Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Finding a goldmine

The idea of finding people of like minds always puts the cream on my Oreo cookie. For instance, when I was doing a book signing and found that woman whose passion for Twinkies shadowed my own, I thought I’d found a long-lost sister. I was no longer an oddity that needed to be put in a cage and poked at with a tree branch. I was legit! I had a posse of one. I was invincible.

Same thing goes for Reiki in medicine. It’s still an oddity for us folks out here in California. But if you’re lucky enough to live in New York (and who doesn’t want to live there?) and require medical assistance at any number of Manhattan’s hospitals, you may have the honor and luxury of meeting Pamela Miles and her Reiki hands.

Pamela has made strides in the medical community where most of us have found only closed doors and stares of scorn, and that’s because she’s learned how to speak to docs about alternative healing methods in a non-threatening way. I was frothing at the mouth to crack that particular code, so my mentor, Dan, and I attended one of Pamela’s many seminars at my alma mater, UC Irvine.

I admit to having giant expectations of Pamela. I had visions of a simple magic bullet that would open the perplexing mindset of docs. Oh yes, waves of light would shower down from the heavens and angels would sing. The seas would part, and the world of medicine would reside in my hot little palms. Sorry, Pamela, quite unfair of me. Instead, I worked my ass off trying to comprehend the five syllable words that rolled off her tongue. Eight hours, an enjoyable lunch with Pamela, and five pages of notes later, my head was packed to the limit.

The truth is, there is no magic bullet – just like in real life. Silly me for assuming otherwise. It’s difficult to translate the practice of Reiki into concrete, scientific words because so much of it happens on an unspoken level. It’s like trying to define love to someone who’s never been in love before, or describing what the wind looks like. But Pamela cracked the code, and I now have a slew of science-y words which I lack the genetics to pronounce.

But if we’re serious about blending conventional medicine with alternative healing methods in order to enhance wellness, we aren’t going to get there by talking about auras and meridians. As Pamela told me, docs aren’t going to swim upriver so we need to learn to speak their language. Pamela’s seminar gave me the tools to become my own translator. And what’s really exciting is Pamela has a supervised clinical internship in the works. I can see throwing myself at her feet begging to be included once it takes off.

Immunomodulation, neuroplasticity, transpersonal dimension, adjunctive, multimodal…Thank you for everything, Pamela, you’re terrific. But, yeesh, looking over my notes makes me wish I had a Star Trek tricorder.

Anyone who’s interested in learning more about Reiki and its uses in a medical setting will find her book, Reiki: A Comprehensive Guide, a wonderful and useful tool.

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