Biology Week 2: Synesthesia | Misophonia | Evo-Devo

Art by Melissa McCracken, Portrait of John Lennon’s “imagine” — Melissa has Chromesthesia

“Metaphor creates a kind of conceptual synesthesia, in which we understand one concept in the context of another.” 

– James Geary

What is synesthesia? It sounds like a Disney princess but it is definitely far from it. Synesthesia is an idiopathic condition that affects the neurological system where the brain governs our senses and they become crossed or linked – and we don’t know why or how. Hearing-touch synesthesia is among the over 20 varieties of synesthetic tendencies exhibited by the synesthetes who make less than one percent of the world’s population. It is a very rare condition in which an individual develops tactile feelings or senses upon hearing certain sounds.

Less than twenty years ago, a new scientific term blossomed into existence: misophonia. It literally means “hatred of sound” and was proposed in 2000 as a condition in which negative emotions, thoughts, and physical reactions are triggered by specific sounds or related to repetitive sounds like breathing or pen-clicking. These sounds don’t just annoy, they cause outrage, which typically results in the person attacking verbally or physically. One study found that around 80% of the sounds were related to the mouth (eating, slurping, chewing or popping gum, whispering, etc.), and around 60% were repetitive actions (pen-clicking, foot-tapping, or heavy breathing, etc.)

I believe misophonia may be a type of patho-synesthesia and these two both need further investigation in order to develop relief for those who suffer and support for those use use their condition to an advantage. Consider the possibility of conditioning our senses so well they represented ‘psychic abilities’ found in classical Taoist scrolls. Qigong has legends of heightened abilities and synesthetic capacities used with Chinese Medicine diagnosis, treatment, and we all have the ability to use each sense for more than one purpose. Evolutionary and Developmental Biology speaks to our scientific baby-steps towards new biotechnology and human refinement. From dolphin and whale brains anatomically developing additional lobes (check that out here) and its potential that we too can evolve and change our anatomy on a cellular level and perceive the world with new eyes, feel our emotions poly-sentually.

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Physics Week 1: My Locks | The Meaning of Time

At twenty years old, I was determined to figure out my mission, develop a plan, and begin a journey of service. I decided to twist my hair into locks and declared when my hair draped my shoulders and chest, I will have a path to follow without reservation. It took eight years to reach that point and I am satisfied to say, in that time, I developed a passion for classical medicine, Qigong, Taijiquan, Tuina massage, joined Wudang West, and challenged myself to study acupuncture at three different schools between two states. My locks were a physical representation of time and when the day came to cut them, I was content with the decisions I had made in the time it took to get there.

Time becomes insurmountable when a person believes in its theories and lives by its laws. When it no longer leads life and momentary decisions take the reigns, time is a figment of the imagination. What happens to time during an honest unbridled laugh? When does time resume after the loss of a close loved one? When we consciously harmonize ourselves with the seasons and the waning of night and day, our experiences are given a different significance for that duration. And as a self-care practice persist, we continue because we can continue. We practice Qigong so we may practice Qigong. The use of “time” is stressful and counter-productive to the cultivation of personal skill necessary to become a truly impactful healer.

I internalized my vow without consideration of time, I only knew how to follow my instincts and trust my decisions. So for the sake of time, I will be brief and repose with the words of the Apostle Thomas: If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you bring forth what is not from within you, what you bring forth will destroy you. In that journey of self discovery, time is no longer a factor.

Biology Week 1: Dolphins | Cetaceans

Imagine sitting at a restaurant ordering food. What if you could communicate by projecting a holographic image of the meal you wanted to the waiter and them completely understanding and delivering? Dolphins and cetaceans (killer whales) can do this. Because cetaceans and dolphins have special anatomy for sound creation and reception in their brains, scientist are beginning to hypothesize these creatures capable of sonar holographic imaging of their ideas to each other.

Michigan State University (MSU) believes “a dolphin wishing to convey the image of a fish to another dolphin can literally send the image of a fish to the other animal.” MSU did research comparing cetaceans and primates brains resulting in this surprising discovery. Cetaceans and dolphins communicate and sense the world with sound. We humans have to primarily see the world to sense it and use sound to communicate out ideas. Think about lightening and thunder, it’s easy to miss the flash from a bolt of lightening and hard to miss the thunder. Dolphins and cetaceans receive 20 times more information with hearing than the average person because of their advanced cerebral cortex and their pimped-out Broca’s & Wernicke’s areas of the brain.

Imagine what life could be if our thoughts were projectable (I could have said that straight to your mind and avoided writing this entirely if it were so), what would 3D printing look like? iPhones? Engineering? Painting? Sports? Politics? The sky would be no limit to our creativity and could change the tide of human evolution.

I hope these discoveries go mainstream and change the face of animal rights and ecological preservations to prevent the destruction of these mysteriously intelligent beings homes.

Daniel Fields | Biography

Aloha, my name is Daniel Fields, I own a health education business, Orcanit, where I perform Tuina massage to reduce pain severity for acute injuries, manage pain from old traumas, and improve range of motion with Si Yuan Balance Method® style acupressure. I also organize workshops as a Kangen Water® Sponsor & Distributor from Hawaii to The Bay Area. I am a Certified Massage Therapist (CMT#68678), Health Educator, and continue to study Taijiquan Qigong since 2007. I currently study acupuncture at the Oakland Academy of Chinese Culture & Health Science (ACCHS) and have completed their 250-hour Tui-Na Medical Massage program in December 2014. I then completed the National Holistic Institute College of Massage (NHI) Core 900-hour massage program in November 2015 & 100-hour Teaching Assistant Program in December 2016. Since 2014, I have studied under David Wei, founder of Wudang West Cultural Heritage Center, Oakland Ca, in medicinal movement arts, specifically Wudang Qigong & Philosophy, and the practical application of Qigong in Tuina medical massage. I currently run Orcanit from Download Wellness in Oakland and look forward to what the future brings, mahalo.

The Wudang Mountain of Oakland, Ca | WDWCHC

11102773_10155554716560092_1042208315289315891_n.jpgGrand Opening Ceremony, WuDang West Cultual Heritage Center | Oakland, CA | May 17, 2015
Photo By Alonzo Young

Everyone has taken their seats for the Academy of Chinese Culture and Health Sciences  new acupuncture student orientation 2014 in Oakland, Ca. A tall 6′ 4″  man stoically walks into the room with long black hair neatly pulled back accompanied by a woman with a massive mane of dark brown curls reaching past her hips.  He takes a seat with the administration in front of us, their perspective students, and she sits silently off to the side. The program begins and each administrator stood and presented their information about the school in turn and the tall man sitting in the middle of the presenters stood, introduced himself as David Wei and presented the “Ba Gua” or “The Eight Directions” of basic movement. He explained how Qigong is beneficial for long-term wellness. It was very impressive, I only knew of ‘Ba Gua’ to be a martial arts style from China, I didn’t realize it was also cardinal spinal directions — forward, backward, bend left, bend right, compress, expand, twist left, twist right. Little did I know that this day marked the beginning of a beautiful relationship with  David Wei 魏 资 容, Wei Zi Rong, “Wayfarer of Vast Capacity”, Najia Kaddoura, and the Wudang West Cultural Heritage Center.

David was my Tai Chi instructor for the following term at ACCHS. I soon joined his 7:30am morning Qigong gathering that happens six days a week (which I still regularly attend). Because I practice Qigong daily, I have found my massage practice has flourished. I focus on the use of Tuina Chinese Medical Massage with Eastern and Western bodywork styles from the National Holistic Institute 900-hour Core curriculum. David has a through understanding of what I call “Master-Key Movements” that Tuina offers and successfully integrates Qigong from morning class to the massage table. He has shared with us this skill as a community via a four section workshop held February 2016 and in morning class we do partnered exercises that utilize the five basic tools of Tuina: brush, grab, press, rub, pat or tui, na, an, mo, pai.

Wudang West Cultural Heritage Center is not a place for learning Chinse fighting techniques, it is a place to find a wellness community that believes the Chinese way of health integration into cultural lifestyle is capable of combating many of the annoying illnesses that occur more often in the standard American life we are accustom to. Appropriate movement and nutrition based on personal constitution, the seasons, and the environment leads to a smoother road in life. Not pushing back and going with resistance in order to maintain integrity, sincerity, and XX provides space to make decisions in life rather than just reactions so that when we reflect on our experiences, we know we chose rather than reacted. we may not agree with the outcomes but at least there was a choice in the matter overall. Orcanit borrows many of these principles found in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Wudang West philosophy to improve personal quality of life and build lasting relationships with like minded people every morning.

I encourage anyone seeking a rewarding personal practice to checkout Wudang West: Mornings, 7:30am, at 2121 Harrison St. Oakland Ca, 94612 EXCEPT Sunday. Look for the group of people standing in a circle and feel free to join in!!

Mutulu Shakur | Restricted Revolutionary

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“I didn’t create T.H.U.G L.I.F.E., I diagnosed it.”

– Tupac Shakur

     Dr. Mutulu Shakur is the most valuable acupuncturist who should be released from prison to date. He has a rich history and intriguing tale of passion, ambition, innovation, healing and mystery. Dr. Shakur was wrongfully incarcerated February 12th, 1986, scheduled for release in 2016 (which did not happen) during the nefarious era of United States politics from the 1950s until the 1970s./

     According to the FBI data vault, “CONINTELPRO — short for Counterintelligence Program—in 1956 to disrupt the activities of the Communist Party of the United States. In the 1960s, it was expanded to include a number of other domestic groups, such as the Ku Klux Klan, the Socialist Workers Party, and the Black Panther Party. All COINTELPRO operations were ended in 1971. Although limited in scope (about two-tenths of one percent of the FBI’s workload over a 15-year period), COINTELPRO was later rightfully criticized by Congress and the American people for abridging first amendment rights and for other reasons.”

     Dr. Shakur became certified and licensed to practice acupuncture in the State of California in 1976. Dr. Shakur managed a detox program recognized as the largest and most effective of its kind by the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Acupuncture Research Society (NARS) and the World Academic Society of Acupuncture (WASA).

     In March 1982, Dr. Shakur and 10 others were indicted by a federal grand jury under a set of U.S. conspiracy laws called “Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization” (RICO) laws… Dr. Shakur was charged with conspiracy and participation in a paramilitary unit that carried out actual and attempted to ‘Robin Hood’ funds from several banks. In addition he was charged with participation in the 1979 prison escape of Assata Shakur who is now in exile in Cuba. After five years underground, Dr. Shakur was arrested on February 12, 1986 and was scheduled to be released on February 10, 2016 — 30 years later. Dr. Shakur is the father of six children. His nephew, Tupac Shakur, was assassinated in 1996. Before his death, they had extensive conversations despite Dr. Shakur being incarcerated.

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     Tupac’s “T.H.U.G.L.I.F.E.” is very popular amongst rap fans across the globe. He came from education and an iron-clad support group who guided him thru his career and personal life. One of his greatest mentors was Mutulu Shakur. They devised alongside other Original Gangsters a Code of T.H.U.G.L.I.F.E, an instrumental tool to bond rival gangs in Los Angeles, California. In 1992, members of the Crips and Bloods signed the 26-item manifesto at the ‘Truce Picnic’ hosted by Tupac Shakur, creating unity on the Los Angeles streets for a time between the two most prevalent gangs at that time.

Their power to unify the Crips and Bloods demonstrated how devising a street code has undertones alluding to Mutulu Shakur’s wisdom with Chinese Medicine and the ability to diagnose sickness and execute an effective treatment plan. Tupac brought a voice to the people who protect the streets, to those witnesses and victims of brutality and cruelty.  Tupac and Mutulu created a foundation that could support the gangs of America to safely protect their hoods in the efforts to become independent of the powers that exercise oppression tactics and deliberately hurt People of Color.

Although our current society does not respect or even echo the phrases of their manifesto, it is still available and only needs some support from those who can respect what it can achieve. We could create a Nation of Color. A place of safety to respectfully be different and reinvent our experiences as Mealinated People of America.

I am leaving you with a Dr. Shakur quote from a telephone interview from Lompoc Federal Prison with Tyehimba Jess of WHBK Radio in Chicago (October 1992)

“…in order for us to understand what it is that we were fighting for, we must label what we’re for … that develops a culture that deals with our experience and a culture that will allow the exercise, creativity, the potential of every man, woman and child that enters our nation.”

– Mutulu Shakur

Read the full article about Mutulu Shakur here 

Thermographic Cameras for Acupuncture | The New Frontier

With the American medical field leaning toward a more integrated approach to healing, modern technology is finding its way into the practitioners office increasingly each day. As an aspiring Acupuncturist, looking at new ways to confirm the eccentric diagnosis tools of Traditional Chinese Medicine are only to the fields benefit when developing a practice. Unlike some approaches to modify 5,000 year old tongue and pulse diagnosis, Thermography only confirms the heat differences that might occur with pathogenic symptoms.

When looking at Qi dynamics, heat is a common description of the sensation given off when someone is experiencing its presence. When there is a fluctuation of heat in any given body region, it draws the attention of an acupuncturist and assist in narrowing the symptoms into a functional diagnosis. Using a thermographic camera can give insight as to how the Qi is either stagnant, over-abundant, lacking, or pooling in any given location. Shui-yin Lo, author of “Meridians in acupuncture and infrared imaging,” explains what meridians are and how Chinese Medicine could benefit from the use of tracking heat signatures. I believe thermography can help western analytical minds conceptualize this “fringe” concept of Qi by translating the art into science.

“Infrared imaging techniques have been used extensively for many years in medicine… The technique is particularly suitable for Chinese medicine, because the meridians are there to connect the surface with internal organs… The meridians are made up of electrically polarized molecules… that account for significant properties of meridians.”    – Shui-yin Lo


Now that we have established that Qi gives off heat and miridians or acupuncture channels connect the skins surface with deep internal organs, the opportunities are endless when creative esoteric healers utilize modernized tools and technological innovations. It’s exciting to be part of the healing world and also have a hand in tech because I can see the benefits on integrated medicine and look forward to utilizing thermography in my private practice.

To learn more about how thermography is revolutionizing preventive breast cancer screening, click here

To learn more about training in clinical thermography, click here