Yearly Archives: 2006

Scorpions and brains

By | Misc | No Comments

This isn’t about the very tiny brains in scorpions. It’s about the treatment of a very aggressive form of brain cancer which has very few options in terms of treatment. The success of cancer treatment (chemotherapy, radiation, surgery) is variable depending on the type of cancer, its origin, location, etc. The treatment of brain cancer poses some unique obstacles in forming effective treatment strategies. Primarily is the obstruction to the introduction of chemotherapeutic agents to the brain by the “blood brain barrier.” Very few substances can pass through this filter. One thing that can is scorpion venom. While this is not news to most of us in the Chinese medicine world, Western medicine is just getting on board with some research that shows how effective this traditional substance can be (although the version used in the research was a synthetic version).

You can find the story here.

Thanks Kathy for the heads up :-)

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Interesting research

By | Misc | No Comments

Two aspects of this research are particularly interesting from a Chinese medicine point of view. First, the preliminary research data showing that slow breathing practiced for 15 minutes a day resulted in a 10 – 15 point drop in blood pressure. Second, the researcher postulates that the prolonged effect of the drop in blood pressure is due to a systemic mechanism, specifically the kidney’s excretion of salt.

The first point is probably well known. Meditation, progressive relaxation, and similar exercises can help to drop blood pressure. The second point is interesting because, if shown to be true, illustrates a concrete connection between the kidneys and the lungs – a basic premise in Chinese medicine.

Getting Ready!

By | New York | 3 Comments

Getting ready to start up again. The new location will be on 40th Street, just west of Madison Avenue. This has been a crazy year for me. What started as an exploration of myself wound up with me taking on even more projects! Those who have accused me of working too much keep your eyes on the ball ’cause you ain’t seen nothin’ yet!

It’s all really exciting stuff for me. I guess i’m going from focusing inwardly to focusing on my role in the world as a human being (though i have been called a couple of other things in the interim).

Anyway, I chose this location because it’s about as central as you can get. Just about every train in NY passes within a few blocks. That should make it more convenient for eveyone, except me of course LOL!

Italian Journalists

By | Trip | No Comments

For those of you that read Italian or know how to use babelfish to translate webpages, here’s a link to a story that appeared by an Italian journalist I met on an island called Pula Wei…here here is is in English

The history of Tibet

By | Nepal | No Comments
As some of you may know, the peaceful land of Tibet has not always been so. It has quite a history of violence and tyranny (think karma on a national scale). Just fyi I’m pretty sure that China’s current claim to Tibet is actually fueled by an ancient edict in which Tibet declared itself part of China. You may wonder at the incredulity of this radical statement, but Tibet was taking over China at the time – so I’m sure it seemed reasonable to the Tibetans. Anyway, for those of you unaware of Tibet’s great history of religious war (one historian told me that the Tibetans in their heyday made the Catholics look like nursery school children…), you might find this video from the NYTimes interesting… the article is here.

Poon Hill

By | Nepal | No Comments

Here you go. Poon hill is the “must see” spot for people doing the Annapurna circuit. It’s pretty obvious why.

sunrise poon hill

You’ve gotta get up at around 3:30am, then trek like a Banshee (well, I guess actually more like a Sherpa) to the top of this “hill.”

annapurna range

Now I’ve seen hills and I’ve seen “hills,” but I ain’t never seen a hill like this. I was thinking they should have a defibrillator at the top. It’s around 45 minutes straight uphill. Luckily you don’t have to bring your pack. They have the most delicious piping hot, instant hot chocolate you’ve ever had. No tiny little dehydrated marshmallows, but hey you’re in Nepal!

mountains of mist

Wow! Has anyone ever told you…

By | Nepal | No Comments

…that you should write a book? You should put a contract out on them! It never seems like it’s never going to end! It’s like a black hole. The more you give, the more it wants, the more dense it grows, the greater its pull. Lots of excuses for not getting around to THIS for a while. I’ll try and update it in the next few weeks.

Nepal really threw me off for a couple of reasons. There was NO internet access. It was freezing in the evening when I usually would have written (remember I had just come from Thailand – yeah, don’t give me any of that “life is tough” stuff either). And I took WAY too many photos (around 500). Going through them is truly overwhelming. And I’m not even a good photographer…

Okay, maybe I’ll sneak one post in here for good measure. I’m so bad sometimes… heeheehee…