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karasti · Breathing · Moderator


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Member, Moderator
  • Re: My dad is a right-wing A--hole

    I see a whole lot of hating from the democrat/liberal side of the fence though, and a whole lot of intolerance when they claim how important tolerance is. The number of times I see liberals say things like "You are just a backwards Redneck!" or "You're stupid to believe in a fairy tail like the Bible" and "You're uneducated and you should just let those of us who are educated and cultured make the decisions..." How is that being tolerant? Many, many liberals I know are only tolerant towards their own side of the fence, sometimes myself included. We each have to work to find and recognize common ground and work with it. That's why it's so pointless to argue politics and beliefs etc with people online who are mostly strangers. Tolerance comes from connection and investment in each others lives, even if we disagree. It's where compromise comes from. But when we vote for people who are bad at compromise because we are the ones insisting they stand up for our values and screw every one else's, then we get what we have -gridlock.

    My in laws are conservatives. My FIL more so than my MIL even though she is Catholic and he is not. FIL loves Trump and Fox News. He's not a stupid man, quite the opposite. He is extraordinarily generous and caring - when he has that connection with someone. We disagree mightily on many political and social fronts. But because we care enough about each other, or at minimum about my husband and our kids, we always find common ground and when you do that, you can start to work on things. But it has to be, in my experience, done on a personal level. The internet is one area this fails miserably. People always responding to each other with their versions of the truth of their facts. No matter how many facts you have and how accurate they are, if you have no connection and no common ground, you'll get no where.

    The part I find unfortunate is that so many people don't work to find common ground, they simply pretend their political disagreements don't happen. I know married couples who are about as opposite as you can get, but to maintain peace they simply pretend the other person's views don't exist, so there is always these lines neither of them cross to avoid upsetting the other, when that relationship is ripe for learning how to negotiate and arrive at common ground. We have to learn how to do it on all levels, it is what softens our hearts.

    I'm sure most of us who are more liberal know a few conservatives we have a soft place for, people we "excuse" as not as bad as the others. But that is because we know them. We have that connection. We can see all the ways they do love people in their lives and communities, that they are generous in their own ways, that their lives are simply misunderstood by many etc etc. Even if we don't agree, we soften towards them. And it's what we need to do with most of our neighbors. Soften.

  • Re: Medicinal/Therapeutic Use of Plants and Herbs

    One of my favorite go-tos during cold and flu season is turmeric/honey paste. Works great for dry, irritated and/or scratchy throat. 1 tsp turmeric to 1 tbsp raw honey (or whatever 1:3 ratio that works for you). I mix it up in a larger batch and just dip the spoon in a few times a day. My kids like it as well. I've not had an irritable throat last more than a day. Also, honey/lemon/turmeric/ginger tea, though I prefer the roots to powdered spices for that.

    Also, not for eating, but vihta in the sauna is great medicine. Boughs of birch or cedar tied together, and then you slap yourself gently with them while in the sauna, lol, as a means of massage.

  • Re: Social Media Shutdown to promote Mindfulness

    I take regular breaks and record the differences I note, too. I enjoy those sorts of experiments! I'm currently on a 90 day no alcohol at all to see if there are any notable differences (I rarely drink anyways, just curious)

    I am much more conscious and discerning about how I use social media these days than I used to be, and that came largely from taking breaks from it throughout the year and noting what I missed and didn't miss. I have friends who are very dear to me where FB is the main way to stay in touch with them, to see pictures of their kids etc. I have family that live thousands of miles away, and also, I can now keep up with them. I take the time to send cards and letters several times a month just for a more personal connection but I simply don't have the time to do that for everyone I want to keep up with.

    I spend time in a few FB groups that I've found just as useful as forums, just depends on the intention and the people that are attracted to it. I've had some life changing (not even kidding) discussions on some of them. For me, there were things I missed on SM breaks that were too important to me to give up on completely, so I changed how I use it. I downloaded a browser extension that allows me to block a ton of stuff from my news feed. I no longer see the posts my friends like or comment on and I block other posts by keyword. I blocked all the superbowl posts, everything with keywords of "politics, trump, news, democrats, republicans, abortion, immigration" and a few other words that often used to set me off. Much more peaceful now, and I see only what I want to see, for the most part.

  • Re: Medicinal/Therapeutic Use of Plants and Herbs

    Just in our yard, we have dandelion (the early spring greens are my favorite part), purslane, clover, wintergreen, wild strawberries...maybe a few others I can't think of. Living in the sticks, we have ample opportunity to forage when it's not winter, so I'm glad for that. We pick gallons of blueberries and raspberries in July. Chokecherries, apples, plums, wild asparagus, June/Service berries, cranberries, lavender, chamomile, wild rose, fern fiddeheads, burdock, parsnips. My sister and I growing up made tea out of almost anything we could find, lol. Cedar and juniper teas aren't bad! We do hunt for mushrooms but I am still wary and always go with someone who is confident. Morels and chaga mostly. Mmmm morels. Also wild rice (which has a lot of rules because you have to harvest it in traditional Obijway fashion) and maple syrup if you have the time to process them. Nuts, too. We live in a boreal forest, but on the border so we have a mix of evergreen and deciduous trees. Pine nuts, acorns, hazlenuts. I guess many parts of cat tails and pine needles are usable or edible but I havent' researched that very much yet.

    We kind of do it just for fun, so I couldn't tell you most of the benefits of a lot of those things, though I know they have benefits of course. I'll have to look it up as now I am curious. Thankfully we live in a very quiet area with no real industry near by and no agricultural except very small family operations that sell at the farmer's market and they are almost entirely organic. So foraging is very safe with very minimal exposure to pollution or pesticides etc.