erupts, it creates a blood clot, which induces heart attacks.

ability to reduce the markers of inflammation. In fact, in 2011, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) scientific panel sanctioned hydroxytyrosol and stated that, 'Olive oil polyphenols contribute to the protection of blood lipids from oxidative stress.' What this means is that hydroxytyrosol protects both our heart and the cells that line our blood vessels at a genetic level from damage by excessively reactive oxygen molecules. They absorb free radicals and reduce the amount of fat accumulating in our arteries. They are also known for their ability to increase HDL (good cholesterol), reduce inflammation and prevent blood clots.

Natural heart health There are a number of natural ways available to deal with these conditions and one, in particular, that needs a special mention. Up until recently scientists have thought it is the high monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) content found in olives that was the primary reason why folk in the Mediterranean area have such a low incidence of heart disease. It is only lately that they have discovered a minor component of olives, a polyphenol called hydroxytyrosol that has, in the past, been lost in the olive juice disposed of as wastewater in the production of olive oil. Studies have now shown that it plays a vital role in reducing or preventing the oxidation of LDL and raising the levels of HDL. Hydroxytyrosol has been identified as the most potent natural antioxidant with the highest

Earlier this year, the results of a study undertaken in Spain by Dr Ramon Estruch, a professor of medicine at the University of Barcelona, showed that people who ate a Mediterranean diet rich in olives showed a 30% less chance of suffering from heart disease. The results were so clear cut that the study was stopped after about five years as the scientists involved felt that it would be unethical to continue. It has received accolades from the American Heart Association. Hydroxytyrosol is also able to reduce C-reactive protein and homocysteine, both of which are significant biochemical markers of inflammation and contribute to conditions such as venous thrombo-embolism, strokes, coronary heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis.

level of free radical protection activity known to man. In

Anti-cancer effects

addition, it is also acknowledged as having a superior

This polyphenol's benefits are not only restricted to CVD,

ODYSSEY 127 • 


The WHO estimates that by 2030, heart disease and strokes will account for 23.3m global deaths. Heart disease in SA is the number-one cause of death in both women and men, according to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of SA. it would seem. New research is highlighting its ability to contribute to the healing process of a number of other serious illnesses. Scientists from the University of Perugia in Italy concluded that hydroxytyrosol was

Rich in natural polyphenols

potent in preventing DNA damage and, therefore, certain types of cancer. As an antioxidant, hydroxytyrosol has a direct, positive influence on the length and ageing of DNA telomeres by preventing DNA oxidation. Telomeres

protect our genetic material and allow the cells to divide without losing genes. A long telomere is a sign of good health, strong immunity and longevity but with time, oxidation tends to shorten these DNA telomeres, which adversely affect DNA duplication. It is common knowledge that antioxidants delay ageing and skin damage. As hydroxytyrosol is the most

Heart health with Phytolive

potent natural antioxidant known, so using it could play a vital role in anti-ageing and skin care. Its ability to lower LDL, improve insulin sensitivity and regulate blood sugar levels makes products like Phytolive a valuable supplement for diabetics. Other studies have shown how polyphenols can prevent the onset of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis as it strengthens bones and increases calcium absorption. Since hydroxytyrosol can also cross the blood-brain barrier, it can be beneficial for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's as well as aiding older people who are starting to suffer memory loss.

Phytolive, rich in natural polyphenols contributes to maintaining heart health. Phytolive is a 100% pure extract of olive fruit, rich in the powerful antioxidant hydroxytyrosol to provide protection of LDL (bad cholesterol) particles from oxidative damage, which are known to adversely affect cardiovascular health. Just one capsule twice daily with your meals is all it takes…

Recently, hydroxytyrosol has become accessible in SA for the first time in capsule form under the name Phytolive, part of the Master Health Products' Purenature range and is available from their online store at O

More info at To take advantage of our introductory offer, shop online at

See ad opposite for more details.

Available at selected health shops *Publisher's note: Odyssey does not endorse racial grouping or any form of race-based thinking. However, given SA's history these demographic categories of people have validity in differentiating lifestyle norms, especially eating habits and practices which influence lifestyle diseases such as CVD.

ODYSSEY 128 • 


Trade enquiries tel: 011 803 5445 Email:


recipes for a new generation of food enthusiasts PREMIUM SALMON APPETISERS Serves 2

Any Mestemacher or New Food rye bread 100 g cream cheese 2 small apples 2 tablespoons of pumpkin seeds 1 packet of smoked salmon 1 branch of dill Lemon juice 1. Cut slices of bread in halves and roast in a pan until crispy together with pumpkin seeds. 2. Wash the apples, cut them in halves and slice one into 8 thin segments, dice the other one unpeeled and sprinkle with lemon juice. 3. Chop the dill and fold into cream cheese with pumpkin seeds and apple slices. 4. Put one slice of smoked salmon on each piece of bread, spread on the cheese cream and decorate with dill and apple segments. Tip: you can also enjoy the cream cream with pickled or young herring. Also delicious with light yoghurt.

021 850 0877 | ODYSSEY 129 • 



SODA STREAM It is not only the new kitchen stylish must have; but the Sodastream Source is also combating the increasing number of bottles and cans dumped in landfills each year. About 450 billion plastic bottles and cans are manufactured every year and only about one-third of them are recycled. Until now, the threat of carbonated beverages has never been addressed, because there was no other option. Now, there is. All Sodastream machines, including the Source, are sustainable and offer its user the non-complicated way of making soda at home, just the way you like it. The chic BPA-free bottle can be used for up to 3-years to make your tailor-made drinks – nothing could be simpler or greener. The Source stylishly turns ordinary tap water into sparkling water in seconds and you can add flavour and bubbles to taste for any occasion, be it a family movie night, fun parties or sundowners. More great news is that Sodastream has a 1/3 less calories than store bought soft drinks. Pretty impressive, pretty delicious and pretty good-looking.

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We have ONE Soda Stream Source hamper (valued at R2 000 each) to give away. Email us your name and postal address here by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win. We have TWO copies of Wine Tourism South Africa 2013 to give away. Email us your name and postal address here by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.

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ODYSSEY 130 • 


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Top-quality drinking water, something which for years was taken for granted, has recently become a global priority. There are many products on the market which filter drinking water, but this particular one claims to be do something that is very different to purifying it. Some filters remove unwanted sediments and tastes, but they do not kill germs. Clear water does not mean pure water; and if it's not pure, it's not safe to drink. This is where the Halo Pure water pitcher, which has recently been released in South Africa, effectively improves and disinfects water by purifying it. It kills 99.9% of bacteria, among them notable nasties such as Poliovirus, Rotavirus, E Coli, Cholera and Salmonella. The pitcher itself is stylish, lightweight, easy to pour from and compact enough to fit in your fridge, while the cartridge purifies 375l of water before requiring replacement.

We have FIVE Halo Pure water purifiers (valued at R599 each) to give away. Email us here by 30 July 2013 to stand a chance to win.

ODYSSEY 131 • 



Jackie Cameron Cooks at Home: Simple & Delectable Home Cooking Jackie Cameron Penguin • 978 0 1435 3067 1 Whether you know Jackie or not, this is a great cooking book, with local ingredients, and designed to be practical, easy and applicable to local palates and home-cooking styles. No liquid nitrogen required here (sorry Hester), just plain old common sense and some great recipes. Use it and make food you, your family and friends will love.

Cook it Raw Edited by Alessandro Porcelli Phaidon • 978 0 7148 6549 2

It is very difficult to review this more than odd (and somewhat massive) book. Not quite just a cookbook, not even a book about raw food only, it features a number of apparently well-known chefs, pushed out of their comfort zones and into the wilds, in some cases, to forage for ingredients that are obviously local and wild. Actually, the entire undertake is about as far removed from a conventional cookbook as a New York saucier might be up to his or her arms in Japanese swamp water searching for wild wasabi, and that's not even a particularly weird example drawn from these pages. There are pictures in some parts, but other sections look and feel like partially completed workbook. Given no other option to help describe this one properly, here's a quote from page 64 which may serve better: 'So Cook it Raw is about spreading a message, raising awareness and inspiring the next generation of cooks. Some of their discoveries might land up on their menu for you to try and in trying these unfamiliar ingredients I hope you it will encourage you to consider that if we want delicious food in the future we all have to start caring about where this food comes from. We need to look after nature and our environment of we expect it to keep looking after us.' Can't disagree with those sentiments, but it's still not making understanding this book, or how it's been put together, any easier. This is one you'll just have to see for yourself.

Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us Michael Moss W H Allen • 978 0 7535 4146 3 In South Africa obesity and related diseases (diabetes, heart attacks and atherosclerosis among them) are at an all-time high, and affecting the least able to bear these social and economic burdens the most. In China, for the first time, people who are overweight outnumber those who aren’t. In Mexico, the obesity rate has tripled in the last three decades. In the UK over 60% of adults and 30% of children are overweight, while America’s population is the most obese in the world. These are the signs that the world has become hooked on a toxic combo of salt, sugar and too much saturated fat. The reason is that, put together, these three ingredients deliver the greatest amount of ‘bang for the buck’ in terms of most taste for least cost. And so we have become victims of a drive by the big food corporations, aided and abetted by the fast food crowd, to get us eating stuff that may taste great but really isn’t any good for us – especially at the rate at which we consume these foods. Researched and written by a Pulitzer Prize winner, this book is a real eye-opener. And if you aren’t scrutinising the labels on the processed foods you eat henceforth, then you either don’t care what an excess of these three foods (plus all the other ‘not good for you’ stuff like preservatives, that go into food products) are doing to you and those you love, or you are among those for whom denial isn’t just a big river in Africa. Read this one and wake up to the reality of what’s in much of the food we eat.

ODYSSEY 132 • 


Hot Turmeric Milkshake While smoothies and juices are wonderful, as the weather gets colder, the body can really benefit from warm foods and drinks. Here's a great recipe. Think: hot cocoa with or without the cocoa. This recipe is very versatile – use your favourite nuts, such as almonds, cashews, walnuts or hazelnuts, spices and superfoods to make it yours. Coconut oil adds an extra creaminess and so many health benefits for your heart, bones and brain, not to mention its anti-bacterial properties will help you kick those winter bugs to the curb. Serves 1       ¼ cup of almonds (preferably  

soaked overnight)       1 cup of coconut water  

      ½ cup of filtered water         1 date            2 teaspoons of Mesquite powder*       ½ teaspoon of turmeric powder         ½ teaspoon of cinnamon powder         ½ teaspoon of ginger powder and/  

or fresh ginger       ½ teaspoon of vanilla powder         A pinch of nutmeg         A pinch of cloves            1 tablespoon of coconut oil

(optional) * If available

ODYSSEY 133 • 


Herbal defence force

earth godess

Jane Griffiths looks at a few wonderful herbs to keep out the cold.


inter and the colder weather usually means sniffly noses, wheezing coughs and achy painy flu. There are many herbs that will build up your immune

system, helping prevent the worst of these bugs attacking you. The biggest difference between herbs and many modern medicines is that herbs help the body heal itself rather than just suppressing the symptoms. For example, many modern cold medicines treat just the symptoms by drying up the mucus. However, taking a herb such as echinacea helps strengthen the body's immune system, enabling us to fight off the cold more effectively and preventing us from being infected in the first place. Herbs not only add flavour to our food, they are also packed with vitamins and minerals that have many health benefits. The effects of regularly using herbs are wide ranging: from building a healthy immune system and improving our digestive systems, to increasing energy levels and our feeling of well-being.

Herbs for winter health

Try growing and using these herbs to keep you and your family healthy throughout winter: African potato, angelica, cancer bush, echinacea, heartsease and thyme all build up our immune system.

African potato

Indigenous to South Africa, the African potato has been used for centuries by traditional healers. In the last few decades it has gained prominence for its ability to strengthen and perk up the immune system. It is only during the last 20 years or so that it has been called African potato, which is a bit of a misnomer as it grows from a corm (a fleshy food-storing underground stem) and not from a tuber like the regular potato.

In the garden: With its bright yellow, star-shaped flowers, this is an attractive and hardy plant that attracts beneficial insects to the garden. It is drought-tolerant and likes full sun in well-drained soil. Buy young plants from a specialised herb nursery. Enrich the soil with compost before planting. Mulch with compost a couple of times a year, especially in winter when it goes dormant. It is happier in areas with summer rainfall.

Healing properties: This plant has the ability to increase the functioning of white blood cells, which control

ODYSSEY 134 • 


ODYSSEY 135 • 


and regulate the immune system, and to purify the blood.

which are followed by fat green seedpods. It is grown

It has been used to effectively treat a range of illnesses

from both seeds and seedlings and likes full sun and

from colds and flu to tuberculosis.

warm conditions with fertile, well-drained soil.

How to use: Corm – infusion or decoction



discovered that it contains potent elements that effectively

and sorcery for centuries. Even its name indicates that it will call on the angels to protect you from evil. It is an


How to use: Dried leaves – infusion.


Also known as coneflower, this is a delightful plant to

and smell of angelica transports me back to childhood

grow in the garden; bees and butterflies love it and its

Christmas parties, where candied angelica was served as

striking pink flowers last throughout summer. Even when


it loses its flowers, the cone-like seed heads create an

In the garden: Angelica is a tall biennial plant with

eye-catching display.

long hollow stems and showy greenish-white flowers in

In the garden: Echinacea likes full sun and

its second summer. As it can grow well over a metre tall,

well-drained soil. It is easily grown from seed and will

it should be positioned to the back of the herb garden.

self-seed happily once established. The plants die back

Angelica grows easily from seeds and seedlings. The seeds

in winter but soon spring up again when the weather

are viable for three to four months so this is an option

warms up. They can also be propagated by division.

only if you harvest your own. Transplant or sow the seeds

Bigger plants can be divided in late winter and planted

directly in a moist area with dappled or afternoon shade.

out in spring.

It grows well on the southern side of an elderflower or

Healing properties: Echinacea is indigenous to

similar tree. It won't do well in a hot and dry climate. It

North America, where Native Americans have used it for

benefits from ground cover or a well-mulched surface to

hundreds of years to treat infections and wounds, and

keep its growing environment moist. The flowers attract

as a general 'cure-all'. Today it is widely cultivated, as

beneficial insects. Cut the seed heads before they start

it contains polysaccharides. These enhance the immune

falling and dry them prior to storage. Plants die once the

system, relieve pain, lessen inflammation and have

seed has matured but this can be delayed by removing

antiviral, hormonal and antioxidant properties.

the young flower stems.

How to use: Flowers, leaves and root – decoction.




old-fashioned English cottage garden plant. The taste

Healing properties: The leaves



invigorate and strengthen the immune system.

This interesting plant has been associated with witchcraft






appetite and are used to treat

Both pansies and violas are derived from the wild viola

poor circulation and strengthen the

or heartsease. Multicoloured garden pansies are hybrids

immune system.

originating from crossing wild viola species to produce

How to use: Leaves – infusion.

plants with bigger flowers and various colours. The

Cancer bush

smaller flowers of the viola are closer to the original wild

The cancer bush – or Sutherlandia –

In the garden: Pansies and violas are easy to grow

is one of the most powerful of South

from seeds or seedlings. Plant in autumn and you will

Africa's indigenous herbs. It has

have bright flowers throughout winter, spring and early

been used for centuries by traditional

summer. These plants prefer a cooler, moist environment

healers, and modern-day researchers

and don't mind dappled shade. Dead head the flowers to

are now discovering a multitude of

keep them flowering. If you leave some flowers they will

medicinal uses for this wonder plant.

form a beautiful triangular-shaped seedpod. Collect the

In the garden: Apart from its

seeds just as the pod begins to dry and sow them the

medicinal properties, the cancer bush

following autumn.

is a pretty plant to add to the herb


garden. It has delicate grey-green

strengthening and toning blood vessels and stabilising

leaves and bears vivid scarlet flowers,

capillary membranes.






How to use: Leaves and flowers – infusion


'I know a bank where the wild thyme blows, where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,' says Oberon, King of the Fairies in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. He is describing where the Fairy Queen Titania sleeps because, as all savvy gardeners in Shakespeare's time knew, if you want to invite fairies into your garden, plant a bed of thyme. In the garden: Thyme is a valuable plant in the garden. Hardy and unfussy, it is easy to grow, is beneficial to other plants and tastes good. For a small plant, it packs a big punch. It is a perennial, bearing pretty pink and purple flowers in summer. There are numerous varieties, including variegated and lemon-flavoured ones. Originating in the Mediterranean, it does well in hot, dry climates. However, it grows happily through rainy summers, as long as it has sufficient sunlight and the soil is well drained. It can be grown from seed, but is much easier from seedlings or root divisions off an existing plant. It doesn't

Immune-boosting tonic

like rich soil, preferring light earth. Every year after

Start taking this delicious pick-me-up tonic from late

flowering, give the plant a trim to encourage new growth

autumn throughout winter to prevent colds, coughs

and prevent it from becoming too woody and sprawling.

and flu from even thinking about starting.

After about three years, the plant will become 'leggy' and should be divided. Dig it up and clear away some soil. Use

2-3 cinnamon sticks

a spade to divide it into smaller pieces, each with a section

2 tablespoons fresh ginger, chopped

of root and foliage, and replant.

1 tablespoon dried echinacea root

Healing properties: It contains a wide variety of

1 teaspoon dried cancer bush leaves

antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, making it a healthy and

1 teaspoon dried African potato corms

immune-boosting herb.

3 cups water

How to use: Leaves and flowers – infusion. O

2 tablespoons each fresh angelica leaves, thyme and  heartsease leaves and flowers

a tip of honey Honey's therapeutic properties have been known for thousands of years. Externally its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial abilities help heal wounds, burns and fungal conditions. Internally its cleansing and antioxidant properties heal colds, flu and throat and bronchial conditions. It is particularly effective in treating pollen-related allergies – especially if treated with locally produced honey. My bad spring hay fever was vastly reduced after I began keeping bees and eating a daily teaspoon of honey produced from my own garden. Honey is a beneficial addition to bitter herbal teas, not only sweetening them, but also adding to their healing power.


10 tablespoons fresh elderberries

Place the cinnamon sticks, ginger, echinacea, cancer bush and African potato in a pot and add the water. Bring to the boil and reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. Add the fresh herbs, cover and remove from the heat. Leave until cooled and strain. For each cup of infusion add 1½ cups of honey. Stir in the elderberries and heat. Boil for 6-8 minutes, until it has thickened slightly and the elderberries have softened. Mash the elderberries with a wooden spoon. Remove from the heat and pour into a sterilised bottle. Drink a teaspoon or two every morning.

Visit Jane's Delicious Garden at or email Jane on

Photographs: Jane Griffiths & Keith Knowlton. SOURCES: Jane's Delicious Herbs – Sunbird Publishers, a division of Jonathan Ball Publishers.

ODYSSEY 137 • 



The herbs that go into our mixtures are of the highest The herbs that go into our mixtures are organic and of quality and organic. The complete process from planting, the highest quality. The complete process from planting, drying blending isisdone doneononour ourfarm farmatatMcGregor, McGregor, drying and and blending 200km from from Cape Cape Town, Town, South South Africa, andsome not some 200km Africa, not distant distant factory in China or Poland. factory in China or Poland. The semi desert conditions and the mountainous terrain The semi-desert conditions and the mountainous terrain have kept industry away from this eco friendly have kept industry away from this eco-friendly environenvironment thus ensuring a verypotency high potency ment thus ensuring a very high herbal herbal product. product.

Some of our products are now available in boxes of 20 organic, kosher tea bags.

Some of our products are now available in boxes of 20 organic, kosher tea bags.

Arthritia Cancerbush Constipatea Buchu Constipatea Cancerbush Fennel Detoxtea Detoxtea Fennel Nettle Diabetea Diabetea Nettle Peppermint Hi LoTea Blood TeaPeppermint Hi Lo Blood Sceletium With Peppermint Sleepitea Sceletium With Peppermint Sleepitea Sceletium With Rosemary SlimteaSlimtea Sceletium With Rosemary Wonderherbs (South African Bitters)



Wonderherbs (South African Bitters)

TradeContact: Contact:PhPh/Fax 0236251 6251687. 687 •EEmail • Trade /fax 023 mail Agentswelcome welcome.

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ODYSSEY 138 • 


Be water smart not water short As we constantly face new water challenges such as rising water bills and municipal water outages, harvesting rain, our free source of water, can be a brilliant idea. A rainwater tank is easy to install and maintain and harvested rainwater

But, make sure you choose a JoJo tank. Our water tanks have a

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ODYSSEY 139 • 



Phytotherapy – healin ODYSSEY 140 • 


Phytotherapy, or herbalism, is probably the oldest medical practice in the world and is still widely practised. Modern phytotherapy encompasses the old with the new: traditional herbs with modern medical practise. Dr Connie Meyer reports.

Herbal medicine is most effective when dispensed and formulated by a phytotherapist. It is much stronger than the over-the-counter medicines and the dosage is correct for the condition. It is also specific to your body's needs. Above all, herbal medicine, when practiced properly by a fully-trained specialist, is generally safe and largely non-invasive, using nature's own processes as its methodology. And it is really green and planet-friendly. O Visit for more.

Herbal medicine has many advantages It facilitates body functions by nurturing and balancing the various organs;

In phytotherapy, most medicines & topical medicaments are formulated specially for the individual.

It doesn't block functions to 'normalise' physiological states; It is not alien to the body and side effects are very rare; It is nutritious as well as healing;


n SA phytotherapy is a registered profession, and to become registered, a university degree in phytotherapy is required. At present the University of the Western

Cape is the only university in SA which offers a recognised course. In a phytotherapy practice dried herbs and herbal

The chemical constituents of herbal medicine are 'recognised' by the body as most of them are abundant in nature and food; Certain herbs have strong effects on certain systems, either calming or stimulating; It can be used together with allopathic medicines,

tinctures or tablets are dispensed to patients. Medicines

which may be necessary in some conditions;

are formulated and prepared by the phytotherapist

It is non-polluting once excreted, and will not harm

who can also make a syrup, cream, lotion or ointment

the environment;

for a wide variety of internal or topical applications. Most medicines and topical medicaments are formulated specially for the individual.

What can you expect when you visit a phytotherapist? The first visit takes about an hour, maybe longer. A complete history is taken – that means questions are asked about your whole body. A medical examination is conducted. If necessary blood tests, scans, or other tests may be requested. Diet and lifestyle will be discussed. Herbal medicine will then be formulated and dispensed

In many instances it is scientifically validated by research; Treatment progress can be clinically evaluated by blood tests, scans, endoscopy, and so on; The use of herbal medicine strengthens the immune system and does not cause antibiotic resistance; It is very efficient for acute or chronic disease; and It can eliminate the need for antibiotics in acute situations and with the guidance of a practitioner. Recovery is in line with what nature intended no quick fix.

and treatment will be explained.

ng with herbal medicine ODYSSEY 141 • 


ph y totherapists Dr Franziska Gunther Registration Number: AO 2632 PY

012 991 1698 • 083 362 0602

Faerie Glen, Pretoria

'We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do.' Barbara Ward, Only One Earth, 1972

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ODYSSEY 142 • 


CAPE TOWN CTICC 29, 30 NOV - 1 DEC 2013

CapeNature is the public institution mandated to promote and ensure biodiversity conservation within the Western Cape. CapeNature manages most of the mountain catchments and nature reserves that supply ecosystem services to the citizens of the Western Cape. This requires good scientific data, a sound understanding of fynbos ecology and commitment to the principles of integrated biodiversity management and planning.

ODYSSEY 143 • 



Conservation &

sustainable living The Kuthumba community on the Garden Route has evolved into one that is earnestly concerned with conservation. Most of its common land is either indigenous forest or fynbos and the community sits on the boundary of the vast and spectacular Tzitzikama National Park in The Crags, Plettenberg Bay. Ruby Ovenstone reports.


ODYSSEY 144 • 


his environment holds us all spellbound by its

solutions to the lifestyle systems that will enable human

beauty and we never cease to be awed by the

settlement to become sustainable.

gifts of the daily display of glorious moments.

The land to host the Kuthumba impulse was purchased

From the first flickering of dawn, we open our eyes to

20 years ago, a time of a new dawn spiritually where

the sun rising in flamboyant splendour over Formosa

there was huge enthusiasm for what we believed was

Peak and the Langkloof. Countless encounters with the

an imminent and radical shift into free energy and

gorgeous creatures in the wild, on our walks through the

ecologically inspired solutions. Confidently, we strove to

forest and on the beautiful beaches, listening to the call

anchor this bright and clear vision for a new living system

of the surf tucked up in bed on a starry night, the intense

into tangible expression. We met in countries all over

presence of nature makes this a home and a sanctuary

the world as a global eco-village network to explore and

that inspires gratitude and delight.

consolidate the available options. Grassroots initiatives

Time unfolds life in unexpected ways. Racing us in a

were making electric cars and all manner of highly

technological speedster with the accompanying pressure

inventive energy-and-resource-efficient contraptions for

to configure ourselves in formats we can hardly grasp

anything from heating water to feeding fish and, most

on the one side, and slowly unraveling a borderline

especially, dealing with human waste. We built houses of

stagnation on the other. The journey of Kuthumba's

all kinds of materials, pioneering, bravely re-interpreting

unfolding has evidenced this through its quest for

what it means to live within one's means and take

responsibility for maintaining a balance between inputs

primates to cheetahs who have been known to visit on

and outputs in real terms. We engaged in countless hours

rare occasions.

of dinnertime conversation about sewerage systems, the

There are still frustrations like paying for electricity

tensions created when humanity meets nature and

and having to conform to council regulations which

the impact we inevitably have on our environment.

often contradict the intentions of an ecologically ethical

We tried different non-toxic treatments for wood, and

lifestyle and some compromises have had to be made.

diligently encouraged the sporty earthworms to aid the

The crazy pace of digital advancement does allow for

efforts at composting toilets. Sometimes there were

more flexibility in terms of one's working environment,

great triumphs and sometimes great losses. Sometimes

however. This is certainly an advantage in a rural

agreement, and sometimes conflict.

community where multi-tasking for an income becomes

What emerged as a central and ongoing challenge

the norm. The Kuthumba community have a wide variety

is the necessity to come to a place of acceptance for

of solutions to income generation, working from home

one another's values and an honouring of our individual

as well as travelling to town on a daily basis or working

efforts. A core factor to the sustainability of community

further afield for a few weeks at a time. There is plenty

is understanding that toxic emotional and mental

of rentable accommodation available on Kuthumba for

content needs as much management as composting and

short-term mainly, which is used for holidays and for

recycling does on a material level. Taking responsibility

the workshops and retreats that are run here. We are

for debris on an emotional and mental level opens the

currently running an Artists Residence winter program

doorway for spirit to find clearer expression, and all one's

of workshops at Elephant House involving printmaking,

endeavours regarding the environment and living lightly

ceramics and writing retreats. Programs are available

come to nothing if they are not done with a loving heart.

for yoga, meditation and health renewal in the form of

So the years have gone by and the residents of

seminars and personalised packages.

Kuthumba have been living, learning and growing in

Through it all there remains one constant here, and

authenticity. There is still a lot to unfold and opportunities

that is that there is a majesty to this place that calls forth

abound for a creative future. The last phase of freehold

a living grace and we are blessed by it and thankful.

title plots are available for sale and we have land zoned

The question still remains; does our living bless the

for a wellness centre or country inn as well as an

Earth? Have we overcome our fears enough to reach a

educational centre or retirement shared investment.

tipping point where joy is the gift we return to the field

Kuthumba home owners, both permanent residents

of love we have been inspired to live in?

and holiday visitors, enjoy the proximity to Plettenberg

Sustainable living is a noble aspiration and humbling

Bay which is developing a strong community of

in its application. As Steve Biko said: 'We have set out on

permanent families, moving beyond its old image of

a quest for true humanity, and somewhere on the distant

a holiday town of glitzy affluence for a short heady

horizon we can see the glittering prize.' O

season. Our neighbourhood conservancy has filled with all kinds of intriguing animal and bird sanctuaries, from

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ODYSSEY 145 • 


The Royal Horticultural Society Encyclopedia of Gardening Editor-in-Chief Christopher Brickell DK • 978 1 4093 8394 9 Now in its 4th edition, revised and updated, this is the definitive and classic gardening book – if you live in the UK. For us in Africa, there's obviously some cross-over, given seasonal adjustments – perhaps more so for those living in (nominally) Mediterranean-type climates (mostly that would be the Western and Southern Cape), though these days, with increasingly strange, extreme and variable climatic events, who's to say what is 'normal' and whether the old way of thinking about climactic regions in rough equivalents to each other still applies. In any case, where pertinent, if you are into gardening, this is obviously the go-to book on all matters where you might want a final and 'official' answer.

The Grower's Cookbook: From the Garden to the Table Dennis Greville & Jill Brewis Jakana • 978 1 4314 0615 9 If you like the notion of growing your own food, as well, or course, as cooking it, but lack expert knowledge, experience or have limited space and time, then this is the right book for you. Straight forward, clean design, easy to read layouts some inspiring images and plenty hints, tips and recipes make this book a one-stop solution for most gardeners – especially those new to the game. And the best part is that this is a South African edition, making every page locally relevant.

How to Garden

The Royal Horticultural Society

DK • 978 1 4053 6640 3

A lovely book – and as much a coffee-table offering as a technical one – the only unfortunate thing about this title is that it is, as the name would indicate as Royal Horticultural Society publication, designed for British readers. Hard core gardening types will likely love it anyway – and the pictures are great and inspiring. But as to local applicability, one will still have to do research beyond what is in these 350+ pages to be sure that the information offered in relevant to specific conditions in whichever part of Southern Africa in which you may be located. Once again, a rough equivalency to Mediterranean conditions in the Western and Southern Cape may make this a more immediately useful book than if you live, say, in Natal, the Northern Cape or anywhere in either the Lowveld or the Highveld. But then again, you may want the book for its images of gardens and plants alone.

'The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul.' – Alfred Austin

ODYSSEY 146 • 



We take a bird's-eye view on the impacts of plantation forestry on biodiversity in South Africa.


s a bird, soaring above the South African landscape your flight path will take you over many diverse habitats, from grassland to

woodland and fynbos, from farms, mines, factories, cities and towns with their urban landscapes, to mountains and wetlands and over forestland and timber plantations. At this elevated level, you will plainly observe man's influence on this patchwork quilt below. From this bird's-eye view it is also clear that plantations do not occur in single contiguous blocks, but rather as a patchwork of their own between natural areas and other farming activities. To understand the impact of plantation forestry on biodiversity at this biome or landscape level we need to look at spatial extent within the biome and the impact on any particular site. The Grassland Biome is the most impacted by human activity. Commercial forestry and (planted portions of) timber plantations cover 991  900ha throughout the country, which forms less than 3% of this biome. Forestry plantations also only make up 18% of the grassland that has been transformed by agricultural crops. So the loss in species or change in biodiversity that you observe at this level has been affected by the broader land use impacts – and these are cumulative. Human development and economic activity creates a loss of sufficient habitat or causes fragmentation resulting in large extents of habitat becoming rare and the connectivity of the fragments less prominent. At this biome or landscape scale, very wide-ranging species, or species with very specific requirements, are often affected. In the areas where plantation forestry occurs species impacted include oribi, Denham's bustard, secretary bird, ground hornbill, grass owl and blue swallow. At the same time though, at this level a pattern emerges with species favouring trees in the landscape benefitting. A number of mammal species

ODYSSEY 147 • 


have benefited from afforestation, especially those species that use forested or wooded habitats for refuge sites or are forest or woodland species. These species include bush pig, baboons, bushbuck, caracal and even leopard. Bird species that are favoured include fruit eaters, hole-and-tree nesting species and forest and woodland species like woodpeckers, barbets, robin-chats, drongos, bulbuls, mousebirds, and raptors such as crowned eagles, long-crested eagles and sparrowhawks. Now, as your flight continues and you circle down and get closer to the ground, you observe a typical Sappi plantation. Here you will note that at the plantation estate, or farm level, the impact is generally mitigated by the fact that it is seldom that more than 65% of the land is planted, with over 30% of the land being managed for the conservation of the natural habitats and the biodiversity they contain. These unplanted areas are managed within Sappi's environmental management system (and independently certified by the Forest Stewardship Council) and include important sites of conservation significance for many rare or threatened species. At the estate level, the landscape becomes more heterogeneous with a number of new habitats being created which brings in new species to the area. These species are often the pioneer (weedy) plant species or the generalist animal species that are adapted to mixed or more-woody habitats. An analysis of bird species occurring on timber estates revealed that of the 453 species that have been recorded, over half are forest, woodland and grassland or multi-habitat adapted species. These species probably benefit from the increase of trees in the landscape. It is true that as you then descend into the typical stand within a timber planation that you will notice that the natural vegetation cover has been replaced with a single species of exotic trees and, by changing the habitat of the stand from a grassland, woodland or fynbos to a homogeneous stand of trees, that there has been a significant impact on the natural

As your flight continues and you circle down and get closer to the ground, you observe a typical Sappi plantation. Here you will note that at the plantation estate, or farm level, the impact is generally mitigated by the fact that it is seldom that more than 65% of the land is planted, with over 30% of the land being managed for the conservation of the natural habitats and the biodiversity they contain.

ODYSSEY 148 • 


biodiversity, as nearly all the plant and animal species in the natural vegetation have been displaced or replaced by species that are adapted to the shady, tree-dominated, conditions of a plantation. In mitigation for this severe, localised though not very extensive impact, plantation forest owners control approximately a further 500 000ha of unplanted grassland, some of which consists of the best examples of pristine moist grassland in the country. This constitutes a 50% offset for conservation by the forestry industry in South Africa, which greatly exceeds the international norm of 10%. Furthermore, in partnership with SANBI via the Grassland Stewardship Programme, forest owners have identified an initial 37 sites comprising 45 000ha which are in the process of being proclaimed as protected areas and nature reserves. Of the 137 831ha of permanently unplanted land owned by Sappi in South Africa, about 111 387ha consists of open areas with natural vegetation cover which are managed for conservation purposes. About 73% (81  412ha) consists of riparian zones, firebreaks, cliffs, rocky outcrops, dams and small wetlands. These areas are subject to general estate management which consists of the control of alien invader plants and regular burning, if and when appropriate. The remaining 29 975ha are larger zones classified as important conservation areas which receive special management according to specifically developed management plans. Currently, Sappi has 208 sites classified as important conservation sites. These sites conserve representative examples of grassland, forest or woodland and many of them are home to rare or threatened species. At present, threatened species recorded on Sappi properties include 22 plant species, one insect, two frogs, two snakes, six mammals and 20 bird species. If you are ever soaring above Sappi's plantations, you will be in good company. Data collected by Sappi over a sustained period of nine years recorded a total of 450 species in and in close proximity to their timber plantations. Considering that South Africa has some 950 species, this means that almost half of the entire list (47%) of Southern African species have been recorded in these air spaces and locations at one time or another. And, as you soar away over this country which has the third richest biodiversity in the world, you can rest assured that those parts of the natural habitat that have been entrusted to the custodianship of one of the largest landowners – Sappi – are in good and careful hands. As biodiversity is key to the healthy functioning of the plantations from which Sappi sources its woodfibre, their plantations would not be productive without biotic processes taking place. For this reason their plantations and semi-natural forests are actively managed to enhance these beneficial processes and to restrict harmful processes like pests and disease. Good news for the planet and not just for the birds.

These pages were made possible with the kind assistance of Sappi

ODYSSEY 149 • 



Paradigm Shift  Paradigm Shift is a growing collective of youth-initiated communities that encourage and support open-mindedness, healthy living, and the evolution of consciousness. As there are many open-minded people around the world in need of a global communication network, Paradigm Shift Communities were designed as a platform to gather those like-minded individuals to share ideas, knowledge, resources, and to discuss topics that are not particularly dominant in public spheres. Shaun van Niekerk and Ashley Epstein of Paradigm Shift Cape Town take a look.

ODYSSEY 150 • 


Paradigm Shift for us is about questioning things that are less spoken about in the world and to create a ripple in the global awareness. 'A ripple can create a wave.' Question everything.


Journey to Lucidity Brendon Culliton aka Skull Babylon


Brendon is a Canadian TV broadcasting student

hift 101 P

aradigm Shift Communities were started by a

22-year-old individual named Brendon Culliton, aka Skull Babylon (see video above), from London,

Ontario, Canada in 2009. First he started Paradigm Shift London, then Paradigm Shift Central, and now Brendon

who has since been recognised as an award-winning film-maker. He has released four films, with his most recent consciousness-shifting film Journey to Lucidity which will be available soon, and produced by the assistance of those who contributed online here. His latest film has been referred to as a 'very inspiring' piece of work and is something he hopes will help many others awaken to remember more of themselves, and the place they hold within this reality. Every Saturday night there is 'Paradigm Shift (PS) Radio' which is a free open media stream where all that are interested can login and communicate among other PS members. It is a great way to meet like-minded individuals and to raise awareness on topics in which you have an interest. It is a global youth collective, although not only limited to the young but rather encouraged for all ages from all walks of life. Positive global and social consciousness is key.

Paradigm Shift Cape Town Paradigm Shift Cape Town is the first of its kind on the African continent, started by us in November, 2012.

encourages all willing participants worldwide to start their

Our aim is to achieve a collective gathering of

own Paradigm Shift Community in their local towns by

conscious exploring individuals within Cape Town and

using all his materials, graphics, videos, and so on.

SA to then facilitate and offer a platform where people

ODYSSEY 151 • 


'If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet.' Niels Bohr

Paradigm Shift Cape Town's screening of Sirius at Avalon Village, Hout Bay

can come together and work towards the development of mind, body and spirit in a positive and enlightened environment. We strive to discuss many topics and create synchronicity among the community. Some may not resonate with you, but the ones that do, go with them. We encourage body and brain preservation with topics, for example, to reduce fluoride intake which calcifies your pineal gland, which is the seat of enlightenment and vision, often referred to as your 3rd eye. We hold get-togethers called Consciousness Camps, where we show videos, have guided meditations, discussion groups, and so on. We are still in our development phase and are in the process of expanding our community to facilitate the vision of a healthy society living in peace, love, and harmony. We encourage all who are interested to assist us with meditations, venues for screening, donations to fund our projects, and various other ventures. Paradigm Shift for us is about questioning things that are less spoken about in the world and to create a ripple in the global awareness. 'A Ripple can create a wave.' Question everything.

ODYSSEY 152 • 


What makes reality real? Quantum physics begs the question, what makes reality real? What makes a physical object that you can touch physical? Have we lived here before in another body, and how many lives have I lived? Is death an illusion and can it be beaten? What is beyond the frequency range that we cannot see and hear (humans can only perceive much less than 1% of the electromagnetic spectrum)? What is time and does it actually exist? Do I create my own reality and can I learn to develop this? Who am I and why do I have to age? We, as a global youth community and representatives of Paradigm Shift Cape Town, are waking up more and more to our true nature as infinite, unlimited conscious beings. When you hear or read the words 'youth movement', we also imply youth as a young, new, fresh way of seeing and understanding the world, life and the universe we live in. Remember that age is but a number, time is but an illusion, and the ageing body is not the true reflection of the forever-young greatness within. In this day and age populations are less cut-off from information, so we see an increase in global

What is a 'Paradigm Shift' exactly?

From left: Shaun van Niekerk and Ashley Epstein

awakening and understanding about ancient knowledge that predates any religion and government power. As the Earth energies are shifting, so should mankind. We as a society must learn to love ourselves primarily and love all things unconditionally; we need to make the most of everything we experience and to love it because we created it – you are that powerful. You chose this life to learn something, and whether it be rich or poor, healthy or sickly, you can change it, you can heal it, and you can manifest it. The best way to predict the future is to create it. Everything is energy, including your thoughts. These thoughts have a radiant quality that ripple through the consciousness field and energetically affect all things around you. If you want to change the state of society, it starts right now by finding peace and love within yourself. In the end we are all students of life, studying together, to make known of the unknown and to live each and every moment filled with positivity, happiness and harmony with ourselves. We are delighted and excited to offer and share this new vibration and this new comprehension of the world we live in with everyone and anyone interested. O Join our community on facebook. Visit our website. Find us on twitter here. Visit the global website here.

A paradigm shift (or revolutionary science) is, according to Thomas Kuhn in his influential book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (1962), a change in the basic assumptions, or paradigms, within the ruling theory of science. It is in contrast to his idea of conventional science. The term has also been used in numerous non-scientific contexts to describe a profound change in a fundamental model or perception of events, even though Kuhn himself restricted the use of the term to the hard sciences. If we pay close attention to our history, we will quickly come to realise that our planet has been shifting paradigms for thousands of years, if not eons, in some way, shape or form. 1000 years ago, we believed the earth was flat. 500 years ago, we believed the earth was the centre of the universe and that the sun, moon and stars all circled the earth. 200 years ago, we believed that it was impossible for stones to fall from the sky because we thought there couldn't be stones in the sky. So it was concluded that meteorites were rocks on earth struck by lightning. 100 years ago, we believed that we would never fly. Wilbur and Orville Wright later proved that flight was not as impossible as we previously thought and became the first aviation pioneers. 50 years ago, Sir Harold Spencer Jones predicted that humans would never set foot on the surface of the moon. 30 years ago speaking through a wireless communication device to someone on the other side of the planet was unimaginable by many. Today, scientists and physicists are achieving startling realisations and are proving many theories about quantum mechanics and the universe. Everything is energy, and that energy can be manipulated.

ODYSSEY 153 • 




eco.kid products contain no synthetics, silicone, sulphate, artificial preservatives, artificial fragrances or artificial colouring. The creators of these products tell us more.

Why the name?

We made some nice, pure hair products which we call eco. kid, because that's what they are – ecologically responsible,

and sugar derived surfactants, moisturisers and wheat nano-peptides.

kid-friendly products with no artificial fragrances, colourants,

Distinctly Australian

preservatives, or harsh surfactants.

eco.kid is Australian-made and is crafted using Australian

Certified organic

indigenous flora and certified organic ingredients. The harsh

eco.kid products contain up to 99% ECOCERT 'certified organic' ingredients.

Formulated for kids

A child's skin and scalp produces almost six times less

oil on a daily basis than an adult's and can be sensitive to synthetic perfumes, colours, preservatives, heavy

beauty of the Australian climate has evolved its flora into a powerhouse of phyto-resources. eco.kid key flower and plant

ingredients include wild harvested Kakadu plum – the world's richest natural fruit source of vitamin C and essential oils of

eucalyptus, nerolina, lemon-scented myrtle, lemon-scented

tea tree, aniseed myrtle, blue cypress and sandalwood – all

of which have well-known benefits and possess varying

film-forming conditioners and aggressive surfactants. eco.

anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties.

kid is an organic, healthier, biologically-friendlier and more

For all kids

effective product range formulated exclusively for the hair,

scalp and skin of children aged 3 to 12 years old and so is

able to help prevent common problems faced by this age group. One of our mottos is 'prevention is better than cure'. eco.kid hair products:

help prevent split ends and tangles by using an essential oil solvent dry-cleaning action, not a detergent action;

help make hair unattractive to head lice by using a high percentage of twice-distilled pure essential oils, which smell nice to us but not nice for head lice; and

help prevent dry scalp and cradle cap due to the use

of organically-certified, hypo-allergenic ingredients such

as coconut and sugar foaming agents, conditioners and wheat nano-peptides. eco.kid skin products:

help prevent dry skin, skin irritation, skin flaking and sensitivity due to the use of organically-certified coconut

Braille labelling can be found on all of the products to give the visually-impaired access to them. This is also a way to raise

awareness of the visually-impaired among all our consumers.

A healthier choice

We care about what we put into our products and we care about what our rinse down the drain. eco.

kid products are fully sustainable and the bio-degradable ingredients can be safely returned to the planet. Our enviro-concern has resulted in the use of enviro-friendly

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paper or cardboard and the use of food grade inks. This concern has also led to the use of 100% green energy in our factory.

Visit, their Facebook page and here for online purchases.

kid's & teen's books

Cross Roads WM Paul Young FaithWords • ISBN 978 1 4555 1604 9 Anthony Spencer is egotistical, proud of being a self-made business success at the peak of his game, even though the cost of winning was painfully high. A cerebral haemorrhage leaves Tony comatose in a hospital ICU. He 'awakens' to find himself in a surreal world, a 'living' landscape that mirrors dimensions of his earthly life, from the beautiful to the corrupt. It is here that he has vivid interactions with others he assumes are projections of his own subconscious, but whose directions he follows nonetheless with the possibility that they might lead to authenticity and perhaps, redemption. The adventure draws Tony into deep relational entanglements where he is able to 'see' through the literal eyes and experiences of others, but is "blind" to the consequences of hiding his personal agenda and loss that emerge to war against the processes of healing and trust. Will this unexpected coalescing of events cause Tony to examine his life and realize he built a house of cards on the poisoned grounds of a broken heart? Will he also have the courage to make a critical choice that can undo a major injustice he set in motion before falling into a coma?

Conversations with God for Teens Neale Donald Walsch Hay House • ISBN 978 1 5717 4675 7 Suppose you could ask God any question and get an answer. What would it be? Young people all over the world have been asking those questions. So Neale Donald Walsch, author of the internationally bestselling Conversations with God series had another conversation. Conversations with God for Teens is a simple, clear, straight-to-the-point dialogue that answers teens questions about God, money, sex, love, and more. Conversations with God for Teens reads like a rap session at a church youth group, where teenagers discuss everything they ever wanted to know about life but were too afraid to ask God. Walsch acts as the verbal conduit, showing teenagers how easy it is to converse with the divine.

The Greening: What if a Book Could Answer All Your Deepest Questions – if You Were Willing to Risk Everything? Margaret Coles Hay House • ISBN 978 1 7818 0113 0 Joanna, a Fleet Street journalist, chances upon the journal of the mysterious Anna Leigh. She is moved by Anna's compelling confessional about her life-changing encounter with Julian of Norwich – an extraordinary woman from another age, who risked death at the stake to write a secret manuscript revealing the truth entrusted to her. Joanna becomes captivated by Julian, remembering her own neglected ambition to pursue the truth at all costs. But Julian is from an alien world – can Joanna believe her promise that pain and suffering can lead to peace and happiness? Anna has the answer, but Joanna can find no trace of her. Joanna's conscience is tested and she is put in danger when confronted by a terrible choice. Does she save her career by smearing a whistle-blower who has exposed a government scandal in which her lover may be implicated? Dare she risk all she holds dear to capture the greatest treasure of all?

Without Fear of Falling: A Novel Danielle Boonstra John Hunt Publishing • ISBN 9781780997889 22-year-old Ellie Stewart would much rather forget that she can see into the past lives of those she meets, but when she crosses paths with Declan O'Shea, an attractive yet troubled artist, flashes of 18th-century Britain begin to plague her mind and push Ellie to uncover the mystical connection that she and Declan share. Enlisting the help of her childhood mentor and psychic, Mrs Dawes, Ellie is brought back to a time when she was Louisa, saintly and beautiful, and Declan was William, handsome and driven by a shameful past. Will Ellie be able to face the truth of all that happened so long ago? And if she can, will Declan believe her? Weaving between present-day Tobermory, Canada and 18th-century Tobermory, Scotland is a tale of love, loss and forgiveness across time.

ODYSSEY 155 • 


The Science of Discworld IV: Judgement Day

Terry Pratchett, Ian Stewart & Jack Cohen Edbury Press • ISBN 978 0 0919 4979 2

'It's Wizards vs Priests in a Battle for the Future of Roundworld' proclaims the subtitle of this one. Another in Pratchett's famed series, this one will appeal to the kids and the kid in all of us. If you've never engaged with the Discworld series, maybe this is the place to start, then work your way through the rest of the series – and there are a lot of other books, so expect a long sojourn into Pratchett's hugely successful and amusingly detailed magical world of weirdness and wonder. Lots of fun.

My Simple Faith: And Why Some Tortoises Drive Ferraris Sean Bastable

Reach Publishers • ISBN 978 1 9202 6178 8

This is a book about God. And everything else. In the author's words: 'Like why I hate TV advertisements, why I have an iPod, why I sing Spurs songs, why I’m troubled by Father Christmas, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Mouse, why I keep falling off my bike, why I’d like to become a tortoise and why I’ve discovered that growing roses isn’t so bad after all. But more importantly, it’s about how I’ve come to know what love is. And you can read it, you can believe it, you can debate it or even dismiss it. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter. Because it’s just my thoughts, my view, my perspective. My understanding of God and all that is. And that’s it really.'

The Master’s Sacred Knowledge: A Key To Your Inner Treasure Allan Rufus

Smiling Eyes • ISBN 978 1 4793 6403 9

This is the story about a wise old Master who comes across a young man who is about to end his life by hanging himself to a large tree. The wise old master asks the young man to spare him some of his time before he hangs himself. This the young man did and by doing so the wise old master passed on a sacred master key to him along with some of his sacred knowledge so he could open the doors to divine living. This did not only save his life, but helped him have a total rebirth which transformed his life from being negative, living in despair as well as living in fear into that of a wonderful, colourful, uplifting, positive and joyous life full of beauty and unconditional love.

The Last Laugh Arjuna Ardagh Hay House • ISBN 978 1 4019 4232 8 When suicide feels like your best option, you know something has gone horribly wrong-and that's just how Matt Thomson felt. He had lost everything: his wife, his children, his job, all his money, and his front door key. But everything changes when he meets Joey Murphy, ex-Merchant Marine, entrepreneur, teacher, and wild man, an enigmatic mixture of Forrest Gump, Merlin, and a long-lost best friend. Upon hearing Matt's woes, Joey offers Matt a life-changing deal he can't resist: 'The life you know has been completely predetermined by old habits, both your triumphs and your failures. If you are really at the end of your rope, these habits will drop away, and you will be free. I give you ten days, starting today. I will show you all you need to see. It is up to you.' And with the deal struck Joey leads Matt on the roller-coaster ride of his life: a ten day adventure filled with dodging cop cars, playing Blind Man's baseball on the edge of a cliff, finding heaven in a Taco Bell, and learning how to open the hearts of total strangers. Joey introduces Matt to 'the True Teacher', but also leads him to face his own deepest darkness and despair.

ODYSSEY 156 • 


clinically proven natural medicines

ODYSSEY 157 • 



optimising eyes


odern science has brought us many benefits,

indistinct, are seen enlarged and more clearly through a

not least in the arena of improved vision. The

globe or glass filled with water.'

first recorded use of spectacles goes back a

Obviously, reading glasses have made life much better

long way – Egyptian hieroglyphs of the 5th century BCE

for many people – especially in an age when reading is

depict 'simple glass meniscal lenses'. The earliest written

so common and so often required that eradication of

record of magnification for reading dates back to the 1st

illiteracy has become a top priority in every developing

century CE, when Seneca the Younger, a tutor of notorious

country worldwide.

Roman Emperor Nero, said: 'Letters, however small and

ODYSSEY 158 • 


But not every eye problem needs to be solved with

They say you don't really appreciate something until you lose it. Speak to anyone who has lost all or part of their sight – vision being our most important sense – and you will understand some of the full meaning behind that idea. We take a closer look at seeing.

How it works Light is taken in by photo receptors, the rods and cones of the eyes. The rods and cones receive and decode the visible spectrum waves of light that enter the eye, converting them into chemical signals that go to the brain where images are formed. The eye exerciser takes advantage of the eye's natural functionality, without any added effort or added stress, by simply looking through each eye (one at a time) for a minimum of one full turn of the device, or for a minute on each eye. As the gems and colours float past, and as the pieces drop past the mirrored prism, your eye has the opportunity to contract, relax and experience what is termed a 'relaxed focus'.

Kaleidoscope eye exercisers are said to have the potential to improve one's vision

The Official Fun Eye Exerciser is said to be a fun way to strengthen and exercise your eyes daily by looking at something beautiful and organic using reflective symmetry.

a set of specialised glasses. Some people employ, with

William Bates is among the most well-known eye

success, a different approach – more of an inside-out

and vision therapists – his much-researched techniques

than an outside-in process.

continue to prove valuable, despite rapid developments

Conventional eye research varies in its answers

on the technical aspects of eye health and care. These

to some vision-related challenges, depending on who

include techniques called sunning, movement, gazing and

you choose to listen to. Take for example conventional


optometry wherein it is believed that eye problems

More recently, ophthalmologist and vision therapist

such as 'amblyopa', or lazy eye, requires the wearing of

Dr Jacob Lieberman has written several books including


Take off Your Glasses and See, and, more recently, Light,

ODYSSEY 159 • 


Medicine of the Future. He has had successful results with his machine which he has dubbed 'the eye port'. That both of these vision therapists were able to cure their own eye disorders – as well as those of others – using their respective techniques is testimony to their efficacy. In both instances, they included the use of the colours red and blue to help with their healing process. Since then, their techniques have gone on to help the eyes of a great many other people. Subsequent research has provided clinical proof that underscores the demonstrable efficacy of this approach, with investigations showing that red and blue in particular work with the rods and cones of the eyes to help strengthen the eyes' muscles. In comparison with what might be called conventional thinking, some eye problems, such as a discrepancy between the strength and functionality of the eyes (amblyopa, or lazy eye), the Bates method as used by more forward-thinking optometrists encourages the wearing of an eye patch over the stronger eye, keeping it closed and forcing the weaker eye to work. It may seem a counter-intuitive way to solve the problem for those used to the default setting of providing a lens prescription for a set of glasses, but it works. More recent researchers have discovered that eye exercisers have similar benefits. One automatically allows the weaker eye to exercise, thereby strengthening the eye naturally and without conscious effort. In








near-sightedness, most optometrists believe that the condition is due to a change in the 'dimensions in the

The irony of the Fun Official Eye Exerciser is that the technology involved is far from new – indeed, it is based on an invention that was designed by optical engineer Sir David Brewster in 1816. beautiful and organic using reflective symmetry. This optical instrument was created, based on scientific principles, using reflective symmetry in 'elaborate art forms', and has purportedly an ability 'to create beauty' for all visual artists.

Fun for the eyes Children and young adults with particular visual impairments need to find ways to keep their creativity up, while at the same time exercising their brain and their eyes simultaneously. This process is called 'activating the imagination', where creativity and colour can merge and 'dance together' in an interactive manner that enhances both eye function and mental ability. The irony of the Fun Official Eye Exerciser, which can be used daily to help revitalise and strengthen eyes, is that the technology involved is far from new – indeed, it is based on an invention that was designed by optical engineer Sir David Brewster in 1816.

eye', causing the normal 20mm diameter of the eye to

Toy or tool?

either extend diagonally or vertically, making the lens

The kaleidoscope was from its invention seen as a toy,

produce either near- or far-sightedness.

but after much research into the inventor's background,

While man-made lenses can obviously adjust for that

it has been discovered that he came across the design

distortion, it appears that eye exercises might well also be

while conducting experiments with polarised light using

able to rectify the problem. The Official Fun Eye Exerciser,

gold and silver reflective surfaces. Reflective symmetry

for example, is said to be a fun way to strengthen and

has been advanced over the years and a lot of research

exercise your eyes daily through looking at something

has been done on the use of patterns in helping the

Colour inspires • creates • heals offers:

   • Corporate health and wellness services • Individual coaching and counselling • My Happy Colour play sessions for kids

ODYSSEY 160 • 


mind to relax. This work has been underscored with


studies of a large number of individuals, across all age groups, which have shown that its use leads to a range of benefits that include mental relaxation and improved learning (induced, it would appear,

The Galactic Light Liquid Motion Scope has a profoundly harmonious yet stimulating effect on the brain. We at Colourvision call it an invigorating brain massage, try it for yourself. Good for both young and old, children, learners, teachers, executives, practitioners, therapists and various healers who all use kaleidoscopes as part of their offerings to their patients.

primarily through the mental relaxation that comes with the device's application).

In the eyes of children Though you may not be aware of it, effective eyesight is a learnt ability. In other words, we need to learn how to see – it is not something we are born 


knowing how to do. Just as each eye is an extension

 

                                   

of each hemisphere of the brain, when using your 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

eye exerciser you engage both parts of the brain.

Beyond improved vision and resolution of a number of functionality issues in the eyes, this process has

the secondary benefit of sparking the imagination and integrating left and right hemispheric interaction

in the brain, especially in young children. The resulting internal cohesion, integration, balancing and cross-hemispheric communication tends to

improve mental functioning and performance, as well as improve memory and problem-solving abilities.

Using this instrument seems to be a case of what

appears to be play (we all remember what fun it was to look through a kaleidoscope when we were

kids – and how many fights there were as to whose turn it was next) being really something far more

important: a natural, easy and enjoyable way to fix some eye functionality issues while inducing mental relaxation and improving overall visual and mental performance. O


                                                                                                                                                                                                   

 5

    

 


       


 

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ODYSSEY 161 • 



Life Coach Expert



ver 700 people were looking up at me. I was

purpose, so that you can be all you were born to be. That

on stage. The packed auditorium was perfectly

is your purpose.

silent. 45 minutes earlier I had taken the stage

absolutely no idea what I was going to say. Nothing. Zip.


Nada. Not even the first opening line. I had no speech

You might say, but doing is important, you can't go


around sitting on mountain tops just being. And I agree.

to give my talk, and, wait for it, I'd walked on stage with

I had been introduced to the audience by a celebrity MC, and had walked to the centre of the massive stage,



'being quest', the results are astounding.

heart pounding and dry mouth. Am I nuts? Probably,

Look at the great lights of the world, in every field

but I'll tell you, even though I was afraid (I mean who

of life: business, sports, spirituality, healing, etc. Look at

wouldn't be?) I knew something that sadly most people

the individuals who have inspired, who have expressed

don't. I knew that I had found my Apple Tree and I knew

great creativity, who have brought great collective

that my Apple Tree knew what to do. I needed only set

change in the wake of their existence, and you will see

my ego aside. A decade of new-found success had proven

the individuals as the source of their actions. You will

this to me again and again, so now I put it to the test

honour the presence of these people and speak of them


with honour. We recognise that it is because of their very

What happened? Magic happened. My talk flowed – a

presence that they have made a difference. Many can do,

lovely gentle beginning, then unexpected humour arrived

and many do; but who will allow themselves to be? It is

and had the audience laughing, then piercing wisdom had

from being that powerful doing flows, and not the other

moved some to tears. Then, my talk naturally ended and

way around.

I was rewarded with a standing ovation. My ego would

The average human never discovers their essence,

have loved to take credit, but I know the truth. A truth I

their unique presence in the world, and one of the most

would love to share with you.

significant reasons is because we are taught to focus on

It is usually buried beneath ego, fear and trying


But watch what kind of doing flows from people on a

doing and not being.

to make oranges. But if you find your Apple Tree, you

A popular modern saying is: 'You are a human being

find your natural flow. For some that means words and

and not a human doing.' Doing will flow from the being.

speaking, other it means leading, or creating; each Apple

Knowing that you are an apple tree and then letting

Tree has a purposeful design. You can learn to coach

yourself be it, naturally leads to doing what apple trees

yourself and others to find their Apple Tree, their true

do. Focus on being true to you and freeing your true self,

purpose. I'd love to show you how to coach anyone (at

and all your doing will flow from your being.

work, children, clients, teams and even yourself) to find

The fruit that arises from your true self will look

and live your true purpose. My life was totally transformed

like 'doing' to most people, but will simply be a natural

from being a shy introverted person, to becoming a very

expression of who you really are. If you sell crayons,

successful coach, speaker, author and trainer – because

people won't buy your crayons, they will buy you, and

of freeing my Apple Tree. I hope that you free your true

then they will buy your crayons. It's all about you, all

Colleen-Joy Page, the creator of the internationally accredited InnerLifeSkills life and business coaching courses, offers expert guidance on how one's true purpose can save lives. about your being and the longer you hide from this truth,

anything more for ourselves than what looks to be ideal

the longer you will wonder what your purpose is.

to others. The great news is that it is never too late to find the


Apple Tree, to dig for and unearth the essential being

Education systems generally focus on performance; your

that you are, and it is never too late to free this you to

job is to prove that you can output on demand and that

a career path that better suits your true nature. Some

you can do as you are told, by measuring up to collective

will naturally desire to match their careers more closely

standards. Further to this, your future career path is

with the truer self that they discover. But career changes

determined largely on the discovery of talents or areas

are not a prerequisite for being the apple tree because

where your performance is best. The premise that sits

remember: 'you are the apple tree wherever you are'. So

at the backbone of education and vocational guidance

at the very least and the very most, just being conscious

is that young people should follow a line of work that

of who you really are, and giving that you the freedom to

matches their areas of greatest academic achievement.

be and grow, is reward enough for many.

A philosophy that says: 'Do what you are best at.' For the academically suited the choices are vast, for the

Don't ask: 'What do you do for a living?' Rather ask: 'What do you live to do?' O

academically challenged the prospects are dismal. What if you are not really good at anything the

Colleen-Joy's free online Purpose Coaching Course

schooling system threw at you? And for the academic

achievers, what if you are good at something but (other

has video training + a downloadable purpose coaching

than the thrill of being best at it), it still leaves you empty,

worksheet gift. This is some of the content that I have

bringing little long-term fulfillment?

been teaching in my seminars for over 14 years. It's

What you are good at is not necessarily connected to your life purpose. But your purpose leads to many talents and natural aptitudes. So focused is the occupation and educational system

valuable and I do hope you benefit from the sharing.


on doing and performance, that we very rarely get the opportunity to enquire after our essential natures. We do not learn how to be, we only learn how to do. For the lucky few that stumble upon a 'doing' that matches their essential 'being', they quickly find a sense of purpose and meaning in their lives. For the rest, they wonder why they were not good enough to make the grade, or imprison themselves with the: 'I should be grateful for what I have,' attitude. Being good at something can be as dangerous as having a 'good job'; provoking a feeling of guilt for wanting to abandon a talent, and for wanting

How to coach a successful life purpose

ODYSSEY 163 • 




Louise L Hay says that if you take good care of your body, it will reward you with vibrant health.


e very clear that your body is always trying to maintain a state of optimal health, no matter how badly you treat it. If you take good care of your

body, it will reward you with vibrant health and energy. I believe that we contribute to every 'illness' in our body. The body, as with everything else in life, is a mirror of our inner thoughts and beliefs. Our body is always talking to us, if we will only take the time to listen. Every cell within our bodies responds to every single thought we think. When we discover what the mental pattern is behind an illness, we have a chance to change the pattern and, therefore, the dis-ease. Most people don't want to be sick on a conscious level, yet every dis-ease that we have is a teacher. Illness is the body's way of telling us that there's a false idea in our consciousness. Something that we're believing, saying, doing, or thinking is not for our highest good. I always picture the body tugging at us saying, 'please, pay attention'. Sometimes people do want to be sick. In our society, we've made illness a legitimate way to avoid responsibility or unpleasant situations. If we can't learn to say no, then we may have to invent a dis-ease to say no for us. I read an interesting report a few years back. It stated that only 30% of patients follow their doctor's instructions. According to Dr John Harrison, author of the fascinating book Love

Your Disease, many people go to doctors only to have their acute symptoms relieved – so that they can tolerate their dis-ease. True healing involves body, mind, and spirit. I believe that if we 'cure' an illness, yet do not address the emotional and spiritual issues that surround that ailment, it will only manifest again.

The Power of Affirmations Here is an exercise to help

DO YOU BELIEVE that any of the following statements apply to you?

you discover the power of written affirmations. Writing an affirmation can intensify its power. Write a positive affirmation about your health 25 times. You may create your own, or use one of the following:

Heart dis-ease runs in my family. My allergies act up constantly. My back gives me constant pain. I'm constantly hurting my body. These headaches never go away. I get one illness after another.

My healing is already in process. I listen with love to my body's messages. My health is radiant, vibrant, and dynamic now. I am grateful for my perfect health. I deserve good health. O

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ODYSSEY 165 • 


ODYSSEY 166 • 


ODYSSEY 167 • 




Regression Therapy &

The Science Delusion Rupert Sheldrake

The idea that we have reincarnated or lived before is a romantic notion for some; curiosity is often a valid reason for people to seek out regression therapy. That curiosity can frequently be accompanied by a certain amount of excitement and/or fear and other emotions as to who we might have been, when we might have lived or what we might have done. Doug Buckingham takes a closer look at past life regression.

ODYSSEY 168 • 



usually involved them being 'stuck' in some way or an aspect of their life not working as it should, or could or as it might. It may be an unexplainable pain that hasn't gained remission through other avenues; a recurring relationship problem, unexplainable anger, panic attacks, an irrational fear, lack of career success or a host of other reasons. When you can accept the possibility that the soul reincarnates over a series of lives, then it also seems a reasonable assumption that not all of these lives have been resolved satisfactorily. Some end traumatically or suddenly, some ended with unfinished relationship business or without closure in some other way. As the soul reincarnates, it is these potentially traumatic memories which are re-awakened and re-created in the unconscious mind and played out again in our every-day existence, often making little sense in the context of the present life and keeping us from living peaceful lives. Regression therapy involves revisiting those earlier memories and experiences for which we have not achieved closure. That source may be from these past lives or it may also be an earlier unresolved experience from the current life. When we regress to the original issue, then a new perspective can be gained as well as an understanding of the consequences of previous choices or reactions. Within this process clients can be guided to transform the situation for themselves and to release energetic blocks from the past which then result in positive resolution for them in their current lives Cynics sometimes query the reality of past life regression experiences. A great many case studies have been built up by various respected regression therapists, some having started out as 'non-believers' with conventional Western ideas (mainly that we live only one life) who have 'accidentally' discovered that they have 'over-regressed' a patient or client beyond the beginning of this life into a previous one. However, to argue over whether past lives are facts or

the journey of the soul


fancy is to entirely miss the point: the important reality is how the current life issue of the client is affected. Regression therapy works best in a tangible way, by measuring the client's symptoms and seeing how these symptoms change during the course of therapy, regardless of whether our mental constructs accept or reject the notion of past lives

ast life regression therapists say that clients sometimes have expectations of lives in 'special' places like Egypt, Atlantis or as 'special' types of people, in

special periods in history. Sometimes those experiences can be helpful and those expectations are appropriately met, but mostly not. More






regression therapy for a specific reason and that's where the true genius of this modality is to be found. And that reason

at all. So, when the symptom is reduced significantly or disappears completely, then the question of whether their past lives are real, or something that their unconscious mind has invented in some way, isn't a particularly big issue for the client – or the therapist. However, by virtue of their own past life experiences which might be quite emotional or physically challenging on occasions, they know they have undergone something that they would be unlikely to choose

ODYSSEY 169 • 


to make up. Invariably, these experiences help them to gain an awareness of links and correlations to the current life – and, of course, the ultimate reality is the release of physical, emotional and mental issues and the changes that are experienced in the current life as a result. There have been numerous evidences of supposed real regressions and many of these are easily accessible via the internet. It would appear unlikely that the reality

Egypt is often a reoccurring motif in regression therapy

of reincarnation can ever truly be proved in the eyes of everyone, although it should be mentioned that some aspect

person being held underwater. I was unable to stay in the

of previous lives lived exists to some extent in the traditions

living room and experienced shortness of breath, and at the

and religions of between 75 and 80% of all people alive

movies themselves I had to close my eyes and put my hands

today. However, as with any experience, the really important

over my ears. After regression I went to the beach to walk

evidence – and thus reality – comes from the individuals

and started to feel the change. The real experience came in

who have that experience; real people whose lives change

the summer when I lay on the beach with my eyes closed,

dramatically as a result.

and was finally able to relax and enjoy it. Living in Cape

The following comments by clients who have

Town, that's important. And now I can even watch water

undergone past life regression and had significant

scenes in movies without any stress and that is a really

relief from their problems testify the efficacy of this

amazing experience. The feeling of being afraid of water is

approach, regardless of the understanding of any

absolutely gone now and I am really grateful for that.' M,

participant of what conventional thinking on the

Cape Town.

subject of reincarnation may be:

essential territory for the regression therapist, is to familiarise

No more pain. Talk about a totally excellent result. Since the

themselves with (and for spiritual explorers to experience)

pain stopped my personal business has been super-busy too

the life between lives (LBL) space; what the Tibetan culture

and I haven't even had a chance to advertise and clients

refers to as the Bardo and what some others call 'Home'.

have been coming forward so it's really positive for me in all aspects.' SW



It's interesting that documented descriptions of the LBL realm and the description of survivors of near death

'I'd been suffering with severe asthma for some time.

experiences (NDE) have a lot of similarities: light, tunnels,

Every year with the first sign of spring, I'd get terrible hay

life reviews, meeting ancestors, spirit guides, and so on.

fever and asthma and the only way to combat it was with

While most scientists believe that these things are at best

homeopathic remedies. I had been using an inhaler for

hallucinations (in NDEs); or more likely the brain shutting

asthma up to 20 times day and night. Amazingly, I have

down and not 'evidence' for a life after death, it is reassuring

not had to use it since the regression. The hay fever is also

that there are more measures being taken within the

greatly improved and gets better daily. I cannot thank you

scientific/medical community ( is

enough; you've literally changed my life as I can finally

one) to investigate the experiences of those NDE survivors.

breathe again.' JT


An important part in the Journey of Soul, and thus

'Everything has been amazing since the session I had.

Odyssey Magazine has thoroughly explored some of

'For as long as I can remember, I was afraid of water.

this emerging scientific work (Odyssey Magazine Issue 1,

My mother told me that washing time as a child was a

2013, pages 54-59), as well as the very important impact

nightmare. I had no option about learning to swim but it

of neuroscientists like Dr Eben Alexander, NDE survivor and

was one of my biggest challenges. During my childhood I

author of Proof of Heaven (Odyssey Magazine Issue 1, 2013,

frequently had a dream where my brother and I were at

pages 60-63), which is posing essentially unanswerable

the beach being engulfed by a huge wave. This dream only

questions to his materialistic-thinking colleagues.

"left" sometime in my twenties. Before regression, I always

These developments promise the possibility of science

experienced discomfort at the beach, couldn't sit peacefully

meeting with spirituality; establishing common ground is

and I always had the notion to keep an eye on the sea.

important for us all in the coming decades. Equally vital

And for my whole life, I never put my face underneath the

to us all is how reasonably quantifiable spirituality can be

shower. I knew exactly how to wash my hair and not get

grounded into everyday life. Kenneth Ring, who was one

my face wet at the same time. I couldn't watch movies

of the main authors in the field of writing about NDEs,

with a wild sea, waves coming towards the screen, or a

identified a consistent set of value and belief changes

associated with people who have had a NDE, including a

Editor's Note: Frequently, people beginning to explore the possibilities

greater appreciation for life, higher self-esteem, greater

of past lives as a reality for themselves find that they resonate with a

compassion for others, a heightened sense of purpose and self-understanding, desire to learn, elevated spirituality, greater ecological sensitivity and planetary concern, and a

significant historical figure or event. Confusing the issue in this regard, it is common for people suffering major delusional episodes to believe that they are 'Christ', 'Hitler', 'Cleopatra', 'Napoleon' or one of many other major historical personalities. Consequently, in Western psychological

feeling of being more intuitive. All of these are very similar

and psychiatric circles such persona identification is correlated in

to the life between lives experience for clients and major

the minds of conventional therapists with 'delusional psychological

spiritual experiences in general. In the LBL space we review our previous incarnations and we plan our next ones. The idea that we are actively involved in planning our lives has quite a few implications.

dysfunction' or even schizophrenic delusional disorders. While some people with severe neuro-chemical or psycho-emotional disturbances may indeed have such delusional persona identificational issues among their symptomology, that does not explain the vast number of past life regressions conducted successfully on people without such

The idea that we create our own reality essentially means

major psychological conditions. Nor do the majority of people properly

that we take responsibility for everything in our lives –

regressed to what appear to be actual past lives find themselves to have

because we planned it. While for many people in a variety of tough situations, that can be extremely shocking, for many others it can be extraordinarily empowering and it

been actual major historical figures. The key here is to realise, in the context of Rupert Sheldrake's work on morphogenic fields, that lives of major significance have a resonance in the collective awareness of us all, even if only on a subconscious level.

can be just the boost they need to move away from victim

If we have a personal issue (from this life – or any other, supposing one


accepts the notion of reincarnation) that resonates the core issues raised

When someone trains to become a regression therapist it is a 'Journey of the Soul' and so in that respect it is not always easy. Challenges have to be overcome along the way, and lessons learned. However, doing all of this work on

by an historical figure (say betrayal in the case of Judas, for example) one may find oneself 'tuning in', as it were, to that particular life and historical persona. This may be both because it is a known life and because it has registered so profoundly that it has in essence become a common human archetype and is therefore the 'go to' life experience

our previous lives and in-between lives enables us on a soul

with which most of us would automatically relate, given that specific

level to understand the consequences of previous choices

issue in current time. With this understanding, it can be realised that

and to know that each individual is ultimately responsible for shaping and creating his or her life in the present moment. And it is an amazing journey. O

very few people have had significant past lives of an historical nature, but almost everyone has had major events (in this or previous lives) related to significant issues that resonate deeply in the collective consciousness. Also to be noted in this context is that there is frequently confusion between the persona of an individual in a particular life and the soul of that person. Given that one is discussing reincarnation as a working hypothesis, it stand to reason that personas, in general, come and go, and are related to the particulars of a specific life in a specific time and place. While the soul may experience similar personas and life conditions for similar reasons, sometimes that same soul may have very different life experiences for the purpose of learning quite different lessons. Therefore the issue of the current persona and its issues being confused with a past life persona lived by that same soul, or another of greater significance historically, is more or less irrelevant. What is important,

Katharine Lee, well known, mystic, healer and teacher with 40 years experience in spiritual science, can help you to explore past lives

as many case studies have shown, is not the objective fact of someone having lived a specific past life or not, but whether, through this or similar modalities, the underlying issues can be successfully addressed. The overwhelming evidence at this point in time is that past life regression can and does work remarkably well, even with people who have been almost completely immune to other forms of therapy. Doug Buckingham is running Hypnotherapy and Regression training in Cape Town on behalf

084 800 1947 | (B) 011 782 1249 | Fax 086 672 3923 Skype TM katharine.lee97

of the Past Life Regression Academy, www.regressionacademy. com. The Academy specialises in Regression Therapy, Past Life Regression, Life between Lives Regression and Hypnosis training in Europe, Asia, South Africa, United States and Australia. It awards internationally-accredited qualifications and its training program has been accredited by the International Board of Regression Therapy.

ODYSSEY 171 • 



Reading the Divination tools have been part and parcel of virtually every major religion in history, with the exception of some forms of Christianity, perhaps. People of all stripes, times and places have sought to understand the 'hidden hand' believed by them to drive the forces that affect our lives. We take a look at what's behind the desire to discern the divine design.

ODYSSEY 172 • 


Divination techniques and tools have always been about discerning the hidden or less-than-obvious connections between the events and processes of our lives.


Divination by TipToeChick

e Signs T

o begin at the beginning – which is almost always a good thing – it should be acknowledged that there are many people alive today who do not believe in

anything beyond a physical reality that can be empirically measured and defined. Obviously, these people are both unlikely to be regular Odyssey Magazine readers and are even more unlikely to be taking a session with the local Tarot reader anytime soon. There have always been such people, though in many earlier times and in some places still today, it is or was worth more than one's life to say so out loud. Just a few hundred years ago, saying such a thing as 'There Inquisition's many informers (in what was then termed

Divination 101 Divination can be daunting and/or scary for some. Here are modalities and tips to help you navigate through the options and methodologies that have been used or which are still being used by many practitioners. First a definition: Divining means asking the universe to answer our questions through the patterns of seemingly chance events in our lives. The practice of divination is as old as mankind, and is certainly not confined to uneducated, superstitious peoples, as is believed by some (usually those who know little to nothing about the subject). Answers are read in the patterns that show up when the divination tools are 'cast' or read. Another method of seeking answers, and probably the most reliable one, is that of looking for meaningful co-incidences. Many divination systems involve both methodologies. It is strongly suggested you do not 'give your power away' when engaging with any of these systems, using them instead as affirmatory of your internal guidance and as symbolic indicators of what your current track's likely outcomes could be. It is important to remember that, by definition, the future cannot be written in stone as free will will always have a role to play – at best, divination will

is no God' or 'I am an atheist', within the hearing of

First Peoples' shamans are known as the 1st diviners

ODYSSEY 173 • 


'Christiandom') would have likely resulted in an extremely unpleasant experience at the hands of torturers, followed by a fiery exit from this life. Not much fun. But the 'I don't believe in anything I can't touch, feel, see, hear, smell, taste or measure' brigade are still a minority, numbering, according to one recent study, at about 1 billion of the souls currently incarnated on Earth. That leaves a lot of other people who are far less sure that there isn't something going on that is somehow connected with everything else that's going on. And, in short, that could be a very apt way of collectively describing what all divination techniques and tools have ever been about: discerning the hidden or less-than-obvious connections between the events and processes of our lives. Whether it was some Druid priest closely examining the entrails of a raven for signs and portents, or a secret Tarot deck revealed only to a chosen few in times when such things brought instant and terrible consequences to the unwary, or even Nostradamus himself, peering into his bowl of water and writing down his meaning-shrouded Centuries, there have always been those who seek the answers to life's compelling questions. Today, despite the rise in scientific rationalism,




societies, there remains within many the desire, need even, to seek out what the future may hold. This is why it is hard to find, even in the second decade of the 21st century, a daily newspaper without an astrology column.

ODYSSEY 174 • 


But like so much else, part of the evolution we are experiencing is that people are taking their divinational experiences into their own hands these days, though some people still prefer the services of a 'professional' reader.

only serve to confirm what you may already suspect or know, but it may also help in cementing a decision to affirming a course of action which you had already considered and may well be likely to follow, even without any divinational assistance. It is always a bad idea to go against your deeper sense, which is much more than merely your 'gut' reaction, but is a considered, meditative assessment of an issue, choice or situation which has given rise to the question posed. If there is a conflict between your 'gut' and what your head is telling you, then perhaps the divination process might help shed light on the dynamics of the inner conflict – and thereby suggest a resolution and path forward. The rule is: try and see what happens. In the end, evidence is the only real proof and worth of any divination system. Tarot, Medicine Cards, and the I-Ching are the most popular divination tools. There are many books about what the various hexagrams, cards, and layouts mean, and there are even software programs that will do the shuffling, selecting, and interpreting for you. Regardless of which system used, if we are shown something that appears negative, we are being told either that something needs to change, or that if we just 'hang in there' this seemingly negative event will turn out fine. Then we can look to other parts of the reading for clues as to what needs changing or what the meaning is. In doing this, we will find out how to cultivate (or avoid) any outcome that's shown, or at least understand the underlying reason (almost always designed for our greater good) behind any temporarily negative manifestation. It's important not to become 'hooked' by any divination system which is what is meant by not giving your power away. People who become 'addicted' to card readings, for example, or casting the I Ching for themselves at almost every moment of the day, are either asking the wrong questions and/or don't believe the answers they've already received. So they keep asking essentially the same question over and over, hoping for a different answer (or for confirmation of the first one). If you find yourself doing this, just sit down and write out what the answers are that you have been getting to your question. Then, once answered, don't ask about that again until the situation makes some kind of major shift. It's vital to be thoughtful about framing questions. The best can be along the lines of: 'What does my highest guidance offer me right now?' If we seek answers to a particular question, we could ask: 'What does my highest guidance want me to know right now about _________ (insert issue here)?' You fill in the blank. Also, if we try to use these tools as a substitute for the inner work that needs doing, we'll find ourselves going around in circles. Divination tools can help us choose the path we should walk, but the choosing and the walking will always be up to us. The I-Ching (an oracle which originates from one of the oldest Chinese texts) practitioner 'casts the coins' in a reading.

Many secular-oriented social psychologists might argue that these trends in divination point to what people almost always do in times of uncertainty – turn towards religion and 'supernatural' sources for help and succour.

New Age, Old Age Thirty years ago, the rising tide of interest in what had previously been labelled by religious authorities as 'occult', which in their terms meant 'not to be meddled with under any circumstances', was given a new label: New Age. It's a silly label since almost none of what is supposedly 'New Age' is actually new at all – indeed, most of it is either somewhat aged, as in dating from the Medieval period or thereabouts, or much older yet, going back to Neolithic times. 'New Age' has become one of those easy-to-use labels that is shorthand for a supposed meaning but ends up being, ironically, more 'occultish' than the practices it supposedly covers, since it occludes much more than it reveals. There's very little new about the already-mentioned and well known card divination system we call the Tarot. Dating from the Middle Ages, with traces of precedents that go back much farther in time, this particular system stayed almost unchanged into the 20th century, practiced quietly in secluded places and with very limited exposure.

Above: An African sangoma (witchdoctor) 'throws the bones' in a divinatory reading • Below: Palm reading is a wellknown technique in divining (possible) future outcomes

But the late 19th century's interest, especially among the well-heeled of the late Victorian age, when all things mystical and spiritual were suddenly in fashion – including with the scientists of the day – meant that the Tarot, among numerous other divination systems, was no longer 'untouchable'. Instead of being hidden away, Tarot sessions along with séances and various other mystical explorations, were for a time very much the 'in thing' in upper class society in the West and practiced right out in the open. Elsewhere in the world, there have also been long traditions of various forms of divination. In First Peoples, the divinational process was usually undertaken by the shaman, sometimes called pejoratively 'witchdoctors' by culturally biased commentators. Although the shaman usually led any such ceremony or practice involving journeying into the 'spirit world', those for whom they were making such often risky undertakings were also intimately involved. These days, with a complex mix of both increased disbelief in traditional-style superstitions together with a rising tide of people who experience the universe as being,

ODYSSEY 175 • 


The Tarot dates from the Middle Ages, with traces of precedents that go back much farther in time. This particular system stayed almost unchanged into the 20th century. in some fundamental way, always connected to all its parts, including each of us with everyone else, there is another surge of interest in divination. But like so much else, part of the evolution we are experiencing is that people are taking their divinational experiences into their own hands these days. So in any bookshop or similar venue where such things may be found, there will not be just one old-style Tarot deck, but several, many even, with new versions coming along it seems on a regular basis. The old interpretations still lie at the basis of this system, but there are newer, fresher ways of using these sorts of tools. And this is true for apparently 'new' phenomena like angel cards, or animal ally cards or one of literally dozens of other similar systems, all designed for personal use by individuals without the need of an interpreter – though some people still prefer the services of a 'professional' reader. And this is perhaps the point: with even quantum physics, the hardest of hard sciences, saying things that sound like they come straight out of the 'occult' traditions of Eastern mysticism, and combined with emergence of a growing band of people who wish to take their fate into their own hands, the role of divination in our lives remains as

ODYSSEY 176 • 


Divination systems Astrology – Understanding the symbolic meaning of the planets and other celestial bodies and how they represent process and forces which may be acting upon us. Some astrologers are still very much stuck in a mechanistic view that would be expressed in a term like 'Venus is doing such and such in your life right now.' If you receive a reading of this sort, it is necessary to understand that this is the point where astrology and astronomy radically diverge. Where these two were once one science or field of study, they are now literally worlds apart. This is because Venus, obviously, has very little direct effect on the earth as a whole and on each one of us less still, unlike the moon and the sun which clearly affect us all daily (day and night, high and low tides, and so on). The effect referred to by astrology is not a direct force so much as reference to an underlying pattern of forces and expressions of the universe, as played out in the form of the planets, their movements and interactions. So astrology is a symbolic interpretive system that allows us to draw parallels between events in our own lives and the pattern between the various celestial objects that form the astrological elements. This underlying truth is pertinent for every other divination system too. This is why Western astrology with its zodiac of 12 houses, and Chinese astrology, which uses a totally different system, basing whole years on a single house and usually symbolised by an animal, are not contradictions of one another.


– This is an ancient system, and the root of the word augur, as in this or that augurs well or ill, as the case may be. Originally it meant to watch birds. From species of birds, to the migration of birds, this is historically one of the most common forms of divination, especially among indigenous peoples. It is commonly considered an omen when an unusual sighting of one or more birds occurs. The more common current usage of this system is a version based on Native American and other indigenous systems wherein animals play archetypal roles in our lives (usually at the subconscious level) and are referred to as 'allies'. Once the ally has been recognised and claimed as one's own, it becomes a symbol and indicator that one is on the right track.

Aura Readings

– Some people see the aura (or, if you prefer a more science-based definition, your bio-energetic electro-magnetic field) around a person. Others can feel this energy field. The idea, partially supported through sensitive electro-magnetic measuring devices and Kirlian photography, is that within the subtle energy layers of the 'aura' are predisposing patterns that can predict both disease and/or other personal developments. Even places have an aura around them, which few can see but almost everyone can feel, whether good or bad.

Automatic Writing

– In this system a person channels from the spirit realm and allows the spirit(s) to use their body to write a message or draw symbols to be interpreted later. The writer is frequently is entirely

unaware of the contents of their writings or drawings until after the session is over and interpretation begins.

Botanomancy – Also know as scrying and a form of pyromancy, this method involves divination through the burning of leaves, tree branches and/or herbs. It is a practice where a diviner draws messages from the smoke of the fire (hence pyromancy) and/or from the ashes that remain.

Crystal ball reading

– This is another form of scrying and is used primarily as a tool to trigger visions. The crystal balls themselves, which come in many shapes, sizes and colours, are not the point of the exercise, but the point of the focus of the person doing the reading. This is true for almost every divination system – the system acts as a focalising agent but it is in the consciousness of the participant or participants that the revelation of the meaning is registered. It is therefore foolish to confuse the focus tool or methodology, with the message derived from it.

Fire and Smoke Scrying – Again a form of pyromancy, in this system the flame from a candle or a campfire may allow one to see various images dancing in the flames. The process sometimes puts the person into a trance and thereby allows visions. Smoke scrying is similar, but shapes are observed dancing on the smoke.


– This refers to the viewing of animal entrails to divine the future. First seen used in the early Roman culture, it is still used in some circles today, but is widely regarded as essentially superstitious in its nature, not to mention rather cruel for the creatures who are disemboweled in the process.


– Depending on where you live, I-Ching (pronounced ee-ching, to rhyme with ring) can either be a type of bibliomancy, religious text, or a guide for how to divine the future by use of symbols and objects. The I-Ching means 'Book of Changes' and is a classic Chinese text that shows how to use a 64-part symbol system to identify order in the chaos that surrounds us. Historically it was viewed as an account from the time of Fu Xi in a similar story to the Noah's Ark legend in the Christian and Jewish texts. More modern meanings use the text as a guide to the 'oracle bones' and the casting of them much like rune stones. Usually three coins are used and thrown three times, with each cast resulting in a number or line which together with the other two casts, provides a figure of solid and/or broken lines. Each of the 64 figures in this system has a particular meaning which is highly symbolic and requires perhaps more right-brained assessment than left-brained analysis. Each cast can include what are termed 'moving lines' which allow one to produce subsequent symbols, indicating a direction likely to be followed in terms of what comes next – but which is always subject to free will and therefore is not immutable.

Today, despite the rise in scientific rationalism, it is hard to find, even in the second decade of the 21st century, a daily newspaper without an astrology column. widespread as it has ever been. Some




apparent contradictions involved in these facts, but beyond the surface contradictions, there lies a deep and powerful truth. Modern physics (using the term quantum entanglement)



mysticism, using phrases like 'we are all one', are saying precisely the same thing. As




all this must be for reductionist mechanists – people who literally only believe what they see, feel, hear, and so on, and who have no sense of any integrating intelligence or force behind creation – there's no denying where the trend is going. You can't even escape it in the world of entertainment or, if one prefers, infotainment. In our previous issue (Odyssey Magazine, Issue 2, 2013) we covered the rise of the paranormal in terms of the number of new shows or new series of older shows centred on the 'paranormal'. The growing interest in and resurgence of divination tool use is a parallel phenomenon. Many secular-oriented social psychologists might well argue, as some do, that these trends point to what people almost always do in times of stress and uncertainty – turn towards



and 'supernatural' sources for help and succour. That may be true to

ODYSSEY 177 • 


The old interpretations still lie at the basis of this system, but there are newer, fresher ways of using these sorts of tools, like angel cards, or animal ally cards or one of literally dozens of other similar systems all designed for personal use.

some extent. But what is also true, whether one seeks an astrology reading,





reading, uses the runes of Nordic origin, or throws the bones in the style of African sangomas (there are many other local cultural variations on





methods), there is the underlying presumption (some would cynically say a better word would be 'hope') that there really is something that makes sense of all that exists. That something might be called God (or some version of that word like Allah or Jehovah or Brahma), spirit, or, in physics, perhaps it is dark energy, which we know exists but know almost nothing else about it except that without He/She/It, the universe wouldn't work. It might be called something else altogether. But none of that matters since both physics and mysticism tell us that we are all connected to everything all the time; that separation is an illusion of the mind and that, consequently, if one is able to use an adequately sensitive and appropriate tool, it may be possible to discern the nature of some of the connections between the drivers that make things happen. Will it rain tomorrow? Ask the

ODYSSEY 178 • 



– This system is based on the idea that there is an underlying meaning to numbers, and that this meaning can be found in everything, from giving letters in your name a symbolic number and reading that meaning, to the meaning of your birthday, to the oracle meaning of the number of certain types of animals you see. Numerology is variably interpreted (as are most divinatory systems) and therefore there is not one set meaning to any number or combo of numbers.

Oracle Cards

– These cards are similar to and largely based on the Tarot. Some use animals as the basis for their meanings, others use a combination of animals, plants, stones, symbols, archetypes, shapes, and so on.


– Also known as cheirology, this is essentially the reading of the palms of the hands, looking especially at the lines in the palms but also other topographical formations and markings. Commonly thought a parlour trick, it traditionally uses the natural creases and lines in the palm of a hand to chart out things like how long the person's life will be, how many times they will marry, and so on. Some people use palmistry like tea leaves, and view the patterns as shapes to divine the future of the person.

Pendulum – This involves using a device on a string or chain, usually made of metal, stone, wood, glass, crystal or bone, but it can also be a ring or other piece of personal jewellery or of significance, that is dangled from the string. Some superstition says that a pendulum dangled over a pregnant woman's belly will move in one direction or another to foretell the sex of the unborn child. Primary methods use the movement of the pendulum to divine answers to questions, or even scry for the direction of an object that is lost. This idea is based on the notion that the pendulum can pick up on the energy lines and fields that operate in patterns around the user and in the earth. Some people deliberately swing the pendulum and then 'allow' it to settle into its own motion, the extent, direction and shape of the subsequent movements then indicating, in the mind of the reader, the meaning being conveyed. Other practitioners use the still pendulum method whereby they hold a pendulum in one hand that is as firmly anchored as possible, specifically to reducing to zero, if possible, any conscious or unconscious inputs by the practitioner. This form relies on the idea that their entire universe is made up of patterns of spiralling energy or vortices, which a pendulum can pick up on (enhanced, some believe, by the consciousness of the reader) and then communicate information based on the spin direction and degree of movement of the pendulum.


– These are stones or sometimes pieces of wood that are marked with either Norse runes or Ogham runes. The most common use the Nordic system. Readings vary in how they are done. Some

people pull a single stone, others use a spread similar to the Tarot. They can be and often are custom made, usually out of stones and hand carved, or are commercially produced in which case they will use standardised runic symbols.

Tarot – Also called tarotmancy, the use of Tarot cards to foretell the future. Made up of the Major and Minor Arcana, there are usually 21 cards in the Major Arcana, and four suits of 14 cards in the Minor Arcana. There are custom decks available, and decks that use different suits, as well as some that have extra cards, or some that feature fewer cards. Some decks even change the names of the Major Arcana cards to suit the theme of the deck itself. Each spread can vary in number of cards, meaning, and even the depth of the questions asked.

There is the underlying presumption (some would cynically say a better word would be 'hope') in divination that there really is something that makes sense of all that exists. That something might be called God (or some version of that word).

Scrying mirror or bowl

– Similar to the crystal ball, this type of mirror (usually coloured black) of a bowl of water is possibly most noted from Nostradamus's visions of the future believed to have been derived using this system. The coloured glass can create a depth illusion in which a person can see objects, people, or happenings.

Spirit board/witch board/talking board – These are all names for the more common name of Ouija Board. The name Ouija comes from a combination of French and Dutch/German for the English word yes as one of the main points on the board is a 'yes'. There is also a 'no' plus the letters and alphabet and the numbers from zero to nine. The idea is that a spirit or spirits guide the hand or hands of one or more people touching the pointer that moves across the board to spell out answers, give yes or no answers and provide numerical data with the numbers on the board. Still highly controversial, these boards are widely frowned on by most practitioners of divination because inexperienced users may easily, it is believed, open a doorway into other realms or dimensions allowing through entities or energies which are far beyond their control and therefore dangerous, even to life and limb, let alone one's spirit and psyche.

Tea Leaves – This system has ancient origins, even though tea has only been a common drink in the West for a couple of centuries or so. The idea is that one drinks a cup of tea, then the cup is tipped over onto the saucer to drain the dregs. The pattern of the remaining tea leaves is viewed and interpreted based on shapes and patterns in the remains.

weatherman. Will the stock market go up or down? Don't bother asking anyone that question as no-one seems to know at present. Is there something I'm not aware of that needs resolution so I can move on in my life? Well, if that is your question there may well be a practitioner somewhere who can throw the bones, lay out the cards or help you cast the coins (as in the I-Ching). If that 'floats your boat', then all there is left to do is find the right person to help you figure out the way round the stumbling blocks in your life. And maybe, once you've found the methodology that resonates with you, set about empowering yourself with your own deck, or whatever, and learn how to see the hidden threads that hold together the fabric of your life. O

Vision quest

– A Native American tradition that induces visions, vision quests and sweat lodges are reported to lead to many types of seeing, from future to past to 'otherworld'.

Beyond these there are a large number of lesser known systems used by local communities and indigenous peoples, along with more modern variants.

Right: Fiona Horne, a popular author who utilises divination tools

ODYSSEY 179 • 


divination books & products

LifeStones: Wisdom To Live By Glenn-Douglas Haig Lifestones cc Glenn-Douglas recently published his first in a series of five personal transformation tools under the banner of LifeStones. The first, called WisdomStones consists of a box containing a booklet and a bag of 24 ‘stones’ inscribed with different symbols. By pulling a stone, you can look up its meaning and discover a useful ‘thought for the day’ or, more commonly, a significant personal insight for enhanced living. What makes the LifeStones series special, is that each insight is accompanied by African proverbs and legends, bringing their ancient wisdom to bear on the challenges of modern day living. It is designed to awaken the inherent wisdom that each of us is born with, to access our own subconscious pool of knowledge.

Healing Divination: A Native Guide To Being Intuitive

Shirley Laboucane

John Hunt Publishing (Dodona Books) • ISBN 978 1 7809 9459 8

Healing Divination teaches people how to develop psychically using methods based on the author’s native spirituality. The book covers how to work with herbs and plants and how totems and power animals can give us the ability of clairsentience, clairvoyance and clairaudience. There are lessons in divination including how to make your own oracle deck and how to do readings using cartomancy. Shirley Laboucane is an aboriginal woman who holds spiritual gatherings and workshops throughout southern Ontario, Canada.

The Transformational Truth of Tarot: The Fool's Journey Tiffany Crosara

John Hunt Publishing (Dodona Books) • ISBN 978 1 7809 9636 3

This book is the winner of Prediction Magazine's Best Spiritual Book 2012. Crosara is regarded as among the best Tarot teachers and experts. She has the ability to impart her knowledge of, and passion for, the cards to those who wish to learn – from the complete novice right through to those who are already well-practiced and perhaps looking to gain clarity or brush up on their skills. She deftly unlocks the mysteries behind the Tarot’s veil with a freshness and vigour that brings the ‘esoteric art’ of Tarot reading right up to date. She gives each card its own fully-accessible identity and personality, making them far more accessible. The best part of the book is that it transcends the idea of Tarot as a predictive tool, engaging with the philosophy that underpins both the Tarot and, arguably, our entire existence.

The Sum of You: The Six Forces That Shape Your Personality Alan Graham

Hodder & Stoughton • ISBN 9781444116021

Are you an explorer, an artist, a gambler, a scientist, an environmentalist, or a philosopher? In this groundbreaking book, Dr Alan Graham argues that in fact these six different personality traits are present in all of us, to a greater or lesser degree. He provides a number of practical questionnaires and exercises which will help us to understand ourselves. Although we don't realise it, these six different personality styles are underpinned by our approach to and understanding of mathematics. Some of this knowledge is innate in all of us, some of it is learned in school, and some of it you may not learn until you read this book.

ODYSSEY 180 • 


Your Hidden Symmetry – How Your Birth Date Reveals The Plan For Your Life Jean Haner Hay House • ISBN 978 1 4019 4242 7 On the day you were born, you were imprinted with a plan and a purpose – your birth date has elegant patterns that reveal who you really are and what your true calling is, and at the same time, the map for your entire journey was formed – each year of your life with a meaning and message that can help you 'ride the waves' instead of 'fighting the current'. There is a design concealed in your birth date that reveals your inner nature, what you came here to learn, how you can find happiness, and what your life purpose is meant to be. 'The wisdom Jean Haner presents in Your Hidden Symmetry has been valuable in my own life over the years. I highly recommend it as a way to love and accept yourself, as well as the way your life is unfolding. I’m delighted to contribute the affirmations in his book to support your journey,' says Louise Hay.

The wisdom of your face: Change Your Life With Chinese Face Reading Jean Haner Hay House • ISBN 978 1 4019 1755 5 Based on the same ancient foundation as Chinese medicine, face reading has a depth of over 3 000 years of research and development. When translated for our modern Western lives, it’s a powerful source of wisdom that we can all access. In this book filled with stories, photos and easy-to-understand information, you will discover how your face reveals your inner design, and how to live in alignment with your true nature. Each of your features has a message for you about who you really are inside, the kind of work that will bring you joy, what relationships will be most fulfilling for you, and most of all, how to feel compassion for yourself and everyone you encounter. Discovering the wisdom your face reveals can help you answer two of the most important questions you need to ask yourself: Who am I, and what is my calling?

The Wisdom of Your Child's Face: Discover Your Child's True Nature with Chinese Face Reading Jean Haner

Hay House • ISBN 978-1401925345

People joke that your children don't come with a user's manual, but they're wrong. It's written in their faces and all you have to do is learn to read them. The secrets of your children's inner nature and personal potential are eloquently inscribed in the curve of their cheeks, the shape of their eyes, the contour of their brows, and the unique language of their original design. Chinese face reading is based on ancient Taoist principles that teach that each child is born with a soul's intent, a blueprint that is theirs and theirs alone, and this inner architecture is reflected in their outer design. When you can read your children's faces, you can discover their true nature. You can understand what their special gifts are, see where their personal challenges will be, and how to guide them through these issues. You’ll be able to recognise what they need from you in order to feel safe and loved, and you’ll be empowered as a parent to raise them with less stress, more joy, and the confidence that you're helping them fulfill their special purpose in the world.

Inner Realms Tarot Saleire

Schiffer Books • ISBN 9780764343919

78 magical Tarot cards, marked with intuitive words on the artwork, will enhance your readings and have you quickly reaching out to claim your own inspiration. Meditate on the artwork to soothe the body, calm the mind, and bring insight as you receive answers for the questions you bring to the oracle. A quick-and-easy companion book which will help you learn to navigate the spiritual world for guidance in becoming an intuitive reader.

ODYSSEY 181 • 



Teresa Alfonso | Qualified & Professional Traditional Astrologer Teresa's website at aims to inform the public on this ancient celestial art, showing readers by practical example what an empowering difference it can make in their lives. An astrologer is not supposed to be clairvoyant and cannot wave a magic wand to make someone’s problems disappear, but an astrology reading will afford perspective, insight and the discernment to make better decisions and life choices.


the HereNowExperience

Workshops in transformation of towards living personal experience vision quest | exploring the wilderness inside awareness of the here & now | constructing a personal narrative

turning awareness into story | |


EMAIL or visit Long distance readings also available via skype or telephonically

Gift vouchers also available

APPWORLD We take a look at a few inspiring apps and websites that have intrigued us lately.

THE STATE OF THE UNIVERSE This is not actually an app, but it really is an incredible website that literally zooms in and out from the edge of the universe to the quantum foam of spacetime while learning about everything inbetween. From the smallest possible unit of distance (known as the Planck Length) to the outer reaches of space and the universe and everything in-between, this amazing tool gives you a small idea of

occasion you are celebrating and designate to whom and where the audio file should be sent. You will be prompted to record your favorite story about your gift recipient. You’ll get a handy timer to help you keep it under two minutes. Review and send. Whether your story starts the waterworks or initiates a rumbling laugh, you’ll know that you gave the most meaningful gift there is: the gift of a story.

the incredible scale of the universe. It is a truly fascinating


interactive site for anyone who marvels at our insignificance

As the first interactive and social palm-reading app, fenopalm

in the grand scale of things.

is unique in that it uses cutting-edge image recognition via your phone's camera to analyse the head, heart and life


lines, your zodiac sign and index-to-ring-finger ratio. The

The Story Jar Lite is designed to deliver meaningful audio

app is very much integrated with social media and shares

stories of loved ones through a memorable and delightful

the findings on your Facebook page. At the end of the

experience. It will help you give the most thoughtful and

reading, palm-reading master 'Swami' will also recommend

timeless gift this year for any special occasions including

books relevant to your social, emotional and professional

birthdays, weddings and graduations. Simply select the

well-being. O

ODYSSEY 183 • 



Ca la vera Cape Town based artist Nicole de Jager has embraced embroidery as her primary art form as it is the intimate, slow time consuming way of drawing with thread which she feels grounds her in our fast paced society. She has always treated embroidery as a drawing with each stitch likened to the stroke of a pencil, another way to leave a mark. Here she invites us into her world.


alavera has evolved from a passionate love affair with art, bright colours and

tattoos. Each piece begins once I have stitched up the eyes. I like to see it as a birthing process; there is no clear idea of what I would like each one to look like, once the eyes are in place they form a personality and so I choose the remaining colours, mouth and nose elements, etc. I use a combination of hand embroidery and beading. Every item is unique and produced entirely by hand. I am not a fan of mass production so time is not of the essence when producing each skull. My inspiration comes from the collaboration of many elements: cultural significance, life and death, music, colour, tribal art. I would love to change society's take on skulls being associated with dark and negative elements and instead for them to see them in a more positive light. I embrace embroidery as an art form as there is something powerful about creating something so intimate. The use of thread as a medium and embroidering as the application grounds me and slows me down to become more aware and present. It is the intimate, slow way of drawing with thread that connects me with the natural world. O

Check out Nicola's Facebook page here.

ODYSSEY 184 • 




Easy going, self-effacing, ‘go along to get along’ type, wanting life to be comfortable, harmonious and peaceful BUT avoids conflict/ anything that disturbs inner peace

Confronter/ Challenger


Direct, self-reliant, can-do people with high energy and an all-ornothing approach to life BUT claim power whether others want it or not



Thorough, idealistic, principled and conscientious type, striving to improve the world BUT can focus on fixing, miss the present and be judgemental

1 Giver/Server

Enthusiast/ Adventurer

Optimistic, multiple options, imaginative type who keep things up for everyone, mostly for themselves BUT can be frustrated with routine and commitment



Caring, interpersonal, nurturing type, striving to meet others' needs BUT can be overneedy for affirmation, people-pleasing and demanding



Responsible, trustworthy, loyal, diligent and security–oriented type who seek to belong BUT can be self-doubting and sceptical


3 5



Private, unemotional, curious and detached, seeking to make sense of the world BUT can be remote and socially awkward

Results-oriented, self-driven, hardworking type who focuses on competence and goals BUT competitiveness can hinder empathy

Tragic Romantic/Individualist Introspective, emotionally sensitive, creative type longing for emotional connection BUT fears being ordinary and can get hooked on suffering

Enneagram what is it?

The Enneagram is a well-established system, grounded in modern psychology and used internationally, having been around in its current format for over 30 years. The Enneagram describes nine personality types, each with their own unique decision-making approach, conflict management style, attentional focus, underlying motivation, and worldviews. Practitioner Frances Hills explains.


he Enneagram is a marvellous system. The symbol

surprised by its robustness as a system, its validity and

it uses looks like a geometric shape with lines and

comprehensiveness, but most of all its accessibility.

arrows, which can be either off-putting or intriguing

Despite its simplicity, the tool is a powerful one,

to the novice. But those who take time to discover how

used by psychologists in therapeutic work, organisations

the system works, and what it all means, are often

in team-building and executive coaching, spiritual

ODYSSEY 185 • 


counsellors, parents, managers, teachers, and individuals who are trying to understand themselves and others better. It is not gender or culturally biased. The system describes nine types, or world views, and their particular underlying focus of attention. Our attentional focus, which is the lens through which we experience the world, directs our energy so that we

The Enneagram gives us a non-ego perspective on who we are and enables us to optimise what gifts our type brings with it.

experience life in a particular way, largely because of our type structure.

and that they can enrich others' lives by doing so, rather

One only has to see the types at a party to recognise

than choose the more comfortable path of withdrawal.

behavioural tendencies. For instance, type three, the

They can choose to participate in life rather than watch

Succeeder, seeks out opportunities to achieve visible

life. They also realise how their fear of being saturated

success and recognition, which is why they often find

or usurped or drained by others is often unfounded, and

themselves in the spotlight. Conversely, type five, the

that their fear has shackled them. By cutting themselves

Observer, can think of nothing worse, does not seek out

off, they deprive themselves and conversely, by getting

approval, and rather, wishes to be let alone.

involved, they enrich their own lives.

At a party, the Succeeder will network, behave personably, and usually make an impact, while the Observer will find a quiet corner and hope to be ignored or at the very least, not fussed over.

Why is it unique?

One of the reasons the Enneagram is popular is that it is a typological system that helps us make sense of human behaviour and reduce our confusion and misunderstandings. What makes it unique is that the focus of the system is less on the behavioural descriptors than on the underlying motivational drivers and focus of attention. While the Enneagram provides a typological description of human behaviour, unlike many typing or classification instruments, it does not 'box' or categorise people – rather it liberates participants who discover and recognise how they unconsciously and automatically apply limiting behaviours without mindfulness. A perfectionist can perfect a working document compulsively, but lose perspective, so that they work ridiculous hours to get the job done with no time left for themselves and a growing sense of resentment. Where is the perfection in that?

How does the Enneagram liberate one?

It encourages recognition and appreciation of your unique gifts - what you bring to relationships and others' lives simply by being you. It also reveals the unconscious

How does it help relationships?

This system unravels the hidden dynamics of relationships with far greater ease and clarity than other conceptual models. For instance, it allows couples to recognise habitual patterns that help and hinder their relationships, how they push each others' buttons, what really works for them and why. Couples can see what each of them bring to the relationship, and sometimes for the first time, realise how they dismiss their partner's gifts or don't realise his/her needs. An active type eight, the Confronter, who enjoys a hearty discussion and has huge amounts of energy, might feel disappointed with his partner, who needs time out when she walks in the door after a stressful day at the office – until he realises that as a Peacemaker, being a type nine, she needs time to recharge and her silence has nothing to do with him. The Enneagram is simple without being simplistic, clear without being naive, and comprehensive without being complicated. It's not a fad. It's not a quick-fix. It will open the door to deeper self-awareness which one participant described as 'sometimes difficult to hear' but who then added that it offered a 'perfect launch-pad for thinking about one's life and relationships'. It offers participants a route to self-appreciation, self-compassion and self-forgiveness. It also offers the opportunity for healthier relationships with others as one recognises others' gifts and challenges as well as one's own. O

self-defeating qualities that keep us from achieving important goals. For instance, the Observer recognises their gift of neutrality and objectivity and how it allows them to offer amazing insights with great perceptiveness,

ODYSSEY 186 • 


For more info contact the author on, or see advert, top right.

Enhance Your Relationships The ENNEAGRAM - a powerful tool for understanding yourself and others better and enhancing your relationships with family, friends and colleagues. The Enneagram is not a new-age idea, but rather, a well-established system, grounded in modern psychology, tried and tested and used internationally by individuals in their private lives, by professional practitioners and in major corporations.

The courses run over ten weeks. comprehensive workbook

Our significant relationships are the foundation of our happiness.


receive a

Upcoming level 1 workshop

What makes for healthy relationships? How can we deepen, improve or heal our relationships? Why do some people press our buttons? How does our personality help and hinder us? The Enneagram helps us understand what drives behaviour, our automatic reactions and blind spots. opens the door to greater self-awareness, choice development. By better understanding others, we become more empathetic, flexible and skilful in relationships.

Level 1 & 2 Workshops are offered here in Cape Town by FRANCES HILLS experienced Enneagram practitioner and counselor. She has worked actively with the Enneagram for 15 years, has run public workshops locally and internationally, and is a member of the International Enneagram Association (IEA).

Ten Monday evenings at 7pm as from the 9th of September 2013

our This and also our

Past participant's comments: 'It really helped me understand myself, my husband and children better, I find I am using the Enneagram all the time.' Yvonne U

'Everytime I come home from the workshop I feel stimulated and invigorated. Frances has a unique way of making the styles come to life.' Willie M Past participants' contact details available on request.

Contact Frances Hills: 021 794 6086 • 083 650 0214 •

Conscious Sexuality with Andrew Barnes

Cape Town Tour July 2013-07-01

Andrew Barnes is an internationally acclaimed and qualified Trantric relationship, sexuality and orgasm coach, sexologist, speaker, master bodyworker and author of Heart of the Flower and Relationship Tantre. Our natural state of being is one of bliss, joy, love, power and expansion. But our personal histories, life and experiences get in the way. Each of us resists this natural state of bliss at some level by protection ourselves from harm. These defences take the form of mental, physical and sexual armouring Andrew has developed a unique and powerful method to get to the source of these blocks quickly and effectively – to remove them and allow you to open to bliss more fully.

Schedule of events

Wednesday 17 July Expanding Women’s Sexuality – Tantric Yoni Massage, G-spot & A-spot ejaculation and energetic orgasm. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00 Friday 19 July Expanding Men’s Sexuality – Understanding addiction to ejaculation, full body orgasms without ejaculation and lingam massage for healing. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00

Saturday 20 July & Sunday 21 July 2 day Tantric Energetic Full Body Orgasm Workshop. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 10am-6pm both days. Cost R2 400.00 including lunch. TUESDAY 23 July Relationship Tantra – Feeling your way together into living and loving on purpose. Phakalane, Hout Bay, 6-10pm. Cost R500.00 wednesday 24 July Play Party. Claremont, 7-10.30pm. Cost R500.00

Thursday 25 July – Monday 29 July Tantric Orgasm and Body De-armouring Retreat. The Blue Butterfly, Tulbagh. Cost R4 500.00 (including Facilitation and vegetarian meals) Accommodation costs are additional. Private Sessions in Claremont: 18th July 30th July. Cost R1 300.00 per 2hr session This work is suitable for all sincere seekers of truth of any gender or orientation, single or partnered. Men, Women and Couples. You do not need a partner to attend.

For info, bookings & enquiries for all of the above events contact Rhianne van der Linde: • 083 679 1297 • Book soon, as places are limited.

r e v i e w s

Soul Companions Karen Sawyer O books • 978 1 8469 4060 6

Subtitled Conversations with Contemporary Wisdom Keepers – a Collection of Encounters with Spirit, this is a book meant for our time. It is a compendium of information and inputs, sought by the author during a two-year quest, from respected healers, seers, visionaries and shamans from around the world. It brings together both traditional and modern wisdom on how to inspire and guide us through these turbulent times towards a planet – and our own being – which needs to be in a much more harmonious, stable and sustainable state than at present. You may know some of those she speaks to and whose wisdom and insights she has captured; most you'll likely never have heard of. Either way, though, there is a consistency and cross-cultural commonality that invites the reader to begin to live more completely in a relatively much more awakened state – and the book provides some techniques on how to do that too. If you are looking for soul guidance at this troubled hour in human history, this book may well be the one for you.

How to Attain Enlightenment: The Vision of Nonduality James Swartz Sentient • 987 1 5918 1094 0

Having not met this author, one hopes that he himself is 'enlightened', whatever that may mean. So there is a problem from the

ODYSSEY 188 • 


outset as to exactly what the meaning of enlightenment is in terms of what this author is on about. Enlightenment, we are told, has been eagerly sought over millennia in order to remove the limitations that compromise one's happiness. The implication is that if you are enlightened you are necessarily happy – or at least, happier than you were before 'enlightenment' was yours. Is that true, though? Swartz bases his search for and investigation of enlightenment on the Vedanta, one of the most ancient and venerated wisdom traditions in the world. But this book isn't just one more set of spiritual techniques that have followed so many others; instead, it represents a comprehensive body of knowledge and practice that has successfully been followed by those who have gone before us and apparently unravelled the secrets of nature and themselves to achieve this exulted and sought-after state. Given that this book and this author's understanding is based on a single system, filled with ancient wisdom as it may be, it does create certain restraints in that you may or may not resonate with this particular approach. Besides that, though, in these turbulent times a little bit of peace and serenity born of the resolution of contending opposites may be well worth the time taken to read and absorb what this book offers.

Enlightenment Ain't What It's Cracked Up To Be Robert K C Forman O Books • 978 1 8469 4674 5

What, asks this author, you spent years of

your life – decades even – seeking spiritual enlightenment, but ended up finding you were looking in the wrong place? The author says this has happened, and is still happening right now, to millions of seekers around the world. He sets out to offer 'a sane and healthy spiritual pathway in our increasingly confused world'. Forman says that it is his experience that many traditional spiritual models are giving seekers a wrong and frustrating impression about the goal of their spiritual life. He seeks to help those who perhaps believe that they don't have the 'right stuff' to make it to 'enlightenment' in this lifetime; those disillusioned by spiritual teachers who don't live up to their lofty self-portraits; are worried that choosing a spiritual life means leaving everyday life behind; or are hungry for a different way to be, but are unable to express it. The book is a memoir about Forman's own 39-year spiritual quest but it is more than that and is beautifully written. It is an invitation to seek and find one's authentic self, beyond what any teacher or system has to offer. In that sense, it truly is a book that goes beyond many that have come before it of a roughly similar ilk. And it's a good read, which is hardly more than one could ask from any book on any subject.

Seasonal Awareness and Wellbeing: Looking and Feeling Better the Easy Way Marie-Claire Wilson O Books • 978 1 8469 4469 7

This book is designed to help you lose weight and improve your well-being by

harmonizing your nutrition and exercise practices with the seasons. Usually one thinks perhaps of eating in season, but exercise in season? And putting the two together seems a natural extension of the former approach. It does take an effort since the modern lifestyle tends to drive us in exactly the opposite direction than that being espoused here. Rediscovering seasonal rhythms and making simple, practical changes to your routines will help you to feel and look better, and is easy and enjoyable, says the author. Try and see for yourself.

Life: Stepping Stone or Stumbling Block Brenda Hattingh Xlibris • 978 1 4691 3867 1

The quality of your life, says this author, is a choice. She bases this idea on the notion, now widely being adopted in Western culture, that everything in your life has been chosen by you, on some or other level, conscious or unconscious. There are, in this understanding of things, no victims. At the core of our choices is how we see life itself. We can either see it as a pain, or series of pains, with many stumbling blocks to overcome. Or it is a pleasure with many opportunities and stepping stones to higher levels of attainment. The quality of life depends on where you are coming from in respect to these two poles of perspective, or the many gradations in between. Not specifically a 'spiritual' book as such, it does address deep issues generally regarded as 'spiritual' in their nature, and provides

many helpful steps and processes to help you overcome whatever it is in your current perspective which may be holding you back.

Thera and the Exodus Riaan Booysen O Books • 978 1 7809 9449 9

Not everyone realises that today's Mediterranean island of Santorini was once much bigger and went under the name of Thera. Then it had not one but two huge eruptions. Together, says this author, they helped with the formation of a the people we now know of as the Israelites, and indirectly gave birth to Judaism, Islam and Christianity. The Biblical exodus of the Israelites from Egypt is closely linked to these eruptions, the second of which occurred around 1450-1410BCE during the reign of Amenthotep III. The eruption's fallout caused sundry 'natural' disasters including a plague outbreak. To appease the gods, the pharaoh ordered the first born son of every household to be sacrificed, something his own son, Tuthmosis, was narrowly saved from enduring. The latter later became Moses – and the rest, as they say, is history, or at least, it is Biblical history. A fascinating exploration, as the subtitle suggests, of 'The Exodus explained in terms of natural phenomena and the human response to it'. Interesting stuff indeed.

Christanophobia: A Faith Under Attack Rupert Shortt Random House Struik •978 1 8460 42756 8

We very nearly did not review this book as it not our mission to proselytise for any particular belief system but rather act as a platform for communication between divergent worldviews and life experiences, including those of people of various faiths. This book is overtly written from a Christian perspective and is about widespread attacks on and oppression of Christians in various parts of the world but especially where those of this faith are in the minority. To align with any particular religion would, then, defeat our purpose. But the author's point, beyond the facts he outlines about the way Christians are treated in some places, and their response to that, is that freedom of belief is the 'canary in the mine' on every aspect of civil liberties. In other words, a regime which allows or turns a blind eye to the oppression of Christians is probably also involved in other forms of civil and human rights abuses. In so far as that assertion may have more than a grain of truth in it, this is an important book, especially when read less from a hardline Christian perspective than from one with a wary eye on what rights people in minorities really do have in societies where those rights are supposed to be protected. In the South African context, the thread may be drawn to go beyond religious belief to political and racial dimensions, just as the same implications may be drawn for other multi-cultural societies. This makes this book worth reading as part of the wider global debate on how human civil rights might best be protected and enhanced, especially for minorities of all types.

ODYSSEY 189 • 



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ODYSSEY 190 • 


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Dr Cecile Gericke, is a registered psychologist using hypnotherapy. She combines sound scientific methods and a holistic mind / body / spirit approach to enhance human growth and potential. Dr Cecile works with 15 modalities.

• Release negative emotions like anger, fear, depression & stress • Enjoy greater creativity & clarity of mind • Energise and rebalance your body, mind & spirit • Live more fully in the present moment The Art of Living Foundation, founded by His Holiness Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, is an international nonprofit organisation dedicated to serving society by strengthening the individual. The Art of Living works in special consultative status with the UN. Call the national office on (011) 781 7687 Visit 035-041-NPO

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ODYSSEY 191 • 



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HEALING SOUNDS Selling: Crystal Quartz & Himalayan Singing Bowls, Tingshaws, Gongs, Tibetan Bells, Tuning Forks, CD Blessings in Eternity & Harmonic Tuner. Lindi offers SOUND THERAPY & BIO-RESONANCE THERAPY. Contact 021 797 7731, HANDCRAFTED PENDULUMS & DOWSING RODS FOR SALE Made from various materials to many different designs. Toby's Mystic Pendulums Cell 084 522 3700, Fax 086 645 3724 The Wigwam Woman Children’s Tipis provide a cool-in-summer and warm–in-winter conical shelter to play in easily erected and packed away - used indoors or in nature. Made from canvas and up-cycled materials - poles are locally sourced and made from invader trees. Our design philosophy incorporates creativity, fun, attention to detail, durability and respect for the environment. Suitable for children ages 3 – 12 years. Contact cell 081 408 3912

ESOTERIC EMPORIUM Largest variety of crystals & minerals Imported silver jewellery esoteric & self-help books Buddha's, Dragon's & Faerie's Angel & Tarot Cards, Candles & CDs Mon - Fri 09.30 to 18.30 • Saturdays 8.30 to 14.00

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ODYSSEY 192 • 




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Tranquil training / conference centre for hire for small groups (ideal 10 to 12 people) in Bryanston. Contact Hester on 082 377 2534 or email


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Professional consultations for business and home by internationally qualified Master Consultant. Workshops available. Simone 011 485 2078, 082 601 1122 Email:

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ZEST4LIFE - INSPIRATIONAL SPEAKER Dr Sibis Mouton (behavioural kinesiologist and ex World Champion Iron (Wo)man) is now available as inspirational speaker for Ladies's Breakfasts, company get-togethers or special events. See Phone 021 671 4956 or Email Private kinesiology treatments (since 2002) also available to give people's lives new meaning and purpose.

Although every effort will be made to meet the advertisers wishes, the date of publication, the form and position of the adverts, and places of distribution shall be at the sole discretion of the publisher. Credit will not be given for typographical errors which do not lessen the effectiveness of the advert. Contact Melody to advertise on these pages:

KWA ZULU-NATAL Advertise for Free (and LIKE) our Facebook Page Advertise in our Weekly Newsletters Subscribe to our Mailing list • 082 298 1047

A unique spiritual festival where Practitioners working with creative healing energies will converge and share this gift. A space to explore the landscape of spirituality in a new era of conscious living, wellness and inner peace. Look, feel, participate: You will have the opportunity to view exhibitions, listen to talks and participate in workshops and sacred ceremonies Experience: An array of spiritual, healing, therapeutic and holistic modalities Interact with: Psychic Practitioners, Healers, Shamans, Therapists and many more Soulspace kids: An enchanting programme has been created for our little ones When? 26 & 27 October 2013. Where? Kloofzicht Lodge, Muldersdrift 35km out of Jozi Perfect for a day visit. More info: Jean – 082 949 9449 or Tickets available at •

ODYSSEY 194 • 


Paulo's Column


Recently, Paulo Coelho read Amerigo: A Comedy of Errors in History, an essay written in 1942 by Stefan Zweig, an Austrian writer of Jewish origin, who took refuge in Brazil during World War II. What he discovered was that things are a little different from what he had learned in school.


weig begins this small book with a very simple

of this new world with the name of America for the first

question, which we learn to answer in school:

time, using the name of the author of the letter as the

why is the continent in which we were born called

new continent's possible discoverer.


In a feudalistic Europe, which had been defeated in

Our teachers taught us that everything has to do

the Crusades, the promise of a New World had the effect

with a letter of Amerigo Vespucci. But it gets complicated

of a bomb. It was like a miracle, a chance given to the

when we try to understand Vespucci's importance in this

people to dream again, to turn their eyes to the setting

story: a letter, as well elaborated as it might have been,

sun and know that the world kept a treasure beyond the

does not justify such honour. Theoretically, the continent

seas, for those with courage to overcome their own limits.

should be called Colombia, once we all know that it was

Amerigo Vespucci's immortality, for being one of

discovered (or better, rediscovered, because Vikings and

the greatest consecrations never given to another man

Phoenicians had already walked around here) by the

in history, also had its dark side. As one could expect,

Genoese Christopher Columbus, sponsored by Spanish

once the new continent was baptized, people began


disseminating that Vespucci had stolen Colombus' glory.

As he tried to understand why things went this way,

He would be nothing but a charlatan who had consciously

Zweig realises a huge network of misinterpretations,

spread a lie. That opened a kind of academic duel

which lead to Amerigo Vespucci's immortality.

between Colombus and Vespucci, which would last two

What exactly happened? Vespucci made three

centuries. Vespucci went from 'discoverer' to 'villain',

journeys to the new continent between 1499 and 1502,

until around the year of 1700, when letters exchanged

and in each one of them he wrote something about his

between him and Colombus were discovered, showing

experiences. However, one of these letters, titled as the

a complete abstraction of both about the controversy

'New World', was one of his time's greatest best-sellers.

created by others.

The just-born press provided with mobile typology

Reading Zweig's essay, I imagine: how many times

took upon itself to spread the news throughout Europe

aren't we dragged to situations we did not seek, which

(free of copyrights, by the way). In addition, geographers

end up being impossible to control, and which are only

from the small city of Saint Dié in France drew the coast

clarified after we are no longer here? O

©Translated by James Mulholland • Travel with Paulo through his blogs, visit

ODYSSEY 195 • 


ask the swami


ODYSSEY 196 • 


Humourist Swami Beyondananda answers some of his fans questions Diets and Diet-Tribes Dear Swami, I'm confused. At the bookstore, on the web, in conversations with friends caught up with one food fad or another, I'm overwhelmed by all of the different diets. Which one is right? And which is right for me? You must be doing something right in that regard, Swami. Do you have a special diet? And how do you manage to look so slim and trim?

Anita Fixx, San Diego, CA Dear Anita, it is indeed confusing out there. All those different groups arguing about why their diet is the best – 'diet tribes', I call them. Now of course you realise that many weight problems are psychological, due to an unresolved Edible Complex. We think something is edible, we eat it, and that's where the trouble begins. Indeed, science has shown a remarkable correlation between weight gain and eating. The food industry knows this, so they've come up with sugar-free, salt-free, fat-free, but the ultimate weight-loss food – flavour-free. Put people on the flavour-free diet, and they'll eat less. Personally, I've settled on the 'mucous-free' diet, because frankly mucous is pretty unappetising and I figure it should be pretty easy to give up. As for the secret of looking slim and trim, if I told you it wouldn't be a secret, would it? But since those spying agencies know all our secrets anyway, I figure what the heck. So I'll tell you. My secret for looking virtually perfect all the time? PhotoShop.

Have You Been Rebuffed? Dear Swami, how does one deal with rejection in relationships? I was recently rebuffed, and I'm having a hard time getting over it.

Chuck Itall, Memphis, Tennessee Dear Chuck, yes, being rebuffed can certainly make you feel that something is amiss, then a miss is missing, that's what is amiss. And you are missing that missing miss, are you not? OK, so you see the bed as half empty, but I see the bed as half full. Yes, you've been rebuffed. But at least you were getting buffed in the first place! Think of all those guys who haven't gotten buffed, are not getting buffed, and are unlikely to get buffed in the near future. Be thankful for what you got, even though you're not getting it now. Change your focus. The less time you spend feeling rebuffed, the more likely you are to be re-buffed. As for rejection itself, I reject the idea of rejection. There is a cosmic program playing 24/7 on the All That Is Channel called Universe Knows Best, so accept the rejection as a re-ejection into a new world of possibities – of re-ejecting and buffing, to your heart's content. Visit Swami online at and find out about Swami's Digital Fool Enchilada Special by clicking here. ©Copyright 2013 Steve Bhaerman. All rights reserved.

Odyssey Magazine Issue 3 2013  

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