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Springing Into Spring

with Anita Sundaram
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Welcome to Kapha Season!

As the Winter season comes to a close and we move into Spring, Kapha Season begins; a process of rebirth and rejuvenation. An opportunity for New beginnings.

New beginnings first require us to release. Shedding our winter coat, both physically and mentally. Right now, nature is cleansing. The warmer temperatures begin to melt the accumulated snow and ice, Kapha in the body also begins to liquefy, often causing colds, congestion, runny nose and possibly lethargy and dullness. Spring invites us to lighten up and eliminate accumulated Kapha from the body.

To Nourish Kapha dosha, let us begin with a few simple practices to incorporate into this season. Harmony, health, clarity and happiness - these things come abundantly when we align ourselves with nature.

Physically - On a gross level there are quite a few practices we can do. Let’s keep things simple. Three of my favorite Sacred Rituals are, dry brushing, Abhyanga & Face Yoga exercises.

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Dry Brushing

The technique consists of gently, brushing the skin in the direction of the lymph flow, toward the heart.

  • The strokes should be medium pressure—you want to feel something happening without irritating the skin. Long strokes are the best since you are trying to push up lymph fluid, and that requires a delicate and rhythmic touch. You'll also want to do each pass more than once and overlap sections while brushing.  Along bends (like your joints) or smaller areas, you will switch to shorter, quicker movements. 

  • Brush towards the heart. Making long sweeps, avoid back and forth, scrubbing and circular motions. Start at your feet, moving up the legs on both sides, then work from the arms toward your chest. On your stomach, direct the brush counterclockwise.

  •  Don’t brush too hard - light touch is all you need to effect the lymphatic system. Skin should be stimulated and invigorated, but not irritated or red.

Springtime Selections

Featured Artist: Shell Amega

Shell Amega's Southwestern Sri Yantra also served as the cover art for this print edition of VedaZine!

TIPS FOR THE UPCOMING KAPHA SEASON

by Dr. Marianne Teitelbaum

Recipes for Medicinal Lassi Cultured Coconut Water available in printed edition of VedaZine! Click here to download.
Safari Sunrise
Barley Grains
Image by Megumi Nachev

Dinacharya

  • Wake up before the sun comes up, and if you are able, do your exercising in the morning.

Soup & Ladle

Avoid Cold Foods

  • Eat warm, cooked foods.

  • Avoid yogurt until the summertime.

  • Avoid cold smoothies & salads.

Reduce Wheat

  • Eat a little less wheat (which is the heaviest grain) and focus more on barley (which is the best Kapha-pacifying grain)

Milk

Try Goat's Milk

  • Instead of balancing your Vata with warm cow’s milk, try substituting boiled goat’s milk into your daily routine

Choose Cultured Ghee

  • Use cultured ghee. It is lighter than regular ghee since it’s made out of yogurt.

Olive Branch and Olive Oil

Favor Olive Oil

  • Get a very good quality organic extra virgin cold-pressed olive oil.

  • Don’t eat avocado or coconut oil

Cultivating Bhakti in the Spring Time

by Cindy Lunsford

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Bhakti + Ayurveda

"That which in the beginning may be just like poison but at the end is just like nectar and which awakens one to self-realization is said to be happiness in the mode of goodness” (B.G. 18.37).

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In the spiritual practice of Yoga, we make choices that situate us in the mode of goodness, where moderation and purity abound. While this includes the kinds of food we eat, the exercise we do and the sleep we get, all of which should be done moderately, it also includes forming practices that bring us closer to Divinity and our true nature.

Waking early to commune with God, forgoing certain activities and foods that stir up the mind, and hearing & reading spiritual truth on a daily basis are necessary components of a strong spiritual life, according to Bhakti Yoga. At first this can seem impossible and even restrictive, but with a disciplined approach, one quickly develops a desire for these practices and gains a sense of freedom never experienced within the constraints of a materially focused life.

 

Moreover, these divinity-centered activities naturally cultivate sattva and the inclination for steadfastness in our spiritual life. In such a state, we are clearer, more balanced, more peaceful and more tolerant because we understand the temporary nature of this material world, including the seasons.

 

Consequently, we begin to understand and even experience that “the non-permanent appearance of happiness and distress, and their disappearance in due course, are like the appearance and disappearance of winter and summer seasons. They arise from sense perception…and one must learn to tolerate them without being disturbed” (B.G. 2.14).

The Gita calls such evenness of mind Yoga (“samatvam yoga ucyate”, B.G. 2.48).

 

So during this change of season, do tend to balancing your Doshas, but also add spiritual practices that remind us why we have a material body in the first place.

Maha Mantra Japa ~ Srila Prabhupada
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Detoxification and Rejuvenation

with Kate O'Donnell

PRACTICES FOR ESSENTIAL BALANCE

From Everyday Ayurveda for Women's Health © 2024 by Kate O’Donnell. Reprinted in arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc. Boulder, CO. www.shambhala.com. [[pg. 78–85]]

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The Definition of Cleansing

The Ayurveda concept of cleansing is used as a prerequisite for nourishment, and the two together maintain essential balance. Placing detoxification into a complete context with rejuvenation, understanding why and when we might need them, and when we do not, gives us a golden tool for cultivating health. Take a long view, and imagine yourself doing purification about once every year. Some years it may feel appropriate to “go big,” and other years the program may be shorter or quite moderate. More is not better, and timing is everything. When you do not feel strong—when you are a caretaker, very busy, or under a lot of stress—is a good time to go easy. At another moment in your life, you may find that you have more freedom or that you can recruit friends and family to help you carve out time to retreat and go deeper into self-purification. Addressing qualities as they present in your body is of utmost importance. 


When we talk about “doing a detox” or “doing a cleanse,” it often doesn’t mean shodhana (cleanse) in the traditional sense. I like to be careful when I use these terms, because it’s one of those wellness trends that can be overdone. People just love to “detox,” whereas the concept of receiving deep nourishment is truly the hard part for many. It seems this is a result of a cultural favoring of solar qualities, the active, sharp, and intense side of essential balance.
 

Detoxification is essentially the process of langhana (lightening). Light foods and body therapies that draw out toxins later need to be balanced with a reintroduction of grounding foods and therapies. Then cleansing is always coupled with essential rejuvenation through nourishing
foods, medicines, and therapies. The Ashtanga Hrdayam says that “Rasayana (rejuvenation) given to someone who has not completed cleansing first is like trying to dye a dirty cloth.” This means the tissues will not soak up the nutrition or medicine. They need to be prepared to
receive it first.


Healing substances such as herbal milk or ghee will work better after a light diet, when the body will absorb the carrier fats and their medicines easily. Taking an herbal milk after a burger and fries is likely to overload agni. So it’s helpful to think about cleansing as a practice that works in tandem with rejuvenation. The nourishment that follows cleansing is often the whole point—especially so when we are working with artava dhatu.

FOODS TO FAVOR

  • Herbal tea and spiced waters

  • Date sugar, coconut sugar, raw honey, maple syrup, stevia (all only in . tsp portions)

  • Mung beans, lentils (red, green, black), small amounts of grass-fed whey protein, rice protein, hemp protein, if needed

  • Whole grains, especially basmati rice

  • Raw dairy, when available, if needed

  • Sweet potatoes, steamed leafy greens

  • Fruits and vegetables in season

  • Natural fresh juices, especially pomegranate and vegetable juices

  • Seeds: sunflower, hemp, pumpkin, flax, chia

FOODS TO AVOID

  • Coffee and caffeinated tea

  • White sugar

  • Animal products and isolated soy products, such as protein bars

  • Wheat products and all refined flours

  • Processed dairy

  • Members of the nightshade family: eggplant, tomato, white potato, bell peppers

  • Foods out of season

  • Alcohol, iced drinks

  • Nuts and nut butters

Don’t forget about how you eat during your detox. While you choose from the above table, favor a bigger lunch and smaller dinner, avoid mixing raw fruits with food, and take care to relax while you eat. All these choices support agni.

Alpinen meadow

Kapha Pacifying Mini-Practice

by Raquel Bueno

Herbal Intelligence Attuned with the Spring Equinox

by Dylan Smith

Traditional Formula to Align with Spring Equinox Intelligence (DIY at Home)

 

The change of seasons (ṛtusandhi) generates significant environmental influences that the body must adapt to. Don’t underestimate this seemingly “standard” natural phenomena. Seasonal change is a significant cause of many diseases in Ayurveda. If you do not adhere to ṛtucarya (seasonal regimen), impurities and disturbances in the physiology will manifest.

 

On the other hand, seasonal change is an opportunity to attune your biological rhythms to the rhythms of the sun and the moon. When your human nature is in tune with Mother Nature, physical health radiates like the sun and mental state shines bright like a full moon.

“The goal of Life

is to make your heartbeat match

the beat of the universe,

to match your nature

with Nature.”

~ Joseph Campbell

6 Taste Drink for Spring & New Year

UGADI PACHADI

More information on Ugadi Pachadi & Navarātri in the print edition of VedaZine!

Horoscopes for Rahu in Pisces & Ketu in Virgo

with Saraswati Miller

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Full article available in print edition of VedaZine!

These Horoscopes will give you general themes for the year to come based on your rising sign. Horoscopes are based on your sidereal, or Jyotish rising sign, not your Western or Tropical sign. There is likely no correlation.

You may also use with your sidereal Moon or Sun sign for extra insight.

Nakshatras and Dates:

 

October 30th, 2023 until July 8th, 2024: Rahu in Revati Nakshatra

July 8th, 2023 until March 16th, 2025: Rahu in UttaraBhadrapada Nakshatra

March 16th, 2025 until November 23rd, 2025: Rahu in PurvaBhadrapada Nakshatra

June 26th, 2023 until March 4th, 2024: Ketu in Chitra Nakshatra

March 4th, 2024 until November 10th, 2024: Ketu in Hasta Nakshatra

November 10th, 2024 until July 20th, 2025: Ketu in UttaraPhalguni Nakshatra

Aries

Rahu shifts to your 12th house and Ketu lands in your 6th house. You’ll naturally be pulled into retreats, rest and more solace in the cycle ahead. Take time to meditate, listen to your dreams, and do ancestral clean up. Marriage contracts require your attention as do losses and release. You’ll need to focus more on your spiritual work in this cycle. Ask for support from trustworthy guides. Ketu requests physical body clean up- especially in the gut and intestines. It’s time for a cleanse! This reminder extends to your money and finances as well. Plug the leaks and be diligent with your boundaries. You’ll be navigating conflicts and challenges so keep a clear and focused mind. Take extra care of your animals. Feet and lower intestines will require attention in this cycle.

Taurus

Rahu enters your 11th house of gains and Ketu moves to your 5th house of intuition and higher learning. Friendships and fun will be getting more attention in this cycle, however, there may be challenges with these as well. Older siblings and friendship may be a source of confusion and hurt. What are you learning as a result? Gains come from foreign or unexpected sources. Be bold and make your desires known. Lighten up and try to have more fun- even if it feels difficult. Your children will be experiencing challenges of their own. Maybe you need to play more? Strengthen your intuition, power, and gut intelligence. Clean and clear the gut with a pure diet. Your father, children, and education may have difficulties. Don’t make sudden changes unless it’s obvious to do so. Shins and calves, as well as solar plexus and upper intestines request your attention.

Gemini

Ketu in your 4th house brings losses, shifts and sudden changes with home, heart, land and property. This may also impact your mother and emotions. Rahu pulls you into your 10th house of worldly offerings. Your desire for visibility strengthens, but don’t lose sight of reality. You have a good chance for more worldly success in the cycle ahead, but don’t let the head of the serpent run away with you. Did you have a change of heart? Or did you get a reality check? You may be changing your mind a lot in this cycle. Try to stay grounded and rooted as much as you can. Be extra careful of your lungs, heart, chest and ribcase. Your knees also need attention.

Cancer

Rahu enters your 9th house, causing friction with your dharmic path. When Rahu navigates the 9th house of dharma, the demon must bow down to god. This is very challenging for him! Purification and spiritual practice become important here. You must strengthen the inner authority and stop letting others influence your choices. Notice where you hand off your power and to who. Refocus on your dharmic path and soul purpose. Nothing else matters as much as this one truth. Stay aligned with your body wisdom. You may experience challenges with your creativity and self expression. Do it anyway. Art, drawing, painting, music, dance, writing and poetry request your presence. Be courageous and put in the effort. Your thighs and hands require more attention in this cycle.

Leo

You are being pulled deep into the mystical and occult realms over the next 1.5 years. As Rahu transits your 8th house, notice how your desires shift towards the hidden depths. You’ll be navigating the unconscious and subconscious terrain and it promises to be a potent experience. Nothing that goes through the 8th house comes out the same. Shadow work, grief work, past life and ancestral work request your presence. There is deep vulnerability with this transit, but with effort you can turn this into new power. Ketu in your 2nd house requires trauma work. You’ll need to focus on speech, voice, self expression, money and nourishment. Early childhood issues may surface as well as food sensitivities. Start chanting and be clear with your needs. Voice, thyroid, vocal chords, sexual and excretory organs require your attention in this cycle.

Virgo

This is a delicate cycle that requires extra care and caution. Don’t take unnecessary risks and watch your head. Your whole body will be extra sensitive in the next 1.5 years. You will need to clean up diet, behaviors, choices and your mindset. Your ego identity and sense of self is going through a major transformation. Shed, release, and lighten your load. Relationships are pulling you closer, likely through challenge and insecurities. There may be deception, illusions, or struggles with your relationships. Pay attention to changes that need to be made and do the work. Is it time for couples counseling or maybe a shaman? You are being asked to transform yourself, however, the mirror of relationships will be the catalyst. Your head, whole body, pelvis, womb, and urinary tract will need your attention.

Libra

Boundary work becomes essential in this cycle. Rahu pulls you into the 6th house of conflict which requires clarity, tenacity, and diplomacy. The challenges you face are a result of leaky energy, lack of clear boundaries, and people pleasing. Time to clean it up! Clear your digestion and lower intestines so you can think more clearly and stay focused. This is a great time to put more attention on healing work in general as well as your finances. Try to get the right support team in place and close relationships that drain you or don’t feel supportive. Ketu in your 12th house requires ancestral support and lineage trauma work. You may need more quiet time but it may be hard to find. Try to spend time alone, on retreats and meditate. Travel may be fruitful. Expect changes in relationships, and take extra care of your pets. Your feet and lower intestines need your attention.

Scorpio

Your solar plexus and power center become a strong focus in the months ahead. Simultaneously you may feel confused and uncertain about your power, purpose, and strength. Clean up the gut so your intuition strengthens. You’ll need the clarity for big decisions. There may be a desire for children, but this isn’t the best cycle for growing a family. Father and children will need more attention- which may feel draining. Increase fun, play, and joy wherever possible. Learn something new and grow in spiritual knowledge. Expect sudden changes and epiphanies with friends and older siblings. What are you learning? Ketu may bring unexpected gains and exciting new connections. Get organized, focused, and clear with your desires. Your upper gut, solar plexus, shins and calves need extra TLC.

Sagittarius

Home and heart get all your attention and desire in this transit. Rahu navigating your 4th house of home, heart, land and mother mean the desire and pull towards comfort and devotion strengthens. You may simultaneously feel confused and afraid about the changes coming. This transit requires deep emotional work. The heart may feel heavy with grief. Release, purge, and transform undigested emotions. Ketu in your 10th house brings changes and restructuring with your offerings and visibility. Have you had a change of heart? Have your desires shifted? The internet and spiritual wisdom may be helpful to help you gain visibility and momentum with your dharmic offerings. You will need to make some adjustments in order to be successful, but don’t give up. Heart, lungs, chest, ribcase, and knees require more attention.

Capricorn

The desire to courageously self express strengthens in the cycle ahead. Use your hands to create and have fun exploring new artistry. Paint, draw, dance, write, make music and be bold! The expressive arts are extremely valuable to your path and purpose at this time. Go deeper! Ketu in the 9th house brings challenges with your dharmic path. You may doubt, feel unclear, and lose hope. Keep going anyway. Challenges with younger siblings and parents may show up. You’ll be working on courage and consistent action steps. This cycle requests deeper self trust and healing spiritual trauma. Listen to the inner authority and be mindful where you hand off your power to an outer authority. This is a powerful time for soul work. Stay on path and don’t lose the faith. Hands and thighs require more attention.

Aquarius

You’re being pulled into the 2nd house of speech, money, and nourishment in this cycle. Rahu will be asking you to pay attention to early childhood issues and dissatisfaction. You may start to feel an insatiable desire for more money. Over eating and bad habits with food and intoxicants could sneak up on you. Where do you feel malnourished? Use your voice and strengthen your vocal chords. Chant, sing, and express in new ways. Watch your spending and overindulgence. You will need to dive deeply into your unconscious and subconscious terrain in the months ahead. Deep trauma work from the past requests your attention. Shadow and grief work will help you purge the lineage issues and ancestral trauma impacting your vulnerability and fear. It’s not the fun stuff, but entirely necessary to feel more nourished and soul content in body and life. Your voice, vocal chords, thyroid, sexual organs and excretory organs require your attention.

Pisces

The coming 1.5 years will bring powerful change and transformation to you. You are being pulled deeply into your sense of self, identity and ego. Rahu causes confusion and uncertainty, doubt and illusion. Who are you? What do you most long for and desire? Lean closer to the doubt and confusion. Get curious and listen to your body wisdom. Relationships are being restructured- which may be painful. Loss, release, and awakening are taking place through the mirror of “other”. Expect spiritual growth and new illumination. You will be confronting undigested relationship trauma in this process. Be courageous, but ask for support. Make sure your therapists, healers, and guides are safe and trustworthy. Be careful driving and watch your head. This is an important time to clean up your body and mind. What illusions are making you sick? Head, whole body, pelvis, womb, urinary tract require your attention.

Acknowledgements + Gratitude

Thank you to all the gifted teachers who have collaborated in the creation of the second edition of VedaZine

Anita Sundaram 

The Art of Sacred Living

 

Anita Sundaram is an International Spa educator, Yoga facilitator teaching 200hr/300hr Yoga & Ayurveda YTT, and founder of Anita Sundaram Beauty. Her passion and life’s work is sharing her love for Ayurveda, Yoga and Beauty. As a licensed face & body therapist, she offers healing sessions incorporating the magic of botanicals, essential oils, Guasa/Kansa, marma work and sound therapy to balance and heal the senses.

Anita is the founder and author of Sacred Intentions. It is a beautifully crafted Yoga & Ayurveda lifestyle collection of Intentional cards and a workbook, offering practical self-care and lifestyle suggestions. Anita facilitates and curates Ayurveda and Yoga retreats, journeying into some of the most beautiful places on the planet.

Shell Amega 

ShellAum

Shell Amega’s paintings are a pilgrimage to a variety of Ancient Wisdom Teachings through sacred imagery. Each of these journeys begins with a seed, such as archetypes of deities, mandalas, or chakras. Trees, butterflies and the cosmic nature of the universe also inspire her work. These all serve as guides as she paints, and tunes into their energy, through the Eastern tradition of transmission, while manifesting their essence creatively. She uses crystals, gold leaf, and gels to enhance the spiritual light emanating from the ancient points of inspiration.

Motivated by the writings of Carl Jung, and a desire to heal from intense grief, she began painting mandalas. The experience of creating mandalas unlocked a world of peace, and joy that became a spiritual path. Communing with sacred symbols has imbued her creations with an energetic charge and has filled her with awe, gratitude, and inspiration. In the hope that her paintings may spark a similar energetic resonance in the viewer, she is grateful.

Cindy Lunsford

YogaSoul Bhakti Center

Cindy Lunsford is the former owner of four Yoga studios in upstate New York and one in Nashville, Tennessee and is the current owner of Yogasoul Bhakti Center in Nashville. She is a certified Bikram, Vinyasa, Yin Yoga and Level 2/3 Barkan Vinyasa teacher. She has completed Yin Yoga certifications with Paul Grilley and Josh Summers. She also completed Ana Forrest's Advanced Yoga training as well as Baptiste's Art of Assisting and Advanced Art of Assisting trainings. Cindy fulfilled her 500 hours with both Jimmy Barkan and Rolf Gates. For five years, Cindy assisted Jimmy Barkan at his level II/III Vinyasa teacher trainings. She currently leads 200 hour Vinyasa and Hot 26 teacher trainings and assists her teacher Raghunath in his 300 hour training in India. She practices and studies Bhakti Yoga in the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition. She lives in Nashville, Tennessee where she teaches, as well as regularly travels to lead trainings, workshops and retreats.

Dr. Marianne Teitelbaum

Author of Healing the Thyroid with Ayurveda

Dr. Marianne Teitelbaum graduated Summa Cum Laude from Palmer College of Chiropractic in 1984. She immediately began her studies with Maharishi Ayurveda, obtaining Ayurvedic Practitioner certification in 1992. In the late 1990’s she began a 17-year one-on-one internship with Vaidya Rama Kant Mishra, an award-winning herbal formulator who hails from a 5,000 -year-old family lineage of Raj Vaidyas, treating the royalty of India. During her internship Vaidya Mishra taught her how to treat practically every disease, making over 500 herbal formulas for all the problems they were treating together.

Dr. Teitelbaum is now writing books, articles, blogs, and courses based on the knowledge Vaidya Mishra imparted to her before his untimely passing in April of 2017. Her first book, Ayurveda and the Thyroid Gland: Natural Treatments to Heal Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, and Hashimoto’s is published by Inner Traditions Publishing Company and available on Amazon. She runs an extremely busy Ayurvedic practice, treating all diseases, by addressing her patients’ imbalances, instructing them in diet and daily routine, and teaching them Ayurvedic cleansing techniques.

Kate O'Donnell

Ayurvedic Living Institute

Kate O’Donnell is a nationally certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, senior yoga teacher, and the author of multiple Ayurvedic books including The Everyday Ayurveda Guide to Self-Care and The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook: A Seasonal Guide to Eating and Living Well. She studied in India for twenty years and continues to travel there annually for study. She is a contributor to many publications including Yoga Journal, Women’s Health Magazine, and NPR. She teaches trainings, cooking classes, seasonal cleanses, retreats, and online programs when she isn't practicing yoga or having a chai. Kate’s Ayurveda offerings aim to help others come closer to their true nature. She is based in Portland, Maine and teaches internationally.

https://healwithkate.org

Raquel Bueno

Alma Poeta

Inspired by art, creativity, and belonging, Raquel Bueno creates a practice that brings to life the holistic and healing nature of yoga; a practice where everyone belongs. A self-identified biracial Mexican-American, her faith in the practice of “allowing” inspires people of all orientations to simply, yet deeply, access and connect more passionately with spirit. Her teaching style integrates real-life experience and the science and philosophy of yoga; enhancing a spiritual, mental and physical context for your body and mind in the world.

Dylan Smith

The Vital Veda

Dylan Smith is a certified Ayurvedic Practitioner and holistic health educator who founded the Vital Veda clinic in Sydney and works very closely with the Raju family, an internationally renowned family of Ayurvedic doctors. Aiming to uncover the root cause of ailments, Dylan travels the world to share his passion of ancient vedic wisdom for everyone to utilise, enjoy and experience total wellness and bliss.

 

Learn more about Dylan – https://vitalveda.com.au/2018/10/28/dylan-smith/

Saraswati Miller

Dharma Mentor​

Saraswati J. calls herself the Embodied Dharma Coach. She believes what the world needs most is healers who fully embody and trust in their medicine.

She was born and raised with Vedic knowledge and a passion for walking the path of Dharma. For over a decade, she has helped hundreds of creative, spiritual, healers all over the world create soul clarity and business prosperity. She teaches her clients how to live in alignment with their inner wisdom, and create effective soul-based businesses that are truly nourishing. Her approach to dharma and healing is trauma-informed, body-based, and rooted in Vedic knowledge and wisdom.

 

Connect with her here:

https://saraswatidharmacoaching.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/swatidharmamentor/

FB: https://www.facebook.com/groups/divinedharmacircle

Thank you for reading VedaZine

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