How to Practice the Four Cornerstone Philosophy in Family Life [Episode #787]
This week’s topic is: How to Practice the 4 Cornerstone Philosophy in Family Life
Today I am going to share how to apply the Four Cornerstone philosophy in family life. The purpose of the Solluna Four Cornerstones which are Food, Body, Emotional Well-being and Spiritual Growth is to provide a balanced, sturdy lifestyle to support the whole you, your energy, true wellness and health and vitality, your joy and the fulfillment of your purpose.
These Cornerstones can be taught to family members and adopted for children and for the collective of the family. In this way, you can expand your own lifestyle to help enrich and deeply nourish the well-being and health of your whole family in a powerful, well-rounded way. It feels really good to know that as parents and/or head of the household, we are looking to honor and nourish the whole family on not just a physical level, but also on the emotional, mental and spiritual levels as well.
Practicing these Four Cornerstone philosophy in family life can create true health in a family, real closeness and intimate connection. And when all four of the Cornerstones are paid attention to, each member can feel that deep nourishment, which translates into a truly healthy life!
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Namaste loves and welcome back to our Monday solocast podcast, where today I am very excited to share the Four Cornerstones for Families. So this is going to be a very practical show of how we can expand our lifestyle, our choices, our beliefs, how we approach this wholeness to support the wholeness within ourselves and in the context of today’s show, to also support the wholeness of our families and the wholeness of individual members. It is so amazing when we get to share and live our values with our loved ones, because of course, as we start to understand the importance of practices and this approach, which is food, body, emotional well-being, and spiritual growth, we want our loved ones to benefit as well. We want our families to be as healthy and happy as possible. And the power of our four cornerstone philosophy, as I mentioned, is that it on, it honors the whole person.
(01:03): So, so many times I’ve seen an emphasis on healthy food, whether that’s making sure we’re creating healthy lunches for our kids, we’re getting the right nutrients in our own diet, but then the emotional well-being aspect may be neglected in the busyness of life. And it doesn’t mean that, you know, someone’s a bad parent or that they don’t care. It’s just that when we have this framework, it helps us to really make sure that we’re nurturing all of the cornerstones. So then what can happen is someone may be eating really healthily, but they’re not feeling seen or heard, or there’s some sort of, you know, mental health challenge. And that in turn can lead to not sleeping as well at night and other health issues that can come into play.
Kimberly Snyder (02:58): Already. Please gift the book out again in that energy of sharing an expansion. You can pick it up wherever books are sold. Okay, all of that being said, let’s get into our four cornerstone philosophy for families now.
Everything affects everything else. So our mental, emotional well-being, our spiritual health, the energy from the inside definitely has an impact on our physical wellbeing across the entire family. So this translates to healthier sleep. This translates to better digestion. This translates to just more balance, less wear and tear because our nervous systems are more balanced overall. So I’m very excited to get into today some really practical ways that you can practice the living aspect of the four cornerstones in the family home environment with children of any age, extended family members, friends and roommates who feel like family, you know, however we define it. It of course doesn’t mean biologically speaking. So I’m very excited to talk about that. But of course, first a few little announcements. If you could please leave us a review on Apple, Spotify, wherever you listen to our show. I like to call that out at the top of our show because it means so much.
It helps other like-minded, beautiful souls like yourself find the show. So thank you, thank you in advance. Please also give yourself the gift of self-care by subscribing to our show, and that way you don’t have to think or take further action. You just stay in the flow of our Monday podcast and interviews and our Thursday q and a show. Please also just take a moment to share the show with anyone that you think would benefit. It could be a simple screenshot or a link or whatever, but this is how our community was founded with sharing. And of course, this energy, it’s a type of selfless service that really does create more abundance in your life when we’re thinking of how we can support others and we’re not looking to gain anything from it. Reminder that our newest book, baby You Are More Than You Think You Are, is out now in paperback.
It’s a great summer read or gift as you, as we head into summer. And just if you haven’t checked it out yet, it’s a amazing collection of practices and tools that have helped me so much in my life to overcome limitation, to expand my vitality and my purpose and my fulfillment of all the things I wanted to create. I can feel daunting at first as we go into life and we think about how noisy it is and how much is going on. So these ancient teachings, which have come from Para Mahana and I work to highlight how important they are for modern day life, I think are really important for all of us to know about. So please check out the book if you haven’t yet.
Let’s start with food are in many ways most tangible cornerstone. And of course this applies to families as well. There’s so many meals that have to be prepared in a week, and it can feel like a lot, especially when you’re cooking for many different family members. So one of the things that I encourage, and this is what we do in our family, is to create the same foods across the board. When I was backpacking, I saw this practiced in India and Japan and Mongolia and everywhere, Africa or kids don’t get their own foods necessarily. Of course, we may wanna adjust the spice ratio, or you know, in my family, if we’re eating a bunch of lentil soup and some rice, my kids may eat more rice and less soup. And you know, the difference is the ratios may shift a little bit, but I’m a big believer in kids being exposed to a wide variety of the healthy foods that we as adults are putting in our own bodies.
So this is great for them to open up to different flavor profiles, different vegetables, different types of tastes, and this will serve them later in life. This type of exposure. And we all know when you look at the kids menu at restaurants, it’s usually really crappy. It’s like chicken figures and french fries, and it doesn’t really make sense. Why do kids have to eat completely different foods? So if that’s the way it’s, um, you know, meals have been approached in your family, no judgment, it’s fine. Of course it may feel good, but if you feel like shifting, we can shift at any time, right? We can make that shift and make that change. And you know, Dr. Joel Ferman talks about this. Sometimes kids resist. He talks about the number 15 research. His research shows sometimes we need to keep offering that broccoli or whatever it is, 15 times before they come around. But in our house it’s, you know, quite simply like, this is what’s for dinner. And sometimes they may also want a piece of bread or whatever, sourdough bread, and that’s fine too. But I like to really expose them to the different foods. I think that’s important.
The glowing green smoothie, which is a staple cornerstone within the cornerstone of food in our lifestyle, is something that’s incredible to share with your children. So since my kids were weaning off breast milk and also while they were still having breast milk, the glowing green smoothie was the first food in the sippy cups. You know, with the built-in straws in the safe containers, of course, the BPA non leachable containers and kids love the G g S and introduced early green. Doesn’t seem weird. Later on, if it seems scary for some reason, you could add extra banana, you could extra add
Extra fruit and make it more palatable for them. But it’s fun for them to drink the g s and they really are attracted to the fresh flavors of the fruits and vegetables. The green color you can play with it, um, in terms of talking about Hulk or superhero powers or even get opaque glass. So they don’t really see the green as much. Now another thing that we like to do in our family is to have cut up veggies after school. So it’s already on the table. When bubby comes home after first grade where he’s ravenous already when he walks in the door and usually a a denser snack, I’ll make him like another sandwich or something after school is warranted. But right away his favorite crunchy veggies, which are carrots, celery, cucumber, mosey, loves bell peppers. They’re out on the table. So it’s a practice of just getting used to simple, earthy natural foods.
No sauces, no dressings. Sometimes they’ll wanna dip in some hummus, but usually in our family it’s just plain Jane veggies. So this helps to encourage a plantcentric lifestyle, a veggie forward lifestyle when they’re hungry and that’s what’s around, they tend to nosh on that first. Now for breakfast, I like to offer my kids, they’ll be playing with Lego’s on the table while I’m making lunch and getting ready for school.
Kimberly Snyder (00:00): The next cornerstone I wanna talk about is body. And it’s really important that we teach our children and our family members to respect the bodily temple that we are encased in in this lifetime. Because with social media and the noise all around in the imagery, unfortunately young minds can be led to believe that our bodies are just there for performance. To do something like sports or to look good appearance based and not really honoring the truth that our bodies are worthy of. So much respect for carrying us again through our soul journey of this life. So touch is one of the most important things, I think, to foster in a family healthy touch. And of course, this is different for each family and different comfort levels, but in our family, cuddling and holding each other and holding hands is so important. It’s a huge part of our life.
I also shared on social media a practice that we do as a family called face. Face, where we literally press our faces together and we are able to breathe together and be together and share together. And it feels really nice and it feels really good. And it just, it feel, it just feels so healing and connecting. So this is something that Ayurveda talks about, which is this idea that touch helps to settle the nervous system. It helps to bring us into the here and now. So anytime we can connect with touch on a family level, I think there’s a real, um, nourishment in that. Honoring evening routines is an important way for our children to understand in the family. To understand that we need to prepare for rejuvenation and sleep. So in our family, we’re blessed with a big tub and an open shower next to it.
And we’ll take a bath at the same time, all four of us. Or I’ll be in the shower and the kids and hub will be in the bath and everybody kind of goes back and forth. But the routine is that we eat dinner early, we bathe together, and then we read books for mosy. We cuddle in the master bedroom, then we go down into Moss’s bedroom and we cuddle again, and we read books, and then he goes to bed, and then sometime later there’s a similar pattern with ee. And then I like to read at night and journal and meditate. So that’s my practice and that’ll be a nice stretch. So just teaching kids this rhythm and routine in the body in our daily practice, I think is really wonderful for them because they find safety and security in rhythm. Another way that we like to connect with the body and um, honoring this wholeness is to be in nature together, to expose our bodies to this power of nature, the stillness, the awe, the
Elements. Our kids play outside so much. We’re really grateful to have this beautiful yard here. Our lands in California, our farm in Hawaii, where we’re in the forest a lot, and we’re barefoot a lot. And it’s very simple, but there’s something that feels really healthy to the body, to be in nature, to be playing with sticks and stones, to be barefoot. And it’s just, it in, it inspires creativity to be outside. It inspires many ways of deeper connection. I think when our bodies are physically placed in the ocean, in the park, if you live in a city, in the soil, wherever we happen to be, it’s a wonderful way to help assimilate and ground the body in an unnatural world. <laugh> in a world that’s full of devices and concrete and artificial lights, being in nature is so healthy for the family. So thinking about the summer as you start to plan activities and what you may do together, I encourage picnics, just simplifying, getting outside is amazing. That’s what we did for Mother’s Day this year. And I have to share with you, it was the best mother’s day ever, just to be outside in the picnic settinG.
The next cornerstone is emotional wellbeing. And this is the big one because being seen and heard and supported for simply being is critical to well-being, but can often be glossed over because we are busy in life. And Eckhart totally talks about this. I was actually rereading a new earth this past weekend, which I love by the way. And he was talking about the different parts of parenting. So there’s the function of parenting in terms of the doingness, which is brush your teeth, get to school on time, you know, it’s time to brush your hair and blah, blah. All the different details of life. But, and that’s an important part of it. But then there is this beingness aspect as caregivers and family members to be with one another to really just be, and to cut down on all the rushing around and the activities to be together.
So this is a huge one for me. My parents were really loving but really busy growing up and hustling and both of them were working full-time. And so I don’t remember having a lot of time to be, but I remember when we would play board games together and we had some time not driving to an activity or something in a group, but just being together. It felt really special. So in our family, we do a lot of board games. We just have a lot of cuddling, like I said, just a lot of being time and that feels really nourishing. So of course these are ideas I’m sharing a lot about what we do as a family, but you know, just giving you ideas for how you might like to practice this. Um, another thing is expression I think is so important, sharing emotions. So I like to express through writing through my journaling, and my little ones can’t write yet, or they, my older one writes, but not in an expressive way. So we draw pictures and so we talk about whether there was an incident or someone said something in anger or someone was scared about something, drawing out what that emotion was like or reflecting where it came from in a safe space. We always sit in the same comfy chair when we do this. And then also maybe discussing and drawing out what, what might, what might we do differently or how we might think about the situation differently.
I think it’s important to practice active listening. So when we are in a shared space, this is something that Yoga Nanda talked about, this idea of over familiarity. Sometimes it’s easy to take each other for granted and not really listen and be in a rush and sort of be like ships passing in the night. But it’s so important that we listen to each other and really hear each other’s needs and what we’re trying to say and express. So active listening means we’re
able really be together, as I mentioned, and look into each other’s eyes and listen to each other’s words and needs. And again, this is so healthy, this is so important for mental health and emotional wellbeing that, that worth, that self-esteem really builds up when we know that we’re worthy. Not for anything that we’re doing, but just being ourselves. At dinner. I like for us to pause before we eat and we say grace together as a family. You may also think of this in terms of a verse or, or which is something that they do at my child, my, um, older son’s Waldorf school or an intention or whatever feels good to your family. For us it’s grace. And then we go around and we say what we’re grateful for, but this space of honoring family time together. Hey, we’re sitting down now for dinner. We’re gathering in this group, in this collective. We’re taking pause out of our busy days and all the ways we’ve been pulled in different directions for this moment. Makes everyone in the family feel honored and important. And I encourage that very much. However it looks in your particular family.
Our final cornerstone is spiritual growth, and this is about connecting to the core of who each of us is. So we see that core, that true self within the family is individuals, but also honoring that in the collective group. So it’s so powerful when we bring this in, and I’ve mentioned this piece of research before, but I love it so much. I wanna mention it again from Dr. Lisa Miller, from a researcher out of Columbia, a PhD, who found that when mothers, it was specifically mothers and children, shared a spiritual practice together, there was an 80% reduction of that child, the potential of that child developing depression over their lifetime. So as she writes in her book, the Awakened Brain, it wasn’t just one factor, but she found it to be the most protective factor against depression over that child’s life. So when we’re talking about spirituality and spiritual practice, it’s very generously broad how she defines it.
It could be religion, it could be meditation, seeing the oneness and connection of all things of nature, any form of transcendence to teach the child that we are part of something bigger and we’re all interconnected. So in our family, we talk about our beliefs, we meditate together. My children go to our meditation center, our temple every week. My older son’s in Sunday school now we have altars in every room of the house, including a little one in their rooms with our, with our gurus on there. So as I shared my new book, you are More Than You Think you are. I follow the BK path, which is of the self realization fellowship. So it’s Jesus and Krishna, the love-based path, which essentially we’re the same message. So this underlying unity in oneness from the east and the west, um, that yoga Nanda brought here and was able to teach when he brought yoga to the west.
So we have little altars, uh, big altars statues and framed pictures. And a practice that I do as the family with the kids is that we pick flowers fairly often for the altars, and we place them there with love and, and put them in water and, and um, really keep the altars fresh and alive. And when the kids create something really special, it could be a little crocheted piece, um, of knitting or, you know, a little, uh, piece of clay or whatever. We’ll place that on some of the altars as well. We have an altar in the kitchen for Quan Yang, who is this female Buddha of compassion and love. So a lot of the family items go on there. So it’s this idea of, this is really personal of course, but it’s connecting our personal values and beliefs with the family, with
Sharing with ma, with making it a really living part of life. And again, this isn’t just this isolated part. This helps them feel part of something bigger. This gives them resilience. This can help with immunity, this helps with mental health, this helps with physical wellbeing. So we start to see how connected all the different cornerstones are and how we can bring this, this emphasis, this nourishment into our everyday lives in a balanced, holistic way. So I hope that some of these resonated with you and your family. These are some of the ones that we love practicing as a family over here. But again, every family’s different. This was just meant to be a springboard, a brainstorm. We all know that brainstorms can lead to other ideas. It can just help spark creativity in your own family’s life. So I’d love to hear about other ways and practices that you like to practice and live the four cornerstones within your own family. So please share with me on our website, mysolluna.com. There’s a podcast section where you can leave comments. You can also, um, ask questions for our Thursday q and a show. You can also reach out to me on social at _KimberlySnyder and our show notes at mysolluna.com. We will have other articles, podcast meditations that I think you would enjoy. So please be sure to head over there for sure. I’ll see you back here Thursday for our next q and a show. Till then, take great care and sending you so much love.