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issue 88 CADUCEUS issue 88 CADUCEUS


25
founded the eld of ) but I do not
think that is his motive at all. Peskin
tells it as he sees it and I think that
his assertion may irritate, more due to
American style of writing and present-
ing than as a valid criticism of bigotry
toward his views.
There is some paradox as he uses a
lot of references from scientic literature
with a certain amount of cherry-pick-
ing of those that t his beliefs. In his
defence, he accepts that he has selected
papers, but not to support his theory,
more to dismiss inaccurate research.
Absolutely correct..., he says, I chose
highly controlled studies... Nevertheless
he does not pop in too many to dispel
his arguments! Few of us will read most
of the 15,000 he has dismissed but we
may select a few, argue they are accurate
and this perhaps will weaken his posi-
tion. Peskin may put too much empha-
sis on animal studies and he may not
have a practitioners view of single nutri-
ents as opposed to Natures complexes
in prescribing to patients, but overall I
feet he is right in his arguments. And
what if he is right overall?
He argues quantity does not override
quality, the issue of proving cause and
effect as opposed to associating one
medicine or supplement with a con-
dition and yet he arguably contradicts
himself in places: I am not opposed to
all EPA/DHA/marine oil supplementa-
tion if they are used in proper physiolog-
ical amounts. But then he states, Fish
oil is physiologically wrong, period.
PEO Solution reminds or teaches us
that omega 6 is not only an inamma-
tory EFA, but also provides foundation
to vital, anti-inammatory processes and
has both functional and structural roles
too. It is adulterated omega 6 (dam-
aged by food processing, incorrect stor-
age, rancidity, heat, additives, etc) that is
bad. Oops, I have to admit my training
said: excess omega 6 bad, excess omega
3 good surely? No, he reminds us that
chains and industrial food giants.
To the authors credit, they never
sensationalise the shocking scenes they
witness, preferring simply to convey the
facts and expose the reality of a brazenly
exploitive empire conveniently sanitised
and dressed-up as a caring, quality-con-
trolled, production system bringing you,
the consumer, everything you could ever
wish for and all in the air-conditioned
convenience of your local hypermarket.
Fortunately, the reader is guided
toward both personal and more gen-
eral solutions, under such headings as
How to avoid the coming crisis and
Consumer power what you can do.
They are both pragmatic and realis-
tic guides for the perplexed, sensibly
encouraging readers to buy local from
producers one comes to trust and respect
and not wasting food by over-buying,
and avoiding over-eating meat products.
Human health is recognised as
being dependent upon soils, animals
and plants being treated as vital, living
organisms whose optimum growth is
achieved by using natural ingredients
and through the adoption of a caring,
loving attitude that is the antithesis of
the sub-human battleground that epito-
mises the 21st century factory farm.
All in all, I would strongly recom-
mend this book to anyone who wants
a grounded, undiluted account of the
machinations of the global food industry
and its devastating affect on the lives of
millions of sentient beings, including
ourselves.
Sir Julian Rose (www.julianrose.info) is
an early pioneer of UK organic farming,
a writer, broadcaster and activist. He is
currently President of The International
Coalition to Protect the Polish
Countryside. His latest book, In Defence
of Life Essays on a Radical Reworking
of Green Wisdom, is available in book-
shops and online.
EVOLUTION An Odyssey:
Reconciling Science to God
Philippa A Rees
CollaborArt Books, 2013 (www.involu-
tion-odyssey.com). Pb, 427pp, 17.99/
ebook 4.99. ISBN978 0957500204
Reviewed by David Lorimer
P
hilippa Rees is a polymath brought
up in South Africa who studied
literature, science and theology and
who has brought these strands together
with her own experience in this brilliant
epic poem telling the story of the Western
Odyssey of the mind with parallel expla-
nations in 150 pages of notes.
She has been working on this theory
of involution for many years and was in
correspondence with Arthur Koestler,
Konrad Lorenz and EF Schumacher
in the 70s. The nine Cantos of blank
verse a dialogue between Reason and
Soul reminiscent of Iain McGilchrists
The Master and His Emissary chart our
cosmic journey, ending up, with a phase
of love and reunion in which we come
full circle.
The introduction explains the thesis
of the book and the meaning of invo-
lution in this context. It is related to
collective memory through acts of con-
sciousness, recovering and transcending
what has gone before. Genius plays
the role of being an advanced emissary
of consciousness enabling others to
follow in their understanding. Rees
understanding of the basic impetus of
evolution is not accidental mutation but
rather behaviour or act as the critical
driver of change. This is elaborated in
the series of six propositions:
Interaction leads to interiorisation
Internal selection increasingly over-
rides natural selection mind is the
driver of change
Interactions between organisms and
environment are retained as memory
the development of mind leads to
autonomy
Matter is in-formed by mind
through memory
Memory of evolution is stored
Involution in man occurs through the
recovery of memory we have the
entire memory of our evolutionary
path and understand its connection
with everything else. Consciousness
is able to return to its origins and
recover a lost sense of wholeness.
The theory has parallels with the work
of Teilhard de Chardin, Ervin Laszlo,
David Bohm, Carl Jung and Rupert
Sheldrake, all of whom have found their
own ways of reconciling the scientic
with the spiritual. Many readers would
agree that we are paying a high price for
sciences limited certainties by exclud-
ing subjective experience in terms of rev-
elation, inspiration and intuition.
Rees approach opens up access to
these realms, all the more so through the
use of poetry as her medium and a coun-
terbalance to the dominance of the left
hemisphere not only in science, but also
in academia in general. This is scientia
in its broader form as acknowledged by
the perennial philosophy essentially
intuited rather than deduced.
The dialogue between Reason and
Soul is sometimes tense, sometimes cre-
ative. Reason is always wanting to cut
to the chase in a literal fashion, while
Soul is more expansive and imaginative.
Reason refers disdainfully to a spoonful
of soft syllables to help all sophistry slip
down and is a little impatient with the
paradoxes of quantum mechanics. Soul
reminds the reader that:
The world is all en-folded mind.
The yeast of any forward thinker
Leavens the whole loaf entire.
The reader is able to consult the
footnotes on the way through and
alternate between the mode of poetic
narrative and more detailed background
explanation, which demonstrates the
authors considerable erudition. The
reader passes through the early states
of unity what Bareld called original
participation through the genesis of
tools and language, the world of the
Greeks, Archimedes and Alexandria, the
Dark Ages and the preservation of cul-
ture through monasteries and Muslim
thought, the Renaissance (especially art)
then the Enlightenment and rationality
leading onto Modernism and dissolution
before nally arriving at love and reun-
ion, where Reason falls silent and Soul
continues the narrative.
Following on is an appendix discuss-
ing the relationship between mysticism
and science and drawing on William
James, among others, but also mystics
from different cultures. Some mathema-
ticians like Poincar and Penrose have
followed in the footsteps of Plato and
understand harmony in a deeper way. In
an Afterword, Reason and Soul explore
the authors experiences leading to her
thesis the brain is the souls receiver.
I should also mention that there are
informative charts at the end of each set
of canto as a way of conveying informa-
tion in a different mode.
I know of no comparable work cov-
ering the Western Odyssey in its many
thematic variations using an interplay of
poetry and prose to convey the adven-
ture of the journey that arrives at a more
comprehensive understanding of reality
as a whole. The authors grasp of the
principal elements of Western culture
is masterly and her poetic narrative
is woven together with extraordinary
subtlety and eloquence. The result is a
heroic tour de force that deserves the wid-
est readership.
David Lorimer is editor of the Scientic
and Medicals Network Review (www.
scimednet.org), in whose Winter, 2013,
issue the original of this shortened review
rst appeared.
I
had to overcome obstacles of ego
and incredulity when reviewing
this book. The enormity of their
suggestion that I, among the majority
of nutritionally trained doctors, practi-
tioners and health journalists, have been
prescribing for decades, sh and crusta-
cean (krill) oil to our patients detriment
was, to say the least, worrying. Nothing
equivocal, no leeway: sh oils are bad.
Peskin is an electrical engineer,
graduate of the prestigious MIT in the
USA, and held a Professorship; Rowen
is a prolic educationist, so their views
should be considered seriously.
They start off by reminding us
how nutritional advances are trum-
peted as good, then all too frequently
are denounced as bad. They simply
state: Recommendations keep getting
reversed and move swiftly to the
main thesis of the book that health advi-
sors and practitioners have been ill-ad-
vised regarding prescribing essential fatty
acids from sea creatures.
To support this, Peskin sets out to
prove we are all frequently misled and
the rst half of the book is a mixture
of explanation of how medical studies
are often unscientically conducted,
with an expos of bad scientists and bad
science, naughty pharmaceutical giants
and inadequate research, poor report-
ing to the public all of which lead to
incorrect prescribing. He mentions the
difculty of going against mainstream
thinking and the issue of money inu-
encing health advice, pointing out that
much published science cannot be rep-
licated and statistics are manipulated to
t expectations. He sites the scepticism
many pure scientists have of medical
research and frequently refers us back
to the work of Nobel Prize winners,
Richard Feynman and Otto Warburg,
in an attempt to steer us away from our
current acceptance of evidence as it is
presented which is too often promoting
a commercial interest.
One may criticise Peskin for some
blunderbuss and self-promotion (I
PEO Solution
by Brian Peskin, BSc, and
Robert Rowen, MD
Pinnacle Press, Houston, Texas, 2013. Pb,
507pp, $27.50/16.99/Nutri Centre, London
Reviewed by Rajendra Sharma
is not the case. I feel he has successfully
re-educated me.
My colleague, Dr Elisabeth Philipps,
points out: The authors make a lot of
assumptions that people are eating daily
portions of seafood so they are getting
omega 3 physiological requirements
through diet alone something that is
just not the case generally in the UK.
We eat far more omega 6 EFAs in our
daily diet, hence the more common
need for omega 3 supplementation.
She further points out, There is little
discussion about the long, energy- and
nutrient-dependent conversion process
of PEOs into derivatives, not to mention
digestion of PEOs in the rst place.
The common, frankly unhealthy, diet
is usually heavily imbalanced toward
omega 6 EFAs mostly adulterated
thus skewing the omega 6:omega 3
ratio. Also, Peskin is quick to dismiss
our attitude that genetic ability of our
regulation of desaturases to convert
PEO from plant oils is not effective in
many of us. Many cannot. Also, DHA
and EPA are directly absorbed into the
bloodstream from the gut, bypassing the
need for lipase and bile for digestion,
which is often compromised in many of
those who are ill.
I am at a point where I feel obtain-
ing omega 3 from sh and crustaceans
cannot be bad in all cases and I am
struggling to dismiss what I have consid-
ered good evidence in so many outcome
studies, particularly in the arena of the
treatment in autistic spectrum disorder,
chronic inammatory joint disease and
certain skin disorders. Cardiac issues are
rarely treated with sh oils alone so per-
haps too much emphasis may have been
placed on arterial EPA/DHA effect.
What Peskin professes I think
demands that we are eating a good diet.
If so, supplementary EFA should be in
a ratio of omega 6:omega 3 of 1:1 or up
to 2.5:1 but not higher. Our use of high
omega 3 in supra-physiological dosages
is harmful and pharmacological sup-
plements provide overdose. Fish-based
diets are okay but Peskin points out
that Eskimos have low arterial disease
not because of the oily sh they eat; it
is not the predominant nutrient in their
diet, which is higher in omega 6. I sug-
gest that those with bad diets may need
higher omega 3, perhaps?
The latter chapters identify and ref-
erence how PEOs help answer many
of our ailments, skin disease, diabetes,
heart disease and, inevitably, cancer, so
overall, I came away feeling he may be
spot on.
I will certainly be paying attention to
what is said on the web by the likes of
Dr Mercola, who continues his consid-