So Many Paths To Healing
By Jay Kantor, Ph.D.
The Story Behind This Article -- I wrote this article to share the story of the healing I experienced through my attendance at the North American conference of the Friends of Bruno-Groening, last December (2006) in New York. As you will read, I had a heart-opening, life-transforming healing -- a profound shift of consciousness - which still affects me today, 7 months later. As my heart was opened, I entered a place of Oneness that lasted for 5 months. In this state, many things became clear to me, that I had previously only known intellectually. I got to see myself much more clearly, and one of those insights that came quickly was the awareness of how I -- my ego -- has spent many years fearing and avoiding healing. That is the topic of this article. I felt it was most important to share this discovery about myself with you. Maybe it can help you to open to one or more of the many paths to healing which surround us during this time of our lives.
How We Get Wounded And What It Does To Us
Our most damaging psychological and spiritual wounds take place at the hands of our parents or the kids who tease us at school. We are pained by their mistreatment – their lack of love and caring for us, their abuse, their neglect. To keep from being hurt further, we disconnect from them. We become separate.
In many ways we disconnect from life, the many forms of life that we actually depend on to be nurtured and energized. We are no longer part of the flow. We become stagnant -- no longer refreshed and renewed.
When we disconnect from the flow – of energy, of information, of love – we stop growing, stop healing, stop changing. There is nothing new, and so we become old – older but not wiser. We become more and more bitter and less and less sweet. As in nature, we lose the ability to get into and stay balanced. We become imbalanced. We become subject to dis-ease. We become a breeding ground for disease, which gains a foothold because our functioning is compromised.
To quote a poet, when we are "not busy being born, we are busy dying."
The Challenge Of Accepting Healing
Since our wounding appears to be caused by other people, it is hard to go to people for help. It is hard to trust. We are essentially separate and only feel safe staying that way. Yet, as wounded and often angry, hate filled, fearful, and negative people, we are in a poor position to heal ourselves without help.
For healing to come to us, we must be willing to accept something from the outside – a positive source, a re-source -- a means to re-connect with the vast ocean of love and light that exists, outside of our world, which is filled, instead, with wounding, isolation, and fear of connection.
So much of staying separate, suffering, and unhealed is the product of our egos, which see survival as remaining separate. An ego defines itself by being separate. In their insecurity, our egos cannot let go to become one with The One. Instead, our egos doom us to be alone, lonely, and disconnected.
Our salvation and, in the beginning, our terror lies in connecting with, being affected by and, ultimately, being healed by what is now outside ourselves. The ego is afraid of change, of loss of control, of loss of separation, of Oneness.
Our immature egos do not know their Individuality in the Oneness. We do not know our Spiritual Selves. We -- our egos -- fear the loss of our conventional, separate "selves" -- the selves we sustain through fear and anger and pushing away, rather than through love and embracing.
If the ego realized that healing is true gaining of Self, rather than a loss of "self," the ego would want healing. If the ego saw that people are trustworthy and loving, it would run to embrace people and be embraced.
I saw this in myself, in my own life – how I was afraid and wanted to remain safe, separate, and, at the core, unhealed. And I have also seen how healing can come from interaction with something or someone outside myself. As our wounding does not take place in isolation, neither does our healing. It takes place through connection. We do not, possibly, cannot, heal alone.
There are so many paths to healing, ways of healing, levels of healing. We are moved gradually and sometimes suddenly, to a return to love, to connection, to life, to health, to wholeness.
An Earlier Experience Of Healing: I Asked For It!
I had a healing in 1990, which resulted in a quantum shift in my consciousness. My whole life changed. "I" changed it. Not the little "I," but somehow a bigger "I" emerged (Maybe more like an "I am.") I found myself doing things that I had been learning about for years. I took healing actions spontaneously that I had never done before. Some part of me had, apparently, been taking notes for years -- had been listening and knew what to do. Also, I was scared. My defenses were down and my ability and desire to remain separate was compromised. I was ill with a cancer at the time, even though I did not yet know it consciously.
I found out that I needed "exploratory surgery" on my birthday, of all days. Just one "coincidence" of what was going to be an unbelievable series of "coincidences" – one after another -- series of events that made visible a usually invisible world of divine love and grace and healing. It was clear to me at the time that what was happening to me was not "normal," not usual. It revealed to me a world of hope and good, not the fearful, separate, depressed, and hopeless world that I had been living in for 25 years, since my father died, when I was 13.
Some part of me was collecting valuable information on healing for years. The first action I took "spontaneously" was reaching out and asking "Spirit" for help. I was desperate after months of being ill with a condition that was not going away. After I found out I was going for surgery, I chose to "meditate" while sitting in a warm tub in my mother’s house in Florida.
I didn’t know what to do. I felt like I didn’t know anything. I needed help! I surrendered. I asked for it. I don’t remember exactly what I said, but I do remember what happened.
I saw a light come into the room. I heard the words, "Do not be afraid." I felt a peaceful feeling. Ever since that experience happened, when I would think the words, "Do not be afraid," I would feel the peaceful feeling. Something or someone had paid me a visit. And it was good. Very good. I am still grateful for that experience. Facing the fearful experiences to come, I had a resource that really made a difference.
There is much, much more I could tell you about the healings that I experienced at that time in my life, but for now I want to go back to today’s topic: the existence of many paths to healing and our ego’s resistance to them.
Receiving A Healing From "Bruno" In Spite Of Myself
The ideas in this article come from an experience I had last weekend, while attending the North American Conference of the Friends of Bruno-Groening. Bruno-Groening (Bruno-Groening.Org) was a spiritual healer who lived in Germany. He died in 1959. He and the healing communities that formed around him have been associated with thousands of healings of even serious, long-term disease. Six thousand German medical doctors have been busy verifying these healings for many years.
I was introduced to Bruno-Groening a month ago in Nyack, New York. I was drawn to it, impressed by it, but also "skeptical," wanting to keep myself separate. I found some of the leadership off-putting. It felt a bit like a cult: we have the answer – the only answer. Not that that’s what they said, but it was how I heard what was said, so I was turned off. Yet, I took an audio CD and some printed material away with me, which attracted me, which struck a chord in me -- enough so to ultimately get me to go to the North American Conference. I had been invited by one of the German doctors who had come to America to give some of the 180 introductory lectures that were given in the US during the last month or so.
What I want to share is the healing I experienced by being at the conference. The "healing" I will talk about was a shift in my perception and relationship to the Bruno-Groening community.
I saw that people were drawn to the community through their desire for healing. How obvious! They wanted to be part of the group and support the group because they saw it as a potential source for their own healing. Yet, I did not feel this way. I was new to this group. I did not know this group -- the people in it.. I was uncomfortable. Separate. And wanting to stay so.
I can say now. I can see now, that my wounded, fearful ego was feeling threatened at the conference, with this group of people I did not know, looking for an excuse to remain separate -- to not trust, to remain alone, unhealed.
I became aware of what I was feeling and what I was doing --how I was keeping my heart and keeping my love, out of my experience..
Needless to say, the separation and fear I felt were not new to me. They were a product of my own wounds. My own "need" to protect myself. My own fearful disconnect from a source of healing and from an opportunity to heal.
How sad that I would do this in spite of the fact that I knew what healing was and had experienced such profound healing in the past. Yet, I should not be surprised because I was recently looking inside myself at substantial wounds I still carried from childhood that remained unhealed -- that I had neither chosen to heal, nor was "forced" to heal by "necessity." Sometimes our soul and the universe seems to conspire to insure that we heal an issue in our lives. For some of us, that means we will only face something when we absolutely have no other choice. This usually isn't the easiest alternative. We often call such an event, a "crisis."
Here I got to see the part of me that was choosing to "opt out" of a strong possibility for change. My fearful ego was misdirecting me toward "safety" -- the "safety" of staying the same -- separate, alone, and unhealed.
My ego tried to make sure that my heart would miss what was really important for me to see -- that this was a very effective approach to healing that was changing many lives. It was important for me to see that this was a means for people to have the kind of experience that I had "spontaneously" when I had cancer. It made me see that this was a valid and valuable path to healing, among a multitude of paths that have emerged on the planet at this time. So many people seek "a healing" and seek to find God, a path to God, and to understand themselves and their lives as Spiritual Beings. So many paths back to the One.
The "bigger me" heard the stories of healing told by the loving Friends of Bruno-Groening who shared their healing stories at the conference. My ego, my critical mind, relaxed and my heart felt love. There was love and healing there, and I want and need that love and healing. I came to appreciate and be grateful for what was there, instead of being afraid.
Receiving The Healing And Help That Is Available
I wrote this article, not so much to recommend Bruno-Groening to you, although I do so whole-heartedly, but to tell you, if not warn you about the ego, which I now realize has kept me and possibly keeps you from receiving the healing and help that is available.
Spiritually, the wounded ego is a small child, who does not yet know its true nature. When we are defined by and identified with the fearful "little" ego, we cannot trust that our perceptions will lead us to the best decisions and actions. The fearful ego, which cannot stand more fear, will do anything to avoid it now, no matter what the cost later. The fearful self is fearfully focused in the fearful moment. It cannot see the "big" picture. Its fear and fear of fear, keeps it blind to the truth, blind to love, and blind to the possibility of healing.
Since, in the past, we have been hurt by "others" and fear that "they" will hurt us again, we focus outside ourselves when looking for potential sources of future hurt. At the same time, we fail to appreciate the dangers we establish when our ego fearfully decides that we will avoid anything that will make us feel "bad." Yes, we can "control" our emotions by refusing to deal with situations we cannot tolerate, but that changes nothing about the situation or our ability to "deal with it." It just means that the situation and the dangers that may be present go un-addressed. Thus, we have been controlled by our fears, and the opportunity to grow, solve problems, and improve the situation has been lost.
What is another way to understand fear and the other strategies the ego uses to "keep us safe?"
Instead of interpreting the experience of fear as meaning that we should avoid what we fear, maybe feeling fear could remind us that we are seeing the situation in an exaggerated, distorted manner. The pessimism of the wounded ego can often do no better than project the worst of the past on to the future -- seeing the worst, repeating endlessly.
Seeing With A Loving Heart
But we are capable of looking at a situation through our love -- by connecting to it with a loving heart. If it is truly our intention to heal our lives, developing our ability to consciously look at situations, at problems, with love can make a big difference. A world in which love is present, a world in which we are supported, is a world of infinite possibilities -- world of shared purpose and beauty.
Remaining conscious of our thinking can help us prevent ourselves from being hijacked by a fearful, negative, control-hungry ego. The danger the ego perceives is not the real danger. The real (greater) danger lies in our isolation, not in our union. A house divided against itself cannot stand. A body or body-mind divided becomes imbalanced, diseased. A soul separated from God, from Good, from All That Is is weak and incomplete. To choose to listen to fear is to choose to feel and be powerless. It is our choice to be powerless, but it is a poor, unnecessary choice for an unlimited soul to make.
Wake up to the ego. See its childish fears. See the "bad" world it lives in -- its world of painful, limited illusion.
Do not believe – (the root of the word believe means: to be in love with) – the stories told by the ego.
Be led, instead, by the heart, going where it finds love. Love is a tip off that the process of healing is happening. Healing leaves clues that even the ego cannot deny.
Do not fear to take a step on the path of healing. Recognize that feeling fear is a sign that you are at the threshold of the door to healing.
Have the courage to act in the face of fear. Healing will be your reward. Discover who you really are beyond the illusion of fear.
From my heart to yours,
Feel free to call or email me with any comments or questions about this article. If you feel drawn to Bruno, you can contact the organization through their website: Bruno-Groening.Org/english. If you want help on your path to healing, I'd be honored to help you. I have a professional healing and counseling practice in Ridgewood, NJ.
Copyright Jay Kantor 2006. All rights reserved.