Secrets of Korean Medicine, Part 31: Grow Old and Be Healthy

A vision for elderly living
By Dr. Seo Hyo-seok,
June 3, 2016 Updated: June 3, 2016


If, at age 60, the angel of death comes to take me away, please tell him I still have too many things to do to go right now.
If, at age 80, the angel of death comes to take me away, please tell him I am still too useful to go right now.
If, at age 90, the angel of death comes to take me away, please tell him not to hurry, for I will go when I want.
If, at age 100, the angel of death comes to take me away, please tell him I will go when the day and the time are right.
If, at the age of 150, the angel of death comes to take me away again, tell him I’m already in heaven.

—Excerpt from the lyrics of the song “100 Years of Life” performed by Korean singer Lee Ae-ran

When you get old, you start to receive more obituary notices than wedding invitations. Elderly people who live into their 70s, 80s and 90s get frequent, sad news of the departures of close friends, one by one.

Mental and physical aging go hand in hand. When one ages mentally, one’s body will also age, but if one keeps his or her mind youthful, the body will also be able to sustain its youthfulness.

Similarly, when a 100-year-old person is put into a crowd of people in their 60s, and these people talk behind the centenarian’s back, saying that he or she is a living corpse, the 100-year-old person may begin to think, “Yes, I have definitely lived for too long, and it is about time that I pass away.”

When one closes the door to one’s heart, one’s life will end soon after. I believe that if a person’s mental frame of mind is set to live to the age of 99, the person will in fact live to the age of 99. Furthermore, if one’s mind has thoughts of living longer, the body will follow suit. If the body is left alone, it will die earlier than if the mind and body go hand-in-hand, and the mind is determined to have a long life. 

Based on this idea, I am planning a very special project. I want to establish a ‘100-year-olds garden’ by selecting 33 persons over the age of 90 to live together in a special community. To start, these persons will live in 12 units of traditional Korean tile-roofed houses. Here they will experience such a peaceful life that they will glow with good health.

They will also be kept healthy by consuming highly effective medicinal herbs. Their good health and these herbs will also contribute to happy thoughts so that they can enjoy their remaining time left on earth.

The goal is that all the residents live a healthy and happy life without a thought given to death. I firmly believe that all people are capable of living beyond 100 years if they have a youthful mindset, forget about old age, and maintain their health daily.

Once this first stage of this project is successful in Korea, people from all corners of the world can come to see it and share the life experiences of these 33 centenarians. And when people see the success of this project in Korea, I imagine establishing a place in which more people can live joyously and in great health.

In commemoration of the first Chinese emperor, Qin Shi Huang, who passed away at the age of 49 after having failed to find the elixir of immortality, 3,300 Chinese people around 100 years old—or closer to 90 years if enough centenarians can’t be found—will be chosen to live a comfortable life in 888 tile-roofed houses constructed for communal life.

(Dragon Images/Shutterstock)
Cleansing the lungs will also strengthen the immune system, which will ensure that the aging proceeds much more slowly than before. (Dragon Images/Shutterstock)

I will call this place the Pyunkang Shangri-La or Pyunkang paradise. The dream of Emperor Qin Shi Huang was embodied in the concept of Shangri-La. The renowned Chinese poet Tao Yan Ming, (A.D. 365–427) wrote a poem about the paradise of Shangri-La, an ideal world in which all residents achieve longevity free from disease and sorrow. This poem has captured popular imagination and is still very popular.

Since the Pyunkang herbal medicine I developed has cured hundreds of thousands of people of wide a variety of diseases, I believe a Pyunkang Shangri-La can actually be established and will be a place where people can enjoy longevity in great health.

The principle of longevity in great health is quite simple: Cleanse the lungs. The root of all diseases comes from the lungs, and the lungs are the center of life. However, by the time people reach the age of 99, their lungs are inevitably damaged. The lungs are punctured, filled with phlegm, or hardened.

When pneumonia manifests in people with half-destroyed lungs, they can survive only if they are properly treated in a timely manner. Although it is relatively easy to fight against and eradicate pathogens that cause pneumonia when the lungs are healthy, people with damaged lungs will have a great deal of difficulty overcoming the disease.

Then, why do 99-year-old lungs become punctured, filled with phlegm, and hard? It is because they have not been thoroughly cleansed. People’s lungs will inevitably become filled with toxic waste if they are not cleaned regularly, and the accumulation of the toxic waste destroys pulmonary cells.

(Stock Creations/Shutterstock)
(Stock Creations/Shutterstock)

Cleansing therapy for the lungs will heal punctures, remove built-up phlegm, and restore the resilience of hardened lungs. Moreover, if the lungs are cleansed of toxic waste before the lung tissues become seriously damaged, it is possible to substantially extend the life expectancy of a person.

The beneficial results of cleansing the lungs are first seen in the skin. When the health of the lungs is sufficiently restored, the skin will appear healthier and look about 10 years younger.

Cleansing the lungs will also strengthen the immune system, which will ensure that the aging proceeds much more slowly than before.

With these changes, people’s life expectancy will be extended by about 30 years, and they can expect the blessing of good health and the disappearance of numerous chronic diseases.

Once the health of the lungs improves, a wide range of chronic diseases such as chronic nasal inflammation (rhinitis), asthma, COPD, and high and low blood pressure will disappear. I expect that there will even be some people among the 3,300 residents of the Pyunkang Shangri-La in China who will live to the age of 150.

If by using the herbal formula I developed, a person is able to live to the age of 150 in good health, then my next goal will be to enable people to live to the age of 200. My hope is that the life expectancy of mankind will increase markedly as many people see the benefits of cleansing their lungs.

Currently, there is an abundance of diseases in the world and countless other health problems arising from the side effects of synthetic drugs. In Korean medicine, we say that people fall prey to diseases when their life force is weakened. But if their life force is strong, no disease can exist.

Cleansing the lungs greatly strengthens the life force. Accordingly, my ultimate goal is not simply to extend the average life expectancy, but rather, to create a world without disease by healing the root cause of diseases.

It is possible to be free from many diseases if immunity is restored through cleansing the lungs. Without the common cold, rhinitis, asthma, atopic allergies, arthritis, and high and low blood pressure, many people would be able to enjoy a 100-year lifespan in great health. I will continue my project until people around the world dance with joy because they can live in wonderful health until the age of 100.

Dr. Seo Hyo-seok.  (Courtesy of  Dr. Seo)
Dr. Seo Hyo-seok. (Courtesy of Dr. Seo)






Dr. Seo Hyo-seok is the director of the Pyunkang Korean Medicine Hospital, which has seven branches in South Korea, one at Stanton University in California, and one in Atlanta. Dr. Seo entered Kyung Hee University in Korea at the top of his class and after years of research, developed the Pyunkang-Hwan herbal formula, which improves immunity by strengthening lung function. It has helped cure over 155,000 patients of various conditions.

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