Kristie Dahlia Home
My Bookshop is Open and Oh, the Interstitium!
We Are Beloved

My Bookshop is Open and Oh, the Interstitium!

Feb 8, 2024

Beloved friends, 

This week has a delicious theme: that-through-which-things-are-connected. This is taking place on numerous levels. In all of this, I echo the words of the wonderful Black poet Saretta Morgan:

I want to wake every morning into love
where love is the question of
how I'm going to help you get free
where that means whatever
it needs to mean. 


My Next Course
Lovingkindness lights the way. It lights our way toward one another in both joy and sorrow. In difficult times, its light within our hearts helps us to carry on. In easeful times, we can strengthen our capacity to shine with love. In all times, it encourages us to act to create the world we want to live in – for ourselves, our children, and everyone everywhere. This is what I wish to share with you now, and Lovingkindness: Meditation and Living, is open for registration. This offering aims to be both more robust and simpler than my prior courses. We'll be using a new format, testing to rousing success in my most recent offering. If you wonder if this can be a fit for you, I'd love to discuss that. February 29 - Beltane, May 1

My New Bookshop
We are a community centered around thoughtful, curious, living presence, and books are an incredible way to share those. I am constantly recommending the books that help shape my thoughts and which I think might sparkle for you. has been the source of my book links for a while now, as this fantastic B corp's mission is to support local, independent booksellers. They give over 80% of their profit margin to independent bookstores. I now have a carefully curated selection of books to share with you in my new Bookshop! If you purchase books there or through links in this newsletter I will receive a small commission. Thank you for your support of my work in this way. If you read a book that I've suggested, I'd truly love to hear about that! Thanks to Jessie

My Website & Newsletter
The newest is nearing completion! Very soon you'll be able to share all sorts of things with me in elegant, modern ease and my usual love-drenched tone. There will be a couple weeks of website-less-ness during this transition, which will begin any moment, and there will be a new, lovely format for this newsletter. I will sing from the treetops to let you know when this is ready. If you experience any snags in the meantime, reach out! Thanks to James

Our Reading Group
In case you missed this announcement last week: we'll be resuming on February 20th with Robin Wall Kimmerer's Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants, which is really having a moment. I am constantly seeing this book cited right now; it planted seeds of deep inspiration and consideration of how humans can live in right relationship with the wider life of the Earth, which can bring only benefit to all of us. It is gentle, loving, and utterly revolutionary. Perhaps you've already read it? So have I! I read everything in the Reading Circle solo before we read it together. It is quite different to read a text aloud, slowly over weeks, in good company, with discussion. I hope to see you there. This event is freely given, donations warmly accepted, and a great way to explore the energy of my work and community. 

New Time for The Soft Animal on Saturdays
9:15-10:45am, Pacific is the new time for this drop-in yoga session. Link and description are below. 


Recently I shared with you my delight at realizing that the fascia which surrounds and connects every organ, muscle, and bone in the body is not just connective tissue, but layers of connective tissue and water. This week I had my mind absolutely blown with additional detail about this: it's an entire organ system!

A Brand New Human Organ System
We used to think that our connective tissue was fibrous stuff. Just in the past few years, modern science has come to understand that the tissue which, when dried on slides looked solid, is in our bodies a honeycombed, water-filled matrix. This has been called both an organ and a system, and it has been given the beautiful name the interstitium. It is not small, this thing we missed: there is four times more water in our interstitium than our bloodstream! And this appears to be the way that cancer cells move through the body in metastasis. There is research afoot on how the anatomy of the interstitium aligns with meridians of Traditional Chinese Medicine. And it is VISIBLE TO THE NAKED EYE! How did we miss this massive part of the human organism, which "functions as a highly dynamic and complex structure" within us all? If you prefer to read, here's Scientific American's reveal, and the original ground-breaking studyRadiolab has answers in a deeply compelling narrative format. Content warning: this podcast episode has portions which describe animal research. I'll be leaning into this at The Soft Animal this Saturday! Thanks to Aimee

Leaning into Mystery and Metaphor
I have been engaged over the past couple of years in contemplation of the name which I have given myself in my sacred-service aspect: Priestess of the Mystery. I mean so many things by this: that I practice devotion to the grand mystery-that-is-life. That I am a spiritual practitioner and guide and yet I do not have a set story about what all-that-is is. And that leaning into all-that-we-do-not-know is a vital aspect of cultivating freedom-and-belonging. When we remember that we are small creatures in a large universe about which we understand as yet so little, we know more deeply that the culture we live in is just a story we are telling right now, and that so much change is possible. Realizing that we didn't even know a major part of our own bodies really brings that home. What a delicious opportunity to revel in possibility!

Jennifer Brandel has leaned into the interstitium metaphorically in a gorgeous piece for Orion magazine,  "Invisible Landscapes: Scientists' recent discovery of a 'new' part of the human body, the interstitium, is an invitation to think differently about our relationship with the world at large." She says that "The reason I'm so hyped about this discovery, despite my last science class having been decades ago, is that the interstitium is a conceptual skeleton key, unlocking a more sophisticated, accurate way of seeing everything in the environment." Her vision of this within society is beautiful and intriguing: "We need more navigators skipping between these constructed categories to subvert and replace a perspective of separation that has reached its limits and logical conclusion." and she speaks with a scientist who says "We’re in a paradigm shift. We’re moving away from the scientific way of looking at the world as objects, to seeing a system-based world that’s all about fluid, currents, connections and relationships.”Ohhhhh yes. I'd love to hear how this resonates with you! 

On the Somatic Level
This week I've recommended one of my favorite self-massage tools several times, and it's for tending the fascia, so it seemed ripe for sharing here! Ashley Black was a bodyworker who created a tool for clients recovering from hip replacement therapy to use at home. One of her clients said, "Hey, that thing made my cellulite go away!" and BOOM. I do not care for the aggressive tone, marketing, or suggested use of these tools, which are called Fascia Blasters. Also, I adore what these tools can do for my body when used with thoughtful care. They are rounded plastic combs that you rub over oiled skin. They were wildly popular in the sports and beauty worlds a few years ago. They do indeed ease the visual appearance of cellulite, caused when fascia dimples our fatty tissue. I use their smallest tools, and for their original intent: to create greater ease in my body's connective tissue. This one I keep in the bathtub, where I use it without oil, in the water. This one is intended for smaller places, like fingers or the face. I use an oil-based facial cleanser at night and then give my oily face a little round of massage. If you watch the official videos they advise vigorous use and make light of bruising. I would, as in all things, suggest beginning far more gently than you think you need, slowly increasing intensity as safety is established, and avoid massaging bruised skin. 

Memento Mori
A deep and simple sentiment