Saturday, November 6, 2010

Thoughts and prayers

The night began with the forgone conclusion that there is nothing on television.

By the end of the night I had watched fascinating programs on American politics, the marsh lands of Iraq, Navajo rug making, opera, sports...all on PBS of course, and all slightly inspiring me in some weird way in relation to what I do day in and day out - which is practice a medicine which is of a culture in all honesty I barely know, that involves sticking needles in people, and using plants as medicine. What a life, huh?

The most profound statement of the night came from a Navajo rug maker. She was speaking of the tools used in making wool and rugs, and said, "They all have life giving names." She contrasted that against making rugs by machines, which she pointed out don't have thoughts and prayers.

It was a theme reiterated throughout the evening in different ways, whatever the culture, or the medium.

Made me think about how much the Chinese and the Native Americans are alike in their respect of their ancestors, and the relevance of this notion of "life giving names" to Chinese medicine and how we imbue meaning...