Meeting challenges and change. Meditations, articles and resources to support you when you or those you are caring for are ill, in pain, unconscious or facing other health challenges or disabilities.
So many issues can surface when we are unwell or otherwise disabled, such as financial concerns and responsibilities; pain; not knowing which treatment option to choose; feeling out of control and struggling with the need to depend on others.
And especially trying, perhaps, the insecurity of not-knowing: not knowing if and when you might recover; how total that recovery will be; not knowing what the likelihood of relapse is; and given that you have been told that there is no more that can be done for you, not knowing ‘how long you’ve got’ and how your final weeks and days will be.
We look at the various concerns that can emerge when we, or someone we are supporting is, diagnosed with an illness.
Understanding some of the triggers and emotional changes that might come up in sickness and/or dying
When you are seriously ill or dying, understandably many issues can come up for you and you may go through many emotional changes. It’s good, then, to be reminded of your resources and those which you can develop.
A series of articles relating to the emotions that might arise with serious illness or learning that you are dying: Finding calm – Allowing the feeling – To fight or flow – Positive thinking vs vigilant realism – Choiceless awareness
The healing power of laughter in relieving pain, reducing stress and more
Resilience and finding your internal resources
What influences the way we respond to stressors and react to crisis? Identifying and accessing the strengths you have and on which you can build.
What is resilience? How to strengthen and activate it so it can help you in times of need?
Meditation as key to building or maintaining your emotional integrity and strength – in everyday life and in trying situations.
Moving into the vertical reality gives us an entirely new perspective on situations outside us and the changing experience inside too.
Accept it, express it, mobilise it, unfreeze it and watch it – are among some meditative approaches to support you in being with whatever feeling you have.
Meditative methods to support you during illness
A selection of meditation methods which can be practiced whatever your state of health, what is happening around you and your degree of mobility. You can practice them alone and whenever you need to. They can provide you with a rich collection of inner resources to empower you and help deal with issues such as pain, loneliness, anxiety, loss of independence and disturbing environments. Read more
A selection of methods
Some additional considerations including the person’s physical and mental state, dealing with a hospital environment, meditation as a rehearsal for dying and final words of guidance as a person dies.
Some general and specific suggestions.
Osho on Illness
A unique take on the relationship between health and illness, between illness and death, and the secret of the mirror – an invaluable resource in suffering.
Osho points out that illness and health are two sides of the same coin. Passing through illness can yield unexpected insights.
Osho explains the key to moving beyond yourself-as-ill or as the sufferer.
Osho questions the assumption that illness causes death, and that it is death we are afraid of….
Although pain can be a factor accompanying many illnesses, it can and does happen at any time in life through accident and injury as well as longer term disabilities and illness.
Whilst they generally refer to physical pain, many of the articles and meditative techniques work equally well for emotional pain. The techniques and suggestions revolve around the concept of ‘what you resist, persists.’
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, relaxing into and accepting pain is key to its ‘management,’ Osho offers some guidance on how to deal with pain and several meditations that are especially effective for dealing with pain. See Meditations for Pain Management.
An invaluable compilation of resources to be with one of the most challenging aspects of illness.
A selection of methods
An approach to managing your pain based on the method of Steven Levine, ‘Softening around Pain.’ The key is relaxing into and creating a sense of space around the pain.
Acupuncture, electrotherapy, hypnosis, visualisation, biofeedback and other complementary therapies can also be effective in the relief of pain – see also Resources.
Laughter is recognised as a very powerful pain reliever.
Osho on Pain
An enlightened – and enlightening – understanding on some aspects of illness and pain, including the potential for inner growth and the perennial question of ‘Why is there pain?’
Osho responds – in a way that may surprise you – to the question: What to do when there is pain?
Osho explains how not being influenced by fearful and future-oriented thinking is key to being with pain.
Osho responds to the perennial question: Why do we suffer? Why is there pain?
Articles & Resources
Interviews with those facing a terminal illness or living with a chronic disability.
Inspirational gems from Osho, Rumi, and others
Complementary therapies are based on the principle of treating the whole person – including the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual aspects – not just a set of symptoms. This section features some therapies particularly appropriate for the seriously ill or dying.
Some recommended reading from the OSHO Sammasati 'library' with comments from Maneesha and/or Amazon reviews.
If your illness is such that you require a carer (whether that be a family member or a professional), you might like to direct them to our Toolkit for Carers which includes:
Offering your care
• Physical care
• Emotional & other support
• Supporting someone in meditating
• Other Resources
Some suggestions, including complementary therapies and electrotherapy
A variety of natural remedies for various painful conditions including arthritis
Treatment and other support suggested by Macmillans.org.uk
An app to help deal with persistent pain.