Erik Jampa Anderson – The Sowa Rigpa Revolution: Tibetan Medicine, Ecology, and the Breath of Life
In today’s episode, Erik Jampa Anderson will take us through the rich and fascinating world of Sowa Rigpa, the Tibetan Science of Healing, and discuss some of the ways that traditional medicine can help to revolutionise our approaches to health, personal and social wellness, and environmentalism. For years, scientists have been warning of an impending rise in zoonotic infections like Covid-19. A perfect storm of deforestation, global warming, widespread inequality, and disrespect for the ‘sensitive’ regions of the planet have forced us into a new and frightening era of uncertainty. But beyond tackling this singular epidemiological eruption, how can we truly heal on a deeper level?
800 years ago, the renowned yogi-physician Yuthok Yönten Gönpo composed a collection of texts that would come to represent the basis for all Tibetan medicine, seamlessly integrating cutting-edge Indian, Chinese, and Greco-Arabic medical developments with indigenous healing knowledge. Of particular interest is Tibetan Medicine’s unique theory of ‘provocation’ (Tib. gDon). Rooted in a deep and sophisticated indigenous understanding of the energies of the natural world, Tibetan scientists like Yuthok concluded that infectious diseases arise in part due to an imbalanced relationship with the natural world.
We will also explore Tibetan perceptions of rLung (‘wind’), a highly sophisticated and fascinating framework for conceptualising mind-body interactions, along with a simple traditional method for soothing excess rLung on your own. Together, these two concepts – rLung and gDon – illustrate two of the many ways that traditional medicine can help us to unite disparate fields of science, health, and philosophy to enter into a new age of revolutionary wellness.
This episode was recorded during ‘Healing the Body, Healing the Mind’, a weekend of workshops and talks organised by Science & Wisdom LIVE in collaboration with Jamyang London Buddhist Centre and Land of Medicine Buddha.