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Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow.
(Swedish proverb)
Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirty.
(Sicilian proverb)
Your friend is that man who knows all about you, and still likes you.
(Elbert Hubbard)
You can always tell a real friend; when you've made a fool of yourself he doesn't feel you've done a permanent job.
(Laurence J. Peter)
Friends are family you choose for yourself.

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2nd November 2009
Time to share:

Natural Hygiene is a science with its core, defining property being: following the wisdom of the nature. It has nothing to do with a dogma, quite contrary, it is a system that accepts the instincts of the body as a natural way of satisfying the body's needs. The body knows what it needs and expresses its needs through the signals known as instincts, which include hunger and thirst as examples. Trying to create some intellect-derived set of prescriptive rules to follow, instead of following one's instincts, is not Natural Hygiene. So, for example, if one decides that they are going to eat 3000kcal per day, or 30 bananas per day, or no more than 1/4 avocado per day, or any other such rules, whatever they are, instead of following the true hunger, then they are not following their instincts, and so are not following the Natural Hygiene. On the other hand, if one does follow their instincts (not habits or addictions), and hence follows the Natural Hygiene approach, they may well observe that their diet converges around some pattern, whatever it is. That pattern is just a mental approximation of the true process. Following that discovered pattern instead the instincts however, is operating in a fractured manner, that is disconnected from the body. The needs of the body may be totally different on different days, on some days the body may need more food, on other it may need to fast, on some days it may need to exercise vigorously, on others it may need to rest. Ignoring the instincts and following some set of rules that the intellect believes in, is guaranteed to fail to meet the needs of the body. Not understanding this core principle of Natural Hygiene and advocating that one must stick to any set of prescriptive rules is not understanding Natural Hygiene, whose core principle is to follow the rules of Nature. Those rules of Nature is not something that we can completely intellectualize and describe by some set of patterns (partially yes, perhaps). The amount of mechanisms that govern the body is so rich and complex that if we somehow managed to describe them fully in some set of rules, they would be impossible for the intellect to comprehend. The calculations would be too complicated if we wanted to predict exactly, without an error, how much of what we might need on a particular days. However, if one relies on their instincts, no calculations are necessary. The body knows exactly what it needs, and if follow the instincts, we are guaranteed to meet its needs exactly.

Suppose that we take a scientific approach to the task of establishing what amount of fat is optimal for the body. (Which really is a reversal of the approach of simply following the instincts, and an attempt by the intellect to establish a pattern, that approximation of what is observed in that unpredictable process, over some long period of time.) For this approach to follow the principles of Natural Hygiene, one would have to focus on what the instincts signal. Also, for the approach to be scientific at all, one would need to keep an open mind and learn from what is observed. Science at its best is always some approximation of the reality, and so assuming that the current science is the ultimate knowledge, immediately leads to the lack of learning, and hence lack of progress. In my view, the current level of understanding of what is optimal for the body, which we observe in the raw food movement, although far better than that observed in the mainstream arena, has still a lot of room for growth.

811 is not Natural Hygiene, it is an observed pattern, and an approximation, which refers to the caloric ratios of carbohydrates, protein and fat in one's diet. One can, of course, follow Natural Hygiene and spontaneously observe that their caloric ratios converge around the 811 pattern, and deduct from this that such way of eating is the human natural diet. But reversing the approach and sticking to calorie calculating and eating so as to fulfill the 811 ratios on daily basis, whilst ignoring the instincts of the body and eating when not hungry or exercising when tired, as examples, is not following Natural Hygiene. In fact, one may be completely out of touch with Natural Hygiene concepts, yet eating 811 diet at the same time.

And what about the other way around? If one is in tune with their body instincts and follows their true hunger, will they eat low fat diet, as per 811 ratios? The only way we can find out is we observe the patterns of those who do follow their instincts, not those who follow patterns whilst ignoring their instincts such as true hunger. So, let's listen to the evidence, with a mind that is free off dogma, and open to change the past way of thinking when confronted with the evidence. Let's gather the evidence, examine it and learn from it.

(from my post at Raw Natural Hygiene)

17th November 2009
I am happy to report that I feel I am recovering from my back injury. Two years ago I had such a breakdown when after months of pain I realized things were much worse than I had thought. But finally, after two years, I feel I can do things I was not able to do for a long time.Today I did quite some gardening. I staked the tomato plants and then planted 64 corn plants (which I had produced from the seeds, using seedling trays, kept in the greenhouse built by Luke in the recent weeks), 12 snow peas plants and  a goji berry bush. I used the easy minimum digging permaculture style method. That is, about 3 weeks ago I covered the ground with a layer of newspapers and straw. This made my work really easy today. The soil under that layer of paper and straw was nice and moist, full of decomposting plant matter and worms. I made a small hole for the plant, put the plant in, covered with some extra paper, then straw on top and that's it!  Julia and Odys helped me with the preparation of the extra paper. The trick I used was to make a cross-like cut in the paper, and so it was easy to put the young plant through the slot, yet the ground around the plant was covered completely. I will not have to worry about weeding!!! I look forward to seeing the plants grow. This is such a rewarding experience. I am yet to plant the lettuces. I bought some seedlings and some seeds, including some heritage seeds that people kept producing since the 18th century. Once I get my plants established, I am aiming at keeping my own seeds. Also, my dream is to grow the custard apple tree in the greenhouse. Hey, I could keep talking and talking about my garden and all the plans I have for it ha ha!

21st November 2009
I have been becoming more active every month. Swimming is my regular cardio activity. I aim at 3-4 times a week, 1km each time, and choose a back-stroke which helps my lower back by strengthening my core.
Being able to swim faster/stronger each time I go for a swim has been giving me a tremendous amount of satisfaction. I love observing how my body is getting stronger and it is a pleasure to discover new muscles that I did not know I had before. I also booked myself to a belly dancing class, this has a lot to do with my love for dance. So, I've been having quite a lot of active fun recently.

As far as my dietary patterns, I continue observing a preference for sweet juicy fruit, as I have for quite a while now. Salads do not appeal that much to me although I do have them sometimes. I have not kept the statistics but my rough estimate is that the last year was close to 100% raw. As far as the cooked food, besides some going out occasions, I performed a number of deliberate experiments to re-assess my views. 2 years ago my % dropped perhaps to around estimated 90%, this was mainly due to going through some tough emotionally times after being in pain for many months.
I don't really care for such details and say it only for clarification. My focus is on the current experience, the journey, the never-ending transformation, and not my past patterns, although it is interesting to observe the evolution. I avoid labelling myself a fruitarian or a raw vegan or a natural hygienist, even if my dietary or thought patterns might oscilate around these concepts, because I feel the need to be unrestricted. I prefer to experiment and follow my instincts, rather than abide by some external, mental rules and decisions. The best I can describe my current place is a fruit lover following her instincts.

I decided to let myself focus on my personal growth and stay away from engaging in raw food forum discussions for a while. Forum discussions can be very tempting, compelling, entertaining and even eye-opening at times, but they consume a lot of time too, and there are other things I'd rather do at the moment. Besides, a lot of these discussions oscilate around debates which approach is right (which can be a rather energy-draining and focus-disturbing exercise), and I do not feel the need for it, as I see cleerly that my body's instincts is my best guide. So I am giving myself some time for my own transformations, some quite time for myself. Afterall, the most brilliant thoughts come to me when I am silent and alone.

25th November 2009
I try to focus on the signals of my body more than I have before. I feel that this is what my body really wants me to do.
I find this connecting with the instincts quite soothing. So I drink when thirsty, eat when hungry. There is room for improvement, of course. A little more time in the sun, for example. I will get there.

As far as the sleep, it can be tough, as the nights are my only time when I can compose the music without being disturbed. I am really not sure how to resolve this issue. Surely, the sleep is important, but without the music I just can't exist! I admit, I have ignored the need to rest at times.


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Acknowledgements: Maura (logo).
Quotes on raw foods by fellow raw foodists.
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