Healing Quotes

All six of today's Healing Quotes come from a wonderful book by Marc Barasch entitled, THE HEALING PATH. Barasch was an award-winning writer and editor who was diagnosed with thyroid cancer in the 1980's. This book is the story of his seven-year quest to find alternatives to surgery; a quest that took him from Tibetan retreats, to high-tech hospitals, to the homes of extraordinary survivors. I recommend THE HEALING PATH to anyone who is seriously ill, as well as anyone who wants to avoid becoming seriously ill; which is to say, all of us. If any of these quotes resonate with you, I suggest you buy a copy of Marc's book.


"Sometimes the things that go wrong in our lives,
including physical illness,
may happen when we have refused to change
at the point it was called for:
when we continue to perform a killing job,
ignore the pain of a toxic relationship,
perpetuate a self-harming habit;
when we refuse to stop what we're doing
even when we do not feel well doing it;
when we neglect to ask ourselves, '
What's the matter?',
or turn a sympathetic ear to the reply."

"What was particularly striking to me
was how many disease survivors I spoke with
had found, in the midst of their ordeal,
an unexpected unfolding of the authentic self."


"Disease becomes a non-negotiable demand,
an annunciation saying,
'There is no time but now;
Know you, by your deepest self.
Anything less than the total embrace of life
is no longer acceptable."

"Paradoxically, the moment of utter defeat
can be the traditional turning point in the journey.
It is the moment when all conscious strategems have failed,
the ego abdicates,
and deeper forces of life may make their appearance."

"Disease proneness begins when we cut off
parts of ourselves that do not fit --
those selves that speak too loudly, move too clumsily,
shine too brightly, desire too ardently.
But there is a law of conservation in the psyche
-- energies are never destroyed, only transformed.
If these shadow parts cannot grow with us,
they may grow against us -- or,
if given the chance, may emerge from
the shadows to help make us well."

"According to the shaman,
transformation itself is healing.
Though change may be the last thing
we are interested in when we are ill --
we wish to go back to the way we were --
the most archetypal stories tell us
that the path of healing leads not back whence we have come,
but ahead, toward a new beginning."