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A Swirl of Synaesthesia Soup
What color is evoked in the mind's nose
"Fragrant" the color of flower and perfumes
Is it red, green or yellow
the "Fruity" color of apples, peaches, apricots and tomatoes
"Citrus" colored lemon, lime and orange
perhaps easier along the "Woody" and "Resinous"
shades of green and hazel
colors of pine or fresh cut grass
perhaps overcome by the bright Chemical color of ammonia or bleach
Sweet colors of chocolate, vanilla and caramel
are the colors that go with the smells the color of the thing itself
is Sweet a rich brown color or something lighter like an off white
or completely different a turquoise or chartreuse
Is Minty and Peppermint green
what about the color of eucalyptus and strong colors of camphor
or the color of Toasted and Nutty
of freshly popped popcorn
a thick slab of peanut butter or a handful of almonds
along with the after dinner color of Pungent
like blue cheese and cigar smoke
or the Sickening and Disgusting colors of Decayed
rotting meat and sour milk
what do the colors smell like
in a swirl of sensory soup
- From the Upcoming book by Kimberly Burnham, 20 / 20 Seeing Color Around the World, a Daily Vision Health Program. More poetry, color research, and vision exercises at https://www.nervewhisperer.solutions/peace/category/color-vision
Published in over 100 books, Kimberly Burnham is a writer, poet, and complementary medicine practitioner. She authored, Awakenings: Peace Dictionary, Language and the Mind, a Daily Brain Health Program for people interested in improving their brain clarity, creativity and muscle movements. Her current project focuses on color words, the brain and vision health designed to assist people in seeing better. Kimberly's Ph.D. (Integrative Medicine) considered manual therapy techniques and health coaching for people with Parkinson's disease. She is an avid gardener and environmentalist, who bicycled 3000 miles across the U.S. in 2013.
Contact Kimberly at https://www.nervewhisperer.solutions/ or email her at NerveWhisperer@gmail.com
Synesthesia of Colors and Smells
Research with people who have a neurological association between smells and colors show that they are quicker in naming both colors and smells than people who don't associate colors and smells.
"Olfaction is often considered a vestigial sense in humans, demoted throughout evolution to make way for the dominant sense of vision. This perspective on olfaction is reflected in how we think and talk about smells in the West, with odor imagery and odor language reported to be difficult. In the present study we demonstrate odor cognition is superior in odor-color synaesthesia, where there are additional sensory connections to odor concepts. Synaesthesia is a neurological phenomenon in which input in 1 modality leads to involuntary perceptual associations. Semantic accounts of synaesthesia posit synaesthetic associations are mediated by activation of inducing concepts. Therefore, synaesthetic associations may strengthen conceptual representations. To test this idea, we ran 6 odor-color synaesthetes and 17 matched controls on a battery of tasks exploring odor and color cognition. We found synaesthetes outperformed controls on tests of both odor and color discrimination, demonstrating for the first time enhanced perception in both the inducer (odor) and concurrent (color) modality. So, not only do synaesthetes have additional perceptual experiences in comparison to controls, their primary perceptual experience is also different. Finally, synaesthetes were more consistent and accurate at naming odors. We propose synaesthetic associations to odors strengthen odor concepts, making them more differentiated (facilitating odor discrimination) and easier to link with lexical representations (facilitating odor naming). In summary, we show for the first time that both odor language and perception is enhanced in people with synaesthetic associations to odors.
- Speed, L. J. and A. Majid (2018). "Superior olfactory language and cognition in odor-color synaesthesia." J Exp Psychol Hum Percept Perform 44(3): 468-481.
Exercise: Make a list of different smells and visualize what color you associate them with.
"Our 100,000 taste buds elicit five different sensations, namely sweet, bitter, sour, salty, and umami (a Japanese word for a pleasant savory taste, but distinct from pure saltiness)."
10 Smell include:
Fragrant (e.g. florals and perfumes)
Fruity (all non-citrus fruits)
Citrus (e.g. lemon, lime, orange)
Woody and resinous (e.g. pine or fresh cut grass)
Chemical (e.g. ammonia, bleach)
Sweet (e.g. chocolate, vanilla, caramel)
Minty and peppermint (e.g. eucalyptus and camphor)
Toasted and nutty (e.g popcorn, peanut butter, almonds)
Pungent (e.g. blue cheese, cigar smoke)
Decayed (e.g. rotting meat, sour milk)
Imagine if this was your day....a headache before you went to bed, then you woke up at 2 am and never did quite get back to sleep. At seven when the alarm went off you thought about calling in sick but there is just too much to do and then irritated you realized you ran out of breakfast cereal and had a pop tart instead. Your eyes can't focus on the report you are preparing. Last night's head ache is coming back and you wish that you had had time for a better lunch.....It is not a good day for you or your liver.
What would your liver say, if it had a voice, a say in how your life flows, the amount of energy you have, how well you sleep and how happy you are?
In fact, your liver is talking all the time, communicating how it feels and is functioning. Here is a brief Liverese to English translation guide, followed by some things you can do to bridge the communication gap:
Low energy in the afternoon : Low energy often means the liver is not doing it job. Normally the liver regulates many substances important in maintaining your body's normal state, stores nutrients including blood sugars and clears out waste products.
Easy bruising or bleeding gums - The liver is partially responsible for maintaining a good level of clotting factors.
Anemia and other vitamin deficiencies - The liver also stores fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E and K), folate, vitamin B 12 , and minerals such as copper and iron.
Dark circles under the eyes and yellowish skin color - The liver is telling you it is not clearing toxins and the bilirubin from old red blood cells is turning the skin a yellowish hue.
Swollen ankles - Decreased amounts of liver produced protein, albumin may lead to swelling and water retention.
Difficulty digesting fats - Bile produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder is a greenish fluid need for fat digestion.
High cholesterol - Cholesterol, needed for cell membrane structure, hormone balance and proper nerve conduction, is produced or processed in the liver. If the production or processing is off then cholesterol levels rise. A healthy liver keeps it all in balanced.
Hot flashes and other hormonal disturbances - Yup, liver again as it plays an important role in hormonal modification and endocrine balance.
Chest distention, sighing, nausea, vomiting, poor appetite, diarrhea, depression, moodiness, PMS, breast tenderness, painful and/or irregular menstruation - Liver talking again.
Headaches - The liver removes harmful substances and irritants from the blood, when it doesn't they can irritate the lining of the brain.
Hang over - Alcohol and sugar are primarily metabolized by the liver, and accumulation of its products can lead to cell injury and liver problems.
Gallbladder pain / gallstones - The gallbladder is considered in Traditional Chinese Medicine to be the pair to the liver and as you know when one partner is not doing his job the relationship suffers.
Trouble sleeping between 1am and 3am - These are considered the peak hours for the liver in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Difficulty between 1 am and 3 am is often ascribed to an unhappy liver.
Problems with the eyes, tendons, tears (dry eyes), nails - All associated with liver's acupuncture meridian which flows along the inner leg on both sides.
Anger management issues - In Traditional Chinese Medicine the liver, considered a wood element is associated with the emotion anger.
So, what is there to do to ensure everyone is happier?
If you think of vision / eyesight, liver / gallbladder health and anger forming a triangle, three connected points, each influencing the other for good or for bad. Imagine one point of the triangle is your vision, your ability to see the colors of a rainbow, recognize the face of your best friend, or read an inspirational book like, Pebbles in the Pond, Transforming the World One Person at a Time.
Another point is the liver and the gallbladder, they are linked in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). The liver meridian associated with the color green, runs along the inner leg. The gallbladder meridian runs along the outer edge of the leg and up into the area over the ears. Rubbing the head as in a scalp massage can stimulate the liver and gallbladder points. Pressure on liver and gallbladder points along the leg is also thought to soothe the liver.
Due to the interaction between the three points of this triangle, improving the eyes with exercises, eating more essential fatty acids, such as olive oil, avocado, salmon or through acupuncture or manual therapy will also have a beneficial effect on anger management and liver / gallbladder health.
You can go in another door and work on improving the liver and gallbladder by eating organic foods, and maintain a diet low in processed sugars or alcohol. There are many herbs and detoxifying foods that can help the liver and gallbladder function more efficiently. Improving liver and gallbladder health typically also improves vision and anger management skills. Going in the anger door of the triangle will also affect the other two points.
Another way to increase internal communication is to rest quietly with one hand over the liver (right side of the lower rib cage) and the other hand on the area you want to connect (ie) the heart to improve blood flow and cholesterol or the spleen (left side of lower rib cage) to improve the way the liver talks to the immune system or the head to improve headache symptoms.
By talking to a psychologist or life coach, doing things you love and enjoy, watching one of your favorite movies, like my favorite, The Last Holiday or writing in a journal can each improve your anger management skills. As your level of uncontrollable anger or rage decreases, your vision and liver / gallbladder health may also improve. By improving one of the three you can improve the other two.
One of my favorite Japanese sayings is, "There are many ways to the top of Mount Fuji." Once you understand relationships in your body or in your life you can find the access or doorway into improving the overall system. For some people doing talk therapy or coaching for anger issues can be the easiest, fastest way to improve their life. for someone else eliminating processed sugar from their diet might be the best way to improve vision and reactivity to the world.
I See What Your Are Saying, If Your Liver Could Talk by Kimberly Burnham, PhD, The Nerve Whisperer Originally Published at Giving Voice to Your Story with Dorit Sasson
in Japanese unhurried
also peaceful, calm
Japanese—"Heiwa" (peace) 平和, "Wa" / 和 (わ) + "Hei" 平, (へい), "Wahei" (peace), "Washoku" Japanese cuisine ("Wa" (peace, harmony, "Shoku" (food, cuisine), "Yasui" (cheap, inexpensive, calm, peaceful, quiet), "Shizuka" (quiet, unhurried, silent, peaceful, calm)—Japan, Brazil.
Is Cheap Calm?
calm, peace, quiet but also
Visit Tokyo this summer.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Hiroshima Day commemorates 6 August 1945, the day when an atomic bomb was dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima, followed a few days later by another dropped on the city of Nagasaki.
Originally Posted in Our Community of Humanity at Inner Child Magazine
Thriving on the Beauty in Diversity
There is value in enjoying our differences and similarities. When everyone is the same life is boring. Our brains are not excited if all we can see is one kind of tree or all we can buy is one kind of car, which is the same as everyone else's. Sameness also increases competition, which if you think about it — what is competition ... the differentiation of self as better than another in some way. In order to win you have to be different.
If we value differences then everyone can win in some way. Everyone can be better or best adapted to a particular task. What are you good at? What can you be the best at?
The biological value of diversity is survival. The more different kinds of birds, butterflies, or dinosaurs there are when the environment shifts or changes, the more likely one, two, or more will survive. If everyone is the same and the environment becomes too cold, too hot, too blue, the wrong mix of air, or too much water, none will survive. But if some people, animals, butterflies, or bacteria do better in the cold, hot, blue, or wet environment then they can survive and life continues.
An example of this kind of diversity is Charles Darwin's finches. He studied all the different types of beaks on the finches of the Galapagos Island. Each beak seems designed for a particular kind of food, whether for sucking nectar from a bright purple flower, chewing tiny protein filled seeds, catching mosquitoes on the fly, or picking grubs out from under layers of fractal shaped tree bark. We don't even have to agree on whether these differences evolved or were created in order to enjoy the beauty and practicality of being different. If all the birds are eating exactly the same kind of food, they will run out. There is enough for a greater number of birds in a diverse environment with a variety of birds skilled in finding and eating different things.
You could look at the extinction of dinosaurs and say, they were too similar in their needs for food, temperature, air, etc. Their environment changed and none survived, but some creatures, like horseshoe crabs did survive from a time before the era of dinosaurs. The horseshoe crabs were different from dinosaurs in the ways that mattered in the new environment and they survived. They thrive in coastal water today.
There are lots of ways in which we enjoy diversity. Many people like to see lots of different kinds of butterflies in a ripe summer field. True, some people try to kill the white cabbage butterflies, which eats vegetable crops, but it is the caterpillar that does the most damage. The adult butterfly feeds on nectar and pollinates flowers. Some people don't believe in the giant blue morpho butterfly of Latin America, it is so rare and elusive. Some people even hate butterflies and find them creepy. Other people study certain types of butterflies and ignore the rest. You may have a favorite kind of butterfly but none of this changes the benefit to butterfly survival of having lots of different kinds of butterflies.
In this world we have a diversity of religions and faith traditions. Perhaps there is a survival value in the variety of ways to appreciate life, community, and nature. Perhaps there is some other kind of value in having a diverse and pluralistic society. Different religions came out of a wide variety of different cultures and environments. It seems odd to think of one as better than another or more valuable than another. The religions of the world are just different from one another and each appeals to certain people and doesn't appeal to others.
There is a Japanese saying, "There are many ways to get to the top of Mount Fuji." Let us appreciate the beauty, even of what we don't understand or enjoy on other levels. It is simply enough that someone enjoys the beauty of what exists.
regardless of language
the breath beneath
propelling them into space
thoughts, primal images creating
folding them into time.
Kimeteiru, a Japanese word
for already decided
but not just decided
by what you have already chosen
you chose the path
and now the way is
is truly already decided
each moment can be one
of peace or not
each moment chosen a new
each instant a fork in the road
What will you choose now
supported by the past
enlivening the future
what is the fresh choice
that makes brilliance
- From the book of poetry: Live Like Someone Left the Gate Open by Kimberly Burnham
Kimeteiru on YouTube
“You can’t really hear the difference between bat and vat, can you? You just know the difference from context, right?”
This question was asked by a 28-year old Japanese student during an English class I taught several years ago in Japan. He was clearly illustrating a common phenomenon I’ve observed: When a person can’t hear something, he or she imagines no one else can hear it either.
“No, I really can hear the difference,” I insisted.
In my classes, I used music, word games, and neurolingistic programming to teach English. In Japan, I learned how much motivation can vary from student to student and that opportunities influence our abilities to learn, to hear, and to listen.
I also learned everything you could want to know about soy sauce production. One of my gigs was teaching English to Kikoman Soy Sauce managers heading to Singapore to set up a new factory. I also met a Chinese woman from Hong Kong. After we had been speaking for awhile, she mentioned that English was her first language. Hearing her speak, I couldn't imagine this to be true, but it turned out she had learned it from her Filipino nanny, for whom English was a second language.
During my three years teaching in Japan, I also worked with Taisei Construction businessmen. These men studied intensively to improve their spoken English. They would soon be heading to Saudi Arabia to work for a year at a time, living away from their wives and families. Some of them tried awfully hard to fail, because they thought if they failed English class, the company wouldn’t send them abroad. They were wrong.
And then there were the six months I spent in remote Kamaishi, Iwate-Ken, teaching bright young graduates of Tokyo University working on their first assignments for Shinitetsu, or Japan Steel. Each of them hoped to be transferred back to the big city as soon as possible. Interac, the English-teaching company I worked for, sent me to Kamaishi because I speak Japanese––not that the company required knowledge of Japanese in order to teach. No, they sent me specifically in the hopes that having some abilities in the local language would keep me from going crazy––and to avoid further embarrassment. Let me explain.
The only other foreigner in the small fishing village, population 40,000 was a man from India who had married a Japanese woman. Pretty much no one in the village spoke English other than my students employed by Japan Steel, and this isolation had caused the previous English teacher to drink himself into a stupor, lock himself in his apartment, and cause a scene.
In addition to avoiding going crazy, I had wonderfully interesting opportunities. One highlight was translating for the Sri Lankan ambassador to Japan. He was in this part of rural northern Japan on a mission to help improve eye health in Sri Lanka. I had never done simultaneous translation, but the audience patiently waited as I figured out how to translate the ambassador’s words, which were not only spoken in accented English, but they were from a medical field I knew nothing about.
In my huge, company-provided Kamaishi apartment books lined the floor. I filled my days with reading and teaching, with hikes through the beautiful countryside, and by making origami dolls with the woman next door. I also visited the 100-foot high deity, Kuan Yin, who held a fish while standing to face the Pacific Ocean.
My time in the village was a chance to turn inward, to connect with nature, and to consider what it means to be an insider versus an outsider––and why we divide ourselves into groups.
After a while, the children in Kamaishi got to know me and stopped yelling “Gaijin! Gaijin!” every time I walked to the store or to the bowling alley or to work. Gaijin doesn’t only mean ”foreigner.” The literal translation is “outside person.” There was no hiding my foreignness.
Sometimes it was helpful to stand out as a foreigner. I always got rides when I hitchhiked, usually by people wanting to practice their English. Once I was picked up by a man who had passed me going the opposite direction. He stopped, did a U-turn, and came back to ask, ”Where are you going?” When I told him, he thought for a minute and said, “I can take you and still get back to work on time.” He diligently practiced his English while driving me in the opposite direction to his destination.
One time I brought a baby gift to a friend––at least I consider her a friend. A few weeks later I got a picture of myself holding the baby, and on the back she had written, “Congratulations, you are the first foreigner to hold my baby.”
- Originally Published on Authors On Show.
Published in over 100 books, Kimberly Burnham is a writer, poet, and complementary medicine practitioner. She authored Awakenings: Peace Dictionary, Language and the Mind, a Daily Brain Health Program for people interested in improving their brain clarity, creativity and muscle movements. Her current project focuses on color words, the brain and vision health designed to assist people in seeing better. Kimberly's Ph.D. (Integrative Medicine) considered manual therapy techniques (Integrative Manual Therapy, Matrix Energetics, Acupressure, Reiki) and health coaching for people with Parkinson's disease. She is an avid gardener and environmentalist, who bicycled 3000 miles across the U.S. in 2013. Kimberly Burnham is the managing editor of Inner Child Magazine and on the board of The United World Movement for Children. For a brain health coaching phone consultation or an appointment in Spokane, Washington contact Kimberly at https://www.nervewhisperer.solutions/ or email her at NerveWhisperer@gmail.com.
Not Taking Advantage of Your Amazon Author's page?
Kimberly Burnham helps authors get their books out into the world more broadly by improving their free Amazon Author's page and book pages, posting a book review on her blog and on her LinkedIn Pulse blog (over 12,000 followers) Promotion packages start at $50. Contact her at NerveWhisperer@gmail.com. See her Amazon Author's Page.
See her list of publications including her latest book of brain health meditations, Awakenings: Peace Dictionary, Language and the Mind, a Daily Brain Health Program.
Designed to enhance memory, creativity, and inner peace, Awakenings: Peace,Dictionary, Language and the Mind, a Daily Brain Health Program is available free of charge as a Kindle eBook on February 14-15, 2019. [Click Here].
Please share and write a review on Amazon.
I am looking for guest blog opportunities and a position as poet-in-residence. My current project is writing dictionary poems using words in different languages for the English word "peace." You can read some of my poems on Poemhunter .
As poet-in-residence I would write poems on different words in different languages and broadcast them throughout the social media blogosphere. Each poem would link back to your site where the word or language appeared.
I would expect some sort of stipend and a six month to one year placement. Please contact me for details if your organization is interested in having a poet-in-residence to help get your message out. Nervewhisperer@gmial.com
Buy the print or eBook, review Awakenings then contact Kimberly for a free 20 minute brain health consultation. Email or Phone
(Regular rates $120 per hour or 10 sessions for $650.)