Heartbeat*

by Doug Nachbar, Editor

     
     As I lay on the table, face down, with 20 acupuncture needles skillfully placed in my leg by Colet Lahoz, the therapist we featured in our October 1992 issue, I couldn't keep my mind from wandering. First it went to cartoon scenes of a porcupine's victim, then to the more serious scenes of a magnificent bull in the Corrida de Toros who has had the banderillas placed in his withers. . .

     Ritual. Execution. Art form. Life and death. Precision. Courage. Sincerity. Admiration. Respect. "Grace under pressure. . ."

     These concepts and qualities all came to mind, wafting through like so many cumulus clouds rolling by a country boy enjoying the summer afternoon atop a haystack on his uncle's farm in the carefree 1950's. As the needles worked to free or reroute my chi and meditative music encouraged me to relax, I revisited on old friend, Hemingway, and his Death in the Afternoon , which is a wonderful technical book on bullfighting and in which 1 had even discovered the precedence of today's trend in men's hair fashion-the pigtail and ponytail.

     These are, or were, a caste-like trait of the matador. People knew a man out of the arena to be a matador by his pigtail. Perhaps today's GQ dandies would make of themselves brave and courageous as a matador simply be wearing their hair in the fashion of these brave and courageous men who fight bulls.

     Then I made a strange transition from matadors to medicine - a juxtaposition, I thought - to true healers and these same concepts and qualities. Moreover, in one of the books by Jane Roberts, The Unknown Reality , one reads: "The complete physician would be a person who learned to understand the dynamics of being, the soul-body relationship - one who was healthy in his or her own body. Unhappy people cannot teach you to be happy. Sick ones cannot teach you to be well. Psychiatrists have a high suicide rate. Why do you think they can help you live happily, or add to your vitality? Physicians are not the healthiest of men by far. Why do you think they can cure you?"

     A footnote says that the national suicide rate for psychologists, physicians, and dentists is three to four times the rate of the general population.

     "The person who is healthy understands the dynamics of health. . . But a true medical profession would be, literally, a health profession . It would seek out people who were healthy and learn from them how to promote health, and not how to diagram disease. . .. A true healing, or health profession, would deal intimately with the powers of the psyche in healing the body, and with the interrelationship among the desires, beliefs, and activities of the conscious mind and its effects upon the cellular behavior."

     Maybe Christ knew this, and it's why he says in Luke, "Physician, heal yourself." Maybe it's why alternative, or complementary, health care has gained the foothold it has in this country. Estimates range as high as one-third of all Americans having gone to alternative health care practitioners spending $14 billion yearly.

     . . . Colet Lahoz reentered the room as softly, quietly, and unobtrusively as she had left. She's like that. I think that this sure, soft spoken woman who is educated in both Eastern and Western healing techniques is, first of all, a true healer. She took most of the fire out of a leg ravaged with tendinitis from mid-thigh to ankle. She quenched this "four-alarm fire" that had raged for weeks with a series of acupuncture treatments. Subsequent complications required visits with medical doctors and prescription of allopathic drugs "just to make it." But that's another chapter in my ongoing story, involving another true healer, and will have to await another opportunity for its telling.

     For $990 a prominent orthopedist had wanted to do a more extensive "work-up" with an MRI because, as he said, "You don't get tendinitis in the leg like that. There's nothing back there to get inflamed."

     I know from too many athletic experiences what tendinitis is, and I know my body. When another M.D. countered the orthopedist with "That's not true; everything comes together back there behind the knee," I wondered if basic anatomy is the same at different medical schools. The specialist was wrong; more over, I believe that his error and his wanting to resort to "High-tech medicine" without even feeling my leg through its normal range of motion is part and parcel of what's wrong with the health care system in this country.

     Colet Lahoz, on the other hand, represents part of the solution to the health care problem in this country. This woman heals from the basis of her own healthy being, using centuries-old techniques that help the body heal itself. I reminded myself that we would all do well to remember this when choosing our would-be healers, regardless of whether they be medical doctors, therapists, chiropractors, naturopaths, nurses, herbalists, acupuncturists, mud packers, or laying-on-of-hands healers.

     Be careful, for there are many masters of image management whose masquerade would make it a mistake for us to put our health in their hands.

     It is a mistake to put our health in the hands of liars, because, if it is true that, "All healing comes from God," as we've asserted previously and attributed to William A. McGarey, M.D., then we would only be making the healing of ourselves impossible by choosing a would-be healer who is not genuine or who is not healthy. I don't think God is going to have anything to do with His antithesis; He is not going to heal us through a liar. Truth, not illusion, will set us free, we are promised.

     You just can't get blood out of a turnip, folks, and a pigtail on a man no longer means that he is a courageous matador.

* Published on Newslink, July 1993 Volume 4, Issue 3

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