In this day and age we have available to us a cornucopia of choices when it comes to healing. We have modalities from every culture and region under the sun - Ayurvedic medicine, Chinese medicine, naturopathy, therapeutic massage, psychotherapy, herbs, meditation for health, yoga, food as medicine, aromatherapy and energy work to name just a few. We also have amazing advances in modern conventional medicine, which is invaluable, especially when we require pain relief, surgery, diagnostics, treatment for serious infections and so much more. I am no stranger to this cornucopia of offerings. I grew up around parents and a community that had great interest in seeking out healing and personal growth, and from a very young age I experienced health foods, energy work, meditation and metaphysical exploration as a very normal, everyday occurrence. I have also many pivotal times in my life where conventional medicine was irreplaceable in helping me through physical challenges. I entered the field of complementary health care, hold a degree in naturopathy and have completed many additional certifications and trainings in this field. Over the past 23 years that I've been a healing arts practitioner, I have gone through tremendous evolution and advancement in my own understanding of what it means to heal, and how to offer a practice to my clients and myself that gets to the root causes of what is feeding disharmony and disease. From these years of practice, I have known many things to be supportive - from herbs to dietary changes, surgical procedures to hydrotherapy, meditation to dietary supplements, sound healing and hands-on healing. Within this range of approaches that I’ve found to be an important part of how I care for myself, I have become very discerning as to what types of modalities really feel true to me and my body, and thus what I would offer my clients, as well as which practitioners I choose to see myself, strongly based on their commitment to really walk their talk. After all this time gaining experience and practice working on my own healing and that of my clients, I have finally found the greatest medicine on Earth.
I have always been very drawn to the beauty of nature and the healing power found in plants. I appreciate deeply appreciate the reflection we are offered by oceans and forests, mountains and rivers - and the simple and effective practice of herbal medicine - but this is not the greatest medicine on Earth.
I have always loved exploring how to eat to feel well, fit, vital and energetic and am ever refining my diet to support my life and supporting clients to do the same - and while how we eat is so important to how we feel and our health and well-being, foods are not the greatest medicine on Earth.
I have had amazing experiences where I have needed regular medical care or even hospitalization for surgeries, and have found so many amazing doctors and nurses who have helped me though these physically challenging moments in my life - but conventional medicine is not the greatest medicine on Earth.
I love caring for myself by soaking in the bath with essential oils, and using warm compresses, salves, and creams and scrubs and gentle massage - but these yummy activities are not the greatest medicine on Earth.
Meditation is a tool that has been powerful in helping me come to understand conscious presence and to deepen in my body to support healing and evolution - but on its own, it is not the greatest medicine on Earth.
I deeply appreciate hands-on sessions of bodywork and energy work when needed, and have found certain modalities and practitioners and teachers who have truly supported me to understand the greatest medicine on Earth - but these sessions on their own are not the greatest medicine on Earth.
So what is the greatest medicine on Earth?
It is no drug, no herb no modality, no teacher, no food, no place, and in short - nothing at all that is outside of ourself.
The greatest medicine on Earth is very simple, and yet perhaps we don’t want to know what it is. We may not want to know because it is not a pill or a superfood or a mantra or anything that provides a quick fix. It is nothing that merely comforts or can give us temporary relief. It can never place the responsibility on another person, a substance or a technique to ‘save’ us. It is not dramatic, exotic or glamorous - but rather very, very simple. It takes a willingness on our part to feel, deal and heal our lives - and that is not always easy, but is always worth it.
It is always worth it because, when lived, it is the most extraordinary, magical, beautiful and harmonious way - and healing to the core.
So if you still want to know what the greatest medicine on Earth is, read on.
The greatest medicine on Earth is to be in relationship.
Relationship is defined as 'the state of being connected,' so the greatest medicine on Earth is our connection to the absolute truth of who we are - to a grandness and wisdom that we each hold within. The great medicine of relationship always begins with our relationship with ourselves.
There is a way to live and move through our day in which we are connected to our heart, our essence. From there, it matters far less what we actually 'do' in our day, but rather everything we are already doing in our day is an opportunity to confirm the connection, and equally the connection informs the choices and movements we make moving forward. It is from this quality of conscious presence with ourselves that a natural way of being unfolds. We then may share that connection with others via our relationships with our partner, our friends, our family and our community. We evolve, heal and develop together through our relationships.
In such relationships, there is a commitment. The commitment is not that we will be perfect and always be feeling this connection. It is not that we come to understand that when we feel neediness, loneliness, anger, defensiveness or other emotional reactions, that we can choose to dis-connect, check out, numb ourselves, get some relief or high, or we can choose to stay in connection. It is that we have a commitment to returning to our connection - over and over again - and be willing to feel what there is to feel, to understand emotional reactions, thought patterns, harmful behaviors, and addiction to comfort, distraction and avoidance, etc., as the 'what is not me/us' and as reminders to go deeper. In this way of meeting ourself and others there is so much space for acceptance, letting go, deepening in intimacy and love, as we are holding ourselves and other in love. Holding ourselves and others in the knowing that we are already whole, magnificent, powerful and beautiful beings who have a lot to heal.
So a lot of us may read this and agree - because we actually already know this. We've all had moments where we felt a great depth of connection, and everything becomes simple, clear and more harmonious - physically, mentally and emotionally. We know it to be true and yet what we may struggle with is the "how" of it all. How to live in a way that this is experienced far more consistently. Clients often say to me how they know this is true, and yet don't know how to live it. And the day-to-day life of being in relationship does have its own toolbox. There are techniques to support us in finding our way back to this natural way of living with vitality, simplicity and spaciousness.
And there are very real, practical, simple tools to build a foundation in this kind of way of living. One of these tools that is like the "Greatest Medicine on Earth Training 101" is the Gentle Breath Meditation. Gentleness is like a bridge back to this relationship and connection with our heart and soul. It’s like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz “You’e always had the power to go back to Kansas" and rather than click our heels together 3 times, we breathe gently to return to there. It is through bringing a different quality - gentleness to start with - to the everyday, mundane things we are already doing that the greatest medicine begins to unfold. It makes sense that healing need not overwhelm us by adding many things to our "to-do" list, but rather can be found in what we all are doing all day, everyday. And in taking this simple and practical approach, the mundane becomes out-of-this-world - because there is nothing more grand or more beautiful on Earth than you being you in connection with yourself and others.
In addition to private relationship consultation sessions, Deborah offers a "lunchtime meditation" on Tuesdays from 12-12:45pm at Salsa con Todo at 211 N 36th St, Seattle, WA 98103. Come for the meditation, stay for the yummy lunchtime bites while you hang in the hammocks of the wonderful Cafe con Todo afterwards.