From Uprooted to Repotted

Us humans are intresting creatures.

We came from the Earth Mother, Plants that turned human.

Consider how alike we are to plants:

Just as roots draw up nutrients from the Earth. We eat food that’s from the earth.

Our bodies do the work of balancing the life giving energy from the sun, with the purity of water.

Plants thrive when they’re in a community; picture a lush forest. We also need each other for friendship and support.

Plants require a home. Some form of stable ground where they can spread their roots.

Houses are like pots, A safe space, where we feel comfortable to spread our roots.

After travelling, I came back to my childhood pot. The shadows of my roots welcomed me back. Reconnected with my past self, Honouring the younger version of me. Thankful for how much I’ve grown and learnt.

As the plant grows, the roots take up all the space that’s available. A pot bound plant needs more earth to take in nutrients, but most are resilient enough to survive being pot bound. When they’re eventually repotted into a bigger home the plant experiences stress, until they have adjusted to their new home where they can thrive once more.

I liked my childhood pot, but had outgrown it. I felt a call to live in a totally new place. So I made myself homeless again. With a handful of my belongings on back, I drifted through England.

Uprooted, living in hostels, no stable ground to claim as my own, it dulled my light. I was in survival mode, didn’t have it in me to do what I love; create.

After relentlessly messaging landlords, I eventually found a pot I could call home in Exeter.

The first few days I was feeling down in my new home. The air was really thick and muggy, which added to my blues. Sleeping with the windows wide open, but no breeze graced me.

One day I was woken up at 5:30 am by heavy rain. A wide smile spread across my face. Thank you beautiful rain! I ran outside dancing, singing “FEEL THE RAIN ON YOUR SKIN…”

I looked up the song, and the lyrics resonated so well with my situation. The universe is always talking to us. I’ve linked in the version with the lyrics so you can dance and sing to it too!

Thanks for reading! Expect more regular posts as I’m feeling the divine creative energy run through me.

An Athens Love Story P2

My main reason why I love Athens is in my other blog post so if you haven’t read that then… Go read it!

Okay, now thinking about it, perhaps this is the top reason why I love Greece…

Greek people.

Gosh you lot are quite something! I don’t like to generalise, but hey I’m going to generalise. I feel like I’m allowed to, since I’ve lived here for a while now and notice significant differences between Greeks and English people.

I feel like there’s two main type of Greek people.

The religious Greeks.

If you’ve read my other posts, you might have come to the conclusion that I dislike religion. Although I have a lot of constructive criticism to give to the churches. I won’t go into that now… I’ll save it for another blog post.

This is a Love story after all!

What do I love about religious people?

Spirituality gives people purpose and direction.

As Buddhists and Meeseeks say “existence is pain.”

When bad situations enter our lives, we might see this as a test from God/Universe.

How do we show up? How does our experience shape us? Do we let our past decions define who we are today?

Eutopia project

The use of rituals is prehistoric.

Many of us partake in rituals without realising, whether it be celebrating a wedding, new year, birthday or grieving someone at a funeral. These events help us connect with our emotions and reflect.

Our busy lives take over, and often these events become the only rituals we observe.

While religious people, who often pray; to give thanks, ask for strength and forgiveness with whatever they’re dealing with. Surrendering what they can’t change to the universe/God. Giving all that weight and power to a higher being, with the belief that they will help you overcome it, is a mindful practice.

The act of positioning your hands in a certain way, for example bringing the palms together in a prayer position “connects the right and the left hemispheres of the brain and connects with spirituality/god/divinity. It promotes respect for oneself and others. It is considered a natural remedy for stress and anxiety and is useful for entering into a meditative state.” (from kooshoo.com)

It’s common to see people praying and making the sign of the cross on themselves, when they touch the head, the chest then both shoulders. The act of connecting a physical action with a spiritual belief is powerful in itself. Mind, body and spirit are connected. Practicing these rituals daily, help us connect with our higher self/intuition/god.

The Greek spiritual art work has its own unique style. The artist sees their creation as a part of their worship, therefore take time to make something beautiful. Rich jewel tones are a common theme: gold, emerald, marron and of course the classic Greek blue.

Lepon…

I said there was two main types of Greek people…

Can you guess the other group?

Anarchists! Of course!

Christians and Anarchists, polar opposites right?

It may look like that on the surface, until you look deeper and it becomes apparent that both groups are very similar.

Anarchism is derived from the Greek root anarchos meaning “without authority. ” They reject hierarchy structures and call for abolition of the state.

So do they want complete chaos? No

Instead of goverment, they think that people should work together to create a society in any form they choose. The belief that we can take care of each other without a government, is to have faith in humanity.

What do you think would happen, if we didn’t have governments? Do you trust people or governments more with your wellbeing?

Questioning and rebelling against authority goes back to ancient Greece. Philosophers that dared to share their controversial thoughts were put in prison and executed for “corrupting the youth.”

You can find Socrates prison in Filoupapou Hill, where he was held and killed. His friends and followers planned on setting him free, but he denied their help, choosing to martyr himself.

Imagine his followers at these bars begging him to leave, he nonchalantly replies “We don’t know what the death is, it’s not reasonable to be afraid of it.”

Would you call him brave or stupid?

In modern Greek history, a fascist junta military dictatorship took power in April 1967. Those who stood against them were tortured and killed. Freedoms were restricted; elections abolished, demonstrations and strikes forbidden, only church gatherings were allowed.

This led to the growth of Anarchist and Anti fascist movements in Greece, led by mainly students.

On November of 1973, students and citizens came together holding a massive demonstration at the Polytechnic University. The dictatorship retaliated by crashing a tank through the gates of the University, brutally murdering 24 people and leaving many injured.

Emotionally looking through pictures and footage of the uprising. Reminding me of the countries that are currently under oppressive rule.

Courageous people, that know how dangerous protesting is, but because they have soo much love for each other and what is right, they put their lives on the line. Rest in peace.

The same anarchist chants echo through the streets today. “Our passion for freedom is stronger than any prison.”

No One is Illegal

My favourite anarchist value is that no one “owns” land. We are all citizens of the earth and we should be allowed to go wherever we please. Sadly the ruling class have divided the earth with imaginary borders. Imagine the first person to ever draw maps. How would they know what seperates one country from another?

Anarchists offer support towards refugees, providing food at solidarity kitchens. They also are invited into squats. There’s even a squat only for women and their children.

Can you find any similarities between Christians and Anarchists?

They’re both about humanity and solidarity.

Which explains why Greeks have hearts of gold. Many that I’ve lived with would often cook me food and check in on me. One Greek lady would always end our conversations with “if there’s anything you need just let me know.”

The white cross in the Greek flag represents the Orthodox religion. While the 9 white and blue stripes represents the amount of syllabus of the phrase Ελευθερία ή Θάνατος’ (Eleftheria I Thanatos) which means “Freedom or Death.” Perfect symbolism for the general Greek attitudes.

We all need a helping hand

Thank you for reading till the end!

What did you learn from this article? Are you Greek? Do you agree that Greeks have beautiful souls? I’d love to know your thoughts!

I still have soo much more to write about magical Greece!

An Athens Love Story…

It’s not soo much a love story rather things I love about Athens.

But then you could say that I’m love with Athens…

Lepooonn… Soooo…

I was on a search for a secret ingredient.

What is it?

This oil that my French/Portuguese grandmother would put in her crepes to make them taste even better! She called it “Fleur d’oranger”

I don’t know where she learnt this from. Perhaps a trick passed down through generations.

I desperately hunted for it in cake shops, even in French shops they weren’t sure where to direct me.

Until I came to Greece.

Although the streets are filthy.

The bright sweet smell of orange blossom saves the day!

Most streets are lined with Orange trees. Sadly they aren’t edible. But they smell gorgeous! Everytime I smell it, I imagine my grandmother.

I found the Oil in a health food shop in Athens. Forget getting your friends Olive oil as a gift! Get them what Greece actually smells like on a spring day. Its very moisturising too, I rub it on my hands, neck, hair, cakes and crepes!

Other prominent smells are Lavender and Rosemary. They’re planted everywhere in Athens! I’m Grateful because they’re such useful herbs. I regularly go trim bushes, hang them up in bundles and make tea/ cook/ burn them.

I feel that Greeks are very much connected to nature. There’s loads of these cute little shops. I call them the Witches Market. Where you can buy dried plants, permice stones, natural sea sponges and all kinds of magical things. Some shops take care displaying goods in glass jars.

My favourite is this little messy shop. You might find an earwig hidding in the leaves. The wise old man foragers himself. Gives away nuggets of wisdom on the power of healing using plants.

Although Athens is mainly concrete, Greeks make use of their balconies growing big beautiful plants that cascade down. Seeds, leaves and bugs blowing in from the neighbours balcony, creating its own little eco system

Okay so there’s soo much I could write about Athens… I’ve decided to stick with the nature part for this post. My next blog post will be another aspect of Athens.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the rest of your day!