The Story of Science

The Story of Science

Nam ex falli aperiri temporibus. Et est alii animal prompta. Ei veri omnis dolores sit. Suas gubergren nam ut, qui ei consequat complectitur. Vel ne natum euismod adolescens. Cu enim vocibus erroribus has. Eu mea dolorum tractatos, quis graeco vim eu, eum ea duis nemore iuvaret. Mundi euismod tacimates vim at, vim ei   The reasons are as multitudinous — and as varied — as snowflakes. It could be that western bio-medicine’s pharmacologically targeted molecules did not contain the key that fit the lock of a particular set of difficulties. Perhaps the side effects of such efforts proved more troubling than the initial complaint. Maybe batteries of tests and thousands of dollars failed to find the cause of their discomfort, leading to this directive: “Nothing is wrong with you. Take this anti-depressant.” Some people turn to Chinese medicine for renewal after harsh cancer treatments or surgery. Some resent the row of pill bottles that face them every morning. Some come because they don’t care to wait weeks to see a doctor who spends less time with them than it takes to pump and pay for a tank of gas. Some want a second opinion. Many people come because whatever else they have tried simply has not helped. Our bodies — and spirits — have tremendous ability to heal. If the knots that hold together an illness are loosened, life may change for the better. That said, Chinese medicine is not “one size fits all.” Regardless of how simple a health problem appears or how difficultly knotted and complex it has proven, Chinese medicine requires regarding every person as unique....
But Chinese medicine does not seem scientific

But Chinese medicine does not seem scientific

      If you mean petri dish, negative-pressure laboratory scientific, then no. It is not. But, life does not unfold within the controlled environment of a laboratory. Life unfolds in forests, work-time commutes, seasons of flowers and birds, grocery store aisles, moments of bliss, birth, death and the 10,000 other moments that we hardly notice. Chinese medicine did not develop by peering into a microscope, or tinkertoying with molecules; it has evolved over centuries of observation of how nature and life unfolds into being. It is not the science of double blind studies; it did not come from a system that imagines you can stand outside of it. It is the science of understanding from the inside, the art of reading connections as they unfold. More like music than prose, in the same way Art invites us into an experience beyond the doorway of the work itself, the diagnostic process involved in Chinese medicine is the opposite of a reductionist narrowing to one guilty influence. Instead, it is based on process of piecing together seemingly unrelated connections, thus seeking to holistically glimpse a person’s situation. And unlike Western bio-medicine where there is a focus on one-size-fits-all treatment, Oriental medicine looks to see how each person’s condition is a unique expression of who they are, the environment, how it effects their life, and finally the illness process itself. We don’t focus solely on illness. We are not machines running down like a wind up toy. We are the stuff of starbursts, rainstorms and a curious divine spark. Chinese medicine is neither heroic nor salvational. It does not assume we...
What Does Acupuncture Feel Like?

What Does Acupuncture Feel Like?

  It feels like that moment when you experience a sudden jump of fluency level in the new language with which you have been struggling. In a fleeting moment a whole realm of understanding and ability appear out of the thin air of a magician’s hat. It is like finding the just-so twist that keys open a sticky lock. Acupuncture feels fresh baked bread, a stone perfectly skipped, a call from an old friend. Like old photos recovered from a dusty attic, misplaced vitality from another time becomes accessible with the right stimulation from a few skillfully placed needles. Acupuncture is like waking from a restorative nap. It’s nourishing like a good relationship. Acupuncture pulls forth our innate vitality, like when a new idea grabs us and we willingly change our lives to unfold a direction that has quietly, patiently whispered to us for multiples of seasons. Acupuncture can turn you on dime, reflect back to you your brilliance, call you to account for your habits and slip you into a quiet so nourishing and vast you cannot help but touch on appreciation and wonder. Acupuncture feels like a well-swung bat, a nicely banked shot, a satisfying sneeze. It wiggles us through the emotional knots we’ve tied, loosens our hearts to feel just beyond the edge of habituation, expands our chest in the same deep-sigh way that forgiveness creates an extraordinary amount of space in our spirit. You can find the traces of acupuncture on an fMRI, in the cortisol count of the blood, the disappearing inflammation of a stomach lining, electrical activity of the brain, growing life in...
How long does it take acupuncture to work?

How long does it take acupuncture to work?

Sometimes acupuncture seems like a miracle. A strained back that suddenly turns into “I guess I did not twist it as bad as I thought I had,” digestion that regulates and settles down, hot flashes that go from a daily irritation to an occasional annoyance, there are times that acupuncture seems like magic. But, as Isaac Asimov once pointed out “any sufficiently advanced technology will be indistinguishable from magic.” Acupuncture seems strange, and it certainly is exotic, so it is easy for belief to run off leash to all kinds of conclusions. Which is why it is important to know that acupuncture is medicine, not magic. It follows a theory of pathology and treatment, has a well detailed physiology (albeit non-Western, but a system that is solid within itself), it has centuries of clinical experience, and abundantly documented at that; at least if you read Chinese. It is neither random, nor a fancy handwaving placebo. There is absolutely nothing magical about it, and as a patient it would be best if you come in without carrying that particular baggage. Just like disposable lighters would make you appear to be an emissary from the god of fire 1000 years ago, or just like using something as simple an antibiotic to treat a raging infection in a place where antibiotics were unknown, your special medicine would instantly elevate to the status of a magician. But, we all know that these things are simple tools in our day and age. To us, as common as clean water, and warehouses of food at our beck and call. And it can be this way...
Are Chinese Herbs Safe?

Are Chinese Herbs Safe?

I love watching those Olympic athletes bump through a mogul field, float a corkscrewed flip, land like cat and continue to scream like a banshee down the slope. The way those skaters pull off a triple backward spin and land on a thin edge of steel is truly miraculous. Watching world-class athletes is indeed amazing. Equally amazing for me were the commercials. Especially the ones for prescription medication that combine the image of a smile-happy patient bouncing through life against the background rapid-fire litany of side effects and cautions. This product may cause: Insomnia Headaches Diarrhea Hallucinations Brest enlargement in men Anxiety Suicidal thoughts Back pain Blurred vision Nausea Constipation Decrease in sexual ability Birth defects Liver damage Joint aches Problems if handled by pregnant women Nose bleeds Hair loss Skin rashes Dizziness Coughing Urinary tract infections Heartburn Panic attacks “Ask you doctor if this drug is right for you. Perhaps it is best that we should be ask ourselves if these drugs are right for US. Are Chinese herbs dangerous? Depends on what you are comparing them to. There were some cases about 12 years ago of a number of patients suffering kidney failure after taking a diet pill that was a compound of various herbs and pharmaceuticals. Indeed there was a Chinese herb involved in the mix that was a known nephrotoxin. It was also an herb that any trained Chinese herbalist would avoid or use with extreme caution as we are aware of its potential dangers. Are Chinese herbs dangerous? They can have powerful effects, and generally speaking when prescribed by a qualified and skilled practitioner...