The Tao of Ebola

The United States is fond of fighting metaphorical wars. We have seen wars on crime, drugs, poverty, cancer, terror etc. The latest is a War on Ebola, since it has made its way out of the dark continent and traveled west  to Texas.

While I’m not a physician, it does seem to me that the general approach taken to medicine in the US is to fight illness after it has taken root.  The western approach to health care is similar to taking your car to a mechanic.  Something gets broken and you are forced to fix it. On the other hand, in traditional Chinese medicine there is more of a  focus on prevention.

The traditional Chinese view is that life is full of pathogenic influences.  A bug has a better shot of harming you when you are in a weakened state.  For example, you are stressed by a change in circumstances at work and it’s keeping you awake at night.  On top of that, you aren’t taking time to eat sound nutritious meals.  In this weakened state, you get sick. You can wait until a pathogen gets a toe hold into you, or you can nip it it the bud when you are strong and at your best.

It’s possible that Ebola became epidemic in Africa because of the extreme poverty, and it won’t happen in the US.  While it’s true that the US is much richer than Sudan, it’s also true that we are stressed, often overworked, sleep deprived, and overfed but undernourished.  These conditions make us susceptible to a virus.

In keeping with the traditional Chinese view of healthcare, our first line of defense is to make ourselves strong.  Eat a nutritious plant based diet.  Practice meditation, yoga, tai chi, or qigong.  Take a vacation.   Enjoy your family. Visit the zoo or a park.  Breath.



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As long as Robert can remember, he wanted to be a writer. Like many young people who are called to a creative life, he had to contend with well-meaning friends and family members who discouraged it. While Robert spent most of his career as a successful attorney, he never forgot his dream. In the meantime, he pursued many other interests and was fortunate enough to have some amazing adventures. One of those interests was martial arts. He spent many years studying and teaching Chinese Internal Martial Arts. Robert promised his teacher he would someday write that book he always wanted to write and began to develop a story idea that pitted a young lawyer/martial artist against a powerful pharmaceutical company in a conflict over a miracle cure. The hero wants to insure the cure is freely available to everyone, but powerful enemies want to suppress it. The Nostrum Conspiracy is Robert’s second book. His first book, Naked Tao, breaks a few rules.

Robert has been blessed with an amazing life and it just keeps getting better. He lives in Louisville with his beautiful wife and children. "Bad Bob" is a tongue-in-cheek nick name bestowed upon him by his co-workers when he showed up at his law firm one day on a new Harley. Robert is a martial arts master and has taught over 600 students.

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