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JOURNEY TO WHOLENESS - October 2015 - Kansas City
By Jude LaClaire, Ph.D.
The intersection of science and sacred traditions is a place of great interest, new learning and, hopefully, profound insight into ideas and practices that make our lives richer. Let’s look at some of these belief systems.
Chief Seattle, speaking in Duwamish in 1854, was reported by Dr. Henry A. Smith to have said, “ This we know: All things are connected like the blood that unites us.
We did not weave the web of life,
We are merely in it.
Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.”
Buddhism, a 2,500 year old philosophy, teaches “At the most fundamental level of life itself, there is no separation between ourselves and the environment…everything around us, including work and family relationships, is the reflection of our inner lives.
(Buddhism in Action for Peace) Buddhism also teaches that everything exists in one eternal moment and that cause and effect are simultaneous.
Quantum physics, something I don’t pretend to understand, talks about ‘entanglement’ which says that particles on opposite sides of the universe can be intrinsically linked so that they share information instantly. The rules of time and space, as we have known them, do not apply.
Chaos theory, sometimes called the ‘butterfly effect’, postulates that a butterfly’s wing flap may initiate a disturbance that ultimately leads to a hurricane or other phenomenon across the world. Simultaneous cause and effect are occurring. Beginning to see some parallels?
Jill Bolte Taylor, Ph.D., experienced these realities in her life when she had a left brain stroke at the age of thirty-eight. She relates her story in My Stroke of Insight, detailing her four hour stroke episode, her recovery process and learning from all of this. Dr. Taylor is, by training, a neuro-anatomist, and had been studying brains for some time.
The morning of the stroke, she knew something was wrong, but as her left brain became more impaired and the right brain was dominant, something very amazing happened. She was thinking very differently. “What a bizarre living being I am. Life! I am life! I am a sea of water inside this membrane pouch. Here in this form, I am a conscious mind and this body is the vehicle through which I am ALIVE! I am trillions of cells sharing a common mind. I am here, now, thriving as life.” She had no ability to call 911 or call for help. She was having an amazing transcendental experience of the ‘oneness of her body and mind, self and the environment.’ She felt no sense of the ego self, no anger or sadness, only deep inner peace.
In the months and years following the stroke her goal was to keep the sense of deep inner peace alive in her daily life. She had no desire to return to her egotistical self that was stopped by her fears, anger, regrets and ambitions. She has come to believe that this is a choice for herself and for all of us. As she recovered the use of her left brain, she worked very hard to remember and use the great qualities of her right brain. When faced with anger, for example, she says “Moment by moment, I make the choice to either hook into my neurocircuitry or move back into the present moment, allowing that reaction to melt away as fleeting physiology.” This is a great example of taking charge of our lives, using the simultaneity of all experiences, the inter-connection as a tool of expanding our awareness and control.
Using the knowledge of the breadth and depth of our experience, we can make healthy choices for creating peace, joy and positive action. It is simple, not easy. It takes practice, conscious Awareness, lots of deep Breathing and Connecting with our many inner and outer resources. Let’s choose that peace!
Jude LaClaire, Ph.D., LCPC, is a counselor, educator and author. For counseling appointments, seminars, training, speaking engagements or information on Neurobehavioral Programs or Imago Couple therapy call 913-322-5622. For more information about Jude LaClaire or the Kansas City Holistic Centre go to