Nothing beats meeting and speaking directly to an astronaut about his experience in Space! Fulfilling day at the pre-conference of the 2016 ISS R&D Conference. Astronaut Rick Mastracchio, a veteran of four space- flight missions, gave a fun and insightful presentation about his missions to the ISS. The space that he shared from was awe-inspiring. Now having met one, I can see why astronauts have celebrity status. It is so exciting to get to ask him all my burning questions about his experience of physiology and pathology of living in the ISS and on re-integrating back to earth. He also did several Space Walks while being stationed in the ISS and it was good to learn about his experience in the spacesuits. Also although there has been experiments being carried out in the ISS in the last 15 years, none has been focused on CAM (complementary and alternative medicine) research, so there is room to learn and find out more! Also made the acquaintance of a Japanese Astrophysicist today, Mihara San, who works on watching stars through X-rays on the Japanese Module on the ISS.
This blog will be a depository of space-travel related news and my exploration of the application of Classical Chinese Medicine to the field of Space Medicine.
Many people ask how I came up with the idea of Classical Chinese Medicine in Space, and I simply tell them, “I just got curious and this is a fun topic to explore!”
I hope that this site will inspire you to Get CURIOUS about exploring the intersection where your passion and space travel meets, and that it will be a fun for you too.
This is a recording of my talk given at the Lan Su Chinese Garden in Portland Oregon on 12 May 2016.
00:00 – Introduction – Guqin piece and Shuogua quote linking what is Classical to Space
04:55 – Definition of Classical Chinese Medicine
14:00 – Definition of Space
20:00 – Yin-Yang Theory and Space, the relationship of Light and Darkness, circadian rhythm
23:36 – Gravity through the lens of the 5-Phase elements and the 6-Conformations
29:23 – Acupuncture Point Names and clues to our physiology in Space travel
33:49 – Space Medicine and the possible applications of Chinese Medicine
40:34 – Future directions and applications
48:02 – Question: What do you think is the greatest obstacle to making Chinese Medicine more mainstream now and for future space travel?
51:58 – Comment: Many older cultures usually do not want to change, and are clinging to their ancient systems, but for Chinese Medicine, it seems like it is the opposite, and we are talking a lot about Change in this talk.
Reactions, comments, sparked an interesting idea or further questions? Please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you!
I would like to share the work of Dr Cameron M. Smith, an Anthropology professor at Portland State University. I met him at a talk at OMSI several years ago, and he encouraged my pursuit of the idea of Classical Chinese Medicine in Space. He makes his own DIY space suits and talks about the importance of keeping space technologies open-sourced. I enjoyed this lecture on Interstellar Voyaging as it expanded my thinking about the biological and cultural challenges that we may face in such an expedition.
To read more about his work: http://cameronmsmith.com/
The DIY space suit | Cameron Smith | TEDxPortland – http://youtu.be/C17yk-xsZpA
So much of Chinese Medicine is based on the relationship of the 5 phase-elements to the body. To understand how our physiology may be different in space, we can start by considering how gravity might be understood through the lens of the 5 phases.