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If there is one thing the western lifestyle is exceptional at cultivating- it's EXCESS ...  The fast pace, busy busy busy, high-stress western lifestyles many of us live has us on the hamster wheel of always 'doing' and simultaneously always trying to cope with how much we're doing. In an attempt to handle (or survive) these obligatory motions of the daily grind, we reach for our beloved vices- coffee, sugar, meditation, alcohol, exercise, sex, Netflix, shopping, doom scrolling (you get the picture) to alleviate the stress and lighten the load. The more stressed we are, the more we tend to reach for a vice in an attempt to cope. Not such a bad thing if your 'vice' is conducive to good health- but for many, it tends to be the quick fix, like a coffee at 7:30, on route to school drop then work, while you mull over your endless 'to-do list in your head. Coffee is in the top ten most consumed legal addictive stimulants globally- humans LOVE to consume coffee. Sadly, our Kidneys and adrenals do not. Caffeine, alcohol, and a high-stress lifestyle, all excessively deplete our core energy- our Jing essence, which is stored within the Kidneys. The amount of Jing energy one has stored in their Kidneys is indicative of; Lifespan, immune system, and ability to cope with stress without reaching for a stimulant.  Enter 30 Days of JING. As many of our SuperFeast community know, The 30 days of JING Challenge is an annual opportunity to get off the stimulants and rejuvenate kidney and adrenal essence so you can begin regaining the zest in your step that was so familiar in our youth. In today's episode, Mason discusses his personal story with the Jing herbs (how they changed his life) and how the 30 days of JING challenge can transform your month, year, and (as an annual event)-the trajectory of your life. Mason dives deep into the dark waters of Kidney energy from a Taoist perspective and explains why 30 Days of JING, more than quitting coffee, is about creating an intention that will deepen our relationship with ourselves and our Jing essences through foundational lifestyle practices.   Mason discusses: -What is Jing essence? -Addiction and excess. -What are the Jing Herbs? -The Kidney's and Jing essence. -Yin and Yang transformation in the body. -How to protect and cultivate Jing essence? -Setting an intention for the 30 days of JING.  -Diving into the darkness of our Kidney essence. -Creating rhythms in our life that create automated flow. -How does 30 days of JING improve longevity and vitality?   Resource guide Guest: Mason's Instagram SuperFeast Instagram 30 Days Jing Starter Kit 30 days of Jing Facebook Tonics: JING blend SHEN Blend Deer Antler  Cordyceps Eucommia Bark Relevant Articles: Jing: What Is It? How to Cultivate It? JING Blend: Our Favourite Adrenal Tonic JING Challenge: 30 Days To Restore Core Energy Adrenal and Kidney Health- Breathing and Movement The Three Treasures: Jing, Qi and Shen Relevant Podcasts: Jing Energy with Mason Taylor (EP#02) Why The Weak Are Crumbling Right Now with Jost Sauer (EP#143)    Check Out The Transcript Here:  
There are all sorts of reasons people seek out a psychedelic experience.  For some, psychedelic-assisted therapy helps treat depression, some seek a deeply embodied therapeutic experience to traverse major trauma or grief, and some seek a little magic-an escape from the mundane of the day-to-day 9-5 grind.  Whatever it may be, the depth of research and data proving the benefits of a well-integrated embodied psychedelic experience- is making the vision of psychedelic-assisted therapy becoming a recognised/available integrated form of healthcare a realistic vision for the near future. Today Mason chats with Tobias Penno, A government-funded psychedelic researcher and founder of ‘Psychedelic Healthcare’- a therapeutic service specialising in psychedelic integration work in Australia. Tobias talks about the benefits of psychedelic-assisted therapy and its capacity to open up the mind/body interface for deep therapeutic work and mystical experiences that can evolve consciousness.  As with all journeys that crack open the psyche- The process of integration after any psychedelic experience (assisted or not) is an essential part of the journey. Tobias explains what integration after a psychedelic experience looks like when done well, the holistic self-work it takes to integrate meaningfully and embody the changes in your life, and how we can benefit from this type of therapy both on an individual and societal level.  Mason and Tobias discuss the intersection of the Taoist herbs and a well-integrated psychedelic/plant medicine experience  And how these majestic herbs and plant medicines can assist us on the journey towards becoming an evolved elder that embodies health and love in mind, body, spirit.   "People come to psychedelics looking for this silver bullet, thinking it's going to suddenly change their life. I think it's important to slow that right down because they're not a silver bullet. They're not right for everyone. There are some people who probably don't need psychedelics- they're already so open, so connected already. They kind of already have an inner psychedelic state, either through other practices or just by nature of their personality. And for them, throwing psychedelics in the mix is probably just adding more chaos than they really need".  - Tobias Penno   Tobias and Mason discuss: -Ayahuasca. -Somatic work. -What is a Dieta? -Psychedelic integration. -Psychedelic healthcare. -Holotropic breath work. -Plant medicine journeys. -Psychedelic integration groups. -Relational dose psychedelic therapy. -Why psychedelics aren't for everyone. -Somatic mapping and psychotherapy. -Deeper psychotherapeutic types of work. -High-quality preparation before a psychedelic experience. -Psychedelics are great prep for good deep therapeutic work. -Personal and collective integration of a plant medicine journey. -What happens when there is no integration after psychedelics?   Who Tobias Penno? Tobias Penno is a government-funded psychedelic researcher at the University of Western Australia (U.W.A.). His first academic publication titled 'How Ayahuasca Offers Psychosocial Wellbeing' won the social work research prize in the school of Medicine, Dentistry, and Health Science at U.W.A. in 2017. Tobias is the current chair of the Australian Psychedelic Society (WA Chapter) and his current doctoral research is titled 'Interpersonal Neurobiology in Psychedelic Healing’. Tobias is also the founder of ‘Psychedelic Healthcare’, a therapeutic service specialising in psychedelic integration work in Australia. One day he hopes to provide psychedelic-assisted therapy within an integrated model of emotional healthcare practices.   Resource guide Guest: Tobias's website  Tobias's Instagram Tobias's Facebook Psychedelic support Australian Psychedelic Society Tonics: JING blend Relevant Podcasts: Love, Sex and Psychedelics with Dr. Molly Maloof (EP#137) Psychedelic Journeywork and Fungi Academy with Jasper Degenaars (EP#120) Psychedelic Assisted Therapies and Mental Health with Tania De Jong (EP#124)   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
Today on the podcast, we are graced with the presence of Ella Noah Bancroft, An indigenous-born artist, storyteller, published author, public speaker, mentor, and founder of The Returning Indigenous Organisation.  A proud Bundjalung woman- for the past decade, Ella has been deeply invested in decolonizing to thrive across all aspects of community, helping both indigenous and non-indigenous folk connect to the immense depth of knowledge and spirit her culture and this great land holds.  Ella, accompanied by Jataya, a young Bundjalung girl she mentors, chats with Mason about the recent Northern Rivers Floods in which she has played an integral role at the Koori Mail hub in Lismore. This 100% volunteer, First Nations-led response team for a natural disaster that shook the Northern Rivers to its core saw our First Nations brothers and sisters protect, support, and provide for a broken community when they had nothing. Ella shares her experience of volunteering at the hub and witnessing her community stand up as a backbone to the people of Lismore. "It's been an incredible way for us to reclaim what our cultural role is here, which is to protect all community, anybody that is on these lands, that we, us that have blood ties to these lands- It's our purpose to be here, to protect everybody. More than human kin and the natural world included in that space".   This heart-centered, wisdom-filled conversation is about bridging the disconnect between indigenous and non-indigenous Australia through building better relationships, investing in country and community, and building businesses that replenish and work with the natural world rather than those that extract and destroy it.  A must-listen, tune in now.     "Business doesn't need to eradicate just because we start to appreciate a more nature based world, or a more reciprocal way of being in the world. Actually, we can thrive and a big part of that thriving, I think is also moving away from individualistic needs and figuring out what community needs".   - Ella Noah Bancroft   Ella and Mason discuss: -Localisation. -Community. -Mental health. -Investing in community first. -First Nations wisdom; guiding us to a better world. -Lismore floods - the aftermath and where it's at now. -Investing in the natural world over the man-made world. -Koori Mail; A First Nation's led response team in the floods. -Community work for indigenous mob affected by the floods. -Business designed to work with and replenish the natural world.   Who is Ella Noah Bancroft? Ella is a Bundjalung woman and also has bloodlines to England, Poland and Scotland.  Indigenous born artist, storyteller, published author, public speaker, mentor and founder of “The Returning Indigenous Organisation." Ella has been promoting re-wilding and the importance of system change, as a way back to deep relationship nature and decolonizing of personal, social and ecological well-being for 10 years.  She has been on the board for Women Up North since 2019 . Women Up North is a Northern NSW service for women, children and young people who have experienced domestic or family violence or abuse. Ella is an active community member to all humans, more than human kin and the natural world.   RESOURCE GUIDE:   Guest: Koori Mail Ella's website Ella's instagram Women Up North Work with Ella Noah Bancroft The Returning Indigenous Organisation Donate to The Returning Indigenous Organisation   Books:  It Takes Courage To Tell The Truth - book by Ella Noah Bancroft   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
Free birth, sovereign birth, natural birth, undisturbed birth, DIY birth, no matter how you describe it, the reclamation of birth by women away from the medical system is a beautiful thing to witness and be a part of as a birth partner. Today on the podcast, we are celebrating the wild pregnancy and free birth experience Tahnee and Mason journeyed through to bring their beautiful son Leo into the world the way they envisioned.  There has honestly never been a podcast that we've had so many requests for and questions about than today's episode. Over this two-part birth podcast series, Tahnee and Mason will be answering all the questions asked, plus telling the story of their journey from conception to postpartum. Recorded only three weeks after giving birth, Tahnee talks very openly about her experience of bringing her son into the world and laboring undisturbed at home with only Mason and Aiya present. Tahnee and Mason discuss how they prepared for the birth, mentally, physically, individually, and as a couple, the fears that came up and were integrated, why they chose to birth the way they did, and why it's so important to protect the ceremonial gateway of birth. There's a special guest appearance from baby Leo too, with lots of adorable baby cooing in the background (it's heart-melting), plus some suspense at the end that will have you tuning in for Part two.  "Free birthing is mother-led birth, or at least our version was, so that doesn't mean the role of support isn't a hundred percent essential, but it means that it wasn't Mason's job to learn midwifery. And wasn't really my job either. My job was to trust in physiological birth, to know that nature rarely makes mistakes. Mistakes do happen. I'm not saying everyone's a hundred percent guaranteed to have success, but the reality is that an undisturbed, physiological birth is going to be nine times out of 10, more successful than intervention of any kind".   - Tahnee Taylor Tahnee and Mason discuss: -Birth as Ceremony. -Mason's advice for birth partner's. -Birth as a cultivation of Jing, Qi, Shen. -There is no right or wrong way to birth. -Mother's advocating for themselves in birth. -Ultrasounds and scans; the pro's and con's. -What Tahnee did to prepare her body for birth. -Knowing what can go wrong and being prepared. -Knowing your rights when you're in a hospital system. -Why Tahnee and Mason chose to do a free birth course. -Fears that come up for Tahnee during birth and pregnancy. -Energy cultivation work that helped Tahnee prepare for birth. -Tahnee and Mason's birth with Aiya compared to Leo's birth. -How Tahnee and Mason prepared their birth space and birth altar. -The trauma from the western medical system inflicted on women, family and babies.    RESOURCES:  Tahnee's website Tahnee instagram Birth Pool- Water filter Birth altar tarot cards Birth a float birth pools  The radical birth collective- Wild Pregnancy and Free Birth Course   Tonics: Reishi Tremella  I am Gaia  Beauty Blend   Books:  Ina May's Guide to Childbirth Spiritual Midwifery - Ina May Gaskin Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering - Sarah Buckley Way of the Peaceful Warrior - Dan Millmen   Articles:   Tonic Herbs For A Healthy Pregnancy   Relevant Podcasts: Pregnancy Health with Tahnee and Mason (EP#20)  Birth Is A Body Based Event with Clancy Allen (EP#79) Motherhood, Birth and Embodying Your Truth with Jinti Fell (EP#129) Nurturing All Phases of Birth with Nutritionist Tahlia Mynott (EP#138) Birth Work, Ceremony, and Rites Of Passage with Caitlin Priday (EP#148)   Check Out The Transcript Here:
One of the most common questions we get from customers new to SuperFeast is, Why do we source our Mushrooms from China? The answer is simple and rooted in integrity and hundreds of years of ancient Daoist philosophy; Di Dao.  Di Dao is the concept of growing herbs in their spiritual and native homeland; The preferred environment, atmospheric energy, pressure, and altitude required to grow and thrive. When tonic herbs and mushrooms are grown Di Dao, they deliver their intended spiritual intention and potency to the body. Contrastingly when herbs or mushrooms are not grown Di Dao and are instead grown on grain, oats, or even wood- away from their natural environment, they inevitably lack quality and their innate energetic potency.  In today's episode, we're answering ALL your questions plus more as Mason travels through China, visiting the pristine mountains and valleys where SuperFeast grows and forages its Di Dao tonic herbs and medicinal mushrooms. You can hear the reverence and awareness in Mason's voice as he discusses the lineage of Daoism and the wisdom that has been handed down from the ancient shamanic Daoists to ensure the knowledge, healing, and essence of these revered herbs, is not lost. You will learn about the philosophies of tonic herbalism and shamanic Daoism, wild foraging, the conscious farming operations of SuperFeast medicinal mushrooms and tonics, and why we are so proud to grow our herbs Di Dao. Tune in for all of this and more.    Mason discusses:   -Meteria medica. -Di Dao philosophy. -How herbs are classified. -What are Inferior herbs? -What are superior herbs? -What is wild and semi-wild crafting? -How SuperFeast herbs are sourced. -The preventative approach to health. -How to grow the best schisandra and Chaga. -How Traditional Chinese Medicine lost its way. -Shamanic Daoist style of herbalism and its origins. -Why mushrooms grown on grain or oats are inferior. -How to make a herb more adaptogenic through conscious farming.   Mason Taylor  Mason Taylor is the CEO/Founder of SuperFeast and a renowned tonic herbalist. On a soul mission to bring people back to their body and nature while bursting through dogma, he shares passionately and uniquely in his workshops, podcast, and content on how to cultivate healing and potentiation through health sovereignty. An expert in Daoist tonic herbalism, Mason has helped tens of thousands of people globally discover medicinal mushrooms, adaptogenic tonic herbs, and the healing philosophy from which they emerged. Mason is also a budding comedian; bursting the bubble on the “health scene” with his antics.   RESOURCE GUIDE: Tonics: JING Reishi Chaga Schisandra Lion's Mane Eucommia bark   Books:   Shen Nong The Divine farmer's Materia Medica   Articles:   Tonic Herbs, What Are they? Everything You Need To Know. The Daoist Brains: Who Are The Dao and What Is Their Philosophy?    Relevant Podcasts: Transformation with Tonic Herbalism (EP#4)  The Ancient Daoist Beauty Tonics With Mason Taylor (EP#29)   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
Today on the podcast, Mason joins James Perrin as a guest on The Overview Effect podcast for an illuminative dialogue, exploring the most transformative and pivotal moments in his personal evolution. Mason talks about his conflicting relationship with the wellness industry and how both Daoism and heading up SuperFeast (from birth to success) have been at the centre of his expansion.    Mason and James discuss stifled thinking in society, the pitfalls of ideology, herd mentality, and the effects of personal power and sovereignty willingly being handed over to governments and organisations. Mason talks about his relationship with comedy and how comedians continue to keep our minds liberated through challenging the status quo, genius mockery, sarcasm, and satire. This conversation is a brilliant exchange of progressive thought and freethinking. Don't miss it.    "My comedic nature helps me inquire about myself and what I'm actually doing here, because it's quite a head fuck, to be honest. To be working within a lineage and be walking that line of, am I using it? Is it using me? Are we in collaboration? Am I just bullshitting myself? What's actually happening here? So I use comedy to narrate and take the piss out of myself. These herbs are messengers from heaven. They are so special." And what they allow in terms of a cultivation of a capacity for life to be protected inside of yourself rather than just used and commodified itself, is very special and huge to me".    - Mason Taylor   James and Mason discuss: - Innovations. - Cultivating Qi - Identity and ideology. - Decolonising the mind. - The problem with ideology. - Studying things in isolation. - Virtues and values in business. - Self awareness and self reflection. - Taking on responsibility in life/business. - How comedians are pioneers in society.   The Overview Effect with James Perrin The Overview Effect is the paradigm shift astronauts experience when viewing Earth from space; where their outlook on life changes, they experience an emotional and spiritual transformation, and they return to Earth profoundly connected to Nature and humanity. What would our world look like if we lived from the perspective of this ‘Overview Effect’? Join James Perrin as he speaks with influential thinkers, environmentalists, humanitarians, & entrepreneurs to explore the moments in their lives that have shaped the way they see the world, their stories of awakening and transformation, and ultimately, how these moments have influenced the impact they're seeking to create in their lives. In a world that faces endless crises (climate, wealth inequality, homelessness, health, racial injustice, and so much more), this podcast asks "What if we all experienced our own moments of transformation? What if the most pertinent crisis, that underpinned all of the others that we face, is that of our own consciousness and morality?"   Mason Taylor Mason Taylor is the CEO/Founder of SuperFeast and a renowned tonic herbalist. On a soul mission to bring people back to their body and nature while bursting through dogma, he shares passionately and uniquely in his workshops, podcast, and content on how to cultivate healing and potentiation through health sovereignty. An expert in Daoist tonic herbalism, Mason has helped tens of thousands of people globally discover medicinal mushrooms, adaptogenic tonic herbs, and the healing philosophy from which they emerged. Mason is also a budding comedian; bursting the bubble on the “health scene” with his antics.   RESOURCE GUIDE: Mason's Instagram The Overview Effect podcast The Overview Effect with James Perrin Instagram   Products and Books: Shen Blend Three Treasures Bundle   Articles: The Three Treasures (Jing, Qi and Shen) The Daoist Brains: Who Are The Dao and What is Their Philosophy?   Relevant Podcasts: Calm Mind, Joyful Spirit: The Shen Blend with Mason and Tahnee (EP#91) Sovereignty and Self Responsibility with Tahnee on Super Woo Radio (EP#159)    Check Out The Transcript Here:  
Are you looking to ignite the dulled flame of your sexual essence? Are you feeling depleted and lacking lustre for the day, let alone for having a robust lib*do? Perhaps you're looking to support your sexual vigour so you can continue to thrive, love life, and enjoy sex well into your later years. We're all sexual beings, and having the energy, spirit, and capacity to express ourselves in such a way is the spark that keeps us inspired and in love with life. Earlier this year, Mason did a live webinar on the topic of Lib*do and how Daoist tonic herbalism serves as a beautiful gateway into the cultivation of lifelong practices that will continue to expand sexual capacity, sexual vigour, and keep our essence burning strong well into our 60's, 70's and 80's. The webinar was so well received; that we've decided to make it an episode on the podcast. This episode is a holistic, integrated guide to establishing your intention and awareness of where you want your sexual vigour and capacity to be in 10, 20, and 30 years. Mason explains the relationship between Jing (Yin and Yang Jing), foundational energy, the kidneys, and how they are all inextricably woven into our potential for sexual desire and vigour. He also lays down an integrated guide to the Daoist tonic herbs, discussing how specific blends work within the organs to cultivate sexual essence, lasting potential and can work as a support system right through to our elderly years. Ultimately this is a holistic discussion around how we can use the teachings of Daoism to embody the most sexually robust, unique, love-filled expressions of ourselves! There is also a compact resource guide below with links to everything mentioned (and more) in the webinar, be sure to check it out.    "So put into place something to ensure you are taking your herbs regularly. Put your boundaries in place to ensure that you have enough time to cultivate your essence and have enough time to really go into that loving place where you know you have the space to take all those experiences that your potential and your sexual essence and lib*do have given you. And you have enough time to sit with it within your heart and let it sink in and make, gain wisdom".   - Mason Taylor   Mason discusses:   -Yang Jing herbs -The quality of lib*do. -Foundational energy. -Protecting our essence. -Spontaneous joy and sex. -The Daoist tonic herbs and lib*do -The cultivation of Jing, Qi and Shen. -Yin Jing- cultivating the waters of life. -Good sleep practices for sexual vigour. -How adaptogens help to restore lib*do. -Jing foundational essence and lib*do. Bonds, boundaries, spleen energy and protecting Jing.    RESOURCE GUIDE:   Products and Books: JING Blend Cordyceps Schisandra Ashwagandha  Deer Antler Velvet JING, QI, SHEN (Three Treasures bundle) Eucommia bark (primary Yang Jing herb). Ron Teeguarden - The Ancient Wisdom Of Chinese Tonic Herbs (Book)   Articles: Cordyceps Health Benefits- Article The 7 Sexy Benefits of Schisandra- Article The Three Treasures (Jing, Qi, Shen)- Article  Jing: What is it, and how to cultivate it- Article  Cultivating Passion and Desire Article by Molly Helfend. Discover Deer Antler Velvet Impressive Benefits- Article   Relevant Podcasts: Authentic Sex with Juliet Allen (EP#31) Sexuality and Libido with Nick Perry (EP#45)  Semen Retention with Taylor Johnson (EP#46) Nurturing Stability & Earth Energy with Tahnee & Mason Taylor Your Erotic Blueprint with Ian Ferguson from Jaiya Inc (EP#60) The Dao of Health, Sex & Longevity with Daniel Reid (EP#115) Love, Sex and Psychadelics with Dr. Molly Maloof (EP#137) Life-Changing Sex Makes Anything Possible with Kim Anami (EP#28)   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
In a very open and sovereign exchange on Super Woo radio, Tahnee sits in the guest seat and journeys deep into earthly, Daoist, yogic, and supernatural spaces with George Kavassilas. This episode is one of a kind, revealing the expanse of Tahnee's depth in all her nuanced layers; intellectual, spiritual, creative, vulnerable, masculine, and feminine (to name a few). Seated unwavering in the unified field of love, host of Super Woo radio, George Kavassilas, holds an impeccable space for this expansive conversation that explores the depths of our existence into other dimensions and beyond. Starting with a glimpse into her love story with her husband Mason, this episode weaves in and out of Tahnee's life journey, her value system, and the tenets of yogic and Daoist teachings that have informed her awareness along the way. Tahnee talks openly about the grief and bliss she has experienced in her life and discusses the importance of honesty, courage, self-responsibility, and sovereignty in any healthy relationship, business or personal. George and Tahnee discuss energy centres, chakra systems, other dimensions of space and time, and current events that call upon us to be clear on our value systems as we move towards an ominous technological future; that thrives on hive mind mentality. Tahnee's willingness to be equally real and vulnerable on all things discussed in this episode reminds us of the power our voices have when we operate from a place of integrity and speak from a place of authenticity.     "But it's this idea of, complete self-mastery isn't, 'I can hold my breath for 15 minutes. Or, I can stop my heart'... Or whatever it is. Those are all interesting things to play with. But can you actually master yourself? Can you master the singularity? And can you actually be in control"?    - Tahnee Taylor     Tahnee and George discuss: -Pain. -Trust. -Projection.  -Vulnerability. -Co-creation. -Relationships. -Value systems. -Natural yoga. -Plant medicine. -Shinto Buddhism. -Tantric Buddhism. -The chakra system. -Living authentically. -How to sit in discomfort.  -Honesty in all relationships. -Tahnee's embodiments of Yoga. -Boundary setting in relationships. -Connection in an age of disconnect.   Tahnee Taylor Tahnee is a self proclaimed nerd, with a love of the human body, its language and its stories. A cup of tonic tea and a human interaction with Tahnee is a gift! A beautiful Yin Yoga teacher and Chi Ne Tsang practitioner, Tahnee loves going head first into the realms of tradition, yogic philosophy, the organ systems, herbalism and hard-hitting research. Tahnee is the business brains behind SuperFeast, wife to Mason, and devoted mama to Aiya and baby Leo, the newest addition to the Taylor family. George Kavassilas George Kavassilas is an author, mentor, and public speaker. George has had a lifetime of experiences beyond the ordinary, encountering a wide spectrum of expressions of life both Inter-Dimensional and Extra-Terrestrial in nature. As a consequence, he went through a process of reconciling the knowledge and wisdom gained from these experiences and came to realise a natural responsibility to share what he has learned with our global community. George now embodies a limitless passion in addressing life’s primordial questions: “Who are we? Where do we come from? and What are we doing here?”  George knows his life path includes a focus to expose all levels of deception, no matter how far they go. He carries a deep-seated sense of responsibility to help liberate our Humanity from all forms of imposing doctrine and dogma, without exception - be they Earthly or even Cosmic in nature. As George says, “It’s really a remembering process to revitalise and resurrect the Sovereign and Infinite Being you truly are.” The Extent - The Challenge - The Creative Solution   Resources: Tahnee's website Tahnee instagram George's website To contact George Superwoo Radio (George's Podcast) Our Universal Journey (George's Book)  Transcending The God Matrix with George Kavassilas (EP#119)   Resources mentioned in the podcast: Dr. Hiroshi Motoyama Dr Hiroshi Motoyama books The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali- book Yin Yoga with Anatomist and Yogi Paul Grilley (EP#59)   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
We're discussing metabolic health, metabolic healing, the kinship of different nutrients and minerals, and how an imbalance of certain nutrients and minerals such as copper, zinc, iron, and magnesium are at the root cause of a range of health conditions becoming prevalent in society. In pursuit of health and healing, most people, at some point in their life, have been told by a doctor or healthcare practitioner that they need to take Vitamin C, D, and Iron supplements to bring their body back into a state of harmony. At some point in their life, many women will also be told they are anaemic. In this episode, Dan breaks down how and why many people who have been diagnosed as anaemic are actually not, and how downsizing the number of synthetic supplements you take daily (a less is more approach)- could be the missing link in achieving health harmony. Dan discusses his health journey finding out he was copper anaemic, which lead him to researching the relationship between ceruloplasmin production, copper deficiency, tissue-stored iron, retinol, D3, and whole-food vitamin C. We love having Dan frequent the SuperFeast pod; his non-dogmatic approach and devotion to upgrading his knowledge in health and vitality keep us inspired and on point. In this episode, Dan delivers accessible health protocols for acute situations and lifestyle maintenance and discusses what an ancestrally aligned diet looks like, and why our bodies thrive on them.     "It turns, out a lot of the time people aren't actually low in iron. It's just that so much of their iron is stuck in the tissue, and it looks deficient in the blood. So, what do they get? They get iron supplements. Which just compounds the whole problem. It creates more oxidative stress. No one's looking at copper. If anything, they've been told they have too much copper, right? So you can see how that conundrum just accelerates and accelerates. And you end up with this more inflammatory, more oxidative stress type of picture over time, which eventually leads to chronic fatigue". - Dan Sipple     Mason and Dan discuss:   -Anaemia. -Zinc deficiency. -Copper anaemia -Pyrrole disorder. -Metabolic health. -Metabolic healing. -Ancestral nutrition. -Bioavailable copper. -Autoimmune disorders. -DHEA supplementation. -The Importance of retinol. -Hemochromatosis in men. -Terrain theory vs germ theory. -Copper deficiency symptoms. -The difference between retinol and beta carotene. -The relationship between retinol and D3 supplements. -Whole food vitamin C vs ascorbic acid and liposomal C.    Who Dan Sipple?  Dan Sipple also known as The Functional Naturopath is based on the south coast of NSW and has a special interest in gut health, immune dysfunction, pro-metabolic health, mineral rebalancing & hormones.  Dan has been in the health and wellness arena for over a decade and blends traditional herbal medicine systems and knowledge with cutting-edge functional and integrative testing to best facilitate a patient's journey to peak wellness.   Resources:   Dan Website Dan Instagram Gut Health Podcast 1 Gut Health Podcast 2 Autoimmunity and Medicinal Mushrooms (EP#18) Optimising Your Gut Bacteria with Dan Sipple (EP#68) How to Turn Your Immune System On with Dan Sipple (EP#131)   Resources mentioned in the podcast:   Truth Calkins book Matt Blackburn website Morley Robbins - Cure Your Fatigue (book) Ray Peat- Generative Energy Restoring The Wholeness of Life   Check Out The Transcript Here:
One in five women worldwide has had the major abdominal surgery commonly known as C-section- the word major is no hyperbole. Seven layers of tissue (both abdomen and uterus) are cut through, to deliver the baby. Traditionally C-sections were only used in emergencies where either the mother's or baby's life/health was at risk. In modern-day society, they have become a regular pre-elected surgery.  Today on the podcast, Tahnee talks to C-section Recovery Coach, Doula, and specialised Massage Therapist, Nicole Alfred about all things C-section trauma, recovery, and post-surgery care. Working in this field for over 15 years and having experienced C-section herself, Nicole brings much depth of knowledge and awareness to the lack of C-section rehabilitative care available to women within the healthcare system globally. Nicole's work focuses on changing the current narrative about C-sections, not to promote them like they're better or safer than vaginal birth, but rather something to be avoided where possible. Nicole also works passionately to bring awareness to the lack of preparation and follow-up care that would routinely happen with any other major surgery. Through her multi-layered healing programme (The C-Section Recovery Method), Nicole guides women back to a place of connection within their bodies on every level- physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.    Tahnee and Nicole discuss the untold realities of what happens during and after C-section, the trauma women carry (physically and emotionally) post-C-section, why women need to be advocates for themselves and the care they receive no matter how they birth, and so much more. Make sure you tune in for this beautiful, eye-opening conversation.   "I tell patients, "This is where you gave birth. In this area that I'm working on, I don't just dig right into scar tissue like I would with a muscle that was tight, I respect it. Post birth body acceptance is really important, but it's also really hard. It is hard because what your body was before you had a baby; was just your body. But now you've had a baby and there are all these changes that have happened. And now you have this permanent line across you that may or may not hurt sometimes. And so, it's a lot to integrate. And unfortunately our medical systems are failing. They're failing women by not having the right information available".   - Nicole Alfred   Tahnee and Nicole discuss:   -C-section trauma -What happens in a C-section? -Massage for C-section scarring. -Body acceptance post C-section. -Bacterial infections post C-section. -Urinary incontinence post C-section. -Subsequent pregnancies and VBAC. -Healing the pelvic floor post C-section. -The damaging 'bounce back' ideology. -REST - why it's so important post ALL birth. -Dyspareunia (painful intercourse) post C-section. -The feeling of failure many women experience post C-section. -Corsets/belly binding - when and how we should be using them.   Who Nicole Alfred? CEO of Fully Alive Wellness and creator of the C-section Recovery Method. Nicole Alfred is a trained doula and has been a Registered Massage Therapist in Oakville, Ontario Canada for the past 15 years. Nicole also co-owns a continuing education program called Perinatal Massage Therapy Education. Nicole helps C-section Mamas who have experienced an emergency cesarean recover from birth and contributes globally to education and healing protocols for C-section recovery.     Resources:   Nicole's Instagram C-section recovery Facebook group  C-section recovery method website Nicole's massage- Fully Alive Wellness Diastasis Recti book- Katy Bowman   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
It's time again for us to tune into the elements, our bodies, and the soothing subtle shifts occurring around us in nature; here in the Southern Hemisphere, we have entered into Autumn. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Autumn is the season of the Metal Element. As we come down from the energised Yang energy of warmer months into the Yin, we naturally find ourselves slowing down and going within. It is a time for introspection, reflection, and letting go of anything mentally, emotionally, or physically that no longer serves us. The Lungs and Large Intestine are the organs associated with the Metal Element. The Lungs, also known as the Seat Of Wisdom, play a vital role in the natural process of fortifying surface immunity (protective Wei Qi), strengthening Qi and our overall immune system. The Lungs also purify; The fresh Autumn air is inhaled and processed into True Human Qi, which is then carried throughout the body and distilled down to the Kidneys. This beautiful flow of transformation and distillation is why it's a good practice to take nourishing Yin herbs that keep the Lungs moisturised and protect the chest area from the cool, drying Autumn air. The Large intestines release toxins and waste from the body that is no longer required.  Mason Taylor: So if your Qi is transforming with flow through each of the organ systems through yang and yin, yin and yang, and different degrees and expressions, and let's say, you have a terrain which can protect itself. But that doesn't mean you'd be disrespectful to the system and be aware that it's not as much as it is infinite. It also is finite in what it can do because it's yin and yang. And therefore, you still put a scarf on when the wind is coming in cold to stop that the wind invading in through your throat. You still make sure that your kidneys are nice and warm, so the cold doesn't invade them all through your feet. So, it's yes to both. So, I'll just put it... because I had someone who wanted me to talk about it. Now, that's my piece   Tahnee and Mason discuss the herbs, practices, and emotions of this season, why breathwork practices are essential in this season and the importance of reflecting on the movements of nature with early bed, early rising, and lots of rest.     Mason and Tahnee discuss:  -Lung Foods. -Qi and Lung herbs. -Surface immunity and Wei Qi. -Convalescing foods for Autumn. -The energy of Lung Metal season. -The emotions of Lung Metal season. -Exercises for Autumn and Lung energy. -Contraction and introspection in Autumn. -The relationship between the Lungs skin. -The Lung and Large Intestine relationship. -How to strengthen Qi and build immunity. -Breathing practices for Lung Metal season. -Connecting with the seasons through nature. -Honouring the transition of seasons for good immunity.   Tahnee and Mason Taylor Tahnee and Mason Taylor are the CEO and founder of SuperFeast. Their mission with SuperFeast is to improve the health, healing, and happiness of people and the planet, through sharing carefully curated offerings and practices that honour ancient wisdom and elevate the human spirit. Together Tahnee and Mason run their company and host the SuperFeast podcast, weaving their combined experience in herbs, yoga, wellness, Taoist healing arts, and personal development with lucid and compelling interviews from all around the world. They are the proud parents of Aiya and Goji, the dog, and are grateful to call the Byron Shire home.    Resources: Shiitake Qi Blend Cordyceps Schisandra Astragalus Turkey Tail     Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
How do we simultaneously exist and heal ourselves in a world that is in crisis? How do we integrate traumas when they occur at a community level? How can we turn a crisis situation into an opportunity for healing? Today on the podcast, we are journeying into all of this and more as we explore all types of trauma; with the guidance, knowledge, and wisdom of Dr. Jimi Wollumbin. Dr. Jimi Wollumbin is a renowned expert in his field of traditional Chinese Medicine and has been practicing for over 20 years. He is the CEO and founder of One Health Organisation, a wellness-based charity that has distributed over ten metric tonnes of herbs and supplements to 100 locations across 13 countries for the past 15 years. Jimi is an incredible human whose life soul work is devoted to the holistic healing and reconnecting of all humanity.  Over the past month, SuperFeast, and the entire Northern Rivers community of NSW, Australia, have experienced the worst flooding ever recorded in the history of this region. Thousands of people have been left homeless, heartbroken, and traumatised. Our hearts go out to all those who've been affected by these floods and suffered a tragic loss. It is true; that even a crisis like this allows us the opportunity to build resilience, strength, and experience growth. But what happens to the trauma left within us unhealed and unprocessed? Trauma cracks, leaks, and is passed on from person to person, through generations. Dr. Jimi explains: "It can not be walled off. You can't ignore it. The only way to heal trauma is to integrate it. When trauma heals, it becomes a rhizomatic resilience web built on love and connectivity". In this curative conversation, Dr. Jimi Wollumbin examines humanity's history of collective trauma and how these traumas are still affecting us today as a community in modern culture. Through metaphor and anecdote, Jimi illustrates the fragmented nature of trauma and compassionately explains how we can integrate our trauma wounds to become active conscious caretakers of any crisis, rather than adding to and further becoming a part of the problem.    "We've all experienced trauma. All living systems have a component of resilience or anti-fragility. Communities, rainforests, humans; We all become more resilient from stressors. But only if we have time to repair, integrate, and reflect upon it. If someone continues to get trauma after trauma, after trauma, after trauma, after trauma, after trauma without integration, what happens? They break. But if you have challenge integration, assimilation, repair, repeat, that's like a gym workout".   - Dr. Jimi Wollumbin    Mason and Jimi discuss:   -Survivors guilt. -Vicarious trauma. -Collective trauma. -Community trauma. -How trauma leaks. -Epigenetic switching. -The perpetrator model. -How to integrate trauma. -Victims, perpetrators and trauma.  -How to deal with the effects of trauma. -Shamanic medicine, trauma and soul retrieval. -How do we live and heal in a world that is in crisis?   Resources: Dr. Jimi Wollumbin Website Dr. Jimi Wollumbin Patreon Jimi Wollumbin Instagram Dr. Jimi Wollumbin Facebook   Resources mentioned In the Podcast: The Yellow Emperor's Classic of Internal Medicine Microbes and Viruses with Jimi Wollumbin (EP#58) SuperFeast Podcast   Check Out The Transcript Here:  
Today on the podcast, we have one of our most loved returning guests; naturopathic doctor and best-selling author Lara Briden. If you have had the pleasure of listening to Lara on one of our previous podcasts, you know she is an absolute wealth of knowledge for all things women's reproductive, menstrual, and hormonal health. As a woman, listening to her illustrate the inextricable relationship between female reproductive health, mental health, and hormone systems, there is a sense of belonging and reclamation for the natural cycles that have been medically interrupted.   Over the years, we've had Lara on the podcast talking about period repair, PCOS, Hypothalamic Amenorrhea, and all they encompass; Today, Lara is joining us to talk about the transitions into perimenopause and menopause. Lara's enlightened wisdom reminds us that menopause is not something to dread or treat as a medical 'condition' to be corrected; but rather a gateway and rite of passage to be honoured and exalted.    In this beautiful conversation with Tahnee, Lara dispels menopausal fallacies replacing them with profound knowledge and biological facts about what this sacred transition within the female body/psyche represents. Lara reframes the metabolic/hormonal shifts between the reproductive years and perimenopause,  details the best diet/herbal medicines for menopause, and offers a beautiful evolutionary perspective of menopause across time and cultures. "How the perimenopause transition is going for a woman depends on a lot of factors. Your stress, your adrenal system, your stress support system, how stable it is, how strong your circadian rhythm is, how well-nourished you are, how your immune system is. All of those things, including, unfortunately, how many environmental toxins you have been exposed to. Any of those negative things can increase the symptoms of the perimenopause transition".    - Lara Briden    Tahnee and Lara discuss: -Menopause. -Perimenopause. -Contraceptive drugs -The reproductive years. -Pill bleeds are not periods. -The phases of perimenopause. -The transition into menopause. -Herbal medicine for menopause. -Hormone therapy for menopause. -Why alcohol and menopause don't mix. -The difference between progesterone and progestin. -Bone density loss with perimenopause/menopause. -The hormonal shifts during perimenopause/menopause. -At what age do women start getting symptoms of menopause?   Who Lara Briden? Lara Briden is a naturopathic doctor and author of the bestselling books Period Repair Manual andHormone Repair Manual. With a strong science background, Lara sits on several advisory boards and is the lead author of a 2020 paper published in a peer-reviewed medical journal. She has 25 years’ experience in women’s health and currently has consulting rooms in Christchurch, New Zealand, where she treats women with PCOS, PMS, endometriosis, perimenopause, and many other hormone- and period-related health problems.   If you're wanting to enrich your knowledge and dive deeper into Lara's work, make sure you check out the resources below linking to Lara's websites, books and previous podcasts.      Resources: Dr. Lara's website Dr. Lara's Instagram Dr. Lara's Facebook Lara Briden Forum The Period Repair Manual-Lara Briden Period Repair with Lara Briden (EP#21) The Power of Menopause with Jane Hardwick Collings (EP#77) Is It PCOS or Hypothalamic Amenorrhea with Lara Briden (EP#99)   Resources Mentioned In The Podcast:   The Power of Eating Enough - Lara Briden Blog Post The Difference Between Progesterone and Progestin - Lara Briden Blog Post The Slow Moon Climbs - The Science, History, and Meaning of Menopause (book mentioned by Lara in podcast)   Check Out The Transcript Here:
Today on the podcast, we welcome back holistic lifestyle coach and men's work facilitator Nick Perry for a cultivating chat around personal transformation, fulfilling soul purpose, calling in harmony, and prioritising health in our daily lives. Both champions in their own right, carving out the lifestyles they desire with integrity and vision, Nick and Mase offer their insights on becoming the best version of your authentic self so you can show up for the grind of life, ready to achieve goals with more ease. In a world that seems progressively unpredictable and uncertain, there has never been a better time to dive into foundational self-development and hone in on core values that bring about the evolution we desire in ourselves and our future world. Nick discusses both the challenges and importance of prioritising self in all holistic facets to embrace life feeling confident and equipped for any challenge that comes our way. Having mentored and transformed the lives of many individuals on their paths to fulfillment and success, Nick gives some poignant words on finding your truth, connecting with your soul's purpose, and not diluting the unique essence you have to offer to the world.   "Maybe your health sucks, maybe you have challenges with your sexual function. What's the feedback life's offering you right now? That's the place I would start. And another good question to follow that with is; What do you want out of life? And most of the time, when that question's asked in a deliberate container, the answer is 'I don't really know'. Okay, so that's the doorway; now let's step through it."    - Nick Perry     Mason and Nick discuss: Fatherhood Relationships Goal setting. Value systems. Value building. The pain teacher. The transformation process Personal Development tools. Taking responsibility for yourself. Finding your identity, your authentic you. Who are you and what do you want in life? Having congruency and integrity with intentions and goals so we can achieve them.      Who Nick Perry? Nick Perry is a Holistic Lifestyle Coach, Corrective Exercise Specialist and Men’s Work Facilitator who is passionate and driven by authentic relating and inspired living. Nick’s education in Holistic Lifestyle Coaching draws from personal mentoring and learning from some of the world’s leading healers, facilitators and physical therapists. For the last decade, he has immersed himself in study and experimentation, acquiring qualifications across a broad range of modalities. Over the last few years, his reach in the world has spread far, as he shares his knowledge, experience and personal story through podcasts, workshops and teachings in Pleasure School. Known for his deep presence, relatability and down-to-earth nature, Nick’s goal when working with clients is to leave them feeling empowered and aligned in themselves - physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Rhythm Health Nick's Instagram Nick's Facebook ManKind Project Australia Sexuality and Libido with Nick Perry (EP#45)       Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Mason: (00:00) Nick, thanks for coming back into the pod room with me.   Nick Perry: (00:03) Well, absolute honour and pleasure to be here, mate. I was just saying it was 2019 the last time, so it's been a while.   Mason: (00:14) 2019-   Nick Perry: (00:17) November.   Mason: (00:18) ... that was November, wasn't it? Yeah.   Nick Perry: (00:18) Mm-hmm (affirmative). A lot happened, man. A lot has happened.   Mason: (00:22) Yeah. Well, it makes it even more relevant.   Nick Perry: (00:25) Yeah.   Mason: (00:25) I know your work continues to go and supporting the men, supporting the boys.   Nick Perry: (00:30) Yeah, absolutely.   Mason: (00:31) And I'm sure we've seen a bit of an exposing two years of the need and necessity to get our ducks in a row, as we were talking about when we're having that swim this morning.   Nick Perry: (00:45) Yeah. Yep yep. That was really cool and very refreshing to chat with you about like ducks in a row. And the terminology for me is getting the I sorted before we get too invested and entangled in the we and the all aspects of life and relationships.   Mason: (01:11) Well, so tell me about, I know you've got your, your course developing and it's always evolving. But then I know you've got your coaching services and your mentoring services. But I know you do have that awareness of bringing a harmony of the many areas to just start tuning into and checking into when it comes to health, which is... It's much more difficult than people think to bring the smorgasbord and the platter of the various modules and elements that are required when you're really dipping into taking on some responsibility for your health in all areas.   Mason: (01:49) And it's not just like, "Okay, tick this off and tick this off and tick off." It's finding which one is it the... How intensely do you jump in the deep end of each of these things? What's an appropriate way to start? And then where does that fit in the larger picture? As you know, it's a huge task to take to deliver it. So where are you at with it at the moment?   Nick Perry: (02:12) Personally?   Mason: (02:13) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Nick Perry: (02:18) Reinventing myself personally. My identity has evolved as I've stepped into being a father, and that's changed everything. If I were to summarise what I'm getting at, it's fucking changed everything. And that doesn't mean my foundations have changed like thoughts, breathing, hydration, nutrition, movement, sleep, if I were to summarise what we need to work toward being in mastery of regarding health. But the environment that I balance that with, the environment that I conduct that symphony has changed completely from being like an amphitheatre to being like a shopping mall to offer a taste of what it feels like in this adjustment phase that I'm in right now.   Nick Perry: (03:20) It's like, "Wow." Being present enough in a relationship to keep the balance, and peace, and the harmony there has definitely been... It's been a stretch now that there's a baby with its high needs in the mix. My business is doing better than ever, and that's something that I love and I'm really passionate about and really excited to nurture and grow. And then somewhere in that, family, relationships, business, somewhere in that is me.   Nick Perry: (04:02) The longer I go without prioritising myself, the more dishevelled I become, and that impacts those are the three priorities, those are the three key aspects of life. That's really where the main adjustment is, is like, how do I nurture my own health? How do I embody and apply these foundations most of the time? So I'm feeling confident to embrace the daily challenge in the daily grind.   Mason: (04:39) How do you approach that? Because I think that's something like everyone listening, I'm sure relates to that, losing yourself and your commitment to yourself a little bit as life gets busy. And you're the last one that you nourish. Especially the men listening will relate, but how do you approach that while still staying... A lot of around here, it's like, "Oh, that's it. I'm checking out and it's me time." And it's like I'm going into self care mode. And it's almost at the sacrificing of other responsibilities.   Mason: (05:19) So how do you see... What's the goo and the space between all those elements of our commitments that allows us to dedicate that time for ourselves so that we're better at showing up for other responsibilities?   Nick Perry: (05:33) That's the essence, is like when my cup is full, I have more to give. We get that idea, but filling that cup is easier said than done. And I think one part to speak into that question, it's the quality of presence. And we chatted about this earlier this morning. It's not always volume of time that equates to a full cup. Because I can be diffuse in my awareness whilst having my "self care time." But if it's half an hour that I gift myself where I take that half an hour seriously.   Nick Perry: (06:18) I take it seriously enough to take nothing seriously and I do put my phone down. And I let people's problems be their problems completely and entirely. And I learn to really be in devotion to myself fully for half an hour, then four hours here, eight hours here, 12 hours here those days that happen and managing those responsibilities inside that bigger volume of time is easier. Because I came home to myself, which means I'm not resentful. I'm not resentful for the other things that need my presence.   Nick Perry: (07:01) And I think that's the first response that I feel to speak into is, how honest am I being in my self care time will determine how nourishing it truly is for me. That's one aspect.   Mason: (07:23) I think last time you were on, we chatted a lot about those pillars you were talking about, sleep, nutrition, hydration. I know people will be like, "Yeah, yeah, cool. Know that." But when men are coming to you and they're getting into their health, what are those little extracurricular elements or pillars? We've talked about like being able to have difficult conversations, those kinds of... What are those other little juicy bits and bobs for guys listening here going like, "Yeah, I'm starting to delve into my life, my health kick here"?   Mason: (08:02) For you, what are those little exciting, little [inaudible 00:08:04]? Maybe it's the core, maybe it's the extracurricular stuff. What are those things that you guys need to be aware of and jumping into?   Nick Perry: (08:12) Well, what I see men get most value from when I'm coaching them, things like the value of congruency, what I think, what I say, what I do. And being very aware, am I being congruent here in whatever it is that I'm doing, and in particular, in my bigger conquest, my bigger life mission? I wouldn't really rate that as a nuance, but that is an anchor point when I'm starting to integrate optimising my hydration or cleaning up my diet. Or getting the right dose of movement into my life weekly, whatever that is.   Nick Perry: (09:07) Overshooting puts me out of congruency. Overcommitting, saying, "All right, I'm going to train six days a week, 45 minute sessions. Meditate half an hour, seven days a week because I know this is good." And it's just unbelievably unrealistic. We cannot be congruent with that intention in that goal, so fall out of integrity. We're not being impeccable with our word and our self-esteem takes a hit. And the people that we're around see us or feel our energy deflate and shrink and contract.   Nick Perry: (09:50) And it's so invisible a lot of the time to somebody that's new to that and he is feeling puffed up and inspired to make changes, but doesn't have somebody there supporting them to qualify, is that goal realistic? So the subtlety is in essence to set yourself up for a win is so fucking important. One, because you'll get done the thing you need to get done. It's like, I need to do a little bit of resistance training.   Nick Perry: (10:22) I just need to keep that muscle mass on me, I don't necessarily need to build. But I need the density, it helps me stay grounded. And when I do meet that, when I say, "Okay, Wednesday morning and Saturday morning, I'm going to it 45 minutes." I can do that. My self-esteem starts to build, and then that impacts everything. It reverberates outwardly. But part of this is communication, which is another one of those subtle aspects that needs to be an awareness.   Nick Perry: (11:01) Because if I have a family and I have a business and I have these quarters of my kingdom that I need to invest energy into, there's people that I need to consider. So if I were to all of a sudden get up in the morning, not communicate to my partner, "This is what I'm doing now," And ask her for her support. And ask how I can reciprocate that support in another way. There's a failure to communicate the intention, and that's going to create disruption and disharmony, because it's going to shake up the dynamic as it is too much.   Nick Perry: (11:45) So again, this is is part of the process, is learning how to communicate, learning how to identify my needs. And then go that step further and ask for the people in my life for their help, for their support in meeting those needs.   Mason: (12:03) This is in the best way possible wreaking of like, all right, how do we find harmony of how we're engaging with our weight training? So you are talking about it in the sense of like, all right, you need to be realistic. If you try and do it six days a week, 45 minutes, maybe it's not realistic. And for most people, I think they'll resonate with that and be like, "Yeah, probably..." I've recognised that part of me that goes, "Yeah, I'm going to do this." And then you go, "Oh actually, that was shooting for the stars."   Mason: (12:34) Maybe you land on the moon, that's still good. Some people like that approach. I personally don't like that approach a lot of the time, because I do feel like the failure side of things. That's one way that's maybe not the approach. The other approach is maybe you go, "That's it, I'm going six days a week." And you say it, you don't know why you say it. You that commitment. And because you're someone that's so obsessive, you go and do it and create an excess.   Mason: (13:00) And I know a lot of people will go like, "Well, that's just a that's just because that person's a legend and they always do what they say they will do." Personally, I think that would be an excess for me and not be in harmony or balance. Because there's most likely many other things I need to be doing in my life that I could be committing to. And just because I randomly said it or the course said it, "You need to do this," I just go in. Maybe it's good every now and then just to go blow past my limits, but going back to the core and then going like, "What's the purpose of this? Now what's my purpose here?"   Mason: (13:33) And then that, whether it's that resistance training, allow that to find like an appropriate place within my timeline within my culture. I'm interested to talk to you about this, we've chatted... I think we've danced around talking this morning, and I definitely I just wanted to make sure we do talk about it on the podcast. The idea of just because something's good, there's like, do we have to be like that all the time? You need to get into a certain extent eating in a healthy way.   Mason: (14:06) You need to be to a certain extent, I want to talk about these other qualities of like calling people out in their bullshit and standing firm that you mentioned this morning. In the personal development scene, you say, "Guys, a lot of the time, I'm holding everyone to integrity and I'm going to be that shining light and not let anyone ever get away with their shit." It's like, at what point, first of all, I know a lot of men have a deficiency and their capacity to hold the line and call bullshit out.   Mason: (14:33) And I know a lot of guys who it's like, "Dude, you're at a party, relax." Just this is also quite excessive and quite boring. And so again, it hasn't fallen into harmony and it becomes, just because it's good, more must be better. And that's my identity now. So I'm keen again, the fabric of... Is it finding that purpose so all these little extracurricular things you're teaching people can fall into line and fall into a rhythm and in a harmony based on something more the core?   Nick Perry: (15:12) Yes. Yes, it is. Great. Such a cool question. And yeah, that overzealous, pulling out my sword all the time, what's motivating that? What's driving that? What do you gain from being that person? They're the questions that I would become curious about, especially if it's having an adverse impact on the people around you. Being masqueraders, no, I am the saviour, I am the caller-outerer person. And for sure, of course we need that. It keeps us honest and it keeps us accountable, and I am all about that.   Nick Perry: (15:54) But we both have been in the presence of people who are, like I said, over zealous in that, and that last piece you mentioned, then it's like, "What is this person's purpose?" Who are they? What is the thing behind all of this driving this way of being? That's where it needs to go always. Otherwise, it truly is an unconscious expression, and typically, that unconscious aspect is one that is wounded. One that is distorted might be a better way of putting that.   Nick Perry: (16:36) And that distortion will perpetuate and amplify and be projected onto people until that question is asked and explored. Not just through the mind, but through the body. Right into the nervous system when we can get into the deeper truths of who we are. And if we do find that distortion, then of course that becomes our work. That's when we need to start calling ourselves out on, oh, here's me being tyrannical in my friendships. Here's me being the perpetrator posing as the saviour.   Nick Perry: (17:14) But actually I'm just trying to hold power over my friends. Why? Because I'm feeling super insecure underneath it all. Where did I learn to be this way? Ah, yeah, then. And here I am in my adult life, it's still playing out. That's super important to address, but it's like, once I have this awareness, what do I redirect it to? How do I take that energy back and invest it in something that's truly affirmative to me and therefore affirmative to people that I'm responsible for and in relationship with?   Nick Perry: (17:48) And that's the bigger question. So the first port of call when it comes to purpose is knowing yourself. And taking as long as you need and seeking out as much support as you need to get a solid assessment of that. Scan the entire landscape of you and take it in.   Mason: (18:10) When you start working with someone, how do you approach that? Because obviously it can happen. It does happen through just the random nature of life's events and it's a constant feedback loop so we can know ourselves. But how do you personally give people that arena to as quick as possible, arrive at that place where they're in touch with their purposefulness and knowing themselves so they can have a bit of a compass as they start engaging with all the practises?   Nick Perry: (18:38) Well, that's the joy of being a coach is it really is unique to each individual. But I just get very curious about a few things. I get curious about what's not going right in your life? That's really important information. And sometimes, when we're in the thick of it, that's not something we want to really take stock of or audit or acknowledge. And it's like, "Well, let's just go there. This is a safe space. What's not working?" Maybe there's distance in your relationship. Maybe you are fucking hating your job.   Nick Perry: (19:20) Maybe your health sucks. Maybe you have challenges with your sexual function, anything. What's the feedback life is offering you now. That's a place I would start. And another really helpful question to follow that is, what do you want? And most of the time when that question is asked in a deliberate container where it's like, "Okay, we're getting real here." Most of the time, it's, "I don't really know.I don't actually know." So it's like, "Oh, cool, cool, cool. Here's the doorway now, let's step through that."   Nick Perry: (20:00) So if you don't know who you are and what you want, who have you been been? What is this identity that you occupy? Where did it form and what impact is it having for you to continue in this path? What's at risk here if you don't actually make contact with the authentic you. That's where I start, just really curious and it's really nice because there's no shame in that. It is a big and they are big and confronting questions.   Mason: (20:33) I think these types of conversations happen far too often accidentally when people stumble into the, for lack of a better word, like the health scene. This level of like maturity or going to the core is like what happens after someone's drunk the Kool Aid and gone too far down a dietary or spiritual or philosophical dogma? And then you come out the other side of it and then that's the impetus sometimes to be like, "Oh, I lost myself. Where am I here?"   Mason: (21:07) But again, I think more and more, hopefully there's a bit more ethic in the people who are welcoming people and to get healthy and to make sure that... I think this is the insurance policy, to make sure people don't lose themselves, especially when delving into the spiritual stuff. And especially, at the moment with everything going on in the world where there's so much division. Not just trying to find your identity through opposing another camp, but going in and finding what you want.   Mason: (21:39) I'm curious, because I definitely relate to like, if someone goes like, "What do you want?" And I'm like, "I just don't see... I don't know what you're really asking me or what you want me to say right now." But I'm not someone that works in those black and whites. I have a German friend who was talking to you about earlier. Maybe someone like that, he's like, "I tell you exactly what I want. This, this, this, that."   Mason: (22:01) I can tell you somewhat of a specific of how I want my life to unfold, but part of me doesn't give a shit what my life looks like. So I can't give you specifics, but I can tell you where I want to be as a person, as a man and a businessman and husband and father ongoingly bit by bit. So I'm in a position for life to unfold in a way that I know is congruent with my purposefulness. And so I just want to be in that. That's what I want, and so that's... I'm not going to go too much deeper.   Mason: (22:35) Here, it'll take me too long to explain to myself what my process is. But how do you then frame up that, what do you want? And then how do you bring colour to the responses and nuance into the way that men are answering that question when you're working with them?   Nick Perry: (22:54) Awesome. What you just said then is a really important detail, is we're not looking for the blueprint. It's like, what direction do you aim your arrow in? And I feel like that's what you described. You know what direction you aim your arrow, but you've been walking your own path long enough and being in a place of self responsibility long enough to know that as you evolve, so does that vision. And so does what you're about and what you're building, and all of that.   Nick Perry: (23:38) And that's a very important detail is, we're not looking for the thing and it has to be that forever right now. We're just trying to find what is your north? Where does north point on the compass? So the places that I would start is that question, and this is a really popular one in personal development. And I think it's deservingly so, value systems. So all things are governed by a value system, things that we deem as important and prioritise.   Nick Perry: (24:14) And a value system is basically like a filtration system. And things pass through that value system and I make my decisions based on those values. So when it comes to someone getting clearer on who they are, again, this is one of those confronting questions. It's like, what if you were to name me the things that you value highest, four of them, just four of them. And do so from as selfish a place as you can. Just you. And a meditation that can help with this is to call in and visualise you in a child and just observe them.   Nick Perry: (24:52) What do they gravitate to? What do they resonate with? And then you can call in your inner elder and just observe the essence in the energy of the inner elder that's past all the bullshit of that middle stage of life. Childhood to old age. And then it's like, name them. And for some people it's like adventure, some people it's... For me, one of my core values is solitude. That's so important for me to build and design into my life, and I have done.   Nick Perry: (25:32) Somebody else, it could be like honesty, and they just use that as their means of establishing what is a yes and what is a no in their life. And if somebody can't answer that, these are my prime core values, just four or five, then it's like, okay, no wonder you hate the job that you're in. Starting to make sense. Whose values are you living out right now? What drove you to say yes, to staying in a job that you fucking despise and is literally sucking you of your life force essence?   Nick Perry: (26:11) And you have inflammatory disorders, you're tired, you're using, alcohol and weed as a crutch and you not really connecting in your relationship. It's like, "Oh, okay. Well, yeah, this is what might dad did. He worked his fingers to the bone and he valued hard work. And so it's like, okay, now we're starting to take stock of who you are and where you aren't living in accordance with your true essence. And it's like, that doesn't mean you need to quit your job straight away, but just have the awareness.   Nick Perry: (26:51) And now you can start to dream into that question, what do I want? So if you were coming from your own value system, what would change?   Mason: (27:03) I think, and you just mentioned is that, what was coming into the back of my mind is that bridging phase. I think quite often, we don't go through a comprehensive value building where there's nuance. And when you bring those multiple value and virtue sets that arise, they often harmonise and balance other out. Versus being told, "Hey, if you don't like your job, you probably need to prioritise yourself." "Oh, so it's all about me," And then you just go and rip [inaudible 00:27:37]   Nick Perry: (27:39) Push like a Looney Tune scene, push the T&T bar down.   Mason: (27:43) Yeah. And it happens a lot in personal development as well. You see people just eject out of their relationships and all kinds of things and prioritising myself. And they just ride that energy. Sometimes it might be the right call, a lot of the time it's probably... Let's look at like a job's an easy one. Pointing the finger at the job being something you didn't like versus gently real... nourishing the learning that you went in there and committed to that job as a particular type of person and got what you were energetically putting out there.   Mason: (28:18) And can you just stay there for that little bit while you have a plan for what's going to come next, especially, if you have dependence? Or ensure.   Nick Perry: (28:26) Yes.   Mason: (28:27) ... that you respectfully, don't just... Now because the secret to life and prioritising yourself, don't make it everyone else's problem. And don't blame them for their unconsciousness and all that. Can you still meet them in that place of where they're at and gracefully and respectfully move on? Same in a relationship, right? That's what I think when you were saying, there's like that four values, however many come up. You see what you could... The holistic family of values and things that you cherish in life, they do harmonise each other.   Mason: (29:01) And if you go through that comprehensive work to begin with, that lays solid foundation to ensure what you are doing is in resonance with what you're actually trying to create.   Nick Perry: (29:11) Yes, yes, yes. Right on, it's a bigger picture and it's a longer game now. The long game is the way to go from my personal experience, speaking for myself. I see this often, and this isn't a diss or a judgement it's an observation in the coaching circles where it's like, "Okay, I'm ready to change the world." I'm a coach now, so I'm going to step out of the matrix. I'm going to two feet jump out of the matrix and I'm going to have a thriving coaching business. And it's like having built a coaching business, it's taken me nearly a decade to get where I'm at and I'm still very much a work in progress. I'm like, "That's not going to work."   Mason: (30:02) Do you mean especially the part of stepping out of the matrix?   Nick Perry: (30:06) Yeah. So I'm quitting my job and it's like, "Okay, well, who's going to pay the mortgage." It might seem obvious, but still it's a common thing that is often endorsed in the mind over matter ideology.   Mason: (30:23) Faith in the universe.   Nick Perry: (30:25) Yeah. Faith in the universe. And it's like, "No."   Mason: (30:26) Which has got some validity.   Nick Perry: (30:28) It does.   Mason: (30:28) But it's more like 80-20 rule. Just like the term.   Nick Perry: (30:33) Exactly. Again, don't be so rigid in that. And my advice to people, and I swear to God, I've had this conversation with many people because they're like, "Oh, how'd you do that? And this and that." And I was like, "Man, for the first few years I was wearing steel cap boots more than I was wearing sneakers." You know what I mean? I was on the tools digging holes and paying rent as a labourer and then doing my coaching on the side. And it was a transition that took, it took time and it was important that it took that time. One, because it helped me be an effective coach because I can relate, I can relate to people who are moving through a transformation process and all the aches and pains of that.   Nick Perry: (31:21) It gave me time to acquire experience right before I'm just gung-hoing because it's a big responsibility to be a coach. And the more exposure to complex problems and having mentoring first in how to resolve people's complex, support people to resolve their complex problems is super fucking important. Otherwise it's negligence, straight up. Don't take somebody to a part of themselves, one, that you haven't been to in your own way, and two, and you don't know how to get them back out of there. If you're taking someone down, there needs to be a level of experience and a skill developed where you can actually feel, where's the point in our return and how close are we to that right now? And is it appropriate that we go there today? And this just takes time and it's a beautiful experience and yeah, I feel like I'm rambling.   Mason: (32:23) No, I mean it's-   Nick Perry: (32:25) I don't know if that answers that.   Mason: (32:25) ... probably the most common thing. I don't have any specific questions, just jamming but bit what brings up a lot. I used to, and I've still got one client, one coaching client and was nearly considering do I go down the route where I'm running Super fist or do I go down the route where I continue my mentoring, coaching programmes, running retreats. And obviously ended up going down, running Super feast, which is not what I wanted, but it was probably it was what I personally, what I needed. Exactly for the reasons you're saying I would say I'm an ethical coach and I don't take people into cathartic process, but none nonetheless, I still probably wasn't willing to be a facilitator at that. I wanted to be more general in my approach.   Nick Perry: (33:24) Cool, cool. Yeah.   Mason: (33:26) In that, you talked about stepping out of the matrix. Now, the biggest thing I see in the coaching circle, and I'm sure this can be seen when people who when they're stepping out of their jobs, stepping out of and just making a big lane change in life, is you do excessively go right. What I was doing before, where I was super grounded into the earth and the earth's rules and the government rules and taxation and the matrix and all that kind of stuff. I'm rejecting that and it can of like the Darwin's model is like you've got the earth down the bottom, and that's got a couple of organs down there and you've got the human in the middle, and then you've got couple of other more up towards the heaven, organs up the top.   Mason: (34:14) And that's where all your vision and your purpose and all that is. But down the bottom is where your worry and your grief and your fear, but also your willingness to take on large responsibility. And as in the coaching world, people do just go like, "All right, well, that's it, I'm changing my job and I can straight up to the top and I'm all purpose and all vision." And the thing I can smell it on them now, when I know that they're not grounded and that they don't have their ducks. And are like, "I don't care if it's a... you can see, I only work all in like cryptocurrencies now because money ATO, all of that bad and new world spiritual awakening, blockchain, this is just an example, cryptocurrencies, that's the way of the future.   Mason: (34:58) And it's a complete bypass, regardless of whether you're running an official business or whatever it is, you are energetically ungrounded and lack the capacity to take on the responsibility to facilitate those big inner journeys, and then bringing people out of those journeys as well. If you don't know how to run your business and be super all over tight, what my cash flow is like, what my balance sheets looks like. All those things that are out, I'm getting out of the matrix and I'm going to be free and be a coach. What they think they are going and pursuing is they're just shirking responsibility. And coaching clients, you're either going to have a low IQ, not to be mean, but a low hanging fruit coaching client, who's not experienced enough to recognise that you are pretending to have your shit together, or you're delusional about having your shit together, or you're going to have good coaching clients and they're going to test you, like what a child does.   Mason: (36:02) Children are really smart to test your boundaries and see where there cracks, where you haven't got your shit together and where you emotionally haven't got yourself together. And good coaching clients will be like that. And you can say all you want like, "Oh, they didn't get it, and they just wouldn't listen, and they weren't teachable." It's like, no, their pointing out that you don't have your shit together. You are not grounded. Therefore you don't have the capacity to take on this big responsibility. I think it's really important what you're saying there. It's not all about this can be applied everywhere. It's not just coaching.   Nick Perry: (36:35) Yeah. Well, I'm so glad you brought in the Daoist stuff, I was waiting for that, and I love it. That's why I tune into this podcast because I'm just love that perspective so much and yeah, totally, it's like, if your coach doesn't seem human, then they're pretending, they're not being honest. Anyone that's worked with me would know that I am such a work in progress and it's not that I'm a perfect person. It's more that my relationship with hardship has matured, where it's something to embrace. It's something to love on, it's something to accept and recognise as part of the spectrum of the curriculum that we pass through. So that's my way of deciphering what you're saying. If it's like, "No, this is the way and crypto and I'm holier than thou and following me into the desert, it's like, where are we going though?"   Mason: (37:51) Yeah. And just all crypto's great. It's not [crosstalk ##].   Nick Perry: (37:55) Definitely Not, definitely not. That's just our   Mason: (38:01) The [crosstalk 00:38:01] example at the moment is on.   Nick Perry: (38:04) It's pretty on trend too.   Mason: (38:06) But I think, I talk about it so much on this podcast and I don't apologise because it's-   Nick Perry: (38:18) Everybody who can't see [inaudible 00:38:21] he looked up, looked off into the distance and raised his finger and said, "I don't apologise and I love that."   Mason: (38:30) It's the non escapism, not losing yourself to a particular identity, not feeling like you've found the holy grail, realising you're a constant work in progress. We talked about this morning to kind of... I like the Buddhist and they're like, "You chop wood, carry water, and you do that for your entire life, doing the basics." And as you're going along, chopping wood, again, you're going to have a moment of enlightenment as you're chopping that wood. And then your challenge then is to go, "Okay, get over it, integrate it, don't be attached to that and then keep on chopping the wood." So in that, what we're ultimately, as we always do talking about having enough ging and kidney essence, and what is that just the capacity to not get exhausted?   Mason: (39:20) That's just the physical expression of it. The more qi energetic base, which falls into our psychology is, can you maintain a connection to what is a unique set of emerging and malleable values for yourself? Where you take responsibility for mining those values and coming back and designing your life, where you come back to that. And from that a sense of, yeah, I can see what my sense of purposefulness is, rather than relying on anything externally to tell you what those values are, to tell you what that purpose is.   Mason: (39:58) And there is going to be a dark night of the soul at some point for everyone, especially if you've gone too far away from your centre and are identifying externally, where you might have... It have been that book or this community where it's like, "It is a good way to live." We can't argue, there's virtues there, but they're not yours. And might have been pointing you towards what your own values are. But at some point you're going to fall over if you're outside of that centre. Or you're going to have to become a little bit tweaked psychologically in order to... Your spirit needs to disconnect from your body in order to justify staying.   Mason: (40:38) That's what you said, it's what I see with a lot with a lot of these health ministers with the cracked out eyes at the moment, and they've lost all capacity to be human. So the spirit, we see it's a deficiency of shen. You see the life goes out of their eyes and they've just got that dead psychotic stare as they're berating the public down the camera. So that's the spirit needs to go away-   Nick Perry: (41:00) Right on.   Mason: (41:00) ... because it can't justify being in that system anymore. Because we've decided we don't need our own sovereignty, I'm just completely going to become a shield for this institution or this narrative. And so everyone... That's why I like talking to you and I like your approach to coaching people. Because I think coaching's become so diluted. I like reminding myself and everyone that, yeah, it just... But the more dilution there is, the more you're actually also going to define the pure, the goods.   Mason: (41:36) And we have talked about it lots on this podcast, but your ability to stay within your own centre, it's what we're talking about this sovereignty, mining for those values, it's so important.   Nick Perry: (41:49) I would argue that it's everything. Bottom line, [inaudible 00:41:54] what's the bottom line to this dream or dreaming? It's that, it's fucking that, because anything else is illusion or distortion. Anything else like you say is, your free will's been hijacked and it is no longer in service to your truth, your soul, your essence, your uniqueness, period. And therefore the offering you are to the universe is being hijacked or diluted somewhat. Who you are needs no justification.   Nick Perry: (42:39) Doesn't need to fit into anything, any demographic, any label or title ultimately. And for sure, when we are in the world, we can take that on, we try it on. But we need to know that it's something that we can take off like a jacket as well, and try something else on, and this and that, and this and that. And the feedback comes in. I'd like what you said about the spirit disassociating, detaching, and how you can literally see that. You can literally see that as a physical manifestation.   Nick Perry: (43:22) And it reminded me of that really important concept of the pain teacher. So the further from myself I get, I am going to... A messenger will come. And usually, it's through like health, pain, sickness, disease, or relationships is another place the pain teacher often shows up, relationships falling apart or becoming dysfunctional and unhealthy and toxic, et cetera. But that's so part of this, is my relationship with the pain teacher. When I outsource my responsibility to listen to the messenger, listen to the pain teacher, now I'm fucking in trouble.   Nick Perry: (44:11) Now I'm walking further and further and further down a path that's not true to me. And like you say, there's a lot of pressure to do that. There's politicians doing the most pure shit, guilting and shaming people to conform to whatever the fuck their agenda is, like who even cares? Is it promoting people to love themselves and to pursue their authenticity? Hell, no. Anything outside of that isn't a healthy pursuit.   Mason: (44:52) The clarity I'm getting, you're mentioning, it's everything. That's everything. Again, we hear purposefulness thrown around a lot to the extent I roll my eyes when I hear myself say it to an extent. But just as much as it gets diluted, when... I always watch myself when I'm like, "Oh gosh, another health coach. Oh, we're talking about purpose again. Oh, we're talking about this again." As much as something's become like, I keep using the word diluted, I think it's a really good one for myself. I've heard about things too much and I find myself getting eye-rolly.   Mason: (45:26) I remind myself that because there's... I've got such an awareness and I've heard it so many times, if I just tilt where I'm looking towards, like, "All right. Well, I'm looking externally too much, when I'm talking about purpose and I'm rolling my eyes hearing people talk about that." It's because I'm not looking in the same place. I need to look internally and feel... As much as it gets diluted out there and I roll my eyes, I equally know that I'm going to have the opportunity to actually know what purpose fullness is for me.   Mason: (45:55) I'm going to have greater, the more eye-rolly I get, the more potential I have to actually get clarity on for what it means for me, right?   Nick Perry: (46:04) Yeah, yeah, yeah.   Mason: (46:04) So I'm rolling my eyes at myself because I'm getting bored of trying to... I actually am trying to find the meaning externally and I'm just like, "[inaudible 00:46:12] these people [crosstalk 00:46:13]." And it's just I'm annoyed that I can't [crosstalk 00:46:15]   Nick Perry: (46:15) You're like, "I don't like that explanation, that person that isn't me is saying."   Mason: (46:20) I've heard that one before and I tried it and it didn't work and give a different answer that worked. It's like, yeah.   Nick Perry: (46:26) You said it wrong.   Mason: (46:28) Yeah.   Nick Perry: (46:28) [inaudible 00:46:28]   Mason: (46:32) And just realising that again for myself, as much as I love the taking the piss out of other people. Ultimately, for me, it's all well and good as long as I can practically find that place where I can shoulder the burden of responsibility of that annoyance. So I'm not putting that on someone else, as long as I genuinely have that skill in my repertoire, I find that I'm fine. And I don't mind being sarcastic and taking the peace out of it all.   Mason: (47:04) But I think the biggest thing that I'm getting today is the difference between just using tools for personal development, which we've talked a lot about, and there's lots of tools. And we see there's lots of little dogmas in churches that emerge around these tools that have been taken out of ancient eastern philosophy and taken out of psychology. So you can see like motivation and crafting your mindset is a tool within a rich tapestry of ancient psychology and spiritual development.   Mason: (47:39) But we see, just talking about love, and by the way, this is absolutely not a criticism, my own experience. So like the motivation scene or like the David Goggins' kind of like, "We're going to take this tool of crafting your mindset and making so you push past your beliefs and we're going to use that." And it's like, well, to what effect? Why?   Nick Perry: (48:09) What's the effect?   Mason: (48:10) Where is that coming from? And the way we can ensure that that falls into actually using an appropriate amount rather than going, "Oh my God, that was really amazing. I've pushed past my barriers and so more must be better." And then your identity falls into that tool, versus where's the why, that mining for your own purposefulness and values. If you know what your purpose of what you're actually creating in life or the direction you want to go in life, it becomes self informing.   Mason: (48:42) You use that tool to an extent and then you see where it actually starts pulling you away from your centre. And therefore you naturally find, "Okay, that's the appropriate amount that I really need to be pushing my mind and going beyond what I think is possible. And that's then where I can leave it and it's had it's done its job, and I'm just going to come back to my centre and cruise, and maybe not have to go and do another ultra marathon on broken legs."   Nick Perry: (49:11) Yeah, on these broken legs that are screaming, "You're not good enough. You're not good enough. You're not good enough. And I just fucking this, the moRE stamina I get, the more I reinforce that. Is that what this is about? Is this trying to fucking... I guess what I'm saying here, man, is I love that, what you just said then. And I think the biggest challenge isn't an ultra marathon, it's to do anything from a place of enoughness. Meditate on that. If I was in my enoughness now in this moment, would anything change?   Nick Perry: (49:53) Would I choose something differently? Would I communicate something else? Would I go downstairs and go in the gym and do the training session? In my enoughness, what happens?   Mason: (50:12) Huge question.   Nick Perry: (50:12) How do I feel? How do I feel about the world from that place? That's an important meditation. Otherwise, it's just people yelling at you. It's just the fucking drill sergeant yelling at you, to use the Goggins archetype, [inaudible 00:50:35], and it's like, "Stop the noise, shut up."   Mason: (50:39) Roger that.   Nick Perry: (50:40) Stop running and consider what it would be like to trust yourself.   Mason: (50:50) The enoughness, that's a huge one. What an exercise? What a process to come back to. Funnily enough, I've been using it a lot lately, because again, I live in my mind so much sometimes that I'm black and about like, "Am I an ambitious person or am I not an ambitious person?" Rather than coming, returning to that place. This is why I promote an uncolonized mind so much, because when you're in a non-colonised mind and you can step back into the natural, there's diversity, with various seasons, various things come up.   Mason: (51:32) Seasons of your life, different things come up and you're ready for that because you're not attached to going, "I am an ambitious person. You know what? I've just realised, I'm not an ambitious person anymore." Ambition is there in existence, in diversity with everything else. I've been meditating on it with my business and I'm like, "Where am I taking this?" And this is probably going to... What you just said is going to tilt me to go a little bit deeper, going, "Okay, if I'm enough already," and I go, "Wow." And I feel, but I'm enough.   Mason: (52:06) Then the first thing that came up is permission for my ambition to come up, but appropriately in resonance.   Nick Perry: (52:14) Yeah.   Mason: (52:15) You know what I mean? [crosstalk 00:52:15]   Nick Perry: (52:16) Look at this pump in here. Right. Right. And that's your contribution. That's your contribution. That's what your role modelling now. I don't give a fuck how big your business is. I don't give a fuck if your business ends. I'm more interested in seeing a man live from that place and exude that essence and show the way and give me permission to gift myself the same state of being. So like you say, we can get so identified with the form, with the material. But that's just the vehicle for growth, that's all. And sovereignty is the bottom line. Here I am, and here we are. And fuck it, this is awesome right now."   Mason: (53:07) Yeah, it's a trip and facilitating that journey for people, I can... When you feel the space that's been created now and what we're weaving into, and looking at what it means to create an environment where we don't just get that pop once, but we create the environment within our life that this can be a constant. Yeah, it makes-   Nick Perry: (53:30) That's where the tools become relevant. When the context is me, not measuring myself or comparing myself against someone that I have pedestaled or that markets themself as there. At where, some sort of fucking destination, they've made it. No such thing. One of my clients dropped some wisdom once on a call, and he's an avid sailing enthusiast. And what he started to... The metaphor that came to him, because we'd just gone through like an intense 10 weeks of learning tools.   Nick Perry: (54:09) It's like, "Here., here's some covery. Here's some swords and ninja styles and shit for the battlefield." And is like, "Oh, I kind of get it. When I sail, I'm continually tapping the steering wheel. I'm continually just having to read the environment, obviously, that's always in flux, always. And steering my vessel in the direction that's truest to me." I'm never not tapping it. It's never really smooth sailing. But if I identify as the captain, captain of the ship, I look after the ship, which is my body. And that's what will take us back to the start with the health stuff.   Nick Perry: (55:02) Then yeah. Then now I'm living. Now I'm living, now I'm present to where does the rudder need to move right now in this movement? Ah, ah, cool. Cool, cool, cool, cool. And now we're getting closer to that bliss without it needing to be a sunny day.   Mason: (55:22) Are there any tools in particular that are really exciting you at the moment?   Nick Perry: (55:25) I don't know if that made sense, man.   Mason: (55:27) Yeah, yeah. No, for sure.   Nick Perry: (55:28) Cool. Cool.   Mason: (55:30) Just yeah, before we wrap up, I'm curious, just to the ninja styles for... We've taken it deep and given the bed. What are the ninja styles and little tools that are exciting you the most at the moment?   Nick Perry: (55:44) Well, to someone that's new to this, I really do feel like Don Miguel Ruiz's first book's great. The Four Agreements. I think they're great ninja styles, always do your best, and to know what that means. And that again takes us into congruency and integrity again, doing your best isn't perfectionism. It's something else. Don't take anything or anyone personally. And again, it's like we can take the feedback coming at us, but don't take it personally. So self responsibility matures when we embrace this ninja style.   Nick Perry: (56:24) Don't make assumptions. I think that's a really powerful... Whenever I do couples coaching, that's usually the big driver of conflict is assumptions. You should know, it's like, "Well, they don't." You need to make it known and vice versa. And be impeccable with your word to me. If somebody said, "What is freedom?" I would say that. How do I be a free person? How do I be a free man in the world? Being impeccable with your word and I really journey with that going to the depth of what that means.   Mason: (57:12) Love it, man. Good ninja styles. Good ninjaring. Where are your offerings at the moment? Are you taking clients?   Nick Perry: (57:21) Yes. I've got a few sessions. I'm not sure when this comes out, but I've got sessions left for the end of the year. And I've opened up, it's the third time I've run this, a mentorship. It's a 12-week container That's open to 10 people and it's a very holistic experience where we do you, and we also come together as a group and learn from each other. Again, there's lots more detail information in the infrastructure of that mentorship, what it includes, who is it for? Who does it serve? And I'm really excited for that.   Nick Perry: (58:05) So the next one is kicking off the 31st of January. It's about half-full, so if you're listening to this and you're interested, get in touch through my website, That's R-H-Y-T-H-M, spelled funny or Instagram, Rhythm Health.   Mason: (58:24) Nice.   Nick Perry: (58:24) That's yeah, that's it at the moment.   Mason: (58:26) You got to like mailing list I can jump on just to [crosstalk 00:58:29]   Nick Perry: (58:29) Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Jump on that, jump on that. You can do that through, again, through my website.   Mason: (58:35) [inaudible 00:58:35]   Nick Perry: (58:37) You'll yeah. Get a little gift if you do as well.   Mason: (58:40) Jump on it, guys. Get gifty. Man, thank you. It's been a really fun morning. Been a really fun podcast. It's been very enlightening, and as we know. Drop the enlightenment now and get on with chopping wood, carry water.   Nick Perry: (58:54) That's it, man. Why not?   Mason: (58:55) Yeah. What a gift to be able to have these conversations and make this a part of our businesses and work and purposefulness like yeah, what a fun way? What a fun way to exist.   Nick Perry: (59:07) Agreed, man. It's really is a privilege and an honour and a delight to just hang and let alone be invited onto your podcast and connect with your audience.   Mason: (59:22) We love it.   Nick Perry: (59:25) Thank you, man. Thank you.   Mason: (59:26) Absolute pleasure, man. Likewise, thank you. See you next time, man.   Nick Perry: (59:29) Yeah.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but how much of our perception of what we perceive as 'beautiful' is being prescribed, moulded, and manipulated through marketing campaigns and products? What if beauty brands were regulated by a set of ethical standards that didn't allow them to prey on our insecurities to sell their products? Let's be real, beauty brands have a vested interest in you not feeling good about yourself, in you wanting to change something about your appearance or enhance your features; It's how they sell their products.      We're exploring all these topics and more today on the podcast, as Tahnee chats with prolific beauty industry journalist and author of The Unpublishable, Jessica DeFino. You may have read some of Jessica's articles in Vogue, Harper's BAZAAR, Allure, The New York Times, Elle, Cosmopolitan, or Marie Claire. Jessica has earned herself a reputation for debunking marketing myths, exposing the ugly truths behind beauty product ingredient lists, and as the HuffPost once put it, "basically giving the middle finger to the entire beauty industry". We love Jess for this and are so excited to share this podcast with you.   In this episode, Tahnee and Jessica deconstruct the beauty industry as we currently know it. The insidious impact patriarchy, white supremacy, colonialism, and capitalism have on the industry, how things like colourism, sexism, and ageism are enforced constantly through marketing campaigns, the ethical dilemma of dermatologists offering (and often suggesting) aesthetic cosmetic procedures like Botox and fillers, the role of self-care as we age, and so much more. Most importantly, Jessica talks about the power individual behaviours have when it comes to shaping culture and the future of beauty culture for the better. Jessica also breaks down how and why we need to stop participating in this psychologically damaging industry that is the root cause of so many physiological and psychological disorders. There is so much in this episode; Jessica inspires transparency, truth, and the kind of beauty that can only come from within.     "I want the next generation of humans to feel worthy, to raise their voices, be seen, heard, acknowledged, accepted, and embraced by the people around them without worrying if they're pretty enough to ask for that acknowledgment and acceptance. And I mean, that's my whole motivation. I don't think anybody should feel the way myself and billions of people around the world currently feel. I want that to change. And the only way I know how to do it is to change myself and inspire the change in others".  - Jessica DeFino     Host and Guest discuss:   Botox. Topical steroids. Filter vs. Reality. Psychodermatology. The Skin/Brain connection. How meditation benefits the Skin barrier. The ploy of 'community' used in branding. The problem with the clean beauty industry. Jess's natural skincare routine and suggestions. The culture of consumerism and the beauty industry. Performative beauty masquerading as empowerment. Self Care; What It Means and How It Changes As We Age. Racism, colourism, sexism and ageism in the beauty industry. The Kardashian's, and the beauty standards they perpetuate. The most pressing health issue in beauty is the psychological harm of beauty standards.   Who is Jessica Defino? Jessica DeFino is a beauty reporter working to dismantle beauty standards, debunk marketing myths, and explore how beauty culture impacts people — physically, psychologically, and psychospiritually. Her work can be found in the New York Times, Vogue, Allure, and more. She also writes the beauty newsletter The Unpublishable.    CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Jessica's website The Unpublishable Jessica's Instagram    Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or  check us out on Stitcher :)! Plus  we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Tahnee: (00:00) Hi everyone, and welcome to the SuperFeast Podcast. I'm here today with Jessica DeFino, who is one of my favourite follows on socials. She's also the author of The Unpublishable, which is this amazing newsletter you guys should all sign up to. I've heard you describe yourself as pro-skin/anti-beauty product. I love that. So yeah, thanks for joining us here, Jess. I'm really excited to have you.   Jessica DeFino: (00:23) Thank you so much for having me.   Tahnee: (00:25) Yeah, really, really cool. And you're such a prolific writer. You've been in the New York Times, Vogue, Marie Claire, all over the place, plus all of those amazing online platforms we have access to today. But then you're kind of this punk, which I love. You're sort of in the beauty world, but also tearing it apart from the inside. So would that be fair to say?   Jessica DeFino: (00:45) Yeah, I think that is fair to say. It's definitely a balancing act and a tight line to walk.   Tahnee: (00:56) Yeah. I often say to my husband, because I really respect that line you're walking, and I think any of us in any industry, it's really important to be critical of like the work that we do and the kind of culture and everything, and also to love and enjoy what we do. And I do get a sense that there's that sort of dance there for you. You really love what you do, but then there's also this like.   Jessica DeFino: (01:23) Exactly. I mean, the whole reason that I got into the beauty industry is out of love and out of a passion for it. And yeah, I think we do critique the things that we love the most because we want them to be the best possible version of what they can be and sort of serve the highest good. And currently, I don't think the beauty industry serves the highest good, and I think it can, and I would love to be part of that transition.   Tahnee: (01:47) Well, you're doing a good job of getting us there. So thank you. So how did that sort of manifest for you? You are obviously a writer. Did you sort of always want to get into the beauty space or were you drawn into it for a certain reason or?   Jessica DeFino: (02:01) No. I was always interested in writing. In college, I studied songwriting. I went to the Berkeley College of Music in Boston. And I sang, I played guitar and songwriting was my main passion. After school, I decided I wanted to be more in the music industry. So I pivoted. I moved to Los Angeles and I decided to work for a wardrobe stylist in the music industry. So I was assisting her on shoots and helping to cultivate the look for rock stars like Green Day and Linkin Park and Daughtry.   Jessica DeFino: (02:34) And that was really fun. And eventually I missed writing. And because I sort of had this foothold in the celebrity space, I pivoted it into celebrity lifestyle writing for magazines, which eventually led me to a job working for the Kardashians, which eventually led me into the beauty space. So it was a long winding path.   Tahnee: (02:58) Okay. So I have to stop at the Kardashians because I've never watched that show. But no matter how avoiding the Kardashians you are in life, they seem to be everywhere. What were you doing for them? What was that?   Jessica DeFino: (03:10) I was part of the launch team that created content for their official apps. So in 2015, all the Kardashian and Jenner sisters launched their own individual apps. And they had content that was fashion related, beauty related, lifestyle. I mostly did Khloe's app. I wrote her sex column. I wrote her beauty column.   Jessica DeFino: (03:32) So it was really funny. It was really fun. It was definitely a learning experience for me. And I think looking back that's part of what inspired me to get into the beauty industry. Well, for one, it was a high stress environment and my skin kind of freaked out during the time I was working there. So I started independently researching a lot about skincare and beauty.   Jessica DeFino: (03:57) And then working for these women, you sort of see how beauty standards are created, and how they are consumed, and how that is a very strategic thing in order to get clicks and sell products. And so I started deconstructing that in my head and applying it to different aspects of the beauty industry. And eventually I was like, "You know what? This is super messed up. I want to do something about it."   Tahnee: (04:27) Well, that's kind of what made me start with that, that name in particular because I feel like they've really shaped, I guess ... Again, I'm not sort of someone who's super across all the trends with face things. But people have the skin that's really shiny and the implants and all the injections and all of these things these days. And it's like I really see they were part of that first wave of celebrities that were really, I guess, pushing that. And they're such an interesting family because they have sort of darker skin, but they're not black and they're sort of in this weird world. What sort of has come from that for you? You are obviously, I love how you call it dewy, diet culture. It's one of my favourite things. But where have you landed after this sort of journey from the Kardashians to now?   Jessica DeFino: (05:17) From the Kardashians? Well, when I started, I truly did think that they were great examples of empowered business women. I really thought like, "Wow! These people started out with not much talent to work with, and they've created these huge empires. And how amazing is that?" And that was definitely an early part of my own feminist learning and understanding, and journey.   Jessica DeFino: (05:43) And now where I am is recognising that those things aren't necessarily empowerment because that sort of empowerment within a patriarchal culture, what kind of power is that truly. I'm less interested in those forms of power and beauty as capital, and infiltrating the male business world as capital. And I'm more interested in chasing collective liberation, which I think looks very different.   Tahnee: (06:16) So where does beauty even sit in that, because I think that's such an interesting ... My partner and I talk about this as well. We're both white, fairly attractive people who run a Taoist tonic herb company. And I have to think if I was Chinese, I probably wouldn't be as successful as I am just because of the way our culture reflects back that sort of stereotype. And it's something I sit with a lot and I don't have any answers about yet. But I think it's a really interesting time because beauty does give us leverage and it does give us space in the world to take up.   Jessica DeFino: (06:53) I think an interesting path to go down, if you are interested in learn more about that and learning more about beauty and how these standards evolved, is just getting into the history of beauty standards. And when you do dive into the history, I wrote a pretty long article on that for Teen Vogue, if anybody wants to Google it, about the origins of beauty standards. But basically beauty standards all came about through four particular forces in society, patriarchy, white supremacy, colonialism and capitalism. Any beauty standard from the beginning of time can be traced back to one of those things.   Jessica DeFino: (07:35) Beauty standards are how things like racism, colorism, sexism and ageism are enforced. These aren't just fun things, even though we tend to think of them that way now. These standards emerged to support these sort of more nefarious societal forces and to, not to get too conspiracy theorists about it, but convince us to reinforce these social structures. So when we are participating in beauty standards, a lot of the time we are reinforcing the very societal structures that oppress us and we don't even know it.   Tahnee: (08:16) I think that's such an important mic drop moment because we are all co-creating and participating in the ongoing perpetuation of these forms without any awareness around how we're actually contributing to that. And that's what I've loved about your work. You're really trying to bring that to the fore. And for me, it's been a big sort of, I think obviously that's been happening in my life for a while. But then your work has really helped me give words, I guess, to sort of some of the stuff that's been brewing in my thinking, because I did some modelling when I was younger and it was quite toxic for me.   Tahnee: (08:55) I know some people don't have that experience. But I had an eating disorder. I felt like people were constantly looking at me and judging me and just it really turned this kind of cog in me that made me very self aware and very uncomfortable. And I've noticed myself over the last probably 20 years just like I don't by stuff anymore. I barely use anything on my skin. My skin seems to be about the same as when I used all the things. It's really funny. Kind of as I decondition myself, it's like my life becomes a lot simpler.   Jessica DeFino: (09:29) Yeah. What strikes me there is that we often hear in the mainstream media beauty sort of touted as this path to empowerment, and beauty is empowering, and beauty builds confidence. And sometimes those things can be true. But more often what beauty culture does is it disempowers us because studies show that it contributes to things like anxiety, depression, body dysmorphia, eating disorders, self harm, and even suicide.   Jessica DeFino: (10:00) So it's really important to examine when we hear this beauty product is empowering or this thing is self care, because the flip side of that is that this disproportionate focus on our physical bodies actually leads to all of those things that I just mentioned. So we sort of have to weigh that and say, "Okay. Is the confidence that I get from getting this injection of Botox worth the anxiety that I get from now constantly worrying about my wrinkles for the rest of my life?"   Tahnee: (10:39) That's a tricky one. I know people in their twenties now getting Botox and I'm like, "Woo." And I think that's ... I mean, you've lived in LA. There's certain pockets where that pressure is really high for people. And I think it's definitely an interesting time to be a human. And that's something I really appreciate about your critique is you talk about this idea of brands and how they perpetuate this idea of community. And again, my brand is probably contributing to that in some way. But I think that's a really interesting conversation again around well, if someone is just getting money out of you and really selling you a narrative, is that actually a community, and is that actually sort of something you want to be a part of? Can you speak a little bit to that sort of, cause I see that as a theme in your work?   Jessica DeFino: (11:27) Yeah. I mean, I think community has become this sort of catch phrase that brands are using now. And it's an attractive one and it's one that really grabs our attention because I think as humans we crave community. Humans are creatures of community. We crave it on a biological, instinctual level. And because we have been so steeped in this culture of consumerism, we can't really see out of it. We don't really see any different. And it's really easy to latch onto this idea that this brand is my community and the other people that buy from this brand are also my community.   Jessica DeFino: (12:08) But it's not a community. There's inherently a power and balance in that relationship in that a brand's main interest is always going to be their financial interest. Brands don't do things unless they further the brand and make the brand money and further their reach. If something that is good for the customer also comes out of it, that's a bonus. But that is never the initial goal. The initial goal is to make a living. And so that inherently creates this power imbalance with brand and customer. And to call that a community is just, I think it's a little bit a psychological mind fuckery. I don't know if I can say that on you podcast.   Tahnee: (12:49) Of course, you can. Feel free. I think that's a really interesting ... So you probably don't know this, but I used to be a yoga teacher full-time and had a studio. And I found that really interesting when I worked in yoga before having my own business that, this is probably not a great thing to say. I won't name names. But people would talk behind students' backs and kind of be quite critical. But then to their faces, do the whole yoga thing.   Tahnee: (13:21) And similarly, within the teaching community, there was a lot of backstabbing and kind of really awful behaviour, and then this front facing kumbaya, look how spiritual we all are kind of stuff. And I found it really challenging and kind of went off and did my own thing. It was financially successful enough for me, but I really notice that when you focus on that community aspect, so much energy, so much time, so much of yourself and you can see why that's not a commercial proposition for most businesses. It's not a way to go and make you millions. But rewarding for other reasons. But I think it's like that word has become so loaded and so misused that it's really tricky now to even know what people mean when they say community, especially.   Jessica DeFino: (14:10) I mean, it's just, especially with beauty, beauty brands have a vested interest in you not feeling good about yourself. They have a vested interest in you wanting to change something about your appearance or not thinking your current appearance is enough as it is. And whether they frame that as "fixing your flaws" or "enhancing your good features", which sort of means the same thing, the baseline has to be there in order for them to be successful. You have to think your good features aren't enhanced enough. You have to think that your flaws aren't fixed.   Jessica DeFino: (14:50) I always like to use the Dove campaign, that everybody is beautiful campaign from years and years ago. That was kind of their first body positive thing. It was founded on this marketing idea of empowerment, and we're going to make everybody feel beautiful. But again, in order for a campaign like that to succeed long term, depends on most customers not feeling beautiful and needing to buy into this message of confidence and empowerment. So your insecurity has to be there in order for these brands to survive even if their marketing message seems positive.   Tahnee: (15:28) I do know. And I don't see that much difference you in the wellness space, if I'm honest. I know I seem to make those comparisons. And I think that's something that I'm aware of in terms of the world we live in, which I guess like you Americans, that sort of we are a version of Moon Juice or those kinds of companies here, obviously with less of a fashion focus than they have. But I think it's a really interesting thing because it's like the premise can be literally there's something wrong with you. You need to buy X, Y and Z to be healthier, or better, or in this perpetual grind toward optimization and stuff, kind of improvement. So can you speak a little bit to that, how you see that overlap up between wellness and beauty in what's happening?   Jessica DeFino: (16:16) Well, I think what has been happening more so is that the shift in messaging is less about outer beauty and physical appearance as it is health. Health has sort of become the beauty standard. And now of course we associate health with having all of these aesthetic markers that are not necessarily signs of health. For instance, beauty brands will use glowing glass skin, healthy skin, and glass skin. That look is not a marker of health. That's not what healthy skin looks like.   Jessica DeFino: (16:57) And I think wellness brands will do the same thing. They'll use health as this marker, but the things that they're positioning as health are not necessarily health, or maybe they are, but it's not going to be fixed by a supplement or a tincture. A lot of the problems that wellness brands are trying to solve are structural societal problems that require collective action and policy change, and not just a stress relieving tincture. So sure, a stress relieving tincture might help. But it's not actually solving the underlying problem. And I think if brands don't acknowledge that, it's pretty disingenuous.   Tahnee: (17:39) So it's really pointing to root cause, which is one of those foundations of neuropathy. And all of these, in theory, wellness things anyway, rather than going at what's the outside symptom.   Jessica DeFino: (17:51) Exactly. Which is so ironic for a lot of wellness brands because they claim to be treating root cause. A lot of the wellness philosophy comes from root cause medicine and holisticism and or holism and and all of that. And still, they're stopping at individual solutions rather than looking wider to systemic solutions. And again, that's not to say you can't do both. As a brand, you can of course say, "Hey, this blend of ashwagandha and whatever might help you feel less stressed throughout the day. And also-   Tahnee: (18:28) So you can go tackle the patriarchy.   Jessica DeFino: (18:31) Here are the systemic reasons why you're feeling stressed, and here is how we as a brand are going to encourage change in those areas too.   Tahnee: (18:41) Well, I think that's such a, not trying to point the finger at America, but that individual pull yourself up by bootstraps. That's such a cultural ... When I was at uni, we studied cultural colonialism. And it's something that really landed for me is how much we've digested that American like, "You can do it." But then it really takes out that we do need to come together as a community and there's this sort of usefulness in us having these conversations to together and sharing them widely. So I noticed that's changing in America slowly, I think, maybe. Are you saying that?   Jessica DeFino: (19:21) I think so. I think, again, it starts with buzzword. And that's not exactly a bad thing. But like just how we set ed brands are starting to use community. Okay, it feels a little disingenuous. But also, okay, it's getting the idea of community out into the collective consciousness and we can start valuing that more. So I am hearing more community, collectivism, collective care. And that feels really good. And I think what needs to happen is just sort of taking that next step from absorbing it as a marketing term and adopting it as a way of life.   Tahnee: (20:00) Yeah. And actually changing culture and letting that filter through. I wanted to step back to self care because you mentioned that before and it's something. I guess we both using Instagram. It's kind of one of those things that always makes me cringe a little bit when I see someone with their bubble bath and their face mask, whatever. And for me, self care has a pretty different definition, especially being a mom. It's usually like my practise and meditation and sleep. They're my pillars. But I'm interested for you obviously having been in the beauty industry and now sort of holding this space of holding up a mirror literally to this strange industry, how has self-care changed or been redefined for you over the last sort of decade or so?   Jessica DeFino: (20:47) I think for sure, I used to definitely give into the brand focused definition of self care as being like, "I'm going to do a face mask, and I'm going to take a bubble bath, and even I'm going to go for a run, or I'm going to exercise." And I mean, those are all valid things. It took me a really long time to realise, or not to realise, but to embody and incorporate the idea that yourself isn't your skin, and yourself isn't your body. Yourself is your values, your purpose, your passions, your deeper wants and needs, your emotions. And all of those things require care too.   Jessica DeFino: (21:33) So if my self-care stops at a face mask, it's literally stopping at the surface, not actually addressing the self. It's just addressing the fleshy coating that encapsulates my spiritual self. So just having that sort of aha moment was huge for me, which is not to say that I'm necessarily great at self-care. I still work too much and don't take time every day to meditate, and don't particularly feel like I'm in a season of my life where I am actively caring for myself the way that I should. But at least I have an awareness about it now. Is that any better? I don't know.   Tahnee: (22:16) I think so. I think that's a step. I mean, my experience is similar of being this, even though I'm a yoga teacher, been practising since I was 15. At the beginning, if I'm really truly honest, I was practising because I didn't want to get fat and I wanted to have a strong body and a healthy body. But it was quite an external motivation. It wasn't to connect to myself or to feel more calm in my existence or whatever. Now it's literally this thing that reminds me of my spaciousness and my connection to life and nature and all of it, and why I'm a mother, and why I'm ... But that took me, I'm 36. I would say in the last 10 years, that's really landed for me. But that's a long time with one discipline really to get to a place of not using it to beat myself up, I suppose. And I think it's a process.   Jessica DeFino: (23:15) Yeah. And it's also fine because I have said many times before that vanity was my entry point to wellness. So the reason I started meditating was because my skin was so inflamed, and I had been through the ringer with dermatologist. I had been on a prescription steroid treatment. It actually really damaged my skin. I went to topical steroid withdrawal and I couldn't put products on my skin.   Jessica DeFino: (23:40) And so I started looking at stress reducing exercises to sort of minimise the impact of stress on my skin because you get stress breakouts, stress can cause acne and rosacea, all of that. So I was like, "Okay, I'm going to clear my skin." So I started meditating. And it was for purely vein reasons. And then once I got into the practice, it expanded and it became so much more. And it became not about my appearance at all. So I think it's fine to have these sort of vein superficial pursuits be your entry point, as long as you are able to cultivate that awareness and allow yourself to expand further and maybe even use it to let go of the original vanity and the original superficial reason why.   Tahnee: (24:33) I think that's so true because that sort of evolution of self has to be honoured and acknowledged. And I think that's probably what I see as so insidious about the kind of those four pillars you were talking about of patriarch and white supremacy and all these things. It's like it's so insidious and it's designed to really trap us in this cycle. And I actually do think it takes quite a lot of strength and self awareness to step out of that. And then I think what you are doing to sort of help raise collective awareness about these things, it's a big task and it's not ... So I think however people get there, it's great.   Jessica DeFino: (25:14) And it's also not easy. So I know like my work and my writing can come off as very harsh. And people will sort of come at me for it and be like, "I don't want to let of this certain beauty procedure or my Botox appointment or my lipstick. And I don't think you should be telling people to let go of these things. And how dare you? And blah, blah, blah." And that's a valid perspective too. And I think what we all need to realise is that so many of us have formed these beauty habit and these beauty behaviours as a coping mechanism. We are coping in a world where we are judged by our beauty. And it has material effects on the quality of our life. "Pretty people" make more money, get better jobs, have better social standings, have better legal outcomes even. There are material benefits to performing beauty.   Jessica DeFino: (26:11) And so when we develop these habits and these behaviours, those are natural and totally understandable reactions to living within a world that judges us based on our outside appearance. And then I also think we need to acknowledge that as we slowly let go of these behaviours, we are changing the culture that instilled them within us. We have that power collectively to change the way things are. And I personally think that it has to start with us individually and collectively deciding to stop participating if and when that is emotionally available to us.   Jessica DeFino: (27:00) If abandoning a beauty behaviour is giving you extreme anxiety and affecting the quality of your life, don't do that. Work on the anxiety thing first. And then maybe later in your life, you will start to let go of the beauty behaviour that prompted it. But there's a balance there where you have to protect your mental wellbeing, while also divesting from this industry and this culture that tells us our appearance is the most important thing about us.   Tahnee: (27:33) So you're still a fairly young woman like me. I often think, I'm not going to speak about other people. But for myself, I've often been like, "When I'm 60, I'll just kick around with my grey hair and not worry about how I look." But that was definitely more so in my 20s. As I'm getting older, I'm sort of integrating more. But how do you personally dance this dance between performative beauty and, I suppose, I guess wanting to present? I love mascara. I have blonde eyelashes. Mascara makes me happy. Those are things that I don't want to give up. Are there things for you that sort of still draw you into this world or?   Jessica DeFino: (28:14) Yeah. I mean, I think the big thing for me is my eyebrows. So I have, it's a mental disorder called trichotillomania, called hair pulling disorder. So when I get really anxious, I actually pick out my eyebrows. And I can't help it. I can't stop it. There is no approved treatment for it. It's just something that I do, and I've done since I was 16. And seeing my bald eyebrows is really traumatising for me. It makes me even more anxious, and then I pick even more.   Jessica DeFino: (28:51) So for me, eyebrow makeup and microblading is something that I'm currently not emotionally able to let go of because it does affect my quality of life if my eyebrows are completely bald, because it triggers the trichotillomania. It makes me remember of like, "Look what you've done to yourself." It starts it all over again. And so I always use that as an example of like this is not a safe beauty behaviour for me to let go of because it harms me to let go of it at this point. I'm working on that emotionally and maybe be someday I will be able to let go of that. And that would be a beautiful thing.   Jessica DeFino: (29:30) And I think I also still have a lot of anxiety around my acne scars. I have had pretty severe cystic acne since I was 14, 15. I've gone through the ringer for treatments of it. And I've done a lot of work to not have to wear a full face of makeup every day. I mean, in my early 20s, I would put on liquid foundation, concealer powder, lipstick, eye line, all of it to go to CVS for toilet paper. I could not be seen without it.   Jessica DeFino: (30:00) And now I pretty much don't wear makeup. But in social situations where I need like a little bit of cushioning to not feel different or weird or ugly, I have gotten down to just tinted moisturiser, a little concealer, blush and eyebrows. Those are my four. And I would love to be at a place where I felt like I didn't need makeup in those situations. But I still do feel like I need it. And so I'm slowly easing my way out of it and being gentle with myself when I do need that sort of skincare security blanket.   Tahnee: (30:42) I think it's such an important thing to talk about because I have a little girl. She's five, or she'll be five in two days. I'm making a rainbow cake right now. It's highly stressful.   Jessica DeFino: (30:53) Oh, so cute.   Tahnee: (30:56) But I watch her. I'm like you. My makeup kit is literally tinted moisturiser, a blush thing, mascara and an eyebrow grooming tool. But I will put that stuff on before we go out for dinner or do some kind of an event of some kind. And I've just watched her, without any encouragement from me, sort of integrate this idea that she now has to ... She doesn't sort of want to put it on every day or whatever. But if she sees my little makeup kit lying there, she'll grab it and she'll start putting on blush. And she'll ask me if she looks pretty, and this part of me dies. I'm like, "Oh my God! What have I done to her?" And then this other part of me is like, "This is life and we kind of have to navigate these things with our kids."   Tahnee: (31:46) But it's been a really interesting dance because I've sort of, I was raised with a mom who didn't really wear makeup at all. And in many ways, I found her lack of self care and presentation almost a bit confronting. It was like can you at least try? Can you put on some ... So it's this sort of interesting thing. And I haven't got any answers at all. But I think we all have to find a space where we're comfortable with what we're putting out there. And I think the piece that you really have been pointing to and we've been dancing around is it's that conscious awareness and choosing what we engage with and what we don't, as opposed to being unconsciously moulded by an industry that's designed to be very toxic for us.   Jessica DeFino: (32:27) Yeah. I mean, I think the mother daughter pipeline is such a powerful example of how individual behaviours shape culture, and how working on our individual behaviours and changing our individual behaviours can shape the future of beauty culture to be better, to be safer, to not be as stifling and suffocating. I think a lot of times people read my work and they think that I have completely freed myself from the pressure of beauty standards. And that's not true at all. I feel so weighed down by the pressure to be beautiful or to look a certain way or to ... I feel that all the time, that I'm not good enough, I'm not pretty enough, I'm not beautiful enough to use my voice in the particular space. I am not pretty enough to be looked at and to be like a public figure or whatever.   Jessica DeFino: (33:25) And so many people feel that. And that is my main motivation, is like nobody should feel that way. I want the next generation of humans to feel worthy raising of their voice and being seen, and heard, and acknowledged, and accepted, and just embraced by the people around them without worrying about if they're pretty enough to ask for that acknowledgement and acceptance. And I mean, that's my whole motivation. I don't think anybody should feel the way that I know I feel, and it sounds like you have felt and millions and billions of people around the world feel currently. I just want that to change. And the only way I know how to do it is to change myself and inspire it in others.   Tahnee:  (34:15) Yeah. I think that one thing, this is weird. It's sort of a segue, but it's linked. My husband, when I first got with him, I was like, "You don't use anything." Literally, the guy doesn't use shampoo, he doesn't use soap. He doesn't. He literally goes in the shower, kind of maybe every now and then he'll use Dr. Bronner's on his armpits or something. Seriously, his little man bag when we travel is toothbrush, toothpaste, not even a hairbrush, a hair tie. And I'm like, "Hang on a second. This person-   Jessica DeFino: (34:49) And I bet he has fine hair and skin.   Tahnee: (34:52) No, beautiful hair and skin. I'm always like, "What the fuck? How come you have this amazing hair and this amazing skin and you've never used any of the stuff?"   Jessica DeFino: (35:06) That's the secret.   Tahnee: (35:08) I know. So I'm interested in this because my daughter, we've never used shampoo and things on her. We've used some conditioner because she has my hand. It gets really tangled. And she barely uses soap, all of these things. And I guess kind of inspired by my husband. I haven't quite got to his level of self corporation. But I'm really interested in that because I mean, yes, patriarchy. But bodies, they're sort of not these filthy beasts that can't take care of themselves. They have these self cleaning mechanisms. You speak about this a little bit. What's your kind of current deep dive into this world? How is that?   Jessica DeFino: (35:46) Sure. Well, I always like to say human skin survived and thrived for literally millennia before pre-bottled products were invented. So it's fine. It's truly fine to not use almost anything. The skin has built-in mechanisms to self cleanse, self moisturise, self exfoliate, self heal, and self protect. And oftentimes what we do when we apply all of these products, and again, not again, but a reminder, your scalp is skin. So this stuff applies to hair as well. When we add all of these external products, we actually interrupt the skin's inherent functions and we change the signals they get, because sort of the extension of your skin is the environment. It gets a lot of its cues out how much sebum to produce or how many dead skin cells to shed from the environment it's in.   Jessica DeFino: (36:42) So when you sort of cut off the connection to that environment with skincare products, you interrupt these mechanisms and they kind of go haywire. And then you become dependent on the products to keep your skin in that cycle because your skin hasn't needed to interact with its actual environment and figure out how to regulate itself. So oftentimes when you just stop using products, it'll take a week, two weeks, sometimes a month. A skin cycle is 28 days. So that's what I generally recommend. When you stop using these products, you'll find that skin self regulates and you actually don't need many products or sometimes even any products. Of course there are like some modern changes to the environment that we can account for. For instance, pollution levels are a lot higher, sun exposure is a lot more harsh.   Tahnee: (37:37) Air conditioning.   Jessica DeFino: (37:37) Yeah, exactly. So SPF, great. Sometimes your skin will need a little bit more moisture in that case. I love to use Jojoba oil on damp skin. Jojoba oil is like a 97% chemical match to human sebum. So your skin really responds well to it as if it were it's own. And I personally cleanse with Manuka Honey, and really-   Tahnee:  (38:03) I've seen you talk about that.   Jessica DeFino: (38:04) I love Manuka, but-   Tahnee:  (38:05) Well, I love it too. But I mean, I tend to use it on wounds and internally. So what's your take on skincare? I've used as a mask before.   Jessica DeFino: (38:14) Yeah. Well, exactly. It's used in hospitals for wound healing, for burn healing. And that's because it really supports the skin's inherent repair and healing mechanisms. So if your skin is acne prone or eczema prone, or psoriasis, rosacea, any of those big skin issues, Manuka is beautiful. It's so great for it because it supports your skin's inherent healing. It's a prebiotic. So it supports your skin's microbiome. It's food for all of those great beneficial bacteria that live on your skin. It's full of antioxidants. Antioxidants are great for fighting free radicals like pollution particles. There are just so many things. It's also humectant. So it draws moisture into your skin. So your skin is able to stay moisturised on its own. It's just, to me, a perfect product. Of course, if you don't have prevalent skin issues, a normal honey will usually do the trick. It has a lot of the same properties. It's just that Manuka has really special healing properties.   Tahnee: (39:25) Yeah. So you're talking about, they're the ones we use medicinally, they're the ones with the pluses. I can't remember what the compound is right now. I should know.   Jessica DeFino: (39:33) It's called the UMF rating. Unique Manuka Factor. So for skincare, if you're using it topically for its healing properties, you want to look for a UMF plus rating of 15 or higher.   Tahnee: (39:47) Yeah. Because I think it can go quite higher from memory. The New Zealand honey industry is thanking you right now for the plug. Well, I guess on a really practical note, it's very sticky. So how do you get around that?   Jessica DeFino: (40:01) Well, I mean I use it as a cleanser. So I will splash my face with water and then just take like a finger full and massage it onto your face for about a minute, and then wash it off. It's really not sticky at all. If you're doing it as a face mask, yeah, it'll be a little sticky. You're not going to be running around the house in it. But you also can't run around the house in a sheet mask. So take those 15 minutes to just chill. Don't touch your face. You'll be fine.   Tahnee: (40:31) Yeah, great. And I mean, are there other things you've sort of changed in your routine from your little research dives? Or like what else are you looking into?   Jessica DeFino: (40:41) Yeah. I mean, the bulk of my like "skincare routine" is mindfulness practices because one of the most fascinating finds of my skincare research has been the field of psychodermatology, which focuses on the skin brain connection. So the skin, the gut and the brain, it's called the gut brain skin axis, are all connected. They form from the same bit of embryonic tissue in utero, and there they form these pathways and these connections that are there for life. So that's why what you eat can affect your skin. It's the gut skin connection. And even what you think can affect your skin. That's the skin brain connection. And we usually see this in more negative settings. So if you're stressed out, and you get a stress pimple, anxiety acne, or when you're embarrassed and you blush, or when you're scared and the colour drains from your face. These are all everyday examples of the skin brain connection.   Jessica DeFino: (41:39) What I found in my research is that it actually goes the other way. So if you actively cultivate a calmer mindset, it results in calmer skin. So for instance, meditation strengthens the skin barrier. It makes your skin are able to hold in moisture. So it actually does create that, we call it, an inner glow. But it's actually an outer glow. It's actually your skin barrier getting stronger and being better able to hold onto moisture and producing balanced levels of oils. So that has been fascinating to me. So I try to incorporate practices like that in my routine.   Jessica DeFino: (42:15) And then a big thing for me was researching the skin barrier and realising that, it sounds so obvious. But your skin is built from within. Your skin cells come from the deepest layer of your skin, work their way out and then eventually shut off. So you're focusing on putting skincare on your face, you're caring for them at the final stages of their life.   Tahnee: (42:41) It's like palliative care.   Jessica DeFino: (42:45) Exactly. If you focus on consuming the nutrients that your skin needs to create healthy skin cells, you're great and you're actually not irritating your skin barrier with external products. So omega-3s and omega-6s are huge for the skin barrier. They're essential fatty acids. They are integral to skin barrier function and the body can't produce them on its own. It can only get them via diet. So once I started incorporating omega-3s into my diet through a supplement, but also through like salmon, nuts and seeds are huge sources of omegas, my skin saw the results of that very quickly. And that's goes onto your skin.   Tahnee: (43:29) And that's going to be overall. Yeah. I was going to say feel better.   Jessica DeFino: (43:30) Exactly. I mean, it's great for brain function, for hormones, for heart health. They're so important. And also yeah, it makes you glow. So why not?   Tahnee: : (43:40) Win-win.   Jessica DeFino: (43:42) Exactly.   Tahnee: (43:44) And topically, you're sort of just sticking to really simple stuff like you.   Jessica DeFino: (43:47) Yeah. Topically, I don't do much. Honestly, the best thing you can do for your skin is leave it alone. It does so much for you, and it doesn't really want to be bothered. So I really don't wash my face in the mornings. Sometimes I'll spritz it with water if I need to, and I'll put on a little bit of jojoba oil if it's feeling dry. On damp skin and if I'm going outside, mineral SPF. And then at night, I'll wash off the SPF or any makeup that I have on with jojoba oil as an oil cleanser, Manuka honey as a cleanser. And then that's it. I love to leave my skin bare overnight because overnight is when a lot of the skin's repair and renewal processes take place. And again, it needs to interact with your environment in order to do those to the best of its ability. So I just love a skincare free evening.   Tahnee: (44:43) Well, it's so interesting you say all of that because I've landed at a similar place. I basically use jojoba, if I do wear mascara, to get that off and then I wipe my face with a cloth at night, and then I wipe my face with water in the morning. And that's pretty much it. If it's dry, I'll use oil.   Jessica DeFino: (45:02) I love that.   Tahnee: (45:05) Like you said, it took a little while for my skin to sort of, I think probably like a month, just to feel like it was ... It was a bit patchy, I think, or something. I just remember it not being amazing for a little bit. And then it was totally fine.   Jessica DeFino: (45:19) Yeah. And part of that process is also like letting go of these arbitrary aesthetic expectations that we have placed on our skin. Your skin's not going to glow like a piece of freshly polished glass from doing nothing to it. But that's also because your skin is not supposed to glow like a freshly polished piece of glass. Things-   Tahnee: (45:41) Does that basically mean you've taken off, because it sort of seems to me you're taking off that protective ... My understanding is the skin's more mechanical. But it's a protective area and it's meant to be there, and you shouldn't probably be exactly deleting it.   Jessica DeFino: (45:53) Yeah, exactly. Everything that's happening on your skin is happening for a reason. It's meant to have a barrier for a reason. Dead skin cells are there for a reason. They're actually really important to skin functioning. And actually, your dead skin cells are the only skin cells that are equipped to hold external moisture. So when you absorb moisture from the environment rather than drinking it, your dead skin cells are the only cells that can actually do that. So if you're exfoliating them away every day, your skin is going to be dry.   Tahnee: (46:24) Then you need more moisturising things, and vicious cycle.   Jessica DeFino: (46:29) Yeah, it's important. Yes. It's important to just keep everything in place. And the reason that we have, part of the reason that we have come to repeatedly damage our skin through skincare and think that it looks good is because we're actually creating these micro injuries on the surface of our skin every time we do that. So for instance, intense exfoliation will often make you look very smooth and shiny. And we like that. And so we keep chasing that. What that is is your skin's repair process kicking in. When it's injured, your skin, your body, sends all of these healing nutrients and molecules to the surface, collagen, hyaluronic acid, which are supposed to be in the deeper layers of your skin, all of these other things. They flood the injured area with nutrients to sort of heal and repair. And we think that looks good because suddenly we're getting this rush of blood to the surface and all of these good molecules. And what it is is it's a response to injury. And we shouldn't have that happening all the time. [crosstalk 00:47:37].   Tahnee: (47:37) It sounds like a drain on our resources as well.   Jessica DeFino: (47:39) Exactly. Your skin doesn't want to be in repair mode constantly. So I think with glass skin and things like that, we've sort of normalised the look of injury, which again, traces back to capitalism because if you're constantly injuring your skin, you constantly have to repair your skin. And it's just a process that requires product after product, after product with no end in sight. And if you sort of chill and let your skin re-regulate, you can honestly wean yourself off of most of those products.   Tahnee: (48:10) It feels like it's gotten worse since Instagram. I don't know if I'm sort of ... Like I said, I don't really, my one kind of delve into this world, which my husband finds really funny is every now and then I read Into The Gloss Top Shelf, just because I find it incredibly amusing how much shit people have.   Jessica DeFino: (48:27) It is fascinating.   Tahnee: (48:29) Yeah. And I get down into this like, "Wow! This person uses 93 creams in the morning or whatever. And how do they have time? And they must be so rich." And anyway, it's just this funny little reality TV show world of mine. But that, sort of I've noticed. I remember when I first started reading, which would've probably been five or six years ago maybe, there was a lot more sort of, it was quite simple, I feel like, whereas now it feels like people are using a lot of different things. And you see these skin care routines that are 9,000 steps. And I wonder is that because, do you think that's in part because of this filter culture? And I mean, you call everyone dewy dust bunnies, which I love. But there does seem to be, and actually another thing you wrote, which I really loved was like is this fear of dead skin cells related to our fear of death?   Jessica DeFino: (49:21) Oh, yeah.   Tahnee: (49:24) I think it's a really interesting thing because it's like we've suddenly kind of got this platform where people are sharing these kind of quite synthetic versions of themselves. And then we're trying to match our 3D reality to this thing. And it's a bit of a concern.   Jessica DeFino: (49:38) It's so much. I think there are a lot of factors at play there. I think one of them is just that's the nature of consumerism. It's this constant need for more and more and more and more and more. And we've seen that grow in real time through Instagram. I think too, this skincare boom that sort of started with Glossier, beauty has always been messaged as this ethical, moral imperative. It's always been this ethical idea. Beauty historically has been associated with goodness. And so we sort of feel this moral obligation to be as beautiful as possible.   Jessica DeFino: (50:14) Recently, I think through the start of COVID, science has sort of been messaged as this ethical ideal as well, western science. And health has always been an ethical ideal. Of course, these things are not moral, but they have been messaged as such. And so with skincare, you get a lot. You get this sort of moral validation of, "Oh! This is something I'm doing for my health." Even though it's mostly just aesthetic, it's messaged as a healthcare thing and a self care thing. And so that feels really good. And so people are emboldened to share more of it and do more of it.   Jessica DeFino: (50:56) And then there's also this scientific intellectual aspect of skincare where people are just over the top about knowing everything about this particular active ingredient, and whether this ingredient mixes with this ingredient, and what this other ingredient does to your skin. So skincare offers a lot of ways to sort of show off and feel good about yourself. There's the science intellectual aspect, there's the health aspect and there's the beauty aspect. So I think all of those combined into this huge, just overwhelming mass of just skincare bullshit.   Jessica DeFino: (51:29) And then also, as you said, the filter thing is for sure part of it. We're seeing people through filters, and we're seeing less of people in person, especially again through COVID. So we're getting all of our information about what human skin looks like we're seeing through a screen, and we're actually not getting any validation of what real human skin looks like in person, because we're really not seeing people. Most of our interactions are through a screen, through a filter, through lighting, through all of these things that warp our perception of what our skin is supposed to look like.   Jessica DeFino: (52:07) So we're seeing everybody else out there looking "perfect" and we're seeing our actual skin, in an actual mirror, with no filter and we're saying, "Oh my God, what's wrong with me?" And so we start buying and applying all these products to try and match our real life skin to this sort of virtual ideal that doesn't exist in real life. And all of it is just this huge recipe you for, one, consumerism, and two, just skin stress.   Tahnee: (52:34) Insecurity. I think that filter, I'm thinking about the metaverse right now, whatever Facebook. I'm like, "Oh God, this is going to get more interesting." I mean, you've spoken a bit about, I guess we've sort of touched more on what I would say the conventional beauty industry. But clean beauty has become this thing in the last again maybe decade. I'm not really sure on the timelines. And it's sort of the same thing, right? Are you seeing any distinction in this clean beauty space or what's your rate on this trend?   Jessica DeFino: (53:11) I think the ethos behind clean beauty is admirable and necessary. There are a lot of unnecessary ingredients in our beauty products. There are a lot of potentially harmful ingredients in our beauty products and the science bears this out.   Tahnee:  (53:27) Well you also made a note of a dinner you went to where the person was sharing.   Jessica DeFino: (53:31) Oh, my gosh!   Tahnee: (53:31) I was like I wonder if you'd had a few wines when you wrote that?   Jessica DeFino: (53:37) Oh my God. I'm privy to some beauty industry insider information. And it's not good. There are-   Tahnee: (53:47) This particular comment was like, "Yeah, this is not good for people." And they're putting it in this mass produced product.   Jessica DeFino: (53:51) I was talking to a product engineer who was telling me that the ingredient that this cosmetic corporation was using as its star ingredient in a lot of new products was not safe. And they were trying to tell the company, "Hey, we can't use this." And the company was saying, "We're going to use it." So just know behind the scenes there's a lot of stuff going on. There are ingredients that just don't belong in beauty products that are in beauty products. They're not going to kill you, most of the time. They're just ...   Jessica DeFino: (54:22) And I say that talking about extreme examples of a couple of years ago, there was a moisturiser that was contaminated with mercury. That was a counterfeit product. And it actually did put a woman in a coma. Is that going to happen every day with the products you buy at CVS and Target? No. But there are these outlier cases. So I'm not trying to fear longer there. I'm just trying to say like, "Hey, stuff happens." So I do think that the ethos of clean beauty is a necessary one. But it has become this marketing monster and it has gotten so out of control. And a lot of the statistics that clean beauty brands and clean beauty influencers are using are actually scientifically incorrect. And so it undermines the more admirable overall mission of clean beauty.   Jessica DeFino: (55:16) And so I do have a lot of problems with that. I also think that the solution to most of our problems is not cleaner beauty, but just less beauty. We just need to be using less of everything. I see clean beauty products that have 52 natural ingredients in it. And it's like the skin doesn't want 52 ingredients on it. That's going to cause irritation. That's not a better product in any sense of the word.   Jessica DeFino: (55:41) And then finally, I think that in non-toxic beauty, we are focusing on the wrong toxicity. Sure, some of these ingredients can be harmful. But the most toxic thing in the beauty industry are beauty standards. And these products promote unrealistic beauty standards. And these beauty standards that these products are pushing, even clean products, are leading to physical and psychological health issues in humans all around the world, from anxiety, to depression, to eating disorders, to dysmorphia, to self harm and even suicide.   Jessica DeFino: (56:20) And that is what's toxic in the beauty industry more than anything. So I wish that the industry overall could adopt this attitude of clean beauty and apply it to the ideology of the industry and clean up the standards that we're selling people because if you're concerned is a health issue, the most pressing health issue in beauty is the psychological harm of beauty standards.   Tahnee: (56:48) And I mean, I'm just thinking about dermatology, because I know you've mentioned that before, and you've had your own experience with that. And the topical steroid piece you wrote was really interesting because I've not had any experience with it. But I've heard from a lot of people that come through our doors how damaging, and I guess my understanding is it's quite a commonly recommended first step is like, "Use this quite strong product. And I think what I've heard you point to a few times in this podcast is how much that psychological factor is influencing what's showing up on us.   Tahnee: (57:23) And I have a similar, I don't know if your stress was work related mine. I left a partner of 10 years. And it was a big life change for me, and came off the pill at the same time. So it was a combination. Or I'd come off the pill for years earlier. But it was a combination of things going on. But I can really trace my kind of emotional instability at that time to what was reflecting on my face.   Tahnee: (57:49) And I've studied all these practises, Taoist healing and things. And we speak about how these organs and these parts of body, like the emotion, if the body can't hold it, it comes out through these elimination channels. And I think that's a really interesting of an untouched topic. And I don't see dermatology really addressing that. I think what I tend to see as people getting trapped in these loops with prescriptions and kind of appointments. And is that sort of your experience? I mean, I don't know heaps about the dermatology world. But is that your experience?   Jessica DeFino: (58:20) Yeah. I mean, I will say that there are great dermatologists out there, and I do think dermatology is of course necessary for your annual skin cancer screening and anything relating to actual physical health issues that are manifesting specifically on the skin. That being said, in my experience in interviewing thousands of people or over the years and in researching the field of dermatology, the main goal for dermatologists day in day out with their patients is to eliminate the physical symptoms. That doesn't mean treating the root cause, and that doesn't even mean promoting skin health. So a lot of the very powerful drugs that dermatologists are describing will eliminate the physical skin symptoms for a time. And they often do this at the expense of overall skin health and skin functioning.   Jessica DeFino: (59:19) So for example, antibiotics are the number one prescription in skin care. Antibiotics actively kill the bacteria of your gut microbiome and your skin microbiome, which are huge factor in healthy skin long term. And that can lead to more skin issues down the road. Something like Accutane, while it can be very helpful for a lot of people psychologically because it can wipe out acne very quickly, it does this by destroying and damaging your sebaceous glands. And that's a direct quote from a dermatologist. A dermatologist told me in an interview that we damage and destroy sebaceous glands.   Jessica DeFino: (59:58) I was on Accutane in my early twenties before I knew much about it. And my skin still struggles to moisturise itself. I have not regained the sebaceous function at all. So again, this is an example of a prescription that sort of damages the skin long term. Steroids, for sure. I mean, there's a lot of scientific literature on how steroids damage the skin's inherent functions. So dermatology is still very much steeped in this world of aesthetics where it's just trying to create this certain aesthetic as quickly as possible, and that doesn't necessarily serve you or your skin in the long term.   Tahnee:  (01:00:36) So that's sort of making the problem go away without really addressing why it's cropped up in the first place.   Jessica DeFino: (01:00:41) Exactly. I also think there's a huge ethical dilemma to the fact that a lot of aesthetic cosmetic procedures are offered by dermatologists like Botox and fillers. These things are not markers of health. And I do think it's a huge conflict of interest that healthcare providers are not only offering these services, but suggesting them. Offering them is one thing. If people are going to get them, they need to get them in a safe way. But I have heard from dozens and dozens of people who will go into their dermatologist for an annual screening and their dermatologist will say, "Hey. So you recently turned 28. Have you thought about Botox?" And this is your healthcare provider who is now planting this.   Tahnee:  (01:01:25) That's so unethical.   Jessica DeFino: (01:01:26) It's so unethical. And planting the seed of doubt in your brain like, "Oh no, I look old. I need to do something about it. And my healthcare provider is telling me that this is an option. So it must be safe and it must be healthy." And it's equating aesthetic with health again. And it's creating this really, I think, toxic cycle of obsession with our appearance outside of health.   Tahnee: (01:01:56) Is there a long term effect to Botox? Because I've heard about people having preventative Botox, which I'm not ... So my husband's mom is disabled and she has Botox in her leg because it actually is a medical treatment, which was sort of new to me. I knew it had been developed for that, but I sort of figured it had become a beauty thing. But I've sort of been seeing it around that people use it preventatively. Does it actually? It doesn't work long term though, right? It stops after a few months.   Jessica DeFino: (01:02:24) No, it doesn't work long term. It wears off after a while. So you have to keep getting these injections. And just applying common sense, there's no way to know that Botox is preventing anything. You say you're using it preventatively, but what are you preventing? Everybody ages in different ways. Some people get really deep lines and some people get no lines at all. And I mean, there is just no scientific way to prove that you're preventing something. So that is just a, that's marketing. That's nothing more than marketing.   Tahnee: (01:03:01) And kind of we haven't spoken a lot about race. But I'm obviously conscious of time with you. But with things like gua sha, and even I've been seeing face yoga on Instagram recently and these things. I'm interested in, again, from my understanding of yoga, maybe I'm wrong, and of Taoist practices, gua sha, yes, there's the aesthetic, but also it moves Chi, it helps move fluid. It's this really powerful ... I use it on my body because it's this really powerful way of clearing chafe from the meridians and stagnation, these kinds of things. But I'm seeing it a lot now as this really popular trend to get rid of wrinkles and do this and do that. So it's like we've sort of taken, I guess it's the same thing with this whole conversation. It's like we take the real root essence of something and turn it into just an aesthetic kind of.   Jessica DeFino: (01:03:51) Yeah. I mean, to me, that is like the real tragedy of gua sha getting so huge and facial massage getting so huge is that there's been this focus place on it as this is a way to get rid of wrinkles, or it's a way to look younger, when actually these practices offer so many overall health benefits to not only you and your skin, but also your mind. Massage in any form is this huge form of stress relief. It sends a physiological chemical cascade through your whole body that lowers cortisol and promotes skin health and also promotes overall health. And there are just so many benefits to these practices beyond aesthetic.   Jessica DeFino: (01:04:31) And I think we do them a real disservice by focusing on the aesthetic benefits rather than the fact that facial massage supports your skin's inherent cleansing mechanisms, it supports your skin's inherent moisturization and exfoliation mechanisms. It boosts blood circulation. It brings nutrients to your skin cells so that they are healthier and more efficient and better equipped to protect you and to heal you. These are all wonderful reasons to engage in these practices. And I think that should be the focus rather than you're going to look younger.   Tahnee: (01:05:06) Yes, it's funny. I mean, it crossed my mind when my daughter was born. She's got that porcelain baby skin. It's like, "Oh! It's a shame we don't get to keep that." But it's also very vulnerable, right? And so you're always trying to protect it as a parent. And it's just bizarre to me that we sort of grow this strong, awesome adult skin, and then we're just constantly like, "Oh my God! I wish I had my five year old skin again."   Jessica DeFino: (01:05:35) Well, that comes back to this idea of getting rid of your dead skin cells as a way to show-   Tahnee: (01:05:44) Avoid death.   Jessica DeFino: (01:05:45) Yeah. It's like our constant struggle with our own mortality and our own death. And I do think that doing some deeper inner work on the meaning of life, and your purpose, and your happiness, and your joy alleviates a lot of these anxieties and insecurities we have about our skin because as psychodermatology has shown us through studies and the skin mind connection has shown us, our sense of identity is so deeply embedded in our skin because our skin is the connector. It is where our insides are connected to the outside world. The skin is the only place on the body that our mind can sense it's physical reality.   Jessica DeFino: (01:06:27) So there's a lot tied up in our skin, and how it feels, and how it looks, and what we put on it, and how we treat it, that is really enmeshed with our sense of self and our sense of identity and our sense of our mortality. And I think working through some of those deeper issues, it sounds silly, but you will see it play out on your skin.   Speaker 1: (01:06:47) I really think getting comfortable with death was one of the big catalysts in my life for my own evolution, I think. And birth and death is very fine lines. I think going through my daughter's birth too, I think when we enter those luminal realms and I did it through meditation and plant medicine, there's different, you start to really connect. You see that this is meat suit.   Tahnee: (01:07:18) I don't know if you've ever done a psychedelic. If you look at your skin on psychedelics, you do not look normal. And it's like you start to really realise like, "I'm not just this vessel." And like you said, skin is this organ of perception. It helps us touch with babies, with adults. It's one of my big things. I'm a massage therapist as well. It's like when you touch someone, there's a transmission. And I think we sort of are putting all these things on us and taking away, and it's like we're really missing the essence of what skin is and human connection. It's more than just the initial judgment of aesthetics.   Jessica DeFino: (01:07:56) Oh, it's so much more.   Tahnee: (01:07:58) Well, I'm so grateful you're reminding us of all of that all the time, and I really-   Jessica DeFino: (01:08:00) I'm so grateful for your questions.   Tahnee:  (01:08:05) It's been such a pleasure to talk to you. Like I said, I've really enjoyed the sort of way you've stimulated my own exploration of things. And I think I still have a lot of unpacking to do, but-   Jessica DeFino: (01:08:17) Oh! We all do.   Tahnee: (01:08:18) Yeah. And I love that you're so authentic around your own journey too. I think it's just a really important conversation because especially us women, it's been such an indoctrinated part of our growing up and we relate to the world. So thank you. And for those people who have enjoyed this, and I hope that's all of you, you can check out Jess's The Unpublishable. So it's this incredible Substack she sends out, these great newsletters, and Jessica-DeFino, D-E-F-I-N-O .com. You're also on Instagram, social media. Any other like Facebook, those kinds of places or?   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:00) No, I'm on Instagram and Twitter @jessicadefino_, but I am trying to spend less time on social media these days. So the newsletter is the best place to get in touch.   Tahnee: (01:09:09) That's good to get mental health.   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:09) And thus one's skin.   Tahnee:  (01:09:14) Yes, totally. And I mean, the newsletter looks like you're just on a real great roll with that. So that's something you're really going to focus your energy on moving forward?   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:24) Yeah. I mean, that is the place where I'm trying to channel my energy instead of shooting off an Instagram post a day. I'll pick one that feels really important and I'll send out one short little newsletter a week. And then probably once a month is a longer in-depth article. And then I have special content for paid subscribers as well. So it's definitely not overwhelming, but not nothing.   Tahnee: (01:09:48) No, it's really great. And are you going to write a book, Jessica?   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:54) I am.   Tahnee: (01:09:54) You are?   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:55) Yes. I'm on deadline for the book as we speak.   Tahnee: (01:09:57) Amazing.   Jessica DeFino: (01:09:58) So hopefully that will be done soon and out into the world sometime next year.   Tahnee: (01:10:02) Okay. Well, we'll keep an eye out for that and make sure we show that around. I'm so happy for you. Congratulations.   Jessica DeFino: (01:10:10) Thank you.   Tahnee: (01:10:10) Well deserved. And thank you for your time today. I really appreciate that you spent it with us.   Jessica DeFino: (01:10:12) Yeah, I loved it.   Tahnee: (01:10:14) Okay. Thank you so much.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
With late Summer underway here in the Southern Hemisphere, we are experiencing those last balmy bursts of sweet summer energy with the dampening effects of late afternoon storms and muggy weather. Within the five Element framework of Chinese medicine, late summer is associated with the Earth Element, Stomach, and Spleen. More so than any of the other five elements, the earth element or spleen season is one to put aside your strict diets, feel into your intuition and cravings, and not only prioritise but ENJOY your food. As TCM Five Element Food Therapist Kimberly Ashton puts it, "The theme of the Earth Element is enjoying the sweetness of life".   The easiest way to understand the Earth element and how we can nourish the Spleen is to look out into nature at the earth itself; Think, soil, microbiome, digestion. The way we eat in this season is pivotal for nourishing our core, bringing balance back into the digestive system, and cultivating an intuitive relationship with what our body wants and needs. Helping guide and inspire this intuition through the fabric of functional food therapy and Chinese medicine wisdom, we have TCM food expert Kimberly Ashton covering the energetics, foods, cooking styles and associated emotions of this season. Mason and Kimberly journey into this multifaceted, (both) sensitive and practical element and discuss how we can bring balance back into our lives and digestive system through the foods we eat and how we prepare them. Kimberly outlines the exact foods and flavours to welcome into the kitchen and why Spleen energy is all about relaxing, enjoying and embracing the sweet aspects of food and life. Tune in now.   "The spirit of the Spleen is the intellect and this idea that we think or we overthink. It is the mind and the brain itself, but it's definitely related to the state of our spleen. If the Spleen is happy and warm and functioning well, you're going to be very clear in what you want and what you need".   - Kimberly Ashton      Mason and Kimberly discuss: Digestion. Food cravings. Spleen/Soil Qi. The Earth Element. Digestive imbalances. Foods for Spleen season. Warming foods for the spleen. Cooking styles for this season. Food Therapy for the earth element. Spleen energy: bonds and boundaries. Alleviating dampness and balancing digestion. Managing dampness within the body through food.     Who is Kimberly Ashton? Kimberly Ashton is a Holistic Wellness coach that focuses on the 5 Elements, Food Therapy and Chinese Medicine. She spent over 18 years in Asia and Shanghai, 8 of which she co-founded China’s first health food store & plant-based nutrition cooking studio. Now back in Australia, she launched Qi Food Therapy in 2020, a platform offering e-books, online courses, and coaching for “balancing life energy” through food, food energetics & emotional wellness. In 2019 she published her second book “Chinese Superfoods” in Mandarin, which encourages new generations of food therapy enthusiasts to explore Asian traditional foods, everyday ingredients & get back in the kitchen. It has sold over 7000 copies in China. Her approach is centered on cultivating an intuitive relationship with food and helping people understand their energies through food choices, cooking techniques, the 5 Elements, emotional & energy practices.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Kimberly's Website Five Seasons TCM  Kimberly's Instagram Kimberly's Element E-BOOKS 5 Elements & Cycles E-Course How To Eat In Spring with Kimberly Ashton (EP#133) Eating For Vitality In Summer with Kimberly Ashton (EP#147)      Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Mason: (00:00) Hey, Kimberly. Welcome.   Kimberly: (00:01) Hi, Mason. How are you doing?   Mason: (00:03) I'm so good. Thanks for coming back on with me. We're getting through the elemental wheel slowly, but surely.   Kimberly: (00:10) Yep. I love it and I love the earth element.   Mason: (00:14) Well, I mean, it's the gateway. I think it's like the gateway element over towards Chinese medicine. I know for me it was. Well, it was the one that I didn't like the most when I was a raw foodist because it was the one that hit my ideology in the face the most with reality and therefore, I rebelled against it.   Kimberly: (00:36) Yes. Actually, that's a good term. A lot of people will rebel on the earth element and then they find themselves with digestion issues and emotional issues and become very ungrounded. Yeah, we'll be covering a lot about the importance of the earth element, not just the organs or the season, but the element itself.   Mason: (00:54) Do you want to paint a picture for us in your world, in your internal relationship to the spleen, the element that is the earth, just what it represents for you, whether you want to talk about the organs or emotions or how it impacts your life?   Kimberly: (01:12) Yeah, absolutely. The easiest way to understand the earth element is if we look out into nature and look at the soil and the earth itself. When we grow our food, anything that's just above or just below the soil is really our soil and our centre, which I always like to compare it to our belly button and everything just below and above that. The importance of our core physically, emotionally, mentally, energetically is really the core and that is not just unique to TCM. You see that in Ayurveda, you see it in Japanese culture. They even have certain words for this element. It's funny because in Chinese there is words, but they're much more powerful in other languages. If you may allow me to bring them in things like hara in Japanese or agni in Ayurveda, like this digestive fire. They're really short, concise words and in Chinese, we don't really have anything which is one word or a short phrase. We have spleen-qi and digestion and spleen stomach organs or organ pair, but it's not as sexy as hara or Agni in my opinion.   Mason: (02:29) No, I mean, I'm with you on there. Tahnee's got a big book at home called Hara Diagnostics and growing up with my dad doing in a black belt and Japanese jujitsu, we talked about the hara regularly. I'm much more connected there, but I guess it shows the translation. I mean, you're talking about in native tongue, but even for me relating to spleen, straight away it taps into my Western desire to relate to anatomical, Grey's Anatomy, separate, oh, that's that organ, maybe spleen, pancreas, organ, physical organ, and which it is representative of what we are talking about, but so not. It takes away everything. As you're saying this, it's much more than actually relating to the reality of it. It's hard when you're just saying the spleen-qi and doesn't represent the etheric reality that it is.   Mason: (03:27) I think that is important for us. Like a few people have always told me, never just say spleen, say spleen soil, say spleen soil so that you don't get lost in that mental trap, not that it's bad to obviously go there at times. Bringing up soil, I think is another one. Tahnee and I always have a little fun back and forth about this because for me, it's soil, the element of soil, because the element of earth goes into a larger concept of [Pachamama 00:03:59], which is not a bad thing necessarily, but it's so impractical, I find, when relating to the earth soil within yourself and doesn't play into the analogy or metaphor or story that I think is more captured in soil. You can relate soil and water and soil and metal a little bit easier. Yeah.   Kimberly: (04:22) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. I know that we're both big fans of nature and in Taoist philosophy and wisdom, it's always about that internal and external. When we start to see as the soil and you see that now on the last, I don't know, five to eight years, this in the Western wellness world, this huge growth in talking about the microbiome and the soil and food. The Chinese wisdom of the earth element, soil element has been there all along. If you don't have a strong soil earth element, that's it, your health won't be balanced. It's very hard to define balance in other elements if this element isn't strong and of course, the digestion is the key part.   Mason: (05:08) You're bringing up agni is one that, yeah, it is beautiful to bring that agni fire into the fold because quite often people won't relate that fire with the soil, but yet as I think I've said quite a few times on the podcast, maybe even in chats with you, how that the kidneys are kind of like the pilot light for that light, for that fire of digestion [inaudible 00:05:39] to the spleen to be able to be turned on. But it is that spleen that is the actual fire that sits under the pot that is the stomach, which I know people are like, well hang on, no, isn't it soil and not fire. It's like, oh, okay. Yeah. We're talking about a yang function of that soil-qi. The goal posts keep on moving, but again, the beautiful thing is staying slippery because there is no goal post when it comes to health, there is no balance. You got to be able to dance in that harmony.   Mason: (06:13) But then hara you bring up as well because the way my dad talked to me about my hara, relating somewhat to lower dantian-esk kind of like if not exactly that reality in the body, but he also always referred to it as the centre of my universe. I'd orient myself around that core as you brought up, which is something I guess I've just found myself not feeling when I do tap into that spleen soil-qi and I'm like, oh wow, but of course, it is that earth element that sits at the core of all the others and is the centre of the universe that there's an orientation around it. I mean, I just wanted to kind of like [inaudible 00:06:59] to that and bringing that up because that really helps me get a clearer picture on what we're actually talking about here with spleen.   Kimberly: (07:06) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. I just mentioned the belly button because when I'm teaching kids and we draw, trying to learn the elements or apply them, even as adults we start with that middle line, that's the middle line of the earth and so that's where we're starting, especially when we're going to dive into food later in this podcast. I'll be talking a lot about that middle line and suitable foods because it's very logical. If we break it down, the five elements are really logical and this element is very easy to interpret in terms of foods and the energies purely by understanding that that middle line, middle ground and therefore, all the issues that we have with digestion or imbalances. I call them digestive imbalances. There's plenty. People will be very familiar with IBS and diarrhoea and bloating and all of that. You go to a acupuncturist or a TCM doctor and they'll be like, oh, usually they'll say something along the lines of spleen-qi and people go, what? What's that? But you can definitely eat really nourishing foods to build that and it's something that I love building and we can talk about that as well today.   Mason: (08:25) Well, let's talk about the season as well because you're going to be talking to us about the somewhat of maybe the cooking styles of our kitchen maybe not completely at its core, but somewhat transforms towards a particular direction in terms of cooking styles, techniques, ingredients that are coming in, intention we're putting into our food to match the season and what's going on around us, which is late summer's something that in some areas it kind of feels like it's always late summer in other areas doesn't have any of those qualities. I'm interested to hear that and also point out that it might be that those ingredients and these insights that you use during this season, but this is probably the diet, and I'd to hear your thoughts, that is used therapeutically to heal most-   Kimberly: (09:17) Correct, yep.   Mason: (09:17) ... for most people. Yeah. It's I mean [crosstalk 00:09:21] yeah.   Kimberly: (09:22) Yeah. Yeah. As you said earlier, this fluidity is needed when we are approaching the five elements because it's not just five elements, five seasons and then there's lines and rigid boxes around them. We have to blend them and when we need them, we draw from the other elements even in this season. It's now late summer, the weather's changing, it's getting cooler. There's a little bit more rain. There's dampness and humidity typically. We need to modify the way we eat and cook definitely.   Kimberly: (09:54) The key theme for the season would be to alleviate dampness and to balance the digestion. As you said, that can apply to a lot of people in other seasons, but also in Chinese medicine, in between the seasons, you can draw from this. Say, if it's spring to summer or autumn to winter and you get a upset stomach or you're feeling a little bit slow or you have some dampness or you're feeling lethargic or you have some bloating or diarrhoea, we can draw from this, the wisdom of the earth element and foods to come back into balance. It's always about coming back into balance in this element and this season, the earth element is about transformation, our ability to transform, our food, our thoughts, our energies to prepare us for what's coming. Like you said, we can slide that into really any time of the year when we need it and it's definitely the most healing, cooking and ingredients for anybody at any time.   Mason: (10:58) Well, just because we get a lot of questions about the spleen. We talk about it a lot and there's many different ways to approach. It's intimidating in its simplicity. I think because it requires such practical transformational changes that are grounded in the core of your personal food culture or family culture and that can be confronting if we are really rigid in the way we're doing things. And our rigid patterns, personal habitual patterns, within the kitchen, food and emotions, a lot of the time as well are out of alignment. It's often quite confronting to admit that, which is I think something really is I just want to constantly extend my compassion, cheering everybody on that adventure, just go in nice and easy with a lot of empathy for yourself, which is a lot of like very spleen [inaudible 00:11:52].   Mason: (11:54) Just again, little reminders that I think for emotional journeys for a lot of people, for me, the way that I relate to the spleen, there's several aspects of that element and that system within the body. One being the muscular system, seeing that there is the food that you're eating is building good high quality muscle and then the way that you're moving is going to help you develop appropriate high quality muscle. I feel it's really important to remember that as well as a huge part of the spleen being about creating bonds and boundaries and with soil, moving soil and creating boundaries that are organic and not superficial.   Mason: (12:37) But I find a lot of people when they're really ready to go like, all right, I've got really poor boundaries or my boundaries are too rigid and I'm not able to create strong bonds with myself, a bond with earth or bond with my family and friends as to the depth I'd want, that's when the spleen really starts coming up as a theme. Or maybe you're just going, I'm just [inaudible 00:12:59] attracted to spleen friendly diets. Maybe just in correlation to that, there's maybe other areas perhaps would be of interest to you. I like throwing that in there and with that, I'd love to go on a deep dive with you and definitely going to be yeah taking notes myself today.   Kimberly: (13:16) Yeah. It's funny what you just said. The spleen and this earth element, it's not just the spleen, but as you said, spleen stomach pair, will throw in the pancreas as well, so spleen, stomach, and pancreas, it's like the chicken and the egg. It's like, do we need strong nourishing foods then the muscles and then the emotions, but the spleen is so sensitive, well, the whole earth element is to the emotions. Maybe you're eating really well, but then you're bombarded with overwhelm and worry and anxiety, so it's which comes first. In my mind it's well, you got to have both. You can eat all the... I'm going to talk about millet and puddings a lot today-   Mason: (13:55) [crosstalk 00:13:55].   Kimberly: (13:58) ... we're going to talk about puddings, all these foods, but if you're still having these emotions, it's really hard. You have to manage both and maybe people don't want to hear that because they want a quick fix or a easy solution or one food to help. I've got maybe top three to five foods for you today, but definitely the earth element is the most sensitive to those emotions, so definitely look at that as well. It also-   Mason: (14:28) [crosstalk 00:14:28].   Kimberly: (14:28) It also impacts our decision making ability. I said, worry and anxiety, most people who study the elements and the emotions in yoga and qigong, they're familiar with the emotions, but actually feeling them and embodying them is different. But decision making is a funny one, too. If your spleen is a bit weak or you're getting some spleen weaknesses or IBS of any sort that I just mentioned, your ability to make decisions reduces. Therefore, it's really hard, it's doubly hard to then know what to eat and then I see people who are a little bit lost and like, I don't know what to eat, I don't know what to eat. If we can have those simple steps and simple foods, a little bit of warmth, a little bit of getting that fire back in the belly, then you step up and you become much more grounded and calm. And then you can deal with the emotions and the diet and nutrition as well. It's a multifaceted element.   Mason: (15:21) It's practical. It's real. It's not easy, but I mean, it has to be and I hope everyone loves as much as I do just how we can't not go into the reality of the energetics or the philosophy of the emotions, whatever you want to call it. Otherwise, we have bastardised and commodified the system in which this has emerged from. If we don't continue to come back to the essence, as you're talking about there, the anxiety piece. A lot of people would just go anxiety, heart [inaudible 00:15:55] disruption, but there's many so different shades of anxiety and there's lots of different types of clinical diagnosis on different types of anxiety. But even that for us to just be aware of like, oh, that's different shades of our own inner anxiety and perhaps one is over just ruminating and chewing, constantly ruminating and chewing, chewing, chewing, chewing, and not digesting a life lesson and therefore, not making a decision. That's going to just throw off your spleen-qi and then you can have a drip of millet just straight into your stomach and it doesn't matter. It's just like, it doesn't matter.   Kimberly: (16:37) We should have intravenous millet drips. That would be amazing because not many people are familiar with it. But yeah, no, I'll mention some of the best foods and they're actually really yummy and delicious and as you said, quite simple, actually, if we take it back basics, but I thought I'd just quickly mention a few imbalances. How do you know if your earth element needs strengthening? Appetite, if you have a loss of appetite, if you have any of those symptoms I mentioned earlier, like diarrhoea, loose stools, bloating, anything really in that whole IBS, irritable bowel syndrome category, which doesn't really exist in those terms in Chinese medicine. Water retention as well, so there's a fluid metabolism effect that's important with the spleen, any kind of nausea, indigestion, anything to do with the stomach and the lower half of the body.   Kimberly: (17:33) If you're feeling really lethargic and heavy in the legs or have edoema and swelling in the ankles, that's all to do with this system. Most people have a look at the list and go, yep, I can relate to one of those or many of those. It's important to know what we're feeling. And then the simple list of foods or categories anyway would be, what I call, ground and round vegetables. As we come back to that line in the soil, anything that's just above or in the soil itself, so pumpkins, sweet potatoes, onions are actually perfect example of the earth element. They're very round and they're got all this lovely layering and they're sweet. A lot of the vegetable that I just described and the flavour of this element is sweet. In that way, most people love the earth element.   Kimberly: (18:29) As soon as you start talking about earth element, they're like, oh, I can have more desserts. I'm like, well actually, I do recommend and I prescribe desserts because we want to have this calm, nurtured, motherly love through this element. If you look in every food culture, there's always desserts and always sweets. Of course, I'm talking about not white sugar and refined junk, but using sweet vegetables, wholesome sweeteners, and condiments, fruit. We're talking pudding, but we're also talking pies and cakes, all this very, maybe even grandmother kind of warmth and love through our food. That's missing in a lot of modern day dietary habits. We kind of demonise dessert or sugar or sweet flavours when actually we need them.   Mason: (19:26) Well, I mean, I feel, again, it's the pendulum swinging quite far, which I understand and went there, especially when there's that energy of like have a massive, I don't know, Sunday roast dinner and then put a big, heavy, overly sugary dessert on top of that and you can feel the dysfunction of your body just trying to compute digesting sugar, which is I think my friend [Sage 00:19:53] talks about. It's like a Ferrari in the digestive system, you put it on top of like a tugboat equivalent, something that's like a heavy protein that's slowly digesting. Again, it's a hard and fast rule, but I do prefer that Chinese medicine does bring in awareness of yeah, well, don't throw the baby out with the bath water because there's a lot of medicine in that.   Kimberly: (20:19) Yeah. You could still have that roast. I mean, you could still have that roast and the dessert. The earth element's also related to not doing anything in excess, it's all about balance. Overeating, you can eat, earth element's all about the food and nourishing and having this beautiful satiating feeling after you eat. It's good to have a have that, for example, but not overdoing it. The boundary comes from most people just overeating, good food or bad food. The earth element's like, no, we find balance, we eat a little bit of everything. We have our roast, we have our puddings, we have our whatever it is, but in balance. But as I said, most people are missing the sweet, the naturally good sweet flavour, and by that I would prefer or rank very highly the sweet vegetables and some fruit and definitely more natural sweeteners and things like cinnamon, and cardamom, and all the sweet herbs can really help with this flavour and coming back into balance through our cooking and our food.   Kimberly: (21:24) On that note, carbs are a good thing. The earth element is all about wholesome, happy carbohydrates. It's not about eating lots of too many pastries or white bread or white rice, but just having some good, wholesome carbohydrates, whether it's rice, white rice or sticky rice or brown rice or red rice, and then millet. Millet is the best friend of the spleen. If we're looking at the colour of the season or this element, it's a yellow or an orange or even like a earthy brown soil. Foods that come into that category and millet is really something that I share with a lot of people. I've worked with people who just they literally add more pumpkins, some sweet potatoes, some millet into their diet and depending what it is of course, but they start to notice their energy, their happiness. You just feel happy when you eat these nourishing foods and you feel comforted as well. It's very soothing to eat foods like millet.   Kimberly: (22:27) If you don't know what millet is I highly recommend you look it up. It's a small, yellow, soft, sticky, mushy grain.   Mason: (22:37) Yum.   Kimberly: (22:38) Yeah.   Mason: (22:38) Wow.   Kimberly: (22:39) You can make it sweet and savoury. You could make it into a porridge with some milk, soy milk, some cinnamon, make it with nuts in like a breakfast porridge or you could make it with roasted vegetables and make it into more like a fluffy salad kind of like quinoa, but a little bit moister. Those would be my suggestions of just simple foods and then cooking styles for the season would involve a little bit more warmth, using your pots and pans and a little bit more moisture. Think soups, stews, casseroles that kind of texture and consistency. Texture isn't something we've talked about a lot actually, but for this season, it's a really nice one to bring in this soft, creamy, comforting flavour, whatever that means to you. I'm going to say pudding again, but it could be pudding, it could be pie, it could be crumble, a nice fruit crumble. Or even I start to crave in late summer and going into the colder months, more creamy beverages as well. I'm a black tea, green tea kind of girl, but when it gets cooler, we can start having some nice milk or soy milk or oat milk or whatever milk you choose. Start to bring that into your mornings as well.   Mason: (24:13) Because I kind of always sense the question, I think I feel like I've asked quite a bit in terms of like recipe guides and that kind of thing. Have you got those on your site?   Kimberly: (24:25) I do. I actually have an ebook for each element and the one for earth element's on managing dampness, so it's more specific to that, but yeah, there's other recipes for certain elements and certain seasons. I'm actually going to be doing a short course with beautiful recipes that I haven't written myself have enlisted some wonderful teachers and chefs in Australia and overseas and it's just purely on the earth element and it's about relaxation and food therapy. There's a lot of desserts and the idea of understanding how we can relax our body and our mind purely by looking after the earth element in late summer season because a lot of us that experience anxiety, worry, nervousness, tension, stress, it's all around the earth element. We can definitely reduce those symptoms and come back into balance with food.   Mason: (25:30) I might just quickly ask some reiteration what I really there is like as you know, I've got a spleen-y constitution, which I think surprised me more than anyone, but it's actually not [inaudible 00:25:43] I'm like, oh actually it's not really that surprising. What happens because it's, I know, I don't know if you gone too much into this, but the personality or spirit of the spleen, the [crosstalk 00:25:55] so much about the intellect and from what I can tell or the way I'm relating to it at the moment is that aspect of somewhat reflection and intellectually taking stock of how are we going moving towards manifesting our visions? How are we going? Have we planned effectively? Are my actions detracting from one another? Has my timing been good? It's kind of the time to really take stock of how the harvest was that year and how we prepared going into winter.   Mason: (26:30) I do have a tendency to overthink intellectually a lot and so quite often, because I have that proclivity to constantly ruminate, therefore when I start looking at the, not that these are laid down as rules, but I'll treat them as an intellectual rules of like, all right, this is cooking style, this ingredient, or can I do that ingredient? I'm like you, you said, quinoa and when my spleen-qi when not flowing, I can feel it go oh, gosh, there are people out there that are worried. Well, can I eat quinoa? Is that right for the earth season? It just goes around and around. I like for you then bringing up when we are cooking or eating or doing a dessert, the intention there just immediately takes me out of my mind is to bring that relaxation into the body and that feeling of nourishment and therefore, I go, okay, that's a real good guide for me. When I get into the kitchen, don't worry about the rules or remembering the ingredients and [inaudible 00:27:35] that are going what I'm bringing into... And I'm curious about the other qualities [crosstalk 00:27:40] that you're looking for and seeing in a recipe or ingredients like what the outcome is and using that as a lighthouse rather than getting stuck in the rumination for spleenies like me?   Kimberly: (27:49) Yeah. First comment is you've probably got the spleen-y rumination going and then your metal element going, I need a rule or a recipe. The earth element is all about intuition and it's a very feeling, sensitive element. When we're in the kitchen, definitely, I always encourage people to look at the recipe or use it once or twice and then just throw it away or scribble all over and change it. I actually, really, this is a public announcement, I hate writing recipes. I hate it. I do it. I actually have to finish one more on the kidney and the water element at the moment, but because it is rules and it's rigid. When I cook, I don't use recipes and I know people need them and I understand that.   Kimberly: (28:38) But what we want to cultivate on what you just said is to have this intuitive nature. If you wake up it's hot or cold, it doesn't matter what season it is or what podcast you've listened to, if you're feeling like eating salad, eat the salad or think about, oh, maybe there's a reason why I need to cool down. Same with the earth element, if you wake up and you're thinking, oh, Kimberly and Mason said I must eat more pumpkin and millet and this and that, but you're just not feeling it, there definitely isn't any reason to stress about it or overthink. But yes, the spirit of this organ is the intellect and this idea that we think or we overthink. It is the mind and the brain itself, but it's definitely related to the state of our spleen. If it's happy and warm and functioning well, you're going to be very clear in what you want and what you need.   Mason: (29:36) Can you talk about warmth there, the importance? I feel like I think we've hit it several times, but I can never get enough reminders, especially coming from the raw food circles.   Kimberly: (29:45) Yeah, yeah. The idea of the spleen or the spleen-qi is to be able to regulate the upward and downward energies in the body, whether it's food, emotions, everything, how we're feeling and thinking. I always think of it as like, if you have your spleen, which it is a small organ in Western anatomy and it's not considered if much importance, but in Chinese medicine, it's very important, up there with the gallbladder, both very small, but very powerful and important. When we pour lots of cold water on the spleen, we lose that fire, we lose that even zest for life. We lose a lot of upward energy, potential, and warmth. In Chinese medicine, the, I don't want to say, rule, but the guiding principle would be to have more warm foods than cold and to avoid ice.   Kimberly: (30:41) I personally love a good ice cream in summer on a hot day, no problem there, but I always tune in and think is my spleen okay with this today or if I have it three days in a row? A lot of the traditional food cultures and wisdom will say not too much cold and to have warm foods, especially in the morning. If you're a smoothie or raw person, no problem, but not ideally first thing in the morning, so have something like a ginger tea or a warm porridge or a tonic herbal drink, something warm first, and then start your day. That's just a long term health thing to cultivate the energy of the spleen and not just put that fire out constantly.   Mason: (31:28) Yeah, I mean, I feel there's a real maturity coming about now in terms of Chinese medicine's having been having to hold in the west, especially, such a strong place and maybe sometimes a rigid place of just being like, no cold, no raw. A lot of practitioners who maybe are really good in their treatments, but maybe not good at communicating nuance, even though they embody it and so there is just this kind of like, just stop doing all this bloody smoothies and raw foods and juices. I think now there's more of a nuanced integration, a colouring of that conversation coming up, little distinctions, like well, your spleen element might not necessarily care that you move to Bali and Hawaii and the weather's always warm. You maybe think you've tricked the system and you can always do tropical fruits and cold drinks because you're in that environment, but your organs maybe don't want to be long term stationed in that environment or even if you live there, maybe they still want to have a bit more respect and honouring. I think that's definitely happened maybe even an overcorrection away from raw foodism and veganism and that kind of thing. But then the other one is the cold plunging that is now probably the biggest, such a huge, awesome practise, but [crosstalk 00:32:57]-   Kimberly: (32:57) I think they all are and they all have their place. I'm a very modern, flexible five elements practitioner, so I will never say you can't have ice cream because I quite enjoy good quality, personally vegan ice cream, but any ice cream for those. The ice baths, the smoothies, there's a time and a place. For some people, they actually probably are craving that for a reason. It's when that happens and then you start finding you get diarrhoea or digestion issues that you might feel really hot on the outside, on the external layers of your body, but your inside, spleen, intestines, for women, even the uterus, if there's cold, or kidneys even, on the inside, you just need to balance that out. Some food, some herbs, some acupuncture, get back to balance.   Kimberly: (33:46) I have a teacher who's always said, "We should technically be able to eat anything." If we have a strong earth element, an ice cream here or a cold bath there or whatever is not going to cause you that grief or pain, but when you do it and you're out of balance in the first place, you're just going to overburden the system and make it harder to come back into balance one day when some other condition or illness will manifest and that does happen. There is a time and place for cold things, absolutely. Just know what it is and when your personal level or limit has been reached. I mean, the other thing I do is I play with it, I experiment. I'll have ice cream and then I'll have a ginger tea and I feel the effects on my body or I'll have a ginger tea knowing I'm going to have ice cream tonight.   Kimberly: (34:38) You just self-experiment, you really test the feelings and the energies of the food, knowing full-well the properties of it. That's fun, too. Or you can use [moxa 00:34:50] as well sometimes, but I definitely notice the difference when I eat foods that my spleen doesn't like. I feel it the next day, whether it's brain fog or an upset tummy or dampness, I feel it. But yeah, maybe it's the sensitivity or the awareness, but then the beauty of the five elements is you can always do that balance. You can use food, you can use cooking, herbs, acupuncture, moxa is fantastic. Not that I'm suggesting you eat ice cream and use moxa, but you can bring warmth to your body in other ways.   Mason: (35:26) Yeah. I mean, that's like qigong, like it's all on offer and they all kind of integrate.   Kimberly: (35:34) Yeah. The ancient wisdom was all about balance. If you are staying in balance, you can come bring yourself back to balance and the earth element is all about that. As long as we nourish it and have these foods on a more daily basis, then you can challenge yourself or challenge your spleen in small ways. I mentioned ginger, let me just add a few more foods for everybody. I mentioned those round and ground vegetables. Don't underestimate onions for their sweetness, carrots, parsnips, turnips, for the vegans and vegetarians red beans or adzuki beans are really good for the spleen, the spleen-qi, the spleen energy, also our blood, chickpeas and lentils. When I was living in China, my TCM doctor would recommend for everybody, meat eaters and vegetarians and vegans, for everybody having lentils, sweet potatoes, also artichokes. They have a spleen-qi quality to them to enhance our spleens. That's something just to note. If you're a meat eater, then absolutely a little bit of meat will help with the energy of the spleen, keeping it strong and robust.   Mason: (36:53) Any particular meats for this season?   Kimberly: (36:58) Meat's a funny one because with each food chart that I find in Chinese medicine, there are some books, not many, but in terms of food energetics, chicken's a funny one, for example, because some people will put it in the wood element, which is spring, and some people will put it more in autumn and winter. It's a tricky one, but one of the charts that I have for the five elements, because you can apply meat and any food to each element, one that I found that most people agree on would be duck, pork, salmon, tuna, mackerel, so some of the more oily fishes as well, they classify them in this element or in the season. Again, that comes back to charts and tables and recommendations, but seeing how you feel would be my suggestion. But as a comparison, a lot of what Chinese medicine would classify as warmer meats, such as lamb, would definitely be more in winter and then more seafood and fish in spring and summer. You can experiment with meats for sure, just as you can experiment with vegetables or even beans or pulses in each season. There are definitely different ones that are more suited.   Mason: (38:26) Beautiful.   Kimberly: (38:27) Yeah. I'm actually going to make a chickpea pumpkin stew this weekend. That's a very earth element, roundness. If you're a meat eater, you could put some meat or fish with that as well. That nice, creamy, rich, hearty kind of stew is what we're looking for.   Mason: (38:49) Yum, happy spleen [inaudible 00:38:52]   Kimberly: (38:52) Yes.   Mason: (38:55) Yeah. Are you sometimes fascinated by how much notoriety damp spleen have these days in the health world?   Kimberly: (39:02) Yeah.   Mason: (39:02) It's like the one thing that's permeated purely Western orientations. It's like someone who's like [inaudible 00:39:11] a full pelt keto, they're just talking about ketosis and talking about all those other areas of fat metabolism, but then they'll bring up spleen dampness just out of nowhere. It's like, I don't know, instinctively the spleen's just going like, dude, please, please, please can we not be so rigid? [crosstalk 00:39:35]-   Kimberly: (39:34) Yes.   Mason: (39:36) ... keto can definitely fall into the same category as a therapeutic diet, just as a spleen friendly diet can become a therapeutic diet and then people fall too far into ideology around their therapeutic diets, which is spleen friendly, keto. And then thinking that that can become a holistic approach to life dietarily when this doesn't quite work like that. Again, it's another maturity or [inaudible 00:40:06] that we need more maturity and conversation and making a distinction. I'm going to start and then I'm going to hopefully create this result and then I'm going to be able to slowly integrate further back into one more full spectrum, integrated, elementary, romantic, lots of laughter, lots of fun, different aspects of different organs and virtues and nourished at different seasons or different times of my life. We need to just remember that, so we don't get stuck in trying to find the right diet.   Kimberly: (40:35) Absolutely. Yeah, variety in every season would be key and definitely in the earth element finding those sweet qualities, creamy, nourishing and go whatever ingredients you want just within that framework and enjoy it. This is the time, this is the where the foodies live or the earth element people are. They prioritise their food because they feel it and they enjoy it. Taking pleasure from our food would also be my suggestion for this late summer earth element and throw away the rigidity. Bring that back in metal, bring that back in autumn if you want, but just let it go and relax, chill out for earth element. Have some pie and just life's okay. You don't have to worry so much because that also comes into this element, this overthinking. We're worrying like, oh, guilt and all of this in there and it's no fun. This is a season to enjoy. It's also in the 24 hour cycle we didn't talk about that, but it is in the afternoon. This is afternoon tea time. This is when people want that sweet piece of cake or pie or cookie, muffin, whatever, energy ball. This is the time to respect that, honour that and yeah, you have my permission to enjoy afternoon tea.   Mason: (42:05) That's good therapy. It's good therapy [crosstalk 00:42:07]-   Kimberly: (42:07) Yeah, absolutely.   Mason: (42:08) Yeah. Yeah. I think we've got a pretty great community and I think a lot of people have gone through that stage of going, I can't do this anymore. I can't do this rigidity. I can't do this feeling dirty if I have something that's not in my mental scope of the right thing to eat. Again, it's just like that doesn't have to be come your whole life as well. Going no, I just need to enjoy, that can lead to, gosh, what's the word I'm looking for, that can lead to a, not gorging, but just like never stopping chasing that sweetness hit versus going, there's a season or a time of day where it could be nourished and then not dominate everything as well.   Kimberly: (42:56) Yeah. The sweetness of life. That's the theme for the earth element, definitely.   Mason: (43:03) Beautiful. What's the best way currently for everyone to make sure they're in touch with you and your work and all your future, I don't know if it's a surprise yet, of what you're bringing out in the future soon, but things that people should be aware of and be able to hear about?   Kimberly: (43:17) Yeah, well definitely with the earth element would be this relaxation in food therapy short course that's coming out very soon, Hopefully around the time that this podcast is out and qifoodtherapy on Instagram or I've got some eBooks, online courses, fantastic online summit coming up soon, and I'd love to connect with anybody who wants to talk about pudding or desserts or cooking.   Mason: (43:46) Love it. Thank you so much again for coming on and helping keep everyone's spleen soil nice and dry and fluffy. I mean, that's another one I want to [inaudible 00:43:56] like, really, if you go away from even a really Disney style of imagining of what that earth looks like internally and allow it to break out into a real gritty, grounded reality of soil, imagine yourself grabbing soil and if you're grabbing that sloppy too wet soil, it doesn't have many worms, it doesn't feel great. Verse, when you find a really nice, fluffy, aerated, rich, aromatic soil that you can smell, it's alluring. It smells like life itself. Imagine, oh, I'm going to [inaudible 00:44:36] and I'm going to ease myself over in that direction of having that quality and feeling when I relate to my spleen. Thanks for holding that space for everyone getting there.   Kimberly: (44:47) My pleasure and yeah, fluffy soil, I just wrote that down. Brilliant.   Mason: (44:52) Lots of good work gets done when we're in our chats, doesn't it?   Kimberly: (44:55) Yes.   Mason: (44:55) Lots of good insights.   Kimberly: (44:57) Thank you much.   Mason: (44:58) Beautiful. Have a great weekend and looking forward to jumping on with you again next time.   Kimberly: (45:04) Thank you. Bye.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
Today's guest Dr. Daniel Keown is an author (The Uncharted Body and The Spark In The Machine), licensed acupuncturist, and a registered medical doctor (trained and specialising in emergency medicine). In this fascinating conversation, Tahnee and Daniel discuss the problem with western medicine (and its lack of predictive power), the subtlety of acupuncture, Qi in the body, The TCM Channel system (Jing Luo), Fascia, understanding how the body works, and the all-pervading spark that is electricity.   Daniel's brilliant mind and extensive education allows him to illuminate the distinctions and integral components of traditional Chinese medicine and western allopathic medicine with a simplicity that seems effortless. This conversation is a beautifully comprehensive scope into the organising life force of the body (Qi) and the Jing Luo channel system that allows us to reimagine the body as a landscape with folds, creases, hollows, and structures, all connected by a system of energetic intelligence.    "Those guys who wrote all those classics must be like, 'Oh, could we have made it any more simple?' They must be thinking. 'We literally said, it's like water. Over and over again, Qi is like water'. And now everyone's like, 'Oh, what's it like?' It's like water. What does water do? Water goes from high pressure to low pressure; it flows in a current in channels and generates energy as it moves. But the only thing I would say, is it's not water, it's electricity".    - Dr. Daniel Keown     Tahnee and Dan discuss: Qi is Spirit. The Triple Burner. Movement and electricity. Pregnancy and Jing essence. How Qi operates in the organs. The TCM channel system (Jing Luo). Hypertension and low blood volume. The Lymphatic system and Gaul bladder. How Qi, Jing and Shen operate in the body. The predictive power of traditional Chinese medicine. The subtleness of acupuncture in emergency medicine. Why movement is so important to the flow of Qi in the body. The damaging effects of Western pharmaceuticals on the body.    Who is Daniel Keown? Dr. Daniel Keown MD MCEM Lic Ac became interested in Chinese medicine when hearing from his octogenarian grandmother about her traveling around China. In 1998 he qualified in medicine from Manchester University, England, and then obtained a degree in Acupuncture from The College of Integrated Chinese Medicine in 2008. He continues to practice Western medicine having passed the membership exams of the College of Emergency Medicine (MCEM) in 2014. His enduring aim is to re-establish acupuncture and Qi at the forefront of medicine in the West. To this aim, he published The Spark In The Machine in 2014, which shows how the principles of Chinese medicine can be fully explained with a deeper understanding of how the human body works, an understanding that necessitates a semi-mystical force at work ie Qi. He lives in Kent, England, with his wife and two children, and still searches for the elusive perfect wave.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Dr. Daniel's website The House Of God book. The Uncharted Body- Dr. Daniel Keown The Spark In The Machine- Dr. Daniel Keown   Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Tahnee: (00:02) Yeah, I'm really excited to have you. I just wanted to give you a quick intro to what we do, so you have some context.   Tahnee: (00:08) So we have a Taoist tonic herb company here, my husband and I. My background is a little bit more... I've studied with someone called Mantak Chia, so I've done a fair bit of Taoist healing work. And we've both studied herbalism, but we have a lot of practitioners, a lot of people who are really interested in healing, listening to our podcast. It goes around the world. We've ranked in lots of countries, which is weird to us. But mostly our audience is in the Western countries, but we do have... Strangely, we're very popular sometimes in Korea and other places, which is very odd to me.   Tahnee: (00:44) But yeah. So, we tend to just talk about topics related to health and wellness through the lens of the Eastern medicine practice, but also open to all sorts of things.   Tahnee: (00:55) I'm also a Yin Yoga teacher, like I said, so I got introduced to your work a long time ago by my teacher. And yeah, so that's all that stuff around fascia and the more modern research around what might be going on in the body that starts to validate the Eastern model is really exciting to me.   Tahnee: (01:12) So that's the framework of what we do. We try to stay away from pathology. We're really interested in how people can take healing into their own hands. So that lens of education. But we do have a lot of practitioners, so I'm quite excited. I saw you've got some more courses coming up as well soon. So I'm excited to promote your work.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:33) Well. Yeah. Yeah. Thank you, Tahnee. What I didn't understand was how Qi operated in the organs. And so then I sat down and wrote The Uncharted Body. And when I started writing that book, I didn't actually know... Oh, wow. You've got it.   Tahnee: (01:49) We've got a couple of copies actually. We were going to do a giveaway. We've got a few of The Spark as well, but yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:55) Oh, great. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:56) Hopefully to someone who will understand it. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:59) Yeah. Well, yeah. Yeah. It's interesting. So that's what I'm turning into a course at the moment. Effectively, what I'm going to do is just turn that into animations.   Tahnee: (02:12) Mm. Yeah. The visualisations you do. Yeah, they're really good. And I remember years ago, you had some Vimeo videos as well that were addressing Qi and a few things.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (02:22) Yeah.   Tahnee: (02:23) This is probably five or six years ago from memory.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (02:27) Yeah.   Tahnee: (02:27) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (02:28) Yeah. That's right. Yeah. They're all still valid those videos, but I think what's happened is I've got much more sophisticated in my understanding of what's going on. So especially with regard to how simple it is, it's all very simple. That's one of the things I try and impress upon people. I mean, that book you just picked up, effectively, that takes you beyond university PhD level embryology.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (03:00) I bumped into an anatomy professor and I was talking about the coelomic epithelium, which forms the [inaudible 00:03:07] channel. And he'd never had a conversation like that with anyone ever before. And he was like, "Well, I'll have to actually check some of this stuff."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (03:17) So, even though that book looks dense and it looks thick, that is a complete anatomy, embryology, physiology, and medicine book. So it is actually not as onerous as it seems, because if you can understand that book, you basically understand medicine at a level that's beyond Western medicine at the moment.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (03:41) And the main thing is, it's just a translation. It didn't come out of my brain. The translation came out of my brain, but it's a translation of Chinese medicine into a form that the Western mind can appreciate and understand.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (03:57) And the key thing is that in order to really understand how the body operates, you've got to get into this concept of it's running on energy. It's definitely 100% without a shadow of doubt, running on energy. It's ridiculous to... To me, it's just like, how can anybody have thought it wasn't running on energy?   Tahnee: (04:18) Yeah. Especially when you are looking at healing and medicine. I've actually heard you say in another podcast, like a doctor just augmenting healing and the arrogance that we think that we're in any way in control, really, of the kind of healing mechanisms. It's really about removing those blockages to Qi and creating the capacity for that to just do the magic.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (04:43) Yeah.   Tahnee: (04:44) Yeah. It's something we've really missed in [crosstalk 00:04:46].   Dr. Daniel Keown: (04:46) The body wants to be well. Everyone's body wants to be well. There's nobody out there... Well actually, there's a few. Because people have perverse incentives to stay unwell, that's a societal issue. But generally people want to be well, and if you can bypass those societal issues, like sick benefits for instance, it is a perverse incentive to stay unwell. But yeah, people do generally want to be well. And so if you can just remind the body how to be well, then it tends to fall back into that pattern of wellness.   Tahnee: (05:30) Yeah. And I guess that's what I love about acupuncture, is it's just re-inviting that harmony and that movement toward wellness, instead of chopping out chunks or trying to take something away, or burn something or delete something in some way.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (05:48) One of my favourite books on medicine is called, The House Of God.   Tahnee: (05:54) I don't know that.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (05:54) Which is interesting. Because my first book was called, What God Forgot To Tell Surgeons. The House Of God is this classic book from the '60s, that was about a doctor who went through the medical system and realised how bankrupt it was. And he just about got through at the end. But he has these laws of the house of God, which are basically laws about how to operate within the Western medical system. And the first law is the art of medicine is doing as much nothing as possible.   Tahnee: (06:27) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (06:27) And I operate that law in emergency medicine. In emergency medicine, I try to do as much nothing as possible the entire time. In other words, you're like, "Whoa, we're dealing with this really delicate balance here, that's a bit effed up. And we don't want to suddenly move in there and mess things up even more, we want to be really gentle and just move things in the right direction." And generally, whenever I saw other people fuck up in emergency medicine, it's because they did that. They basically went in there with sledge hammers and fucked things up. But acupuncture is effectively as close as you could get to doing nothing, as you can get. I mean, literally it's like the very next thing to doing nothing.   Tahnee: (07:24) Well, it's so subtle.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (07:25) It's like I'm almost doing nothing, but I'm just going to do this tiny little thing. I'm going to take this tiny invisible needle, and it's actually so small I can barely even get it into your skin. That's a skill in itself, getting it through. And then I'm just going to move this energy. And then you're going to miraculously feel better. It's doing as much nothing as possible.   Tahnee: (07:48) I really like that. That's such a great way to describe it. Because it is, it's so subtle and yet it attunes to this really... Well I think, it doesn't stress the body or create more stress, so there's not that extra layer to deal with. I think about a lot of what happens in hospitals and it's like, first of all, the environment is quite challenging. And then, there can be a lot of intervention and that just creates more stress. And so the body's not really in a place to heal. It's, if anything in a survival response.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (08:23) The only Western medicine that works, and this is backed up by studies, is emergency medicine.   Tahnee: (08:30) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (08:30) None of the other Western medicine works. None of it works. If you actually look at the evidence to show Western medicine works, there's only evidence to show 15% of Western medicine works. From the study, this was a letter in the BMJ years ago, I think 15% of medicine, there's good evidence to show it works. 8% of medicine there's actually evidence to show it does harm. And the rest of it, there's no evidence either way. All of the surgery, there's no evidence to show it works. Yeah? And basically, because you can't do the studies. There's evidence to show it works.   Tahnee: (09:10) Don't chop that person, but do chop that person. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (09:17) There's not the evidence that you would... They certainly use to discredit alternative medicine. There's certainly nowhere near that level of evidence to show it works. And when they do do studies into, for instance, surgery, where they can do studies, they are often very surprising. They show that placebo surgery is as efficacious as surgery. And so, the emperor has no clothes, as far as I'm concerned. However, emergency medicine, I'm an emergency doctor, still am, want to go back into it one day, I'm not going to argue with anyone who wants to say that emergency medicine works. It does work in my opinion. But when doctors go on strike, mortality drops every single time.   Tahnee: (09:59) Interesting.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (10:00) [crosstalk 00:10:00] going. Yeah. Yeah. It always drops. And that's because almost all of Western medicine, like the non-emergency stuff doesn't work.   Tahnee: (10:12) My husband and I always say that though. We're grateful it exists for car accidents and even broken bones and things. It's great to be able to go somewhere and have that treatment. But yeah, for chronic stuff, all the things we're seeing, and that's really the stuff we get, is a lot of people that have been through Western medicine and they're so disillusioned, they've been, basically... And it's things like autoimmune conditions, cancers, genetic stuff, these kind of long term chronic things that we don't have a system or a model in Western medicine that addresses it.   Tahnee: (10:46) And I've heard you speak to this, the sort of mind, body, spirit aspect, like that Jing, Qi, Shen, which is something we talk about so much in our work. And it just is seeing completely from the Western model. It's like, "Oh, cool. You've got a tumour. We can cut it out or we can radiate you or chemo you. But that's pretty much it."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (11:06) Yeah.   Tahnee: (11:06) It's like, well why does this person have this thing? It's not like it's dropped in from out of space or something. Where did it come from? So I think that's a really interesting topic, and I don't hear it addressed a lot. I guess there's pockets in Western medicine where people are interested in it, but not so much in large.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (11:27) Well, the fundamental problem with Western medicine, aside from emergency medicine, which is great and works. And I'll extrapolate that into any specialty that effectively does emergency. So emergency obstetrics is great. Emergency eye surgery is great. The reason I think that emergency Western medicine is so good, because effectively in an emergency you get down to a reductionist level of, "My eye is about to lose all sight because there's been a bleed in the back of my eye," for instance. "And if I get a laser in there and cauterise the blood vessel that's bleeding, it will stop bleeding." Yeah? "And that will possibly save my eye." Now, why is that eye bleeding? Western medicine is very useless at, because that's a much more holistic question. But when it comes down to pure reductionism, it works very well, Western medicine.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (12:21) And the fundamental problem at the core of the Western medical model, is there's no concept of Qi, there's no concept of spirit, which... Qi and spirit are the same thing, by the way, I don't know if you know that. But the origin of-   Tahnee: (12:35) You talk about it in your book.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (12:38) Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly.   Tahnee: (12:41) Well, I'd love if you could drill down on that a bit, because Qi was always... You Google it I guess, and people would get Qi is energy. And I think that's such a vague definition for people.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (12:53) Yeah.   Tahnee: (12:54) Do you have a working definition at the moment, that you are really loving? Or is there something...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (13:00) Yeah, I would call Qi the organising force of the body, best seen in the embryo. That's my working definition when it comes to sticking needles into people. It's kind of like a semi-mystical God-like quality. It's the life force, it's the same as the force in Star Wars.   Tahnee: (13:21) We use that analogy a lot too. The force. I just want to stop on that quickly. So when you say it's best seen in the embryo, because this is something I think is a really interesting and important thing, is like, embryologically we're unfolding along the lines of this blueprint, which is quite magical really, when you think about the fact that a sperm and egg become a baby, becomes a human. How does that know how to be that? And so that's the Qi factor, is the capacity to know what to become. Are you agreeing with me?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (14:02) Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think that's reasonable. I don't see the Qi as having... It's able to take the instructions in the genetic code, and-   Tahnee: (14:16) So do you see that coming from Jing? Or are you...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (14:19) Yeah, it's more Jing. Yeah.   Tahnee: (14:20) Yeah. Okay.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (14:21) Yeah. Yeah. What you become is more Jing, definitely. So, the Qi is the energy that organises things.   Tahnee: (14:28) The activating force to decode that Jing blueprint, I suppose.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (14:35) Yeah, that's right. Yeah.   Tahnee: (14:36) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (14:37) Yeah. And yeah, I mean, that's the thing, you've got to have Qi, Jing and Shen, in order for a person to exist. You can't have Qi without Jing and Shen, and you can't have Shen without Jing and Qi. You've got to have all three of those things to create a person. So, it's kind of difficult to describe one without the other two. Equally, Qi I see, it's the energy, it's the organising force, the organising energy that takes the Jing, the blueprint, and manifests that into matter. So, one of the best descriptions I heard was from Twitter. [crosstalk 00:15:22].   Tahnee: (15:22) The wise place of Twitter.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (15:24) Exactly, yeah. It's like the group consciousness, isn't it?   Tahnee: (15:30) The best and the worst of humanity.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (15:34) And somebody's came back and said, "Qi is the..." Now, I've got to get this right. And I didn't get it right last time either.   Tahnee: (15:45) Oh, it's high pressures. Deep breath.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (15:50) "It's the energy by which matter manifests into form." I haven't quite got this right. He put it so brilliantly and I haven't quite got it right. But basically, what he was saying is that matter... Life is a great example. You start off with a single cell and then suddenly, as you're going to find out, nine months later, and it's not even months, even by 12 weeks...   Tahnee: (16:15) I'm 22 weeks. And there's a human in there.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (16:19) Well, there we are.   Tahnee: (16:19) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (16:20) Well, basically, yeah. Yeah. Basically, a sperm and an egg combined, and then bang, you have a cell. And then somehow, magically over the next 12 to 22 weeks, that cell just multiplied, multiplied and made a baby. And it was the thing that allowed it to make that baby was organisation, and that force was Qi, that's what Qi is. But it had to have the Jing of the genetic code, in order to have the instruction manual to make the baby. And if it had a different genetic instruction manual it would make a baby mouse or baby [inaudible 00:17:00] or a baby whale or something like that.   Tahnee: (17:02) It's still a possibility. We never know. Talk to me in a few months.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (17:06) That would be pretty amazing. It's the same thing. It's the same Qi in a whale embryo as in a... I really see it like some kind of electricity. Qi's an analagist to electricity, but it's a life force electricity.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (17:25) I mean, it's interesting, in Star Wars, when the emperor tries to kill Luke Skywalker, it's electricity that comes out. I'm not saying Star Wars is [inaudible 00:17:37] Chinese medicine is based, I'm saying that Star Wars was stolen from a Japanese film, I think it was, that was based on-   Tahnee: (17:47) Yeah. Chinese medicine structure.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (17:48) Yeah, exactly.   Tahnee: (17:50) Yeah. The Taoist worldview.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (17:51) Yeah.   Tahnee: (17:52) Yeah. Because I think that's the idea... You speak about it in Spark, I'm pretty sure. I don't know. There's a man called Dr. Motoyama who my teachers are very interested in, and he was trying to measure Qi. And what he found was, it was a very, very low current, hard to measure electricity. And he got poo pooed by everybody because he had to invent a machine that was subtle enough to actually detect this stuff. And his work has not been widely accepted, but it's interesting because he's got this machine that actually measures all the meridians, and measures the flow of Qi in the body. And you speak about the DC current and AC current, and the sense that the Qi or the sort of regenerative force in the body is this more consistent flow. Is there any detail you have on that? Or is it still a bit out there?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (18:48) Yeah. No. But firstly, I'd never used the word meridians. I always say channels. Yeah. Yeah.   Tahnee: (18:55) Channels. I know. And I've been told off about that a thousand times. It doesn't actually translate.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:00) Yes. Exactly. That's the prime issue. It's a poor translation. So it's a Jing Luo, which is the channel network.   Tahnee: (19:12) And also, I think I always love the poetry of the Taoist...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:16) One second. There's some super bass going on in the background with my kids.   Tahnee: (19:22) I love it. I actually can't hear it.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:25) Oh, can you not hear it?   Tahnee: (19:25) No.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:25) Okay, fine.   Tahnee: (19:27) You're probably vibrating, but it's not coming through.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:32) Yeah. It's like, they're clearly playing some game with explosions. Okay. So yeah. So it's really important to get rid of... Oh, that's really loud. It's annoying me. Give me one second.   Tahnee: (19:43) Yeah. Go. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (19:44) Hey, kids.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (20:07) Yeah. So channels. So the words were Jing Luo, and they were channels. In fact, they translate perfectly. If you look at the characters, I was just doing a video today about this. Because I keep saying this over and over and over again, and it never seems to get through. Well, it gets through, but very slowly. Because these things are [inaudible 00:20:27]. And so, it's clearly the connective tissue network, that's what they're describing. Fascia. And the best translation is channel. So this is really important, because you can have a conversation with lay people or especially doctors that goes like this. "Oh, well there's Qi in the body. It's like an energy, that's a kind of electricity that flows through the body and it flows through meridians." "What's a Meridian?" "Well, it's structures in the body that allow Qi to flow." "Okay. Has anyone ever shown these meridians?" "No." Kind of thing. Yeah?   Tahnee: (21:09) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (21:09) And you can have this conversation with any doctor. The conversation can go very differently. It can go something like this. And bear in mind, meridians is a terrible translation. It's not a good translation. It's not a valid translation of Jing Luo.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (21:25) And it goes something like this. "Well, the body runs on energy, electricity. You can see it for instance in the heart. But actually, every cell, every organ, every muscle runs on electricity, and that electricity has got information attached to it. And that's what Qi is." And they go, "Okay. So, how does this flow around the body?" "Well, it flows in channels in the body." And it's like, "Channels in the body? I don't know of any channels in the body." "Well, no, there's loads of channels in the body. Every time a surgeon operates, he basically moves through channels. And for instance, you've got the peritoneal channel. It's called a peritoneal cavity, but it's actually a channel in the body and that's the liver channel." "Oh. No, surely there's nothing flow..." And the doctor will say, "There's nothing flowing in that peritoneal cavity in the channel." "Yeah. There is. There's fluid flowing in the peritoneal channel. In fact, every single potential space in your body, and there's loads of them, there's an infinite number of them, has fluid flowing in them. And that fluid is flowing and that's a channel."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (22:23) And then, that conversation ends at that point. Their scepticism just evaporates because there's nowhere for them to go. That's why it's so important. That's why language is so important.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (22:36) And so, that's why I hate the word Meridian. For two reasons. Firstly, it's just an awful translation that the Jing Luo didn't have a neat translation to put it into for [inaudible 00:22:49]. So he put it into this word because someone said, "Oh, sounds a bit like that." And secondly, because it's such a bad translation, then you just go down this blind alley. Where basically, you are digging yourself a hole to put yourself into when you say that word. So that's why.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (23:12) So, to go back to your original question. Sorry, you touched a nerve there.   Tahnee: (23:17) No. Look, I really appreciate it. And I always think from the Taoist perspective of, everything is so poetic, and the body as landscapes and structures. And it's like, of course it's a channel or like a river, or even like the English Channel. It's a natural body, instead of this like an arbitrary kind of human construct of a Meridian or a lay line or something. So yeah, I totally hear you on that. And I think-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (23:43) Well, that's exactly it. Because a Meridian is a human construct.   Tahnee: (23:46) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (23:47) It's exactly that.   Tahnee: (23:48) And it doesn't actually mirror what's happening. And I think this idea...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (23:52) No. It's underground rivers. The character for Jing is drawn as underground rivers, carrying a mystical substance, which is obviously Qi. And it's like, okay. Well, yeah. I mean, nobody's going to dispute that on the earth there's underground rivers. There's 100% guaranteed, there's one-   Tahnee: (24:13) Keeping us alive. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (24:16) [crosstalk 00:24:16]. And then it's like, okay, that's what the character's actually drawn as. It's drawn as underground rivers, which are enveloped by... Well, the character is sea, which people have translated as silk. But actually, it is very clear that it's not necessarily silk. It can be any material. In other words, it's fascia. So it's fascia carrying underground rivers. That's what Jing translates as. And Luo translates as a collagenous net.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (24:45) Now, where did, where did the M word come from in that? If you're going to translate it into one word, it's channels. But even channels doesn't really do that justice.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (24:58) And so, the key thing to understand about the Western and Eastern appreciation of the body, is the west is really obsessed with things. We're always obsessed with things in the west. It's fine. I quite like having a cup for you to drink your cup of tea out of.   Tahnee: (25:21) Useful, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (25:22) But the cup is only useful because of the space within it. And so, the east is more thinking about the space within things. And the west is saying, "Ah." So the west was always like, "Where are these meridians?" And obviously-   Tahnee: (25:37) "Why can't I cut them out of a dead body?"   Dr. Daniel Keown: (25:40) Yeah. And it's like, "No, it's channels. It's spaces within the body." And so, within that space, travels this organising force that enables your body to stay connected. It has to stay connected. All the cells have to stay connected, otherwise you get things like cancer developing. Worst case scenario it's cancer, best case scenario, the cells just die if they're not connected anymore. And that energy that's travelling in the channels is basically a form of electricity. And it can be measured and it can be seen as well. There was a guy called Becker who measured it in amphibians, who have very powerful-   Tahnee: (26:24) [inaudible 00:26:24] frog head guy.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (26:26) Ah. Yeah, close. That was Spemann. That was a German embryologist. He didn't actually measure the currents, but he discovered that you can have parts of the embryo that control growth.   Tahnee: (26:41) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (26:43) Yeah.   Tahnee: (26:44) So these smaller animals, because you talk about this in Spark, the lower animals. But you talk about how that divergence to what a bigger brain we lose that regenerative capacity, the smaller, less developed animals.   Tahnee: (27:00) I remember as a kid, this is a horrible story, but I used to pull the tail off lizards and then keep them as pets. Because the tail would grow back. I thought it was really cool. Those poor lizards.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (27:12) It is cool.   Tahnee: (27:13) Yeah. It is really cool. And they always grew back slightly different.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (27:16) Do they bleed when you pull them off?   Tahnee: (27:19) No. They wriggled a lot though. I don't think they were happy. But yeah, say if they were-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (27:24) [crosstalk 00:27:24]. So hang on. You pulled them... I know this is displaying your inner psychopath.   Tahnee: (27:24) I know. Hopefully my inner scientist and not my inner psychopath. Yeah. I would have been maybe six or seven. But my house had a really big white wall. It was really hot and we'd always get these little lizards. I don't even know the species, but they were quite tiny. And if you stressed them or held their tails, they would try and run away and drop their tail as a survival mechanism.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (27:57) So you didn't pull them off. You basically just-   Tahnee: (27:59) Well yeah, they let them go, but I would hold them and-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (28:02) You encouraged them.   Tahnee: (28:06) I've got to say, I'm sounding like a psychopath. And then we would like look after them and try and keep them alive whilst they grew back.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (28:13) And they regrew.   Tahnee: (28:14) Yeah. So, say they were brown originally, they might grow back a funny lighter brown colour or something. And there'd be a little seam. It was always a little bit wonky.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (28:27) Yeah.   Tahnee: (28:27) But yeah. It was like, "Wow. This is cool." And so, when I read your book about how humans can grow back fingertips and things when they're babies. And I was like, "Oh, great." Haven't tried on my child.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (28:40) Yeah.   Tahnee: (28:40) Chopping off fingers or anything. But it is such an interesting... I think about Qigong and all of these practises that are designed to help us cultivate Qi. My teacher's 76 and he still looks about 50. He's just had children. He's got many children now. He had a kid a couple years ago. He's really defying what we would term ageing. And you can see, well, this practise is doing something to him where he's actually still holding onto that regenerative capacity for Qi.   Tahnee: (29:11) So I think it's a really interesting and under acknowledged area, I suppose, in our culture. Especially with health and healing, I just think if it's as simple as breathing practises, meditating, eating well, looking after ourselves mentally, why aren't we encouraging this more as a baseline human practice? So, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (29:33) Yeah. Well, it's because there's not-   Tahnee: (29:38) Lots of shit going down.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (29:39) Yeah. It's difficult to mass produce that and profit from it effectively. It's not that there's no profit in it, there's definitely profit in it, but it's difficult to mass produce that and make profit from it. That's why, I think.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (30:01) Because yeah, that's kind of my mission at the moment actually, is to create a model of acupuncture that can be effectively mass produced, and people can practise... My ambition at the moment is to raise... So it has taken me 20 years to get to a point where basically, pretty much everyone I treat at the moment gets better. Which I find astounding. I'm amazed by that. Because as a Western doctor, I see people and I'm just like... If I didn't understand what I was doing, then I'd be like, that's just beyond medical comprehension. But it isn't, because basically you understand what Qi is. But it's taken me 20 years to get there.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (30:52) And my ambition is that I can create a teaching programme effectively, that can get you there in five years.   Tahnee: (30:59) Yeah. Fast-track that.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (31:03) And I would say where I am is generally where it takes you to get, if you're good, 40 years to get to. So in China, they say you're not mature until you're about 65. And I reckon I probably got there at age 47. But that's just because I've spent my entire life in medicine, effectively. And I've written a couple of books on it, and I've spent a lot of time studying. And I've had the advantage of a lot of information and...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (31:33) Yeah. But if we can get people there in five years, so if you're 20, you can get there ar 25, you can get to the point where it took me 15 years to get to, and then you've got another 40 years, 50 years, 60 years of practice, of getting people well. So that could be really revolutionary, in terms of where medicine goes. And that's my ambition at the moment.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (31:58) Because this stuff is so simple. It's unbelievably simple. My criteria for the videos I'm producing at the moment, is I'm going to show them to my 10 year old son. And if he doesn't understand them, then I'm like, that's-   Tahnee: (32:13) You're not doing your job.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (32:14) Yeah.   Tahnee: (32:15) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (32:15) Yeah. The whole thing's just so crazily simple. Even the function of the liver and stuff, it's just so simple. It dredges, drains and regulates. If you understand what those three words are, and bear in mind, I had to look up the word dredge to check exactly what it meant. And then I was like, "Holy shit. That's exactly what the liver's doing. It's dredging." It's dredging, to clear a waterway, especially of debris. That's what the definition is.   Tahnee: (32:47) Mm. They do it to... What are they called? Bays where boats go.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (32:53) Yeah.   Tahnee: (32:53) Yes.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (32:54) Yeah. That's it. And that's what the liver... The liver basically clears all the food that comes out of your digestive system.   Tahnee: (33:00) So are you talking about this... Because I had an acupuncturist who's unfortunately moved, but he was probably the first person who I started to drop in on how simple... I think before that it always seemed a little bit complicated and mysterious. And he got me looking into [inaudible 00:33:19] because he said the Chinese model's a little bit messed up. I think you call it cookbook acupuncture, which I really like. He's like, "There's a recipe, da, da, da." It's like, "No, you go straight to the [inaudible 00:33:32]. Symptoms are like a guidepost, but you can't always trust what the person's saying, da da, da."   Tahnee: (33:40) But I guess I often, coming from having learned a lot of this stuff, the kind of rote learn, like multiple choice, da, da, da, that sort of way of, the liver governs wood and it's spring. I've learned to think of it more like, "Okay, the liver, it's not the liver per se, but it's like the energy of every cell operating on that liver Qi level is the ability of the cell to dredge itself. The ability of..." Is this making sense? I hope this-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (34:14) It definitely works in that kind of aspect as well. Every cell within your body has respires and creates proteins, which is a liver function. Respiration is a lung function [crosstalk 00:34:28]-   Tahnee: (34:28) Lung function, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (34:30) So it's got grey in the nucleus, which is also like the heart as well. And it's got little vesicles which are like stomachs, and it's got a membrane, which is like skin. So it is fractal in nature, the body. The heart will also effectively do functions of the liver as well, which is why if you get heart damage, some of the enzymes that are released are liver enzymes. And in the olden days, when I was a junior doctor, they used to check they didn't have something called troponins. And they used to do enzymes that were also produced by the liver. And there would be a bit of confusion about, has this person maybe just got a liver problem or is it a heart problem?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (35:12) So all of the cells within your body are kind of a microcosm of your body. Equally however, there are definitely six planes, six confirmations within your body that are the six systems I talk about in The Uncharted Body that are clear... In terms of practical medicine, they are as clear as the liver is within Western medicine, as the heart is within medicines. These six divisions are-   Tahnee: (35:44) So the [inaudible 00:35:45] Yang and all Tao Yin and all that sort of stuff.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (35:48) Yeah. That's it. And you can definitely think about them as... When you say about the liver, and you started to get, with all due respect, a little bit airy fairy about it-   Tahnee: (36:00) Yeah. Go for it.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (36:04) And that's kind of true. But actually the liver, the way to see it is the liver is like the biggest concentration of energy and cellular material within this division called [inaudible 00:36:17], this division has concentrated its energy and power, certainly in the lower aspect, within the liver, to perform this function that it has to perform within the body. But the layer is performing that function. And so, all the cells within that layer, which also include the peritoneal channel and also part of the venous system as well, will be performing that same function as well. It's just the body has concentrated that power within the liver itself, in the same way that in the United Kingdom, in a way everyone is performing a political system and even political function, and even within our town there'd be politicians of sorts, minor politicians. But the country has concentrated that political system within Westminster. Like burn the fuckers down, as far as I'm concerned.   Tahnee: (37:20) Don't burn your liver down.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (37:21) As long as no one's to blame. But yeah. And in the same way... I'm trying to think of another system that's not-   Tahnee: (37:33) Well, you were speaking on your blog about COVID and how you are seeing that sort of... I think it was the Tao Yin level, I could be wrong. It was the lung and spleen level.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (37:45) Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly. Yeah. So COVID affects the lungs and pancreas. And pancreas is part of-   Tahnee: (37:53) Yes. Pancreas. You're calling the spleen.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (37:56) Pancreas, yeah.   Tahnee: (37:57) Yep.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (37:59) Yeah. So, this is the amazing thing about this six division model of the body. So one of the big problems, Western medicine's got no predictive power. For me as a scientist, that's a massive problem. If you've got a scientific model or theory that has zero predictive power, that model's bunk. It's useless.   Tahnee: (38:15) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (38:15) Yeah? It's absolutely useless. And Western medicine does not have a model of how the body works, in my opinion. It's got little parts that work in isolation, but in the big picture, it doesn't have a model. In other words, it's not holistic. It cannot explain really how health is maintained. It just says, if you look at the WHO definition of health, it's just an absence of disease.   Tahnee: (38:40) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (38:41) I would say, no. Health is a smooth flow of Qi, effectively. You also need good Jing, and good Shen as well. But effectively, presuming your Jing, in other words, the body you were born with, and your Shen, in other words, your spirit and your soul, they're in good shape, then health is a smooth flow of Qi. If you've got a smooth flow of Qi, you'll have health. And then you can define what Qi is. But in Western medicine there's no model whatsoever of... And that's a big problem.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (39:13) Now within the six divisions, that has predictive power. So if you get a disease process occurring within one aspect of this division, it will also affect the other aspects of that division as well. So within COVID, COVID is a disease that really seems to affect the lung, especially. So then you say, "Okay, that's also going to affect everything else within Tao Yin, which is pancreas, spleen." I bet coronavirus will accumulate in the spleen. It's well known to cause diarrhoea. That's part of Tao Yin. And I bet you it's going to cause thyroid problems as well, long term. Things like Hashimoto's.   Tahnee: (39:53) Which is part of the lung...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (39:56) It's 100% part of the lung. Yeah.   Tahnee: (39:58) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (39:58) It's the messenger of the lung.   Tahnee: (40:00) And so, what I was being taught by this acupuncturist before he abandoned me, was that if that is allowed to stay in the body, that pathogenic factor, it will descend down. That's where you get the heart fire and these kind of problems, I guess, with COVID that are... When it actually gets really bad in people. Is that an accurate... I'm not going to say-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (40:21) Yeah.   Tahnee: (40:23) [crosstalk 00:40:23] Across the pathology.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (40:24) Yeah. The heart.   Tahnee: (40:26) Because the heart is the most, deepest layer of these six layers. So if it's getting there, it's bad.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (40:35) As befits the body, it's complex.   Tahnee: (40:44) Okay.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (40:44) This is what it's like to have to keep things simple. Yeah. Well you have to keep things simple. This is why I'm always like, "Look, let's just keep things as simple as possible." Because it fucking gets complicated. Guaranteed. Because every single person is different. So you have to keep this thing really simple. But yeah, the six divisions, bizarrely, the deepest level is Xue Yin, which is liver and peritoneum. However, the heart is also the emperor and is protected by everything. So it's the equivalent of the king on the chess board. Apparently fairly weak, but everything has to move around it to protect the king. You shouldn't ever really move the king in chess if you can get away with it.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (41:24) So it's the same. In a way, the heart as the emperor is the deepest, but in another way, it isn't. Within the six divisions, it's actually not the deepest. And this, I'm still trying to get my head around exactly what that means.   Tahnee: (41:43) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (41:44) Yeah. If it sounds a bit confusing it's because it [crosstalk 00:41:50]. I mean, this is really simple medicine compared to Western medicine, but we're still dealing with an organism that's unbelievably complex. And the body is just unbelievably complex.   Tahnee: (42:05) Well, like you said, with pathology too, you're treating individuals who are showing up with their own constitutional patterns, and all the unknown factors of what a human gets up to day-to-day.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (42:18) Yeah.   Tahnee: (42:18) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (42:19) Exactly. They pop up into your clinic after 47 years of existence, and just go, "I've got pain here." Somehow unravel that 47 years of existence and find out what's causing that pain there. And that's when you just have to go, "Man, I can't have too much information at this point because it's going to really fry my brain." So, you just have to kind of keep things as simple as possible.   Tahnee: (42:49) And you're listening to the pulse. You're kind of working through on that level. I had a guy the other day on the podcast, who's an acupuncturist. And he said something that I thought was really interesting. He said, "When I needle stomach 34, I don't actually think I'm needling the organ." And I was like, "Well, what do you think you're doing?" And he sort of... I didn't feel like we got anywhere with the answer. And I'm like, this is interesting that someone who practises this medicine doesn't really believe... And I'm not trying to poo poo him.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (43:23) I completely disagree. When I needle stomach 36...   Tahnee: (43:28) That's the one, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (43:30) I've never needled stomach 34.   Tahnee: (43:32) No, it was 36. I'm pregnant and [inaudible 00:43:34].   Dr. Daniel Keown: (43:35) But that needle, the way I feel that needle going into a plane within the body, a tissue plane, like a fault line within the body that is then directly connecting to the entire gastrointestinal tracts and especially the stomach, but it's the entire... So no, for me, it's the opposite. When I needle these points, I'm like, this is connecting to that organ. As far as I'm concerned, there's no contradiction between Western and Eastern about how the body operates, apart from one important thing. And that is that Western medicine is a primitive model of the body, that's not particularly helpful and actually fits in underneath the Chinese medicinal model of the body, as a kind of useful adjunct in emergency situations. That actually, because it has no model of health, because it has no model of how the body operates, and because effectively, the way it's been organised is back to front.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (44:41) So, what Western medicine has done is, it didn't start off with a model of how the body operates, and instead has used a microscope to look closer and closer into the body, and then-   Tahnee: (44:53) Rebuild.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (44:54) [crosstalk 00:44:54] the body. Yeah. So, the equivalent I explain to people is, imagine if you didn't have an idea of the phylogenetic tree of life. Yeah? I don't know if you know what that means. It's like the idea that we all came from jellyfish and jellyfish... Which we did actually, thankfully from my [inaudible 00:45:11]. But there's another story behind that as well, actually, that I might tell you another time. But imagine instead of that phylogenetic tree of life, where we came from jellyfish and jellyfish then turned into... I don't know, molluscs and snails and whatever. And then they developed into vertebrates, and they developed into-   Tahnee: (45:32) Higher mammals and things, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (45:34) Higher mammals. You've got it. Yeah. Imagine if you were just looking right at the top, and you saw all of these different animals, and you have no idea of the phylogenetic tree, which is the equivalent of embryology. And you started to categorise all those different animals according to what they did and how they behaved. And you went, "I'll tell you what. Why don't we put all flying creatures into the same bracket? Because they appear to all be behaving in the same way. So we'll put bats and birds and... What else flies? Flying squirrels. We'll put all of those. They're all flying animals, so they must be related. And everything walking on two legs must be related as well. So we'll put chimpanzees and humans and ostriches and..."   Tahnee: (46:20) Kangaroos.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (46:22) "Kangaroos. Yeah. They're all related as well. So they're all related. They're all related." That is what Western medicine's done with the body. It's basically taken all of these things and grouped them together, into systems that don't make embryological sense.   Tahnee: (46:37) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (46:37) And you really have to have a good grasp of medicine and the body to understand exactly what I'm talking about at this point. But that's what they've done.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (46:48) Now, what the six division model is, is an embryological model that builds from the bottom upwards. So, the original three divisions were endoderm, exoderm and mesoderm. Which, anyone who studied any medicine probably knows. And that's the end of their embryology. And what happens, the endoderm and the exoderm become Tae Yin and Tae Yang, which stay as consistent division or layers within the body. And the middle division, the mesoderm splits into four, and that forms then things like the heart, kidney and vascular system, the arterial system, which will become Shao Yin.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (47:27) Now, if you have this model of the body, you can make predictions about how each of these divisions are going to behave. And the fact that a pathogen or even a drug that affects one of the aspects of this division will affect all of the other aspects.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (47:43) So for instance, my favourite one is with hypertension is always a problem of Shao Yin. It's always a problem with a lack of blood effectively, to the body and the body then responds by increasing the pressures, as you would in any fluid system.   Tahnee: (47:59) Blood [crosstalk 00:48:00].   Dr. Daniel Keown: (48:00) Yeah, exactly. You would increase pressure. And so that's what hypertension is. It's the body that has perceived a lack of blood for whatever reasons. And therefore, that is always a problem with Shao Yin, of the heart, kidney, or the blood vessels themselves, the arterial system. And every single anti hypertensive known to man, with one exception, acts on that-   Tahnee: (48:22) On that level.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (48:23) On either the heart, the kidney or the blood vessels. And the same with COVID. So COVID has got a particular propensity for attacking the Tae Yin system, which is all about dampness and the phlegm. And that's why it attacks the pancreas, that's why it attacks the lung, that's why it gives you diarrhoea. And it will, like I said, it almost certainly is going to give you thyroid problems. And also it will have a propensity to hang around in the spleen, which is why hydroxychloroquine works so well as well.   Tahnee: (48:52) Mm-hmm (affirmative). And that's making me think around that Wei Qi level as well. If you're talking embryologically, that surface protective level, sort of this making sense that we're going to have this really deep... Because you were saying before, the liver is right in the middle there, it's that very, very centre of the egg, I suppose. Is that what you were talking about before? I'm just trying to build this puzzle out in my mind.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (49:28) Yeah, the six divisions though, I like to think... Yeah, yeah. In a way in the middle it's a bit like...   Tahnee: (49:38) Yeah, I know it's not accurate to say the middle, but I think it's Deadman's model. There's layers, like the surfboard layers, and they kind of...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (49:48) It's like Russian dolls.   Tahnee: (49:50) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (49:51) So the skin in the Tai Yang, the skin is your outer layer of the Russian doll. And then right in the middle is your Xue Yin, your liver right in the middle. That innermost... Now, the interesting thing is, that obviously the inner and the outer have to connect. Yeah?   Tahnee: (50:10) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (50:11) Things have to always flow. Things always have to flow. And there is actually a connection between, effectively, your Xue Yin and your skin, and in women that's through your uterus and vagina.   Tahnee: (50:26) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (50:26) So when the sperm, it actually swims in through the skin, effectively through that little hole in your skin, called the vagina, and it swims into the uterus, which is actually in the peritoneal channel, which is Xue Yin.   Tahnee: (50:48) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (50:50) So, it is, you're right. The liver is your innermost layer. But connects to the outside, through the uterus. And then that connection is the rebirth of new life.   Tahnee: (51:04) And I guess, is that then pointing to that blood layer being... Because again, through my understanding of being a patient really is, being needled on that blood layer, it's very deep, quite painful. Because the liver's responsible for storing the blood and all of that sort of stuff, are we looking... Because I think about the uterus as well, the sea of blood, it's like this kind of idea of that deep substance of women being blood and for men, it's more Qi. So do you guys have a different connection between the Tae Yang?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (51:36) Yeah. Between Xue Yin and Tae Yang. Yeah. Yeah. Well, I mean, I'm just speaking...   Tahnee: (51:47) Theoretically?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (51:47) Yeah, because the interesting thing about our sperm is, it kind of effectively at an embryological level comes out of your Tae Yang, your kidneys, bladder.   Tahnee: (52:06) Well that's where the Jing element comes in, I guess. Yeah?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (52:12) Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's it. Yeah. Yeah. There's definitely a different kind of embryological process going on.   Tahnee: (52:19) Interesting. Children.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (52:23) Yeah. I was trying to work out what it is. Yeah.   Tahnee: (52:26) I want to jump back to electricity because we were talking about that when we got wonderfully distracted. But yeah, I think that's an interesting... It seems really logical to me that we're governed by this electric force, but it's not really that...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (52:42) One second.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (52:42) Kids. What's up? Right. Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen. It's simple, yeah. You can either stop crying and watch telly and enjoy yourself, or [inaudible 00:53:11] it's time for bed.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (53:25) Okay. Might just take a pause for a bit.   Tahnee: (53:29) Yeah, that's fine.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (53:31) Yeah. I'll just try and...   Tahnee: (53:33) That's my future.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (53:36) It's time for bed. Right, bedtime. Come on, bedtime. Well you have to stop crying immediately. Immediately. Okay. Now [inaudible 00:53:54]. Okay. Right. This is going back in the freezer because you're only allowed one. How come you have two? All right. Listen, listen. If you start crying again, it's fine, it'll be bedtime. Okay? So pull yourself together.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (54:20) Okay.   Tahnee: (54:29) We can make this very short.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (54:32) Negotiation. Yeah. It's always negotiation.   Tahnee: (54:38) Little ones.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (54:40) I'll just mute it because...   Tahnee: (54:43) Yeah, no stress.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (54:45) I'm just going... Yeah.   Tahnee: (54:46) Negotiate. Good luck.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (56:15) Yeah. Harry's my oldest. He's 11. And he's worked it out. He's basically worked out that, so long as he does what I ask him to do, which I like to think I'm fairly reasonable, he can do what he likes outside of that. Whereas Cora's a bit more likes her drama a little bit more.   Tahnee: (56:33) How old is your daughter?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (56:35) That was me saying basically you can have your drama, but then it's game over.   Tahnee: (56:40) Yeah. How old is your daughter?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (56:43) She's seven.   Tahnee: (56:44) Seven. Okay. Yeah. I have a five year old, so I'm gearing up for siblings.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (56:52) Five year old girl or boy?   Tahnee: (56:53) I have a girl. Yeah. She's got a tendency for theatrics sometimes as well. I think it's just kids. Yeah, I won't keep you too much longer because I know it's the witching hour with little kids. But yeah. If you're happy to jump back into the electricity conversation.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (57:14) Yeah, sure.   Tahnee: (57:14) And then we can start to wrap it up. Yeah.   Tahnee: (57:17) So yeah, I guess we got very pleasantly distracted, but I want to bring it back to the electricity conversation, because I think I've always... I guess, especially since discovering fascia and the research around [inaudible 00:57:32] electricity and all this stuff, I was like, "Okay, so this makes a lot of sense to me." I've always felt a bit like a glow stick. If I move it's like I light up. I don't know if that makes sense. But like cracking all of my bits makes me feel really alive. And so that made a lot of sense to me. And you speak about that in The Spark, around these electric currents. So if there's any elaboration you can give on that, or how you see that.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (57:56) Yeah. This all links into the triple burner and fascia, and this concept of... So, collagen is something like 30% of our body protein.   Tahnee: (58:07) Mm. Really high.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (58:10) And then the water within our body is 60% of our body, of which... No, I think it's higher than 60%. I haven't checked this recently, but something like 40%.   Tahnee: (58:19) [inaudible 00:58:19].   Dr. Daniel Keown: (58:19) Yeah. And something like 40% of your body water is extracellular. Yeah? So in other words, 30% of your body protein is collagen, which is extracellular, and 40% of your body water is extracellular. And Western medicine just pretends that those two things don't exist. There's no organ for either of them. There's no concept of when you replace fluids in the body, it's really blood that you're trying to replace when you give intravascular. So effectively, Chinese medicine goes, "No, no, no, no, they're two organs." They're triple burner, and what we call lymph is effectively gallbladder. And gallbladder is an interesting one. The gallbladder definitely does control lymph. It keeps it clean, because the most important thing in lymph is your fat content. It's fat that basically will bind up lymph and stop it moving correctly.   Tahnee: (59:25) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Dr. Daniel Keown: (59:27) And the gallbladder is critical in making sure your fat's emulsified, which is why-   Tahnee: (59:33) That makes so much sense when you think about where the fat deposits and then the lymph, and just the aesthetic of that. Yeah. Makes so much sense. And then that being associated with [inaudible 00:59:44] Yang.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (59:48) Yeah. You can really [crosstalk 00:59:50]. When you're feeling like all stiff and groggy and phlegmy, you can imagine that fluid within you is actually also just full of gunk.   Tahnee: (01:00:01) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:00:02) I mean, it is. When people come to me and say, "I feel like I've got brain fog." I'm like, "Well, you have. You've got gunk in your brain. You're not imagining it. It's not like you've woken up in the morning going, 'Mm. I think I'm going to imagine I've got gunk in my brain.' Brain fog. Yeah."   Tahnee: (01:00:27) That was one of the most mind blowing things for me. I remember about 10 years ago, they were like, "The brain has lymph." And I'm like, "Are we really just accepting that?" I think before that they always were like, "No, no." It's like, "Of course it does."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:00:41) Yeah. I know.   Tahnee: (01:00:43) Yeah. But was only I think 10 years ago, they discovered the [inaudible 01:00:45], I guess, that did that, or whatever it was.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:00:48) Yeah. So the triple burner. So all of this collagen that makes the fascia, that makes the connective tissue, and actually even gets down into the bones themselves and makes the bones themselves that everyone thinks of them as hard minerals, but really they are collagen. And I actually did this myself because I didn't believe it. But if you take a chicken bone and pour it into a bowl of vinegar, it will dissolve all of the mineral, and you'll be left with this collagenous bone that is unbelievably strong. You will not break this thing. You can flex it because it's just made out of collagen. The crystals of hydroxyapatite are there to keep the bone stiff, so that you can resist gravity effectively. Because fish don't need this, because they don't need to resist gravity, but we do.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:01:45) But that's the only reason there, but the collagen is still there and it's unbelievably strong. You will not break this. And this creates a three-dimensional web within your body, that's an organ. There's no doubt about it in my mind. That is definitely an organ. In fact, it's probably as important as all of the other organs in your body. And this is the triple burner.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:02:13) And one of the interesting things about the triple burner is the burner part of it. Why is it called a burner? And the reason is... There's a few reasons, but one of the main reasons is this thing creates electricity as you move. It creates energy as you move. In the same way that when you click a cigarette lighter, it makes a little spark of electricity. This is also doing that through piezoelectricity. And this is why, if you sit at a desk, especially in a slightly cold room for a few hours, you get up and you suddenly feel really cold, and it's a deep cold that goes to your bones, because this network does go to your bones, and why you have to... If you get moving for a bit, you start warming up. And then everyone thinks, "Oh, it's because you get the blood pumping, and you've metabolically increased your rate." But actually it's really because you're moving your triple burner. You're moving your-   Tahnee: (01:03:09) [inaudible 01:03:09] system, effectively.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:03:10) Yeah. And that's creating electricity, and that's really what's warming you up. I mean, the other two things are probably important, your blood pumping and also metabolically warming you up. But I think they're less important than actually the fact that you are making your triple burner, your fascial network, wake up, warm up.   Tahnee: (01:03:29) Because some definitions of fascia include the blood vessels, because of that sort of structure, I suppose they have. Do you include that in your definition?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:03:38) No. Because I'm now completely six divisions.   Tahnee: (01:03:42) Yeah. Okay. And yeah, that Chinese model. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:03:48) Blood vessels are interesting, because they actually sit within two divisions. And this is backed up by embryology. So your arterial system is part of Shao Yin, and that's linked into kidney and heart, whereas your venous system is actually Xue Yin. And they do emerge embryologically from two different areas. I mean, they're in a similar starting position because they're both mesoderm, but then they branch off.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:04:17) And interestingly, the venous system shares more embryologically with the lymphatic system, than with the arterial system. Which fits perfectly because the venous system sits within Xue Yin, which is paired with Shao Yang, and Shao Yang is lymphatic system, which takes us back to the triple burner. And the lymphatic system and the triple burner, are basically the yin and yang of that aspect because the triple burner provides the structure for the lymphatic system to flow through.   Tahnee: (01:04:49) Mm-hmm (affirmative). So you are not just, because I've heard some people define the triple burner as those three pleural cavities, like the fascial sort of-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:05:00) Yeah. Yeah. That's part of it. Yeah. That's part of it.   Tahnee: (01:05:03) But yeah. You are taking a broader, whole body definition, I suppose, where it's really every fascial connection through the body.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:05:15) It's exactly like you were saying before with the liver. And about how the liver is the densest concentration of energy, the Westminster of the political system in the United Kingdom. And the triple burner, the most powerful manifestation of this ability for fascia to divide up the body, manifests in these three burners, which are basically the pleura pericardium, or the chest, the peritoneum, or the abdomen, and the retroperitoneum, or the pelvis. The pelvis, abdomen, chest are the triple burners. But really the triple burner is this ability for fascia to divide up the body.   Tahnee: (01:06:01) Mm-hmm (affirmative). So all of these compartments and sacks that we find within the body. Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. And I think for people, because I guess a lot of acupuncturists throw away the triple burner, the [inaudible 01:06:17]. I think if you think about what Mao Zedong and that sort of legacy of Chinese medicine, we end up with the triple burner being almost clinically irrelevant. But just what you are explaining sounds incredibly important.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:06:32) Oh, gosh, yeah. I love the triple burner. Always preaching people on the triple burner. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:06:42) Yeah. So I think that's a really interesting distinction for practitioners, is actually starting to use and understand that system, I suppose. Because I'm immediately thinking about all of the lymph issues and stagnation. And what happens to fluid when it stagnates, it starts to get a bit festy. You think about a pond sitting there for a few days, that's always something that inspires me to move is to keep that cellular fluid moving in my body. But often, movement isn't enough if we [inaudible 01:07:15] pathology. So it makes a lot of sense to start to use your practice, to actually get that stuff flowing for people.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:07:23) Yeah. That's it. I mean, people are generally sitting around not doing much and that's exactly what the triple burner doesn't want. It wants us to move the whole time.   Tahnee: (01:07:37) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:07:38) It's there to allow movement.   Tahnee: (01:07:40) Yep. And if you are talking about electricity then, I guess just from more of a management perspective, movement's a really obvious one, but are there other things you've seen, like hydration's obviously really important as well? The things that you see clinically, that really assist with that flow of energy in the body?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:08:07) Mm. So, in terms of staying healthy, then I think it's like your grandmother was just 100% correct, basically. I mean, everything your grandmother-   Tahnee: (01:08:30) It always goes back to your grandmas, yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:08:31) Yeah, exactly. Like good food. Buy good food, it's kind of impossible to find good food in supermarkets, in my opinion.   Tahnee: (01:08:41) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:08:42) You can get close, but you're not going to get food that... I grow as much of my own food as I can. Yeah?   Tahnee: (01:08:54) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:08:54) We've got apples at the moment. These are apples from the allotment. And I went down there the other day with the kids, and was just like, "Right. We're going to pick all the apples we can. We're going to store them. Because we will not find apples this good in the supermarket."   Tahnee: (01:09:10) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:09:11) There's nothing special about these apples. They're just on the tree on our allotment, that's yummy apples, but you won't find them. We won't find them in the supermarket this good. And what that means is, if they taste that good, then that's super nutrition. And it's the same with the carrots. Even the potatoes, I couldn't believe this. First time we started growing potatoes on the allotment and I was like, "Oh my God."   Tahnee: (01:09:36) Yeah. They have a flavour.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:09:39) Yeah, Exactly.   Tahnee: (01:09:40) They're not just like white nothing.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:09:44) Yeah. Yeah. And it's like, wow. So if you're getting in that quality of nutrition, then that's the first thing. So I mean, I would encourage everyone to grow their own food as much as they can, if nothing else, just because it raises the standard of what they expect to get from food. Start with herbs. Herbs are the most efficient way to grow food, because they're concentrated nutrition.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:10:05) And then move more. You've just got to move more generally. I mean, people don't move enough. So, I just walked to the clinic today. It's a half an hour walk. It's a lovely walk. Walk home again. I could drive there, but I'd always rather walk.   Tahnee: (01:10:23) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:10:27) Yeah. So those are just the absolute basics of good health really, I think. Those two things. And having good relations with people.   Tahnee: (01:10:38) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:10:38) And then, in terms of the clinic, whenever people come see me, what I'm looking at is... It's like electrical engineering for bodies. That's how I see it. I just look at them and go, "Right. Okay. Which division is the Qi misoperating in? And then, what's going on? Is it stuck? Is it going the wrong way?" And it's that simple. I just see it as electrical engineering.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:11:13) I'll tell you why I see it like that, because I have to keep it simple. Because if you allow yourself to start to get overwhelmed by the complexity, then you just lose track. So with my students, I just say, "Just choose a division, and then just decide what's going on with the Qi in that division, and then try and correct it."   Tahnee: (01:11:37) Mm. And be methodical and... Yeah. I guess what you're saying, that airy fairy tendency, which I think there's a lot of in the Eastern medicine world.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:11:49) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:11:50) I'm probably responsible for some of it.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:11:53) I get it. I totally get why the airy fairness crept in. Actually, if you look back, it seems like, "Oh my God. Those guys who wrote all those classics must just be like, 'Oh, could we have made it any more simple?' They must be thinking." "We literally said, it's like water. Over and over again, Qi's like water. And now everyone's like, 'Oh, what's it like?' It's like water. What does water do? It goes from high pressure to low pressure, it flows in the current in channels, and it generates energy as it moves."   Tahnee: (01:12:29) Moves. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:12:30) And it can get stuck and it can go backwards. And it can-   Tahnee: (01:12:33) I'm even thinking about the Nanjing water wheel visual right now, that my Taoist teacher uses, but it's literally a water wheel in the lower dantian that creates energy.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:12:42) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:12:43) And I'm thinking, "Duh. It's literally mapped out there."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:12:47) But the only thing I would say, is it's not actually water, it's electricity.   Tahnee: (01:12:47) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:12:47) But electricity-   Tahnee: (01:12:48) But water's the conduit for the electricity, it's the conductor.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:12:58) Yes. True. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:13:00) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:13:01) And also, the thing about electricity is it behaves exactly like water.   Tahnee: (01:13:05) But yeah. I mean, I guess from my perspective, thinking about the takeaways, I guess, from this conversation, it's really... I mean, I'm always left in awe of the magnificence of the body. And like you said, it's so simple, but it's so complex. And I think in terms of thinking about healing, we really want to focus on the simple, and what we can do.   Tahnee: (01:13:35) You were talking about lifestyle around just eating food that has Qi in it. That have been sitting in a storage facility for a year.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:13:45) Yeah. Staying away from Western pharmaceuticals as much as you can.   Tahnee: (01:13:50) Yeah. Well, my acupuncturist always said, he sees such damage to the organs from Western pharmaceuticals. And I'm sure you see that too in people's Qi.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:14:02) Yeah. I mean, the problem is, once you start on a drug, it's suppressive most of these drugs, so it suppresses normal metabolism. And normally, depending on how long it's been going on for, it can be fairly easy to fix a lot of health problems. But as soon as you start on these so-called medicines, these Western drugs, they just push the symptom down, they make the symptom disappear, but the underlying pathology is still there.   Tahnee: (01:14:38) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:14:39) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:14:40) Do they, in a way, if you're thinking about those six levels, do they change the way in which a pathology might operate as well?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:14:49) Mm. Yeah. So, the other day someone came in to me with... Did they have hypertension? They were definitely on a beta blocker. Oh yeah, no, this was a phone conversation, actually. Yeah. And he had hypertension, and they were put on a beta blocker for hypertension, and he was a keen cyclist. And then he was told, "Oh, by the way, when you're on the beta blocker, you're probably going to find that you're not going to be able to cycle as hard." And that's exactly what he found.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:15:22) And basically what that's doing, is the beta blocker is, the kidneys are telling the heart within a Shao Yin system, we're not getting enough blood. Now, it could be because there genuinely isn't enough blood there, or it could be because the kidneys are a bit diseased and are miss-recording how much blood they're receiving. One of those two things. It's difficult to know without seeing him.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:15:47) So the kidneys then tell the heart to increase the pressure, because that's just simple fluid dynamics. If you've not got enough circulation, just increase the pressure. And that becomes hypertension, because there isn't actually a problem in pressure, there's a problem in either blood quantity or the kidneys themselves are deceased.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:16:12) And then as a result of that, because he is on the beta blockers, they stop that connection between the kidney telling the heart to increase the pressure. And as a result of that, when he goes on a bike ride and his muscles start needing more blood, and effectively want to tell the heart, through adrenaline, "Oh, let's have some more blood." The heart doesn't respond. And so the muscles get tired and exhausted. And so, the underlying problem hasn't been fixed. The underlying problem was either he hasn't got enough blood, which is actually much more-   Tahnee: (01:16:54) Are you talking blood deficiency? Would that be...   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:16:58) Yeah. Yeah. It's really interesting, blood deficiency, because when I worked in emergency, there were loads of people who came in with symptoms that were very consistent with what the Chinese call blood deficiency. So things like muscle cramps, and... What are the other symptoms? I forget.   Tahnee: (01:17:19) Anaemia style things.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:17:20) Well, this is where it gets interesting. So muscle cramps, blurred vision, and there's another one as well, like postural hypertension, where you stand up you feel lightheaded. They're all blood deficiency. And people will come into A&E with these symptoms, I'd be like, "Oh wow, it's blood deficiency." and then you'd get the haemoglobin back and it'd be normal. And this was really disconcerting for me, because I was like, "Well maybe the Chinese have got this wrong because these people's haemoglobin is completely normal, and yet the Chinese medicine says they've all got blood deficiency."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:17:54) It turns out that you can have huge variations in the volume of blood you have, whilst having a completely normal haemoglobin, a completely normal concentration of haemoglobin in your blood. So in other words, you can take a 60 kilogramme man and the average blood volume, I think it's 7%. So what's that? It's about five litres of blood. So there are five litres of blood in the normal 60 kilogramme man. However, if you do a haemoglobin in a normal blood test, you will not get any idea about the volume of blood, you just get an idea of the concentration of haemoglobin within the blood. To understand how much blood the person actually has, you've got to do a special test involving a radioactive dye effectively, that you inject into the person and then you measure how much it has been diluted down.   Tahnee: (01:18:52) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:18:53) It's very difficult and involves radioactive dye, so you don't do it routinely at all. But they've done this in studies. And when they've done this in studies, in perfectly healthy people, what they've found... Or apparently perfectly healthy people, according to Western medicine, that don't consider things like blurred vision and muscle cramps necessarily a sign of blood deficiency.   Tahnee: (01:19:14) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:19:14) What they found is that there was a massive variation in the volume of blood between people. And in fact, so much so that they define normal as plus or minus 25% at a certain range. So, say you've got five litres, so they'll say normal is 6.25 litres all the way down to four litres.   Tahnee: (01:19:38) That's a vast difference.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:19:40) Yeah. Yeah, vast. Exactly. Yeah. And realistically, no one has blood excess.   Tahnee: (01:19:47) Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:19:48) So really, 6.25 is probably full up and everything below that is deficient. And in fact, actually by the time you get to 25% below what they consider normal, you're talking about a blood volume that's almost half of what someone else could have.   Tahnee: (01:20:06) Mm. That's significant. Mm.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:20:09) Yeah. You have all these people out there who are basically told, "Oh, you're not anaemic." And they have very low total blood volumes. And you'll never be able to find out what their blood volumes are, unless you send them into some kind of special lab where they do this test with radioactive dye, or unless you start listening to what the Chinese describe as blood deficiency.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:20:35) So basically, a lot of these people with blood deficiency will then develop hypertension as a result, because they've got low volume, so the body compensates for the low volume by increasing the pressure. Yeah? The kidneys have picked up on this, increased the pressure, you then get hypertension.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:20:53) And when they do all the tests in Western medicine, because they don't routinely measure blood volume, they all come back normal. And so the doctor turns around and goes, "You've got hypertension. We don't know what the cause is. We call that primary hypertension. Primarily we don't know what's going on." That's the primary bit.   Tahnee: (01:21:11) Primary bit. Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:21:15) And then as a result of that, they put them on these medicines. Now, not everyone who has so-called primary hypertension has low blood volume, there can also be genuine kidney disease as well, that's miss-recorded pressures and stuff. But they put them on these medications to basically trick the body into thinking there's no problem. But the problem is still there. They've still got low blood. And so that's where in Chinese medicine, you try and fix the blood, try and help them make more blood.   Tahnee: (01:21:50) I'm interested in this from the perspective of pregnancy, because the blood volume increases quite dramatically. Off the top of my head, it's something like eight litres of blood that we have-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:03) Yeah. Yeah. I think it's about 40% or something. Yeah. You get a huge amount of blood increase. Yeah. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:22:10) So, if someone has a preexisting blood deficiency and then gets pregnant, are they still... I mean, is that where we see these sort of postpartum Jing problems come up?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:22) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:22:23) Down the track.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:24) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:22:25) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:26) I mean, what you do in pregnancy is, you pull out on your reserves of Jing to get through it. So it's very draining on Jing in essence. But if you look after yourself, then you can cope with that.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:41) That's why historically, pregnant women, everyone opened the door for them. They always got the seat on the bus, and you were expected to just sit around, and do as little as possible.   Tahnee: (01:22:52) Be pregnant.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:22:52) Yeah. Be pregnant. Yeah. Because it wasn't like, "Oh, you've..." Otherwise you'll drain your essence, that's the problem. Yeah, fine. You can cope with it. I mean, a pregnant women can do amazing things, but that's not the point. The point is that you need to be saving your energy because you are in a vulnerable position.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:23:19) It's like the difference between a patient and a client. I hate this people calling patients clients, because their clients aren't in vulnerable positions. When you go and buy a car, you're not in a vulnerable position or are likely to be in a position where you have to get that car at that moment. Whereas a patient is by nature vulnerable. And it's the same in pregnancy, you've got to take it easy. And that's the most critical thing with health, I think, is preserving your essence, your Jing, because once you've depleted that you can't get it back again very easily, unless you're some kind of Qigong master.   Tahnee: (01:23:59) Yeah. I was going to say. I think they're the only people I know that are special. Because that's something I think... It's probably a good place to start wrapping up, but around lifestyle. I think so much of our culture, it's really... And I'm a pregnant woman, and I've watched friends who have just gone really hard through pregnancy and had quite challenging postpartum periods, or challenging births and stuff. And it's been a big learning for me. And my husband and I are constantly reflecting on this. It's like we come out of this culture that is really driven and pushes, and you're meant to have achieved so much. And it's like, yeah, but rest and sleep and good food and good air. These are such fundamental, core, non-negotiable things that we have to have. And I think we've moved really far from just prioritising those things. And yeah, I guess there's a lot of ego and a lot of human nature involved. So yeah. Social pressures.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:25:06) Yeah. There's a lot of people... Oh, by the way, I'm down to 3%. I'll tell you when I'm down to 2% and then we should wrap it up. I accidentally got involved in this cycle helmet group in New Zealand to try and get rid of cycle helmet laws. That's another story. But this is a good example. People make loads of money out selling bike helmets, nobody makes any money out of not selling bike helmets. So, unless people are really savvy and switched on, which argument's going to win? And that's the issue. And it's the same with, people make money out selling Paracetamol in fevers.   Tahnee: (01:25:51) They make 36 billion out of jabby jabs.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:25:53) Yeah, exactly. Exactly.   Tahnee: (01:25:53) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:25:57) Yeah. Stay away from that poison. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:25:59) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:00) And that's probably...   Tahnee: (01:26:01) That's a good place to stop. Before we start going to... My husband just recorded a really hectic podcast with a Chinese doctor who was like, "No, this is all very bad."   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:10) Yeah. I've said for 18 months, it's poison. It's poison.   Tahnee: (01:26:10) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:13) There was a study out in circulation the other day, said basically, it over doubles your five year risk of a coronary event. Unbelievable. Wow.   Tahnee: (01:26:29) That's insane.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:30) I mean, I didn't want to go onto this, but unbelievable. Any other drug, literally any other drug in the world, it would be pulled immediately. Immediately.   Tahnee: (01:26:41) Oh yeah. It wouldn't have even made it through trials. They've suppressed all the trial data.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:45) Yeah. You've got it.   Tahnee: (01:26:45) Yeah.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:45) You've got it.   Tahnee: (01:26:47) It's a cluster fuck, is what it is.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:26:48) It's a game at play. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:26:51) Yeah. And I think, I guess that's what I find reassuring, knowing there are people like yourself out there, who are not just practising , but also wanting to... My point is, you've got these online programmes and people who are interested can study with you. So on your website, if they sign up, they can stay in touch with you. You'll let us know when all of that's ready?   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:27:12) Oh, please do. Please visit my website at Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:27:17) Yeah. Great. So, we'll link to that as well. Yeah. And you've got great blogs. Obviously you can purchase Dan's books there as well. So please, if you're listening and any of this has been of interest, go have a look. Because yeah, your work's really amazing and I'm really grateful you're out there in the world. So, thank you for being here today. And yeah, I really appreciate you working around your little-   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:27:38) Good luck with the baby.   Tahnee: (01:27:40) Thank you. Yeah, so far so good.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:27:41) You look great.   Tahnee: (01:27:43) Take care. Many thanks.   Dr. Daniel Keown: (01:27:44) Thanks, Tahnee. Bye.   Tahnee: (01:27:46) Bye.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
We're keeping the sexual embers alive and burning on the podcast today. Australia's leading sexologist (and SuperFeast's favourite), Juliet Allen, talks to Mason about post-birth sexual desire, how to funnel sexual energy into all areas of your life and filling your cup first so it can overflow with more energy for yourself and others. Almost eight months after the birth of her son, this conversation reveals another blooming layer of Juliet that we've never seen before. She talks very openly about her lib*do, while fully immersed in the role of motherhood, her evolution as a sexologist with such longevity in the industry, and why advocating more time for self is so connected to our sexual vigour. Mason discusses the best herbs and practices for supporting our Jing/Kidney essence and how to maintain long-term sexual vitality well into our old age. Make sure you tune in, you don't want to miss this episode.   "I feel all those things contribute to sexual desire, and that's not just coming from me, but for the hundreds of people with whom I've worked. A lot of the work I do with people when I'm coaching is evaluating their life and going, "Okay, what's working? What's not? How can you get more time to yourself?" or whatever it is. As soon as they get their ducks in a row, become more organised, and start advocating for themselves and what's important again, the lib*do is like BOOM. 'Oh, surprise, surprise. You want to have sex again', every time".   - Juliet Allen     Mason and Juliet Discuss: Sexuality in isolation. Lack of lib*do shaming. Birth and sexual energy. Excessive leaky sexuality. Jing essence within the Kidneys. Self pleasure without ejaculation. Leaking Jing and long-term sexual vitality. The Yin/Yang expression of sexual essence. SuperFeast tonics for sexual essence / lib*do. Why advocating for time to self is so important. Tantra; Choosing with awareness what brings joy. Juliet's postpartum journey with her sexual desire.      Who is Juliet Allen?  Juliet Allen is a Sexologist, Tantra practitioner, host of the Authentic Sex podcast, and head teacher at the Pleasure School. Juliet comes from a background in psychology and sexology, is a qualified Yoga Teacher, and is trained as a Kundalini Tantra practitioner. Juliet is a committed mother, passionate entrepreneur, and lover of all-things sex and sensuality. Known for authentically sharing her own experiences as a sexually empowered woman, Juliet is committed to freeing people from mundane and disempowered sexual relationships and opens up the conversation of how to have great sex every day. Now Australia’s leading Sexologist, she resides in the hinterland of Northern New South Wales, Australia. Juliet spends her days with her family, making love and swimming in the ocean.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Juliet Allen podcast Juliet Allen Instagram Yinn Body Instagram Superfeast Deer Antler Superfeast Cordyceps     Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or  check us out on Stitcher :)! Plus  we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Mason: (00:00) Hello, Australia's leading sexologist and SuperFeast's favourite sexologist, friend of the show.   Juliet Allen: (00:07) Hi, Mase. Thanks for having me back.   Mason: (00:10) Yeah. I think this is round three, I think, for the SuperFeast Podcast. I think-   Juliet Allen: (00:18) I think so.   Mason: (00:19) Remember the first one you came to that we sat in that spare room of that house I had I think up in Coorabell? That was the first one for the SuperFeast Podcast.   Juliet Allen: (00:30) Yeah, I remember that. That was fun. Yeah. I think it's around three. I was trying to think about that this morning, as to how many we've done now together. It's always fun though, so I'm glad to be back.   Mason: (00:37) Yeah, and I'll never forget the one over on my old podcast, the Mason Taylor Show, masturbation in utero.   Juliet Allen: (00:45) Oh. What a great title.   Mason: (00:46) Yeah. I think that still just randomly trends every now and then. It just enters into the charts of top downloads. I'm like, "Oh yeah, there it goes again."   Juliet Allen: (00:56) Yeah. You can't go past that one.   Mason: (00:59) Thanks for coming on. I know you're postpartum right now and I know you're in that baby bubble, and I just really appreciate you coming on. We're having a libido month as you know at SuperFeast, which can mean any number of things when you're coming at it from the way we talk about sex and libido and daoism. I just really value your take always on how to more... I mean, someone said to me yesterday, they don't like me using the word sustainable, and I think because it's been politicised and turned into green washy, shitty businesses going, "We're super sustainable." Just like, "Dude, you're a fucking beer company. Shut up."   Juliet Allen: (01:39) Oh, I said that to Nick the other day. I got some promo from a clothing company saying, "We're sustainable." I was like, "What? Does that make me just want to buy your clothes, now that you've just put a sentence on the end of an email saying you're sustainable?" Like, it just, I don't believe a word of it. I don't believe a word.   Mason: (01:59) No, I mean let's, we could go on about that. Businesses should just be in reality, do the best they can and stop patting themselves on the back so much. But in terms of sustainability, talking to you about libido and sexuality, you've been doing this for so long, and you have this amazing ability to go into, have those fun taboo conversations that burst through these layers of mental programming. They're like, "You're not allowed to talk about libido that way or anal that way," or whatever it is.   Mason: (02:30) Then at the same time, this is what I talk about a lot in the podcast when I talk to practitioners, I like practitioners that can treat symptom and disease, but know that they need to provide the bridge over to never coming back to the practitioner ideally as well. Which you have that ability to bring people into this beautiful world of sexual essence, everything, sex, love, and then know that we are bridging over to that essence and that reawakening and renaissance of people connecting their sexuality, connecting and integrating to their life so that they have a real, sustainable, in harmony life where that's integrated. That's why I like talking to you and why I wanted to jam about libido with you. So yeah, what's on your mind and in other places and things?   Juliet Allen: (03:20) What, with libido or life?   Mason: (03:22) Yeah, I mean libido mostly.   Juliet Allen: (03:24) Well, I was saying to you off air, let's call it, that my libido is actually, since giving birth has been... Well, no, I lie. I gave birth and then straight away my libido was bam, back on. Literally within a couple of days. I was, like, "Whoa, this is amazing." I thought I was like a unicorn, because I'd heard so many stories. Obviously this was my second baby, so I'd been through it before. But I'd heard so many stories from clients who had said, "My libido hit rock bottom, and it was really challenging." I'd never really experienced that.   Juliet Allen: (04:05) So then my libido came back online straight away and I thought, "Yep, it doesn't happen to me." Fast forward about two months postpartum and I just, my libido disappeared. I got to two months postpartum, and my libido just disappeared. I'm now seven months, seven and a half months postpartum and I still don't have much of a libido, which is really new for me. As you know, my libido is always pretty high, and I have quite a... It's quite consistently high.   Juliet Allen: (04:41) It's cool though. I really love it, because it's giving me an opportunity to feel what it's like to have a really long period without really feeling like sex, except for when I'm ovulating. I'm all for it when I'm ovulating. That happens to a lot of women. Yeah. That's where I'm at with it. But I'm also really cool with it. Because I'm like, "Yeah, this is a season in my life where I'm parenting my new son, and I'm being super present with him and we both are, and that's a priority for us." We co-sleep and I'm breastfeeding on demand and all the things that feel good for us.    Juliet Allen: (05:25) Occasionally I say to my partner, Nick, "Baby, are you okay?" Because I'm not used to being the partner who's not up for it so this is new for me. I'm like, "Are you okay?" He's like, "Babe, I'm fine. This is our season to just be with Soul and it's going to change and it's okay." We still have sex every now and then. So I wanted to be honest about that because here I am talking about libido and mine's quite low at the moment, but I also think that that's really normal and that there'd be so many people listening who'd be like, "Oh my God, thank God. It's normal."   Mason: (06:05) Yeah, I was hoping to have a few thank God moments. I love talking about the spiciest of topics. Then we were just talking about the Byron Bay tantra scene and just thinking about little hot pockets. I'm thinking about the Ashram communities over in Costa Rica, everywhere, just how they're sacred little places where everyone can be excessively sexual and create these abnormal expectations on libido. All of a sudden all the personal practises, whether it's Daoist practise or tantric practise, starts revolving around sexual essence and libido.   Mason: (06:41) So it's good to go through those little initiation bubbles, but when that expectation becomes the norm, it's really, I find it disturbing to think that people have to go into that level of isolated dedication to sexuality and libido. Always being at this, probably if you think about over a 50 year period, it's very unreasonable to expect yourself to be at that peak that our mind tells us is actually healthy. Then at the same time, you've got to juggle processing your, let's isolate anger and let's process our anger. Then let's isolate our mental acuity. Then let's isolate the gaining of skills and then isolate being a good husband or wife or partner. It's all these isolated things, it's like they're good for a moment or a period to isolate and study, but then it has to become integrated so you're not thinking about these things and it becomes a wholeness.   Mason: (07:44) I'm interested there. For you, if libido not being present, but then what is there? Because libido is like a dangle, as we were talking about earlier. It's a dangle to talk about this, but your libido's not gone. Your libido's connected to other parts of your body. I'm sure you're getting lots of insights as to as Nick said, going into maybe a winter season around the yang expression, which is maybe that's what we call libido, the yang expression of sexual essence. What are you learning about the different sides of the libido conversation?   Juliet Allen: (08:18) Yeah, that's a really good topic. I love talking about this. What I'm noticing is, and what I see libido as is also an expression of our creative energy and that they're quite similar, that our sexual energy and creative energy is one really to me. It's interesting because I'm not feeling to connect sexually much. I think that's due to many reasons. I guess we could talk about how different things impact our libido. For me at the moment, I know it's lack of sleep at night because Soul's up a fair bit. I'm not, if I were to be honest, food prepping as much as usual so my nutrition's probably gone down. We still eat amazingly, but not as good as we would like to. I think that's impacting, and then lack of solitude is impacting my libido. I'm making sure I schedule it in, but it's so little compared to what I had before so that definitely impacts me.    Juliet Allen: (09:30) Then I think I get to the end of the day, or I wake up in the morning and I've been breastfeeding a lot. When you've got a baby on your hip all the time, you're always in contact with something. So the last thing I feel like is then going back into contact and intimacy with my partner. So they're, just backtracking, some of the things I think have been impacting me with libido. But what I'm noticing is because I'm not dropping into that energy with myself or with Nick, I've got so many creative ideas. It's like a bubbling pot in my head and it's actually, I'm trying to get more organised in my week so that I can actually schedule in the morning, which is called my creative morning or whatever we are going to call it, where I can just get all the ideas out of my head onto paper and then look at it and go, "Okay, how could I manifest these? How can I create them? How can I get my team involved?" But I think that what I'm noticing, is that now that I'm not engaging in sex as often, the energy's being redirected into new creations.   Mason: (10:48) What is that showing you? There's so many things going on in my head. The one hearing you, I just can see the value of understanding that there's certain things you're not able to do when you're in this bubble of nurturing your little one, that it's okay. Maybe it's just not the time, but you're doing enough and being aware of just because it's winter, keep the embers, let's just do enough to keep the embers going, knowing that it's going to come back. Because I think it's probably a good thing to be aware of, for people not to get it down on themselves when it goes right down, but really try not let those embers go out. I think a lot of people do have that year or two or three years sometimes after birth where the libido flame goes. Right?   Juliet Allen: (11:35) Yeah. They do. Yeah. It's a good one, the embers thing, because yeah, I think it's important not to let it go out completely. I don't feel like for myself that that's happened at all, and it's definitely picked up in the last month since Soul's gone on solids actually, because he's having a tiny bit less feeds. It's like I'm having that bit more of space to myself. But yeah, you got to keep the embers just simmering away, whatever you say. I think that's what's great about using, and this wasn't intentionally a plug for SuperFeast, but every day I use the SuperFeast products, and I think they help me and they definitely help Nick. He swears by them for libido, help the embers just keep hot.   Mason: (12:27) Yeah. The tonics, even if we, and we'll use them as a reason to talk about this concept of keeping the embers alive. If we're not having the pressure to have to be, and it doesn't have to be postpartum. I know a lot of guys. I know I've gone through this phase where I've been come the closest I've ever come to a depression or a self-hatred and after having some what I considered monumental failures, and everyone's like, "Your failures are your biggest lessons," and I'm like, "Yeah, they are now." But at the time, my whole identity is crumbling and it's hard, so I definitely, I've had that phase.   Mason: (13:13) And of course when I talk about the tonics and lifestyle, it pales in comparison to having open communication with for me with my lover or even if you've got just a good friend, if you're alone or journaling with yourself to be like, "This is what's going on." Just that alone can keep those embers alive and not let it go out. But then talking about tonic herbalism, it's where they fit in a lot of the time. And people do associate taking say the deer antler or Cordyceps and being like, "I'm horny, I'm hard." But sometimes it is about taking them during convalescence periods, postpartum periods. It's just they're not going to let you, they're going to help you just not tip over the edge.   Mason: (14:02) Same as you saying, I think this is an important one because I feel like there's a lot of subconscious no libido shaming sometimes in our culture, especially in our circles, and you saying you've got Nick, you're talking to Nick, and he's like, "I've got awareness of this is a season of our life." You're trying to have moments where you do book in your solitude, which seems like it's obvious. It's like, that's hard when you've got a lot going on. That just keeps it alive without necessarily I think with the tonics even taking tonics, not expecting them to just turn the libido on, not seeing it as a failure that they don't immediately, it's not all bubbling over straight away. But it is a just keep hanging on, keep those embers alive and just clinging on that little bit. I think that's a really important distinction. Glad you we danced there.   Juliet Allen: (14:53) Yeah. It's a long term thing I think with the tonics too. It's not just like, "Oh, I'm going to take deer antler this morning in my cacao." I mean, Nick swears by deer antler though. He's just so protective of his jar of deer antler. If I haven't put it in, he's like, "Where's the deer antler? Why didn't you put it in?" However, I don't think-   Mason: (15:11) Nick's a winner, though. Nick's a winner. That's why.   Juliet Allen: (15:14) Yeah, yeah, yeah. He loves it. Yeah. But I think with the tonics, for me it's a long term thing. I know that if I have them, which I do daily, they're keeping me just simmering away, but also looking up to my health long term, which is what my vision is. I'm going to be in my sixties, seventies and still enjoying a really great sex life and not get to 60 and be like, "Yeah, now I have cobwebs and I'm never going to have sex again." That kind of mentality. I want to feel vitality and I want to feel libido and I want to enjoy a great sex life for a long life. I know people and mentors in my life who have that and that's my long term vision. So incorporating things like the tonic herbs is part of that long term vision for me.   Mason: (16:05) I think that's because when you think about that vision, we're going 50 years into the future, it's impossible to hold onto all of those. I want good bone structure. I want good mental health. I want good libido. I want to be able to be generous. I want to be able to receive. I want to be able to dominate. I want be able to also submit. It's too much to hold. I think this is again why I appreciate talking to you about sex so much is that we just such a deep dive into the subject and then such a relinquishing of the isolation of the subject and watching it bleed over into a real life that doesn't have idealism within it to be where it's boring and hard to... It's the most interesting thing, but in an Instagram world, it's the most boring thing to try and market this reality.   Mason: (16:57) But yet I know I like the SuperFeast podcast and having conversations with you. I feel like I've been a custodian from that road to Rome that you sit in, where people go, "Wow, at some point I really do forget about libido and I really do forget about sexuality in isolation. I become integrated and harmonious so that all of those things by happy accident are there when you're 60 or 80." I want to talk to you about that. Because the tonic herbalism is about having the capacity for say spontaneous joy. You have the capacity for libido to emerge, which is different to giving you libido. Here right now you've cultivated capacity for it to emerge.   Mason: (17:44) I don't know if you've got any insights there around that relating to your own sexuality and your own libido in order to make that, to be able to perceive how it's something that is bubbling under the surface and you're cultivating and it comes out at a natural time without possessing you. Yeah. That's I guess my question I'm roundabouting.   Juliet Allen: (18:08) Oh, a couple of things pop up for me around that. What did you say about joy with the tonic herbs?   Mason: (18:15) It's especially from the Ayurvedic as they talk about taking the tonics in order to cultivate a capacity for spontaneous joy.   Juliet Allen: (18:24) Ah, that's so good. Because tantra, which I teach and which you mentioned, and I've studied lots and experienced and travelled the world learning about. Tantra for me, the definition I was told by a mentor of mine is choosing with awareness what brings joy to our life. So tantra isn't just about like, "Let's have a orgy and all the kind of myths around tantra," although there is a lot of that going on, but choosing with awareness, what brings joy. So it just popped in my mind, the link there between the herbs and what you just said about joy and then tantra, which is for me choosing a lifestyle and a life that brings joy. But for me, when I feel joy, I also feel like the embers are alive and that I'm feeling turned on by life.   Juliet Allen: (19:22) That's the most important thing for me. The most important thing for me is not having sex every day and having multiple orgasms and all the stuff that's in Instagram at the moment, squirting and this and that. If you do this in the G-spot and all these things that are becoming more and more spoken about, which is awesome, because it's downing the stigma. But for me it's like how can I feel turned on in work? How can I feel turned on within my family and not in a, you know what I mean by that? How can I feel really, yeah, excited by life, because when I feel excited and when I feel joy, then I'm more likely to feel like I want to share that with others, including share it sexually, share that energy.   Mason: (20:16) I mean, look, I know you brought up getting turned on in life, turned on within family and then we got to be like... But I know what you mean, but I think about it quite often. It's how we want to deny in birth that that came from sex and love. So we're like, "No, not allowed to have any of that near," which I get, because it's a very, that's a very nuanced conversation that a lot of people new to the conversation would be like, "Oh, hey, you can't bring that energy near children." Which it's like, yeah, hear your nuanced conversation, but don't literally throw baby out with the bath water. I think it's a symptom of that isolation. Like, all right. Sex sits over here and that energy sits over there. Then that energy can't come anywhere in real life or around other people. You do that where only God can see you and then God's watching dirty little [inaudible 00:21:16], you know?   Juliet Allen: (21:18) Yeah, yeah, definitely. Oh, with the birth stuff I could get into that big time around, yeah. I don't know whether we go there, but how that energy brings the child in, and then we're not encouraged to enjoy that energy when it comes into the birth space in general, unless you have the midwife I had or the birth team of your dreams that does encourage that. But yeah, so much there.   Mason: (21:51) I mean, by all means jump into it, but I just wanted to bring up that it's like a real syndrome that people are trying to cut that part of themselves that they associate purely with sexuality and libido and that feeling and that energy from anywhere else in their life. But if you get out of the Western colonised way of thinking, you'll see it's not just pure sexuality. It is like a lustre for life.   Juliet Allen: (22:16) Yeah. That's what it is. When I say turned on by your family, it's not like I'm feeling all horny when I pick up my son. It's not that. That's what mainstream would be, "Oh, yeah, she's a fucking whatever you call it."   Mason: (22:30) Exactly. They would.   Juliet Allen: (22:31) It's like, no, I'm talking about I'm excited when I walk into the family home and Nick's in the kitchen with Soul on his hip and my daughter's in her bedroom at the moment because she's 15 and a half and loves hanging. But you know, when my daughter's in the house, it's like I'm feeling excited by that. I'm not feeling like, "Oh God, back to the family or okay, locking in for dinnertime." You know, I want to bring that energy into everyday life. Yeah.   Mason: (23:06) I mean, I would love because I think we're close to birth as well, so I'm always interested to talk about birth and the reality of the energy of birth. But just very quickly, and I think you've covered it a lot on your podcast and I think we've probably talked about it before, but just some basic maybe some kind words or some guiding words for people who maybe they love their life and they love their family, et cetera, but it's just that spark is perhaps not there. Perhaps they could do with a few real practical things that they can do or practises perhaps from the sexual realms of themselves that they could explore to see what's emotionally energetically or sexually in the way of them just getting that spark back when they walk into work, family home, when they're going to bed. Any just little guidance?   Juliet Allen: (23:56) Oh, there's so much to that.   Mason: (23:57) You have one sentence, one sentence to nail it.   Juliet Allen: (23:59) Stop it. Neither you or nor I are a one sentence person when it comes to these topics. Look, for me, it's like coming back to where, and this is so cliche saying this, but how can we fill up our own cup so that we walk into the family home feeling full within ourselves so that there's this bubbling brook just overflowing so that we can then share that with our family. That is so easy to say and quite challenging I would say for a lot of parents. You know what it can feel like to have a child and want to give them everything and then you can neglect yourself. I can neglect myself because I just want to give so much. So for in particular parents, it's like defining what's going to make you feel like you are overflowing so that you can give that to your family.   Juliet Allen: (25:04) Because when I feel overflowing, I feel like, "Okay, now I can give." Whereas when I'm coming from the dry well, it's resentment. Resentment begins to build and that's just a killer for relationships. It's a killer for your relationship with your kids, if you're resenting them. Catch yourself if you're feeling any sort of resentment and then communicate that and then get help, like therapy, coaching, mentors, whatever you need. Yeah. This feels like really basic stuff but it's stuff that really helps me.   Mason: (25:41) I mean, well I guess again, if we are talking about it over a 60 year period, you are going to come back to the basics I think constantly. It's just whatever releases the dam. I mean, I will go quickly because I know people don't want to hear from me. They want to hear from you, but-   Juliet Allen: (25:57) No, they probably do want to hear from you. I would.   Mason: (25:59) Maybe, maybe both. Me too, secretly.   Juliet Allen: (26:04) Yeah, yeah.   Mason: (26:11) I think you've just reminded me though of what is often a dam for myself and remembering different ways to fill up my cup. I guess one of the ways I forget that I can fill up my cup is, because sometimes I'm like, "God." I'm moving, I'm even doing some meditation. I'm really trying to make sure that I have time with Tahnee and my kids, and something just still feels like, Great. I go to therapy. What the hell is happening?"   Mason: (26:41) I think I've spoken to enough guys that I know for me, this isn't an all the time practise, but maybe a once a year period where I'm really good at not feeling, which is I think a stigma for men, but I feel like for everybody. But I think you see there's a renaissance of especially on Instagram of women going like, "I'm actually going to get in touch with my essence of my sexuality," and they put the videos up. It's all lovely and never would I suggest this for guys to do that, but the essence of that, where-   Juliet Allen: (27:16) I'd love to see you do a dance video. Could you please? They'd like it.   Mason: (27:19) I mean, I've got my character. I've got my character, the Conscious Cucumber, that I do.   Juliet Allen: (27:23) Oh my gosh. Yeah. I think you've written about that.   Mason: (27:27) I've got an influencer as well, Masella-Moon.   Juliet Allen: (27:29) Oh, I love the influencer. You could do a merge of the two and do a really amazing dance video where you're feeling into. Yeah. Anyway, sorry.   Mason: (27:39) Oh, I was just going to say sometimes for me the thing that I need to release the dam of me getting some colour, because I'm just really, I'm just so good at hiding from my feelings and pretending. I'm a good actor. Is just that 20 minutes of self-pleasure without the focus being on release and ejaculation. I remember when I first came across that practise, for me people listening to me would know I'm pretty comfortable talking about sex and talking about my sexuality. I've had open conversations with Tahnee about it on this podcast, with yourself.   Mason: (28:14) But actually again, it sometimes can be like, "Oh, I've gone into a little bit of an act of my outward identity. Can I sit there for 20 minutes touching myself and feeling myself?" It's like I'm getting the [inaudible 00:28:29] for myself. I'm just not a finished project, but that's when I do do that, I put it like, "Okay, I'm going to focus on that this week," and maybe two or three or four times, I am able to do that. It completely releases the emotional dam for me, because I just can't hide from feelings that I have towards myself when I'm in that space. I can when I'm stillness or standing meditation or qigong formations or yin yoga, but when I'm in a self-pleasure without a focus on ejaculation, it's like, yeah, I think it's pretty significant. So yeah. Bringing it back to basics.   Juliet Allen: (29:09) Yeah. Thanks for sharing because not everyone's going to share about stuff like that, so it's cool that you feel comfortable to share that. I think it's a really good one you've brought up, is how can we connect with ourselves like that without having the goal of orgasm at the end? It's just connecting in with our sexual essence and our sexual energy, and you're right. You can't hide when you're doing that. You can, I find I can in stillness or silence or meditating or whatever it is. But when I'm just laying there with myself and connecting with that energy, there's no hiding from myself. It's like, "Oh, I can't even bring myself to, what is it, touch myself right now. What the fuck is that?" Jesus, that's... So whatever comes up for you, I'm not saying that's me, but if that came up for me, I'd be like, "Whoa, okay. There's something there." So it's yeah. It's like a self-exploration without the pressure of the big bang at the end or the fucking multiple orgasm or whatever, without having to write about it on Instagram afterwards, without having to talk about it. It's just like, "How can I give this to myself?"   Mason: (30:27) I definitely, I think we've talked about this quite a bit and it's fun. I really have fun talking about the cringiness of the excessive sharing and the excessive leaky sexuality that I've definitely been there in this community. Again, it's a phase. It's an initiation phase. Then for me, hopefully, there's an integration where I don't need to feel like that person's touching themselves in front of me at all times and moments at me all the time. But again, it's a phase. Definitely no judgement . I think it's a precious time when someone is going through that and sharing a lot and being really vulnerable, even on Instagram and sharing all their insights and their meditations. But I think there needs to just be, I think we are alluding to a little bit of a maturation in the conversation to be like, "And perhaps then there will be a time where you may not need to go and share that and really play with that without it being good or bad. See what happens when you don't share as much."   Juliet Allen: (31:29) Yeah. It's an interesting time. It's really interesting because I've seen it change so much on social media from when I first started working as a sexologist to now, where I was one of the only people and now there's so many people out there talking about sexuality and their experiences, and I think that's really great. I don't think that's a bad thing, but I do, I think what it's done is polarise me into the opposite because I used to share more and I used to talk lots about my sexual experiences, and now seeing so much out there has polarised me into the opposite of like, You know what? Some things have got to stay sacred."   Juliet Allen: (32:14) I've always been that way, but even more so now I feel like the most potent amazing experiences are the ones that nobody knows about that I don't feel the need to jump on and talk about afterwards. There's magic in that. I think for me, when I share too much, it takes the magic out of those moments, especially for myself and Nick too. So yeah, I think eventually, there's no judgement on people who feel that that's their avenue to express, but also I think eventually there does come a bit of I like the word maturation. It's a different level of a different stage or phase or level of awareness.   Mason: (33:01) Yeah. I wouldn't describe, because I think your energy is very different to when we first spoke I think seven years ago.   Juliet Allen: (33:09) Fuck. Yeah. So different.   Mason: (33:10) But I also wouldn't, because I don't see you swinging, I don't see that being so much of a pendulum swing where you are in opposition because you're not. I can feel you're not in opposition. As you said, it's just a moving down the path.   Juliet Allen: (33:24) Yeah, and life changed too. Like, oh my God, seven years ago, what the hell was I doing then? Probably in the orgies, in the orgies just travelling around slutting about in a really wonderful way. Now I'm in this beautiful monogamous relationship with a new son and it's just like we go back to, the seasons of our life change. So for me, I need to honour that and I love that.   Mason: (33:58) I won't get too philosophical here, but it brings up a little connection to Jing. I know we talk, people can see, you can become ideologically, you can fall in, which is kind of good I think for a moment, where you fall into whether it's that that tantric world, the orgy world, whatever it is. Polygamy. You can see how it can either be a I've never really gone into the depths of that space. For me it was this different dietary kind of ideological things. But it served the same purpose where I'm like, "Oh, I've gone a little bit too far away from myself. Let's integrate those experiences."   Mason: (34:40) I just want to point out two things. Jing essence within the kidneys, in which libido is said to emerge from. Especially that yang Jing is where we feel the vaporisation of the water and bringing the fire to the water, so the water, the yin, the potential heats up and the waters can go and fertilise everything within the body. It's how I see libido and yin being the potential for libido. It completely drains with over ideology and also opposition.   Mason: (35:12) Because I think that was a key distinction I think there, what you've said. You're not in opposition to those people who are doing maybe similar to what you were doing, which is a real easy trap I feel like, especially when we've got careers as we do, and I felt it towards extreme health people, extreme raw food people, where I've been. If you form your identity through opposing them, rather than just smiling and moving along on your journey, it's a Jing like trap. I think that people don't realise the hook that that, forming your identity from that rather than letting go and starting afresh and being in that vulnerability. It's important long term libido.   Juliet Allen: (35:54) Yeah, definitely. One of the words you said was integrate, and I think it's important that if we do go into the extremities of something, like for you it was dietary stuff, for me it was sex stuff let's say, then it's coming back into centre and going, "Okay, how can I [inaudible 00:36:13] about me coming back into my own centre," and catching myself and thinking, "How can I integrate this now into life?" No more workshops, no more fucking retreats, no more this, no more that. How can I now integrate this into everyday life so that I choose what parts of it I loved and what parts I didn't and how do I remain in my truth in a way and not get caught up? Yeah. So for me, that was big, to just stop everything and find what works for me rather than what I feel I should be doing or what I feel I should be exploring.   Mason: (36:54) For you, what are the top, when we talk about a lifestyle that is going to facilitate you, you said moving along within your truth, which I know is a huge thing to try and perceive. Well, I can't perceive it. Only you can perceive it, and we're trying to all describe what we're talking about through these really unique feelings that we have about ourselves and our own journey. But for you, when you look back over the last couple of decades, have there been particular patterns or practices within your life that have helped you burst the bubble every now and then, and be like, "Okay, now in order to stay on that path of my truth this is where I need to go, or I need to stop and move on now?" Is there anything in particular that helped you stay in touch with that purposefulness?   Juliet Allen: (37:44) Yeah. Something that comes to mind is, well, my children are always my biggest inspiration for pulling myself back into centre. How can I... I hate sounding so cliche all the time. I feel like lots of these things are bit cliche, whatever. How can I be really authentic to what works for me in life so that I can be that model for my daughter so that when she flees the nest and grows up and is finding her own way, she has had some sort of transmission from me as her mother of a woman who can come back to centre and who can also honour her sexuality and yeah, all the things that I value. She's been my biggest inspiration actually. She's nearly 16 so it's been a long journey with her. I had her when I was 23, so a long time, but yeah, she's always brought me back into line, her energy and her presence in my life. She's my biggest teacher in a way, my biggest inspiration. Yeah. That's something that comes to mind.   Mason: (39:10) I find it's going to be trippy when we're 60 and 70 just to look back and see what the pattern of consistency was. It's so easy to get lost in these different phases.   Juliet Allen: (39:21) Yeah. Yeah. It is. It's so easy to get lost. Yeah. The other thing I keep talking about is having time to myself. So just time to refocus, time to just go for a freaking swim by myself. All the simple stuff that I know if I get in the ocean that I reset my body, things like that, that I have to advocate for, because at the moment I have to advocate. I'm like, "I need this." And not feel guilty for wanting it too, because there's that parental guilt and lots of parents will relate. Mothers, I think, especially of like, "Hang on, I'm supposed to love this 24/7." It's like, I do love him and I do love this, but I also love myself enough to be like, "Hey, take the child, I'm going to the beach," and I'm okay with that. I'm not going to feel guilty. You know, stuff like that. That's on topic for me.   Mason: (40:21) Yeah. Well again, I mean like you say, it's a cliche, but I remember thinking, "Oh, it's going to be a cliche to say, 'Hey, let's come back to the breath,' during Aya's birth." It was not. It was, Tahns is just like, "Wow, that was the best." I think about in these instances, it's just like, "Hey lady, you really need to advocate for that time." It's the most obvious thing, but it's like, bring it up [inaudible 00:40:49] hundred bajillion times and they'll be like, "Yeah, yeah, yeah." It's like, "He's going to bring it up again."   Juliet Allen: (40:53) Yeah, and not just for parents though. Even people who are stuck in a really full-on job. Not stuck but they're choosing to be in a really full-on job or they're in a relationship that's really codependent where they're doing everything with their partner and it's time to go, "Actually, I need a Saturday to myself." Whatever that brings up in you is your shit, but I'm going surfing all day and that's going to fill up my cup and I'm going to be a better person for that.   Juliet Allen: (41:23) So all those things, let's bring it back to the topic, I feel really contribute to libido and that's not just for me, but for the hundreds of people who I've worked with. A lot of the work I do with people when I'm coaching is evaluating their life and going, "Okay, what's working? What's not? How can you get more time to yourself?" or whatever it is. As soon as we get ducks in a row like that and they become more organised and they start advocating for themselves again and what's actually important, then libido just boom. It's like, "Oh, surprise, surprise. You want to have sex again." Every time.   Mason: (42:11) I think that's a really beautiful place to leave everyone pondering that. Everyone reach out to us. Hit us up on Instagram or email or wherever if you'd like Juliet to come back and I know that conversation around birth, sexuality, and libido is a huge, one.   Juliet Allen: (42:31) Yeah, that's a big one.   Mason: (42:32) Yeah. So if everyone's interested in that, yeah, hit us up and you should go over and follow all the things that Juliet's doing. Best places, Instagram, websites, all that. Anything bubbling under the surface right now?   Juliet Allen: (42:48) What, for work stuff, work offerings?   Mason: (42:50) Yeah.   Juliet Allen: (42:52) I'm doing my best to keep the bubbling just simmering at the moment with all the ideas I have, because I even tell my team, I'm like, "Do not say yes to me. Just do not say yes." But if people are interested in learning more, they can go to my website. There's a couple of things that I have that they can join. Or my podcast is another place to get heaps of information and I have an online school. So it's and Instagram is @Juliet_Allen. Yeah. You know what I thought? For another episode, if people are keen, we could do a Q and A if they send their questions, so we get to answer some of their questions about all these topics because then we really get to know what they want to hear about. I always find those ones fun.   Mason: (43:40) I think that's good. I think that's good to do. What I've actually, what I want to do is have... Because SuperFeast is really coming into its own. That's why I've done a lot to listen to SuperFeast's voice and not project my voice onto this really great mission. But naturally that's meaning that I'm having to go and get my own itches scratched. My podcast is slowly rearing its head again. That's actually the model that I was going to do, is I was just going to constantly do Q and As and jump on and stream it live on Instagram at the same time.   Juliet Allen: (44:20) That's a cool idea.   Mason: (44:22) I think that's something maybe we can do on my Instagram as well, really cut loose and have some fun. I definitely want to hear what everyone's interested in at the moment because those two years have probably brought the essence of what everyone needs to the surface.   Juliet Allen: (44:38) Most definitely. I think that's a really good point. The last couple of years have brought so much to the surface and people's priorities have changed a lot and within relationships so much has changed in people's relationships and it's just added a whole different, weird, crazy dynamic, but cool too, you know?   Mason: (44:59) It's been cool.   Juliet Allen: (45:02) Yeah, really cool.   Mason: (45:03) I know it's been tumultuous for a lot of people, and I did bring up earlier that when was going through my hardships, it was hard to be like, "Don't worry, it's going to be cool, Mase. You learn lots." There may be a few people listening to this of like, "Hey, it's not cool for me yet," but I'm definitely, I'm with you. I can only see going through the pressure cooker. If you can really, that's why I bring up, it's like, "Well, what's going to bring out the context for you to get in touch with what you need?" That's time alone, maybe time alone with your sexuality, not being able to avoid your feelings. I think that's when you naturally are like, "Is this job for me? Is this relationship for me? Do I need to alter my priorities in life"" I think it's been a cool two years for that.   Juliet Allen: (45:59) Hell yeah. It's been awesome. Yeah.   Mason: (46:01) Yeah. Let's do it. Everyone go and follow everything. Juliet does, Juliet Allen, especially. Yeah. The backlog of your podcast is awesome.   Juliet Allen: (46:15) Yeah. There's so many episodes there. Yeah.   Mason: (46:17) Yeah. I mean, you can just go through the titles. It's really well-titled so you can land on what you're wanting pretty easily. Unlike mine sometimes are a bit mysterious, like Masturbation in Utero. It's like, "Do I want that?"   Juliet Allen: (46:29) You're like, "What is he on about now?" Yeah, I get really specific.   Mason: (46:35) Yeah, I think it's good. I think it's an endearing quality. Yeah. Hope you and the team fall into a nice sync with ensuring that those ideas can come to fruition.   Juliet Allen: (46:47) Come to fruition. Yeah. Yeah, they will.   Mason: (46:51) Awesome. Love to the family.   Juliet Allen: (46:52) Thanks, Mase. Thanks for having me.   Mason: (46:54) Yeah. Pleasure. Hope you can get to the beach today as well.   Juliet Allen: (47:00) I'll do my very best.   Mason: (47:02) All right. Lots of love.   Juliet Allen: (47:04) Thank you.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
Caitlin Priday has been devoted to the path of women's healing and birth work, weaving her threads of medicine through nourishing food and ceremony into future generations of women for over a decade now. A Kinesiologist, full-spectrum birth worker, shamanic practitioner, women's work facilitator, ceremonialist, and co-author of the brilliant book, Nourishing Those Who Nurture (More than a Food Bible for new mother's). Caitlin is an embodied full feminine force of integrity, supporting, teaching, honouring, and witnessing women as they traverse the many seasons of life, meet their shadows, and journey through sacred rites of passage. There is currently a remembering, a renaissance of women's work and birth work, rising up in communities globally. A new (but ancient) paradigm of birth work is emerging, with increasing numbers of women choosing to transition through the realms of birth at home while being supported and held by birth workers like Caitlin. Everywhere women are reclaiming birth, and with it comes both the shadow work and generational healing.   In this full spectrum conversation, Tahnee and Caitlin journey deep into the birthing portal exploring all facets of doula work, postpartum planning, the inextricable relationship between fear and pain, birth as a rite of passage, and why we need more advocacy and education around birth. Caitlin discusses her powerful ceremonial work with the obsidian egg, womb boundaries, her upcoming workshops, and the sacred act of living life as ceremony.    "I feel comfortable in my experience. I don't want to escape my feelings or leak my energy somewhere to get something back. And that is what women, I believe, need to learn through their lives; How to have strong womb boundaries and be firm in themselves. I think this is how femininity will heal. When women can be comfortable with being in their bodies and being firm in their womb boundaries".   - Caitlin Priday      Caitlin and Tahnee discuss: Birth work. Postpartum care. Rites of passage. Caitlin's doula work. Closing of the bones. Kinesiology and birth. Integrating the shadow. The history of doula work. The potent energy of obsidian. Working with the obsidian egg. Honouring the maiden season. Community and supporting the mother. Father's and their important role in birth. Shadow work; Identifying and working with it. Rebozo; A way of life and how it is used in birth.   Who is Caitlin Priday? Caitlin Priday is a Byron Shire-based Kinesiologist, Shamanic Practioner, Doula, Ceremonialist, and Co-Author of Nourishing Those Who Nurture: More Than A Food Bible for New Mum's. She is passionate about supporting women in all facets of life, from pre-conception, fertility, birth, postpartum, and beyond. With vigorous training and dedication over a ten-year period, Caitlin has learned the teachings of strong energetic boundaries, discernment, and psychic hygiene and how to hold these within everyday life. She prides herself on holding a sacred, grounded space no matter what the container is for and is a fierce advocate for women to reclaim their voices, bodies, and wombs for themselves, their lineage, and their descendants.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Rebozo  Obsidian egg  Caitlin's website Caitlin's Instagram Sharon Bolt's website Mother Tree Creations Catering Empress and the Dragon workshop Caitlin Priday Shamanic Energy Training Nourishing Those Who Nurture Book   Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Tahnee: (00:00) Hi, everybody. Welcome to the SuperFeast Podcast. It's Tahnee here today with Caitlin Priday. Really excited to have her on the podcast. She's a business partner actually to Tahlia, who we had on last year. They have this amazing book called Nourishing Those Who Nurture and I actually saw it under a few Christmas trees this year, Caitlin, so you'll be happy to hear that.   Caitlin Priday: (00:20) Oh good.   Tahnee: (00:21) Yeah, and she's also a kinesiologist, shamanic practitioner, doula, does ceremony and she wrote all the beautiful recipes in the book as well as contributed to the content. So I'm really stoked to have you here today, Caitlin. Thanks for joining us.   Caitlin Priday: (00:37) Thank you so much.   Tahnee: (00:39) Yeah. So great to have you here. We only recently met, but I just was so interested in our brief chat. Your story, your personal journey, just sounds so interesting. So I was hoping, if you don't mind, if you could share a little bit about how you got to be here, writing the book that you just wrote, and what was your kind of initiation into this world that you now inhabit?   Caitlin Priday: (01:03) Oh God. I feel like [inaudible 00:01:06].   Tahnee: (01:05) You start it, "I was born in..."   Caitlin Priday: (01:09) But I don't like that. Well, I'm a Shire local, so I feel like the Shire kids have always got some kind of alternative edge. So yeah, I was born in the Byron Shire. I've travelled the world for a little bit in 2012 and kind of started getting into spiritual awakening, I guess. It was that year that everyone started opening up to everything then. And I was just travelling around India and Canada and Mexico and just trying out all types of different things.   Caitlin Priday: (01:40) I actually got into to more of the shamanic aspect of things by working with cacao in Guatemala in 2012. So that was actually a really big part of my journey and my story. But when I got back to Australia, in 2014, I met my teacher, who's still my teacher now, Sharon Bolt. Her business is called Shamanic Energy Training and she also goes under the business of the Temple of Mythical Magick now as well.   Caitlin Priday: (02:10) So I started working with her, and that was more in the realm of workshops, women's work, ceremonial work in the sense of working with cacao and blue lotus and different plants like that. So I got quite thrust in quite early. She loves to tell the story that I told her that I could cook, but I couldn't really. But I'd told her that I could cook so that I could get a job with her basically, which is quite funny because that's-   Tahnee: (02:41) [crosstalk 00:02:41].   Caitlin Priday: (02:41) Yeah, it was... I was a sneaky young lass.   Tahnee: (02:42) What you just did for your book?   Caitlin Priday: (02:45) Pretty much. Yeah, so that actually was the baseline of learning how to cook and getting into recipes and all that kind of stuff. But yeah, back then I was only 22 when I met her. So I spent pretty much like the better part of my maidenhood working with her and just learning space holding through workshops and just being immersed in retreats and that kind of thing. So interfacing with people a lot, learning a lot about energy, learning a lot about how to be a good space holder, how to be grounded and also how to work through my shit...   Tahnee: (03:20) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (03:20) ... through that mirroring. So I kind of went a bit backwards. A lot of people go as a practitioner first and then go into group work later, but I worked in group work first and now I've moved into practitioner work. The thread that's always been the same is wanting to assist women. So, that's quite a full spectrum thing. I like working with women that want to get pregnant all the way through to pregnancy and then in postpartum, which is my real deep passion and commitment now. And that's how the book also came about because Tahlia and I met around that same time that I met Sharon and we just had a really deep bond, and then Tahlia and I were like, "Let's do this book, because postpartum is such a gap." So yeah, it's a pretty broad thing, but I'm predominantly now a kinesiologist and I work one-on-one. Yeah.   Tahnee: (04:13) Yeah. Where do you think that drive to work with women came from? Was it something you observed in your community or yourself or just a calling or?   Caitlin Priday: (04:22) To be honest, I'm very much a shadow worker and it actually came out of wounding. It came out of feeling the wounds of my experiences with the sisterhood and also the wound with my mother, so that deep mother wound and that deep desire to connect with women on an intimate, true, authentic level. But I had had a lot of wounding around that in the past. So it was through being thrust into environments with women that I realised that that wound was there and I felt like being able to heal that wound would be through interfacing and connecting with women in a deep way. Yeah.   Tahnee: (05:04) Can you talk a little bit to shadow work because I love this topic, but I don't think we've actually really talked about it on the podcast. I'm trying to think maybe a little bit with Jane Hardwicke Collings. But yeah, I guess I'm just interested in your take on that, like how you... You said that's sort of the work that you do or your personal journey. So yeah, what does that mean to you? How do you kind of work through that in your life?   Caitlin Priday: (05:33) Definitely a shadow dweller. I definitely am. I mean, don't get me wrong, I-   Tahnee: (05:39) [crosstalk 00:05:39].   Caitlin Priday: (05:40) Yeah. No, I find that terrain of the underworld, like that really mythical aspect of the feminine which is like that Persephone journey. Persephone was in the Underworld and that's how seasons were created on Earth because Demeter, her mother, went through seasons because of her daughter Persephone being in the Underworld with Hades.   Tahnee: (06:00) Being taken away.   Caitlin Priday: (06:02) Yeah, exactly. And I'm really view my life as a seasonal journey and a cyclical kind of journey. And obviously that's the same with menstrual cycles, but that's another topic. So I really honour the shadow when it needs to come to surface. I think a lot of it has got to do with working with Sharon. Sharon's very much a shadow woman and a shadow worker and it's helped me realise that shadows are not enemies, shadows are friends. And so I've discovered this more in going to my own therapy as well, learning more how to bring the shadow up and out of that shadow and bring it to light and learn its mysteries and its power and help integrate that, and that's how we become more of a whole and integrated person.   Caitlin Priday: (06:50) When we say we don't want to be something and we shove it away, that's when that thing will come up and try to dominate us even more. So within the feminine psyche there's a lot of that shadow work as well, like in women's work and women's workshops, if people are familiar with that kind of world, there's a lot of promotion around the dark feminine or the shadow feminine. Even in motherhood, there's a lot around the dark mother. So I think-   Tahnee: (07:20) Kali.   Caitlin Priday: (07:21) Kali, yeah, that kind of thing.   Tahnee: (07:22) I was thinking about the sort of eating heads. Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (07:25) Yeah, even like the [crosstalk 00:07:26] mother-   Tahnee: (07:28) Well, how do you define shadow for yourself? Like, is it the stuff that you avoid or feel triggered by or is it just anything in the sort of subconscious? How do you define that in terms of your work?   Caitlin Priday: (07:44) If something triggers me, then I definitely know that I'm looking at a shadow. Obviously you've got family stuff, that's a perfect place to do shadow work is just go stay with your family for a week. I just-   Tahnee: (07:57) You think your spiritual, go hang out with your family.   Caitlin Priday: (08:00) Exactly. I just had my family here for three weeks, so I'm just like decompressing.   Tahnee: (08:05) [crosstalk 00:08:05].   Caitlin Priday: (08:07) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (08:07) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (08:07) Actually, it's a good point though, because my mum and I ended up having a fruitful conversation after she stayed, which was her telling me that she gets triggered by me because she sees so much of herself in me. And I think that's a really good way to look at the shadow is that like when you're having that mirror come up and place that thing in front of you, you've got to look at where that is unintegrated inside of yourself that it's becoming a problem. And so we've gone into that a lot in more of the shamanic workshops that we've done with Sharon, but also in our women's work, The Empress And The Dragon, which is the three month women's programme which I'll be running up here soon.   Caitlin Priday: (08:49) We work with the obsidian egg. So the obsidian egg is known for bringing up shadows and known for bringing up mirrors and triggers. And we work through that in the workshop on the weekend and the months after. Because we want to be able to bring things up and have a look at them, but I'm really a big believer on there being a firm and held container for when shadows come up.   Tahnee: (09:14) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Especially when you're learning to work with that energy, I think, because-   Caitlin Priday: (09:20) Yeah, definitely.   Tahnee: (09:21) ... it's powerful stuff.   Caitlin Priday: (09:22) Yeah.   Tahnee: (09:24) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (09:24) Yeah, I'm not about going into shadow work and flinging your energy all around and getting crazy on it. Shadows are things that we learn how to tame and that's a very Daoist perspective, which I know you're really into as well. And that's the background of our training as well, is Daoism, so learning how to do it with containment and befriending and also a right relationship. Because when we don't, when we allow an emotion to own us, we are just being dominated by it. So it's [crosstalk 00:09:57].   Tahnee: (09:56) It's a possession at times.   Caitlin Priday: (09:58) Yeah, exactly. So it's learning how to not allow shadows to possess us, but for us to find how to dance in a relationship with them. So yeah, I think shadows are mostly a mirror.   Tahnee: (10:12) Yeah. I'd like to go jump back to that workshop quickly.   Caitlin Priday: (10:17) Yeah.   Tahnee: (10:17) You're talking about... This is an in-person one that you do.   Caitlin Priday: (10:22) Yeah. We also do them online.   Tahnee: (10:25) Yeah, because I thought I saw on your socials that you had online versions.   Caitlin Priday: (10:28) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.   Tahnee: (10:29) So for people that are interested in this, it's learning to work with jade eggs and energy practices. Can you explain a bit about the container of the work [crosstalk 00:10:37]. Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (10:37) Yeah. We work with obsidian eggs, so jade-   Tahnee: (10:41) Oh sorry, yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (10:41) No, that's okay.   Tahnee: (10:42) It's my brain.   Caitlin Priday: (10:43) She's got baby brain, everyone. Baby brain.   Tahnee: (10:46) [inaudible 00:10:46]. Yes, eggs. I should have just... yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (10:49) It's all right.   Tahnee: (10:52) Those things in your vagina that you move around and helps with itching.   Caitlin Priday: (10:57) Exactly.   Tahnee: (10:58) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (10:58) So obsidian a bit unique. Obsidian comes from the Mexican protocol. It's quite strong. I discovered the egg in Mexico about 10 years ago. And then I came back to Australia with it and had to contact for it for a while. And then I told Sharon about, and she said, "Oh my God, I've had this programme written for ages." And she'd actually been told by a psychic that she'd write a programme around the egg. And she was like, "Oh no, no. I don't want to do that." Because she'd worked with the jade egg when she was a Daoist monk and had gone, "No, that's not for me." But when I brought the Mexican egg in, she got really excited because Sharon's actually Mayan, so it was very lineage aligned for her.   Caitlin Priday: (11:45) We kind of started working with egg ourselves and we were like, "Okay, this is really powerful." And so we wanted to honour the protocol of working with the obsidian egg, which is very different to jade. Jade works with vaginal strength, also just like pelvic floor, sexual energy, that kind of thing. But we are really firm believers on if you don't have a cleansed and clear womb before you get into doing sexual and central practises with the energy body, you actually can amplify a lot of the wounds that you already have there.   Caitlin Priday: (12:18) And the obsidian really, really is like a cleansing and clearing stone. So we put it in at nighttime and it helps bring up the subconscious. So the subconscious will come up via dreaming and it's also a mirror stone, so it will... It's very special the way it works. It will bring people in and out of your life to help you realise what you're working on deeper. Like pretty much every time, at least four or five people in the group will have an ex-boyfriend pop up. Every time. It's magical, because... It's a womb Buddha. The womb broom, that's what we call it. It helps clear the womb.   Caitlin Priday: (13:01) So things will stop popping up, and it will also amplify things, like I was saying before, like sisterhood wounds or the mother wound or where we're unstable in our energy bodies, that kind of thing. Because obsidian really grounds you into your body. So people that disassociate easily, it's a really good stone for that. It helps people like come firmly into the body. So yeah, that's been one of the most potent tools I've had for doing shadow work because we've been working with it for about five years now and we've had over 500 women go through the programme and it's also developed into working with other eggs as well. Working with rose is the second part of the programme, and then working with amethyst is the third part of the programme.   Tahnee: (13:44) Beautiful.   Caitlin Priday: (13:48) Yeah, it's a fully embodied programme.   Tahnee: (13:50) So kind of womb, heart and then third eye. Is that what [crosstalk 00:13:53]? Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (13:54) Yeah. Well, it's very Daoist, like I was saying. So the Daoists actually work with the three cauldrons. Yeah. So you have the womb caldron, the heart caldron and then the upper dantian, which is the pineal gland. So it's like a full embodiment programme.   Tahnee: (14:09) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Caitlin Priday: (14:10) Yeah.   Tahnee: (14:10) But that's this Empress and Dragon or that's another [crosstalk 00:14:13]?   Caitlin Priday: (14:13) Yeah. No, that's The Empress And The Dragon. I just specifically run an obsidian... I'd love to run the other ones at some point, but I'm just an obsidian woman.   Tahnee: (14:21) My shadow friend.   Caitlin Priday: (14:22) That's what I am.   Tahnee: (14:24) Well, I'm so interested that... You know there's heaps of obsidian here in Byron, like in the hills?   Caitlin Priday: (14:28) Exactly.   Tahnee: (14:29) Yeah. So it's [crosstalk 00:14:30].   Caitlin Priday: (14:30) Obsidian woman.   Tahnee: (14:31) Yeah. And we lived on a property with a really deep underground obsidian reservoir and man, whew, that was a time.   Caitlin Priday: (14:41) Yeah.   Tahnee: (14:43) Okay. It was like, we conceived our child, but also just like the psychic kind of downloads and the awakening on that land was really powerful.   Caitlin Priday: (14:53) Yeah.   Tahnee: (14:53) It's an amazing stone.   Caitlin Priday: (14:57) Well, you know, on that point, thanks for bringing that up, that's why people come to the Byron Shire. Generally they'll come and have... They'll break up with their partner or they'll get pregnant, or they have a massive awakening.   Tahnee: (15:09) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (15:10) Obsidian is volcanic, and obviously good things are formed under pressure, like diamonds are. It's the same with obsidian portals. High obsidian places are usually places of deep transformation, like Bali's obsidian.   Tahnee: (15:25) Hawaii area.   Caitlin Priday: (15:25) Yeah, Mexico, Mount Shasta.   Tahnee: (15:27) Shanghai.   Caitlin Priday: (15:28) And they're the places that people are drawn to in order to hear. So once you pop that inside of your body, you have the possibility for deep transformation.   Tahnee: (15:38) Well, I will definitely link to that in the show notes for your upcoming one. So you've got one coming up in the Shire.   Caitlin Priday: (15:43) In March.   Tahnee: (15:43) And then in you guys run them online sort of regularly, is that?   Caitlin Priday: (15:47) I've got one here in March. I've got one in Bellingen for the first time in April.   Tahnee: (15:53) Cool.   Caitlin Priday: (15:53) And then I'll run one online, and Melbourne if the... If Mr. Andrews permits, I will come to Melbourne.   Tahnee: (16:02) Throw some obsidian at him and... That's unkind. Maybe it might help.   Caitlin Priday: (16:05) Hmm.   Tahnee: (16:10) Yeah, I'm interested in that link you have with Mexico, because I think your book was one the first I saw where... I mean I've heard a lot of postpartum books, and you actually had Rebozo in there.   Caitlin Priday: (16:21) Yeah.   Tahnee: (16:22) The tying and... I'd read about that online but never in someone's actual postpartum books. I thought that was cool. So could you speak a little bit about that impact on the kind of Mayan lineage has had on you and your work. And obviously is Sharon's into it, that's obviously [crosstalk 00:16:37].   Caitlin Priday: (16:36) Yeah. Yeah. It's an interesting thing. I don't know how it's happened. I lived in Central America for a year. And it's funny, without having any cultural appropriation, that's definitely not my style, and I love having right relationship with all indigenous rights of passage and ceremonies and all of that. But it's interesting if I revise my journey to getting here, how much the Mexican practices have impacted me as a person. I think living there and being able to be in such a deep connection and honouring of the land really helped me understand their magic and their way. But yeah, obviously I worked with cacao. That's definitely one of my master plants. I don't work with-   Tahnee: (17:21) With Keith, right?   Caitlin Priday: (17:21) With Keith, yeah.   Tahnee: (17:24) Just for those listening, we were both in the same... Probably not the same time. I was a 2015, I think. But yeah, in San Marcos La Laguna in Guatemala. So it's a great cacao shaman who's very well known around the world.   Caitlin Priday: (17:40) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah.   Tahnee: (17:41) So you worked with him or you [crosstalk 00:17:43].   Caitlin Priday: (17:43) Yeah, I worked with him a little bit, but I also mostly just had cacao all the time, which I don't do anymore. I don't recommend it, definitely fried my adrenals. And I've been on my SuperFeast Jing Herbs since then trying to put myself back together.   Tahnee: (17:59) Yeah, absolutely.   Caitlin Priday: (17:59) Yeah.   Tahnee: (18:02) Especially the ceremonial cacao, it's really... I get high off it. I can't touch it really.   Caitlin Priday: (18:04) No. A tiny little bit for me, and oh gosh. Anyway, I made chocolates and all that kind of thing. I've had my massive journey with cacao, and I love it dearly but I don't need to indulge in it so much anymore.   Caitlin Priday: (18:17) But yeah, as I've gone more into my birth work, I found that that Mexican lineage has really come through. And it was no surprise that I found a teacher that is Mayan, like very Latino. She's got her other practises as well, but having that Mayan thread in there has been really deep and resonating for me. But with the birth work, yeah, Rebozo... Look, I really am not an expert on Rebozo. I still have a long way to go. I really honour the Rebozo and how it's even created. It's like all of the South American and Central American countries, like they have their own special weave. So their weave is like their creative signature. And so most Rebozos will never be the same because it's created by a woman whose signature is that weave or that colouring. So Rebozos-   Tahnee: (19:12) Could you just even quickly explain what it's because I was just thinking that-   Caitlin Priday: (19:12) Oh yeah, sorry. Of course.   Tahnee: (19:13) ... people probably don't even know. That's my bad.   Caitlin Priday: (19:16) Mm-hmm (affirmative). No way, that's also my bad.   Tahnee: (19:20) Like, "What even is this thing?"   Caitlin Priday: (19:20) Yeah. So they're actually this beautiful long piece of fabric. They're quite thick. And like I was saying, they all have different colours and different weaves and designs on them. And Rebozo basically means like the way of life. It is such an integral part of Mexican women's lives. Like they use their Rebozo to carry shopping, they tie it up. They use it to tie babies on. They use it in birth work. And it is used in postpartum a bit, that's with closing of the bones, which I can go into in a moment. But in birth itself, it's a labour technique.   Caitlin Priday: (20:00) Again, I've learnt, but I'm not fully, fully trained. So it's not something that I necessarily offer because I'm really integral in wanting to understand something before I go and put it on the table for myself. So I'm by no means a Rebozo expert. But they do, in Mexico, use it for helping if interventions kind of starting to creep in, or baby's not moving or there's a lot of techniques that they can do. They call it sifting, so they'll pop the Rebozo underneath the womb and the woman will be on all-fours, and they'll sift the Rebozo.   Tahnee: (20:42) [crosstalk 00:20:42].   Caitlin Priday: (20:42) Yeah, to get the hips kind of jiggling and open. It's a really integral part of their work. If people do want purchase Rebozos, I highly recommend finding a really good source for them because some of them are just getting pumped out of China and if we're going to use indigenous tools, we want to make sure that we give back properly. So yeah, so that's Rebozo. But we use it in closing the bones as well, which is a postpartum technique where we basically help put a woman back together, so that's physically and also energetically. It's kind of like helping shut down the story of the birth. Because there so many women I've heard, I haven't had a baby yet, but obviously I work with women a lot in this realm. Most women say, "I have to reach out to the stars to find my baby and come back with my baby before I could birth it," which I'm sure you can definitely resonate with. And so-   Tahnee: (21:40) It's a portal, that's for sure.   Caitlin Priday: (21:43) Yeah, exactly. Where there's a portal... mm-hmm (affirmative). I see closing the bones, you know, shut the portal down.   Tahnee: (21:47) Yeah, well it's like any... We've both done plant medicine and it's like you don't just walk away at the end of the journey. You have to have that ceremonial ending and then beginning the integration process. I think that birth is the same, right?   Caitlin Priday: (22:05) 100%   Tahnee: (22:05) We have to honour it with ceremony and... yeah. So you work... because we've spoken a bit ourselves about your doula work.   Caitlin Priday: (22:13) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (22:13) So you offer that sort of pre, I guess, natal support or during the prenatal period, and then also into maybe the pregnant period. Prenatals before that, yes? I don't know what I'm talking about anymore. And then you also do of this aftercare, so can you speak a little bit about your work with that and how you work with women and I guess what you observe as a... Because it's interesting, I think. I actually don't know that many doulas who haven't... You and I both know, Oni. There's a couple of people I know that haven't kids, but most women seem to come to this work after they've had their own children. And so it's interesting there's all these young women in this area really picking up the torch, I think. So yeah, I'd love to hear your take on all of that.   Caitlin Priday: (22:59) Yeah. Well, I think like for me at the moment, I definitely feel like I'm not completely maiden anymore. I feel like I'm transitioning more into mother, but I've had the exuberance of the maiden for the last 10 years and mothers need maidens. And I'm very, very into helping other maidens in my community learn how to look after mothers properly, because mothers are the backbone of our society. So that's been my driving force as a birth worker to really, really help mothers be strong and able to support this next generation. So that's kind of my passion, to make sure that this next generation are coming through in a strong and supported way, like in a village.   Caitlin Priday: (23:41) I can't really explain why that's been my thing, but that's just my heart calling, so I'm just... That's what I've followed. But postpartum kind of comes naturally. I think having that backbone of cooking and also space holding and helping people just in workshops and that kind of thing, I think it's easy to see where a gap can be filled. And postpartum is such a gap. It's just horrific. We think that we're doing well in the West, but you have to just turn to the East and see how well they're doing it to see how much more we could be doing.   Caitlin Priday: (24:18) Initially with the book, that's what Tahlia and I talked about a lot, because I was there with Tahlia when she was in her preconception period with her firstborn. And then I also was at her secondborn's birth, Ochre, and helped with postpartum as well. It really became the fuel to our fire, and just realising that the village is really... Not even necessarily missing, but it actually needs to be retaught.   Caitlin Priday: (24:43) There's something about our culture that because we haven't experienced or we haven't seen our mothers experiencing it, we don't know what to do. And so we need other people who say, "This is what you do and this is how we care for them." So essentially, that's how the book was created, like a really easy go-to manual for that. But in postpartum, I'm all about nourishing, and that's across the board, but predominantly with food. Yeah.   Tahnee: (25:11) It's super interesting you say that about the cultural piece, because I had a friend have twins recently and another friend of ours, who's in her maybe late forties, she... I said, "Oh look, I've set up a meal train." And this person was like, "A what?" And I was like, "A meal train." She was like, "I've never heard of this." And I was like, "Well, we all make food and bring it to the family." And she was like, "Oh, when I had kids that wasn't... you didn't do that." And I was like, "What do people do?" She's like, "I know you just ate... Your husband made food or..." And I was like, "Oh."   Tahnee: (25:43) It's such an interesting... It's only been... She's what, 10 years older than me? That still wasn't even on her radar when she had children. And yeah, I think there's stuff we really take for granted, especially in the Shire, where there is such an awareness, I think, of postpartum being important. It's still not perfect, but it's getting better.   Caitlin Priday: (26:03) Yeah.   Tahnee: (26:04) Yeah. I think there's this real lack of awareness of... I think when there's those big changes, like grief births, people often back away.   Caitlin Priday: (26:12) Yes.   Tahnee: (26:12) It's almost like, "I'll give you space and then I'll kind of lean in later."   Caitlin Priday: (26:17) Yes.   Tahnee: (26:19) It's almost like a reminder to people that it's actually really great to lean in and maybe they don't know what they need or what to ask for, but bring them food, bring them a treat, make them a cake, you know? There's some sort of basic things we can do. And that's what I loved about the book. You guys had some stuff around boundary setting, which I thought was really awesome, with families. It had all the great recipes. You talked about different ceremonial aspects around whether it's closing the bones or any of those kind of things.   Caitlin Priday: (26:46) Yeah.   Tahnee: (26:46) I think that sort of stuff more and more... You know, bringing that awareness through is so important. And it's kind of what your work is about, like with this shamanic dimension of your work. It's like we need to honour... You're feeling that transition already, like your maiden to motherhood transition. So many women I speak to don't even observe that change until they're a couple of years postpartum and they're like, "Oh my god, I'm a totally different person."   Caitlin Priday: (27:09) 100%.   Tahnee: (27:11) Yeah. Have you been tuning into that through your practice or is it just like an awakening that you're feeling that motherhood is calling? Or what's that feeling like for you?   Caitlin Priday: (27:22) Well, it's interesting that you just brought up this like people backing away and death, and birth. Because I've always wanted to be a mother, but when my father died three years ago, that's when I really, really realised more about that nature of death and birth being such a similar portal, very much not like Hollywood, as we are all shown in the movies. Very gentle, humbling. Yeah, very different, very ceremonial act. So that really concreted that for me. Yeah, it's been hanging around for a while, but what I'm starting to realise more is, and I wrote a post about this the other day, is again honouring that season within, like honouring the maiden while she still is here. And by doing that, that's like having fun, enjoying moments of silence, doing all of things that I want to do because I watch my friends around me not be able to do that anymore.   Caitlin Priday: (28:30) And in society, I think we have a lot of lost mothers who have a tendency to hold onto the maiden because they haven't been celebrated or witnessed in that shift or that rite of passage correctly. And so like you're saying, in postpartum it's four years down the track and they're like, "Oh my god, what just happened to me?" So I try to really honour those seasons within myself, but I also like to facilitate that for other people. And as much as closing of the bones is a postpartum practice, there are some people who open up closing the bones for people that have gone death as well. And so I even experienced my own closing in the bones on the grief and the death around my father to help close that portal down as well. So yeah, motherhood is something that I think about and I feel like I do embody that archetype of the mother for many people. But I do like to honour the maiden as well because she has a place and I don't want to be a mother in a few years that's still trying to hold on to my maidenhood.   Caitlin Priday: (29:35) You know, obviously we have an internal maiden that lives within us, as we do a chrone and a maga, which is the menopausal season. But when I become a mother, I want to be embodiment of the mother, not holding onto aspects of myself that don't need to have the stage. You know?   Tahnee: (29:54) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. I think it's really interesting. And I remember when I was pregnant with my first child, my daughter, feeling this... It was a grief, but it was like a poignant grief. It was kind of like, "Oh, I'm changing seasons." We talk about that in TCM, like the full, the autumn season, like things falling away and the sort of dying that needs to up for something new to happen. And I think our culture is so afraid of death in all of its forms that we kind of lose the beauty of those transitions and those seasons. And motherhood is a death. You do have to, to some extent, kill the person you were before to become the person you're becoming. It's not a bad thing, and it doesn't mean you don't integrate. But it's like, yeah, there's a bit of a... Well, it's certainly been my experience and I've really enjoyed it. But I think it's something that we...   Tahnee: (30:53) We conceived this child, my partner got the call to go to Sydney. His father was dying. His father died. You know, we were at the funeral within... I think I was six weeks pregnant or something.   Caitlin Priday: (31:03) Yeah.   Tahnee: (31:05) And it's just like there's something for me that's so beautiful about that transition, even though it could be... Like people were saying to us, "Oh my God, I can't believe what you're going through, and you're pregnant." I'm like, "It's actually... " You know. My partner did all the death care. He washed his father, he dressed him, he cut his beard. And his ability to hold that, that's the kind of... that I'm birthing with this person, it's such a... and that I'm getting to share this goodbye and this ritual with him. I think it's something really powerful about that and that's given me a lot of confidence and faith in the other side of the coin, right, which is birth.   Caitlin Priday: (31:44) Yeah.   Tahnee: (31:44) Birth and death are the same portal really.   Caitlin Priday: (31:47) Yeah.   Tahnee: (31:48) So yeah, I think those death and grief teachings are very powerful when it comes to motherhood. And that's what I think people don't get, like of having a doula or someone around who can support that process if you aren't someone who maybe naturally is drawn to that work on your own.   Caitlin Priday: (32:07) Yeah.   Tahnee: (32:07) And I think that's where people... I don't know. What do you see when you first meet with women? What do they think a doula does versus kind of what you feel like you do? Do you have any experience with that or?   Caitlin Priday: (32:21) I think it's interesting. What comes to up a lot actually is that they want... Generally what I've found is that the doula wants the woman to be there to do all of the things that she thinks her partner can't do. But what I've actually really realised is that this thing that we placed on to men in the birth world, about men being redundant, or this is how a lot of men say, "I feel redundant," actually breaks down the family unit a little bit. So when I go into my initial meetings with people, I'm very focused on supporting and talking with the father, just as much as I am talking with the mother who's pregnant. Because if we talk again about that rite of passage aspect of things, a woman is very visibly going through a rite of passage. Whereas a man is also having a rite of passage, but there's nothing visceral or physical about it.   Caitlin Priday: (33:19) So, a lot of women that want a doula, I think, are quite familiar with what a doula is, which is that emotional support or that physical support, or if there's other kids involved, somebody that can cater to and hold space for the family as a whole. But I'm really into making sure that dads are included in that as well, because we can't have a society of women that are going through a rite of passage, and men that are just ignored or forgotten about. So for me, as a doula, that's been a pretty strong part of my work. I'm not sure if that's what is happening for other doulas, but it seems to be a theme with me that I'm actually there to help equally empower men as I am to the woman.   Caitlin Priday: (34:06) But yeah, I think we're lucky now. I think people do know what doulas are more often. If people that are listening don't know what a doula is, it actually means woman's servant. So midwife means with woman and doula is woman's servant. Doulas have been around forever. We were wet nurses back in the Greek times, or we were nannies or... Women have been assisting women for thousands of years in this way. Doula, isn't a new thing. It's actually a Greek term from thousands of years ago, so it goes to show that we have been here forever.   Tahnee: (34:41) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Caitlin Priday: (34:43) It's just that now people are realising that they need us more. I think it's challenging at the moment for doulas because COVID has really put a strain on our ability to work. Women that are home birthing generally are in a different state of mind. And sometimes they don't need a doula as much, because if you're home birthing you're going to have a private midwife, or your free birthing and you don't feel like you want that support anyway. So that's a different thing. Like doulas are really needed in that hospital environment at the moment, and it's really challenging. All the births that I've had in the last few months that were lined up, I haven't been able to attend. So [crosstalk 00:35:25].   Tahnee: (35:25) Just for people who are listening, they've basically said there's no support people allowed, is that right?   Caitlin Priday: (35:30) Yeah. Just the partner. But even in Sydney at the moment, they've had really intense birth restrictions where-   Tahnee: (35:36) No partners have been allowed.   Caitlin Priday: (35:37) ... not partner. Mm-mm (negative).   Tahnee: (35:39) Which is just horrific.   Caitlin Priday: (35:41) Yeah.   Tahnee: (35:42) Yeah. And talk about fracturing the family unit.   Caitlin Priday: (35:44) Exactly. Yeah, because women come out completely disturbed. There's a lot of birth trauma going on, not to discount people who have had beautiful experiences in hospitals. Because even in the Shire, I love hearing the stores that come out of Lismore.   Tahnee: (36:01) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (36:02) There's so many positive obstetricians and midwives out there. But on a predominant basis, if you look at statistics, we are failing women in the hospital sense of things. There's cascades of interventions, as my birth working teacher, Ria Dempsey, calls it. So yeah, we are needed, but we are not able to be there, so it's... Not for the portal itself when the baby comes through.   Tahnee: (36:29) Yep. Yeah, I think when we met, you were having to phone support the partner in one birth and-   Caitlin Priday: (36:35) Yeah. That's right. I forgot about that.   Tahnee: (36:38) Yeah, I think it's actually really devastating for women. I mean, I also believe in the power of the female body and the energy to be like, "This is my space." But it's a lot to hold if you aren't experienced and you don't know the system in you. I think that's what's so valuable about having someone who's like a birth keeper of some kind with you who navigates that world regularly. It's like they can be of support and help. And it's quite scary that that's all happening at the moment.   Caitlin Priday: (37:09) Yeah. It's wild. I mean doulas are advocates essentially, but as I've spoken to other birth keepers who are obviously... We're all having the same problem. Once the other woman can't go to hospital, realising that doula support is not just holding your hand as a baby comes out. Doula support is like teaching women how to advocate for themselves, what their rights are, teaching their partner, "This is how you rub her back properly. No, not quite there. A little bit down, you want to know now or she'll scream at you in labour if it ain't right."   Caitlin Priday: (37:43) Other things like postpartum planning, people really hone in on, "Oh, this is my birth plan." But postpartum planning is... if not more important, I think, than birth itself. Because you're got to have your structure and your village set up. So doulas are stepping into different roles now. We're learning how to work with what's going on. We can FaceTime, you know?   Tahnee: (38:09) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (38:10) We can call.   Tahnee: (38:12) Well, I think that piece around education and advocacy is super important. I think, I even can reflect on my first pregnancy being... Like wanting to be nice to this midwife suggesting something I didn't want to do, just a prenatal test. But it's that sort of conditioning we have as women sometimes to be like, "Okay. Well, I don't want to do it, but you're the professional so I'll agree." You know?   Caitlin Priday: (38:40) Yeah.   Tahnee: (38:40) It's just like... And I'm pretty stubborn and strong and I'm easily affected by that stuff. I think having someone there that can be like a sounding board and just provide that mirror, that reflection back to the couple around speaking to fear, speaking to... having someone to voice those concerns to I think just can be really helpful, that isn't your care provider necessarily, that isn't... you know? Because I think they can... I don't know. Like you said, it's just a mixed bag because some people have great experiences and other people, they get the fear of God put into them.   Caitlin Priday: (39:12) 100%.   Tahnee: (39:12) So it can be really different for everybody.   Caitlin Priday: (39:17) That's where at the moment I'm... because I'm a kinesiologist as well, that's my kind of-   Tahnee: (39:22) You're psychic. That was literally my next question. Yeah, I'd love to hear how you see that kind of intersection, because I think...   Caitlin Priday: (39:30) Yeah.   Tahnee: (39:31) I see that as a really helpful tool to have the doula as well.   Caitlin Priday: (39:35) Mm-hmm (affirmative). I mean you touched on a really important thing, which is what is your relationship to fear or stress or pain. You know? These are things that most doulas will go into anyway before the... Like, when we take on a client, we have our paperwork and we're generally having that rapport with not just the mum, the dad as well. If the dad is fearful of birth, that's going to come into the room. So it's important that we have these kinds of conversations with people.   Caitlin Priday: (40:02) At the moment, I'm really incorporating that into my kinesiology work. Because I did that workshop and retreat work for such a long time, I really felt like even with Empress And The Dragon, I could be doing more. And I'm really into integration, like helping people actually understand what's going on. Because I think people can have really spiritual experiences, but they have no grounding. They'll come out kind of going like, "What just happened?" Like you said with plant medicines, people come out and go, "I don't know what just happened to me."   Tahnee: (40:32) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (40:34) Yeah. "I've been blown open, now what?"   Tahnee: (40:35) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (40:35) So that's why I got into kinesiology. But what I've actually been really finding is helping women in kinesiology prior to having birth. So really using their birth as a goal, like the kind of birth that they want to have, and helping them move stress and fear around that to help them get more mentally straight around the kind of birth that they want to have.   Caitlin Priday: (40:58) Kinesiology's amazing because it goes into your own birth story, and that's an important thing even without kinesiology. I think if a woman's preparing to get pregnant even, or is pregnant, unpacking your own birth story, which I'm sure you and Jane would have talked about on her podcast.   Tahnee: (41:14) We talked about menopause.   Caitlin Priday: (41:17) Okay, yeah.   Tahnee: (41:17) But I've done her workshops and obviously unpacked that. I think it's really helpful... I mean, I was very conscious after my birth of my daughter that my mother was very big on physiological birth, and like, "You're like a horse. You pace around. You don't lie on your back." But it was also this very stubborn kind of... I don't know, like almost a masculine approach to-   Caitlin Priday: (41:43) Harder.   Tahnee: (41:44) Yeah, like kind of a tough approach. Like, "I don't need anybody. I can't do..." And I could feel elements of that where I was like, "Don't touch me. Get away from me. I've got..." You know? And I think partly is necessary because that's who the person I am, but also I can feel that being some of her energy.   Caitlin Priday: (42:03) Yeah.   Tahnee: (42:04) Yeah, so I think it's really interesting to reflect on it and... yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (42:07) Yeah.   Tahnee: (42:08) And I mean, I imagine doing it with kinesiology where there's an embodied response that you're able to translate or... yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (42:14) Yeah. You've got that really somatic response of where it's at and what's going on. But I believe that you don't have to go and see a kinesiologist to get fear out of the body before birth. I think that there are so many practices that women could be doing prior to even getting pregnant. The preconception journey is just so important to start as a maiden, like you were saying before. Like unpacking these things, "What was my birth? Like what was my first period like? What's my relationship with fear?" Doing things like dance, movement, like meditation, shamanic journeying, drum journeying. There's so many different avenues that we can go into to start helping us unpack our relationship with our body and our relationship with the internal mother or the mother, the mother wound, that is really important to go into prior to having your baby.   Caitlin Priday: (43:14) I know that people have mother wounds that still have amazing births, but I think that anything that you can do to help you get prepared for a normal physiological labour, if that's what you want, is just so deeply important. And we do go into that a little bit in the book as well. But even what you're saying before about the people pleaser. You know? Like how you're saying that, "No. Yeah, you can do that. I'll do that." I do believe that the good girl archetype is something that needs to be talked about more in society, for women.   Tahnee: (43:49) Yeah, nice girl.   Caitlin Priday: (43:52) Like, "Okay, I will do that." Yeah. I think [crosstalk 00:43:54].   Tahnee: (43:54) I agree. And I mean it's a shadow really of what you're actually thinking, which is, "No." But I think that's an interesting... I think that's one of the things people underestimate. I actually wanted to bookmark this a while ago. At the very beginning you spoke about therapy, and for me, therapy has actually been a really important tool over my life. Probably at like 19 I started going seriously for quite a long time, probably close to a decade. And then I had a bit of a break, and then I've gone back at other phases of life. Now I work with more like a somatic therapist I guess.   Caitlin Priday: (44:36) Yeah.   Tahnee: (44:37) But I just find for integration and for self-reflection, it's just such a useful tool. But it's not often... The spiritual world, in my experience anyway, poo-poos therapy a little bit sometimes.   Caitlin Priday: (44:49) Yeah.   Tahnee: (44:50) I'm interested in your own journey with therapy and how you sort of see that affecting the integration of your work.   Caitlin Priday: (44:56) I'll say one thing, never trust any practitioner that doesn't go to a therapist. That's just my opinion.   Tahnee: (45:03) I agree.   Caitlin Priday: (45:04) If you are seeing somebody that isn't getting supervision, run. I really believe that we have elders and therapists for a reason, like we have people that have gone through rights and passages before us to call us out on things. So for me personally, I have a lot of supervision, mostly because I obviously offer a variety of different things. Sharon is a supervisor for my shamanic work. My teacher, Parajat, supervises me for kinesiology. I call Anna, who's my postpartum teacher for birth stuff, if I'm not really sure what's going on. And then I also just have like normal therapy, which I use EMDR as a tool for me. That's been great because I've of early childhood trauma. If people don't know what EMDR is, I really recommend looking it up. It's an eye movement, very sensory experience where you are basically just helping turn off neural pathways. And I also do parts therapy, which is definitely a shadow thing.   Caitlin Priday: (46:13) Do you know what parts therapy is?   Tahnee: (46:16) No, and EMDR interestingly enough, when I studied Daoist stuff with Mantak Chia, we used it... We didn't call it EMDR, it's actually a Daoist technique that we use in energy work to clear patterns or loops that people get stuck in. It's interesting you're using that because that's... yeah. We're taught at very effective for trauma and loops.   Caitlin Priday: (46:36) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. Well, we do it in kinesiology as well. It's more like a subconscious... like sabotage programmes we call them, where it's like the brain goes into internal conflicts or reversals. So the brain kind of fries itself when it's gone through trauma.   Tahnee: (46:51) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (46:52) But EMDR has been really helpful for me because it was predominantly used to people that have gone through really hectic PTSD. They started using it on like war victims and stuff, and it just kind of helps turn off a memory. Because when somebody's rerunning a traumatic memory and over and over again, their amygdala is unable to get out of fight or flight. So it just helps people calm down the fight or flight, or freeze response.   Caitlin Priday: (47:16) So that's been helpful for me, but parts therapy has been more interesting. That's what I've been going into recently and that's more shadow work. It's like calling out archetypes within ourselves and letting them have the chair. We move in the room and we'll sit on the chair and it's a bit more interactive and you actually let that part say what it wants to say.   Tahnee: (47:38) I've actually done stuff like this with this anthroposophical therapist I saw years ago. I did it about five years with her. But yeah, I would sit and I would talk to... and then I would go over there. And then I would also have to move as that kind of aspect of self and throw things.   Caitlin Priday: (47:55) Exactly. Yeah.   Tahnee: (47:56) Make shapes. It was quite... At the beginning I was like, "What the fuck am I doing?" But it actually was very powerful. Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (48:06) Yeah. And with parts therapy as well, you find the opposite of the parts. So when you have a very dominating part, you'll have a part that's very quiet.   Tahnee: (48:12) Timid.   Caitlin Priday: (48:12) Timid. So, that actually is also a shadow. It's not a bad shadow. This is what I was saying before, shadows aren't good or bad, it's just a part that that's been suppressed. Recently I found one of my main shadows was the nurturing quiet woman, because most people that know me personally will know that I'm quite loud and vivacious and extroverted. And that's partly my family conditioning, but that's also my personality.   Caitlin Priday: (48:39) But I also have a very nurturing, quiet, internal side of myself, and I really shoved that away. That was a shadow as well, so that was really helpful. But yeah, I've just found having any form of therapy... I mean, I've done most things, to be honest. I've drank plant medicine a million times, I've done kinesiology, I've done ecstatic dance. I've done ceremonies, but I've actually just found traditional therapy helps a lot.   Tahnee: (49:07) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Caitlin Priday: (49:08) Yeah.   Tahnee: (49:09) And I mean, in terms of your ceremonial work, what does that look like now? Because I think life is ceremony to be a bit... you know?   Caitlin Priday: (49:19) Yeah.   Tahnee: (49:21) But how do you integrate this element or this idea of ceremony into your personal life and work, given that it's something that you've obviously had a lot of experience with?   Caitlin Priday: (49:29) Hmm, it's interesting you ask that. My relationship with ceremony's interesting at the moment. Website thing keeps coming up. Yeah, it's different at the moment because I put it on the back burner a little bit. I think I've become quite masculine in the last few years. That's a product of the grief and just things I've been going through, practicality-wise. I find ritual and ceremonies very feminine and I haven't, funnily enough, made enough space for the feminine.   Caitlin Priday: (50:00) As you were saying, a lot of people are like, "Ceremony is life." And they'll poo-poo it, but actually life is... it really is ceremony. And you know, five years ago I'd build altars and light candles and incense, and it's a big show. And actually, to be honest, I think it was more of a performance. Like, "I'm so spiritual, look at the spiritual things I do."   Tahnee: (50:22) "Look how much incense I can burn." Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (50:23) Exactly. But now I'm older and I'm more integrated. I mean, I've also done a huge ceremonial training with Sharon. And like I said, I've sat in ceremonies many times and serve cacao ceremony, blue lotus ceremony. But yeah, to be honest, now it honestly is the mundane. It's just like watering my plants or having a little bowl of food for the ancestors in my therapy room. That's really important for me. And even just ritualistically having energy hygiene in my clinic space, like a bowl of salt water for every client that comes in, or a candle when I feel like the presence of my dad. It's not such a full blown thing anymore.   Caitlin Priday: (51:06) But even just... like I got to go over and see one of my really close friend's newborn babies two days ago, and that was a ceremony. You know, flowers and-   Tahnee: (51:17) They're baby Buddhas too, you can't be in-   Caitlin Priday: (51:18) Exactly. I was like-   Tahnee: (51:20) You can be in the presence of a newborn and not be like, "Hello, special being."   Caitlin Priday: (51:23) Oh my god. That is holy.   Tahnee: (51:29) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (51:29) And then big ceremony in my life is being with my dad when he passed as well. My relationship is very different. I don't need to post about it on Instagram to know that I'm a ceremonial woman. You know?   Tahnee: (51:40) Yeah, it's interesting. I did a workshop earlier this year. I actually can't remember the guy's name right now, having such a blonde day. But he's a teacher from... He's been initiated to Native American lineage, but he is actually also like a pastor in the Christian tradition, and he's also just studied theology. And his point was really around... and I know this life is ceremony thing can feel sarcastic. But his point was like "It's container, it's intention." You know?   Caitlin Priday: (52:13) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (52:13) It's this sort of idea of also having enclosure and then integration. And we can do this when we get in a car. We can do it when we... you know?   Caitlin Priday: (52:23) Yeah.   Tahnee: (52:23) It's like how many times you get in the car and you're on your phone and picking music and you're putting your seatbelt on and you're trying to reverse. And it's like, "Get in the car. Get clear on where you're going. Save attention. Be present with the moment." It sort of just really landed for me how much that changes in my life as well. It used to be I had to practise and I had to do this. It has to be all these things. I have to look like something. And now it's like tending my family, and my chickens, and myself. It's very boring and not particularly... Like you said, not Instagramable, but...   Caitlin Priday: (53:00) No, it's the beauty of the mundane. But I will say in terms of actual ceremony, like when somebody is intentionally running a ceremony... I just have to bring it up because...   Tahnee: (53:13) No, please.   Caitlin Priday: (53:16) ... I promised Sharon that I'd be real on the call. Because I'm a part of her lineage, and so I'm like a spokesperson for the lineage and ceremony is a big part of our lineage. I've obviously apprenticed to her and worked with her for a long time. It's unfortunate in these times where Western people want to put a dollar on Eastern practises and really sell it out, in a way. I am a very, very big advocate for people that want to run ceremony for a job or to have a financial exchange that they actually get proper training for it, because ceremony works with spirits. That is what it is. That's how it always has been. And a true ceremony needs to be run in a proper grounded container, which is also generally known as a medicine wheel. Medicine wheels are in all types of cultures. They vary depending on the culture. But even if you're Celtic, they've always had medicine wheels as well.   Tahnee: (54:28) The Daoists have the turtle.   Caitlin Priday: (54:28) Yeah, exactly. And the native Americans have got their wheel and... Anyway, so there is always somebody there is the holder and the spokesperson and the leader of that wheel, if there is a ceremony that's going on. That's why there's always wise people or sages or whatever. I do have a problem with ceremony being thrown around and I do have a problem with ceremonies being put on the internet, because I believe that true ceremony isn't shared in that way. I do think that we could do better. People that post pictures of altars and things like that, they're sacred portals, they're sacred spaces where the spirits come in to do their work. So I don't believe that posting sacred pictures online is doing that work justice. If anything, it's diluting the magic and the ritual that people have been putting their energy into.   Caitlin Priday: (55:22) It's like if you're building an alter for manifestation and then you put it on Instagram and then everybody looks at it, it can really actually do the opposite. It can actually dilute the energy from it. So ceremony is sacred, but I do believe that ceremony is also contained. And if somebody wants to run ceremony that they definitely need to get proper training because a real ceremony will bring up shadows and triggers. And if the facilitator doesn't know how to handle that and hasn't done that work themselves, you're not going to be in a good space.   Tahnee: (55:54) Hmm. I'm really glad you've said all of that. And when I think about formal ceremonies I've attended, the casualness with which an experienced facilitator operates belies how much is going on underneath the surface. I've sat with people in their 60s and 70s who have been holding ceremonies for a very long time. They seem so nonchalant and relaxed. But then if you really tune in, there's like this eagle perception of they're literally above it all, watching and holding and architecting. You know?   Caitlin Priday: (56:31) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (56:32) It's just this very interesting dynamic to observe. And yes, I think that's a good distinction around, I guess, life is ceremony and our own personal relationship with that aspect. I'm a yoga teacher, and I find posting... My personal practice, I can't share it. I cannot. I've never been able to record. I watch people on Instagram. I'm like, "It's so interesting that they can record their practice." Like, I can record a class that I'm intending to share, and share it. But if it's like my practice, I'm like, "This is..." It's like recording myself having sex with my partner. It's very intimate for me. And yeah, I find it really interesting. Not to say other people are wrong, but it's just something I've never been able to cross as a boundary for myself.   Caitlin Priday: (57:18) Yeah. I mean, that's a really good point because we have to question before we post things, why are we actually posting it? Do we want validation? Do we want other people to think we're spiritual? Do we want to sell a workshop that we're bringing out in three months? You know? When something is truly sacred and intimate, why would you feel like you need other people to be involved in that? That's between you and the divine, or you and your ancestors or you and your spirit team. Yeah, I think it's a good point for us to put into the podcast. I think that would be a thing in itself.   Tahnee: (57:52) Yeah. Totally. It's like its whole-   Caitlin Priday: (57:54) I can feel the mystery between you and I going, "Well, that can be a whole other conversation."   Tahnee: (57:59) Yeah. I find this stuff... and I guess I find it valuable to discuss with people who have relationships with these things, because a part of me values that if someone saw someone's practice and was moved by their intentionality and their self connection and... I can see the value in that being a transmission that people can receive and maybe inspire them into their own version of that. You know?   Caitlin Priday: (58:27) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (58:27) I get it. I get that seeing someone's alter can inspire someone else to go and maybe... I remember last year seeing pictures from people on All Hallows' Eve kind of connecting with their ancestors and I thought, "Oh, that's actually really beautiful."   Caitlin Priday: (58:45) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (58:45) But I agree with you that part of me was also like, "Urgh. Did the ancestors want to be like on Instagram as well?"   Caitlin Priday: (58:52) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (58:54) Yeah. And I don't have a black and white answer for it. I have a very uncomfortable relationship with social media as it is. But I do think it's interesting when it comes to these things that are deeply intimate, like how do we maybe inspire or serve others through our work and our practise, and also keep something for ourselves. So just a constant-   Caitlin Priday: (59:13) We just embody it.   Tahnee: (59:15) Yeah. Constant dance, I think.   Caitlin Priday: (59:17) Also, as we learn to grow our power and embody our power in a true deep way, we don't... People come, you know?   Tahnee: (59:24) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Caitlin Priday: (59:25) When you sit truly deeply in your power, it's like you could be in a room with heaps of people and the person that is magnetic... And you remember this from Daoism as well, power and magnetism. Somebody that's magnetic is very obviously out there and they are showing that they have a sense of power, but mostly it's magnetism. People are drawn what they're emitting. But then you look into the room and if you can scan and find a person that's got true power, they're quiet and hidden. And when somebody's ready for particular types of work, they'll find their power.   Tahnee: (01:00:00) What they need.   Caitlin Priday: (01:00:02) Because real power comes from deep containment, I believe. But that's a very Daoist perspective as well.   Tahnee: (01:00:08) I mean, I completely agree.   Caitlin Priday: (01:00:10) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:00:10) Actually it was something my mum taught me years, and years, and years ago when I was a little girl. She would say, "The people that want to look rich or want to impress you or..." she's like, "They're the people that don't have the thing that they're promoting. Look for the people that look poor and look..." She's like, "They look like their lives aren't together. They're actually probably the ones you want to be talking to or learning from."   Tahnee: (01:00:34) And I remember it sat with me, especially when we moved to the Shire, where so many... We call them two-minute noodle shamans. There's so many people that are self-proclaimed gurus and healers and spiritual people. I have such a strong radar now. I'm just like, "No." You know?   Caitlin Priday: (01:00:49) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:00:50) But I think that's partly from that teaching she gave me which was, "Yeah, don't take things at face value, and trust your instincts as well around, I guess, energies such as..." It tells us everything we need to know, really. So then you can tune into it.   Caitlin Priday: (01:01:06) Yeah. I mean it's like somebody that's really deeply grounded in their power, and it comes back to womb work, to just finish that off is in Empress, we teach people how to clear their womb out. They become grounded in their womb and their lower dantian so that they have strong womb boundaries. Because women are programmed by society to be leaky, to be like, "If I give away my energy or my sexiness or whatever." They put their energy out in order to receive something back. Not all women. But I mean, I've been there. I was horrific in my early twenties, just leaking my energy everywhere to try and get attention because I hadn't had enough therapy yet, or my inner child wanted mommy and daddy to validate me, so I would put that energy everywhere. But as I'd learnt how to be more contained and cleansed and clear in my womb, I feel more solid in my power that I now can like sit comfortably in my body.   Caitlin Priday: (01:02:03) I feel comfortable in my experience. I don't want to escape my feelings or leak my energy somewhere in order to get something back. And that is what women, I believe, need to learn through their lives, is to how to have really strong wound boundaries, to not be the good girl or to not cross their own yeses and nos, you know? To really be firm in themselves, I think that's how femininity will heal in someone, when women can be comfortable with being in their bodies and being firm in their womb boundaries, like authentic to who they are. Not to say that you don't want to be sexy sometimes. It's not like that, it's just being sexy with the right person in the right place.   Tahnee: (01:02:47) Yeah. With the right intentions or...   Caitlin Priday: (01:02:49) Exactly.   Tahnee: (01:02:49) Kind of understanding why you're drawn to that expression and integrating that, I think.   Tahnee: (01:02:55) I'm interested, to sort of lead us toward a conclusion, if your... Obviously you've done all this work and very deep work, and now you're more... I feel like I'm hearing you saying you're more integrated in terms of day-to-day kind of living this stuff and really embodying it and not it needing to be the thing where you have to leave your home and go out in the world. It's like bringing it back to your little container in your home, in your life. What do you do or what are your practices that you use to stay energetically in balance? I mean, especially being a practitioner working in the birth space. I think birth is like... I seriously think in terms of ceremony, it's the most powerful ceremony I've attended.   Caitlin Priday: (01:03:42) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (01:03:44) I remember my husband going to visit a friend of ours who was birthing. It was when my daughter was very little. He just went to take them food and some drinks or something, and he came back and his pupils were all dilated and he was on this oxytocin high kind of thing. He's like, "Oh my god, birth is so amazing." And I was like, "This is a guy, who's walked into a room and walked out again. It's not like he's swallowed anything. And he's so high right now on this energy."   Tahnee: (01:04:14) But I think it took him a while to come back down to earth too. And I was like, "I wonder how, as a doula and as a bodyworker you harmonise yourself at the end of the day?"   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:26) Yeah. I mean, I'm not perfect.   Tahnee: (01:04:28) No, none of us are.   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:30) Message to all the listeners out there, I am a devil as much as I am a saint, but I am okay with that. I drink cocktails sometimes, ladies.   Tahnee: (01:04:40) Integration, baby.   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:42) I still drink alcohol and I eat meat.   Tahnee: (01:04:44) Margaritas.   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:45) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:04:45) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:47) I do eat meat, okay? But actually, that said, I have found meat for me, good quality meat, is really helpful for me.   Tahnee: (01:04:55) It's so grounding.   Caitlin Priday: (01:04:57) It's so grounding for me. Of course I have periods off. I detox and do things like that. But I'm a human. I drink margaritas, I go out for fine dining. I do all of those things, but I actually find that that does help me be integrated. The more that I've accepted my humanness has been the biggest blessing ever. Because when I felt disembodied and traumatised as a younger woman in my 20s, I wanted to escape my body and be a vegan and not wear shoes and all of these things, but I was so out of my body. Whereas, I'm now so in my body, which is very annoying sometimes but-   Tahnee: (01:05:32) Having a body?   Caitlin Priday: (01:05:33) You know?   Tahnee: (01:05:36) Rats.   Caitlin Priday: (01:05:36) It's a dense journey in this hate suit, isn't it? Oh my god. But I let myself feel the feelings that I need to go through. I'm not perfect all the time, but I'm learning how to be better. And yeah, routine. My partner's been amazing at helping me with that. Going to the gym, being strong in my body, going for beach walks, having swims, going to bed at 9:00 every night. Finding better boundaries with social media, which can be challenging when you run your own business but I'm getting better at that. Drinking lots of water. And then just with my actual clinic practice, when I shut the door and a clinic session is over, I shut the door. They don't come home with me.   Caitlin Priday: (01:06:17) I wash my hands. I throw out their salt water bowl. I blow the candles out and I say, "That's enough." And that's my boundary that I've learnt with spirits and with people's stuff. I don't compassion fatigue out the way that I used to five years ago. I don't absorb people, but that's because I've done enough therapy that I feel sovereign in my own self that I can be caring and compassionate for someone else but I don't need to absorb their shit to feel like I'm a good practitioner.   Tahnee: (01:06:47) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Caitlin Priday: (01:06:47) Yeah. So for me it's very much about routine.   Tahnee: (01:06:51) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:06:52) Yeah, it's, "Goodbye. Shut the door. Session is over." Yeah. But again, that's another topic.   Tahnee: (01:07:00) Yeah. Well, a really interesting one. And I think when you touch people in any capacity or spend time with people in a therapeutic way, that tendency for the energy to move from, "I don't want to deal with the person that's not well." In Daoism, we call it sick energy, which I don't like because it implies that the person is sick. But it's like energy moves to where there's cleanliness and faith and positivity and light. It's like, you can pick up a whole lot of stuff if you're not careful.   Caitlin Priday: (01:07:35) Yeah. Well, I do get clearnings a lot, which is part of my shamanic work as well, because I offer clearings. But I'm fortunate enough that we have a big group of people that I trust. So I exchange.   Tahnee: (01:07:47) [crosstalk 01:07:47].   Caitlin Priday: (01:07:47) I get a clearing once a month, but I also work with other energy workers as well that I trust to help me just to make sure that my vessel's good. And I know when something's not right. If I've picked up something from somebody, I've got tools that I can use to clear that out. But at the end of the day, if I don't have someone, I just go to the beach.   Tahnee: (01:08:06) Yeah, god bless.   Caitlin Priday: (01:08:08) Yeah. Thank you, Mamma Ocean.   Tahnee: (01:08:10) Cold water and sunshine [crosstalk 01:08:11].   Caitlin Priday: (01:08:11) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:08:13) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:08:13) Or a bath. You know, a bath with Epsom salts and a handful of salt and some essential oils.   Tahnee: (01:08:18) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:08:19) You know, there's plenty of tools out there. But maybe you need to get Sharon on the podcast.   Tahnee: (01:08:22) Yeah. I was thinking about that. She sounds like fun. Yeah. Well, that sounds like a really amazing spot to wrap up. But I want to remind people that obviously your workshops are coming up in March in this area, Bellingen, and then you'll have something online. So I'll put the links to your website on the show notes. Will they have all those events?   Caitlin Priday: (01:08:44) Yeah, yeah. Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:08:45) And we'll also link to your social media. And for those of you who are interested, Nourishing Those Who Nurture is the book that Caitlin worked on with Tahlia. I'll link to her interview as well, because I think you guys are just such a great pairing and both have so much wisdom.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:01) She's the best.   Tahnee: (01:09:01) Yeah. I think it's really beautiful. I can just totally see how you guys connected to [crosstalk 01:09:08].   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:07) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:09:08) You're sort of like almost yin and yang in a way.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:10) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (01:09:11) It's really beautiful. But then a lot of overlap as well. Like [inaudible 01:09:14] of how you guys-   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:15) Yeah, best business partner ever.   Tahnee: (01:09:17) Yeah. And your book is such a testament obviously that you guys were able to produce something so beautiful.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:24) Thank you.   Tahnee: (01:09:25) And yeah, I've had so many women write to me since we had Tahlia on saying they loved the book and everything.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:31) Oh good.   Tahnee: (01:09:31) So yeah, for those of you who are in that sort of space of whether you care for mums or you're just interested in how you support, or if you're pregnant or postpartum yourself, get a copy of that. And if people want to see you, like if you're based in the Byron area, clinically are they able to work with you or?   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:47) Yeah, definitely.   Tahnee: (01:09:48) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:49) I work online as well.   Tahnee: (01:09:50) Ah, cool.   Caitlin Priday: (01:09:50) So if people are interested in more of that wound stuff, I offer sessions via distance, which is just as powerful, and I love it so much. And also run kinesiology and closing the bones and postpartum support in the Byron Shire as well so if there's any-   Tahnee: (01:10:06) Yeah, that more has to be done in person?   Caitlin Priday: (01:10:09) Yeah, closing the bones is not something I can do online. It's a very manual thing.   Tahnee: (01:10:14) Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:10:14) But there's lots of information about that on my website as well. But I love working with absolutely anyone, woman or man or child. So if you feel a resonance, I'm here.   Tahnee: (01:10:24) I actually didn't know that what you said about closing the bones being for grave mother sort of things, I think that's a real beautiful takeaway that you can use these things for multiple purposes.   Caitlin Priday: (01:10:36) Yeah.   Tahnee: (01:10:37) Yeah. So, for those of you... I'll put this link in the show notes, but it's Caitlin Priday, C-A-I-T-L-I-N P-R-I-D-A-Y, dot com.   Caitlin Priday: (01:10:45) Mm-hmm (affirmative).   Tahnee: (01:10:45) And there's also links there to your social media. So if you're keen to follow along, and... Yeah. Caitlin's sharings are really good. That poem you wrote about enjoying your maidenhood I thought was really beautiful. Made me a little bit jealous.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:00) Aw.   Tahnee: (01:11:00) I want to keep having fun.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:02) We can swap. I'll hold your baby.   Tahnee: (01:11:06) Yeah. I mean, I actually love being pregnant. But sometimes I'm like, "Oh yeah." I'm in the baby-making stage of life. I'm reproducing.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:15) But you've always got that inner maiden.   Tahnee: (01:11:17) Yeah, trust me, she'll come out when she can for a margarita.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:20) I can't wait to see.   Tahnee: (01:11:23) Maybe we can have one together. Yeah.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:24) Exactly.   Tahnee: (01:11:26) All right, well thanks again so much for your time today.   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:28) Thank you.   Tahnee: (01:11:29) It was such a great chat, and like I said, for those of you who want to reach out and connect, you've got Caitlin's details there. So thank you for your time, and have a [crosstalk 01:11:36].   Caitlin Priday: (01:11:36) Thank you so much. Thanks, darling.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
Something we're passionate about at SuperFeast is honouring the depths and beauty of living with each of the five season seasons. Through observing the energetics of nature and consuming foods that are in season, we can flow in harmony with the element of each season. Summertime is the season of joy, festivities, sunshine, the heart and is associated with the Element of Fire. The energy of this season is upward and outward and driven by Yang energy. Naturally, we crave full sunshine, warmth, cooling foods, and activities that bring a sense of excitement. All too often in this season, we tend to overdo it and exhaust ourselves to the point of depletion. More than any other season, Summer is about maintaining balance (not always easy); The true art of living in Summer is to energise without exhausting. When the Fire element is in balance, the heart is strong, the mind is calm, and sleep is sound.    Here to introduce and explore the flavours, fruits, grains, vegetables, herbs, and spices of Summer, we have our favourite TCM Food Therapist, Kimberly Ashton. Kimberly's healing work centres around the power of functional food, Chinese medicine, the 5 Elements, food energetics, emotional anatomy, and energy medicine. Kimberly and Mason discuss dampness within the body, the Five-Element cycle, how to nourish the Yang energy and not overexert yourself to the point of affecting the kidneys, and adrenal burnout. Kimberly gives the full breakdown of what foods and flavours we should be eating to support vitality and how the energetics of these foods and the fire element work together within the body.    "Summer is a time for cooling foods, lighter cooking styles, a little bit of spice, a little bit of bitterness, and keeping your circulation moving; it's not a time to sit in front of the tv, save that for winter. Look after your sleep, mental, and emotional state as well because that can be easily tipped, as well, in this season".   - Kimberly Ashton      Mason and Kimberly discuss: The Fire organ system. Foods to eat in Summer. Burnout and the Kidney's. How to avoid Summer burn out. Chinese medicine food therapy. The beauty of the afternoon naps. Why we need to sweat in Summer. What is the Fire Element and Fire Qi? Signs your fire element is out of balance. Cooking and preparing food in Summer. Bitter and spice; The flavours of Summer. Listening to your body and seeing what it wants. Dampness and not over cooling the digestive system.   Who is Kimberly Ashton? Kimberly Ashton is a Holistic Wellness coach that focuses on the 5 Elements, Food Therapy and Chinese Medicine. She spent over 18 years in Asia and Shanghai, 8 of which she co-founded China’s first health food store & plant-based nutrition cooking studio. Now back in Australia, she launched Qi Food Therapy in 2020, a platform offering e-books, online courses, and coaching for “balancing life energy” through food, food energetics & emotional wellness. In 2019 she published her second book “Chinese Superfoods” in Mandarin, which encourages new generations of food therapy enthusiasts to explore Asian traditional foods, everyday ingredients & get back in the kitchen. It has sold over 7000 copies in China. Her approach is centered on cultivating an intuitive relationship with food and helping people understand their energies through food choices, cooking techniques, the 5 Elements, emotional & energy practices.   CLICK HERE TO LISTEN ON APPLE PODCAST    Resources: Kimberly's Website  Kimberly's Instagram Soothing Liver Qi Stagnation 5 Elements & Cycles e-course      Q: How Can I Support The SuperFeast Podcast? A: Tell all your friends and family and share online! We’d also love it if you could subscribe and review this podcast on iTunes. Or  check us out on Stitcher, CastBox, iHeart RADIO:)! Plus  we're on Spotify!   Check Out The Transcript Here:   Mason: (00:00) Kimberly, thanks so much for coming on again.   Kimberly: (00:02) Glad to be back. Thanks for having me.   Mason: (00:05) Yeah. Oh, it's nice. In between... since our last chat where I was able to get on, and have that session with you, diving into my dominant organs, based on your technique, which is really revealing and amazing, and really nuanced, which I really enjoyed as a part of your process, the nuance of not just having it just be like, "This one organ system kind of just..." Yeah. You went deeper. It was nice.   Kimberly: (00:31) It's fun knowing our predominant elements. I always have to catch myself because we all have five elements in and around us, but we have a predominant three that are more easily to get out of balance, let's say. Or more typical that come out in our emotions and personality. And food. We're driven to certain foods based on if you're an earth element or a wood element person. And yeah. It's really fun. And today we'll be talking further on the elements, and more so with the fire and summer element.   Mason: (01:03) I definitely recommend everyone jump in and have that... have a session with you if they're interested in figuring out what their dominant organs are.   Kimberly: (01:10) Yeah.   Mason: (01:10) And I'm looking forward to hearing and getting some insights about how we can weave in with the fire element and summer, and what are those foods that are going to help that fire, Qi, transform between its yin and yang. And I mean, I feel like I always... I was telling my team, I was talking about summer just especially in the Southern hemisphere, just really watch out in summer because we have these huge festivities in the middle of the time when we don't need extra festivities.   Kimberly: (01:44) That's right. That's right.   Mason: (01:48) Yeah. What's your take on that? Because I talk about going... your preparation for winter and your capacity to cultivate and be in a cycle of cultivating energy rather than just trying to heal yourself after burning out. So it starts now. Your cultivation for winter starts now. Because if you go real hard, the fire runs too hot, burns out, then you're going to be spending winter trying to heal rather than cultivating.   Kimberly: (02:13) Yeah, absolutely. And I think that's a part of modern society. We live... No matter what season it is or where you live in the world, whether it's a tropical place or in Sweden or I don't know, somewhere really cold, we tend to burn out just as a general fire element. I'll dive into more details, but we do tend to do that. And then we get to winter or the water element, and then we're burnt out. And then we're always playing catch up. Because of this cycle, we're going round and round. There's no stopping it. People don't understand that it... what you do now affects...   Kimberly: (02:46) And the Chinese practitioners in the Chinese medicine system understands that beautifully, right, that what you do now affects the next season. So as you said, even though it's Christmas and beach weather and barbecues and parties, and end of year in the Southern hemisphere, we do burn out. But people can do that at any time of the year. You can use your fire in autumn or in late summer as well. But it's just more prone to being used up. And as you said, it actually affects in the five element cycle, and the nourishing cycle, and the destructive cycle, if you want to go there quickly, you affect the kidneys, and you burn out with the adrenals.   Kimberly: (03:26) I actually personally have just done that in the last few weeks. I had acupuncture yesterday, and I was like, "I'm tired and it's self inflicted." And yeah. It was... well, it is, just too much mental and physical activity. So we're just getting too burnt. And that's a modern day trait, I think, with everyone burning out so literally with the fire element. So yeah. I'll share a little bit about what the fire element is for those people who are into Chinese medicine, which they probably are if they're listening, or maybe some people that are new and are just exploring the elements and realising the depth and the beauty of living in seasons and elements.   Mason: (04:10) Yeah, I mean, that's the beautiful thing here. If anyone is listening, as I know a lot of people... You come here and listen to this podcast. And especially, I know a lot of people really tune in for these seasonal ones when we chat, or when myself and [Taney 00:04:22] have them as well, where we go a little bit more philosophical. We're very practical in this podcast here.   Mason: (04:28) And if it's like, "Oh gosh, I don't have room for like fire element, and fire Qi," the information, that's just a way to relate that the information that we explore here, and that's why I really like your work, it's so practical and just comes down to just wisdom-based principles that have been refined... the insights that have been refined over thousands and thousands of years. It doesn't matter where you are in the world. The idea is for you to relate to what's going on energetically around you, or seasonally around you, and what food is available locally, as well. And then it's just those simple, "All right. This is the type of energy of the food that is going to keep that organ system moving. This is the food preparation that's going to keep that organ system moving" because at this time of year, this is what you need to keep going based on the temperature, based on what's going on.   Mason: (05:17) So just for everyone, just make sure you... you don't have to like... You can just be like "Oh yeah. Interesting. They're saying fire." But we're coming down to... And as you said, the burnout and the kidneys, I think this time of year, I've had a lot of people, interestingly enough, talking about hair lately. And that's a real... I think that's one... Whether it's little symptoms going on within joints, little symptoms going on within hair, and I'm kind of there at the moment as well. I really have not been quite listening to my body in how much rest it desires. And I can see my hair health just like, oh it's just not quite as rich. And it's such a big sign and a slap in the face. I had a lot of people coming to me about poor hair health. And it's like, "What do I do?" And it's like... You really... These podcasts, this topic, this is what we do. There's subtle principles.   Kimberly: (06:11) Yeah.   Mason: (06:11) Living seasonally, listening to your body so you don't burn out. And everything around... We're talking about food and preparation of food, and everything around this, you'll hear there's characters of this time of year and character of the fire organ system that hopefully gives you insights so you can get back and flow with your temperament, and aspirations with the season. And hopefully, then you don't pull from your kidneys, your water. Therefore, that's where the hair health emerges from, from the kidneys and from the lung lungs also. But it has a lot to do with just what... I think what you just said, the burnout.   Mason: (06:43) And you've got to call a spade a spade and just be like, "You know..." and I'm really trying to do. It's like a hard process for me. Just be like, "Mate, you just have to acknowledge it. You just... You can't go on this way. You're going to have to keep on provisioning smarter." So yeah. With that, let's dive in.   Kimberly: (07:02) Yeah. Awesome. And it going back to personality, as well. I believe you were earth and wood and some metal, so... And I'm wood. So I had this upward energy and go, go, go. And so people who have a lot of wood and fire, the idea of slowing down and not burning out is like, "What? No. I wouldn't do that. I can just keep going" until you can't.   Kimberly: (07:24) So the fire element is this energy of upward and outward. The springtime is pretty much up. And if we're talking about food, I always bring in asparagus and leaks, which I mentioned in the spring talk that we had, which is this upward. And this fire element is about an expansion. So if you think of pineapple, or like dragon fruit, or even vegetables that go up and out, like all the beautiful salad grains, that's the energy of the season. And so it's about embodying and capturing that through our food, but not overdoing it, if that makes sense.   Kimberly: (07:59) It is full sunshine. It's warmth and heat, but again, not overdoing it. So if you want to have some spicy food and chilli it's... it could be a good thing. And that's when a lot of people enjoy it, and they love things like Thai food, and Vietnamese spicy foods, and all the curries and things like that. It is a good time to have it because it encourages more of this expense nature. You sweat, it helps you cool down. There's many factors to incorporate those foods. But if... I want to bring it back into this idea of balance. We have to... This is a season to really watch the word balance more than any other season so that you don't overdo the parties, or overdo the spice, or overdue certain lifestyles because it also affects the organ of the heart and small intestine, which is the organ pair in this season, which is easily disturbed. And we get... It disturbs the [inaudible 00:08:57], disturbs our mental capacity, our emotional capacity, and people tend to get a little bit overly excited, or easily excitable, and bit chaotic and manic. So that's not good, either.   Kimberly: (09:09) So we have to be very careful in every season, but this one is a really easy one to tip over, I see and I also feel in my experience with the five elements. So the idea of overexcitement for some people is a bit weird, potentially. They're like, "No. Being happy and full of joy is good." But you can overdo it.   Mason: (09:29) Yeah. Well... I mean, everyone does associate constant upward and outward motion with summer, but forgetting that the Yin Qi of the fire element has got such a calm serenity. It's on cruise control. It's relaxed. It's... I mean, it's like a Sunday... it's it like a summer afternoon nap. You know? It's like swinging in the hammock while reading. But I feel Christmas and New Year, especially, they hijack that time.   Kimberly: (10:03) Yes. Yes.   Mason: (10:03) And I mean, and I don't know why I'm surrounded by so many [foreign language 00:10:07], so many birthdays around at the moment. And you've got to... I mean, and you-   Kimberly: (10:11) A lot of birthday parties.   Mason: (10:13) And this... As you said, that excitement, it's the thing that I often... I think for our... where we are in the Southern hemisphere, I think it really throws off the entire other cycle more than anything else. That, and then in getting around to autumn, and not able to transition down and welcome and mourn the fact that the summer's gone.   Kimberly: (10:33) Yes.   Mason: (10:34) Everyone, if you can... Yeah. Quality, not quantity. So if you can get quality celebration in upward times where we get really excited, and then be sure that you come down and cruise during these months would be... I think that's good... Good way to go.   Kimberly: (10:48) Yeah. You bring up a good point about afternoon naps, something I don't do. It's just not in my... It's not in my DNA, but I should. And I'll just briefly mention a few imbalances, so how do you know your fire element is out of balance? And then we can talk about foods to support that. You get heart palpitation, like actual physical disturbance of the heart. You get anxious, you get some insomnia, there's a lot of sleep issues that surface during the height of summer for people. You get, obviously, more easily sensitive to the heat outside as the temperature's rising. You get nervous. You get forgetful, as well. So there's a lot of agitation in this chaos, wire-iness, to the fire element as well. So... But as you said, if you're balancing, you can have a nap. You can slow down in the height of summer, and you take the time for a little bit of cooling down that fire, heat, and excitement, which is really, really key.   Mason: (11:48) You know what? Just what you're saying, what it... something points out to something to me, like... Because quite often, people find themselves in situations where they're like, "Well, that's all... That's very well and easy for you to say that, but I can't because of this. I've made... I've got this many kids," or "I've got... I'm in this phase of my business." I've been really watching myself kind of say that. And then watching the decisions that I'm making that are going to affect my next two years or three years. And it's like... you've got to become a custodian of the fire, the future fire.   Kimberly: (12:17) Mm.   Mason: (12:17) So it's like, "Oh. Well at least I'm going to learn from when I've bitten off more than I can chew. And I'm going to ensure that I make choices that when I get around to summers three years from now, that I actually do have greater capacity to get into that serene flow."   Kimberly: (12:32) Yes. All love that future of fire. I wrote down a note here as well to... which kind of ties in with that future fire idea. It's like, energise but not exhaust. So you want to have the energy in summer... well, the whole year round really, and that flow of yin and yang, and that balance, but not exhaust. And we tend to, in modern day society, to just go to the edge and exhaust ourselves, and then try and catch up and take herbs, and eat food, and sleep. And then you really depleted yourself to another level and it's harder to catch up, so...   Kimberly: (13:05) But on that note, there are foods that can help in the season. And for those that are familiar with the flavours and the five elements of five seasons of five flavours, it's one of bitterness, and not many people like to hear that because likes to eat bitter foods. But in Chinese cuisine, there's a lot of bitter and spicy foods that can... They don't have to be like eating something really obviously bitter or spicy like a whole chilli or like... I don't know if you've ever had bitter melon in Chinese cuisine?   Mason: (13:40) I was thinking about bitter melon. Yeah.   Kimberly: (13:44) The kugua? Oh. It's like... I used to hate it. And it's a really weird-looking food, a vegetable, as well, but it is the classic vegetable in Chinese, in summertime. There's a few others, but that is the classic because it just... it goes straight to where it needs to go in the body, and it does its job, and you feel great afterwards, after you've had it. And there's obviously ways to cook its so it doesn't taste so disgusting. But yeah. So you're looking at some bitter and spice. So as I mentioned a little bit earlier, a little bit of chilli, but it... I'm not a big chilli fan, but you can have other spices that make your food taste good. You can go to Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Thai cuisine and borrow from their condiments list.   Mason: (14:25) Spice rack. Yep.   Kimberly: (14:26) Spice rack. Yeah.   Mason: (14:27) Condiments list. Yep.   Kimberly: (14:28) Yeah. And herbs as well. Like Thai basil and all those beautiful flavours, as well. And there's a reason I wanted to explain as well why they have those in... especially in tropical places in Southeast Asia, is to cope with the season. It's pretty much summer all year round there. So they have foods and herbs that... and spices that help with that. So that's important just to start thinking about, oh, different ways of eating in different times of the year. Because most people that I meet eat pretty much the same all year round. And so I'm always encouraging like, "Explore different flavours, explore different vegetables, spices." Not every day, but maybe once a week, cook something different, or borrow from different cultures.   Kimberly: (15:12) So the main aim of food therapy in the fire element or in the summertime is to cool, hydrate, and enjoy your food as well. Because I don't want people to become too... to worry about cooling themselves and having certain ingredients. So I'll mention a few of those ingredients that support that. But then I'll also talk about the digestion, because it's really important that we don't overcool the body. I did that when I first started doing Chinese medicine, and it was in summer, and my TCM doctor was like, "Oh, the cooling foods." So I overdosed on some of these foods. So I'll mention things like zucchini, melons of all types, watermelon, rock melon, mint, papaya, chrysanthemum is a very popular.   Mason: (15:59) Yeah. Drainer. Drain from the face. Yeah.   Kimberly: (16:01) Yeah. Just cool the body and get... Exactly. So if there's too much heat coming up, we want to cool the body, the whole body, but from the upper half. Cucumbers also fall in the melon family.   Kimberly: (16:13) And then the bitter of flavours can come from bitter of melon. If anyone hasn't heard of bitter melon, Google it, because it's fascinating. It's a really wrinkly-looking green thing, and scary on the inside with seeds. But as I said, highly nutritious, the most bitter thing you'll ever eat. And then on a Western, it's probably a lot easier to associate with arugula or rocket. That's got that nice bitter quality to it. And look at the shape of rocket and arugula leaves. So that's something good, as well, to incorporate. So those are nice cooling bitter flavours that you can start to add to your salads, or your stir fries, or your soups. Like a zucchini soup, I like to make it with leak. So you can still use your spring vegetables. You don't have to ignore the green good stuff that we talked about previously, but just starting to add more variety because this is the most abundant time of year, where we have... in the farmer's markets or in the fruit and veg shop, you have so much choice. So really start to have more variety in your meals.   Kimberly: (17:15) And then the colour red. So the colour of the season is this beautiful red quality. So that could be literally things like red rice, or red lentils, or red beans, as well as red coloured vegetables. Last summer I discovered red sorrel. I don't know if you've... You've probably...get that a lot up there, as well. It's a beautiful leaf, and it's really bitter. But it looks like a baby Swiss chard kind of, and it's just delicious. It's got these red veins through it.   Mason: (17:47) We mainly just got lemon sorrel.   Kimberly: (17:49) Lemon sorrel's good, too. Yeah.   Mason: (17:51) I mean, that's like... That's a nice thing about the bitterness coming from all those greens, and a little bit of dandelion here and there when you're walking around. It's just like... I mean, that's where... like, you're having bit of melon available is really great, but it is really... The bitterness kind of slaps you in the face. And I think that's the thing like... It's like it's all mangoes, it's all calling foods, and it's all easy to eat celebration foods. And it's like bringing foods to take to that party, and that Christmas party. Things that are rich, things that are really easy for everyone to eat. And it's... no one wants to bring that challenging meal a lot of the time that's like... got like quite bitter of tones.   Mason: (18:31) Maybe... everyone's not used to having massive aromatic... You said like a lot of the spices we get here, whether it's in India, Italy, it's like... They're often... It's like, of course. They're aromatic, and there's a bit of pungency in there, and bitterness is just layered in through all of them. So it's nice to put them in there, but... I think that is a... It's a good... Just little heads up warning, and something good you can do, just like what I do. Walk around, you see like a little bit of sorrel, you see a little bit of dandelion, just go and whack that in, just to kind of ground yourself, and remind yourself that, "Hey, it's not all just like getting the helium... getting in the big balloon and just going up, up, up, up, up, up, up into the sky." You need something to slap you on the side of the face and be like, "Come back down to earth, buddy. Here. Have some bitter tones." Because it's... Otherwise, it's-   Kimberly: (19:16) That'll do it.   Mason: (19:18) That'll... And it does do it. As you said, the over-cooling that's just... I mean, it is... People just run off in one direction. They forget... I think everyone forgets that in the centre of the elemental wheel is earth.   Kimberly: (19:35) Mm.   Mason: (19:35) So there is like a consistency.   Kimberly: (19:38) Yes. Yes.   Mason: (19:38) There is still... It's still okay to have a little bit of warm water to nourish the spleen first thing in the morning.   Kimberly: (19:45) Absolutely. Yeah. And exactly. And that's... We'll get to that when we talk about the digestive system. Because we tend to either overcool, or go to that extreme, like you said, and think in summer we can just have lots of ice cream and like raw salads, and... But there isn't... A huge benefit to still having some warmth, whether it's warm water in the morning, especially in the morning, something warm so that we're not just hurting the spleen first thing in the morning. Just because it's summer and it's hot outside, the body on the inside, especially the stomach and spleen don't enjoy having ice cream for breakfast, for example.   Kimberly: (20:23) So some other foods that have a little bit of redness to them, but also have that bitterness are... I mentioned red rice, but I'm a really big fan of amaranth leaves, and we can get those here quite easily. Or even amaranth seed, so you can make a really nice porridge or desserts. Like, we can get quite creative with these fire elemental summer seeds, grains, vegetables, fruits, where we don't just have to stick to the ones that I mentioned. I mentioned the most common ones to start with, but I do encourage people to explore other grains and vegetables. So amaranth is a nice purple... well, you can get green ones as well, but purple leafy vegetable, which is a really nice thing.   Kimberly: (21:03) And then another really cool... I love sea vegetables, and I think you know this. So we can start to look at dulse, as well, red coloured seaweeds. So we don't want to just keep it to land vegetables, and cooling, and things like that. But we can bring in a lot of the sea vegetables, as well.   Mason: (21:22) Do you use that in soups mostly?   Kimberly: (21:25) Yeah. So I'm... The easiest way I found it is in flakes, so the dulse flakes that you can get in the health food store. You can put it on salads, you can put it on like savoury porridge or congee or meal, or things like that. Because it's in flake form, it's very small. So it's not too... It's not actually that strong. But it's the right colour and the energy, quality of the food that you can sprinkle out on anything really. It's not as strong as like wakame or arame, those sort of more suitable for like miso soup, or more Japanese style. Dulse flakes are just... you can put them on anything. You can put them on barbecue things if you want to. Yeah.   Kimberly: (22:06) So again, explore are different things that you can add to your spice rack, or to your kitchen condiments. I think condiments are one of the most fun things. And especially in summer, you can make really nice toppings or dips, or sources to go with your meals.   Kimberly: (22:23) I will get back to the cooling food. So I mentioned mint. Some people love or hate cilantro or coriander. That's a great one for this season. And mung beans are the classic Chinese cooling food outside of bitter melon. And I have to say one more Chinese vegetable, which is it's called winter melon. It's a silly name, dong gua, but it's this big melon. It looks like 20 times bigger than a cucumber. And it has cooling and dampness removing properties to it, which is also the beauty of Chinese medicine, food therapy. Every food pretty much has a function in a season, in a meal. So yeah. I know mung beans aren't a Chinese ingredient. They're used a lot in Indian cooking and in Ayurveda as well, so we can start to look at that.   Kimberly: (23:13) And lotus seed, again a little bit more on the Chinese ingredient, but beautiful in soups and stews. And chrysanthemum I mentioned as well before. And then papaya is a good one that's very often and used, as is dragon fruit and guava. I love guava. So again, there's like nutritional benefits. There's a lot of functional things. And a lot of these fruits help with your digestion, help with dampness, as well as cooling the body. They... All the tropical fruits have this beautiful cooling nature to them. And ginkgo. I have to mention ginkgo. It's got a bitter and sweet flavour to it. I don't know if you... Do you use ginkgo at all?   Mason: (23:57) Yeah.   Kimberly: (23:58) Yeah? As a whole ingredient?   Mason: (24:01) I don't use nut. I use leaf.   Kimberly: (24:03) You use leaf. Oh, nice.   Mason: (24:04) It's in a herb formula that's-   Kimberly: (24:06) Oh, great. Nice. Yeah. The so ginkgo is like a yellow... It's big for a seed, but it's a big chewy kind of seed, and it's... You'll see it in Chinese stir-fries a lot, but it's a classic also summer ingredient. Yeah. It's got a lot of... It's got like a multitude of functions including dampness and stabilising the heart, as well. So I love it. And it's good for the brain. I know that you can tell us more on the tonic side of it. But it's just another ingredient to consider yeah.   Mason: (24:50) Yes. Ancient dinosaur tree.   Kimberly: (24:50) Mm-hmm (affirmative). And then in terms of cooking styles, because that's also something that I love to talk about because that's also seasonal. So if we're cooking the same thing all year round in the oven, which is a very easy thing to do, especially with Western cooking, we get a lot of heat. And if you look in Asia, traditionally, they didn't really have... in Southeast Asia or Southern China, they didn't have big ovens like to make bread and bake whole roasts and things like that in summer in particular.   Kimberly: (25:20) So it's important to change or shift, adjust your cooking styles to incorporate more stir-fries, or steaming, or quick sautes, blanching, which just means a dip in hot water. It's a really nice way to have a bit of light cooking. So you're not cooking things soggy or in the oven, but not all raw. And that leads me to the point on raw food, which I think we might've mentioned last time, but I've been hearing a lot more lately... I've been listening to a few people talk about Chinese medicine, but also the correlation with Ayurveda and other natural medicines, and this idea of strengthening or keeping the digestive system strong, and they call it Agni. In Chinese, it's Yang Qi or Yang Pi, Pi being the spleen and stomach, Pi Wei.   Kimberly: (26:09) So especially in summer, when we think it's really hot and we want to reach for cold orange juice, first thing in the morning, you mentioned having some warm water, or some warm tea, herbal tea first, then you can have whatever else later, so as not to shock the stomach, and spleen, and the whole intestine system. So I really recommend people to keep that in mind, and not burn out or really cool down too much their stomach in spleen.   Mason: (26:41) It's amazing how quickly untethered you can be. And it is the nice thing about summer, is you kind of... the party animal kind of comes out, and so it should because to an extent, you want to be free...   Kimberly: (26:53) Yeah.   Mason: (26:54) ... non-tethered to rules and dogma. But that's... You go... Well what happens, you go that step too far, you become untethered from your reality. Right?   Kimberly: (27:04) Yeah.   Mason: (27:05) Which is always-   Kimberly: (27:06) Very easy to do.   Mason: (27:07) Yeah. I mean... And it's such a fine line there. So I mean it's... As you said, it's like simple set up for success. And they're like... When you look at the organ wheel, it's like this time of year, more than ever. It's the easiest, too. And therefore, hopefully the one... the time when everyone can get onto the bandwagon soon. Like, it's get up, go and move your body, get sweating. Help the yang crack through the concrete of the yin, and all the stagnant water, and then have your warm tea, your warm water, and then you've set yourself up right.   Mason: (27:38) And then, when you do inevitably break the rules because you're like, "No, no. I'm going to be good. And I'm not going to have any one of those organic, natural, homemade ice blocks. I'm not going to have too many of those." And then everyone's having one that like... in the mid-morning and you're like, "Oh, why not? I'll just have a little one of those, have another little one."   Kimberly: (27:54) Yeah. Yeah.   Mason: (27:54) At least you set yourself up with the principles correctly. And I always want to remind people, remember you can... If you're feeling cold in there, maybe it's a super hot day, and you're like, "This is medicine." Some, maybe. It's... You feel the cold, hang around just a tiny bit. And you sneeze once. You go, "Oh, cool. I'm going to go and have a tea." Boom. If you're really cold, you go, "Oh, cool. I'll just go have a little bit of cinnamon." Even... It's not a bad thing to have cinnamon in the middle of summer.   Kimberly: (28:20) Absolutely.   Mason: (28:20) Just kind of like...   Kimberly: (28:20) Absolutely. Yeah.   Mason: (28:22) It's simple. Simple little techniques.   Kimberly: (28:24) Yeah. And you bring up the point... I thought about it earlier to mention, as well, of just listening to your body and seeing what it wants. Because just because everyone is eating, I don't know, a salad or whatever. Mint, things that are cooling, things that I mentioned, you might need more warmth. Some people are still... even though they've come through spring and the wood element, they're still feeling... there's still coldness trapped in there, in their body.   Kimberly: (28:46) And the fire element is actually about hydration that I've mentioned as well, but also circulation. So the heart is responsible for circulation. And a lot of people will still have cold hands and feet through summer. So that's a perfect example of what you just said. Like, you might need cinnamon. You might still need to have some of those warming herbs and tonics and things like that because you're still cold on the inside even though it's 30 degrees, 40 degrees outside. So it is very much listening to your body and what it needs. And just because Kimberly is talking about cooling foods, maybe it's not going to work for you because you're not warmed up yet, actually.   Mason: (29:21) I think it's... I mean, I've talked about it before with how... before our acupuncturist moved away. And he would... Taney did kind of like... and Taney was vegetarian for so long, but maybe not with your principles in place. I know you help people do this in a way without meat. But with... after Taney came through, she was quite depleted, especially within her spleen. And our acupuncturist was like, "Hey, listen. I know you want to live super seasonally, but you've been off the elemental cycle for so long, it's probably going to be two to three years of you camped out within the spleen, grounding diet. Don't... Just because it's summer, don't run off and just smash a bajillion mangoes and think that you can just go and enjoy the fruits of summer when you haven't actually..." I'm putting it a little bit more bluntly than he did. "You haven't put in the time. You're not listening to your body. You haven't put in the time."   Mason: (30:21) And I kind of feel like this with a lot of people I see. It's like, "Well, you've... It's going to take you a long time before you've got the capacity to warm yourself up and heat yourself up before you can actually go nuts in summer. But you haven't..." Yeah. Because the foundations of the diet haven't been created. And as we said before we jumped on, yes. There's a different principles within each season, which... within each organ, but they are connected-   Kimberly: (30:45) Yeah.   Mason: (30:45) ... by something. There is a continuity that's there, and you kind of have to cultivate that, and know and feel that, and know what your baseline markers are. Know... You need to know what your edges are, so you don't get exhausted. You need to know how to feel, whether you are cold.   Kimberly: (31:02) Yes.   Mason: (31:02) You need to be able to perceive what the difference is between you living in a way where you can heat your feet and your hands, and not.   Kimberly: (31:09) Yes.   Mason: (31:10) And then you... So maybe you might not be completely exploding into summer or out there into autumn, but you will be going... learning from the principles as we go along. It's an important one. Yeah.   Kimberly: (31:22) Yeah. Absolutely. And some people... You bring up a great point because some people... like, they might be listening and thinking... especially at the beginning, when we were talking about this explosive energy and warmth and they're like, "I don't feel that. I'm flat or cold or..." And it might take three years for somebody to warm up, or to feel that energy of summer because they haven't had that for so long. Or you live in a really cold place, and your summer's really short, and it takes a lot more energy to get to that fire-iness. So yeah, we need to be very mindful of your climate, your individual constitution, and your condition of where you're living. Someone who's listening, maybe if they're in Singapore, or Hong Kong, or Mexico where it's much warmer the whole year, that's a different story. Right?   Kimberly: (32:08) You're going to have different foods, and different... Hopefully, you're not having cold hands and feet in a very warm climate. That might actually be an indication of even more severe cold on the inside. But yeah. No, circulation is really important as well in summer. So you mentioned getting up and moving. So exercise and sweating because one of the, the biggest problems with dampness, and I'd love to talk about that as well even though it's more earth element, we can have that at any time of the year. But if it's not being expressed out of the body through sweating, and it doesn't have to be a gym session. Most people think of sweating in that terms, but you can go for a walk in summer, and still sweat. Or you can just dance or do something fun that encourages that energy of upward outwardness, but also the sweating.   Kimberly: (32:56) But you mentioned mango. So that's why it brought my attention and back to dampness. So in summer, we tend to enjoy lots of fruit, which is great, but you can overdo that, as well. And a lot of the raw fruit in summer, particularly mangos and bananas, tropical fruits of... and those two will... For someone who has dampness issues, which is a stagnation in the spleen, and then it can move up to the lungs as well, and you get mucus. So we want to keep that clean and not being bogged down. So I liken dampness to being like a swamp, or a steam room in your digestive system. It's a very unusual term for us in the West, but something to just keep in mind. And I actually personally think there's a lot of gut issues, and IBS, and things around that.   Kimberly: (33:41) Whereas if... And if you tie that into Chinese medicine, you're like, "Well, that makes sense." It's just like this bogged down moist, not pleasant environment. So sweating is really key, having the right foods. So just reducing your mangoes or bananas and dairy for a while, and having a lot of those foods that I mentioned earlier, actually. Those bitter flavours, a little bit of cooked foods, and dampness removing foods such as coix seeds or Job's tears. They're around... you can get them in Australia quite easily. And I didn't mention corn yet, but corn is a really nice summer vegetable. And corn silk, which is the hair of the corn, is a really nice thing just to boil... boil the whole corn with that hair, and then drink the water. That is like one of the best ways to get dampness out you. You just pee more. It's fantastic. But again, keeping that water and fluid metabolism balanced and moving, and not overburdening your spleen is key in summer, as well as late summer. Excuse me. But very important in this hot weather. Yeah. I don't know how you feel about dampness.   Mason: (35:02) Oh no. Like just... I mean dampness, I feel like it's the most prevalent issue we see from the Western diet, especially when I came out of the raw vegan... I came out of the raw vegan community. And so that was the biggest... the most common diagnosis that everyone would self-diagnosed, or that you'd... I'd come across a furious acupuncturist who would just be like waving their fist at me in the face for all the damp spleens that we were encouraging and creating. I was quite aware of it early on, because I personally didn't care whether I had to change my diet. Going back onto animal foods was a big change for me. But I didn't... I never... I stayed doing, whether it was bee products or colostrum, I stayed there, with my intention being health.   Mason: (35:55) So for me, when I started, if I would see anything start emerging that showed that I was actually... that my foods were too cold, I'd just change and alter my diet. And so I kind of like... I used to get very annoyed. I was very annoyed by Taoism and Chinese medicine because it would just... it would like ruin the party that we had. Like, we've got the perfect diet.   Kimberly: (36:18) Yep.   Mason: (36:20) But it ultimately... It's saving a lot of people. It's like the paramedics at a festival where everyone's gone nuts, going too hard-   Kimberly: (36:27) Yes.   Mason: (36:28) ... just sitting on the sides like, "Come here. All right. Come on. Yeah. We'll get you on some of these. We'll get you on more of the grounding diet."   Kimberly: (36:35) It's so true.   Mason: (36:36) And again, I mean, like just pointing out to everyone. I do include meat in my diet. I know you don't. You have a like vegetarian approach to it.   Kimberly: (36:45) I'm a flexitarian, to be very honest. So the vegans that are listening won't like to hear that. But I've done a bit of-   Mason: (36:51) We've got pretty inclusive vegans listening [crosstalk 00:36:54].   Kimberly: (36:53) Well that... Maybe I'm a... Yeah. Well, I'm a vegan flexitarian, so I'm not strictly anything. I don't like labels, so I will eat whatever I want when I want. I don't tend to eat much meat anymore. I used to, a lot. But I... Yeah. No, I'm open to eating whatever my body needs, whether it's a little bit of ghee, or some seafood. I maintain an open stance, but yeah. What I really like the challenge of is support... through the TCM lens is supporting people who want to go... who are vegan, vegetarian, because classically TCM's like, "No. You must have meat." I'm like, well, actually... I like to challenge things. You know? I'm like, hang on a second. You can do this with the wisdom of Chinese medicine, and you can do it. It's just not classically in Asia... Well, I mean, Buddhist in the temples and things like that, it can be done, is what I'm trying to say, if you do it properly.   Mason: (37:48) It's there for sure.   Kimberly: (37:48) But most people just don't do it properly.   Mason: (37:50) Well, and that's the key. And I think there's always a confusion between, well, there's an ideological diet, which that's... that we all... We're all kind of more familiar with that. But then post-ideology, which I think everyone listening has heard us talk at length about post-ideology, there's often... Because nobody... I don't know. I don't know a lot of people doing veganism and vegetarianism quite right, even though I lived within that world of collecting justification about why... But I've never really found outside of Chinese medicine principles, Ayurvedic principles, I didn't really find... I found a lot of unhealthy vegetarians in that community as well.   Mason: (38:34) So but then you get to the healing... You get into healing cycles. And that, likewise, is like a healing cycle from being excessively on Qi, Western meat-fueled, crappy oil-fuel... Nonetheless, you go into the convalescence, you go into the healing cycle. Well, maybe it's a... Maybe you go out of veganism, ideological veganism, and kind of where Tanny was at now. Acupuncturist was like, "Listen, mate. You are going to have to eat meat beyond not just every day. Like, more than one meal a day for like two years, three years." That was his approach about how to get back, and get the spleen so tight and so nourished, and that the foundations are present. And then... Then you can go off, and you earn the right to go and explore the many roads to Rome.   Kimberly: (39:19) Yeah.   Mason: (39:19) Where your diet, emerging from ancient principles and it comes about... Often I find at that point, that's when meat becomes a side.   Kimberly: (39:29) Yes.   Mason: (39:29) In any cultures where they're honed, they've got their diet, they're eating seasonally, and they know their body and they generally know for the body and the people around them, what the signs are that they are in balance nutritionally. So you can see right now there's so much fighting because everyone's fighting about what the ideal diet is, but they're in the convalescence, or the post-ideal logical stage. And that's why we've got still extreme veganism, or cleansing diets, when you come from a Western diet, extreme carnivore when people have been vegan for so long, and they've got no yang left, so they go three years of just eating meat and healing. And they're going, "Oh my God! I bloody found the way. I found it!" And it's all excess.   Kimberly: (40:17) Yeah. Either way is excess. Exactly. Yeah. And it's about the... Well, that's the beauty of Chinese medicine. So I think when acupuncturists or TCM doctors... because I was in China for so long, and they would be like... quite against vegetarianism because they would see the results of an extreme vegetarian diet, which was pretty much tofu and white rice. That was it. Like, I've seen people in Asia do it, especially when vegetarianism and veganism started only a few years ago in China in a modern Western sense. And it was very depleting. And I was running behind people going, "Don't do this. This is going to give... You're going to give yourself a bad name, the vegetarians and the vegans, because you're just taking the meat out. You're not replenishing. You're not learning about different ingredients, and herbs, and foods, and beans, and grains. You're just eating white rice and tofu, which is not very good at all."   Kimberly: (41:08) So like you said, we don't want to go to either end of deficiency or excess. You just want to find that middle ground. And that's what Chinese medicine has always been about. Right? And it's not that you'd have to eat lots of meat. They just use meat as a side, or as a medicine really. You know? To strengthen certain organs. And meat also is seasonal. You can put that onto the five elements, as well, and to eat lamb more in winter because it's warming and really building for the young Qi, and things like that.   Kimberly: (41:37) But that being said, if you're wanting to go a little less heavy in your diet summer, and the fire element is a great time to eat more vegetables, and become 50% vegetarian, whatever you want to have. So plant-based diet or things like that, where you do reduce a little bit of the meat, just on a digestion and heat perspective, it's a great time to explore that, and then use the meat and animal products more in autumn, winter, just to really warm yourself, nourish yourself, build your blood, your Qi. And again, it's that cycle and the five elements. So yeah, we shouldn't be eating lamb roasts all year round, or I don't know, raw arugula salad all year round. It's just-   Mason: (42:22) [inaudible 00:42:22], all year round.   Kimberly: (42:24) Yeah. Exactly. There's a time... There's a time. And you enjoy those foods more. Right? You're going to enjoy that salad more in summer. You're going to enjoy that lamb roast in winter or a cold day, or whatever it is. Knowing your body, knowing how you feel, you could wake up on a summer's day, or a summer's evening, and want to use the oven and roast some either vegetables or meat or whatever it is. But knowing the energy of the food and the effect on what it'll give to you, that's key, I think, more so than following a food list. And that's what... I mean, I have a food list from Chinese medicine, but you've got to know when to use them, and what you personally want to achieve from your food and cooking it.   Mason: (43:08) Well, I mean, what a great conversation to have. Don't... Yeah. I mean like, and especially that, what you pointed out, like a lot of... whether it's going to be... Like, it's going to be naturopath, same thing, or it's going to be a lot of the TCM doctors who, because of what they've seen and maybe rightfully so... They've seen the aftermath, and I've seen it a lot, of the aftermath of extreme veganism. I've also seen it of keto. So remembering... Just remembering, everyone, that there is an ideological approach to diet. And if you are looking around going, "Gosh, I'm trying to gather evidence. I'm trying to gather evidence that 'Oh, that ancient thing works because of this.' Okay, great. I feel good now. And I'm getting my dopamine hit because I'm right. I'm right. And I feel safe here."   Mason: (43:53) It's not... It's like, acknowledge where you are, but keep on moving. And then, when you're starting to get advice from other people, you'll feel that self-righteousness, especially from the carnivore kind of community at the moment, because they're so self-righteous in knowing that this is the healing because everyone's been such a soy-heavy vegan, vegetarian- dominant, or just eating shitty vegetable oils, and eating lots of crappy cereals, and so they're like, "Yes. This is the ultimate diet." But there is a difference between ideological diet, and then healing diets, and that's where keto kind of comes in. Keto in these little areas for particular clinical situations, it seems to work. And it's great.   Kimberly: (44:34) Yeah.   Mason: (44:34) But unless you feel the uniqueness, you kind of... You can use these principles, and when you kind of get out of that ideology, and you move past your own convalescence/healing stage, you will feel this uniqueness, and this... You'll feel you can just on walking past the noise, because all these people are gathered down the bottom of the mountain, yelling and angry at each other, and standing on little pedestals that they've made for themselves and tapping themselves on the back...   Mason: (45:00) But if you just don't get distracted, just keep on walking, keep on walking up the hill. And eventually all the noise will fall away, and you can still look at... whether it's Chinese medicine, you can look at Ayurveda, you can look at all the carnivore stuff and vegan stuff, but all of a sudden, the noise will go away. And what will be there is your capacity to cultivate what's right for your body, your family, wherever you are in the world. And it's a great... it's a great feeling. It's only... It's just... It's hard to get attention that way, which is almost good.   Mason: (45:30) I don't think we should be getting that much attention from our diet. We want the attention to be like a magnet kind of eventually, maybe people come and ask us about it later on, when we've cultivated that much vitality, and it... and then where people are naturally attracted. But yelling and screaming about being right, or trying to feel like you've got it right and don't have it wrong, it's... Keep on walking past all of that. And-   Kimberly: (45:52) Yep.   Mason: (45:54) And then yeah, picking up some tips along the way with what you are sharing as always helps us just get back into a harmonising kind of flow, which is always helpful.   Kimberly: (46:02) Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah, absolutely. And you said the word "vitality." So we should feel the most energised and full of vitality in summer. So if you're not, that's a great sign to know that you're doing something off, or you've been living out of harmony for the other seasons. So by the time you get to summer, we should be ready to go and have a beautiful, fun, energising summer and not get burnt out.   Kimberly: (46:29) So yeah. Hopefully, today again... the theme was more in Chinese medicine, it's all about cooling and hydrating the body and the mind and the heart in summer. Because it's just the way that it tends to go energetically a little bit too high, and too overly excited. So if you're not feeling that way, then there's something to dive into and explore. But for the most part, yeah. Cooling foods, lighter cooking styles, a little bit of spice, a little bit of bitterness through... It's easiest to do through vegetables and herbs. That's why I mentioned it. And keep... yeah. Keep your circulation moving. It's not a good time to sit in front on the sofa. Save that for winter. Yeah. And look after your sleep, and mental, emotional state as well because that can be easily tipped, as well, in this season. So yeah. We can do that through food. We can do that through changing our cooking, as well. And yeah. Then it becomes more enjoyable summer, and you can have those afternoon naps.   Mason: (47:39) I love it. Thanks so much for coming and sharing the wisdom and-   Kimberly: (47:42) My pleasure.   Mason: (47:43) ... what we know and you know. It's always nice talking to you, but especially because you've seen this... You've seen this work so many times. And the beautiful thing about Chinese medicine is it comes down to the energy, and the flavour profiles. And so it isn't... As you said, it's not about foods from China. It's about foods from where we're at. So that might mean Chinese foods and herbs, but it's about the energy of the food, and feeling that that energy flows and helps us flow in harmony with the season. So yeah, it's nice. Always... We can personalise all we want.   Kimberly: (48:16) Yes.   Mason: (48:18) And I do recommend... I don't know if there's anything else you want to share, but I do recommend everyone goes and checks out your website, which is   Kimberly: (48:29) Just .com.   Mason: (48:29) Oh, just .com? Oh, nice. Global.   Kimberly: (48:32) Yes.   Mason: (48:34) Is there anything else you wanted to leave everyone with today?   Kimberly: (48:38) Just to recap... Yeah. Introduce or explore new flavours and vegetables, and herbs and spices. And summer's a fantastic time because we've got the most choice, whether it's salads, or warm salads, or a little bit of new flavours, vegetables is something... Now's the time to do it. Or summer, when you get round to it if you're in the Northern hemisphere.   Mason: (48:59) Yeah. Yeah. Beautiful. Thank you so much. And yeah. Hopefully, we'll be able to get on soon and chat late summer.   Kimberly: (49:07) Awesome. Thank you.   Mason: (49:08) Bye.   Kimberly: (49:09) Bye.   Dive deep into the mystical realms of Tonic Herbalism in the SuperFeast Podcast!
Comments (5)

Chelsea Winter

Awesome podcast - I've gotten so much useful info and inspiration over the past 18 months from when I started listening (your podcast was the first I started listening to when I finally got into podcasts!) Thanks Mason and the team for putting out really empowering stuff!

Jul 8th

Katrina richard

As someone who has had anxiety most my life, this excites me. although it may be a while off, it's still the step in the right direction! more plant medicine!! less man made crap!

Jul 7th


Yet another amazing podcast. Such much valuable information in here! I'll be sending this one right toy sister....hint hint nudge nudge? baby on the way?

Jul 7th

Flynn Tufnell

I love Mason and Tahnee!

Mar 10th


Love it!!!!!

Aug 25th
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