The latest ‘aha’ moment in neuroscience is that the brain changes constantly. It’s not static and it doesn’t automatically decline as we age. We change our brain either proactively by cultivating thoughts which lead to good mental health, or it is affected by an environment that leads to poor mental health. If we live ‘correctly’ we automatically generate an environment that will create a healthy brain. So, the new frontier in neuroscience is finding this ‘healthy thoughts’ environment.
This is not a new frontier in Chinese medicine, it’s ancient history. Living correctly is so fundamental to health, it is everything. And they mapped it all out from the mechanics of how your organs shape your mind and how that drives the brain, to the role of chi in connecting us to everything. I’m not sure the neuroscientists will ever get there because you need a framework so holistic it can encompass everything from our cells to the cosmos.
“The mind is the enemy of Dao” is all about mental health, and controlling the mind though the body and lifestyle. So here’s the overview: mental health is not your brain, it’s your mind. And what shapes your mind? Your organs (chi organs). And what shapes those? Everything you do in a day! This ‘environment’ those neuroscientists are searching for is internal, it’s our organs. And we can control these.
For example, if we wake up to scroll news and social media we automatically contribute to poor mental health. This is because we are creating an unhealthy environment for our organs, especially our large intestine which is madly trying to clear toxins out, while we’re busy adding more. From then on every two hours we are either building a great environment or blowing one up. Because every two hours we have a chance to boost the health of a different organ. So I say, the secret to good mental health is forget the brain, and focus on your organs. And do this with lifestyle.
- If your Spleen is looked after your thoughts around boundaries are healthy and you have great focus
- If your Heart is looked after your thoughts around self perception and ideas are healthy, and you’ll naturally want to share the love
- If your Liver is looked after your thoughts around your direction and goals are healthy, and you’ll do stuff
- If your Kidney is looked after your thoughts on sex and willpower are healthy and your memory is sharp as a tack
- If your lungs are looked after your thoughts on other people are positive and your actions are honourable
These connect to the Five Elements
Focus – Spleen – Earth
Memory – Kidney – Water
Motion – Liver – Wood
Perception- Heart – Fire
Reaction – Lung – Metal
I’ve got an entire book on exactly what to do every two hours to build up physical, mental, emotional and even spiritual health. Check out Chi Health Cycle.