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Posted by Michael Finkelstein | April 15th, 2018

The Old Way of Healing

Those in thirst need water, not the faucet.

-Hank Wesselman, Visionseeker

Have you ever wondered why you have the life you have? Why you face specific challenges? And what this all means for you? Have you ever considered the larger question about the meaning of life in general? ….Or, perhaps you are one of the many who state that they don’t care about any of this, which leads to the question, why don’t you?

Either way, we seem to all, in one way or the other, search for meaning–even for the nihilist there is a quest, though it is cut short by the opinion that there is nothing important there.

I submit, we are all captivated by the mystery. Indeed, this search for meaning is not new, but it is interesting to note how elusive it is; and also, how essentially human it is. How many other creatures do you believe consider any of this? The fact is, we are different. Our consciousness makes it so and leads us to question, not merely react to, the world around us.

Of course, our challenges come in many forms, some more pressing, others more academic. When faced with a disease or concern for our own mortality, as an example, there might even be a sense of urgency to all of this. Ready at hand are a plethora of suggestions, many helpful and well-intended. However, at best, these offer only temporary relief. This is the arena of the quick fix, so in demand these days (and so ripe for corruption in the form of glib messengers that seductively distract us with shiny promises rather than the essential substance itself). The deeper symptoms of longing will still remain, and the lingering question about the meaning behind all of it will gnaw at us until we address it head on and get clear on a path that will make a sustainable difference.

Indeed, failing to take this into account leads to the viscous cycle of suffering that is so pervasive. I have experienced that myself first hand, as a physician and as a patient. It would be wonderful if the remedies solved the problem. And, it would truly be an achievement if the advancement of technology actually worked at the deeper level, but it doesn’t and it won’t. What we need to heal is to devote more of our energy in an age-old approach and focus on our spiritual evolution in order to truly heal. We are thirsty and what we need is the water.

There are few of us now who don’t notice the precarious nature of our existence; not just as mortal individuals, but as a collective that seems quite unstable at the moment. What can be said about each of us can be said about the whole. In caring about the one, we need to care about the other. Holding the two together is what is required. That said, this process begins with your simple awareness and a commitment to take care of yourself in this old way. I wish you well in that regard. Indeed, it matters to me, and all of us!

Mitakuye Oyasin,

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