I LOVE My Womb (Photo Challenge): Day 1 – Favourite African Goddess

Today’s photo challenge was to post a photo of my favorite African Goddess. Yemaya is the African Orisha Goddess (ruler of the ocean, deep seas, and lakes), that I connect with the most. I don’t know everything about her, AND every time the opportunity for learning more about African Orishas come up, I’m always drawn to Yemaya’s energy.

I believe I connect with Yemaya, off top, because of her association with water. It took a long time for me to get used to water. I mean, I like to drink it and bathe in it, but large masses of water sort of freak me out. That feeling is because, I am not the best swimmer.

I have the worst childhood memories of me vs large bodies of water. For instance, this one time when I was on a field trip (age 5 or 6) at the local YMCA, and instead of the swim instructor LOVINGLY coaching me through my fears of being in the swimming pool (no floaties at all), this fool drops me in the deep part of the pool. You know that saying, “sink or swim”? Well, I sunk. I didn’t put up a fight to even try to swim. I literally gave in to the water.

Another time, (around the age of 7 to 9), I was at the beach with a family friend. The day was beautiful, partly sunny, and full of all the sandcastles I could make, because, I WAS NOT GOING NEAR THE OCEAN. Playing along the shore, I also watched how other kids, and just people in general, were fearlessly enjoying the ocean, I mean all the way up to their waists. And to me, that was unheard of, because once again, I WAS NOT GOING NEAR THE OCEAN.

Bravery, started to settle in, because I wanted to experience the same joy THOSE people were feeling in the ocean. I put my  little blue pail aside, and began to walk towards the shoreline. Water hitting right at my toes, I went in a little further. Water hitting right at my ankles, I went in a little bit more. Water hitting right at my knees, and I’m starting to feel myself a lil’ bit… so much, that I turned my back to the ocean and stepped in further, and now the water is hitting right at the middle of my thighs.

I turned around to look at everyone playing in the ocean, who is now behind me, and fear automatically sets in. The biggest wave I’ve ever seen is rising high, and it looks like it’s about to swallow me. I try to run, but as the tide is moving me back and forth, my feet loses it’s grip because guess what? I’m standing on a sand bar!

So when I come back to consciousness on the shore, all I can remember is a big ass wave swallowing me, taking me deep into the ocean, and throwing me back on the shore. Talk about NEVER EVER wanting to get near an ocean again, that was me!

So now, being grown and conquering some fears associated with water, I’m not so afraid.

I said all of that to say, my experiences with water has played a major role in my life, by cleansing (physical and spiritual) and, ritual healing and offering. The representation of Yemaya and water, could have been a mini rites of passage for my role as the person I am today, a mother, a nurturer, empathic, a healer, etc…

For me, I connect with Yemaya because of her associations with the number 7, spirituality, moonstone, clear quartz, turquoise, sandalwood, and cowrie shells (all of my favorite things). And although, I may have had a traumatic experience with what Yemaya is the ruler of, being in tune with her energy gives me comfort, healing, and understanding to the wombman I am, and becoming.

She is water, she is magic, she is healing, she is Mama Watta!

My intention for the remainder of the #ILOVEMYWOMB photo challenge is to bring Yemaya into my morning meditations.

To get in on this awe-inspiring and fun journey of womb healing and awareness, follow along and participate each day for the next 30 days, of the #ILOVEMYWOMBPHOTOCHALLENGE (@ILOVEMYWOMB).

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The Buddha Spotlight: Afriye Michelle

Namaste y’all!

The Buddha Spotlight introduces you to Astrologer, Poet, Vlogger, & Creator, Afriye Michelle!

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Goddess Mena Love:  Who is Afriye Michelle?

Afriye Michelle:  Afriye Michelle is a beautiful soul who incarnated into the body of a black woman. I am ever evolving, and seeking ways to learn as much as I can, live as much as I can, laugh as much as I can, LOVE as much as I can, and savor every beautiful moment while I am here on this physical plane of existence.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What was the turning point for you that got you started on your existing spiritual journey?

Afriye:  After my grandfather passed away, I started to question everything. It was such a traumatic experience for me because I watched him battle lung cancer in the hospital and then eventually at a hospice center where I arrived about 15 minutes after his transition. It was hard. Before then, I had studied metaphysics a little, but AFTER THEN I wanted MORE. I prayed and I asked God to show me who He/She/It was. I said “I don’t want to know who other people tell me you are, I want you to show me who you are personally.” And the rest was magic lol.

 

Goddess Mena Love: What is LOVE to you?

Afriye:  A friend of mine once said, “Love is an infinite mathematical equation that must be worked daily.” I think the operative word is work. Love is a commitment to caring about a person enough to take action towards maintaining their well being and growth, spiritually, physically and otherwise. Love is a force. Love is the gas in the vehicle of life. There are many adjectives and metaphors and similes I could use but something else about Love is that it still is very much a mystery, and THAT is what keeps people drawn to it, interested in it, and on a lifelong quest to keep experiencing it in its many forms.

 

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Goddess Mena Love:  What are ways you show LOVE to yourself?

Afriye:  I am constantly LOOKING for ways to love on myself more. I’ve recently started this mantra/way of thinking that is “Do not make fear based decisions.” So that’s a way. I do little things that make ME feel good like get my nails done lol. I fill my mind with positivity. Positive words, books, and music. I SET BOUNDARIES and say “No” when I need to. I demand respect from people. I only maintain relationships that honor me. I recognize my need to be more gentle with myself. I say kind words to myself. I forgive myself when I make mistakes.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s your meditation destination?

Afriye:  Still working on the quieting my thoughts part. I’ve read to just let your thoughts happen and then release them. But I still get stuck on them often. I want to be able to quiet my mind for 2 minutes, then 5, then 10, then eventually 30!

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Finish this statement. Meditation gives me access to…..

Afriye:  ANSWERS! I always find answers when I meditate…especially when I add in chanting. And peace. And the understanding that everything is happening for my good. *smile*

 

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Goddess Mena Love:  Explain your deep connection with Astrology? What stands out to you the most about learning  Astrology?

Afriye:  The most important GIFT that learning Astrology has given me is ACCEPTANCE. Especially self acceptance. Through acceptance I have learned how to love myself more deeply. I’ve also been learned to understand that for everything there is a time. There is a time for perceived loss and a time for gains. There is a time to learn lessons, a time make more money, to take a vacation. The Universe is so intelligent and so perfect. Nothing is by chance. Everything is divinely timed. Now when it comes to free will, all that means is when you operate from your higher self you are able to call things forth that serve you higher good. You are able to be more of a creator because you are in tune with the will of your higher self. You subconsciously are working with the energy you’ve been predisposed to have to produce your highest good.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Any advice for people just awakening on this beautiful path, we call LIFE?

Afriye:  Learn to honor yourself. Trust that even during challenging times you are still divine and everything is happening as it should be. Be gentle with yourself. If there comes a time where people don’t understand or accept your journey, that is the time you need to love and accept yourself more. Always affirm yourself and find that quiet place within yourself, your core, and always operate from that place.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s your favorite song/movie/book?

Afriye:  I love music so much that’s it impossible to choose one. But my favorite song at the moment is “Beautiful Skin” by Goodie Mob.

My favorite movie is Love Jones. Favorite book at the moment is The Voice of Knowledge by Don Miguel Ruiz.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s in your playlist?

 

Afriye:  My playlist that I’ve been listening to lately is called I titled ‘Wave’. It has artists like The Wknd, Iman Omari, Sza, James Blake. I’m not sure of the genre but I like the ethereal beats and electronic feel with a pinch of soul/r&b. It gives me so much LIFE! I also have been bumpin a playlist called ‘I’m the shit’ lol. And it has Brown Skin lady by Black Star, Beautiful Skin by Goodie Mob, Whatever you want by Tony Toni Tone, Soul Sista by Bilal. Just songs that affirm who I am as a woman, as a black woman, and as the divine creatress that I am hunny! Yaaaaaas! lol

 

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Goddess Mena Love:  What’s the biggest life lesson you’ve learned thus far?

Afriye:  TRUST MY INTUITION. Plain and simple and real.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  When you’re not at home, how do you create peace for yourself?

Afriye:  I tap into my core being and I focus on how I want my day to go. If I am in a situation that I am not the happiest in, I get quiet then create how I want to rest of the evening to go. In the past if I was invited to a party that I wasn’t enjoying I would focus all of my energy and say “There will be at least one person here who I will connect with.” And it ALWAYS would happen. I’m just imagine what peace would look like, feel like, sound like, and I create it. I create the best possible outcome.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Any advice for women beginning to discover their goddess power?

Afriye:  Your Queendom is going to be different from every other queen’s Queendom. Don’t compare yourself. Create what you want YOUR life to look like. Set boundaries for yourself. Start creating an air around you the commands respect and it will be given. Imagine how you want to be treated and it shall be so! If there be any negativity to seep through in your life, have courage enough to address it and handle it how YOU see fit. YOU are the creator! Create the life you want. You don’t need approval from anyone. Forget the rules, what everyone else says and create what YOU want.

 

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Goddess Mena Love:  Share any experience that stands out significantly about the role and impact The Law of Attraction has in your life?

Afriye:  Even before I knew what the Law of Attraction was I was using it. Every job or opportunity that I’ve had since discovering the Law of Attraction has been the result of what I mentally focused on and put out into the Universe. Think it, Speak it, Write it!

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What miracles have you manifested as a result of The Law of Attraction?

Afriye:  My Car!!! MONEY when I NEED it most. Both are miracles lol. I had to keep it real. Money is important and I always have it when I need it most.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Who or what inspires you? Why?

Afriye:  OPRAH!! I love that she is very spiritual and grounded and also has attained material success. I know that money is good, lack is wack and it’s wack to be spiritual and broke!

 

Goddess Mena Love:  In 2015, what would you like to create?

Afriye:  Love. I’m like any other woman. I want to be in love. I am creating the perfect relationship FOR ME. And I’m also creating a means to generate income on my own terms. Everyday I’m thinking of ways to have multiple streams of income via entrepreneurship.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  I LOVE your mind! Can you please share a poem with my readers?

Afriye:  Sure! Here is a sort poem I wrote in honor of the Sun and the Spring Equinox.

“Rays that warm, but do not burn…things once dark now glow. It is the food for life itself, helping all things grow. It melts the snow on barren land, a push to cycle on. Give thanks and salutations, old blues become undone.”

 

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Goddess Mena Love:  What’s your favorite quote?

Afriye:  ONE of my favorite quotes is by Queen Toni Morrison. “If you wanna fly, you got to give up the shit that weighs you down.”

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Finish this statement. My life is so cool….

Afriye:  Because I know exactly who I am and who I am not. My life is so cool because I have the knowledge and understanding to create my reality. My life is so cool and I’m looking forward to this beautiful journey. It’s going to get better from here! PEACE!

 

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The Buddha Spotlight: Author of Mama Glow – Latham Thomas

Namaste y’all!

The Buddha Spotlight introduces you to Latham Thomas

 

Goddess Mena Love: Do you have any advice for women trying to conceive naturally?

Latham Thomas:  Stop “trying” and start being. Now what do I mean by that- procreation, like any other natural process does not require thinking, planning or strategizing- it’s really not about designing your sex life around when you are ovulating, it’s about practicing a lot with your partner, having a lot of good sex on a regular basis as a training ground to boost your fertility. With conception- its less about control and more about surrender, letting go, and being receptive, which happens when you relax and forget about the outcome, and focus on being in the moment. Embody the sexiness and have fun!

 

Goddess Mena Love:  How important is meditation while pregnant?

Latham:  I believe you should implement practices that work for you. Some people don’t enjoy meditation- because they aren’t ready for it. So they have to find a way to transcend that they enjoy. There are lots of benefits to meditating while pregnant- including increased oxygen flow to baby.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  How important is to change your diet before & during pregnancy?

Latham:  What you eat will become the building blocks of your future child. Would you rather build a castle of sand or of stone? Preconception detoxification- which I outline in the pre-pregnancy section of the book, and a healthy plant based diet of whole foods with a focus on what I’ve termed “glow foods” for optimal wellness. Find recipes on www.MamaGlow.com.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Tell me about your doula experience.  What inspired you to become a doula?

Latham:  Becoming a doula seemed like a natural progression to my work. I was serving pregnant women in my prenatal yoga classes, many of them found that my soothing energy and sense of calm was just what they wanted when they went into labor. I applied for a fellowship and was trained as a doula with the Hudson Perinatal Consortium. My experience as a doula has influenced every aspect of my life, including my parenting. A lot of the principals echo teachings from yoga. I have learned to trust the process, go with the flow, watch and wait, listen, take a back seat and support each of these lessons are addressed in my book as well.

 

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Any advice for women who would like to become a doula?

Latham:  Listen to the calling to serve. Find a community.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned on your path of awakening?

Latham:  The birth of my son was the biggest lesson.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s music are you listening to, right now? What’s in your playlist?

Latham:  I listen to everything- it depends on my mood. Lots of classic soul. I love Baptize by RKCB.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What advice do you have for women going through depression (i.e. post partum depression) without a healthy team of support?

Latham:  It’s important to build a sister circle of support around you especially if you have a history of depression prior to pregnancy. See http://mamaglow.com/get-help-depression-pregnancy-alone/

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What is your favorite quote?

Latham:  Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know. ~Pema Chodron

 

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What are some tips for manifesting dreams into reality?

Latham:  I don’t use the word “manifest” all things are born from the womb- from the feminine principal. So I use language that reflects our power in being creatrixes. Wombifesting– is about creating a vacuum and drawing what you want to yourself rather than chasing it down. Dreams are reality waiting to happen if you align your beliefs, actions then they are born. Focus on one thing and nurture it- where you focus your energy fruit is born.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  How important is it to speak affirmations to yourself?

Latham:  It’s very important to speak blessings on yourself. But if you don’t believe what you are saying it doesn’t work. Words are powerful and can heal.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s your meditation destination?

Latham:  I don’t go someplace in my mind- I allow the sensations moving through me to take the driver’s seat.

 

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Are you a vegan or vegetarian? How important is it to change your diet while living a spiritual life?

Latham:  I eat a vegan diet and it works for me. I’ve been vegan since I was 14. I believe assessing your diet is always a positive thing. Your diet may need to change periodically- certainly with the seasons for instance. The more you eat high vibrational whole foods- the better you feel. Plants specifically have information that programs our cells.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What’s your favorite healthy comfort food?

Latham:  Popcorn cooked in coconut oil and topped with truffle salt.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  What is your favorite healing plant?

Latham:  Yarrow and Raspberry leaf.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  When you are not at home, how do you create peace for yourself?

Latham:  I’m a Taurus so I always have to feel grounded wherever I am. I bring objects that make me feel cozy while traveling. But otherwise when I close my eyes and breathe I make space for myself.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  No one speaks too much about consciously dating. What are your views on dating or being in a relationship with a mate that may not fully understand the path you’re on?

Latham:  I date who I feel a magnetic affinity toward. Who inspires me and who I inspire. I don’t expect him to understand my path- it’s for me to unfold. All I expect is for him to respect what I am doing, and where I am headed and just support me along the journey. If you focus on just being yourself and leading by example- the best in you will influence your partner and vice versa.

 

Goddess Mena Love:  Any advice for people who are just starting out on this path of awakening?

Latham:  Listen to the whispers within.

 

 

 

Latham Thomas is a maternity lifestyle maven, women’s wellness & birth coach, on the vanguard of transforming the maternal & women’s wellness movement. A graduate of Columbia University & The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Latham is the founder of Mama Glow  a holistic lifestyle hub for women to explore optimal wellbeing. Her practice provides support to pre/postnatal women along their journey to motherhood offering culinary and nutritional services, yoga, and birth coaching services. She is co-founder of the Mama Glow Film Festival- a platform for maternal advocacy through film and philanthropy which launched in 2011 with Christy Turlington-Burns and Selita Ebanks. Latham recently launched the Mama Glow Salon Series– a platform for birthing conversations around cocktails, panels, and discussions. Latham launched the Mama Glow Salon Series in 2012 hosting the east coast premiere of Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein’s film More Business of Being Born. Bridging the gap between optimal wellness, spiritual growth, and radical self-care Latham Thomas is emerging as the go-to-guru for modern holistic lifestyle for women during pregnancy and beyond!
Latham is a recurring guest on the Style Network hit show Tia and Tamera, where she has served as Tamera’s doula. A sought after nutrition and lifestyle expert, her television appearances include The Dr. Oz Show, Fox News LIVE, CBS News, ABC Eyewitness News, NBC-LXTV, The Couch, TODAY Show Australia, and Inside Edition. She has been featured in the London Times Sunday Styles Magazine, Du Jour, Fit Pregnancy, Style Network online, GQ British, New York Daily News, New York Post, Time Out New York, Vogue.com, Whole Living, Essence Magazine, the cover of Experience Life Magazine, Global Grind, and VegNews Magazine, Cosmopolitan. She is the host of the new Scripps network web series- Om on the Go which features fitness interviews with: Venus Williams, Gabrielle Bernstein,  Daphne Oz, Kris Carr, and more. Latham was selected to speak on an esteemed panel at Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Conference at City Center alongside Dr. Dean Ornish, Lucy Danziger and Mark Bertolini.
She lives in New York City with her son Fulano and their turtle Climby. Latham’s first book- “Mama Glow: A Hip Guide to Your Fabulous Abundant Pregnancy”, foreword by Christiane Northrup, M.D. debuted at #1 on Amazon in November of 2012. Latham celebrated the launch of her anticipated book in partnership with Morgan Stanley, Fit Pregnancy and hosted by fashion maven and client Rebecca Minkoff. Mama Glow has been endorsed by esteemed physicians including Frank Lipman, M.D., Mark Hyman, M.D., Neal Barnard, M.D., Richard Ash, M.D. and Lissa Rankin, M.D.  Latham is helping to green the planet one belly at a time.

 

© Copyright 2014 – Goddess Mena Love. All Rights Reserved

The Buddha Spotlight: Educator & Yoga Instructor – HawaH (Pt. 1)

The Buddha Spotlight introduces Hawah

 

HawaH Evolutionary.net YogaNepal.com

HawaH
Evolutionary.net
YogaNepal.com

HawaH is an artist, author, educator, yoga teacher and community organizer. In the year 2000, he co-founded One Common Unity, a non-profit organization that inspires a culture of non-violence through arts, media and music. He has released four books, two musical CD’s, and produced three documentary films. His fourth book, The Poetry Of Yoga, is a 2 volume anthology set featuring the writing of 300 yogi poets from 19 different countries and contain special forewords from Shiva Rea and Sharon Gannon. You can join him on his 2014 international yoga retreat and Buddhist pilgrimage to Nepal by visiting www.YogaNepal.com.

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Tell me about the retreat you’re apart of in Nepal.

(A) HawaH: This retreat in Nepal is a pilgrimage to some of the most breathtaking, beautiful monasteries that you’ll find in all of Asia. The scenery is majestic with the tops of the temples literally scraping the clouds. The pilgrimage will include morning and evening asana and meditation classes with me (approx. 3 to 4 hours a day). More exciting though is we’ll have audiences and direct teachings from Tibetan Buddhist masters, learning about this remarkable branch of Buddhism.  People from all over the world are signing up for the retreat (we only have 6 spots left—-it’s capped at 16 people), and this is my second time teaching yoga in Nepal. My friend Marty Kravitz is the organizer and she’s been living in Nepal for many years, and brings in different teachers every year for yoga “Nepal”.  I’ve personally been to Nepal 3 times in my life and India more than a dozen. My first time in Nepal, I did the Mt. Everest Base camp trek. It was an extraordinary, once in a lifetime journey.

(A) Goddess Mena Love: Is this retreat for all levels?

(B) HawaH: It’s for people that have been practicing some form of asana. You don’t need any Tibetan Buddhism background at all. This is a great introduction to Buddhism and Tibetan Buddhism. The yoga portion does require you to have at least six months of asana practice, so that you’re familiar with basic poses such as, downward dog, up dog, and warrior one. You also have to be in enough physical condition to where you’ll feel comfortable hiking a bit at high altitudes.

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: When is the yoga retreat to Nepal?

(A) HawaH: The retreat is October 27 – November 7, 2014.

HawaH YogaNepal.com

HawaH
YogaNepal.com

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Where can people get more information about this yoga pilgrimage to Nepal?

(A) HawaH: www.YogaNepal.com and on the home page you’ll see my retreat called, “Awakening to Freedom.” If you decide to come, we’ll be picking you up from the airport!

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: What style of yoga do you practice?

(A) HawaH: I was initially trained and certified in Sivananda over 10 years ago, which was my first deep immersion. My second certification is in Jivamukti yoga; in addition to that I’ve been training and studying for close to 15 years now. I’m versatile, the other styles of yoga that I incorporate in my teaching practice are a little bit of ashtanga, iyengar, and vinyasa flow.

 

HawaH Evolutuonary.net

HawaH
Evolutuonary.net

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: What is the best thing about teaching yoga?

(A) HawaH: The best thing about teaching yoga is that I’m never teaching yoga. Yoga, to me, is more of an exchange, it’s interaction with other spiritually inclined, and motivated individuals who desire to penetrate into deeper levels of consciousness and awareness. For me, every time I step into the classroom, I don’t consider myself a teacher. I consider myself a tour guide, guiding you through the natural flow of movements with breath. Some people might view me as a teacher, but I don’t see myself as a teacher. I see myself like a partner in this journey with you.

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: When did you fall in LOVE with yoga?

(A) HawaH: Yoga, in the philosophical and Bhakti sense, has been apart of my life since birth. My mom is a Bhakti yogi, meaning she practices prayer, devotion, and chanting for hours every day. She’s been doing that for as far as I can remember.  When I was growing up as a child, I was frequently taken to India, which exposed me to many of the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita and Vedas. My uncle who resides in India now is a revered Swami. So, from a young age, I was exposed to his teachings, as well. In that sense, I think yoga is just apart of my blood. I think in another sense, yoga, as we know it as asana, is something that I kind of came around to in 1999 or 2000.  These were pivotal years; I was first introduced to asana practice by my friend Terence Ollivierra.

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: What is your daily spiritual practice?

(A) HawaH: I give thanks and gratitude, which is the anchor to everything that provides me joy and happiness. Before every meal, just stopping for a few minutes, closing my eyes and saying a silent wish for an end to suffering. I spend about 1 – 2 hours a day in my meditation and yoga room sometimes just staring at a candle. Working with kids is also another spiritual practice for me, and probably the compass to all of the above.

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Do you have advice for anyone interested in starting a daily meditation routine?

(A) HawaH: Yes! It’s a 5 letter word, “S-T-A-R-T”, start! It’s one of my favorite words in the English language. Sit down and close your eyes for 5 minutes a day. I can give you all these tools, but it’s all meaningless until you just sit down on your mat (or cushion), close your eyes and just see what comes up, watch, and observe. I would start right there! Take time out of your day to make time for yourself, and until you start that process it is all just procrastination. Once you start creating that time for yourself, there’s no wrong way, as long as you’re exploring and curious. A curious mind… is the best mind to have. Also, find teachers that you gravitate toward. Zone in on what kind of practice you’re into: a Bhakti practice, or a sitting meditation practice. Are you more drawn to an asana practice? It’s not all asana, in the West — yoga has been diminished and reduced to these hot yoga classes that are a real small fraction to what different paths people are on to attain a deeper spiritual realization.

HawaH YogaNepal.com

HawaH
YogaNepal.com

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: You mentioned being born in this type of lifestyle, but what was the turning point for you to get started with your existing spiritual way of life?

(A) HawaH:  By getting on the mat everyday my life was transforming, and changing rapidly in a positive way. I was more calm and happy. I found a deeper level of contentment, less stress and anxiety, and found myself becoming more focused and creative. Sometimes I was amazed that I could do the same amount of work that use to take me four hours to, now in one hour! That was really powerful to me! I was witnessing one hour a day of my meditation and seeing results that it actually allowed me to accomplish so much more! All of those things contributed to my commitment to being disciplined in my practice.

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Are you a vegetarian? Have you been a vegetarian all of your life?

(A) HawaH: I personally don’t like labels, but yet I would consider myself extremely close to a vegetarian.  I was brought up in a vegetarian household. The first time I had meat was probably in 6th grade. I remember the first time I ate Ham, and I had no idea what it even really was.  But we were at a weekend camp on a school trip and everyone else was eating it for breakfast in the morning and so I figured I should just give it a try to (partly at that time to fit in)… I started eating meat regularly around that time, not in the house, only at school, because of the lack of variety in school lunches. I continued to eat meat through college, until my junior year. This is a loooong story, but let’s just say that I was face to face with a chicken while in Vietnam, staring at her in the eyes, and I couldn’t bring myself to actually kill it. I had the knife in my hand, in a small hut staying with a family on the Mekong Delta, and they gave me the knife as an honor to kill the animal.  I froze there with them around me and was like, “Oh my God, what do I do!” I was scared, and didn’t kill the chicken that day, and never ate a land animal again ever since. It wasn’t because of what I learned about the environment, and how much better it is for world hunger, not because of exercise or hormones, it was because I couldn’t consciously bring myself to eat something I wasn’t willing to kill with my own two hands.

© Copyright 2014 – Goddess Mena Love. All Rights Reserved

 

The Buddha Spotlight: Educator & Yoga Instructor – HawaH (Pt. 2)

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: How important is it to change your diet while living a more spiritual lifestyle?

(A) HawaH: Honestly, I think it is absolutely essential. When we look back at humanity, a few hundred years from now, there will be analogies of how animals are treated today in the factory farming business as literal slaughter houses… how animals are treated, there’s absolutely no excuse for it.  There’s no excuse to why we should be causing another living creature any pain.

I think that if anyone really wanted to walk the path of yoga, you have to take an honest look at the Yamas and Niyamas. The first Yama is non-violence (ahimsa). I think we can make a lot of excuses for ourselves, but if we’re putting that kind of pain in our bodies then there will be karmic repercussions. If you’re raising chickens in your backyards, killing it with your own two hands, and offering it to the spirits before advancing the conscious circle of life (the story has changed… we can’t be okay with being barbarians anymore), then I think it is more acceptable.  However, if you’re not doing that then I think it is hard for one to have a spiritual practice rooted in the Yamas and Niyamas.

 

Eating meat affects your asana practice, it effects your mental vastitude. So much is “riding” on your diet. Your diet is the fuel you put in your body. When an animal has been through so much pain and suffering, and you put that pain and suffering in your body, that karma is karma that you have to live with, it becomes your new living cells. The pain and suffering of those animals is what replaces dying cells in your body, so your new cells contain that. That is the harsh reality.

 

HawaH Evolutuonary.net YogaNepal.com

HawaH
Evolutuonary.net
YogaNepal.com

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: What is your favorite healthy comfort food?

(A) HawaH: I don’t know if it’s healthy! My comfort food is really good homemade bread, toasted, with olive oil, Himalayan pink sea salt, and nutritional yeast.

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: OK, fun question! If you could pick your favorite song right now, at this moment, what would it be?

(A) HawaH:  Off the top of my head, it would be Purple Rain by Prince. It’s been raining a lot in D.C. lately.

 

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: What’s the biggest life lesson you’ve learned, so far?

(A) HawaH: The life lesson that I am learning and totally incorporating, that’s immediate and really one that I’ve been instilling in my daily life is, not to do too much. The past two years I’ve simplified and I now say no, to so many things that I used to say yes to; all so I can have more personal time. I used to work well over 60 – 70 hours a week, running my body into the ground, and I noticed that I just didn’t have enough time to spend with my family and friends the way I wanted to. With getting older, I’m like,  “yo’, I’m not gonna save the world, you know, that’s just not possible”, but what I can do is a little something here in my community to help make it better than how I found it. I can be satisfied with knowing that I did my best with all that I had, and at the same time not beat myself up and feel guilty because I’m not trying to cure everything, and being ok with not being everywhere, not doing everything.

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Finish this statement. Yoga gives me access to……

(A) HawaH: Yoga gives me access to serve. Seva in Sanskrit means to give back, or selfless service. For example, if you take care of an elderly person, volunteering your time, that’s seva.

HawaH Evolutionary.net YogaNepal.com

HawaH
Evolutionary.net
YogaNepal.com

(Q) Goddess Mena Love: Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out on this path of awakening?

(A) HawaH: I just finished an article about this called, 10 Tips For The Budding Yogi! To pick out the most important points is that yoga is so much more than physical masturbation. Yoga is a journey into the heart, a journey into the spirit, a journey into awakening and freedom. If you’re just practicing to get your ass looking tight and a six pack, then you’ve missed the whole picture. That’s my real advice to people who want to get started. Understand that this is a deep ancient practice that dates back thousands of years, and that it’s not just exercise.

 

Goddess Mena Love: Thanks HawaH, for taking time to speak with me!

HawaH: Thank you! And I appreciate you for taking time to do this important project! We gotta tell our stories, get more stories out, because our stories are important.

HawaH YogaNepal.com

HawaH
YogaNepal.com

 

© Copyright 2014 – Goddess Mena Love. All Rights Reserved

Intuitive Reading: Ma’at

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A couple of Fridays ago, I was coming out of the Whole Foods parking lot. Inching out of my parking space very slowly, due to pedestrians and other drivers, not damaging my car was the first on my mind.

Well, I can’t say the same for the lady who hit me, who was “backing out the same time” I was. The only problem, I was already backed out, and she apparently didn’t look back before reversely darting her bumper into mine. The bump caught me so off guard too, because I was moving my car in tortoise mode! I get out of my vehicle, unfazed at the fact that my car was hit, I mean, it was totally not my fault! I just wanted to exchanged info and get the process started.  A man unrelated to our accident scene walks up to us and says he didn’t see a thing, when asked if he’s seen what happened. He then changes his story and says “well, maybe both of you were coming out at the same time”.

BULLSHIT!!

So the lady, eagerly gets his information to be her witness, while I’m copying her insurance info and taking pics of my car and her car. A woman walks up to me and says, “ma’am I seen the whole thing. You were already out of your parking space and that lady wasn’t looking, she just backed out without looking!”

YES!!!

So, I exchanged info with her so that she could be my witness! I was too damn excited because I sure didn’t feel like going through unnecessary B.S. when it clearly wasn’t my fault.

Now, this card pulled is Ma’at, and a specific meanings of this card are that a dispute will end harmoniously and you’ll be treated fairly.

I pulled this card one week before this fender bender. I ignored this card when I first pulled it because I was thinking of my current situation. Nothing in my current situation gave me an indication that I needed to call a lawyer for anything, not even being in a situation where I would be wondering if I was gonna be treated fairly, none of that! And because I was not going through anything at present time, I decided to slip that card back into the deck prematurely as if I never pulled it in the first place.

All last week, I had to wait by the phone for a decision, because all that I knew was that the claim adjuster wanted to file 50/50. He wanted both of us to take part in this accident! I wasn’t for that, and at the same time, I was very aware that I would be treated fairly!

This past Friday, the claim adjuster tells me that he could not get in touch with her wack ass witness (he didn’t know shit anyway!), and that his decision was for my damages to be paid in full because he had spoken to my witness!

Thank the UNIVERSE!

And thank Ma’at!

Thank my spirit guides for keeping me calm!

I LOVE my enlightened spiritual journey!

© Copyright 2014 – Goddess Mena Love. All Rights Reserved

May Cause Miracles – Day 3: LOVE Did Not Create This! (Part 1 )

*This is dedicated to the ex-boyfriends that I’ve learned from. It may not have seemed like it at the time, but I recognize my fault(s) in our past relationship and can be confident in embracing the woman I’ve grown into now……….mature, LOVE giving, and reciprocal LOVE.

I ain’t gonna lie…..my boyfriend has really been getting on my nerves lately. I LOVE him, but he’s a human, and like me, has mood changes, too. I’m stretching myself to learn more about him, deeper than just “I know my man”. For me, it’s more on an authentic, deep, soul level.

Just being real, I’ve never stayed in a relationship long enough to not make it about me and my feelings. It’s always me, griping about how I feel, and wondering how you feel, weird insecure shit. But to take on the lesson to really learn from someone, really learn how they work, where they are spiritually, where they lack, their darkest moments that need pruning and nurturing….this is the first for me.

I don’t know what it feels like to function as a man. I’m green to the same common thread men have with one another. Like how they can understand each other and even respond the same way as each other over something that’s trivial bullshit to a woman. And see, that’s where the affirmation “LOVE did not create this” is inserted. I’m not only learning about him as an individual, I’m gaining clear insight on how a man lives in a man’s world. This is the first relationship I’ve been in where I can sit back and just observe. I mean, I’m really on front row, being pulled on stage, and walking backstage (meaning, I’ve worked my way into allowing him to feel comfortable enough for me to touch his soul, I’m allowing him to connect with me, without fear, I’m allowing him to feel comfortable with sharing all his faults that he wishes to change, and without judging him or being vindictive by throwing it up in his face when he’s vulnerable.)

I identify his roller-coaster emotions with false assumptions & self-sabotaging. It’s like he doesn’t feel worthy of being with someone who LOVES him back. I swear I feel like all of my past boyfriends, in the sense that I’m experiencing how they were feeling being in a relationship with someone who was physically in the relationship, but not open to receive LOVE. In retrospect, I can see where I could’ve been more optimistic about LOVE (and LOVING myself, first) instead of being focused on ego and negative shit that ended up spoiling the relationship.

Just like any other man, my man has been hurt in a relationship, and that causes past relationship triggers that sneak into our mix and try to fester.  Having to remind him that I am not like anyone from his past, is something I used to have to do quite often to get him to drop the baggage and really see me for me, a whole different person. See, men have baggage, too. It’s not just the ladies! But because in some cultures, men are not suppose to show their emotions, they end up suppressing them which ultimately creates a blockage. We all need that balance, that feminine energy and masculine energy to balance….but that’s another post (and a good book that delves deeper into that topic is a book called God Wears Lipstick)!

So basically, things could be going extremely well, and just because it is, he wanna get into an argument “just cause”.

LOVE, did not create this!

So that’s what I did today. Now, I’ve been inserting “light & LOVE” for the past couple of weeks for disagreements that manage to ascend, and BECAUSE there is no one to argue back with him, I win…..egotistically speaking. Most importantly, I balance the energy, I feed him LOVE, because that’s obviously what he NEEDS. Today, as soon as I felt a twinge of negative energy from him, swiftly I fed him LOVE, and repeated the affirmation in my mind,

LOVE did not create this!

LOVE did not create this!

LOVE did not create this!

Immediately, it worked for me! I don’t have to be in a negative mood when he is!

………BALANCE……….

LOVE did not create this!

I allowed him to be in his emotions and GROW through his lesson, without physically and verbally interfering. He calmed down amicably, kissed me on the back of my neck, face glowing with LOVE, eyes twinklin’, as he gazed at the light shining in me.

ATMOSPHERE CHANGED, LOVE WAS ALL UP IN THAT ROOM! ILLUMINATING, SHINING!

That’s how I fight……….with LOVE.