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MICROCOSM, MACROCOSM AND �MAGIC�

The radically differing renderings of the human body. In the first image (facing page) the body is depicted in terms of nadi (or nas) which are energy channels, conduits of prana or life force. In the second (top), the biomedical anatomy is shown in terms of organs and discrete physiological systems.

Some of the practice and knowledge of dais can only be understood in terms of a world view based on microcosm-macrocosm simultaneity. Pre-modern cultures and Asia specific medical traditions recognize a dynamic world where similar patterns exist at the microcosmic and macrocosmic levels. Pre-modern systems use underlying organizing principles in which these patterns are framed. In the context of dais� work the principles of �balance�, �life force� and reciprocity or exchange of energy are utilized. Microcosm-macrocosm systems of correlation and causality differ radically from Newtonian mechanistic action-reaction ideas of causality.

Post-modern medical therapies, such as psycho-neuroimmunology (PNI), stress management, neurolinguistic programming (NLP), foot reflexology and healing visualizations, are all gaining recognition as effective holistic treatment modalities. These interdisciplinary modalities are also based on recently recognized (by the West) interrelationships between the brain, behaviour and the immune system. Indigenous medical therapies such as Yoga, Acupuncture, Shiatsu, chakra-based healing, also map the human body with principles of correlation and causality foreign to classical biomedicine.

In this way of understanding, which has been called �superstition� and �magic,� the human body is located in the natural world and the cosmos. Dais and traditionally-oriented women open doors, windows, locks and knots during labor in order that the womb may open. What is ritually accomplished in the outside world will be mirrored in the inside world of the body.
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