In April 2010 the BP Deep Horizon drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico, resulting in a catastrophic offshore oil spill. Millions of barrels of oil have spilled into the Gulf since the explosion, representing an unprecedented environmental disaster. Many complex ecosystems are affected by the oil spill, ranging from the Louisiana bayous and associated wetlands to as-yet-unexplored deep ocean ecologies.

The natural world functions very well on its own. Left to their own devices, members of the tens of millions of species on our planet thrive and prosper without relying on outside agencies.

What animates us? In other words, what is it that causes us to be living matter? For example, what distinguishes a living orchid from a tissue-paper-and-paint model of an orchid? Or what distinguishes a hawk from an airplane? What is it that causes the material that is us to hold together and function in an organized fashion, rather than falling apart and decaying as all other non-living matter eventually does?

Many people - adults and children - are familiar with the marvelous animated feature "The Lion King". Most have found themselves humming the film's theme "The Circle of Life" long after they've stopped actively thinking about the film itself. "The Circle of Life" is not only a terrifically catchy tune, but is also a powerful metaphor. And as is often the case, what we find in our outer experience is also true in our inner experience.1

Most of us have undergone some type of screening exam in the last several years. Depending on your age, personal history, and family history, you may have needed to go for a periodic mammography, colonoscopy, or cardiac stress test. If everything was fine, you have probably been instructed to follow-up next year, in three years, or in five years or more. As treatment is usually more effective and easier to accomplish in the early stages of illness, screening procedures are an important component of a public health and health care policy. Most people are generally aware of the usefulness of periodic screening exams for chronic diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease. Spinal screening, performed by your chiropractor, is an additional important service to assist you in maintaining your long-term health and well-being.1,2