Friday, January 29, 2010

Paying Homage

I stand here today on top of the shoulders of all those who have stood before me and opened the doors for people like myself to explore the avenues of life in which I have traveled. It is because of others that so much opportunity exists and this extends to a myriad of different aspects of life. But for the purpose of self reflection I could not help but think of the people who created the pathways in which i travel, from the thousands of years of history in Chinese Medicine and Philosophy, to Krishnamacharya and his students like Iyengar & Jois (ashtanga); people like Pavel in Kettlebells, Simmons in Powerlifitng, Ueshiba in Aikido, and then my teachers like Reifkind. The list goes on and on beyond these more modern day people in the history of these various 'things'.

Whatever we do, whereever we are I believe it is essential to have an idea of history and how it enables us to be where we are. Beyond what they did, it was why they did, how they did, etc. Many of the greats did this more than to benefit there personal wealth and well being, but more to advance society or these 'things' to help others.

Yes, I am selfish and self absorbed, wanting to learn, study, explore life but the best part is all this self centered stuff has enabled me to live my truth, my essense and contribute/share in compassionate and loving way as a teacher, educator, coach, mentor, friend, listening ear, and soon as a doctor and in the end be a contributing member of society. And, I thank all those who have stood before me on all levels for making this possible and for all those who currently continue to create opportunities and contribute to the growth and evolution of all things/beings.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Some more reflection and application of TCM

To no surprise my education in the Traditional Chinese Medicine is making me re-think and re-evaluate the concept of health and wellness. The concept of Yin and Yang is the primary basis of TCM and reminds me of the old adage, 'everything in moderation' or you can think of it as balance or harmony. Keep in mind this is dynamic and is dependent on the constitution of the individual. However, the basic premise is 100% applicable to all human beings relative to their constitution.

I cannot argue with the idea of homeostasis as it is thought in western terminology and achieving a balance in the body. Of course, there is little in western ideology that is about Balance and harmony, everything is pretty much 'balls to the wall' and I am sure guilty of this adage.

But, since I started practicing daily meditation, and more specifically Mindfulness and my yoga practice I have been noticing gradual changes in my constitution. Nutrition plays a large role as does proper rest which fortunately I get plenty of but in reality it is no coincendence as I begin to delve deeper and learn more about TCM philosophy.

One of the funny things is I have been able to increase or maintain my strength and fitness levels (even with long breaks/layoffs, over 3.5 months on my last layoff and by doing less volume and work and more quality. I am aware that I am highly trained and this means I can get away with less and get more due to physiology. I can give examples but the numbers and not nearly as important as the actual reality of what is happening.

On a larger scale, I am putting things together in a more balanced manner, not over extending in one area or another and feeling great while continuing to progress even at the ripe age of 35. Much more to come but I do not want to jump to false conclusions about my understanding of TCM, it is quite intense and deep in nature with a ton to learn but safe to say it is very logical, truly open to the flow and moving in accordance with nature, which is far smarter than the human if you ask me :-)

Friday, January 15, 2010

First week of School in Traditional Chinese Medicine

One week is in the books and so is my nose. There is much to learn and study in Chinese Medicine and I am a eager and willing participate. The first has taught me many things, such as:

*I am in the right place, this is a field for me to endeavor to excel in serving the needs of patients and the field of complimentary, alternative and integrative medicine.

*It is coming to me and quickly, the basic foundation of principles and concepts Chinese Medicine is steeped in sing a sweet tone too me.

*Philosophically speaking, the basis of Chinese medicine is rooted in Yin and Yang. This is the basis of Taoism and this is a philosophy that I comprehend well and enjoy exploring. This makes learning about the Chinese Medical system of function much easier.

*Additionally it is based on the Five Elements (wood, fire, earth, metal and water) which are essential to life and living. I am a man of nature and one who spends time in the surrounding of the elements of nature and understand the interdependence.

*This medicine is not magic, not mysticism, but truly a medicine with sound basis and a long history to stand upon. It has and continues to evolve and has the ability to help in many cases the body return to its normal function and rid dis-ease.

*I will be traveling abroad at some point in my studies to live and study in China, to gain expereince and a understanding of the field from the 'motherland' of TCM. I want to learn more about the culture, history and language as well to better understnad the practice of TCM in living an healthy lifestyle.

More to come on all this but I am honored to be in a position to study, learn, and eventually practice this fine medicine and contribute to the health and well-being of patients whom I will treat, as well contribute to the medical field.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

If you allow and are open, life will provide you with amazing opportunities and experiences. Some may feel scary, some may feel exciting, some challenging, some life changing, and some daunting, but they are there for us for a, if not many reasons. We can ask all sorts of questions as to what, why, who, when, how, where, etc. and in due time if we take them and even if we do not many if not all these questions will be answered and provide you with clarity.

As of this past summer I had no plans for doctoral school or medical school. But I was open and exploring myself throughout 2009 and looking into many avenues of things, directions to go. Traveling and spend plenty of time on the road in foreign lands with friends, new friends, strangers, and by myself gave me plenty of opportunity and experience to answer some of the ??'s, many of which I was not actively asking.

As summer turned to fall I had my applications in for my doctoral programs, however not 100% convinced but still open and eager and thus knowing it was time to move and challenge myself to new endeavors I was looking forward to the new road. And before I knew my status at either of the schools I applied I put out and inquiry and did some research on TCM (traditional chinese medicine).

I remember in high school I thought about Medical School, Western Medical school but a video on the struggles, trials and tribulations was quite discouraging and thus Business school. And during business school studies I earned a Massage Certificate and began work at my cousins Integrated Medicine Center which had Acupuncture, Herbology, Tai Chi and much more. I inquired about TCM back then but realized I would need many more years of schooling which I thought I wanted no part of.

Well, 15 years late here I am, much has happened in my life since then and now I embark on a new road, which will work nicely with all I have learned, practiced, studied and done for the past 15 years. As the Founder of the school said, I am on a great path and at a great place in the time for the advancement in the medical world. There is a growing trend toward Western and Eastern practices being used as complimentary practices.

Well, I glad to be in line to be on the front lines of the progression of health and wellness in this world. So many opportunities and experiences are awaiting and this new path will bring much personal and professional growth. So glad to be open and free to breathe and live this life and all that it brings.

Day 1 of TCM begins in 12 hours.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

In the moment

As I prepare for med school I am aware that a large part of time will be dedicated to my studies, more so than ever before. Although I realize that I truly do not know exactly what this means in terms of direct time, I am aware that some of the many things
I have enjoyed over the last few years will be more difficult o achieve since so much more of my time will be occupied with school.

So I sit and think how much I appreciate the time I have had but also have I have under utilized this freedom to do and go as I please. For instance, leisure reading will take a backseat to school books; full yoga classes, weight lifting, running, etc. That I could do each day will be much more difficult to be able to do; and the list goes on.

This is not about regret but gratitude and the realization that the time is always now and it is imperative to live life to the fullest becuase some day aspects of your life will evolve and some thing may be more difficult to come by with such ease.