“Say Yes to the Dress”

Bride dressing for wedding

Okay… I was on vacation and I confess that I indulged in some shows that I’d normally surf through.  I watched a bit of “Say Yes to the Dress.”  This is a program that celebrates the ritual of women gathering to present the betrothed in the most alluring garb on her special day.

Initially, I wanted to say “No to the Show,” because it seemed so vapid and self-indulgent, but my mind went to the origins of the wedding ceremony itself.  Few know that the modern wedding ceremony, white dress, altar and all, had its origins in pagan days.  As a tribute to the gods, a young virgin girl was dressed in white, given by her family in gratitude, placed on the altar and sacrificed.  They had the good sense to drug the poor girl.  Today the bride can be plied with alcohol or Xanax!

 In the Christian interpretation, both bride and groom are sacrificing individuality to oneness, a cleaving to each other.  They are redefining themselves as the foundation of a new family.  One source says that the bride represents the human soul and the groom represents the Holy Spirit.  When they join, the circle is complete and human consciousness become one with the Creator.

In our culture, the notion of sacrifice is dwindling on many fronts, not only in marriage. People seem to be looking to get more than give.  When we have two people in a grab-fest it’s hard to create an atmosphere of gratitude and abundance.  Instead, there is frustration and disappointment.  We’re missing something if the focus is the dress, the party, and no deeper meaning to the union. The solution seems commitment to creating rather than consuming…giving rather than taking.

We are entitled to nothing.  (Shocking to write that and probably to read it.)  We have the consequences of what we have or haven’t created and there is no one else to blame.  In marriage and any relationship, we have a canvass upon which to project loving intentions.  No one is asking for a literal “death” on the altar, but the individual egos have to give way to a larger concept of joining.

Let’s say “Yes” to that!

With love, Rosanne Bostonian

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The Tangerine Tree

Tangerine Tree

Hurricane Irma did its dirty work down in Florida.  Many lost much, but by human standards, I was a lucky one.  My home is intact and there is no visible damage, except…

When I first had my Florida home built in the middle of a pasture, there were two friendly trees that caught my eye.  I say “friendly” because a large oak and a tangerine tree were in each other’s embrace near where I planned to build the home.

My guess is that many years ago a bird or another creature had sat in the branches of the oak and released a seed.  That seed grew (a little too close) into the tangerine tree.

In some ways the two trees competed for nourishment and light.  Although they were closely situated, there was clearly enough to see them through their many years of companionship. When my house was finally built, I remember driving many miles from NJ excited to see the finished product.  When I came around the bend, it was late afternoon and the Sun was reflecting off of thousands of tangerines with a golden welcome.  It was a magical moment.

The tangerine tree took a serious beating in Hurricane Irma.  Its bark is stripped and its branches are bare.  There is one branch with some green leaves.  My groundsman Bill wants to save the tree, but its future seems very doubtful.  The skeletal figure stands next to its oak companion of many years and, to tell the truth, I was appalled and saddened.

Then I remembered that Nature was the vehicle by which that creature dropped the tangerine seed decades ago. Now Nature has taken back Her gift, asserting the ancient rhythms of the pasture.  I’m left with the memory of its golden welcome over 20 years ago.

If we replace the grief of loss with “having had the privilege,” maybe the words “thank you” will roll off the tongue more easily.  Gratitude is incompatible with arrogance and entitlement. Wouldn’t that be a breath of fresh air (tinted with tangerine blossoms)!

With love, Rosanne Bostonian

The Speed of Things

crowd of people on shopping street

it’s not your imagination that everything feels faster.  In a mad rush to catch up, we aren’t so mindful and bad things can happen.  Here is a list of some bad things:

  1. We don’t really listen to each other, so misunderstand and ruin trust.

  2. We forget to be kind because it isn’t time efficient.

  3. We blow past opportunities that are invisible at warp speed.

  4. We are always focused on the “next thing.”

The human brain is miraculous, but it can only focus on one thing at a time.  It can switch back and forth between various things quickly, giving the impression that it’s multi-tasking.  The truth is it’s checking out, then back in, and missing pieces along the way.

Slowing down is healthy.  Slowing down is necessary.  The process of mindfully slowing down is an attunement because the Natural Rhythms are only felt when invited in.

If we have a chance to slow down during the holidays, rather than find one more bargain, the people around us will notice and will appreciate it.

I was at the food store in the “Express Line.”  There were lots of people in a hurry and the woman behind me was huffing because people ahead of us had more than the 12 allotted items.  I had felt a little agitated over it too.  I said “This is the Distress Line.”  She and I laughed and couldn’t stop.  It was a moment of observing ourselves in our human form and finding humor.  No speed, no greed… just a little need.

I wish you a Holiday of Peace… Peace at your own pace.

With love, Rosanne Bostonian

Presence, Not Presents!

holiday celebration

As the holiday season gets into full swing, what is more valuable is “presence,” not presents!

Many of us live like a speedboat skimming across the surface of a lake, unaware that life is unfolding in the depths of that lake.  The demands of life in 2017-2018 accelerate and distract our minds.  We have to slow down and be fully present to derive fulfillment.  The alternative is a list of to-dos that never get to-done!

Wherever you are, be there.  Don’t be a skimmer, a shopper, a material being that, when all is said and done, and the wrapping paper has been torn open and revealed the treasures within, feels duped and disappointed.

Ceremonial occasions are important…the gathering of “tribes” in our lives is part of tradition.  Don’t mistake the ceremonial for the authentic and try to bring as much authentic to the ceremonial as you can.

 Christ’s birth symbolizes a transition in consciousness, another step in the evolution of humankind.  We can celebrate that by being conscious rather than by devolving!

May you invite into your life the blessings of abundance, both material and invisible!

With love,  Rosanne Bostonian

9 things you didn’t know about Myrrh essential oil

myrrh

There was a time when Myrrh may have been more precious than gold. People have sought after this precious botanical since biblical times for its use as a perfume, incense, spice, and to beautify skin. A gift fit for royalty, travelers carried myrrh across desert and sea to be delivered to kings and queens of old.
Today, people still revere Myrrh essential oil for its rich, earthy aroma and skin-benefiting properties. Myrrh oil is also often used during yoga, meditation, and religious practices to promote feelings of spirituality. There’s plenty “myrrh” to know about Myrrh oil uses and the benefits of Myrrh oil. Become a Myrrh master with these nine fun facts and usage tips.

1.  Origins
Myrrh was extremely valuable in the Middle East and Mediterranean. Today, it’s popular all over the world.

2.  Name
The word “myrrh” comes from the Arabic word “murr,” meaning bitter, because of its sharp taste. In other words, you wouldn’t want to add this oil to your morning smoothie.

3.  Plant
Myrrh essential oil is steam distilled from the red-brown resin of the Commiphora myrrha tree, identifiable by its knotted trunk and white flowers.

4.  Aroma
Its earthy, sweet, and slightly spicy aroma can help promote feelings of spirituality during mindfulness practices like meditation and yoga.

5.  Bath time
In need of a little TLC? A few drops of Myrrh in a warm bath can create a luxurious, spa-like atmosphere. Combine it with Lavender or Lemon, sit back, and breathe in a warm, uplifting aroma.

6.  Hair care
Shampooing your hair might leave it squeaky clean, but it also removes important oils that help hair stay strong. Add a couple drops of Myrrh essential oil to your shampoo to help keep your hair and scalp hydrated.

7.  Skin care
Myrrh is a common ingredient in luxury beauty products, especially products that go on the skin. Just a couple drops of Myrrh essential oil can make even drugstore products feel high-end.

8.  Home and family
There’s nothing like a home filled with a relaxing and uplifting scent after a long day. Diffuse Myrrh essential oil in the evening as you and your loved ones unwind together.

9. Holiday Cheer
Myrrh has long been seen as a symbol of sharing during the holiday season. Fill your home with the essence of the holidays by diffusing Myrrh with Frankincense and Orange.

Happy holidays!

Actively Listening to Yourself

Active listening

More than ever, we are pulled into the area outside of our skin with high levels of stimulation and distraction.  Bombarded with seductive and interesting energy, the more subtle, internal voices are drowned out.

The complex biological being upon which our heads sit has a voice.  Its messages are drowned out by the “louder” stimuli that bombard our eyes, ears, taste buds and noses.

Our body connection, our sense of material being, connects us to every other form.  The fact that molecules came together to form you and me underscores the fact that the very same molecules form everything else.  To ignore our bodies, our inner experience, or to minimize its importance, is to miss the sense of unity of all forms.

So how do we actively listen?  The brain can only process one message at a time.  We can move rapidly among messages, but each impulse is discrete.  This is why slowing down, breathing and some of the currently touted relaxation methods make sense.  When we slow down, we’re making space to listen to ourselves one internal stimulus at a time. Quieting the mind and its mischief is a big part of hearing the body and making friends with yourself.

What does it feel like to occupy your body?  What is it asking for? What is it trying to communicate? When we’re able to have this empathic connection with ourselves, it opens the door for profoundly different relationships with others.

With love,

Rosanne

R.I.P. – Mickey Mantis

Praying Mantis

If you’ve been following my blogs you know that I was visited by a Praying Mantis that I named “Mickey.” (I’ve always been a Yankee fan and always will be!)  Seeking advice from my local Petco, I created a Mantis Spa, complete with vegetation and live prey.  Alas, Nature rules the day despite a human’s best intentions.
Mickey’s job was to find a safe spot to deposit her egg case.  She did so, producing a “whipped cream” mound that hardened into a protective structure about two days after she arrived.

Several days after producing the egg case, I found her in the vegetation having completed her life cycle.  I’m amazed at how moved I was.  I had been fascinated, watching her small triangular head follow my movements, and sparring with her through the glass of the terrarium. The whole episode was a humbling glimpse into the efficiency of Nature, the endless cycle of Life.

So now there is the egg case.  Mantises produce from 50 to 200 babies… I’m watching to see the culmination of the story, not sure if the egg case is still viable. Mickey received a proper burial… Am I too sentimental? (Smiling)

Probably due to our incredibly advanced brains, we see ourselves as separate from the Natural Order.  It’s no accident that we are refreshed and energized by walks in the woods and strolls on the beach. The rhythms of Nature guide every form of life, including humans.  When the rules are violated, such as genetic alteration of foods, excessive use of antibiotics and use of artificial household products, we suffer.

Quietly, inexorably, the rules of Nature prevail whether we are aware of them or not.  My choice is to be more aware… How about you?

With love,
Rosanne Bostonian