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From HEALING BACK PAIN two surprising (to me) facts

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by nowa, May 24, 2020.

  1. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    from page 1O8 of HEALING BACK PAIN

    'One of the most difficult concepts to grasp is the fact that one does not have to eliminate tension from one's life.
    People ask "how do I change my personality and how do I stop generating anxiety and anger"

    If these were prerequisites for recovery, my cure rate would be zero. it is not changing one's emotions; it is recognising that they exist and that the brain is trying to keep one from being aware of their existence through the mechanism of the pain syndrome.'

    AND from page 146

    'To the prescribers of treatments to promote relaxation . I would put the question "To what end?" What is your purpose in trying to relax the person?" What do you hope to accomplish?"

    There is no question that a calm, relaxed person will experience less pain, but again we are engaged in symptomatic treatment. The basic disorder is not being treated. And how much time each day can be devoted to the relaxing exercises? I advise my patients that meditation and relaxation exercises can't hurt, but one cannot depend on them for the definitive relief of pain.'
  2. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    That's why I always get a little confused when we (us on the forum) get sidetracked on the meditation train.... I am a wound up caffeinated Little Rabbit hopping from here to there... and yet I still am 100% recovered...and got it fassssst!

    I also seem to stick my hand in a lot of blenders...(stress) but as long as I maintain a certain simple attitude about pain and what it represents, I don't get symptoms

    I sometimes relax and read the Bible or Sarno or some other useful life text and that could be considered 'meditation' I suppose... but sitting still without a rock to sharpen my teeth on has eluded me all these 21 pain free years.

    HBP is my "gospel of Mark"... I always go back to it for basics.
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  3. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    I find it so liberating, that I don't have to change myself or relax... thanks for describing yourself, you sound a lot like me (apart from the caffeinated, it was coming off caffeine that finally did me in).
    Last edited: May 25, 2020
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  4. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    I agree! That is part of Dr. Sarno's genius, in my opinion: his advice undercuts the need to "fix." We're not adding pressure. This is really important, in that we're not pressured to do more or be more. You don't need to fix your body, and you don't need to fix your head. You only have to understand. That said, in my experience this understanding may have to go deep, and it may involve certain efforts!

    I appreciate you sharing this nowa!
  5. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    thank you Andy, it has made me realise that I have been mistakenly pressurising myself, trying to meditate and relax TO GET RID of the pain, now I can do it for pleasure...
    silentflutes, Baseball65 and plum like this.
  6. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    And there's the rub, i.e. you understand what is going on, but how do you get this understanding to go deep enough to make the brain give up on giving you symptoms? I feel like I've tried everything, but my mind/brain still hasn't fully got the message.
    Mars497@, nowa and Baseball65 like this.
  7. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle


    All the things that ‘heal’ me are coincidentally things that bring me pleasure. I enjoy yin yoga and meditation because I like how they feel. Everything in life can be viewed as pleasure/pain, approach/avoid, love/fear or soothe/rage.

    I’m an out and out sensualist and I make no apologies for it. My TMS started (and flares) when the balance tips. So long as I fill my cup with an abundance of pleasure (dancing, music, reading, cloud-watching, swimming etc), I’m sweet as pie.


    Being yourself is the ultimate freedom which is why Sarno so explicitly focused on people-pleasing as a dynamic that thoroughly screws you up. As a comedian whose name escapes me once said:

    “I want you to love me...
    (for who I am pretending to be.)”

    This gambit never goes well.

    I’m never going to be a fully tame and domestic good girl, my tail is too busy and wild for that. But I can be a great blend of fully human and domestic goddess and be very happy. I just need to howl at the moon sometimes.

    Be Yourself.
    Let yourself out.
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  8. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    Exactly!! that's how I feel, especially about my walking problems, which never go away and which make walking so f ing difficult that I find it impossible not to think about when I am actually walking it or to stop anticipating it... (with fear)
  9. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Nowa
  10. Neil

    Neil Peer Supporter

    All these spiritual teachers & healers have brainwashed & conditioned our minds to believe that we have this particular problem/issue/condition bcos there is something wrong with our thought process & we are negative thinkers & we need to change it & fix it otherwise it will further destroy us. They so shit scare us that we have no option but to fall for it.
    And yes yoga/meditation(except vipasanna) & other feel good healing energy modalities are placebo just like surgery, physio/chiro, massages etc.
    Boston Redsox likes this.
  11. Mars497@

    Mars497@ Peer Supporter

    Me too!
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  12. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    I agree ...meditation to me was a useless Exercise and a waste of time ...for others its might help ...but I agree your treating the symptoms..just like a chiropractor physical therapist or a pill ..
  13. nowa

    nowa Peer Supporter

    I don't know anything about vipasanna, I will research it, but could you explain why you have excepted it
  14. Mars497@

    Mars497@ Peer Supporter

    So @Boston Redsox what would your advice be for those of us that have increased muscle tension that seems to be the reason for our pain? I’m still working on GPD and I’m at the part that talks about how the tension is the perfect recipe for the onset/exacerbation of TMS. He wrote “During times of heightened tension, the body is already locked in fight or flight...” I’m paraphrasing what I think he’s getting at here but if we are seemingly tense and the fear of further pain makes it worse, what is a good way to ease that? I admit I’ve always been a bit of a tense person but not to the degree that it’s now causing me daily pain. I see that you are pain free but still the same “wound up caffeinated” guy. Was tension just not an issue for you? I’m just trying to understand as I too would feel so relieved to know I don’t necessarily need to become this zen meditator but can still find my way back to my functioning self. Because I am certainly not functioning. I’m just surviving day to day. And every time I feel like I’m making some progress, I get knocked down with something changing on me such as moving symptoms or varying intensities. That being said, I know my pain is something in my unconscious that wants to be heard. So I don’t want to be my old self again but rather an improved version of myself that is thriving again. Does that make sense?
  15. Mars497@

    Mars497@ Peer Supporter

    @Andy Bayliss can you explain a little more about “this understanding may have to go deep, it may involve certain efforts!”? As I wrote on my other reply on here, I’m working through Great Pain Deception and perhaps I’m just not there yet and need to keep reading before asking these questions. I’m still reading and will continue but any insight is appreciated.
  16. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member


    and just to clarify I am not pain free at all my Tms has not changed much in 10 yrs if anything anxiety and fear have gone down but not my pain still present everyday ...
    But I am learning acceptance and indifference to the pain I just don't give a shit anymore if it there or not...I can't ignore it it's there and I feel it but I just teaching my brain not to care I'm safe Im healthy and I move on..

    For me this has been the best way to turn down fight or flight and also exercise! I bike lift light weights and jog 2 miles everyday ...if I have high pain levels I walk and chill out.

    I am not saying meditation doesn't help people but for me it's just treating the Symptoms and also had no effect on calming my nervous system ...Sitting on the porch listens to sounds and some music helps a lot ...I hope this helped
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  17. Mars497@

    Mars497@ Peer Supporter

    Thank you for your explanation @Boston Redsox Every time someone on this site replies it helps. Just knowing there is support and people who understand is comforting.
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