Saturday, July 2, 2011

For more independent research on buying ethical aromatherapy products please go to

  • Is an Independent Watchdog for Natural Aromatic Products used in the aroma (: fragrance/cosmetics, flavour, aromatherapy), traditional herbal medicine & phytochemical industries. Many of these natural commodities are under threat via their over-exploitation in the wild (see articles inCropwatch Files section), or their continued use & availability faces uncertainty via the imposition of restrictive & over-precautionary legislation.
  • Cropwatch's independent stance & expressed opinions can counter-balance information about natural aromatic products obtained from commercial sources, trade magazines & (even) learned journals. The reports & policies of governmental/non-governmental bodies & authorities can often show bias towards corporate concerns, against the wider public interest.
  • Information provided to Cropwatch is derived from a number of sources e.g. from academics, researchers, aroma industry employees, health industry professionals, ethnobotanists, ethnic peoples and others, all of whom  have primary concerns for natural products & the environment.

Endangered species of plants and their essential oils & resins to boycott - Rosewood, Sandalwood and Frankincense

Yet again I provide another update for the New Age industry to pay serious attention to, and I sadly look at these oils in my collection and feel a sense of sadness over my materialism - another reason not to worry about buying products to affirm your faith.

ROSEWOOD - An endangered species with a violent & corrupt industry history
Apparently rosewood has been an endangered species for decades now, and some articles I've read on the internet state that due to the demand from aromatherapists, this product is still being supplied.  Dalbergia nigra or Brazilian Rosewood, is listed as an endangered species which has a strong, sweet and long lasting smell.

The following information is from a website which begins to talk about the blind demand for Rosewood oil and the roots of its corrupt industry in Brazil:

In mid December 2003 the body of a 27 year old Greenpeace activist was found floating in the Amazon. Emily Craddock was investigating the activities of the illegal loggers operating throughout the Amazon basin. It is believed that she may have fallen overboard. However, as it is believed that loggers had threatened this expedition, investigations are ongoing. It is known that Brazilian campaigners against illegal logging have been threatened with their lives. My respects to Emily and her family, a sad loss to the world at such a young age.

I would just ask those who insist on selling and using rosewood oil to consider this: What you have done is indirectly contribute to the death of the young lady mentioned above. All the excuses the trade come up with about "we only use the sawdust" "we only use the leaves" "we are only tiny users compared to other trades" etc. are hogwash to cover them continuing to trade in endangered species and helping support criminals.

Rather than copy and paste the information about the over-harvesting of these plants, I'll direct you straight to the source: 
Aromatherapy School

Please: if you find any articles like this to alert other members of the Wiccan and New Age community, please respond with a link in my comments so that I can do further research.  I'll continue to dig through to see whether there are any more products we ought to look out for.

Love, light & responsibility,
)O( Elspeth.

Rosewood information sources:
Scientific Rosewood names from Wikipedia
Article on Greenpeace activist from Aroma Medical

Friday, July 1, 2011

Occult Shop of the Week II - The New Oracle (AUS/NZ)

If you really need to be materialistic (oh, go on!) then this website has a wonderful range and great prices.

I one day would love to have a wooden book of shadows and their wooden book stand... One day...

Go to the website here.

Healing is a psychological journey, not a physiological cure-all - a great video about the money maker called Theta healing

So I'm not really typical as a Wiccan when it comes to these sorts of things.  Sometimes I find there are grey areas, and then there are moments like these where I see things as being much more black and white.

My position on any form of healing is that, whilst it can physically make the endorphins run wild, it is best reserved for psychological work rather than physiological.  Even then, when you feel that unwell by the activity of your mind and you can't bear it any longer, see a psychologist: that is what they are for.  New Age healing, which I have experienced myself, is wonderful for the psychology and can be incredibly uplifting and invigorating, and if you receive images or feelings from it, you still have to be proactive about what you have discovered.  I am saddened to see people attempting to use it to physically heal people with their hands or their minds, particularly when they are terminally ill.  It is sad to see that the potential for healing is abused by people who:

  • Charge a lot of money for it 
  • Are so convinced that their healing works that they may disregard crucial symptoms of a serious illness (not that they're trained to really detect them)
  • Have no actual scientific qualifications of any kind yet charge more than a doctor and probably as much as a psychologist.
  • Make claims that HIV can be reversed when it's impossible, which is completely revolting and misguiding and again, draws in people to believe that if they spend their money with these people that they will be healed
This kind of thing racks my brain, like healers who claim that their practice will alter your DNA... which as we all know is impossible.  At this particular event that I went to, it was proposed to me that I would be so fortunate as to have my DNA altered - but what for was not clear.  It was thrown out there just to make the event seem incredible when all we were ultimately doing was allowing ourselves a group psychological healing - is that not enough?  Is it not joyous enough to share that moment with others at the end of a working week by letting go together, singing together and just having a nice time?

Meditation, however, can help to prevent a range of things happening to your body by reducing stress and the chemicals your body then produces which can affect your mind, heart and general wellbeing.  It reduces your risk of heart disease by half if you meditate two times a day for twenty minutes and there is certainly no harm in connecting with your truth.  Go here to read my article on how to achieve a sincere balance from your practice, which is really common sense for any lay person (well, except for the more religious parts anyway!).

It is interesting to see how people cross the line within spirituality like this, like those who practice cold reading if you remember the post I put up about that featuring the fantastic episode of Bullshit by Penn and Teller.  Don't you think it is interesting how when that line is crossed, there is a lot of money to be found on the other side?


video via Derren Brown Blog