Interview with Doctor Konstantin Buteyko, MD, PhD, Newspaper Soviet Siberia (1998)
Newspaper “Sovetskaya Sibir'" (Soviet Siberia)
No. 19, 31 January 1998.
Konstantin Pavlovich Buteyko recently celebrated his 75-th birth-date. Thinking that the cause of the most common diseases has been deep breathing, he was and is now the most mysterious character in medical and public circles. He has many supporters in our country and abroad, who promoted to award “Buteyko genius” with the Nobel Prize. At the same time, many doctors do not accept his ideas and the method of “liquidation of deep breathing”. In recent years, while touring far from Siberia, the president of Folks’ Academy of Spiritual Culture agreed to talk with our reporter N. Zubritskaya.
“You are usually do not say about your childhood, but there was the beginning of your character”
“When I was 5 years old, I gave myself one oath. I was returning home from the shop, but a stranger, a grown lad, beat me and took away all my shopping goods. I yelled towards his back, “When I am adult, I’ll eliminate all robbers!” I’ll keep my word; I’ll do that… I went to school one year earlier – I cheated that I was seven years old. By that time I could write and read Byron; therefore, I was assigned to the third form.
“You studied successfully later as well. What was driving you?”
“I could not tolerate that somebody was in something above me. The main law of organic matter is perfection. After the school I decided to go to Kiev Polytechnic Institute, in order to build spaceship, which could fly in cosmos. The study was interrupted due to the war. I was in automobile unit, which served the reserves of the frontal line. After the war I decided to go to a medical institute; I studied with all my grades excellent. Wishing to solve the mystery of death, I decided to observe death of a hundred hopeless patients. I was sitting for hundreds of hours in the ward for the dying and I learned how to predict, with hourly, or even daily, precision, the last breath of the patient. I have a special quality; it is rare, acute sensitivity to breathing. Just in those times I noticed the relationship: the closer the death, the deeper the breathing.”
“Breathing is called the bridge to Universe”
“Yes. And awareness of the own breathing can give the man a lot. Breathing and life are synonyms. To breathe consciously is to live consciously.”
“They say, that it is not easy to learn your method. I know that due to my experience – using books it is impossible to get. But in a group with your practitioner learning is easy. But many are scared to try your method, because air hunger, as hunger for food, is an example of extreme discomfort. In reality, that is not so.”
“In order to introduce the method to a clever person, I need only 5-10 minutes. I start with the same, what I did myself, when I was a student, who was severely sick with hypertension. My state was almost hopeless; I tried best medications. I had to expect the speedy perspective of myocardial infarction, or insult, or kidney failure. The blood pressure was beyond all imaginable limits. However, I have causative thinking; I tried to find the cause of my disease. During my medical service in the hospital near Pokrov’s Gates, I got an idea that my hypertension due to deep breathing. I started to monitor my breathing. I felt that my air moved through nasal passages, throat, trachea, and bronchi. The ribs were expanded, the abdomen expanded, and the air reached the abdomen. Several inhalations and exhalations – and I felt better. The problem is that deep breathing, Satan, as I call it, does not like to be observed. Later, I consciously decreased my breathing, and the headache got released, the heart calmed. I went into the method in 3 minutes. I immediately went to wards, reached the maternity unit, cancer patients. I said, ”Let us conceal breathing.” And pain was taken off as by a magic wand. By decreasing the depth of breathing, I cured and established the foundation of my method: during deep breathing, hyperventilation of the lungs, the level of carbon dioxide in the blood is lowered; that causes interruption of all metabolic processes, which finally leads to diseases.
“From the book “Discovery of doctor Buteyko” we know, that official medicine had unfriendly attitude in relation to the method. Some its representatives tried to eliminate you physically and to poison; twice you had suspicious road accidents. They tried, although without success, to put you in a mad house. Why all these persecutions?
“The problem is that I found a method to get rid of drugs and complex and not safe surgical operations. The thought, that the most common diseases, which kill humanity, can be treated with normalization of breathing, insults the official medicine. Even Academicians do not want to think about the causes of the disease. There are few of them who possess causative thinking. The mind of the man is nailed with: sleep more, eat more, get more sex, breathe deeper, work less – and you will be healthy. But these are the laws of the anti-world. Deep breathing makes the person aggressive and provokes violence. In essence, deep breathing is some type of madness and the cause of robbery, theft, infidelity, and pollution of environment. If breathing is deeper certain number of times, the person is duller, weaker, and sicker the same number of times; and he lives shorter.”
“Do you want to turn the world upside down?”
”To turn the anti-world is my goal. It is the Hercules task to clean the Augean stables, which are human brains. And Medicine is to blame for the cause of collapse of civilization, because medicine, in essence, is anti-medicine. It blessed such sins as overeating, laziness, and promiscuity. It nailed into brains that to breathe deeper is useful. And the more people are perverted, the deeper they breathe.
“Could you tell more about causes of overbreathing?”
“Consider the origins. When the life appeared on Earth, the air had no oxygen; it consisted of carbon dioxide, from which all life cells were built. They are built now too. Investigations showed that for the cells of the brain, heart, and kidneys, about 7 percent carbon dioxide and only 2 percent oxygen are required. Now air has 200 times less CO2 and 10 times more O2; and the deeper we breathe, the stronger the violation of the necessary balance. In the formation of deep breathing we are to blame: overeating, physical inactivity, nervous and psychological stress, sexual immoderation, street drugs, and food allergens. My discovery is 45 years old, but medicine is still on its head. The students are still taught that during deep breathing the organism gets more oxygen, although it is proven long time ago that everything is vice versa. Therefore, medical schools become the bases of foolishness.”
“Such assessments can disturb many people.”
“Many people do not understand why I fight fiercely. The destiny of the mankind, its survival, is at stake. Fame and money are not of my concern. Now I inquired the Health Ministry with the question, “Why is the 1985 Directive about the use of the method not fulfilled?” Up to the present time, nothing, what was specified in the Directive, is done.”
“During the International Congress on Respiratory Diseases in Novosibirsk, it was surprising that nobody mentioned a word about the Buteyko method, which radically treats asthma. The conclusion of Academicians is that asthma is incurable.”
“Moreover, asthmatics get dangerous forms of drugs, which dilate bronchi and vessels. They have a disease of deep breathing; and “help” of doctors makes the state of the patients worse.”
“We discussed asthma. In this area your method is accepted by many doctors and patients. Now there is tuberculosis outbreak; and, if we say that your method can treat this tough disease, some “professionals” would be insulted, that we are embarrassing people.”
“People are deceived by pseudo-science. Modern medicine is such a science. Treatment of patients with tuberculosis using normalization of breathing was tested by my colleagues long time ago, and in different institutions. It was 100 percent success. By the way, we taught one lady, and she, claiming that the idea was hers, received a certificate of authorship. In regard to my method, pupils and colleagues obtained dozens of scientific degrees, but even that did not lead to rejection of mistaken ideas in medicine.”
“The fact that tuberculosis can be treated by breathing is indeed a shocking statement.”
“Normalization of breathing strongly increases immunity. We tested that in Moscow, in the Institute of Immunity. Skin was stained with staphylococcus, and after 3 days of training, in accordance with the method of elimination of deep breathing, all skin of patients get sterilized. That was increase in immunity! All were shocked. They started to test again – the same result. We re-tested that using numerous patients. Those, who have right breathing, do not suffer from tuberculosis and can not get cancer.”
“There are rumors that you can treat AIDS.”
"Normalization of breathing can defeat even AIDS."
“Why did you not announce that to the whole world? That would be an international sensation and could lead to recognition.”
“We do not advertise that because AIDS is the punishment for human promiscuity. If people now find out that AIDS can be defeated, epidemic of wrongdoing and perversion will be catastrophic.”
“How is your method met abroad?”
“In the first place, desperately sick people, as at home, believe in it. For example, the financial manager of the UK asked me to help him to get rid of asthma. I delegated my pupil there, and they defeated asthma in one week. The friend of this manager asked us the question: could this method be used to treat epilepsy? It is possible, we helped hundreds patients. By the way, there are already published books about normalization of breathing using my method. However, speaking about health and medicine, the situation abroad is even worse than ours. That is consequence of so called luxury life.”
“You told that you intend to clean Augean stables, or human brains. How?”
“I believe that stupidity is the result of deep breathing. It is Satan, which extinguish best human abilities. Deep-breathing mothers, due to spasms of umbilical cords, give birth to invalids. They, in their turn, have even deeper breathing and mentally deficient children. Hence, deep breathing is a global cause of degradation of humanity and the way to world disaster.”
“Let us consider the local soil. What is the situation in the mega polis – Novosibirsk?”
Thirty years ago, rate of diseases and mortality was 3 times lower. In the past, when I asked the audience, which listened me, to exhale and hold the breath – to carry on their maximum pause, the pause was in average about 25 seconds. Today the pause is 15 seconds. That is an indicator of poor health, which has a stable tendency of further worsening. Everybody can be convinced in that, by checking with a clock, how long breathing can be hold.
“How is it done?”
“Try to keep your breathing after normal exhalation as long as possible. Monitor the second arm of the clock. If the maximum pause is only 10 seconds, then carbon dioxide value in the lungs is only 4 percent. The organism hardly struggles for life. 20 seconds is also bad; from 20 to 40 seconds - satisfactory, from 40 to 60 – good, more than 60 – excellent. By the way, there is a dissertation, which proves that the maximum pause, among other indicators of health state, including X-ray analysis, is best. I insist that the Health Ministry issued a Directive about measurement of the maximum pause and its addition into medical charts of medical institutions. If a doctor does not measure the pause, fire him. Besides, I would survey the population if they know that deep breathing is dangerous and that diseases should be treated by normalization of breathing. In Novosibirsk the method of elimination of deep breathing is known only by 1 percent population. I want that all people of the region know that the deeper the breathing - the sooner the death, the less the breathing – the healthier the organism. However, the training must be done under supervision of our practitioners and doctors. ”
“Do you suggest to people to live without usual pleasures, causing diseases. What for, in your opinion, should the man live?”
"The main goal of the sensible creature is to understand the universe and God. The laws of Nature rule everything that takes place in the micro-cosmos – the living cell and the macro-cosmos – the universe. The set of these laws is the most precise definition of God. We must realize, that we never can get the exact definition what is God, because our brain is limited, but God is infinite. We must comprehend these laws and live in accordance with them. Since the man cannot understand and follow all laws, he must choose and follow the main ones. The first law is common of all mater, which I divide on lifeless and alive. A stone, grass, and tree also think and feel, but using their own way. The main law is the law of cause and effect; it is irreversible in time. The cause results in the effect. As my grandmother used to say, “Nothing takes place without a cause.” Therefore, the truth is the law of Nature; and sin is violation of this law. The first sin is deep breathing. Look what is suggested by all religions: fasting, pray, work, restraints, and the attitude to others as to himself. The commandment “Love each other” means do not get excited. Clear? All what is suggested by all real thinkers is connected with normalization of breathing.”
“What can you tell about your plans?”
“We are going to build the palace of breathing and children centre in Novosibirsk. I hope for support of all sensible people.”
End of the interview.
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