Monday, July 23, 2012


Yucatan Cave..."The search of the depth

Job 38:16

Viewing the 1769 King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Job 38:16

Hast thou entered into the springs of the sea? or hast thou walked in the search of the depth?

Psalms 18:15

Then the channels of waters were seen,..."

Cenotes, Underwater Sinkholes

The natural wonders of the state of Yucatán are innumerable and some of the most important and unusual are the cenotes, or sinkholes. It is estimated that there are more than 6000, although only 2400 are registered.
The Mayas called them dzonot, which the conquering Spaniards translated as cenote. Geraldo Díaz Alpuche was a military commander in the 16th century who was greatly impressed with these underground caverns and pools, and he tried to explain the meaning of the word cenote in the Spanish language as meaning "deep thing". The Motul dictionary, a dictionary of Mayan hieroglyphics, defines dzonot as "abysmal and deep". 

Cenotes are magical, enigmatic and unique in the world and were once the only resource for fresh, sweet water in the local Yucatecan jungle. They were the sacred places of the Mayas for that reason, but also because they represented the entrance to the underworld.
The Yucatán Peninsula is a porous limestone shelf with no visible rivers; all the fresh water rivers are underground. Being porous, caverns and caves formed where the fresh water collects – hence the cenotes or water sinkholes. The water that gathers in these subterranean cenotes is a crystal clear turquoise color with a very pleasant temperature of 78° F (25.5º C). 

The stalactites and stalagmites that form inside the cenotes are true natural works of art. In many, holes in the ceiling allow the sunlight to filter into the cenotes, giving the scene a magical feeling. The cenotes of Yucatán are a natural treasure that should be seen by all, keeping in mind that they should be protected so that man does not destroy in a few days what nature took millions of years to create.
There are four different types of cenotes - those that are completely underground, those that are semi-underground, those that are at land level like a lake or pond, like the one at Dzibilchaltún, and those that are open wells, like the one in Chichén Itzá. Some of them are accessible for swimming and cave diving, but this is a sport that should ONLY be practiced with a professional guide.
Arriving by air into Merida, think of the land of cenotes, geological cavities which vary according to their morphology; deposits of crystalline waters with a stunning kaleidoscope of natural light, and also, incidentally, which played a leading role in the development of the Mayan culture. Without cenotes, this enigmatic civilization would not have prospered, not to mention the religious significance that they played in their mythology, as the gateways to the underworld. When your plane touches down, only a few meters away from the runway are some of these natural wonders. The cenotes by the airport cannot be visited, as they are not open to the public, but the geography of the Penísula is full of them. Do not miss the chance to see the cenotes of Yucatán: pure magic!
Here is a list of some of the most accessible cenotes:
Cenote Yaxunah
With the participation of local residents, the beautiful Yaxunah Cenote has recently received new stairs and access to a picnic area. It is located between Chichén Itzá and Yaxcabá, and there is also a Cultural Center and the Yaxunah archaeological site nearby.
Cenote San Ignacio
Just 20 minutes from Mérida, on the highway to the neighboring state of Campeche in the village of Chochola, is the cenote San Ignacio. This cenote is a safe place and ideal for swimming in its transparent, turquoise waters. Found inside a cavern, there is artificial lighting and even music! The domed type roof is about 24 feet tall, from which hang incredible stalactites. For your enjoyment and comfort, you will find palapas, bathrooms, showers, dressing rooms, a children’s play area, wading pools, stables, restaurant, and spa. Open 365 days a year.
Cenote Yokdzonot
Yokdzonot Village. A swim in this cenote is a magical experience. Small fish dart all around you, birds are swooping overhead and singing, and dragonflies flutter above the water's surface. The water is cool and clean. Just 10 minutes from Chichen Itza and some meters away from the cenote, is a Ecohotel & Camping, Yucatan Mayan Retreat,  to stay! Open seven days a week, and life jackets can be rented. For those who love the adventurous and exciting exploration you can get one of their 3 ecotours packages in the Yokdzonot cenote at:
Cenote Cuzama - 3 in 1
The town of Cuzamá is becoming well known for the large number of cenotes found there. Especially unique is a tour that you can do in this area where you will visit three cenotes. Go past the tourist booth in the village of Cuzamá (read more about this here) and continue on to the village of Chunkanan where you can hire a guide who will put you on a platform buggy pulled by horses (cost: 250 pesos for 3 hours' visit to 3 cenotes). You will travel this way for 7 km. on interesting paths through the surrounding countryside. The main cenotes are: Chelentún (laying down rock), Chansinic'che (tree with small ants) and Bolonchoojol (nine drops of water). The Chelentun Cenote is located about 3 km. from the Chunkanan hacienda and about 3 km. south of Cuzamá. The water is incredibly blue and clear with excellent visibility. Stalactite and stalagmite formations add to its unique beauty. For more information, check out our Cuzamá day trip. You can visit Cuzamá with
Zaci - in Valladolid
Located in the heart of Valladolid, this is a semi-open cenote that has a diameter of 150 feet and is 260 feet deep. This is a popular cenote for swimming in the refreshing turquoise waters. You will see a rare species of eyeless black fish known as "lub." A third of the cenote is covered with stalactites and stalagmites and there is a walkway around the entire cenote. There is also a great restaurant on the property.
Cenote Xlacah
Cenote Xlacah 
Located at the Mayan site of Dziblichaltún, just north of Mérida, this is the closest to Mérida. Meaning "old village," it is an open ground level cenote, great for swimming. It is more than 140 feet deep at one end.
Open from 8 AM to 4 PM, it is a great place to jump in after a visit to the archaeological site.
Cenotes X'kekén and Samulá
Located in Dzitnup, 7 km. southeast of Valladolid, this cenote is underground with a hole in the ceiling. It is probably one of the most photographed cenotes in the Yucatán. Deep, refreshing, crystal clear waters await you and it is a great cenote for swimming. There is lighting and a guide rope to make it easier to enter. Don't forget to buy a picture postcard from the kids at the entrance as taking a picture just never turns out right and you WILL want a picture of this to show the family. Entrance for nationals adults $27.00 foreigners $52.00 and $17.00 nationals kids (under 13 years old) & seniors with INSEN CARD.
Cenote Ik kil
Located in the Eco-archeological Park Ik Kil, just 3 km. from Chichén Itzá and Pisté. Called the "Sacred Blue Cenote," it is a perfectly round well-type cenote with exuberant vegetation and waterfalls. This is another ideal place for swimming in the clear blue water. 196 feet wide and about 130 feet deep, it is an open cenote about 85 feet from the surface. A grand stairway leads you down the steps into the water.

 Entrance is 70 pesos and it is open daily from 8 AM to 6 PM. There is also an excellent buffet style restaurant here and bungalows for overnight stay.
Cenote Kankirixche 
(tree with yellow fruit)
At Kankirixche Cenote, you will find a large, spectacular sub-aquatic cavern with crystal clear water that allows fantastic visibility for snorkeling or scuba. In this grand cenote you will also find stalactites and alamo tree roots that form an impressive formation from the ceiling to the water. Kankirixche is a semi-open cenote 33 feet high, 90 feet long and about 75 feet wide. Tour required to see this cenote. Contact
This village gets its name from the large number of cenotes located within the town and the outskirts. According to locals there are more that 150 cenotes, some of which are located in open fields. It is necessary to ask a local to take you. The main cenotes are Kaipech, Xayin and Ucil.
Dzul-Ha (Caballero del Agua) at the Hacienda Sotuta de Peon. Monday to Sunday: Package includes: Tour in "truck", visit to Casa Maya, life jacket and visor at cenote. Optional: Restaurant service. Adult $200 pesos. Children: $125 pesos. Info: 941 86 39.
CENOTE CHIHUAN 80 km. from Mérida on the "Libre" road to Cancún, this underground cenote is clean, safe, well lit, and has easy access. Change rooms, parking, regional food, green area, camping and horseback riding.


Daniel 4:20

The tree that thou sawest, which grew, and was strong, whose height reached unto the heaven, and the sight thereof to all the earth;

A cosmic mystery is uniting monks and scientists in Japan after a cherry tree grown from a seed that orbited the Earth for eight months bloomed years earlier than expected -- and with very surprising flowers.

The four-year-old sapling -- grown from a cherry stone that spent time aboard the International Space Station (ISS) -- burst into blossom on April 1, possibly a full six years ahead of Mother Nature's normal schedule.

Its early blooming baffled Buddhist brothers at the ancient temple in central Japan where the tree is growing.

"We are amazed to see how fast it has grown," Masahiro Kajita, chief priest at the Ganjoji temple in Gifu, told AFP by telephone.

"A stone from the original tree had never sprouted before. We are very happy because it will succeed the old tree, which is said to be 1,250 years old."

The wonder pip was among 265 harvested from the celebrated "Chujo-hime-seigan-zakura" tree, selected as part of a project to gather seeds from different kinds of cherry trees at 14 locations across Japan.

The stones were sent to the ISS in November 2008 and came back to Earth in July the following year with Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata, after circling the globe 4,100 times.

Some were sent for laboratory tests, but most were ferried back to their places of origin, and a selection were planted at nurseries near the Ganjoji temple.

By April this year, the "space cherry tree" had grown to around four meters (13 feet) tall, and suddenly produced nine flowers -- each with just five petals, compared with about 30 on flowers of the parent tree.

It normally takes about 10 years for a cherry tree of the similar variety to bear its first buds.

The Ganjoji temple sapling is not the only early-flowering space cherry tree.

Of the 14 locations in which the pits were replanted, blossoms have been spotted at four places.

Two years ago, a young tree bore 11 flowers in Hokuto, a mountain region 115 kilometers (70 miles) west of Tokyo, around two years after it was planted.

It was of a variety that normally only comes into flower at the age of eight.

The seeds were sent to the ISS as part of "an educational and cultural project to let children gather the stones and learn how they grow into trees and live on after returning from space," said Miho Tomioka, a spokeswoman for the project's organizer, Japan Manned Space Systems (JAMSS).

"We had expected the (Ganjoji) tree to blossom about 10 years after planting, when the children come of age," she added.

Kaori Tomita-Yokotani, a researcher at the University of Tsukuba who took part in the project, told AFP she was stumped by the extra-terrestrial mystery.

"We still cannot rule out the possibility that it has been somewhat influenced by its exposure to the space environment," she said.

Tomita-Yokotani, a plant physiologist, said it was difficult to explain why the temple tree has grown so fast because there was no control group to compare its growth with that of other trees.

She said cross-pollination with another species could not be ruled out, but a lack of data was hampering an explanation.

"Of course, there is the possibility that exposure to stronger cosmic rays accelerated the process of sprouting and overall growth," she said.

"From a scientific point of view, we can only say we don't know why."

Wakata is back aboard the ISS, where he is in command of the station.

The astronaut took part in a video link-up on Thursday with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and US Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy, chatting about his daily life hundreds of kilometers above the Earth. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012


The Benefits of Fasting

Affecting our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects.

  Can benefits of fasting really be so broad? Yes, they can, and they are. We are so much more than a physical body and fasting affects every part of our being. When we cease the over-indulgence that has become so common in our modern world, even for a short while, our lives and our priorities become clearer. Do these "short while"s occasionally, and you have a tool that will greatly add to your life.

Matthew 6:16-18

Fasting will:

  1. rest the digestive system
  2. allow for cleansing and detoxification of the body
  3. create a break in eating patterns, while shining a spotlight on them
  4. promote greater mental clarity
  5. cleanse and heal "stuck" emotional patterns
  6. lead to a feeling of physical lightness, increasing energy level
  7. promote an inner stillness, enhancing spiritual connection
These benefits of fasting are not limited to just traditional fasts like water or juice, but can be attained through cleansing diets as well, although the effects will be less pronounced, as they occur over a longer time frame. But they will be there.
See here for a variety of quotes from doctors, writers, and health professionals about the effects and benefits of fasting.

Physical effects of fasting

"Fasting is the greatest remedy --
the physician within."

Fasting has been called the "miracle cure" because the list of physical conditions improved by fasting is long and varied. Cited most often are allergies, arthritis, digestive disorders of all kinds, skin conditions, cardiovascular disease, and asthma. (See here for more information on the physical health benefits of fasting and specific conditions.) Because fasting initiates the body's own healing mechanisms, any ailment may show improvement.
Fasting frees up energy so healing can begin
Fasting is a wonderful antidote for our usual over-indulgences. There's nothing wrong with enjoying our food, but excess food on a continuous basis does create a burden for the body. When it must handle more than is comfortable and appropriate for it, it will suffer.
Imagine at work how you feel when you're handed a huge work load--more than you can handle in your 8-10 hour day, more than is comfortable and appropriate for your job title (or salary level). You're under duress. But you WILL cope. You MUST cope. You must make decisions. You attend to the most important and urgent of matters and set aside those that can wait for another day.
This is what our bodies do when they're overworked; they tuck things away for another day. Whatever tasks can be postponed will be. And more work is dumped on them at every meal- or snack-time, whether they're ready or not. This is why fasting is a beautiful gift you give to yourself. A vacation for your weary, overworked, under-appreciated body.
During fasting, we rest our system from the constant onslaught of food stuffs. We usually think of food as giving us energy, so it can be a new way of thinking to understand how the food we eat actually requires energy. Digesting, assimilating and metabolizing--these activities require a great deal of energy. It is estimated that 65% of the body's energy must be directed to the digestive organs after a heavy meal.

Some Benefits of Fasting

Antiaging effects
Better attitude
Better resistance to disease
Better sleep
Change of habits
Clearer planning
Clearer skin
Diet changes
Drug detoxification
Improved senses
  (vision, hearing, taste)
More clarity
  (mentally and emotionally)
More energy
More relaxation
New ideas
Reduction of allergies
Rest for digestive organs
Right use of will
Spiritual awareness
Weight loss

from Staying Healthy with Nutrition,
by Elson Haas, M.D.
Free up this energy and it can be diverted to healing and recuperation. It can detox and repair cells, tissues and organs, eliminating foreign toxins as well as the natural metabolic wastes (which are also toxins) produced even by our healthy cells. And this is what the body will do during a fast. It will take advantage of that time and energy to do some housecleaning. The overloaded, overworked system, unable to properly handle all the toxins, has been storing any excesses in the tissues where they can be dealt with later. This is one of the great health benefits of fasting in that it offers this opportunity to play "catch up".
Fasting itself isn't necessarily a "cure" for anything. What it does is "set the stage" or create the environment in which healing can occur. Our bodies know how to heal themselves. We just have to "get out of the way", and this means on all levels of our being. Fasting has a way of rebalancing us on all those levels.
Physically, fasting is of high benefit to the chronic degenerative diseases that are plaguing our population and that modern medicine is at loss to cure.
Losing weight
Losing weight is, for many of us, one of the greatest benefits of fasting. Due to differences in metabolism and/or body chemistry (or mental patterns), exact results will vary from person to person.
Using fasting to lose weight can create many opportunities to gain insights into your patterns with food and for making changes to your habits and lifestyle much easier to accomplish.
Professionally supervised fasts may be the best for serious obesity. They offer both medical and psychological support during the process and guidance toward healthier eating habits after the fast.
Those who have the best luck "going it alone" are usually fasting to "get healthy" rather than to "lose weight". The change in mentality can be the trick.
Sometimes a short 3-day fast is used to "jump start" a new healthy diet plan, because fasting will change your tastes toward more natural and wholesome foods. It will also give you a new perspective on your relationship to food; why and when you eat what you do, what your mental and emotional attachments are, and offer an opportunity for you to heal these issues.
Fasting can give you more energy
When you've progressed past the stage of dealing with detox symptoms, a fast will have you feeling lighter, more energetic, more enthusiastic, and requiring less sleep.

Mental and emotional benefits of fasting

Because fasting improves mental clarity and focus, it can become a tool in your life to give you greater freedom, flexibility, and energy to get done the things and projects that are important to you. Many experienced fasters find it helpful to fast whenever they need an additional boost for a major project or deadline, e.g. writing a paper, preparing for a big presentation, getting ready for a long trip. Artists and writers often talk of foregoing food during great creative inspiration; that it helps to keep the momentum going. (Although, beginners must be warned that this won't be the case at first. Don't fast for a big event until you are more knowledgeable about your fasting reactions, and you're sure you won't get a "detox headache" or such.)

Emotionally, you will feel calmer, clearer and happier. Fasters often report that depression lifts, goals begin to feel more obtainable as obstacles are put into proper focus. Doctors have reported patients experiencing improved concentration, less anxiety, sleeping better and waking more refreshed.
Sometimes it's hard to tell the difference between our emotional and mental aspects, where one begins and the other ends . Am I sad because I had this thought? Or did I have the thought because I've been feeling sad? Fasting has a way of clarifying those issues. Your awareness can focus in more accurately and determine the source of some unpleasantness, that then snowballed into a mess. Once the source is identified, it's easy to see how overblown everything else was that came after.
In other words, you see things from a clearer, more appropriate perspective. See Emotional Benefits of Fasting for more details on the emotional cleansing that can occur.

Spiritual benefits of fasting

And let's not forget the powerful effects of fasting on our spiritual connection. Another one of the benefits of fasting is that it promotes we take our attention inward, that we listen, become quiet. And that quiet quality time, you with you, will also allow, if you are willing, a greater sense of kinship with your Inner Being. Without the continual addition of heavy foods into the system (and after any major detox symptoms have passed), the body takes on a lighter, less dense, feeling. This helps to create a subtle separation from ordinary physical reality and all its worldly things, and instead you begin to sense the presense and power of things beyond this world.
Meditation or prayer become clearer, higher states easier to attain, messages or guidance from higher realms clearer. Knowing you are loved and supported every minute of your day and of your life is something you begin to intuitively feel. Recognition that there truly is a higher plan or purpose will become more real as it is intuitively experienced rather than just intellectually understood.
Your experiences will be deeply personal and unique. Sometimes, subtle too. You have to pay attention to the little things, you have to be quiet enough internally to pick up the nuances in a changed attitude or perception.

Begin to experience the benefits of fasting

You can start with simple, short-term fasting (see here for a one day apple fast). Even short fasts will help you enjoy the many benefits of fasting, allowing the body, digestive tract and organs a chance to rest and repair and heal, and you to begin the process of rebuilding your inner connection to your physical body, as well as your inner spirit. The benefits of fasting reach into all areas of our lives. And whether you want to fast for increased health, or increased mental clarity, you will get them both--only maybe not all in the first day. Fasting is an ongoing practice, that grows and deepens over time, delivering more and more meaningful benefits.

Further information on the benefits of fasting...

Emotional Benefits of Fasting allow for the release and healing of long-held patterns and beliefs, with little effort on our part. Gain insight into this process.

Quotes on Fasting reveal the effects and benefits fasting promotes. Read what doctors, health professionals, and religious figures have to say.

The Benefit of Fasting toward Degenerative Diseases Understand the limitations of conventional medicine and when it is appropriate to pursue alternative therapies -- such as fasting.

Learn the Benefit of Fasting on Physical Conditions with this list of ailments that respond favorably to a fast.

Studies on Intermittent Fasting are showing many benefits can be derived from regular schedules of fasting.


The Olympus Mons volcano on Mars.
An orbital view of the Olympus Mons volcano on Mars.
Photograph from NASA/Corbis
Richard A. Lovett
Published June 26, 2012
Mars could have entire oceans' worth of water locked in rocks deep underground, scientists say.
The finding suggests that ancient volcanic eruptions may have been major sources of water on early Mars—and could have created habitable environments.
According to a new study, Martian meteorites contain a surprising amount of hydrated minerals, which have water incorporated in their crystalline structures.
In fact, the study authors estimate that the Martian mantle currently contains between 70 and 300 parts per million of water—enough to cover the planet in liquid 660 to 3,300 feet (200 to 1,000 meters) deep.
"Basically the amount of water we're talking about is equal to or more than the amount in the upper mantle of the Earth," which contains 50 to 300 parts per million of water, said study leader Francis McCubbin, a planetary scientist at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque.

(Also see "Mars Has Liquid Water Close to Surface, Study Hints.")
And if water exists today in the Martian mantle, that means the red planet likely had a lot of water in its interior all the way back to the moment the planet formed.

"We don't have to rely on sources like comets and asteroids to bring in water afterward," McCubbin said. (See "What Created Earth's Oceans? Comet Offers New Clue.")

And if that's the case for Mars, it's probably the case for the other rocky planets—Mercury, Venus, and Earth—as well as for some large asteroids.
"Earth is not unique," McCubbin said. "We should be finding water nearly everywhere in the solar system."

Water Boiled Out of Mars Lava
McCubbin's team found water while analyzing meteorites that had been blasted off the Martian surface by asteroid impacts and sent careening to Earth.
The meteorites are basaltic, which means the rocks must have formed from deep magmas brought to the surface during volcanic eruptions.

(Related: "Huge Spirals Found on Mars—Evidence of New Lava Type?")
By carefully examining a mineral called apatite, McCubbin's team found hydroxyl ions—a form of water that contains an oxygen atom bound to a hydrogen atom.
The presence of hydroxyl means that standard water—oxygen bound to two hydrogens—was also present in Martian magma. But because the hydroxyl is more tightly bound to rock than ordinary water, the ions remained behind when the rest of the water boiled out of the cooling lava.
From the amount of hydroxyl in the meteorites, it's possible to reconstruct how much water is in Mars's interior, McCubbin added.

"We're using apatite as a hydrometer to record how much water was in the rock before it degassed," he said. For instance, similar studies of lunar apatite in 2010 found that the moon's interior is a hundred times wetter than previously thought.

Furthermore, he said, the Mars meteorites examined in the new study came from extremely young basalts, only 150 to 350 million years old.

That means all large Martian eruptions throughout the planet's history probably carried substantial water to the surface—including eruptions that happened during the Noachian, the period when ancient Mars was warm enough to have possibly hosted liquid water on the surface.

(See "Rover Finds 'Bulletproof' Evidence of Water on Early Mars.")
It's also possible more recent eruptions might have created zones that were temporarily favorable to life as we know it.

"That makes these volcanic regions the most promising regions in which to look for past life on Mars," McCubbin said.
The new Mars water research was published online June 15 by the journal Geology.

Friday, July 20, 2012


Ephesians 4:26-31

The Effect of Anger

The Effect of Anger
by Tyler Woods
Medical and psychological research has shown that no matter how much you exercise or eat correctly, you are putting yourself at risk if you do not manage your anger. Anger causes a widespread negative effect on the body.
It is important to understand what happens to the body when one becomes angry. In a moment of anger, you may experience muscle tension, grinding of teeth and teeth clenching, ringing in the ears, flushing, higher blood pressure, chest pains, excessive sweating, chills, severe headaches or migraines.
With chronic anger people can also experience peptic ulcers, constipation, diarrhea, intestinal cramping, hiccups, chronic indigestion, heart attacks, strokes, kidney problems, obesity, and frequent colds. Medical experts have found the heart muscle is affected by anger, and anger can actually reduce the heart's ability to properly pump blood.
The results of prolonged anger can harm the body's largest organ, the skin. People who hold in their anger often have skin diseases such as rashes, hives, warts, eczema and acne. Researchers have studied the relationship of anger and skin disorders and discovered that when a person resolves his anger, skin disorders dramatically improve.
One of the major effects anger has on the body is the release of chemicals and hormones, primarily the adrenaline and non-adrenaline. The adrenaline hormones act on all organs that reach the sympathetic nervous system, stimulating the heart, dilating the coronary vessels, constricting blood vessels in the intestines, and shutting off digestion.
Suppressed anger can also have psychological effects, causing depression, eating disorders, addictions to drug and alcohol, nightmares, insomnia, self-destructive behaviors, and can cause disruptions in the way a person relates to others.
Learn to control anger by using the following techniques:
* Meditation
You hear it all the time -- take a deep breath and count to 10. Meditation can allow you to breathe, relax, reflect on the situation and take a critical look at why you're angry.
* Practice forgiveness
Anger often results in resentments, resentments which can be resolved through forgiveness. You do not necessarily have to forgive the person with whom you are angry in a face-to-face meeting; you can forgive in any way that works for you.
* Anger management
Find a clinic that specializes in anger management and proper ways to release deep anger.
* Therapy
Sometimes our anger is so repressed that counseling is the only way to understand it and learn to release and deal with anger issues.
* Talking
Just talking it through with a friend can often help. Vent your frustrations.
* Creativity
Be creative in releasing your anger. Scream into or pound a pillow, dance, take aerobics, do stretching exercises, tear up old newspapers, throw rocks in a safe place, squeeze a ball of clay, kick a ball or pillow, use a punching bag, or take up a sports activity such as basketball, racquetball, soccer or baseball.
No matter what you choose, it is important to learn safe, effective ways to release your anger. The result of prolonged anger can change how your body functions. Anger is a valid emotion and should not be suppressed, but remember to release it in an appropriate and healthy way.


Genesis 17:9-14

Medical Benefits of Circumcision

Many doctors believe and many studies show that circumcision has many definite medical benefits.Dr. Edgar J. Schoen is a leading medical expert in the field of infant circumcision.
Here are some of the benefits that he lists:
  • Circumcision reduces the risk of urinary tract infection
  • Circumcision reduces the risk of HIV/AIDS
  • Circumcision reduces the risk of cancer of the penis
  • Circumcision reduces the risk of infected/ unretractable foreskin and penile diseases
  • Circumcision promotes lifetime ease of cleanliness
For a comprehensive list and explanation of medical benefits listed above, please click here:
New York Times on Circumcision
On Dec 14, 2006, the N.Y. Times ran a lead article on the results of a study showing that circumcision may reduce the risk of HIV by up to 50%.
The story explains that leading organizations are considering spending money to promote circumcision in countries where many people are affected by HIV.
For the complete NY Times article on the benefits of circumcision, please click here.
For more information about this subject, please go to our page Philosophy of Circumcision - Bris Milah: Beautiful or Barbaric.
For a comprehensive explanation of the medical benefits, please see our Medical Information pages.


Leviticus 11:7-8

The following lists show germs or parasites that are found in pork and some diseases caused by them. Many of these diseases are contagious while some are proven fatal.This proves that the more science advances the more Islam is shown correct as a religion of God.

a) TRICHINELLA SPIRATIS ( Trichina worms )
It is the most dangerous parasite to man ( Rheumatism and muscular pain). The infected persons shown no symptoms, recover very slowly some die, some reduced to permanent invalids. No one is immune from this disease and there is no cure.

b) TAENIA SOLIUM ( Pork tape worm )
The worm causes malnourishment of the person leading to anemia, diarrhea, extreme depression melancholia and digestive disturbances. Cysticercosis means that larva enter the blood stream then settle down in one or more of the vital organs of the body, for example: brain, liver, lungs or spinal cord. They grow and encapsulate, inducing pressure to the
system around, resulting in dangerous diseases (diarrhea,digestive disorder, anemia, chronic invalidation).

Examples: Ascaris, which may lead to digestive disturbances, appendicitis, obstructive jaundice.

Examples:Ancylostomiasis, which may lead to anemia, oedema, heart failure or retarded growth ( mental and physical), tuberculosis,
diarrhea and typhoid.

Bleeding, anemia and other syndromes. If ova are settled in the brain or spinal cord, paralysis and death may occur.

Infestation leading to bleeding of the lungs ( endenve haemoptysis)

Digestive disturbances leading to persistent diarrhea; generalized oedema.

chlonorchiasis-obstructive jaundice, liver enlargement.

Causes bronchitis, abscess of the lungs.

Cause anemia and digestive disorders.

Causes acute dysentery and general weakness.

Fusiformis necrofurus: causing foot-rot which is very difficult to heal.
Salmonella Cholera suis: causing cholera
Bruceellosis: Acute, sub acute and chronic. It may lead to permanent disabilities.
Swine Erysipelas: causing Erypelas in man.
Viral Diseases
Small pox: is was a source of infection to man.
Japanese B-encepphalitis: It is the source of infection
Influenza, foot mouth disease, gas tro-enteritis of the new born babies.
Protozoal Diseases:
Toxo plasma goundii- It is a very dangerous diseases.A new born baby of an infected woman may die within few days or weeks after delivery. But if he survives he may develop blindness or deafness.In adult chronic exhaustive fever with enlarged liver and spleen may occur. Pneumonia, or celebro- spinal meninggitis which may lead to death or madness. The patient may become blind and deaf too.

Fats In Pigs:
Pork contains more fats than other meats. Therefore, people who are fond of pork are more obese than others. Cholesterol is higher in their blood thus making them more prone to asthereosclerosis cardiovascular accidents and sudden death.

Other Diseases:
Flesh of the pork is hard to digest and may lead to chronic digestive disturbances. Pimples, boils, cysts are common in pork eaters. These are some of the parasites and diseases found in pork and/ or the skin of pigs and certainly there are many more. There is still no means of killing these parasites, in the tissues, neither has anyone found a method of expelling them, even produced any specific treatment for the diseases.

If you pours Coke (yes, the soda) on a slab of pork, wait a little while, you will SEE WORMS crawl out of it.


Proverbs 23:20

Viewing the 1769 King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Proverbs 23:20

Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh:

Romans 14:21

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It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.

Eating too much meat causes IBD
Sun Jun 6, 2010 12:30PM GMT

While a meat-rich diet had long been linked to heart problems, a new study says following such a diet may cause inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) in women.

Inflammatory bowel disease, a group of gastrointestinal disorders characterized by severe inflammation in the digestive system, consists of ulcerative colitis, which typically affects the colon, and Crohn's disease, which can attack the entire digestive tract.

Recent studies had reported that adopting a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can protect the individual against IBD disease while eating lots of omega-6 fatty acids may make him/her more vulnerable to developing the condition.

According to the study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, eating too much animal proteins increases the risk of developing IBD in women.

Women consuming the most protein, particularly those with animal origins, are at a tripled risk of being diagnosed with IBD as digesting such compounds produces certain potentially toxic end products such as hydrogen sulfide and ammonia, altering the mix of bacteria that live in the colon.

The high intake of dairy products or eggs, however, is not associated with such an increased risk, the study found.

"Our results may help [us] better understand the role of diet in IBD risk," said lead researcher Franck Carbonnel, stressing that their findings may pave the way for the development of new strategies to prevent and fight IBD, especially in at risk families.

Editor's note: Read this story in Arabic.
( -- Want to live longer? Trade some of the red meat in your diet for fish, nuts, whole grains, and other healthier protein sources, Harvard researchers say.
That's the conclusion of a new study, published this week in the Archives of Internal Medicine, that found that the risk of dying at an early age -- from heart disease, cancer, or any other cause—rises in step with red-meat consumption.
Eating too much red meat, which is high in saturated fat and cholesterol, has long been seen as unhealthy, especially for the heart. The new study, however, is the first to estimate the effect of swapping out red meat on a person's lifespan.

Dangers of eating red meat

Is eating red meat bad for health?
Using data from two long-running studies of health professionals, researchers tracked the diets of more than 121,000 middle-aged men and women for up to 28 years. Roughly 20% of the participants died during that period.
On average, each additional serving of red meat the participants ate per day was associated with a 13% higher risk of dying during the study. Processed red meat products -- such as hot dogs, bacon, and salami -- appeared to be even more dangerous: Each additional daily serving was associated with a 20% higher risk of dying.
Based on these findings, the researchers estimate that substituting one daily serving of red meat with fish, poultry, nuts, legumes, whole grains, or low-fat dairy products would reduce the risk of dying in this stage of life by 7% to 19%. If everyone in the study had slashed their average red-meat intake to less than half a serving per day, the researchers say, 9% of deaths among men and 8% of deaths among women could have been prevented.
"Our message is to try to reduce the red meat consumption to less than two to three servings per week," says lead author An Pan, Ph.D., a research fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health, in Boston.
"We don't want everyone to be a vegetarian," Pan says, though he adds that avoiding processed red meat altogether may be a good idea. "It's better to go with unprocessed products and plant-based foods."
Dean Ornish, M.D., the founder and president of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute, in Sausalito, California, says a plant-based diet provides a "double benefit" in that it reduces a person's exposure to the harmful substances in meat while also providing valuable nutrients.
"There are literally hundreds of thousands of protective substances that you find in fruits and vegetables and whole grains and legumes and soy products that prevent disease," says Ornish, who wrote an editorial accompanying the study.
Why is red meat, and especially processed red meat, potentially harmful? In addition to the high saturated fat content, which can contribute to heart disease, charring red meat at high temperatures can produce carcinogens on the surface, Pan says. And processed meats contain certain additives that in high quantities are believed to promote cancer as well.
In addition, a diet rich in red meat is likely to come up short in other areas, says Robert Ostfeld, M.D., a cardiologist and associate professor of clinical medicine at Montefiore Medical Center, in the Bronx, N.Y.
"If you eat more red meat, on average, you may be eating fewer fruits and vegetables, so you're getting the bad things from the red meat and you're not getting the good things from the fruits and vegetables," says Ostfeld, who did not participate in the study. "My preference is for people to have as little red meat as they can, and I think it's ideal to avoid red meat."
Staffan Lindeberg, M.D., an associate professor of medicine at the University of Lund, in Sweden, says singling out red meat may be counterproductive. A bigger threat to health is the sugar- and starch-heavy Western diet as a whole, says Lund, who studies heart disease and diabetes and advocates a version of the so-called Paleolithic diet, which emphasizes lean meats, fruits, and vegetables.
"We need to focus more on common foods, like grains, dairy foods, refined fats, and refined sugar," Lindeberg says.
Studies like Pan's are inherently iffy due to red meat's unhealthy reputation, which makes red-meat consumption difficult to tease apart from a person's overall lifestyle, Lindeberg says. "Red meat has been perceived as a villain for many years, and people who avoid red meat take all sorts of precautionary measures for their future health," he says. "It is not possible to statistically adjust for all of these measures."
Sure enough, Pan and his colleagues found that the men and women in the study who ate the most red meat also tended to be heavier, less physically active, and more likely to smoke and drink alcohol than their peers. However, the researchers did take those and other factors into account in their analysis.


Leviticus 18:19

Viewing the 1769 King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Leviticus 18:19

Also thou shalt not approach unto a woman to uncover her nakedness, as long as she is put apart for her uncleanness.

Question: Does period sex increase the risk of getting an STD?
Recently, a friend of mine wrote to me to ask if it is true that period sex increases the risk of getting an STD. Although the short answer is yes, the reasons why that is true are both fascinating and varied.
Answer: When it comes to blood-borne diseases such as HIV, it would not be surprising to find that having period sex could increase the risk of HIV transmission. The virus is, after all, found in the blood, and during menstruation there is a lot more blood to which a woman's sexual partner may be exposed -- even if they are practicing safer sex.
In fact, there is a small, if controversial, body of research suggesting just that -- that sex during menstruation, as well as other exposures to blood during sex, may increase the risk of heterosexual HIV transmission. There is, however, also some evidence that sex during menstruation is associated with an increased risk of other sexually transmitted diseases.
Why would STD risk increase during period sex for STDs that are not transmitted through blood? Well, there are several theoretical reasons why you might see such an increase:
  1. The amount of the pathogen varies with the menstrual cycle.
    This explanation is plausible, but not proven. In at least one study, the amount of shedding of cytomegalovirus (CMV), but not herpes, has been shown to vary cyclically. However, the maximum shedding time was during the luteal phase, not during menstruation.

  2. The blood flow acts as a carrier for viruses and other pathogens.
    Physiologic changes during menstruation could also increase a woman's susceptibility to infection, and menstrual blood could enhance bacterial growth.

  3. Because a woman's cervix is more open, she may be more susceptible to upper cervical and uterine infections.
    There is conflicting data on whether ascending infections and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) are associated with sex during or near the time of menstruation -- it may be more folk wisdom than scientific fact. It is, however, worth mentioning that an alternative explanation for why ascending infections might be more common in the week after menstruation could be that existing infections are be more likely to ascend into the uterus and become symptomatic PID during menstruation, even if the sexual act that caused them occurred at another time.

  4. Women who have period sex are likely to have more sex and more sexual partners -- increasing their risk in a way that has nothing to do with menstruation.
    Although there is some research that suggests that women who have sex during their period are at increased risk of STDs other than HIV, there is also data showing that women who have sex during their periods are simply more sexually active, and have more sexual partners, than women who choose to abstain from sex during menstruation. This could mean that it's not having period sex that increases the women's STD risk, but the fact that they're higher risk in general.

  5. Exposure to menstrual blood causes skin irritation and inflammation that might increase susceptibility to infection.
    Menstrual blood can be an irritant for some people, and skin irritation could increase susceptibility to various STD infections. There is also some data that women may be more susceptible to vulvar skin irritation during their periods. Finally, menstrual blood can also dilute the effects of both natural and artificial lubrication, potentially increasing the risk of tearing and other skin damage.
In the end, the data on period sex and STD risk isn't all that clear. While self-reported data does suggest that period sex is associated with an increased risk of STDs, more rigorous studies have not found as clear-cut results. Although I'm not convinced that anyone is ever going to put the time and effort into doing the research, it might well turn out that the association between STDs and period sex is more about the type of people who have sex during menstruation than the absolute risk of having sex while a woman is bleeding.
That said, if you're going to have sex during menstruation, it's certainly not safer than doing so during other times of your menstrual cycle, and so it's still a good idea to use condoms and take other safer sex precautions... not to mention precautions to keep from getting blood stains on your mattress. Those things are crazy expensive to clean.

Agner T, Damm P, Skouby SO. Menstrual cycle and skin reactivity. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1991 Apr;24(4):566-70.

Farage M, Warren R, Wang-Weigand S. The vulva is relatively insensitive to menses-induced irritation. Cutan Ocul Toxicol. 2005;24(4):243-6.

Foxman B, Aral SO, Holmes KK. Interrelationships among douching practices,risky sexual practices, and history of self-reported sexually transmitted diseases in an urban population. Sex Transm Dis. 1998 Feb;25(2):90-9.

Filer RB, Wu CH. Coitus during menses. Its effect on endometriosis and pelvic inflammatory disease. J Reprod Med. 1989 Nov;34(11):887-90.

Lurie S. Does intercourse during menses increase the risk for sexually transmitted disease? Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2010 Dec;282(6):627-30. Epub 2010 Jun 25.

Mattson CL, Bailey RC, Agot K, Ndinya-Achola JO, Moses S. A nested case-control study of sexual practices and risk factors for prevalent HIV-1 infection among young men in Kisumu, Kenya. Sex Transm Dis. 2007 Oct;34(10):731-6.

Mostad SB, Kreiss JK, Ryncarz A, Chohan B, Mandaliya K, Ndinya-Achola J, Bwayo JJ, Corey L. Cervical shedding of herpes simplex virus and cytomegalovirus throughout the menstrual cycle in women infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2000 Oct;183(4):948-55.

Tanfer K, Aral SO. Sexual intercourse during menstruation and self-reported sexually transmitted disease history among women. Sex Transm Dis. 1996 Sep-Oct;23(5):395-401.



Leviticus 17:15

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And every soul that eateth that which died of itself, or that which was torn with beasts, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger, he shall both wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the even: then shall he be clean.

Deuteronomy 14:21

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Ye shall not eat of any thing that dieth of itself: thou shalt give it unto the stranger that is in thy gates, that he may eat it; or thou mayest sell it unto an alien: for thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God. Thou shalt not seethe a kid in his mother's milk.

MANILA, Philippines - Warning! Eating "botcha" or meat from diseased pigs could lead to death.

Dr. Eric Tayag, officer-in-charge of the Department of Health National Epidemiology Center, said people who eat the meat of diseased pigs could contract all sorts of illnesses, which may lead to death.

Among the illnesses that one could get from "botcha" are diarrhea and sepsis. "Worms from the pig could go to the brain and cause seizures that could lead to death. If the bacteria is a mild one, it may cause diarrhea," he said.

He said that even if the meat is cooked, there is no assurance that all of the bacteria has died.  He warned that one could get food poisoning if the food preparation was not handled properly.

Tayag advised the public to be careful when buying meat especially now that chemicals may be mixed in the meat to remove its foul smell.

He said it is important to make sure that the meat bought was inspected by the National Meat Inspection Service. He said the meat should be firm and grayish-pink in color.

He said the meat should also be properly cooked.

Local officials of Bulacan province earlier called for tougher laws against the illegal transport and trade of "botcha" or double dead meat.

Pandi, Bulacan Mayor Enrique Roque said many people are enticed to the illegal trade of hot meat because the law is weak for violators.

At present, those arrested for selling and transporting of hot meat violates an ordinance with a penalty ranging from P1,000 to P5,000.

An early-morning raid at a piggery in Pandi, Bulacan on Thursday led to the seizure of tons of "botcha." Piggery workers in the raided warehouse were caught in the act while turning the double-dead meat into "lechon" to hide traces of the meat being "botcha."

« Antwoord #1 Gepost op: 12 November 2010, 12:02:48 »

How do you know it's 'botcha'?

ABS-CBN News  11/12/2010

 MANILA, Philippines - Double-dead pork or "botcha" has been in the news lately for being smuggled and sold in public markets. Not only is it being peddled as "fresh" pork, it is now also being sold as "lechon."

An early-morning raid at a piggery in Pandi, Bulacan on Thursday led to the seizure of tons of "botcha." Piggery workers in the raided warehouse were caught in the act while turning the double-dead meat into "lechon" to hide traces of the meat being "botcha."

To add insult to injury, chopped pieces of the "lechong botcha" were simply strewn on the piggery floor, where stray dogs were also found moving about, eating bits of "botcha" as they pleased.

Pig intestines, also found on the floor, were being chopped into what looked like the makings of the popular dish "sisig". And in a nearby pen was a dirty and obviously sick piglet, with swollen red eyes.

The local government of Bulacan has since burned all of the seized "botcha".

Authorities have again given a stern warning to the public to be cautious of the meat they buy, after the piggery's workers admitted to plans of delivering the "botcha" to marketplaces in Metro Manila, particularly the Paco and Blumentritt Market in Manila, and the Mega Q-Mart in Quezon City.

How to spot 'botcha'

The good news? "Botcha" is recognizable, even to the ordinary market-goer.
What to watch out for when buying meat

Aside from "botcha" or double-dead pork that's pale, smells bad, and easily 'crumbles', there are other meats consumers should watch out for.

Avoid buying the following:

1. old and decomposing meat and chicken
- smell bad, green in color, slimy when touched
- often ground and used in longganisa with lots of garlic to mask the bad taste and smell
- sometimes marinated in tawas overnight to bring back the reddish "fresh" color and remove the bad odor

2. imported pork, beef and chicken not inspected by the National Meat Inspection Service
- frozen and sold in boxes
- should be used only for processing hot dog, ham, and other canned meats, according to the Philippine Association of Meat Processors, Inc. (PAMPI)

To be assured of the safety of the meat you're buying, avoid meat being sold at cheap prices. It's best to buy only from your "suki" or regular vendor whom you can trust. -- based on a TV Patrol report by Winnie Cordero, ABS-CBN News

The bad news? There's no telling which market "botcha" could be smuggled into next.

But can the ordinary buyer actually distinguish "botcha" from fresh meat? Atty. Jane Bacayo, Executive Director of the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS), said yes.

Bacayo advises the public to look out for the following characteristics, and if the meat being sold displays any or all of these, it could very well be double-dead:

- meat is pale, sometimes taking on a bluish or greenish tinge;
- meat smells bad, with a stench stronger than the ordinary smell of slaughtered meat; and,
- the hair and skin have not been properly cleaned, since "botcha" is often butchered in a hurry before the meat hardens.

Bacayo compares the pale color of "botcha" meat to the pinkish hue of fresh meat, which sometimes still has blood on it.

But buyers at a local market in Quezon City said they need no further description, since they know for themselves what "botcha" looks like.

"If you ask me, I know I can't be fooled. The color of 'botcha' is a dead giveaway compared to fresh pork," said buyer Max Marasigan at the Kamuning Public Market.

"Just one sniff and you'll know it's 'botcha', even if they try to convince you it's fresh!" added buyer Clarissa Cariaga.

And buyer Ed de Jesus said, "I used to be a security guard at a slaughterhouse so I know. 'Botcha' is sticky and slippery."

Health danger

But although it's a good thing that buyers know fresh meat from "botcha," the NMIS said it's only right, since there is no telling which market the "botcha" may land in next.

"The smuggling of 'botcha' changes markets, switches places, to give authorities a hard time detecting it," said Bacayo. "But I can say this: Every single market has sold 'botcha' at one point or another."

Bacayo explained further that while there is no danger of the sick pig's disease actually transferring to the person who eats its double-dead meat, persons who eat "botcha" will still most likely suffer from diarrhea and vomiting, because they will ingest the bacteria coming from the contaminated pig's blood.

"In a dead animal, the contamination of blood is fast. And 'botcha' meat is often slaughtered in a hurry, with no time to properly drain the pig's blood. The worst that could happen is one could suffer from food poisoning, and die from contamination," said Bacayo.

NMIS reminded the public to avoid "botcha" at all costs, despite the allure of being sold at a much lower price than fresh meat.

"What good is lower-priced meat, if you'll be sacrificing your safety and your loved one's health in exchange for it?" asked NMIS.

« Antwoord #2 Gepost op: 18 November 2010, 17:45:23 »

Public warned of ‘botcha’ in processed meat products

Manila Times , 19 November 2010

THE public should be more careful in purchasing or consuming “generic” processed meat products being sold in the market because there is a possibility that double dead meat or “botcha” was used to make the product.
This was learned after Quezon City chief veterinarian Ana Maria Cabel admitted that there is now way to tell if the meat used in process meat products like, longaniza (sausage) tocino, embotido and the likes is botcha.

But Cabel in a press conference held at the Quezon City hall assured that the city government is doing everything is could to stop the proliferation of double dead meats especially in Balintawak market, a known drop off point of hot meats.

In fact, she said, city authorities were able to confiscate a total of 11.6 tons of double dead meats in several operations from September to November conducted at the Balintawak Market.

The intensified campaign against double dead meat also led to the closure of three privately owned markets in the Balintawak after having found in violation of existing rules and regulations on sanitation and safety of the public.

“Our operation against double dead meat is being conducted regularly to discourage unscrupulous traders from selling illegal meats which pose danger to the public,” Cabel said.

To make sure that process meat products are not tainted with hot meats, Cabel said that there will be a continuous monitoring of meat processing plants in the city and make sure that they have the proper permits and license to support their operation.
At present individuals found guilty of selling hot meats only face six months detention and fine of P2,000 to P10,000.
Jefferson Antiporda



  Numbers 19:11

Viewing the 1769 King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Numbers 19:11

He that toucheth the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days.

Numbers 6:6

Viewing the 1769 King James Version. Click to switch to 1611 King James Version of Numbers 6:6

All the days that he separateth himself unto the LORD he shall come at no dead body.

The health risks of dead bodies are dangers related to the improper preparation and disposal of cadavers. While normal circumstances allow cadavers to be quickly embalmed, cremated, or buried, natural and man-made disasters can quickly overwhelm and/or interrupt the established protocols for dealing with the dead. Under such circumstances, the decomposition and putrefaction of cadavers goes unchecked, and raises a series of health, logistical, and psychological issues. After disasters with extensive loss of life due to trauma rather than disease—earthquakes, storms, human conflict, etc.—many resources are often expended on burying the dead quickly, and applying disinfectant to bodies for the specific purpose of preventing disease. This is an inappropriate use of scarce resources and manpower: the health risks from dead bodies in such cases are minimal.
According to health professionals, the fear of spread of disease by bodies killed by trauma rather than disease is not justified. Among others, Steven Rottman, director of the UCLA Center for Public Health and Disasters, said that no scientific evidence exists that bodies of disaster victims increase the risk of epidemics, adding that cadavers posed less risk of contagion than living people. In disasters involving trauma where there is competition for resources, they should be going into establishment of water supply, sanitation, shelter, warmth and hygienic food for the survivors, not digging mass graves. Spraying is a waste of disinfectant and manpower. Indiscriminate burial of corpses demoralises survivors and the lack of death certificates can cause practical problems to survivors.

The situation is quite different in the case of a health disaster such as an epidemic of certain diseases which can be spread by contact with the bodies of those who died of the disease.