Mastering our craft
Reverent Sensei Furuya.
“Kodo Ancient Ways”
According to an old legend, one day the samurai lord of Echizen province ordered a pair of sword-handle ornement from a master artist. The lord was eager to have them right away, but knowing the skill of this master, knew that he had to be very patient. After several months passed, the ornaments still were not ready. One year passed, and still the master artist had not yet finished. The lord was becoming very impatient. Finally, after two years, they were finished and the master artist presented his master pieces to the lord. The lord was very pleased and ordered that they be immediately used on the handle of his sword.Unfortunately, while the sword handle was being wrapped, one of the two ornaments was lost. The lord was furious and called the master artist right away to make another replacement. Only two days passed to make the other replacement and the master artist presented the lord with the replacement, which was exactly like the original. The lord asked the artist "If it only took you two days to make this one, why did you make me wait two years for the others?"
Without saying a word, the artist grabbed the original and the replacement and threw them both into the pond in the outside garden. The replacement sank to the bottom while the original was so delicately and finely worked that it actually floated on the surface. Indeed, the original was a master piece of two years effort.
Is convenience the key's to man's future ?
Shiatsu for Multiple Sclerosis
The benefits of Shiatsu for Multiple Sclerosis
Shiatsu helped transform my life, reducing fatigue and soothing the emotional pressures that are a feature of Multiple Sclerosis says Brighton mum Zia
MS sufferers say a little known complementary therapy from Japan is boosting their quality of life.
Shiatsu massage, which combines movement, stretches and acupressure points, is so popular some MS treatment centres across the UK have three or four therapists on site to meet demand.
MS is a neurological condition which causes severe fatigue, difficulty walking, muscle stiffness, painful spasms, headaches and vision problems. It affects 100,000 people in the UK with around 5,000 new diagnoses a year.
Sufferers say Shiatsu relieves pain and fatigue, boosts mobility and mood and makes it easier to cope with the hardships of life with an incurable illness.
Treatments last one hour and work the body from head to toe. Sessions are booked months in advance according to MS Treatment Centres in Bedford, Northamptonshire, Sussex and Cumbria.
Shiatsu is different from other massage because it combines acupressure points with movement and stretching
Brighton mum Zia Rehma says life has transformed for the better since she discovered Shiatsu four years ago. “Treatments have been effective for addressing my MS symptoms on two levels, emotionally and physically. After a treatment I find my general mood has improved and on a physical level I have much more energy, my spasms are calmer and I have less stiffness in my legs,” she said.
Wow the difference was amazing. Shiatsu reduced headaches and pain and stiffness in the legs, said sports fan Gary
Gary Menicou was a keen sportsman before his MS diagnosis 15 years ago – now he relies on a wheelchair to get around. The father of two from Brighton, said: “I must admit I was very cynical about the benefits of shiatsu but Wow after only a couple of weeks the difference was amazing. The treatment reduced my headaches and stiffness in legs and neck and altered my general mood positively. I really looked forward to my weekly session and my wife Dee will also agree how much nicer I was when I got home.”
Lisa Edmonde is conducting ground breaking research into the efficacy of Shiatsu for MS sufferers at Teeside University. The study, which is part funded by MS Societyand Shiatsu Society research grants, follows ten therapists working with two patients each over six sessions. It monitors quality of touch, acupressure points and therapist technique. It is too early to report the results.
Lisa, who has been a Shiatsu therapist for 15 years, said: “Past experience suggests Shiatsu may have a lot to offer chronic, degenerative neuromuscular conditions such as MS. This ailment is myriad in its manifestations and Shiatsu appears to be a therapy that can respond to that because it is so versatile.
“Shiatsu elevates mood which may sound spurious and unscientific but it should not be underestimated how life changing that can be.”
Shiatsu is versatile and uses varied techniques. It is performed through clothes on a futon, bed or in a wheelchair.
Shiatsu’s adaptability and varied techniques may explain why it is a favourite with MS sufferers. It can be performed through clothes on a bed or in a wheelchair and incorporates the invigorating stretches recommended by the government health body NICE in its guidance notes for MS.
Until now there has been no research looking specifically at Shiatsu and MS. However, studies exploring the benefits of acupressure and massage have had encouraging results. In 2013 Researchers in Iran found that Swedish massage reduced pain, improved balance and walking speed for MS. In the same year a Canadian study discovered patient wellbeing improved significantly after massage. “Improvement in the quality of life experienced by an individual with MS is of great importance and therefore further research is warranted, the study concluded.
Shiatsu practitioner Trish Dent from Halesworth in Suffolk has watched patients regain independence after treatments. She said: “I found working on the legs helped reduce the severity of spasm, enabling one client to manage to go to the toilet for herself, rather than getting her carer to take her.”
Melita O’Byrne is one of four Shiatsu practitioners at the MS Therapy Centre in Bedfordshire. She has been treating MS for 16 years and sees over 20 clients a week. She said: “We are always fully booked. Shiatsu gives pain relief and makes people aware of what is going on in the body. It provides a very safe environment to release their feelings. It can also help mobility and headaches, improve flexibility and lift mood.”
When Alan Taylor, former manager of Sussex MS Treatment Centre, introduced Shiatsu to members in 1998 he monitored the benefits using the NHS approved methods MYMOP. “Without exception we found Shiatsu had benefits for people who tried it. Rigidity and muscle spasm mean lack of mobility so most MS sufferers like the movement they get from Shiatsu treatment.”
“Shiatsu makes people feel more alive,” says George Strino who treats MS patients in four different clinics, including Penrith Community Hospital and Westmorland General Hospital in Cumbria. One project sees nearly 50 MS patients per day.
“It mobilises the body with lots of stretches, which opens things up. This improves posture and helps people walk better. It also works on a more subtle level, releasing tension. It is no cure but it helps people manage their condition,” said George.
Clients are usually advised to come for fortnightly sessions. Treatments cost around £15 within subsidised clinics. Private practitioners charge at least £40 per hour.
Shiatsu techniques can soothe the bowel problems affecting 60% of all MS sufferers
There is growing interest in exploring the benefits of touch therapy for MS. In 2016 researchers at Shepherd Centre in the US began a new study examining the efficacy of massage for pain, spasticity and overall quality of life. A team of 10 researchers at Glasgow Caledonian University are currently investigating the benefits of abdominal massage after receiving a £740,000 research grant to investigate the link between MS and bowel dysfunction which affects 60% of MS patients. If the results are positive, this could further boost Shiatsu’s popularity because it has powerful techniques which can soothe bowel problems.
Heidi Dore, yoga teacher, Shiatsu practitioner and journalist based in Brighton and Newport On Tay in Scotland.
Self Love what is it?
Love towards ourself:
-Allow myself to Be what I am at every moment even though I am not what I would like to be (being impatient, being a liar, being overweight).
-To accept my differences compared to others with no judgment to myself.
-To be able to treat myself even if I think that I don't deserve it.
-To allow myself to be human (to be afraid, to have weakness, to have limits...).
-I have to remember that everything we live is an experience and not a mistake, to avoid judgment.
-To let my heart decide instead of taking into account the notion of Good and Bad suggested by others.
-To learn from each experience instead of condemning myself.
-To listen to my needs even if the others advise me differently.
-To feel good even if I don't meet my expectations or if I don't keep my promise towards myself or others.
-To observe what is going on around me even if the little voice in my head does not agree.
-To keep in mind that NOBODY can look after my happiness, I am the only person responsible of what is happening to me.
I am responsible for my own Happiness and it is already a lot to do!!!
The Me & the Self
Nomads versus Sedentary…
When we get frustrated, when can not stand ourselves, it is because we are rejecting something from our reality instead of trying to adapt.
This heartbreak between the Me and the Self can be illustrated with the exemple of the historical struggle between the nomads and sedentary people.
The power of Me on the Self
Each one of this people had a particular vision of the world. The nomads changed places constantly. Their geographic points of reference were the stars in the sky, visible only at night. Nothing belongs to them, their culture is an oral culture as it was impossible for them to mass their knowledge.
The sedentary people on the other hand, mark out their territory. They write down their landmarks on the soil meant for limiting themselves, to make those land marks their own. Their tradition is written down.
For a long time these people stand alongside, tolerated, then fought each other. Officially speaking, it was unbearable to the nomads that the sedentary people claim ownership of territories or land that was for property of all; and it was unbearable to the sedentary people that the nomads do not respect the lands that they were cultivating.
Inconciencly speaking, the reasons of this conflict were something else. It was unbearable to the nomads that the sedentary prevent them to be free, and to continue to be so. It was unbearable to the sedentary people that the nomads do not respect the rules (obligations).
In this case, sedentary people won geographic ground as well as culturally. Their vision of the world bringing security and material comfort (ease) took over a more liberal vision but less reassuring.
If I want to have more freedom, I should accept to loose a bit some security.
If I want more security, I should accept to loose some freedom.
You would measure time the measureless and the immeasurable.
You would adjust your conduct and even direct the course of your spirit according to hours and seasons.
Of time you would make a stream upon whose bank you would sit and watch its flowing.
Yet the timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness,
And knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream.
And that that which sings and contemplates in you is still dwelling within the bounds of that first moment which scattered the stars into space.
Who among you does not feel that his power to love is boundless?
And yet who does not feel that very love, though boundless, encompassed within the centre of his being, and moving not from love thought to love thought, nor from love deeds to other love deeds?
And is not time even as love is, undivided and spaceless?
But if in your thought you must measure time into seasons, let each season encircle all the other seasons,
And let today embrace the past with remembrance and the future with longing.
Daikon – The Cancer Fighting Radish
By Vicky Chan of NourishU
The Oriental white radish is very common in most Asian cuisines because it is plentiful all year round and therefore very inexpensive. Besides price, daikon is known to many to be a healthy food choice. The Japanese, Korean and Chinese use daikon a lot in soups, stews and in pickles. It may be one of the reasons why Asian people, especially those eating their traditional diets are living healthier, longer lives than most others in the Western world.
Chinese medicine regards daikon or “lo-bak” as slightly cool in nature and sweet in taste. It acts on the lungs and spleen to clear phlegm, stop coughing, promote digestion, move stagnant qi or energy downwards, cool internal heat and prevent/stop the development of cancer cells. “Lo-bak” is commonly used in many home remedies.
One of the main reasons cancer is becoming more and more common nowadays is because our modern diet is creating the internal body environment to foster cancer growth. The over indulgence of food, especially meat, sugar and dairy products and the lack of high fibre vegetables, are making our gut too acidic. The over processed foods especially deep-fried and grilled foods are too hot in nature and are lacking the digestive enzymes necessary to break down food quickly therefore creating indigestion, heart burn, constipation and leaky gut syndrome. To correct all these internal problems and imbalances, daikon is most suitable and it is far more effective than any modern medicine can do without any side effects.