Adventures in Healing: Tonglen Meditation

10 05 2011

I’ve got bad news to share.  The doctor’s found a new 8mm “tumor” growing in my corpus callosum – basically, it’s inoperable.  It has already caused me to have three consecutive seizures  on 4/14.

Curiously, this new “tumor” is very close to my “3rd eye” (ajna chakra) in the exact center of my brain which makes me doubt this is a physical issue but a spiritual issue that I’m dealing with.  Basically when you have issues with ajna chakra, it is a sign that one is avoiding their spiritual path.  So I’ve started working with a Chi Gong Master, a type of Asian “witch doctor”, to get help me get to the source of this spiritual crisis.  I meet with him on a weekly basis.

In last week’s Yoga Teacher Training, we studied meditation.  The teacher turn me on to a book by Pema Chodron, “When Things Fall Apart“, which teaches a form of meditation practice called Tonglen.  Tonglen meditations could be defined as:

One visualizes, on the in-breath, taking into oneself the illness/suffering of others; and on the out-breath, healing for everyone in this situation.  Use what seems like poison as medicine.  Use your personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings.

I feel like Tonglen is the exact opposite of what I use to do.  I will always regret that I never visited my aunt when she was dying of breast cancer but I had just received my fist cancer diagnosis a few years previous at 17.  I’m now 43, and it feels like I’m facing my worst fear ever!  However, I’m also feel power over this fear via my daily Tonglen meditations.

Instead of feeling sorry for me, I want to encourage that you put Tonglen to use for yourself.  For example,  on the in-breath, taking into oneself my illness and other people’s suffering with brain tumors; and on the out-breath, healing for everyone with brain tumors.  I’ll let you know if this makes a difference.


I just started taking beta-glucanase, a digestive enzyme, to help my body “digest” the protein coating cancer that actually repels immune cells.  I’ll let you know if it works.




One response

18 05 2011
3 to 6 months to live? « Anti-cancer Living

[…] saying: “if it were a snake, it would have bit me”.  Thankfully I’ve been doing Tonglen Meditation and facing my worse fear every day for about two weeks previous.  So that night I purchased […]

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