In my last post, I wrote about a wonderful place not far from my home called Tai Sophia. It started out as an acupuncture school, and evolved into a place where yogis, meditation students, and those who wish to devote their lives to the healing arts could seek certification and advanced degrees. I’m delighted to announce that Tai Sophia just received its authorization as a university! It is now the Maryland University of Integrative Health; as a university, it can now offer doctorates along with its bachelor’s and master’s degrees. This is rather exciting news for us scholars and “crunchy granola” types!
My wife and I attended a workshop there last weekend which was actually titled, “The Gift of the Healing Presence.” It was given by a gentleman with a medical background who recently conducted a survey of healing professionals. The results were remarkable: more than 85% of those polled responded that they would prefer to have more time to devote to fewer patients or clients. Many of them reported breaking into their patients’ descriptions of their own situations in need of healing in less than twenty seconds. The consensus seemed to be that they are expected to quickly evaluate the patient in terms of their disease or problem, [emphasis mine] and offer a quick solution (often in the form of pharmaceuticals). As the workshop leader said, this doesn’t allow the patient or client–who is obviously the world’s leading authority on his/her own body/mind–to explain what’s going on and reach a natural state of wellness. Often, the mere fact that a clinician presents a “healing presence” — one that causes the client to relax, feel safe, and unburden herself — is sufficient to enable the healing process.
One thing I particularly enjoyed about this presenter was his devotion to mindfulness in the context of the workshop itself. In other words, we were listening to a presentation, but at key moments throughout, the entire room was invited to take several minutes to devote to their own mindfuness practice, whatever that may be. My wife and I found that this enabled us to fully receive, internalize, and process the information being presented. There’s also something healing and calming about simply being in a room of one hundred or so practitioners who are all practicing mindfulness exercises in silence at the same time. We found it deightful indeed.
I congratulate Tai Sophia on its new incarnation as the Maryland University of Integrative Health. I believe many first-rate, holistically-oriented healers will be emerging from their advanced degree programs.
Copyright © 2013 by William K. Ferro, All rights reserved