Blog: 2013

Autumn Light

Mid summer, enjoying our amazing run of sunny days in the Northwest, my fifty four year old body started to take some hits. During my spectacular but grueling 19 mile hike through the Enchantments, I smashed both my big toe nails in the slightly too large boots I wore. They are both still black 6 weeks later. A few weeks later, I smashed my thumb in a car door – another black nail. A fall while playing Frisbee with my daughter on my birthday Monday – bruised ribs and a jammed middle finger. Then there’s the increasingly achey back which is one of the main complaints I see at CommuniChi on an...

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Fukushima – Nuclear Genie Out of the Bottle

“The splitting of the atom changed everything, save man’s mode of thinking. Thus we drift towards unparalleled catastrophe” — Einstein August 15, 2013. Senator Patty Murray’s office in Seattle, Washington. My name is Jordan Van Voast. I am a resident of Seattle, father, and a licensed practitioner of acupuncture for the past 15 years. With my friends and fellow citizens, I’m here today to express my alarm over the recent revelations at the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan and request the Senator to work with colleagues, especially those from West Coast states, to initiate Senate...

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“Smart” Meters Planned for Seattle – What Effects on the Health of our World?

You care about your health and you probably spend a fair amount of time on a computer, a mobile phone, and possibly a wireless network in your home or work. So a smart meter is simply one more device in the age of wireless devices – right? Don’t know what a smart meter is? Okay, let’s start there: A smart meter is an electrical meter that records consumption of electric energy and communicates that information back to the utility (usually wirelessly) for energy monitoring and billing purposes. Some of the major environmental groups consider smart meters as an important new technology to...

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Nameless being in a Nameless Land

“When a person knows the solitude of silence and feels the joy of quietness, he is then free from fear and feels the joy of the dharma.” Buddha. A confession here – I carried no map and no headlamp, though I did have plenty of food and enough warm clothes to stay warm if for some reason, I had to huddle for an evening by the trail. There’s a certain freedom – not without obvious risks of course – in being a nameless being in a nameless land. The mind easily enters a state of profound clarity and awareness of interconnectedness with all life, unencumbered by conceptual dust....

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Chinese Poetry

Since men still make war Let me lie down and sing with the grasses  Kobayashi Issa (1763–1827)  This week was emotionally painful and stressful for many people, beginning as it did with the acquittal of George Zimmerman by an all white jury in the shooting of Trayvon Martin – a young black male armed with a pack of Skittles and perhaps fragments of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream of a world where people are not judged by the color of their skin. That dream was cut brutally short, but rather than allow our anger to target a perpetrator acting out an institutionalized role, I invite you...

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Acupuncture Midwifery – Birthing a New World

I often write in my blog about mindfulness and how acupuncture can enhance that and after reading two recent articles “The Morality of Meditation” (NYTimes), and “Beyond McMindfulness” (HuffPost), a deeper insight into what we at CommuniChi are actually doing here arose: Seven years ago, I was making a very comfortable living as an acupuncturist – charging people $100 for a new appointment and $65 for a followup.  The only catch was most people in America can’t afford those prices for very long. Insurance coverage for acupuncture limits access to those...

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