15 years of speaking – I LIVE THE MESSAGE… so today it’s all about healing and wholeness.
I have two definitions for wholeness -One – an unbroken completeness or totality
and the second is – a state of robust good health
I’ll attempt to address both briefly by first saying that our spiritual wholeness IS the source of our physical health. I like to think of spiritual wholeness as a recognition of enoughness.
Most of us spend a good deal of our lives trying to fix ourselves as if we were broken – or somehow damaged goods. Did you ever notice how many people talk about WORKING on themselves…Deep down, I think a lot of us believe that we are flawed; that someday – someone is going to find out that something is really WRONG with us. I remember thinking that for a long time in my life.
Maybe it comes from hearing the word NO so much when we were young. Or maybe it comes from all the advertisements that tell us we will be okay when… we use the right deodorant; or lately when we use whatever pill the ad is pushing… Call your doctor and see if you can use it – Most of the time they don’t even tell you what it is for – but the assumption is – something is wrong with your life and YOU NEED IT – whatever the IT is – in order for your life to be okay.
Then, there is the goal setting syndrome – that says – STRIVE for more or at least better… And, I do have to admit that it’s important to keep growing but – not because I think we need to get better – but, because I believe that Spirit, God, itself is continual Self-Expression and the more we self-express, the more we are emulating God – which is who we are in the first place!
So, we are continually being prodded to become ALL WE are capable of being. But, we need to be careful that we are allowing ourselves to grow BECAUSE we can, rather than because we need to!
Here’s a perfect example of the more, better syndrome:
The rich industrialist from the North was horrified to find the southern fisherman lying lazily beside his boat, smoking a pipe.
Why aren’t you out fishing, said the industrialist. Because I have caught enough fish for the day, said the fisherman.
Whey don’t you catch some more? What would I do with them?
You could earn more money, was the industrialist’s reply. With that you could have a motor fixed to your boat and go into deeper waters and catch more fish. Then you would make enough to buy nylon nets. These would bring you more fish and more money. Soon you would have enough money to own two boats- maybe even a fleet of boats. Then you would be a rich man like me. What would I do then? Asked the fisherman.
They you could REALLY enjoy life.
What do you think I am doing right now?
There’s a delicate balance between continually striving to be more and knowing that where we are is perfect, whole and complete. Wholeness, in this sense, means NOTHING Missing.
Let’s talk about Perfection for a moment. Our society tells us that perfection is having everything the exact way we WANT it to be. Perfection, in this sense, means meeting our every expectation. Now, that will get you in trouble quickly! Very few things, if any, ever meet our expectation, and expectation is often the cause of our dissatisfaction with what is.
Perfect, whole, complete, in a spiritual sense means that life is a perfect manifestation of all of our thoughts and beliefs. Within every seed is a perfect fruit. Dr. John Waterhouse, in his book, Five Steps to Freedom puts it wonderfully; he says, “Ours is not to force the world into a submission of perfection, but rather to become evermore aware of the presence of Spirit in everything that we see, hear, taste, smell, feel, and know. Perfection is something of which to become aware, not something to achieve.”
I used to be plagued by the scripture passage that says BE YE PERFECT AS YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER IS PERFECT, until I studied with some Bible Scholars who showed us the original text and the word PERFECT is translated as COMPASSIONATE. Be ye Compassionate as your heavenly father is compassionate has a far different meaning.
We are, in fact, a HOLY people. Holiness is a derivative of Wholeness and Holiness, at its deepest essence, means dealing with reality. Wholeness or holiness, then becomes the state of being truly PRESENT wherever we are. When we do that, we begin to see that perfection is the norm. Anything we give our full attention to becomes PERFECT. Try it. The next time you are doing something you usually don’t enjoy – and wish you were elsewhere or doing something else, STOP and fully focus on what you are doing and where you are. You’ll find that you come into a stillness and a peace and can actually begin to enjoy what you are doing. It’s the continual wishing that something else were so right now that disturbs us and makes us feel less than whole. When we practice being totally present, we begin to live in a constant state of gratitude. Distractions from the present moment are a way of our being ungrateful for what is. The opposite of Gratitude is not in-gratitude but CRITICISM.. and whenever we fail to focus on what we are doing, we are in effect criticizing it – wanting to do something else. All our unhappiness comes from thinking that we don’t have something or someone that we think we SHOULD have right now; in other words, EXPECTATIONS.
This, of course, applies to our physical bodies as well. Often when we speak of wholeness we think in terms of being vibrantly healthy, and that is the second of the definitions. But, we need to be careful of a trap here as well. Have you ever noticed that PAIN in the body is really just a Physical sensation? Suffering doesn’t come from Pain, it comes from believing that pain shouldn’t be and that it is an indication that no only is something wrong with our bodies, but, again, that something needs to be fixed. Illness or pain is NOT a sign that something needs to be fixed – but, it is the body’s way of creating wholeness. Fever, for example, is a regulation of temperature.
Even something like vomiting is a way of getting rid of poisons or toxins in our system. Our bodies are WHOLE. They know how to heal. True we use doctors and medicine when we need them, but, the Perfection of our physical state knows how to come to homeostasis. It really does!
Real healing then, comes when we begin to see the state of wholeness in ourselves or in anyone who we are currently defining as ILL. It is about seeing beyond the wounds to the perfection. Illness of any kind is our body’s way of getting our attention about some aspect of our lives that is not in balance. One thing you can do to find out what that is is to speak to the parts of your body that aren’t functioning well – and asking – what is your message for me??
Science and Religion both have taught us some important principles:
1. · We are born whole.
· 2. We exist simultaneously on many levels (i.e., body-mind-spirit), which are interconnected and synergistic.
True health is experienced when all three levels are communicating and in harmony. So, when we ask the question, what is the message in this illness or pain, usually what we get is an indication that some aspect of our spiritual or mental or physical life wants more attention.
Think of the different aspects of your life as spokes on a wheel. If your social life, or your sexual life, or your spiritual life or your business life, or your creativity is out of whack, the wheel can’t ride along smoothly and something in the body usually gives way.
· In our journey to adulthood, we sometimes make choices that gradually reduce our wholeness. These are usually choices that conflict somehow with our core values. These barriers to wholeness reduce our vitality, well-being, as well as our inner guidance. We move naturally back to wholeness as we remove these barriers. Effective care and treatment must focus – not only on the outer aspect – or the physical – but, also on the other two levels of our being. We cannot separate a healthy body from a whole life. Remember, the principle – all of life is an INSIDE job. Pain and illness are that some aspect of our lives needs more attention. Give it some thought, but, be careful not to focus on what’s wrong. Remember the ancient spiritual principle, what we focus on increases!
So, in addition to looking for the message, how do we handle physical challenges in our life? Primarily by allowing ourselves to look beyond appearances.
There is an original blueprint of health embedded in our beings. And so, in a spiritual sense, there is nothing to heal – only our innate wholeness and perfection to reveal! The deepest healing comes when we let ourselves truly GET this truth about ourselves or anyone else whose health and wholeness we may have concern for.
Ernest Holmes in the Science of Mind text, p. 418 says: “What the healer does is to mentally uncover and reveal the Truth of Being, which is that God is in and through everyone, and that this Indwelling Presence is already Perfect. We separate the belief from the believer and reveal that which needs no healing. Thought is sifted and that which does not belong to the real self must be discarded. We really heal the thought. The Spirit of man needs no healing for the Spirit of man is God.”
In the late 1800s, a young woman from a family with a history of consumption (t.b.) was desperately ill. She had tried everything medically to cure her consumption, but she was only getting worse. The doctors had written her off completely. At this same time, there was a new movement in the U.S. on the horizon. One with some radical ideas about healing; ideas that people could be cured of illness and disease simply through prayer and mental work – this movement was founded on one principle: That we are spiritual beings and we each have a built-in capacity for wholeness. This young woman was convinced by a friend to go hear a lecture. She figured she had nothing to lose, and so convinced her husband to go with her. Her husband didn’t think much of the lecture, but she heard one sentence that came as a true revelation to her — the “ah-ah”: The words she heard and deeply took to heart were: “You are a child of God, and therefore do not inherit sickness.”
She left the lecture repeating this statement and her whole outlook toward herself and her life began to change. Instead of focusing on CURING herself from illness, she began to focus on HEALING – that is, understanding her innate WHOLENESS. She started talking to her body and telling it a new story. And she stuck with this in spite of appearances. Gradually, she began to see herself as WHOLE, which is the real definition of healing, and eventually, she was cured. . This woman was Myrtle Fillmore, who, along with her husband, Charles, eventually became the founder of the Unity Movement and the Unity School of Christianity.
Dr. Richard Cabot, former Dean of Harvard Medical School, supports this belief in the inherent perfection to be revealed. He said, “The body simply has a super wisdom which is biased in favor of life rather than death, and which is ten times as powerful as medicine’s initiation. What is this powerful force? It is God, the power upon which all of us depend in order to be here today. I earnestly recommend to the medical profession to let the patient know of this great force that is working within him, working on the patient’s side, working on the doctor’s side. It does the medical profession no good to avoid the word “God,” why not teach people the truth?
Scripture tells us, “You shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free”. No medicine, no doctor, no focus on disease can make us well. Wholeness is the state of KNOWING the Truth that even our bodies are no less made in the image and likeness of God than our Spirit or soul. When we understand this, our next step is taking responsibility for and asking for guidance on the cause of the illness.
This has nothing to do with BLAME. I’m not suggesting we ask, ‘what did I do to CAUSE this’? The cause is often so much more complex than some simplistic explanation. Be particularly careful when it comes to trying to figure out the Cause for someone else. It’s NOT OUR BUSINESS. I know I used to read Louise Hay’s book and say – Oh, you have a cold, must mean there’s some congestion in your thinking!! Eeks… it scares me to think of the damage I may have done – both to myself and others by trying to diagnose. Each of us is only responsible for ourselves. Only WE can know what needs attention. Remember, it’s not about being FIXED or finding out what’s wrong with us! See any lack of vitality and full health simply as a wake up call to become more conscious of the connection between our emotions, our living habits, and our bodies. We are WHOLE beings and so often we forget that.
Remembering that is the greatest gift we can give ourselves during those times when the appearances are telling us something else.
We are first and foremost spiritual beings. I recently heard it said – we are not human beings having a spiritual experience, or even spiritual beings having a human experience. We are spiritual beings having a spiritual experience! Sometimes, even “spiritual oriented” people say I AM NOT MY BODY – and I would caution to even be careful of that… We are WHOLE – we are SPRITMINDBODY – like a web page – it’s all one word. Our bodies are not separate from our minds or our spirit. It’s when we begin, even subtly, to forget that truth, that we create an imbalance that appears as an illness. Rather than assessing blame, we can look for what will bring the desired movement, the shift, and eventually, the healing.
We also don’t need to feel guilty if we use a doctor, or need surgery or some form of prescription medicine. While I am a believer in holistic practices – I am often aware that when I shun or avoid Western medicine, it’s because I am somehow creating separation once more. I truly believe that by realizing our WHOLENESS, we can overcome ALL ILLNESS and perhaps eventually even Death. I use Jesus as a model, and he was able to heal the sick and raise the dead and said we can do these things and even greater. I tend to take him at his word. But, once again I recall that we can only manifest at the level of our spiritual understanding.
Since my spiritual understanding is not sufficient to enable me to mentally set bones, or to re-grow cartilage that has been depleted, I have called in a surgeon; Since I cannot yet walk on water, I use a bridge or take a boat! We can go only as far as our spiritual knowledge takes us. Principle is Infinite, but we shall demonstrate Its power only at the level of our concept of It.
If we had the understanding that Jesus had, we would be able to walk on the water.
A priest, a rabbi, and a female Minister decided to go on a fishing trip together. They went down to their local lake, rented a boat, and went out on to the lake for a day of fishing.
As the afternoon approached, the trio got hungry – and realized that they left their lunches on the shore of the lake. So, the priest got out of the boat, walked across the lake, got his lunch, walked back, and sat down …beginning to eat his lunch.
“You should have gotten all of our lunches!” scolded the female Minister, so she got up, walked across the lake, picked up her lunch as well as the Rabbi’s, walked back across the lake, and sat down, handing the rabbi his afternoon meal.
The rabbi at this point is almost out of his mind, his eyes wide with shock. Finally, he manages to sputter.. “Wha.. what… how did you…?” The priest grinned at the female Minister, nudged her, and whispered “Do you think we should tell him about the rocks?” To which the female Minister, with a raised eyebrow, replied “What rocks?”
If we had the understanding and consciousness that Jesus had, we would be able to walk on the water. Someday one will come along who knows how to walk on or over water. Be patient with yourself until then. Sometimes the body needs time to catch up with the changes we make in our thoughts and our experience. It’s denser. Be careful when you are not seeing immediate results, to not abandon the Truth and settle back into fear. If you were driving from NY to California and got lost for a while in Arizona, you wouldn’t say, Oh, it’s no use. I think I’ll just turn around and go home! You keep your focus on where you are heading rather than turning back or stopping!
It’s been said that the Apollo 11 spacecraft was off course 90% of the time during its long voyage to the moon. But the destination was preprogrammed and the spacecraft kept correcting and adjusting its bearings until finally
it reached the moon.
So – keep your focus on WHOLENESS – and use whatever means is necessary to allow your body to experience peace – but gradually try to lead your thoughts from where they might be into the higher realms of consciousness where the soul recognizes its own I-Am-ness. One of the best questions that can be asked is:
* How can I bring myself back to what I know to be true — that I am whole, I am safe, I am a perfect manifestation of the Divine? How do I get to that understanding again? Remember, a higher idea always heals a lesser one . Call in support if need be. That’s why some of us are ordained ministers. Use us! We’re really good at seeing the TRUTH for others.. and we use each other when we fail to see it for ourselves!
And finally, remember: Wholeness doesn’t equal perfection as most people understand it. In the Bible story when the man with the withered hand was made whole, – his hand was restored to perfect functionality – not necessarily perfect appearance. In other words, if he had a scar on his pinky, when his withered hand was made whole, the scar was probably still there. If he had a birthmark on his thumb, when his hand was made whole, the birthmark was probably still there.
Wholeness is not about fixing anything. You were never broken! It’s not about the perfection that is getting all your expectation met either. It’s not about being made perfect- it’s about knowing you already are! Claim it and see what happens. You’ll experience life differently. I guarantee it!
I thought I’d close with an upbeat song today that reminds us of our true place. And I don’t know about you but I’m accepting my perfection now and MARCHING in with all the SAINTS already numbered! Please stand and join me..