I’ve always been a fan of the type of books that Deepak Chopra writes. He’s on my list of favorite authors by default. If you know about Hay House and Shambhala publishing companies, you speak my language.
Even though Chopra’s message of well-being and wholeness is right up my alley, for whatever reason, a lot of his words sail over my head. Back in 2006 when I was newly married and unemployed, I read his “Seven Laws of Spiritual Success.” Didn’t help the situation at all. Not that I was expecting to get a job as result of reading the book per se, but it would have been nice. Stranger miracles have happened to me.
I picked up “Quantum Healing: Exploring the Frontiers of Mind/Body Medicine” shortly after I found out about my Mom’s last cancer diagnosis. I guess when I started reading it, I was expecting to stumble upon some new or ancient Eastern technology that would lead to her miraculous healing. I only got to about page 60 before she died. Ultimately, it was just her time to go.
My dearly departed mother doesn’t have to worry about illness or stress anymore, so in a sense, she has been healed. For the those of us who still have one hand on a mouse, this book provides some solid information on the intersections of East and West, mind and body, sickness and health.
“Quantum Healing” has its share of geekspeak. I frankly got lost in some of his discourse on neuropeptides, dendrites, DNA, and dopamine. Still, I got the point: there is really no separation between the mind and the body. If you’re stressed, it’s not just in your head. Your digestive track, heart, lungs, pancreas, etc., are all stressed. Same thing if you’re happy, relaxed, nervous, or depressed. The whole body thinks and is the physical manifestation of consciousness.
Another key theme is the idea that we set limitations on ourselves, when none are really there. Once a person hears that they have cancer, they are no longer just themselves, they become “a cancer patient,” and a set of limitations become real in terms of what they should and shouldn’t, can and can’t do. In reality, there are no limitations. If people could mentally take the news that they have cancer the same way they take the news that they have the flu, the survival rates would be much higher.
Consider the Tarahumara Indians in Mexico. The run 25 to 50 miles a day, day after day, in high altitude. They do this on a diet of almost exclusively corn–and not that much of it. Part of that is genetically learned, but they are humans just like the rest of us. It just doesn’t sound ridiculous or impossible to them, so they do it.
Chopra uses a lot of examples like this to show that the Ayurvedic model he’s proposing is in line with all we know about physics, right up to the Superstring Theory. I more or less buy it, even though he never outlines exactly how to do the bliss meditation or primordial sound techniques. Guess you have to pay for that, because I can’t find it online, either.
What I’ve taken from this book is the reminder that as an individual, I’m not separate from the rest of the universe. That feeling of duality that we feel is often the foundation of disease. Be aware of your oneness with your surroundings. The mind runs all the way through the body, but it doesn’t stop there. Like dropping a stone in a pool to cause a ripple, our thoughts extend outward to the ends of the earth and beyond. Maybe one reason “the world is so messed up” is because so many of us have such messed up thought patterns. I for one, am convinced that the world is a thing of beauty, and so am I.