If youthfulness comes from abundant, dynamic and therefore
balanced energy, illness comes from the opposite—deficient,
stagnant, imbalanced energy. Stagnation is normally the result of
excess that leads to deficiency, yet it can go the other way as well.
Life is replete with examples. Excesses of food and work lead
to obesity, stress and high blood pressure. Excessive thought—a
mind constantly running—invites a myriad of problems. Put
another way, excess is the opposite of relaxation. overeating
prevents the internal organs from relaxing and regenerating.
Constant thought keeps the mind in high gear, continuously
moving. deficiency arises as the heart and blood vessels
constrict and weaken from strain, and as the liver, pancreas and
colon slow in function. Stagnation is constipation; it is tight
shoulders hunched in front of a computer; it is the clot that
stops the flow of blood and causes a heart attack. death is the
ultimate stagnation, the end of flow and flexibility. Lack of food
or adequate nutrition and exercise also lead to deficiency and
stagnation. Anemia, weakness, brittle bones and malnutrition are
quieter and less noticeable than diseases of excess, but are just
as deadly. In other words, a sedentary lifestyle or poor internal
combustion from an improper diet inhibit parts two and three
of the equation—movement and energy.
Causes of Illness
Emotion (worry, envy, anger)
Excessive physical or mental exertion
Parasites and poison
Wrong treatment; iatrogenic errors
Structure or posture
Leading to imbalance from excess,
deficiency and/or stagnation
At first glance, there appear to be multiple causes of illness
of different character and origin. It would seem that we are as
life rafts, adrift on an open sea, subject to the whimsy of chance.
But a closer look exposes a cunning beast, a likely suspect. While
tempest-tossed through illness and health, suffering and peace,
an unwieldy dragon has come along for the ride—a powerful
friend when tamed but a destructive foe when left untethered.
The dragon is a familiar companion, with you from birth,
trained by many masters although sometimes mistaken as the
master itself, always available for assistance to create or destroy,
to protect and love, or swipe its tail and make a mess.
Operating consciously and subconsciously, controlling the
processes of the body, taking in information, making choices
and plans, conducting inner dialogues like computer code or
the little devil and angel on each shoulder, directing your life
with or without concern for your health or happiness, this
dragon is your mind. In tune with nature, it finds balance and
optimal health. In excess, it throws the equation out of balance,
emphasizing movement over relaxation, while missing the ever
available energy buffet.
Nature (without the intervention of man) is a dynamic system
of abundant energy, fueled by the pure and unspoiled heat of
the sun, water and nutrients from the soil. In cycles from day to
night, activity to rest, through the seasons, hot to cold, wet to
dry, nature self-regulates. It is balanced, adaptive and flexible—
the origin of the formula for health. Nature is vibrant, youthful,
full, alive and healthy. If you stand by a stream in the forest
you will be surrounded by vitality. Yes, there will be death and
decay, but the overall picture, what meets the eye, is lush and
radiant. It doesn’t get sick in its 20s and live into its 70s. Its
existence is healthy and energetic, followed by a rapid decline.
Grand old trees are sturdy and strong until close to the very end.
Like nature, we have the potential to live long, energetic, healthy
lives to 100 plus years. But we get old early.
The Fountain of Youth
An embodiment of nature: abundant, free-flowing,
balanced energy. It is vital and pure. Living as harmoniously
as possible with nature, following its laws, cycles and
currents, is the key to tapping the fountain.
We are creations of nature, the whole we—mind, body
and spirit—born in harmony with nature as manifestations
of, not separate or impervious to, its laws. We are nature. A
baby is the closest reflection of this harmonious, abundant,
vibrant state. A baby born healthy is strong and vital, yet
supple and flexible.2 do not mistake normal childhood illness
from an immature immune system for a lack of vitality. When
health returns, so does its companion radiant glow. A baby
uses no force, although it is forceful. It looks intently without
squinting, screams for hours but does not get hoarse.3 It does
not try to scream, it simply screams. She becomes the scream.
She expresses her emotions and then moves on, poops and pees
without raising her hand or excusing herself. She sleeps when
tired. She is in tune with her needs and cycles. A baby continues
to be vibrant as a matter of course. The body grows and renews,
it self-regulates, balances and heals itself. We do not need to
think to stop bleeding, to make new cells, to breathe or digest
food. All of this is done without learning. If we fuel the body,
exercise it, and then step aside, it will maintain health, it will
Over time, however, we move away from this harmonious
state as we experience trauma. The mind, scrambling to rectify
these problems, assumes dominance over natural expression.
I'm continually amazed and appalled by how the food industry treats us like lab rats. Again, Europe is ahead of the US, seeking to ban this practice last year. Europe has also rejected GM food. I believe the US consumer would do the same if the packages clearly disclosed that the food is GM. A recent review of GM studies showed that corn, genetically engineered to release insecticides, continued to do so once in the intestines, with system wide adverse consequences.