Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Teaching Us About Healing

This past weekend, I read the most interesting book by Tim Parks:

"Teach Us to Sit Still: A Skeptic's Search for Health and Healing."  By Tim Parks.  New York, Rodale Press, 2011.  322 pages.  ISBN: 9781609611583. 

The author lives in Italy and has written over 20 books.  He was having many urological, genital, and pelvic pain problems.  He used conventional medical tests and some recommendations to help him with his problems; but was not satisfied.  He discovers the book titled "A Headache in the Pelvis" by David Wise, PhD., and Rodney Anderson, M.D..  The book advocates daily exercises and relaxation/meditation methods, and psychological methods to help with healing. 
Tim follows the regiment with some improvement in his condition.  

Mr. Parks experiments with regular Shiatsu massage therapy.  Finally, he participates in some Buddhist Vipassana retreats.  He shares, honestly and insightfully, his experiences with many alternative therapies he used to ameliorate his health problems.  

Men with prostate problems (prostatitis, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), excessive urination, and pelvic pain) might gain some treatment and adaptation ideas from Mr. Park's journey.  

Mr. Parks thinks a great deal and complains of the "constant chatter in my head."  This active mind-set, he believes, hinders his progress in the body-consciousness practices he wants to integrate into his daily life.  His practice of Vipassana provides some clearer understanding of his psychological and bodily states and conditions.  

Tim usefully explores the relationship between writing, writers, and health issues throughout the book.  After a ten day Vipassana silent retreat, he decides to stop writing for awhile to reduce his stress and deactivate his analytical and judgmental over-thinking.  

Overall, a fine book by a skillful writer, full of cogent observations, a skeptic's questioning, humor, and personal revelations.  

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