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Entries in healing gardens (2)


Healing Gardens, Healing Stones; a Product Review

Healing Stones and Gardens, a DVD/Postcard Gift Set by Sherry Black and Everett Buss, Five Star Publications 

The concept of the healing garden is relatively new to North America. A study of Asian landscapes shows that such gardens have been in use for a very long time. We are only now beginning to understand their power to relax the visitor.

Since the industrial revolution of the early 18th century, our lives have grown more complex as the pace of life has steadily increased. Finding peace and tranquility becomes more challenging with each generation. Those who have a commitment to a strong belief system may find comfort in their religious rituals. However, for many, that refuge is elusive and the need for a spiritual experience to sooth, relax, and re energize, remains unfulfilled.

A large number of people engage in serious sports, dance, yoga, meditation, or massage. Others use recreational substances. Many do not know where to turn. Fortunately for some of us, each time we step into our gardens, we experience a euphoria that defies description. The touch and aroma of the soil, the fragrance and color of the flowers, the sounds of the birds, the fresh air and the wind, the warmth of the sun, and the exercise all contribute to a feeling of well being.

Spending ten minutes watching this DVD will be a relaxing spiritual experience both for those who cannot garden during winter and for many who do not enjoy gardening at all. The creators hope that the viewer will be able to suspend time while watching the breathtaking images of peaceful, flowering gardens alternating with and superimposed upon multidimensional stones and crystals.

The imagery for the postcards and the DVD are supplied by Sherry Black and Everett Buss. Ms. Black is a nature photographer who has created advanced technology slide shows that blend her photographs together on large screens using three projectors. The haunting and ethereal shows are in demand for music concerts, gallery openings, and museums. Everett Buss, who has a gift for seeing the universe in stones and crystals, is responsible for bringing us the awesome imagery embedded there. Through his lapidary art, he finds and shares spirituality. Each of his images is abstract art of extraordinary depth and feeling.

On the DVD, garden images not only alternate with the designs found in the stones, but each stone image echoes the pattern and design of the next nature image. Throughout, the inviting background sounds of birds and insects are calming. Watching the DVD had as powerful an effect on me as a glass of wine, a hot bath, or a Shiatsu massage. It must be the continuous bombardment of the eye, with pleasant, breathtaking images, that creates the calming, visual experience. The compact size of the combined DVD and postcard set makes this a unique and thoughtful gift item.



Chakra Gardens are Soothing, Healing, Spiritual: Book Review for

Chakra Gardens by Carol Cumes, with photography by Greg Asbury, Mitra Publishing

One of the best kept secrets of gardening is the spiritual transformation that one experiences each time one enters a garden to tend, to admire or to escape. For that reason, a chakra garden is not an altogether new concept to the passionate gardener. It may also help others understand the spirituality that some gardeners have reported experiencing.

A chakra garden is a botanical environment that provides a place of rest and healing. The author believes that nature provides healing energies that can benefit us when we choose to sit in a garden. This view is reinforced by healing gardens that have recently been built at some hospitals throughout the United States as part of a program for convalescence or palliative care. Visitors to chakra or healing gardens are positively influenced by the perfumes of plants, colors, textures and petal shapes, birds and their songs as well as insects and their sounds. One is immediately affected by the beauty and peace experienced there. The author suggests that when one heals the soul, the healing of the body will follow.

This book is a journey to the seven chakra gardens that the author has built in the Andes over the last twelve years. Each garden addresses a different aspect of human nature and is inspired by the ancient yoga philosophy which connects the seven energy centers to one’s soul. In each garden one can find physical symbols, flowers, herbs, and stones that are meaningful and that relate to specific chakras. It is the author’s hope that we will be inspired to create chakra gardens for ourselves. Those of us that become more serene simply by entering our own gardens will understand how easily attainable that goal can be.

The editors of this book have wisely decided to take Greg Asbury’s superb photographs and blow them up to larger than life. In doing so, they have accomplished two objectives. Firstly, the enlarged pictures create the illusion that the reader has been almost reduced to the size of an insect. Ever wonder how a flower hypnotizes a flying insect to drink its nectar and pollinate it in the process? Just look at the magnified photos and you will wonder no more. Seeing a flower from the perspective of an insect is a visual experience not to be missed. Secondly, the enlarged beauty of the flower is both magnificent and overwhelming. Focus for a moment on any one of these brilliant pictures and you might be transported to a place you never thought imaginable. Reading this book is in itself a chakra garden experience.

This book won the Independent Publisher Book Award for Best New Age/Mind Body Spirit Book for 2009.