Reaching a deeper, greater understanding of mothering

Please see the class announcement at the end of this E-news!

Exploring the relationship between mothering and personal growth

I had a very interesting conversation with someone recently about emotions…specifically, the perspective that you can choose your emotional response to something rather than believing that you have no control over your response, that it is shaped by your personality and your history.  However, if you “choose” your emotional response, that is, you respond with an edited version of your original impulse, does that mean that your response is less than authentic?    Why do I bring this up in the context of mothering?  

Let’s first take a step back.  People have such different impressions of how they were mothered, and by whom (ahh, the complexities of large or blended families!) that it is not a good idea to introduce the topic of mothering with an idea that everyone had a good experience with their mother, or that their experience was similar to yours.  It can actually be a very “touchy” subject!  I learned this by sharing one of our descriptions of our Mexican Lime essential oil…it offers “emotional mothering”…with a visitor to my Shining Sun Aromatherapy studio.  Her immediate reaction was to reject experiencing the Lime essence, as she had had a very difficult relationship with her mother her whole life.  And while it allowed us to broach the concept that using that essence might be a positive step in healing that relationship, her initial comment also brought home to me the mixed and sometimes difficult relationships many people associate with the word “Mother”.   

Another step back.  When I was in the corporate world, I conducted research in the area of human resources for a major public accounting firm.  One of the studies I did was on mentoring…exploring how it happened, its benefits and pitfalls, and whether men and women were equally mentored in our firm.  What I discovered was that a narrow definition of mentoring did not provide the understanding, or the possibilities, that a broader definition offered.  I explored traditional mentoring (a senior level person looking out for, providing developmental opportunities for, someone who was at a staff level significantly junior to them), peer mentoring, and, lo and behold, even upward mentoring…where a more junior person provided some of the feedback or support generally associated with traditional mentoring to someone at least one organizational level above them, and sometimes more.  This really stretched the understanding of upper management when I presented this aspect of the research.  But, as we discussed it, they became really excited about the expanded possibilities a broader view of mentoring revealed.  Looking back, I realize that “mentoring” was just a way of expressing “mothering” in a way that was more acceptable in a corporate setting.  But that experience of the benefits of creating a broader understanding helped me to look at the concept of mothering the same way.  

As often happens when I am thinking deeply about a concept or situation, related information starts crossing my path.  I love how the Universe works!!  Recently, a FaceBook friend shared a beautiful piece by a foundation in New Zealand called Sacred Dreams.  Within the wisdom offered in that post was one gem on mothering, offered in the context “Mastering the Art of Dis-entanglement”.  It used to be easy for her to get triggered…[This personal] story made for a tremulous existence, one that was continually shaken by how the world was responding to her.  The story is changing as she entered deeper into her heart, her soul, her womb, her mind.  Every pain and heart-break became an opening to enter deeper. She reached the place of origin of many wounds.  She touched them softly, lovingly, kissed them tenderly.  In her inner journeys, she’s found this place of tranquility, where she’s always safe, always loved.  This place is her mother-centre ~ one that loves every single bit of her.  She’s practicing living awareness from this space, while old wounds try to take her down the familiar path.  She practices keeping her heart open, even in the deepest pain.  This wise space teaches her to sit out the triggered wounds rather than act from them.  – Sukhvinder Sircar

The “mother-centre” described above …female or male, we all have it… can be a source of guidance and support for us.  Self-mothering, in a way, not something often considered. Also, I think this quote addresses the concern raised in the conversation I referenced in the opening paragraph of this e-news…whether choosing our emotional response to something is less than “authentic”.  I think the perspective offered by Sacred Dreams demonstrates that holding onto our “authenticity” (and believe me, I am hugely about being authentic) can mean holding ourselves back from growing…intellectually, emotionally and spiritually.  I remember once, many years ago, when someone wanted me to consider an experience that was very much outside of my comfort zone, I kept thinking “this isn’t me”.  I honestly do not remember what that experience was, but I clearly remember the lesson…I decided to give it a try, and was amazed to learn that it was more “me” than I ever dreamed possible.  And though it wasn’t consistent with the “old me”, it WAS like the “new me” who emerged from that experience…I had grown.  

So, I will leave you with that little story that has stayed with me all of these years, and also some suggestions, in addition to the Mexican Lime (great on the soles of the feet) that will help broaden your perspective on the concept of mothering, and assist you in accessing that “mother-centre” source of wisdom, so that, even if you don’t have other positive “mother” figures in your life, you can effectively “self-mother”.

Rosemary verbenone:  This beautiful essence is about remembering, and deeply exploring our memories in the context of our greater self-knowledge as we learn and grow.  What we may find is that we have an incomplete  memory or one that, from an adult perspective, takes on a different meaning.  Rosemary verbenone helps you discern which memories to hold in your heart, which to “update” in terms of your broader, more mature understanding, and which to let go, as they no longer serve you.  This can be a very freeing process.

Davana:  This ancient beauty is all about healing through expansion…greater compassion for self and others; greater understanding of how life works.  She helps you to challenge beliefs that may no longer serve you, and are limiting you.

Exotic Basil:  Expands your perceptions of self, others, and your physical environment, which yields many opportunities for change, new directions, and growth.

Oak Moss:  I find this exceptional for doing deep heart work, and it would be perfect to access that mother-centre discussed above.  And, it smells divine, evoking the mystery and power of our connection to Mother Earth.

Chamomile (Blue/Green); This gorgeous essence will take you to the depths of your emotions, with calm acceptance of what was and a grounded vision of what will be.  She supports you in making new choices by softening and neutralizing your “triggers” and creating an awareness of other, more authentic ways of understanding and responding to situations and opportunities.

Blessings, Audre

PS:  This is an announcement about an upcoming, two-day, private Level 1 Certification Class in Medicinal Aromatherapy to be held at my Shining Sun Aromatherapy studio in Santa Fe.  This client is open to having others join us, and we are considering these possible dates: July 2-3; August 28-29; or September 11-12.

if you are interested in joining us, please contact me ASAP about the date or dates most convenient for you.  The tuition is $575, and I will offer the $25 early registration discount to anyone who responds by June 7th.  Call 928-300-5090 or email me at shiningsunaromatherapy@gmail.com for questions or to register.  


 
Two important notices: First, Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of this newsletter is born from her experiences, education, research and intuition. It is hoped that the information contained herein will support you in making personal choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share our communications or selected content more widely, however, if you do, please give attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you! Second, you are currently on my mailing list for communications from Shining Sun Aromatherapy via website opt-in, signing up at an event we hosted or participated in, or by purchasing essential oils/products from me. I hope you will choose to remain in communication with us, as new and exciting things are happening at Shining Sun Aromatherapy, however, I will certainly understand if you decide to “opt out”, as we all have to maintain our focus on things that are most important to us. 

Our mailing address is:
51 N Shining Sun
Santa Fe, NM  87506
 

The importance of being centered in times of chaos and discord

Energies seem to be swirling around at an unprecedented pace…relationships, health, community, work, political, social, local, global.  If you are not feeling them, you are either very, very fortunate or very isolated.  I honestly do not know anyone who isn’t feeling upended in one or more aspects of their life.

As we have just passed a marriage milestone…10 years as of 7/18/18…Leonardo and I were recently talking about how much we have weathered as a couple…and while we have made it through (with flying colors, I might add) situations that could have torn our relationship apart, they did not.  So, with that backdrop, we had a good conversation about the pace and nature of current circumstances and how to navigate most gracefully and effectively.

I read to him a few passages from a book I have been reading (a few pages most nights) for a couple of years.  It is the diary of a saint, Maria Faustina Kowalska, who lived in the early 1900s.  While her words are couched in the language of Christianity, if that is not your path, I think there is still value in considering their wisdom within the context of a power greater than our human selves…whether that is your higher self, The Universe, Nature, Source, Fate or any other divine, spiritual or supernatural ideology you subscribe to.

Here are some of her thoughts, as captured in her diary in the spring of 1938, shortly before her death.

O Christ, if You Yourself did not support the soul, how much could it do of itself?  We are strong, but with Your strength we are holy…

And…The enemy’s greatest efforts will not thwart the smallest detail of what the Lord has decreed.  No matter if there are times when the work seems to be completely destroyed; it is then that the work is being all the more consolidated.

I personally have felt torn apart by the misery and inhumanity of the treatment of those seeking asylum at our southern border.  I was really struggling with the images and the feelings and reality of what was happening to these unfortunate parents and children.  Reading and meditating upon her words “it is then that the work is being all the more consolidated” restored my sense of peace and fortitude.  This, in turn, allowed me to address, with renewed energy and purpose, my day to day responsibilities, as well as my broader responsibility to my fellow humans, and the treatment and condition of the Earth and all of her beings.

What does being centered mean?  And, importantly, why does it help us “regroup” and renew our sense of purpose and hope? Interestingly, one of our students, Linda C., explored this in her Level II certification paper on Fir, Balsam (it is included in our book, Voices of Light, Voices of Love…Messages from the Plants and Trees).  Here is a brief excerpt from what she shared:

Another time, while sitting with her [Fir, Balsam], she let me feel how it feels to have roots that go into the ground.  This, too, was an amazing and new feeing for me.  In many circles, one hears the words, “ground yourself.”  Or, “you need to be grounded for this, so center your self and get grounded.  By quieting myself, I thought I had been grounding myself.  But all I really had been was internally less frenetic.  

I felt, with Fir, Balsam, what it was truly like to be grounded.  I felt connected to the earth, tightly connected to the earth, which was also providing food to me.  I was separate, but I was not separate from the earth.  I was held firmly and strongly to one place on the planet.  There was no here or there to go to, or to wonder or worry about .  This was my place to be and to know.  No questions, no insecurities, just steadfastly anchored to this place on the planet.  It was a strong, safe, contented feeling.  

I had grown up in one town, moved to another for school, moved to another after graduation to look for a job, then back to another to look for another job.  I had no idea what it felt like to be part of one place on earth.  What a feeling of belonging.  

So, from this perspective…from the perspective of a tree…being centered is about not being separate, about belonging.  It is about not worrying, questioning or being insecure, but being accepting of what is and putting your heart and energy into doing and being your best in the situation at hand.  It is also about trusting that the Universe is unfolding exactly as it should…which does not mean that you sit back and let things “happen” to you, but that you exercise your free will…one of the most important aspects of human existence…and become the player you were meant to be in the situation that is occurring within and around you.

As Linda C. profoundly experienced, tree essences are incredible at helping us to get grounded/centered…and to stand tall and find strength in our holiness and sovereignty. So essences like Fir, Balsam; Pine, Red; Spruce, White and Pine, Ponderosa can support us in finding our center (clarify beliefs; reaffirm core values, etc.) and acting purposefully from it.  Root essences such as Spikenard, Vetiver and Angelica Root, are helpful, as well.  Spikenard has the additional property of helping us tune into the unseen world, while Vetiver helps purify…releasing those beliefs or patterns that do not serve purposeful, centered living.  And, finally, Angelica Root (botanical name, angelica archangelica…that gives you a clue), brings in the wisdom, protection and inspiration of the angelic realm.

So, let the chaos and discord be the impetus to claim your divine purpose, and allow the essences to support you in meeting the challenges of these times with clarity and courage.

Sending lots of love and a sense of peace,

Audre

Please feel free to share this post on social media or otherwise…your attribution of this content to Audre Gutierrez, Shining Sun Aromatherapy is appreciated.

21 Ways to Find Your Heart Connection

: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Ways to Find Your Heart Connection This Season…or ANY Season
Many people feel a sense of disconnection or loneliness…sometimes fleeting but recurring, other times, pervasive…and don’t have an understanding of why they feel that way.  One of the greatest gifts pure, natural essences give us is facilitating a deeper connection to our own heart/soul purpose…with the effect of helping us feel more vibrant, more a part of life.

One of my Aromatherapy students, Lynn Getz, sent out the most beautiful, simple and inspiring holiday card for Thanksgiving.  The card contained a list of 21 Ways (adds to a “3”…divine guidance!) to Find Your Heart Connection.  She has graciously given me permission to share the list with you!  I honestly believe that if you can find the time to do at least one of these a day, it will transform you, and bring joy to your heart and your life.  A gift of joy for YOU this holiday season!

For each, I have suggested an essence especially suited to the nature of that particular “way” to connect with your heart:

1.  Deepen your connection to nature (Spikenard over the heart and 3rd eye)
2.  Slow down, rest, be still  (Blue Tansy over the heart)
3.  Pay attention to your breathing  (Balsam copaiba – Copal on the chest)
4.  Be with the animals and the children; let them teach you  (Tangerine on the soles of the feet)
5.  Drink lots of water  (Cinnamon Bark – 2 or 3 drops in a liter bottle of water…remember to shake it each time before you drink from the bottle..no burnt lips!)
6.  Spend slow time with the elders  (Rosewood & Myrrh over the heart)
7.  Feel the wind, sun and rain on you (Laurel Leaf over the heart)
8.  Listen to your body, talk to your body, give it what it needs  (Blue Yarrow at the base of the spine and over the heart)
9.  Spend more time with the people you love.  (Rhododendron over the heart)
10.  Forgive and apologize (Hyssop over the heart and throat chakra)
11.  Play more (Mexican Lime on the soles of the feet)
12.  Grow something (Rosemary over the heart)
13.  Express yourself creatively; get curious (Cajeput – White Tea Tree over the throat chakra)
14.  Dream (Wild Tansy on the crown chakra)
15.  Watch the sky; watch the sun and the moon rise and set (Frankincense on the crown chakra)
16.  Listen to your heartbeat (Red Spruce over the heart)
17.  Be truthful (Highland Lavender on the crown chakra and over the throat chakra)
18.  Look deeply at and into a flower (Ylang Ylang over the heart and on the 3rd eye)
19.  Be patient and kind (Violet over the heart)
20.  Share – give freely of what you have (Sweet Orange – high aldehyde – on the feet or wrists)
21.  Above all, love openly (Sandalwood over the heart)

I have “my reasons” for the essence suggestions…but each supports the heart energy of these experiences, so the logic is less important than engaging with an open heart, open mind and clear intention.

Again, my thanks to Lynn Getz, one of our wonderful Wisdom of the Earth Level 1 teachers (Portland, OR) and a dear friend.  May her wisdom and care bless you as it has me!

Wishing you all a wondrous, peace-filled and love-filled holiday!

Love, Audre

Heroes Among Us: Cherishing Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness

neroli
: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Heroes Among Us
Cherishing Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness
From Top Left: Riccardo Muti, Roberto Clemente, Maya Angelou, Karen Clay and Mike Phillips, Cam Perron (with an unidentified player from the former Negro League)
Independence Day was created in 1870 as a Federal holiday to celebrate the birth of the United States as an independent nation.  I would like to take the opportunity of this time of reflection on freedom, responsibility and courage to briefly consider heroism, and share a bit about some of my heroes, past and present.

Typically, heroism involves putting the needs of others ahead of your own, at great risk or danger to yourself.  However, as I have reflected on this definition, I realize that some of the people I consider heroes are those who have touched me deeply and inspired me greatly, though most did not do so by putting themselves in danger.

I think it is important to have heroes, to be inspired, and then aspire to be more like them in one’s own life.  Here are some people who are heroes to me, and why:

Riccardo Muti Music Director of the Philadelphia Orchestra from 1980-1992, he was a purist when it came to music…he would research little known circumstances or events of the times in which a composer had lived and a work was first performed.  He was also known for conducting the music as it was originally conceived by the composer…even if subsequent changes had been made by other conductors over the years to cater to contemporary tastes, their personal style, etc.  I am a purist at heart, and his commitment to the original truth and form of the music inspired me greatly.

Roberto Clemente He was killed in 1973 at the peak of his baseball career with the Pittsburgh Pirates while personally assisting victims of an earthquake in Managua.  He was on a cargo plane carrying relief supplies when it crashed, killing all on board.  That he died while helping others wasn’t the only reason Roberto inspired me; as a young girl, I had a difficult childhood…I immersed myself in following baseball, loving the gentle rhythm of the game.  One Sunday, I attended a double-header at Forbes Field.  Our section was located just behind Roberto in right field.   I was in heaven!  A bunch of us twelve-year-old girls were screaming his name…and he turned and looked directly at us, removed his cap and waved at us.  I will never forget it.  He was the kind of athlete you could look up to and be inspired by…both in life and in death.

Maya Angelou A Pulitzer Prize-Winning American Poet, her courage and eloquence have touched millions, myself included.  Childhood sexual trauma, teenage pregnancy, years of single motherhood and racial discrimination shaped her, but did not defeat her.  This quote from her has affirmed my own natural bent and has inspired me over the years:

I‘ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Mike Phillips and his mom, Karen Clay Recently featured on MSNBC’s  “The Last Word”, Mike is a severely disabled 33 year-old man who wasn’t expected to live past his first birthday.  He is cared for at home by his mother, Karen, who was also featured on the segment.  They were discussing the personal impact deep cuts in the Medicaid program would have on the quality of Mike’s life.  With no facilities in their state for someone with his disability, he would have to be institutionalized out of state if Medicaid discontinued his home care provision.  His family would either have to relocate to be near him, or they would only be able to visit him infrequently.  His courage, his zest for life, his charm and incredible eloquence had me in tears through the entire segment.  That his mother has cared for him for over 30 years, and that, despite all that he has been through and all that he faces, he has a thoughtful, positive outlook on life, deeply touched and inspired me.

Cam Perron My husband, Leonardo, recently saw an interview with this young man.  As a child, Cam, like me, was mesmerized by baseball.  Though he was white, as a teenager, he became intrigued by the Negro Leagues – the often over-looked chapter of the game’s history.  When he found that the vast majority of these Black players did not qualify for an MLB pension because of lack of documentation of their service time (proof of four years is required), he took it upon himself to research these players’ histories, and discovered more than 80 players who had qualifying experience.  Due to his research and documentation efforts, Cam helped these elderly former players obtain pension benefits, and for many, it was literally a lifesaver.   I love his dogged persistence in tracking these players down and winning their trust, and his incredible research skills.  But many of these elderly Black players now consider Cam “family”…one calls him “Son.”  So, what he does, he does with heart.  I love that about him, too.

So…these are some of my heroes, and the reasons why.  Who are your heroes?  Why have you remembered them throughout your life…or why did they touch your heart recently?

In closing, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention one of my favorite essential oils that, at Her heart, is all about heroism…Laurel Leaf.  She brings out the hero in us, helps us find our passion and gives us the courage to stand up for what we believe in.  A great ally to inspire and support us!  Put a little Laurel Leaf over your heart and have a wonderful, inspiring 4th of July!

Two important notices:

Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of these communications reflects my experiences, education, research and intuition, and is offered to support you in making choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share my Essential Thoughts and Newsletters with others who might enjoy them, with attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you!

Additionally, you are on my mailing list because you “opted in” on FB or my website, attended one of my events, or purchased something from Shining Sun Aromatherapy.  I hope you enjoy and benefit from these mailings, however, it is easy to unsubscribe (below) if you would rather not receive them.

Our mailing address is:
Shining Sun Aromatherapy
51 N. Shining Sun
Santa FeNM 87506

Rites of Passage: Aromatherapy to Consecrate Your Ceremonies

neroli
: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Rites of Passage
Aromatherapy to Consecrate Your Ceremonies

Summer months traditionally are a time for wedding ceremonies, though, of course, people get married throughout the year! So, it’s a good time to consider the role of essential oils and hydrolats in weddings, as well as other ceremonies such as birthdays, baptisms, and passage events such as adolescence, retirement and death.First of all…it is wonderful to use the essences and/or hydrolats in the preparatory phase of the ceremony. For one couple, I created small, approximately 4oz glasses of spring water with about four spritzes of rose hydrolat in each. We each sipped quietly of the libation, and then I took them through a series of questions and had them answer them, respectively, while facing each other.  The questions would be based upon the purpose of the consultation, of course.In this case, there had been some family issues around acceptance (it was a same-sex couple) so some of the questions had to do with how facing these challenges had made the relationship stronger, and what they still needed to focus on to keep their hearts in love and positivity.  I also asked them to share an important memory, and also a future desired experience, with each other.  I then asked them to speak of what they pledged to each other.  It was very powerful, and they later told me that it was a turning point in the relationship, and cleared the way for a very heart-felt exchange of marriage vows.Sharing a hydrolat libation helps people to address complex, emotional issues with balance and thoughtfulness.  It helps reticent talkers to express themselves, and avid talkers to listen more attentively. The Rose hydrolat helps one speak from the heart.For the wedding ceremony itself, the couple chose Violet to wear over their hearts…to remember to stay open to one another and not fear deep intimacy.  For creating an aura of calm and harmony, Neroli (Orange blossom) was applied to their wrists and crown chakra. They literally emanated well-being and love as they walked up the aisle to pledge their lives to each other.You can use this approach to enhance literally any life event…hydrolat for the pre-ceremony/rehearsal phase and appropriate essences for the actual ceremony.  Aromatherapy deepens the experience and creates a lasting memory for all involved.Two important notices:

Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of these communications reflects my experiences, education, research and intuition, and is offered to support you in making choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share my Essential Thoughts and Newsletters with others who might enjoy them, with attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you!

Additionally, you are on my mailing list because you “opted in” on FB or my website, attended one of my events, or purchased something from Shining Sun Aromatherapy.  I hope you enjoy and benefit from these mailings, however, it is easy to unsubscribe (below) if you would rather not receive them.

Our mailing address is:
Shining Sun Aromatherapy
51 N. Shining Sun
Santa FeNM 87506

Cool It! Aromatherapy Solutions to Beat the Heat

: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Cool It!
Aromatherapy Solutions to Beat the Heat

Too hot to be out and about? If you want to hike or engage in some other outdoor activity in the heat, try this: Take a bandana, dip it in cold water, wring it out, and put a drop or two of peppermint on it. Fold it in half to make a triangle, then continue to fold the smaller end toward the larger to form a long, folded strip.

You can tie it around your neck or around your head; if you have two, tie one around the bicep area of each arm for a cooling remedy.  If you are like me, and end up going hiking in the hottest part of the day (even in Arizona!), you will find this bandana tip to be a lifesaver.

If you don’t like the fashion look of wearing a bandana, a few drops of any of the following at the nape of the neck or on the temples will have a cooling effect:

•   Spearmint
•   Wintergreen
•   Peppermint (US)
•   A spritz of chilled Peppermint hydrolat

And, for a refreshing Summer drink, this really hits the spot! Take a pitcher filled with ice; fill it half way with water and then to the top with lemonade or limeade. Add 4 drops of Peppermint (US) essential oil for an amazingly refreshing, tasty beverage. Enjoy!

Click to Order These Cooling Oils!
Two important notices:
First, Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of this newsletter is born from her experiences, education, research and intuition. It is hoped that the information contained herein will support you in making personal choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share our communications or selected content more widely, however, if you do, please give attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you!
Second, you are currently on my mailing list for communications from Shining Sun Aromatherapy via website opt-in, signing up at an event we hosted or participated in, or by purchasing essential oils/products from me. I hope you will choose to remain in communication with us, as new and exciting things are happening at Shining Sun Aromatherapy, however, I will certainly understand if you decide to “opt out”, as we all have to maintain our focus on things that are most important to us.


Our mailing address is:
Shining Sun Aromatherapy
51 N. Shining Sun
Santa FeNM 87506

Intoxicating Essence of Lavender Indulge Yourself!

: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Intoxicating Essence of Lavender
Indulge Yourself!

Wisdom of the Earth’s Albanian Lavender (Lavendula augustifolia) is wild-crafted in the lowlands of this beautiful country. A calming, yet uplifting essence, She is the perfect remedy as we head into the long hot days of summer! Too much wind or sun exposure on that camping trip?  She is just the essence to sooth your troubled skin.  Headache from squinting into the sun? She’s your girl.  Difficult to fall asleep in an unfamiliar bed or unfamiliar setting while you are traveling?  Several drops of Albanian Lavender applied to your wrists and over your heart will help you drift off to sleep in minutes.  Highly anti-inflammatory and analgesic, she will take the pain, redness and swelling out of insect bites.

We offer 7 different Lavenders…Albanian (my favorite, I will admit!); Fine Lavender; three elevations of Highland Lavender (harvested by hand atop Mt. de Cheiron in France) 1200-1400 meters, 1600 meters and 1800 meters; Spike Lavender (from Spain) – especially excellent for pain management; and Stoechas Lavender – also from Spain, also great for pain, but not as traditional a “lavender” aroma as the others.  It is rare, indeed, to be able to offer multiple wild-crafted lavenders, but we are blessed to do so.  The others are bio-dynamically produced, which is more prevalent in Europe than in the US, and means that the farming techniques are based upon the philosophies and methods of Rudolf Steiner.

Let Lavender, with her multiplicity of uses, old-fashioned comfort and intoxicating scent be your Summer companion.

Layer with Lavender Hydrolat
Multiply the Blessing!
The water from the “cook” of the lavender essence, our Lavender hydrolat is made from the distillation of Fine Lavender.  It is subtle, but powerful, and helps prevent or treat sunburn, calms the central nervous system, soothes Rosacea, and heals small scratches.

On an emotional/spiritual level, this hydrolat uplifts and delights the senses, has a soothing effect, and raises your vibration.  The hydrolat can be sprayed on the body, or around a stuffy room to literally, and figuratively, “clear the room”.  Use this beauty to bless yourself in ceremony!

Our hydrolats come in 4 oz bottles (120 ml) with a spray top.  They are best stored in a refrigerator, unless they are frequently used.  They do not have the same shelf-life as essential oils.

Two important notices:
First, Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of this newsletter is created from my experiences, education, research and intuition. It is hoped that the information contained herein will support you in making personal choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share our communications or selected content more widely, however, if you do, please give attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you!
Second, you are currently on my mailing list for communications from Shining Sun Aromatherapy via website opt-in, signing up at an event we hosted or participated in, or by purchasing essential oils/products from me. I hope you will choose to remain in communication with us, as new and exciting things are happening at Shining Sun Aromatherapy, however, I will certainly understand if you decide to “opt out”, as we all have to maintain our focus on things that are most important to us.

Our mailing address is:
51 N. Shining Sun
Santa Fe, NM  87506

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Welcome Back! Essential Thoughts Have Returned!

: Hand Poured : Ancient Wisdom :
Welcome Back to Shining Sun Aromatherapy!
Welcome Back, Welcome Back, Welcome Back! (Sung to the tune of Welcome Back, Kotter…If you are old enough to remember it!) I say “back”, because it has been some time since I have communicated via email, as I have been focused on creating exciting new offerings, while retiring or modifying others.   Over the next several months, you will see a clearer vision of Shining Sun Aromatherapy take shape, with new ways I will be speaking, writing and teaching about the healing power of pure plant and tree essences.

I hope that you are inspired by the content and visual energy of this reformatted Shining Sun Aromatherapy e-news.  I have created this new look and am committed to more consistent communication with you, my dear friends, clients, colleagues and students.

Summertime is the Time
Take the Cure!
Ayurvedic and Yogic Traditions understand that the factors impacting the environment in Summer provide optimal conditions for cleansing. The Sun, so close to the Earth, creates an organic sensation in the body to expand into new and greater potential for health and well-being and release that which is not serving this expansion.

The body intrinsically knows that the warmth of Summer means bountiful, fresh food supplies and craves lighter, cooling foods like steamed vegetables and salads. Longer days mean more time outdoors and an abundance of fresh air. Add medicinal essences to the mix and you have a perfect combination for cleansing, detoxifying and healing. It is absolutely possible to reinvent and revive one’s state of health and fortunately there are many oils that support doing just that.

Similar to every living organism on our planet, the human organism is programmed to repair itself on a cellular level according to its intricate blueprints. If you are deficient in vital nutrients, it might be challenge for your organism to heal itself.  Prepared food, “junk food”, “fast food”, and other culprits are robbing many of the nutrients they need to heal and thrive.

Another major overload people face today is the high level of toxicity in the environment and inside the human body. Toxins interfere with the normal functions of organs and make the process of healing hard or even impossible.

There are two main underlying causes for all illnesses in the world: toxicity and deficiency.People inevitably develop stress if they do not follow their dreams.  For those who do not know how to manage it, (or who refuse to make the necessary changes to alleviate it) stress can become the third cause of disease.Our bodies are dedicated to our survival, not our death. By addressing the key components that negatively affect the body’s ability to heal itself – toxicity, deficiency and stress – we can look to the Plant Kingdom for essences that detoxify, nourish and reduce stress.Detoxification
I could go on and on about the essential oils that support detoxification, there are so many and you will see a common thread that many of them are also digestive healers. Here is a short list, with a brief notation if they are noted for a particular type of detox:

  • Vetiver
  • Patchouli (heavy metals)
  • Red Pine (emotional toxicity)
  • Santolina (kidneys, gall bladder, liver)
  • Ginger Lily (liver)
  • Fennel
  • Rhododendron
  • Ginger
  • Black Pepper
  • Rosemary
  • Juniper Berry
  • Cypress
  • Laurel Leaf
  • Peppermint (liver, intestines)
  • Balsam gurjun
  • Calamus (liver)
  • Sweet Basil (liver)
  • Turmeric.

Nourishment (physical)

This is an area we rarely see discussed with regard to essential oils.  I will mention several that are known for their nutritional components but I expect that there are MANY more that contribute to the body on this level as well.
  • Black Cumin (nigella sativa):  We use this as a general tonic. I personally take about 30 drops a day, and can REALLY tell if I forget to take it.  Black Cumin is wonderful for increased energy and stamina, as well as mental clarity.  Black Cumin contains 21% protein, and is an excellent source of EFAs (essential fatty acids), necessary for cell maintenance, the stabilization of cell membranes, and the metabolization of cholesterol and fat in the blood.  The EFAs’ linoleic acid and gamma linolenic acid are used by the body to produce prostaglandins, vital hormone-like substances that regulate many body processes. Nutritional information from the book Black Cumin, the Magical Egyptian Herb for Allergies, Asthma and Immune Disorders, by Peter Schleicher, MD and Mohamed Saleh, MD.
  • Rose Hip Seed Oil (rosa rubiginosa): The dried form (rose hip fiber) contains Vitamin C, with about 1700 to 2000 milligrams per 100 grams in the dried product. In contrast, an orange contains 50 milligrams of vitamin C per 100 grams and a kiwifruit 90 milligrams per 100 grams.  Rosehip seed oil contains retinol (vitamin A). It is also high in the essential fatty acids, linoleic acid (omega-6) and linolenic acid (omega-3), as well as the antioxidant lycopene and beta-carotene. Wisdom of the Earth offers two types of the oil – “regular” Rosa rubiginosa, and Rose Hip Lycotop, which is made from only the red seeds (which contain greater amounts of lycopene).  We also have the Rose Hip fiber (mentioned above) which is great to put in smoothies, and some people make a tea of it.
  • Cucumber Seed Oil:  Rich in Vitamin C and B1, cucumber seed oil is a powerful antioxidant that can prevent the onset of premature aging caused by free radicals. Cucumber seed oil is also high in Omega 6 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory.  I love to use this to calm and soothe my skin after using a mild exfoliant (our Rose Hip Seed exfoliant).  When chilled, it is very cooling and soothing to sunburns, along with Lavender essential oil.

Stress

“People develop stress if they do not follow their dreams,” according to Victoria Boutenko, who speaks and writes about healthy living. The way we describe it at Shining Sun Aromatherapy and Wisdom of the Earth is that people are not being their “authentic selves”.  Something that is rarely discussed with regard to how pure essential oils affect humans, is that they bring you to your authentic self. Period. Sometimes this happens after one occurrence (hard to believe, but I can vouch for it personally), but usually it occurs over time, once someone is using pure essences on a daily basis with  consciousness and intention.My point is, simply using the essences will bring you to your authentic self. Minimizing stress greatly aides this process. There are some individual essences that are excellent at reducing stress:

  • Violet (fear, vulnerability)
  • Vetiver
  • Blue Chamomile
  • Blue Yarrow
  • Lavenders (particularly Highland and Albanian)
  • Wild Chamomile (anxiety, worry)
  • Scotch Pine (overwhelm)
  • Red Spruce (confusion, consumed by “what ifs”)
  • Sandalwood
  • White Spruce.

As my dear friend Uqualla, a Havasupai wisdom keeper says, “Let Heart Lead,” which, to me, is another way of saying “follow your dreams”.

Eat fresh, whole foods; minimize the toxins in your environment; (laundry products, cleaning products, yard care) and secure pure drinking water and use these essential oils. The Plant Kingdom has provided these wonderful essences that support the detoxification and the healing processes, all the while bringing you to a much healthier, calmer place in your life, living as your authentic self.

Sacred Seeds
Living in Northern New Mexico, where the land is generally and openly acknowledged as sacred, there is a reverence for the land and for the seed that is palpable. Seed exchanges are commonplace. The entire community gathers, telling stories of planting, of fruit trees caught, mid-bloom, by the late March frost and sharing seeds from their gardens or their farms with others seeking hardy, local plants that can withstand the Northern New Mexico weather. As a young man, my husband Leonardo planted sugar cane from the purplish-red seeds his grandmother had carefully saved for over fifteen years. The neighbors stared at the now unfamiliar crop, and then began to approach him, questioning what it was. It grew tall and strong, over seven and a half feet tall, reminiscent of the sugar cane the Spaniards had gown to supply sugar for their settlements and for trade since their arrival in New Mexico.

The fact that few could recognize the sugar cane, though it had been a local staple less than 20 years before, underscores how quickly a generation can lose valuable knowledge once the need for a particular crop is gone. Today, the vast majority of Americans have lost the knowledge of how to grow and produce food. We, for the most part, have handed that responsibility over to someone else or, more likely, to someTHING else. Giant companies like Monsanto count on this disconnection to facilitate their plan to control the seed of the planet. Either the typical person has no idea that these companies are buying up patents on our seeds and staging a food coup to wrest control over the seed from farmers all over the world, or they hear it and dismiss it as unimportant or irrelevant.

The time will come when we need to regain these skills. To learn the personality of the land and weather again, to learn how to read the soil, to share seed with our neighbors as well as planting tips and soil secrets. Perhaps you will be the one in your community growing medicinal plants and distilling them for your neighbors while they supply you with corn and eggs. Success will depend upon your relationships with your neighbors, not fierce Yankee independence. Sustainability will be—IS—the key. Self sustaining practices as well as planetary sustaining practices. It is time to restore that age old bond between humans and the natural world and not let anyone tell you it is “unimportant” or “irrelevant.”

It is time we stand up for farming policy that honors local food production and respects the integrity of natural food. There is NOTHING natural about a Genetically Modified Organism (like corn or potatoes) that has within its cell structure man implanted pesticides designed to ward of insects, bacteria and fungi. I remember one of the famers interviewed by Michael Pollen for his fabulous book, The Botany of Desire. He broke down crying while discussing his farming practices over dinner with Michael, saying he HATED the way he had to farm. He remembered how his grandfather had farmed and yearned for that simpler time when the Monsantos of the world did not dictate how and what we would plant and would legally prohibit him from saving seed from the crops for use the next season.

If you are not aware of seed sharing opportunities in your community perhaps this will inspire you to create them!

Tansy, Wild
The Queen who shows us Our Strengths
Excerpt from Voices of Light, Voices of Love
It is in the wildness of nature that we truly see God’s plan. Wild Tansy reminds us of that. While we may find comfort in human order and predictability, the joy, excitement and passion in life most often comes in the unexpected encounter, the road less traveled, the exploration of the “what if’s” in our life. Her golden hue reflects the enlightenment that comes from the inner journey and the openness to hearing the messages that the voices of nature whisper to our hearts. Wild Tansy has a unique gift of revealing to us the “behind the behind,” the issues or beliefs hidden beneath layers of time and life’s experiences.

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” 
Mary Oliver, American Poet
Qualities of Tansy, Wild Include: 
Facilitates meditation, channeling; relates to 6th, 7th and 8th chakras. A Queen who shows us our strengths. Promotes menses or moon cycle and more…
Has a plant or tree ever spoken to you or moved you to a deeper place of self-knowing? This book shares the transformational experiences of our students as they journeyed with an essential oil of their choice as part of the Wisdom of the Earth Level I Medicinal Aromatherapy certification process. You will laugh, shed tears and be inspired as you travel with them into the heart of Mother Earth via the essences. These students have been forever changed by their experiences and our hope is that you will be, too!
Happy Father’s Day!
Dads are most ordinary men turned by love into heroes, adventurers, story-tellers and singers of song.
Pam Brown, Australian Poet
Click to Order Essential Oils
Two important notices:
First, Shining Sun Aromatherapy is the Santa Fe practice of Audre Gutierrez. The content of this newsletter is born from her experiences, education, research and intuition. It is hoped that the information contained herein will support you in making personal choices that enhance your health, happiness and well-being. Please feel free to share our communications or selected content more widely, however, if you do, please give attribution to Audre Gutierrez/Shining Sun Aromatherapy. Thank you!
Second, you are currently on my mailing list for communications from Shining Sun Aromatherapy via website opt-in, signing up at an event we hosted or participated in, or by purchasing essential oils/products from me. I hope you will choose to remain in communication with us, as new and exciting things are happening at Shining Sun Aromatherapy, however, I will certainly understand if you decide to “opt out”, as we all have to maintain our focus on things that are most important to us.

Our mailing address is:
51 N Shining Sun, Santa Fe, NM  87506

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Whatever your Passion or Profession…Essential Oils Can Work With You!

The basic nature of essential oils is to be in harmony and to bring harmony.  They are also wonderful additions to a surprising number and variety of professions or practices.  I think you will be surprised at the interesting and powerful ways our Essences are enhancing all sorts of business endeavors!  But first, a few announcements:

Level 1 Certification Class in Medicinal Aromatherapy

Lev. 2 Hopi TestersI will retire from teaching group Level 1 classes at the end of this year.  My last Level 1 Class will be held September 10-11, 2016 at my Shining Sun Aromatherapy studio just north of Santa Fe, NM. To qualify for the early registration price of $450, I must receive the full amount by August 10th.  After that date, the price goes to $475, and must be paid in full at the time of registration. I have room for about 5 more people; right now, I have no more auditor openings, but if you have your WOTE Level 1 certification and want to audit in September (and you have not already registered with me), please send me an email noting your interest, and I will put you on the “waiting list”. Life does happen, as we all know.  Details about the Level 1 Foundational course are available on my website, www.shiningsunaromatherapy.com/level-i-classes/  I am still doing Skype classes, mentoring, and private Level 1 classes.

Voices of Light, Voices of Love…Messages from the Plants and Trees by Audre Gutierrez, Barry Kapp and Cynthia Olivera de Kapp

Audre Barry Cyn book pic sittingHas a plant or tree ever spoken to you, or moved you to a deeper place of self-knowing? This book shares the transformational experiences of our students as they journeyed with an essential oil of their choice as part of the WOTE Level 1 Medicinal Aromatherapy certification process.  By their own account, these students have been forever changed by their experience. By sharing some of the heart-touching messages and profound wisdom they received from 19 different essences, our hope is that you will be, too!   Priced at $29.95; it will also be available on Amazon.

We are grateful for the support we have received from honored colleagues in the global aromatherapy community. For example:

 …For those who wish to retrace the intimate steps by which the authors have explored…their relation with essential oils, this book is a treasure trove. – Kurt Schnaubelt, PhD, Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy

 Many gifts await you in this beautiful book that can be read over and over again…Your heart will be nourished by this unique and loving interpretation of plants and essential oils. – Robbi Zeck, ND, Author of the Blossoming Heart, Aromatherapy for Healing and Transformation

This is unlike any offering we are aware of in the aromatherapy literature, and we are very excited to bring this information to light!  I am currently accepting pre-publication orders of this beautiful and moving book; we expect delivery of a limited first run in August or September.  Please call or email me if you are interested in securing one or more copies.

Voices of Light Book Cover

July’s Essential Thought from Shining Sun Aromatherapy: “Works Well With Others”

Growing up, I always heard the phrase “Plays well with others” as a way teachers and caregivers described children who were able to get along and function well in groups; when I got older, the phrase changed to “Works well with others”, which was important in both college and in employment. As a practicing aromatherapist and educator in the field of aromatherapy, I see how pertinent both of these concepts are in truly understanding how essential oils work with humans on all three levels…physical, emotional and spiritual.

Essential oils have a very unique and powerful ability to facilitate and enhance other modalities without overpowering them.   As is their nature, they work in harmony with each other, and with other ways of healing, supporting and creating. This is something that I find very special about the essences, but not much is said about it in the aromatherapy literature.

I am often asked “Is it ok to use more than one essence at a time? Won’t they conflict with each other?” Or, “If I use more than one essence, how will I know which one ‘worked’”? These are ways of understanding the world that bear little resemblance to nature or to how healing with natural medicines occurs. While there are some limited situations where essential oils may be “contra-indicated”…that is, they are not recommended for use with another treatment type or with a certain condition or with a certain pharmaceutical drug…for the most part they work remarkably well with each other, and with many diverse modalities and practices, as well.

Working Well Together

Our philosophy with regard to using multiple oils at one time (layering) to treat a condition or situation is that they work very powerfully and effectively together; typically, the essences selected the essences address both the presenting symptoms, as well as known or suspected contributing factors or root causes. For example, say that an individual experiences migraine headaches shortly before or during their menstrual period, and has done so for years. I might suggest Marjoram (cineole) and Peppermint for headache pain (both are anti-spasmodic and analgesic (pain-killing) in nature, and I might suggest Geranium and Clary Sage for hormonal balance. These would all complement each other and address the migraines from different angles.

We also use multiple oils at the same time to address a variety of concerns; a person might be working with Birch (Yellow) and Spike Lavender for their sprained hand, Cardamom Seed (Green) and Basil (Sweet) for digestive issues and Myrtle (linalool) for balancing their thyroid. I have seen people literally be aghast at the thought of using all of these essences at the same time, or within a twelve-hour period. We, as a culture, have been so conditioned by western medicine to think of drug interactions, the idea of different plant medicines working harmoniously with each other, as a general rule, is hard for some people “to wrap their heads around.” And yet, serious drug interactions (which I had personal and frightening experience with many years ago) are a reality, and are not well-understood or well-managed in western medicine.

medicines in shoeboxWhen my father was alive, he used to have a shoebox with 10-15 different drug bottles in it, prescribed by four or five different doctors. I know for a fact that his doctors did not confer with each other on how harmoniously these drugs would work together. Now, that is something to be aghast about. And I was. But when I tried to address this situation with my father, my concerns fell on deaf ears. My father refused to question his doctors, for in his mind, everything they said was “gospel”.  Also, he would never have “bothered” the doctor to ask if a newly prescribed medication was compatible with the laundry list of drugs he was already taking, prescribed by other doctors in other practices. I think his trust was outsized and misplaced.

Complementing Other Modalities/Professions

It is literally fascinating to see the beautiful symmetry of the essences with so many other modalities or practices. I did a “laundry list” of situations I am personally familiar with where essences have been successfully integrated with other professions, and here is what I came up with (we’ll start with the more obvious ones first…so stay with me…there are some pretty creative and exciting combinations here):

  • Massage:  Essences can be used directly on the areas of concern, and integrated into the massage… not just drops on a face towel or in the massage lotion.
  • Yoga:  An essential oil can be diffused in the practice area; many instructors apply an oil like Frankincense or Lavender on participants’ feet or crown chakras during savasana — Corpse pose —  at the end of a yoga session.
  • Chiropractic healing: Essences can be used during a session to help relax tense muscles and facilitate  manipulation and/or after a session to relieve any soreness or tightness.
  • Sound Healing with a didgeridoo:  The essence can be dripped into the bottom opening; the aroma then emanates from the instrument when it is blown in a sound healing session.  One of our clients does powerful healing in this way, and his choice is Wild Chamomile for its calming, soothing effect.
  • Sound Healing with crystal bowls or gongs:  Essences which are heart-opening or calming in nature can be applied to the participants and/or diffused in the room.
  • Vibrational Healing with Tuning Forks or Reiki: The vibration of the essences, in concert with the vibration of the forks or Reiki, is really profound. A local healer recently shared at my Aromatherapy Meet Up about the amazing reaction a client had to her use of the tuning forks with appropriate essences on each meridian.
  • Meditation:  The essences facilitate and enhance the experience of the person meditating; they can be diffused into the room or, preferably, applied to the participant.
  • Acupuncture: Suitable essences (i.e., those whose properties support the healing intention) can be applied to the area where the needle will be inserted, or the needle can be dipped in the essence before insertion.
  • Natural creams and salves: One of my students has a beautiful line of personal care products that she has created. While, at first, she wondered how moving to a higher grade of essences for her products would impact her bottom line, she was excited to tell me that she could use significantly less of our essences in her products, because they are so pure and powerful.  Also, her clients reported better results! The higher quality really made a positive difference in the effectiveness of her products, and actually made them less costly to produce!
  • Physical Therapy: Essences can be used during a session to help relax tense muscles or after a session to relieve any soreness or tightness.
  • Hypnotherapy: Essences can relax the person being hypnotized and facilitate a deep trance.

 

The following collaborations may be a little less “obvious”, but they are working very well for the owners of these businesses:

  • Space Organizer/De-cluttering: One of my students is an excellent personal and business organizer…she expertly helped me clear out my “junk” room and made my hall closet functional again! Many of her clients have emotional attachments to the things they have finally decided to “let go”, so she finds essences like Mugwort, Lavender, Peppermint and citruses really good for helping them with the letting go part, reducing the stress of the change, and uplifting them up mentally and emotionally.
  • Artistic Creation:   Music, painting, sculpting, dancing, pottery making, writing, etc. are enhanced by using essential oils to help open the heart, access our higher self, or access our inner child. Essences can also be used in the material…paint, clay, etc….to minimize any toxicity in the substances used and to leave the finished piece with a special energy and aroma (which recedes over time…the energy does not) that can enhance the experience of the person viewing or using the piece.
  • Nutritional Counseling: A number of the essences can be used for the emotional side of eating too little or eating too much; other essences can be used for their high satiety value.  For example, Black Cumin is 21% protein; it helps satisfy hunger and is energizing. Spearmint essential oil topically applied or in water helps curb cravings.
  • Jewelry: A friend who creates wonderful jewelry combined her love of our oils and the benefit she has received from them with her passion for jewelry-making. She now makes a variety of necklaces that gently emanate an essential oil of the wearer’s choice.
  • Psychotherapy: A friend and student who is an excellent therapist has greatly enhanced her practice by working with essences chosen to help with particular emotional issues experienced by a client, as well as relaxing and soothing them to enhance the benefits of an individual counseling session. She has found many essences, including Bergamot, Cardamom (Green), Laurel Leaf and Frankincense, to be greatly beneficial. The progress of the clients is accelerated, and many choose to purchase essences so that they can use them between sessions.
  • Candle-making: A woman who was interested in creating a line of natural candles asked to consult with me about essences she could use to give the candles aromas that would achieve certain goals like Clarity, Joy or Peace. She mentioned that she was going to make all of them colorless, as she hadn’t found any dyes that she felt comfortable using. When I showed her essences like Blue Tansy (beautiful dark blue in color), Blood Orange (brilliant red-orange color) and Emerald Cypress (deep green color), she was excited to realize she could facilitate a particular emotional state as well as have beautiful, natural colors for her candles.
  • Aesthetician: A student of mine is an aesthetician in Sedona; one of her “signatures” is to finish her facials with a couple of spritzes of our Neroli (Orange Blossom) Hydrolat. It is heavenly!
  • Personal/Business Coaching: One of my Santa Fe friends is a Coach to many incredibly successful and interesting people; she uses the essences to support them in changes they wish to make in their lives and careers…helping them get clearer on their goals, easing the difficulty of significant change, and relieving the stress of very high-powered career choices.
  • Hospice work: Essences can greatly ease the transition from this earthly realm for both the person transitioning, and the person’s family/caregivers. Frankincense, Sandalwood, Rose, Laurel Leaf, Blood Orange and Ocean Pine are a few of the many that are so effective for this sacred journey.
  • Channeling/Spiritual Guidance/Animal Communication: Essences are highly effective at increasing our ability to communicate with the unseen world, and to access the guidance of the Angelic Realm, the Plants & Trees, the Animal Kingdom, etc. Those who provide this service to others find that using the essences at the start of a session greatly enhances the connection between them and their client, and facilitates their ability to receive information from other sentient beings and the unseen world.
  • Nature Adventures/Exploration: One of our advanced students takes clients on a journey with the dolphins; he has found that using the essences greatly enhances the sacredness and depth of this profound experience.

 

Believe it or not, this list is not exhaustive, but I’m sure you get my point. As I tell my clients, when they callwoman questioning with question mark and say “Is there an oil to help me with X condition?”, “It is better to think of it as ‘What oil or oils will help me with X’ ”…because there is always some essence that will offer benefit or resolution in any situation. To extend that idea, there is probably some way essences could benefit any healing modality or profession, if we are just resourceful and creative about considering the options.

Now it’s your turn! I would love to hear from you about other wonderful collaborations with the oils that you have personally experienced or are familiar with. I am sure this already comprehensive list can grow even more.  Send me your thoughts, and I will post them on my Face Book page to continue the conversation!

Much love to you,

Audre Gutierrez, Owner, Shining Sun Aromatherapy

 

 

The Identity Crisis in Aromatherapy

I have been getting a number of calls and emails regarding recent statements concerning aromatherapy in social and other media.  They vary in content from “myths about essential oils” to “research on essential oils” to blanket generalizations about essential oils.  I will discuss what I am calling the Identity Crisis in Aromatherapy later in this newsletter, but first, I would like to share an important announcement regarding my Shining Sun Aromatherapy practice and some upcoming events that I hope you will be able to attend or share with others who might be interested.

Announcements:

Retirement from Level I Teaching after 2016

I will be retiring from teaching the Wisdom of the Earth Level I Certification program after my three classes scheduled in 2016.  It is time for me to leverage myself more effectively…so I will continue to teach the 5.5 day WOTE Advanced Aromatherapy Retreat (“Level II”) with Barry and Cynthia Olivera de Kapp which is offered twice a year at our Wisdom of the Earth facility outside of Sedona, AZ; on-line classes and seminars…some to be developed…as well as the Skype Level I, which I have done for some time; and I will do more writing, which I love, including finishing my book on Meditation and Essential Oils and other projects I have considered for some time.

I will miss the joy and enthusiasm of the Level 1 classes, whether at my studio in Santa Fe or at Northcoast Essentials in Arcata, CA.  However, I have been teaching Level 1 for over 15 years, and I know our incredible Level I faculty (listed on the Wisdom of the Earth website) will continue their amazing classes that get rave reviews from students all over the country and in Japan.  Any of the certified students I have taught will be able to audit Level I classes taught by these WOTE contracted teachers — all of whom have received their Level I and Advanced Retreat certifications, and who are senior members of the WOTE family.

A heart-felt thank you to all of those over the years who have entrusted their training in medicinal aromatherapy to me.  Your trust and commitment mean the world to me, and I have been honored to be your teacher.  Here are two of my wonderful classes in Santa Fe…I wish I had been more consistent in my picture-taking, as I do not have group pictures for most of my classes!

May 2013 Level 1

level 1 outside

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Level I and Level II Classes

March 12-13 Level I in Arcata, CA (Humboldt County, northern CA):  I will be teaching the Level I Certification class at Northcoast Essentials Saturday and Sunday, March 12-13, 2016.  Times will be the standard times, 9:30-6:00 both days.  For more details on the Level I class, please visit my website and read the description and testimonials.  There is a registration form you can download, if you decide the time is right for you!  Please let me know ASAP if you want to register.  I have extended the Early Registration discount until midnight, February 20th.  https://shiningsun-shiningsunaromatherapy-com.oakleystudio.com/level-i-classes/

April 12-17 Level II in Cornville, AZ, just outside of Sedona at Wisdom of the Earth.  Please see my Shining Sun Aromatherapy website for details.  https://shiningsun-shiningsunaromatherapy-com.oakleystudio.com/advanced-classes/  This is a life-changing immersion into the heart and soul of aromatherapy.  Still room for a few more students!

Level 2 April 2015

Level 2

Level 2 pouring station

 

 

 

 

 

June 4-5 Level I in Santa Fe, NM  9:30-6:00 both days.  For more details on the Level 1 class, please visit my website and read the description and testimonials.  There is a registration form you can download, if you decide the time is right for you!  Early registration discount ends May 4th.    https://shiningsun-shiningsunaromatherapy-com.oakleystudio.com/level-i-classes/

September 10-11 Level I in Santa Fe, NM  LAST  LEVEL I I WILL BE TEACHING  9:30-6:00 both days.  For more details on the Level 1 class, please visit my website and read the description and testimonials.  There is a registration form you can download, if you decide the time is right for you! Early registration discount ends August 10th.    https://shiningsun-shiningsunaromatherapy-com.oakleystudio.com/level-i-classes/

The Identity Crisis in Aromatherapy

While I may be engaging in hyperbole just a bit with this title, I do not think that it is an overstatement to say that there are many schools of thought that have co-existed for some time in the world of Aromatherapy.  But, like much of American culture these days, what seems to be happening is that these schools of thought are becoming more polarized…that is, “my/our view is right…the others are wrong”.  And that is saying it much more politely than I have sometimes seen or heard.  Why do I think this?

There seem to be a lot more “declarative statements” now than before.  By that, I mean, generalizations stated as fact, with little or no room for other views on the same subject.   “Never use an undiluted oil on your skin.”  “Never use Mugwort…it is dangerous.”  “Never use oils during a pregnancy.”  None of these specific “black and white” declarations are substantiated by my training or experience, so I disregard them while still exercising prudence and respect for the power of the oils.  Kurt Schnaubelt, an internationally known aromatherapist, scientist, and one of our teachers and mentors, observed in his book The Healing Intelligence of Essential Oils (pg. 76) that ” ‘even the safety of essential oils during pregnancy discussion’ seems to abate due to the stubborn absence of reports of any adverse effects.”

Cat for ETBasically, I think that many of these safety arguments come down to a love versus fear paradigm. There have always been articles circulating the Internet like those that said that Lavender was causing breast development in young boys (my bet is on the growth hormones in so much of our milk and meat products), and that you couldn’t use essential oils on cats because it is toxic for them (tell that to the cat Barry saved who had had a stroke…which the vet was treating with antibiotics).  But there seems to be more of it now, stated with greater certainty.   To share another quote from Kurt’s powerful book:  “To get out from underneath these layers of trumped-up concerns, the whole safety and toxicity discussion needs to be turned upside down.  Instead of perpetuating mantras about imaginary dangers, the inherently benign nature of essential oils needs to be recognized.” (pg. 75)  I couldn’t agree more.

I don’t think the scientists and non-scientists need to be at odds, with lines drawn in the sand.  While science isn’t my “thing”, I believe there can be value in well-designed, well-executed and properly interpreted research on essential oils and their effectiveness with various health conditions.  However, sometimes science doesn’t give me a warm, fuzzy feeling. Take the gentleman who came to our Wisdom of the Earth booth years ago at a Holistic Health show…he was doing research at the NIH on Frankincense, as he proudly told us, but, in the name of objectivity, had never smelled Frankincense, nor had he ever experienced it personally (i.e., applied it to his skin).   It truly made me wonder what sense he was going to make of the data collected.  Also, he said that their research goal was ultimately to find the isolate in Frankincense that made it effective so that it could be patented, synthetically produced, and mass-marketed.  He looked at us like we were crazy when we explained to him our view that Frankincense would not work the same in the body if it weren’t in its wholeness, and certainly not if it were synthetic.  He shook his head, packed up his things and stormed away from our booth…and we looked at each other and shook our heads as well. Time to agree to disagree.

Or, when you have no idea of the purity of the essence being tested (I have honestly never seen this addressed in an essential oil research report), or even if it truly IS the essence said to be studied (one study I saw years ago used the terms Melissa and Lemon Verbena interchangeably…even though they are totally different plants/oils…they were likely referring to the common name for Melissa, Lemon Balm, but it was incorrectly stated throughout the article); well, such issues raise doubts in my mind, and I, for one, am not going to view the results as gospel.  So, I look at everything, including scientific “evidence” to see if it resonates with me; to see if it makes sense, relative to my experience, intuition and training; and to see if it passes the “Audre’s truth” test.

That leads me to another oft debated or denigrated aspect of essential oils, namely, their consciousness, or, as some might describe it, their “aliveness”.  Recently, an article by essential oil chemist Rob Pappas which “debunks” a list of “myths” regarding essential oils, has been circulating the Internet.  One of these myths concerns those who believe that the essences are alive.  As he says: “Sorry to disappoint, but essential oils are not alive.  I would like to see anyone go through a 212+ degree distillation process for a few hours and come out alive at the other end, LOL.  The plant material is certainly not alive after the distillation, so I am not sure how anyone could believe the the oil is alive.”

Level 2 student bonding with treeBasically, this conflict of views comes down to science versus spirituality, in my humble opinion.  And, despite the sometimes acrimonious nature of this “identity crisis”,  I do not care to get into shouting matches about whether the oils are sentient beings or not.  I do not care to try to convince even one disbelieving person that the plants, trees and essential oils talk to me…and to others.  It all comes down to whether we can hear them, and whether we believe what we have heard.  I have seen enough of our students have life-changing experiences from meditating with the essences, or spending thirty minutes bonding with a tree or plant, or feeling “called” by a particular essential oil to know that my profound experiences with the oils and the Plant Kingdom are not limited to me.  They are repeated time and time again across people, plant species, and geographic locations.

 

Our (my, Barry and Cynthia’s) forthcoming book, Voices of Light, Voices of Love…Messages from the Plants and Trees offers an incredible array of transformational experiences with the essences/plants and trees that some of our Level I students have documented in their certification papers over the years.  These are the kind of accounts you couldn’t make up if you tried…and I know that they were life-changing experiences shared from the truth of their hearts.

While these experiences may not be “fact” or “truth” to some people…they certainly are to me.  And I need no one’s approval of that or confirmation of that.  It just is.  And it is beautiful, and it is life-changing.  And it is an honor to engage in cross-species communication with the plants/oils, just as it is with a precious dog or a wild animal.

While some feel the need to hold others hostage to their truth concerning the dangers of essential oils and numerous prohibitions regarding their use, I am happy to take my lead from the plants and trees, my own study and experience, and my own intuition and higher guidance. I believe in honoring the views of others, even if I don’t agree with them, or even if those views do not mirror my experience over the years.  I believe in respect and reasonableness, and that is how I will continue to operate.

Wishing you introspection, deep love for the plants and trees, and a respect for the views of others…

Audre Gutierrez
Owner, Shining Sun Aromatherapy & Partner, Wisdom of the Earth Essential Oils
www.shiningsunaromatherapy.com   shiningsunaromatherapy@gmail.com
Please respect my ownership of the information contained in this post.  I would welcome you sharing it, as long as you give me and Shining Sun Aromatherapy attribution.  Thank you!