“Most of us are living at the periphery of our consciousness. Intuition invites us to the center.”

– Willis Harmon

Chakras Part 2

My original post on Chakras (July 2011) was written based on a book published in 1990, click on the link to go to that post.  Since then I have worked extensively with the Chakras and have discerned many more things about them.  Below is a summary of the Chakra numbers, colors, and associations that I perceive and have found most useful.


My perception of Chakras 1 – 8.  Original photo by diez-artwork, modified by A. Buckley.

In the pictures I have put a small black circle for the umbilicus and a small x for the third eye position.  The most notable difference I see with other Chakra pictures is with the 6th and 7th.  Most pictures show the 6th Charkra as indigo and the 7th as violet. I perceive the 6th as purple and the 7th as white.  (I have also seen that these are just the most common color associations and that the Chakras actually change colors.  But let’s keep it simple for now).

The other difference with my pictures vs most others is the existence of the 8th Chakra! I perceive the 8th Chakra as being 18″ above your head and 18″ below your feet, so I have designated these two points as 8+ and 8- in the chart below.  The 8th Chakra creates a complete Maroon colored sphere around you.  I believe this Chakra has two main purposes: (1) It is a form of energetic protection and (2) The position of 8+ and 8- ‘pull down’ the next set of Chakras into place.  More on that below the next picture.


Chakra Colors, Numbers and Main Associations (that I have found most useful).  Original picture by diez-artwork, modified by A. Buckley.

Chakra 8 continued:  There are actually thousands (or potentially an infinite number) of Chakras.  In my experience, once you have gained a certain amount of lessons from your current Chakra set (#1-#8 to start with) and energetically cleared them enough, then you can pull down the next ‘set’ of eight.  In this case, Chakra 8- would pull down Chakra 16- bringing with it (and putting into place) Chakra 9 where Chakra 1 is located, Chakra 10 where Chakra 2 is located, and so on.  In my experience all previous chakra sets (and their lessons) remain available to you.

If this is the first time you have heard of your 8th Chakra then some clean up will be needed!  Imagine the maroon bubble around you.  Now take a closer look.  Is the maroon color very dark?  Does it have black spots in it?  Is part of it missing?  Is it misshapen?  These are all common issues.  See if you can change or fix these things.  Ideally, the 8th Chakra should be a deep maroon color but not too dark. If you can’t figure out how to fix it (or if you can’t imagine the 8th Chakra but would like to) then click here or on the Contact tab above and make an appointment with me, I can help.  And if you live far away from me, don’t worry, we can work together remotely over the phone.

The Science of Energy

E = mc²

Don’t let this equation scare you – it just says Energy is equal to Matter. Let’s step through it together…

E = Energy, also called: Qi, Prana, Ki, Vital Force, intangible stuff

m = mass, also called matter, Yin, tangible stuff

c² = a constant squared, in this case the constant is the Speed of Light: 299, 800, 000 meters/second.  Yes, 300 million meters per second.

What if we rearrange the equation?   Then  matter = Energy/speed of light².

You are made of matter.   So you are Energy divided by the speed of light².


So you are made of energy and you are made of matter.  Which part of you – the matter side or the energy side is easier to change?  Let’s think about it this way:  A 250 pound football player stands in a room.  That is quite a lot of matter standing in the room.  And how easy is it for you to change or move the football player?  It is not easy.  Now put that football player in a room with a martial arts master – some one trained to use energy to move his opponent.  How easy is it for the martial arts master to move or change the football player?  Very easy.

Now let’s put an injured or sick version of you in a room with a Medical Doctor (MD), trained to heal you by changing your matter – bones, muscles, cells, etc.  How easy is it for the MD to change you?  Not easy, the MD needs to run tests and put you in a specific category (diagnosis) in order to know which drugs, surgery, or physical therapy to use.  Instead let’s put you in a room with an Energy Practitioner (me, Amy Buckley) trained to heal you by changing your energy.  How easy is it for me to change you?  Very easy – no tests are needed, just your symptoms and feelings about what is wrong.  Additionally, I am trained to feel your energy (no special equipment needed).  I can feel areas where your energy is blocked, stuck, slowed, or nonexistent.  And then I use energy (qi) and light touch on your body’s energy points to change your energy issues.  Essentially I have an energy conversation with your energy.  I am trained to ‘speak’ in the language of energy to explain to your energy what is wrong and how to change.

You are energy, so changing your energy issues changes and heals you.

The Energy of Food

In my experience I found food to resonate with certain emotions or actions.  Below is a list I compiled.  If you are eating with intention, eating for healing purposes, or just curious… try eating a food below and see if you agree with my assessment.

Food Description
Apples Surprise
Beans – all Despair
Beef Contemplation
Beets Humble
Broccoli Expansive
Brusselsprout Mysterious
Butter – all Love
Cabbage Lonliness
Carrots Happy
Celery Clarity
Cherry – Dark Death/Chaos/Yin
Cherry – Light Life/Order/Yang
Chocolate Yearning
Chocolate – Dark w/Carmel Orgasm
Cocoa Satisfaction
Dill Softness
Eggs Renewal
Fish – dark Truthfulness at rest
Fish – white Truthfulness in motion
Ginko Tea Qi (energy) for Chakras 4 and higher
Gliadin Frightened
Gluten Fear
Grapes – dark Passionate stillness
Grapes – light Passion in motion
Italian parsley Clean
Kale Firm
Kumkwat Cheerful
Lemon Denial
Lentils all Insulting
Lettuce Heavenly/The Dao
Molasses – Blackstrap Piqued
Molasses – regular Mildly interesting
Olive Oil luscious
Onion Strict
Pineapple Interesting
Pork Wisdom
Potato – red Sex with sensuality / Yin Energy
Potato – white Sex w/out love / Yang energy
Potato – white w/skin Balanced Sex/Kundalini energy/Yin&Yang energy
Potato red w/skin Sex w/love
Rice Joy
Salt Tonify
Sauerkraut Togetherness
Strawberry Satisfaction
Sugar – refined Mind-blowing
Sugar – whole Intriguing
Tree sap Life
Whole Wheat Afraid
Wine – dark Bitterness
Wine – light Overjoyed
Yams Love

Sex Education for Kids

My sister asked me what books I found to educate our kids about their bodies and the many changes we go through in our lifespan.  While I didn’t do extensive research; I got a few recommendations from friends and browsed the sex ed section at a book store, I feel this is a solid list for the different life stages a child goes through.  I also couldn’t find any lists on-line, so I’m posting mine here!

  1.  For young kids (0 – 5years) – “How you were born” by Joanna Cole, 1993 – No mention of sexual intercourse, and awesome actual pictures of a fetus in-utero!  The family photos are multicultural, heterosexual only, and from the 1980’s.
  2. The book cover says ages 7 and up – “It’s so Amazing!” by Robie H. Harris, 2002- Our 6 year old read it too with some things going over her head.  The 8 year old understood it though.  Fun comic-like pictures.  75% pictures, 25% words.  Lots of detail and pics: circumcised vs not, tampon vs pads, different kinds of love – for your dog/grandmother/parents/girlfiriend/etc., gay/straight/lesbian/etc. all explained, alternative methods of joining an egg and sperm, twins/preemies/etc., adoptions of many types, chromosomes, ok vs not ok touching, sexual abuse defined, illustrated naked pics of male and female progression from baby to “old” age.The annoying part of the book is that they want to be all inclusive on every sentence in the book so the sentences have multiple nouns and are repetitive. There were a few sentences I rearranged into my own words to better fit the message I wanted to get across, but overall a great book.
  3. The book cover says for pre-teens and teens: “What’s happening to my body?” Book for Boys (and there is one for Girls) by Lynda Madaras (with help from her daughter starting when the daughter was 11years old, mine was updated in 2007) – I feel like it’s for a mature pre-teen or needs to be read with parents, good for teens.  Lots of words, hand-drawn diagrams and pics which could be better.   Topics covered:  Masturbation, orgasm, child abuse, pics of adolescents with the 3 main body types (ectomorph, endomorph, mesomorph), a few pages on homosexuality/bisexulaity; detailed different stages of growth in puberty, etc., etc.  We have the book for boys and it shows a few pages of girls’ anatomy, and the growing fetus, and a whole chapter on Girls’ Puberty. In total the boys’ book is over 200 pages! Suggestions for further reading on different topics are given at the end of the book.
  4. What do people look like without clothes on?  I wanted to show my curious child, (11 years old), respectful, fully nude, non-photoshopped, actual sized bodies (ie. not super-skinny, or women with outrageous sized breasts, etc.), non-sexually suggestive, multi-aged, multi-racial, photos.   Instead of getting all his information from internet/YouTube sensationalism.  The best thing I came up with was this series of books: “Art Models 4; Life Nude Photos for the Visual Arts” by Maureen and Douglas Johnson.  If you know of something better please tell me.  Of course all the models are adults, for better or worse, I don’t expect I could find any books with kids at different ages, except those hand drawn, and that’s understandable – to protect the kids. includes a disk with 100’s of poses of the models.  Watch out some of these ‘books’ are now for sale only on disk!  This volume 4 includes; 2 white female pregnant models, 2 male and 2 female black models, a female model of unknown origin – mix of white/black? hispanic?,  a white skinned red-haired female model, 3 white male models aged ~70years, 40 years, 30 years, and about 3 other white skinned/female models in 20’s, there are interacting male/female posses (eating dinner, leaning on each other, etc. – for the most part more artistic than sexual).   There is some sculptured pubic hair and tan lines – otherwise, all natural!  And lots of different body angles – rear shots, side shots, bending over shots, etc.
  5. For an introduction to Anatomy for kids this book is good and shows pictures of a plastic dummy’s interior parts and organs (instead of a real cadaver):“Inside Guides:  Human Body” by Dr. Frances Williams from DK Publisher, 1997.

Help! Something is (still) wrong with me!

Feeling like something is wrong with you?  Been to many ‘doctors’ or ‘experts’ and still feel not quite right?  Don’t let people try to convince you it’s in your head!  Below is some collective wisdom from my 5 and a half year journey back to being 100% healthy.  According to regular medical doctors I was ‘doing everything right’ – exercise, eating healthy, taking vitamins, sleeping well, etc.  Yet I was still massively sick!  It turns out western medicine, the only kind I knew when I got sick, is only looking at one aspect of our (very complex) bodies.  Read below to see if you have covered all these ways to investigate your body.

Here are the layers of the body that can be contributing to a problem and who can help:

  • The MD‘s (medical doctors) will be checking your physical body organs to see if they can diagnose anything.  Very often, if you don’t fit a commonly accepted diagnosis or disease category they can’t help you.
    ND‘s (Naturopathic Doctors) also diagnose physical body organs but can offer alternatives when you don’t fit into any medically accepted disease category.
  • Call a Chiropractor to see if any of your bones are out of alignment and causing the trouble ….ask me if you don’t know why this could cause digestive distress, emotional issues, muscle aches, behavioral problems, etc.!
  • Fascial Planes – someone who is trained in Cranial Sacral Therapy or Reiki can check this important structure which is all over your body. Fascia is the way your body maintains it’s physical shape and is your body’s communication highway.  Communication problems within your body equates to physical problems that you can feel.  Often if chiropractic changes ‘won’t stick’ then a patient is sent to get their fascial planes worked on and then the chiropractic changes stay in place.
  • Energy – Energy Medicine Practitioners, Acupuncturists, (some) Massage Therapists, and Shiatsu Practitioners, work with your body’s energy systems (which have been used and documented for over 3000 years) to fix the body, mind, and spirit. To be more specific:
    • the body = all items listed in 1. – 3. above
    • the mind = emotions, thought patterns, behavior, etc.
    • the spirit = how balanced and connected we feel in our lives

As you can see, to save yourself time and money, you may want to start with a practitioner in this Energy category – since they can work on all body areas at once.

Does Acupuncture work?

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared, in 2003, that it does – in valid clinically controlled trials.  They have posted some of those scientific studies on their website as well as an 87 page report detailing their own findings on Acupuncture.

Click on the link below to see for yourself.   (2018 update – WHO changed their website and I can not yet find where they moved the report; but I’ll put the WHO link below anyway).

Here is an opening to one of the WHO report pages:

“Over its 2500 years of development, a wealth of experience has accumulated in the practice of acupuncture, attesting to the wide range of diseases and conditions that can be effectively treated with this approach. Unlike many other traditional methods of treatment, which tend to be specific to their national or cultural context, acupuncture has been used throughout the world, particularly since the 1970s”.

WHO website link.

Straight from the website are 27 diseases/disorders that WHO found scientific evidence which supported/”proved” that Acupuncture was good for (see below).  And on their site this list is followed by another list of 63 conditions which scientific studies have shown benefits for, but broader studies are needed before WHO will call those diseases/disorders ‘proven’ to be effectively treated by acupuncture:

1. Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which acupuncture has been proved-through controlled trials-to be an effective treatment:

Adverse reactions to radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy
Allergic rhinitis (including hay fever)
Biliary colic
Depression (including depressive neurosis and depression following stroke)
Dysentery, acute bacillary
Dysmenorrhoea, primary
Epigastralgia, acute (in peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, and gastrospasm)
Facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders)
Hypertension, essential
Hypotension, primary
Induction of labour
Knee pain
Low back pain
Malposition of fetus, correction of
Morning sickness
Nausea and vomiting
Neck pain
Pain in dentistry (including dental pain and temporomandibular dysfunction)
Periarthritis of shoulder
Postoperative pain
Renal colic
Rheumatoid arthritis
Tennis elbow

NCNM Study Abroad

NCNM offers trips and study opportunities abroad.  China, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda are just a few countries that have recurring trips.  Here is a link to the African countries information:  NCNM website

Here is an example of a study abroad class, the class currently counts for credit in the NCNM ND, MSiMR, and MSOM degrees.

NCNM Tanzania Trip Description (Tentative – subject to change a little)

Week 1 (July 7-11) – Portland. Reading, videos, discussion.
Students will spend 9 a.m. to noon each day with Dr. Zwickey preparing for the trip. There will be readings, videos, and discussion about international public health, tropical diseases, and cultural topics relevant to Tanzania. Students will start their projects which will be presented the last week of the trip.
July 12 – Fly to Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.
All students will fly to Tanzania on the 12th of July. Students may fly whatever airline they choose. However, because we will need to pick them up in Dar Es Salaam, it’s important that everyone arrive on the 13th.
July 13-15 Orientation; Basic Swahili; Jet-lag recovery
Students will arrive on the 13th or 14th (often flights land at 2 a.m. the next day). We’ll stay at Kigamboni, on the beach. Student will have the opportunity to sleep, swim, and will complete some local orientation.
July 16-17 Muhimbili University Institute for Traditional Medicine and CDC
Muhimbili University has an Institute for Traditional Medicine, where they study some of the 10,000+ plants that grow in Tanzania, analyzing them for activity against HIV, cancer, and malaria. We’ll tour their facility and talk to some of the scientists who work at Muhimbili. We’ll also spend some time talking to a public health expert from the CDC who works in Tanzania.
July 17 Fly to Moshi/Arusha
July 18-19 Orientation to Moshi, Mowo, Arusha
Located at the base of Kilimanjaro, this area is where we have relationships with researchers and some smaller villages. All students will visit Mowo, a village outside of Moshi.
July 20-22 Off (Ngorogoro Crater (optional safari) /Massai Village (optional village stay)
A popular safari takes place in Ngorogoro crater. Students will have the option to go to Karatu, and complete the Ngorogoro safari. Additionally, an herbalist who has lived with the Massai will provide herbal medicine history, and arrange a village stay with Massai villagers.
July 23-27 Activities in Moshi, Mowo, Arusha (optional village stay)
Students will alternate between 3 activities, a clinic day in Mowo village, visiting the herbal medicine research center on Mt. Meru, outside of Arusha, and completing public health activities.
July 28 Drive to Lushoto / Hike
July 29 Free day (or hike to waterfalls)
July 30 Drive to Tanga
Tanga is a coastal city that is primarily Muslim.
July 31-August 2 Tanga (Mama-Baby Clinic; Bombo Hospital; Bongo)
Students will alternate between three activities, including visiting a Tanzanian hospital, spending time with a traditional Tanzanian herbalist, and helping with a Mama-Baby clinic. Students will also deliver public health lectures at a local elementary school.
August 3 Boat to Zanzibar
August 4 Off
August 5-7 Stonetown; Spice Farm; Wrap up classes; Presentations
August 8 Leave
Course information will be distributed and discussed at breakfasts and dinners. Daily reflections will occur with faculty during drives to various locations.
After August 8th, students are welcome to fly back to the US, or to stay in Tanzania to travel and explore. Students may also want to spend time in other parts of the world on their way back to the US. Note that the last night of paid housing is August 7th.

First Term of Medical School

Fall 2012 at National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) where I was enrolled as a first year ND (Naturopathic Doctorate) and MSOM (Masters of Science in Oriental Medicine) student.  Unfortunately, ‘Dual Degree’ students, as they are called, do not get any MSOM classes until their Spring Term during the first year.  So this summary is on the ND classes only.

Overall Summary:  The common euphemism for medical school is that “It’s like drinking from a fire hose”.  That is to say, that there is so much information coming at you, so fast, that it’s hard to catch and retain any of it.  While it does feel like a fire hose of information – you are expected to retain ALL of it – at least until the next exam.  (Luckily, at NCNM, most of the exams are not cumulative).  In some cases, you are given only the highlights of topics and have to go fill in the details (which are necessary to pass the exam) from a book you might buy, the internet, or hopefully, pulling from the pre-reqs you took.

What’s nice is that the classes start to overlap.  Anatomy and Organ Systems.  Biochemistry examples and Organ Systems.  Clinical Correlates case studies and Organ Systems, etc.  Even during the first term you start to see that the information isn’t endless – the body only has so many parts and so many key processes.  Learn those and you can start applying future classes to that base knowledge.

Words of Wisdom:  Take as many courses as you can before you start medical school – not just the ones required to attend the school, but the ‘Suggested’ courses too.  Take lots of physiology and anatomy.  I didn’t have any.  Every class has these subjects as their basis, even if it’s just in the use of examples.  Even though you might take these courses you will still  find the curriculum challenging.  Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Organic Chem., BioChemistry are all necessary as well. These concepts are assumed to be in the forefront of your mind (luckily for me that was the case).  The medical courses take off from there.  Get a ‘private’ tutor immediately – these are upper classmen on Work Study.  An hour of their insight can save you 3 hours of trying to decipher Power Point slides.  And it gives you unparalleled access to the type of questions that will be on exams.

My experience:  I am 41 years old.  I have a Bachelors Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan.  I have an MBA from my time at General Electric, from a program they have with Marquette University.  I am an overachiever.  I took every course at GE I could – including their intensive Statistics Training called “Six Sigma”.  I learn fast and I’m into details.  None-the-less, this curriculum required 110% of my time.  Finding time to eat or exercise was nearly impossible.  If you get sick or have to attend to personal business, nothing slows down, sure you can ‘make up’ exams – but when?  It’s like you fell off of a train going 80 miles an hour and now you have to run to catch up.  It may sound like I’m being overly dramatic, but I’m not, you’ll see.

I had another 40 year old tell me it was like a 9-5 job and she didn’t study evenings or weekends.  She must have taken all the classes before she got here.  I don’t see any way to pass the tests unless you are studying in between classes, at night, and at least one and a half days on the weekend.  It’s just too fast, you are in class too many hours, and the level of detail required on the exams is too in-depth.  I have always been a B+/A- student.  For the pre-reqs I was an A+ student.  At NCNM it’s Pass/Fail but you still know your percentage:  mine was 60-80%.  Passing is 70%.

I found the information extremely interesting.  And it would be great to slow down a bit and absorb it.  But there is so much being crammed into the 4 years to prepare for the State Board Licensing Exams that slowing down is not possible.  And this is how MD medical schools are too.  How are any of the schools turning out decent Doctors?  The 4 year curriculum is ridiculous.  And yes, it’s doable (but at what cost to your personal health?), so the pace continues.  At least at NCNM the Administration knows how hard it is and offer alternatives.  They offer 4 year ND because all the other ND schools do too.  And ND schools offer it because MD schools do it in 4 years.  At NCNM there is an established 5 year track and some students take even longer.  Don’t worry, the 5 year track will still be challenging – do yourself a favor and start in that.  I’ve heard many students call the 5 year ‘The Happy Track’.


Organ Systems

This is the bulk of the first year classes.  Extreme detail of body organs and how they work is taught.  Very interesting – to a point.  And then your mind says – really? I need to know these minute details?  Yes, you do for the test.


This is the little brother of Organ Systems.  Just as much detail is required, but the amount of material is less.  It’s really challenging for non-science majors.  Only the highlights are given and you have to go find resources to teach yourself the material.

Anatomy – 

If this is your first exposure to anatomy and physiology you have a LOT of memorizing to do.  The professors are so flexible at NCNM that they don’t require a text book.  This was NOT beneficial for me since I hadn’t had anatomy before.  Get one of the recommended texts ASAP and start memorizing.  I found ‘Clinically Oriented Anatomy‘ by Keith Moore, et. al. to be great – it has drawings, real cadaver photos and x-rays….all of which you will need to know.

The ND Professors – 

The professors of these main classes are excellent.  They know their subject area extremely well, try to keep up with the latest developments, and aren’t afraid to tell you when they don’t know something.  They are more dedicated to the students and more personable than most college professors at the three other colleges I’ve attended.

NOTE:  As of 2013 the ND Curriculum at NCNM is going through a review and will be changed.  Check out their website or call the Admissions Counselors for more information.

First Week at NCNM

The first week at NCNM felt like being

Low light attempt to capture the drumming circle with my iPhone.

in the dryer with a bunch of clothes….it’s a swirl of new people, your own positive and negative emotions, biochemistry equations, body parts and names, research tools and talk, new classroom environments, new computer systems, to take an elective or not?, a new commute, different schedule everyday, to buy books or not?, etc., etc.

It is at once daunting, exhilarating, fun, and scary.

It is also clear that you are not alone and the administrators, upperclassmen, fellow classmates, professors are here to help you – you just need to ask. And it is emphasized that one of the best tools a doctor can possess is the ability to ask for help.

The first class of our entire school career started with a Drumming circle. As all (approximately) 90 us waited for the Biochemistry professor 3 drummers started a beat in the hallway. They entered the room and were followed by 100 clapping upperclassmen, teachers, administrators, and counselors. It was an awesome upbeat tempo that quickly got all the new students clapping as well. Once the drumlin line and people had completely surround the tables we were sitting at there was a brief Welcome introduction. Then the drummers and clappers filed out of the room clapping and drumming the entire way. It was so uplifting, welcoming, and ‘yang’!

Other professors started their classes with: meeting for a moment of silence in ‘the heart space’, singing and dancing, a small speech about this journey we were embarking on, and, yes, some even just introduced themselves and the topic of the class straight away.

Other notable first week items and quotes:
– Two back to school parties sponsored by the school
– “It’s best if you wear a sports bra and biking shorts to this class”. (Palpatation Lab)