Happy Habits Organic Juice Bar Dabbles in Arts and Energy

Aug 29, 2018
Photo by: Ryan Morrill

Could energy education be the next addition to the standard high school curriculum? On Sunday, Aug. 26, Happy Habits, Manahawkin juice bar and proponent of mindful eating, held an event stressing the importance of energy education through watercolor mandala making. The workshop invited participants to gather and paint mandalas, circular pieces of art that symbolize the universe, while learning about chakras and energy flow.

Shauna Thompson, owner of Happy Habits, invited friends Carly Surmonte and Rachel Mambach to host the afternoon. The three women had met at a “Babes in Business” networking event in Asbury Park, where leading women are encouraged to mingle, connect and collaborate on their entrepreneurial endeavors. Mambach, an art teacher, guided the watercolor efforts while Surmonte led the energy education portion of the two-hour-long gathering.

“I know the world’s not ready for this energy enlightenment, but any little bit of consciousness I can raise,” said Surmonte, of Car Chet Healing.

There are seven main energy centers in the body. These centers, otherwise known as chakra centers, are where Qi, or energy, circulates. According to Surmonte, if the flow of Qi within these chakra centers is disrupted or imbalanced, mental, physical and emotional ailments can arise.

“It’s our energy DNA, and we hold things in those areas of our body,” said Surmonte. “If you don’t find ways to release or let them out, sh** builds up.”

Surmonte described the different chakras, which begin at the feet and end at the crown.

“You can eat different foods to help balance the chakras. Different activities. I always suggest that people get out and do stuff because the best way to get the energies moving is just to be out there,” she said.

Participants learned about the history of mandalas, which have been created by Buddhist monks for centuries as a means of attaining spiritual enlightenment. Mambach then instructed attendees on how to paint their mandalas, starting with a base and creating layer after layer before adding the intricate details later on.

“Each layer of the mandala is reflective of a different chakra of the energy system,” said Surmonte. As guests painted their colorful, vibrant mandala layers, she would teach them about each energy center: root, sacral, solar-plexus, heart, throat, third-eye and crown.

Meanwhile, Thompson kept the kitchen open for guests and provided them with Happy Habits tea to sip while they quietly filled their paintings.

“I’m all about bringing mindfulness and giving people different tools to relax their lives and take a step back,” said Surmonte.

Perhaps a blank canvas, some paint and hot tea are all the world needs to balance its energy flow and do away with dysfunction.

“It’s just good for people in general to realize they can create things,” said Surmonte.

For more information on upcoming Happy Habits events, visit facebook.com/happyhabitsnj/.

— Sarah Hodgson


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