Avocado cilantro salad

 

My buddha is from China, his bindhi from India, devotion and gratitude is not particular.

My buddha is from China, his bindhi from India, devotion and gratitude is not particular.

Here are the pix – this recipe is pretty self evident, and you can improvise as you like. The recipe is one of Sri Dharmas that he suggests in the Life of a Yogi teacher training manual.  Its a super food, and if you eat too much of this it wont hurt you! The image below does show this with sprouted bread, if you cannot have gluten then corn tortillas or gluten free vegan corn bread is a good substitute.

 

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f) super foods to live on

From the post on detoxing:

Things to start to have on hand if you want to eat better and get healthy and really have some freedom about when and how to eat them. The more raw food you eat the better, once something is subjected to heat it will lose it’s vitality, and becomes less nutritious. Everything below is just suggestion:

VEGETABLES: Vegetables become super foods when you juice them, eat them raw, or add to smoothies. The best vegetables are local, seasonal, not sprayed or organic. Buy only what you know you will prepare and eat while fresh and minimize waste. This will have your healthy food budget be manageable and have you be compassionate & responsible towards those who do not have. Pick ones you like or ones your body is telling you to eat. Standbys are:

avocado (really a fruit but considered a vegetable by many) (avocado cilantro salad)
carrots great to juice, shred, or steam (Trader Joes sells them organic 89 cents a pound)
lettuce, spinach, bok choi, baby chard, kale etc. and other leafy dark greens – for salads
and for steaming/saute
onions if you love onions, but note onions and garlic are considered by many cultures to be ‘medicinal foods’, so I avoid them on a day to day basis, and then eat them raw when having a cold or other syptoms of a depressed immune system
cucumber – juicing or eating
zucchini spaghetti squash – substitute for pastas and great in vegetable dishes
celery for juicing and adding to many dishes like stir fry vegetables or pots of lentils
and vegan chili (trader joes has great organic celery)
cabbage(s) – not great if you have thyroid issues but fine if eaten in moderation
mushrooms – a great high protein vegetable that is very satisfying
tomatoes (really need to be in season, local and near organic)
potatoes, any kind but fried!

any other vegetable you love and can get fresh – beets, root vegetables, herbs are also excellent, you have to go by what you like or love – that will have you satisfied with your food. If you only love one thing go with that. Some of this is better eaten raw, and some you may feel a need to cook.

SEEDS & NUTS
a good small grinder is a necessity
always best to eat these raw but if you want to roast your seeds and nuts it is always better to start with raw and do it yourself in a pan on the stove top or in the oven. if you want a super food you will sprout your almonds, soak your walnuts, and grind your seeds to add to your oatmeal!
sunflower seeds great in oatmeal, homemade granola, by themselves as a snack
sesame seeds, ground in cereals, on salads, or use tahini for salad dressing
hemps seeds – good for milk making, adding to any foods, eating as high protein snack
pumpkin seeds – as above
chia, flax – add to cereals or salads, use in baking
almonds – snack or add to other foods
brazil nuts – high in selenium, good for the sluggish thyroid
peanuts – same, as long as you have no allergies to peanuts!
walnuts – great for desserts
cashews – topping for stir fried veggies – as snack etc, soak raw cashews to make cashew cream, or sauce base for ‘kormas’, mild indian curries
any others you like

GRAINS & BEANS & LEGUMES
I joined a buying club so buy 25lbs bags of organic beans. lentils and oats, getting around the crazy prices for the same at certain health food stores…
Oats, oats are great for detoxing, steel cut or rolled, but preferably organic
corn grits (polenta)
lentils any variety, for soups, in salads, as a side dish
split peas – green and yellow
brown rice
suggested low gas beans:
edamame – frozen fresh
red kidney
lima beans
black eyed peas
aduki or mung beans (mung beans ideally are as they sell them in the Indian stores, skin off, or ‘hulled’ and split, this makes them more digestible)
white or navy beans

FRUITS BERRIES & DRIED FRUITS:
organic, local and in season is best – otherwise whatever is available to you
bananas are great and have some protein
apples are also great
raisins, cranberries, prunes, apricots, goji, mulberry,
any of your favorite fruits
I buy what is on sale, organic and affordable, or really fresh and wash it well/peel if not organic

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y) detox exclusions

The really easy version of this is: no animal/seafood products, no wheat or gluten.

What is the rationale? Well there are many but the most compelling to me from the standpoint of health is that these foods are dead foods. Literally to eat them is too eat a carcass (keeping them in the fridge is like having a mini mortuary in the house) or in the case of dairy an animal by product.  Carcass – even if its ‘white meat’ or ‘fish’ or eggs, and somewhat easier to digest than a big hunk of red meat – all become more toxic within the body than plant based foods. Meats often literally ‘stick’ around on the lining of the intestine decaying inside the body. If your system is not fluid and processing what you eat today by the next day, then whatever you eat sits inside becoming putrid and upping the toxic load on your whole body especially your liver. So – whatever you decide to do in the long run, if you want to DETOX well, you have to leave aside the animal products to do so.

I have any diary and or eggs as an exclusion in this detox regime for a few reasons: animal proteins are often unclean, (added hormones, antibiotics and trace pesticides and herbicides) and are difficult to digest. I am avoiding the whole conversation about cruelty here, I address it elsewhere. The China study has demonstrated that there is a strong link between animal protein, heart disease and cancer.

Its not that big of a deal to leave the animal matter aside- just think about what you are committed to – if you are seeking more energy and better health – going vegan for a month and adding more raw vegan foods to your diet will make a difference. And its really not that hard. I don’t want to say you will also lose weight because it’s not the focus of a detox regime, but I do recommend reading this book, Eat More, Weigh Less, by Dr. Dean Ornish. He was the first Doctor to clinically demonstrate a reversal of heart disease through diet and lifestyle changes alone. (I linked to his website, the book can be found easily online for purchase.) If you want to really move into a hyper drive detox just watch the movie, Sick Fat and Nearly Dead. Then go out and buy a juicer and do what he does! Just be mindful, many of our bodies are so toxic we really have to start with the basics of cleaning the intestine before going into juice fasting and deep tissue detox. Otherwise when we suddenly detox all that toxin releases into the blood stream at once, creating a very heavy burden for the kidney and liver, and making us feel very sick at the same time. You be the judge of how fast or slow you can go – listen to your body and always support detox with lots of water.

With regard to wheat and gluten: many many people have a wheat or gluten intolerance that has not been identified – if you experience bloating, joint pain, or constipation there is a high probability that wheat or gluten is causing some of these issues. If you have anything like Irritable Bowel Syndrome wheat may be at the source of it. Read Wheat Belly for more on this. If you CRAVE wheat products then its likely it is an allergen for you. In a paradoxical twist of body biology we often crave that which is worst for us, other big ones include red wine, sweets, and greasy salty foods.

If you can manage to eliminate wheat and gluten from your diet while detoxing it will speed the clearing of the intestine, as most wheat products are highly processed. When you find gluten substitutes like corn meal, corn tortillas, gluten free breads, polenta, rice, etc you will be adding more fiber to your diet automatically.

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y) detox inclusions

This is in progress, I am right now just adding links to things I have already posted that should be included in a detox diet. Please check this link for what to exclude – animal products are at the top of that list, as well as wheat.

the INCLUSION RULES OF THUMB  are :

1) Eat some form of oatmeal as your first meal of the day – Muesli is good and usually made up of raw oats and the best for you, steel cut or rolled oats preferably organic when you can is great – soaked in non diary milk to soften. Granola is OK but often way too sugary. If you choose to cook your oats, use the steel cut or rolled oats and cook them al dente in water to get the maximum benefit from the fiber. Add your favorite nuts, non dairy milk, seeds, fruits, fresh and dried, non sugar sweetener, and chew well. Have a huge bowl of it if you are used to eating heavy in the mornings. Have a small bowl if you normally skip breakfast altogether. In the latter case after a week or two you may notice that your hunger signal will return in the mornings. The oats will start to work on your system within 2-3 days if your intestine is not impacted.

NOTE – IF YOUR INTESTINE IS VERY BACKED UP: Normal bowel movements are minimum once a day, and should reflect what was consumed in the last 24 hours. If you have constipation or your intestine is impacted – you will need to add lots of water to your diet.  3 to 4 cups a day more than whatever your current water consumption is. There are a few ways to kick start the intestinal clearing, strong coffee in the morning is one of them, it can be decaf if you don’t want to get hyped up. I am not recommending any of the following  methods as this process is wholly individual, however there are a few common approaches used when detoxing; warm water enemas, suppositories, psyllium seed powders mixed with juice, and some of the teas, but the teas are often very strong and require that you be near a toilet for 24-48 hours so proceed with caution if you choose this method. If you stop animal products at the same time you begin to add raw and live cleansing foods, being careful what you eat, your system will respond, so there is no need to hurry things unless you are motivated to do so. The longer you have eaten badly and tolerated a slow digestive system, the longer it will take to get it back to full optimal function. You will probably begin to notice early results in a few days.

2) Eat one raw meal a day – preferably this one is the last meal of the day – salad with your favorite greens, the darker the better, avocados, jicama, any other favorite raw vegetables seeds, nuts, (no cheeses) dried fruits, olive oil, fresh lemon juice or some other non dairy dressing, tahini is great for satisfying cravings for calories, protein and fats. Cabbage salads are good but find a vegan version, for example with oil and vinegar. Eat as much salad as you can – do not eat bread, pasta, or any other foods with the salad. If you are really unsatisfied with this meal you can add something like cooked potatoes with a vegan ‘butter’, or vegan potato salad, just try hard to have it with vegan mayo or german style instead of eggy mayo.

3) have Green clean juice juice once a day – yes bring your jucier with you if you have to! it must be consumed right after juicing or there is little point to having it.

4) eat one cooked meal preferably with grains and or legumes and cooked vegetables. Eat as much as you care to. There are many options you don’t have to make yourself at home and are readily available in restaurants if that is your lifestyle: Indian food is great, especially if you order from a vegetarian place, Thai food has many vegetarian/vegan options, think coconut curries – vegan chili is great, avoid the cornbread and have it with rice, places like chipotle have several options for vegan meals that are tasty and satisfying…avoid the breads and flour based foods. If you are cooking at home you can surf the internet for loads of great vegan recipes that are easy to make; beans and rice are always good, braised grilled and steamed vegetables, soups etc.

5) unlimited fruits and nuts (preferably raw and unsalted) are fine on this detox regime – but note that having too much sugar can trigger cravings for all the bad stuff that you USED to eat!

Stick with this regime until your bowel movements are synced with your consumption – with no more than a 24 hour lag between eating and passing that meal. A beet salad will tell you where you are! As you progress notice the differences in your energy and mood, you may find you have lost weight in the process, your skin and eyes will be clearer, and you will be more in touch with the optimal functioning of your body. Now you can
move on to the next level!

CRAVINGS: it is common to crave the high calorie (sugar laden) often dense foods of a standard American diet if that’s what you’ve been on. Nuts go a long way to deflect those cravings so have some with you – eat slowly until you have satisfied the craving.

a few recipes that are good to include:
carrot salad, purple cabbage salad, holy rice and beans, mexican, curry lentils, chana shag, soaked walnuts, sprouted almonds, sprouted peas, scrambled tofu, vegan potato salad, spring rolls, avocado cilantro salad

 

 

 

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a) I am not my body

I used to think that who I am is synonymous with my body.
That was difficult as my body wasn’t always loveable to me – dimples on my thighs said it all. ‘I’ used to be disconnected from my body – and look down on it, I hated it so much.
On the arc I have traveled from there to accepting and loving my body, I realize now, when I say ‘I’, that I am not speaking of my body. What a liberation.

Now I look at what I am committed to in my life – like being around for my kids 10, 20, 30, 40 years from now, (or getting to have more fun and more life) and I can say, what do I have to do with this hunk of flesh and bones (body) to get it to go my way? And to be able to do what I want to do?

My body is the container for my soul, spirit, consciousness – whatever I call it, that life force that energizes this body into motion, action, experience. But it is no match for who I really am. It runs slow while I want to run fast. No matter, as long as  I don’t let my body become weighted down in a stupor from bad food, alcohol, illness, I still have something to work with.

This realization helped me immensely as I followed the path towards what had become an elusive state of good health. It also helped immensely with the integration of my body and my mind with my consciousness. The way it was; my mind passed judgement on my body and didn’t like what it saw, my body was at the mercy of my own desperation, fear and self loathing – I fed the pain and grew ever more unhealthy.  Once I got just that slight bit of distance, the insight that the ‘I’ consciousness is not the same as the body, I could look more dispassionately and compassionately at the container I had been given, and take better care of it. The path to a healthy reintegration of body, mind – heart and soul was through the practice of yoga – not only the physical practice but also living the life of a yogi.

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Detoxing – the path from dis-ease to vitality

In this post I am going to outline the whole enchilada as I know it, that is – how to get from poor health back to natural vitality, and the various states or stages involved – and in subsequent posts get into the details. Its been a long time since I was quite ill, deeply troubled, numbed, yet I am still working to stay as far away from that state as possible and closer to being fully acutely alive. Please do not consider anything I post here to be true. In the long honored tradition of monks and yogis, I invite you to find out if any of this is true for you.

a) ‘I’ am not my body
b) unaccountable happiness, clarity, connectedness
c) we are what we eat
d) 6 week detox inclusions and exclusions
e) 6 week detox tools
f) super foods
g) freedom and suffering
h) niyamas and mindfulness
i) ‘I’ am not my mind
j) the extraordinary miracle of this time, this place, this body
k) convergence
l) making a difference: vegetarianism and being vegan
m) the basics: what’s needed and not needed
n) fluid body vs blocked body
o) liver support
p) wheat and inflammation and poor health
q) caffeine sugar alcohol drugs
r) pH balance
s) let thy food be thy medicine – carcass versus live plant food
t) allergies, addictions & the anti-inflammatory diet
u) signals from the body
v) practicing yoga – body teaches mind
w) gentle yoga – traveling inwards
x) following one’s ‘destiny’ or path, and observing the journey
y) yoga, karma, imprints, past lives, incompletions
z) no boundaries, all is one

 

Posted in addictions, detox, Gluten free, Householders guide, Juicing, pH balance, Practising Yoga, Restoring health, super foods, VEGAN, Vitality and love, Wheat free, YOGA | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Chana Shag with coconut milk – spinach and chick peas

So I am trying to eat more raw food these days – and it is a challenge to say the least! However on my good days – I avoid wheat altogether, I have a raw smoothie usually with cucumber and fresh spinach, maybe a little banana and coconut water mixed in, that’s really good. At least 2-3 servings of fruit, raw nuts in some form, (sometimes fresh almond milk) and a salad usually with avocado so satisfy my craving for heavier foods. Let me just say, I love this recipe and have made it many times but the sprouted spinach (leftover ends from the last batch I made) have been growing fast and are SO ALIVE!!! makes me think I must eat it raw from now on!  And thankful to have it either way!!!

spinach sprouted in bowl

 

 

This is a seasonal and easy recipe:

2lbs fresh spinach (or 2-3 large bunches)
wash well – and use stems
locate your favorite curry mix use about 2 tablespoons –
this one has salt already added so not optimal , but tasty
find your best fresh onion – doesn’t matter what kind – chop small
saute spices and onion in a generous amount of olive oil – (1/3 to 1/2 cup)
add chopped spinach and saute lightly – by the time I have chopped all the spinach and added it to the pot overall saute time is about 10 minutes
after spinach starts to wilt
add coconut cream (I use trader joes but other coconut milk will do fine)
add chick peas – you can cook from hard or use 1 small can – I remove skins to lessen the gas!
add salt if your curry powder did not have (most do not)

simmer for 10 minutes – serve with rice!

 

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Sri Dharma’s Sprouted Almond Milk and a Moment of Lightness

ingredients

 

Maya Tiwari, who turned to her ancestral knowledge of ayurveda to cure herself of cancer and grief, in her book ‘Ayurveda A Life of Balance’ says this about the milk of her childhood, …”The milk was delivered, buff colored and foaming, within the hour of milking. It was never preboiled. Milk was a vital and living food as long as the ancestry could remember. The cows were gentle and happy. They grazed in the green pastures of fertile and rich land. The roamed by instinct with their own rhythm. No one questioned why they should seek shelter from the blazing sun, or why they sat and gazed with those stupendous lotus eyes. …Years later, during my stay at an ashram in Pennsylvania, I was taking my daily walk past a cow pasture. I saw for the first time what I had so long felt in my heart: the abiding grief of these cows. I have walked through the valleys and shadows of death twice in my life and never have I witnessed such gargantuan grief. How can we in the West hope to rationalize or address the present state of unwholesomeness of milk as a food? The primary issue we must confront is the holocaust of these animals.” Pg 176

Ok, so that is not light. Her book is very good to read, she talks about the Vedic tradition, and how it holds all animals sacred, as they hold the memory of life on earth. ‘The cow is the keeper of the scriptural memory, and the elephant the holder of the first memory of plants and herbs on the planet. If either becomes extinct, we would not be able to maintain the memory necessary for the survival of the earth.’ She talks about the diseases of the food body and how the suffering of the cows is reflected in our own. ‘The mental agony of the cow is inherited by all those who drink the polluted ama, which used to be milk; we suffer the same conditions of fear, isolation, restlessness and melancholia. The cows subtle memories are blackened by their captivity, directly effecting the loss of our own memories of spiritual dharma.’

The lightness is this – Sri Dharma’s Sprouted Almond milk is our modern day vital and living milk. It has the sweetness and softness of unpolluted milk from happy cows. It has a food body memory that is sustaining, nourishing, and loving. It enters the body system like mama’s milk, soaking into the cells, filling them with prana and light. It is truly divine and I will never ever drink the box stuff again!

Here is how make it, easy, a little time consuming, 100% worth it every time.

1 ½ cup sprouted almonds or brazil nuts
4 cups filtered water
3-5 dates (or agave nectar to sweeten)
1 Tbs vanilla (or fresh vanilla bean seeds)
Pinch sea salt, agave, honey or maple syrup to taste

It takes me about 10 minutes to peel the sprouted almonds. See my post for sprouted almonds to see how to sprout) I hold the large end in my finger tips and squeeze, the nut slips out of the skin pointy side first into my palm. Rinse after peeling to remove any lingering toxins from the skins. (Note: some brands of almonds will not peel easily – I found the Trader Joes non organic whole raw almonds most reliably easy to peel, Costco’s depends on the bag)

Pour the nuts and water together into the blender. Close the lid and blend on high for a couple of minutes. The better blended the more nutrition you will gain from the nut pulp.

Any linen type cloth or very fine cheese cloth will do for straining. It doesn’t have to be a bag but that will make squeezing it easier. Make sure your bowl is large enough.

Pour the milk through the cloth into the bowl. When the sprouted nut meal pulp is still in the cloth you can dip, rewet and squeeze with your hands. This will yield more of the vital essence of the nut. You can add a little more fresh water into the bag as well to help with this.

You can also pour the milk through a second time, again its like squeezing milk from coconut pulp, the more you work it, the more comes out of the pulp.

Like anything that has vitality or prana in it, it has a visual aura, a luminosity.

Once you’ve done this to your satisfaction, then you are ready to pour the milk back into the blender without the pulp now, and add the dates (pitted), vanilla and salt.

About the dates, if you remember to do it, soaked for 10-20 minutes beforehand is better, if dry however, they soak themselves in the milk after blending and dissolve away leaving only skin that falls to the bottom.

After blending, pour into a glass container for keeping 3+ days in the refrigerator. Make an offering to your kitchen altar or deity and ask for it’s blessing. Shake before consuming, and add more sweetener to taste. I added a touch of maple syrup to this batch.

The Goddess Saraswati joined and gave me knowledge of the essence of this milk. Like this milk, she is both sweet and beautiful.

 

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Asleep, waking up, fully awake and sweet potato ‘noodles’

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

 

 

 

Note: because this recipe is raw, it can go either way – towards being a savory ‘noodle’ dish, or a savory salad.

Here are the ingredients you will need:

4 large sweet potatoes (or yams) or several smaller ones – peeled and ‘spiralized’
2/3 to 1 cup fresh chopped cilantro
1 head of shredded cabbage (optional)
2 Tbs Lemon juice – add the lemon directly to the sweet potatoes as you cut them it will soften them and keep them fresh.
¼ cup Nama Shoyu soy sauce
3 Tbs miso paste or raw tahini
¼ cup sesame oil

Combine the miso, oil and soy sauce, and then pour over the potato (and cabbage if used) and mix well. If you use tahini you may need to add additional lemon or water to keep it liquid. I used miso paste instead of the raw tahini, it is just a matter of what you prefer, both are good. More images and reflections below.

A spiralizer is easier that this method… and they look more like noodles if you have one…
I always ask for help in my food journey, and pray for the knowledge and determination to keep myself healthy. Remember to eat vegetables and fruits of different colors everyday for your health! Marinate for 1-2 hours. Serves 8 people. And voila. Take a moment to lay it at the feet of your kitchen god.

Sometime I wonder about how it is that I spent so much of my life asleep, and how then I eventually ‘woke up’. The great poet Rumi wrote a poem on this topic…

This is how a human being can change:

There’s a worm addicted to eating grape leaves.

Suddenly he wakes up, call it grace, whatever, something wakes him, and he is no longer a worm. He’s the entire vineyard, and the orchard too, the fruit, the trunks, a growing wisdom and joy that doesn’t need to devour.

So I can remember when I was that worm. I remember when I just ate the grape leaves, no questions asked. Or to use another analogy; I realize now that I have been in a grand play, but not aware that I could have any role in it; I could be actor, actress, director, the lighting, or audience to name a few. I was not conscious of being ‘an actor’ in my life at all, instead just delivering my part as it was already written – without knowing I could interpret the part or have a viewpoint about it. Pretty unconscious I would say. No judgment, I was just asleep. Asleep as in believing the thoughts in my mind were true, instead of something that happens automatically with language. Asleep as in being the feelings I had; getting happy, sad, angry, and not noticing that those feelings are not ‘me’, they are just a passing state that comes and goes. It was as I was awakening that I became aware of the trap I was in. Trapped in a limited view of reality that went no farther than myself. In hindsight, now that I have woken up for the moment anyway I can say – those thoughts and feelings were not and are not reality. And what a relief it is to know that!

By some grace, I began to awaken to something larger and so much greater than my own self. It was because of the many moments of what I call ‘convergence’ that happened in my life and the extra-ordinariness those moments, calling and raising my attention through that fog of sleep that I began to see the whole drama, with myself in it. I began to be the audience. It was then I began to wake up – and notice that there were miracles happening in my life, extraordinary miracles. Waking up was not easy either – the dream state did not quickly or completely clear up. But it did. Slowly over time, and now I can look back and see how it happened. And still, even after all these years I notice that I am still asleep to something. I am now certain there have been lives before this one, before ‘me’, and yet the memories of those lives are still mostly invisible. So I walk through this life as ‘myself’, yet who am I really? Who was I before, and why now this body, why this life? And most of all, why is that person, who is me, behaving like that?

And by the same token, why should anything else be the way it is? And is it (reality) the way it is because we are still asleep? Are we waking up yet? Do oceans and rivers rise and holy temples flood because so many of us are just doing what we do with no thought or witness to our role in this extraordinary drama that is unfolding before our eyes?

This is when I notice the ‘sleepiness’ I still carry around. The state of being fully awake is not solidly present. I expect that when I finally get truly devoted to my practice I will come to be fully awake, stay awake, and see these things more clearly.

And, what does food have to do with all of this? I believe a compassionate diet helps us wake up. I will say I am often shocked when I see how so many people eat foods that will make them ill, when they eat so much the body will become ill from overload, and then after when so much is thrown away. Many of us in the West have no true experience of hunger. Many of us have never gone without. Fasting as an act of devotion can awaken our compassion for others. Muslims fast during the Month of Ramadan simply to know what hunger is, so that they can maintain their compassion for what it means to be human and suffer hunger. It is a required devotion to feed the poor during these days of fasting. When one understands what this hunger is, whether by choice or circumstance, I believe it becomes an act of non-compassion to overeat or waste food.

I think it was in the film ‘Vegducated’ I saw the footage of a large fishing boat just spewing out carcasses of fish that were caught and killed by accident, that were not even wanted for food. To me this wasting of life and food in the face of so much hunger is utterly devoid of compassion. Eating plant-based foods on the other hand is an act of compassion. For every vegetarian and vegan person out there, there are many lives saved, much violence averted and the possibility of radiant health and compassion is present. So eat your plants at every meal! These sweet potato noodles is another recipe that made me happy. It was so good, and literally made the inside of my belly feel good. I was awake for that one!

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The Dharma LOAY (life of a yogi) carrot salad and on being resourceful

Carrots, lemon, honey, raisins, olive oil.

Carrots with grater, lemon, honey, raisins, olive oil.

What I love about this recipe is the ease and simplicity of it. Soak the raisins in a little water while prepping everything else, grate the carrots, mix the honey lemon and oil together for dressing, drain water off raisins, put all in bowl and mix!

I like to make it if I have to travel as it travels well – even if just into the office for a day, and it is also one of the recipes that can stand up to being made in advance. Based on several at homes trials, it appears to me that grated carrots seem to sustain their vitality for about 8 hours, so while it is always best to eat as soon as your food is ready, if you have to prepare in advance you can be pretty sure that you will still get the benefits of eating raw.

What I also love about this salad is that it costs about $2 to make a serving for 2-4 people. Now I base that number on having easily available organic produce, I buy most of mine at Trader Joe’s, especially for juicing. Their carrots are about 89 cents for a 1lb. pkg. and I use about half a pound. Once you have invested in the bottle of olive oil and honey the small amount you use for this is minimal, (maybe 50 cents worth) and the lemon is probably the most costly. Organic from TJ’s can be as high as 50-75 cents each depending on the size and how many in the bag. Raisins are also costly but the recipe does not call for a lot. From a $3.00 bag of organic Thompson raisins  I use probably 1/10th of the bag. So for those of you who are precise about these matters; .45 for carrots, .50 for oil and honey, .75 for a large lemon, and .30 for the raisins. Children also usually like this salad as it is sweet and crunchy, so now you have a ‘snack’ for kids that costs only a little more than your time. As far as time to prepare, I can have this one done in about 8 minutes, with 1-2 minute2 to get everything out, 3 minutes to grate the carrots, 1-2 to mix everything and 1 to wash up and put things away.

Honey, lemon, olive oil

Mix together honey, lemon, olive oil

Can you tell I am big on resourcefulness? Recently I also took an accounting for what/how we eat, and how we shop for clothes and how thoroughly we recycle or not. Mostly we buy clothes from the thrift store which is a good way to ‘recycle’. To put this in context for a moment – if our clothes are being made any where near a sweat shop – due diligence is called for to check and see what that company practices as far as protecting their workers, paying a living wage, and not using children in the shops. If I am not wrong there is an app out that will check whether a company uses child labor or not, I believe you scan the tag with the smart phone and it will let you know whether children are used to make the product. I believe it is the same one that defines certain pay rates as ‘slave labor’, and will also let you know about that.

Add raisins and salad dressing to grated carrots and mix. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before eating.

Add raisins and salad dressing to grated carrots and mix. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before eating.

With regards to reusing, if you find a good thrift shop near you – you can reuse a huge amount of the clothes to be found there, at a fraction of the price. Our society and culture has trained us well to desire name brand clothing in season.  As yogi’s I believe we are responsible for every choice we make; are we wearing leather shoes or coats and sleeping under down comforters? And when we chose not to do so any longer – did we make sure to give our old shoes and blankets away to Goodwill? Are we recycling 80-100% percent of our plastics, metals, glass, cardboards, papers and compostable foods? Are we using our goods until there is no more use in them or freecycling them? Are we being well trained consumers – buying the latest new thing just because we can or buying only what we truly need? Do we have more than several pairs of jeans in the closet? Are we eating a plant based diet? Do we spend money just because we have it? Could we change our ways and give the money to someone who needs it? That for me is the definition of resourcefulness, and it is also compassionate. Like gorging ourselves on a buffet, overconsumption is not responsible to ourselves or to the community. I’d probably get a C+ or B- if graded on these things, so I am still working on it.

Saraswati, Goddess of knowledge, blessing the carrot salad so that I may know what my body needs for health.

Saraswati, Goddess of knowledge, blessing the carrot salad so that I may know what my body needs for health.

 

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