Are You an Activist for Your Own Life?

In 1955 my brother and I came down with strep throat. Untreated, it turned into rheumatic heart disease for me and nephritis for my brother. The doctors said there was nothing they could do for either of us other than to give me antibiotics for the rest of my life to prevent infection in my heart. My brother was expected to die by the age of 12.

This just didn’t set well with me, I was 6 years old when I realized that the doctors didn’t know everything. I refused to accept their grim prognosis and thanks to the intervention of my grandmother, an herbalist, did not take the antibiotics.

My grandmother gently campaigned for nutritional and herbal therapy, but my family was hooked on the Standard American Diet (Cocoa Puffs, Campbell’s soup, lots of meat and some over-cooked veggies on the side, etc.). So even though a few herbs were introduced, they were offset by the foods we ate.

By the time I was 12 I knew that my life depended on gaining knowledge about healing. My grandmother had a library of books on natural health care so I began a daily study routine that continues to this day. I learned about the poisoned environment we live in, including our foods. I learned about the value of fresh organic foods and use of food supplements and herbs. When I exhausted my grandmother’s library I frequented the public library.

At age 16 I was earning my own money to buy the books, health foods, herbs and supplements I knew I needed and announced to my cattle ranching family that I was going vegetarian. This decision was based on the fact that by eating high on the food chain, I was getting concentrated doses of all the environmental toxins, which my heart didn’t need. I succeeded in restoring my heart back to health.

My brother lost his kidneys but the dialysis machines came along just in time to keep him alive with regular hospital visits to clean his blood. He died at age 30 and suffered during his life. My education didn’t benefit him, even though I was also learning how he could recover (before losing his kidneys).

The difference between my brother and I was this: my brother took a passive role, I took an active role. My brother placed his life in the hands of others, the “authorities”, the “experts”…even when they said his was a hopeless case. I took responsibility for my own life and became active in the search for solutions and applied what I learned.Even though the doctors said mine was another hopeless case.

Since then, I’ve seen this pattern repeated in others. While its an advantage to team up with a qualified medical practitioner who possesses the knowledge and determination to effect a cure, all too often we only encounter those who are trained in a very narrow discipline that lacks cures for us and can actually harm us.

There seem to be two basic approaches we take when confronting our own illnesses: active and passive.

  • Passive: We don’t believe in our own ability to understand our illness, let alone, what’s required to get well. We have faith in “expertise”, believing that anyone possessing a medical degree knows best. We need to be told what to do. True, we may switch doctors or turn to alternative medicinal practitioners, but its always with the same goal…find the authority and do what they tell us.
  • Active: We feel driven to understand our illness and all its permutations. We read everything we can find about it; talk with others who share our interest; find out who has been healed and how they did it. We don’t blindly sign on with a medical “authority” but we take the time to find out what their track record is with our illness. How many patients with our condition have they cured? And if we agree to work with a doctor, it’s a team effort. If we can’t find a good doctor, we’re able to continue on our own and have confidence in our own ability to heal ourselves.


My observation after 50 years, the activists not only get better results, but they leave a trail for others to follow. The Herbal Coaching Community is full of such trails. My motivation in creating this learning program is to support activists, to make it easier for them to sort through their options and to leave trails for anyone who refuses to accept that a health condition is incurable.

Its even more important to cultivate health activists now that our health care system has devolved to require medical doctors to restrict themselves to diagnosis. I find this hard to believe but I’ve recently listened to lectures by doctors complaining that this new health care system (Obamacare) will issue a code for every health condition. Doctors will be given a device where, after diagnosis, they punch in the code. Accordingly, they’ll be informed as to which procedures they are allowed to follow to treat their patient. If they think the patient needs something else and use a different treatment than what the machine dictates, they’ll be fined a large sum of money. If they disobey the machine again, they can go to jail !!! Is this true? Is it science fiction?




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