Now we come to the exciting stuff - energy. This is where life breaks all the rules. Biological science is just beginning to penetrate the mysteries of life energies. For thousands upon thousands of years, until now, they have remained the province of mystics and sages.
When it comes to rejuvenating the body, energy is where it's at. Put simply, successful rejuvenation depends on being able to activate energies which support the life force within. It is this life force that governs growth, nourishes us, sustains us, deep cleanses our bodies, regenerates our cells, heals us and makes us feel grateful just to be alive.
buffalos and daffodils
This ineffable life force is found in abundance in each of us as it is in all living things from buffalo to daffodils. Different cultures call it by different names. The Indians speak of it as Prana. In Polynesia it is know as Mana. The Chinese call it Chi. All of these words describe various forms of subtle energy which until the advent of quantum physics remained largely unknown to Western science. Yet throughout history all forms of traditional medicine from Paracelsus to Chinese and Ayurvedic herbalism have worked with it.
biophotons and quantum magic
Long ago quantum physicists established that wave particles such as electrons, atoms and molecules in living systems behave as biophoton energies. These energies appear to help regulate and control enzyme activities, cell reproduction and other activities in living systems. Experiments such as those reported in the March 1995 issue of Scientific American by Brumer and Shapiro established the existence of these particle/wave reactions in organisms. Like light bulbs, atoms give out radiant bio-energies which can either act constructively or destructively on the body's own molecules. Scientists are beginning to define how the interference wave forms generated both by internally manufactured toxins and by environmental pollutants act either constructively on the body to support health and vitality, or destructively, interfering with the harmonious biophoton energies (another name for life energies) on which health and protection from premature aging depend. In the future we are going to hear a lot more about these biophoton energies and their effects on our health but for now we can make practical use of the knowledge there already is of how to influence them for healing and regeneration.
From the point of view of quantum physics, as human beings we are not only immersed in an energy field. Our bodies, our minds, our selves, are energy fields. These fields are constantly expanding, contracting and changing as our thoughts, diet and lifestyle change. The aim of any form of natural treatment, from dietary change and detoxification to hydrotherapy, exercise and meditation, is first to enhance positive bio-energies in an organism and second to help to balance them and create order.
In University Parapsychology Research Laboratories such as the one at UCLA in California, scientists like Dr Thelma Moss have experimented with techniques such as Kirlian photography to examine, record and analyze the unique energetic patterns living things emanate. Kirlian photography is one of the methods whereby ordinary non-visible force-fields around and through living and non-living things can be recorded visually and studied. Kirlian photographs are extraordinarily beautiful. Researchers find they get consistent results when working with the Kirlian method to photograph plants and foods when comparing cooked foods with their raw counterparts for instance, or the leaf of a healthy plant to the leaf of a damaged one. The luminescent energy corona recorded on film from a living thing such as a healthy plant, or one of the superfoods such as organically grown herbs, wild crafted algae, organic green juices, and plant enzymes, is significantly stronger, more radiant and wider than in that of a processed food. The corona produced by well harvested spirulina or an organic raw carrot or cauliflower is dramatically reduced when these foods are cooked or processed. Uncooked vegetables and fruits radiate brilliant spikes of light, harmoniously surrounded by geometric shapes. Cooked and processed foods show only the dimmest evidence of corona discharge. Foods, plants, and herbs with a wide corona carry a lot of the life energy useful for rejuvenation.
Chromatography is another tool useful for studying energy. It is widely used in chemistry, biology, medicine and industry as a way of analyzing complex substances such as the amino acids in a protein or for detecting impurities in a compound. The use of chromatography to measure energy differences between living things and between natural and synthetically made substances was originally developed by European chemist Ehrenfreid Pfeiffer.
Early on in his career Pfeiffer was asked by the Austrian philosopher Rudolf Steiner to find a chemical reagent that could be useful in charting the quality of life energy - what Steiner called the formative etheric forces - in living matter. After experimenting with many different substances Pfeiffer discovered that when he added extracts of living plants to a solution of copper chloride then let it evaporate slowly it would produce a beautiful pattern of crystallization typical of the species of the plant used. Radiant form and shape consistently indicated the life strength of the plant. Pfeiffer established that strong crystallization patterns indicated health, while weak ones indicated ill-health.
Nowadays scientists working with techniques like chromatography, Kirlian photography, photomicrography and polarized light field photography - as well as clairvoyant healers who can actually `see' changes in energy patterns around plants, people and animals - confirm that certain foods, herbs and plant products carry high levels of harmonious bio-energy. They can be used to enhance the beauty of a living organism's energy patterns. So can techniques of breathing, meditation and deep relaxation as well as the laying on of hands or spiritual healing, hydrotherapy, bodywork and autogenics. That is why all of these things can be so helpful in the rejuvenation process.
healing the impossible
One of the most interesting researchers to look into the area of life force treatments for healing and regeneration is the American healer Mitchell May. At the age of 22 May was in a car accident that rendered him profoundly damaged. He lost several inches of bone from his legs, and the tissue and nerve damage was extensive. He lay in insufferable pain. His physicians told him he would never walk again and that it was necessary have his right leg amputated. They also informed him that his immune system would be permanently compromised and that his health would be severely restricted for the rest of his life. May was lucky enough to have been hospitalized at one of the most important medical research centers in the world, the University of California Medical Center at Los Angeles. There he became part of a special study involving ongoing experiments into life force healing and extrasensory perceptions using skilled spiritual healers working under strict scientific controls. He met and worked with a very gifted healer named Jack Gray. Gray had a great gift in his ability to activate powerful and natural healing life force energies within a person. Within a week of Gray's having begun simple laying on of hands treatment, May discovered he was able to turn off and on his experience of excruciating pain using the techniques Gray taught him.
May became fascinated with the whole area of life force healing and become an apprentice to Gray. He developed an interest in states of consciousness, subtle energy and in discovering ways to enhance life force through the use of spiritual healing, plant foods and biological compounds - those which have a particularly high quality of energetic radiation. May's own story is one of the most well documented tales of impossible recovery in medical annals. Not only did his body heal, he was able to learn to walk again and eventually regained full use of his body. In the process he has also become one of the most respected and acclaimed healers in the world.
During the period of his recovery May worked intimately with Gray and with Thelma Moss in her Parapsychology Research Laboratory at UCLA, photographing energy patterns around foods and other nutritional substances. He also carried out wide searches of scientific literature and conferred with physicists, health professionals, doctors and practitioners of natural medicine both trained in Western science and Oriental health traditions. He set out to discover, test and record information about specific foods and plant compounds which can enhance human health not only chemically by supplying an abundance of vitamins, minerals, phtyo-antioxidants and immune enhancers, but also by providing an abundance of life force. May wanted to find ways of making it possible to help people live at their fullest energy, vitality, and wholeness, in maximum health and wellbeing.
entranced by beauty
Before long May became totally fascinated by the beauty of energy patterns certain foods and plants emitted. He also became convinced - as had many researchers before him and since - that the fundamental processes of healing and rejuvenation depend on intensifying the life force within an individual and then helping to bring about a harmonization and balance of its movements within the living system. He saw that there was so much potential to help people by working in an energetic way. He also discovered (as have practitioners of natural medicine) that it is not just food and plants that are able to enhance the life force. He experimented with many forms of meditation and breathing, shifts in attitudes of mind, and various healing modalities, energy-shifting exercise such as Tai-Chi, yoga and the martial arts, which enable us to awaken the life force within.
Most of all, he loved working with plants. Slowly, painstakingly, he identified plants, algae, mushrooms, sprouted seeds and grains, all of which carry an abundance of this life energy. He also found they could be used to intensify a person's own life energy and help create coherent and harmonious patterns of energy within. As early researchers into the healing effects of living foods such as Dr Max Bircher-Benner and Dr Max Gerson had insisted, plants are holders and emitters of quantum sunlight - life force which we can use to our advantage either taken fresh and live or when grown, harvested and dried properly. These plants are able to transfer their life force to us.
May's highly practical experiments were carried out over 20 years, during which he conferred with the very finest medical practitioners in Western medicine as well as experts in Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine, and spiritual healers. Slowly, painstakingly, he was able to identify foods and plants - organically grown - with a particular abundance of life force and to develop ways of further heightening their powers for healing by combining them in a carefully formulated synergetic way, so that the energies of each balanced and enhanced the energies of the others. Out of this he developed what I believe to be the most remarkable and potent nutritional supplement that I have ever come across. It is called Pure Synergy. Its combination of 62 of nature's most potent and nourishing components include organically grown freeze-dried herbs, organically grown immune supporting mushrooms, plant enzymes, freeze-dried royal jelly, wild crafted algae, organic green juices and many other natural ingredients, and is the finest super food made so far.
May, and others like him such as Dr David Peat and twice nobel nominated Robert O Becker, have delved deeply into the field of subtle energy. They have helped to build bridges between orthodox, chemically-based, allopathic medicine (which until recently paid little attention to the energetic aspects of healing) and the ancient traditions of medicine which have always viewed healing as primarily an energy art. Breathing, movement, thoughts and dreams as well as the metabolism of the foods that we eat, all contribute to active energy `information' or life `intelligence' capable of bringing about a continuous circulation of harmonious energy to transform and heal the body. Energetically speaking, illness and degeneration are viewed as some sort of misalignment or blockage which interferes with the natural flow of energy, perverting its natural balance or siphoning energy off from its natural vital function of supporting the body. Rejuvenation takes place by using everything at one's disposal to enhance this harmonious and orderly circulation of life energy. The dynamic harmony within body/mind and the restoration of energetic balance which energy-based rejuvenation aims to bring about is not a static state but a dynamic process whereby energy continually circulates and health continually unfolds. This is living in the zone at its very best. This in turn helps bring about a process of renewal, regeneration and expansion of the individual spirit and its life purpose. After all, everything each of us needs to regenerate and rejuvenate ourselves lies within.
There are no magic bullets for rejuvenation. What works is creating a lifestyle for yourself that continues to support your energetic flow at a very high level. The Chinese, who have probably delved into the whole process of rejuvenation more than any other culture, consider the whole process an alchemical one. They see it as a great art and science in which ultimately a person becomes more fully who they truly are, living out their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual potentials to the full. To put it another way, rejuvenation is a process in which `base metal' undergoes a remarkable series of transformations first by being broken down into its materia prima (here is where detoxification comes in) and then transformed into `gold'. This alchemical process which is also recognized by the Sufi tradition, and the Ayurvedic one, not only occurs on a level of external and material change such as a younger, stronger, healthier body, but also on a spiritual, psychological level whereby the soul, the heart and the head are united together with the material body in what is traditionally referred to as a `mystical marriage'.
At this point in history we have a greater need than ever to learn to practice such alchemy within ourselves. Our air and water have become polluted. There is less and less good quality fresh food readily available. Much of our food is poisoned by herbicides and pesticides which distort bodily processes, polluting our bodies and undermining our clarity of thought and visions in ways that can seriously interfere with our ability to maintain health on a physical and spiritual level. Only we can change that for ourselves. I believe it is time we began to turn away from the whole idea of magic bullets, symptomatic treatments and quick fix ideas, replacing them with foods and natural techniques that enhance our energies and support our lives in the best possible ways. Once the life force energy is built the body heals itself.