Question for Bernie:
I am a mental health professional and have a client who states that after undergoing back surgery, they have not been the same person since. Could you tell me what your experience is with this problem? I believe my client, and want to know how best to help. Thanks.
Ask your client to describe what they are experiencing. Guide them by asking them to use words that describe how they feel now compared to how they felt before the surgery. An example might be “How did you feel about meeting new people before the surgery and how do you feel now?” You might choose a different social situation or other sort of relationship situation around which to pose a question based on your knowledge of your client, but you want to get your client to use descriptive words. In the example I have above, I would be looking for words like “I used to feel comfortable—even excited to meet new people. Now I really feel tense.”
Then ask about specific things in your client’s life that they would like to eliminate to increase happiness and an overall sense of well-being. Listen for the same or similar words that came up in the answer to your first question. If the descriptive word that comes up again is positive, ask them how they can address something that they named as wanting to eliminate from their life in a positive way—do the same thing with any negative words that come up again. If the word is “tense” for example, talk to them about how they might lesson the tension of a situation or make themselves less tense (meditation, creative visualization, etc.)
You might also explore with your client how having this extreme reaction after surgery could be a way to maintain the level of attention they may have gotten before surgery for the physical problem. If your client was away from work quite a bit with a physical disability, it may be hard to go back. Help your client consider all the reasons why it seems better right now to say that they are not the same person since surgery rather than face some of the difficulties of re-connecting in all aspects of their life.
Your work with your client to discover what is underlying this post-surgery disability could undercover that they are not doing work that they love, or are not experiencing any joy in life. Help your client find a way to do what they love, either as their livelihood or an avocation, or just in richer relationships—even new relationships. Loneliness and a lack of connectedness to other living things, whether relatives, friends, or pets, can throw the Mind-Body-Spirit connection completely off.
If your client didn’t love their body before surgery, they may find it easier to reject the “old” person with the surgically repaired body in favor of a “new” completely different person. Help your client discover their authentic self and love that person’s inner being. Encourage your client to learn to meditate as well as use creative visualization to get in touch with and love themselves.
Question for Bernie:
First, I hope it is OK to call you Bernie. I feel I know you after reading some of your books, years ago.
I have several autoimmune diseases. Many years ago, I had a meditation tape of yours that someone gave me. To be honest, it looked like it was copied or possibly taped at a meditation session in a hospital. It had 4 meditations on it. In one meditation, you climbed a mountain. In another, you went through a tunnel and out the other side where people were waiting for you, and you ended up on a stage. I loaned it out many years ago and never got it back. There have been numerous times in the past few years that I wished I could listen to it again. I am sure it is still being used by someone who needed it more than I.
I would like to know if that tape is now on one of the CD’s that you sell. I would love to have another copy of it. I would also like to know if you have any other books or CD’s that would be good for someone with multiple autoimmune diseases. I am asking my body to stop attacking itself, instead of asking it to attack cancer cells. Do you have any more recent books or CD’s that would work for my situation? I have read a couple of your early books and they really gave me hope and put me in a good frame of mind and spirit, even though physical healing didn’t take place. I loved your books and now that I have found your website, I would like to start the New Year with more inspiration. What would you suggest that I could read or listen to of your work?
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you do for so many!
I can’t remember which CD has this particular meditation. Here on the website, go to the Wisdom of the Ages link (down the right side of the page) and then click on “Contact Us.” If you prefer, just click on: http://wisdomoftheages.biz/index.php?main_page=page&id=5
This link takes you to the page for the Wisdom of the Ages store that carries all of my books and CDs. You can ask them right on the website page specifically for the CD that has the meditation you describe. You can also get copies of the three books I recommend that you read now:
- Faith, Hope, and Healing
- 365 Prescriptions for the Soul
- Peace, Love, and Healing
Also, please DO NOT INTERNALIZE ANGER. It is very damaging to the Immune System. Instead, express anger when, where, and to whom it is appropriate if you were not treated with respect.
Other things you should do are to:
- abandon your past and its wounds
- know that you are loved
- forgive and move on
- learn to meditate and keep a journal of your feelings
- laugh for no reason several times a day