Wanna go holistic? Why not do it right here in Chang Mai
Chiang Mai is set to host the Worldwide Holistic Healing Seminar
2009 from February 20-22 at the city’s Empress Convention Centre.
“If there ever was a time in your life where health should come first, now
is the time,” say the event’s organizers, the International Center of
Natural Sciences (ICNS), who add that the benefits of holistic healing need
no advertising, no large amounts of money, nor is a degree in science
required to understand the theory. Holistic medicine is the philosophy of
medical health care that views overall well-being rather than concentrating
on singular parts of our physical bodies, tackling the causes of disease
rather than just attacking the symptoms.
Worldwide Holistic Healing Seminar 2009 will take place from February 20-22.
The Worldwide Holistic Healing Seminar 2009 is aiming to attract health
professionals, those who are undergoing treatment for chronic illness, and
those who simply want to maintain their current vitality and fitness level,
as well as those who wish to find out more about the holistic approach.
Shari Brown, from INCS, says that, “Holistic healing can and will improve
the quality of your own life as well as impart knowledge and experience that
can be passed on to your children, friends and relatives.”
The first Worldwide Holistic Healing Seminar was held four years ago in
Chiang Mai, and organizers claim it was a huge success with over a thousand
people from 35 countries in attendance. This year’s seminar promises to be
even more spectacular.
Scheduled to attend and deliver a speech is the president of Gambia, whom
organizers describe as ‘a healer in his own right’. Also scheduled to make
an appearance is Mantak Chia of Chiang Mai’s Tao Garden, who was a popular
speaker at the first event and will talk again this year on transforming
stress into vitality. According to ICNS, Phil Morimitsu will also be
returning from Hong Kong to talk about mastering change in your life.
Shari adds that, “Holistic medicine seeks to heal and balance all areas of
our lives. In addition, it fosters a sense of self-discipline, giving you
the ability to make the best choices. These forms and methods of using
complementary medicine can help establish a healthy and harmonious
lifestyle. Learning from experts in the field will help everyone reach their
goals of longevity, health and happiness.”
Organizers said the seminar will present an outstanding range of topics.
Talks by more than forty speakers will include themes such as aromatherapy,
Vedic astrology, yoga, music therapy, brain spotting, meridians,
acupuncture, homeopathy, and spiritual exercise.
The seminar will also present a wide range of quality health and herbal
products, together with researched and proven innovations in natural
medicine. Workshops include anti-ageing, dimensions of wellness, gemology,
Emotional Freedom Technique, laughter therapy, managing change, and
transforming stress into vitality among the 30 subjects covered.
The event will stress that the holistic approach is personalised and
proactive, and bridges the gap between conventional medicine and alternative
therapies. Talks will be broadcast in English and Thai, with professional
translations available with the use of individual headsets.
During the three day seminar, participants will receive expert guidance in
taking care of their health and well being; learn new skills from workshops,
discussions and introductory talks on more than 25 health topics; network
with professionals to expand their business opportunities; discover the
latest innovations and research in holistic medicine; experience the
uplifting of consciousness, make new friends and share joy, laughter and
fun; and, last but by no means least, gain more understanding of and
confidence in the holistic approach to health and healing.
For more information, please visit www.ircns.org.
Skal members visit ‘Look at This’
gallery’s print exhibition
Marshall and Joy Kelly
(centre) with their friends and artists.
The newly opened ‘Look at This’ art gallery, located on
Nimmanhaeminda Road opposite the Amari Rincome, held an open house on
January 22 for members of the Chiang Mai SKAL group and their friends. The
evening celebrated the gallery’s latest exhibition, consisting of prints by
five up-and-coming Thai printmakers from Chiang Mai.
The owners of the gallery, Marshall and Joy Kelly, served up delicious
wines, paired divinely with delectable tasty treats, to match with the art
works on display. The print-makers themselves were on hand to discuss their
works, a ‘static mime’ artiste had been invited to entertain, and the
evening was capped off with a fun wine taste-rating for twelve guests. The
lucky dozen had each brought in a bottle of wine from their native country,
wrapped in foil to disguise its origin. The competing wines included
offerings from France, Lebanon, Australia, America and South Africa, with
the overall winner being a Grgich Hills Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley.
As is usual at SKAL meetings and events, a good time was had by all.
The ‘Look at This’ exhibition will continue through mid- March; for further
details, please call on 053-400921.
A ‘Spa’ with a difference
Guy, with his wife Toi, and
lots of friends, celebrate both
the opening of Spa Chiang Mai and Toi’s birthday.
Just imagine having a luxurious spa with a focus on holistic health
right on your doorstep - without even having to leave your moo baan!
Together with organic food grown on the hill above the homes and
recreational areas …what more could one need?
furry ‘whatchamacallit’ found its way on to the invited guest list.
This excellent idea has been brought to Chiang Mai from Koh Samui by Guy and
Toi Hopkins, who founded Spa Koh Samui in 1992. The perfect place in the
perfect setting is how Guy imagined his new venture, and a perfect setting
it would seem to be. Set on a gently sloping hill, and landscaped with
trees, streams, lakes and flowers amidst a village scene of rice paddies and
agricultural life, the peace and quiet soothes you the minute you step out
of your car.
Except, that is, on the evening of January17, when a huge joint celebration
for Toi’s birthday and the official opening of the project took place,
attended by hundreds of Guy and Toi ‘s friends and neighbours. Centered
around the restaurant were tables serving food, wine and beer, with lovely
young ladies refilling glasses from jugs of whatever pleased the guests. A
stage had been set up to accommodate the band, with lights streaming out
across the sloping grounds, and a special area next to one of the swimming
pools had been reserved for the welcoming speeches.
Guests, both Thai and foreign, came from everywhere, and fanned out at the
tables and on the grass, eating, chatting and having a good time in the cool
evening. Traditional dancers entertained, and floating lanterns were lit and
sent into the heavens for good luck and good health for Guy and Toi and for
their new project. All in all, a great evening.
The spa itself is based on a health and wellness principle, and, of course,
includes all the facilities necessary to ensure a healthy start to
residents’ new lives in Thailand.
The Chiang mai Mail will be visiting the complex within a few weeks -
in daylight - so that we can be shown round the homes and grounds and be
able to appreciate the lovely setting. Watch this space for a full report on
Spa Chiang Mai, especially if you are searching for the perfect place to
Horizons Unlimited Travellers
hold mini-meeting in Chiang Mai
Bikers and friends meet at the
Chiang Mai Saloon 2.
Horizons Unlimited (HU) Travellers, a loosely-constituted
organisation for adventurous motorcyclists, recently held one of their
‘mini-meetings’ at the Chiang Mai Saloon on Ratchawithi Road. Small ‘local’
HU Community meetings, often held in someone’s backyard, garden or field for
a barbie, or in a restaurant or local watering hole, are often held to
welcome a traveller passing through, or just as an excuse to get together
and keep the travel fires burning.
For this, the 3rd meeting in Chiang Mai, 37 bikers came from far-flung
places including Switzerland, Australia, the UK, France, the USA, Canada,
Laos and Germany, and also, closer to home, from Thailand. The theme was,
‘We’re here for the free beer, the free information and the free-style
travel.’ Of course, Chiang Mai is an ideal destination as it is the perfect
base from which to travel on a motorcycle around the South East Asian
countries bordering the north of Thailand. The group described themselves as
a ‘mixed adventure travel group,’ with motorcycles ranging from BMW’s to
Honda Phantoms. One threesome is planning an attempted ride across Myanmar.
We wish them good luck with that one! Another is on his second ‘round the
world’ trip, riding the same bike, a BMW F650.
Horizons Unlimited is the largest motorcycle travel group in the world. Its
website, at www.horizonsunlimited .com, is extremely informative about all
aspects of adventure motorcycling. For further details of the Chiang Mai
meeting, please go to http://www.horizonsunlimited
Will Obama be ready for radical
humanitarian intervention in Burma?
Even before the euphoria following the historic inauguration of
Barack Obama had died down, the new US President moved almost with lighting
speed on his first day in office to tackle the issue of the closure of
Guantanamo Bay. As a result, the Cuban prison camp will be closed down
within one year and the administration has suspended trials for terrorist
suspects at Guantanamo for 120 days pending a review of the military
tribunals. Many EU countries were particularly impressed with the intended
Guantanamo Bay closure, which was seen as the right approach to undo the
Bush’s era human rights violations and restore America’s lost moral position
as befits a democratic superpower.
Meanwhile, Burma has been hinting that the new US President should change
Washington’s tough policy towards its military regime and end the
‘misunderstandings’ of the past, according to a media report on Friday. In
Obama’s inauguration speech, he stated, ‘To those who cling to power through
corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the
wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to
unclench your fist.’
In the Obama administration’s foreign policy agenda, a paragraph reads,
‘Seek New Partnerships in Asia: Obama and Biden will forge a more effective
framework in Asia that goes beyond bilateral agreements, occasional summits,
and ad hoc arrangements, such as the six-party talks on North Korea. They
will maintain strong ties with allies like Japan, South Korea and Australia,
work to build an infrastructure with countries in East Asia that can promote
stability and prosperity and work to ensure that China plays by
One wonders, whether the overtures of the Burmese military regime regarding
a better relationship with Washington could be a fresh start for
reconciliation and the beginning of a win-win outcome for the conflict
within Burma and as well, the hostile Burmese-US relationship.
Arranging six-party talks, as in the case of North Korea, could be a
possibility. The only condition necessary to get it started is that the
give-and-take of compromise must be available. Whilst the US-led team
wouldn’t pose a problem, the Burmese military regime will have to budge from
its stance of insisting on playing by its own game plan and rules. In other
words, the acceptance of political accommodation, all-inclusiveness and the
level playing field will have to be an agreed precondition.
The Burmese military regime cannot expect to improve its relations with
Washington without genuine compromise to end its tyrannical rule, oppression
and political monopoly.
Whilst the ethnic resistance and democratic opposition groups are well aware
that Obama’s plate is full with heavy priority issues such as the global
financial crisis, the US troop withdrawal from Iraq, climate change,
improving America’s relationship internationally, brokering peace between
Israel and the Palestinians, and empowering and supporting Afghanistan
government against the Taliban, they are confident that the moral and
humanitarian issues involving Burma will also be part and parcel of his
foreign policy agenda, even if further down his list of priorities.
As it is, the Burmese military has never been ready for compromise or
flexibility where power-sharing or political accommodation is concerned. In
a situation of continued rejection on the part of Burmese military, Obama
would be forced to alter his approach to help deliver reconciliation and the
democratisation process in Burma.
Although the diplomatic overtures to woo the Burmese military for genuine
democratic change all-inclusiveness should continue, Obama could also ‘up
the ante’ by innovative and radical humanitarian intervention, short of
military undertakings by US forces. For example, Washington could work with
Bangkok to create sanctuaries along the Thai-Burmese border, where the bulk
of the 500,000 internally displaced persons are struggling to survive on a
daily basis. All this could take place within Burma, close to the border,
with the help of the many ethnic resistance movements. This way, the US
military would not need to be involved physically, but only need to come up
with material needs and management know-how, under the supervision of UN or
agreed international establishments. If this happened, many other
humanitarian devices and forms of aid could be carried out across the border
without having to deal with the military regime. In other words, the
international community could bypass the regime to give badly needed help to
the oppressed population along the border.
For such a scenario to become a reality, Obama needs to secure Bangkok’s
involvement in implementing humanitarian aids. It should be possible for the
US President to co-ordinate and work closely with Thai PM Abhisit Vejjajiva,
notwithstanding ASEAN itself, to create a new balance of power which would
force the Burmese military government to come to the negotiating table for
genuine give-and-take discussions. At the end of the day, a two-pronged
approach of pressure and engagement seems to be the only viable approach to
deal with the entrenched dictatorship. What the people of Burma need now is
a physical commitment from international stakeholders, led by the US and
based on negotiation, to give them a helping hand and hope for the future.