The Healing Garden: A Place Of Peace

Gardening For The Soil Gardening For The Soul

Finding Solace In A Changing World

ISBN 0-9733085-0-8

By Gwen Nyhus Stewart B.S.W., M.G., H.T.



Inside The Book



When you buy the book, The Healing Garden: A Place Of Peace, my commitment is to match every book purchased with a donated book to a resident in a shelter for survivors of domestic violence. It is very simple, buy a book and have one donated in your name.


In this book, Gwen Nyhus Stewart B.S.W., M.G., H.T. teaches you how to:


   open your heart to self and others.

   heal your relationships by communicating more effectively.

   get more self-esteem, self-appreciation,

and self-love.

   clear internal and external clutter.

   let go of toxic relationships.

   use the Law Of Attraction and gratitude

to create the life you want.

   heal yourself through forgiveness of self

and others.

   manage stress and find balance in your


   integrate self-care on a daily basis.

   use the garden as a healing therapy.

   use colour in your daily life through food, plants, recipes, and colour energy.

   plan and grow indoor and outdoor

gardens and herbs.

   use colour energy for emotional, mental,

physical, and spiritual health.

   simplify your life.

   practice acts of kindness as a daily way

of life.

   plan and create a place of sanctuary.

   use common everyday non-toxic

products to create health in your home and garden.

      become a conscious peacemaker and heal the planet


When you buy the book, have your questions about gardening for the soul answered

for FREE - a confidential service for purchasers of the book and/or workshop attendees. Contact Gwen at 306.586.6898 or submit your questions by e-mail Contact_Form.

Buy the book now.



100% Iron-Clad Guarantee: If you havent learned to heal your relationships within the next 30 days as a result of reading my book, I will personally refund your money and you can keep the book as my gift to you.



The first peace, which is the most important, is that which comes from within the

souls of men when they realize their relationship, their oneness, with the universe and

all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the universe dwells Wakan

Tanka, and this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us. This is the real peace, and the others are but reflections of this. The second peace is that which is

made between two individuals, and the third is that which is made between two

nations. But above all you should understand that there can never be peace between nations until there is first known that true peace which is within the souls of men.

- Black Elk





What happens to joy in our lives? As young children, we laugh, cry, and experience life to

the fullest. Somewhere along the way, something changes. Life becomes more complex.

We learn that in the real world we have to be serious, work at jobs we are not fulfilled

by, and stay in relationships that are toxic for us. We become concerned, focused on amassing material possessions in an attempt to fill the hole in our soul.

We work only to keep up with the debt-load generated by need and desire. We

search for that formula to heal the hole in our soul and for a while the new whatever

(car, house, clothes, etc.) glosses over the feeling of despair. Then life presents us with

challenges and we question whether that is all there is? We learn that the answers were never out there, rather the answers lie within us, and to discover the seeds of our own

healing requires the healing power of inner gardening or gardening for the soul.

Please continue reading Introduction to the Book.


Chapter 1 Interpersonal Relationships



In this chapter:

      The Communication Process

      Listening Skills




      Exploring Belief Systems

      Practical Steps to Changing Belief Systems



"Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you are right." - Henry Ford


Healing which means to make or become whole, and peace meaning a state of calm and

quiet, does not resemble most of our lives in the 21st century. In 1992, a United Nations Report identified stress as "The 20th Century Disease Epidemic." The World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that job stress is "A World Wide Epidemic." In addition, WHO defines health as "The condition of perfect bodily, spiritual, and social well-being and not solely the absence of illness and injury." Please continue reading Chapter 1 Interpersonal Relationships.


Chapter 2 Clearing The Clutter



In this chapter:


      Internal Clutter Clutter of the Mind

      Practical Steps to Changing Internal Clutter

      Deeper Levels of Internal Clutter Unproductive Relationships

      More Practical Steps to Changing Internal Clutter

      External Clutter

      Other Kinds of Clutter

      Exploring Clutter

      Practical Steps to Changing External Clutter



"The Divine Plan requires that you sometimes need to let go to see where spirit and destiny will take you." - Unknown


In our search for inner peace, an area often overlooked is the amount of clutter in our lives. Clutter is defined as a crowded or confused mass or collection and to fill or cover with scattered or disordered things that impede movement or reduce effectiveness. In terms of

how I understand clutter, this is both an internal and external process. Internal clutter is

those thoughts and feelings that keep us from experiencing the joy of being alive. External clutter is the bombardment of too many stimuli or material goods and the constant reinforcement by advertisers that more is better and that consumerism will buy us

happiness. Please continue reading Chapter 2 Clearing The Clutter.


Chapter 3 Forgiveness



In this chapter:

      Beliefs and Irrational Thinking

      What is Self-forgiveness?

      Exploring Self-forgiveness

      Practical Steps to Self-forgiveness

      Forgiveness of Others

      Practical Steps to Forgiveness of Others


      What is Self-appreciation?

      What does Self-appreciation Mean?

      Practical Steps to Self-appreciation



"The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong." - Mahatma Gandhi


In our journey to inner peace and healing, both guilt and forgiveness of self and others have

a profound effect on this process. Guilt is defined as a feeling of culpability especially for imagined offences or from a sense of inadequacy; a self-reproach; and forgiveness as the

act of forgiving or the ceasing of feeling resentment against an offender. Guilt and lack of forgiveness of self and others burdens many people with the heavy weight of inappropriate shame and the destruction of deep-seated resentments. Please continue reading

Chapter 3 Forgiveness.


Chapter 4 Gratitude



In this chapter:

      Existential Despair

      Making Peace with Ourselves

      Perception What You See Is What You Get

      Practical Steps to Changing Attitudes

      What is Gratitude?

      Gratitude as a Way of Life

      Practical Steps to Living Gratitude



"You cannot be grateful and unhappy at the same time." - Unknown


Do you get up in the morning determined to have a good day and before you know it, you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, and that you can't wait for the day to be over so

you can rest? Do you feel like you are existing from day to day rather than living a life of joy? Do you ever ask yourself, "Is this all there is, and if it is, do I want it?" If so, you are not alone. Please continue reading Chapter 4 Gratitude.


Chapter 5 Living in Balance



In this chapter:

      Time Management and Creating Balance

      Reasons for Managing Time

      Practical Steps to Time Management and Creating Balance at Home

      Practical Steps to Time Management and Creating Balance at Work

      Stress Management and Creating Balance

      Effects of Stress

      Symptoms of Overstress

      Overcoming Fear

      Practical Steps to Stress Management and Creating Balance

      More Tips for Self-care Activities




"Don't compromise yourself. You are all you've got." - Janis Joplin


Benjamin Franklin wrote: "If you want to enjoy one of the greatest luxuries in life, the luxury of having enough time, time to rest, time to think things through, time to get things done and know you have done them to the best of your ability, remember, there is only one way. Take enough time to think and plan things in the order of their importance. Your life will take on a new zest, you will add years to your life, and more life to your years. Let all your things have their place." When you read Franklin's

words, what do they mean to you? Do you have enough time to balance your personal

needs with your commitment to the outside world? Is stress causing havoc in your life? What exactly does it mean to have your life in balance and how do you achieve it? Please continue reading Chapter 5 Living in Balance.


Chapter 6 What Is A Garden?



In this chapter:

      Components of an Outdoor Garden

      Practical Steps to Creating an Outdoor Garden



The land! That is where our roots are. There is the basis of our physical life. The farther we get away from the land, the greater our insecurity. - Henry Ford


In Section 1 of this book, I described a process of creating internal healing and peace.

Internal is defined as relating or belonging to or existing within the mind. In this section we

will examine external peace and its place in our journey. External means having merely the outward appearance of something, or of, relating to, or connected with the outside or an

outer part. Peace is described as a state of tranquillity or quiet; freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions; and at peace: is a state of concord or tranquillity. For our purposes then, the definition we will use is: internal and external peace exist when our inner

and outer worlds are balanced and in harmony. In my mind, this peace is manifested when

we create a garden, whether it is indoors or out. Please continue reading

Chapter 6 What Is A Garden?


Chapter 7 Colour and Healing Energy



In this chapter:

      What the Colours Mean



Gardening is the art that uses flowers and plants as paint, and the soil and sky as canvas. - Elizabeth Murray


Every substance on earth contains colour. Even the rays cast on earth by celestial bodies contain colour in the form of white light. The rays of the sun contain seven different

colours violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red. These are natural colours

that are highly beneficial to the maintenance of health and for healing diseases. Sunlight

plays an important role in the recovery from chronic disease and the judicious use of

sunlight can be part of the curative process in other afflictions. The rays of the sun improve digestion and nutrition, quicken blood and lymph circulation, and increase the elimination

of impurities through the skin. The method of treatment of diseases by colour is called chromotherapy. Please continue reading Chapter 7 Colour and Healing Energy.


Chapter 8 Colour Energy, Plants, and Recipes



In this chapter:

      What You Need to Know

      Red Energy

      Orange Energy

      Yellow Energy

      Green Energy

      Blue Energy

      Indigo Energy

      Purple Energy

      White Energy



Nature is but another name for health. - Henry David Thoreau



In this chapter, I will define what the various terms mean and then discuss the colours and

how they can be used. Included are some of the plants, their colours, and recipes for the various colour energies. I have identified the common name first and then the Latin name in brackets as the names are sometimes different according to where you purchase them from.

Please continue reading Chapter 8 Colour Energy, Plants, and Recipes.


Chapter 9 Creating An Indoor Garden



In this chapter:

      Plants that Eat Toxins

      Reasons for Creating an Indoor Garden

      Practical Steps to Creating An Indoor Garden

      Additional Indoor Plants and Colour Energy



You know you are a gardener if you find compost a fascinating topic. - Unknown


There are many reasons for creating an indoor garden significant among them is the need

to clean the toxins from our homes and offices. How many of us feel healthy spiritually, socially, and physically on a daily basis? We work in structures called sick-buildings; we

go home to care for families, so tired we are almost unable to function; and we increasingly lose our connection with any sense of our place in the universe. Please continue reading Chapter 9 Creating An Indoor Garden.


Chapter 10 Creating An Indoor Herb Garden



In this chapter:

      Components of an Indoor Herb Garden

      Herbs that Grow Best Indoors, Uses in the Garden and Kitchen, and Recipes

      Ideas and Options for an Indoor Herb Garden

      More Herbs, Flower Colours, Spiritual Meanings, and Uses

      Plants, Flower Colours, and Spiritual Meanings




I think this is what hooks one to gardening: it is the closest one can come to being present at creation. - Phyllis Theroux


Herbs have been identified as plants with a purpose for good reason. They have been cultivated and used to season foods for centuries according to existing records. Today,

herbs are more important then ever. Herbs supply many of the vitamins and minerals we

need to keep us healthy and enhance the flavour of the foods we eat. Buying fresh or dried herbs at the grocery store is one option that we have, but growing our own is a relatively

easy process as long as we can supply the environmental requirements necessary. If you have ever used fresh herbs from the garden, you will never again be satisfied with the alternatives. Please continue reading Chapter 10 Creating An Indoor Herb Garden.


Chapter 11 Simplicity as a Life-style



In this chapter:

      Achieving this State of Being

      Pursing a Life of Simplicity

      Practical Steps to Simplifying Your Life

      Discovering our Joy

      Self-care Nurturing Self

      Practical Steps for Self-care

      Ideas and Options for Creating Joy



We do not inherit the earth from our parents, we borrow it from our children.

- Native American Proverb


Thomas Merton wrote: There is a pervasive form of contemporary violence [and that is] activism and overwork. The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form, of its innate violence. To allow ones self to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit ones self to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything, is to succumb to violence. The frenzy of our activism neutralizes our work for peace. It destroys our own inner capacity for peace. It destroys the fruitfulness of our own work, because it kills the root of inner wisdom which makes work fruitful. As you read Mertons words, what do they mean for you? Do they resonate within you to the core of your being and the sense of existential despair experienced by so many people living on the planet today? Do you sense that feeling of futility (powerlessness), that no matter what you do, it will never be enough? Please continue reading Chapter 11 Simplicity as a Life-style.


Chapter 12 Acts of Kindness



In this chapter:

      What are Acts of Kindness?

      Ideas and Options for Practicing Acts of Kindness



You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late. - Ralph Waldo Emerson


In 1982, Anne Herbert, a writer for The Whole Earth Review, wrote in her column to Practice Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty. A woman who had seen the quote while driving along a toll bridge in San Francisco decided to put this into practice. She paid for the next six cars that were behind her in the line-up. Another person saw the quote and decided to do a kind deed for a neighbour. The quote is now on bumper stickers, bottoms of letters, T-shirts, in classrooms, on walls, and kindness groups have been started to engage people in acting kindness on a daily basis. Please continue reading Chapter 12 Acts of Kindness.


Chapter 13 A Place of Sanctuary Creating Sacred Space



In this chapter:

      Creating Sacred Space in Your Home

      Ideas and Options for Creating Sacred Space in Your Home

      Creating Sacred Space in Your Workplace

      Ideas and Options for Creating Sacred Space in Your Workplace

      Creating Sacred Space in Your Garden

      Ideas and Options for Creating Sacred Space in Your Garden



You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection. - Buddha

Sanctuary. Sacred. When you think of these words, what picture comes into your mind? Is it a place remembered from childhood where you were able to hide from the world? Is it in a corner, sitting quietly, reading a book? Is it a walk along the beach or sitting on a rock and watching the quietness of the water? Is it watching a sunrise/sunset or lying on your back and seeing pictures in the clouds? Please continue reading Chapter 13 A Place of Sanctuary Creating Sacred Space.


Chapter 14 Earth Stewardship



In this chapter:

      Thinking Globally Acting Locally

      Ideas and Options for Environmental Stewardship in Your Home

      Household Products Hazardous to your Health

      Household Cleaners, Chemical Content, Non-toxic Alternatives

      What Can We Do?

      Practical Steps to Environmental Home-caring

      Non-toxic Household Cleaning



This we know. The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth. Man did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.

- Chief Seattle


Are you increasingly alarmed about the health of the Earth on which we live? The food we eat? The water we drink? The air we breathe? You are not alone. There is a tremendously important shift in consciousness at a global level right now. This shift is the understanding of the urgent need for action to save our planet and to develop a more holistic way of living. Holistic in the sense of balance, harmony, and peace, or in other words in alignment with our connection to the ALL THAT IS the Universal Energy. This movement means an emphasis on becoming stewards of the Earth, recognising that there is spirit in everything and that everything is connected. It means a life enriched by a sense of connectedness and belonging, a life filled with respect for the earth because the EARTH IS THE ONLY HOME WE HAVE. There is a Chinese proverb, which states, Unless we change direction, we are likely to end up where we are headed. Please continue reading Chapter 14 Earth Stewardship.


Chapter 15 Healing and Peace Integrating the Whole



In this chapter:

      Practical Steps to Creating Healing and Peace in Relationships

      Practical Steps to Living Healing and Peace

      Writing a Journal of Healing and Peace

      More Ideas and Options for Your Journal




Wise people seek solutions. The ignorant only cast blame. - I Ching


Michael Samuels wrote, In the struggle for freedom from environmental pollution the battle is ultimately not won by force but by healing, and within this framework we must all become healers. I believe this statement speaks to the fundamental question of our place in the universe and how we live our lives. Do we pollute our homes, offices, community, country, and planet through the words of anger and hatred so carelessly and thoughtlessly said? Do we poison our relationships with our insistence on winning the power struggle at any cost? Please continue reading Chapter 15 Healing and Peace Integrating the Whole.


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Inside The Book

Reviews and Testimonials


Section 1

Internal Healing And Peace

Chapter 1

Interpersonal Relationships

Chapter 2

Clearing the Clutter

Chapter 3


Chapter 4


Chapter 5

Living in Balance

Section 2

External Healing And Peace

Chapter 6

What is a Garden?

Chapter 7

Colour and Healing


Chapter 8

Colour Energy, Plants, and Recipes

Chapter 9

Creating an Indoor


Chapter 10

Creating an Indoor

Herb Garden

Section 3

Planetary Healing And Peace

Chapter 11

Simplicity as a Life-style

Chapter 12

Acts of Kindness

Chapter 13

A Place of Sanctuary Creating Sacred Space

Chapter 14

Earth Stewardship

Chapter 15

Healing and Peace

Integrating the Whole



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