Category Archives: raw lifestyle

JOY is a key to shamballah: 10 ways to bring more joy into your life!

in the times ahead we are facing some incredible shifts and challenges.  the new paradigm is upon us and we are being cleansed of our old programming and healed on many different levels, both personally and collectively.  if we choose to be conscious of this process, the road will definitely be more graceful and we can make these shifts with gratitude and joy.  so when the going gets tough, one of the biggest keys is to remember to BE joyful, and TAKE ACTION so that you can welcome more joy into your heart and into your life!

here are 10 practical and simple actions you can take to bring more joy into your life.  the more joyful moments you have on a daily basis, the more your life will start to align with the JOYFUL you and the JOYFUL world we are co-creating together!

1.  smile – smiling is a magickal alchemical tool!  even if you’re faking it at first, the brain and the body don’t know the difference.  the neurochemical affect of putting a smile on your face will release endorphins and serotonin that can change your mood, enhance your immune system, relieve stress, lower blood pressure, relieve pain, and even make you look younger and  more attractive! 

2.  do something you love to do!  – sounds easy, but we often spend so much time doing things we MUST do, instead
of things we love to do.  so, simply ask yourself, “what brings me joy?”, then just go and do that thing!  even for just a few minutes.  do you love cooking?  gardening? playing video games? hiking?  sitting in the sun?  reading a book?  just do it!

3.  watch something funny – pop in a DVD of your favorite comedy or uplifting movie!  if you don’t have time to watch a whole film, there are thousands of videos of the most random and laugh-out-loud bits of stuff on youtube.

4. hang out or connect with a happy & uplifting friend! – think of the most positive person you have in your circle and give them a call!  instead of dumping your troubles on them, ask them what is good in their life.  happiness is contagious!  focus on the positive things they have to say and be thankful to have this friend in your life.  if you don’t have many friends who are positive and uplifting, time to make some new friends!

5. be grateful! – make a list of the things you are grateful for.  start with the simple things.  write them down.  once you start focusing on the positive things, your energy will start to shift immediately.  try it, it works!  if you do this everyday, the cumulative effect will bring more joy into your life, guaranteed!

6. eat something delicious, give yourself a treat!  – instead of reaching for your good-ol’ comfort food, try something that will raise your energy and be really yummy at the same time!  try some raw chocolate or a juicy piece of fresh organic fruit that is perfectly ripe and in season!  enjoy it with all your senses and give thanks!

7. give yourself a gift that will improve your life – of course, money can’t buy happiness, but you can buy a personal growth book, a crystal, a healing tool, get an empowerment session, reiki session, pedicure/manicure, massage etc.  when you give yourself gifts such as these, you increase your self-love and self-care factor, thereby increasing your capacity for joy.

8. try something new!  – is there something you’ve always wanted to do but have been too afraid, too busy etc.?  it can be something extremely simple like chanting “om mani padme hum“, trying a new food you’ve never tasted, going to an event or gathering you’ve never experienced before.  or even a new practice or routine like starting up a meditation practice, trying a new form of movement like tai chi, yoga, martial arts, dance.  make a list of things you’ve always wanted to do and just do it!  doing just one thing that you’ve never done before can open up new possibilities, encourage you to grow and change, and give you a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.  you can even enlist a friend to try that something new with you!

9.  give a hug, get a hug!  – hugs are a proven form of touch therapy!  they feel good, improve mood, build self-esteem, ease tension, and so much more!  give as many hugs as possible: hug your partner, your friends, your family, even give hugs when meeting some one for the first time!  this breaks down the walls between us and the other, affirming our unity and physicality, and spreading joy to our surroundings.  if no one is around, give yourself a hug, spend some cuddle time with your cat, or even hug a stuffed teddy!

10. be a kid again! – go to a playground, swing on the swings, ride the merry-go-round.  get out some markers and crayons and draw a silly picture.   go to the beach and make a sandcastle.  go outside and have a snowball fight or make snow angels.  if you have children, spend some time playing with them, on their level.  if you don’t have children, make arrangements to spend some time with a friend or family member who does have children.  play with them, talk to them, let go!

much love, light, and JOY!


magic wands and magical times in joburg

we are excited to announce that we have officially launched shamballah tribal community gatherings in joburg.  our first event was on 2nd october at the bikram yoga jozi studio in illovo.

thanks to our amazing team, we had a successful event, with music, dancing, amazing raw food, beautiful people, and beautiful energy!

chef ingrid of raw alchemy delighted us with a variety of tastes including magic wands (a rolled nori snack filled with ayurvedic spices and nut pate), mini pizzas, stuffed tomatoes, and fresh juices.

we performed a quick twindragon set of 3 of our favorite songs from our forthcoming album.  there was a dance performance, tarot card readings, a toning session, percussion instruments banging and shaking, and everyone dancing and grooving to DJ barrett’s musical selections.

all in all, it was a great event and a good kick-off for the joburg shamballah tribe and we even were able to donate R500 of our proceeds to The Golden Pyramid of Peace project!  we will be having monthly events in the joburg area and we’re looking forward to the next magical event!


raw vegan heaven in johannesburg

on our recent trip to joburg to launch shamballah tribal community gatherings, we took a few days out to visit with our friend ingrid litman, chef at leafy greens cafe in muldersdrift, gauteng. we discovered a raw vegan haven/heaven that we’re definitely looking forward to frequenting on future visits.  despite several comments that muldersdrift was “way out there” we really enjoyed the scenic half-hour drive from sandton and it was definitely worth it!

we drove down the dirt road, parked in a lot rimmed with trees blossoming with fluffy white cotton-ball puffs, and walked down the shady tree lined path suggested by the arrow pointing to leafy greens cafe.  it was sweltering hot, but we were surrounded by rows and rows of vegetable garden, ancient trees, and the sounds of children in a jumpy castle.

we came up on the cafe and were greeted with a smile by our lovely friend ingrid, who offered us a special green smoothie of kale and strawberries.  we were parched and starving and this was just the thing to kick off our special pig-out raw food day.


kale and strawberry green smoothie


she introduced us to antonia de luca, the radiant and friendly owner.  antonia was trained in raw food living and nutrition at hippocrates health institute in florida, while ingrid completed programs at  gabriel cousens’ tree of life institute in arizona.  their combined expertise and knowledge is evident in the artful variety of love-filled organic raw and vegan food they offer, both to nourish the body and delight the tastebuds.

there is a menu as well as the buffet table which is R80 a plate and there is an amazing variety of options, based on whatever is fresh in the garden.


onion bread, flax crackers and kale chips!


there is something for everyone, from the seasoned raw foodist, to those just testing the waters.  we loved absolutely everything we tasted, especially the desserts!




after our meal, we had the pleasure of being taken on a tour of the organic gardens by ingrid.  the farm grows all of their produce according to organic standards and principles of permaculture and the life force coming from the fruit, herbs, veggies, flowers, and trees is so evident!

if you’re in the area, please make it a priority to support this restaurant and shop.  they have a well appointed shop complete with all of your superfoods, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, supplements and more!

next time i’d love to bring back some banana bread spiced walnuts and vanilla maple brazil nuts. YUM!

tees for peace – raw magick exclusive designs for charity!

hartley making a statement in our "peace worldwide" organic t-shirt

to help raise funds for our further training, we’ve dreamt up these beautiful, high quality designs for you to make your statement and show your support for the Shamballah way of life now sweeping the planet! 10% of all proceeds will go towards the The Golden Pyramid of Peace project.  another 10% will go towards Shamballah Tribal Community South Africa.  the rest of the profits will go towards getting us to toronto and japan, in order for us to bring the most advanced spiritual training available to south africa now, when we need it most!


peace worldwide

we collaborate to manifest all of the designs on offer, that are then printed on organic cotton tees for women, men, and kids, in all sizes and a variety of colorways.  you can also purchase matek’s album internal fire as well as art prints and other items featuring matek’s brilliant fractalizm project, which encodes specific frequencies and intentions into mesmerizing digital fractal art mandalas.

shipping is a mere $5 to the US, Canada, and Australia, £4 to England, and $7 worldwide!

please take a moment to check out what we’ve created.  then buy a gift or two for one of your loved ones, friends, or YOURSELF.  support us and everyone wins!


Step One:

Go to our online webshop at

Step Two:

Browse our designs, available in all sizes for women, men, and children, and make your purchase on their secure server. Your selections will be shipped to you anywhere in the world!

Step Three:

Give yourself a pat on the back, a thumbs up and a wink, and a hearty round of applause, because 10% of all sales will be donated directly to the Golden Pyramid of Peace and an additional 10% will go to the Shamballah Tribal Community South Africa!

Step Four:

Open your package when it arrives, and sport your t-shirt with style, class, and attitude!

P.S. If you’re feeling ambitious, send us a photo of you and your sexy bad self in the said t-shirt, and we will do our best to make you famous!

Lots of love, and PEACE

Vanessa and Craig

RAW MAGICK: episode one

download RAW MAGICK: episode one for iPod / PSP

breakfast club in the raw!

craig happily piling his fruit salad with superfoods!

fluffy raw pancakes, with cashew maca cream, coconut, cacao nibs, & maple syrup

gojis, hemp, cacao nibs, muesli, almond milk, fruit salad!

during our last visit to cape town, we had the pleasure of having raw buffet breakfast with noel and natalie of earthshine at their home in pinelands.  it was a raw foodists’ dream!  laid out on the table before us was everything that we could’ve asked for before a 5 hour drive home to plettenberg bay.

for R100 each we enjoyed a green juice with wheatgrass, buckwheat muesli with seeds and dried fruit, almond milk, the most delightful raw pancakes with cashew maca cream and maple syrup, a tropical fruit salad with pomegranate arils, and topped all of it off with hemp powder, goji berries, and cacao nibs!  it was a breakfast to remember, and we’re still dreaming about it!

if you’re in cape town and free on a tuesday morning, this is your chance to try out raw food at it’s best, and see how delicious even raw breakfast can be!  and if you’ve been dabbling with raw foods and haven’t yet figured out what to make for breakfast, get some inspiration!

noel and natalie are also pioneering raw food convenience foods and have a selection of organic raw crackers, aubergine biltong, pizza bases, sauerkraut, and buckwheat muesli for sale.  our favorite was the pink sauerkraut and the red onion and chive crackers.  you can also take away an amazing raw pizza to munch on throughout your day!  we’re totally looking forward to tuesdays in cape town!

muesli, aubergine biltong, and more raw foodie staples!

organic raw crackers, 4 different flavors, made with love!

for more info or to order foods from earthshine, visit their facebook page, or contact natalie at or on 074 167 9792 !

mmm quiche!

one of my weaknesses has always been quiche, and since going raw and vegan, i’ve yet to have quiche.  needless to say, this was one small bit of bliss that was missing from my life. during my days in seattle, i would often stock up on these frozen quiches from trader joe’s.  i probably ate these every day for breakfast on my way to work!

craig and i attempted to make this raw vegan quiche and it immediately brought me back!  we didn’t get the cheesey-egg base quite right yet, too much lemon.  but i think next time a bit less lemon, a touch of nutritional yeast, and about 2 more hours on the dehydrator and we’ll have it spot on!  when we get it right, we’ll post the recipe.


first try at a raw vegan quiche -- marinated mushroooms, wilted baby spinach with cashew cheese and a crust from raw oats, onion, and grapeseed oil



the golden pyramid of peace lands on south african shores!

our latest shamballah gathering in cape town, held 5th june at novalis ubuntu institute was a successful evening filled with magic and heart connections!  we received a mini golden pyramid of peace that arrived from the airport in cape town and brought straight to the event!  we had luscious raw food from earthshine!

for more photos see our album on facebook here.

the mini golden pyramid of peace amplifies our prayers and intentions for peace and a new world of shamballah

we had a nice mix of indigos, children, and elders! the children where happy to perform their "bubble magic"!

so many people were excited to get in on the african drumming magic, the energy was high!

noel and natalie did a raw food demo and blew peoples' minds with their raw pizza!

raw pizza from earthshine = a divinely inspired slice of heaven

a ritual dance performance brought in more shamballah energy

we did chi gong to move and ground more energy

and everyone danced it up to the sounds of DJ matek in the radiance of the pyramid!

lick the bowl clean

two nights in a row i’ve made this simple and satisfying dessert, and we literally licked the bowl clean!

sliced apples with magick yum creamy caramel sauce!!!

creamy caramel sauce (serves 2)

4 big fat organic dates (soft)

1/4 cup cashews

1 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 cup warm water

1/4 tsp himalayan rock salt

blend all ingredients in your power blender (we use a vita-mix) and serve with fresh fruit.  also would be delicious in many other ways, pour it over your raw ice cream!  YUM!

i can't believe it's raw, i can't believe it's vegan creamy caramel sauce

try it, you’ll like it.



incredible wild edibles: olifantskos or spekboom

we are discovering the abundance of wild food in south africa, especially after a trip to kirstenbosch botanical gardens in cape town, where we strolled through the edible plants garden and discovered portulacaria afra.  this cute jade plant-like succulent is also called “spekboom” or “elephant’s food,” or “olifantskos” in afrikaans.  on our recent road trip from plett to johannesburg, we found this plant, in the purslane famly, growing in abundance along the N1, especially in the free state and eastern cape.


though this highly nutritious plant is a favorite of many wild animals in the region including elephants, kudu, rhinos, ostriches, and goats, the zulus and khoisan tribes have been known to eat the leaves raw and it is traditionally used to increase milk supply in lactating women.  it’s high in vitamin c and i suspect it’s rich in omega fatty acids, as well as being a wild food, which makes it even more nutritionally dense.

the flavor is very similar to purslane, which is lemony and green, so i created these 2 recipes using spekboom just as i would use purslane, in a salad and a soup.

wild spekboom & sesame salad

1 packet mixed green leaves (spinach, rocket, watercress)
handful spekboom leaves cut from stems
1 avocado, diced
shredded cabbage
julienned carrot
sesame seeds
sesame oil
himalayan salt

toss all ingredients as a salad, chopping as finely or coarsely as desired.

raw olifantskos & baby marrow soup

olifantskos & baby marrow soup

4 medium zucchinis/baby marrows
1/2 cup of olifantskos leaves cup from stems
1 small onion
1 clove garlic (or more if you love garlic)
250mL warm water
dash of thyme
splash of olive oil
himalayan salt to taste
dash of bragg’s amino liquids to taste

blend all ingredients in high speed blender until frothy and warm and garnish with julienned baby marrow and spekboom leaves.