Nutrition

Man cannot live on T'ai chi alone. T'ai chi and therapeutic movement helps, of course, and many masters of such arts have lived long lives while being able to abuse their bodies with junk food, alcohol and cigarettes. However, these people would probably have lived much longer had they also practised good eating and living habits.

What we eat is directly related to how we think and act; our standard of life and thought is directly connected to our food. As a general rule, people who enjoy blood sports and violent activities usually have a high intake of animal protein, whereas those involved in a higher level of thought require less food and certainly less animal products. This is a generalisation and there are of course exceptions to the rule. For instance, women tend to be able to take in more bad food without it affecting their higher realms of thought because they are usually on a slightly higher spiritual plain than men. If we choose to eat junk food and rotting flesh then our standard of living and thinking will drop.

We often have no control over the air we breathe in the streets, but we are able to control it to a certain extent in the home, with a wonderful 20th century invention, the negative ion generator. The alternative is to move to the mountains.

Our water supply is now so polluted by our endeavours to clean it up, add things to make our teeth strong, etc. that it is almost undrinkable. Only in Australia and some States of America are we forced to drink fluoride, despite reports of people dying from fluoride overdoses and children's teeth being affected by fluoridosis. British scientists have also found that fluoride bonds with other ions in the body to form a new ion, which can cause certain cancers. All other countries have seen the light but we keep tipping tonnes of this highly toxic chemical into our water supplies. (Fluoride used to be one of the ingredients of Ratsac, a highly toxic rat poison). The only way around this problem is to buy a very expensive water purifier, but make sure it extracts fluoride as well as chlorine.

We have much more control over the quality of the food we eat. Whatever else you may think about the Bible, it holds many hidden health ideas, which are as relevant today as they were whenever it was written. 'The people shall eat the herbs of the fields and the fruit of the trees. The animals shall eat the grasses and the grains'. Genesis, 1:29-30

We have only to place ourselves in the position of the first people on earth. Man was not given great mandibles with which to grind down hard grains, nor was he given sharp incisors with which to tear apart animal flesh. We would not have been attracted to a stalk of rice or wheat, or to a cow. We would have been attracted to colour and smell in the first instance, then taste. I regard fruit, herbs (green, leafy vegetables) and honey to be manna from heaven and perfect human food.

Many of my students ask me 'How will I remain strong if I only eat fruit'? I tell them to go to the zoo and look at the gorilla. This strongest of all primates only eats fruit and has a wonderfully gentle nature; he can also shimmy up a tree one handed pulling his huge weight under him. Everyone needs different foods and must find her/his own ideal within the basic guidelines. I am not dogmatic about diet, I don't say 'Eat as I eat nor would I recommend a particular diet without having tried it myself. For instance I will sometimes eat only one fruit for four days to see what effect this has, or I will eat ice-cream and artificially sweetened food. One company in Australia guarantees an all natural ice-cream, but the ingredients include sugar. Sugar does come from a natural source, but has a very negative effect on our bodies. After eating two of their products it was possible for two of my students to push me over easily; under normal circumstances they would not have had a hope of defeating me.

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