Wednesday, July 12, 2006

10: The Journey to Wild Divine

A friend showed this game to me--and I hate video games--but I found this one really compelling. The game, "The Journey to Wild Divine," uses biofeedback to move you through the obstacles in the game.

Included in the game is biofeedback hardware that hooks up to your fingers to monitor heart and skin resistance characteristics. You have to do various yoga breathing techniques and meditation to create the right pattern of biofeedback readings.

It is a beautifully executed product; the graphics and music are excellent; the affirmations and breathing instructions are enlightening.

I truly felt like the game made me a better person.

Take a deep breath,


Saturday, June 24, 2006

9: Your Energy Body - stuff to avoid

A comprehensive list of stuff that's bad for your energy body would be very long. Almost any aspect of modern western life is bad for your energy body.

We were talking to the director of the TCM clinic where we get our medical care; he said that almost every person who comes to the clinic has problems with the Qi in their kidneys and liver. What are we all doing that is harming our energy bodies?

All the bad stuff we do to our spiritual selves harms our energy body as does all the bad stuff we do to our physical bodies. It's all connected as you know.
In addition, we have to worry about the sights and sounds we take into our energy bodies; movies and music, gossip and backbiting--even the evening news can have negative effects in the energy body. We think of these negative inputs as being mostly harmful to our spiritual selves but it goes deeper than that; it gets down to the level of karma.
In vedic terms, there are "colorings"--distortions to reality produced by the ignorance that we project onto our experiences. These distortions can be at a deep subconscious level. We all have these distortions; we should endeavor to remove them through spiritual practice, not make them worse by wallowing in ego-stimulating entertainment.
The Vedas also mention samskaras, deep impressions in our energy body from our prior experiences and actions. Again, we don't want to add to the negative samskaras by doing bad stuff to our spirits or our bodies.
All this takes discipline. The world calls you to be more attached to it. You must struggle to maintain a higher goal. If it were easy, everyone would do it. Right?
Take a deep breath,

Thursday, June 22, 2006

8: Your Energy Body - Good Stuff to Add

If you don't know you have an energy body, click here. Managing your energy body is central to health. I almost said that it's more important than diet or exercise, but I stopped myself because bad diet and poor or little exercise will damage your energy body. I think what's true is: if you live your physical and spiritual life in such a way that you have a strong energy body you will be sick far less often, have milder illnesses, feel better and have a longer productive life.
Now, what's good for the energy body?
Tai Chi and Qigong will strengthen your physical body and your energy body. Patrick Martin at Northern Arizona University has produced a series of videos on Chen style Tai Chi and Qigong that are easy to understand and follow. There are many other excellent videos on Tai Chi; if you use another video or take a live class, go slowly and strengthen your legs and knees before doing the more advanced movements. Qigong and the simpler Tai Chi movements are great for people of all health levels.
Meditation is important for spiritual and energetic health. Swami J's site is a good place to start if you don't already have a favorite. Here's a table of meditation resources.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treats the energy body as a way of dealing with your physical and emotional issues. This is what we really like about TCM; it doesn't deal with symptoms, it goes straight for the underlying energetic causes. Use a TCM practitioner that is NCCOM certified.

You've probably heard of Reiki, Shiatsu, or Reflexology. There are others that you may not have heard of. They all have their usefullness. Click here for a table of common energy modalities.

Take a deep breath,

Dr. Ron

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

7: Your Spiritual Self - stuff to avoid

Bad Stuff for Your Spiritual Health
Anger and Fear! How much healing could happen on the planet if we could just get rid of the anger and fear.
Let's look at ways to get rid of anger and fear:
Key Concepts:
Be Here Now! Don't waste time regreting the past of worrying about the future. The past and the future are only a dream, this moment is the only moment there is. Living in the moment is the subject of another important book, The Power of Now, by Eckhart Tolle. I can't do justice to either of these books in a paragraph; read some reviews. The Power of Now is very straightforward and logical while Be Here Now is whimsical and mystical. Choose either, the point is the same: spiritual health requires living in the present moment and using it effectively.
Forgive! Forgive! Forgive! Any and all grudges are anchors that prevent you from moving forward spiritually. They harm you exclusively; they don't harm the person that you're angry with.  Are you ready to make room for some miracles in your life? What are the grudges that are holding you back? If you hold onto bitterness about a former spouse or your parents, are you living in the moment? Are you one-pointed? Or holding your bitterness in one part of your brain and your spiritual growth in another part and expecting them to support each other?
Get over it! It's done enough damage to you already!
Many of life's little miracles occur because you are awake--you are in the moment--and ready to recognize the opportunity and act. If you're lost in regret or anger about the past, or fearful about the future, you may not notice the opportunity.
Get rid of the clutter in your environment. The Dalai Lama says that if you want a sense of the interior of your mind, look at your environment. Strive for beauty.

Look for other ways in which your physical life harms your spiritual life. Get rid of negative foods, negative art and entertainment, negative attitudes about your body. Meditate and watch your thoughts; they will tell you what physical things are harming your spirituality. Be grateful for the thoughts that disturb your meditation; they are signposts on your journey.
Take a deep breath,

Monday, June 19, 2006

6: Your Spiritual Self - Good Stuff to Add

We believe that your spiritual health affects your physical health more than your physical health affects your spiritual health. To have spiritual health you need a central focus for your spiritual growth; you can't just grab an idea here and an idea there. Your beliefs must be internally consistent or you'll create inner conflict for yourself.
There are a number of practices that can be added to any spiritual foundation and provide benefits without eroding the foundation itself.
Meditation is one of those topics. While we are urged to meditate the form of meditation is left up to us. There's a table of meditation resources on our website. It's hard to imagine a spiritual life without any kind of meditation. If you're not meditating, find a method that works for you.
The concept of living in the moment is another. Be Here Now is a whimsical and mystical book that looks at the question from a yoga perspective. In his book, The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle addresses the concept in a straightforward manner that is probably more acceptable to a western or Christian audience.
We believe in the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism and the Eight-fold Path that is part of the fourth Noble Truth. Whether your a Christian, a Muslim, or anything else, you should know about the Four Noble Truths, a proven method for reducing or eliminating suffering.
Swami Rama wrote a profound book called, A Practical Guided to Holistic Health that includes nine steps to holistic health. You should be aware of these steps.
We realize that most of our readers are Christian. We don't want you to change religion but you should recognize that other religions have far more to say about physical and spiritual health than the Bible does, and what they say does not conflict with your belief, and ours, that Jesus is the Son of God, and the personal Savior. We attempt to find the truth in all the religions instead of focusing on the differences.
Personally, we're Baha'is. We believe that the Baha'i Faith has an internal consistency and respect for other religions that is necessary for spiritual health.
Take a deep breath,

Thursday, June 15, 2006

5: Your Physical Body - Stuff to Subract

Oh! This could go on forever. I think this is the core issue in everyone's health. The body is so smart and so capable of healing itself--however we bombard it with toxins and stress to the extent that it is overwhelmed. So I'm going to talk about a lot of stuff here, but you don't have to eliminate everything. Actually you probably don't need to eliminate anything--just cut way back on some of it and reduce other things by a little.
Sugar, Salt, alcohol, and Fat
I don't really need to say anything--you've heard it all before.
High Fructose Corn Syrup
This started being added to the SAD (standard American diet) in the 70s in great quantities. The increase in Adult-onset diabetes has grown proportionately to the increase in this now-pervasive chemical. It is in almost everything from colas and ice-cream to the little peppermints they give you in restaurants.
Carbonated Drinks
Don't you just love carbonated drinks on a summer day? The problem is carbon dioxide is one of the body's waste products, by drinking it you are changing the acid balance of the body. You're screwing up your hormones which are especially sensitive to excess acid. If you're a woman this is a bigger problem. Drinking an occasional cola isn't serious because the body does a good job of excreting carbon dioxide but it definitely a stress that you can easily avoid.
Pesticides and Weedkillers
There are no good pesticides or weedkillers. These chemicals are hurting our children and our wildlife. Learn some alternatives.
I live in Florida where the bugs must outnumber the people by a million to 1. Yet we don't use any commercial pesticides or herbicides. We have very few bugs in the house because we keep it clean enough that they aren't attracted. We get a few tiny ants that we get rid of with a soapy spray bottle. We do have weeds that have to be pulled. We also use an electronic device that produces sounds that bugs don't like.
Activities that stress your system
Oh, another long list! Poor posture, TV, violent movies, even clutter in your home. I believe in chiropractic which tells us that the spine should be in natural alignment: there should be a curve in the lower back to act as a shock absorber; the upper back should also curve slightly backward between the lower back and the neck; the neck should curve forward between the chest and the skull. So you have three built-in shock-absorbers--all of which can be destroyed by poor posture. I see teenagers sitting slumped in a chair so that they are actually sitting on the back of the pelvis. We should always sit on the bottom of the pelvis where the two leg bones join to the hip. Our backs should be erect while sitting--just as when we are standing, the only difference being that the legs are bent.
A clean environment is important to your health. Get rid of clutter and the dust that comes with it. The Dalai Lama says that if you want to see the condition of your mind, look at your physical environment. Treat yourself as an honored guest in your own space. Clean it as if you were cleaning it for an important visitor.
I'll add more at another time; see our webpage at

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

4: Your physical body--stuff to add

I wish I could tell you to take a particular supplement or one of the panaceas that are promoted in multi-level marketing schemes--and then your body would start rejuvenating itself and your chronic complaints would disappear.

But I can't--not if I want to be fair to you and your pocketbook.

The obvious things to add--that won't cost you anything--are nutrition, exercise and rest. Let's look at these one at a time.

There is an acronym SAD; it stands for Standard American Diet. You deserve better than a SAD diet.

Buy a book called Eat Right 4 Your Type. The idea behind this diet is that you should slightly adjust your diet based on your blood type. We've found that, since people are so different, diet needs to be customized for each person. I don't believe that there is a diet that works for everyone. So I say, start with the diet for your blood type then customize it carefully. Let's say that the diet for your blood type says that you shouldn't eat tomatoes. But you love tomatoes! Wait until your fairly hungry, then eat a whole tomato. See how you feel. If you feel dull afterwards then maybe tomatoes aren't really for you. If you feel energized and ready to clean the garage then tomatoes are probably OK for you. Learn to sense your body's reaction to foods. The key is eating one thing at a time so that you can focus. At an ordinary meal we eat too many things to determine what made us feel dull or energized.

That's all I'm going to say about diet today. I'll write more tomorrow when I discuss what to leave out of your diet!

Get balanced exercize. Walking and swimming are balanced--you do the same stuff with the right side of your body that you do with your left. Golf and bowling are good exercize but they're not balanced; you twist your body counterclockwise if you're right-handed; you never twist clockwise. Tai Chi is perfect exercise that you can do alone or in groups. So it can become a pleasant social experience also. Doing exercise in groups has a spiritual dimension as well as a physical dimension. You're also more likely to be regular if you're in a group.

Exercize also improves your energy body which I'll talk about in a future blog.

Think about how our ancestors might have lived 30,000 years ago as hunter gatherers. Think of all the physical exercize, the walking, stooping and lifting. Your body hasn't changed one bit from the bodies of those ancestors. But we have more comfortable things to sit on. For your health's sake, move your body and avoid sitting. When you sit, don't use the back rest. Most chairs don't support your back properly and create spinal problems. So sit as if you're sitting on a rock with your back erect and a nice curve in your lower back--curving in toward your belly button, not backwards.

A lot could be said about exercise but some of it would probably not be true for you. You have an individual body--with a certain age, a unique history of gains and losses, operations and illnesses. What ever your situation, do more than you're doing now, start off slowly and gradually increase your ability, strength and range of motion.


It used to be (going back just 100 years or so) that life was seasonal. There was activity in the some parts of the year during planting and harvesting, and periods of rest after harvest or during a growing season. Today we go all the time, some of us working multiple jobs to earn enough money. What I'm afraid of is that you're using caffeine instead of rest. Coffee and cola makes it feel like you can keep going--so you do. What would be better is to close your eyes for a few minutes and meditate. What I see is people developing habits in their twenties that really don't work in their 40s and 50s. You can keep up the pace using caffeine but you're seriously taxing your body.

I hear different things about sleep. There's expensive beds that supposedly give you a better night's rest. They probably do help. If you can afford them fine, but if you can't then learn to control your sleep. You're probably eating too late. Personally I stop eating at 5PM and go to bed at 10PM after doing yoga and Tai Chi. I stop drinking at 8PM. So by 10PM there's not much digesting to keep me awake. Nor do I have acid reflux. I don't get hungry until 7 or 8am because my body is used to this pattern. So I'm truly fasting for 14 to 15 hours per day.

I realize that you might not get home until 6 or 7PM and have to fix dinner for the family so you might still be eating at 8PM. You could stay up later but you may have to drop off the kids in the morning and rush to the office. So you don't have the flexibility that I do. I understand.

Think about the principle of allowing your body to rest during the night by reducing as much as possible the digestion that is occurring. For instance, eat your heaviest, protein-based meal at noon, then have a salad in the evening. Avoid sugary fruits in the evening because it will increase your metabolism and make you hungry in the night. Experiment with what works for you but set a goal of sleep without digestion activity.

I think I'm done for today. We'll talk more on these topics later.

Take a deep breath,


Monday, June 12, 2006

3: First Steps to a Healthier Immune System

In the simplest terms, I want you to work on three parts of yourself, your physical self, your spiritual self, and your energy body. I want you to do this in two ways, by adding things that make you stronger and more resilient and by subtracting things that make you weaker. So everything in this blog will be in one of this six categories:

1. Strengthening your physical self
2. Strengthening your spiritual self
3. Strengthening your energy body
4. Leaving behind the things that weaken your physical self
5. Leaving behind the things that weaken your spiritual self
6. Leaving behind the things that weaken your energy body

Let's define some terms.

By spiritual self I'm talking about your loving relationship with the rest of the universe and in particular the other sentient beings that you share it with. I personally believe in God and include my relationship with God in my spirituality but you can do as you like. If you have compassion for other sentient beings, that will be enough to improve your health and vitality.

By the energy body, I'm talking about Chakras and Qi (chee) and the channels of energy that run throughout the body. Scientists haven't quite figured out what this is all about, but we know from thousands of years of experience in Asia that there is an energy in the body that isn't really physical and isn't really spiritual either. This is the stuff of Qigong and Tai Chi. There may be more potential here to improve your health than in purely physical exercises and diet, or in spiritual exercises like prayer and meditation. We just don't know. So I say work on all three at the same time.

I'll try to not get hung-up on terminology. I want this blog to be helpful and easy to follow for English speakers. We'll talk about the energy body but I'll avoid the Sanscrit and Chinese terms as much as possible.

For homework, I'd like you to start thinking about the six categories above.

I suspect that you already know some things that you could do physically. Schedule regular walks with a friend for instance--this will improve you physically, spiritually and energetically. Think of a few things that are probably making you sick. If you can't make your own list, think about coffee, high-fructose corn syrup (it's in almost everything--even those mints they give you at restaurants), and carbonated beverages.

The biggest improvement you can make spiritually is your joy. As much as possible, get rid of things that make you sad. If you can't get rid of them (like relatives!) then learn acceptance (we'll talk about this later in a separate blog). Increase the things that give you joy! Joy will give you wings! Meditate on this. The things that give you joy will be different from mine.

Energy work may be new to you. You might start by reading about Tai Chi. I personally like the Chen version taught by Patrick Martin of Northern Arizona University. He has a set of tapes available that are very easy to listen to and learn. If you are physically weak you might want to start with Qigong which is related to Tai Chi. If you buy Patrick Martin's video, the first part of each lesson is actually Qigong which he uses as a warm-up exercise. I have used other Tai Chi videos and find that while they're technically correct, they may encourage you to do more strenuous exercises than you're ready for. So if you buy a video other than Patrick Martin's, go slowly and be gentle with yourself.

More to come . . .

Take a deep breath,


Sunday, June 11, 2006

2: Where to start?

I could assume that you are already motivated to take control of your own health and just start in with some ideas about healthy living, but I won't. I'm going to spend a few paragraphs describing the situation as I see it.

I will assume that you're well into your adult years--enough that you're aware that you can't play, eat, and avoid exercise like a teenager without consequences.

I'll assume that you're aware that you can't rely on the government to insure that your environment, your food and the other things you buy for your home are completely safe. Do you know a family that hasn't been touched by cancer? Do you know a family without any diabetes? Or allergies? If you're not convinced poke around a bit at the website of the Organic Consumers Association; you'll see that there is a problem. You cannot assume that the government has tested and approved the safety of every product in your supermarket.

What about your doctor, your friendly local hospital, your health insurance company? Don't they have your best interests at heart? I was talking to an MD friend of mine about GERD (Gastro-Esophogeal-Reflux-Disease), the stuff they sell Nexium for. I told him I thought it was a crock that MDs weren't educating their patients about this non-disease--that all you had to do is avoid eating for 5 or so hours before bedtime and sleep on your left side and you wouldn't get reflux. He told me that he doesn't have time for patient education; he gets $75 for a patient visit whether he spends 45 minutes educating the patient or 45 seconds writing a prescription for Nexium. He has a $40,000 per month overhead--he has to make that much before he has a dollar to feed his children. I could see in his eyes that he really wants to help people but his reality is that he has to move a certain number of people through the office each day.

Your hospital and insurance company are concerned that the overall amount of cash flowing through the hospitals and doctors office is maximized. That means more of your money coming into the system and a minimum of cost to them for the services being provided. They are corporations and are ruled by the same morality as any other corporation. This is the reason why health corporations aren't keen on chiropractic and acupuncture which could really save the system money since both treatments get people well at minimum cost and keep them well; they don't produce enough cash flow in the system. While the individuals at a hospital or insurance company may be dedicated servants of humanity, and loving, nurturing people, the organization they work for wants you to be sick, stay sick, and spend money.

You might have thought that you had a right to health care in an enlightened society; well guess again.

So in the end, there's no one but you to be in charge of your health care. You have to educate yourself. I don't want you to have to get a doctorate in this stuff, just read a few articles online and in magazines while you're sipping your morning coffee--scratch that--morning tea. You can start to make a difference in how you feel and how your body can fight off the toxins that it comes in contact with.

Your body is extraordinarily capable of defending itself; you just need to get the number of things attacking it down to a reasonable level. Don't panic! Fear weakens the immune system. Be concerned, make smart choices, exercise, rest, and most of all increase joy.

More to come . . .

Take a deep breath,


Saturday, June 10, 2006

1: Is Natural Health Easy?


Next question?

Well I wish it were that simple. The problem is that our environment is toxic and staying out of trouble is hard. In this blog I'll talk about the issues that make natural health difficult. I'll try to make you aware of the forces that are working against your health, and offer alternatives when I can.

The World Health Organization says that 1.2 billion people live on less than US$1 per day. Obviously they're not reading this blog, but we need to change the toxic culture of the world so that those 1.2 billion human beings don't have to spend their dollar on health care, and you and I don't have to spend so much of our income on medications, surgeries, tests, and procedures.

The basic secret is this: you're spending money on things that are making you sick. Then you're spending more money to change the symptoms that come from your purchases. If you start spending your money on things that won't make you sick, then you're money ahead already. Then you won't have to buy medical care--that'll save you even more money. With all the money you're saving, you'll be so joyful that your immune system will be humming along, sending happy, healing hormones around your system. You'll have so much health you won't know what to do with yourself.

I'm Ron Frazer, Ph.D. My doctorate is in natural health. I'll try to give you some ideas that will make your life easier. If you've got questions and would like my opinion, I'll try to help. Maybe I'll be able to suggest some things you can do by yourself, or maybe I'll suggest a practitioner that could address your issues.

Take a deep breath,