The Fall Shift

October represents change to me. The colors of fall are infectious as I watch the dramatic changing of leaves. Pumpkin patches glow in the fields, and apple trees sparkle as they wait to be picked. Sunsets become works of art. A new and invigorating energy seems to grip the air. Everything about fall and the change of seasons brings a new fresh energy to my life.

It is fascinating to watch how nature deals with change so effortlessly. If only it were the same for us. Nature moves without a push back—it simply adjusts and makes the necessary next move. I am amazed at the order of the universe—how complexity and simplicity work together to deliver exactly what is needed for the planet.  Continue reading

The Day a Mother is Born

May brings sunshine and flowers, and a new energy to the Northeast. It also brings us Mother’s Day. Of course, every day should be Mother’s Day, but that’s another column.

I was pondering what to write here when I thought of my wife, Asta, and her experience in becoming a mother. I remember how she was consumed with fear as her pregnancy progressed toward delivery. As part of her family dynamics, she had had very little, if any, experience with newborns, including holding one. In addition, she was just about to enter her forties, so she had a lot going on. Reading, talking, getting advice, going to classes—everything leading up to delivery was just a fog that covered up her insecurities. Having moved from Lithuania, she had no family around the corner and only a small circle of friends to lean on. I understood just how tough it was for her. I’m sure that, despite my being there, she most likely felt alone at times. I know she was frightened—of child birth, of motherhood, of the future. Everything about taking care of a newborn “scares me to pieces,” she would tell me.

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Letter from the Publisher, April 2016

Our earth is two-thirds water, and water is a crucial part of being – physically and spiritually.  Yet water has become a critical, politically complex issue with environmental, social and economic ramifications.  As I write this, it’s nearly World Water Day, March 22, an internationally observed day of education and activism about water.

Karen-Asa_0416The struggle for humanity’s right to clean and accessible water isn’t just a global issue: it’s happening right here in Pennsylvania. Linda Sechrist’s article in this issue, “Troubled Waters,” discusses a landmark legal case that affirms Pennsylvanians’ right to pure water, clean air and a healthy environment, and gives them the ability to defend that right against fracking and other environmental violations.
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Letter from Publisher, October 2013

So much of what we hear about these days has to do with changes needed in our world. Want a better life? We might change our eating, thinking, habits and relationships with anyone or anything. It can be overwhelming to consider all of the healthy changes we should be making on behalf of ourselves, others and all life


on this planet. No one can do it all on a personal level, but as a collective whole, we can move mountains. This issue of Natural Awakenings offers numerous ways we can all take little steps forward toward big changes for a good future.
As just one example, I like to give unused possessions to friends and family that can use them. What I don’t give away, I sell twice a year; kids’ furniture and toys, clothing and other items are great for this. There are many of these kinds of sales in the area. Here’s how it works.  Continue reading