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Mouth/Food Yoga


I’m blessed in many ways. Sometimes my blessing takes the form of sneaking away with a large portion of a meal prepared by Angela. The days are busy, so I take a little break where I won’t be lovingly interrupted by Aya or Angela, typically when they are working or playing together.

This morning I curled up with a bowl of oatmeal, rich with cinnamon and heavily laden with small bites of sweet potato, ginger, almonds and raisins. Though I am not aware of them specifically, I’m certain of ancient yogic texts that touch upon taste and texture. I simply go at this mouth/food yoga from the heart and enjoy.

I practice what some call reiki on a daily basis thanks to the link that I’ve fostered between intention and food. As many traditions do, I sit with my food food a moment before I eat to express gratitude for and solidarity with the food, the chef (of course!), the farmers, the earth and all the elements that came together to bring this bowl before me.

Closing my eyes and breathing deeply through my nose, I start with small bites, moving them around in my mouth. Sometimes I find myself counting, other times I silently chant a mantra or rhythmic prayer as I chew. There are also times when I chew and focus on the journey that each element made to get to my table.

Once acclimating my mouth to the various tastes and textures as a melange, without any mental aggression, I allow myself to stumble upon individual elements to relish in. Exploring the cellular fiber of the oats, the almonds, and the other fascinating bits and bites, while discovering their specific taste.

Though my eyes are closed, I sometimes see colors, shapes and even patterns and symbols as I isolate and explore. I have, on a few occasions, experienced a phenomenon like communication while chewing deeply, like some how the nutrients and chemicals, through my heightened awareness and focus on this sacred act, go more directly to my head.

Thank you so much Angela!

In Health, Joy & Liberation!
Gregg

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March 14, 2012   No Comments

Mom-2-Mom Fundraiser & Bake Sale March 24 at the Commons!

EMEAC’s Stand Up! Speak Out! Program having Mom-2-Mom Fundraiser & Bake Sale March 24 at CCC

A Mom-2-Mom Charity Sale & Bake Sale will be held March 24 from 9:30 am to 12:30 p.m. in Mid-town Detroit’s Cass Corridor Commons – the new home of East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC) at 4605 Cass Avenue, inside the First Unitarian Universalist Church. www.emeac.org

“This re-sale is a fun event where families can make money, save money, re-use and recycle the items they’ve already spent hard-earned dollars on. It’s win, win win!” said EMEAC Policy Coordinator Alisha Deen-Steinder.

A Mom-2-Mom sale is like a large flea-market or indoor garage-sale where anyone can sell gently used children’s & teen items from their home. Shoppers pay only a $1 entrance fee and can browse through hundreds of used items at garage-sale prices. There will be 30-35 tables with children’s items. Clothes sizes will be from infant all the way up to teen. Large items like strollers and kid’s bicycles are also welcome. Delicious baked goods and coffee will be available also. Proceeds go to support EMEAC’s Stand Up Speak Out (SUSO) programming.

“We are also going to have the Young Educators Alliance. Some of them are going to be selling their items, so teens are definitely welcome,” said EMEAC SUSO Youth Coordinator William Copeland. “Right now we get a lot of funding from grant sources, which are great, but we want to start doing more independent fundraisers to help support our Young Educators Alliance, our in school programs and for the policy work that we do.”

It costs $20 to rent a table to sell items. Anyone interested is encouraged to beat the crowd and arrive early for the $2 Early-Bird special from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Beginning at 9:30, the doors officially open at the $1 entrance fee.

The Mom2Mom Sale concept has taken off in churches and schools every Saturday morning all around the Detroit-Metro area, but very few such sales have been located in Detroit. This is a great way for to keep money in the community.

“Full-priced children’s clothes, shoes, toys, games can cost a fortune, and it’s nice to have a one-stop place to get cheap, quality used clothing for my family.” A Royal Oak mother of two said.

Contact Alisha Deen-Steindler at 248-269-3662 or Alisha@emeac.org to reserve a $20 table.

Who do the proceeds of the sale go to?

Stand Up! Speak Out!

Stand Up! Speak Out! (SUSO) is the advocacy arm of the East Michigan Environmental Action Council. SUSO programs and activities advocate for environmental justice in Southeast Michigan through legislative policy initiatives while encouraging community involvement through youth and adult education and training.

SUSO is also home to the Young Educators Alliance a small group of young adults (aged 14-24) who come together to identify issues in their environment and work collectively on solutions, using their creativity and personal insight. YEA advocates for healthy environments in Detroit in a way that fosters leadership and holistic development. Young people learn to identify injustices, place them in a historical context, and propose alternatives that involve community input, community organizing, and/or advocacy. The program aims to build a “pipeline for community activism” in which young people come to see themselves as community activists and learn to network and engage with existing communities of activists. SUSO also partners with EMEAC’s ReMedia and Greener Schools programs to conduct environmental education classes and trainings in Detroit schools for students in grades 6-12.

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March 12, 2012   No Comments

Metro FoodLand Loyalty Appreciation Campaign 27

This from Undoing Racism in the Detroit Food System. Before you head out to the burbs, please consider visiting Metro FoodLand and checking out their selection. Angela and I have taken the appreciation pledge to support this Detroit-local black-owned business and encourage your support. Let’s come together to help out a business that has been helping Detroit for 27 years! Thanks! ~Gregg

http://www.metrofoodland.com/

Metro FoodLand has been a staple in the Grandmont/Rosedale community for the last 27 years. It has weathered many storms that forced or induced other store owners to leave the city and the people they once served there for “greener pastures,” easier sales, and convenience. The store’s owner, James Hook, has stayed though, because he believes in the store, which has always been family owned and operated, and he believes in the importance of providing safe, fresh, and affordable produce and supplies to his community. His grocery store also happens to be the only remaining Black-owned and operated grocery store in the city of Detroit which is, of course, predominately Black. If this isn’t shocking to you, it should be.

When you listen to politicians give their stump speeches, they often blow the horns of small businesses and job creators. James Hook is an incredibly upstanding, respectable, and generous man who runs a small business (Metro FoodLand) and employs people in his community. Nevertheless, it has recently become clear that the city of Detroit has made an agreement involving millions of public, taxpayer dollars (tax credits and breaks), to bring in a new Meijer store, which, though cheaper, has no incentive to keep the money circulating in the community, or employing local residents. And guess where that Meijer is going? You guessed it–right next to Mr. Hook’s 27-year-old, independent grocery store. Times are already tough for Mr. Hook, but he hasn’t given up, and a growing coalition is dedicated to making sure he survives this storm.

The result is the Metro FoodLand Loyalty Appreciation Campaign 27. Mr. Hook has been dedicated to Detroit and his community for the last 27 years. As a sign of appreciation, we (a collection of organizations and individuals based in the City and involved in the politics and creation of food) urge you make an Appreciation Pledge to shop at Metro Foodland 27 times this year, spend at least $27 and bring in 27 new  customers to make the pledge!

Metro Foodland 18551 Grand River

For more information, contact Lila Cabbil, undoingracismdfs@gmail or 313.861-8467

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February 13, 2012   1 Comment