Re: [Meditation Society of America] Re: Health, EEG Studies, and Schools of Tibetan Buddhism
Katrina, you have two questions in your email of June 2, 2010 that I will answer from my life experience that may be helpful in your research. The first question is implied in statement "I always hear stories of meditators telling me that they healed certain ailments through meditation but it is difficult for me to wrap my head around that concept". The second question "Is there a certain type to be used to heal physical conditions?" has an answer that is related to the first question. The easiest way explain this is to give a chronological history of my spiritual development. It starts in my teenage years with an interest in hypnosis. I was introduced to this on a work camp sponsored by a religious organization to do construction on a lodge and other minor projects on an Indian reservation. We were all high school students plus an older couple (teachers) and a counselor who was a medical student. The rhetorical question is how would you like being any one of the adults dealing with twenty teenagers for a summer because lots of things happened I could tell you about, but lets limit this to the current discussion. In what I am going to relate there was certainly a breach of correct behavior in a psychological matter. I can only say that we were a bunch of teenagers without much to do when we were not working. One of the students helped a dentist as a demonstration subject when the dentist taught classes to other dentists on medical hypnosis. One evening we were sitting around with nothing much to do so one of us, I will call him Ted, told us about what he did for medical hypnosis demonstrations and asked if anyone wanted to be hypnotized. No one jumped at this immediately, but I thought it might be an interesting experience so I said yes. I was hypnotized and since I was not told to forget anything, I then later asked Fried for more details about what he had done with me. He then told me that what with the information he gave me, I could hypnotize other people.
Here is a side story on that breach of correct behavior because there was a crossover between REM sleep and hypnosis. This may be of interest from a research standpoint. One evening rather late, one of the fellows in the dorm was talking in his sleep. Ted, out of curiosity, wondered if it were possible to hypnotize a person while they were talking in their sleep. So Ted tried a standard hypnosis induction and then suggested that the fellow was fishing and to cast out a line. Well the fellow did bring his arm down with a thump on the bed. Ted then gave the fellow a post-hypnotic suggestion that when Ted came up to him and put his had on him and asked how he was feeling, the fellow would go into a hypnotic trance. Ted did that the next morning, but the counselors also at this point started to divide folks up into work groups, one to paint the roof of a two room school house, and the other to work on the Indian lodge. The fellow turned and looked toward the counselor, so Ted thought the post hypnotic suggestion did not work. Wrong! Ted went to work on the Indian lodge and the fellow went to the schoolhouse project in a trance. They kept him off the roof of the school as he was in a trance for the better part of the workday. Now the fellow who was hypnotized was a Christian Scientist and they do not believe in hypnosis, so he was a bit upset about the experience. If you do not remember, the Christian Scientists do not believe in doctors treating them for medical issues, but have their own methods, which maybe have something in common with medical hypnosis I think. I have never been inside a Christian Science place of worship so I have no firsthand experience. Mary Baker Eddy, who started the Christian Scientists, did have some experiences with hypnosis before she started her religion. Perhaps it would be a good research topic to see how Christian Scientists use whatever it is they say they use to deal with illness. There might be some useful practices that could be incorporated into medical hypnosis.
Later in the year when I was back in high school, I went to the library and found a book called Practical Hypnosis (in a locked book case). I asked the librarian for it and she gave me a funny look, but got it out for me. With that information, I proceeded to hypnotize friends and relatives. I carried on with it for some months, but decided to stop since I found hypnosis to be a very power thing, and more responsibility than I cared to take on. One thing I did notice was that suggesting a new behavior, such as stopping smoking, may not be successful unless underlying feelings were explored. This is an important point for me to keep in mind when I later started doing medical self-hypnosis.
One summer a few years later, I was working for my uncle who had an orchard. We had a few idle days between jobs, so I was in the house by myself sitting in a chair and listening to the wind on the oak trees. I tried to hypnotize myself by having one part of my mind; lets say the intellectual part, give suggestions to another part of my mind. I was successful. At this point in time I switched from hypnosis to meditation. There is one aspect of hypnosis that I carried over into meditation and that is the ability of the intellectual part of my mind to interrogate my subconscious. This is rather like a hypnotist with their intellect having direct access to the feelings of the person who is hypnotized, but I did it all within myself. This self-interrogation of feelings within medical meditation I think is important for healing.
I was eventually able to slip into meditation very easily if I wanted to. I tried working with myself for about six months. Have you ever had a feeling of being uneasy but not knowing why? I had feeling like that from time to time and so I would do self-hypnosis and easily find the reason. The reason was always a surprise as to why. The problem was that I could feel uneasy a few months later, do self-hypnosis, and come up the same reason I have before. I did not have a way to use my meditation for self-improvement.
Several years later after I graduated from college, I found a notice for a seminar near Monterey taught by a surgeon, Dr Peter Mutkie (sp?) about medical hypnosis. This seminar was open to anyone. He had a lot of interesting stories about preventing scaring, speeding healing and anesthesia. One story he had about himself was that he was horseback riding at nighttime and he had the animal jump some kind of barrier. The horse fell and the doctor broke the bones in the back of his hand, the metacarpals I think. So, while he is driving his Porsche to the hospital, he puts himself in a hypnotic trance. (Seems to me he is lacking a bit of common sense, the horse could have broken a leg not to mention something more important on the doctor, and here he is disengaging the intellectual part of his mind while driving his car). When he gets to the hospital, the doctor there concurs about the broken hand and says he will have to commit him to the hospital for surgery tomorrow. He says, well my hand is perfectly numb from hypnosis, lets put the pins in right now and I will assist you in doing it, which they did. He then worked with self-hypnosis to speed healing, X-rays were taken, and the pins came out in half the normal time. For a little more on medical hypnosis try this link:
Now I had fallen off a ladder onto my shoulder while working for my uncle in his orchard a few year earlier, and I had an arthritic back, and a disintegrating disk. They were talking about removing the disk. I was in some pain and needed a special bed. I though that if the doctor using medical self-hypnosis could speed healing then maybe I would work on my back. I asked the surgeon running the class and he thought it probably would not work. Well I tried meditation on it, trying to do imaging as suggested in the class and found a feeling of a block. I then tried looking at my feelings and found a reason for the bad back. Seems I wanted people to feel sorry for me. Since no one was doing that, I figured I had better give this feeling up since it was not doing anything for me. After that, healing move along. I was careful not to influence the feeling of pain because that was my marker as to how the healing was going. In two months, I had no more pain, and to this day I have never had any back trouble, except for sore muscles when I work too hard, but then the next day everything is back to normal.
Some years later I found I had a small pea size lump under my skin, but the skin itself looked normal. The lump had roots extending out from the lump with a half-inch radius. Now I do not know what that really was, but I did the medical meditation routine, took care of an emotional issue, and the roots got rounded on the ends, the lump soft, and everything shrunk to nothing in about four days. I though this may have been some kind of cancer, but we will never know since no doctors were involved.
So now in the months of March 2005 and I have been diagnosed with colon cancer. I am using my medical meditation abilities to try and make the cancer go into remission and most of the time I think I would be successful, but as I mentioned in a recent post, I had to go to a different type of meditation for success dealing with the cancer that requires enlightenment. With that you could say that the intellectual part of my mind in medical meditation was replaced by that cosmic consciousness accessed by putting the ego aside.
Meditation is a trip of self-discovery of what dwells in ones mind and every time meditation is undertaken, more comes up to the consciousness and is inspected. It is necessary to have enough faith to realize that the path is worthwhile to explore, but rushing headlong means one is more likely to trip up along the way and get messed up by what comes up into the consciousness. So be gentle with yourself for two careful steps may bring better results that a large quick step. Now what to do with what you find out about yourself while on the path, this is where enlightenment comes into play. Offer up your suffering to God for instructions on proper behavior, what to do about what you discovered within, or if you really what a jolt, just make your mind blank while meditating and get your answer that way, receiving something not of your own nature in response that is just about all that you can manage to do.
--- On Wed, 6/2/10, Katrina <blondewithaphd@...> wrote:
From: Katrina <blondewithaphd@...>
Subject: [Meditation Society of America] Re: Health, EEG Studies, and Schools of Tibetan Buddhism
Date: Wednesday, June 2, 2010, 5:44 AM
Thank you for sharing your journey with us. I always hear stories of meditators telling me that they healed certain ailments through meditation but it is difficult for me to wrap my head around that concept. I am so glad to hear that your cancer is under control now. I am wondering though, why did you not tell your doctors?
I also agree that meditation enacts the subconscious and conscious parts of the mind in a way that we are both able to be reflective as well as inverted into our own thoughts. It is a unique ability to look at the problem, find the solution, and interpret what it means. I have some clients who have been in therapy for years and still don't know what the problem is. I think meditation takes you to a place you can step back and look at the problem for yourself, and find a way to heal.
You mentioned using different kinds of meditation both for the back injury and when you were very stressed with your wife. Is there a certain type to be used to heal physical conditions?
I'm currently reading "Boundless Healing" by Tulku Thondup and I find it is quite easy to get through. Must be meant for novices like me :)
--- In email@example.com, WestWindWood <westwindwood2003@...> wrote:
> Can meditation cure cancer? From my own experience, I can say yes, but first some background on another medical issue that influenced my approach to dealing with cancer. In my early twenties I fell of a ladder and compressed a disk in my back. I developed an arthritic back with calcium deposits that could be seen on an X-ray. There was talk of surgery to fuse the vertebrae. At this point in my life I could do a concentration kind of meditation and get in touch with my feelings, but none of the enlightenment experience for any kind of guidance from that wisdom found there. So while meditating, I brought up the issue of my hurting back. Did I have any emotional reason behind the pain? It turned out that I did, like I wanted special treatment from others because of my problem. Well I rationalized that in my situation I was unlikely to get sympathy so lets give it up. I could then do visualizations about the healing process and three months later, perfect X-ray.>So, four decades later I am diagnosed with colon cancer. It was discovered through a colonoscopy, but the cancer could be palpated easily on the lower left side. It was hard and almost a foot long. I am thinking that cancer and arthritis are both failures of the immune system so lets work on the cancer using the same technique. I was under a lot of stress because first husband of my wife was very abusive. Now since I was a laid back kind person from all the meditation, she took out her anxieties on me and I did not do any pushing back at her. I meditated about my wife and yes I was supposed to be married to her. Through concentration type of meditation like I did for the arthritic back, I determined that the stress was so much that I just wanted out through death, but unlike the arthritis problem, I just could not rationalize a solution to the stressful situation to deal with my cancer. If the situation had not been so emotionally overpowering, I am sure I could have rationalized some solution and got a cancer remission, but it was just too much. OK, so then I did meditation of the enlightenment type and got the answer back that I had to keep going, it was not my time. I ALWAYS do what I am directed to do in meditation so I managed. The cancer got soft and went to about half the size in ten days; however, I was scheduled for surgery and went ahead with it; otherwise, I think my wife would have done nuts. The pathology showed the tumor to be non-aggressive, which is quite unusual for a cancer. I did not tell any doctors about my meditation. I believe the most important point here is the ability for a person who meditates to know what is going on in their subconscious, an ability that most people do not have. Perhaps enough talking with a therapist would bring the same information to consciousness, but it would take half a year to get there. See the book, You Can Fight For Your Life by Lawrence LeShan for the therapist approach.