The Ancient Art of Energy Renewal
Reiki is a traditional system of healing through the hands, which stimulates the self healing ability of the body, as it harmonises mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of the psyche. Reiki translates as "universal life force ", or "spirit power " from the Japanese (the nearest term in Chinese is Ling Qi).
ediscovered a century ago in Japan I by scholar Dr. Mikao, in obscure Sanskrit manuscripts, the original tradition of teaching Reiki (Usui Shiki ARyoho) follows a treatment procedure which engages the flow of Ki via the hands while seated, stationary. A set sequence of hand positions sponsors internal regeneration by harmonising vital organ function in the torso, head and back.
One of the demonstrable characteristics of Reiki is that when it is flowing via the practitioner's hands, the oxygen content of the client's haemoglobin is increased by up to 30 percent.
This is particularly valuable in emergencies such as burns or first bite and postoperative recover)'.
The brain wave pattern tends to slow to the 8-10Hz range, as in meditation (the alpha state). With regular practice of Reiki (according to training given in the weekend seminar) the practitioner develops a keener intuitive awareness of underlying causes of disease, which can be interpreted metaphysically.
The outer world is represented in one's inner world, so the body becomes a metaphor or report card to the unresolved past. Reiki also gives you a keener ear with which to interpret the duality of language.
Everyday phrases represent traditional folk wisdom - someone who has suffered a heart attack may have been through a "heart rending situation". The asthma sufferer might feel suffocated in an over protective home environment. Reiki can help alleviate symptoms on the physical plane and in the advanced level it can also be applied to help resolve the underlying situation.
Some problems may seem minor, yet once healed the person's whole life may change for the better.
"Some problems may seem minor, yet once healed the person's whole life may change for the better.
For example, problems with the right knee imply that the person has at some point felt dominated, most likely by male. As the Reiki energy flows they may experience flashbacks of past incidents, as cell memory "evaporates". However, the healing may simply involve intense heat, tingling, pulsing, or even a deep chill over the affected site. A Reiki treatment procedure will cover the whole body and head, not just the affected limb, for optimum long-term results. Sometimes the client will enter a reverie state and talk of past experiences as part of their release from old energy blockages.
Other examples of the metaphor between the body and psyche - problems with the shoulders represent burdens or responsibilities we earn- in life and problems with the neck generally indicates stubbornness of fixed attitudes. Reiki can help resolve the negative behavioural patterning.
During a three-day Reiki seminar, participants receive four "Ki" energy transfers following a traditional ceremony conducted by a Reiki master teacher. On each occasion the student then practises with the developing flow of Reiki, to discern variations in energy responses in the subject, which is diagnostic. Students are taught how to interpret these responses in terms of the underlying metaphysical meaning.
In the advanced level of Reiki, the student is given a method of increasing the potency of the Reiki energy flow, so the results are achieved faster, and it is also possible to project over qirite long distances, where there is a friend or client in another country for example. Further psychic development at this stage tends to enhance the practitioner's clairvoyant, clairaudient or clairsentient abilities.
The practice of Reiki is a safe and simple method of self help which is complementary to other methods of working with the flow of Ki such as Shiatsu, reflexology, pranic healing and the various forms of martial artsg byBarbara MtGngor. Barbara is thefounder andgoirrving director of t/je international Usui Reiki \etuvrk. She has been practising Reiki fir I6jears and teacbingfull time since 1990.
Baby eczema is one of the most common illnesses in babies. They may suffer from it from birth. So what causes baby eczema?
Treating with TCM
In terms of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), infant eczema may be caused by the parents. If the father suffers from excess heat energy in his body, it can pass to the foetus, the foetus is inside the mother from conception. The mother's body constitution affects the foetus during the pregnancy. The foetus can be affected if the mother eats too much hot, spicy food, takes too much alcohol, chocolate, lamb etc. or if the mother is under a lot of stress. These factors can all be causes of baby eczema.
When a baby is born with eczema, he/she is usually treated by conventional medicine, mainly with steroid cream. This, however, does not treat the root of the problem and can often thin the skin. Cool property herbs are used to treat eczema in TCM. They are used as a drink to clean the blood and to moisten the skin. There are no side effects but usually taste bitter, so how can we get the baby to drink it?
If the baby is breast fed, we can treat the mother to help the baby. The mother drinks the herbal tea and is advised to eat a cooling diet such as celery, cucumber, watermelon etc Mothers are only too willing to do this for the sake of their baby's health. This kind of treatment is usually successful within 1-2 weeks.
If the baby is already feeding independently of the mother, a newly developed Chinese herbal drink called "Fu Fang Ban Lan Gen Lu" can be given in a small bottle, or it can be mixed with the feeds. It tastes sweet and it is usually not too difficult to get the baby to drink it.
1Mothers are only too willing to do this for the sake of their baby's health."
If the child is over one years old, there is a Chinese herbal powder which can be put into a banana or a fruit jelly, which makes it easier to take. A case study of baby Jack. Jack was only two months old when he was brought to see me three weeks ago. At that time, he was suffering from severe eczema all over his body on his face, legs, arms, back and head. His skin was very red, dry and itchy and he scratched it a lot.
Inevitably he did not sleep well and was irritable. He also had wind in his stomach and was constipated.
The cause of this was the stress his mother suffered before he was born. Jack's mother is a gentle lady. Two weeks before Jack was born, she found out her husband was having an affair with anther lady, this came as a shock to her and Jack was bom three weeks early. When Jack was born he was already suffering form eczema, one week after he was born his father left them. Jack's mother was very emotionally upset and started to eat a lot of chocolate, of course, after this she would give a breast feed to Jack. This in my opinion affected Jack's eczema.
After the consultation with Jack and his mother, I
prescribed one week of Chinese herbal tea for Jack's mother to take and advised her to stop eating chocolate and relax more.
One week later they came back. The mother had taken all of the herbal tea and the baby's eczema had gone completely. His skin had become more supple and soft and he slept all through the night with no scratching. He also took his food much better.
In conclusion, treating small babies like Jack through the mother's system can be very successful. It is better to treat the condition as soon as possible rather than wait until the child is older^
by Dr. Sbulan Tang You can contact DrShulan Tang viaQiMagajnt or by cmaiion Sbula)[email protected]/ipmgi^hK.com
Iutrition plays a pivotal role in the optimal functioning of the immune system and people who are nutritionally compromised will have frequent infections and also find infections difficult to shake off. They will be more prone to colds, flu, skin infections, Candida, parasites and other pathogenic organism invasion. This is where many people turn to antibiotics and other pharmaceutical preparations to try to help their body fight infection.
Resorting to pharmacological intervention is also not always the answer. Indiscriminate use of antibiotics has caused an upsurge in strains of resistant bacteria and "superbugs". Antibiotics also deplete levels ofbencficial bacteria in the gut, which can lead to dvsbiosis. Even a single course of antibiotics can wipe out beneficial strains of bacteria for up to six months. It is therefore essential if you do have to take antibiotics for an infection that you also take some probiotics in order to reinnoculate die gut. Probiotics contain specific strains of beneficial bacteria for example 1 Lactobacillus acidophilus and bifido species. These beneficial bacteria work in the gut to help improve immunity and to reinforce the body's natural defences. Some people take probiotic supplements on a daily basis to maintain levels of these beneficial bacteria just like they would take a multivitamin and mineral supplement or a fish oil.
People who are nutritionally aware do not look for a silver bullet that will destroy pathogenic organisms but make changes in their lifestyle and dietary habits, which will strengthen the body's immunity so that the system can both defend the body from attack and fight off an infection quickly and easily, should such an invasion occur.
There arc various nutrients that can be employed to help support the immune system and some of these will now be discussed.
Essential fatty acids are important for all immune system functions as they play an important role in forming cell membranes. It is therefore imperative to take supplements of omega-3 (the best source is fish oil) and omega-6 - Starflower oil in order to boost the immune system.
When taking fish oil supplements it is important to ensure the product is stable. Unstable fish oils not only taste and smell fishy but also induce free radical production. Free radicals can generate oxidative reactions within the body and cause damage.
On top of this saturated fats such as those found in highly processed foods, dairy produce and fattv meats should be avoided as fats are
transponed in the lymph system and too much fat could reduce the capacity of the cleansing action of this system.
Vitamin C is a well-known infection fighter if taken in large enough amounts. Many people take at least 1 OOOmg per day for general health and well being and increase this amount substantially should they feel the signs of an infection. A good way to dose vitamin C when an infection is brewing is to take 1 OOOmg every hour until bowel tolerance. When such high dosages are required powdered forms of vitamin C are possibly easier to administer. Vitamin C works in a variety of ways. It can neutralise toxins produced by some microorganisms and can also immobilise microorganisms. It also helps to control and maintain immune cell activity and can increase the production of interferon and other anti-microbial agents. Vitamin C is also a potent antioxidant and detoxifier.
The Immune System
The immune system is probably one of the most complex and diverse systems of the human body. It comprises:
lymph and lymph organs - the tonsils, spleen and thymus various cells that help to fight infections - for example phagocytes and macrophages immune cells which recognise foreign invaders -the immunoglobulins chemical reactions such as the complement cascade and the production of interferon physical barriers such as the skin, mucous membranes and hairs
All these help to protect the body.
Vitamin A is essential for maintaining the health and strength of cells as well as being a powerful antioxidant in its beta-carotene form.
Zinc plays a role in almost every enzyme system of the body. As well as this it helps with detoxification and fighting infections. Zinc deficiency reduces the functioning of the thymus gland. Research suggests diat taking increased supplementation of zinc sublingually along with extra vitamin C may reduce the duration of the common cold.
There are many herbs that may be used to help a failing immune system. Cat's Claw from the Peruvian rain forests is heralded as a powerful immune booster by herbalists worldwide and may help to protect from infections. It is rich in phytochemicals, which have powerful antioxidant effects. Other research findings surrounding Cat's Claw suggest that active alkaloids have a pronounced enhancement on phagocytosis (the ability of the white blood cells to attack and engulf harmful micro organisms).
Echinacea is another interesting herb possessing potent immune boosting properties. Its immune stimulating properties are still not fully understood. There is now a high volume of well documented research demonstrating Echinacea's impressive track record. It is diought to exert its effect by triggering the complement system, increasing immune cell activity and acting as an antiviral and antibacterial. It can prevent the spread of microbes by reducing tissue permeability and activating the T cells to produce interferon as well as increasing phagocytosis.
Echinacea is most commonly used to ward off colds and flu. Extracts and tinctures are the most popular form and these are taken several times a day at the first sign of a cold. Many people do not recommend long term continuous use of Echinacea because some research suggests the immune system can only be stimulated briefly before returning to its normal state. After several days without stimulation however, immunostimulants can again be effective. Therefore dosing every other two or three days may be most beneficial.
Tissue concentrates are another excellent way of boosting a failing immune system. They work on the principle that some proteins can and do cross the intestinal wall and are very organ specific. So for example taking a tissue concentrate for thymus extract may help to support this gland.
The thymus gland, situated behind the sternum plays an important role in fighting infections. According to American naturopath Dr Robert Cass, people who frequently have colds and people whose colds last for more than five or six days have a thymus gland that is severely undernourished and would benefit from taking supplements of thymus glandular tissue concentrate. By supporting the thymus gland in this way die body may be able to fight off infections more quickly and defend the body from full blown infection.
Taking nutritional supplements and herbs is only one way to help boost the body's immune system. In order to keep infections at bay one must also eat a well balanced diet which includes plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, lean meat, fish and pulses, drink lots of filtered water and avoid processed convenience foods and stimulants such as coffee, tea, alcohol and chocolate.
Regular exercise is also important in order to maintain muscular tone, which will help with lymphatic drainage. Taking time out to relax is essential as stress depletes many nutrients, which contribute to optimum immune function. A positive "healthy" outlook on life will also keep the microbes at bay.
So, by combining lifestyle changes along with a comprehensive nutritional and herbal regime your immune system really should be prepared for battle! _
Helm KimlxrbSc. (l ions), PGCE
There are always two sides to every story. Depending on which side you look at you will see a different picture. When something looks correct from one angle, you must consider the other, or you might do more harm than you realise.
I recently read some where that adopted children have appealed to have access to their birth records so that they could then trace their natural mother. It has caused much anxiety for many of the mothers who gave up their children for adoption, especially for those who gave up their children in the early 40's, 50's and 60's, a time when having a child out of wedlock was socially unacceptable. Some had to endure being shunned by family and friends, still others hid their pregnancies and gave the child up for adoption without their families knowing. A lady in her seventies said that she does not want to be contacted as her step-children and grandchildren have no idea that she ever had a child. Another who also gave up her child for adoption has said that she does not think that it is fair that this total stranger can have the right to walk into her life and be a part of her family. Still others are concerned not so much about the emotional side as to the practical side.. .what if this child that they have given up for adoption should decide to try and claim a part of the birth mother's inheritance when she dies. The issues are complicated and many on both sides. Mothers claim that when they gave the child up for adoption they also retained the right of anonymity. Now however, thirty years later, some are arguing this is not the case.
In China, in the past it was often the case that a child bom into a family with many children would be given away to another family member who was perhaps childless or had lost their children through illness. Sometimes a family would sell their child as a way of survival, particularly a girl child who had lesser use in Chinese society than a boy. Children had no say in the matter and accepted this as their life.
Sometimes in the West, we become too concerned with the past, thinking that it is a map that will lead us to some special treasure providing we can interpret all the clues. The Chinese have a saying, "More talk, more problem." In looking into the past we think that we will find understanding of ourselves. However, if we are constantly trying to dissect the past and our problems, we often miss enjoying the present moment and can even stir up problems that were not even there before. Understanding something does not mean acceptance. I grew up away from my birth father, not seeing him from the age of ten until I was seventeen. To this day, I still do not
"Sometimes we should just accept the situation as it is.
know why this situation happened. It was very painful for me and I carried a deep hurt inside of me for a long time. However, I finally came to the point in my life where I found that the past did not matter. My father and I had established a tenuous relationship when we met again. Over the next years we talked occassionally through letters and phone though we never mentioned the past. Had we done so, it may have broken that fragile thread between us. There were many times when I wanted to know why but I realise that if I had forced him into that confession, many things could have happened. He could have refused to talk at all and could have walked out of my life again. He could have
blamed me for something I had said or done. As it was, a bridge was being built between us and there was no point in tearing it apart before it was even completed. It is easy to say this now, but of course, it was very hard and it has taken much time and maturing to come to this situation. I am sure that these adopted children share the same feeling of abandonment that I felt, even stronger, so it is more than understandable for them to want to know their mothers, the history of their family However, is this right if doing so is at the great cost of even more pain to the mother?
What I am finding, however, is that we do not always need to ask "why" or understand things. Sometimes we should just accept the situation as it is. This is not easy, particularly for me. I am a worrier. I was not born with an easy nature of optimism and so I struggle each and every day to learn how to accept that life and people are not and never will be perfect. Western society is not a forgiving society. It often teaches us to throw away the whole loaf of bread even though only a small part may be damaged. We often "throw out the baby with the bath water." When we become more accepting of things, we also free ourselves from anxiety. I have tried teaching myself, even writing myself notes, to look at the whole picture, not just the details. These children who are looking for their birth mothers are causing much pain if the mother does not wish to come forward The)' are thinking only of themselves and not thinking of the consequences on another person's life^
You am contact Tse Sihn Kd on [email protected]^a^ine. com
When I first came to class - just to watch, It looked good - so graceful and clever 1 thought (others must feel the same) To master the basics — well never.
At first I was cynical How could these rhythmical Movements make me feel much better? But I keep on trying and really loving the Thought I could be a go-getter.
I've tried other disciplines. None seem to spin The same magical spell on my health. I know it's oldfashioned (folk sigh when you mention) It really is better than wealth.
The more I learn, the clearer it seems, It's notjust some movements to master. It unblocks your blockages, energy flows: giving Qigong a high feel-good factor.
Just like eating —yourpractice don't hurry. To miss only once — no defeat, just come back again and don't worry. The proof's in the pudding — it's sweet.
By Sylvia Royle
These days, true heroes are hard to come by. There are many who try to be heroes and many more who would like to be such. To me a hero is someone to whom you can look up to and who represents a picture of what you aspire to be like. It is someone who encourages you to do this and makes you feel you are making progress, no matter that the progress by comparison with themselves is small. A true hero is someone who makes you feel like the hero when you have done even some small task.
When I first met Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang, he was standing absolutely still in the midst of an overrun and noisy train station. Although not so tall, he gave the impression of someone who is of great height by the way he held his head and by the way he slighdv tilted his chin upwards and looked steadily and calmly ahead. His quietness, however, belied the powerful energy that was just under the surface, tangible but not overtly seen. He reminds one of the lions dozing with eyes half shut in the African bush. Although relaxed, you know that they could react with lightning swiftness to any situation around them. I knew that I was in the presence of someone great. When we shook hands, I immediately noticed how warm and red his palms were. Although they were strong hands, they were soft as well, like Taijiquan, soft and hard, strong yet pliable.
Several months later, after this meeting, I had the opportunity to interview Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang with my Sifu, Master Michael Tse, who translated my questions. I would like to share with you the Grandmaster's thoughts and more about how he grew up as a child of the famous Chen Taijiquan master, Chen Zhao Xu - the eldest son of Chen Fake.
When he was eight years old, he began to study Taijiquan with his father in their home village of Chenjiagou, Henan Province, China. He did not truly know how powerful his father was until one winter when they were practising, someone suddenly pushed his father, trying to test his skill. Suddenly, the man was firing through the air, head over heels,
three metres high. His father caught him and when the man was standing he was pale, like a ghost. Chen Zhao Xu asked the man, "Do you want to die?" Twenty years later, Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang thought about how his father had done this. He knew that if he had only used his shoulder and pushed, that die man would only come off of his feet. However, by creating a spiral energy, which came up through his Danrien, he had caused the man to fly away in a circle. He knew then that his fadier had to have had a very high level skill to ^^H^Hi*" ' understand the situation and position in which to use this type of energy.
Grandmaster Chen said, 'To kill someone is easy-to use skill to defend is high level martial art. All the village talked about diis at the time." This story changed his thinking and affected his future. So he practised even harder and was obsessive about finding time for practice. During school, he practised both morning and evening. I -iter, as an adult when he had family commitments to meet and a job, he still did not let his skill and practice falter. If anydiing, he grew even more dedicated. Sometimes he was so tired, especially when he was still working on the farm for his family. However, he learned not to sleep, just rest, and would sit with his eyes closed leaning against the side of a building until he felt awake. Then he would begin to practise again.
Often lie had to travel with his job and no matter how tired or where he was, he would make himself practise before going to sleep. 1 le set himself die goal of going through the Taijiquan form thirty times a day. When he was working in the factory, he had a friend who was a doctor and he asked die doctor one day what his wish wasThe doctor said, "My wish is to work in a big hospital and have a big name for myself." Grandmaster Chen then said to the doctor, "I do not have the same wish as you. Name has no meaning for me. I would like to reach the high level skill of my family's Taijiquan. Then this would fulfill my wish." Grandmaster Chen continued, "At that time, some of my school friends had already passed away. Others thought about house, job and family, but I knew if I had enough food and a place to sleep and time to practise my family skill, this would be enough for me."
He knew that he had to try and put all of his heart into it and so he did. He said,"I knew that ifl failed it was because of fate or heaven. Every time I found it difficult, I said to myself - Don't worry, just try your best.
Of course there were times when I was sad but not for long, lor me, the most difficult thing would be to give up practise." Then he said to me, smiling gently, "It was a long journey."
He later got his wish of developing the high level of his family's skill full time. After the Cultural Revolution, the government started to respect the traditional skills. He was chosen by his village to represent them to the government. As a professional coach of Taijiquan, this increased his wages in comparison to other workers by about ten times and so this allowed him to devote his time to developing his skill and practising even more. I le also began to teach and his high level of skill came to be known all over China and also around the world. People came to visit and study with him, even from |apan and Australia. During this time he won many medals and titles in the competitions in which he took part. He appeared on several television programmes and was written about by many newspapers and magazines.
Throughout his training, he remembered what his father had told him. "High level skill must be found - trained by yourself. It cannot be passed on. You can only pass on the principle - but you have to obtain the skill yourself." Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang continued this thought, "On the other hand, if the teacher cannot explain the principle, then his students will never reach a high level. High level is when skill becomes a part of your thinking and when you do not have to think how to apply skill." I saw a quick example of this when he suddenly reached over and grabbed my Sifu's hand and locked it backwards. Sifu quickly dropped to his knees and dodging among the dining room chairs, he scooted in a circle, releasing the energy that Sigong was applying. Both had reacted without thinking, instinctively. I know that someone of lesser skill could have had their wrist broken.
G ra nd -master Chen Xiaowang is a gendeman even when being a powerful martial artist. He said, "If my students can reach a higher level than me, I will be happy. But the basic thing is for people to know morality, principle and how to understand self defence. Demonstration and fighting and defending are all different skills. A true-martial artist will always treat the people well and behave and be polite."
For me. Grandmaster Chen Xiaowang is a true martial artist and for mvself a true hero — ■
Inttniav by Jessica Blackutli TranslatedbyMichaelTse
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