Spiritual Healing: The Roots of Healing, Part 2
(Also, as a quick aside, I’ll be on hiatus next week, the week of July 19, 2010, so there will be no articles next week – this will allow you to catch up on this series on Spiritual Healing, along with reading any articles on the website that you’ve missed.)
In the second article of this series, I discuessed what Lawrence LeShan identified as the two types of healers, Type I and Type 2. Type I healers use spiritual healing methods, while Type 2 healers use intent through physical or mental actions to manipulate another person’s physiology or energy flow.
As LeShan puts it, “In Type 2 the healer tries to heal; he wants to and attempts to do so through the ‘healing flow.’ In both Type I and Type 2 he must (at least at the moment) care completely, but a fundamental difference is that in Type I he unites with the healee; in Type 2 he tries to cure him.”
Perhaps the most accomplished healers use a combination of Type I and Type 2. They access higher states of awareness to bring the healing powers forward, and they also channel their own energies. This would be using the advantages of both non-local and local medicine.
Non-local medicine sends a healing message while local medicine sends healing energy. The ultimate healing message that comes from non-local sources is universal love. That, combined with the healer’s innate source, may be the correct formula.
To use this formula, and to develop as a healer, the healer must go through their own transformation and do their best to shed the trappings of their ego desires and their heart. If within the healer is a tangled web and hidden agenda of lies, petty jealousies, secret motivations, and so on, the healing message that stems from the Ultimate will be blocked.
Abraham Heschel, a 20th century Jewish philosopher and theologian, once said in an address to the AMA, “To heal a person, one must first be a person.” To truly become a person is a commitment to maturity and an evolution of consciousness.
In this way, a healer can then evolve as a person. This evolution can lead to an expansion of LeShan’s typology to include a Type 3. This would be the type that I suggested above, where a healer aligns the universal energy with themselves and the patient, and then from the depths of their own heart and soul channels their own clear energy. Some healing modalities attempt to teach this method. Reiki healing and Therapeutic Touch are two energy modalities in which the training of the practitioners include concepts of altruism and compassion.
Barbara Brennan, in her book Light Emerging, discusses the process of healing as a means to shedding the blocks that stop the flow of creative healing energy. Her point is that the more we open ourselves up to the flows of the universe, the more we can channel that source for the benefit of others.
Others say the art of spiritual healing lies in the ability of the healer to elevate their consciousness to merge with the Divine. In the book The Art of Spiritual Healing, the author points out that “anyone who practices spiritual healing must rise above the level of appearances – above the discords of corporeal sense, or personal sense – to a higher plane of consciousness where there is no person to be healed and where there is room only for the Spirit of God.”
Qi gong as a healing tool would be another example of Type 3 healing. With qi gong, the practitioner is seeking to unify themselves with the universe. It is believed that when a person is completely relaxed and in a meditative state the body can resonate with the fields of the universe and the two will interact.
In China, qi gong masters do healing sessions where they emit their qi to those in need of healings. One qi gong doctor, Yan Xin, has said, “Early-stage cancer is curable as easily as the common cold. If the patient works with me, I can reduce mid-stage cancer, and control the spread of some late-stage cancer.” People such as Yan Xin and other qi gong masters even perform group-healing sessions, where they emit their qi to the entire audience in order to help heal them.
The reliance on others to perform the healings may be an important part of someone’s recovery, but if the expectations are for someone else to totally do the healings, an important piece of the puzzle is then absent.
That is the ability for self-healing, to be reliant on our own innate healing capabilities and to use them to the best of our abilities. This self-healing potential can lead to a further expansion of the typologies. We can call these people Type 4 healers.
Type 4 healers would use as their foundational approach spiritual medicine, whereby they align their hearts, minds and souls with the Divine.
Type 4 healers are the types who are classified as spontaneous remissions. These are the people who go through extraordinary healings and remarkable recoveries. These are the people who have been blessed by miracles.
Some denigrate these types of healings, and believe them to be random acts of fate. One prominent oncologist says, “I think you’d have a better chance of getting struck by lightning than of having a spontaneous remission of cancer.”
Others are not so smug. In the book The Spontaneous Regression of Cancer, the author William Boyd writes that the term spontaneous regression “has a suggestion of something happening without a cause. That, of course, is absurd, for everything has a cause, apparent or inapparent. On consulting the dictionary we find spontaneous defined as ‘without external cause.’ If we add the subjective ‘adequate,’ we have a concept which we can use in our own thinking.”
Many of the people who are self-healers find themselves venturing down a path of reconstructing and renewing their life as they head towards self-healing. The inner life becomes intensified, epiphanies large and small are experienced, and cathartic episodes occur. This is what can happen to those who spiritually heal. The old coat is shed and a beautiful swan is born. The connection to the Divine is a trip into the quantum vacuum, where infinite powers reign, and where anything is possible.
Spiritual medicine is not about denying the physical and biological aspects of medicine. Sometimes it’s surgery that is the only answer, sometimes it’s a drug. From my experience, acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine often can change a situation. At other times, nutritional changes can be the key factor.
But what spiritual medicine can do is unite the disparate forms of medicine into one medicine, a medicine that stresses a binding connection with the Infinite Oneness of the Universe. To connect to this unity takes both the objective and subjective, the cognitive and the intuitive.
In the teachings of Zen it is said “the organism is regulated by the timeless original mind, which deals with life in its totality and can do ever so many things at once.”
This timeless original mind that regulates the organism is the realm that spiritual medicine delves into. It contains every potentiality of the universe, it contains the capacity to self-heal, and it contains the capability for self-transformation. With so many people clamoring to touch this realm, and desiring a spiritual connection to life, it is necessary that medicine follows suit and not cut people off from their souls.
In his book, Reinventing Medicine, Larry Dossey states that medicine has always been a soulful endeavor. “Serving people who are undergoing these life-changing events is one reason why medicine has always been considered a priestly function and why becoming a physician has always been regarded as a spiritual path,” Dossey writes.
Holistic medicine has always been comfortable wandering down the spiritual path. Western medicine needs to let down its guard and follow suit. When the two paths concur, it is possible they can then integrate. This can lead to a lessening of tension between the two groups. When this occurs, a chasm will be bridged and a healing will have taken place amongst the disparate fields of medicine.
This healing will be a spiritual healing; like all spiritual healings its resonances will be felt profoundly, touching many lives in the process. And this healing can then lead to a transformation both in medicine and in society.