The international macrobiotic movement was started by a remarkable and widely traveled Japanese, George Ohsawa, who was joined in this work in the late. The George Ohsawa Macrobiotic Foundation is a non-profit, public service organization chartered in to educate the general public about macrobiotics, . Macrobiotics receives its inspiration from George Ohsawa—a Japanese man born in Ohsawa had a difficult childhood; he witnessed his mother and.
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Our key source of information on the origins of macrobiotics and the life and work of Ohsawa is Georges Ohsawa and the Japanese Religious Tradition by Ronald E. Much of our information for the rest of the chapter ohsada come from extensive interviews egorges leaders of the macrobiotic movement in the U. The Roots of Macrobiotics. Ohsawa never claimed to be the founder or originator of macrobiotics a term meaning “great life or vitality”.
Manabu Nishibata, a disciple of Ishizuka’s, also had an important influence on Ohsawa. It contends that there is a profound relationship between food, health, and disease, and that food is an important ohwawa of treating disease. The particular importance and power of cereal grains for preserving and restoring health is clearly stated.
Ohsawa often quoted its admonition that “The true sage is concerned not with the cure of disease but with goerges prevention. The Shinto classics such as the Kojiki compiled in A. For over a thousand years at Japan’s most famous shrine at Ohsawwa, this deity has been worshipped in the form of brown rice. Rice and other foods have always ggeorges a key role in the annual ritual cycle.
Ekiken Kaibara was a student of Chinese literature and Oriental medicine, who also wrote about philosophy primarily Confucianethics, education, and natural history.
In his highly influential book Yojokun Treatise on the Nourishment of Lifehe described a regimen for maintaining good health by avoiding all types of self-indulgence. He encouraged people to “Eat less, sleep less, desire less,” to avoid georrges, and to practice a form of self-massage called do-in. Kaibara believed that every wise person’s birthright was to delight in the simple but profound pleasures of heaven and earth, and a life span of years.
Nanboku Mizuno, who lived in the mids and early s, was the father of Japanese physiognomy. After years of study and observation as an attendant in a Japanese public bath, a barber, and a worker in a crematorium, he wrote the great Japanese classic on physiognomy, the Nanboku Soho Nanboku Ohxawa of Physiognomya ten-volume work published between and He felt that a person’s character and past and future fortunes could be discerned by careful observation of physical characteristics, and that a person could change his inherited longevity through proper diet.
Sagen Ishizuka grew up and was educated at a time when Western culture, including “scientific” medicine and nutrition, was being imported into Japan. Infor example, the Japanese government prohibited the practice of traditional medical techniques such as acupuncture, herbal medicine, and moxabustion, and established Western medicine as the official mode of treatment.
Afflicted by a kidney infection, young Ishizuka had been unable to cure himself by Western medicine, so he turned to the study of Oriental medicine. This expanded into a lifelong interest in food and health, while he served as a physician in the military.
In he published the results of his studies in a voluminous work entitled A Chemical-Nutritional Theory of Long Life.
A popularized version of this difficult, technical work appeared in as A Nutritional Theory of the Mind and Body: A Nutritional Method for Health. The second book was extremely popular, and was reprinted 23 times. Ishizuka’s research led him to conclude that the balance of potassium K and sodium Na salts in the body was the prime determinant of health, that food is the main factor in maintaining this balance, and that food must therefore georgs the basis for curing disease and maintaining health.
Food is the highest medicine. Ishizuka saw Westerners as sodium-dominant people animal products are high in sodium characterized by materialism, selfishness, individualism, and a drive for sensory geodges. Upon his retirement Ishizuka devoted himself to teaching and private practice.
This macrobiotic food guru is the reason you and Gwyneth Paltrow eat like hippies
In he and his disciples founded the Shokuyo-kai food-nourishment movementwhich taught people of the problems with the new Western diet, rich in meat, sugar, and refined foods. They urged a return to the traditional Japanese diet based on whole grains, vegetables, and soyfoods. Ishizuka saw many patients daily and cured them with food. He was renowned for his success in healing people considered incurable by standard Western methods.
Thus while most Japanese were being swept away by the great tide of Westernization, gradually abandoning their own culture and traditions including their food and healing artsIshizuka and his associates viewed this trend critically; they attempted to borrow and synthesize only the good points, while preserving the endangered “national essence of Japan.
A disciple of Ishizuka’s, Dr. Manabu Nishibata, developed the basic concept that food should be chosen according to the principle of Shin-do fu-nimeaning “the body and earth are not two. Likewise people should learn the joy of flowing with the great seasonal rhythms of the earth, choosing foods according to time and place, locally and in season, in harmony with the Order of the Universe.
The Life of George Ohsawa.
George Ohsawa, Macrobiotics, and Soyfoods Part 1
George Ohsawa was born on 18 October in an eastern suburb of Kyoto, Japan. His name at birth was Joichi Sakurazawa.
He had an unhappy childhood in a disenfranchised, broken samurai family. The Meiji Restoration abolished the gsorges of the samurai class. His formal education stopped with a commercial high school, since he was too poor ohdawa continue. But he was an excellent student and he continued his education on his own with great drive throughout his life, reading voraciously in several languages on a remarkably wide range of vital subjects.
While Ohsawa was still a boy his mother died of tuberculosis. Her first two children daughters had both died in their infancy. She had tried to introduce a Western style diet into her family’s meals, hoping that it would make them healthier.
In George’s younger brother died of tuberculosis at age 16 and a short time later, at age 18, George himself was diagnosed as having tuberculosis; he was given little chance of survival. By good fortune he happened to find one of Ishizuka’s books in a library. Ishizuka had died two years previously and Ohsawa had not met him. Ohsawa tried the recommended diet georves brown rice and cooked vegetables, with small amounts of oil and salt; soon the tuberculosis disappeared.
Ohsawa continued to practice this simple diet. After working for three years with a trading firm in Kobe, he joined the Shoku-yo group which Ishizuka had founded in In Ohsawa gave up his business career and became a full-time gorges employee with the group. Until he was general superintendent and head of publications. From he was president. Here he began to use the terms yin and yangwhich even Ishizuka had used broadly to refer to sodium and potassium type foods.
In Ohsawa wrote a eulogistic biography of Ishizuka. By that time he had been married and ohswa either two or three times. A new chapter in Ohsawa’s life opened in when, at age 36, he set out for Paris to introduce the philosophy and practice of Shoku-yo food and nourishment, which he later called “macrobiotics” to the Western georgges. In what was then the intellectual and cultural capital of the West, he aspired to be a cultural bridge.
It was well received and he began ohawa move in cultured circles. After a brief return to Japan in to oppose the growing militarism there, he went back to Paris and in wrote Acupuncture and Chinese Medicinethe first book on this subject in English. His work influenced English and German acupuncture writers such as Lawson-Wood. In he returned to Japan, where he stayed for 17 long and turbulent years. He actively opposed hosawa ultra nationalism, militarism, and expansionism, while increasing his efforts as president of the Shoku-yo group.
Inhowever, he was asked to resign because of conflicts largely ohssawa by his antigovernmental political activities, ggeorges also by his personality and philosophy. Inat age 44, he married Lima, who was 38 and whose real??
She began to accompany him on many of his lecture tours teaching macrobiotic cooking.
Since much of his time had been devoted to individual health and medical consultations and to writing. Now he decided to try to establish a new organization to convert Japan to shoku-yowhich he presented as the solution to all the country’s problems. The struggle with the West, he maintained, should be ideological, not military, lest Japan be defeated.
Once the war began, Ohsawa promoted shoku-yo as a means to achieve victory. By a war euphoria was geoorges Japan, but by things started to get bad. Together with his wife Lima and daughter Fumiko, plus a few intimate disciples, Ohsawa retreated to a remote mountain village in Yamanashi prefecture, called Hi no Maru Haru?? His antiwar activities continued and in January he was imprisoned, questioned, and severely mistreated. After the war, Ohsawa recovered slowly. He worked to make shoku-yo the guiding principle for the reconstruction of the nation.
In he became geortes with the World Federalist Movement, which was trying ohzawa seek world peace through world government. He tried to introduce his teachings on food into their program, and he began to call himself a “citizen of the world.
There he began to gather and teach a small group of devoted disciples, who would later spread his teachings throughout the world. In he changed his name from Joichi Sakurazawa to George or Georges Phsawa George sounded like Joichi, the “s” on the end had to do with his love of Geores and French writers, and Ohsawa was written with the same georves as Sakurazawa, but pronounced differently.
At the same time, he first began to call his ohsaa and teachings “macrobiotics. Kotzsch feels that he probably borrowed it from the 19th century German philosopher and physician, Christolph Wilhelm von Hufeland. However Herman Aihara, a close student of Ohsawa, feels that Ohsawa did not know of von Hufeland’s work or term, and that Ohsawa coined the term independently himself. At this time Ohsawa adopted the Western practice of having his students call him by his first name, George.
He gave almost all of his students new, Westernized first beorges such as Cornellia, Roland, Herman, etc. The names were meant to show that the students were citizens of the world, not merely Japan. It was a personal choice whether to use the Westernized name or not; many chose not to. Ohsawa georgfs began to dispatch his more accomplished prote’ge’s, who were eager to spread the teachings to foreign lands.
Herman Aihara went to New York in Later others went to France, Brazil, Germany, and elsewhere. In Octobera few days before his 60th birthday, George and Lima embarked on a new phase of their lives. He called it the “World Journey of the Penniless Samurai.
George Ohsawa – Wikiquote
He hoped to spread macrobiotics around the world, making it a basic principle not only of personal and spiritual health but of world peace as well.
The couple first spent 18 ohsaww in India teaching and studying macrobiotics. They then went to Africa for several months, where George had a deep spiritual awakening at age 62 and later tried, unsuccessfully, to convince Dr. Albert Schweitzer of his philosophy and practice.