The Middle Way View…(article taken from Mind Space archive)
In the last post I introduced the debate that I took part in yesterday on the Sikh Channel TV.
As mentioned my conclusion from the show was that we need to follow the middle way – the path between the two extremes. Not too tight and not too loose. Like the musician tuning their instrument – if the strings are too tight then the string snaps if they are too loose then there is no sound.
The debate and show was around alternative health and the objective was to introduce the idea of alternative health into peoples lives.
Someone close to me is currently deciding which treatment to take for prostrate cancer. The conventional or the alternative. The doctors in the NHS hospital only see one option. Those in the alternative clinics strongly advise to avoid any invasive treatment.
It is therefore refreshing to meet a practitioner who is open to both paths and is not so strongly attached to their view that they can’t see outside it. I have met such a Doctor in a hospital in the West Midlands. I will be visiting that hospital to deliver meditation classes for his patients.
I believe you can combine the two treatments. What is most important is the mental perspective.
For example the NHS have recently cut a huge amount of funding for Homeopathic treatment – they have found no hard evidence that it works! However people are cured through visiting Homeopathic doctors. Largely (and the Homeopath will agree) through the placebo effect. Mind over matter.
The placebo effect is very powerful. Why? Our mind is very powerful and can empower us to heal if we believe in the treatment that we are taking. If there is no belief that it works, what’s the point in taking it?
One of the benefits of meditation practice is that it gives us great confidence in the power of the mind to heal the body – not necessary to the extreme so we neglect any type of medication. But in conjunction with taking medication.
A student who attending my meditation class from Switzerland for around a year was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She decided strongly that she was not going to have it. She didn’t buy into the cancer drama – she maintained a huge positive outlook – the cancer disappeared. No medication – just simply through the power of her mind.
The most hardened skeptic upon hearing the story directly from her…would be convinced.
I don’t conclude however from this story that this is the only way. It is one approach and it worked for Anna at that time in her life. The recovery process depends upon many factors – meditation practice placed gently at the heart of it, however can only help.
At my Great Grandfather funeral around 15 years ago I remember talking to the vicar who I was sitting next to in the wake.
I told him: “the problem I have with Christianity is that I am irritated by Christians who tell me that it is the only way”. I then asked him: “is it the only way?”
He responded: “no I believe in Christ – but I don’t believe it is the only way, it works for me.”
He gave a warm, happy smile and carried on eating. It was like a breath of fresh air.
This approach needs to be taken in the Health Service, including the alternative to give patients the space and opportunity to heal. Rather than being preached at and having treatment enforced the patient is given options and most important the belief, vision and encouragement they can recover.
They are not just a service user – they’re a human being with great potential.
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