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The Healing Project: The Heart of Community


“Nature operates through a dynamic energy and tension to keep everyone and everything in synchronous harmony.” ~ The Power of Wisdom: The Magic of Seeing What Others Can’t



My wildest dreams are being realized!


In November 2023, I fulfilled a long-held dream of getting my National Acupuncture Detoxification Association (NADA) certification as an acupuncture detoxification specialist. The highlight of that experience was being trained by Juan Cortez and former member of the Young Lords, the iconic, Walter Bosque at the OnPoint overdose prevention center on the second floor of 104-106 East 126th Street in Harlem.


Juan designed this Utopic space. Under his leadership, people from all walks of life enjoy this urban spa-like environment, as they receive whole body and auricular acupuncture, reiki, auric massage, aromatherapy, and sound therapy. The main ingredients are love and compassion. The Clinic maintains a partnership with the Pacific College of Health and Sciences offering supervised acupuncture interns a space to hone their skills. I have blossomed in leaps and bounds under his tutelage.


I also have to thank licensed acupuncturists Drs. Enensaauas Rastrygina and Derrick Trent for supervising my needling technique during my practice sessions. And, I especially want to thank the sweet, courageous souls who allowed me to practice on them.



Photo credit: Will Vaultz Photography


The satisfaction I feel after helping individuals sink into a deep, stress-relieving sleep cannot be described.

 

After this monumental step, 2024 brought even more excitement to my life!

 

Community is a treasure that stabilizes the roots of neighborly bonds. Libraries represent the rich and fertile soil required to holds those roots together.  The energy of those who have dedicated their lives to being the keepers of these vast information centers. They are the sentinels of knowledge.


Funded by the Library of National Medicine, I led the Pick Up Your Bed and Walk: Nourish, Heal, and Restore Your Body, a four-part workshop series on the topics of kitchen medicine, natural skin care, flower essences, and vibrational therapy at the Cortelyou Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library.

 

Joining me in this community offering were Makeba Lloyd, founder of Scentonomy, a holistic wellness concierge and certified minority woman-owned business; and, sound healers, Nata Galati and Anthony DiCicco.


Emmy award winning director and filmmaker, Will Vaultz (see below) and Morgan Goldin, a filmmaker talented in his own right, were on hand to help me document this very significant moment in my life.


After the first session, the room was filled to capacity with familiar, smiling faces from the previous week.

 

The audience was culturally diverse, multigenerational, and very interested in self-care. They took notes, asked questions, and communed with one another during and after the hour.


In the first and second sessions, I prepared Golden Milk with Cacao for the community. The first week I sweetened it with date sugar, the second week I added honey harvested from local aviaries.

 

For the third and fourth sessions, I laid out a selection of flower essences for the people to experience: zinnia, yarrow, mugwort, boneset, nasturtium, pink yarrow, black-eyed susan, catnip, mountain mint, official hyssop, German chamomile, tulsi, anise hyssop, petunia, and nettle. We even shared peach pit extract. Thanks to Herbalists Without Borders, the community had the opportunity to try all of these wonderful flower essences.

 


Intuitively choosing our essences, we were prompted by the cheat sheets I prepared. It was so satisfying to watch people identify their emotional needs and address them – on the spot.

 

It was interesting that yarrow, the “Mother of all Wound Healers,” was the flower essence that showed up for the majority of the attendees.

 

I love yarrow as a tea, as well. The healing power of that plant shows up as clear skin, bright eyes, an energetic physical body, and a bright subtle body.


Ms. Beryl (woman in the red sweater) has been attending my classes since 2012 when I met her at Grace Agard Senior Center (aka 966) in my Stress Elimination class. She, Carol, Idell, Jacqueline, Jeannie and many other longtime friends were present. I absolutely loved the intermingling of the old and the new.

 

To top the month off, in honor of Black History Month, I am teaching a new course titled, “Culinary Remedies: Exploring Health in African American Kitchens,” with my mentor and friend, master herbalist Matthew Wood on Monday, February 26 at 8pm EST. Click to register.




This was a memory exercise that was so comforting to my spirit that my research will continue long past this presentation. I became familiar with the great minds of culinary historians like Michael Twitty and Jessica B. Davis, both James Beard award-winning authors and chefs. I educated myself about the table that my mother laid before me. The meals that I enjoyed at 27 Monaco Place in Brooklyn were epic! My mother was a great cook.

 

Thankfully, I acquired a love for cooking by sharing time with her in the kitchen. Mattie Bell kept a garden in the backyard. Home-grown collard greens, corn, and tomatoes were a small fraction of the cornucopia that graced our table, especially for holidays.

 

The Jim Crow history of the watermelon will be highlighted, as well as the bittersweet history of the harvesting of sugar cane. It’s an ugly part of history that looms in our past.


I’m happy that the Black Seed Brothers have continued to supply the community with this nutritious fruit. It is high in vitamins A and C, has an extremely high water content, supports heart health, decreases inflammation, and reduces muscle soreness. Who could ask for anything more?

 

Be sure to view all of my course offerings at the Matthew Wood Institute of Herbalism.

 

The Healing Project is interested in offering community education workshops with herbal tea-tastings, made possible, once again, by Herbalists Without Borders, International, Inc.

 

If you or anyone you know is interested in booking an event, please contact me at cmjonesmedia@gmail.com.

 

 

“Merely seeing another person’s struggles and insecurities, changes you at the most fundamental level. It delivers you to the highest level of personal, spiritual and material fulfillment.” ~ The Power of Wisdom: The Magic of Seeing What Others Can’t

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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