Welcome to a new month and new topic, as we follow Kevin Schoeninger’s exploration of our mind’s ability to create physical changes in our bodies. To do this, Kevin introduces us to an amazing new book, You Are The Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter, by Dr. Joe Dispenza.
We’ve all heard of the placebo effect. It happens when we believe so much in the healing power of what we are told is medicine, or the word of a particular doctor, that we can be healed by receiving a treatment which is basically a fake. It has been shown time and time again that we can get better from taking a sugar pill, if we believe the pill is a cure.
The idea Dr. Dispenza puts forth is that since the belief is what heals us, and not the placebo pill, then we really don’t need someone to dispense a fake pill at all. If faith is what makes the difference, then the real healer must already be within ourselves.
The concept of faith healing, or course, is not new. It shows up in ancient scriptures, and has proponents around the world, from African shamans to practitioners of Christian Science. What Dr. Dispenza brings us is a more detailed description of how this works…not only from a scientific perspective, but also from a truly incredible experience of his own.
Kevin gives us a good summary of Dr. Dispenza’s personal ordeal. A victim of a horrific auto accident as a young man, Dispenza was left with partially shattered vertebrae, and told a perilous surgery was his only hope to ever walk again. Even then, he was warned, his life would be one of constant pain.
Against all medical advice, Dispenza chose not to have the surgery, but to rely on his own “powerful faith in the infinite intelligence supporting the health and healing of his body.” Dr. Joe believed this infinite intelligence resided within his own mind, and once it was given a vision and a plan for the desired healing outcome, he could “surrender” and trust it to return him to health.
The power of believing the unbelievable
I repeat this edited version of Dr. Dispenza’s story, because it seems so absolutely unbelievable. While many of us may be able to accept that focusing our thoughts on good health can strengthen our immunity, or help us fight off a cold, the idea of the mind rebuilding bone seems somehow beyond ordinary comprehension.
And yet, something keeps our hearts beating, and continually repairs and replaces our cells without our assistance. There is no way we can ignore that our bodies already know what to do. Just as he believed would happen, Dr. Dispenza did walk again, and then devoted 30 years to researching and exploring why.
Through his personal experience and his research, Dr. Joe has recognized that the placebo response is a transitional process, which can be broken down into three different steps. There is a setting the stage step, which he calls “open focus”, where we need to relax and shut down our overly analytical, doubting mind. When we become “open” then we can begin to experience ourselves as “pure consciousness,” the second step.
The third step is where we mentally rehearse not only the healthy outcome we expect, but just as importantly, the positive emotions connected with it. Imagining how good life would feel without pain, or weakness, or any sort of infirmity, gives an extra physical boost to seeing ourselves in total health.
If you have followed Kevin’s work for a while, you may recognize similarities between Dr. Joe’s steps, and Kevin’s Core Energy Meditation practice. You may have already experienced how opening up and relaxing our minds, can lead us to greater physical strength and vitality.
That initial openness, as Kevin explains, is where belief happens, and there is no way in Dr. Joe’s opinion, that the importance of belief can be ignored. Doubt and negative emotions have just as powerful an effect on our brainwaves, and our cells’ ability to repair, as positive thoughts do. The stimulus from our minds, he says, are what direct our cells with which chemical reactions should occur, and they can shut down health as easily as they can encourage it.
Learning to rewire our brains away from our own doubts and fears then, might be one of the most valuable skills we will ever learn. I have only touched on all that is included in Kevin’s post. I recommend reading it more than once. Just as belief allowed Dr. Joe to rebuild bone, taking the first step toward belief could help all of us rebuild better health than we have ever known.
For the next three weeks at Spiritual Growth Monthly, Kevin will walk us through these steps one by one, and wrap up with a meditation to guide us through this very specific process. I hope you will join me.
You Are The Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter, (2014) by Dr. Joe Dispenza, is published by Hay House, Inc.
P.S. Want to be part of a community of like-minded souls committed to applying spiritual practice in their lives? Well take a look at Spiritual Growth Monthly. This is our members only community where we share insights, tips and group coaching to support your continued growth.
What’s do you get as a member of SGM?
You get a weekly audio message from me to encourage you and give you more insights into your practice. Membership gives you private email access to me should any questions come up for you. You also get access to our members discussion, plus much, much more.
Go here to get a 3-week trial for just $1.
Check out the weekly messages on Spiritual Growth Monthly today!