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Limpia - Cleansing

December 23, 2018

Today I found myself singing as I was running errands, feeling quite joyful. When I realized I was feeling joyful after two tough 12-hour work days and missing an appointment because I lost track of the correct date, I started to wonder what was going on. I would normally be a bit grumpy, but here I was singing joyfully in the car. 


It was then I remembered that I had attended a workshop the previous Saturday hosted by the “Traditional School of Herbal Studies”. The presenter was Dr. Rocio Alarcon, Ph.D CEO of the IAMOE Center in Equador. She studies ethnoparmacology, botany and healing. She is also a healer.  The theme of the workshop was  “Limpia”. This is the word for “clean” in Spanish. We spent the day cleansing ourselves with herbs and techniques from the South American Indigenous traditions. 


One of the exercises we did was to take a bundle of herbs and starting at our heads, brushing ourselves vigorously all the way down to our toes; then we threw the bundle down and spit on it three times and then disposed of it in the fire. This technique rids the body of unwanted energy that has been clinging to it. I know I am a person who soaks up others energy and I had been feeling a bit beaten down. This stuff works! I am feeling much better. 


It is amazing to me that I forget to take care of myself AND I teach self care. I believe the negative energy around us sneaks up and before we even realize it is clinging to us. Sometimes we get use to carrying around our burdens and forget that we don’t have to. We become aware we are not feeling our best and don’t understand why.


The tradition of cleansing can be found in many cultures: The use of smoke and water can be found in the indigenous populations. Some cultures use smoke and fire. The native Americans use smudging (smoke) of cedar, sage and sweetgrass to cleanse a person and/or a location of negative energy. In Celtic tradition there is a burning of a fire on Samhain the beginning of fall. The fields have been harvested and it is time to release all the old chaff, as the trees release their leaves. In the Spring Beltane is a time of renewal, again done with fire. The Mayans too used fire ceremonial to release the old.  Hindu religion a cleansing bath (Snanam) is the most important ritual of the day. 


Water is also used in many traditions. In the Jewish culture there is the Mikveh, an immersion in water to cleanse the body and spirit. The Christians do the same with baptism to renew both the spirit and body in Christ. There is a Cherokee ceremony of dipping into flowing cold water seven times. I do this on New Years day in the ocean. It is such an incredible experience and I feel as though I have released the negative clinging to me from the old year and I am renewed for the new year!


There are many ways to release negative energy that is clinging. I believe a day of cleansing exercises was just what the doctor ordered! 


Join us for an evening of cleansing at The Life Center, 6811 N. Central Avenue, Tampa, FL 33604 on January 10, 2019 from 6:00 to 7:30pm for an evening of cleansing. You may RSVP by email: or phone: (813) 237-3114


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