Hello to you who are reading this. I have figured out that you can ask questions or throw some food for thought at me directly right here on this blog by filling in the form below. I’m happy to hear from you and contribute to conscious evolution and personal empowerment in this small way on a more public blog platform, rather then the more private one to one work I offer. Fill in the form below to get in touch.
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As I write this blog I am listening to a new mix by Optic Echo. They are amazing experimental samplers and ambient remix producers and you can listen to it by clicking this link and letting it play in another window whilst you read my blog OPTIC ECHO on Mixcloud
I get a lot of messages, emails and inquires on facebook and twitter from people asking me all sorts of questions about this and that, mostly to do with inquiries about resources or advice on wellbeing.
Lately, I am getting stuck in to the mountain of videos I have to edit, some Pre-Cannes writing of movie pitches and doing the one to one coaching, consultancy and yoga in person or via skype… so I’ve got a lot on my plate! I am fully passionate about all of the above projects and commitments, so really feeling blessed to love my work.
As a form of creative expression, I am producing some remixes of sound healing recordings to possibly hand over to Optic Echo or the DJs at Cafe Del Mar in Ibiza in an attempt to digitally send healing vibes to all those clubbers whilst they are lounging about at sunset or on a comedown the morning after the night before…
So I haven’t got a lot of brainspace or energy to personally, privately and carefully reply to every inquiry I get….let alone go on a date. I really want to make space in my life for some romance, to go on more dates and to work less haha this is true!
I also have learnt a few things the hardway or maybe thats the best way?
I learnt that I do too much pro bono work ie freebies. Henceforth I will only be doing one pro bono project per year and I will be very selective about what that is. Feel free to submit your project proposals to me if you are looking for a Producer for a short film or art project. I will be choosing my annual pro bono creative collaboration project at the end of 2014 for production in 2015.
I have learnt that I am not going to do any more video editing work as it is not my passion or my forte, it is very obsessive and slow work for me to do and is my least favourite part of the filmmaking process, I dont mind so much to play around experimenting with editing but on anything I am expected to deliver to a collaborator or client the editing becomes a lot of physical and mental stress for me. So in the future if it is not a self initiated project I am going to ensure that the budget is big enough to hire an editor or else I will turn it down.
I have also been pondering on a solution for the sometimes powerful one question inquiries I get. Some of them seem so frantic, vital or urgent to the inquirer…so, If it’s just one question that you think I might be able to answer and that one answer might be enough to empower you…then I welcome you to send that question to me here (see the form at top of blog page and please specify if you prefer to remain anonymous or use a fake name on the form).
I will be evolving this blog into more of a platform for pondering your questions rather then the diary of introspective drizzle that has taken up much of my writing in cyberspace. I really only did that to begin finding my written voice and also as I have a personal aversion of being preached at.
I have met so many teachers and healers and Gurus along the way, who love nothing more then to sit and dish out widsom, advice or their view on the world as if it is the one and only truth. I am allergic to that and I think it’s my very immature inner “Bart Simpson” who thinks “eat my shorts” when someone patronizes me as though I know nothing and they know everything. My wiser self has learnt to intervene by saying “please ask me don’t tell me” and this sometimes throws people off course, as they have to then put in some effort to formulate a question rather then just broadacst or channel opinions at me.
It is of course really great to film inspiring experts who like to speak, rant or preach as they require no prompting and nudging, I often turn a camera on to people who talk at me and then it feels more winwin. I really can’t stand when people preach as this suggests an assumption that the person or people being preached at know nothing and should just shutup, sit and listen. I find it mostly insulting though often times fascinating and potentially interesting too. In response to feeling this way about being preached at or dictated to, I try not to preach my learnings at others in real everyday life. I make it clear that I am here for you/others if you have questions I try to answer them but I rarely offer up knowledge aas though I am an expert who needs to be listened to.
Please feel free to ask me and I will share what I know or “phone a friend/expert” to quote and get a good answer for the blogosphere.
In this blog I have turned inwards mostly to empower and teach through my own clumsy and raw journey, rather then preach at you how to evolve your own consciousness…
So now, I welcome you to ask me and I will gladly ponder on your inquiries and answer your questions or defer them to the elders and experts as and when I can. This way, The Conscious Hipster blog will grow into a platform of solutions.
This also shows my own evolution… that for now anyway I am not super interested in delving within myself anymore but in accepting myself with all I have learnt over the past years and months and moving forward into my own creative power whilst also empowering others as often as possible.I feel this blog serves both my own expression/empowerment and a way to give back and possibly inspire you.
This is an experiment (my famous last words!)
So I’d like to get tucked in now to defining what I believe a “Conscious Hipster” to be, mostly because I am quite frequently asked to describe my blog to people. I also like the term “mindful observer” which resonates with me as something of a trend-spotter, for example- if I see a new style or “look” on the streets several times, if I get asked the same question several times by different people or if I get told the same story/philosophy by a few different people, I can start to spot and predict trends that will swell and evolve to many more people asking the same questions, telling the same stories, thinkig the same things, wearing the same looks. This trend predicting started for me with spotting personal style on the streets of London…I used to experiment with it back then too by going to the trendiest clubs and doing something odd as a trend forecast experiment like sticking plastic gift bows all over my head just to se if it would be copied or pickedup as a trend anytime soon. I found it really funny to see photos a few weeks later of other people going out to parties covered in metallic gift bows! I learnt how easy it could be to start a trend and I learnt that the world is possibly divided between those who want to innovate and those who want to discover cool things to replicate oh and the third space that really don’t think about this stuff at all. I also blame/credit a lot of my learnings in trend evolution on the cult cool website Dirty Dirty Dancing which featured Alistair Allen’s documentary photography of mine and every other club kids’ looks back then.
To me, a “Conscious Hipster” is an archetype that I have created as a muse. a muse for me and a muse for you if you want to be inspired by the concept of consciusness being cool too…
I also love the idea of “Conscious” becoming “The new cool” as a very positive option and path with gaining momentum in popular culture. I just get such a kick out of the notion of everyone start to be more mindful of their thoughts words and actions especially when it comes to anyone or anything being cool- it’s always seemd srt of the antithesis of that to me in fashion and music and film…it’s all seemed so ego-driven and fragile as a culture. One day someone called me a Hipster and I felt insulted so I went away and wondered to myself why I found being call “hipster” an insult…I justified all sorts of things to myself such as “I am an individual not a follower of the pack” “I have my own personal style, I do not follow trends” and “I am consious not superficial” all that pondering led me to meld those two powerful zeitgeisty words and embrace them, charge them up with positivity and see what might happen if I threw them together out there into the blogosphere to infiltrate popular culture. These two contradictory and contrasting words/worlds sounded at first like an oxymoron to me, in putting the words CONSCIOUS & HIPSTER together….but really there is nothing cooler to me then heart-centered consciousness…that is what I’m happy to dedicate my life to learning about, promoting and living.
CONSCIOUS (as well defined by the free dictionary):
Having an awareness of one’s environment and one’s own existence, sensations, and thoughts. See Synonyms at aware
b. Mentally perceptive or alert; awake: The patient remained fully conscious after the local anesthetic was administered.
2. Capable of thought, will, or perception: the development of conscious life on the planet.
3. Subjectively known or felt: conscious remorse.
4. Intentionally conceived or done; deliberate: a conscious insult; made a conscious effort to speak more clearly.
5. Inwardly attentive or sensible; mindful: was increasingly conscious of being watched.
6. Especially aware of or preoccupied with. Often used in combination: a cost-conscious approach to further development; a health-conscious diet.
In psychoanalysis, the component of waking awareness perceptible by a person at any given instant; consciousness.
One who is exceptionally aware of or interested in the latest trends and tastes,
It works though for me and seems to resonate with others out there too.
I have started hearing people say “oh are you the conscious hipster?” and this is a big compliment to me that people read my blog and that some people know it’s me who writes this blog.
I have explained quite a few times to people that maybe indeed I am a conscious hipster, but really it’s an archetype that I have created to try and push a new paradigm into pop culture. I wish for more people of influence and of all ages- especially in creative fields (for creativity being a global, universal, often wordless language) to start being more conscious and heart centered rather then ego driven and to support this mentality in schools, in the work place/office, in collaboration, in communication and in relationships.
Anyway, wow there is so much I want to say today…this is all just the tip of the iceberg and I’m kind of missing the awesomeness of having had an Editor for a week when I blogged for Sacred Circularities (thank you Goddess Editor Michelle Tan). Having an editor made my writng more terse and to the point, less rambly…as it tends to come out stream of consciousness when I go it alone and with nobody to tell me to chop this or that out…
I want to share some chic portraits I have shot recently after inspiring meetings with international Catalysts, Visionaries and Conscious Hipsters.
Here is Jaguar Mary.
She is the Founder of Sacred Circularities hooping and empowerment retreats and she is an amazing international inspirational creative and conscious woman.
Here is Hai Dai.
He is the Creative Director of WOW BALI and The Mansion Baliwood an amazing VJ and cool, visionary, inspirational man.
Here is Shervin Boloorian.
He is the Founder of The Bali Sound Healer’s Collective. He is a Shaman, a Tama-Do Sound Healer, a musician, singer and visionary sensitive Ubudian man.
I would now like to answer some recent inquiries about wellbeing retreats for people who have been diagnosed with a major but not necessarily terminal illness or are in recovery from a major operation- basically in both cases in need of physical healing and wanting to veer away from traditional western medicine.
Now I had to think fairly long and hard about consulting on this one as most retreats are designed for people dealing with stress and diet issues not massive physical ailments.
I would say first and foremost that I am sending masses of love and good vibes your way- to those of you in particular who wrote t me about this particular concern and any of you out there who might be going through something similar.
It is important to adress three elements: BODY, MIND and SPIRIT in order to heal holistically.
The first step would be setting some conscious intentions to heal and adopt an atitdue of gratitidue for even the smallest of things such as the chirp of a bird or the fluffyness of a cloud or a ray of sunshine or a calm breeze…Then adopting a practise of mindfulness and a mentality of positive psychology.
I am coming to understand more and more that the mind affects the body and then the law of attraction gets into action. So developing a practise of meditation and an attitude of gratitude are essential in healing.
Next vital step would be to do a cleanse and assist the body to heal itself by eliminiating any build up of toxins in the organs and bloodstream. It is easiest to do a juice and soup cleanse, with some days of fasting at the end ideally being in silence and then having colonics to wash any remaining gunk and parasites.
After a full body detox the cells have a chance to regenerate and then it’s time to adopt a change of daily diet incorporating a lot of fruits and vegetables as well as juice and smoothies.
Here is some delicious raw food that /I have had the pleasure of eating lately:
RAW Burger & Jicama RAW fries at The Seeds of Life, Ubud
RAW Vegan Chocolate Brownie and The Holy Trinity : Veggies & Dips at SOMA, Ubud
I love fresh Juices in Rasta Colours
Jamu to cleanse and boost, Green Juice to cleanse and boost, Watermelon to hydrate.
Ideal Detox Diet is: NO DAIRY, NO WHEAT, NO SUGAR, NO MEAT.
In cases of potentially terminal illnesses, the ideal sceario is to go and spend some time at a holistic healing centre ideally one specialising in either Chinese or Ayurvedic medicine.
One place in the world where I have spent a significant amount of time and have also found to be a very supportive environment in which to heal alongside others who are healing… from their hearts to their heads to their internal organs (one never really knows why others are there unless they directly tell you) was Findhorn in Scotland.
It is an impressive sustainable intentional Eco and Spiritual community that was founded in the 1950’s and continues to grow and evolve incorporating permaculture principles, meditation practises, a village community of over 300 year round residents as well as a former castle hotel which is now The Findhorn Foundation : Cluny College of Holistic Studies.
Other global healing centres foused on physical healing (with the benefits of spiritual and mental healing) worth checking out are:
The Chopra Center
The Sanctuary Retreat Sweden
There are so many more place around the world too, just reasearch on the internet for Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine, Herbalism or Holistic Healing Retreats near to you and follow your intuition if someone or somewhere is calling you.
I believe the intention behind anyone offering such a retreat or healing center is currently still pure and good and that the wellness industry has not yet become so commercialised that people are offering bullshit healing retreats…not yet thankfully. Any doubts about something you have discovered? Send me your questions and I will do some research and reply with a blog review about the place for you and others out there…win win :)
Here is a helpful online global directory called Retreat Finder.
So, the following is my response to several questions with the same underlying theme around alternative therapies and healing in a more holistic way, rather then going into a hospital, undergoing invasive surgeries or treatments and ingesting conventional general Western medicines.
Interesting to see how this is become a more frequent inquiry…
I am personally a big believer in herbalism and traditional plant medicines, this is not necessarily a cure but is certainly a naturopathic way of healing the body/organic matter with like/organic matter. Depending on how much pain you are in and how weak or strong you are feeling mentally you could either go and study a holistic healing modality as a way to receive much healing and also learn about how to incorporate it into your lifestyle and eventually when ready, to offer it up (even professionally) to others. If you are in a state of panic or in a lot of pain then you probably just need to receive physical and mental healing and support.
1: See a therapist and get some counselling- do not “zip it up and keep it deep inside”
2: Develop a practise of mindfulness, a P.M.A positive mental attitude and meditation/inward reflection moving on to rising above mental clutter to inner peace
3: Study a form of healing that interests you at a centre where you can live a holistic lifestyle for anywhere from a few days to a few months. This would probably involve quitting your job but then a serious illness is likely to force you into that position or at least to take a sabbatical…a perfet time to learn something you are passionate about that may also empower you and others.
I realise that these centers and foundations are usually expensive places to stay at or study. Most of these places offer scholarships and some offer live-work-study trades wherin you can go and live and study there and in exchange must do some work such as gardening (I have done this and LOVED it- getting my hands dirty was very healing for me and such a meditation practise) or cooking (I have done this too and learnt to cook this way- by cooking delicious vegetarian food for 500 people!) or cleaning ( the least fun in my opinion but still very important, cathartic and satisfying).
So there are often ways to attend healing centers or schools that wont put you into debt.
You can also study different healing modalities online such as this Masters in Herbal Studies (which I am very tempted to do further education online part-time as I globe-trot and once I get through the mountain of video editing work that is currently in front of me straining my eyes on the laptop) Check out places to study healing online such as The American College of Healthcare Sciences.
Study is a great way to learn, to grow, to receive and then eventually to give back.
When battling an illness it can also be a wonderful distraction from suffering and self pity as well as a motivator in getting better.
Obviously it really depends on what illness one is dealing with and at what stage it is at ie manic depression would require some downtime to receive councelling, do some journalling and get grounded back into a healthy body not necessarily an ideal state for learning (although learning any new skill is a confidence booster so can be a great healer for depression) Advanced cancer on the other hand, may likely require some surgery to remove tumors according to traditional western medicine; though I have heard many real life stories about a lifestyle change, diet change and incorporation of yoga and meditation completely eliminating cancers!
Trust your gut on what path is right for you.
Seek your deep intuitive inner wisdom.
Do your research.
You know what is right for you and there are so many healers waiting to help you with alternative modalities, so many resources, healing centres and retreats out there.
GOOGLE is your friend!
I have made pilgrimages to several sacred sites around the world- from the Himalayas to Lourdes to Glastonbury. In this lieftime I hope to visit many if not every sacred site around the world from El Camino to the river Ganges to Graceland.
I can highly reccommend pilgrimages as a wonderful time and space to reflect and to heal. There have been often terminally ill people wheeled along on these pilgrimages in delight at the miracle of being out on a sacred adventure and this always nurtures great humility in me to witness. The healing I have felt and seen taking place on pilgrimages to sacred sites has shown me the power of intention and the power of faith.
If there is anywhere sacred in the world that calls to you, I would say do what you can to go there and you will have a amazing healing adventure and probably several epiphanies about the meaning of life along the way.
I find it interesting and also worrying to receive messages from young and seemingly healthy people or friends who have suddenly been diagnosed with terminal or harsh diseases and are looking for retreats to go and nurture their mind body and soul and figure out what is next and how they are going to heal.
I believe it has to start with the mind, the right mindset to overcome an illness and to heal. I also believe that illnesses and disease are the bodies way of crying out for some attention, for example everytime I get really stressed out, I lose the hearing in one ear- it totally weirds me out and makes me feel very discombobulated whenever it happens. I have learnt that it’s my body’s way of saying “hey you! listen up! you don’t like what you are hearing so i’m stopping you from hearing things hahaha. So speak up now stick up for you or someting thats bothering you or you’ll just hear more of that crap from the one ear thats working right now if not maybe the other side will temporarily shut down too!” I think it was my stress related loss of hearing that first got me interested in “Sound Healing” too.
Then once a new frame of mind has been adopted, an entire body, mind, spirit makeover or action plan needs to happen ideally in a supportive environment in order to move ahead with healing.
I also want to share some great photos of the beautiful healers and cultural catalysts I have had the pleasure of meeting with lately…
But for now just please know that I am open to answering your questions on here as a keen researcher with access to some amazing teachers and as someone committed to walking the conscious path and then walking the talk, one step at a time.
For my ext blog or for a future post, I will open up my “Little black” Holistic book and make a list of the top ten healers I have had direct positive experiences with and links to their websites or contact details-that is very precious information to receive in a blog!
Right now though, it’s way past my bedtime and that’s a lot of conscious drizzle that just poured out of me…yawn zzzzz
Bye for now…