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    Posted January 2, 2013 by
    Carbondale, Colorado

    wfp and 14 other iReporters contributed to Open Story: Tributes for Newtown
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    Thoughts on This Tragedy

    Modern life is fractured and disconnected. It is much easier for children raised in a world where both parents are workaholics to not get the love and attention they need to develop properly. Left on their own much of the time, they easily absorb what else society offers as a daily mental diet: violence through video games, violence in films, and violence in world news. Raised on the modern non-nutritional diet that involves methodical and systematic slaughter of animals, dis-integrated, processed foods and refined, caffeinated, sugar-sweetened cocktails called “soft” drinks – all this is a recipe for disaster.

    It is time that we take a close look at these factors and do something to change the way we live, what we feed our children and how we raise our children.
    Studies with baby monkeys that are raised away from their mothers indicated the withdrawal of love and guidance of parents makes them fail to grow socially; timid, introverted, aggressive and hostile when provoked. The failure to grow emotionally and socially was due to a lack of nurturing they would normally be exposed to when held by their mother. Are we raising offspring who are similarly unfit to cope with and adapt properly to the stresses of modern life?

    Traditional families are raised as an integrated unit, in a homestead-style environment. That is, the parents are available most of the time to educate and serve as examples to their children. Being raised in such nurturing conditions tends to make the children adjust more easily to life properly. Our laissez-faire society doesn’t necessarily create free, well-adjusted individuals; it can create misfits, as the news too often reports. To eliminate the horrors of random, mass-murders and sporadic violence, the social structure must become integrated again. The increase of mass-murders to me is a sign of family and social dysfunctionality. To function properly, society must recognize the importance of fostering close-knit family, extended family and social ties. Less emphasis must be placed on productivity and obsession with generating wealth. Placing too much emphasis on achievement rather than on producing well-balanced individuals is creating social misfits and mayhem.

    An important part of raising well-balanced offspring is making sure they are fed a diet that is based on whole, natural foods. Well-integrated development depends on making sure our children are not only nurtured with all the love we can give them, but also a well-balanced diet that includes whole, natural foods and avoids the highly-processed items and meat that characterizes the mainstream modern diet.

    Many years ago, George Ohsawa, the founder of Macrobiotics, wrote that modern society would fall apart due to the failure to recognize the essential importance of maintaining the traditional diets based on consumption of whole cereal grains as principle foods, and supplementing with produce from farms and gardens, as has been practiced for millennia. He believed a naturally, well-balanced person is a natural product of a natural diet.

    In an article titled “Completely Natural Curing” which is included in the book “Essential Ohsawa”, George Ohsawa wrote:

    “Given the right food, we can live a happy, healthy, peaceful life. Given food that is not right, we are no longer right men – we are inhuman beings. We become weak, sick, poor, incapable of working – joyless.

    “…Since man is a natural product of a natural environment, he must live as close to a nature as possible; to be healthy and happy he must eat natural foods. But what are natural foods? They are the ones that our ancestors have used for a thousand years. And they differ from one country and climate to the next. This is why there are so many different nationalities, religions, societies and customs.

    “One might say that macrobiotic teaching is rooted in the concept of principal food. It is a reaffirmation and reapplication of the ancient wisdom and has produced the miraculous results that lead to an inevitable conclusion: we must re-evaluate, relearn and apply the concept of principle food in our daily lives. We must know that natural food is important and know the reasons why it is vital to our present and future well-being. Otherwise, we are unqualified to be healthy, happy and peaceful.

    “This is the secret of macrobiotic healing.”
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