The Day Before

I got a massage from Elyse this morning. It was the best massage I ever had from her in probably two years of seeing her. Today, I seemed more relaxed and she was more able to penetrate my tissues. In addition, she has very healing hands and really cares about me. She spent a lot of time massaging my belly and bladder, and remarked how easy and free I was. It was a terrific experience!

Cancerport was once again very supportive to my surgery tomorrow. They were very encouraged by my report from Dr. Belknap, and excited by Julie Motz. Unfortunately, two of our members passed away this week. One of them was the lady I visited last month. Another member is having his last few days. I wonder where I stand in all of this.

In the evening, Julie Motz spoke at Marin General Hospital. After telling her story about how she became an energy healer, she spoke about the heart. She said that in Chinese medicine, the heart is the governor of the body, and that the seeds of emotion lie in different organs. She also said that anger is the energy of the heart. She talked about the pericardium, the protective tissue around the heart, as the location of the seat of love.

She gave her ideas about surgery, which essentially is that early trauma needs to be worked out through surgery. She also restated her proposition that cancer begins in the womb as immature, incomplete, fetal cells which stop growing and that wait around for an opportunity to grow out of control. In breast cancer, patients usually feel that their mother was burdened or embittered by the experience of mothering and this had an effect for the patient. Mothers were ambivalent or under a lot of stress during pregnancy.

She led us on a guided imagery experience through each chamber of the heart. The left aortic valve represents fear. The left ventricle valve represent anger, and is the origin of the heart beat. The right aortic valve puts us in touch with pain, and the right ventricle is the origin of love.


A Much Better Day

I’m having a much better day today, thanks to a decent amount of sleep (perhaps!) I worked in the morning before my appointment with Leslie Davenport. In the session, we did a guided imagery experience of what was happening in my life at the present moment. The threat of the pathologist finding cancer in my bladder was still the primary focus of my attention. Leslie, in her wisdom, asked me if there was a way that I could turn out good even if the results were not what I wanted. Although I am still wrestling with this concept, I feel more confident in my ability to use my mindfulness to stay focused on all the good work I have done until now.

Next, I had to register for my surgery of Friday and make sure that everything was OK for Julie Motz. I didn’t even have to wait, so I guess everything will flow smoothly on Friday.

Following my registration, I waited around for a neck and shoulder massage with Anna Pera at the Radiation Oncology Unit. It really felt great and came at a perfect time. I really allowed myself to relax into it and thus I got a lot of benefit from it.

In late afternoon, I had a complete physical with Dr. Belknap. The blood work was very normal and the rest of my health is surprisingly good! Dr. Belknap said with the blood tests and physical exam combined, he gave me an 80 to 90 percent chance of being free of cancer in my bladder! This information helped me to relax slightly.

At night, my wife and I went to the Center for Attitudinal Healing. Some people have been coming to the group for years, against which my three week barely measures up. However, I found it quite beneficial to speak once again about the dilemma I have with the outcome of my surgery on Friday. I am trying to hold either outcome as a part of my healing process, but I really, really prefer to be free of cancer now! I spoke a lot about my daughters reaction to my illness and how they were such wonderful children. “We don’t need a support group!” is what they always say! Their love and support is really helpful, even though I’m not quite sure that they know the worst case scenario.


Having a Bad Day

I had a bad day today, which probably resulted from not enough good sleep. I worked for a while in the morning, and then tried to take a nap. Once again, I couldn’t sleep, but the quite, restful mindfulness of breathing kept me from caving totally in.

In the afternoon, I went to see Alan Sheets for a Feldenkrais treatment. Alan’s gentle hands and compassionate understanding were very helpful. He was purposefully trying to move me into point nine on the enneagram, as this is my so-called, “heart point.” The heart point on the enneagram is the place that you tend to move towards in a secure life situation. It goes in the direction opposite to the arrows on the enneagram. For me, as a point six, the heart point is point nine. Point nine on the enneagram represents sloth with respect to spiritual growth and doing good things for yourself. I often find myself there when I am comfortable and relaxing with my children. Point nine is the point where love enters the enneagram. It is a point where well-adapted individuals remain peaceful without turning away from problems. The point in the direction of the arrows is know as the “stress point.” For me, this is point three on the enneagram. Point three represents the over-achiever, which experience I’ve had many times in my life as I have tried to enhance my professional career. For more information on these and other points on the enneagram, please visit The Enneagram in the Electronic Tradition.

When I returned home from my appointment with Alan Sheets, I once again attempted to nap, with a similar result to the morning. I know what is bothering me, but that hasn’t helped my sleeping situation. I am rather nervous about the results of my transurethral resection of the bladder tumor (TURBT) on Friday.

In the evening, I struggled to make it to Anna Halprin‘s class. She had just returned from the opening of the FDR Memorial in Washington, D. C. Apparently, her husband had a lot to do with the internal construction of the memorial. She sensed my discomfort and had us work primarily on our backs in order to conserve my energy. She had me moving my back in ways I’ve never experienced before, and it was quite amazing. I realized that one could do “moving meditation” in much the same way one does “walking meditation” in the Buddhist tradition. Her guided imagery took us to a clear blue sky above an expanse of ocean, with waves to match our breathing. We were to visualize a creature either in the sky or the ocean. I saw a whale most clearly and drew a picture of the wale just having complete a dive, with its tail still visible above the ocean surface. I wrote:

“I’ve created a ‘whale’ of a problem that needs to be solved. What I need to do is follow the lead of the whale and allow my tail (how about tale – Yellow Stream!) to float freely on the waves.”

By the end of the evening, I was feeling much better. Anna placed me in the middle of the circle so that everyone could send me healing energy for the upcoming ordeal. Each person found a spot to touch me and bring even more healing energy into focus. It was a wonderful experience!


Your Average American Day

This morning I went in for my blood work for Dr. Belknap. In addition, I had blood taken for a nutritional analysis of my blood recommended by Dr. Rossman.

Later, I went to Leslie Davenport‘s group at Marin General Hospital. Leslie did a guided imagery which evoked the four elements. She began with the earth element by having us imaging our feet grounded to the earth even through our socks, shoes, the floor of the room, and on down through the building. She continued with the water, air, and fire, building on the images we had already constructed. Upon completion of the guided imagery, we drew a picture to represent our experience. My drawing incorporated all of the elements focusing on the room in which we were meeting. The building in which the room was looked more like a safe than a building, and I remarked that we were trying to create a “safe” space with our group. Everyone laughed! The group was also quite excited about Julie Motz!

When I got home, I needed to rest, as I was expecting a visit from my ex-wife. She is visiting our son from Israel and wanted to visit me. She arrived one hour late in a broken down car and was more or less forced to spend the night! She even invited me to go to Yosemite with my son and her!


Bubbles of Energy

Leslie Davenport’s group today was quite special. She led a guided imagery experience which was quite similar to the one I had earlier this week. We started with deep breathing, as usual, and switched to relaxing the body, starting with the eyes, working up to the forehead and to the top of the head. Then we moved to our face and then on down to the feet and toes. From there, she had us imagine bubbles of energy rising from our fully relaxed feet and legs on up through our torso and winding up at the top of our heads. The visualization was very effective for me, and I felt very relaxed during the whole process. I probably could have fallen asleep several times. I later found out that most of the people in the room felt a deep sense of relaxation also.

In response to a question from one of the members of the group, I had an opportunity to speak about managing your own health care and how to make appropriate medical decisions. I explained how I had to make a tough decision back in early February regarding radical cystectomy versus the Shipley approach with I eventually decided upon. I also spoke about integrative medicine as the approach I took. This gave rise to comments by many other people supporting what I had to say and enhancing my viewpoint. I shared that I really wanted to come to the group mostly when I was feeling good so I could share my healing experiences with other people and not be so needy. All in all, I felt really supported and that I had contributed to the healing experience of others in the room.



April 20, 1997 – Overprotection

When I was a boy of around twelve or thirteen, I studied and played the game of chess. I studied the masters like Lasker, Reinfeld, Alekhine, Botvinnik and Capablanca. In fact, when Reshevsky played a simultaneous exhibition at Purdue University in 1959, I played him to a tie by playing the Lasker variation of the Queen’s Gambit Declined. My favorite master was Aaron Nimzovich, who published My System in 1925. This was my favorite book on the subject and I studied it long and hard. One of the strategies that Nimzovich taught was called overprotection. He maintained that if you have a pawn in a strong position, especially in the center of the board, you should do everything in your power to overprotect that pawn, which, in turn would lead to a very strong position. Overprotection became my primary strategy in chess, and perhaps in life.


Overprotection is a good strategy for raising children if you consider expressing your love and affection for them consistently throughout their childhood. I’m not talking about protecting them from the outside world so much as assuring them that they are loved and cared for in a way in which they feel secure and protected. My girls and boy have been raised this way and are wonderful people.

I think that overprotection is a good strategy for healing from cancer also. What I mean here is that the more you can do for yourself, the better. For me, this means being a support group junkie, doing “mind stories,” having guided imagery sessions, doing Feldenkrais and other massage therapies, acupuncture, and all of the other activities I’m engaged in to support and overprotect my health.

I came to this realization early this morning after a very difficult night of little sleep. I was looking deeply into my feelings and remembered how I played chess and bridge as a youngster.

I studied the game so much so that I could feel like a winner. I had felt like such a looser as a child that I needed something to win at and I chose chess. Almost every time I played a good game with a good player with a chance to win, I would get heart palpitations and start to shake. I would get very nervous and feel compelled to win. I needed to win at something. This attitude and nervousness carried over into my college days at Purdue University to the game of bridge. I quickly became one of the best bridge players on campus, but winning was still an issue. When Mike Sears and I entered a tournament in Terra Haute, Indiana, I was nervous and shaking as usual, and we did not win. Mike was very disappointed in me. However, when Charles Goren visited Pudure, I was his partner in a tournament and we won.

Now my life is on the line and I’m playing for keeps. I get the same heart palpitations and shaking when I think of the possibility of actually helping someone with my ideas and guidance. I get nervous when I think about publishing this web site as a book and actually speaking to people about how they can learn to make appropriate decisions for their medical treatment. Now that the word is out, I may be able to control my nervousness and shaking enough to heal myself and realize my goal to deliver this message far and wide. This is serious stuff, and I am committed to getting well again. My girls are still young enough that they need overprotection – overprotection in the sense of feeling loved and protected.


Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It’s Off to Work I Go

April 16, 1997 – Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It’s Off to Work I Go

R. T., my boss, and I are met to discuss my raise and bonus, so I went to Menlo Park for the day. Marty Rossman was traveling to some Alternative Medicine conference in Orlando, so I drove him to the airport, which is on my way. This gave me a chance to chat with Marty about my life and ask him about his. The main point of our discussion was the effectiveness of guided imagery in my cure. Of course, he’s the master! When I asked him about Yellow Stream, he said that he was very impressed with the resources section.

I met my son for lunch at the Uptime Cafe at NGC. I had lunch cards from when I taught a class at NGC, so we got to pig out on cafeteria food! He was fairly talkative about his life, but we didn’t discuss my illness at length. He is going to sing for Gail Teehan’s mother on Friday night.

So, the day turned out to be kind of a normal work day, as my life is becoming more and more normal and my symptoms are affecting my daily activities less and less. For example, I didn’t have time for a mind story today, but I compensated by going to bed by 8:30.


Feel Good to Heal Good!

April 10, 1997 – Feel Good to Heal Good!

I woke up very early this morning, feeling almost normal! Before I had cancer, I would wake up early, go down into my office, and begin working. This morning, I followed the same procedure, in spite of having taken a sleeping pill last night. Aside from Cancerport, later this morning, I have an Evolutionary Circle meeting tonight, for the first time in about a month.

Cancerport was a very moving experience for me, as mothers spoke of children they wanted to see graduate and get married! This is also my experience, as one daughter graduates middle school in June and the other next June. I want to be there when they have grandchildren! I felt that it was appropriate to share my guided imagery session about “healthy cells growing all by themselves” again, and once more, it was received with great interest and care.

Several of us went to eat together at Taqueria San Jose in San Rafael. If you have never been there, you’re in for a treat. This is a real, down-home taco place that serves fresh orange juice and fresh carrot juice made to order. I also enjoy their soft tacos more than anywhere else.

During the discussion, I heard about one woman who is surviving cervical cancer for over twenty-two years, with eleven recurrences! One of the women I had lunch with has survived over eleven years with hers!

At the Evolutionary Circle, I showed a ten minute segment from In Search of … Faith Healing from 1980, in which my son’s Wilm’s tumor was the subject of research. The group was moved by his amazing healing and felt very inspired. I next spoke for a long time about my healing process, including “healthy cells grow all by themselves,” and other anecdotes. The love and support I felt transformed my feeling of exhaustion into as state of excitement. We all shared where were mentally and emotionally and left with good feelings for each other.

A friend of R. W.’s was there who is a Reiki healer and does laying on of the hands healing. I look forward to next week’s meeting where she will teach us some of her healing techniques.

This group has been going now for almost two years! In we try to support the goals and desires of each of the members with our thoughts and imagery. Next week we should have T. W. and her husband also.



April 8, 1997 – Two-Pointedness!

Today I went in for a check-up with Dr. Gullion, and saw Dr. Bobbie Head instead. My blood counts were good and there is no need to worry about infection. I asked about a more complete exam, but I was told that this was only to check the blood counts.

I had a second massage at the Cancer Institute with Anne Pera. This time she did a “Metamorphosis” on my feet, hands, skull and back. She has such a light healing touch that I can recommend her highly. She’s really present when she works on you and you can feel the healing energy in her hands.

My session with Leslie Davenport turned out to be quite magnificent! I spent about one half hour simply describing the state of my healing. I told her about the work with Anna Halprin, the Feldenkrais work, my contact with R. M. in New Zealand, and my “seeds of enlightenment,” which seemed to thrill her quite a bit. I talked about That’s Funny, You Don’t Look Buddhist, and some feelings about my family of origin and childhood experiences. I expressed how I felt rejected as a child by my family, school mates, the kids at Hebrew school and Sunday school, and by God. I explored these feelings without regret, but with a sense of longing. These feelings were overwhelmed by my new sense of love for myself and the work I am doing to heal.

In the guided imagery portion, Leslie began with these inspiring words:

“As we begin, just notice where you are as we start… where your attention seems to be clustered… And to engage with the knowledge that you have the freedom and the power to focus your awareness… And feel how each breath, each moment has never been lived before, has never been breathed before… acknowledging the newness… the presence of each part of the breath… each moment of the breath… And to begin to also sense that balance between your focusing of attention and the receptivity… the active, the receptive, of any guidance that may come through at any point… And staying a little longer with the breath and feel how the in breath carries strength into your body, clarity into you mind, stability into your emotions… connectedness to that deep sense of yourself… And how the out breath by its very nature has that cleansing, clearing, letting go qualities… And allowing yourself to begin to tune into your body with the fresh eyes and the fresh sensing that arise out of this moment… And to go ahead and allow your focus to go right into the place in your body most in need of healing… And just to allow images to form which may be familiar or new…”

I tuned into my bladder and had the same images as when I felt “healthy cells growing all by themselves.” Then I noticed a white spot in the area where the tumor was and decided to focus all of my attention on that area. My attention became so one-pointed that I began to feel waves of bliss which I again used to support the growth of healthy cells. When I expressed how I was doing, Leslie said, “Well, it’s actually two-pointed because I’m putting mine there too!”


Seeds of Enlightenment

April 7, 1997 – Seeds of Enlightenment

This morning, I managed to get in about forty-five minutes of tennis! It was difficult to manage my energy, but I’m feeling stronger every day.

By the time I went to Anna Halprin’s class, however, my gut was churning and my energy was quite low. Fortunately, we spent a lot of time during check-in because there were several new people there, including J. B., the mother of my daughter’s best friend.

The movement segment began with sitting in or chairs and doing deep breathing exercises. I gradually picked up to where we were supporting our faces with our hands and keeping our hands in touch with our bodies. At a certain point, I felt the desire to do a modified form Zen prostrations as an expression of gratitude. I continued moving about on the floor for quite a while, returning to the prostrated position quite frequently. Then the movement picked up all over the room and my energy began to accelerate. Mostly, I was dancing alone, but there were quite wonderful encounters with other dancers, and soon, most of the group was dancing together. I spontaneously moved into the third stage of the “chaotic meditation” that I learned at the Ashram from Rajneesh. This is the stage where “With raised arms, jump up and down shouting the mantra HOO!…HOO!…HOO! as deeply as possible, coming from the bottom of your belly.” Most of the people joined my in this movement, and I was filled with images of the Ashram and Bhagwan.

After the movement segment settled down with a group circle, we did our drawings. I wanted to draw a group of people dancing together at the Ashram in Poona, but I knew that I lacked the artistic talents to make it happen, so I just started drawing orange faces, which transformed into six vibrant flowers with roots in the earth and healthy leaves on the stalks – all reminding me of “healthy cells growing all by themselves.” On top of each flower, I wrote the name of one of my major teachers along my path.

The first flower was dedicated to Father Eli, from whom I learned the trance work that forms the foundation for guided imagery well enough to teach it to over two hundred people since 1973. He told me that he had taught both Jose Silva of Silva Mind Control, which I had learned in 1971, and L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Scientology, which I studied between 1968 and 1971.

The second flower was dedicated to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, also known as Osho. I spent the summer of 1975 in Poona and was given the name, Swami Deva Ninad. I have collected more then four hundred tapes and twenty-five books of his lectures.

The third and fourth flowers were dedicated to the Buddha and Thich Nhat Hanh, respectively. Since 1985, I have been devoted to Buddhism in general and Zen and Vipassana meditation in particular. I love the way Thay has interpreted the sutra on Mindfulness of Breathing. My own meditation is totally inspired by him.

The fifth flower was dedicated to Gabrielle Roth, a former student of Anna Halprin, and an internationally known shaman. I studied with her in 1975 – 1976, as we shared a common interest in Bhagwan and the enneagram. I was scheduled to assist her at a workshop at Eselan in June of 1996, but on that very day, my son went into the hospital for his Wilm’s tumor surgery. What a shock it was for me to have to change my plans and spend the time in the hospital instead. Gabrielle harnessed the energy of her workshop at Eselan and all of her remaining workshops that year to perform healing circles for my son. I have been devoted to her since then and have felt a great sense of gratitude.

The last flower, I dedicated to myself, as I am now my own guru. I am learning a lot every day from my illness and my efforts to keep my mind focused on healing. Naturally, I look to the other teachers for inspiration, but most things are coming from deep inside myself.

As a result of the drawing, my meditation has changed slightly, once again. It now goes, “Breathing in I heal, breathing out I’m free,” or simply, “healthy… free.”