Posts made in March, 2011

When Bad News is Good

Posted on Mar 27, 2011 in Life Coaching

When Bad News is Good News By Alaina Speraw, L.Ac.,Dipl.Ac.,B.A. When we listen to the news it seems to be overwhelmingly bad, “Japan is in the worst economic recession in 35 years,” the jobless rate continues to rise, business closures and consolidations, 68% of housing sales in the valley were foreclosures in January, we may be even having our own  personal financial meltdown. Being a Practioner of Traditional Oriental Medicine we have one foot planted in the wisdom of the East and the other in the post-modern technological society of the West.  How do wereconcile these very different societies their world views and assumptions? In the current economic climate of fear and uncertainty might there be other lenses from which to see it beyond those of CBS, NBC, FOX, Wall Street Weekly, the statements of politicians, statisticians, diplomats, and economists?  I think we are fortunate to be connected to a medicine whose roots are in Taoist and Buddhist concepts, both of which have many insightful teachings that can be a medicinal elixir and healing balm in difficult times.  This healing balm can help us endure adversity and offer a way to help our clients, co-workers, colleagues and community. First, we may need to question some of the fundamental assumptions of a capitalistic society such as “Growth is  always Good”  “The economy should be expanding” “The bottom line is what is all important”.  If we fall prey to believing these dogmas than we are left with the conclusion that the recession or possible depression is a bad thing.  But what could be good about people suffering the loss of homes, jobs, the value of their portfolio, their retirement funds etc? Chapter 42 of the Tao Te Ching “All things bear the shade on their backs, And the sun in their arms, By the blending of breath, From the sun and the shade, Equilibrium comes to the world.”   In other words, shade and sun, yin and yang, growth and decline, birth and death are necessary to bring balance and harmony to the world.  The lense of Taoism suggests that larger patterns and cycles are naturally in constant flux.  In western science we call this anabolism and catabolism or in physics acceleration and deceleration. The first noble truth taught by Lord Buddha was the truth of suffering, the second noble truth was that everything is impermanent.  We cannot escape from suffering and we suffer because of our attachment to people and things that are by their very nature impermanent.  Therefore the solution to mental suffering is to relinquish our stranglehold on phenomena which are impermanent.  To cultivate peace and stability through non-attachment to specific outcomes. So the collective we, ourselves, our families, friends, beloved clients may all have to “let go” of many of our well worn attachments, outmoded ways of thinking, dysfunctional behaviors, disconnects between our mind and body personally and collectively. Consider all the money and resources spent on war, hi-tech expensive cardiac surgeries and chemotherapies, cigarettes and alcohol, designer coffee and Jimmy Choo’s, SUV’s, luxury homes, insurance that doesn’t cover its’ policy holders, governmental waste……etc.  Think about all the “trash” which goes unrecycled each day in every city in the United States and the thousands of toxic chemicals and waste including, yes, our own disposable acupuncture needles. So is there a silver lining to our current economic crisis?  Could it be a “divine intervention” to wake up humanity to the interconnectedness of all life and the consequences of mindless and self centered actions?  Is this time a collective opportunity to re-evaluate our priorities and make the necessary adjustments to...

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Ginseng Chicken Soup for the Soul

Posted on Mar 27, 2011 in Health and Wellness

Ginseng Chicken Soup 4 servings 1 Whole Organic Chicken 20 oz Ginseng (Ren shen) 20 pieces red dates (Da Zao) 30 gm GoJi Berries (gou qi zi) Salt Wash the chicken and remove the giblets. Place 10 gm of ginseng, 10 gm goji and 10 pieces of red date in the cavity of the chicken. Place chicken breast side up in stock pot.  Add enough water to cover 8-10 c. Cover w.lid and bring to a boil, reduce to medium heat, simmer 30 minutes, season with salt. This soup nourishes the blood and qi, especially beneficial for nourishing heart blood and liver blood and yin.  The liver stores the Hun or soul in Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Heart stores the Spirit.  This soup is the real deal for nourishing the...

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