Whole Life Magazine

August/September 2015

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art & soul BOOKS Point of Origin Gobekli Tepe and the Spiritual Matrix for the World's Cosmologies By Laird Scranton F ifth in a series, this small volume consolidates and infers connections among cosmological concepts presented in the fi rst four, regarding language, symbols, science and architecture of Dogon, Egyptian, pre-Vedic, Buddhist and Tibetan esoteric traditions. Scranton loftily aspires to fashion a common core teaching therefrom, and posits not only a central point of diffusion at Gobekli Tepe, but also a non-human source for concepts so profound that our contemporary particle, astrophysics and string theory only now begin to catch up. Not so much about the recently discovered, possibly 11,000 year old Neolithic site in southeast Turkey, Gobekli Tepe, the text focuses primarily on a very loose linguistic synthesis of cosmological concepts from these ancient, and in the case of the Dogon, contemporary, cultures. In fact, the author never gets around to giving much of a description of the site, currently under excavation, until the fi nal chapter. A monumental megalithic structure that predates both requisite tools and technologies thought to exist at the time, the site was carefully fi lled in approximately 1000 years later, archaeologists think, preserving and concealing it until its recent discovery—deepening the shroud of mystery that surrounds it. Rife with sophisticated symbolic animal carvings, the structures were apparently not used for habitation or ceremony, but possibly as a center of instruction—a kind of university from whence a profound and consistent cosmology emerged. Scranton openly admits early on that he "may sometimes be required to place more emphasis on the powers of inference or of informed supposition" in this volume. And so he does. He specializes in the Dogon culture, and otherwise relies heavily on matters linguistic, especially the ancient Egyptian writings of Wallis-Budge, to propose striking and often far-fetched links among these diverse cultures and the carvings at Gobekli Tepe. His familiarity with physics and astronomy appears weak and his information often contradictory, casting doubt on the rest of it. The overall thesis, however, seems worthy of much greater exploration, hopefully to resolve such questions as What is this place? What was its function? Why was it concealed? which remain thus far the subjects of wild speculation. (Inner Traditions) —Mac Graham By Michelle S. Fondin A yurveda in Sanskrit means the "science of life," which author Michelle S. Fondin asserts is the most complete medical system on the planet. It includes observation; diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease; detoxifi cation and rejuvenation of the body; surgery; and herbal medicine. "Ayurveda is called a consciousness-based system of medi- cine because the practitioner seeks to understand the patient fully before recommending or administering treatment, and be- cause the practitioner works not only on observation, but also on intuition," Fondin writes. Her passion for ayurveda comes from a personal success story. At age 28 and mother of two, she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. In addition to undergoing traditional treatments, she began practicing an ayurvedic life- style and experienced tangible results. While ayurveda may initially seem a daunting study, Fondin's approach is very accessible. She begins with a simple, yet com- prehensive questionnaire to determine one's dosha, or mind- body type. Readers are also encouraged to explore their dharma, or life's purpose, which Fondin believes offers readers the most important takeaway she can offer: "You have a purpose in this life." Further chapters illuminate ayurvedic approaches to the body, spirit, emotions, relation- ship, occupation, fi nances and environmental health, as well as healing of one's past. Contained within each chapter are practical exercises to immediately refl ect upon and practice the teachings shared, as well as a Checklist for Health. Fondin imparts substantial knowledge in such distilled and meaningful ways that practicing ayurveda becomes more sen- sible—and easier to navigate—than ever. (New World Library) —Judy Tsuei The Wheel of Healing with Ayurveda An Easy Guide to a Healthy Lifestyle 32 wholelifetimes.com

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