Authors Posts by Christina Sarich

Christina Sarich

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Christina Sarich is a musician, yogi, humanitarian and freelance writer who channels many hours of studying Lao Tzu, Paramahansa Yogananda, Rob Brezny, Miles Davis, and Tom Robbins into interesting tidbits to help you Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and *See the Big Picture*. Her blog is Yoga for the New World . Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing The Body And Mind Through The Art Of Yoga.

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hinkley-copyWhen the film Erin Brokovich staring Julia Roberts came out almost two decades ago, it exposed the true story of how Public Gas and Electric Company poisoned an entire California town’s drinking water.

The real-life Erin Brokovich has since been warning that many additional municipal drinking water supplies were likely also toxic, due to fracking, political posturing, greed, and other illegal, industrial practices.

A study conducted by the Environmental Working Group has just revealed that the very same chemical which Brokovich made famous in the movie — chromium-6, or hexavalent chromium — is in the tap water of more than 218 million Americans. The EWG used more than 60,000 tap water samples from across the nation to come to this determination.

As Brokovich recently explained to Bill Maher, over 70 percent of our municipal water is supplied from surface water. That means lakes, creeks, streams, reservoirs, and other small bodies of water. No two water bodies are the same. Brokovich argued,

“If you willy-nilly change the water system from one river to another, you can cause a chemical reaction.”

She further details how, instead of laying new pipe, as most cities are in need of, corrupt politicians instead take hand-outs to hide the deteriorating state of the nation’s water infrastructure. In place of better pipes and expensive filters, contracts are given to companies who just pour one toxic chemical in with another, creating a cancerous byproduct.

Hexavalent chromium is just one of them, and it is endemic now in municipal water supplies. In just 80 parts per billion it is known to increase miscarriage in pregnant women. Chromium-6 is also listed as a known carcinogen by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Additionally, even the U.S. Department of Labor advices against chromium-6 exposure, and the CDC’s own toxicological report for chromium exposes it as a serious health threat – this from an agency many don’t trust for egregious lies and cover-ups concerning public health.

Though chromium appears in nature, it is not supposed to be in the water supply as chromium-6, and certainly not as a byproduct of chlorine and other chemicals added to our water supposedly to keep it ‘clean.’

When the National Toxicology Program found that chromium-6 caused cancer in rats and mice in 2008, California proposed the establishment of a statewide legal limit of 0.06 parts per billion (ppb) of chromium-6 in drinking water. These levels and higher are being found in water supplies across the country.

Currently, no municipality is required to test for this chemical, nor are there any legal limits set. Instead, the US Environmental Protection Agency has set the federal standard for total chromium in drinking water at 100 parts per billion (ppb), but the EPA has never set a specific limit for chromium-6.

As Columbia University reports,

The highest levels of chromium-6 were found in Norman, OK which measured 12.9 ppb; Honolulu, HA with 2.00 ppb; Riverside, CA at 1.69 ppb; Madison, WI at 1.58 ppb; and San Jose, CA which measured 1.34 ppb. The utilities that service the 31 cities whose tap water contained chromium-6 provide water to over 26 million people.”

The EWG believes the number of people who are drinking chromium-6 contaminated water are much higher than the 218 million Americans which were named in the study.

Hinkley, California won a $333 million lawsuit against Pacific Gas and Electric for polluting their drinking water with chromium-6. Who is going to pay for polluting the water of over 30 US cities?

Image credit: www.vice.com

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rebels-copyAn historically secretive governmental assembly has been opened to civilians to discuss a five-point accord with representatives from units of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) – rebels that have fought with the government and Colombia’s citizenry for more than 52 years. The meeting is the beginning of a peace accord designed to give the FARC a political voice, and end a half century of guerilla warfare.

A Colombian leader says the peace deal hinges on people’s ability to forgive. President, Juan Manual Santos said in an interview,

 “Making peace is much more difficult than making war because you need to change the sentiments of people, people who have suffered, to try to persuade them to forgive.”

Colombians are expected to vote on an agreement between Santos’ government and the FARC in a few weeks. The agreement would end one of the last major guerrilla struggles in Latin America that has displaced more than five million people and cost some  220,000 lives. The agreement sets a timetable for the FARC to lay down arms, and sets a path for them to rejoin society, sometimes even as civil servants.

If the public agrees to the peace deal, FARC members will spend no time in prison and will be awarded with political representation, according to Maria Emma Wills, a political analyst for the National Center for Historical Memory, a government research group.

Just a short time ago, military might was still used to subdue rebels who wanted to overthrow the government and install a Marxist regime. All previous peace talks with the government had failed.

The public is leery, but hundreds of FARC rebels have been picking up shovels to build dirt roads and pour cement on a camp in Southern Colombia where the delegates will meet to hopefully ratify a peace deal that will alter the country’s history of war.

Photo Credit: WSJ.com, ChannelNewsAsia

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Connecticut police pulled Michael Picard over at a DUI checkpoint, and could find nothing to arrest him for, but after hastily slapping down a cell phone camera which Picard attempted to film with, and then illegally confiscating it, the police inadvertently incriminated themselves, without ever realizing the device was still recording when they took it back to their patrol car.

The ACLU is now suing the Connecticut Police Department for fabricating retaliatory criminal charges against Picard. The police department has yet to comply with an internal investigation against the troopers who were recorded discussing how to trump up charges against him.

Remarks made by the police officers include, “Let’s give him something,” as one trooper declared. Another offered, “we can hit him with creating a public disturbance.” “Gotta cover our ass,” remarked a third.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) complaint states:

“This suit challenges the actions of three Connecticut state troopers, who, acting under color of state law, detained, searched, and charged Michael Picard for protesting the government. . .”

Picard maintains that DUI checkpoints are unconstitutional and a waste of tax-payer money. He is also well known by the police because he has done public records investigations to find that for every two man hours put into a check point, it yields just one minor traffic citation—almost always for defective equipment.

During the police search of Picard, it was theatrically announced that he had a gun, though he is legally within his rights to do so in Connecticut.  He was also told by one officer that, “taking his picture was illegal.”

The ACLU complaint against Patrick Torneo, John Jacobi and John Barone continues,

“. . . The defendants also energetically interfered with Mr. Picard’s right to receive information when they confiscated his camera and made efforts to prevent him from recording their illegal acts with his cell phone. Through their actions the state troopers violated Mr. Picard’s rights under the First and Fourth Amendments to the United States Constitution.”

Not only did Picard have a registered, active permit for his legal gun, but his requests for an internal investigation of the police officers has continued to be ignored.

Additionally, with criminal charges against the officers pending, someone from the police department repeatedly called Mr. Picard and asked him to come in and give a statement to them, without his criminal defense lawyer. Eventually his lawyer called them back and said, “don’t you ever call my client again. You have to talk to me.” This did not deter them from trying to get a statement from Picard, illicitly.

There have been a number of accounts detailing police corruption lately, but this time, ironically, the police recorded themselves acting in such a blatantly illegal manner.

Featured image: ACLU Video

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Seven German cities were recently bustling with more than 320,000 activists who demonstrated against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Deal, or TTIP, just as news of Bayer’s $66 billion-dollar buyout of Monsanto began to break, along with the EU’s hesitations concerning glyphosate’s renewed licensing.

Heavy rain didn’t dampen the spirits of thousands who met in Munich’s Odeonsplatz square. Karl Baer of the Munich Environmental Institute said, “there is no bad weather, only bad agreements,” when sharing comments before a large crowd of local farmers’ groups, the Green party, Greenpeace, and other non-governmental organizations.

The agreements have been hotly contended throughout the world but Germany’s recent protest is among the largest.  The TTIP has been called Monsanto’s (likely soon to be swallowed up by Bayer) trade deal since it favors industrialized agricultural food processes and genetically modified farming over indigenous and organic farming methods. The TTIP has also been accused of eroding farmers’ income, and forcing them to adhere to corporate practices that swallow up small-family farms with land-grabs, and other international trade agreements that smaller farmers cannot compete with.

The TTIP was concerning prior to the announcement of Monsanto’s buyout, but should the merger of the two giants go through, the sales of agricultural chemicals and GM seed could be worth $67 billion annually to the newly created behemoth.

Bayer made the announcement of their buy-out offer for Monsanto just as the 28 member countries of the EU’s Standing Committee on Plants, Animals, Food and Feed (PAFF) were deadlocked on a vote that would have halted the sale of glyphosate in the EU.

Moreover, the merger seems to be linked to the TTIP negotiations. The TTIP would weaken current regulations which protect the environment from herbicides, pesticides, and GM crops as well as Europeans’ health. The EU would be subject to US standards which are much lower.

One could argue that Americans have already been under the thumb of Monsanto and its back door governmental policy making so long that they are numb to the ramifications of the TTIP. While Europeans have been vocal about their opposition for several years now, many Americans still aren’t sure what the TTIP is. The wall of secrecy surrounding the agreement hasn’t helped. Even members of the German parliament were only recently allowed to see the text of the TTIP, but only after surrendering their purse, phone, all electronics, and their jacket, while being confined to a secured room for a mere two hours in order to peruse a legal text that is hundreds of pages long.

There has not been a demonstration of this size against the TTIP in America, though many smaller groups have signed petitions, sent letters to their representatives, and conducted smaller demonstrations on the capitol’s steps.

It isn’t as though there is no opposition in the US, but Germans are making it overwhelmingly clear that they oppose both the TTIP and the Bayer-Monsanto merger. It would simply extend US corporate control further into the world.

Image credit: Washington Post

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If we ever needed more proof of our similarities, instead of constant messages of divisiveness, it is now. Researchers who published a first-of-its-kind study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences have just provided us undeniable proof of our unity with their findings. After studying over 6,000 current world languages, they found that two-thirds of the world use very similar words to describe the same things.

Though the researchers were unable to determine why so many people use the same sounds to describe similar objects and ideas, their study broke a previous assumption of linguistics – that the sound of a word and its meaning are completely unrelated. Instead, the scientists found that the sounds we hear around the world are similar, and this is likely why we create language that sounds similar, too.

By looking at approximately 100 basic vocabulary words in sixty percent of the world’s currently used languages – more than 6,000 – they found that 85 percent of linguistic heritages used the same sounds to convey common terms.

The phenomenon was true whether people were describing natural phenomenon like ‘star’ or ‘fish,’ pronouns, or body parts. Even emotions were included in the study. So, even with the unfamiliar parts of a foreign language sounding odd in our ears, there are more similarities than differences, at least when it comes to communicating simple ideas.

Morten Christiansen who headed the study conducted at Cornell’s Cognitive Neuroscience Lab said,

“These sound symbolic patters show up again and again across the world, independent of the geographical dispersal of humans and independent of language lineage.”

He also commented on the larger implications of the study,

“There does seem to be something about the human condition that leads to these patterns. We don’t know what it is, but we know it’s there.”

He also relayed that the commonality must have something to do with how we form language when we are young and how our brains work.

The study abstract states,

“Prominently among these relations, we find property words (“small” and i, “full” and p or b) and body part terms (“tongue” and l, “nose” and n). The areal and historical distribution of these associations suggests that they often emerge independently rather than being inherited or borrowed. Our results therefore have important implications for the language sciences, given that nonarbitrary associations have been proposed to play a critical role in the emergence of cross-modal mappings, the acquisition of language, and the evolution of our species’ unique communication system.”

The poet, Ralph Waldo Emerson believed that, “all creation is one.” He also said that the “creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn.”

If the human mind is created by a Divine, Holographic Program, then we are but a part of the sacred geometry that repeats itself according to established patterns. We have heretofore assumed that the brain itself produces consciousness, but new physics (and old wisdom) has proven that consciousness exists outside the brain, and even outside materialism, so it should be no surprise that we ‘think’ similar thoughts even when it comes to the creation of language.

We bleed the same blood, and apparently we also say “ouch” or “ooch” or “oo” in the same language even if our Mother tongue is different.  There is nothing arbitrary about how we communicate, because even when we don’t speak audible sounds, we talk to one another, down to the cellular level.

You can see this phenomenon, though not pointed out in the study, in the various words used to describe God or the divine around the world – Allah, (God – sounds like ahh), Elohim, Aum, Amen, etc.

In fact, the Heart math institute has talked extensively about how our hearts communicate non-verbally. This is a universal language. Coherence in any other social system – including spoken language – would logically follow. Though times seem chaotic, there is always an underlying harmony and order at work that connects us back to love.

Image credit: www.quora.com

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North Sentinel Island in the Bay of Bengal near India is about as different as the Island of Manhattan as possible, though it is approximately the same size. While the inhabitants of Manhattan’s most densely populated city, New York, scurry from a taxi cab to their jobs as office clerks, janitors, secretaries, cashiers, and nannies for the financial elite, a mysterious tribe of Sentinalese people live within a 3-mile exclusion zone to prevent anyone from getting close enough to see how they live.

sentinal-island-copy

While New York City is crawling with people, it is thought that a tsunami wiped out most of the Sentinalese, and that there are a mere 50-400 people of this secretive tribe remaining. The inhabitants of North Sentinel are so protective of their way of life, that any attempt to study or contact them is met with fierce violence. They refuse to be integrated into the modern way of life.

One of the earliest accounts of outside contact with the island, in 1896, reveals that an Indian convict escaped prison and washed up on the island’s shores. He was found just a few weeks later with his throat cut and arrows protruding through his head.

In the 1980s a shipwreck occurred on the island. The Sentinalese tried to invade the ship to take its cargo, and many were killed by the men aboard.

Most recently, two people were killed when they were illegally fishing for crabs, and their boat drifted onto the island overnight. When a helicopter attempted to retrieve the bodies of the fishermen, the helicopter was shot at with arrows.

Only one Indian anthropologist has been able to contact them and reportedly spent 24 years trying to gain their trust with bribes of coconuts and iron bits in order to learn how they live. All he was able to discern is that they are likely not cannabilstic, as previously assumed, with few other details filling in the gaps.

It was discovered, that they know how to use fire, but hide it jealously, because they don’t know how to make it. Their arrows are forged from iron taken from shipwrecks, and they are consummate marksmen.

They smear their deep ebony-toned skin with white or ochre as a form of art. It is also thought that their songs contain only two notes and that they can only count to two. Anything above this number they simply call, “many.”

They have no community structure, with no ‘chiefs,’ and no ‘witch doctors.’

Because the Sentinalese have shot arrows and thrown rocks at almost any plane that tries to land there, even if delivering food or other ‘aid,’ the government has banned travel and allows the tribe to live as they see fit.

It is estimated that the Sentinalese tribe lives as people did more than 15,000 years ago – well before the infiltration of human life with artificial intelligence, the nanny state, endless technologically gizmos, dysfunctional social structures, and more ‘stuff’ ‘than any of us truly need. While reverting to tribalism isn’t necessarily the answer to all modern woes, certainly the Sentinalese guard their way of life because they understand – on some level – the preciousness of isolation.

There are other indigenous tribes still living in various degrees of separation from the rest of the world in the island chain, including the Andamanese, the Onge and the Jarawa. Each is threatened by all-seeing eye which aims to govern even the most remote areas of the world, and the devilish acts of a society gone awry.

The Jawara have been the subject of sexual abuse from outsiders to their tribe, and the Onge have faced their own tribulations from letting outsiders in.

The question is how do we protect indigenous tribes that are remote and isolated when we can’t even protect indigenous cultures right under our noses.

The Sentinalese may be a stone age people with little technological prowess, but they have kept their culture alive for around 15-60,000 years. We seem to be on the verge of WWIII in fewer than several hundred years. Who could be the wiser among us?

Image credit: northsentinelisland.com

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Starting with a meager $50,000 donation to a politician’s campaign, the pharmaceutical industry’s lobbyists make sure we keep getting those pain pill prescriptions filled at the pharmacy. This type of coercion is nothing new, but a report has just revealed that more than 7,100 politicians were paid off with various cash donations, all to make sure that America’s painkiller epidemic continues.

The report details how Purdue Big Pharma lobbyist, Burt Rosen has paid more than 7000 politicians who are legislative gatekeepers for pain drug approvals. With the industry’s influence, we’re kept doped up and paying out, almost endlessly.

Opiod drugs have gotten so popular in the US, often selling for 200 times the price they might in other countries, that many will seek them out before Cocaine or Heroine. Opiod drugs are the second largest drug class globally, but Americans consume almost all of them. Last year 300 million pain pill prescriptions were written in America.

Most people only need opiods during acute illnesses, through childbirth, severe trauma, burns, or during a terminal illness. Thanks to the decisions of politicians swayed by Big Pharma’s money, we use them in the US like breath mints.

And then there’s the massive lobbying campaign aimed directly against a single substance which would likely end opiod abuse forever. Though the US government has claimed that marijuana has no medicinal value, it helps control seizures, stops pain, and has even been shown to dissolve cancerous tumors. No wonder then, that Chandler Pharmaceuticals was one of the biggest donors to Arizona’s anti-marijuana campaign.  The company gave $500,000 to oppose the legalization of marijuana for recreational use, making it the largest funder to defeat Proposition 205 in the state.

The journal, Clinical Neurology News reports that marijuana users are less likely to adhere to opiod therapies – simply because they don’t need them.

As the Times Free Press articulates:

“For more than a decade, members of a little-known group called the Pain Care Forum have blanketed Washington with messages about prescription painkillers’ vital role in the lives of millions of Americans, creating an echo chamber that has quietly derailed efforts to curb U.S. consumption of drugs like OxyContin, Vicodin and Percocet.”

The annual sales for these few drugs amounts to billions with the OxyContin clan being welcomed to Forbes list of richest families for their efforts.

Though researchers say that opiod sales are finally starting a downward trajectory, Big Pharma’s lobbying to keep them in our medicine cabinets is at an all time high.

Image credit: www.weedheadlines.com

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garbage-patch-copyPlastic? It’s not so fantastic. In fact, the same chemical building blocks that make this product so versatile are the very same ones that make plastics stick around for centuries after we’ve used them, often only one time. The entire planet has become littered with plastic – from medical IV bags, to plastic spoons, forks and to-go containers, to cell phone cases and plastic shopping bags. We’ve simply gone overboard with the use of this environmentally damaging and health harming substance. Fortunately – France is doing something about it. They are now the first county to ban all plastic forks, spoons, knives, cups, and plates.

If you want to eat in France now, you’d better be ready to bring your own reusable utensils, or dine at an establishment that uses biodegradable, non plastic items.  A controversial new law implemented in the country bans all plastic cutlery, plastic plates, and plastic cups. Though producers have until the year 2020 to phase out these plastic products and replace them with more eco-friendly, biodegradable ones, many retailers and restaurants have already done the right thing and ditched the plastic.

Pack2Go Europe Secretary General Eamonn Bates told The Associated Press the company is urging the European Union to take legal action against France for violating the European Union’s rules on free movement of goods, but that hasn’t stopped the government from going forward with the ban.

This follows France’s ban on single-use plastic shopping bags that went into effect in March of this year.

More countries need to follow France’s lead. We already have a plastic ‘garbage patch’ growing in our oceans that is said to be larger than the state of Texas. This collection of marine debris is also known as the Pacific trash vortex, and it spans waters from the West Coast of North America to Japan. The ‘great’ garbage patch is actually the collected debris from the Western Garbage Patch, located near Japan, and the Eastern Garbage Patch, located between the U.S. states of Hawaii and California. The plastics in these great accumulations of trash do not break down, they simply become smaller and smaller, eventually finding their way into even the tiniest sea creatures.

Many countries have already made great strides toward reducing the plastic trash that ends up in our oceans.

  • Denmark already offers major tax incentives to retailers who hand out reusable bags. This saves approximately 66 percent of single use paper and plastic bags.
  • Scotland, Ireland and Wales have begun taxing consumers who still use plastic bags.
  • Italy has banned plastic bags that don’t come from biodegradable sources (like hemp.)
  • All stores in Germany have to pay a recycling tax if they provide plastic bags to consumers.
  • In the US 98 cities already have plastic bag bans in place, or are working on them.

If we were all to follow with a further ban on plastic plates, forks, knives, cups, and to-go containers that are not from a biodegradable, environmentally friendly source, then we could start to shrink the garbage patch before more damage is done.

Image credit: www.yalescientific.org

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da-vinci-gut-copyAllopathic medicine has only begun to understand the importance of the gut – brain connection. Our intestines were only just recently named the ‘second brain’ when it comes to keeping the body healthy, but ancient Ayurvedic practitioners have known of this connection for at least 5,000 years. When we are stressed and under pressure, the brain actually sends messages to the intestinal cells, and vice versa – communicating in ways that are surprising, and if we don’t take care of our ‘gut feelings,’ or that ‘sinking feeling in our stomachs,’ then we usually suffer the consequences.

A Scientific American article sums it up quite well,

“Our brain and gut are connected by an extensive network of neurons and a highway of chemicals and hormones that constantly provide feedback about how hungry we are, whether or not we’re experiencing stress, or if we’ve ingested a disease-causing microbe.”

As Heribert Watzke further explains in a Ted talk:

“. . . our gut is [also] connected to our emotional limbic system, they [the brain and guts] do speak with each other and make decisions.”

Aside from eating a meal that is too large, eating food that is simply not prepared properly or that is just down-right unhealthy, the gut responds metabolically to what we eat. The gut also responds to emotions, though.

The entire gastrointestinal tract responds to emotions – fear, excitement, pain, sadness, passion, and more. Since there is two-way communication going on between the brain in our heads and the ‘brain’ in our guts, we can feel a stomach upset when we aren’t feeling happy, just as easily as if we were to eat a meal at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant that didn’t exactly reward our sense of adventure.

What’s more, hundreds of millions of neurons connect the brain to the enteric nervous system, a part of the nervous system that is in constant communication with the the gastrointestinal system.

Believe it or not, there are just as many neuronal cells in our guts as there are in our spinal column. Those neurons in our guts are paying very close attention to the trillions of microbes living in our guts.

Like its own ecosystem – the gut thrives when the healthy bacteria, and microbes within it are thriving, and suffer when the bullies, or bad microorganisms take over.

The chemical reactions governed by the gut-brain axis are so important, that they can even control how much serotonin is released – a neurotransmitter that makes us feel happy –  so if our guts aren’t happy, we aren’t happy. That’s where the use of ancient Ayurvedic remedies become important to our overall health. Here are five of them:

  1. Drink warm water with lemon or lime first thing in the morning. This practice has been done for thousands of years. You can think of it like clearing the pipes of an old house. By drinking warm lemon or lime water first thing in the morning it hits the stomach after it has had a chance to rest for several hours, making the effects of cleansing and nourishing even more potent.
  2. Reduce inflammation. Ayurvedic medicine usually goes for the root cause of most ailments, and when the gut is inflamed, everything from unwanted emotions to physical health challenges can arise. To reduce inflammation, you’ll want to get rid of the foods that cause it, such as processed foods, alcohol, caffeine, refined sugars and carbs and also GMOs and fruits and vegetables full of pesticides. To heal inflammation, take flax or chia, and other essential fatty acids that help to reduce inflammation along the gastrointestinal tract. You can also take ginger root, turmeric root, garlic, black walnut, goldenseal and Kudzu to further heal the gut.
  3. Use the herbal remedy, triphala. You can make triphala, the combination of three Indian fruits, hiritaki, bibhtaki, and amla, to help gently cleanse the body and encourage good bacteria to grow in the gut. Usually triphala will also contain one or more of psyllium, liquorice, fennel and linseed, also expert herbs at cleansing the digestive tract. Since digestive ailments can cause a number of health issues from candida overgrowth, and leaky gut to irritable bowel syndrome and even hernia, making sure to gently cleanse the intestines on a regular basis can keep you feeling healthy and energetic. As Grocare explains, removing free radicals from the intestines also acts as a catalyst in the entire healing process by maintaining optimum pH Levels in the body.
  4. Meditate and Practice Yoga – these practices directly affect how the limbic system responds to stress, as well as how quickly our bodies digest food. Food that sits in the intestines for long periods usually putrefies, causing disease and unhappiness. This can literally interrupt our gut-brain communication, making it more difficult to trust our intuitive hunches, and gut-informed decision making. Meditation calms the nervous system, creating a better pathway for neuronal cells to communicate along the gut-brain axis, and yoga practices help to jump-start our digestive fire so that we process our meals efficiently. Both of these practices were considered sister sciences to Ayurveda ages ago.
  5. Researchers at Leeds University discovered that we make gut decisions so quickly that they don’t even happen on a conscious level. When you get a ‘reading in your gut’ whether it’s a good or bad one TRUST it. There are more than 100 million neurons that are checking out the environment to help you make a choice which won’t even register in your brain until several seconds AFTER your gut has made its decision.

Image credit: blog.aikidojournal.com

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There are key markers for human conversation, among them are our ability to string words together to make full sentences and also our inclination to pause in a conversation to make room for another person to participate. In a first-ever recording, scientists have now recorded dolphins having the same type of dialogue.

With this discovery, researchers have confirmed what many dolphin lovers have always suspected – that dolphins communicate using a very advanced system of communication that is at least as intricate as our own.

The study published in St. Petersburg Polytechnical University Journal: Physics and Mathematics and conducted at the Karadag Nature Reserve in Feodosia, Russia reveals that dolphins have a one-on-one, back and forth communication style. Dolphins are already known to use more than 1000 different sounds to communicate, but the new research confirms that dolphin conversations resemble ‘advanced’ human conversation and a very high level of intelligence.

They might use a series of pulsed clicks or a high squeal to make a word, and these sounds are then strung together to make sentences, with pauses to allow another dolphin to chime in.

Two Black Sea bottlenose dolphins, named Yasha and Yana carried out conversations which researchers recorded and then analyzed to find two distinctly different voices.  What’s more – these marine mammals listen to a complete sentence from other dolphins without interruption!

Lead researcher Dr Vyacheslav Ryabov, as reported by the Telegraph, said: “Essentially, this exchange resembles a conversation between two people.

“Each pulse that is produced by dolphins is different from another by its appearance in the time domain and by the set of spectral components in the frequency domain.

“In this regard, we can assume that each pulse represents a phoneme or a word of the dolphin’s spoken language.

“The analysis of numerous pulses registered in our experiments showed that the dolphins took turns in producing [sentences] and did not interrupt each other, which gives reason to believe that each of the dolphins listened to the other’s pulses before producing its own.

“This language exhibits all the design features present in the human spoken language, this indicates a high level of intelligence and consciousness in dolphins, and their language can be ostensibly considered a highly developed spoken language, akin to the human language.”

Dolphins are amazing in a number of other ways, too. They are able to stave off sleep when a baby dolphin is born for over a month. They have a panoramic 300-degree view of the ocean that allows them to see behind them, even, and they can dive for nearly 12 minutes as deep as 1800 feet. They’ve rescued humans and other animals from ship wrecks numerous times.

Even more fascinating is the fact that scientists have called a dolphin’s healing ability, “almost alien, compared to what we can do.” They’re recuperative abilities are faster than human fetuses, and they regenerate, not just heal their bodies in record time.

By now adding the documented skill of being able to talk like we do, it’s no wonder ancient cultures revered dolphins as not only our equals, but even our guides.

Image credit: 7-themes.com

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