Friday, March 12, 2010


PEKIN (Daily Mail) - A 101-year old Chinese grandmother has sprouted a horn that resembles a goat's on her forehead. The mysterious protrusion began growing on Zhang Ruifang, 101, of Linlou village in Henan province, last year. It has since grown to almost 2 1/2 inches — and another now appears to emerging on the other side of the mother of seven’s forehead. The youngest of her six sons, Zhang Guozheng, 60, said the family didn't pay much attention when a patch of rough skin formed on her head last year. "But as time went on, a horn grew out of her head, and it is now 6 centimeters [2.36 inches] long,' he said. "Now something is also growing on the right side of her forehead." While it is not known exactly what the growth is, it is said to resemble a cutaneous horn. The funnel-shaped growths, most of which grow to only a few millimeters, can extend a number of inches. A small consolation for Zhang is that she says the horn doesn't cause her any pain, the Daily Mail reports.

Cutaneous horns are made up of compacted keratin, the protein in hair and nails in humans, and horns, wool and feathers in animals. The growths usually develop in fair-skinned elderly adults who have a history of significant sun exposure, but growths of this size are rare. The growths are most common in elderly people, and can sometimes be cancerous but are benign in more than half of cases. Common causes of cutaneous horns are warts, skin cancer and actinic keratoses, patches of scaly skin that develop on skin exposed to the sun, such as the forearm, face and scalp. Cutaneous horns can be removed surgically, but this does not treat the underlying cause.

During this life we go throught so many changes of body and yet we are still the same person. Althought the body changes, you are still the same individual. These changes, from childhood to old age, show that we are not the body, but the one who owns the body.

The body is called kshetra, or the field of activity for the conditioned soul. Now, the person, who should not identify himself with the body, is called kshetra-jña, the knower of the field. It is not very difficult to understand the difference between the field and its knower, the body and the knower of the body. ... It is described in the beginning - dehino 'smin - that the living entity is within the body and that the body is changing from childhood to boyhood and from boyhood to youth and from youth to old age, and the person who owns the body knows that the body is changing. ... Similarly, we also understand by a little contemplation that we are different from the body.

Śrīla A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda :
“The Bhagavad-gītā As It Is”
Purport in Chapter 13 - Verses 1 - 2.

No comments: