Fungi – the Good Connection

Article in NEWSVOICE

HEALTH & LIFESTYLE. The word “toxic” must surely have jumped the ladder of the most used words in 2021. News about toxicity around the world reaches us on all levels – physical, mental, and spiritual. Who hasn’t heard of a lake full of toxins, or a toxic personality? The other day I even heard someone say that a person had a “toxic relationship with a God”. Search for toxicity and you’ll see that Google presents a multitude of toxicities in our lives.

By Sofia Grönlund

Add the news these days, and the future can seem pretty somber, so when I met Cristina Azcárate, a childhood friend of mine, whom I had not seen for some 30 years she delighted me with the historic perspective and said that it’s never been better in history. Never before have we realized so quickly how a few try to use their power to convince the world about medical decisions. In the end, it’s all about awareness, as it’s the start to do something about it.

Cristina Azcárate steered away from her corporate job as a strategist on the top floors at Telia Mobile and re-schooled. Now she’s an Ayurvedic and Orthomolecular medical practitioner, who together with her partners do workshops and retreats. They started Olive Retreat 2011 in Spain (also see the O•live blog).

Today they work online and have a very interesting venue in Thailand they call the Oshram. A place that is not an ancient wooden house and not a modern fad either. It’s very pragmatic in that it’s a venue that serves the purpose of living 100% outdoors and minimalistically. It looks more like a… hmm… garage in the middle of the jungle, with wild animals from the neighboring nature reserve roaming freely.

From there they perform body-mind-soul detoxes and live as integrated with nature as possible, with not even a fingerprint of an environmental load. So when we caught up the other day, I had to ask about the connection between all this current toxicity in the world and the detoxes they perform. Need I say, she took me through the most amazing journey.

Going into the body and the soul, and through the woods to the unknown world of Fungi, which she spoke about as if it was her new love. But before anything I needed to understand what toxic really means.

Cristina, what is toxic for us, at the core level of the word?

From an etymological point of view, the word comes from ancient Greek (τοξικόν (toxikón, “poison for arrows”), from τοξικός (toxikós, “pertaining to bows”), from τόξον (tóxon, “bow”).

Basically, it means an arrow, in the sense that it’s something that harms you. Often the arrows had poison on the edge and from there the word appeared. It came with the awareness of human-produced toxins, hence poison, in the mid-1800s during the industrial revolution.

It was also the time we started dumping it all over the place, “in the name of progress”, and we haven’t stopped. Already back then we saw how indigenous people complained and tried to save their forests, themselves, and their animals. They used herbs and some also used mushrooms to heal.

Cristina, what is toxic for us, at the core level of the word?

From an etymological point of view, the word comes from ancient Greek (τοξικόν (toxikón, “poison for arrows”), from τοξικός (toxikós, “pertaining to bows”), from τόξον (tóxon, “bow”).

Basically, it means an arrow, in the sense that it’s something that harms you. Often the arrows had poison on the edge and from there the word appeared. It came with the awareness of human-produced toxins, hence poison, in the mid-1800s during the industrial revolution.

It was also the time we started dumping it all over the place, “in the name of progress”, and we haven’t stopped. Already back then we saw how indigenous people complained and tried to save their forests, themselves, and their animals. They used herbs and some also used mushrooms to heal.

Continue reading

Becoming Aware of Healthy Detoxing – Interview with Cristina Azcárate

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