OF *100* Issues of
Edited by Janice Hughes
of 100 issues of
The Share Guide, we have put together a
compilation of wisdom from the dozens of healthy heroes we have
interviewed over the years. Organized into several
categories--including Nutrition, Spirituality, Relationships, the
Environment, etc--these key extracts of knowledge from the bestselling
authors of our time create a kind of "Prescription for Living," to
borrow a phrase from Dr. Bernie Siegel.
"SHARE" was originally
an acronym standing for Sharing Health & Awareness REsources.
Pictured above: The Share Guide's first cover, published in Fall 1989. The debut issue was only 24 pages and the cover was not even glossy yet.
We hope you will read the snippets of knowledge below and be inspired to incorporate these tips and ideas into your lifestyle, thus improving your health and the health of the planet. See the complete interviews from all of our Healthy Heroes
FOOD AND NUTRITION
Dr. Elson Haas: One of the keys in healthy nutrition is to make sure we eat on average 40 to 50% vegetables in the diet. They are the healthiest food, with lower calories, lots of nutrients, good water content, and they support good digestion and elimination.
Dr. Andrew Weil: I think you should pay attention to your body. The point is everybody is different. You have to figure out what works for you.
Jack LaLanne: Would you get your dog up in the morning for a cup of coffee and a donut? Probably millions of Americans got up this morning with a cup of coffee, a cigarette and a donut. No wonder they are sick and fouled up!
Gary Null: Most people's diets tend to be far too acidic, and they're eating too much fat, so the food doesn't have a chance to get through in a properly absorbed form.
Mollie Katzen: I think there is a difference between loving to eat a certain way and attaching an "ism" or a label to it, which closes the door on ever eating another way. If you have a lot of vegetables, whole grains, and then maybe a couple little twists of different kinds of protein, then it doesn't become this huge deal about whether or not a person is eating meat, and how that defines them as a human being.
Dr. Elson Haas: Someone who has been on the Standard American Diet (the SAD diet) is often overweight with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and at risk for early onset diabetes. They will benefit from reversing that diet and getting rid of high protein, high fat animal foods and simple carbohydrates.
Ann Louise Gittleman: I can think of nothing in the diet that promotes disease and aging more over the long term than excess sugar. There are over 60 ailments that have been associated with sugar consumption in the medical literature. They include cancer, asthma, allergies, diabetes, heart disease, and many more.
Earl Mindell: What people don't understand about supplements is the longer you take them, the better the results. On the other hand, the longer you take a drug, the more chance you have of developing side effects, contraindications, or toxicities. The whole natural foods/vitamin supplement industry is not even as big as Lipitor, a drug that's going to sell $30 billion's worth this year. And that's just one drug!
Dr. Brian Bouch: What's really become clear over the last several years is that the healthiest diet for the majority of people is a low-glycemic diet--one that greatly reduces the amount of refined carbohydrates, such as white flour-based products, baked goods, white pasta, and sweeteners in all forms. This would include soft drinks and cookies and all the dessert treats that people like to eat. People need to focus on whole grains, vegetables, and healthy fats, including things like olive oil and avocados, healthy nuts like almonds and walnuts, and cold-water fish that are rich in essential fatty acids. Fish oil is extremely important and is now actually being used by some conventional physicians as a treatment for elevated cholesterol levels and to reduce people's risk for cardiovascular disease.
Ann Louise Gittleman: No more fried foods! These have trans-fats which raise cholesterol levels and harden the arteries, as well as contribute to heart disease and aging.
Barry Sears: You are only as good as your last meal--and hormonally you are only as good as your next meal. You need to pay attention to what you eat like you pay attention when you get behind the wheel of your car.
Dr. Connie Guttersen: You need to chew more to break up the food to release the nutrients. Also, if you don't take the time to chew your food properly, you don't have enough time for the signals to travel to the brain saying that you've had enough to eat.
Brenda Watson: The problem that we have today is many people are on a lot of drugs like acid-blocking medications, and they don't eat good enough foods. Instead they're eating a lot of processed foods, and these foods do not give them the antioxidant and nutrient-support that the liver needs to detox.
Ann Louise Gittleman: Eggs are a very high source of antioxidants, which I believe we're missing from the diet. Eggs are also high in a nutrient called phosphatidylcholine, which is important for helping to metabolize fats. They are also the highest dietary source of several sulfur-based amino acids, including taurine, cysteine, and methionine, which are needed by the liver to regulate bile production. So I say bring on the eggs! But get those eggs from chickens that don't do drugs. I use free-range, omega 3 enriched eggs.
Barry Sears: At each meal, simply divide your plate into three equal sections. On one third of the plate, put some low-fat protein that is no bigger and no thicker than the palm of your hand. Now the other two thirds of the plate, fill it until it's overflowing with fruits and vegetables. Then you add a dash of heart-healthy mono-unsaturated fat such as olive oil, guacamole, slivered almonds, etc. And there you have it: a meal that will keep insulin levels under control for the next 4 to 6 hours. If you have no hunger and you have good mental acuity, you know your last meal was hormonally correct for your biochemistry.
Ann Louise Gittleman: You're really eating plastic when you're eating trans-fats. If you want a margarine substitute, think butter--and make it organic butter from grass-fed cows. Your body really has no ability to digest margarine.
Dr. Ed Bauman: I have a system called the Four Levels of Eating, which I think is very helpful for people. The first level is Eating for Pleasure, and you're basically eating to make yourself happy and to minimize pain. The 2nd level is Eating for Energy. At this level you're just eating to stay full, but it's more than just pleasure and pain. But after a couple of decades of eating just for pleasure and energy, people get sick. That puts them into the 3rd level, Eating for Recovery. This level is a diet program. There's do's and don'ts, but they're somebody else's idea. Usually after three months, people plateau on these programs; they get sick of it. People shop around and they follow program A, and program B, and program C, and then after awhile they think "this is crazy," because they haven't gained their own sense of understanding. Then they usually just go back to random eating. The 4th level is what I call Eating for Health. This is where you begin to look at your patterns and at what type of foods really work for you.
IMPORTANCE OF WATER
Ann Louise Gittleman: Water is the elixir of life. It is the element in which many of the toxins become eliminated, it flushes the system, and keeps you well hydrated. It's also important to note that many individuals think they are hungry when in fact they're really thirsty. I believe we should drink one half of our weight in ounces every single day, drinking a little bit throughout the day, perhaps every half hour.
Dr. Connie Guttersen: Drinking enough water is very important--you sleep better, you feel better, your skin looks better, and you have more energy to go out and exercise. Water is a critically important nutrient that people sometimes forget. Many people are dehydrated but don't recognize it.
Gary Null: The best type of water filtration is a triple filter with baked-in silver, because that will have broad-spectrum anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. And you need it to be down to 0.5 micron filtration, which will trap most of the other sediment, like heavy metals and pesticides.
Ann Louise Gittleman: Any time you open a faucet you could be exposed to at least 2,000 chemicals, many of which are carcinogenic. And in some cases, you could also be exposed to a good dose of cryptosporidium or giardia. So the reality is that one needs a water filter that is able to block out cryptosporidium parasites as well as giardia, and has the ability to cleanse the water of chorine, lead, other heavy metals, and even radioactive residues.
Linda Page: Detoxification is one of the oldest and certainly most effective healing methods known to man. We have many records of it as far back as 5,000 years ago, perhaps even up to 20,000 years ago. But using detoxification as a purging technique either for rapid weight loss, for rapid cleansing of the bowels or some other reason is not the way to go. It isn't really true detoxification. Like everything else in nature, detoxification needs to be done in moderation and with a holistic approach.
Brenda Watson: The average person is carrying around 91 different chemicals in their body! And the problem is not just one chemical, or one toxin. We are dealing with the synergistic effect of all of these in our body at one time. If you look at every single disease, it probably has some relationship to chemicals in the environment. For example, there is a chemical in air pollution that interacts with LDL cholesterol and increases your risk of heart attack and stroke. People who have been exposed to arsenic and dioxins have a higher risk of diabetes. People that have more fat around the middle of their body have a higher instance of Alzheimer's. That's because in those fat cells are stored your fat soluble chemicals.
Gary Null: Most cleaning materials are full of toxins. Then there's chlorine in the water, which is a very strong neurotoxin that destroys brain cells. Mercury, which is in fish like swordfish and tuna, is also a neurotoxin. Aluminum is toxic; lead is toxic; copper from copper pipes in high amounts is toxic. These things are all toxic to the brain cells; they destroy neurons or interfere in their proper use. There was a time when environmental illness was not considered legitimate, but today there's whole science divisions focusing on it.
Ann Louise Gittleman: In my estimation, if a fast is not done appropriately you can become much sicker after the fast than before. This is because the liver is dumping too many petrochemicals from fat stores into the body, and many of these petrochemicals simply relocate into different organs. If the liver is not supported properly with a variety of antioxidants, sulfur bearing nutrients, as well as certain types of amino acids, then many of the toxins get broken down into more toxic by-products. So it's exceedingly important that people understand that detoxification is a nutrient-dependent process. It's essential that the right nutrients and the proper fiber is in the system before you begin a program.
Brenda Watson: The liver is extremely important. People think, "I don't feel bad." They don't realize that you can have 70% liver impairment without any symptoms. When the liver cannot process a chemical, it will throw it off into fat cells--so people get fatty livers. That's why one of the fastest growing diseases in America is non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
Dr. Elson Haas: Most people have daily habits of one or more of the SNACCs--Sugar, Nicotine, Alcohol, Caffeine, and Chemicals (in foods, environment, and medications). We use all of these substances to deal with life's stresses, but they also tax and weaken the body and its functions, including our eliminative and immune systems. Thus, our cells and tissues can't keep up, and we become congested and toxic. Detoxification is the missing link in balanced health--and a key healing therapy for the common disorders that most of us experience as we age.
Brenda Watson: I've always approached health from the perspective of gut improvement--better bacteria, more bowel elimination, colon cleansing. Detoxification used to be focused on people with specific digestive problems, but we need to recognize the overwhelming amount of chemicals that are being dumped on us daily, like a toxic soup, and how it weakens the digestive system and affects our health. One in three people in this country have a digestive issue.
Dr. Elson Haas: Fasting is only one (and more extreme) way to detoxify. We cleanse our body with many simple changes, such as drinking more water, eating more fresh fruits and vegetables (and their juices), exercising and sweating, bathing, breathing, and sleeping, while avoiding excessive eating and consuming junk food.
Dr. Ed Bauman: For 20 years I've lead people on supervised juice fasts, which involve organic fruits and vegetable juices, herbal teas, and mineral broths. It's really a modified cleansing, rejuvenating program, rather than a pure fast. I recommend people do this one week a year, during the warm weather time.
Dr. Ed Bauman: In regards to too many calories, you can have too many calories from protein, or too many calories from fat, or too many calories from soft drinks. You can have it from any source. Also, the addition of artificial colors, fats, preservatives, additives, and industrial waste into the food supply has gotten into people's tissues and has disrupted metabolism and contributed to enormous fat gain.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: The body of a midlife woman is going to do everything in its power to maintain weight because body fat is like a third ovary. It produces estrogen and hormones. That's why women gain weight at midlife. The body is just desperate to keep those hormones balanced.
Dr. Andrew Weil: I think that the really important thing is to become familiar with which kinds of carbohydrates are likely to promote weight gain in susceptible people. The highly refined processed carbohydrate foods are what can be the biggest problem, especially most of the forms of bread and snack foods we encounter in America.
Jack LaLanne: One thing that you have to remember is scales lie! I always ask people, "What did you weigh when you were 20 years old?" Someone will say, "Oh, I weighed 170 lbs." But then they played football and basketball, and were in good shape. Now that guy is 50 years old and he says, "Jack, I haven't gained a pound!" But how big was your waist when you were 20? "Oh, 30 inches" How big is it today? "Oh, 36." The sands of time have shifted.
Dr. Connie Guttersen: Most people tend to eat a lot more when they are given a big portion, because you tend to eat what's in front of you. Use a smaller plate, and it will make a big difference. Also, it's really hard to eat an overabundance of food when you take the time to eat slowly and savour every bite.
Dr. Ed Bauman: People who eat poorly are not going to lose weight, even with tons of exercise because they're going to be missing certain nutrients. For people who drop their calories and push up their exercise, at some point they'll get a thermogenic effect, lose weight, and they'll be pretty excited. Then if their nutrients are limited they'll plateau, and then start to put weight back on. They'll exercise more, they'll still plateau, then they'll panic. That's where nutritional advising is very important, to look for what's missing.
Ann Louise Gittleman: Many women retain fluids with spicy foods such as certain kinds of chilis, with the exception of cayenne. I recommend seasoning food with therapeutic herbs and spices that are not just empty flavor enhancers, but are actually helpful in terms of powering up your health. One of these spices is cayenne, because it stimulates circulation, breaks up congestion, and is very good for digestion. Cayenne is also known as a thermogenic spice which can raise your body temperature, thereby raising metabolism for several hours. Mustard also has that ability. Cinnamon is another favorite, because it has marvelous anti-oxidant qualities, and it has the ability to regulate blood sugar.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: All eating disorders, at their base, are a lack of nourishment at the soul level.
Dr. Ed Bauman: Stress is very disruptive to the digestive system, the nervous system, the hormonal system, and the fat-burning system. When people are stressed, they store calories. So even with exercise and diet and clean living, if people are unable to find a level of peace, their brain and nervous system are constantly in fear, which can add weight.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: If you can move upstream and change your diet to fewer and healthier carbs, more protein, and the right kind of fat, then you're going to create the biochemistry of balance in your body. Particularly important are the omega 3 fats found in salmon and other cold water fish, flax seed, and so on. With the right diet you think more clearly and you lose weight more easily. Also, the way you eat your food actually changes the way it's metabolized, and contributes to whether or not you gain weight or whether or not you get high blood sugar.
Ann Louise Gittleman: By eating the right essential fats, people can become thinner, up their fat-burning metabolism, and can lose inches for the first time in years. I think this relates to the essential fatty acids and the GLA content, but also eating the right kind of carbohydrates and the right kind of proteins. It's also important to drink enough water and exercise.
Rodney Yee: Your natural weight comes from a really deep listening to what's inside you. You need to get rid of all of the things that are put on you socially (that you should look a certain way), and instead refine the balance of your individual metabolism. I think when people start doing yoga, the listening becomes more deep--and, of course, you're burning calories as well. But you are also satisfying yourself in ways other than eating.
Ann Louise Gittleman: I believe that women have been eating themselves into hormonal dysfunction all these years, because they've been on a fat-free diet. The use of two tablespoons of flax seed oil, as well as our GLA substance, black currant seed oil, has been exceedingly helpful for menopausal women who suffer from hot flashes, irritability, dry skin, and dry eye syndrome.
Barry Sears: Hormones are hundreds of times more powerful than drugs. Every time we eat, something hormonal is going to happen--either very good things, or very bad things. We have the power to control that fate, if we treat food with the same respect as we treat any prescription drug. It does not mean food has to taste like a drug, but we have to stand back in awe of the power of food to orchestrate these hormonal changes in our body.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: One in three women currently have had their ovaries removed. This is a lot of women who do not have the benefit of their own ovaries in connection with their adrenals, which would usually link during the 13 year transition known as menopause. These women may benefit from a little estrogen or a little progesterone or possibly a little testosterone, but in no case should these be the conventional hormones that are synthetic. The hormones that naturally occur in the human female body have been altered so that the drug companies can justify the R&D programs to patent the hormone and therefore make their money. It's frightening! I'll take my chances with the hormones that Mother Nature has come up with.
PAIN AND INFLAMMATION
Dr. Dean Ornish: Pain can be a powerful catalyst for transformation. We know change isn't easy. If you are in enough pain and the strategies for numbing, killing or bypassing it aren't working that well, then sometimes the idea of change becomes more appealing. When people make these changes, and they see how much better they feel and how quickly it happens, they look back on the suffering itself as a blessing in disguise. They say things like "having a heart attack was the best thing that ever happened to me."
Pete Egoscue: With pain, the message we're getting is the body's only voice saying, "I need to address the situation." You've ignored all the other signposts that it threw up for you, so now your body is using pain, the loudest voice it has, saying: You will pay attention to this!
Gary Null: Chronic inflammation is the number one cause of physical disease in the world. It's related to almost all diseases: heart disease, cancer, dementia, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, etc.
Dr. Dean Ornish: We have lots of ways of numbing, killing, bypassing, or distracting ourselves from pain. The pain isn't the problem, it's a messenger. It is saying, "Listen up, pay attention, you are not doing something that is in your best interest." If we just try to numb pain or kill it or bypass it without listening to it, then it is a little like clipping the wires to a fire alarm, and then going back to sleep while your house keeps burning down!
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: The will to live is part of the mystery in life. It isn't a preference; it's an impulse towards life which is in the heart of all living things. It is in the unconscious mind and it's unconditional. I see people living when they have no business living; they should die from this thing because it is so overwhelming and they manage to live in spite of it. And I have seen people die for no reason. So there is a lot of mystery here and it's very frustrating to people. We are a culture of control; we want to see cause and effect: if I do this then this happens, if I don't do this then that happens. But life is larger than we are.
Lama Surya Das: Working on the spiritual level brings us more into our eternal home, and gets us in touch with our natural state of inner health and completeness--beyond birth and death. In other words, you may be very sick, but soul healing will bring you into peace even though you might die of the illness. You can be healed that way…not healed and live forever, because nobody can live forever, but healed spiritually, which transcends birth and death and goes on.
Dr. Dean Ornish: Curing is the physiological process of getting better. Healing is the process of becoming more whole. They often go together.
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: It's too bad that doctors put out a diagnosis such as "You'll be dead by the time you are 40" or "You only have three years to live." It would be wonderful if we could simply acknowledge the mystery in life, and say to people, "You have Crohn's disease" or "You have cancer." This is the diagnosis, but what it will mean remains to be seen. We need to simply accompany people as they discover their own story. A diagnosis is an opinion not a fact. And growth is possible for everyone, even if a cure is not.
Jack LaLanne: Exercise is the catalyst that makes everything happen: your digestion, your elimination, your sex life, your skin, hair--everything about you depends on circulation. You can eat perfectly but if you don't exercise, you cannot get by. There are so many health food nuts out there that eat nothing but natural foods but they don't exercise and they look terrible because exercise is king. Nutrition is queen. Put them together and you've got a kingdom!
Linda Page: Exercise stimulates the muscles to move all those toxins through your lymph system enhancing your immune response.
Gary Null: Exercise is a missing link, but it's the consistency of the exercise that's important. I recommend 6 days a week, up to 45 minutes a day aerobically, with another half hour with resistance exercise. If you're doing it right, there are many benefits. You're hitting the muscles, you're hitting the anaerobic and aerobic systems, and you're increasing the detoxification process of the liver and kidneys. You're rebalancing mood hormones, like endorphins, in the brain. You're lowering your blood pressure, and lowering your cholesterol. You're raising your metabolism and heart beat while you're exercising, and also making your resting pulse lower. You're strengthening the cardiovascular system, and you're burning intramuscular fat. You're also gaining more strength, endurance, stamina, and range of motion.
Jack LaLanne: You need to exercise vigorously, like somebody is chasing you! Otherwise, if you just take it easy and do it longer, you are just wasting time. The main thing is to start a weight training program, and it's not about seeing how much you can lift. With weight training you can work around your infirmities, if you have an injury or pain in a certain area. That is the beautiful part about weights: even if you are 100 years old, you can still lift something.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: Most women will not get osteoporosis if they take enough calcium and magnesium and do regular weight-bearing exercise. Women need to lift dumbbells that are up to 20 pounds. There are many benefits: women who exercise an hour a day have a 30% less chance of getting breast cancer. And 50% of mild to moderate depression can be cured by exercise.
Pete Egoscue: Unfortunately, most people in today's culture are posturally imbalanced, because of the demands of the culture--or lack of demands of the culture. Eventually there's going to be the signal of pain, and then people make the classic mistake, which is stopping activity.
Jack LaLanne: The more things you do to help your health, the more you'll be able to do. That is why a lot of people are sick and tired. They get arthritis and rheumatism and all these diseases. Then they decide to go on vacation and think that is going to help. Well, they take their problems with them! A lot of guys get a little pain in the toe or knee and then they won't exercise. Well gee, you have 640 muscles in your body. There may be a few exercises you can't do, but there are hundreds you can do!
HEALING THE PLANET
Lester Brown: I think the single most important thing we can do is to get the market to tell the environmental truth. For example, right now when we burn a gallon of gasoline, we pay the cost of getting the oil out of the ground, the cost of refining the oil into gas, and the cost of getting that gasoline to local service stations. We do not pay the cost of the air pollution from burning the gasoline, or the rise in atmospheric CO2 levels, or the climate change as a result of burning that gallon of gasoline. Rather than being $3 a gallon, if you included these things it would be closer to $12 a gallon. So what we need to do is restructure the tax system--lower income taxes, raise the carbon tax, and raise taxes on environmentally destructive activities.
Barbara Marx Hubbard: We're undergoing a planetary birth. Our species has got the evolutionary driver forcing us to learn how to co-evolve with nature or die. How do we create a planetary economic system that's just and sustainable, and allows for the new creativity at the same time? That's a very great challenge.
John Hagelin: Exercising common sense, consideration and care towards our environment is a good start. But if we really want to protect our planet against the negative effects of human behavior, we must bring our thinking and action into spontaneous accord with Natural Law.
Jeffrey Smith: Because of the unpredictable nature of genetic engineering, there could be a huge range of health problems that might already be occurring among the population from eating foods with GMO ingredients. The effects of this self-propagating genetic pollution may outlast the effects of global warming and nuclear waste.
Joan Borysenko: We are at a time of change which is the New Time of Polarity. This means that we'll see the worst as well as the best. Every time I see something difficult I like to remind myself that what that means is that we have to mobilize and do something about it, not become paralyzed by it. But what I would like to avoid is what I see some people saying and that is, "Oh, just hold a positive vision and don't get negative and everything good will happen." Well, it won't happen unless we actually do something about it!
Helen Caldicott: For the health of the planet and all of us, we must replace the men in power now with wise, prophetic women and men who will implement life-giving and life-preserving policies. People need to be reawakened to the impending threat of nuclear war, and like the tiny trim tab rudder built into the large rudder of a ship, as it turns, the whole ship of state will turn towards life and not death.
Dennis Kucinich: Alternative energy is compatable with non-violence because the violence in Iraq right now can be laid squarely on the narrow shoulders of those who believe that no price is too high to pay to grab oil.
Shakti Gawain: The most important thing of all is working on living more consciously, day to day. A big part of that is trying to simplify our lives and consume less, not from a place of deprivation but from a place of really caring for the origins of things and bringing our lives into balance.
Lester Brown: In an ideal society, we'd build an economic system that can last as long as the earth itself. Right now we are totally overtaxing the earth, and we are on a path to climate collapse. This is the challenge for this generation, because if we don't do it now, time will run out for the next generation. But it is possible to do it. If you look around the world, there are countries doing virtually everything we need to do. We simply need to make this a global process.
Wayne Dyer: When you're inspired by some great purpose or extraordinary project, all of your thoughts break their bonds--your mind transcends limitations and your consciousness expands in every direction. Dormant forces, faculties and talents come alive and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed.
Jack Canfield: A lot of people focus too much on what they DON'T want. As soon you get clear on what you DO want, and you don't have any conflicting thoughts, The Law of Attraction works. We often think that if something doesn't manifest instantly, that we're not going to get it. The truth is that it will come when your doubts stop, and when you're a vibrational match, and when you're ready to have it.
Jack LaLanne: Everything you do in life, I don't care, good or bad--don't blame God, don't blame me, blame YOU. The thoughts you think, the words you utter, the foods you eat, the exercise you do, everything is controlled by you.
Kathlyn Hendricks: The attitude that most people get stuck in, the one that really needs to shift, is the attachment to being RIGHT. I don't think people realize how much of their life's energy gets tied up in blame and criticism.
Deepak Chopra: Success is a journey, not a destination. Material abundance happens to be one of those things that makes the journey more enjoyable. But success also includes good health, enthusiasm for life, fulfilling relationships, creative freedom, emotional and psychological stability, a sense of well-being and peace of mind. Even with the experience of all these things, we will remain unfulfilled unless we nurture the seeds of divinity inside us.
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: The things that are most deeply meaningful, do them any way you can. Don't hold back because you can't do them perfectly.
Daniel Goleman: If you are reading a book like The Power of Now but don't do anything about it, you may feel great while you're reading, but it is not going to help you in the next moment. If you do a practice and train your attention to hover in the present, then you will build the internal capacity to do that as needed--at will and voluntarily.
Jack Canfield: The average American is watching from 3 to 6 hours of TV a day. That's up to 15 years of your life! I don't think evolution created the brain to do that. For all those people who want to learn more: turn the television off! When you're connected to a source and to each other through conversation, through making love, through meditation, playing games with your kids, all that stuff, then your quality of life is going to go up, because you're being attended to and you're attending to others.
Joan Borysenko: We have to work on healing our inner wounds and on our physical health, and as we heal ourselves then we are in better shape to work on healing the world through social change.
LOVE AND RELATIONSHIPS
Lama Surya Das: We can heal ourselves through cultivating loving kindness, forgiveness, joy, rejoicing in the success and pleasures and benefits of others. Compassion is a verb, it's not just an ideal.
Gay Hendricks: Every relationship interaction provides an opportunity for learning. And if people take that opportunity, then the relationship can be a very rich journey of discovery--rather than getting caught in repetitive cycles of blame and criticism and complaint. People should let go of their partners as "improvement projects" and to open up to seeing them as appreciation projects.
John Gray: If you have respect for the place where the other person is coming from, then you are able to resolve things together instead of becoming enemies in the process.
Lynn Andrews: I think we need to share our love, share our light, share what we know, without doubt or judgment. Share openly, knowing that you may know nothing. You know nothing and you can heal no one. But you can love and give of your spirit, and you can enable people to find their own enlightenment.
Shakti Gawain: The people that are the most annoying and difficult to deal with can actually be mirrors to show us the exact piece of our disowned side that we need to bring into our lives. You have to remember to recognize that this person is there as your mirror or your teacher. You've brought them into your life to show you a part of yourself that you need to develop, so that you can be more balanced.
John Gray: When we start understanding how men and women process stress differently, then we can start to respect what the other person is really asking for and what they need. For example, a woman might be saying, "I just need you to listen to me." And a man doesn't know what she is talking about. He thinks he is listening because he is responding--he is finishing her sentences, and he's interrupting her with solutions, which is evidence that he is listening. When she says, "You're not listening," he doesn't get that what she really wants him to do is close his mouth and try to understand her point of view until she is finished talking. She wants him to empathise, not give a solution.
Wayne Dyer: The power of meditation is that it gives you an opportunity to make conscious contact with your Source and to regain the power of your Source.
Daniel Goleman: Studies have shown that 30 minutes a day of meditation for 8 weeks enhanced the capacity of the brain to catch emotional impulses and pause, rather than react. It also shifted people's emotions into a more positive range.
Dr. Larry Dossey: Meditation is a powerful way of entering into healing states. When people meditate, the blood pressure comes down, the heart rate falls, immune changes take place in the body, and so on. So meditation is certainly a way of bringing about healing influences in our body.
Marianne Williamson: Through prayer, meditation and deep sharing from the heart, we seek to create a field of prayerful meditative energy to uplift the thoughtforms of the planet.
Shirley MacLaine: I think people should take some time every day for some kind of moving meditation, like Qigong or Tai Chi, or just go into a still meditation, doing nothing. You can experience a spiritual revelation anywhere.
Deepak Chopra: Meditation has only one reason: to get in touch with your soul, and then go beyond that and get in touch with the consciousness that your soul is a ripple of. It might be a good stress management technique, but there is only one real purpose, which is the means to enlightenment. When you experience enlightenment, you see the whole world as an expression of yourself and you see that the ground of your being is also the ground of all existence.
Wayne Dyer: The word "spiritual" is almost like a buzz word now. I think you have to define it. Patanjali said 2300 years ago that when you move into the world of spirituality, what you are doing is you are becoming more informed in the sense that you are no longer identifying as a human being having a spiritual existence, but the other way around, as a spiritual being having a human experience.
Marianne Williamson: The problems of the world are based in dense material reality and they saturate our reality. Traditional political activism simply does not contain enough spiritual fuel or spiritual power to fundamentally turn human civilization in a new direction.
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: Prayer is a doorway into acceptance, which is the first step in having things change. That is one of the great paradoxes.
Neale Donald Walsch: I think the new spirituality will be a spirituality that's not based on a particular dogma. The sad part about our past is that religions, ironically enough, are responsible for creating the most destructive idea that has ever been visited upon the human race: the idea that "Our God is better than your God." The new spirituality says: "Ours is not a better way, ours is merely another way." That single sentence would change the experience of the world.
Stanislav Grof: I have personally experienced over the years many examples of an interaction between the psyche and what we consider the material world, the objective reality. This is something that should not be happening if the universe is really the way it's described by materialistic science.
Lynne McTaggart: New discoveries in quantum physics are indicating that everything is connected. We used to believe that there was a physics of the large and a physics of the small. We're now understanding that the laws of the quantum world are applicable to everything. Those laws suggest that the observer has an effect on reality, and that our thoughts have the capacity to change physical matter. That being the case, we have to rethink almost everything, because we've perceived a world based on separation, but the world that we're discovering now is a world of unity, where all things are fundamentally connected.
Shirley MacLaine: You have to surrender to the energy above and below. I wouldn't call it sacrifice, except that you are sacrificing control, and when you do that, you find that basically the Divine takes over anyway, and you go through the things that you need to go through.
Lynn Andrews: For all beings on the earth, we are not separate from each other. We are all part of a great One-ness. We are like a smashed mirror in the earth, each of us are pieces of that smashed mirror, and each one of us reflects the light of the Great Spirit, and we pull that puzzle together--those pieces of smashed mirror into one great huge exquisite mirror and we are all part of it.
Sylvia Boorstein: If we pay a little more attention, we see a bit more and what accrues is wisdom. Not perhaps enduring wisdom of the world, but a wisdom of what is the wise and appropriate response in a given situation. Then we see we are not trapped, because when we feel trapped, we are paralyzed. When we see something left to do, even if it's an internal move and not an external move, we can have the energy to do it. Then we see clearly again, which re-inspires our faith. This is a doable concept. That is what the Buddha taught: peace is possible in this very lifetime.
Dean Ornish: In science we tend to focus on what we can measure, even though what we can measure may not necessarily be what is meaningful. Not everything that is meaningful is measurable.
Rodney Yee: I think many people are thirsty for reintegrating spirituality with practicality and pragmatism. And I think yoga class is a perfect place for people to begin this process--to figure out what these things mean to them as human beings.
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: When we pray, we remind ourselves about the nature of the world. We don't change the outer world, we change our inner consciousness. We move from this kind of individual, isolated, egocentric "I'm the cause of everything" kind of consciousness to a connection on the deepest level. It's a larger reality that is by nature mysterious, something we can never know but we will feel its presence in our lives. It becomes an act of surrender when you orient yourself at the beginning of your day towards the highest possible purpose.
Barbara Marx Hubbard: I believe that there's an emerging species in humanity that is becoming a new norm, as we expand in consciousness, expand in empathy, expand in connectedness, expand in creativity. I believe that we are, in a way, a transitional species, between the self-conscious homo sapiens, and what might eventually become a truly universal species.
Sylvia Boorstein: For me, the point of becoming enlightened is to be able to act without greed, hatred and delusion. It doesn't mean to forget about taking care of yourself; it means to somehow be free of the captivating habits of self preoccupation which are so limiting. The Dalai Lama always says "It's a much better gamble to be interested in the well-being of others than your own because the odds are six billion to one."
THE MIND-BODY CONNECTION
Dr. Larry Dossey: The body is contained in consciousness, not the other way around, as is said in Western science.
Dr. Dean Ornish: There is a wide body of evidence showing that people who feel lonely and depressed and isolated are 3 to 7 times more likely to get sick and die prematurely than those who have a sense of love and connection in the community. I don't know of anything in medicine that has a more powerful impact across the board, not just with heart disease but also with most other illnesses.
Dr. Christiane Northrup: In women, anxiety and depression have a huge overlap. Of course, all the original depression and anxiety studies were done on men, and the drugs were designed for men. But in women, the two areas of the brain have a huge overlap, so often anxiety is depression, and depression is anxiety. It's related to what is going on in the person's life that they don't want to really look at.
Dr. Brian Bouch: Being spiritually focused activates centers in the central nervous system that positively impact the function of the immune system. This puts us in a place where we're more resistant to infections, and we're more resistant to the onset of other degenerative diseases and cancer. It also greatly improves quality of life, and how people feel on a day-to-day basis.
Dr. Bernie Siegel: Studies have proven that people are able to control body functions through their own meditation imagery--changing heart rate, not bleeding from wounds, a whole host of things. Those were things I would use in the operating room when I was practicing medicine. I would tell people not to bleed, what heart rate I wanted, even correct by giving them symbols through my words. Nobody is against success, so the anesthesiologists didn't argue with me. If I could help improve the situation, fine, go right ahead. And the experience changed their attitude.
HEALTH CARE IN AMERICA
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: We now have an economically driven system doing something which is intangible. The values of business and the values of medicine are not compatible. In medicine, every human life matters. Economically speaking though, it's supposed to be the greatest good for the greatest number. These are in direct contradiction to one another!
Dr. Bernie Siegel: The technology today just overwhelms everybody. You spend more time learning about technology than people. If you went back 100 years, doctors took care of the person because they didn't have all the technology. Now there's so many drugs, and all this fascinating equipment--which is wonderful to have, but let's remember there's still a person at the end of all of this.
Daniel Goleman: I think that there is a real need in holistic medicine to do well-controlled studies and document results, because people deserve to know the truth about what works and what doesn't work. Just because something doesn't have validation and may be very new, doesn't mean it isn't quite good-but you really have to be discriminating.
Dr. Larry Dossey: If you go to your doctor, and he writes you a prescription for penicillin, you may regard that as a physical therapy. I mean, that's a chemical. But the moment you take the prescription in your hand, you begin to use your own powers of consciousness, in terms of your expectations of what's going to happen. Suggestion, or positive thinking may enter. And, who knows, your doctor may pray for you, or send you healing intentions. All of this enters into your clinical response, when you take that pill. I don't think that therapy is as simple as we often make it out to be. Whether we're trying to assess penicillin, or herbal remedies, or anything else.
Dr. Bernie Siegel: It drives me nuts when I read medical journals--whatever the complaint, boom, here's a prescription. In the ads the doctor never says "Sit down and tell me what's happening." It's always "Take this pill."
Earl Mindell: Hospitals are basically drug distributing facilities. The average person is given 12 drugs per day when they go into a hospital. Instead of going directly to the new drugs that are under-tested and toxic, why not try some simpler natural remedy? And heaven forbid, why not focus on prevention instead of sickness?
Louise Hay: I think it would be wonderful if somebody would start some holistic retirement communities where people could really live out the rest of their days in vibrant health. It would have holistic medical doctors on staff, instead of a medical staff and an occasional holistic practitioner--with chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathy…all the healing modalities available for the residents.
Dr. Brian Bouch: The model in which most physicians were trained was designed around doing an extensive initial intake, and then being able to spend enough time during follow-up visits to hear the person's complaints, look at possible side effects of medications, and assess how well the treatment is going. But 10-minute visits really don't serve anybody. They have been forced on the medical community and patients by the insurance industry. The doctors are frustrated by it, the patients are underserved by it, and altogether I think it makes for a poor quality of medical care.
Shirley MacLaine: I think in the future we will shift into medicine that has more of an energy, electromagnetic frequency base, and not biological and chemical (as in drugs).
Pete Egoscue: If you consult a physician or a therapist of any kind and you don't participate, what you are really doing is you are handicapping that professional's ability to help you. You have to ask the "why" questions, and you have to be an active participant. Now the tragedy of all this is that we are well-schooled on how to do that in every area of our life, except with our healthcare. We've convinced ourselves that we're fragile and complicated, and because of that only experts can help us solve our problems. It's just not true.
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen: I think that too much "scientific objectivity" can actually make a person blind. All of us have certain ideas about life. Often we can't see life because we are always seeing within those boundaries. It's hard to think outside of the box. But that is where life is--outside of the box!
Dr. Brian Bouch: Doctors follow a standard of practice. If the physicians deviate from the standard of practice they are at risk of being sued. If a patient presents with a certain set of symptoms, there's an expected workup that's supposed to occur, and certain tests ordered to confirm or refute the diagnosis. And then once a biomedical diagnosis is arrived at, then there's a treatment formula that's supposed to be followed. Thus we have a huge problem in this country, and it's probably one of the main reasons why health care is so expensive. It's also why we're not doing well compared to other industrialized nations that have different levels of liability control.
Dr. Larry Dossey: I think the sense of sacredness can be reclaimed in medicine, and I think medicine can remain scientific as this process develops.
Earl Mindell: I think the future is to focus on WELLNESS. And it's going to happen, simply because it's just getting too expensive to be sick. Let's hope that people start to wake up so that we can close half the hospitals, because we won't need them.
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