comings and goings in ecuador

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In the nine months I’ve lived in Cuenca, I’ve heard stories about expats trying to decide whether to stay or leave, and at Stateside stories of people trying to decide whether to move here, or elsewhere in the world.

It seems more than a few people base their decisions on other people’s experiences; they think that what works for that person will work for them. That’s not necessarily the case. Why would we want to plan our lives by what another person does? Their energy, experiences, memories, likes and dislikes are completely different from our own.

Questioning the lay of the land, etc. is important, then if it seems the right fit, we continue with the lay of the heart. This is another way of pondering what to do . . . because the within has its own wonderful methods of arriving at decisions. Sitting still for a while will welcome an all-important decision-maker – one that knows, one we can trust, one who is eager to assist – if we would just let it play its part, too.

When I look back at the times in my life when I followed someone else’s line of reasoning, and put my own aside, things didn’t flow. Of course it’s a different story when we’re in a helpless state, and unable to figure things out ourselves, on the whole though that’s not usually the case.

Learning self-love is a crucial part of the process, and from there we can go on to learning to trust ourselves. Then we learn to trust Life. It’s a nice way to live.

20140510-180248.jpg Look at the usually tranquil Rio Tomebamba with its waves of water rushing pass – thanks to rain, rain, rain. I like it; it’s so alive.

ancient secret of the fountain of youth book 2

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It could be that some people might consider not buying ANCIENT SECRET OF THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH because of the title. Though once the book is opened, a treasure trove is revealed. Book 1 tells of how it all began. It’s a marvelous story, almost in the category of a delightful fairy tale. It’s a story that you’ll want to read before picking up Book 2 “A companion to the book by Peter Kelder.”

It’s written in Book 2 about Book 1: “. . . It is not essential for you to read it, but it is highly recommended that you do so. In Kelder’s book you’ll find inspiration and magic that can’t be duplicated here. Many people who read the book cherish the experience and return to reread it again and again.”

There are amazing stories of those adventurers who dared to wander into territory most people thought they could only dream about. And then there are the amazing five rites which are fairly simple to do and which have innumerable benefits. The only way to discover their power is to practice them yourself. It’s one of the few books I took along with me to Ecuador. That’s how much I like the book.

To give you a glimpse of what the five rites do, I’ll quote the inside cover:

“In this book, readers were introduced to the Tibetan Rites of Rejuvenation, a series of exercises developed over centuries in the monasteries of Tibet and credited by thousands for everything from increased energy to better memory, weight loss, and just looking and feeling younger. Almost as quickly as the books filtered across the globe, letters began to pour into Harbor Press requesting more information on these mysterious rites. Now more than ten years and two million books later, comes a comprehensive companion volume that addresses the unanswered questions of so many readers.”

It’s good to know what’s in the marketplace so that we can choose what works for us, right? Now, if I could find a normal yoga mat in Cuenca, I’d be on the floor practicing those Five Rites:-)

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Someone said, “Have a happy day.” I am; you, too?

dr. seuss

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@TheRealPsychics: “Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!

I really like the above quote. Oh how the memories return of how much fun it was to read his books to my children.
www.seussville.com

paul selig

I watched an interview – Bob Olson of www.afterlifetv.com interviewed Paul Selig, teacher, playwriter, and writer of three books that were channeled.

Watching and listening was immensely interesting and informative, and I wouldn’t have wanted to miss this one.

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@JamesVanPraagh: There is no need for judgment. Judgment comes from the lower physical self, or the ego. Open yourself to the light of tolerance & love.

One of Cuenca’s finest

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the magic of some words

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I’m retweeting . . . my way . . . these words want to be shared . . . they speak to the heart, to the spirit, they have their own kind of magic – they show us another way of understanding ourselves and each other.

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@SMTaylorauthor: We will only be able to live in harmony with our planet, other species & with each other, once we are able to live in harmony with ourselves.

@SMTaylorauthor: In a state of harmony, life becomes easy. There is no more struggle. There is no lack.

@Soulseedzforall: Trust your instincts. Intuition doesn’t lie. http://t.co/PLEtPBJSUW

@Soulseedzforall: Being true to yourself may not mean having a LOT of friends, but it WILL lead to the RIGHT friends.

@Soulseedzforall: Forgive yourself for anything you’ve done, not done, whatever; call a cease fire on judgment.

@PanacheDesai: It’s no accident that messengers show up in your life in the way that they do. The world is your teacher ♥
#GoodEnergy

@PanacheDesai: Every one of us embarks on this journey from the Divine and every one of us is returning to the Divine. So what are you worried about? ♥

@JamesVanPraagh: To attract positive, joyful, & prosperous situations 2 you, you must be that way yourself.

@JoelOsteen: When you go through tough times the enemy will try to discourage you. Let that go in one ear and out the other.

@soniachoquette: You cannot breathe deeply and worry at the same time. Breathe. Let the worry go. Breathe. Allow the love and intuition in

@VedicSage: “There is nothing wrong with Creation. Mystery & Suffering only exist in the mind …”-Ramana Maharshi. Go within & Transcend all problems.

@WayneDyerQuotes: ☯ “Society in General Always Seems to Hnor its Living Conformists & its Dead Troublemakers”

@SoulmateExprnce: Hold onto someone tightly, and you have a prisoner. Offer them a loving space to develop and grow, and you have a lover.

@TheRealPsychics: I think we risk becoming the best informed society that has ever died of ignorance. ~Reuben Blades

@jamesodea: Out of 6 billion humans, the troublemakers are just a handful.~Dalai Lama

@jamesodea: Demagogues exploit anger to promote us/them scenarios & to call for revenge w/o addressing the underlying issues.

@jamesodea: The world is also facing a lot of new problems, most of which are man-made. ~

@jamesodea: A great Tibetan teacher of mind training once remarked that 1 of the mind’s most marvelous qualities is that it can b transformed.

@Debbie_Ford: “There is only 1 solution 2 ur inner hunger, only one way 2 satisfy the hungry ghost, & that is to fill it w/ love, w/ higher consciousness”

www.earthclinic.comCURES/

I’m wishing you a lovely day.

quiet by susan cain

I found a book at Carolina Bookstore in Cuenca; it’s called Quiet The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking. It’s written by Susan Cain. I don’t think this book could have been written any better. To read it is to have a clear understanding of what it means to be an introvert. And, if you’re an extrovert, you’ll discover things about yourself that will enhance your life; things you never stopped to think about before because you were always so busy. I’m an introvert and, for most of my life, have been surrounded by a lot of extroverts. And, so I say, If you’re an introvert Quiet will rescue you from thinking you’re a bit anti-social. And if you’re an extrovert, Quiet will enhance your life by giving you a chance to take a breather from your daily strivings. So . . . introvert and extrovert, this well-researched, wonderfully interesting, completely absorbing book just might give you both a new lease on life.

Could Quiet possibly be one of the best books extroverts and introverts can give each other – on this special day? Quite possibly, yes.

Happy Valentine’s Day and ¡Feliz Día de la Amistad! (Day of Friendship in Latin America) to all you introverts and extroverts!

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bumps on the road of life

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Cuenca’s Rio Tomebamba. It’s well-loved and a perfect setting for strolling.

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There are times in our lives when we need to find a way to bring us out of a bump on the road of life. Otherwise, staying too long with that bump can damage our entire day.

Those securely anchored bumps can play havoc with our thoughts, and when that happens, returning to a calm mind can be a full-time job. Uh-Oh!

When a bump on the road of life is strangled in its path without too much delay, we quickly regain our equanimity. A passage in a book, a chance conversation with a stranger, a wise teacher, even tapping into our own wise selves, can snap us out of a bumpy situation.

Ram Dass has written about one such bumpy issue. In lieu of another way, his way makes great sense, and can be used time and again. Because, let’s face it, in today’s world, bumps on the road of life happen, and a quick resolution so that we can get on with creating wonderful lives, is indeed an awesome thing to know.

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www.ramdass.org

“If somebody is a problem for you, it’s not that they should change, it’s that you need to change. If they’re a problem for themselves that’s their karma, if they’re causing you trouble that’s your problem on yourself. So, in other words when Christ is crucified, he says “forgive them, they don’t know what they’re doing”, they’re not a problem for him, he’s trying to get them out of being a problem for themselves, because he’s clear. Your job is to clear yourself. In ideal situations you would clear yourself within the situation, but very often it’s too thick and you can’t do that. Now, what you do then is you pull back and you do the stuff you do in the morning or at night before you go to work, you do the stuff on weekends, you do the stuff that quiets you down and then each time you go into the situation to where you have to work, you lose it again. And then you go home and you see how you lost it, and you examine it, and then you go the next day and you lose it again, and you go home and you keep a little diary “how did I lose it today”, and you saw that, and then you go and you do it again, and after a while as you’re starting to lose it you don’t buy in so much. You start to watch the mechanics of what it is that makes you lose it all the time.
If I’m not appreciated, that’s your problem that you don’t appreciate me. Unless I need your love, then it’s my problem. So my needs are what are giving you the power over me. Those people’s power over you to take you out of your equanimity and love and consciousness has to do with your own attachments and clingings of mind. That’s your work on yourself, that’s where you need to meditate more, it’s where you need to reflect more, it’s where you need a deeper philosophical framework, it’s where you need to cultivate the witness more, it’s where you need to work on practicing opening your heart more in circumstances that aren’t optimum. This is your work. You were given a heavy curriculum, that’s it. There’s no blame, it’s not even wrong, it’s just what you’re given. You hear what I’m saying? It’s interesting. Can you all hear that one?”
-Ram Dass, Summer 1989
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Let’s make it a grand day in however way we can.

by Jill Jackson and Sy Miller

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Once in the head, it seems to stay for hours . . . easy singing . . .

“Let there be peace on earth
and let it begin with me.
Let there be peace on earth,
the peace that was meant to be.
With God as our Father,
brothers all are we.
Let me walk with my brother in
perfect harmony.”

I’m wishing everyone a full-of-laughter kind of day.

the 7 most prescribed drugs in the world and their natural counterparts

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Ahh, so much information out there! So, when I see an article that’s informative, interesting, one that simply gives the pros and cons, and doesn’t overwhelm, I read it. You, too? Here’s one -

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February 12, 2013 by DAVE MIHALOVIC
The 7 Most Prescribed Drugs In The World And Their Natural Counterparts

We don’t have to live in a medicated world, but we certainly choose to. The crux of the matter is that we refuse to proactively think about prevention because we reactively commit to treating the symptoms of underlying health problems. This is the allopathic model. We want the quick fix so we can continue our poor lifestyle and dietary habits. It doesn’t have to be this way, but it is. We can blame doctors, the medical institutions and healthcare systems all we want, but self-responsibility is our only recourse if we are ever to surface from this mess. There are no exc uses–if you’re taking one of these drugs, consult with a Natural Health Practitioner this week about phasing out your medication and phasing in these powerful natural foods and remedies.

Of the over 4 billion prescriptions written every year, the United States and Canada make up more than 80% of the world’s prescription opioids (psychoactive medications). Between 1997 and 2012 prescription opioids increased in dosage by almost 500%. Pharmaceuticals and medical errors are now a leading cause of death . Painkillers are the leading cause of accidental death .

In the last 15 years of life, people are experiencing more pain for longer periods than at any point on our historical record. If you think life expectancy has increased to the benefit of mankind, you’re not looking at the numbers.

78% of U.S. prescriptions written in 2010 were for generic drugs (both unbranded and those still sold under a brand name). The most prescribed drugs aren’t always the best selling drugs, there’s a difference.

Prescriptions for pain, cholesterol reduction, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, antacids, antipsychotics, diabetes and antibiotics make up 100% of the most prescribed drugs.

Make a commitment to yourself right now and start incorporating some of these amazing foods into your diet with no consequence of side effects. When you accept this, you will get off prescription medications for good.

Check out the top 7 most prescribed drugs and the best natural remedies to treat and prevent disease.

1. HYDROCODONE (Acetaminophen/Vicodin/Oxycontin)

Use: For Pain

Currently the single most prescribed drug in the world. More and more doctors are getting huge payouts from pharmaceutical companies to promote these hydrocodone, especially generic drugs. They make up more than 20% of the top prescribed medications.

Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), told Fox News that doctors are handing out narcotics like candy. Some doctors are giving patients prescriptions for narcotics for even minor injuries.

How it Works:
It is an orally psychoactive compound that works as a narcotic and analgesic. It is biotransformed by the liver into several metabolites. It is highly dependent on metabolism by the Cytochrome P450 pathway.

Consequences:
Respiratory depression; bradycardia; coma; seizures; cardiac arrest; liver damage; and death. Inherited genes such as the Cytochrome P450 affects metabolic pathways–some cannot process it at all, whereas a smaller percentage can get even more strength from it than usual.

Natural Foods:
Ginger, turmeric, berries, cayenne pepper, celery/celery seeds, cherries, dark green veggies, walnuts.
See: Natural Healing Remedies: 10 Foods That Fight Inflammation And Pain

2. STATINS (Generic versions of Lipitor/Zocor/Crestor)

Use: Reduction of LDL Cholesterol

Approximately 15% of the top prescribed medications are generic statins. A study published in January 2012 in the Archives of Internal Medicine linked statins to 48 percent increased risk for type-2 diabetes.

The are NO scientific studies ever documented which have proved through causation that lowering LDL cholesterol prevents disease. The obsessed culture of lowering cholesterol may actually be causing cancer .

How it Works:
Statins artificially lower cholesterol levels by inhibiting a critical enzyme HMG-CoA reductase , which plays a central role in the production of cholesterol in the liver.

Consequences:
Inflammation and pathological breakdown of muscle, acute kidney failure, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, interference with sex hormones and death.

Natural Foods:
Nuts, spinach, apples, turmeric, cranberries, tomatoes, green tea, fatty fish, beans, alfalfa herb, capsicum fruit, garlic, psyllium, fenugreek seeds, butcher’s broom, licorice root, hawthorn berry.
See:
- New Data Shows Lycopene Reduces Heart Disease Up To 26 Percent
- Two Apples a Day More Effective At Reducing Heart Disease Than Statin Medications
- Top 5 Foods and Herbs To Control Cholesterol
- World Renown Heart Surgeon Speaks Out On What Really Causes Heart Disease

3. LISINOPRIL (Prinivil/Zestril) AND NORVASC (Amlodipine)

Use: Reduction of High Blood Pressure

In combination, Lisinopril and Norvasc make up a whopping 23% of the top prescribed medications. This makes them the most prescribed generic medications (if combined) for cardiovascular disease and blood pressure. Individually, Lisinopril constitutes approximately 14% and Norvasc about 9%.

How it Works:
Lisinopril is typically used for the treatment of hypertension, congestive heart failure, and heart attacks. Norvasc is used for hypertension and angina. It accomplishes this by inhibiting the influx of calcium ions into vascular smooth muscle and cardiac muscle so it essentially interferes with the metabolism of calcium.

Consequences:
Cancer, blood disorders, development of breasts in men, impotence, depression, tachycardia, enlargement of gums, inflammation of the liver, elevated blood glucose, hepatitis, life threatening skin conditions.

Natural Foods:
Any foods high in vitamin C (chili peppers, guavas, bell peppers, thyme, parsley, dark leafy greens, broccoli), any foods high in magnesium (chocolate, green leafy vegetables, Brazil nuts, almonds, cashews, blackstrap molasses, pumpkin and squash seeds, pine nuts, and black walnuts) and any foods high in potassium (mu shrooms, bananas, dark green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, oranges and dates) . Coconut oil/water and CoQ10 are also very effective for lowering blood pressure.
See:
- Magnesium Reduces Blood Pressure Naturally Without Side Effects
- Low Salt Diets Do Not Decrease Blood Pressure, Period
- Vitamin C Supplements Reduce Blood Pressure Without Side Effects Associated With Medication
- Low Potassium Linked To High Blood Pressure

4. SYNTHROID (levothyroxine sodium)

Use: Hypothyroidism

A synthetic form of the thyroid hormone thyroxine, generic Synthroid makes up more than 11% of the top prescribed medications. It’s used to treat hypothyroidism. The related drug dextrothyroxine (D-thyroxine) was used in the past as a treatment for elevated cholesterol but was withdrawn due to cardiac side-effects.

How it Works:
It replaces the thyroid hormone which is naturally occurring in the thyroid gland essentially halting natural production.

Consequences:
Long-term suppression of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) causes cardiac side-effects and contributes to decreases in bone mineral density (high TSH levels are also well known to contributes to osteoporosis.) May also cause elevated blood glucose levels, heart failure, coma and adrenal insufficiency. TSH directly influences the whole process of iodine trapping and thyroid hormone production so use of synthroid directly affects how the body metabolizes iodine.

Natural Foods:
Any foods containing iodine such as seaweed, kelp, radish, parsley, fish, seafood, eggs, bananas, cranberries, strawberries, himalayan crystal salt . Also, copper, iron, selenium and zinc are essential in the production of thyroid hormones. Exercise a minimum of 20-30 minutes per day — enough to raise the heartbeat.
See:
- Seaweed Extracts Can Help You Lose Weight, Mostly Body Fat
- 8 Critical Nutrients Lacking In More Than 70 Percent of Diets
- The Number One Reason So Many Women Have Trouble Losing Weight

5. PRILOSEC (omeprazole/generic versions of nexium)

Use: Antacid

A proton pump inhibitor which constitutes just over 8% of the top prescribed medications. Omeprazole is one of the most widely prescribed drugs for reflux disease (GORD/GERD/LPR) and ulcers internationally and is available over the counter in some countries.

How it Works:
It suppresses gastric acid secretion by specific inhibition of the gastric acid ions in cells. The absorption of omeprazole takes place in the small intestine essentially turning off the switch which promotes healthy digestion of foods. Omeprazole is also completely metabolized by the cytochrome P450 system.

Consequences:
Angina, ulcers, tachycardia, bradycardia, palpitations, elevated blood pressure, development of male breasts, inflammation of the pancreas, irritable colon, mucosal atrophy of the tongue, liver disease/failure, elevated blood sugar, muscle weakness, skin conditions, tinnitus, inflammation of the eyes, urinary frequency, testicular pain, anemia and blood cell disorders.

Natural Foods:
Grapefruits, probiotics , broccoli sprouts, manuka honey, mastic gum, marshmallow tea, glutamine, slippery elm, deglycyrrhized liquorice (DGL), aloe vera juice, baking soda, pickle juice.
See:
- Grapefruit Heals Stomach Ulcers
- Broccoli Sprouts May Prevent Gastritis, Ulcers and Stomach Cancers
- Manuka Honey Reverses Antibiotic Resistance, Treats Disease

6. AZITHROMYCIN AND AMOXICILLIN

Use: Antibiotic

In combination, azithromycin and amoxicillin contribute towards a mind-blowing 17% of the top prescribed medications. Then we wonder why we have antibiotic resistance. On their own, each contributes about 8.5%. Azithromycin is one of the world’s best-selling antibiotics and derived from erythromycin. Amoxicillin is usually the drug of choice for children.

How it Works:
Inhibits the synthesis of bacterial cell walls and interfering with their protein synthesis. These drugs also inhibit the protein synthesis of good bacteria needed for immunity and proper digestion.

Consequences: Inflammation of the liver, inflammation and destruction of the stomach lining, destruction of healthy bacterial populations, inflammation of the colon, allergic reactions, obesity, human antibiotic resistance.

Natural Foods:
Sunlight (vit D), garlic, coconut oil, turmeric, foods high in nicotinamide (vit B3) such as salmon, sardines and nuts. Also manuka honey, olive leaf extract, green tea, pau D’Arco, rose water, myrrh, grapeseed extract, golden seal, oregon grapes, oregano oil, andrographis paniculata, and probiotics.
See:
- Garlic Proven 100 Times More Effective Than Antibiotics, Working In A Fraction of The Time
- Before Antibiotics Ever Existed, Sunlight Was Used To Treat Diseases With Great Success
- The Most Potent B Vitamin That Combats Infections Better Than Antibiotics Ever Could

7. GLUCOPHAGE (metformin)

Use: Oral anti-diabetic drug

Glucophage drugs round up the top 7 but the prescription rate of this drug is rapidly increasing. It makes up about 7% of the top prescribed medications. It is the first-line drug of choice for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, in particular, in overweight and obese people. It also acts to indirectly lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

How it Works:
By suppressing natural glucose production by the liver, the drug activates an enzyme which plays an important role in insulin signaling, whole body energy balance, and the metabolism of glucose and fats.

Consequences:
Lactic acidosis, impaired liver/kidney function, decreasing thyroid stimulating hormone and testosterone, increased homocysteine levels, malabsorption of vitamin B12, B12 deficiency, bladder cancer, heart failure. The biggest consequence of diabetes drugs is that it causes pancreatic function to substantially decrease inhibiting several hormones and causing other imbalances which are never correctable without abstaining from the drug.

Natural Foods:
Black tea, Sunlight (vit D), potentially coffee (more research needed), turmeric, nuts, chia seeds, green leafy vegetables, apple cider vinegar, cinnamon, red grapes, steel cut oatmeal, broccoli, spinach, green beans and strawberries. 90% of all cases of diabetes can be resolved by eating foods with a low glycemic load , and pursuing both weight training and aerobic exercise .
See:
- Study on Black Tea Consumption From 42 Countries Shows It Lowers Diabetes Risk
- Two More Bombshells For Vitamin D: It Prevents Both Type I Diabetes and Cavities
- Coffee’s Anti-Diabetes Benefit
- Healthy Diet, Moderate Exercise Reduce Diabetes Risk Better Than Drugs
- How Turmeric Has An Anti-Diabetic Effect On The Body

The drugs on which we spend the most money are those that are still new enough to be protected against generic competition. That’s why drugs like Abilify and Seroquel ( antipsychotics ), as well as Plavix (blood thinner) and Advair Diskus ( asthma inhaler) don’t make the list.

Sources:
drugwatch.com
guardian.co.uk
mercola.com
webmd.com
wikipedia.org

Dave Mihalovic is a Naturopathic Doctor who specializes in vaccine research, cancer prevention and a natural approach to treatment.

When Medications Cause The Very Problem They’re Supposed To Prevent

Reference Sources

a face

Every time I look at him I burst out laughing – can’t help it; there’s such joy in that face.

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