Dear every one who has ever read this blog,
Once upon a time I was a practicing psychotherapist.
My clients were my instructors and they painted, for me, unique pictures of humankind. They taught me many things. From them I learned about strength and resiliency. They taught me how deeply affected people are by the individuals in their relational network. I learned, from my clients, about the enormity of individual emotional power. My deepest appreciation, however, goes for the “client lessons” I received about both the beauty and the practicality of love.
Love, that gorgeous emotion at the essence of our being, can strengthen resolve and encourage positive behaviors. I imagine a huge rope attached to love—this rope surrounds and encompasses everyone nearby. Love offered to another heals and nurtures the self! My clients taught me that when a person caught in a troublesome time draws on love for another she gains enough strength to surmount difficulties.
I loved my job but some time or other during the 90’s I began to wonder why talk therapy “worked” for some clients while for others talk did little or nothing to help them reach their goals. I noticed that insight, considered valuable in the mental health community, did not always translate into a perceptual, feeling or behavioral change. Seeing clearly did not mean that clients necessarily felt better.
Psychotherapy, in the 80’s and 90’s, was often touted to be an end all and be all. Someone would have a problem and the question would be, “Have they gone to see a therapist?” The implication was that seeing a therapist was the answer. To myself, I began to mutter, “But therapy is only words—-surely more is needed than words.”
About the time that I was experiencing doubts about the helpfulness of therapy I began to hear about Ayurveda.
Of course you have all heard of an “Ah ha moment!” An “Ah ha moment” is pretty much what I had. Ayurveda made, to me, sense—-absolute and perfect sense. Following are a few Ayurvedic concepts. I hope they make sense to you too.
- The mind-body-spirit is one seamless energetic system
- The human being is an aspect of nature and the physiology is, therefore, an expression of the elements of nature.
- If the elements underlying the mind-body are out of balance a symptom will be experienced.
Wow! I learned that Ayurveda not only possessed the knowledge to identify imbalances but also offered an instruction manual for the amelioration of symptoms. Ayurveda offered the novel idea that emotional health was tied to physical health. Happiness, the sages told us, is our birthright and a by-product of perfect health!
There is still a doorplate in Birmingham, Michigan that has my name on it but I haven’t entered that office in years. My name is on the door only because my partners and I had invested in an expensive brass plate and my name couldn’t be erased from it. The last time I glanced at the door was sometime in the last century!
I became interested in Ayurveda and studied this ancient science. With Sandra Moss I wrote Healing Depression the Mind-Body Way: creating happiness with meditation, yoga and Ayurveda. Following the publication of that book I’ve written this blog. The blog offers Ayurvedic tidbits and occasionally I do write about my former love—– psychology.
My interest in Ayurveda hasn’t wavered and truthfully I don’t think it ever will but it has become time for me to stop writing the blog. At least for now—-This blog will be my last. I wish to say good-bye for now!
So what is in the future of a dedicated former blogger? Well, I’ve decided to do an audio version of Healing Depression. 2009 is technologically speaking “the olden times” and back in 2009, when the book was published there wasn’t such an avid interest in audio books. It seems that now many people are listening to books on tape and I am excited to have them (hopefully) listen to a book about Ayurveda. I also plan to do podcasts on mental health. Of course these will promote mind-body health—–happiness achieved through physiological balance.
A friend of mine, Dr. Marjie Scott, and I have also started to write a book about being old. That’s right—–being old. Of course there is a twist. The book will be about maintaining a vital life style after retirement. It’s about vitality and creativity…living life with zest during the final years on this planet!
I hope that you picked up a helpful idea or two from the blog. I thank you all for reading it especially those who left comments or got back to me with their thoughts. I wish you all well and of course I cannot end this final blog without a reminder. That reminder is—-do pick up a copy of Healing Depression the Mind-Body Way! If you already have a copy perhaps you know a friend or two who would appreciate one.
May God Bless you and I wish you perfect health and happiness always—-