Each year, in search of health and well-being, we access the fascinating meditations and sage advice of our extensive array of experts. Here are the most provocative quotes of 2002.
ON WHY WE ARE ALL ONE: "History matters, and our ancestors are not just our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents. Our ancestors are also the common ancestor that led to most multicellular life on this planet. One of the genes that controls development of the wing in fruit flies has been conserved all the way to humans and is involved in skin cancer. I can give you lots of other examples. For biologists, one of the most beautiful things has been to see this conservation of function across all living things and how important that is for understanding our humanity."
ALAN BERNSTEIN, Ph.D., molecular geneticist, president of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research
ON HEALING THROUGH NARRATIVE: "I see people's stories from a mythic perspective. Everyone is on a journey. And everyone who has gone through a major event, a trauma or a crisis has really had a big adventure. When you begin to story your past experiences as adventures, you begin to realize all the discoveries you've made. You've survived an ordeal that has changed you and taught you something, and it's that precious understanding that you then return to the community in the form of a story."
MICHELLE TOCHER, author, How To Ride A Dragon: Breast Cancer Survivors Tell Their Stories
ON ADDICTION AND PASSION: "In AA you start to see patterns. People from five years of sobriety start getting depressed and ask, "Is this all I got sober for?' They long for the wildness and freedom of the addiction. They get suicidal, go back to the addiction or live mechanical, depressed lives. The energy behind the addiction is the exact same energy as spiritual hunger. I'm trying to help people reclaim the deep treasure that is in the hunger. In it is a nugget -- a wonderful, healthy part of who you are. With the squelching of that hunger comes the death of our passion."
THEANNA PATEROPOULOS, addiction recovery specialist, Portland, Maine
ON WHY WE NEED SCENT: "Our brain developed from our olfactory bulb. We think because we smell. What I know from my practice is that many people who have allergies and sensitivities can handle natural aromatic products. Removing synthetics makes sense, and (in using natural scents) we won't be denying the human body and human spirit the beauty of aroma, which is integral to our being."
SUZANNE CATTY, aromatherapist, author, Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy
ON USING CAUTION WHEN CHOOSING A CHANNELLER: "If the channeller brings a lot of ignorance, prejudice and psychological baggage, it will affect the message. Entities who communicate through the channeller aren't always motivated by higher purposes, but may be deceptive and malicious. The challenge is to establish relevant criteria to evaluate channelled information. What the channeller tells you should never be considered 100 per cent accurate, and if the channeller tells you it is, you've got the wrong one."
SALAKO KALFOU, director, Occult Research Bureau
ON PROTECTING YOUR HEARING: "It's generally accepted that as you age you lose your hearing. But researchers have looked at people in remote areas who live a quiet life, and even into their 80s they have significantly less hearing loss than (people) in more industrialized areas. The technology is available to make a lot of machines quieter, but they tend not to sell well because we equate loudness with power."
TOMMY CHOO, audiologist, Canadian Hearing Society
ON WASTING TIME: "One thing we can learn from children is to enjoy what we're doing in the moment. Play is where kids learn to live with time organically. A lot of our scheduling is about fear of the unexpected and the uncontrollable. But creative people know that it's the unstructured times that are the most valuable. Unexpected ideas, chance meetings -- we don't know what we're missing by not leaving space for these things."
KATHLEEN McDONNELL, author of Honey, We Lost The Kids: Rethinking Childhood In The Multimedia Age
ON ENHANCING SEXUAL PLEASURE: "If in our sexual function we're holding back, holding on, holding up or holding down and not breathing, then we're not having the sexual pleasure we're meant to have. That creates tension through the pelvis and affects the lower back. If you watch a baby, the pelvis goes back a little bit on the inhale and on the exhale comes forward a little bit. As we get older in this culture, we lose this."
AUDREY FULLERTON, bioenergetic analyst
ON GETTING PRIORITIES STRAIGHT: "Freud said something like, "If you want to live life, face death.' There are people who may have had miserable lives, but once they're faced with the reality that they're running out of time, I've seen them make good use of their time for the first time in their lives."
ED PAKES, MD, specialist in bereavement/grief counselling
ON SCREENING FOR BREAST CANCER: "Thermography is about 83 per cent accurate, mammography, about 84 per cent. The two together are 95 per cent accurate. Thermography is a great annual screening tool for women who don't suspect breast cancer or don't have a palpable lump. If there is a palpable lump, this test needs to be backed up with something else. The advantage of thermography is that it can show functional changes earlier than mammography."
SAT DHARAM KAUR, naturopath, author of The Healthy Breast Program And Workbook