Sunday, August 14, 2011

Healing Visualizations: Cancer, Pt. II

When people begin treatment for cancer, they become warriors in so many ways. They must be brave, valiant, strong, and determined. They must be fierce. More than one client has decided to read the great classic The Art of War when they begin treatment. I hear that book gets passed around the chemo rooms in hospitals. It's interesting to think about.

It makes sense. Conventional cancer treatment is incredibly harsh, almost as bad as the disease itself. Some clients I've known have opted out of the surgery/chemo/radiation side of treatment and have instead completely changed their lives to accommodate stripped down diets, lots of meditation, prayer, focused visualization, yoga, and Chinese medicine. One of these people held her own and is still doing very well. The other two people I knew who took this approach died. But I also have had several clients who took the surgery/chemo/radiation approach and died anyway.

Decisions about treatment are extraordinarily personal. I respect all choices!

Like warfare, treatment of any kind is scary and uncomfortable, requires devotion, commitment, and a very single minded determination. Those undergoing treatment must put aside any hint of vanity. It really is a warriorship. Like warriors, when it's time to fight, these people muster all the strength they can, i.e. in the days following chemo, for instance. When the symptoms begin to recede, they rest, as warriors rest when they don't have to fight.

Visualizations during treatment

People suffering from cancer don't have a lot of spare energy to visualize. The treatment itself wipes them out. What I suggest instead of a focused visualization for those in treatment is a war movie marathon. The only thing that's important, in choosing these films, is that the good guys win. There are a bunch of funny, corny, fabulous films about WWII, but I also love all of Kurasawa's samurai movies. There is violence, death and destruction, but in the end, justice prevails. The Lord of the Rings is a great series to watch during treatment as is Star Wars. Watching these films is a way of aligning the mind with what is happening inside the body, at least I think so.

When the symptoms begin to wane, I suggest either the cloud meditation (the same one I suggested in the last post to be used after diagnosis) or putting oneself into the place of serenity and peace, (the one I suggested for use prior to surgery).

There is no visualization that alleviates the discomfort of treatment, but it gives the patient something to do, and can be extremely helpful, or so I've been told.


Bodywork and/or Reiki during treatment for cancer can help smooth the process. I highly recommend it.

May your day today be pain free, relaxing, and fun. Shalom.

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