Mental Imagery or visualizations is a powerful tool for healing physical and emotional disturbances, mending relationships with others, and tapping into our deep source of wisdom and creativity. Almost anyone can learn how to apply this simple tool to reverse chronic daily disturbances and attitudes or to find solutions to seemingly impassable roadblocks in their lives. And, it takes only seconds to do – yes I did say seconds!
Recently, a patient of mine from long ago, surprised me with a copy of her powerful story of healing using mental imagery included in Chicken Soup of the Soul: The Power of Positive. At 28, she was diagnosed with Hepatitis C. After making the rounds of normative and holistic doctors and practitioners, she found her way to my doorstep. Here’s what she said about her experience.
Help came when I met doctor number ten. I’d heard of him through a family friend who’d been diagnosed with stomach cancer and given two months to live. After she put herself in the care of this man, she lived another ten years. Dr. Gerald Epstein was smiley and chubby like Santa. He welcomed me by cupping my hand in both of his. It felt gentle and caring and I liked it. He showed me his book, Healing Visualizations: Creating Health Through Imagery, then asked me what I liked to do. I told him I liked working as a commercial artist but really loved to paint. That’s when he said, “I want you to paint a perfectly healthy liver, hang it next to your bed and stare at it every morning when you wake and again when you go to sleep. Imagine that your liver is as perfect as that painting.”
Skeptical, I expressed doubts and confessed my fears of slowly dying with chronic pain from cirrhosis.
“Forty percent of people with chronic Hepatitis C live out their entire life with no symptoms and die of old age. Just be in that forty percent.”
He said it so matter-of-factly. It reminded me of the Abraham Lincoln quote, “People are as happy as they make their minds up to be.”
I borrowed an illustrated medical encyclopedia and studied the healthy liver as I rendered it with acrylic paint on watercolor paper. It took two hours and looked perfect. I bought a frame, hung it on my bedroom wall, then meditated on it as if it were an exact replication of my own liver.
Dr. Epstein also told me to get annual blood tests to keep an eye on my liver enzymes, eat healthy and stay away from toxins—drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and processed foods. That was twenty-five years ago. I’ve followed all of his advice and now I’m fifty. My liver enzymes are as low as they were when I was first diagnosed. They are only slightly elevated, just enough to show that the virus is still in my system but it is dormant. I just got a liver Ultrasound that showed my organ is the perfect size and color. Just like the one in my painting….
In our three sessions together during my class Using Mental Imagery for Healing, you will learn how to fashion imagery for growth, restoration and rejuvenation. You’ll also get a new education about Life: what it really means to “live in the moment,’ why the future is an illusion, how to trust your own subjective inner experience rather than be influenced by outside authorities, how the voice of doubt operates to sabotage you, identify and reverse the core belief you have that has inhibited you from fulfilling your dreams. We will also go over a touch of metaphysics from the western spiritual tradition, so you’ll understand how mental imagery works. A lot can happen in even one meeting.
(Essay excerpted with permission from Easy as A, B, C by Dorri Olds. www.DorriOlds.com)