Monthly Archives: October 2015

What Mary says…

After 50 years of constant study, research and perspiration, I am finally beginning to understand. ~ Mary Burmeister

27 bones, 127 ligaments, 34 muscles.

And is not the range of hand limitless?

Wind and seed showed it winnowing.

Light passes from surface to core and back again.

The timpani skin of a black hole reverberates each shape it contains.

Every form that’s passed sings.

All thus, in the simple touch, hearing.

A sum of events pummeling silence pregnant with tune:

time-sprout, catastrophe, triumph tears:

sunrise after sunrise, never the oak’s lit up the same, never’s the brew of wood and wind, fire and air, earthed just so, dancing.

Reach you out from the hide-bound sleep and touch.


~ Cynthia Broshi



Emerson’s Testimonial, Part 2

The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, Number 69, Summer 2010 contains an article written by Julianne Dow about her dog, Emerson, a Labrador. As with all issues of The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, you can obtain a copy at

Emerson’s Testimonial…and My Gratitude

One afternoon Emerson ran up the stairs two steps at a time, and jumped up on the bed for his nightly treatment with at least a 3 inch clearance. Hmmmmmmm!

Yesterday, we had twelve inches of snowfall. Emerson loves to play in the snow. Even more than that, Emerson loves to romp in the snow with his doggy buddies in the woods. We had not been to his dog-friendly park for six months. It was to be the ultimate test. To be off the leash, playing in the snow with the other dogs…would he be limping later?

I think you know where this is going… He played with gusto, “gazelle-ing” over logs and rollicking with newly found canine friends. I watched him carefully…

He was walking fine…no limping.

We returned to the same woods today for more of the same fun.

He is walking fine…no limping. Thank you Jin Shin Jyutsu for helping my best friend move through life with ease!

This is Emerson’s testimonial.

What did Mary say? (paraphrased) The only mistake you can make is to not use it (JSJ)!

Thank you to all my teachers (Jed, Anita, Sara, Iole, Ian, Jill, Susan, Lynne, Wayne, Don and Bobi) who taught, supported and empowered me to help my friend.

A very special thanks to Adele Leas, for her teaching, her frequent email suggestions and her guidance in my caring for Emerson, and my other animal friends…

Thank you, Mary, for all this possibility beyond my dreams.

And thank you to all my animal friends who teach em and remind me to Be and Listen…every time, over and over.

Julianne Dow is a Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner from Saugerties and Riverdale, NY. She has a practice with animal friends at the Catskill Animal Sanctuary. Horses, goats, rams, sheep, chickens, turkeys, pigs, and cows are relaxing in the “exhales, moaning and getting ‘slitty-eyed’ blissed-out expressions” in Upstate New York. (

Thank you, Julianne.

Thank you, Mary.

Thank you, David.

Gassho, Namaste, Blessings

Emerson’s Testimonial, Part 1

Yesterday I posted an article about Emerson written by his owner, Julianne Dow, and how she used Jin Shin Jyutsu Stomach flows to help him lose weight. In that article Julianne referred to a previous article which follows:

The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, Number 69, Summer 2010 contains an article written by Julianne Dow about her dog, Emerson, a Labrador. As with all issues of The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, you can obtain a copy at

Emerson’s Testimonial…and My Gratitude

Emerson is my five-year old ninety-pound yellow Labrador, and my companion. This is his Jin Shin Jyutsu (JSJ) journey.

When Emerson was two he developed a fatty growth about the size of a ping-pong ball on the right side of his neck. I thought little of it since Labradors are notorious for “fatty growths”, and they are usually benign. Although, I did think it was unusual that he had developed one so early in life…

One day last summer, as I was putting on his leash, I noticed that the growth was bigger and harder…much different than it had been. It had grown to be the size of a small tangerine. I brought him to the veterinarian to get him checked out. She said it was “concerning”, and to measure it daily. I immediately emailed Adele Leas, a Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner (author of Jin Shin Jyutsu For Your Animal Companion) for support, and started a variety of Jin Shin Jyutsu treatments on him…I finally settled on the “human” Liver Flow since the accumulation was on the right side of the neck, and he also had a knee project. He received daily treatments at bedtime, relaxing with exhales, moans and the “slitty eye” blissed-out expression on his face. After one week, I noticed the accumulation was “more squishy”. It began to disintegrate, and disappeared after three weeks of treatments. Now THAT was validation that JSJ works!

Earlier that year, Emerson also developed a bone spur accumulation on the right knee at the inside joint (R1). He was limping very badly, walking using only three legs, barely making it up the stairs at night. We sadly needed to give up our running in the woods and catching the “chucky ball” for walks on the leash around the neighborhood. I gave him lots of Hi 1 and Lo 8, and then I put my hand on his 8 and my other hand just below the 8, gradually moving down his leg to grasp the 5 and 16. (See page 34 in Adele’s book) On page 38, Adele works with 3 and 15. I give Emerson 3 and 15 and then 3 and 25, just as I do on myself. While receiving one of my own Jin Shin Jyutsu sessions, Jed Schwartz recommended the Kidney Flow for bone projects. I started giving Emerson the “human” Kidney Flow, R1/opp. 26, and Reversing and Increasing of 4th Depth. Fairly recently, I noticed that the hard bone accumulation seemed to be getting smaller. Or was that just my imagination and wishful thinking?

To be continued…

Jin Shin Jyutsu For Your Animal Companion, by Adele Leas, is also available at

I’m thinking about hope…


“No matter how painful our early experiences were, our Essence cannot be harmed. Our Essence is waiting for the opportunity to reveal itself. In a very true sense, we are waiting for the opportunity to become ourselves. Our spirit is yearning to break free, to express itself …”

“And yet, ironically, we always fear and resist opening to that which is most real in us. When we trust in the process and give ourselves over to it, however, our true nature comes forth. The result is real integrity, love, authenticity, creativity, understanding, guidance, joy, power, and serenity-all of the qualities we are forever demanding that personality supply.”
— Don Richard Riso and Russ Hudson

Copyright © 1999 – 2015 Higher Awareness Inc.
Edmonton, AB, Canada T5K 0K6

Stomach Flow for Weight Loss

The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, Number 70, Fall 2010 contains an article written by Julianne Dow about her dog, Emerson, a Labrador. As with all issues of The Main Central Jin Shin Jyutsu Newsletter, you can obtain a copy at

Another Emerson Testimonial: The Stomach Flow for Weight Loss!

In the previous issue of The Main Central (Issue #69), I wrote an article about Emerson’s miraculous tumor disappearance and bone spur disintegration after receiving Jin Shin Jyutsu sessions. At our yearly veterinarian check-up, Emerson weighed in at over 90 pounds.

Now he has a new project…his weight.

Our veterinarian said he needs to lose twenty pounds, so we put him on a diet and exercise regimen. The veterinarian predicted that he would lose a pound per week, and we scheduled another “weigh-in” in two weeks.

We started with the prescribed weight loss protocol right away (diet food and exercise), as well as a daily Stomach Flow. I could not remember if it was the left or right flow for losing weight, but I DID remember that Jed Schwartz, a Jin Shin Jyutsu teacher/practitioner, said: “It matters little which side you do for losing weight because it is all about harmonizing the appetite, whichever side you do.” Thank you, JSJ, for being so flexible…

I decided to give Emerson a Left Stomach Flow as it goes through the right lower leg (R Hi 1/R Lo 8/3rd toe), which I thought would continue to support his releasing of what was left of the old bone spur. He received the same flow for nine days straight, and then I went on a yoga retreat. When I returned, he seemed to look thinner, or was it my imagination?

The two-week “weigh-in” appointment day had arrived. Emerson and I went into the veterinarian’s office with the assistant, and Emerson gingerly stepped up on the scale. Our vet entered the room and asked, “So how much did he lose?” Her assistant exclaimed, “6.6 pounds!” My vet’s jaw dropped in amazement, and she said, “I can’t believe it!”

As we were leaving, the receptionist asked, “How did Emerson lose all that weight so fast? I have been trying to get my dachshund to lose two pounds with diet and exercise, and it is not working!” I think you know how i replied. “It must be the Jin Shin Jyutsu sessions!”

Jed is right. Jin Shin Jyutsu is all about harmonizing what needs to be harmonized. Thank you, JSJ.

(As of the date of the article, Emerson had lost 12 pounds in 3 weeks and had another 8.3 pounds to go for his optimal weight.)

Thank you, Julianne.

Thank you, Mary.

Thank you, David.

Gassho, Namaste, Blessings

I’m thinking about treasure…

Discover the treasures inside

“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.”
— Denis Waitley

Peace, joy, health and well-being can only be found inside us. They exist within us now, as our essential nature, waiting for us to call on them.

No matter what our income, body shape or situation in life, each of us holds the power to take the inner journey to find our treasures within. This is what makes the inner journey so exciting!

“When we cannot find contentment in ourselves, it is useless to seek it elsewhere.”
— Francois De La Rochefoucauld


Copyright © 1999 – 2015 Higher Awareness Inc.
Edmonton, AB, Canada T5K 0K6


I’m thinking about Brain Pickings…

Here is my gift to you, dear readers; follow Brain Pickings, it can open up the universe to you:

9 Learnings from 9 Years of Brain Pickings

On October 23, 2006, Brain Pickings was born as an email to my seven colleagues at one of the four jobs I held while paying my way through college. Over the years that followed, the short weekly email became a tiny website updated every Friday, which became a tiny daily publication, which slowly grew, until this homegrown labor of love somehow ended up in the Library of Congress digital archive of “materials of historical importance” and the seven original recipients somehow became several million readers. How and why this happened continues to mystify and humble me as I go on doing what I have always done: reading, thinking, and writing about enduring ideas that glean some semblance of insight – however small, however esoteric – into what it means to live a meaningful life.

In October of 2013, as Brain Pickings turned seven, I marked the occasion by looking back on the seven most important things I learned from the thousands of hours spent reading, writing, and living during those first seven years. (Seven is an excellent numeral – a prime, a calendric unit, the perfect number of dwarfs.) I shared those reflections not as any sort of universal advice on how a life is to be lived, but as centering truths that have emerged and recurred in the course of how this life has been lived; insights that might, just maybe, prove useful or assuring for others. (Kindred spirits have since adapted these learnings into a poster and a short film.)

As Brain Pickings turns nine, I continue to stand by these seven reflections, but the time has come to add two more. (Nine is also an excellent numeral – an exponential factorial, the number of Muses in Greek mythology, my favorite chapter in Alice in Wonderland.) Here are the original seven, as they appeared in 2013:

  1. Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind. Cultivate that capacity for “negative capability.” We live in a culture where one of the greatest social disgraces is not having an opinion, so we often form our “opinions” based on superficial impressions or the borrowed ideas of others, without investing the time and thought that cultivating true conviction necessitates. We then go around asserting these donned opinions and clinging to them as anchors to our own reality. It’s enormously disorienting to simply say, “I don’t know.” But it’s infinitely more rewarding to understand than to be right – even if that means changing your mind about a topic, an ideology, or, above all, yourself.
  2. Do nothing for prestige or status or money or approval alone. As Paul Graham observed, “prestige is like a powerful magnet that warps even your beliefs about what you enjoy. It causes you to work not on what you like, but what you’d like to like.” Those extrinsic motivators are fine and can feel life-affirming in the moment, but they ultimately don’t make it thrilling to get up in the morning and gratifying to go to sleep at night – and, in fact, they can often distract and detract from the things that do offer those deeper rewards.
  3. Be generous. Be generous with your time and your resources and with giving credit and, especially, with your words. It’s so much easier to be a critic than a celebrator. Always remember there is a human being on the other end of every exchange and behind every cultural artifact being critiqued. To understand and be understood, those are among life’s greatest gifts, and every interaction is an opportunity to exchange them.
  4. Build pockets of stillness into your life. Meditate. Go for walks. Ride your bike going nowhere in particular. There is a creative purpose to daydreaming, even to boredom. The best ideas come to us when we stop actively trying to coax the muse into manifesting and let the fragments of experience float around our unconscious mind in order to click into new combinations. Without this essential stage of unconscious processing, the entire flow of the creative process is broken.

Most importantly, sleep. Besides being the greatest creative aphrodisiac, sleep also affects our every waking moment, dictates our social rhythm, and even mediates our negative moods. Be as religious and disciplined about your sleep as you are about your work. We tend to wear our ability to get by on little sleep as some sort of badge of honor that validates our work ethic. But what it really is is a profound failure of self-respect and of priorities. What could possibly be more important than your health and your sanity, from which all else springs?

  1. When people tell you who they are, Maya Angelou famously advised, believe them. Just as importantly, however, when people try to tell you who you are, don’t believe them. You are the only custodian of your own integrity, and the assumptions made by those that misunderstand who you are and what you stand for reveal a great deal about them and absolutely nothing about you.
  2. Presence is far more intricate and rewarding an art than productivity. Ours is a culture that measures our worth as human beings by our efficiency, our earnings, our ability to perform this or that. The cult of productivity has its place, but worshipping at its altar daily robs us of the very capacity for joy and wonder that makes life worth living – for, as Annie Dillard memorably put it, “how we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”
  3. “Expect anything worthwhile to take a long time.” This is borrowed from the wise and wonderful Debbie Millman, for it’s hard to better capture something so fundamental yet so impatiently overlooked in our culture of immediacy. The myth of the overnight success is just that – a myth – as well as a reminder that our present definition of success needs serious retuning. As I’ve reflected elsewhere, the flower doesn’t go from bud to blossom in one spritely burst and yet, as a culture, we’re disinterested in the tedium of the blossoming. But that’s where all the real magic unfolds in the making of one’s character and destiny.

And here are the two new additions:

  1. Seek out what magnifies your spirit. Patti Smith, in discussing William Blake and her creative influences, talks about writers and artists who magnified her spirit – it’s a beautiful phrase and a beautiful notion. Who are the people, ideas, and books that magnify your spirit? Find them, hold on to them, and visit them often. Use them not only as a remedy once spiritual malaise has already infected your vitality but as a vaccine administered while you are healthy to protect your radiance.
  2. Don’t be afraid to be an idealist. There is much to be said for our responsibility as creators and consumers of that constant dynamic interaction we call culture – which side of the fault line between catering and creating are we to stand on? The commercial enterprise is conditioning us to believe that the road to success is paved with catering to existing demands – give the people cat GIFs, the narrative goes, because cat GIFs are what the people want. But E.B. White, one of our last great idealists, was eternally right when he asserted half a century ago that the role of the writer is “to lift people up, not lower them down” – a role each of us is called to with increasing urgency, whatever cog we may be in the machinery of society. Supply creates its own demand. Only by consistently supplying it can we hope to increase the demand for the substantive over the superficial – in our individual lives and in the collective dream called culture.

In the spirit of reflection, here are my current nine favorite pieces from the first nine years of Brain Pickings:

Musicked Down the Mountain: How Oliver Sacks Saved His Own Life by Literature and Song

Ursula K. Le Guin on Being a Man

Love After Love: Derek Walcott’s Poetic Ode to Being at Home in Ourselves

The Life of the Mind: Hannah Arendt on Thinking vs. Knowing and the Crucial Difference Between Truth and Meaning

The Magic of Moss and What It Teaches Us About the Art of Attentiveness to Life at All Scales

Why We Fall in Love: The Paradoxical Psychology of Romance and Why Frustration Is Necessary for Satisfaction

Virginia Woolf on Why the Best Mind Is the Androgynous Mind

A Rap on Race: Margaret Mead and James Baldwin’s Rare Conversation on Forgiveness and the Difference Between Guilt and Responsibility

The Shortness of Life: Seneca on Busyness and the Art of Living Wide Rather Than Living Long

For more on the origin story, the ethos, and the spirit that keeps it all going, here is my On Being conversation with the wonderful and generous Krista Tippett, for which I remain enormously grateful: