This article on sustainable living, raw foodism, veganism, humanure composting, and hemp economy was written for the new edition of Perfect Body by Roe Gallo, one of the greatest and most beautiful people, raw or not, in the world. Roe is full of energy, love, and kindness and always brimming over with happiness. She's such an inspiration to us, that's why we were ecstatic when Roe asked us to contribute to her book because she likes what we do. Needless to say, we feel honored to be part of the book that has changed so many lives.Rawganique.com is raw, organic, and unique, and we are Touch Jamikorn, Klaus Wallner, and Nok & Chao Chartlaong, a bunch of raw-organic vegans who have set out to make a difference an ever-widening circle at a time. From experience, we have come to realize that raw veganism is more than what you eat; it's also about how you live (plenty of sunshine on your naked skin, exercise, rest, and relaxation), where you live (clean air, pure water, unpolluted soil), what you wear (natural, chemical-free clothing, bedding, & bath), and what you do with your life (fulfilling and worthwhile pursuits that help to bring about a better future for all).
Touch, a raw vegan of 10 years' standing and a 100% fruitarian during the first of those years, homesteads on rural Denman Island in the Strait of Georgia and daily indulges in his passion for organic gardening when not working on the website. Raw for 5 years, Klaus helps out with webmastering work when he's not teaching economics. Meanwhile, Nok (whose severe cataract melted away 3 weeks after switching to a raw food diet) and her cardiologist husband Chao--both relative newcomers to the rawfood scene--make Bangkok their home so they can go on plucking the most tempting tropical fruits right from the tree. Here's the story behind Rawganique.com as told by Touch.
Touch: The concept for Rawganique.com, which is first and foremost about the convergences within the raw food lifestyle, took shape 10 years ago, when I first became a raw foodist. While attending college in Vermont, I had the good fortune to cross paths with Wayne Johahn, a Natural Hygienist who had been raw for 25 years. Inspired by Wayne's youthful looks, boundless energy and perfect, glowing skin that belied his actual age of 47, I converted to rawfoodism overnight and immediately got quite sick from a cleansing crisis that lasted a full two weeks. The crisis brought back in full force all the illnesses I had ever experienced as a child, like severe asthma, migraine, even acne (during those two weeks, you couldn't see the skin on my face for all the pimples that had sprung up all over it).
Yet I was strangely unfazed by it all; Wayne had told me to expect a cleansing crisis, though what ensued was well beyond what I had expected. Not only was I unfazed by it, I was even reveling in the discomforts of it, for I took them as living proofs that my body was alive and well and vital enough to reverse years of poor diet by throwing out stored toxins by the truckload. What worried me a little at the time, though, was my weight, which dropped precipitously from 145 to 105 pounds in a matter of two weeks and hovered around there for over a year before heading up--without any change in my lifestyle--to 120, where it remains today.
The discomforts from that crisis, which turned out to be only the first in a series that would last off and on for six months, disappeared as mysteriously as they had come; after being bedridden for two weeks, I got up and experienced a new-found lightness, energy and zest for living that I had never experienced before. In time, my eyes began to shine brightly--what a difference from the staring dullness that was there before the conversion!--and my skin was clearing up to a luminous sheen. I was much thinner than before but that's no cause for regret, and I looked much younger, more alive, and happier than I had ever done.
Now, looking back, knowing what I know, I might not have made the switch to fruitarianism overnight. I had been a true SAD (standard American Diet) practitioner and hence had a lot of toxins stored away; a smoother transition to the rawfood diet was probably a more sensible and less painful way to do it. But I was young, eager, and impatient: I wanted to get rid of the debris I had been carrying with me as fast as I could and didn't mind putting up with some major discomforts. Luckily, I was strong enough to withstand it. I've also learned since then that adding lots of greens to my diet would have made for a more comfortable transition; it would also have helped with the horrific cravings for cooked foods as I've found greens to be very filling, calming and centering.
After being raw for sometime, I started to become sensitive to dyes, chemical fumes, and all manners of chemical concoction, soaps included; I would have difficulty breathing in a badly ventilated, carpeted room and get rashes from wearing certain types of clothing, notably those made of synthetic fibers and even natural ones that were heavily dyed, so I started searching for alternatives, which in those days was like finding the proverbial needle in a stack of hay. Whenever I found a natural product that worked both aesthetically and functionally, I would make note of the manufacturer and add her/him to my growing list of eco-friendly and high-quality suppliers.
In time, I got to the point where I was clothed in nothing but undyed, beige-y organic cotton and hemp from head to toe; people would often stop me on the street to comment on my 'groovy' outfit and it dawned on me why organic cotton and hemp products are hard to find and not more widespread: it's because people don't know they exist! There's a lot of interest out there for natural clothing but not enough sources to satisfy it. That's how the concept for Rawganique.com came to me and with help from Klaus, Nok, & Chao, who agree that the internet is the perfect medium of expression for such a concept, Rawganique.com was born.
The resulting website, I'm honored to say, is far beyond my wildest dreams and so much more than the meager concept originally drawn up over my (raw) dinner table. We now carry a complete line of organic cotton & hemp clothing, bed, bath, non-wood paper, food and kitchen products that are essential to the raw-vegan lifestyle. You can find us on the internet at http://www.rawganique.com
and our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have learned so much and come across so many wonderful gems as Joseph Jenkins' The Humanure Handbook, Scott Nearing's The Good Life, Joe Alexander's Blatant Rawfoodist Propaganda, Luigi Cornaro's The Art of Living Long, Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, Herbert Shelton's Hygienic Review, Viktoras Kulvinskas's Survival into the 21st Century, Ehret's Mucusless Diet System, and Roe Gallo's Perfect Body that we're constantly amazed at how much is out there, just waiting to be discovered and cherished. These books have improved our lives and reaffirmed our vision in countless ways. They have one and all inspired us to ever greater heights of enthusiasm for the raw, organic, and unique life. We're buzzing with so much positive energy we want to shout rawsome words from the rooftops. We hope that our work with Rawganique.com will inspire others to also be satisfied with nothing less than perfect health, happiness and well-being and to do it all while treading as lightly as possible on this fragile earth of ours. Good karma to all!