"Healing is, by its nature, a knitting together, a restoration of wholeness. It requires that we see and accept lovingly all parts of ourselves. Our ability to contain more, to expand our identity, to accommodate the multifarious aspects of ourselves is the basis of healing," writes Dr. Rudolph Ballentine, the creator and director of the Center for Holistic Medicine in New York City. Drawing on 30 years of medical study and practice, he taps into the perennial principle of healing as personal evolution.

For Ballentine, now is the time to harness the wisdom of a variety of healing systems, including Ayurveda, homeopathy, traditional Chinese medicine, European and Native American herbology, nutrition, psychotherapy, and bodywork. In this masterwork, the author puts it all together in one volume. Radical Healing is a treasure trove of healing tools for body, mind, and soul.

He begins with an overview of nature's medicinals — plants and other natural substances — with concrete suggestions on how they can be used specifically by different types of people. He relates flower remedies to psychological and emotional issues, seeing them as allies in the struggle with polarities. A fascinating chapter covers the way ancients have used such body maps as the face, tongue, hands, pulses, and nose as pathways to understanding imbalances.

Ballentine assesses the five elements in Indian and Chinese medicine where the physical, mental, and energetic are intertwined. Two final chapters revolve around the foundation stones of nutrition, detox, movement and exercise; and an exploration of energy and consciousness. A bonus in this adventuresome synthesis is Dr. Ballentine's "Self-Help Index and Home Medicine Kit" where he presents his suggestions for preventing and treating common ailments, disorders, and illnesses.