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  • New from Bernie Siegel

    Introducing Bernie Siegel's new audio download, Daily Meditations for Optimal Health. Selected for Dr. Bernie Siegel’s Prescriptions for Living best-selling series, these recordings are a combination of guided imagery, auto-hypnosis and meditations that relieve stress, open the heart, and deeply heal your mind, body and spirit. Learn more.     Available now. Order your copy online today at:  Hay House.
    Introducing Bernie Siegel's new title, Love, Animals & Miracles: Inspiring True Stories Celebrating the Healing Bond . The stories in this new book offer funny and heart-touching, true-life experiences that convey loving connections, amazing rescues, and healing with (and by) animals — both wild and domestic. Learn more     Available now in bookstores everywhere. Order your copy online today at:  Wisdom of the Ages, Barnes & NobleAmazon or New World Library.
  • Ask Bernie a Question

    Have a question you would like to ask Bernie? Use the message box below, and be sure to include your e-mail address. Bernie will answer questions each Monday on his blog (see below). Thank you for sharing your question!

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  • Today’s Prescription for the Soul – Prescription #122 – Getting to Know You

    I hope that my “365 Prescriptions for the Soul,” will be a welcome and healing addition to your day. The prescriptions I ask you to fill are designed for your total well-being. They come from hard-earned wisdom and experience with the difficulties of life. They are dispensed “as written” with love. At the end of each prescription is my “Soulution” to help you develop healthy self-love, self-esteem, and self-worth. Please take the prescription I have written for you here and fill it right away.

    The greatest of faults is to be conscious of none.

    ~ Thomas Carlyle, 1795-1881, Scottish Historian and Essayist

    Getting to know yourself better takes courage. It is far easier to hide behind a mask than to see yourself as you really are. There are many who think they are perfect and need not change, who think they’re the center of the universe, and they have a problem.

    If you wish to know yourself and change for the better, you need to accept your inadequacies, fears, weaknesses, mistakes, and more. If you need others present constantly to entertain and distract you, then you are afraid to be still and know yourself.

    So spend some time being totally alone and see how you feel. If you are comfortable, then I would say you are in the process of knowing yourself. Knowing yourself means being willing to be with yourself. Once you can do that, the frantic search for distraction and escape will stop ruling your life and you can choose to fill your life with the things that bring you joy.

    Soulution of the Day

    Even if it feels uncomfortable, go away with yourself
    and spend some time together getting to know yourself.
    You may find that you are great company.

    - Bernie

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  • Gatherings

    Expect people to be better than they are; it helps them to become better. But don’t be disappointed when they are not; it helps them to keep trying.
    ~ Merry Browne

    Often we are required to participate in gatherings.  From holiday and office parties to family reunions, these can be difficult. The expectations we have before we go will color our experience when we get there.

    When you expect to be loved, you behave differently.  Think about going to a family affair where you expect everyone to praise and love you.  Now think about going to an event where everyone will be critical of you and your behavior.  Feel the difference in your body and attitude.

    Go expecting to be loved, and you will be.  Because of the love of my parents, wife, and family, I anticipate that people will love me.  I have found myself laughing when I am invited to a meeting where I expect to be loved and am instead criticized.  When my critics ask why I am laughing, I explain the problem is that I feel loved and expected them to love me too.  The meeting always goes well after that.


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    Wear Life Loosely

    The Law of Detachment says that in order to acquire anything in the physical universe, you have to relinquish your attachment to it.
    ~ Deepak Chopra, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success

    If we simply saw life as a loose garment, something we drape around ourselves but are not firmly attached to, we would find it easier to live.  I feel more comfortable living this way, as if life were something I could easily slip out of at any moment.  It seems to help me focus on the important things instead of the details that mean little.

    How do you want to spend your life, getting all dressed up or just wrapping yourself loosely in a comfortable garment?  I don’t want to waste time getting ready.  I want to be free to move and live and enjoy life.  I find that everything I need comes to me when I live with this sense of detachment.

    Make sure you have a comfortable fit when you dress for life.


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    Movies of Your Mnd

    Imagination is more powerful than knowledge.
    ~ Albert Einstein

    Your life is created by the movies of your mind.  What you picture, your body experiences and your life becomes.  You are a character playing a role, but who wrote the script and who is directing the show?

    What you imagine and picture should not be dictated and scripted by others.  This is your movie, hour show, and don’t let them tell you how it should be performed or how long it has to play.  Most of all, don’t let anyone drop the curtain on you until you say the show is over.

    Sit down, picture what you want, and write out the script.  Then give a copy to everyone who is playing a part in the movie of your life.  If they can’t play their part, replace them with understudies who do care and believe in you and your show.

    Remember, you are the director of the movies of your mind.


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    Listen to the Sounds

    Deafness is darker by far than blindness.
    ~ Helen Keller

    We hear a great deal, but do we listen to what we hear?  For me hearing is not about the sound waves in my environment being sensed by my acoustic nerve.  No matter where I am I hear things, but they are not always coming from the sounds being made around me.

    I sat in the airport the other day and truly listened.  I was amazed at the difference it created in me.  It was more like a meditation because I heard life going on around me and not just the noise. It became a part of me and my life, and not an intrusion.

    I think I understand the sounds of silence now.  It is not about being deaf to the sounds of life, or the absence of sound, but the ability to hear and listen to life going on around us and in us.

    Take some time today to listen to sounds of silence.


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    The sweetest of all sounds is praise.
    ~ Xenophon

    Praise is seen in your eyes when you look at your beloved.  Praise is felt in your touch when you embrace.  Praise is heard in your voice when you speak to the one you adore.  Praise is about your loved one’s potential and the hope you have for that person.  Praise is like helium; it lifts us up above the troubles and obstacles of life.

    Praise does not say you are perfect.  It says I admire you and what you have accomplished and what I know you will go on to do.  Praise is the food of the soul. No one survives without it.

    Praise is like fertilizer.  Sprinkle it freely, and those you love will grow, bloom, and blossom.


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    Q & A wtih Bernie – Aprill 15, 2019

    Question for Bernie:

    I’m scheduled for a total hip replacement in mid-May. I was in denial for a long time. I read all of Dr. John Sarno’s books and really questioned seriously if my condition was more related to mind than body.

    As the date closes in and I remain in pain, I am inclined to go through the surgery.

    Bernie’s Answer:

    Before surgery, picture blood leaving the surgical area during the surgery, which makes it easier for the surgeon. Also, picture everything going well several times a day, and your body will be ready for the best happening both during and after your surgery.

    Response to Bernie’s Answer:

    That’s good advice. Thanks. I am still struggling a bit with whether I really need the surgery or whether this could be my brain causing the pain as a means of avoidance of other issues. If that’s the case, it’s definitely happening on a very subconscious level. The x-rays show ‘bone on bone’ for both hips, yet only the left one hurts, and that’s the one with less of an issue.

    Dr. John Sarno was the physical medicine doctor who wrote several books on healing pain without surgery in spite of having physical evidence that might support having surgery. Greater than 80% of his patients ended up being ‘cured’ without surgical intervention by following his methods. I’ve done that and have had inexplicable relief at times and at other times not so much.

    Anyway, I haven’t received much support from anyone for not having the surgery, so I probably will go ahead with it.

    Bernie’s Second Response:

    Contact whoever you want to, but you need to contact yourself first. With crayons, on white paper, draw yourself in the operating room and e-mail it to me. It will help you know what is right for you.

    Stop thinking and follow your heart.

    If you plan surgery, then three times a day from today, picture yourself having the surgery and doing very well afterwards, free of pain and other side effects.


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    Genes, Psyche and Soma

    Part of learning to love ourselves is appreciating our own miraculous body, not just externally, but what is much more interesting and truly awesome to me, internally, as complex body chemistry generates internal messages that reach every necessary cell.

    The things that I find exciting about the human body are what we can’t touch directly. We take our cars to body shops for repairs and perform maintenance every so many miles, but what keeps our body going? Why do some people go on for 100 years and others half that time? You can answer that it’s genetic, but why are the genes doing what they are doing? Who is giving the orders, and who or what is taking orders? Why is a touch significant; why do we need to sleep; and what is consciousness? Let me try and answer some of these questions.

    You can see my problem isn’t about ego. Most people would base a book on the above, and I’m trying to answer in a page or so. When you think of the communication going on in the body, it all boils down to the cell membrane and what communicates with it. How we are touched by others, and how we reach out to touch others, creates an internal chemistry that speaks directly to every cell. There is memory and intelligence in every cell. It has a job to do and is equipped to do it, but it’s still following orders that integrate it into the needs of the body as a whole. Who or what is in charge and makes the decisions is beyond understanding as far as I am concerned.

    We know from the stories of transplant recipients that organs carry memory. A painful life has its adverse effects when it leads one to not want to live. The will to live is not just about desire, but about the chemistry and internal messages which are being communicated to the cell. I know how I feel on my difficult days, and I pay attention to those feelings and internal messages—and respond to them.

    Bacteria are capable of making intelligent genetic changes to become resistant to antibiotics, which upsets us. But instead, why not be pleased by the ability that exists within us to do the same thing to successfully survive. I know it is more difficult for us than the bacteria because of how simple their lives are compared to ours.

    However, everyone with a gene for a disease doesn’t get it. I do know of identical twins who both develop the same disease, but I know of more identical twins who do not develop the same disease. I believe their lifestyle, both physical and emotional, makes the difference. Again, this is not about blame, but about internal wisdom and messages.

    Think of the great undifferentiated potential from which we all come. Now think of yourself as a circle within that circle with no circumference. You are touching it, separate from it and a part of it, all at the same time. You are aware and conscious of yourself and more. Our bodies may be present locally but consciousness goes beyond any physical limitations. I have had personal experiences with intuitives and mediums that have convinced me of our potential to communicate and see in ways that most of us are not taught even exist. The CIA uses these non-local abilities to spy on people.

    I think a part of our brain requires rest, so that it can communicate in symbols while we sleep. Think about it. Why do we sleep when sleep is dangerous? Predators can pounce upon sleeping animals, so why do what is dangerous? I believe that sleep is necessary to restore and maintain the system upon which consciousness depends. It is true that we hear while we sleep to provide us the warning of noisy threats, but a good predator is quiet.

    As a surgeon I am fascinated by sleep and anesthesia. We don’t know how anesthesia works, but we use it every day. My sense is that it works through the pathways that lead to sleep. We can lose consciousness, but still maintain all the other body functions—and even respond physiologically to verbal commands and touch while anesthetized. So consciousness exists during sleep and communicates what we need to know via symbols.

    What happens to consciousness when the body dies? My opinion, from my experience, is that consciousness continues to exist without the need for the body. That great undifferentiated potential from which we are derived is conscious without form. We give it form so it can act and touch other living things. The touch that cannot be felt is a mystical or spiritual event that most people never experience.

    My hope is that someday we will all experience both touches—the touch of other living things, be they our pets, family, or therapists, and also the touch of creation, so that we feel a part of something greater then we appear to be. I think when people feel this connection, their membranes get a very powerful live message and feel integrated into the process of creation and so we sing, ‘Touch me and know what happiness is.’

    Remember you are the one who sets the limits as to how far you can reach and what you can touch in your lifetime. So make the sky your nonexistent limit.

    Why am I sharing this? Why do I want you to have a sense of awe? So that each day will be a gift of wonder and not a burden. As a surgeon I need to be practical, just as you do, but to experience life and healing, one needs to reach beyond the practical, palpable things that fill our lives and live with a sense of wonder and awe.

    I want you to achieve your potential. As Ernest Holmes said, “What if Jesus was the only normal person who ever lived?” Hmmmm, think about that for a minute.


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    Poetic Relief

    Poetry is language at its most distilled
    and most powerful
    ~ Rita Dove

    If you don’t write poetry, you are missing a great opportunity.  The other day I greeted my wife at the back door and then put away several bags of groceries.  I patted myself on the back for being such a good guy and waited for her to return to the kitchen.  When she did, she said, “You don’t put tomatoes in the refrigerator.”  No “thank you,” just criticism.  What was my response?  To write a poem entitled “Divorce.”

    In it I listed all my deficits, like putting tomatoes in the refrigerator, eating and walking too fast, and snoring.  I read the poem to my wife, and she laughed.  I love her when she laughs, so we fired the divorce lawyer, took the tomatoes out of the refrigerator, and decided to give love a chance.  Now you know why I love and recommend writing poetry.

    The day you start writing, your world will change.


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    Where’s Home?

    Show me a man who cares no more for one place than another and I will show you in that same person one who loves nothing but himself.
    ~ Robert Southey

    As I stepped of the plane after a recent trip, someone asked me, “Are you home yet?”

    I said, “Of course.  This is my planet.”

    What do you think of a home?  Whether it is one acre or a whole continent, do you treat your homeland differently than the homeland of others?  Or are all homelands sacred to you?

    In actuality, you are home everywhere on this planet.  We all share the furnishings, the environment, and the air we breathe and re-breathe.  Treat it all like your home and care for it so that your descendants, of whatever blood relationship, race, religion, or nationality, can live here in the years to come.

    If we feel at home and those around us, we will create a home for the future.  But if we build fences, fight with our neighbors, intrude on them, and damage their property, we will all lose our homes some day.

    Are you home yet?  Of course you are; this is your planet! So create a home for everyone by landscaping your life for the pleasure of all to see.


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    “Inspiration comes from theHeart of Heaven
    to give the lift of wings,
    and the breath of divine music
    to those of us who are earthbound.”

    ~ Margaret Sangster

    When I speak to respiratory therapists the words inspiration and inspire relate to the act of breathing, mechanical movements of the chest and diaphragm which pull air into our lungs.  Yet these words carry a much more significant meaning as well.

    In many languages the word for breath and inspiration relates to our spirit and spark of life.  I do not think it is an accident that this meaning is shared. After all, God breathed life into Adam through his nostrils.  That first inspiration brought life into a piece of clay.  Dust became alive.

    We are all dust and clay until we find inspiration in our lives.  When we are inspired, we change the world, not by changing others, but by changing ourselves.  If everyone on this planet felt inspired and breathed life into each other, we would have a world of companionship and love.

    Inspire deeply for yourself and all those in your life.


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