As this series of journal entries comes to a close, I hope one thing is clear.
Drinking jiaogulan is much more than an isolated practice–it’s part of a greater lifestyle of holistic health, self-awareness and open-heartedness.
All of our life rituals are interconnected in a greater web of intimate self-identity.
If I’m addicted to a certain kind of drug, for example, this obsession is likely to rear its head in other parts of my life. Our actions all carry with them a deep echo.
This is why creating space for a healing herb such as jiaogulan in one’s life goes well beyond its immediate effects upon the body. Using jiaogulan on a regular basis crowns our life-experience with a certain “aura” that interpenetrates everything we do.
Think about it like this.
Let’s say you binge-watch an entire season of some series on NetFlix. (Probably not a foreign scenario to any of us!) Is your perspective on day-to-day reality not at least somewhat altered by the implicit perspectives the writers worked into the series?
This is perhaps a trivial example. But given this, just consider the scope of influence that an ancient herb, so compatible with human physiology, can have on all aspects of your life, conscious and unconscious!
The magic of jiaogulan doesn’t end with a drained mug. In my experience, this herb creates a certain quality of awareness that attends everything you do.
It creates the conditions for a more healthy and conscious lifestyle.
The health of our body and the health of our mind are infinitely intertwined. Would I be as inclined to meditation or yoga if I’m cramming my liver with junk food and cramming my mind with low-level media? Probably not!
Jiaogulan will not answer your most profound questions, or meet your deepest spiritual needs. Those kind of things take work. It will, however, produce the state of mind one needs for a meditative path to unfold.
It’s like how the silence of a soft brook will lead your thoughts to higher reflection.
As you may have gathered from this journal, I’ve been going through a lot this year.
It certainly hasn’t been the easiest time in my life!
Even as I’ve made strides creatively, I’ve been challenged in ways that last year I wouldn’t have believed.
When human beings are challenged in this way, they can fall apart and lose composure, or they can draw from their inner wells of strength and bravely move forward. In choosing the latter, we can trust that our efforts won’t be for naught. That’s part of the personal process of evolution.
As I’ve navigated this rocky road of the last few months, I’ve been very grateful for the presence of jiaogulan in my life. In fact, I don’t think the medicinal herb’s arrival has been an accident.
A cup of jiaogulan is always a reminder to be centered and present. Feelings of confusion or pain are dispersed by its peacefulness.
And when jiaogulan is incorporated into your routine, that peacefulness spreads into everything you do.
The Buddhists and Taoists talk a lot about “equanimity”, the ability to maintain a sense of peace even in the toughest conditions. That, in my experience, has been one of this herb’s greatest gifts.
Relax, focus on your breath, and merge into this Now. We’re all experiencing it for a reason, right?
See you in a couple cups!