Meditation and the Mind-Body Connection


Most people have heard of some medical people extolling the virtues of meditation to assist with healing and health. I have previously mentioned Dr Bernie Segal in the USA who facilitates meditation groups as an adjunct to help people heal themselves of cancer and has written several books. Of course there are no guarantees in life …

… but using the power of meditation (here is a link to the 3 Hour Meditation Seminar on 2 DVDs at an especially reduced price) and our own mind is certainly powerful and worth tapping into not only for healing assistance but for inner peace and handling many of life’s challenges and issues.

Many Australians would have heard of the wonderful neurosurgeon we have here in Australia … Dr Charlie Teo.  Indeed Dr Teo has done much work in USA so possibly many Americans have also heard of him.  In fact people from all over the world seek out Dr Teo to operate on them if they happen to have the misfortune to develop brain cancer.
Dr Charlie Teo - the worlds most famous Neuro Surgeon 
A friend loaned me a book about Dr Charlie Teo, and in particular one of his patients, and the book is called “Life in His Hands” by Susan Wyndham.  Here is an excerpt from Chapter 10 titled  – Twenty-six Hours (on Pages 84 and 85). 

Many times he has said, in slightly different ways, ‘I have realised the power of the mind is incredibly important to your general wellbeing and the ability of the human body to fight disease.  I don’t know why doctors find this so hard to accept but they do.  I think a lot of patients have done well not because I’ve operated on them, but because I’ve offered them hope and I’ve given them something to be positive about.  It can’t just be the surgery because anybody can do the surgery I do.  They all leave in a very positive frame of mind: “We’re going to beat this.”  I encourage that and I nurture it and I think it’s instrumental.  I think I have gained more understanding of the mind and the power of the mind not through looking at the brain, but through the dealings with my patients.’ 

Charlie’s holistic philosophy is simple, logical and refreshing, but many doctors still find it unprofessional.  He encourages his patients to exercise, follow a healthy diet, meditate, remain positive and, if they have religious beliefs, to pray.  He also recommends surgery, sometimes repeatedly over many years, on tumours that others have declared inoperable or the operation pointless because the patient was going to die anyway. 

Critics in the profession say Charlie gives false hope to hopeless cases with his pep talks and rush to operate.  He argues that those surgeons often abandon patients when it is possible to save some and give many others more time, comfort and support.  He makes it clear that a malignant tumour will ultimately prove fatal but that is no reason not to fight. 

‘While there’s quality of life, there’s hope,’ he says.  If people aren’t willing to die, I will certainly not condemn them to a death sentence.  People I’ve operated on that really should have died within six months, a lot of them are still alive and a lot survived two, three, four years.  If you can give someone six months extra … who knows?  The cure might be right around the corner. 

‘You tell people that their tumour could come back and if they want to absorb it, fine, but try not to focus on that.  Focus on the fact that some people live and some people live a long time and why don’t you just pretend you’re that person?  If you’re going to be one of the people who lives four years instead of six months, wouldn’t it be terrible to live those four years thinking, “Shit, I’m going to die next week,” and four years comes up and you’ve wasted the time dying rather than living?’

More Words of Wisdom - Dr Charlie Teo

Dr Teo is one of a growing handful of doctors who now suggest that amongst other things, meditation and positive thought could be beneficial in a person’s healing and  that meditation probably helps to boost the immune system.

Dr Charlie Teo is the Founder of the Cure for Life Foundation and for some years he offered his services pro bono to people in developing nations who would otherwise have had no hope at all. He lives by the principle that a doctor should always treat his patients as he would a member of his own family.  What a wonderful man! You can find out much more about Dr Teo’s work and background by googling him.  When you do so you will also discover that Dr Teo urges people to move clock radios to the foot of their bed,  turn off electric blankets before getting into bed, use hands free for mobile phone use and wait until the microwave stops beeping before opening the door.  Dr Teo also suggests that some hair dyes, particularly red, may also be best avoided.  He modifies his advice  with the proviso that all these may just be catalysts for those who may have a predisposition or genetic aberration towards developing cancer.  D r Teo also states that some of these claims are based on his gut feeling more than on any medical or scientific knowledge and he intuitively feels they may be best avoided.

Dr Esther Sternberg and Mind Body Interaction

Only this week the name of another internationally recognised doctor came to my attention.  A member of my family told me they heard Dr Esther Sternberg being interviewed on radio by Margaret Throsby … whom you may remember was the very first person in the media to interview me when I first went public with my own story over 20 years ago.

Dr Sternberg is internationally recognized for her discoveries of the mind-body interaction in illness and healing, including immune system interactions and the brain's stress response in susceptibility to arthritis and other diseases, including depression. Here is a link to my CD Moving Through Depression Meditation or here is the same meditation as an Instant Download. She has written books on this subject and if you google her name you will be able to read more about this amazing woman.

There is apparently a DVD available called “The Science of Healing with Dr Esther Sternberg”  and as her personal journey unfolds she reveals more about the scientific basis of the mind-body connection, and the role of environment and emotion in the healing process. She also reveals research that shows some of the ways the brain helps us heal, both emotionally and physically for each of us to be able to create an inner place of peace.

Dr Norman Doige and Neuro Plasticity

I have  told you about Dr Norman Doidge and his amazing book “The Brain that Changes itself”  in two previous MMN Reports and today he is almost a household name.  You can look back at these two reports at these links:  More on The Remarkable Brain - Part 1 and
So John, we are living in exciting times. Just ponder what else may be discovered with the prediction that with the successful isolation of the 6 million proteins in the body we will be able to cure all illnesses. I urge you to find out more about the subconscious mind by doing one of 3 things (or all three of course):
1. Attend a CALM Life Skills Seminar on 20/21 Nov 2010
2. Attend a CHI (Life Purpose Seminar) in Feb or Jun 2011
3. Spread the awareness and teach others by becoming an Independant Credentialled CALM Coach by attending the Train The Presenter from 20 - 24 Nov 2010.
All the Best

Success Stories

I'm going really well! i'm half way through my nursing degree at uni and i'm going well with my grades! I still use the relaxation and study techniques you taught me and i find them very useful! And dad makes sure i never forget either! LOL! He is always asking me if I'm using my study and relaxation techniques!  R.A.  NSW.
I still use my Peaceful Place and find it really helpful especially when the worries or stress of life becomes too much. I especially enjoy your monthly Mind Matters News Reports - so lovely and calming and these give me something up-to-date to send any friend who may be interested in learning your Life Skills, this happens occasionally. I always use your CDs when I meditate, they are GREAT!! just so valuable to me. I know I must not become stressed as every time this happens the words I want to say flash away from my mind and if I then when go to my PP and calm myself down everything I need to say returns. I can honestly say you have the best Seminar and teachings I have ever learnt they have given me an understanding of how my mind works and an understanding of its behaviour wanting to get me back where I was before, stressed and worried. I can now see what it is up to! If my mind wins again for a while I will soon correct it by meditating and telling myself how my mind is sabotaging me. All th e best for the wonderful work you do. And THANK YOU!! C.W. NSW 
I have used "peaceful place" at all times when stress is imminent or active. I have espoused it in clinical sessions I've had, but I get puzzled looks from peers and Clinicians.  It works for me ... thanks Sandy.  PJ.  NSW. 


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