From the Editor
Welcome to the January issue of Yang Sheng! Our theme this month is “Transformation and Renewal.” Every second of our lives, with every breath we take, with every meal we eat, every refreshing drink of water, every physical movement or going deeper, with every session of mind-body energy practices we engage in; we are in a constant process of transformation. Cell by cell – mindfully or not, we are renewing, rebuilding, reinventing ourselves continuously, constantly. How exciting, now to know that we can add Yang-Sheng practices to that! To know that the information is available and we can use these “tools” to mindfully, intentionally orchestrate and guide our own transformation – to wellness, to wholeness ,to heal, to evolve in all the ways and on all levels, physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual that we may long for. To make it more exciting the Chinese year of the Black Water Dragon begins soon. It ushers in the energetic patterns that naturally initiate and support both transformation and change in a gentle and reasonable manner, as the Water element of this year calms Dragon energy.
There are many articles in this issue that offer insight on the process of transformation and renewal including “Training Tips for the New Year: On Meditation” by Dr. Yang Yang. Practicing meditation offers numerous benefits, but for many people, learning “how” to meditate may seem confusing. Dr. Yang offers excellent tips and insights on ways to develop an enjoyable meditation practice. In “The Line between Ordinary and Extraordinary” Reena Reese, tells us that it is naturally part of our nature to be extraordinary, just like a tiny acorn, we are each packed with the potential for astounding greatness. In “A New Hope for Parkinson’s Disease Patients: Tai Chi” Violet Li shares the story of Jerry Wild which brings hope for people with this tragic disease. In “The Natural “Yin-Yang” Transformation inside the Body” Li-Jun Ma, MD tells us that although body weight is important; it is not just body weight or “fat” that matters.
Ancient yet timely advice from Daoist master Li Dong Yuan (1180-1251 CE) is featured in “Distancing Desires – The Daoist way to Longevity” by Neil Kingham. And in “Listening to Your Inner Rhythms” Dan Kleiman tells us that harmonizing movement, breath, and intention creates internal space. “Daoism and the Origins of Qigong”, by Livia Kohn, Ph.D. presents insights about Qigong and the main distinction between the health and longevity practices and advanced spiritual or immortality practices.
In “Seasonal Harmony: Let Flavor Be Your Guide” Ellasara Kling explains that when we gravitate to particular flavors on a regular basis that knowledge can be used along with information from the principles of TCM and Five Element Theory to learn how our bodies try to create balance and harmony. In “From the Doctor: Joyeux Noel! Out of Ashes come Flowers” Nadia Linda Hole, MD comments on current times and asks: “What now? Where do we go from here? How do we help those who come to us and ourselves”? Niraj Naik, M.Pharm. shares “A New Hope for 2012 and Beyond” as he relates his experience of having an incurable illness, his own personal mission to find a natural solution and his path of transformation and return to health and well-being.
This issue also includes a special report by Kevin W Chen, Ph.D. MPH on the first World Assembly of Experts on Yang Sheng. Dr. Chen was one of the VIP presenters at this landmark event held in Hangzhou, China in December 2011.
Wishing each of you a peaceful, joyous, renewing & transforming Year of the Black Water Dragon,
Rebecca Kali, Editor-in-Chief