Why Not To Be A Doctor Or Spock –  A Prose Poem

When as a 36 year old doctor I had severe chronic back pain, Dr John Sarno took me on a journey of recalling all my childhood’s pain. The rain of old memory, cured my back pain by allowing my life’ new memory to peacefully reign. You’ll understand sooner or later, perhaps in this story.

baby-1178539_1920Remembering birth was tough, but time before it was easy. Life in the 1700’s was magnificent but that came from past life regression and this story is not about that journey, but the one after my current birth, not before. I never did manage to remember this more recent birth, perhaps because I really don’t care to or maybe can’t. I do recall however being about age one. It’s not that interesting other than for its wordless description. So I will save you a long recital by telling you it was about cycles. I recall the cycles of the sun behind my crib as day came and went through the window behind where I slept (I slept through most of it). The next interesting thing, perhaps from your viewpoint, was the periodic visitation of floating faces that made cooing noises. I knew they were “nice” as I could feel their happy thoughts. When I could stay awake, seeing them was entertaining.  By the next year, I now knew they were “people” and that with gifts of food or lack of care their visits seemed to bring joy or fear.

When I was about three sitting on the basement floor, I watched my sister assemble a puzzle and for the first time really knew disappointment. I insisted on trying but when I could not do it my mother laughed; it was the first time I ever felt abashed. I did not understand that my sister being nearly twice my age had an advantage. How I “viewed”my mother’s laugh shaped who I am forever – competitive, but mostly with myself. Mom was very creative and to this I was native. There was little TV, just building creative toys and dreams for me.

In kindergarten, the teacher told us to put on reindeer hats and parade in a circle to music and entertain our parents. I refused her, asking why I should do this?  She just got mad thinking that I dared need a reason! From then on I looked at her with derision for her very poor emotional decision. This event that day made me a father to Spock,  emotion free as a rock; though I suspect he was conceived in my mother’s laugh.  We were one and the same with just my name. 

In high school and college, sex I had to acknowledge; but joy for me was being so high on the curve that everyone else would fail. Calculus, Chemistry, Biology all the sciences, her laugh long ago determined how far I would go to leave them all in the dust. 

doctor-2337835_1920Fifty years later having joyfully invented a branch of Holistic Medicine, my patient’s pain had become dark rain. A body cooked long round the spit of the sun finally begins to fail, it ceases to run. My patients grew, old my joy grew cold, for even years after I could still hear her laughter.  It was time to leave!  After 45 years I’d earned that reprieve.

Here in Florida I met a lady who’d been my best friend 40 years ago when I had been painfully divorced.  Her eyes were failing and her surgeons flailing. I volunteered my services for a guided tour that the doctor, not Spock, should have known to abhor. Surgeons well selected, care well directed. But, years of life predicted age could not be interdicted.  Now I remember the reason to retire, watching life end inspires no great desire.


But being a friend before life’s end is a gift of value that laughter can’t devalue.  As I sit here this morning enjoying the sun, I’m glad that from other’s pain, I chose not to run.  I cannot stop the end of life but with love and caring there is great opportunity for preparing.  

For much of my life I’m again married to a wife, who had been to many daring to be selflessly caring. Now I’m inspired, to be so desired, life’s too short to stay retired. Care given to a friend does spiritually help them mend. Her laughter faded in the ever after. 



The Mind Body Connection And Cancer

If you have cancer or are concerned about getting cancer, would you like to know a simple free method of greatly reducing your risk of dying from cancer?  If so, read on.

In much of the western world we look at illness from the standpoint of physical causes such as, bacteria, toxins, nutrition,  things we can touch and feel. Its no wonder we fail to successfully treat long term illness!  This is not to denigrate western medicine. If you have a serious infection or have been injured in an accident, we have pioneered the worlds best antibiotics or surgical treatment. However,  chronic illness and prevention are unaddressed  in any meaningful manner other than by toxic drugs which cause even more pain and suffering.  Even to propose that a doctor look at the body in a more holistic manner and pay attention to the mind is fraught with political danger  in Power of PrayerAmerica.  The “church” of western medicine will see that you are excommunicated if you stray to far!   Take the example of Dr J0hn Sarno who has magnificently pioneered the mind body connection in his books on back pain. He has stridently denied any connection with Alternative or Complimentary care practitioners,  for fear of being in company with such “disreputable practitioners.”

Few of us average people, of lesser intellectual prowess than MD’s,  would deny that our emotions make us ill but we would be unlikely to risk publicly debating this with the “brilliant” medical doctors. So lets talk amongst  ourselves and see what we can agree on in the safety of our community.

Dr Sarno’s books are written for average people. They originally dealt with the issues of back pain only but more recently Dr Sarno has conceded that the mind can cause much more than back pain and in fact be related to cancer.  We know that  people like us may eat a great diet and exercise and yet find themselves diagnosed with this frightening word, cancer.

Dr Sarno explains, in very common language,  that back pain is almost always from childhood misery and current stress;  this is pain and physical illness caused just by memories! He calls this TMS or tension myositis syndrome.   After practicing traditional surgery for back pain he discovered that most of his surgical patients and that of his colleagues failed shortly after or immediately after surgery.  However he discovered that talking to his patients succeeded far better than surgery!  He then began to seek an understanding of how simple speech could cure pain.   He delved into psychology,  particularly Freudian teaching, and was quickly rewarded with possible psychological explanations  for  back pain and potential approaches for its treatment.  The word Psychosomatic illness took on more meaning; but, this was not in the sense of an illness that had no physical reality.  To Dr.  Sarno the mind was the cause but the physical illness was real not imaginary.  This is now well documented by many researchers.  When I was a student in graduate school, working on my doctorate,  over 40 years ago, we read an article titled, “Ulcers In Executive Monkeys.”  The researcher was able to put monkeys in a situation where they had to make many quick decisions or suffer consequences.  As a result, these monkeys developed ulcers, just as people do!  In fact, many of the died form bleeding ulcers.   Forty years later we are still ignoring this truth; meanwhile millions of people are dying needlessly.

I met an author recently who had as “interesting” a childhood as mine.  Perhaps more dramatic and traumatic in some ways.  From his experience he wrote an excellent book that helps protect lives, from not disease, but rather from criminal behavior.  In fact, he build a successful business based on his childhood trauma.  Many of us have had traumatic childhood experience and  have intentionally forgotten them.  Some of us remember and build our lives around helping others as a result.  Some of us die from the memories that seem forgotten.

The key to reducing your risk of cancer is to recognize that your experiences are NOT forgotten.  They are repressed or buried far from sight as your life is filled deeper and deeper with new experience.  However, as Dr. Sarno discovered this is not to say those experiences are any less active in your life or any less real to your survival.  Dr. Sarno helps his patients heal themselves by basically recalling the childhood stress and in so doing releasing its energy, which is causing pain and potential damage in the body.   This does also include current day stress.  More recently Dr. Sarno has recognized that other illnesses, though not entirely caused by negative childhood experiences,  may be at least partially caused by such stress.  This includes cancer.

I have often wondered why people who exercise, look healthy and eat a great diet  can suddenly get cancer and die.  It is more common in those who look less healthy and behave less healthy; yet, you cannot ignore that people on apparently healthy diets and lifestyles get cancer.  Dr. Sarno in his recent book,  The Divided Mind,  expands his definition of TMS to include its relationship with cancer.

I have based much of my writing on experiences I have at 2:30 am in the morning.  It is an interesting state of mind, at that hour, that I call the Hypnogogic State.  In the hypnogogic state (somewhat like lucid dreaming)  I find I have clear almost total recall of much of my life in a way I cannot duplicate during the day. It is so unique that if I do not record my experiences,  they are gone when I awake,  much like the morning mist  is when the sun rises.  This has helped me personally with health challenges much as Dr. Sarno offers.  I have little doubt we will find that the mind body connection,  can reduce the incidence of cancer, its re-occurrence and the number of fatalities it creates.  If you have,  have had or are concerned about cancer, or many other illnesses,  do not allow the church of medicine to excommunicate you should you choose not to be a truly evangelical practitioners or patients.  Allow yourself the grace to know that God has given you intelligence and a need to learn for yourself and likely the capability to do well should you keep an open mind. I recommend John Sarno’s writings.

Janr Ssor