Friday, July 13, 2012

so much gold within

a dream of gold. a teaching dream. in the dream i am in a holy event. the participants sit around tables with assigned seating. there are no name cards. just some gold jewelry that belong to that person. so there i am, going around to search for my seat. i am sure i had put down my jewelry to save myself a seat. i go around table to table. while i am admiring all those golden splendor, o how gorgeous that piece is, o how spectacular this bracelet looks, i cannot find my jewelry. i wake up filled with the question, where is my jewelry, where is my seat? at the same time the images of all those beautiful gold stay with me. as i type this i can still see the purity of all that gold, the masterful design and craftsmanship of them all.

what is this about? i go into morning meditation with this question. very quickly a message comes from within. in the form of a question. who do you think those gold belong to? bing, bong, boom, i get it. all that gold are within me. they don't belong to anyone else. they are part of me, part of who i am. just like that my understanding shifts dramatically and expands exponentially. why do i have to search for gold and find a place to sit when i already have a storehouse of gold within and the most sublime seat in my own heart. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

panchakarma is not spa. vacation? nope. retreat? nope.

the most frequent response when my friends hear i went to india for panchakarma goes like this. o, you were on vacation, suk wah? i say, no. they say, in a retreat in an ashram? i say, no. they then say, you were in a spa? again, no. i don't blame them. how could they have known that hwubby and i were actually in a hospital. 

most people in the west know little about the 5000 year old medicinal system in india and close to nothing about panchakarma. sure there are spas and places in the west that say they do panchakarma. but in the west, for all kinds of reasons, they do panchakarma lite at best and  treatments that are diluted or tweaked, or simply, panchakarma in name only. authentic panchakarma involves intense medical treatments that are customized for the patient's condition and have to be executed and closely monitored by ayurveda doctors and trained therapists in a hospital setting. they are done strictly according to the classical ayurveda literature. 

durings the intake process dr harikrishnan wanted to see all of hwubby's medical reports and given the car accident there were quite a pile of them. dr harikrishnan reviews them carefully, examines hwubby, asks questions, lots of questions, and then design a program of treatments that are tailored for him. mine is different because i have different conditions that the doctor has to take care of. during the most intense treatments which went on for a few weeks for hwubby, dr harikrishnan would come to hwubby's bedside to check on him frequently starting 6 am when the treatment begins. 

medicines three times a day or more. the first dose begins at 6 am. treatments everyday. people from the west would ask, why don't you give me more treatments in a day so i don't have to stay that many weeks? doctor would say, can you take three days of food in one? you need to give the body and mind the time to digest and assimilate a treatment. 

strict diet co-ordinated with treatments. there's a list of things that you are asked not to do during treatments, e.g. you are not supposed to be under the sun or wind during treatments. there is a network of shaded walkways for patients to walk gently around. internet activity is not encouraged at all, to say it mildly. hwubby had to sneak around in order to work with his clients on the phone or skype. dr harikrishnan is really not happy seeing him doing such things. he is a gentle soul but it is evident that he doesn't approve of it. what to do. these americans, they do whatever they want anyway. eventually hwubby gives in and puts a stop to phone and email for a few days. give it up to him. it's a huge surrender on his part.

authentic panchakarma is no walk in the park.  seriously. just think of it as doing surgery, major surgery.