On my most recent Women's Voices radio show, I interviewed a fascinating woman named Elizabeth Anne Jones. She has been studying and teaching aromatherapy for 30 years, and recently completed a book Awaken to Healing Fragrance about the subject. One of the things I really loved about the book is that it included portraits of 11 women throughout history who had used aromatherapy for healing and medicinal purposes as well as the sheer pleasure of enjoying scent and how it affects mind, body, and spirit . Some of my favorite portraits in the book were of Hatshepsut, the first female Pharoh of Egypt and her stunning temple Deir al Bahri, Cleopatra, Catherine de Medici, Queen Victoria, and the amazing saint, scholar, musician, sound shaman, visionary, and all around Renaissance woman (long before the Renaissance) Hildegarde von Bingen. Hildegard says that she first saw “The Shade of the Living Light” at the age of three and by age five she began to understand that she was experiencing visions. I found it interesting that she described her visions as "Living Light", since that is also the name of our company. Many people in the raw food world talk about how the light of the sun is trapped inside of plants, and we are nourished by that light when we eat the plants. Imagine the concentration of plant energy in pure essential oils.
As an example, it takes about 10,000 pounds of roses to make one pound of high quality Rose essential oil. For those of you who do not already know, we now have a truly remarkable teacher, Amy Bacheller, M.Ed., N.C., C.M.T. who comes to Living Light several times a year from her home in Santa Barbara to teach a weekend aromatherapy class: The Essence of Raw: Combining Raw Culinary Arts with the Wisdom of Essential Oils, and The Essence of Abundance: Creating Prosperity with Essential Oils. I have personally attended Amy's weekend classes, and found them to be truly beneficial on many levels. On the first day, we experimented with culinary oils. These precious oils are so powerful, and they have the potential to enhance flavor and add to the energetic healing capacity of our foods.
We are so lucky that Amy became a raw foodist after attending Living Light's Associate Chef and Instructor program, and has agreed to teach us her wisdom gained over the past 20 years as a holistic healer. She is certified in aromatherapy, nutritional counseling, guided imagery, bodywork, energetic healing, and raw foods. The second day of her workshop was even more amazing, as we explored the energies of many of the incredible blends created by Young Living . Several of us in the class had very moving experiences with the oils, and Amy's gentle guidance, humility, and deep understanding of the properties of each oil helped us integrate our experiences in a joyful way.
Here's what Amy has to say about Frankincense (one of my personal favorites). "The essential oils of aromatherapy are an ancient healing modality and prized treasure, proven by modern science. Frankincense, one of the best known, and part of the 'gift of the Magi', is considered to be a universal oil because of its diverse therapeutic properties. It is the number one oil for spiritual alignment, connection, and awareness. It can be used to deepen and enhance any meditation/prayer practice. Frankincense balances and activates the pineal and pituitary glands as well as the associated chakras of the crown and third eye. It has the capacity to repair DNA and has anti-tumor properties, and is wonderful for revitalizing aging skin. It is the oil of choice for depression and grief. Using Frankincense will open and expand your intuitive wisdom as well as strengthen your immune system. Frankincense is considered to be a holy anointing oil in many cultures. It can simply be inhaled or applied to the forehead, temples, back of the neck, thymus and any of the chakras."
Aromatherapy is a big subject, and a tradition that has been used for many centuries. I am very happy that we are including this important modality in our Living Light curriculum. Because of course, it's not just about the food, but the whole person, and how each of us relates to the world around us, including the beautiful plants and their spirits that nourish us all on so many levels. And if you are considering entering the HotRawChef Video Recipe Contest, what about incorporating essential oils into your recipe? Be well....Kristin