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On oleation and self-love...

The Sanskrit word sneha means oil, and it also means love. It is said that oil is to the body, as love is to the soul. Abhyanga, oil massage, is a invaluable practice for nourishing the body and calming the mind. This is a practice that can incorporated into your morning routine, and leave you gleaming throughout the day.  It is said that abhyanga imparts strength to the body, stimulates healthy circulation, gives sound sleep, and bestows youthfulness.  Incorporating abhyanga into your morning ritual is simple.  Create about 15 minutes for yourself before your morning shower. Heat half a cup of oil until it is pleasantly warm. You should be able to place your finger in the oil without any discomfort. Spread a towel over the floor that will absorb any dripping...

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Rasa, the essence of life

How can we comprehend an herb in its fullness? Is through isolating each individual compound present in the plant? Is it being in its living presence, as it dances with the wind, the sun glinting off its leaves?   Ayurveda has gifted us with a map for this vast territory.   Rasa can mean essence, juice, or taste. The taste of an herb has a crucial medicinal effect, more heartfelt to the body than invisible compounds. When we taste an herb, we are partaking of its essential being. In our pharmaceuticalization of herbal medicine, we have packed our plants in capsules and tried to steal them down into the digestive tract unnoticed by the tongue. In doing so, we are...

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