Alternative Medicine
Manifesting Health, Part Two

All Things Connect

Last month, in part I of Manifesting Health, I wrote, “Taking personal responsibility does not mean that you all (all 300 million Americans) will become prosperous and free of illness, if we all just “do it right.” If you are going broke or remain chronically sick in spite of doing your best to “create your reality,” I don't think it is your fault or your failure.

But you and I just donated $700 billion to stabilize the economy, $700 billion that was rushed through because President Bush, in closed session, told congressmen that, if they did not vote to approve the bailout, he would declare martial law.

My point in last month's article was that the principles of manifestation promoted by The Secret are superficial, and built on shaky ground. The updated New Age Guilt language needs to seriously be re-examined. I am talking about the common belief that we all can “co-create our reality” and “manifest our lives” according to perfect and Divine alignment of our will, desire, and intention.

The Great Web

“Mitakuye O'Yasin.” That is a Lakota phrase that translates as “all my kin.” It's used as a greeting, and its deeper meaning is that everyone and everything is part of an interconnected web of life. Chief Seattle elaborated on this simple concept: “Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.”

In The Tao of Physics , Fritjof Capra writes: “The universe is seen as a dynamic web of interrelated events. They all follow from the properties of the other parts and the overall consistency of their mutual interrelations determines the structure of the entire web.” That sounds a lot like what Chief Seattle said.

The secret about The Secret is that it embodies a philosophy that is an outgrowth of rugged American individualism. The NewSpeak and NewThought about personal responsibility fails to take into account the reality that we are not islands. It is not true that, if you consciously work at manifesting your dreams, and you do the work “correctly,” that your dreams are all going to come true. The real secret is that whatever we do to the Great Web, we do to ourselves.

If we are all part of an interconnected web of life, then if part of that web is out of balance, your life feels the ripples across this large web, whether the big “ripple” is caused by your next-door neighbor or by the genocide of 300,000 people in Darfur, Africa. Your gains and losses are affected by the other 6.6 billion people on the planet, including the excessive influence of a handful of dictators.

While we like to believe we are fully in control of our lives, we are not. We can do an enormous amount of inner work to take responsibility for our lives. That does not mean that we can avoid the thoughts, emotions, pain, suffering, actions, or joy of others. The Secret does not express a high level of spiritual consciousness. Spiritual law says that we are One, that we are not just inter-connected. We are One Consciousness on this planet. Did YOU create Darfur and the 300,000 deaths? Did YOU create the staggeringly fast collapse of our economy?

If you are truly going to buy into the New Thought, you have to step up to the plate, and take responsibility for the total reality. Your personal reality cannot be separated from society. The Secret failed to ask, “Am I my brother's keeper?” I am not saying any of you are responsible for the financial collapse. But I am saying that, if you follow the line of thought of The Secret to its logical conclusion, you did create this big mess! Let's talk for a moment about the blame going around about the economy. A lot of fingers are being pointed with blame at the average person, for “not making responsible decisions” about a particular mortgage. That is political jockeying and I think it is inexcusable.

Embracing Chaos

I do believe that, at some level, we all feel the ripples in the web of life, created by billions of living creatures in this web. Once we accept the concept of interconnectedness and unity that is implied by Mitakuye O'Yasin, we can no longer harm other living beings, for they contain the same spark of life. For that reason, when Native Americans used to have the freedom to hunt, they would pray to an animal before taking its life. The prayer is made out of gratitude because the hunter and the deer are made of the same “soul substance.” Non-violence requires spiritual awareness.

By the time you read this article, we could be in a state of national chaos beyond anything we could imagine back in October. The fact is that, as our economy has been collapsing, economies around the world are gasping for air. The economies of the world are inter-connected. You and I are dramatically affected by the financial crisis. But…I don't blame you for not “creating your reality” correctly. If you really are responsible and in control at the level that many books teach, the financial collapse indeed is your fault. It is easier to accept chaos, and ride the waves of uncertainty, when you feel yourself to be part of the Great Web.

Only through awareness of our interconnectedness on the planet can we be truly happy with each other. The sense of “Me and Mine,” that The Secret happily promotes, needs to be replaced by “We and Us.” As frightening as these uncertain times are, this crisis is far from over. Surviving and evolving through challenging times requires coming together. Personal sacrifice, including giving up some things to save energy, is the requirement of the day. Personal self-interest is not what is called for. I do not advocate giving up one's goals and dreams. I encourage people to aspire to the heights, but see the bigger picture while you work at creating better health, wealth, and relationships.

A Good Quantum Mechanic

As fellow members of the human race, we are interconnected on many levels. From the standpoint of quantum mechanics, separateness is an illusion.

How much control do we really have? Here is what Albert Einstein had to say about the subject: “Everything is determined, the beginning as well as the end, by forces over which we have no control. It is determined for insects as well as for the stars. Human beings, vegetables, or cosmic dust, we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible piper.”

When we examine who we are at the atomic level, certain realizations arise. While living beings are extraordinarily complex, they are all made of the same stuff. We are a well-crafted sculpture made of various elements. We are mainly water, H 2 O. 99% of the mass of the human body is made up of just six elements: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, and phosphorus. What makes oxygen different from calcium or nitrogen? Every atom consists of a nucleus, which is made up of neutrons and protons. Orbiting the nucleus are electrons. The number of neutrons, protons, and electrons determines if an atom is one element or another, but the basic sub-atomic particles (neutrons, protons, and electrons) are essentially the same. What is extraordinary is that the distance of electrons from the nucleus they orbit is so great that atoms are mainly just – space. If the nucleus of an atom were the size of a grain of salt, the orbiting electrons would be miles away. That gives you an idea about why we, and all matter, are mainly space.

This is the nitty gritty truth of “what” we are made of, which quite literally is the remnants, the dust, of dead stars. Stardust. Life is quite a miracle. Think about the fact that somehow, planet Earth formed from stardust, and on the Earth, water and the other elements came together to create the forms that are the bodies of living creatures. These well-crafted clumps of clay are mainly space, mainly electron clouds.

The difference between a beautiful lump of clay and a human being is “life,” which can be thought of as consciousness or spirit that infuses the physical form. The consciousness that activates one lump of clay and turns it into a living creature is the same consciousness in all creatures, large or small. Using a different metaphor, God is the ocean of consciousness that is the entire physical universe as well as the entire invisible universe. The individual soul is like a river that eventually returns to the sea. When that mystery called “life” leaves us, our bodies return to the earth, and all those atoms become one with the earth again – back to the elements, back to stardust.

From the standpoint of physics, we are all the same. We are electron clouds, trying to hold it together. We differ in the relative size and shape of the electron cloud that we are. We spend our lives in the illusion of separateness, as if we are all so unique and important. We become more enlightened as we realize that we are one. We all came from the same stardust. We are all activated by the same consciousness or life force. As we brush up against each other, some of the electrons in my electron cloud blend with yours and vice versa, and when we part, you are walking away with electrons that were “mine” just a minute ago. At this fundamental quantum level, we are one.

Medicine and Psychiatry, my areas of expertise, are tiny little fields within the vastness of all knowledge. Spiritual knowledge trumps other fields. Psychological health does not bring you great spiritual wisdom, but spiritual advancement does bring major psychological changes.

The theme of all religions, as well as the new physics, is “unity.” By looking at our unity, and our interconnectedness through the web of life, we are liberated from the suffering caused by the belief that we are in total control of our lives. Few of us have the ability to manifest everything we desire, if we just know the right tools and use them diligently.

The kind of health that this article hopes to help you manifest involves a broader vision of the human condition. That broader vision, which is unity rather than separation, is the key to alleviating suffering. This vision may not bring back the $50,000 you may have just lost because of the devaluation of our economy.

It is within our place in the Great Web that our individual challenges, goals, and desires arise. You cannot choose to leave the Web. You can only choose to “imagine” that you are separate, independent, successful on your own, and able to totally create your own reality. I do encourage everyone to identify their passion, and sense of purpose and then work to bring that passion into physical reality.

Your journey into wellness or wealth will be a different journey if you are aware that your path is not a solo flight. Awareness and acceptance of being interconnected alleviates suffering, and assists in healing. People and things manifest in your life, as a result of your awareness of your place in the Great Web.

Cosmic Glue

What holds it all together? Something holds these human bodies (which are really electron clouds) together. Something holds the Great Web of Life together. The ancient Indian texts, the Vedas, the first books to discuss atomic structure, hold that love is the power that keeps electrons orbiting the nucleus. It is the same power that keeps all the elements held together in the form and spirit of a human being. Love is what holds the Great Web of Life together. However, love is not the same as desire or romantic lust.

Love has no attachment whatsoever. It is the inner, motivating power. When we know our inner identity to “be” love, we feel whole and complete. When this is the case, we do not experience a “need” for another person or a new house. We may “want” them and that is different.

People who are in touch with their core identity are like magnets. Whether or not they know it, their love is magnetic and, as a result, many people will automatically be attracted to that person. When you get the secret of your deepest identity, the act of manifestation becomes a natural expression of who you are. You will feel complete. Many people do not feel worthy, and do not feel that they are enough. When they strive to bring health, wealth, or relationships into their lives, if they are coming from an inner place of “not enough,” they are generating fear.

The law of attraction states that what we focus on is what we will attract. We might put a lot of time and energy into manifesting something, but if the hidden motivation is fear of “not having enough,” your focus will attract what you have been fearing— namely, not having. When you know that you are enough, you are identifying with what you already are, which is love. In that state of consciousness, when you focus on something, the inner state of love is realized and understood as the attraction principle.

Most importantly, as you consider why you may be chronically ill, or why you may be in a very challenging financial position, first get in touch with your place in the very large interconnected web of life. Find your own personal center within the Great Web with many other centers. Remember that, because you are part of the Web, sometimes the forces of the world will make life seem great for you and sometimes those forces will make you feel miserable.

It is not necessarily you . You move about in life, visioning, dreaming, and manifesting. If, in this process, you think you are running the show, are totally in control, and that life is certain (as opposed to uncertain), life will not be peaceful. Feel the embrace of the Great Web; and feel your own soul or spirit, which is love, as the center of your existence within all of life. It is from this perspective that the law of attraction makes more sense.

The law of attraction is grounded in the reality of our interconnectedness. We do attract into our lives what we are focusing on. The power of attraction is great, especially when that power is understood to be love. However, our individual focus is just one point in the Great Web.

David Gersten, M.D. practices Nutritional Medicine and Integrative Psychiatry out of his Encinitas office and can be reached at 760-633-3063. You can access 1,000 on-line pages about holistic health at


Transformational Talk:
Gratitude for Hard Times

Are you grateful for hard times? Although you may welcome reminders to be grateful, you probably don't strive to be grateful FOR hard times themselves. If you're like most of us, hard times are something you wish would pass as fast as possible. The problem is that hard times are usually your best teachers and provide profound gifts. Giving thanks for dark times is often a prerequisite for receiving these blessings.

Here's the tip. First, acknowledge your pain. Hard times hurt. Feel. Breathe. Cry. Find loving support. Repeat as needed. Be gentle as you tend your wounds. Whenever you feel soothed, review your life for previous upsets with positive outcomes.

Keep looking. Interview friends about difficulties which led to delights. Read about others' triumphs over great troubles.

Next, spend time in silence. Be still. Bring your focus to the present moment again and again. Allow sky, fl owners, trees and children's faces to guide you 'back' to gratitude. See if you're ready for a leap of faith. That means giving up, giving in, and giving over. Remember, you wouldn't know pleasure if you hadn't known pain.

Finally, accept, allow and appreciate this hard time while it lasts…always asking “What lesson do you have for me?”

“What is your gift?” Cherish these moments until the disguise of darkness falls away and leaves you bathed in light.

Penelope Young Andrade, LCSW www.penelopetalk. com Call: 858-481-5752 fax: 858-484-8374 email: