Letter from Publisher
Kendra & Jacqueline, Co-publishers
Our vitality is evidence that we are maintaining a healthy and vibrant life. As late summer breezes take us into the brilliant colors of fall, I find myself pondering the ebb and flow of this lifeforce and considering how to bring back balance when life’s daily demands, losses and prolonged stress throw us off center. A state of balance is not a once-and-done achievement. It requires life-long ongoing assessment, starting with intentional slowing down and tuning in to ourselves, allowing the messages our body sends us to become evident, guiding us to what we need.
Sometimes these messages are uncomfortable––showing up in the form of pain, fatigue, emotional or spiritual discomfort––so we ignore, push down or reject them rather than embrace them, even though they are intended to help us restore ourselves to health. Instead, we could choose to see the discomfort as an invitation to hold ourselves tenderly, look closely and believe that our worth requires attention, action and commitment to rebalance our health and wellness.
Turning attention into awareness is something learned, and like any new skill requires practice. Yoga and meditation teach us to tune in to the breath, and in doing so, we tune into our bodies and eventually into our whole selves, finding increased empathy and connection with others.
Themes of awareness, connection and restoration, and the tools to help us maintain our balance, are found in the pages of this month’s issue. In “Age-Defying Bodywork: How to Turn Back the Clock,” writer Marlaina Donato explains how fortifying the nervous system through massage, acupuncture and reflexology is critical to combating age-accelerating stress hormones like cortisol—and has been embraced by the medical mainstream. She also suggests in “The Power of Yoga: Tapping Into the Life Force” that yoga’s contribution to mind-body fitness is a reliable defense against age-related loss of mobility, heart disease and depression.
The mind-body connection is woven throughout Sudha Allit’s inspirational contribution, “Wisdom Unfolding: Approaching Pain, Hunger and Awareness Through Yoga”, and in the recipes she shares to complement writer April Thompson’s “Ayurvedic Cooking: Ancient System Restores Balance.” In Ayurveda, one of the world’s oldest systems, food is medicine; the menu is seasonal and local, and timing and preparation are critical to rebalancing health.
As we seek to rebalance and realign, connect with others and ourselves, may we remember that there is companionship in this community of like-minded seekers, and support for the journey can be found in our pages.
Let’s be mindful of making connections this fall, opening to the possibilities of new companions and deepening relationships that help us feel good, live simply and laugh more.
Jacqueline and Kendra
In times of stress, the best thing we can do for each other is to listen with our ears and our hearts and to be assured that our questions are just as important as our answers.
― Fred Rogers