THE 4 UNIVERSAL PRINCIPLES OF HEALTH
1: The Principle of Original Nature
The Human Delusion
Five scientists met to discuss the state of the world. The world was in an unparalleled period of peace, prosperity, and wellbeing at this particular time. So they decided it was time humans began to take over control of the world from God. So they called God to a meeting and anxiously introduced their plans. They were nervous as they didn’t know how God would respond. And as they presented their plans To God, he listened attentively. Finally, when they were done, there was a long pause. God’s closed his eyes and went deep into reflection. After a few moments, he opened his eyes and said, “Okay, I will begin to transfer ownership of Earth over to you. But first, you’ll have to pass a test. I’d like you to gather all the smartest men and women on Earth and build a large building that reaches into the sky, larger than anything ever built.
And so the scientist left the meeting and gathered a group of the best Architects, builders, and engineers on Earth, and after a few years, they completed the building. It was so large that when you stood on the top floor, you could see the curvature of the Earth. So they called God back, and after a brief ceremony, they revealed the building to him and prepared themselves to take ownership over the Earth.
God took one look at the building and said, “Beautiful marvelous, fantastic; however, there was a slight miscommunication. You see, to build this building, you used my soil, stone, metal, water, and fire. You’ll need to start again and invent your own materials so that you don’t have to borrow mine. Give it another try, and come back to me.”
Ants are extraordinarily intelligent creatures. They rub two parts of their abdomen together to secrete pheromones that act as a sophisticated communication system. Different ants use these scraping noises to communicate to their colony mates to get organized, attract mates, and call for help.
Intelligent as they are, it’s rather apparent to humans that there’s intelligence beyond ant life. Of course there is! We know this because we tower above them. The existence of this intelligence may not be apparent to ants, however.
Regardless of your religious or spiritual affiliation, it might be equally obvious to humans that intelligence exists beyond human intelligence, evident by the fact that we did not create our universe. We didn’t even invent bodies; we just showed up in them! That means we must study the existing workings of nature to understand health.
The principle of original nature states that nature’s original design is the highest form of health. It also states that our role is to reveal the inherent nature of ourselves rather than create a super-human version.
Conventional medicine breaks down the body into smaller and smaller parts with the promise that we will one day unlock its master keys. This began when Zacharias Janssen invented the microscope in 17th century Europe, which stimulated an obsessive fascination with the microscopic world. With bold chemical and biological experiments, scientists became obsessed with reducing, magnifying, and reconstructing our natural world.
A prevailing sentiment amongst scientists emerged that we can manipulate, recreate, and even outperform the natural-functioning world. There were even multiple points in history in the 1900s where nutritional research ceased operation as the greater scientific community believed we had discovered everything there is to know about the body! We fell in love with the microscopic world, an obsessive, intimate love affair, and like any grand love affair, it blinded us from the larger world around us.
However, there’s a massive difference between looking at life through a microscope, giving its component names, and inventing the forces that create life. There’s a term for this form of human delusion- Anthropocentrism. We have become deluded in the success of our invention of antibiotics and discovery of DNA, assuming man’s intelligence can satiate all the body’s needs. Caught in this trap of delusion, we rewrite genetic code, perform highly dangerous and intervening surgeries, and invent multi-vitamins, all with disastrous consequences to the long-term collective health and wellbeing of life on Earth.
If you need additional validation of this idea, notice for a moment that you have no idea what you will be doing even 30 seconds from now. You might stand up and get a glass of water; you might decide to scroll to Facebook; who knows? This more profound nature, the nature that’s unfolding within us, is what we aim to study and understand.
Human technology is still pretty new to the scene in the grand scheme, a blip on the evolutionary radar, hardly long enough to deem it a statistically significant experiment. It has helped us make many advanced, even some in health. However, it’s also made us deeply reliant, lazy, and riddled with chronic disease. In the pursuit of creating genuine, sustainable, vital, and radiant health, technology has only been a deterrent.
The Intelligence Of Nature
Once, a man in India asked the Buddha to instruct him in meditation. He was practicing diligently, meditating for hours a day, yet, he wasn’t getting any happier or more calm. “Buddha, how do I become like you?” The Buddha replied:
“Meditating is not about trying to be like me or anyone else. It’s learning to clear away garbage covering a golden statue, to reveal its inner radiance.”
This simple story beautifully illuminates the principle of Original Nature. Becoming healthy is not about adding anything. It’s about revealing what’s already there by removing the unnatural agents masking our radiant, inner nature. It’s about learning how nature works within you.
Initially, this may sound like a subtle distinction — revealing nature’s original version of health rather than generating it. However, it’s far from subtle. It gives us a radically different roadmap of what health is and shakes our cornerstones of health right to the core.
It’s the difference between pumping ourselves with expensive supplements and trusting a natural diet will do the work. It’s the difference between eating processed, fortified “superfoods” and eating foods directly from the Earth. It’s the difference between killing ourselves in the gym pursuing a perfect body and trusting gentle and nourishing physical activities.
Health is not about becoming a super-human version of ourselves. It’s about getting back to the simplicity of the way human life evolved over hundreds of billions of years.
What Is Our Original Nature?
A good way to begin this process is by asking ourselves how we would have lived thousands of years ago. After all, our DNA has been shaped over hundreds of millions of years by the forces of nature. Only in the last couple hundred years has technology allowed us to deviate from nature’s design.
For example, consider the long list of things that would not have been possible for us thousands of years ago:
- Working behind a desk for 8 hours a day.
- Eating dried, salted potato chips from a bag.
- Drinking demineralized water from a plastic water bottle.
- Staying up until 2 am watching Netflix.
- Using deodorants and body care products with heavy metals and chemicals.
- Jogging next to a highway with huge amounts of toxic pollutants in the air.
- Eating “superfood” health bars with ingredients from exotic places.
- Eating fruits and vegetables that are not from our local area, shipped from thousands of miles away, grown in different seasons.
- Taking Advil or Tylenol when we have mild symptoms.
- Eat meat from animals given antibiotics and fed diets they were never intended to eat.
- Eat genetically modified produce from soil with severely depleted nutrients (soil today has only 40% of the nutrients it had just 100 years ago).
This list is just the tip of the iceberg. We do thousands of things daily that our ancestors would never have done. These are technology-centric behaviors that take us away from nature’s original blueprint.
On the contrary, imagine the types of things we’d be forced to do, living thousands of years ago
- Wake up, and go to sleep with the sun, as we didn’t have electricity or a source of light to keep us awake.
- Eat highly fresh, locally sourced food picked that day as our only source of food.
- Spend most of our days active and on our feet in order to work for our basic needs like food and water.
- Breathe air that is completely free from pollution.
- Drink water from natural sources like springs, which are full of naturally occurring minerals.
- Commune regularly with our neighbors, as our social bonds were essential to our survival.
- Use natural medicines from the Earth and learn about the healing properties of plants.
Many people today consider raw nuts and seeds a superfood. True, they are packed with lots of nutrients. However, you may notice that after eating large amounts of nut butter, you feel tired or lethargic. How could something healthy for us reduce our energy? There are countless interesting examples of this.
Think about how we would have been able to consume nuts if we were living thousands of years ago. We wouldn’t be eating them from a jar; we’d be foraging them from trees. Yes, almonds and walnuts have nutritional value. However, if you were foraging an almond or walnut tree, you’d be forced to climb the tree and break each nut individually from a hard shell. It wouldn’t be possible to eat an entire handful in 30 seconds. It might take you 30-40 minutes to eat that many. And nuts have lots of Tannins and Phytic Acid, which can be hard for the stomach to break down. The question is not “are nuts healthy?” The right question is “how would we have consumed this in our original setting?”
Whenever you’re feeling something off in your body, ask yourself, “Is this something in nature’s design? Would I have been doing this 1000 years ago? What human processes contributed to this that might be confusing my physiology?” This simple question can revolutionize many aspects of your health, including many of the most contentious health issues like eating meat, gluten/grains, legumes, and caffeine. We’ll cover all these more in Section 5: Food.
Advances in hygiene, antibiotics and indoor living have made life healthier. However, our indulgence in processed foods and quick solutions is why chronic diseases have skyrocketed in the last 100 years. As our technology increases in pursuit of an “optimized” life, our world continues to move further and further away from its original, natural state. Meanwhile, every other species around us continues to live in impressive vitality.
As we continue to poison our food, air, and water, we experience more stress and move out of rhythm with the Earth. Again, we don’t need to overthink the causes. We need to get back to a more natural lifestyle.
- Make a list of all the things you do in your day that wouldn’t be possible for you to do 100 years ago.
- What portion of the food you eat had to go through some form of factory in order for you to eat? What portion of your food could you eat directly from the vine or farm, without any processing
- What adjustments could you make to the following areas to live more naturally?
- Daily routines
- Social Life
- What products do you use that have unnatural chemicals in them?
Revealing Your Individuality
The principle of Original Nature also teaches us that every individual life on Earth is unique and requires unique care. Corporatized medicine treats large portions of the population uniformly and looks for mass distributed solutions. Health businesses would never survive if they had to make a different product for every individual. However, as we’ll learn in section 2 about the Gut-Biome, although we share 99.9% of our DNA with every human on Earth, 90% of our gut biome is unique! This means how we process food will be as unique as our fingerprint.
On the other hand, natural medicine is about embracing your radical individuality as one of the essential keys to your health and happiness. As an individual with a unique combination of physical, mental, and emotional qualities, the way you relate to the world is specific to you. You’ll undoubtedly find commonalities with others, but your particular “formula” for health and happiness will differ from anyone else on Earth.
Our genetic lineage is a significant (and often underrated) factor determining our individual needs. For example, lactose intolerance in adulthood is most prevalent in people of East Asian descent, with 70 to 100 percent of people affected in these communities (vs. 60% in the general population). Lactose intolerance is highest in populations who don’t have a long history of consuming milk products. For example, only about 5 percent of people of Northern European descent are lactose intolerant.
Mapping out your lineage is an extremely important and nuanced subject. It will be something we will guide you in the duration of your time with us.
Summary of Original Nature:
- The way to true health is by following the simplicity of nature’s design.
- Train yourself to think back to how we would have lived thousands of years ago as your true north when making health choices.
- Study and trust in your individuality, and seek solutions that are individualized to you.