mindfulness and herbs text over a light purple wall with light bars spilling in blog post about organic herbal blends and terpenes

mindfulness & herbs

mindfulness and herbs blog post about smoking organic herbal blends for terpenes enhancements to cannabis

I practice mindfulness meditation daily, and one thing I'm always focusing on is pattern recognition.

Sitting here, in the morning light, my mind tends to drift, and it takes practice noting what shows up in my brain: Anxious I may have hurt a loved one’s feelings, aware my cappuccino would be so much better if they had that oatmilk in stock at Market Basket--I even briefly relive a vivid memory from age 8, yelling out, “Wait! Where are we going?” from the way back of the station wagon after noticing my mum turned left instead of right, and we always went right to get to the beach.

Meditation is helping me organize my thoughts, and as far as noticing patterns goes, my need for making plans for the future always shouts the loudest. 

My planning mind has gone up a gear during this past year, and what certainly would have induced anxiety in the past now feels much more like excitement about the future. But either way, whatever future the brain is visiting or whatever loop of anxiety it's stuck in, it’s important to remember that it’s not here. It’s not in the present. I notice this simple truth, smile, feel my chest rise as I inhale and lower as I exhale. I’m here.

They say you don’t practice meditation to get good at meditating, you meditate to get better at being a human being. The same down shift that comes with noticing where your attention rests often shows up for me in my smoking rituals.

bars of natural light falls over a pack of raw rolling papers and fresh lavender with rebis blends lavender liftoff organic herbal smoking blend

Rolling joints is my jam. It’s such a classic way to consume and it takes time to perfect. Rolling the joint is as much a part of the ritual as smoking it is. I’ve been adding dried and organic herbs alongside flower in joints for about five years now. Many of the benefits of adding herbs to your smoking or vaping sessions come from the terpenes present in each herb. Benefits can rage from physical to psychological, and reported effects can rage from full body relaxation to a sudden uplifting mood-boost. 

Scent is also something we can attribute to terpenes, and this is where the ritual begins.

I pop the cork top to Lavender Liftoff, our herbal blend containing: lavender, sage, damiana, and peppermint, and I stick my nose right in there. This time instead of letting my attention rest on my chest as it rises and lowers with my breath, I allow myself to be consumed by the experience of aromatherapy. The floral and sweet notes of lavender are the first to make it through. Mid-sniff I pick up savory hints of sage and the earthiness of damiana. The very last scent is peppermint, it's cooling and refreshing in a way that pumps me up, like brushing your teeth before that zoom call (shoot, I’m planning again!).

I do the same with my jar of home-grown flower, getting my nose in there and letting the smells ground me. Purple Haze has been my go-to strain for pairing with Lavender Liftoff as they share one terpene, humulene, but other than that the two profiles are unalike. By combining Purple Haze with Lavender Liftoff I’m creating a terpene profile that is unique to this single experience, the here and now. After grinding the flower and placing onto my patiently waiting rolling paper, I tap out about the same amount of Lavender Liftoff and Purple Haze. Tap tap tap. Creating a ratio of roughly 1:1. 

Setting the scene for a session orchestrated by mindfulness, and the complex simplicity of plants.

Maybe you’ve seen my rolling technique; it's weird, and recently I’ve been told it looks like I’m crafting a sushi roll. I start by shaping the joint using the paper to mould the herbs and flower. Catching a bit of lavender or flower on my tongue comes with licking the gum line, a quick taste of the gift I’m creating for myself. Placing the joint-in-progress down onto a flat surface allows me to begin the maki-like roll up, paying careful attention to the left side, the end I’ll be placing to my lips. This mouthpiece should be small enough to stop any herbs or flower from escaping, but large enough to allow for good airflow. Ah, I could write a whole blog post on the gentle balance of this single aspect.

On the other end of the joint we have the tip, the side that will catch fire. Using a small tool like the end of a paintbrush (or remember when phones had antennas?) to pack down the contents, again finding that balance, tightly packed but loose enough for airflow. Next comes twisting off the tip, I aim to do this in a way that makes a flat end, like the foot of a cigar, to allow for an even burn from the start.

I love sipping on the joint to get a taste of the flavors before introducing fire. If you’ve never done this, try it--you’ll be surprised at what you’re able to taste. I then pause and express gratitude to all of the individual elements wrapped with such care, about to burn and become an even more important part of who I am and how I’ll grow today.

Thank you to the farm in Grants Pass, OR for growing this sage, and to my life and business partner for cultivating Purple Haze with so much love. Thank you to the bushes of lavender that grew resiliently through those chilly nights, the type of willful growth that comes from having a sense of purpose. I admire those lavender bushes, never doubting, just being.

Before inhaling, I like to burn the tip and get a nice cherry going to burn off the excess paper. It's this heat that activates cannabinoids while releasing volatile oils in the herbs. I take in the first hit, letting the smoke fill my lungs. I notice a pattern of simplicity, smile, feel my chest rise as I inhale, and lower as I exhale. I’m here.

I carry on observing flavors and smells, sensing them fade away in between each puff. I’m left feeling a deep sense of connection to the Earth. I’m here now. She’ll be here when we’re gone.

Notes

  1. Understand terpenes here: what are terpenes?
  2. Get to know Humulene here: from hops to headies
  3. Learn more about Lavender Liftoff
  4. If you’re new to meditation or are searching for an app, I strongly recommend 10% happier (not an ad by the way, I just really love the app)
  5. Lavender Liftoff DOES NOT contain: cannabis, thc, tobacco, or nicotine. 
  6. The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. the safety and efficacy of these products have not been evaluated by the FDA or confirmed by FDA-approved research. please consult a healthcare practitioner if you are pregnant, nursing, or taking any medications before using this product.
  7. All herbal blends sold by Rebis Blends are intended for use only by individuals 21 years or older.

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