|Chiropractic for the Planet
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By Dr. Stew Bittman
Today is Earth Day. We thought this article, originally published on February 10, 2000, was very much appropriate for this day.
Mahatma Gandhi once said, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world". These are very wise words that are vividly applicable to our environmental crisis. We will never care for the planet any better than we care for ourselves. We will never heal Mother Earth's wounds until we heal ourselves. We will never find a natural balance with our environment until we discover that balance within ourselves.
We must, as individuals, be the change we wish to see. We must become whole. We must remember who and what we are. We must reawaken to our true essence. We must allow the natural flow of perfection, balance, and harmony to express through us and as us. We must get out of the way of what has already been perfectly and magnificently designed. As each individual works toward this, the world heals.
What if we realized that in each moment, we have everything within us to be totally healthy, totally happy, totally abundant, totally connected, and totally loving? What if we remembered that we are children of God, here to serve and love our brothers and sisters? What if we understood that no one else has our gifts and our talents? What if we became aware of our true nature and developed our gifts and talents and then gave them away in service to the rest of Creation? Would we make different choices for ourselves and for the planet? Would we be shooting each other, raping the planet, abusing Nature and ourselves? Would we have a society that worships money and drugs? Would we have any needs that were not met, even without worrying about "what's in it for me?"
What if we served the whole the way a cell does? A cell feeds its neighbors, helps eliminate its neighbors' wastes, and protects its neighbors. A cell performs the exact function that it was created to perform, without agendas, conditions, or judgments. You don't hear a liver cell say, "sure, I'll detoxify that poison, but not for those cells over there in the stomach that I don't like". Or, "I'll do it after you give me enough oxygen and nutrients". It simply does what it was placed in this Universe to do. And when 100 trillion cells all share their gift, the whole body works perfectly, according to Law, and each cell receives exactly what it needs. I believe we can be that way, too. I believe we can be the change we want to see in the world. We are each a small yet indispensable note in the Universal song. Einstein said that if we were somehow able to remove a single electron from the Universe, the Universe would cease to exist, as we know it. That makes us and the Universe very special.
The Universe is an organized, healthy, sane, harmonious, self-healing, and self-regulating system. It exhibits an incredibly precise order, whether we're considering molecules and atoms or galaxies and stars. There are no mistakes and there are no extra parts or extraneous organisms. The whole thing works within a context of Intelligence which most people call God. When we as human beings attempt to improve on perfection by manipulating the Universe to suit our whims, things always get worse. The evidence of this is clear to any 3rd grader.
Chiropractic philosophy teaches the same principle. The human body is unfathomably intelligent. It builds itself from 1 cell into 100 trillion cells in 9 months. It rebuilds 98% of itself in 3 months! That's right- 98% of the atoms that comprise your body right now will not be in your body 3 months from now. They will have been replaced by atoms that you accumulate from your environment, mostly in the form of food. So, essentially you eat Twinkies today, and tomorrow those Twinkie atoms are part of your eyeball or your toenail or your spleen. How can we account for the fact that these collections of Twinkie atoms can literally do quadrillions of things simultaneously, including healing themselves, regulating themselves, and successfully adapting themselves to their environments? Dead bodies do none of these things, and yet are made of exactly the same stuff. Living bodies reorganize atoms into themselves, whereas dead bodies reorganize into plants. Why? Because a living body contains an Intelligence which creates it, re-creates it, heals it, runs it, and keeps it in balance and harmony. When this Intelligence is fully connected to the Twinkie atoms, we express our optimal potential of health, wellness, joy, love, wisdom, and power.
When we as human beings attempt to improve on perfection by manipulating the body or its parts or its molecules according to our limited perspective and knowledge, the body always suffers. We think of the body as the sum of its parts, and that since we understand the sum of the parts we can understand the whole. Beyond that, we think that health problems are due to a fault in the parts or that there are too many parts or not enough chemicals. There are some problems with these assumptions. First of all, the sum of the parts equals a dead body. Second, we don't know the sum of the parts. We only know some of the parts! Compared to the Intelligence that runs these bodies, our collective "knowledge" is minuscule. And even though Madison Avenue would love us to continue believing that headaches are due to a lack of aspirin, or depression is due to a lack of Prozac, or ear infections in kids are due to a lack of antibiotics, or hyperactivity is due to a lack of Ritalin, this is silly at best. And dangerous at worst. Right now, health care in the United States is the 3rd leading cause of death, primarily because of our belief systems about health. Health is a function of life! It comes from within. The body works within a context of Intelligence that chiropractors call Innate. And when Innate Intelligence is expressing itself in and through the Twinkie atoms and 100 trillion cells that we call the body, health is the inevitable result. You don't even need insurance!
The way that Innate Intelligence expresses itself in the body is via the nerve system. The brain generates life and this energy reaches every cell by traveling over a nerve. Every nerve that runs from the brain to the body travels through the spine. This is where the nerve is most vulnerable to irritation and trauma. The spine then becomes the lifeline of the body, and the spine was created to protect the nerves. But when the spine becomes misaligned because of physical, chemical, or mental/emotional stress, the nerve is no longer protected and can become irritated or compressed. At this point there will not be 100% life traveling over that nerve and part of the body will begin to reorganize into something that is not normal from that person, just as the whole body will ultimately reorganize into plant material when Innate Intelligence ceases expressing itself completely. When part of the body has reorganized and is out of harmony with the whole, we call that dis-ease. When the process goes on long enough and we eventually become aware of it, we call that disease. But disease is simply the reorganization of Twinkie atoms outside of the normal plan for that individual. The sole purpose of chiropractic is to adjust the spine to free the nerve and release the power of life. To reconnect the Intelligence with the Twinkies, as it were. The body can then operate under its normal and natural context of Intelligence, and be in harmony with itself and its environment.
Wouldn't it be possible to do that for ourselves as individuals? To "adjust" ourselves? To remove from our lives that which interferes with the normal and natural flow of perfection and harmony? To live in moderation? To work on our "stuff" and confront our addictions? To become, as Black Elk taught, clean hollow bones for Spirit to express through? If we dedicated our lives to working on this, would there be as much stress? The great majority of stress stems from living unnaturally. It comes from thinking we are vulnerable, lacking, deficient, made incorrectly. It comes from living in extremes. It comes from believing we are separate from everything and everyone else in Creation and from the Intelligence that runs it all. It comes from the insane idea that somehow we are not special, unique expressions of Spirit that are here with a definite purpose. It comes from trying to improve on perfection.
The world can no longer wait for science or technology or government or religion to solve its crises from the outside in. Each one of us must take the responsibility to change and heal ourselves from the inside out. Each one of us has the power to change the world. First we must become that change.
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Dr. Stew Bittman maintains a box practice in South Lake Tahoe, CA along his wife Hillary and daughter Ari. For our more "scientific" brethren: Stew Bittman graduated from LACC as Valedictorian, Summa Cum Laude with a 4.0 GPA. On the first set of National Boards he scored 4 perfect "800's" out of 6 exams. He has a video, "The Mission of Chiropractic" that is available for purchase through Planet Chiropractic. In his video, recorded at one of his weekly evening talks, Stew communicates the big picture of chiropractic - the ability to express our life's full potential free from interference.
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