Health, the Greatest Teacher

My teacher, Dr. Christopher, was in and out of a wheelchair for most of his early life. His illnesses included serious spleen and liver disease and a crumbling spine resulting from chronic arthritis and rheumatism, all of which became progressively worse. When he was thirty-fi ve years old it was predicted that he would not reach his fortieth birthday, and it was probably this close brush with death that became a turning point in his life. He rediscovered herbs, along with food and water treatments, and fi nally examined his long-buried negative feelings about being abandoned by his original parents. Most of all he rebelled against the fate assigned to him, married, had many children, and went on to live to the age of eightytwo. He established fl ourishing clinics and taught herbalism, while 7 The Complete Home Guide to Herbs, Natural Healing, and Nutrition continually learning himself from Native American healers and inspiring many others. He proved that a man who was once virtually a skeleton in a wheelchair could dramatically change the quality and direction of his life, transforming it through positive thought and action combined with natural healing methods. Read his book A Herbal Legacy of Courage for his full and spellbinding life story, which was often beset with legal problems, fi nes, and jail sentences, as well as his main text, The School of Natural Healing.
Another teacher, Dr. Schulze, watched both his parents die of heart attacks, leaving him orphaned by the age of fourteen. By the time he was sixteen, he had himself begun to experience chest pains, which became increasingly painful and consistent. His consultant diagnosed angina and, as time went by, open-heart surgery was recommended as his only hope, his combined parental gene package having now bequeathed him a lifethreatening situation. Yet Schulze felt there were many other methods and ways to treat his problem. At fi rst he talked to a monk who suggested that he should not consume any meat or alcohol, and he felt a little better for these dietary restrictions. He went on to exclude fats (especially from cakes and pastries), fi sh, and sugar. Someone else suggested that he should take plenty of exercise and, all in all, he began to feel a great deal better. Nevertheless, at the age of nineteen, he was scheduled for major openheart surgery. On discovering, however, that a friend of a similar age had died on the operating table undergoing the same surgery just the day before, he literally fl ed the hospital and continued his self-healing quest. To this day he remains healthy and more alive than almost anyone I know, having used no drugs or surgery at any point in his life. His successful clinic, treating many thousands of terminally sick (and other) patients, was closed down by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1994, but his work lives on ever stronger through his books, seminars, videos, teaching tapes, and his herbal medicine company, the American Botanical Pharmacy, in California.
My major personal experience of ill health started at the age of eighteen. It took the form of intense knifelike pains on my right side, sometimes lasting hours or days. I saw twelve bowel consultants, yet gained no insight or advice. When I was nineteen years old, my stomach was cut open because it was suspected that I might have cancer. The doctors found nothing, but removed my healthy appendix. I couldn’t walk properly for months, and
I couldn’t wear a bikini! But after a while, I discovered yoga and the effects of its general balancing and internal massage, which started healing my problems. Eventually, I discovered healing foods, cleanses, herbs, and colon health care, through Dr. Christopher and other teachers.