Well, it’s all over now, but it was a great 3 days last weekend in the magical red rock of Sedona, Arizona. The 3rd Annual Raw Food Festival was in full-force, and even though the turn-out was less than expected…there were perhaps 1,000 people instead of the predicted 5,000….it was still a great time had by all.
Perhaps the hardest thing to deal with all weekend was that there were too many things all happening at once – with 3 talks going at any time plus raw food cooking demos plus meditations every hour and exercise workshops in addition to live music and all the vendor booths, it was just impossible to see and do everything!
I met some amazing people, from the speakers to just other participants like me, and if only I had more time, I would have met more of them! I guess there is always next year….
Anyway, the speakers….so many good ones.
Everyone had something unique to add and something good to say – this was the beauty that I saw even within the diversity of the speakers.
David Wolfe was someone who I was really excited to see…especially because his book ‘The Sunfood Diet Success System’ was the main book that I used in my raw food transformation. I must admit that since then he has gone a lot more commercial, and many would say that he is a supplement pusher more than anything else these days, but I did enjoy his talks and his enthusiasm. You can’t deny that this guy is into raw foods, that’s for sure. He had some great points. I liked when he said, ‘We are coming out of a nutritional holocaust.’
He noted that, ‘Everything we eat is affecting our state of consciousness.’ Now we all know that, but think about it really. I mean REALLY. Include in there the coffee and cakes and chocolates and all the little things which really do add up in a big way.
I had the great pleasure of seeing Dr. Flora VanOrden speak, she has been a raw foodist for over 40 years and worked with Ann Wigmore for over 25 years. This was her first public appearance in over 10 years, and we were all blessed to hear her words of wisdom. She has done some amazing work over the years doing outreach education. She outlined her secret recipe for a longevity smoothie, and hey, it looks like it’s working for her!
One of the most motivating speakers I saw was Kris Carr author of Crazy, Sexy Cancer. This woman is so incredibly positive and uplifting, and to hear her come from a place of real healing and still remain so full of love and gratitude, well it was completely inspiring. She definitely advocates changing to a healthy diet but also doesn’t over-define the diet she is on and allows room to accept herself with the cancer, instead of feeling that life would only be good or whole if the cancer were gone. I hope to see more of her outside of hospitals and more speaking to general audiences because we need to get this message to people BEFORE they get sick. Prevention, yeah.
She also talked about affirmations and saying every day, ‘Thank you for my perfect health, my spiritual wealth and my happiness.’ Something we can all do, wherever we are!
Other great quotes to remember…’Vote with your Fork!’ and ‘Make Juice, not War!’
I also saw Dr. Yashpal Jayne who spoke about Ayurvedic principles, Dr. Jameth Sheridan, Dr. Ritamarie Loscaizo talking about thyroid dysfunction, Brigitte Mars explaining color therapy, Philip McCluskey who has had an amzing transformation and has lost over 200 pounds on his raw food journey, and Ronnie and Minh talking about sprouting sunflower seeds at home (they are so cool by the way).
Are you overwhelmed yet??? I was!!
I was very inspired by seeing Matthew and Terces Engleheart, owners of Cafe Gratitude in San Francisco talk about their concept of ‘Sacred Commerce.’ They are the most genuine, kind-hearted people and I am sure that every staff member they have feels lucky to work for them. They talked about ‘clearing energies’ with each staff member before each shift as a way to make each and every person feel loved and appreciated, and from there as they start their work for the day, they are only spreading more of the same love and, well, gratitude. We practiced the exercise on each other…and it really works!! I so hope to meet them again!
And, just so you know….we are only half-way through the festival at this stage!!! So you can imagine how many great speakers there were…quite a few that I was sorry to have missed 🙂
I was very happy to see Karen Knowler from the U.K. and I was impressed how authentic and down-to-earth her message was….I really wasn’t sure what to expect after seeing her website which seemed very commercialized, but I’ve gotta say that girl is speaking her truth, and living it too. She’s a great public speaker and had me feeling inspired by the end. As she said, you’ve gotta ‘find a way that works for you.’
She points out that when you eat something, ‘ask yourself, what am I trying to get from this food and why?’.
She also stresses visualization and emphasizes that you need to have a bigger version of yourself to step into on your journey. So….who do you want to be???
Sunday morning was my day of enlightenment during the festival. I had a silent prayer very early Sunday morning where I asked to meet someone who really motivated and uplifted me, and on the very first talk I went to at 8:00am Sunday morning, I knew I was receiving what I had asked for! Dr. Medicine Wolf was, by far, the highlight if my weekend. One of the first things he said was that he has dedicated his life ‘to the healing of Mother Earth and all Life.’ And he was genuine, wow this guy moved every single person in that room. The most impressive thing about him is that he has no ego whatsoever. Just a man full of love dedicated to helping everyone. As he said, ‘I don’t care if you are a butterfly, an elephant, a dog or a cat or a human being, I want to help you all just the same.’
He made it very clear that ‘we lose a species to extinction every 10 minutes, and WE are on that list!!’.
He talked a lot about the chemicalization and radiation that is affecting the planet and all life today. His words were ‘we have to move from a numb and dumb situation; we need to advance our brain and we will discover that we have the intelligence to live in a disease-free state and every thing we need to do this is in Mother Earth.’ He also explained the importance of frequency 528, the exact scientific frequency of divine unconditional love. If you make one goal from reading this entry, it should be to try and meet Medicine Wolf just once in your lifetime.
Before I forget, I must mention Shantree and Lorenna, such a beautiful couple living their message and sharing so much wisdom and knowledge with others. I really felt a connection to them and would highly recommend anyone visiting their centre and working with them in the future.
I love Shantree’s concept of ‘spending 20 minutes every day with a tree’ as a way to actively meditate and re-connect with nature. You guys rock!!
I was so busy moving from talk to talk that I missed Victoria Boutenko’s talk, but luckily I was able to meet her in person and have a chat about Green Smoothies, because I tell you, her book ‘Green for Life’ is incredible, and it really helped so many raw foodists I know add an extra value-packed meal to their diet each day. That woman is so gentle and kind and really genuine…I so hope she comes to Thailand soon 🙂
Now…we are finally getting to the ‘headliners.’ Sunday was a day FULL of amazing speakers. I finally got to see Victoras Kulvinskas speak, and I can honestly tell you that this guy is so HIGHLY evolved and so incredibly intelligent that he has to struggle to come back to earth and find a way to communicate to us mere humans. It’s so unbelievable and if you weren’t energetically tuned-in, you might say that he has dementia or that he is ‘out-there,’ and guess what, in a way you would be right! This guy is super-knowledgeable and I find it such a shame that in the recently aired television show 20/20 on USA tv network ‘abc,’ that Victoras was edited to look like a complete fool when asked about this so-called new health threat called ‘orthorexia.’ If you had a chance to meet Victoras in person and if you had any ounce of conscious to your spiritual body, you would know instantly that this guy is tapped into something much bigger than what we know on earth to date. Enough said. I love him! His talk was uplifting, full of useful knowledge and very funny as well!
Victor man, keep being you!!
So many people to mention, but gotta wrap this up so I’m going to end with mentioning 2 very impressionable speakers for me this year…one is Gabriel Cousins who has been a spiritual and health teacher to so many and is so powerful in his energy and his presence. His talks centered mainly on the success he has has in reversing diabetes just through diet. Check out his new DVD on the subject. This guy is an MD from Columbia Medical School by the way, and he has embraced the raw food diet for over 30 years!!
So enough with calling us ‘airy-fairies’ – ha!
And finally I must mention Doug Graham who was one of the last speakers of the festival but had one of the most powerful messages and that was ‘I though this was a raw food festival…so where is the FOOD?’ Hahaha…you knid-of had to be here to get the joke, but the festival was over-run with vendors selling supplements and ‘super’ foods and everyone agreed there was a definite lack of ‘real’ food.
Gotta give it to Doug who is true to his message which is EAT WHOLE FOODS!
In that case there is no need for supplements or processed and refined superfoods. I liked his simplicity – it goes a long way. All the Doug crew are invited to Koh Samui anytime for some yummy Durian indulging. Earn your food – yeah!
What can I say to close except I am fully inspired to be a speaker at the festival next year! We need more girl power representing and also we need someone like me to tell my story, which is totally different to everyone’s story I heard, and to speak to the newbies in the raw food world because we have to find a way to make this lifestyle work for everyone, no matter where they are on their journey!
With that I say HAPPY EATING and MANY BLESSINGS!!!
More on Traveling Raw:
- Vilcabamba, Ecuador: The Raw Food Valley of Longevity… or Just Hype?
- Why I left Koh Samui, Thailand and Why I moved to Tel Aviv, Israel
- Find out where I moved to….! HINT: It’s a healing place
- Fasting Retreat, Organic Raw Food & Total Relaxation at Farm of Life in Costa Rica
- Panama as a health destination? Warning about pesticides in fruits and vegetables
More on Raw Food:
- Cooked Food vs. Raw Food – Giving Traditional Chinese Medicine a try
- Raw Detox Salad Recipe
- Simple Steps to Success: Get Re-Focused on your Health Goals
- 14-21 Day Travel Itinerary for Organic Vegan Raw Food, Hot Springs, Beach & Detox in Costa Rica
- Interview with Gabriel Cousens on Raw Food & Fasting – Video