green crush: meet zahra of soulful seeds

green+crush+soulful+seeds.jpg

meet zahra | soulful seeds

location | nashville, tennessee

eco voyage's green crush series showcases green living advocates who are committed to mindful lifestyles and dedicated to protecting both the environment + all those who inhabit planet earth. today we meet zahra, the ebullient wellness blogger behind soulful seeds blog + founder of women ministries online with a passion for growing spiritually + living healthfully. zahra is an ardent mental health advocate + a savvy slow fashion enthusiast who shares her tips for living that mindful lifestyle through faith, fitness, self love + vegan eats.

live

ev: what is one small action you might encourage others to take to live a more compassionate, cruelty-free lifestyle?

zahra: Choose to be aware! Many people are scared to know the implications of their current lifestyle on the planet, animals, and their own health. Instead of turning away information, try to absorb all the information you can; this will inevitably lead you to pursue a more aware and conscious lifestyle! Books to read include: How Not to Die: Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reserve Disease and Thrive: The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance in Sports and Life.

love

ev: tell us three personal qualities about yourself that you would never change?

zahra: Probably my compassion, work ethic and sensitivity! [Self love is an ongoing practice and Zahra offers insightful posts via her Mindful Lifestyle, Faith + Mental Health categories. She’ll help you continue to show yourself patience + compassion while striving for emotional, psychological + physical balance in your life via her thoughtful posts including 7 Prompts to Affirm Positive Thoughts and Overcoming Negative Thought Patterns.]

learn

ev: how and why did you decide to go vegan and to pursue a green lifestyle? are there books/movies which you might recommend to others who are interested in learning more about the issues of animal rights and sustainability?

zahra: I love this question! I primarily sought out veganism because of the health benefits but was ultimately compelled to go vegan and spread my love for the lifestyle because of the environmental aspects of it. I actually have a whole article with ALL my favorite vegan resources I recommend to others interested in learning about the lifestyle!

zhara+BiabaniBM-24.jpg

work it 

ev: you create weekly content for your website and for social media; it takes a lot of time + dedication to sustain your own blog. what motivates you to do so? 

zahra: Amen to that! I stay motivated because I absolutely love the entire process from content creating to interacting with readers! It warms my heart to hear feedback from people reading my content and learning new things from it!

wear it

ev: describe your favorite outfit from head to toe including any favorite vegan fashion brands.

zahra: A jumpsuit from ASOS (thrifted from Thred Up - my favorite way to shop thrifted and second hand), paired with some vegan Birkenstocks, and some bracelets from Pura Vida!

into the calm

ev: what do you do to decompress when you're feeling a little stressed?

zahra: I go to a yoga class and workout! One of my favorite, soul-feeding things to do is look through my prayer journal for verses I highlight and delve into. This practice brings me closer to the Holy Word, and enhances my understanding of the Text in the context of my own life. Truthfully, when I am anxious or worried about something, the first place I go to is usually not God. I usually try to find hope from the encouragement of a friend or loved one, and though that is helpful, it truly isn’t sustainable. When I do eventually realize that and turn to GOD, I get an unparalleled source of hope. God has the answers. He might not reveal them all to us, but He has them in His hands, and this, my friends, is the ultimate source of hope.

get happy

God is infinitely more powerful than our fears and worries. He is always with us- you just need to let Him in to tap into the vast love, safety, and trust He provides.

ev: share four things that make you really happy.

zahra: The color yellow, sunflowers, the [show] The Office and my friends+ family. Volunteering and participating in community service allows you to connect with your environment and use your unique skills to help those around you. As an added benefit, engaging in service has been proven to be a wonderful way to boost emotional well being and professional skills! There are some great databases and resources for volunteer opportunities. Use these sites to find volunteer opportunities near you:

it's a bird, it's a plane, it's a superhero

ev: if you could invite three people to a private dinner party, who would they be?

zahra: Pauli Murray [the American civil rights activist + lawyer, a women's rights activist, Episcopal priest, and author], Mother Teresa [the indefatigable Roman Catholic nun + Nobel laureate for her lifelong missionary work with sick children], and Miley Cyrus [singer, actress + animal rights activist]. [Editor’s note: now that’s one eclectic and fabulous mix of women! Count me in!]

ev: if you had one superpower, what would it be?

zahra: The ability to fly!

a beautiful mind

ev: how do you define beauty? 

zahra: Beauty is inherent in us ALL! The process of uncovering it and recognizing it is essential to everyone's self development!

say anything

ev: do you have a favorite quote or motto that inspires you?

zahra: Mine is "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle".

images c/o soulful seeds blog

find zahra here: website | instagram | facebook | twitter

{simple pleasures} le recyclerie: guerrilla gardening in paris

I think that the way animals live in the tropics, stepping outside in the morning and evening to see if there is something to eat, and taking a long nap in the afternoon, must be a wonderful life. For human beings, a life of such simplicity would be possible if one worked to produce directly his daily necessities. in such a life, work is not work as people generally think of it, but simply doing what needs to be done.
— Masanobu Fukuoka

the art of farming: another happy discovery in paris. a dusty train station turned dynamic cafe, bar + organic farm. this new venue {from the makers of comptoir general cafe} is full of sunlight + good food; upcycled decor + passionate gardeners. this is where ingredients are picked fresh from an onsite garden/farm + the service can't be beat. vegan pizza on the menu.

craving more veg goodness? here's a list of 14 plant-powered cafes in paris read more about japanese farmer + philosopher, masanobu fukuoka, author of one-straw revolution, a spiritual memoir + natural farming manifesto. his journey towards a life dedicated to farming that used no agricultural chemicals or prepared fertilizers is clear-sighted + galvanizing. this is how a green revolution gets started.

from fukuoka, the father of guerilla gardening: 

"the ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings."

{simple pleasures} jardiner: master gardener

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.
— Marcus Tullius Cicero

jardin du luxembourg: located between saint-germain-des-prés and the latin quarter, this elegantly manicured garden is really an idyllic retreat in the center of the paris urban landscape. more please

eco mode: wearing my fave organic cotton skirt from kaight new york + a cropped top from reformation with handmade bangles from dea dia + cities in dust.