The Center for Mind-Body Medicine

Journeying through Breast Cancer with CMBM

Spring Flowers

Diagnosed with cancer I, like many other cancer patients, was thrown into the dizzying world of doctors, hospitals, MRIs, biopsies, surgery, chemo and radiation at a terrifying pace. I am grateful to western, allopathic medicine, for all it had to offer me in terms of treating my cancer, and hopefully, getting rid of it. Yet it is the world of complementary medicine that has held the key to the quality of my life from that day forward.

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Don’t Give Up; Surrender

Don't Give Up

Let’s talk about the concept of “surrender.” Whenever I do events and signings for my recent book, Unexpected Grace: A Discover of Healing through Surrender, I inevitably get asked the question, “Who did you surrender to?”

The answer? No one. My concept of surrender doesn’t require that we give ourselves over to another person, party or even God. Surrendering isn’t about religion, giving in or resignation. We don’t have to surrender to anybody or anything to discover deep healing.

We just have to stop fighting.
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Shaking and Dancing in the Ring of Fire

Shaking and Dancing in the Ring of Fire

My participation in the first Center for Mind-Body Medicine training workshop in Israel in 2004 marked the beginning of a personal and professional transformation that reverberates in me still. Today, the integration of mind-body skills with CBT (cognitive behavioral treatment), of which I am a therapist, supervisor and instructor, is central to all that I do. I use them in a variety of cultural settings: Israeli, Palestinian, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, secular, ultra-orthodox.
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Enduring Presence

Enduring Presence

It has been 20 plus years since my first encounter with The Center for Mind-Body Medicine. In the early years I was part of the team that travelled to the refugee camps in Kosovo. We had the profound privilege of teaching our work to children, civilians, and professionals. All had suffered the traumas and anguish of war. I saw the transformations that resulted from our work; how enduring presence and teaching provided healing and growth. After “Soft Belly” breathing with a group of 40 people in a refugee camp, one man said that he hadn’t experienced a sense of safety and calm since the outbreak of the war in Kosovo until then. A young man in a small group I led felt free to cry for the first time after drawing a picture depicting the murder of his father in their home.
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Veterans Health Administration Uses Food As Medicine In Their Local Community

Veterans Health Administration Uses Food As Medicine In Their Local Community

After attending The Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM) several times and Food As Medicine (FAM) this past summer*, I continue to find the information to be brilliant. I purchased the FAM DVD and audio cassettes to share with our VA staff. Recently, our nutrition service received a grant to expand our weight management nutrition and exercise program into the local community.
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Saybrook University Offers a Master’s Degree in Mind-Body Medicine

Saybrook University Offers a Master's Degree in Mind-Body Medicine

Are you working as a nurse, physician, massage therapist, Reiki practitioner, acupuncturist, HR professional, nutritionist, educator, or fitness consultant? Do you have an ongoing yearning to maximize your expertise and make a difference in healthcare in some way? Are you seeking an advanced degrees to better understand the research and best practices known to enhance healthcare delivery and individual wellbeing?
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Saybrook University’s School of Mind-Body Medicine Offers Four PhD Specializations in Mind-Body Medicine

Saybrook

In August 2009, James S. Gordon and the Center for Mind-Body Medicine collaborated with Saybrook University, founding the Graduate School of Mind-Body Medicine for individuals pursuing a master’s degree and/or doctoral degree. As the program has grown over the years, the graduate school now provides four doctoral level specializations, to prepare graduates for careers in healthcare and mental healthcare. Influenced by the humanistic philosophy of Saybrook University, the central focus of each degree program and specialization emphasizes person-centered health care, and advocates the importance of integrating self-care, mind-body practices, and other alternative approaches within the mainstream of health and mental healthcare. The School of Mind-Body Medicine is designed as a hybrid program, which affords working professionals the opportunity to conveniently attend a maximum of three short residential conferences a year, as well as complete all of their coursework through online and videoconference technology.

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Childbirth Education: Mind-Body Medicine and the Power of a Well Asked Question

Mind-Body Medicine and the Power of a Well Asked Question

I teach a one-day childbirth preparation course — an odd phenomenon in itself, especially when you think that people will spend a year or two planning a wedding that is a single day’s event versus the birth of your child and the impact that childbirth has on one’s life and all of eternity.

Recently a single woman attended with her boyfriend, the father of their unborn child. She was both unusual and brave, as she openly acknowledged that this was not a “committed” relationship. Yet, here they were, questioning, open, at odds, yet together.
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All Will Be Well

All Will Be Well

“All is well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.” This phrase has been reassuring for me in times of stress and anxiety for years. The fifteen months between May of 2012 and August of 2013 were months that challenged Julian of Norwich’s words as I lost both parents and my husband. I felt I could barely come up for air from one death, one crisis, until another hit. My friends were concerned for me; I have health problems including multiple sclerosis, and stress can exacerbate the disease.
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Break and Shake

Break-Shake

It was day two, 3:00 in the afternoon, and time for a break. Dr. Gordon instructed us to stand up; he was going to play some music. We closed our eyes and were told to shake our bodies. We started from the ground up, gently bouncing, moving our ankles, knees, and then hips. Continuing up the body, we moved our torsos, shoulders, arms, and head. We shook like this for six minutes to music that had an almost hypnotic beat. Dr. Gordon counted the minutes and encouraged us to keep shaking, keep moving! Even though the last minute felt like eternity, my eyes were closed, my body was shaking, and for a moment I felt as if I were alone in the room (I should mention that I was actually one of 400).

The music stopped; we opened our eyes and took a few slow, deep breaths. Ready for part two, I was hopeful that it would not involve more shaking; I was worn out! Dr. Gordon instructed us to close our eyes and move our bodies in whatever way would feel good. The music started; I started to move my body and then I started to cry. The song was Three Little Birds, by Bob Marley. Even though I’ve heard this song a million times, this time was different; I drank in every word as if it were brand new. As Bob Marley sang to me, “Don’t worry, ‘bout a thing, because every little thing is gonna be alright.” a huge weight was lifted off of me; I felt lighter, I could breathe! At the time, I was a medical mess, lots of tests, waiting for results, and fretting about the future. Obviously, I was letting my personal situation weigh on me more than I realized. I wasn’t fully present and I needed to let the worry go.

The importance of being free and in the moment cannot be over stated; I realized that I was not a participant in my own life; my body was in the room but my mind was elsewhere. Now I know that I need to welcome myself and allow myself to be present. Hello self, I’m so glad you’re here!

Author: Kelly Rulle

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