As most of you know, Jake and I are obsessed with tea, tisanes, extractions and decoctions. From the moment we wake up, to our wind-down at night, tea is an integral part of our life practice. It's such a beautiful rabbit hole to fall into when the magick of tea has sparked your interest. As I lean into plants in the form of tea, it makes me realize the alchemy that herbs offer our human bodies. There is a finesse to plant water extraction that teaches us patience, fluidity, self-care, magick and hopefully reverence. As a human I can’t think of a better teacher of the human experience. Tea has been there for me through pure joy, travel, change, sorrow, grief, illness and pretty much any situation... I tend to feel “there is a tea for that!"
The world is changing... wouldn't you agree? I'm seeing more and more people incorporate tea/herbs into their lifestyle, which makes my heart explode. After taking the amazing Ashley Smith’s tea course, I developed even more reverence and respect for tea than before. I realized I was “using” tea to help me get through many situations, but lo and behold I wasn’t giving these amazing plant beings the reverence through ceremony that they truly deserve.
One begins to grasp the full scope of tea ritual when considering the processes of growing, talking, singing, praying, watering, loving, harvesting, fermenting, drying, grinding, then using fire to heat the water for extracting the infinite earth that is infused into the plants, and finally the constituents rising and falling with the air and spirit back into the water for your consuming pleasure. I can’t believe our ancestors gave us these plants and knowledge. After I realized this gold existed, I started researching and trying out different ceremonial tea practices from around the world. Though I am just scratching the surface of understanding what these traditions have to offer, I realize there are a few things they all have in common, such as the focus on the elements in relation to our experience. For example a Cacao Ceremony is heart opening and grounds you into your body, while tea(camellia sinensis) is like a gentle teacher that weaves the heart with the body and mind for healing. As my ceremonial tea/herb practice evolves, I hope to host more ceremony at Roots of the Sun. Sunday, October 6th, I will be teaching all I know about tea in my “tea with intention” class. I will have a tasting experience and a chance to make your own custom tea blend at the end of class. I can’t wait to teach my first class at the new location, and share all about tea Magick with you all!
Hello Earth Lovers, I wanted to take a moment to talk about the Amazon.
I realize we are all inundated with fear-based news at some point or another, and I don’t know about you, but it makes me feel a little helpless. As Americans, we are so busy trying to grind, get by and hopefully thrive, but let’s be honest: living here can be a privilege and can sometimes be a hardship. That being said, if monetary energy is not something you can share at this moment, or don’t feel like you can, OR trust the source you are giving it to, I wanted to share some things with you that I personally believe can help! I believe energy is real and it is palpable. I'd like to share a meditation ritual with you I've done a few times and some really great resources that I myself have been following and researching for a while.
You will need:
Find a quiet space where you feel you can open up your energy field. If you practice, you know certain protections and crystals as well as salt can be a wonderful tools to surround yourself with. A prayer that I recite before any meditation or ritual is “Only love gets in, and only love gets out of this space.” In honor of the elements you can use a feather for the air element, water in a bowl for the water element, Fresh plants for earth and a candle for the fire element. Start to notice your breath, and the mind relaxing into a state of peace. As you clear your thoughts bring your attention to the elements and how they are the building blocks and facilitators of all of life, including yourself. In reverence, ask the elements to join you in helping the energetic state of the Amazon. As you feel them join in your meditation, begin to feel the moisture in the air flowing up to the clouds, try to blend into this resonance in order to try and move this process along with the help of the water element on your side. Feel and encourage this vibration for a while, then begin to turn your attention to the wind. Inhale and exhale with love and reverence for the element of air and the wind that moves through us just as the wind moved through our ancestors. At this point you can choose to ask for their help as well. Breathe in and push the clouds that you helped fill with water towards the Amazon rain forest as you breathe out. Continue this process as you are inhaling and exhaling of moving the clouds down to the Amazon.
The timing of this experience is up to you. When I created this meditation for myself the first time, I spent about an hour and a half total. I sincerely hope that you give it a try. Even if this movement of elemental energy is not for you, I encourage you to know your power and express it when the planet is in need.
Here are some resources that I trust and have been following for a while, if you wish to give monetarily.
I feel inspired to share something with you about my human
experience. Change… and why the heck is it so hard? Why does it feel so uncomfortable: like slowly ripping a band-aid off? As I recently lost a family member, I found myself angry that I was forced into so many changes… yet again. Telling myself I needed to act a certain way, look a certain way, and there was definitely the occasional emotional eating!
After 15 years of intentional spiritual and personal growth, here I am not being an advocate for myself again, like an amateur!
For one, as an American, I wasn’t taught about being flexible. I wasn’t taught that change would really be the only consistent thing in my life. Two, I felt like I was punishing myself by taking something away every time I tried to create a new way of being. I’ve fallen into all of the newest fad diets, crazy expensive supplements, and latest wellness lifestyles. I, of course, did this unconsciously to force myself into portraying this ideal image that you see everywhere about peace, radiance, and the perfect picture of a “healthy” life. I realized I was punishing myself to fit in… just like grade school!
This led to the greatest epiphany of my life. I don’t need to take the things that I enjoy away and push myself into this box of perfection. I need to treat my body and mind with respect, honor and reverence for supporting my spirit on this journey literally 24 hours a day, even
when I am sleeping. I realized instead of taking things away (also known as dieting), I need to GIVE myself the tools and support I need to grow. For example organic fruits and vegetables, and boundaries from things that no longer serve my highest good (including people). Food and lifestyle choices created with intention are what I was really craving all along. This shift in perspective was a sweet invitation to explore a different way of making changes. Instead of depriving and punishing myself, I am now choosing to give the totality of my being what it needs to thrive instead of just survive.
I invite you to explore these same nuances in your thought patterns. As you start to persecute yourself for not being enough, for cheating on your diet, or letting energy vampires stay attached to your energy field, ask yourself this simple question: Is this the way I would talk to my best friend if they were trying to be a different, dare I say, better person? Would I tell my best friend they weren’t good enough, skinny enough, funny enough? I would probably take a step back and say “don’t be so hard on yourself. You are worthy of happiness and becoming
the person you want to be.”
All you have to do is start giving to yourself, and stop taking away! Sounds so simple, but in order for change to be graceful we have to realize: We are worthy! We are worthy of change. We are worthy of all that change has in store for us. By making this seemingly small shift, I no longer fear change. I now look forward to the growth that the fluidity of life has to offer. I sincerely hope this perspective can help you too!
I will leave you with the beautiful words of Jimi Hendrix:
“Change is inevitable, growth is optional”
This seems like a good time to plug the amazing AboutDr. Jake… If you are looking to make some drastic shifts in your life and want a gentle, smart, kind, direct guide and Doctor of Psychology. Jake is truly an amazing healer. He has published articles and facilitated studies on Mindfulness, and uses a number of holistic techniques to help you find your center. He is available for one-on-one support Wednesdays 10-6, Fridays 10-6 and every other Sunday 12-4. He will be starting a Personal Transformation Process group in the fall as well as teaching classes in the Forest Tea Lounge!
As the days get longer and the berries and the nights get sweeter, I feel my inner child coming back out to play. The summer was a time of sweet exploration for me. The summer is when I picked my first blackberry and feel in love with the wild. Truck rides and fireflies filled with giggles and learning what it’s like to be an Earth-loving human. As I look around I start to notice that I don’t see children out running and playing freely in nature, and it makes me wonder if they are getting the full human experience. The summer time in Florida inspired my life’s work, and I hope you can find the beauty in the summer season too!
I wanted to share some of my favorite summer herbs with you all:
Hibiscus(Hibiscus sabdariffa) Actions~cholagogue, antimicrobial, refridgerant, Hibiscus Is one of my favorite summer herbs. Parts used- Calyx AKA the fruit. This herb is known as a refrigerant due to the way it helps cool and hydrate the body. Hibiscus has a tart berry-like taste and pairs well with most herbs. Hibiscus is high in antioxidants and vitamin C. My favorite way to use hibiscus is in our St. Pete Beach tea and in herbal popsicles. Hibiscus can be grown and cultivated right here in Florida. *Please Note not all hibiscus’ are edible.
Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis)- Actions~emmolient, analgesic, anti-fungal. Parts Used- gel in the inner leaf. One of my favorite herbs that I have been using as long as I can remember. It goes without saying that every household needs an aloe vera plant. Aloe is relatively easy to grow being in the succulent family. Aloe is so helpful throughout the summer months, because its amazing ability to sooth comfort and from my experience reconcile a Florida sunburn. Aloe is amazing for minor kitchen burns, cuts, crapes, and some rashes. I usually pick a few mid-sized leaves and put them in my refrigerator, especially for sunburn.
Plaintain Leaf (Plantago major)- Actions~ Vulnerary, anti-iflammatory, antiseptic. Parts used- leaf and seed. Plantain is a wonderful external support for wound healing, blisters, bruises. A tea can be made to spray on rashes and bug bites. I recommend putting it in the fridge, (it lasts for 3 days).
Lavender (Lavandula angustafolia)- Actions~ Anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, carminative, sedative nervine. Parts Used- Flower. Though lavender is not typically that easy to grow here, I find myself reaching for this precious joyful herb often. Lavender is cooling, soothing and an excellent aromatic relaxing tea for the belly and nervous system. My favorite way to use lavender is as a spray made from the tea, the essential oil for pesky/itchy bug bites and a relaxing sachet in my pillow.
I hope you enjoy your summer!
* The information on the traditional uses and properties of herbs are provided on this blog for educational use only, and is not intended as medical advice to treat, cure, or diagnose any disease. This information has not been evaluated by the FDA. If you have any health concerns, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs. *
Just wanted to drop in and share a bit about what’s going on with Jake and I. This year we've decided not to drink alcohol for the entirety of 2019. We're calling it Clean '19. As some of you may know Roots of the Sun has been growing and changing and so have we. I consider us to be curious humans, so we have decided to see what being completely void of alcohol for a whole year will feel like. For the record, we don’t think there is anything wrong with drinking, we have just become sober curious, if you will. We also love working with plants in so many ways and feel like this will give us more room to learn of the many plant allies that speak to our bodies in similar ways that alcohol does, as well as explore new ways plants can open our consciousness through alchemy, and energetic elixirs and infusions.
That being said, I realize our culture is centered around drinking and since we haven’t been drinking alcohol for the past 4 months I suddenly feel empathy for alcoholics in a way I had little patience for before. We are realizing everything we do somehow has alcohol infused into the activity.
After 8 months of work/play nonstop on our shop baby we took a little break to camp and kayak on the river. For the first time in 4 months we felt “challenged” by our “sobriety.” I am a native Floridian and have spent a large part of my life outdoors, on the amazing rivers and beaches and no doubt love having a cold alcoholic beverage to support the comradery that goes along with the beautiful outdoors. As I worked through what that meant for me I realized something needs to change! The oral and social part of connecting over alcohol is not the problem, it’s the hangover and the taxing effect it has on our bodies. I am up for the challenge of changing my rituals and as a Sagittarius with a Aquarius moon, I deeply care about people and the collective. As I create new social rituals and connection I am really excited to share them with you all. This wasn’t necessarily planned, in terms of our Clean '19, but as it turns out we have a beautiful new space to host more conscious, co-creative, and swanky events, all infused with plant energetics.
I love and appreciate you all for supporting us through our changes! If you are sober curious like us and are choosing to try something new that feels great and supports your body, come hang and have an elixir with us!
According to the majority of mainstream scientists, the most powerful force in the universe is entropy. This force dictates that everything eventually dies, decays, and succumbs to the oblivion of a dark and lifeless void. Thankfully, these scientists overlooked one important ingredient when studying the nature of reality: consciousness. Quantum physicists have now discovered that the fabric of existence in this universe is in a state of re-creation through and ongoing interplay between energy and matter. They have reached the undisputed conclusion that the universe is Alive, and has a consciousness
of its own. Furthermore, they have found this consciousness to have a specific intention, which fortunately for us supports the unfoldment of life. This force has been coined as “The Benevolent Bias” of the universe. In other words, scientists have proven that the Universe Loves Us. This background energy of creation exists everywhere, as a coherent field that gently ushers the forward movement of all things. This loving force is responsible for the elegance of the cosmos, the harmony of music, the beauty of nature, and the crystalline geometry of snowflakes. Perhaps the most profound aspect of these scientific revelations is the fact that each and every one of us has access to the power of this Universal Benevolence. You see, each individual point of consciousness creates its own version of the universal field. In other words, the center of your being (which many refer as “the heart”) produces an electromagnetic field at least the size of the earth itself, which vibrates at the frequency of your emotional state. Therefore, we are all connected, and our energy influences everything in existence. The frequencies we generate have a measureable effect on quantum probabilities, meaning we have an incredible power to influence the likelihood of future events. Our energy field influences the structure of physical matter, and the emotions of others in our vicinity. But by far the most profound effect of our state of consciousness is on the functioning of our physical body. Our energetic state of being affects every fiber of our DNA, and determines the quality of cell regeneration. When we resonate with coherent (loving) frequencies, our body releases alkalizing hormones, allowing our immune system to thrive, and activates an epigenetic healing mechanism in our DNA. In other words, when we align our energy and intentions with the benevolent, loving force of the universe on a consistent basis; our bodies naturally heal themselves from the inside-out.
You may be asking yourself at this point “How can I access and benefit from this miraculous healing power of love”? Well that is a very good question, with a very simple answer; Love yourself. You see, love is not just an emotion, Love is a choice to surrender to the unconditional love that the Universe has for you.
The key is to care about yourself, with the same care you would give to a child in need. To be present with all of your pain and darkness, and have the courage to keep the light on. Now that’s LOVE! To continue loving yourself even when you don’t like yourself. Especially when you don’t like yourself. Especially when it feels awkward or uncomfortable. That is how you turn Love from a foreign experience into a familiar one. That is how you reveal your true Infinite Worth to yourself. That is when you gain the power to create a coherent state of being, regardless of the circumstances. That is how you make Love truly unconditional and become a cup that runneth over, a Shining Beacon for the world to see. You are The Light of Universal Love… So Be It and Let the Healing Begin!
by Jake Galles, PHD
Jake is a licensed Psychologist, certified spiritual coach, and intuitive empath. He guides his clients through holistic healing and personal transformation using practices and insights from various ancient wisdom traditions, combined with the most effective tools of modern psychology.
As we approach the annual celebration of our nation’s independence, let us reflect on the true nature of our freedom. As sovereign individuals, we are endowed with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We have the right to make our own decisions, and to experience the consequences of our choices. Freedom and responsibility are two sides of the same coin. Therefore, the true nature of our freedom is to make responsible choices for ourselves. Until we discover complete responsibility, our choices are inevitably influenced by the ways in which we were conditioned by our family and society and by the authorities of our past. The majority of our choices come from our subconscious, which tend to be repeated unconscious patterns, oftentimes stemming from childhood. Such patterns once served a purpose, by helping us to survive and navigate difficult or dangerous situations. However, Life is constantly changing, and many of our subconscious patterns are now obsolete. Some of these patterns may be destructive to our well-being, while others merely take up precious space preventing us from planting seeds of new patterns. The culmination of our ingrained patterns makes up our “comfort zone” as they have become our usual and familiar way of thinking and approaching life. Therefore, making changes often feels uncomfortable, risky, and inconvenient. This reality is why most people remain stuck, reinforcing the same unhealthy patterns again and again; leading to a stagnant, dis-empowered existence. This can become the epitome of self-defeating bondage.
In order to be truly free, we must be willing to question and challenge the authorities from our past, and subsequently, to challenge our own beliefs. We must be willing to break free from the norms and standards of society, as well as from the shackles of our own comfort zones. Independence gives us the responsibility to question and challenge outside experts, and to develop self-trust and personal authority for our own choices. Such freedom requires devotion to our own highest good, so that we may be healthy and empowered to influence the world in a positive way. We must be willing to fearlessly follow our own passions and discover new ways of living.
These words about freedom being said…. We invite you to shed another layer of conditioning and rediscover a connection to your truth. Learning how to care for ourselves and listen to our bodies is freeing and empowering in so many ways. For many, discovering oneself leads to a realization of Oneness with Nature. It is time to discover new ways of living by remembering ancient wisdom and reconnecting with our Roots. Incorporating herbal wellness into our lives allows us to connect with our Earth Mother and in turn listen to the universal web that we ALL share, whether we are aware of it or not. We hope you are inspired on this day to experience your own independence, one healthy choice and one cup of tea at a time!
Peace & Growth,
Roots of the Sun
A sacred experience is an understatement. Roots of the Sun plays host to the Sacred Tea Ceremony once a month, during the new moon. This event is facilitated by Ashley Smith of Into the Heart. She leads an intuitive ritual based on traditional and ancient tea ceremonies of the east. The ceremony can be described as a meditation, an enlightening and warm journey as well as a collective connection to those participating. Our description stops there as each individual experience varies and is based on where you are in your journey. You'll have to join us at the next experience to find out what it's all about!
Ashley's wisdom and warmth blends perfectly with our vibes here at Roots of the Sun. She provides private Healing Tea Journeys, Spiritual Mentoring, Intuitive Energetic Healing. She shines her light beautifully here in the St. Pete area and beyond! You can find her on Instagram.
There are typically only 12 seats available for each event, and they fill up very quickly. Love donation between $33 - $44 is suggested. Cash and cards are accepted. If you'd like to join, check out our calendar and sign up by contacting us or sign up at our physical location. We can't wait to flow with you!