Easy Guitar Songs – Learn Them on the Keytar!

What is a keytar? It is a combination of a piano keyboard that is set on a guitar base. It is very light so it offers more mobility to its users. This has piano keys that are set on a guitar base so you should hold it like how you would normally hold your guitar, but of course, instead of finding guitar strings, you will have to us the keys to create sound. There are many easy guitar songs that you can play using your keytar because playing the chords is quite easy in this instrument. But first, you should know which keys you should play in order to create a certain chord. This instrument is actually pretty popular during the 80s because of new wave rock bands, but it lost popularity during the 90s because of the emergence of alternative rock.

The keytar can also use guitar effects that can allow its players to manipulate the pitch of their instrument as well as use sustain features. Learning how to play the keytar, should start off with playing easy guitar songs first, and this is the case especially if you are not an experienced pianist. You should be familiar with how the keytar is held and its functions before you attempt playing.

If you really want to be an effective keytar player, maybe you should try playing easy guitar songs first on a real keyboard and then trying it on the keytar afterwards. This will help you learn which keys to strike in order to produce a certain sound or chord.

When playing the keytar, be sure that the band is adjusted comfortably on you like you would hold a guitar. You should also make sure that the sound and effect controls can be easily reached on this position. As you play with easy guitar songs on your device, you might first feel uncomfortable as it might feel easier to play on the keyboards. As you master the use and feel of the keytar however, you will be able to play more complicated songs and master the use of the keys for chords.

If you are comfortable enough in using the keytar, you should also play around with the volume control, and try using them whenever you play easy guitar songs. If you devote a lot of time to practice playing the instrument, you can add a new and exciting element in a band that you will be performing with. For beginners, be sure to practice a lot of easy guitar songs as this will help you become an expert if you constantly practice.

The medicinal uses of paw- paw (carica papaya)

paw-paw is one of the greatest gifts of God to humanity. Everything about paw-paw is useful, from the root to the leaves are all medicinal. Even the seeds of paw-paw are naturally worm expeller. Unripe paw-paw contains milky juice a protein digesting enzyme called pepsin.learn more Click Here! Paw-paw also is known to have another important quality that helps to prevent ulcer and help to heal them after they have developed.

Paw-paw also contains all the enzymes needed for the digestion of food and the release of gas .Fresh paw-paw leaves when squeezed with little water help to relief abdominal pain. There are two type of paw-paw the male and the female. The male doesn’t bear fruits and it is more medicinal than the female. The leaves of the male paw-paw when squeezed in a cup of water and little salt added to it help to cure malaria.

Some of the diseases paw-paw can cure are as follows:

1. MALARIAL This plant can frankly help to overcome malaria fever, which is a very common cause of death in some parts of the world. To administer, squeeze some yellow pawpaw leaves in water, take a glassful three times daily for seven days. This preparation is also good for jaundice with the same dosage. At the end of the seventh day, the fever will be no more I assure you.

2. DIABETES The green leaves of pawpaw are good for diabetes and for diabetes-induced hypertension. Squeeze the green leaves in water and take a glass three times daily. This preparation is also good for constipation.

3. STOMACH ULCER Cut a big unripe pawpaw fruit into bits. Do not remove the peel or seeds. Simply cut the whole fruit into cubes. Then soak in five bottles of water for four days. Sieve and take half a glass three times daily for two weeks. This is a very good remedy for any type of intestinal ulcer

4. EXTERNAL ULCER The white milky sap of the unripe paw-paw contains a high percentage of papain, which is used for chronic wounds or ulcers. This can be obtained by making a slight cut on the unripe pawpaw fruit to allow the juice to drop. Papain is also present in the ripe pawpaw fruit.

5. ASTHMA Burn dried pawpaw leaves and inhale the smoke during an attack of asthma. This immediately relieves the patient. To prevent an attack, inhale the smoke every night. This miraculously also has the potential of overcoming the asthma permanently.there are other disease too numerous to mention which paw-paw can cure.try it yourself and see the wonders of nature.

My Personal Cancer Survivor Journey

My first remembrance of my migraines was in the 2nd grade on the playground. I was accidentally hit by another classmate while they were coming off the slide. From there on my headaches became progressively worse. During this time I had a sever nightmare of a pink worm protruding from the wall by my bedroom. I had an extremely high temperature and had to be put in the bath tub with lots of ice. I know now this was a hallucination from the tumor. By the time I was 11 years old in 5th grade my headaches had become violent. I had an extreme case of a migraine once a week with vomiting. I was visiting the doctor at least once a week. Finally in April of 1992 while in 5th grade I was leaving for school one morning and had the worse attack I had ever had. While going outside to catch the bus with my brothers on the steps of our house I began vomiting profusely. I was brought back in and put on the couch with a wet rag on my head, shaking, and was blood red. The same day I was taking to our family doctor Dr. Kevin G. Kelly in Russellville Alabama. After he was told what happened he turned out the lights in my patient room and shined a light in my eyes. After the appointment I was scheduled for an MRI in Muscle Shoals Alabama, I didn’t know what an MRI was but I would become very well acquainted with it. When finally my parents received the results of the MRI they were told I had a mass on my brain. I was in the room my parents begin crying and so did I. I really did not know what was wrong I just cried mostly because they did.

We were scheduled to go to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham Alabama immediately after that. We arrived at children’s hospital Friday May 1st of 1992 and had to sign in at the emergency room because it was late in the evening. I was immediately put into the ICU unit at children’s with regular doses of steroids to shrink the tumor. I stayed in the unit till Monday the 4th when I had my surgery. I had a 12 hour surgery. When I regained consciousness after my surgery I was on life support. The strangest feeling I will ever know was waking up with a tube in my throat. I could not see well but I could see the nurses around me putting in IVs. I had numerous IVs all over my body. I stayed on life support for an unnamed amount of time because I really had no recognition of time while in ICU. I know I was in ICU for 9 days that is all I can tell you. After a while the nurses came and extracted my life support tube (bad feeling). Shortly after extracting it my lungs collapsed and they had to put the life support back in (worse feeling). For days the nurses had to suck mucus from my lungs with suction. During this time my mother learned it was indeed cancer that I had.

The type of tumor was ependymoma

The doctor that had done the surgery Dr. Lewis Harris told my parents it was the size his fist. After 9 days I left ICU and went into a regular room in children’s. I was in the hospital for 6 weeks had numerous MRIs, Physical and occupational therapy, spinal taps, and sleep studies. I also had to have a feeding tube put in my stomach because I was aspirating my food. I was told I would never eat again but I became able to eat a couple of months after I went home and the tube was removed. After I was released from Children’s I had to take radiation for 6 weeks 2 times a day. My mother and I stayed at The Ronald McDonald house in Birmingham during my treatments and went home on weekends. I had to have regular MRIs till I was 21 and then was cut off from children’s because I lost my insurance. School was hard but tolerable, and I went to college a few years at first for general education and then for PC hardware and Software tech. I thank GOD I can hold down a full time job and work as much as I want. My only true disability is my total loss of hearing in my right ear which I lost shortly after surgery. I wear a hearing aid in my left ear.

I am a survivor of cancer now going on over 20 years. I account my blessings on GOD who had many wonderful Christians from Eastside church of Christ in Russellville and all over Franklin County praying for me during my time in the hospital. I also owe my life to my wonderful surgeon Dr. Lewis Harris at Children’s and Dr. Kevin G. Kelly for finding my tumor. Being a survivor has not been easy cancer never leaves you. It is in the back of your mind permanently. I have met many wonderful, strong, and beautiful survivors over the years from hospitals such as Children’s Hospital, St Jude’s Hospital, and Cancer Treatment Centers of America. From cancer survivor camps such as:

Camp Smile a mile in Alexander city Alabama

Middle Tennessee Camp Blue bird

Camp Bluebird at Decatur General

Camp Mak A Dream in Gold Creek Montana

I have lost a lot of my friends and cried for them but I remember the wonderful memories we had and I wouldn’t trade anything for what has happened to me. I have met some of the strongest people I will ever know. Also my mother is a survivor now and I love her very much she is a very strong women.

Kevin Poston Cancer Survivor Journey

My Ex Sends Mixed Signals – What Does It Mean?

Lots of times, after a breakup, your ex boyfriend or girlfriend will remain in some sort of contact with you.

It’s painful to see them, it hurts to hear from them. At the same time though, you’re willing to welcome just about anything your ex does, because you still love them and so very badly want them back.

But what about when your ex sends mixed signals?

What does it mean when your ex tells you they “still love you” or “will always have feelings for you” one minute, but then completely ignore you or tell you to go away the next?

Is there anything to all these back and forth emotions? Is your ex just being cruel, turning his or her feelings on and off like a faucet?

When Your Ex is Hot One Minute… Cold the Next

There are a number of behaviors you will get from your ex boyfriend or ex girlfriend after they end their relationship with you. Some of them are intentional. Others are purely because your ex just doesn’t know what to do. Remember that even though they’re the one who broke up with you, your former lover is still going through a lot of the same withdrawal symptoms and bad feelings that you are.

So what do all these signals mean? Let’s examine them one by one:

My Ex is Completely Ignoring Me

In this case, your ex dumps you and then appears to have completely moved on. They don’t call. They don’t text. They don’t ‘like’ your Facebook or Instagram posts anymore. In short, it’s like you’re not even there. Like suddenly, after how much you loved this person? You’re a GHOST to them.

Being ignored is one of the most painful experiences following a breakup. It can make you feel as if you mean nothing to your ex boyfriend or girlfriend. It can invalidate all your feelings of love, it can wipe away the memories you shared together as if they never happened. It feels cruel. Awful.

But why would an ex ignore you like this? Are they doing it specifically to hurt you?

Not even close.

See, your ex made a very difficult decision when he or she decided to break up with you. And it’s not one they took lightly.

Believe it or not, seeing you, talking to you, even hearing from you is tough for them.

Even something as innocent as a friendly “Hi, how are you?” text message can hurt your ex just as much as it hurts you.

So rather than put themselves through the pain of having to deal with rehashing their decision? Your ex decides to break all contact with you.

This doesn’t mean your ex doesn’t love you. Not by a longshot. But it does mean they’re not ready to hear from you right now, and that any continued efforts to get in touch with them on your part will only push them further in the opposite direction.

The more you call? The further they run. The more you text, or drive by your ex’s house, or stalk them on the internet? The more distant and cold the person will be toward you. It’s a defensive mechanism. And it’s nothing personal.

“I Still Love You, But I Can’t Be With You Right Now”

When an ex gives you this line, it’s not anywhere near what he or she is really saying. In more simple terms, here’s the translation:

“I’d like to see other people. But I want YOU to wait around for me, so that if my new single life is a failure, I can always come back to you for friendship or sex or comfort.”

So yeah, your ex is basically blowing you off to try dating other people. They’ll never admit this of course, which is why they surround themselves with such mystery.

Your ex might call you at weird times, or text-message you and not answer you back. He or she will pretty much make their own schedule, which revolves around doing whatever the hell they want. And when you press them for details, or ask “when” you might get back together again? They scoff at you, tell you you’re smothering them, or that they “need time alone”.

NEVER allow your ex to have this much power. Putting your relationship in limbo while you hang on for any table scraps your boyfriend or girlfriend might throw your way makes you seem utterly desperate and therefore unattractive. Your ex isn’t likely to date you anytime soon when he or she knows you’ll come running like a dog whenever called. And they’re certainly not going to re-enter a long-term relationship with someone this desperate and subservient to them.

Your Ex Has Sex With You But Won’t Get Back Together

You might think that having sex with an ex boyfriend or girlfriend will help get them back. After all, part of the reconciliation process is sleeping with one another again, and you probably aren’t exactly sure when the right time to do it might be.

But when your ex is using you for sex? That’s never going to lead to a permanent relationship again. Not if you’re giving them the physical and emotional comfort of having sex with you, but without any of the strings attached from being boyfriend and girlfriend.

Unani and home remedies for improving eyesight

Food and Diet Consuming good amount of apple and grapes helps in improving your eyesight. Vitamin A is very good for enhancing your eyesight. Carrots have good quantity of vitamin A which proves to be one of the useful natural treatments. Cucumber juice does wonders for your eyesight as it tries to improve it immensely. Add spinach in your daily diet as Spinach contains iron, vitamin A, B and C. It purifies your blood, increases the hemoglobin and improves your eyesight. You can find good source of vitamin A in turnip, milk cream, fresh milk, cheese, butter, tomatoes, lettuce, cabbage, soya beans, green peas, oranges and dates. An ayurvedic medicine name Triphala is considered to work immensely in favor of your eyes. Consuming blueberry juice also considered to be very useful for your eyes. Exercises Close both the eyes very tightly by shutting the lids firmly. Open them suddenly which allows you to feel the stretch. Once open arch your brows and stretch your face. Repeat this several times a day. Look as far as possible and inhale then look down as far as possible and exhale. Blink your eyes more than dozen times. Do the same procedure by turning to your left and right then diagonally up to left, down to right, up to right and down to left followed by rapid blinking. Rotate your eyes in all the directions. Slowly and steadily concentrate one eye at a time. Do this exercise more than dozen times and try doing this with your eyes shut. By using palming which can be stated as a revised version of the thousand-year-old yoga tradition known was Hatha Yoga. It relieves strain and stress from your mind and eyes which needs the required break. For this you have to warm your hands by rubbing them together vigorously. Once it’s warm cover the eye without touching the eyelids. This relaxes the nerves and helps in blood circulation. You can also try sunning which means to use sun’s light for your eyes. Move your head from side to side for the heat to benefit the eyes. After a while try stretching the eyes to allow more sunlight to your eyes. Directly looking at the sun is never good. It is great method to reduce light sensitivity. Perform Netra Basti which is bathing your eyes with clarified butter to reduce eye strain and to improve eyesight. Vision-corrective eye exercises work very well in fully restoring ones vision (or serve as a means of preventative maintenance), and there are a tonn of different eye exercises out there to help your eyesight. However, there’s another, very important, point to know, understand and remember, which is that VISION-CORRECTIVE EYE EXERCISES DO NOT WORK BY THEMSELVES. As soon as you start doing them purely mechanically, you might as well give up right away, because it’ll take you so long that you won’t be able to stand it, and it’s ineffective and an unnecessary waste of time. This mistake alone is one that is making way too many people give up on it early, after seeing no results! In order to throw away your glasses forever, one needs to understand the principles of mind work – i.e. that what we think affects how we see, and know how to apply them in the most efficient way, then that really starts doing wonders! Another thing one needs to understand is that one needs to relax ones eye muscles. It’s really crucial to success, as THAT is what sets the boundary between success and failure for people – the time that the restoration process will take. We need to look after our eyes on a regular bases, *just as we look after any other part of our body*. For me, finding out about vision-corrective eye exercises and doing them was like a miracle, because I’ve actually managed to fully restore my eyesight that way! I’ve followed a russian course myself, which is a course for general self-healing, and that helped me restore my eyesight fairly quickly, which I’m *really* happy about! I’ve actually noticed a load of other stuff starting to happen once I’ve restored my vision, like my concentration level went up *enormously*, for example. I can really see it, and, believe me, it helps a TONNE in anything that you do. Very powerful stuff, the effectiveness of which is not to be underestimated. Vision-corrective eye exercises (coupled with mind work) work very well, when done correctly. I’ve even created my own step-by-step guide (http://cureyoureyes.com/blog), detailing the exact steps I took, which I was giving away at first, and now am selling as suggested by friends. And the really cool thing is that they are so simple, they only take 30 mins a day, 4 days a week! E.g. when you work with a pc, read a book, or when you are doing anything else that requires you to stare at it for a long time, especially close up, you need look around the room, look into the distance now and again. If you do that, your eyesight will NOT get worse. Otherwise, it WILL – it’s only normal, only common sense. It took me a great amount of time to learn and understand all this (because I wanted to understand more), but now that I know this, I’ll never let my eyesight deteriorate ever again. As soon as it deteriorating (now probably not earlier than when I’m well over 40 – I hope time won’t go too quickly!!), I know *exactly* what to do. If you do start noticing your eyesight worsening, then you can start doing more exercises – move your eyes up, down, left, right, look onto your nose etc – do this for a couple of mins once every hour or so, then close your eyes and relax. If you put your hands over your face, so that your eyes are right in the middle of your palms, with no light getting through, and stay like this for a minimum of 3 mins, then your eyes will relax and you’ll see a huge improvement for a moment – every day you’ll notice a slight improvement in your vision, right until the moment when you fully restore it. Although all of us are well aware of all the medicinal values and beauty care that honey bestows for human body, it has been recently learnt that honey works magic for eyes, by protecting eyes and improving eyesight. Although the easiest manner to take advantage of honey is to include it as part of one’s regular diet, Perry Kharpuri, a Shillong-based researcher, advices a mix of two teaspoons of honey with carrot juice, which, on regular consumption, improves eye sight and cures watery eyes. This is believed to be an excellent remedy for people working for long hours before the computer. Also, Amla (Indian gooseberry), taken with honey, apart from improving eye sight helps in treatment of conjunctivitis and glaucoma, reducing intraocular tension in an effective manner. When suffering from cold, cough or chest congestion, add two teaspoons of honey with an equal quantity of ginger juice, and consume often. This although, one of the oldest, is also one of the most popular remedies followed by millions of Indians. Another honey remedy is to add a spoon of fresh honey to juice of half a lemon in a glass of lukewarm water, as a cure for hyperacidity, obesity and constipation. Homeopath, Swapan Debnath, agrees that honey also helps in controlling BP. Two teaspoons of honey, when mixed with a teaspoon of garlic juice, and consumed regularly, helps tackle the problem to a certain extent. As per research conducted by Madeep Kaur of Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Samrala, Punjab, a mixture of honey, ginger juice and black pepper powder mixed in equal quantities and consumed thrice a day, helps relieve symptoms of Asthma. In short, consuming one teaspoon of honey a day helps lead a long healthy life, states Madeep Kaur in her report. However, a work of caution to be followed is that honey should not be heated or exposed to high temperature. Also honey should never be taken with hot and spicy food and fermented beverages such as rum, brandy or whisky, as the nectar of various flowers included in honey, could get its poisonous properties enhanced when mixed with hot and spicy foods, which could at times prove to be fatal.

Psychology of Hospitality in Our Iranian Life

Many years ago, I had a friend who particularly came to see me since she was experiencing anxiety and low mood due to some intrusive guests.

Her main grievance was her lack of tolerance with some guests that was staying in her place for about three weeks. My friend stated that she was tired of not having any privacy or own space. She sounded extremely stressed out and upset. It seemed to her that these guests would never leave, as time was running slow, slower than ever.

I asked her what she meant by these guests never leaving. How long did they come for initially? My next question was how come she could not ask them to stay in a hotel. She challenged my nonsense question by reminding me of our Iranian Taroof business.

At that moment, I knew exactly what she meant.

Now my friend was in a situation where she in addition to the everyday stress for work, studies, and challenges of life, she had to tackle with an extra tension. I could see that she was unable to carry on, a reason for her to seek out.

I knew this woman since a long time. She moved to Canada about ten years ago. In her past ten years she lived here, she had may set of guests. These guests could be her parents, in-laws, siblings, cousins, friends from Iran, and sometimes a relative who was visiting this town. Once family and friends stopped coming, they would refer someone else who was visiting this town to go and say hi to my dear friend. This saying hi meant much more than just a word. We Iranian know what this means, it means that she had to put some extra time and effort to invite this person, she needed to consider accommodating him or her, may need be the case, and she had to offer the person some taste of our Iranian hospitality to the best of her ability.

She actually remembered one lady she knew from high school who had called her many years ago saying that her brother and a whole family was in town and that would be nice to have them visit my friend. Culturally this visit would only be a reason for a relative to a friend become friend to you. This is a very complicated concept that we Iranian are well accustomed to. Friend to parents of in-laws can be easily friends of your siblings for instance. Although there is no formula for this type of expanding on social relationships, still, there are few key concepts here. If we think someone has a status, has a specialty, or has a character, we like all other people around us to get to know that friend.

Anyhow, about this family being in town: One day led to another and my friend totally forgot to call this new arrived family. After a couple of month she had this call again from this lady accusing my friend of being disrespectful and irresponsible. After that incident my friend never heard back from that lady which for her became a pleasant way of getting rid of one more trouble.

So now, all these guests who were coming to visit her, they came either as part of their vacation or a transit to other visits in the State. This time my friend had a couple who visiting her or better to say, staying at her place. I thought of her running a bed and breakfast, at least she could earn some money for her hospitality. She continued to briefly express herself, how much she felt exhausted of all these visitors who come to abuse her resources while being on vacation.

I asked her to elaborate on her feelings. This is a typical problem we all have. Really, we Iranian, sometimes, have no limits for how much of our resources are ours and how much we want to share it with others. Now my friend explained further that now she is tired of all this coming home after work, making food for her guests, while planning her next work day.

At this point, she managed to identify a big issue, that there is a lot she can not speak with her husband about. My friend is a successful professional who is respected in her work place and known for her creative ideas. She suffered from the fact that she could not get rid of the unwanted guests. She also was in pain as she felt she was not being respected by these intrusive guests. The day before she came to see me, she had managed to sit down and write a letter to her husband in order to express her overwhelming emotions about this particular problem.

She started to tell me the story in more detail. I just remember her saying:

It is about three weeks now we have quests in our home. This is not the first time, not the second time, and maybe the tenth time we have people who come to stay with us more than a week. I know that it is our culture to show our hospitality and be guest-friendly, however, now I am sick and tired of being a doormat to others. I am not able to talk with my husband right now as we have to wait for these people to leave. I hope to have a serious talk with my husband and make sure that we are clear about our goals for future events. It is devastating to wait for this talk since we we have to first get our home back. I know that we should be able to communicate better. I am extremely sad, stressed out, unhappy, frustrated, and angry for many reasons. I feel my home is invaded, I feel my privacy and my life is exploited and exhausted, I feel we are being used by people whom we do not have much in common with. It is my understanding that people who go for vacation they go to stay in hotels, they rent a car for sightseeing, and they go out to adventures. Now we are doing multiple works, we are a hotel where people do not need to pay, we provide for free rides around the city, we take people to parks on our free times, and we offer them best food for free again. What is it about our culture that makes us this stupid? I am really tired of this. Now for this recent guest episode, this couple said they will be here for a short time, yet now it is three weeks. I wish I was brave enough to say that I could reserve a hotel for them and I could tell them that I do not have time for guests at this point of time. I wish I was courageous enough to say that I can not take you in my home as I am busy with my own life. There are many things I wish I had said, yet, now, I promise you, next time, if they come I will leave from that door. Oh, no, I will tell them straight into their face that I can not be their host. I can not find any reason to let people reside in my home besides living with this Taroof business. Caring about our resources and our life, I think we should be able to say no to others who use our home as a hotel. For past couple of weeks, although I have pretended to the most, yet, inside me is hurting and aching. I have slept many nights with tears and cried to the middle of nights just because I do not understand why I have to be in service for these people.

Now my friend was telling me that we are unable to tell people know how our privacy, our time, and our life are important. So we should be in charge next time and tell people about our limitations. I really questioned her ability of being expressive next time, although now she was giving me the indication that she had made her mind clear about her own rules. My friend has not even shared her feelings with her husband who had no idea how much she feel invaded. After listening to my friend we sat down and talked about many things. I was happy that she had come to a conclusion and she was able to articulate herself. This was after all the most tolerant person I knew. After she left, I started instantly thinking of how we Iranian define the idea of niceness in our complex and contextual culture? Why do we need to be nice at all and to whom?

I came to think of how the stigma and fear of becoming disgraced is already discrediting our true self. The connotation of being guest-friendly comes from the time where people came from rural areas to the cities to seek work, to seek medical care that was not available in their home town, or for other attractions of a big city like Tehran.

We Iranian are aware of families who lived in big cities and they always had a group of people visiting them from other places. Now that migration is a factor here, our Iranian families, not only visit cities in Iran, they also use their resources to check on relatives who reside outside of Iran. This is a good plan, they visit their loved ones, which is a very positive activity, and also they have their vacation almost paid. Not to mention that some families who come to visit, once they are returning, they have to take home souvenirs. The question about who should pay for all those souvenirs brings in another chapter of the Iranian way of thinking. We will not go there.

I know of an older lady, age 82; she recalls how her mother always made food for least 20 people. This is one of her most repetitive memories as she keeps repeating herself every five minutes.

Now, my question is how we still today, in the 21 century carry on with same traditions that had another contextual meaning.

I guess we Iranian always need to proof ourselves being good, acceptable, friendly, generous, and kind. This is how we would feel superior and in control. This feeling comes along with the sensitivity and adaptability to time and space. If we agree that the style of life has changed, we could question ourselves how in the world we still continue same old behaviours.

About our hospitality: our cognitive blueprint is to show we are capable and reliable. In our Persian culture, it is something about being man enough, to feed many people, to be generous, to pay for others, and to not complain about anything. The hidden aspect of this concept is to be a good, obedient, and gentle person, who at times has no self-defined identity.

Why this is a case in our lives? Why we Iranian (in general) follow this pattern?

There is much more to this discussion.

I believe that once we Iranian are unable to talk about our own boundaries, we defeat ourselves. Our socially construed discourse of hospitality lies in between the layers of internalized oppression, inter-dependability, subjugation, and conformity.

We should be able to have a choice, to use our hospitality as part of our care and love for being with others, not as an obligation.

How we Iranian know ourselves as kind, generous, and guest -lovers has to do with our ancient culture. Our sense of hospitality is certainly well-known and recognized culturally. We have always been proud of our level of hospitality and we undeniably try to be in provision for our quests when they arrive at our doors.

From early childhood, we Iranian hear our parents offering a lot of our resources to our guests. Who are these people anyway? In our ancient Persian culture we say guests are associates to god (Rahmate Khoda) and you treat them with the best of your ability.

In fact we Iranian learn implicitly how to treat others and how to let others treat us. Our parents were always offering best food to the quests and we children could be served food separately so we were not supposed to mess up in front of our guests. Again, there is no general united way of defining our Iranian guest culture.

Many of us, we always had our guest room locked; because children were blamed to make that holy room a clutter if they were allowed to spend time there. In our guest rooms we had our nicest Persian rugs, best china, furniture of good quality and we served our best food in there. I still sense the air in that tidy room where furniture could speak to one another. Everything was in order ready for strangers to come in and enjoy. This is the story of millions of our homes; many of us remember those extra rooms and extra items kept years after years for the use of others. And how did we do, our everyday life we spend time in our living room and we used our casual plates or much cheaper china sets. Our food was less fancy in our everyday life and our habits much informal compare to when we had quests.

We are raised with this schema, this mental filter that we should be nice to others; strangers. With today’s terminology, we used to be a pleaser, to please everyone, but ourselves. This being polite could mean acting nice, or pretending to be nice, just because pleasing others would help us to keep a face, to keep our facade, whatever it was.

Sometimes we really enjoy having people around us and we do this by choice, we are a collectively raised culture, where individuality does not mean much. Many times we have no idea about how life is like when no we are not having people over. Please note that we Iranian similar to every other group of people have different habits, rituals, and styles of life. Again, we are making general statements while we are open for all the possibilities of exceptions and different ideas around how we Iranian are.

I guess many of us share many memories of the time when our parents used to lodge people who came from other cities either to visit or to come for various events. Our mothers used to have a room full of specially designed mattresses, blankets, comforters, pillows, and bed sheets. These guests-sleeping-tools , how we call it Raktekhab, was usually made of nice satin, embroidery cottons, or even silk sheets, in any case, all the best quality that our parents could afford.

If we do a check in to most Iranian homes we carry on that tradition, yet maybe we shift our way of thinking one way or another. Still today, when we have guests, we show our best of best, all from food to entertainment. Remember this is a beautiful tradition to be kind and generous to our guests. However, problem arises when we do not have any boundaries. This seems to have a certain pattern that many of us share using it consciously or just following it by hearth. This pattern has many hidden aspects, being nice to others but not to ourselves, to offer others the best of us, while we go for less in our private time.

There is nothing wrong with being generous, you give and you receive, this is the law of life. We live a happier life once we are able to share our homes, wealth, strengths, and hopes.

However, if we try to analyze this notion of our hospitality more in-depth, we can realize that our guest culture has more to do with lack of definition for personal choice, private life, and individuality. We do not always have to be nice, we can say no, and it is time to consider respecting our own private space. We need to spend time alone to learn about the things we lack. With pretending and denying ourselves, we are stuck where we are.

It is time to learn more about who we really want to be.

Youth Football Is Under Attack, How to Defend Our Game

Defending Our Game

If you have not been camping out under a rock for the last few months, you know our game is under attack. The game we love and devote so much time to in order that our sons and players can gain the life lessons most of us learned from the game, being being viciously assaulted on many fronts. Some are calling for an out right ban on youth football due to the concussion issue or not allowing kids to play until age 13. One of the major problems in today's society is that perception is reality and that perception is shaped by those who are yelling the Loudest and the most often.

In all fairness, there are football people who did offer up some kindling to get this firestorm started. The NFL and it's "Bountygate" scandal did not do the game any favors. While the youth game is not the NFL, many soccer moms think that youth football is a microcosm of the NFL and what happens in little Johnny's league is just a mini version of what happens in the NFL. We also had some youth coaches who did not understand how to teach safe blocking and tackling or how to recognize concussions. While those coaches are rare today, their legacy lives on. And like it or not, soccer moms make a lot of decisions on whether little Johnny is allowed to play youth football or not.

As most of you are well aware, Bountygate is the least of our worries. The concussion issue is what is dominating the airwaves these days. Concussion diagnosis and prevention has been a point of emphasis for the last 2-3 years. More fuel to that fire was added when Hall of Fame player Junior Seau died of an apprehensive suicide last week. Speculation was that his depression and subsequent suicide was caused by concussion issues. The Seau lawsuit was a tragedy, by all accounts Junior was a solid citizen. However there is no evidence that discussions played a role in his death or even that suicide rates are higher among NFL players than the general population. It should be noted that Samoans have one of, if not the highest rate rate in the world and the US has a very high rate rate compared to other developed nations.

Another interesting scientifically verified statistic is that former NFL players live much longer than the general population. Did you have any idea that was a verified truth? Many would have you believe that all these former NFL players break down and die prematurely in their 50's. Well that is not the case at all, they are OUTLIVING the general population. A study was commissioned by the players union to study this very topic.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (Niosh), began it's data collection in 1990 and released its findings in January, 2012. They studied 3,439 players who were in the NFL for five seasons or more. They found a lower death rate among former NFL players than among men in the general population – the institute had expected to find that 625 members of the group it studied would be dead based on estimates from the general population, but instead found that 334 of the Retired players had died. Yes, those alive were almost DOUBLE the number compared to the general population. These numbers are amazing considering the number of 300 lb plus players and African-American players who are in the NFL, since these groups typically have much higher early mortality rates than the general population. So the next time someone spouts off that National Inquirer like "stat" that NFL players are all dying prematurally in their 50's, please set them straight with the facts.

When it comes to youth football, again it's an entirely different game. We do not have 300 lb players who can run 4.8 40 yard dashes and who can bench press 225 lbs 35 times. Statistics say that 70% of youth players will not play High School football, let alone be part of the 2-3% that go on to college Football or be one of the 1 in 20,000- 30,000 to go on to play in the NFL. The NFL is the cream of the cream of the cream of the crop, genetic freaks who have honed their bodies into athletic machines capable of inflating significant hits to one another. But the NFL players abilities have very little correlation to what the average 10 year old can do with his body and in turn to other players.

Mayo Clinic Study

In fact the Mayo Clinic did a study of 913 youth football players on 42 different teams age 9-13. Back in 1997 they found that "most injuries that occurred were mild and that youth football injuries were uncommon." According to Mayo Clinic spokesman Michael J. Stuart MD the findings shown that "the risk of injury in youth football does not appear greater than the risk associated with other recreational or competitive sports." Most of the injuries were mild and the most common type was a contusion, which occurred in 33 players. Four injuries (fractures involving the ankle growth plate) were such that they pretended players from No player required hospitalization or surgery. Again scientific fact flies in the face of those who would want you to believe that you are somehow an irresponsible Neanderthal parent if you want your son to play youth football.

Most of us coach youth football because the game did something for us and we want to pass that same thing onto others. We want kids to experience being part of a team, teamwork, perseverance, selflessness, goal setting, commitment, hard work, making friends, being coachable, delayed gratification, humility, grace, overcoming obstacles, competition, having fun and much more. There are people out there who for whatever reason neither do not understand what youth football is about, had a bad experience from a "bad apple" program or coach or simply oppose kids learning and embracing some of those traditional character traits listed above. Do not let the haters and naysayers dominate the "debate." Know the facts and share the data so people can make legitimate and honest decisions about their child's involvement in youth football. An additional footnote, I've trained youth football for over 25 years and not a single one of my players have ever been diagnosed with a conversation from anything they did on the football field.

Training For Your First Bodybuilding Competition at Any Age

Competing in a bodybuilding competition is an exciting, exhilarating and fulfilling experience. It takes determination, dedication and just plain hard work. And, unless you plan on becoming a professional, all you can hope for from all of your effort is a trophy.

Ah, but what a trophy!

When you stand on stage, holding a rigid “relaxed” pose and hear the announcer call your name as Champion in your Class or Winner of the Overall Competition, it’s mighty sweet. You savor the moment and forget all about what it took to get there.

Deciding to Compete

If you are in reasonably good shape and work out regularly, at least four-times-per-week, you can be prepared to enter your first contest within a year. I trained five-days-a-week for 10 months to get ready for my first contest.

You need that much time in order to gain the lean mass your body needs to sustain itself as you enter the fat-burning/cutting phase of your diet, about 13 weeks before your contest. If you want to compete as a Middle Weight, (165 – 185 lbs.), for instance, you might need to be around 195-200 lbs before you begin your cutting phase. The reason is simple. When you go into the cutting phase, your body loses about one pound of muscle for every three pounds of fat. For my first contest, I weighed 154 lbs on January 1st. When I stepped onto the stage on March 19th, I weighed a ripped 136. I was the lightest Bantam Weight. In fact, I was too light. The Bantam Weight limit is 143 lbs. Off season, I will bulk up with lean mass to about 165 lbs and try to come in at around 142.5, near the top of the weight class for next year’s competitions.

So, the first thing you need to do, after deciding to enter a contest, is to pick a contest 10 – 12 months in the future and decide in which weight class you want to compete. Then, see where you are now and where you need to be on contest day. At that point, you can plan your diet.

To make sure this is something you really want to do though, you should attend a bodybuilding competition in your area. It’s the best place to learn about the sport. You can pick out who is really ready to compete and who needs to do more work. Depending on whether you go to a drug-tested show or non-tested show, you will also see how huge some of the men, and even some of the women, who use steroids and other illegal muscle enhancers look. You can decide if that’s the direction you want to go or not.

Competition Diet

Once you decide you want to compete, you must make a complete change in your life style. Bodybuilding is a life-style sport, much like ice skating, marathon running, competitive snowboarding, etc. Bodybuilding takes a lot of time in the gym and a lot of time in the kitchen. Competitive bodybuilders build their lives around their workouts and their meals, which during daylight hours average once every two-and-one-half-hours. It’s also expensive, calling for large amounts of protein each day, at least one gram for each pound of body weight. Here is a typical diet for a bodybuilder who is trying to put on lean mass several months before a competition:

Breakfast: Three egg whites (protein) and one whole egg + one cup of oatmeal

Mid-morning: Protein shake (two scoops) in 8-12 oz of water

Lunch: 8 oz of steak, or chicken, or fish + 8 oz of sweet potato + cup of vegetables

Mid-Afternoon: Protein shake (two scoops) in 8-12 oz of water

Dinner: 8 oz of steak, or chicken, or fish + two cups of vegetables

Throughout the day, you need to drink between 1/2 and one gallon of spring water.

This diet is designed to put on about a pound of lean mass a week. Lots of protein, lots of carbs and little fat.

I’ll talk about how the diet changes as you get closer to your competition later.

Supplements

I said earlier, bodybuilding is an expensive sport. It’s not as expensive as a Bass Boat with all the accessories, but it’s close.

In order to help your body use the fuel you put in (food and drink) and to take advantage of your workouts to build muscle, you need a good supply of supplements. I won’t go into brand names or lead you to any supplier, but, here are some of the supplements you should consider:

Protein Powder: Check the labels. Some are designed as meal replacements, some for lean muscle mass gain, others for general growth, some for fat loss and some for heavy-duty muscle building. One caution, check the labels for additives.

Glutamine: Increases muscular growth, offers a muscle pump while training, helps retain lean muscle tissue, reduces muscle soreness, helps increase fat loss.

Creatine: Allows you to train harder with greater intensity and recover faster. It aids in increasing your weights and number of reps and reduces your rest between sets. Great energy boost.

Flaxseed/Fish Oil: Fat is necessary in your daily diet for the manufacture of hormones, proper brain function and joint lubrication. Eliminate fats completely and your muscles shrink dramatically, and your energy and strength levels go with them. Enter Flaxseed and Fish Oil. Usually in capsule form. They act as solvents to remove hardened fat, support muscle growth and fat metabolism.

Multi-vitamins: Everyone’s vitamin needs are different. Hard-training athletes need more vitamins and minerals. Getting the right amount of vitamins and minerals is equal in importance to protein and carbohydrates.

There are lots of other supplements on the market today. But, if you use these five, along with good workouts and proper diet, you are going to achieve the growth you desire.

Training

Your competition training regimen will have three phases. The first, while you are adding lean mass for muscle building, you will workout with heavier weights and lower reps. During the second or gradual (13 weeks) fat burning/cutting phase, you will work out with lighter weights and higher reps. And, during your final two weeks of training before a show, you will use light weights and only “pump up” your muscles during your workouts. During your bulking up stage, you do moderate cardio. During your cutting for competition phase, you do max cardio and during the last two weeks, moderate to no cardio. I’ll talk more about the last two weeks later.

During my ten months of training for my first two competitions, I used the following workout plan:

Monday (45 Minutes) – Back & Biceps + 20 Minutes of Cardio

Tuesday (45 Minutes) – Legs & Calves + 20 Minutes of Posing

Wednesday (45 Minutes) – Chest & Triceps + 20 Minutes of Cardio

Thursday (45 Minutes) – Legs & Calves + 20 Minutes of Posing

Friday (45 Minutes) – Shoulders & Biceps + 20 Minutes of Cardio

Saturday (45 Minutes) – Posing (Video Session)

Each week I tried to mix up my workout routine so my muscle groups stayed “surprised” and didn’t let my muscles get used to a fixed routine. I mixed machines with dumbbells and never did the same thing twice in a row.

I had great results with this training regimen. When I started, I weighed about 158 lbs. with about 14% body fat. Ten months later, when I stepped onto the stage at my first competition, I was 136 lbs. with 4.5% body fat. At my second competition, two weeks later, I was about 136 with 4% body fat. One ripped, competitive, dude!

Posing

Posing is one of the more important elements of bodybuilding and one that in many cases is neglected. A competitor with a well-muscled and cut body can lose to a competitor with less muscle who is better able to show the judges what he or she has.

I’m not going to get into individual poses in this article. There are many sources available on the web, in books, magazines and videos that demonstrate the various poses. Rather, I will talk about the “psychology” of posing and the importance of posing practice.

While you will hear the head judge repeatedly call out, “Relax!” between poses, there is no such thing as being “Relaxed” during a competition. From the moment you step onto the stage you are being judged, and every muscle in your body must remain flexed. Every pose is built from the legs up. If you are doing a side chest and your legs are not flexed, your upper body will look great while your legs and calves will look flat. You will lose points. In bodybuilding, the judges are looking for your flaws. As a bodybuilder, you are looking to hide those flaws. It’s a cat-and-mouse game. As a 67 year-old competitor, I have a little extra skin around my midsection. I can’t get rid of it no matter how much I diet or how many hundreds of crunches I do. So, to hide my “extra skin”, I lean back a little during my poses to tighten up the area. And, when doing the last pose of the round, the Most Muscular, I place my hands together, in front of my abs, which shows my upper body cuts while “hiding” part of my midsection.

If you think about it, all the training you do to get ready for a competition is laid out on the table during the 10 minutes you are on stage for your Class. It would be a shame to see all that hard work go to waste because you didn’t pose well. Posing practice must become part of your workout schedule during the entire time you are training. I work out 45 minutes-a-day, five-days a week. I do cardio for at least 20 minutes, three or four-days a week. I pose at least ½ hour a night, two evenings a week, and pose for 45 minutes with a video recorder on Saturday morning. The last week before a contest, I practice posing every evening.

Posing is hard work. If you aren’t exhausted after being on stage for six – 10 minutes going through your “relaxed” round and mandatory round, you haven’t posed hard enough. One helpful hint: some competitors begin taking potassium tablets about a week before your competition. By doing that, you will prevent cramping, which if it occurs on stage, can be a killer.

Every competitor, as part of the competition, must choreograph a 60 or 90 second routine set to you own music. While most of the time, the individual posing routine is not counted in your overall score, it sometimes is used as a tie-breaker or to place a person second or third, if it’s close. Nevertheless, your posing routine should be entertaining, lively and should show off your best body parts to their fullest. Try to pick music that is familiar. Make a CD and have two copies with you at your competition. Never do anything gross or that shows bad taste. Bodybuilding is a family-oriented spectator sport. A vulgar performance can get you disqualified from a competition. During the 60 or 90 seconds, you don’t have to show every pose in the book. Do between eight and 10, with graceful movements between poses. It’s OK to move about the stage while you perform your routine. In some cases, it’s permitted to use props. Check with you organizer.

Posing in a competition is a lot of work and a lot of fun. If you have practiced enough, you will pose well and you will look confident. You might still shake a little and you might get a case of dry-mouth, but if you know your poses and are confident, you can deal with it. The individual posing routine is your chance to have the judges and audiences see you at your best, without any other competitors to distract them from you.

One final tip. SMILE while you pose. Don’t make faces or show strain. You are in control. Have fun.

Tanning

There is an old bodybuilding saying, “If you think your tan is dark enough, put on two more coats.”

Great advice. Tanning for a bodybuilding competition is different than tanning for the prom or before you go to the beach or to a modeling job. While posing on stage during a bodybuilding competition, your cuts and muscularity must show up well against the very bright stage lights. You look your best if you are very, very dark. You look washed out and flat if your tan is not dark enough.

There are lots of ways to tan. Some are inexpensive and some are very expensive. Lets talk first about the least expensive way. The sun. It’s free and easy to use. But there are drawbacks. First, you can’t always depend on the sun being “out” when you need it. Second, it takes longer to tan in the sun than it does to tan using other means. Third, you can burn in the sun and cause peeling, which, on stage would be a disaster. And, finally, unless you know of a nude beach or have access to a private deck, you will develop tan lines that may show up on stage when you wear your posing suit.

The most reliable tan is achieved over time by visiting a good tanning salon. By good, I mean one that changes their bulbs frequently and is clean and well organized. I wouldn’t go to a tanning salon located in the rear of a coin-operated laundry (they do exist). If you want to keep a good healthy tan throughout the year, you should purchase a tanning package of minutes or unlimited sessions and try to go twice a week. By doing that, you won’t have as much “white” to cover up as you make your final preparations for your competition. And, in order to keep you skin healthy and smooth, you should apply a good tanning bed oil before each session and a good moisturizer after tanning. Both of those products are available for sale at the salons.

Once you have a decent base tan, one where people ask you in the middle of the winter, “Where have you been?”, maintain that color until it’s time for your contest.

During the final week, while your body is carb robbed and your brain is a lump of mush, you must think about applying enough tanning color to be “right-on” for the stage.

Again, there are a couple of ways to achieve this impossible task while the rest of your world is in a pre-contest daze. One way to apply self-tanning products and the other is to be professionally sprayed.

The bodybuilding industry has several products that guarantee a competition-quality tan, applied in coats, two to three days before your show. And, they offer several products to enhance the “look,” including competition bronzers, contest finishers, hair removal products (we’ll talk about that later), instant tanners, etc. All of them work, some better than others. One company is ProTan ( http://www.protanusa.com ), another is Dream Tan, featured on many bodybuilding websites. Since they are oil-based, most of the self-application products never really dry on your skin and you wind up leaving a trail whenever you touch or rub up against something.

The most expensive, but most effective way to tan for a contest is to be sprayed professionally two or three times the week of your contest. Most larger tanning salons have a spraying room where you strip down to your posing suit, pulling it up to how you will wear it on stage and let the attendant apply a generous spray-coat of dark color. You will notice instantly that you are darker than you were when you walked in with your base tan. If you are really dark to begin with, you can get away with two coats over two days. Three coats over three days will guarantee you will be dark enough. The sprays dry on your skin and last up to four days before beginning to fade, and they can be washed off in the shower on Saturday night after your competition. But, during the competition, you will not have to worry about being dark enough.

No matter if you decide to do it yourself or have it done professionally, just be aware that your tan will help determine your standing in your competition. Give it the attention it deserves.

Grooming

During a bodybuilding competition, the audience and judges are looking at you while you are standing on stage wearing nothing more than a skimpy posing suit. You are trying to show off your physique and grooming is a very important part of your appearance. If you are not well-groomed, it will take away from your overall look. In the last section, I covered tanning. Here I will cover hair. In short, other than the hair on your head, you have to get rid of it. A male bodybuilder cannot have chest hair, underarm hair or leg hair. Women need to rid themselves of all underarm and leg hair. Unless your hair is very fine, you will also need to get rid of arm hair, toe hair, and hand and finger hair. And, where there is hair under your posing suit, it has to not show, period.

Start you final week of contest preparation by getting a good haircut or styling. You should do this before you begin your final tanning prep, since you will want to tan any area that was covered by hair before it was cut. For a Saturday contest, I recommend you cut your hair by Tuesday.

Removing the rest of your body hair can be tedious. There are several ways to remove hair. The most expensive and most permanent is laser hair removal. It can take several sessions and cost hundreds of dollars but it very effective if you want your hair removed permanently. More temporary and far less expensive is using hair removal products. Usually found in the women’s products section of drug stores, the most popular are Nair and Sally Hansen. A bottle of lotion costs around $4.50 and is usually enough to take care of your contest needs. It takes about five minutes to apply, four minutes of waiting and then a shower to remove the lotion and hair. After drying, you should apply a light coating of moisturizing cream over the area where you removed the hair. Hair removal products usually keep the hair away for a week, plenty of time for your contest.

If you don’t want to use a hair removal product, another way to remove hair is to shave it off. Use a fresh razor and plenty of soap or cream and go slowly to prevent nicks and cuts. Sometimes, shaving will leave a rash or stubs of hair that could show up under the bright lights on stage. If I am going to shave, I do it on Wednesday morning before my Saturday contest and on the other days, while I’m tanning, I go over the areas with an electric shaver to prevent cuts. I also use an electric shaver the morning of the contest, never a razor.

One of the best ways to remove hair is to apply tape-like strips to the desired area and then quickly rip off the strips, removing the hair with the tape. I have never tried this method and I don’t think I will. It does work though and seems to last longer than lotions or shaving. But, man, it really hurts!

You always want to look your best on Saturday morning at the prejudging. If you take care of the little things early on in your preparation, you will be confident, look confident and show well.

The Final Two Weeks Of Contest Prep

The plan during the final two weeks is to lose any remaining fat and water and to bring out the cuts and definition in your muscles.

First, you will act a little goofy. Expect it. This is due to a blend of a high protein and low carb diet. The body needs carbs. When you take them away or cut them back, you tend to lose a little of your thought processes. Not enough to be dangerous to yourself or others. It’s OK to drive, etc., but you might become a little forgetful.

Week one of the two weeks is loaded with ground turkey and fish! After a breakfast of three egg whites and 4 ounces of 98% lean ground turkey, the rest of your solid meals consist of fish. Fish and salad for lunch, fish and green vegetables for dinner. The other two meals are protein shakes. On Monday and Thursday, add a sixth meal, a carb load, consisting of a cup of oatmeal, a banana, a cup of broccoli and ½ of a sweet potato. This meal is designed to fill you out a little so you don’t wind up looking flat on stage. You want to look like Bluto, not Popeye. Or if you are a girl, Betty Boop, not Olive Oyl. The other part of this week’s diet is water. Lots of water. One to two gallons a day. It seems like a lot, but if you keep a jug nearby, drinking from it and filling it when it’s empty, you can easily take in the water you need. Try drinking filtered water or spring water. Don’t be surprised if you visit the bathroom a lot. You are flushing out your system and removing subcutaneous fluids while drinking this much liquid. Stay away from too much coffee (one cup a day is OK) and stay away from alcohol during this training period. Don’t snack. You will have cravings. Just focus on your contest. Wouldn’t you hate to blame a loss in your contest on a slice of chocolate cake?

Your workouts this week should be moderate. Use lighter weights with 8-10 reps per set. Don’t go heavy. You are weak due to the diet and doing heavy lifting could cause injuries. Be careful in the gym. Go slowly. Watch what you are doing. Stay focused. Don’t get angry or impatient with others. Do no more than 20 minutes of easy cardio per day.

Week two is loaded with ground turkey, fish, lean ground beef and grapefruit. On Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, after a breakfast of three egg whites and 4 ounces of 98% lean ground turkey, like week one, the rest of your solid meals consist of fish. Fish and salad for lunch and fish and green vegetables for dinner. Again, the other two meals are protein shakes. On Wednesday, eliminate the salad and vegetables and substitute grapefruit. Fish and ½ a grapefruit works well. Also on Wednesday add a sixth carb meal. Same schedule on Thursday. On Friday, the final cutting day, all five meals consist of 6 – 8 ounces of lean ground beef and ½ a grapefruit.

Your workouts this week should consist of pumping up in the weight room and then practice posing. No heavy lifting. You should have done your last leg workout no later than last Saturday. Last Friday is even better. Don’t do any cardio after Tuesday.

On Saturday morning, before pre-judging, have a steak and two whole eggs. Eat the toast and hash browns. Have a cup of coffee. Just sip water as needed. About 45 minutes before your contest, have a Snickers bar. It will fill you out a bit and give you the boost of energy you need for pre-judging. Be sure to spend about 20 minutes back stage pumping up everything except legs. Then, have fun on stage.

Choosing A Contest And Submitting Your Application

Once you decide to train for a competition, before you begin, you should give a lot of thought to the type, size, location, and sanctioning authority of your event. The largest amateur bodybuilding and fitness organization in the world is the National Physique Committee (NPC). They run contests throughout the U.S. and abroad and offer opportunities to compete in the Pro ranks (IFBB). The only drawback to the NPC is their reputation for tolerating steroid use among their contestants. All of their contests are non-tested events and you can expect many of the competitors to be “juiced” and massive as a result, giving them an unfair advantage.

Given the climate of negative publicity surrounding steroid use today, many bodybuilders are turning to tested events, where competitors are screened for illegal muscle enhancing drugs, such as andros, steroids, prescription diuretics, testosterone boost and growth hormones. These types of events give the athlete a level playing field in which to train and compete. There are several national and regional organizations that offer drug-free programs. One of the largest is the National Gym Association (NGA). Another is International Natural Bodybuilding and Fitness (INBF) and Supernatural Bodybuilding and Fitness (SNBF). The former requires seven years of drug free training and competition, the latter requires five years. A large international organization of drug-free competition is the World Natural Sports Organization (WNSO) which includes regional competitions that lead to the annual FAME World Championships in Toronto, Canada in June. All of the natural federations offer opportunities for natural bodybuilders and fitness competitors to turn Pro. All of these organizations have web sites that list contest locations and requirements. Most allow you to download contest information and applications.

If you have competed using steroids or other illegal drugs but haven’t for at least five years, there is a place for you in the natural arena. You will have to pass a polygraph examination before your competition and be tested upon demand at any contest you enter.

If you are just beginning and are looking to enter a contest, the first thing you should do is to attend one of these events in your area to see what they are all about. It’s important for you to attend both the early morning pre-judging and the evening entertainment and awards event to get the entire flavor.

You should then check the websites for contests in your area that are listed well in advance, choose one, look for your age, weight, height and experience categories, see if there is a fit for you and download an application. Read it carefully, make sure you have enough time to prepare (from six to 12 months, depending upon your conditioning and physical development). If you are under 18 years-of-age, a parent must co-sign your application.

One final consideration is cost. Since these are amateur competitions there are no cash prizes, only trophies and medals. A contest can be expensive. You must pay an entrance fee and the required drug test, transportation, hotel, food and miscellaneous expenses, such as ordering contest photos or DVDs. You can expect to spend around $200 for a local contest and double that if you have to travel and stay in a hotel and rent a car. If you can find a training partner to enter a contest with you, you can half your expenses.

After all is said and done, you can enter a contest and, win or lose, have the time of your life. There is nothing like standing on stage, knowing you are as prepared as you can be, and pitting yourself against other like minded athletes. It’s really cool.

Family Considerations

I saved this section for last because if your family is not behind you and supportive of your efforts, you may as well forget about competitive bodybuilding.

“Scott was so dedicated to his exercise, and I said, ‘Gee, you’ve put so much time into this, maybe you ought to compete. His eyes lit up, like Mama had just said, ‘OK’ and now he could do what he really wanted.'” Vivian Hults

This exact quote, which appeared in a story about me recently in The Birmingham News, our local paper, was what my wife told the reporter who interviewed her about my competitive bodybuilding. Without her “interest” in my sport, “we” could have never managed it.

As I said near the beginning of this article, bodybuilding is a lifestyle, plain and simple. Preparing for a contest is time-consuming and all-inclusive in your daily life. You have to consider diet, which means shopping for and preparing special food required to reach your contest diet goals. Sometimes it’s lean mass gain. Other times it’s fat burning/cutting. You spend a lot of time in the kitchen in front of the stove and oven. Your family usually doesn’t eat what you eat, so while your family enjoys pasta and meat sauce, you may be “enjoying” fish and vegetables. That’s the way it is. You have to eat five or six times a day while your family usually has three-squares. Your food and supplements take up room in the kitchen and refrigerator. And, above all, bodybuilding food and supplements are expensive.

A competitive bodybuilder spends at least an hour-and-a-half, five or six days-a-week, in the gym. He or she will also spend 20 or 30 minutes each evening in front of a mirror, posing. This, maybe while drinking a shake. And, during the final two-weeks of carb depletion, sometimes a bodybuilder will become moody and irritable. It’s part of the “game” and the bodybuilder’s family needs to be “understanding.” Sometimes, being a family member of a bodybuilder is not fun. And, your children might be embarrassed that their father or mother participates in this sport.

Bodybuilding is a vanity sport. It’s one of the few sports where the human body is the star of the show. It’s all about the body. Hair removal, tanning, grooming, posing suits, and muscles, muscles, muscles. That’s all there is. Pretty simple, while very complex.

Now, go out and win your Trophy!

By Scott “Old Navy” Hults

General Things About Mantle Cell Lymphoma

Lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects the lymph nodes and is known as cancer of the lymphoid tissue. We know two categories of lymphomas: Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

We are going to talk about a rare type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, mantle cell lymphoma. This type of cancer can be defined as an enlargement of the population of malignant lymphoid cells, happening in the area of the lymph nodes and tissues. These cells have an unusual structure being considered as mutant cells because of their lack of development. Maturing improperly these cells become cancerous.

The lymphatic system helps the body to fight against infections or foreign particles. When the white cells are mature they seek for infections through the body. There are two types of white cells in the lymphatic system, the B cells and the T cells. Once an infection is found by the B cells, the second type of white cells, the T ones come to destroy it. This is how the immune system works.

Lymphomas are cancerous cells from the lymphatic system. The non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas that occur in the lymphatic system include follicular lymphomas, Burkitt’s lymphomas which are non-cleaved lymphomas, MALT lymphomas which are lymphomas from the marginal sides of the tissues, small and large cell lymphomas, and the subject of discussion, the mantle cell lymphomas (MCL).

The classification of the mantle cell lymphomas separates them into three categories: mantle zone type MCL cells, nodular type and immature (blastic) type. Diagnoses, in most of the cases, refer to mixed mantle or nodular type MCL.

The mantle cell lymphoma is a great concern, many specialists debating over this subject. Some consider it intermediate while others say that mantle cell lymphoma is a low-grade cancer because of its slow development. Both of these sides come with arguments based on studies and both sides are right. Patients suffering of blastic type MCL have less chances of survival comparing to the other MCL patients, because in these cases cancer spreads faster.

Persons suffering of mantle cell lymphoma are rarely under 50 and women represent a little more than a quarter in the patients number.

It’s not easy to say if a patient suffers of mantle cell lymphoma. Some believe that an immunologic test is required for a correct diagnosis.

Treatment is prescript by specialists, because each case is unique and is related to many factors like age, sex and especially stage of disease.

7 Sweet Things to Say to Your Girlfriend to Get Her Back

1. I’m sorry.

This is the number one thing that you could say to your girlfriend, or ex for that matter. The one caveat to this rule is that you need to be sincere. An insincere apology is worse than no apology at all.

2. I was wrong.

What woman wouldn’t want to hear this? Seriously. We spend too much time wanting to be right, that even when we’re wrong we won’t admit it. Be a man and admit it. She’ll love you all the more for it.

3. How are you doing?

Do you really care about your girlfriend? If so, ask her how she’s doing.

4. Is there anything I can do to help?

Sometimes you just don’t know what we can do to fix a problem. In these cases, it’s best to ask her what she thinks you can do. Be prepared to act on whatever it is she asks for, including some space and time.

5. I know that what I did hurt you and I want to make it right.

By acknowledging that you hurt her, you’re allowing her to take ownership of her hurt. Once this ownership takes place, she’ll be able to deal with the hurt more directly. Be prepared to allow her to vent. If you can prove to her that you can listen, you have made huge strides in getting her back.

6. I regret what I did, but I don’t regret ever being with you.

This simple phrase accomplishes two things: 1) you show sorrow for what you did to hurt her, and 2) you show her that you still want to be with her.

7. I did not treat you like someone I love. Please let me start over, because I do love you.

Yeah with this one you are dropping the big L-word. But if it’s true, it’s true. Don’t be afraid to express your love. This phrase can work magic.

Try these 7 sweet things to say to your girlfriend to get her back and you’ll find yourself back in her arms. Again, I just want to remind you to be sincere.

Overcome Panic Attacks – 4 Easy Steps To Stop Panic Attacks Dead In Their Tracks!

Millions of people suffer from panic attacks every year. In actual fact up to 5% of the American population experience the anguish of a panic attack. You find yourself avoiding certain situations that frighten you for no logical reason. However, you can actually overcome panic attacks in less than 3 minutes!

Firstly before i discuss how to overcome panic attacks, let’s look at exactly what they are.

A panic attack will always start with adrenaline being released into your blood stream. The adrenal glands then send a signal to your brain informing it that there is an emergency! These signals are often then transfered into physical symptoms that resemble a heart attack – sweating, trembling, shortness of breath, palpitations, chest pain, nausea and stomach cramps. The list goes on! However, it is the misinterpretation of these symptoms that actually cause you far more panic and anxiety.

So how do you overcome panic attacks in under 3 minutes?

1) I know it’s easier said than done, but relax! You need to try and calm yourself down to a state where you are more aware that you are just having a panic attack and nothing more. Take slow deep breaths. In through your nose and out through your mouth. Slow yourself right down. This is the first step to overcome panic attacks.

Click Here To Discover How To Overcome Panic Attacks In Under 3 Minutes

2) Step 2 to overcome panic attacks is to try and control those negative thoughts going through your head. The easiest way to do this is shout out the word “STOP” in your head. Make it really, really loud inside your head. This can help to interrupt the flow of adrenaline for a second, but long enough for you to try and control your negative thinking.

3) Once you have shouted STOP in your head, you need to start sending your brain positive statements or coping statements. Replace all those negative messages you are sending your brain with positive one’s. So instead of, “Oh no, i’m about to have a heart attack and die!”, you should be saying to yourself, “It’s OK, i’m just having a panic attack and it will be over in 3 minutes. My heart is simply pounding harder because i’m having a panic attack, but my heart is fine.”

4) The final step to stop panic attacks is to actually accept your feelings and what is going on inside your head. As soon as you feel that sensation, discuss your feelings with yourself. If you feel scared because you’re about to give a speech, it’s OK giving speeches is scary. If you think you’re about to have a heart attack, tell yourself it’s OK to be afraid. This is a very valid emotion under these circumstances. If you’re scared of flying, this is a perfectly natural emotion – flying is scary!

In order to stop panic attacks from happening, it is important to understand that fear is actually a very positive emotion. Whenever you feel scared, it is perfectly normal to take certain precautions and also to ensure you take care of yourself. So by trying to keep as positive as you can and following the above 4 steps you are well on the way to finally overcome panic attacks.

Click Here To Discover How To Overcome Panic Attacks In Under 3 Minutes

Too Much Bipolar?

Bipolar disorder is receiving much attention in the media and is more frequently diagnosed today by many mental health specialists than ever before. It has in fact almost become as commonplace as the flu or common cold. Toddlers who do not sleep well are Bipolar, young children with temper tantrums are Bipolar, husbands who get angry are Bipolar, wives with incredible stress in their lives are Bipolar and the individual who spends too much money is also Bipolar. That pretty much covers 70% of the human race. Is it possible that this number of the population can be chronically ill? Prior to this increase in Bipolar diagnosis over the past 10 or 15 years, the National Institute of Mental Health reported Bipolar to exist in approximately 1% of the population, similar to the statistics held for Schizophrenia. Bipolar Disorder is a serious mental illness typically accompanied by lifelong struggles for those who truly suffer from it and not a diagnosis to be taken lightly.

A diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder can follow you for life and alter your opportunities. As a serious mental disorder, you will not be allowed in the military, certain job opportunities will be closed to you, health insurance may be denied and you will most certainly be placed on medicines that can take a toll on your system over time. Although unfortunately, there is still a social stigma associated with mental illness. An incorrect diagnosis, especially for a child, can and will alter a life path, even in how the person views themselves and the expectations they then set for themselves.

So where is all the Bipolar coming from? In addition to the normal rise we see in any illness as the general population increases, it may also be a product of a combination of factors such as a general misunderstanding by the public of the terms and criteria used to diagnose the disorder, too little time Sent by professionals delving into the client's self reported symptoms and background situations to ensure understanding, the trend of public acceptance that our behaviors are a product of disease rather than choice, and finally, in Pediatric Bipolar, a lack of parenting information and appropriate expectations for Children.

The first issue appears to be that our understanding of the criteria and terminology for diagnosing Bipolar Disorder is a bit too simplistic. The symptoms are not as straight as they sound. For example, not being able to sleep because you are worried about something is not the same as not sleeping or a decreed need for sleep due to Bipolar episode. Drifting in and out of sleep is also not the same. Waking up too early and not getting back to sleep, ditto. These can be associated with depression and / or anxiety disorders as well as other disorders and should be fully examined for patterns and in the context or your current life circumstances. Dwelling on your daily activities or worrying about the future while trying to get to sleep are also not the same. These occurrences can be part of normal existence in a very busy and demanding world.

The terms "racing thoughts", "feeling manic", and "mood swings" have become commonplace. When questioned closely, clients report their "racing thoughts" to be anything from their thoughts jumping from topic to topic and being products of feeling overwhelmed to thoughts of constant worry about a particular topic. These are not examples of the type of racing thoughts characteristic of Bipolar Disorder. "Manic" and "Hyper" are not interchangeable terms meaning that someone has a lot of extra energy or stress related energy. "Manic" is a state where an individual exhibits extra or excessive energy that is often goal directed and an irritable, inflated or expansive mood that is different from the individual's normal self. They may lose touch with reality and believe they are capable of great feats such as lifting a sofa with their mind or that they are receiving direct messages from a higher power. Once that starts to happen you do not have to look closely to see if something is very wrong.

Everyone experiences mood swings to a degree, particularly as events occur that do not please us. One major difference between a "normal" mood swing and one occurring due to an episode of Bipolar Disorder is that a mood swing related to Bipolar is not always in relation to an external event, it can happen randomly as brain chemicals shift (sometimes excess stress A trigger a Bipolar episode). We have probably all experienced the "mood swing" that comes when we receive bad news in the form of a bill in the mail, a friend says something hurtful, our job becomes more stressful, etc … We then go from being OK one Minute to angry, elated or sad the next due to the occurrence and our emotional response to it. Individuals with difficulty regulating their emotions may exhibit considerable swings but it is not necessarily Bipolar Disorder.

As humans, we like it when things are reliably easy. When our behavior is out of control such as with chronic spending or substance abuse, it is often easier to believe it is a product of mental illness beyond our control and to medicate it or allow others to care for us. This pretty much takes it out of our hands. This is not to say we are all lazy, but sometimes we are overwhelmed with emotions that lead us to these behaviors and controlling them fears impossible. We hang on to the little bits of pleasure we derived from our newly purchased item or getting inebriated, causing us to repeat these patterns until corrected. This does not mean we are Bipolar. These can simply be poor coping strategies that we have developed or learned. Maybe we grow up in dysfunctional families and saw that this is the way they copied so we do the same. There are a multitude of reasons why we do these things and exploring our actual motives helps our doctors make the correct diagnosis. Understanding why we engage in these behaviors also empowers us to "fix" ourselves.

One very common misdiagnosis that I see is confusing Bipolar Disorder with Borderline Personality Disorder. Those suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder actually exhibit more rapid mood lifts and can do so all day long, one minute angry, the next happy and smiling, back to throwing something across the room if they are crossed or something upsets them. These individuals typically engage in multiple poor coping strategies such as over spending, driving recklessly, substance abuse and many shallow relationships. Typically this is seen more often in women than men and it can not be diagnosed with children or those under the age of 18. Typically the symptoms will begin to appear in adolescence. Taking the time to fully understand the client's history and level of disturbance is the key to correct treatment.

Physical problems, inconsistent or inappropriate parenting, and unreasonable expectations for children often lead to symptoms or perceived symptoms in children that mimic Bipolar. There is still a school of thought with some mental health professionals that Bipolar can not and should not be diagnosed until mid to late adolescence at the earliest. There are, however, those who believe it can be diagnosed very early in life, even in toddlers. Temper tantrums, mood swings, irritability and inability to sleep properly should be studied very carefully in children to ensure they are not a product of parenting patterns or that they may be normal childhood occurrences. It is often difficult for a parent to accept that they may be causing their children's difficulties inadvertently and their children's responses are developmentally normal, predictable and expected given whatever is occurring. The literature on inconsistent parenting alone is vast and every parent contemplating seeking psychological help for their child should read up prior to doing so. Parenting is difficult but there are many resources available for learning and making life easier as a parent. Good parenting is actually easier in the long run.

In conclusion, these types of misunderstandings can easily clarify to make sure you or your child have received a correct diagnosis. Be sure to fully explain what you mean when you report symptoms to your professional and if they are not listening or do not have time, you may be better off with another professional. Bipolar disorder is a serious diagnosis with lasting effects on your life.

How Physical Therapy Can Help a Loved One With Cerebral Palsy

If your child or loved one has cerebral palsy (CP), then you are all too aware of the daily challenges he or she faces. From holding a fork to putting together simple phrases, everyday activities that seem simple to us require much more concentration or effort from someone with CP. Luckily, our understanding of the disease has progressed in recent years and has allowed us to develop methods that counteract its effects. Physical therapy is now a part of many CP regimens. When done properly and guided by a medical professional, physical therapy can have a number of benefits for people with CP. It should be an integral part of the way your family addresses your child or loved one’s disease.

Develop Coordination

Early symptoms of cerebral palsy often include problems with balance; although signs are diverse, the “scissor gait” is a hallmark of classic CP. Intensive training with a therapist can often improve the severity of the gait. Therapists can also help people with CP improve their hand-eye coordination. Catching exercises, movement techniques, and practice walking, pedaling, and swimming can lessen the intensity of muscle spasms or tremors. They can also greatly improve a person’s ability to interact with the world around them. Eating with a fork or spoon, drinking from a cup or through a straw, and writing can all be affected.

Build Strength (and Muscle Tone)

Many people with cerebral palsy have underdeveloped or uneven muscle tone. This is thought to be caused by a lack of nutrients delivered to certain parts of the brain during fetal development or shortly after post-pregnancy. While there is no non-surgical way to radically change musculature, physical therapy can improve the strength of the muscles and somewhat effect muscle shape. By doing simple, supervised exercises on land and in the water, a person with CP can strengthen his or her own body.

If begun early enough, physical therapy can also have an effect on bone growth. In a normal person’s body, our bones maintain shape partially because of the stress caused by opposing muscle groups. Underdeveloped muscles will not hold the bone’s shape correctly during growth, leading to bowed bones. Adding light strength training to a child’s physical therapy can develop those muscles and build stronger, straighter bones.

Gain More Independence

For a long time, the prospects for individuals with even mild forms of cerebral palsy were pretty bleak and often included enrollment in a permanent medical facility or around-the-clock personal assistive care. Now, the disease is a little better understood, and intensive therapy starting at a young age can significantly improve an individual’s ability to provide self-care. Some people with CP are even able to live alone, feed themselves, drive cars, and maintain steady jobs.

As part of a larger course of treatment, physical therapy can significantly enhance the livelihood of people with cerebral palsy. By giving them the tools necessary to take care of themselves, they can go on to live more independent, fulfilling lives. Don’t let their disease define who they are as a person.

How Many Calories Are Burned Swimming Laps? 4 Factors to Burning Calories While Swimming

Swimming is a form of exercise that provides many benefits. If you are wanting to find an overall healthy way to lose weight and become more fit, you need to find a pool and get wet! Swimming laps several times a week is a great way to burn off some serious calories. But just how many calories burn swimming laps? Well, it really boils down to 4 factors.

  1. Stroke. Freestyle is the most common swim stroke and it is not the hardest but typically allows you to accelerate faster through the water. At your top speed you can easily burn over 700 calories per hour. The butterfly stroke will be much slower but is difficult and requires more energy thus more calories burned in a shorter distance. Hard to sustain but you can again burn over 700 calories per hour. If you like taking it more easy with a long backstroke or a more leisurely freestyle or crawl stroke you might burn close to 500 calories per hour. Dog paddle anyone? Hey even this will burn you about 400 calories per hour.
  2. Speed and efficiency. A faster, more efficient swimmer will burn more calories than a slower or average swimmer. That is more calories per minute or hour, not per lap. Why make that distinction? Well, a somewhat out of control swimmer like myself will definitely spend more energy and calories fighting through the water towards that first lap but how many laps will actually happen? The faster swimmer will do a whole lot more laps and in the end burn more calories.
  3. Effort. You will burn calories just goofing off in the pool. About 400 calories per hour if you are 150 pounds and not taking it too seriously. You can burn over 700 calories per hour when you are pushing it with fast freestyle laps or harder butterfly strokes.
  4. Your weight. The heavier you are, the more calories will be burned because more weight automatically means more effort required as you move through the water.

So it varies quite a bit on the number of calories burned, but does it matter? Swimming is fun fitness for all, and did you know that you continue to burn calories after you get out of the pool? Yes, because there are types of exercise that will increase your metabolism and keep it elevated after you are done exercising. Very cool. Metabolism is the key word here.

Are you serious about burning calories and losing weight? Did you know that each of us is unique in what foods will increase our metabolism for burning calories? This is true and now there is a simple, powerful software tool that will teach you to know what those foods are for you.

Classical Combination For Mental Illness

The classical astrological text gives certain combinations for mental illness or insanity. These combinations are often too vague and non specific; they cannot be applied to individual horoscopes in the literal sense. That in fact, is true of combinations for any diseases as given in the astrological texts. They however, give certain clues about the cause of that disease. We shall quote here some of these combinations, and follow this with our understanding of mental illness and the relevant examples. Some of the combinations for mental illness taken from the JATAKA TATTVA and other texts are as follows.

1. Jupiter in the ascendant and Mars in the seventh house, or vice versa.

Note: (a) This appears vague. Jupiter is the planet of idealism; Mars indicates aggression. Too much emphasis on these could ruin the married life, as this combination involves the 7th house. (b) In the above yoga, substitution of mars by Saturn has been said to have the same result though the nature of affliction will obviously change from aggressiveness towards depression.

1. Saturn in the lagna and Mars in the 5th or the 7th or the 9th house

2. Saturn in the lagna, the Sun in the 12th house, and Mars or the Moon in a trine.

3. Saturn in the 12th house associated with a waning Moon.

4. Association of Saturn and the lord of the 2nd house with the Sun or Mars.

5. Birth in the hora of Saturn or Mars, the sun-moon conjunction in the lagna or the 5th or the 9th, and the Jupiter in the quadrant.

6. Mandi in the 7th house, afflicted by a malefic.

Note: same result may accrue from an afflicted Mandi in the 5th house

1. Rahu and the Moon in the lagna,and malefic in the trine

Mental faculties: Astrological Basis. It will be seen from the above that the various combinations for mental diseases are fairly generalized. No mention has been made of the time of onset of the ailment. In addition, there is generally no mention of the various divisional charts without which any combination would lose its specificity. We must thus look for the factor that governs our normal behavior from the nature and extent of the abnormal behavior from the nature and extent of affliction to such factors.

The following points thus need attention of the assessment of the mental health of a native:

(a) The Moon: It is the significator of the mind. Its strength or weakness reflects the state of one’s mind. Its strength attachments are feelings, emotional reactions, mental compatibility with others, and such faculties that do not rely on Mathematical logic. The Moon has no enemies.

(b) Mercury:It signifies the nervous system, academic discipline, rationality, logic and intellect, as also one’s complexes. Its enemy is the moon. Understandably, the mind (signified by the moon) is opposed to reasoning and intellect (signified by mercury).

(c) Jupiter:The best benefactor. Jupiter is the significator of maturity and wisdom. While Jupiter is neutral towards mercury, the latter happens to be the enemy of Jupiter. Quite naturally the strict limits of logics can only restrain the exercise of wisdom. Note: When the Moon, Mercury and Jupiter are strong and well placed, the native has a sound mind, a healthy reasoning and a mature wisdom. When these three planets are afflicted, weak or ill placed, there is a vulnerability to mental illness, nervousness, Intellectual confusion, and inability to take wise decisions and to implement them.

(d) The fifth house: The fifth house is the house of fascination, thinking, logic and wisdom. For a sound mental health, the 5th house and the 5th lord must not be afflicted and be under benefic influence.

(e) The lagna and the sign Mesha: Mesha happens to be the first house equivalent to the head of the Kalapurusha. The lagna is the first house or the head of the native. Both should not be afflicted for a sound mental health

(f) Malefic and benefic Yogas: Besides the other factors, certain malefic and benefic Yogas in the horoscope may promote the occurrence of a mental illness, or favorably compensate for it.

The following are especially important:

(1) The Kemadruma Yoga, i.e.,the Moon without a planet on either side of it. This is an adverse Yoga. The Moon needs support in order to insure a sound mind. When there is no planet in the second and the 12th from the Moon, an inherent weakness is indicated in the chart.

(2) The Gajakesari Yoga, i.e., the presence of Jupiter in a quadrant from the Moon. This is very potent and benefic Yoga; Planets in mutual quadrants influence each other. Jupiter in a quadrant from the Moon causes strengthening of the Moon.

(3) The Chandradhi Yoga. This consists of the presence of benefic in the 6th, 7th, or 8th, from the Moon. Benefic in these houses promote, and the malefic obstruct and hinder the functioning of the moon. Afflictions to the Moon – Most of the mental disorders manifest when the moon is afflicted. These vary from simple mental aberrations to gross neuro-psychotic disorders.

The Moon suffers afflictions when it is weak, placed in adverse (6, 8, or 12th) houses, and under the aspects or association of malefic

(a) Affliction by the sun: Quick temper, quarrelsome, self-aggrandizement.

(b) By Mars: Quick temper, aggressive, violent.

(c) By Saturn: Acute depression; maniac depressive psychosis.

(d) By Rahu: cunning in thought, schizophrenia, phobias, and maniacal suicidal tendencies.

(e) By Ketu: Maniacal/suicidal tendencies, phobias, irrational suspicion of others.

Note:

(1) Affliction to Mercury and Jupiter causes abnormalities in behavior in a similar manner. For example, placement of mercury in the 6th house affected by Saturn, leads to some sort of mental derangement. Jupiter- Saturn or Jupiter-Mars opposition have already been pointed out.

(2) How close these planets are in degrees must be examined.