Saturday, January 24, 2009

Update on the Free China preservation effort

This is an update from Dione Chen who is spearheading the effort to save the Free China.

Thank you for your interest in saving the Free China, a historic Chinese junk that will be lost forever unless preservation efforts succeed.
We appreciate—and need—your support. We'd like to provide you with a brief update on preservation efforts, and let you know about the areas of greatest need. Any assistance will be valuable. Please visit our website for more information.

Emergency Short-Term Preservation Strategy:
With the Dec. 31 deadline for destruction fast-approaching, in mid-December, Chinese Junk Preservation was able to first "buy time" by negotiating to pay for a 3-month extension for continued temporary storage of the junk. The owner will not extend this new deadline, which is fast approaching.
We have developed a pragmatic, emergency preservation strategy to give the junk a chance at survival. The strategy includes these essential steps:
Pay for interim storage of the junk at another location in the San Francisco Bay Area, and transport the junk there (by sea/land), while efforts continue to secure a long-term home for the junk.
Commission a professional survey and documentation of the junk's construction and original and current (altered) condition.
Collect and save the rich array of documentation, photos, news clippings, and film that exist—but need to be preserved as they are currently vulnerable to deterioration.
Support Critical to Saving Junk
Chinese Junk Preservation is a small group of volunteers with a dream of saving this historic vessel. Here are the areas of greatest need:
* Help find a home for the Free China. Do you know of a potential long-term owner and/or home for the Free China? We are seeking a long-term home for the junk where it may have a secure, public life, that is, where the junk will be safe and be exhibited in a way that will generate public awareness and understanding about maritime, Chinese and American history and culture, as well as immigration. A critical short-term need is for an interim home while a long-term home is found and readied. The ideal interim home will be in the San Francisco Bay Area, on land immediately adjacent to the water.
* Volunteer. You can make a difference! Join our crew of supporters today. We are looking for volunteers to assist and/or take a leadership role in the following areas: outreach to prospective supporters, partners and donors, fundraising and grant writing, public relations, historic preservation and boat restoration, nonprofit management, Chinese-English translation and online communications.
* Donate. The Chinese Junk Preservation group operates on a shoestring budget and relies on volunteers. We need to raise $50,000 to implement the emergency short-term strategy that will give the junk a last chance at survival. This money will be dedicated to securing an interim home for the junk, preparing exhibition/educational materials, conducting outreach to current and potential supporters and partners, and obtaining a professional survey of the junk and documentation of its construction and history. Tax-deductible donations can be made to the group via its fiscal sponsor, the Chinese Historical Society of America (, which is the largest and oldest Chinese American historical society in the U.S. Information on how to donate can be found at the group's website We also seek an experienced fundraiser to lead fundraising efforts, and volunteers to assist with outreach.
* Spread the Word: Chinese Junk Preservation welcomes interest and support in this preservation project. The more people who know about the junk, the better our chances of finding a new home, potential sponsor or talented volunteer! Please tell people about this preservation effort. Invite them to visit this website and join our mailing list for future updates. We welcome everyone who would like to be added to our mailing list to send an email stating their interest and contact information to us at: To find out more, help spread the word about efforts, or to make a donation, please visit . Emails may be sent to:

Keep in touch. We value your interest and support in this inspiring preservation project. Please join our mailing list to receive occasional email updates about our progress. To join, please send an email to, including your contact information and a brief note letting us know of your interest. Please be assured, we will not share your email address and you may unsubscribe at any time.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

American publisher to issue Chinese Medical Science book by UMAC's professors

University of Macau (UMAC) revealed that Nova Science Publishers, Inc from USA, has recently published “Pharmacological Activity Based Quality Control of Chinese Herbs”, written by Associate Prof. Li Shaoping and Prof. Wang Yitao, from the Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences (ICMS) of UMAC. Following the growing trend of “Getting Back to Nature”, the Chinese herbs have become more and more popular because of its security and effectiveness characteristics. Associate Professor Li and Professor Wang's book was written based on the recent research results of the quality control of Chinese herbs conducted by UMAC, as well as invited experts from the Mainland, Hong Kong and Singapore to write and edit the book. Meanwhile, the concept of “Pharmacological Activity Based Quality Control of Chinese Herbs” not only represents the research direction of the quality control of modern Chinese medicine, but is also conducive to the international expansion of Chinese medicine. Nova Science Publishers, Inc (USA) is one of the most influential publishers of scientific and technical books in the world, and is well-known to publish the newest advancement in scientific areas. It publishes more than 500 types of book and 45 types of academic periodicals every year. The publication of the book has indicated that research on the quality control for Chinese medicine conducted by UMAC is international acknowledged.

For full article see:

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Question: What do you think of Colorpuncture?

Answer: Colorpuncture...Hmmm... I've heard of it but don't know much about it so I looked it up. After reviewing the colorpuncture website, here's what I think:

There's a lot of people who have unusual, non-traditional takes on acupuncture and this is one of them. One of the claims on their website is "Colorpuncture therapy uses precisely targeted light treatments to gently unlock and release emotional trauma and blocked soul information which often underlie our illnesses."
Personally I don't believe that someone can "unlock and release...blocked soul information". In fact, I don't think there is such a thing as "blocked soul information". The key though is can it make you well? A lot of things get better all by themselves so a good test, in my opinion, is getting rid of pain fast. My experience with acupuncture is that if you chose the right point you can have an instant change in the level of pain. I doubt colorpuncture can do this.
If you try it you'll have to tell me if it works but you might be better off going to someone who is good at using acupuncture needles.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Achyranthis "Niu xi" and Achyranthis "Tu niu xi"

Question: What is the difference between Achyranthis "Niu xi" and Achyranthis "Tu niu xi"?

Answer: There seems to be some confusion about this herb but the clearest explanation is found in Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica. See link below:

Basically, both herbs invigorate the blood and direct downward but Niu Xi tonifies the Kidneys, strengthens the lumbar area and knees. It does not drain fire or resolve toxicity. Tu niu xi has no ability to tonify deficiency, but does drain fire, resolve toxicity, clear heat toxin and unblock painful urinary dribbling.

As far as the prepared forms of niu xi are concerned, this is something you would do yourself by dry-frying, salt-frying, wine-frying, or charring. See Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica for full information.

You can buy Achyranthis (Niu Xi) at, see:

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Breath of fresh air

By Lu Hong (China Daily)

Engineer Liu Sha spends long days in the office, suffers from shortness of breath and easily catches colds. But her days of anguish are slowly disappearing thanks to "yijinjing", a combination of stretching movements and breathing exercises.

This technique was practiced inside the confines of the Shaolin Temple 1,500 years ago and up until 40 years ago, remained a mystery.

The exercises Liu practices mostly involve standing in a half crouched position raising the arms and breathing slowly.

"Now I have stronger breaths and a bigger appetite," Liu, 31, says. "My neck pain is also getting a little relief."

Under the instruction of Master Liu Yuchao, the 31-year-old professional has learned to control her breathing and can now feel qi (energy) flowing through her body.

Breathing plays an important role in most yijinjing movements, which is similar to taichi, another traditional system of physical exercises.

She learned from a news report that a yijinjing training class had opened in the Lianyang International Neighborhood, just a stone's throw away from her home.

"I learned that yijinjing is also helpful for ordinary practitioners to replenish qi, nourish the blood and calm the nerves," she says. "Then I decided to have a try."

Yijinjing, which means "limbering up exercises for the tendons", is one of the most treasured internal exercises to come out of the Shaolin Temple in Henan province. The temple is also the birthplace of Chinese kungfu.

According to legend, Bodhidharma Ta Mo created yijinjing about 1,500 years ago. It blended Zen Buddhism with martial arts to help strengthen the Shaolin monks, prolong their meditations and get them fighting-fit in order to defend their temple from invaders.

For centuries, the Shaolin monks practiced these exercises in secret and most Chinese were unaware of the techniques until the 1960s, when Louis Cha's martial arts novels became hugely popular.

In these novels, the leading characters began their lives as ordinary men but after practicing yijinjing in the Shaolin Temple they would miraculously grow into top kungfu masters.

"Actually yijinjing is not as mysterious as people think. It's just like yoga, and is good for everyday fitness," says Liu Yuchao, the instructor.

Chinese medicine doctor, Liu Yuchao, from Yueyang Chinese Medicine Hospital, opened the first yijinjing training class in Shanghai in September and Liu Sha was one of his first students.

"In my clinic, I've often taught my patients some movements to practice at home, as a way to coordinate with their clinical therapy," Dr Liu says. "They just don't know that I'm teaching them yijinjing."

Yueyang Chinese Medicine Hospital is now launching a health campaign in the city and Dr Liu is the yijinjing promoter.

Liu massages the neck and spine of each student and can discover their health problems immediately. He then suggests the best movements to cure their pain. Students consult Liu about their health problems after class and ask for advice.

Dr Liu and his promotion team want to promote yijinjing among foreigners in Shanghai.

Their first class was at Lianyang International Neighborhood in Pudong and their second class, which is being prepared, will be held in Gubei International Neighborhood.

Currently, Yueyang Hospital is not the only organization devoted to promoting yijinjing. Shaolin Temple announced a plan in September to open yijinjing training courses across China.

"Our company did have such a plan but everything is still under preparation," says Qian Xiangpeng, a project leader of Shaolin Huanxidi Company, a subsidiary of the temple's commercial arm.

Jane Chen, editor-in-chief of a yachting magazine, has tried yijinjing because she flies to Europe six times a month on average for business and the jetlag leaves her exhausted. Yoga didn't help so she tried something new.

"I've practiced yoga for a long time. It emphasizes body stretching and twisting," she says. "For me, it's too simple because I have a soft body.

"I often feel shortness of breath, yijinjing is an exercise that emphasizes internal breathing, and so it might work on me."

See this article at:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

What is Artemisinin?

Coartem, a malaria drug whose potency is derived from a Chinese herb, may soon be approved for sale in the United States.
By Jordan Lite, Scientific American

Coartem, derived from the Chinese herb artemisinin, wipes out malaria in over 96 per cent of patients in regions where malaria has become resistant to older drugs.

See full article at:

Sweet Wormwood or artemesiae annuae (Chinese: Qing Hao) is available at:

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Actor Jeremy Pivens false Claims Blaming Chinese Herbs for Mercury poisoning? You Decide!

Recent articles flying over the Web claim the unsubstantiated “fact” that actor Jeremy Piven's “mercury poisoning” came from “sushi” and “Chinese herbs”.
Chinese herbs laced with mercury are illegal in this country and have been banned for years. Where did Piven get them?
We would hope that Piven's doctor would explain, however, apparently he's a controversial figure in the medical field.
As it turns out, Colker is a “love doctor,” or he was until the Federal Trade Commission called the sex drug he formulated and hawked in infomercials a sham.
Colker was busted in an FTC complaint against a Portland, Maine, company known as Vital Basics, Inc. The company was sued for false and misleading advertising involving a sex drug that Colker had formulated called V-Factor Natural Pack.
Colker, who bills himself as a “doctor and fitness trainer to the stars,” has also been sued in at least four states over another “scientific study” and testimonials in support of the sale and use of ephedra-laced drugs.
Read more about Dr. Colker at: