This Tuesday (May 13th) the call-in discussion group will be discussing “Eric's Journey – Chapter 5” and “Walt's Journey – Chapter 5 ” in God Does Not Want You to Be in Pain by forum members Eric "Herbie" Watson and Walt Oleksy. The recorded discussion will start at 9:00pm Eastern Time. Phone lines will open about half an hour early for folks to talk beforehand, off the recording. Connection details are as follows (for more detailed instructions, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/connect ): • If you're connecting by phone, dial 1 201-479-4595 and when prompted enter the pin code 18311499 followed by the pound symbol. • If you're connecting via your computer (Fuze Meeting), go to http://fuze.me/18311499 and follow the instructions from there. For more information about the discussion group, and to listen to all past recorded discussions, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/Call-In_Peer_Discussion_Group. God Does Not Want You to be in Pain: Proven Techniques and Faith Can Heal You (2014) Eric’s Journey - Chapter 5: “The Glow of the Faithful” and “The Visit” – About Perceptions, Knowledge Therapy, How to Know It’s TMS, pp. 118-130 Walt’s Journey - Chapter 5: Journaling 3: “Of Love and Sauerkraut”, pp. 131-142 Summaries Eric’s Journey - Chapter 5: “The Glow of the Faithful” and “The Visit” – About Perceptions, Knowledge Therapy, How to Know It’s TMS, pp. 118-130. In this chapter, Eric chronicles his transformation from alcoholic to Sunday school teacher to reborn Christian healer while demonstrating, in the process, a direct connection between Dr Sarno’s injunction that you must believe 100% that “there is nothing physically wrong or broken in your body” and the principles underlying Christian religious belief. Eric notes that despite being “lost” in the wilderness while using wine as a way to dull his TMS pain, finally through “prayer and faith and acceptance of pain” his “new-found knowledge” made him stronger and helped him to find his spiritual avocation at last. 14 thoughts to ponder and how to know it’s TMS Eric ends this chapter with a list of thoughts to ponder and a very useful check sheet for determining whether your pain is structural or due to TMS. He admits that this is very hard to do if you’ve been told by MDs and PTs based on an MRI that a structural problem such as a bulging disk or something abnormal in you leg, neck, or shoulder is causing your pain. 1. Can you remember when you took some “me time” to go out and appreciate your life? 2. Have you taken time in the last month to relax and meditate on purpose? 3. Always strive to draw connections between your pain and certain situational and emotional patterns, asking whether you were under unusual stress of any kind at the onset of your pain symptoms? Does it only occur when your driving, or when you’re angry or upset? 4. Be especially aware that, very often, thought precedes the pain, instead of the other way around. Does the pain develop in the morning after being absent all night? As Eric notes, you’ll find that you’ll be thinking about your back only a moment before the pain starts there. 5. If your pain went away previously using TMS self-treatment therapy “you can be close to positive it’s TMS again”. As Eric emphasizes, you have to “remember TMS is there to trick you and make you think each new pain is something physical.” 6. Does the quality of the pain (sharp, dull, ongoing, intermittent etc) match up with certain preconceived ideas you might have about how a particular symptoms might feel? If you recognize the connection, it probably is conditioned pain thinks Eric. 7. Does the pain have tendency to go away when you’re busy or preoccupied with something else? That is, does the pain disappear when you stop focusing on it? 8. Are you habitually TMSing? Do you tend to get upset when things don’t work out right? Do you always try to do your best but feel no matter how hard you try it’s never good enough? Such habits of mind lead to further anxiety, stress, tension, strain and pain. 9. When you help others in distress do you feel like you could or should have done more? 10. Unconscious psychological conditioning that you were not even aware of is the problem, not the way you move, lie or sit. 11. Practice thinking you’re not going to hurt each time before and after you do your conditioned activities like running, typing, exercising etc. 12. Start to be aware of your thoughts. 13. Start to expect that you won’t hurt each time you move in a conditioned way or else meditate on feeling and seeing yourself pain-free. Walt’s Journey - Chapter 5: Journaling 3: “Of Love and Sauerkraut”, pp. 131-142 Again, Walt’s Chapter 5 is based largely on a series of personal vignettes he has taken from his TMS journaling assignments. Thematically, it weaves together a series of incidents involving personal betrayal by tenants, friends and family members that lead his forgiving those who have gone out of their way to take advantage of his good nature. There’s Jake and Fran that Walt describes as the “Couple from Hell” who deliberately trashed the apartment Walt rented them in order to avoid paying rent. There’s Ed, the future do-nothing politician, who took Walt for a $2 grand advance while performing no work in return. And there’s even his dictatorial mother who arbitrarily threw out all of his high school momentos but who he felt guilty about being unable to take care of during his last years. Through this spiritual progression from anger to compassion, Walt also works his way back to an admittedly flawed Catholic Church. Incidentally, this isn’t very far from the same position many divines, like John Donne or Jonathan Swift, have come to by separating the ideal Church from the visible Church. Walt ends this chapter with a parable worthy of Aesop about Lawrence Anthony, the “Elephant Whisperer” and the extremely intelligent and compassionate animals he champion for so long that illustrates the little understood intuitive, empathetic connection between the minds of men and animals.