Let’s Awaken, Beautiful People!


black-madonna-son
We have entered a time where our inner grace is constantly challenged. It’s part of our experential earth life stuff. We are here to evolve and, geez, it’s just not for the feign of heart. So, it’s crucial that we surround ourselves with powerfully positive thoughts, people, and information. Choose to be the solution. Start with self. Seek out the wisdom, the Love, the beauty, the calm within yourself. Tell yourself the truth at all times.
 
Drop your deceit, lies, knives (the backstabbing ones) and pick up your reasons for growing, developing, expanding…Once you set intention, fascinating things start to happen. You notice the light in a child’s smile. You realize your neighbor’s sour face is because s/he is lonely and needs a smile, a helping hand. You find yourself feeling calmer for no apparent reason. You chide away from negative talk, especial gossip. You choose not to berate a person, or curse a person. In other words, you begin to be the change you want to see in others.
 
Our Souls are awakening. Our time is now. Our need is Love, respect, compassion, resurrection and to know when to retreat. Please take good care. We are all in growth mode. The rest is on us. Seek the help you need. You’re not alone. Actually, you’re in GREAT company! Smile often. Forgive often. Hug yourself and someone else. Walk away from those who do not have you in mind. Love will win in the end, but it’s a ways away. So, keep it motivated. 😉 Please remember: Every journey begins with the first step.
Love YOU, I do! ❤

RED BLACKBERRY JOYRIDES THRU SAN FRANCISCO!


Always found this blog post an hilarious way to get over losing my Blackberry, all the notes, files, contacts and music. Humor is healing.

Dafina's Treasures

Life has gotten way too serious! BREAKING NEWS: This just in! Police Report given by Oakland’s Licensed Acupuncturist, Dafina Kuficha: “Who knew when I got out of the taxi,

CAB DRIVER: BENITO FOURATUCCI

my assistant,  Ms. Red Blackberry, had remained behind, and sadly with all my precious business and personal documents still in her possession. I didn’t realize it right away as I was rushing to get to the parking lot in time to avoid paying extra parking fees. You know I could pay a third of my office rent for what it costs to park in San Francisco.  Sorry, I digress. I asked Ms. Red to phone my publisher and when she didn’t reply, I turned around and she was nowhere to be seen. That’s when I realized she did not leave the taxicab. “Ms. Red hadn’t been herself lately. She and the cab driver had been flirting. After…

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Life Is Precious/Save One Today, Part 1


There are many who curse the person who in a “selfish” moment take his or her own life. However, unless you’ve suffered through depression, especially severe depression, your judgments are misguided. Depression is not your usual sadness. It’s a touch of that, but much, much more. The mind of a depressed is fragile, at best. They often wear the mask of “all’s well,” but they haven’t found that to be so. They are often besieged with thoughts of worthlessness, and it often doesn’t take a lot to get to that place. There also may not be anything apparent in their lives that the average person would consider “bad enough” to even consider suicide. However, we must always remember that people wear masks to hide behind because often they have not received unconditional Love and support that

If you or someone you know is having a hardIMG_8993 time, please know there is someone out there on that same page. Please know that there are many of us who would hold your secrets and judge you NOT! Please know your mind can and does lie. You are NEVER worthless. The standards this society sets for worthiness are unreachable and unreasonable. We have become conditioned to see worth as a matter of possessions, not as a birthright.

When you’re in trouble, remember, there are suicide hotlines with people waiting to be attentive to your needs or to the needs of those whom you refer. Those ears are there to hear your problems. In my profession as a licensed acupuncturist, I have treated and referred patients who were suicidal. There were times when I was able to recognize the signs, and other times, I could hear it in their story. Folks go through a lot. I’ve often wondered, after listening to their stories, how some of them get out of bed in the morning. And, then, there are those who don’t have a tangible problem, but their mental/emotional wiring is a bit off. There is no difference between them and those who have lost a child or their job or their homes. Pain IS pain! When we know our value, nothing can take us down. KNOW THYSELF and to thy own self be true. How? Deepen your spiritual base. “S/he will remain in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee. Take thought inventory. From where do your thoughts derive? What tape keeps playing in your mind over and over again. Replace negative thoughts of self with positive ones. It’s a practice. You’re not going to believe them right away, but keep working with positivity. Smile inside. Warm your own heart. Hug yourself. Take small steps, but take steps to assure yourself that your life is precious, worthy and important, especially to YOU! And, no matter how it seems, your life is important to others, too. I know it’s important to me!

Here is the number to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255. Keep it close and share it with someone you Love. If you have the heart to listen to people needing help through depression and suicidal thoughts, perhaps this is a good place for you to train.

Let’s choose to be present for each other. No, we can’t help everyone, but we can surely acknowledge when someone needs help and make every effort to assist them, as we are able. We are ALL in this together! Love is a big part of the healing, as is acceptance.

Brrrr, It’s An Intensely Cccold Winter! What to Do!


WINTER LANDSCAPE Photo by Tesnim Shoemaker

WINTER LANDSCAPE
Photo by Tesnim Shoemaker

Many cities in this country are preparing for an Arctic freeze, meaning a lot of people of all ages and conditions will be experiencing dangerously low temperatures. I affirm that there is NO where Divine Good is not, even where it seems an impossibility. However, it’s not enough to pray for your good, you have to help it manifest. Some of the weather conditions will reach record lows that have not occurred for many decades. Thus, many who are in the midst of these extreme temperatures may have no idea how to handle them.

So, with you in mind, I have written this blog and posted a few links at the end of my blog to further inform you on how to survive, even enjoy, these extreme conditions safely. (Oh, quick shout out to my dearly treasured family and friends  and to everyone facing extreme cold, I, we, are praying you warmth, safety, protection and to fare well during these very intense climatic times. Now, please read on…)

Do wear a lot of layers (4), starting with a soft shell, followed by a layer that gives you wind & water protection. The layers trap air. There are never too many layers. Keep your neck, the back of it, particularly, your mouth & nostrils, hands and toes well covered. It’s better to have too much clothing than too little.

Sitting in your car while it’s idling in the snow can cause carbon monoxide poisoning, especially if the back of the car is buried in snow. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning resemble the symptoms of cold, but since the car is running, they may be a bit more apparent: fatigue, nausea, dizziness and headache.

Do use wisdom when keeping warm inside your homes. Fireplaces should have the logs fitting within the fireplace, not hanging outside of it. Also, make certain the chute is open so the carbon monoxide does not overcome your room or home. That actually happened to me a few years ago when I was living in Sacramento. I went to bed as the rest of the logs were burning out. I did not realize my chimney chute had closed. Thank goodness, I went to sleep with my bedroom door closed as I would usually like that heat to keep me warm. When I awakened, I could hardly lift my head from the pillow it hurt so badly. I finally got myself up, dizzy with the banging headache. When I opened the door, the room was filled with smoke. I grabbed something to cover my mouth and nose and opened all the windows. Some writer could have been using me as an example of why you want to be absolutely certain your chimney chutes are open when you are using your fireplace.

The other story is that of a dear friend who cleaned out her fireplace a few days after burning logs and papers. She absentmindedly put the seemingly cold remains of the fire in paper bags and left them on her back deck. By midnight a fire was raging and she and her husband were thankfully awakened by neighbors. Fortunate for them, they were alright and had to wait a couple of years for the renovation of their home after the fire.

Another danger is space heaters. Not only do you have to be certain the cords on the heaters are not worn, you must also be concerned with where you place the heaters. Too many people have lost their lives because they have gone to sleep and the heater caught something on fire or the cord was worn and started a fire. Also, please be careful using your oven to heat your home. Most local gas companies send out safety information for using gas items to keep warm. Any flammable items should be used cautiously and with wisdom. You cannot be too cautious!

If you are out and about during the extreme cold, keep blankets and an emergency kit in your car. It’s also important to know that symptoms of hypothermia can occur very quickly in extreme cold conditions. You may also be on the lookout for any signs in people you pass who may not be as fortunate as you to be properly dressed or sheltered. The following list is from www.mayoclinic.org and lists hypothermia symptoms and here are a few of them:

“Shivering is your body’s automatic defense against cold temperature — an attempt to warm itself. Constant shivering is a key sign of hypothermia. Signs and symptoms of moderate to severe hypothermia include:

  • Shivering
  • Clumsiness or lack of coordination
  • Slurred speech or mumbling
  • Stumbling
  • Confusion or difficulty thinking
  • Poor decision-making, such as trying to remove warm clothes
  • Drowsiness or very low energy
  • Apathy or lack of concern about one’s condition
  • Progressive loss of consciousness
  • Weak pulse
  • Slow, shallow breathing

A person with hypothermia usually isn’t aware of his or her condition, because the symptoms often begin gradually and because the confused thinking associated with hypothermia prevents self-awareness.” – By Mayo Clinic Staff

Do phone, text, email, as you are able, family, good friends, or young folks who may not be exposed to how to survive during harsh weather conditions and share these tips with them. This info may be life-sustaining for them. Keep a lookout for others whom you may pass during your time outdoors. Give generously to people who need a hand.

I just want you to know we are thinking of you, praying for you, and knowing that your needs are met. Please keep your tempers and choose to quiet yourselves when needed, keeping your tempers in balance and your fears controlled. This is a good time to reconnect with family members with whom you live. Sometimes life’s hustle and bustle keep us from really stopping to hear and know each other. After awhile, families are more like strangers. So, you may choose to find some games, projects, or the like to keep engaged with each other, especially if you’re forced to be indoors.

This is a time to share with those who were not, are not as prepared, for whatever reason. Kindly put your judgments aside as those folks may be facing life or death situations and you may not be aware of that at first glance.  Please also check on any elders you know, or anyone you know may be vulnerable during this time. Keep your children close and highly informed with common sense approach to being out in the cold. See that they have a list, not on their phones, but in their pockets of emergency numbers they may need to call. Let others you trust know their route from school or perhaps form a team of parents to keep all the children safe, especially the ones whose parents will not be as attentive. Remember: All children are our children. They’re safety is a community affair.

While you’re out, do let your folks know where you’re going and your estimated time of return, just in case they need to look for you because a blizzard occurred.

Remember: There are Divine Angels all around you. Call on them to assist you. You are never alone. Most High bless, guide and deliver you as needed. Be wise, please.

Here are a few websites with more information about how to stay safe in the cold weather conditions:

http://www.weather.com/news/weather-winter/winter-storm-live-updates-snow-ice-latest-20131106

http://articles.philly.com/1996-01-10/news/25652238_1_carbon-monoxide-car-exhaust-poison-control-center

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hypothermia/basics/symptoms/CON-20020453

http://www.ehow.com/list_6869570_dangers-running-gas-fireplace_.html

http://www.today.com/money/hidden-dangers-gas-fireplaces-6C9675769

http://www.csia.org/homeowner-resources/the_facts_about_chimney_fires.aspx

http://myhomecare.ie/index.php/top-tips-for-the-elderly-in-cold-weather/

And, To All A Good Life!


Happy, safe, & enjoyable Holy Holidays to ALL!

ImageWhatever your belief, I hope this season finds you to be of good heart and generous character. We are all in this together and during this season, especially, we are given great opportunity to develop and express the spirit of brother & sisterhood to all, not just those in our circles, of our own race, ethnicity, gender, religion, etc. We can choose to honor and respect ALL life. We can choose Love over hate, acceptance over intolerance, and we can choose to exemplify standards of morality that will aid our children in respecting and Loving themselves and each other.

These are beautiful times, and yet, highly emotional times for many, many people.  While some of us will be enjoying connecting with family and friends over a great meal on Christmas, others will be grieving for those who are not present at the table this year. Others still may not have a table at which to feast. As well, there are families missing children, parents, friends, and even pets. There are those whose lives were upset by natural disasters and they have not recovered. We have so many unemployed who are stressing to bring home gifts for their children, or just food. There are people who are justly or unjustly incarcerated. They may be inhumanely treated even if their crime is minor. There are wars being fought and service men and women who will not be home for the holidays. While we have a lot for which to be thankful, the challenges may scream louder than our voice of gratitude. We are reminded to keep a soft light on in our hearts for our fellow sisters and brothers who are experiencing hard times. There are young folks without families who care about them and it becomes more pronounced during the holidays.

Suicides are on the rise during the winter season. S.A.D. aka Seasonal Affective Disorder may not be easily recognizable, but here are some signs Mayo Clinic asks us to watch out for:

  • Depression
  • Hopelessness
  • Anxiety
  • Loss of energy
  • Heavy, “leaden” feeling in the arms or legs
  • Social withdrawal
  • Oversleeping
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Appetite changes, especially a craving for foods high in carbohydrates
  • Weight gain
  • Difficulty concentrating

The holidays also tend to have people rushing around for gifts, holiday parties or just running to get that last task completed before taking off on holiday vacation. Rushing causes mindlessness and accidents of any nature can occur. This is a time to slow down and take heed of what’s in your surroundings. You may be running around so quickly that you don’t even realize you didn’t hold that heavy store door open for the next person, who may have been an elder, a child or a person with physical disabilities. Or perhaps, you have a long list of gifts to buy and didn’t find that item at the store you’re at and need to make a mad dash to another store. This may result in your driving too close and not have enough space to stop when the car in front of you brakes without warning, or speeding and losing control. And, those Christmas parties may have you drinking a bit too much. You can avoid the backlash if you keep your mind with you. Plan ahead and decide to drink and behave responsibly. Believe me, there is no better gift than the gift of life. No gift you can give is better than you being able to show up or to stay alive and safe.

There are those who have gone through tumultuous times this year and are thrilled to be beyond the depths of their struggle. “Yay, it’s over,” is their cheer! Their gift is that they can now finally exhale after months or a year of great trials. There are others who need Forgiveness and to Forgive a large or small transgression. Whatever the case, let us strive to be vehicles of goodness to ourselves and each other. We do not know what another person is feeling when they have that scowl on their face. It may be an incredibly hard time for that person. They don’t need our grief to add to their own. And, unless they are doing harm, we can ignore a bit of rudeness or meet it with a smile, if we just let ourselves slow down a bit and consider what another may be feeling beyond the surface.

This is a time for deepening, cleansing, and releasing what no longer serves our good, especially our Divine Goodness. Please take moments of Silence throughout your day and give thanks for your many precious treasures. Taking moments of Silence also allows us to make better choices with our reactions to adverse situations, avoiding the off-the-cuff responses for which later we may need to apologize. Let’s choose to keep an open Heart for those who may need our Kindness and Compassion. Tis the Season to Forgive. The best changes start within our own selves. Let us be of service where we are guided to be, and use the power of Prayer, powerfully positive affirmations when we are shown our place is to be on the sidelines, not to meddle or interfere in another’s process. Every season is a season for growth and new understandings. Please keep your focus on remaining safe and choose to do no harm.

The very best to you ALL! And, to all a good life! ❤

Choosing Vibrant Health 101


As a child, when my older sister & I would get into trouble, my parents would sit us down for the much dreaded family talk. Mom would rant and rave about how our friends were responsible for causing us to be in trouble. My father would sit back for a spell, allowing Mom the space to express her disappointment. He didn’t agree with her analysis though, much to my chagrin. Poppy, as I lovingly called him, wanted us to realize our power of choice. He’d often chide us with his ever-familiar chant, “You are responsible for your choices and behavior, not your friends, not your sister. YOU!”

What responsible choices can you make for your optimal health? Our health education should begin while we are young children. We should be not only be taught the importance of brushing our teeth and keeping our wardrobe neat and clean, but basic things, like how to care for our reproductive systems learning proper hygiene practices to prevent infections. We should also recognize indicators that let us know our health needs attention, like the importance of knowing what our urine and stools look like. Is the urine yellow? Are the stools formed? Do they come out easily or with force? All these are indicators. If the urine is yellow or the stools don’t release with ease, it may be as simple as needing adequate hydration, increasing our intake of water throughout the day. Children and adults alike should know the dangers of sodas to quench thirst and the value of water. 

We should all know the value of good nutrition and that we are not going to get it at MacDonald’s or in any other fast food outlet. Fast foods generally have little to no nutritional value. We need to know what our bodies need daily to operate optimally, choosing to eat whole foods like fruits, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, and healthy drinks. If you’re a meat eater, choose to eat free range or kosher meats, fish. Please be mindful to avoid or greatly minimize your consumption of the fish that are endangered due to overfishing and overconsumption. Continue reading

Take a deep breath…exhale slowly


My Lake Chabot hike photo by Dafina Kuficha

These days are filled with fascinating natural occurrences. Arizona has experienced its second major dust storm in a month. Over 241 tornados touched down in Alabama and the midwest, leaving uncountable and in some cases, insurmountable, damages, including loss of life and property. The news is not reassuring but actually serves to keep fear at the forefront of our lives. Stress plays an all too major role in our everyday lives and many of us need a way to handle it effectively. Well, here’s a 10-20 breathing exercise that may not be able to prevent high blood pressure but it can keep it from rising. Sometimes we just need an easy way to handle our stress and the right type of breathing can be the answer. Your breath can be of great aid to your process or it can hinder your process by keeping you feeling fearful and inflexible. Remember, deep breathing is essential to good health.

Acupuncture also aids you in deepening your breathing practice as it aids the respiratory system in improving its function. Choose to have vibrant  health by taking time to deepen your breathing with the Hara Breathing Exercise Technique and open yourself to practices that improve your health.

HARA BREATHING EXERCISE TECHNIQUE

Hara breathing is done to relieve the body, mind, and spirit of all types of stress.  If you feel weak or overwhelmed, scared or angry, breathing into the hara will ease these feelings.  Breathing into the hara region allows you to contact your reservoir of energy, and then helps you to root it.

Find a place of quiet, peacefulness.  Make sure the clothes you are wearing are loose fitting, especially around your waist.  You may lie down, sit down or stand up to perform this breathing technique.  It may feel more comfortable to either lie down with your knees slightly bent (to take pressure off your lower back), or to sit in the lotus (crossed-legged) position. (Careful of too placing much pressure on sore knees)  Begin with natural breathing, allowing your body, especially your jaws, neck and shoulders, to relax.

Begin by taking three deep, cleansing breaths, inhaling slowly through your nostrils, while expanding your abdomen, and finish by exhaling slowly through your mouth.

Now, inhale slowly through your nostrils to the count of five (“one thousand one” and so on).  Place your tongue at the roof of your mouth.  Feel your inhalation all the way down to your hara, the region located about one inch below your navel.  As you inhale to the count of five, your abdomen should be expanding as your diaphragm is moving downward.  Hold the breath for another five counts.  Exhale by removing your tongue from the roof of your mouth keeping your mouth slightly open.  To the count of five, slowly, quietly exhale like a cool breeze.  If a feather were placed in front of your mouth during the exhalation, it would not be moved, so quiet and calm is the exhaling breath.  Continue this exercise without pause between inhalation and exhalation.  As you become more adept with this breathing exercise, you may wish to hold the breath longer.  Increase the count gradually as you are ready for it.

Practice hara breathing daily for at least ten to twenty minutes in the mornings and evenings. You will immediately notice improvement in your inner feelings and in your overall physical health. Feel free to use this breathing technique when you are facing challenges in your life’s daily activities.  You can do the exercise for a few moments  or for ten to twenty minutes, once a day or twice a day or throughout the day. At the end you’ll feel much calmer and refreshed.  Your choices, options, possibilities and opportunities become clearer when you are calmer. Enjoy deeper breathing and better health.   Ashay!