The incredible properties of mushrooms are being unearthed by mycologists with wide-ranging benefits in various fields from packaging to antibiotics, biofuels to ecological pesticides.
In 2006, a patent was granted to mycologist, Paul Stamets. The patent is perhaps the biggest threat the chemical pesticide industry has ever encountered and this is only one of a string of patents Paul has to his name.
This interview by Richard Schiffman with Hollyhock Presenter Paul Stamets was originally published in The New Scientist, February 2016. Paul will be presenting Mushrooms: Wild & Mysterious at Hollyhock on Oct 23 -27, 2016
Tell me about the hat you’re wearing.
It’s made from a birch polypore mushroom. Our ancestors realized that you could get this tough bracket fungus off birch trees, hollow it out and put fire in it and carry it for days. This enabled the portability of fire that is so critical for human survival. When the same mushroom is boiled and stretched, it produces a fabric. There are only a handful of people in Transylvania who are making these hats now. Because of deforestation and the difficulty of finding large-enough mushrooms, the hats are becoming very rare.
By Sandra Wallin, director of Chiron’s Way Centre.Sandra will be co-presenting Horse Wisdom in Vancouver on Sept 17, 2017.
Horses have inspired artists throughout the ages and in turn, those of us who look upon their art are captivated by the beauty and majesty of the horse. The cave drawings in Lascaux, Leonardo’s sculptures, and the finger paintings that adorn kindergarten classrooms, created by little girls who dream of being a horse.
What I want to share however, is a new way of looking at horses, through stories that pay homage to the master artist in each horse. Instead of the painted, they are now the painters, transforming the at times tattered canvas of the human spirit into glowing masterpieces, alive with the colours of love, compassion and joy.
The Sounds In Silence:
My first story begins wrapped in the grey mist of a wet, west coast day. It was drizzling and overcast as I went out to groom the horses. Standing beside them in the shelter it seemed as though the world stood still. The clouds hovered atop our little mountain, shutting out the sounds from far away, creating a quiet symphony of the little sounds that often go unnoticed … the drips falling from leaf to leaf, the wonderful sound of horses chewing, my own contented sigh.
Twenty years ago I learned the fundamental principle that our energy and vitality does not actually belong to us – it is dependent on how connected we are to the larger energy field that we all live within. This includes nature and community (human and animal) and how our body is connected to these sources of energy. You may ask – Aren’t we always connected? Yes, we are always connected. However, how this connection flows through the body’s energy flow and organs is key.
These are ancient concepts –around for more than 4000 years, yet humans, in general, are becoming less connected to this life force energy flow. For starters, we have moved in-doors. We live alone more, or in smaller family units without extended family. We wear shoes, eat processed foods, and spend much of our time on-line or on the phone. We have become sedentary at work – and movement is the most effective way to move energy and energy blocks in the body.
Hollyhock and, Misty Isles partner to offer a special Mothership Kayak Tour. With our kayaks loaded onboard the Misty Isles, we voyage out from Hollyhock each day to explore and paddle in beautiful places. Along the way we may be able to set the sails or view wildlife which may include eagles, seals, or even porpoise or dolphins. Upon arriving at our destination for the day we will launch the kayaks and paddle off for an exploration of picturesque channels or islands before returning to Hollyhock in the evening for supper and a hot tub.
A Different Sort of Hollyhock Workshop Space: things I expected and things I didn’t on my Hollyhock Misty Isles Adventure.