This is the first podcast episode of the 2023 year of connection. How can we employ connection to advance the functional and lifestyle medicine movement?
One answer is that we must continue to leverage group care and community networks to support reconnection in the post-COVID era, improve patient outcomes and increase the awareness and accessibility of our movement.
Our guest on this episode is an innovator and thought leader on health creation and chronic disease reversal. Zach Bush, MD teaches about the intersections between the environment and the individual by identifying the themes that connect diverse systems, such as microbiologic processes and macroeconomics. To him, the original human wound is a false belief that we are not all connected—to ourselves, nature and everyone around us.
To be healthy—physically and mentally—is to be connected. In this episode, Dr. Bush and James explore the many repercussions of disconnection, from autoimmune disease to war, while also covering how connection can transform and heal.
The full episode will bring you more insights about:
- The negative effects of cellular disconnection, and what environmental or lifestyle factors trigger that dysfunction
- How a scarcity mentality leads to fear, guilt, shame and economic disparity
- Empowering perspectives that help people heal
- Flaws in peer-reviewed, evidence-based medicine
- Quorum sensing and Dr. Bush’s new organization, Institute of Natural Law and Governance
Resources mentioned in this episode:
- Zach Bush’s website
- The Journey of Intrinsic Health
- Institute of Natural Law and Governance
- ION* Biome
- Farmer’s Footprint
Zach Bush: It’s not until we look into the mirror of another human being that we get to really see the beauty within ourselves. And we tend not to be able to conceive of our own beauty when we’re in isolation. And so, this disconnected state that we’ve all been encouraged to maximize in these last two years of social isolation and et cetera, in the very fear of one another, we have driven ourselves away from the mirror to look at ourselves critically.
And you see a lot of psychotic behavior emerge from that isolation and a lot of completely illogical things. You know that, as a scientific community, we got used to and accepted and didn’t stand up and scream bloody murder…
James Maskell: Welcome to the Evolution of Medicine podcast, the place health professionals come to hear from innovators and agitators leading the charge. We cover the latest clinical breakthroughs in health technology, as well as practical tools to help you transform your practice and the health of your community. This podcast is brought to you by the Lifestyle Matrix Resource Center, who provide a range of options to help you deliver successful, effective, functional, and integrative medicine. To find out more and to get started, go to goevomed.com/lmrc. That’s goevomed.com/lmrc.
Hello and welcome to the podcast. This is the first podcast of 2023, and the first podcast of our year of connection. I am so thrilled, honored to bring to you an incredible conversation. An hour that reinvigorated my desire to make this a really transformational year to touch on all the areas of reconnection where disconnection exists, and no one could have done it as well as Dr. Zach Bush. Many of you know Dr. Bush. He is an innovator. He’s an entrepreneur. He’s a physician. He’s triple board certified. He has a lab. He is involved in all kinds of interesting organizations, from natural law that you’ll hear about, regenerative agriculture, working on the level of the microbiome, such a genuine, heartwarming fellow. And we had a great conversation, and I’m super excited for this to kick off our year of connection.
If any of this conversation stimulates you and you would like to let us know about projects that you think need to be highlighted for our year of connection, we’d love to hear from you. As ever, thank you to our podcast sponsors, the Lifestyle Matrix Resource Center. They’re making it easy for you to build a successful, automated practice. In fact, some of the stuff that we talk about with Zach could be facilitated through the Lifestyle Matrix Resource Center, making things like group visits, education series for your patients, reconnecting your patients to each other and to themselves. And super grateful for the opportunity. I think you’re really going to enjoy it. So, without further ado, here is Dr. Zach Bush on the year of connection. Enjoy.
James Maskell: So, a warm welcome back to the podcast and the show, Dr. Zach Bush. Great to have you, doc.
Zach Bush: James, so glad to be with you. Thanks for having me back.
James Maskell: It’s been a couple of years and a lot’s happened in the meantime. But as we are planning out our year ahead and thinking about what the theme of 2023 would be, we came up with the year of connection because there’s just so many ways in which we could think about the power of connection. And when we came up with that theme, there was no one else that I’d rather have kickoff the year.
So, I guess to contextualize it, you know, when we first started the functional forum, one of the very first episodes, we had a doctor called Jay Gordon on, and he said something quite profound. I didn’t really catch at the time, but it’s become more profound over time. He said, “All chronic diseases are at their core diseases of disconnection.” And as I thought about that, I thought that might be a good way to kick us off because through some of the work that I’ve seen—some of the interviews that you’ve given—you’ve really, I think, got a handle on all the different ways in which humans are disconnected.
So, why don’t we just start there?
Zach Bush: Beautiful. Yeah. That’s a very fundamental truth there that’s been spoken for you there. That the human cell or any cell that has unfettered access to information never dies. And if it gets to a point of a state of disrepair that’s irreparable, it simply replaces itself with a stem cell, you know, activation and all of this. And so, this state of eternal youth is possible within every cell that has access to information. And it is the beginning of that disconnect to information and the connected nature of a multicellular organism that leads to the biologic dysfunction or pathology that would become disease. And that’s perhaps best exemplified in cancer. Cancer is a cell that’s finally completely cut off from all connection to its surrounding environment. And up until that time, you can have metabolic dysfunction, you can have immune dysfunction, you can have regulatory detox dysfunction. But the moment that you slice all connection to the whole organism that cell has become a cancer cell.
And we all harbor these lonely cells within us. We all have cancer cells within the human body starting at a very young ages because inevitably, somewhere in the body, there’s been enough injury accumulated and drop in metabolic activity to allow for this disconnect to occur. At the macro level of humanity, we see the same phenomenon and that major depression, all the way to suicidal, homicidal behaviors that we see in school shootings or 65-year-old men climbing up towers in Las Vegas to shoot 250 strangers dead.
You know, these horrific, malignant behaviors of humans are ultimately the macro expression of, again, the isolation event. If we look at a seemingly more benign version of this… We can look to the soil systems beneath our feet and the result of our growing agricultural-chemical-industrial complex and its effect on disconnect. And when you start to divide a humanity, or even, you know, broader stating, all animals from the light capacity or the energetic capacity of the food that is meant to carry that energy towards us, you start to interrupt that with chemical disruption and mechanical disruption, such as over plowing and disking fields and such, you start to lose the energetic quality of that food. You’re disconnecting humanity from its energy source, which is ultimately the sun.
The food is the connection between sun and biology. Sun obviously being a physics event. It’s nuclear fusion. So, it’s a nuclear quantum phenomenon happening. And then biology on Earth is an expression of that energy potential of the sun that is captured in plants through photosynthesis. Chlorophyl, specifically, being the small mitochondria that takes all that sunshine and combines it into long-chain carbons—glucose, fatty acids, and the like—to carry that sunshine as a battery, basically, into the human condition.
And within the human biology, we then break those carbons apart back into CO2 and release all that solar energy within the cell. So, that’s how biology happens as an expression of light. As we start to undermine the vitality of soil systems and therefore the plants that grow in them, we start to lose that battery potential of the energetics. And of course, along the way we lace it with chemicals that are undermining our biology deeper. The antibiotics that are used as herbicides and pesticides and the like, once ingested, kill the microbiome within our gut. And more insidiously, they kill the mitochondria inside of our cells, which are small, specialized bacteria that do that sunlight, release of carbon, carbon lysine.
All of that phenomenon, ultimately, is a series of disconnects that have led to the advent of the sixth great extinction here on the planet that we can now predict our own demise within the next a hundred years or less.
James Maskell: Yeah. That’s… It’s serious and obviously, you know, myself and yourself and many others are standing to create reconnection. You know, as I think of our community of practitioners that practice the type of medicine that educates people about glyphosate, that educates people about the microbiome, that educates people about the connection to the soil and organic food. You know, these are an army of light warriors in a certain way. But I think, you know, since we last spoke, one of the things that’s been really tricky has been that even our community that, I would say, was reasonably gelled going into the pandemic, has almost been somewhat split apart along political lines for different reasons—or maybe not political lines—but different ways.
And I would just love to get your take on that because for forever, the functional forum was a way of bringing practitioners who thought the same way—they thought in a sort of a lifestyle-focused, holistic way of practicing—to bring them together. And as we try and reinitiate community and connection between providers, you know, we’re faced with a reality that maybe the community isn’t as connected as we thought or maybe further disconnection has been sewed and seems to make it more of an uphill struggle where maybe it shouldn’t be.
Zach Bush: Yeah, that’s well said. You know, we’re in the midst of the deepest schism—social, political, social, social scientific—if you want to think of it that way. But we’re in this deep divide in humanity that’s affecting all 7.8 billion people directly and indirectly. And so, we have a profound expression of polarization that has occurred in the last two years, which is not new. This is simply the next iteration at larger scale of the original wound, which is a belief of separation, which is, again, disconnect. I believe that the original wound of humanity is that we believed ourselves to be separate from nature. And as soon as you believe yourself to be separate from it, then it leads to a scarcity mentality. And once you believe in scarcity at any level, you develop the emotions of fear, guilt and shame.
And you also start to develop a sense of need for ownership. And so, you need to own enough stuff so that you don’t run out because things are scarce. If you go to any indigenous peoples and spend time with them, if they are connected to their original way of life and their original philosophy, they demonstrate very quickly what life looks like without a sense of scarcity, with a sense of abundance. The generosity that you’ll experience in the home of a family that is connected to their original, indigenous awareness of self, they will give you the shirt off their back, literally, because there’s no fear for them that they can’t go make that shirt again, that they already had brought out of nothing. And so, there’s this connection to source and that indigenous wisdom that is so palpable and so starkly contrasting to the Western mind, the colonial mind that believes there’s not enough.
So, we need to go find more stuff. We need to go buy more stuff. We need to sequester more things, and we need to go after this solution for scarcity. And by that, we’ve justified horrific events and behaviors. We’ve justified slavery and justified raping, pillaging, destroying indigenous people as their lands in the march of Western-colonial machine that started with the Dutch and the French and then, ultimately, the British probably perfected. And then America has figured out its own version of colonialism. And then China has maybe perfected what the United States began, which is the insidious ownership of everybody else’s stuff.
And there’s debt mechanisms by which China and the US do this to people. There’s mechanisms by which we buy the mineral rights and oil rights and water rights from developing nations to give them a short term infusion of money while completely stripping them of any long-term economic stability or independent capacity as we eliminate their resources from beneath their feet.
And so, this insidious creep of scarcity mentality that comes from this original wound of, “we are separate, we are disconnected from nature,” has now been expressed at the level of fear of a pandemic. And we have so come to believe ourselves to be separate from nature that we believe she’s attacking us all the time. And ironically, we have chosen viruses to demonize because when you look at the march of life through history with the genetic knowledge we now have of the human genome and all other genomes we’ve mapped, it’s very clear that without the viruses, life does not advance on this planet. Without genetic communication, constantly updating and upscaling and up-generating life, there is no biodiversity on the planet. There is no life on earth. And so, we have so demonized the very mechanism by which life progresses, and we have placed ourselves in opposition to that by this scare tactics and fear paradigm of the virome.
And for that, we have now scaled, I think, to the very end of where this pendulum can move to, of our belief of scarcity, our belief of separateness. And it has to swing back now. We cannot push it any further than hating, fearing, guilting each other into fear around the fabric of life. And that’s where we’ve gotten ourselves to at the scientific level. At the social level, we’ve done this through technology, such as Google, Facebook, cryptocurrencies, and the like. These are all more and more severe, abstract versions of communication. Google’s interesting that it’s not even communication, it’s curiosity that became so popular for us. So, you’ve got a question in your head, you can Google it. Google for the answer. That curiosity being monetized, I think is, again, as far as the pendulum swing can go towards the wound of humanity, which is, I think, that the divine spark within us is curiosity.
And when we allow curiosity to become the biggest generator of advertising dollars on the planet to drive consumerism, we’ve broken the whole system of our divine state. And so, whether it be Google there at the level of monetizing curiosity, or Facebook, Instagram, and the like monetizing social connection, or the farming industry monetizing biology at the fabric of the food we eat. When we decided to create abstract economies out of the fundamentals of nature, we have brought ourselves to the endpoint of life. And so, this is why extinction now emerges as an inevitable consequence unless we reconnect. And so, you could not have picked a better theme for your 2023 because without that reconnection, we march right into or right off the cliff of our extinction event here.
James Maskell: Well, I’d love to just quiz you on, you know, I think you spend a lot of time with interesting people and you get to participate in interesting projects because the way that you’ve stood up in the last five years to share this message. And so, I guess, the question that I have is for the people who are listening, who… I spend my time feeling like equal parts sad and frustrated about the state of the world, but also more than half the time, I think, spend excited about what’s happening because there is sort of like an acceleration to some of the things that maybe people in our industry or otherwise thought would never be possible. You know, the seeds of evil’s destruction are within it, right?
So, it starts to break down. And I think we see some of that just in some of the systems around health and healthcare, things that we thought would never happen are starting to happen, things moving our way. What are some examples that you see of the pendulum swinging back, of people participating, people connecting, and things that you can look to that give you hope that it is swinging back in the other direction and that it’ll have enough momentum to get us where we need to go?
Zach Bush: Yeah. It’s happening so, so beautifully across so many levels of humanity right now. And I think at the individual level, we could look at it, at one patient in your clinic, in my clinic or whatnot, but one patient comes in with a failing biology and lights are literally going out in that person. The mitochondrial potential to release light energy from the food they’re consuming has so diminished that no matter what kind of nutrients you try to put into this person, they are failing to thrive. Weight loss, collapse of inflammatory cascades and chronic inflammation and outraging. And you’ve got all of these disconnect phenomenon happening biologically and looks like life is impossible to maintain at this point. You’ve got some horrific diagnosis of end stage autoimmune disease, end stage cancer, whatever it is.
If you bring that person into a moment where they can release fear and let go of their sense of scarcity of life itself, something dramatic happens, something remarkable and purely miraculous occurs in which they become brighter than they’ve ever been in just a split second. There’s no need for healing—you know, some long health journey. Split second: Their lights become brighter than they’ve ever been. And it’s a phenomenon in which an energetic being that, from a religious standpoint, might be called a soul. From a scientific standpoint, it’s literally the energy field. It’s the quantum physics energy field that then manifests biological grids. You know, the reason a liver knows how to be shaped like a liver is that that is encoded in the energetic signal of being human. This is what a human liver does. It expresses itself in this shape no matter what happens because there’s an energetic grid there.
And so, that quantum reality of being a being that’s now manifesting what is infinite, which is energy. You know, first law of thermodynamics: You can neither create or destroy energy. It’s permanent. It can be transformed, but it cannot be destroyed and it cannot be created from nothing. And so, these energetic centers that we call bodies or souls, if you will… These energetic moments are indestructible on some level, and they shine through the human particle moments. You’ve got a light in the form of energy that’s shifting to a particle state to create an atom, therefore a molecule, therefore a cell, therefore a human being. So, where this finite expression, this particle state of an infinite beam, and if you can bring the awareness of that individual into their infinite state, you can see it immediately, and it’s not connected to the food they eat or the microbiome of their gut or anything, it’s something that cannot be destroyed.
And in my hospice work, I got to see this frequently where you would see somebody in a coma state and go for days or weeks in this non-communicative, seemingly brain dead state, and then suddenly they wake up, and they extubate themselves. They pull the tube out of their lungs, and they’re so present. And it’s so almost frightening as a human being to see this thing happen because they are so present and they are so on, and they can look at you even without saying anything. And you know, they are more real than you are at that moment. And so, there’s been a lot of disconcerting moments in the ICUs and on hospice moments for me, where I’m suddenly faced with a being that is completely real, completely present, and has divorced itself from all of the human constructs of scarcity and disconnect.
And it’s fully connected at that moment. That is a force to be reckoned with. And I’ve seen it do amazing things in those moments. I’ve seen cancers go away spontaneously. I’ve seen, you know, human relationships healed in an instant when that being suddenly speaks their truth and speaks love straight into another being. This is a transformative energy that is present when somebody snaps to this complete state of being. And so, that can happen at the individual level, at the moment of the most disconnected biology. It reveals the most connected state of the being, which is this energetic reality, this energetic truth that preceded and will recede or continue to be present after this biologic death or biologic endpoint. The infinite will take back over. And so, that’s one individual.
But now imagine all who humanity in which our lights are going out for our food system, the toxins, the all this stuff. There is something shining through right now for those that will pause for a second and release the fear, guilt and shame. That’s always the trigger truth. If you can let go for a moment from those three things, you will become so present and accurate in your truth that you become a force to be reckoned with. And that’s where we try to move our patients to in clinic when we were running through that mechanism. Now, we’re switching to this eight-week course, the journey of intrinsic health, which is with a coach and everything else, bringing each individual to this potential moment to let go of the fear of themselves, let go of the guilt and shame of being themselves and speak their truth for a moment. And watch the transformation without expectation because it’s always more beautiful than you can make up.
They may have come in wanting to heal their arthritis or their cancer, whatever it is. They never have that sense of priority a few weeks into this journey because they have realized their truth is much deeper than their fear of a disease or their experience of a disease. Their truth is speaking to a state of being that so supersedes the even construct of disease that they had the wrong priority list going in, perhaps. And so, or maybe not wrong, but they had a low-level viewpoint on what their real purpose was in that journey towards self. And so, I’m compelled that you can see that in an individual.
And now, as we look at a population level, are we not seeing it as people rise in ways that they’ve tried in the past, unsuccessfully? But you look at the way that the Russian people stood up to their government for the first time in my lifetime, at least, and started protesting the streets against their most popular president of all time. You got Putin there and being protested by his own peoples towards this Ukrainian war. You have women in Iran marching out into the streets without their, without their covering garb to show their face, show their power, show their beauty. And that is threatening a regime that has resisted all other potential threats, but a woman on her truth willing to walk into machine gunfire to be killed for her exposure of her own beauty, her own self, her own truth.
This is happening around the world now that people are standing up in ways that we haven’t, I believe, that where we need to move to next to complete that cycle is to move into a state of real sincere apology and deep forgiveness towards one another because we don’t take the opportunity to recognize the injustices that are being protested at the cellular level, at the human level, at the social level and societal levels. If we don’t take the opportunity to see those, acknowledge those and give apology for our ancestral traumas towards one another, we won’t heal that disconnect.
And so, we need to begin at, “I am sorry for what we have done.” And I have to begin at that point with myself daily as I need to apologize to myself every day for the ways in which I’ve undervalued myself, disempowered myself, because I believed myself to be a compilation of human reactions, human emotional memories, inconsistent and untrue statements and programs running in my psyche. And I’ve chosen to adopt those every day instead of do the hard work of shedding those. And I’ve did that to myself for decades and decades and lived a disempowered life, which means…
James Maskell: Well, I wanna just say to that, I mean, let’s just take a moment here while we’re all listening to this. You know, that is the work, and I certainly have my men’s group every Wednesday, and those themes are like consistent in coming up. The removal of the guilt, fear and the shame. And I haven’t heard it in the terms of like apologizing to oneself, but it definitely resonates for me because of the potential that resides within all of us that has not been brought to it’s maximum. So, I definitely would take a moment to just acknowledge that. I want to come back to something you said because I think we’re on this sort of like exponentially horrific extinction path.
And so, a solution to that has to be sort of exponential in nature. And there’s one thing that you said there, which is sort of your shift in thinking away from treating people individually to getting people sort of in groups with a coach. And one of the things that I want to reflect back from my experience with the last year and having run a lot of groups now. I think the health coach is a very interesting sort of exponential person in the ecosystem because what that person is in general, in my experience, is someone that has gone through that sort of dark to light process. Like it’s woken… They’ve woken up. They’re doing some other job, they get chronically ill, they find a way back, they turn on typically earlier than the end of life, but they’re like light again.
They understand that healing is possible, and they’ve done it. And they want to be part of something that facilitates health in others. And I think, with this group model, we’ve uncovered that a group model run by coaches. You know, one of the things that’s been missing from the sort of classic functional medicine experiences that you never meet someone else who’s reversed their chronic illness, right? The doctor may or may not have. That may be the reason why they’ve come across. But if we have to wait for everyone to get chronically ill and have their “aha” moment, it’s going to be too, too late.
You know, one of the things that we’ve seen in this sort of team-based care model is like, who do you have on your clinical team who can inspire patients to say, “Look, I did it, and you can do it.” And this is like, “I’m going to share my own apology for the way that I didn’t take care of myself, and I had to sort of change my personality and change who I was in order to heal. And you can do it too, but then to see other people doing it who are just like you.” And I think there’s something really powerful in that because if you can take one person’s experience and and possibly multiply that by 20 in a group or 400—20 groups at a time by one coach—now you have something that can be exponential in nature. And one light can turn on another light.
And I feel like that’s the potential of what I’ve witnessed in the last two years is that there is an exponential mechanism for one person to share another person’s light. And in the context of like a functional medicine practice or a medical practice, it can actually be harnessed in a way that is capable of an exponential shift.
Zach Bush: It’s beautiful. We’ve gotten to see that happen under our microscope in our lab over and over again for the last 10 years as we’ve studied the communication network of the microbiome. So, this is basically the wireless communication between cells, so that’s called redox chemistry. And bacteria and fungi, each in their own species, makes about 10 or 15 of these variants of carbon molecules that can carry electrons. And so, they basically form in liquid state, a liquid circuit board, where information can travel very rapidly from cell to cell. And so, we’ve been the first lab to get to witness in the world what happens to human cells when you put them in the bath of a microbial communication network, which is obviously where the first single-celled organism turned into a multi-cellular organism in the stew of this communication network.
And so, it’s really been a humbling and awe-inspiring journey to see what happens when the communication network of nature is put in contact with human cells. And this has never been seen before in laboratories because in every single Petri dish ever, studying cancer or autoimmune disease or vascular disease, whatever model, every single one of those was done in a sterile Petri dish. And so, we only understand human biology in a complete disconnect from nature, and therefore, we don’t believe in healing. Therefore, we don’t believe in miraculous recovery because we’ve never seen it before because we were sterile studying human cells in isolation. And so, our very scientific model towards which we try to understand human health is so fundamentally flawed in our current understanding of how biology happens. That every conclusion that’s ever been made in a peer reviewed journal article is a half-truth at best.
And so, we have to remember that we have misunderstood the human life potential because we believed it to be an isolated event. As we reconnect humans to this communication network of nature, the very first thing that happens is that the cells getting the wireless communication network immediately hardwire with fiber optic cables called gap junctions. And thousands of these little cables go from cell to cell. And these, this whole gap junction that may contain a thousand little tiny hollow cables within it is a hundred times smaller than a human hair. And so, it’s tiny, tiny bundle of cables, but at the end of every single one of those hollow tubes that’s now a thousand times smaller than a human hair, there’s a perfect light aperture that can open and close letting more or less light from one cell to the next.
And so, what you just said was you saw one person sharing light with another. That’s literally what happens to the cellular level. As soon as there’s communication, they immediately set up fiberoptic cables to share light between cells. And there’s something really beautiful at that microscopic level to understand that the microbiome allowed for multicellular life to occur through its capacity to connect cells by wireless communication that then inspires a hardwired sharing of light. And for that light transfer, we managed to make the first nematodes in earth worms in humans because of our capacity to share light. And so, your community connection is basically the macro expression of how biology occurs.
James Maskell: It’s amazing. I wasn’t thinking that I would ask you about this, but it actually brings up one of the most amazing things that I’ve ever heard of that happens, and I’m sure you know about it because you are doing that level, but quorum sensing. The ways that you have sort of leaderless decision-making from groups of people who are connected and in this case, groups of cells who are connected. And when I heard about that, it really started to get me thinking about things like consensus and ways in which humans might evolve to have systems where there didn’t have to be an autocratic ruler to decide things for us. And, and groups could harmonize together to make decisions that were best for all of them and act in unison. Have you found quorum sensing to be as interesting and inspiring as I have?
Zach Bush: Absolutely. I think it’s become a real passion, actually. And so, at the single cell level… Well, we’ll give it at the Petri dish level, at least the Petri dish level, when you get enough BioD into a space, you suddenly see hyper intelligence occur, and this hyper intelligence is expressing something greater than any part could be. And it seems to be even greater than the sum of the parts. So, there’s some sort of exponential, synergistic quality to the intelligence of ecosystems connected.
And so, that connected ecosystem of humanity has an opportunity to express something much greater than we can as individuals. And we experience… This is why we, in fact, are drawn to spiritual practices, religious constructs, all of that ring true for us, because we see and feel in those spaces something greater than the individual. And so, we are connected to something greater when we go into these social constructs. And so, this is something that’s inherent in our own experience and our own knowledge base. Over 200,000 years of human history, we are expressing this deep thing of quorum sensing all the time. And the more people you get thinking one thing, even if they’re not aware of each other, that that knowledge becomes universally available.
And they’ve done some neat studies, as was just sort of a colleague who did a bunch of these studies in London where they took college students in Oxford and basically broke them into teams of, I think, it’s 45 students in each room and put them a mile apart on this greater campus or something like this. And they would do three groups, and they would start them in sequence. So, the first group would start a crossword puzzle and solve for it, and they would time that. And within five minutes of them solving the puzzle, they would start the next group.
And so, they would do this, and every single time they did this, solving the same cross puzzle in each group, the crossword word puzzle was solved faster and faster by each subsequent group, meaning that the experience of the individual 45 students having the experience of solving something immediately put that information into the field so that it could be accessed faster by the next group and then faster by the next group. So, that’s at the intellect level, showing quorum sensing at the physical level. I’m very compelled that this can happen as well. And there’s great evidence that this is the case. A great example of it, I think, is the four-minute mile.
It was thought to be impossible to run faster than a four-minute mile in human biology. And that threshold was respected for hundreds of years of people trying to run that, break that record. And then, suddenly, just a couple years ago, somebody ran out at 3:59, and within six weeks, two others had run 3:57, then 3:56. And so, it was like they had broken some sort of physiologic threshold and the information needed at the cellular level to coordinate that much energy and this much focused expression of locomotion was suddenly available to the population in a new way. And so, we sense at the physical level, at the intellectual level. And if you’ve ever had a spiritual moment with a group of people in ceremony, you’ve certainly had that. So, the body, mind, spirit can all express quorum sensing in it.
And for this, we’ve just launched a new nonprofit called the Institute of Natural Law and Governance because we believe that we could start to do quorum sensing, like you said, at the government level, where we could start to all practice that’s been proven out for thousands of years to be the most stable form of sociopolitical management, sociopolitical leadership. And so, we can reteach this, relearn this natural law system, but in this new system, where we start to appreciate quorum sensing, if we start allowing groups to access information within this Institute of Natural Law environment where they’re given a resource pool of a cohesive philosophy by which they can go and apply it to their local governance structure, to their local social movement, that might be trying to resolve gender abuse in third world countries with the patriarchy. So intensely abusive in many of these spaces.
In the United States, we still suffer from an unbelievable amount of domestic violence and gender abuse. And so, there’s an opportunity for that social change to also take on natural law as a resonance structure rather than just activism and antiviolence or anti-male or whatever it is. Instead, understand the vibration of natural law and let that create the new fabric for this resonance state of quorum sensing at the sociopolitical level. So, Institute of Natural Law and Governance.
James Maskell: Yeah. Well, you wouldn’t believe how interested I am in that. I am extremely interested in that. But I want to make sure that for all the practitioners there listening to this podcast because they’re trying to deliver great medicine. And you know, I think one thing you said there is that… One thing I’ve tried to reinforce time and time again with our practitioners is like, each time you help someone heal, it’s not an isolated incident, right? It creates a ripple effect out into the community, to the school, to the family, and then even beyond the sort of thing that you could imagine happening, like one kid sees another kid and they reverse their chronic illness, and then the parents want to know. The sort of quasi-cosmic effect that we just discussed also exists at sort of a next level.
And that’s incredible. So, I guess I want to just come back to, for the practitioners that are listening that want to do the one thing that they’re doing every day better. Right? They’re out there on the front lines dealing with people with chronic illness. We have the most chronically ill population of all time. We have huge inputs into the chronic illness of our population that are novel that have happened in the last few years, whether that be isolation or gene therapy or whatever that is. These are all novel sort of inputs that we’ve never really seen before.
What are your clinical recommendations as a physician and someone who runs a lab on how physicians who are trying their best to think in cohesive ways to practice in a way that honors different levels of holism and systems biology, which is a big part of connection? How do you practice in this world? And how do you give yourself, give your patients the best shot at reversing their chronic illness through your wisdom, guidance, and support?
Zach Bush: Yeah. In a nutshell, it’s reconnection at every level. So, your reconnect or connect kind of theme is going to be my answer. But, there are places in which you can reconnect. We’ve boiled down to eight basic steps. And so, this is the eight fundamentals of our eight-week program. But the first one is you have to connect to self. And so, this is what we were talking about earlier about the biology is fading, but there’s something brighter starting to burn through, which is this original math, the original vibration of the energetic field that coded for this finite body.
And if you can release that fear of guilt-shame pattern in your patient for just a moment, and unlock that code to the original vibration of self, which means you’re going to have to help them release and burn their identities that have been based in: A child, therefore, responsible to my parents. I’m a parent, maybe, myself. I’m a boss. I’m an employee. I’m a teacher. I’m a student. I’m a… All of these identities that we take on, these roles that we play in this orchestrated play of life.
Those roles are divorcing ourselves of the true self. And so, you have to begin at reconnecting to that core before every other role or identity to be taken on. Who are you? What is that original vibration? And help them get into that space, and the lights will go on so quick. And it’s oftentimes beyond your wildest imagination what just that reconnection can do.
James Maskell: What’s the best mechanism that you’ve seen to achieve that?
Zach Bush: I think it’s a little different per your environment. In the United States, in the Western mind, if you will, which would certainly apply in Australia and other places. But in that Western mindset, I like emotion code therapy a lot. And NET/NEAT. These are all practices that work really well in rapidly identifying the emotional programming and then clearing that programming and then allowing the person to become more present. I also like having them list all of their diagnoses and realize that they’ve taken all of these diagnoses on as their identity. And so, helping them just discard all of this junk off of them, the emotional patterning, the identities, the roles, and do that socially. What are all the social identities you have? And get rid of all that. So, it’s decoding all of that down to that core self-meditation in some shape or form.
For some people, that’s bike riding. For some people, it’s breath work. For some people, it’s something else. But find your own path into that silence and that new capacity for listening to the original core self and then learn how to speak from there. Learn how to act from that space of original self. So, that’s step one. But then you can also move on to changing their relationship or reconnecting them to breath, food, sleep, exercise and motion. Their relationship to fasting and changes in metabolic processes and reconnection to metabolism, ultimately, and then reconnection to community. So, those are kind of the layers we chip through there in that eight-week program to getting people to reconnect, reconnect, reconnect. And there’s many different mechanisms for each of those layers, obviously.
And so, you don’t have to be prescriptive in that. It’s more a sense of offering some ideas or examples of what’s worked for others, perhaps, but then start asking into that course base, now that you’ve tuned them into their original math, their original self. Let them speak their truth as to what that’s going to express as in their life. And it’s very challenging as a practitioner not to be prescriptive because that’s your identity. You were trained into a prescriptive relationship with your patients.
And by so doing, you are devaluing them. You are disabling them by that prescriptive belief that you are going to be the source of their wisdom, you’re going to be the source of their healing or the treatments or modalities or drugs that you’re going to provide are the mechanism by which they’re going to heal. That’s how you disempower somebody from true healing. That’s how you send somebody on a chronic disease and maintenance journey that will only take them to the grave and a level of discomfort and dismay. That’s probably not necessary.
So, there’s this whole reconnection at every one of those levels and then a release of yourself as a practitioner from any sense of duty and responsibility to be their source of health. That’s impossible. You are not their God. You are not their source of life. There’s no way that there was a lack of you in their life, and therefore, they have disease. There’s a lack of connection to these core eight phenomenon in their lives, and therefore, they have disease.
The best you can do, again, is be that coach. And so, I think, instead of being the source, the coach doesn’t think that they’re going to shoot the winning goal. They know that they’re going to inspire somebody to shoot that winning goal. And so, that’s where we become, I think, the best version of ourselves as practitioners is when we give up the prescriptive, patriarchal, top-down behaviors and start to be a mechanism by which we lift up biology to its full potential.
James Maskell: Yeah. Wow, man. Listen, the very first Functional Forum, my business partner, Gabe Hoffman, who passed away in 2019. On the first Forum, he basically gave the talk that you just give, which is that you are not the hero. Right? The patient is the hero, and they need to be the center of their own journey. They need to be the hero of their own journey with chronic illness. And here we are, 109 episodes later, coming back to that same original truth, which is that that is what needs to happen. And you know, I would just say, the programming of doctors is so deep to be the other thing. Right? To be the hero. Because that was, you know, it was appropriate in a time when drugs could save the day for acute illnesses.
It’s just no longer appropriate for the diseases that we have today. It’s the central thesis of the evolution of medicine. But, I guess, I still think that if we are going to optimize, like if I look into the future of how care should be delivered in a health system that whose goal is to create a healthy population. Right? Healthy humans that don’t need medicine. That even the functional medicine physicians have in the last 30 years still focused in on the sort of diagnosis and repair work that is a big part of the sort of that shift.
But what I hear you saying—and what I’m in a hundred percent agreement with—is that there is this fundamental reconnection that needs to happen. And that fundamental reconnection system, if you build it in your practice, will be so effective, clinically transformational, for the people who go through it and also synergistic with you as a healer of any modality that you can’t help but be successful in turning people on and reversing chronic illness.
And that’s been something that I’ve been thinking about for a long time, and that’s why I’ve spent the last three years doing what I’ve been doing too because I recognize that that fundamental truth is so clear. It’s that if you don’t have that reconnection, if patients don’t reconnect those eight things that you just described, the chances of them getting healthy tends towards zero. And if they start on that journey, especially with a different cohort of people that are also on that journey at the same time and have different people at different stages of the journey, now you have almost like an irresistible force.
Zach Bush: Yeah, yeah, I think you’re right. And I think we’re going to find over and over again that the vast majority of peoples and circumstances are best managed by a connected group of humans that are on the journey together and can be witnessed to one another. And that might be a coach or it might be a group of people, not larger than that. But it’s not until we look into the mirror of another human being that we get to really see the beauty within ourselves. And we tend not to be able to conceive of our own beauty when we’re in isolation. And so, this disconnected state that we’ve all been encouraged to maximize in these last two years of social isolation and et cetera, in the very fear of one another, we have driven ourselves away from the mirror to look at ourselves critically.
And you see a lot of psychotic behavior emerge from that isolation and a lot of completely illogical things. You know that, as a scientific community, we got used to and accepted and didn’t stand up and scream bloody murder over the fact that we thought it was acceptable for people to go sit down at a restaurant and take off their mask and then have to put the mask back on when they stood back up. Like it is so impossibly illogical that viruses float only above six feet of altitude or something like this. Like we did these things that were so fundamentally ridiculous. And yet we excuse them for what reasons? We don’t even know. And so, when we see this level of behavior, and we can be pretty convinced we have a lot of evidence at that point that some part of our psyche has become so isolated from reality that we’re capable of psychotic behavior.
And that’s so interesting because I can do that in a million versions of my day. I can be psychotic in the way in which I act towards myself, looking at myself in the mirror in the morning. I can be psychotic in the way that I react to some social group or some work group or employee or whatever it is. Like I can be so irrational, and I can justify it or not even be in such denial of the behavior that I don’t even feel the need to explain it or justify it. And it’s… And so, we are a fundamentally disconnected species. Therefore, we look like we are manifesting or expressing the current version of humanity. That version of humanity is going extinct, period. There is no saving that version of humanity.
My excitement is we could transformationally shift the biology and the belief systems, the neurologic behaviors and programming that are connected to those energy fields that are infinite. And so, then that’s, I think… The journey that I get most excited about is that when we talk about regeneration, my nonprofit, Farmer’s Footprint just launched in Australia as well. Farmer’s Footprint in Australia, that organization is having so much impact because it’s not trying to tell anybody what to do. It’s instead creating community around this regenerative movement.
And in that, we are selling so much radical change in behavior, change in beliefs, change in productivity, change in joy, at the fabric level of the farming industry and at the consumer industry of being connected back to a food system that turns you from consumer into producer, even if it’s you knowing and supporting a CSA, you’re now a producer of something positive for biology and planet as well as your own health.
And so, this feedback loop that happens when we go into community around these practices is really extremely powerful. And I get very excited that we are seeing the extinction of the old humanity, of the disconnected humanity, and very excited that we’re going to birth a new version of humanity here in these next few years. And I think it’s already a foot, I think it’s already happening now. The fact that we have to have a technical, scientifically acceptable term called spontaneous remission is pretty cool because it was too awkward to keep writing a miracle in the chart when we saw case after case of autoimmune diseases spontaneously going away or cancer disappearing from bodies without a single trace of scar tissue or anything else. Like what’s happening there. Spontaneous remission is the scientific description or scientific lexicon of miracle.
And like Einstein said, either we come into terms with the fact that everything’s a miracle or we have to come to terms with fact. Nothing’s a miracle. And so, if you are willing to be witness to the world around you as a practitioner, you are definitely going to witness somebody heal at some point. And that healing is not contingent upon you. The drugs you give or the thing, it’s going to be an inexplicable event that that defies our understanding of biology and kind of the physiology of healing. Instead, these spontaneous remissions happen instantly and at a level that that defies our current understanding of some sort of Newtonian biology of mechanisms. And so, we are quantum beings that are expressing ourselves. And the quicker we get to terms with that as a group of practitioners like functional medicine, integrated medicine, I don’t care which type of medicine… I, we are so prone to the old Newtonian belief systems of a cell as a cell and blah, blah, blah.
And it’s this physical structure. We just pretty much ignored physics when it came along and in the early 20th century there with the realization of relativity and then quantum physics. And we’ve just ignored that, as medical practitioners, we don’t want to think about it. It’s too complicated. It doesn’t seem to apply to us in our science. Cause our science is about the living tissue that we can feel, touch and because we cannot perceive with the limitations of the human eye that that tissue, that physical state is disappearing and reappearing every millionth of a second. We can’t perceive it; therefore, we can’t believe it. But the reality is none of your patients are physical beings. They’re all physics beings. And that’s a much different thing than something limited to a biologic state. And this is biology expressing a deep, infinite physics.
And it’s a really important thing for us to get to as a group of practitioners to say, “We don’t know what we’re doing. We don’t have a freaking clue about the truth of physiology.” Cause we believe it to be biologic instead of physics. Therefore, we have studied human biology in isolation and made a bunch of erroneous or, at best, half-truth decisions about who we are, what we are, and our capacity to repair. Our capacity to express life to its fullest potential. So, for that, we’ve become very ineffective as practitioners for all of the science discovery of the last, you know, 50 years. It’s unbelievable. Hundreds of millions of peer-reviewed science journal articles, hundreds of billions of dollars of medical research done. Like this is a scale of human intuition, human ingenuity that… It’s never happened before.
And yet during that same hundred years, we’ve become sicker and see a more rapid decline in health than ever in history. And so, for all of our inquisitive nature and for all of the answers we’ve tried to come up with, we’ve certainly given no solution. And so, it’s because we believe in a structural Newtonian, old belief system of what health looks like. And we have lost the miracle of life for all of the four, the trees that we’ve studied.
James Maskell: Beautifully said. You know, Zach, there’s so many different ways that we could take this. And part of the reason why I wanted to have you here at the beginning of the year is that we’ve got a whole year to unpack so many of the ideas that you’ve shared here today, each one of those different segments. You know, I spend a lot of time thinking about: I’m living in my own life. And I’m just super grateful. I know I would… I think one of the things I’m most grateful for in the pandemic is that the serious sources of light on the planet have garnered more attention. So, I didn’t know who Vandana Shiva was before the pandemic. I do now. And now, I get to experience her wisdom regularly and get reconnected to someone who is thinking in a way that I wish to think.
And I know that many more people during the pandemic got connected to you because of some of the incredible interviews that you gave over time and how you’ve been able to shine your light to further places. And I’m just grateful for you accepting the invitation to come and kick off our year of connection. Couldn’t be anyone better to do it. And I’m super grateful for everything that you’ve done for our community and continue to do and the things that you still have yet to do and you’re setting yourself up for in the future. So, thank you, thank you for being part of this, for kicking it off so beautifully. And we look forward to a truly, truly, truly transformational 2023. It has to happen. It has to happen now, and it’s on all of us to play our part in facilitating this transformation of consciousness that’s necessary for us all to survive and thrive. So, thank you.
Zach Bush: Beautifully said. Thanks for having me on, James. Appreciate all of you as a community. It’s beautiful to be part of it.
James Maskell: Awesome. Well, this has been the Evolution of Medicine podcast. I’ve been with Dr. Zach Bush. We’ll have in the show notes linked to all of the work that he’s doing to reinvigorate regenerative agriculture and cellular biology and groups of humans reversing their chronic illness together. We’ll have links to all that in the show notes. Thanks so much for being part of it, and we’ll see you next time.
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