A little bit of history – forty years ago, a lot of the movements now which are in full flow were really only just beginning. Environmentalism, forty years ago in 1980, it was hardly know. I remember visiting Friends of the Earth office in London. It was a tiny room. These were very alternative, the whole environmental movement was not heard of. Now everybody is talking about the environment. We are facing climate change and so the whole world has woken up to the fact that we are part of nature. We are not living separate to nature and in control of nature. We are beginning to realise how much we need to start respecting nature and working with nature rather than just using it or working against it.
With health, the orthodox model of health really predominated at that time. There was only a small number of complimentary medicines around at this time, maybe only a dozen or so. It was only just beginning and used by a great minority of people. It is so interesting in history to see how the pioneers, when something new is beginning they get vilified, criticised, made wrong. Then maybe 20, 30, 40, 50 years later everybody is saying ‘yes we full agree on these principles’ and it’s very frustrating when we are trying to creating change. It can be very hard work as a pioneer. Complimentary medicines and practices like yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong have multiplied enormously both in terms of the numbers of them and the number of people using complimentary medicine. The figures are something like 35-45% of the population are using complimentary medicine now, really far beyond recognition it is given by governments and orthodox medical establishments, although that is really beginning to change now.
The importance of food. In 1980 it was considered by Western science and society that food really had nothing to do with health, If you had any health problem you could just eat whatever you like. It was thought that food had no impact on health. Then throughout the 1980s there was a lot of research which began to show that a high fat diet heart was contributing a lot to heart disease. Then in the 1990s into 2000s cancer, started being studied more by Western medicine, partly because of the greatly increasing number of cases, it started being studied more. A great contributing factor is our daily food and our lifestyle. Cancer is not an inevitable disease, it is primarily a lifestyle disease as is heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Gradually our the connection between what we eat, our emotional health, our relationship with the environment and lifestyle are becoming more widely recognised as the primary causes of disease. However, there is still a long long way to go.
There is still lots of work to today to change collective consciousness. Some of those areas are: