2010 Newsletter

Chiropractic Healing Missions Of The Himalayas

For almost three decades now Sacred Journeys have been leading people into the mountains of China and Tibet for adventure, study and fun. One of the most rewarding aspects of our Sacred Journeys has been our healing missions. We have been extremely honored to bring many types of health care practitioners such as MDs, TCM docs, Chiros, PTs herbalists and massage therapists to the mountains to study their indigenous culture and forms of medicine while at the same time offering our health care services to the local people. This healing cultural exchange has enriched the lives of both our participants and the local people we visit tremendously.

Chiropractics are one of the most popular and effective forms of health care we bring up into the mountains on Sacred Journeys. All chiropractors really need is their heart and their hands and they can do a tremendous amount of healing work. A chiropractor doesn't need any equipment to perform their services in the field. Of course back at the office they have complex tables and maybe some massage equipment but up in the mountains they can use the locals beds, meditation seats, tables or even do a lot of work standing up. This is one of the special qualities of chiropractic care because equipment up in the mountains is negligible and hauling it up there is impossible.

Monks, nuns and hermits living high up in the small temples and cave retreats live a pretty tough life. Though they are full of light and usually have great visceral health they sit for very long periods of time when chanting and meditating. They also have to haul food and gear on their backs up and down the mountains so subluxations are very common leading to many musculo-skeletal, and even visceral health issues. A chiropractor's diagnosis is based on their observation and palpation of the patient and a diagnosis can be rendered very quickly. Then with just a quick adjustment or two they can realign the bones so that the nerves are released, the blood can flow, the pain is relieved, and the illness is pacified. In a short amount of time many patients can be successfully treated and the general health of a monastery, hermitage or village can be greatly elevated in a short amount of time.

There are many forms of chiropractics and related health care services. On our China and Tibet Healing Missions chiropractors simply use the same approach in the mountains as they do at home in their offices. They can work as much or little as they like and take out plenty of time for self reflection, meditation and contemplation or, simply hang out with the locals, explore their ancient culture and have a good time. Many chiropractors are great humanitarians. WCA members have set up healing missions in South America, Africa, India, Asia and we've been hosting annual healing missions up in the high mountains of China and Tibet for twenty seven years. If you aspire to help the people of the Himalayan Mountains then please consider making yours a sacred journey.

Live to serve and serve to live, this is the path of the Bodhisattva!

TCM Healing Missions Of The Himalayas

Sacred Journey's TCM Healing Missions in China and Tibet started in 1986 after Linhai graduated from his barefoot doctor's course in Emei Zen TCM. After learning the Emei System he traveled throughout China diagnosing and treating many many patients with great enthusiasm and success. He has made an annual pilgrimage to Emei Mountain every year and brings other TCM practitioners and health care providers to the mountain to deepen their knowledge of Classical TCM in general and to learn the Emei Zen TCM system in specific. One of the great qualities of the Emei Zen TCM system is that participants don't need any prior medical experience. They don't need to know any anatomy, physiology, pathology, meridians or points at all. Just come to the mountain with a fresh and open mind and its medical wisdom will be revealed. The Emei Zen TCM system is extremely easy to learn and apply so it is great for TCM students who want to develop a practice or TCM PhDs who want to take up the path of TCMs inner cultivations and realizations. The Emei Zen TCMs methods of diagnosis and treatment is based on energy awareness instead of just physical observation or intellectual memorization of anatomy, pathologies and points. In diagnosis the greater the awareness the greater the diagnosis. It's impossible to know how a person's vision will open just by receiving the qianneng empowerment at the beginning of the trip, but through the empowerment and cultivating the qigong, meditation and therapy systems everyone can develop exraordinary abilities to diagnose and treat disease. The Emei empowerment is called the qianneng empowerment, which means empowering, and revealing, the innate potential. Everyone has this innate potential and the empowerment helps to activate it. The cultivation system helps to strengthen it and the therapy application system is an expression of it.

From the Emei Zen TCM training and healing missions in Sichuan, Province we often travel even further into the hinter lands of the great Tibetan plateau. There we travel by horse back to get way up into the mountains and high plains grass lands to visit the ancient villages that time forgot. Tucked up in the middle of nowhere these villagers have never seen a formal doctor with modern medical training much less people from another country. Once they begin to see the positive effects of our healing mission people from all around come to see us sometimes walking for hours and days to get there. From the high mountain villages we also go up into the high plains grass lands and visit the nomad camps. When successfully treating these rustic people you know you are make an amazingly positive change that can last a life time. Their gratitude is over whelming and the grace is reassuring that you are doing the good work.

Like chiropractors there are many many different schools of TCM. Even though TCM comes from China the country is vast and mountainous so villages all around China have different traditions of their own and the doctors that we bring on the journey can offer a great supplement to what they are doing and in the exchanging process learn their forms of local medicine much of which has a spiritual nature. For TCM physicians from other countries there are no requirements. You can offer the same type of services you do back home in your office or practice the techniques you learn on sacred journeys. You can see as many patients as you want and still have plenty of time for your own exploration, meditation, contemplation or join in the festivities of the mountain villages and high plains nomads. Generosity is the first Perfection of the Buddha's teachings and with the open heart of bodhicitta doctors who come to the mountains to help alleviate the pain and suffering of the mountain people benefits can only by Buddhas be told.

Live to serve and serve to live, this is the path of the Bodhisattva!

Other Healing Missions Of The Himalayas

The field of medicine originated in the spirit of compassion to try and help heal the pain and suffering of the world. In the west the originators of medicine were religious priests who were looking to heal the body, mind and spirit. When the Europeans came to the Americas preachers were the ones who provided health care for their flock. The indigenous people of the Americas had their own medicine men who were also highly connected to spirit. In the east medicine originated with the shamans and the Daoists and merged with confucianism and Buddhism. It wasn't really until the secularization and commercialization of medicine that compassion began to wane from the practice. Even though there are still many lineages of traditional and classical medicine left in the world they are being consumed by globalization and the light of their enlightened activity is like a candle blowing in the wind, which can be blown out at any time. In a chiropractor friend's office he has a sign that says, "tylenol is not the cure for back pain", yet quite often that's the only health care tool that people know of and turn to. Many people don't know of all the wholistic opportunities that exist for a possible cure.

Even in these degenerate times when corporate medicine seems to have lost its compassion and sometimes creates as much harm as it does healing there are still health care providers who are driven by compassion who want to truly help heal the world. Besides TCM and chiropractics there are many types of health care that could really be beneficial for humanitarian work in the Healing Missions of the Himalayas. If you have a special health care technique that you think you can use in the high mountains such as dentistry, ophthalmology, gastroenterology or anything else please consider coming along on one of our healing missions and really make your journey sacred.

Sacred Journeys is just starting a new project called Visions of Tibet. In Tibet there are thousand of monasteries and little villages that are cut off from the rest of the world. Every year Sacred Journeys healing missions go up to the hinter land to provide care for the locals. Many of the older monks, nuns and lay people wear out their eyes reading their holy scriptures because of the low light conditions in the evenings and lack of eye care they loose their ability to read. Visions of Tibet is asking people to send in their old discarded reading glasses and we will give them to the people of the mountains who can really use them to keep studying and chanting their holy scriptures. If you have any suggestions or health care skills that you would like to bring to the people of the Himalayan Mountains please let us know. They would be greatly appreciated.

Live to serve and serve to live, this is the path of the Bodhisattva!

Tibet, As It Is!

Just like the Middle Way, The Great Symbol or the Great Perfection of Tibetan Buddhism, Tibet is perfect just as it is! Perfect in the beginning, middle and end, and perfect on the outer, inner and secret levels of existence. It’s not that Tibet has been destroyed or has ever been a paradise but that for those who are bound by their own karma, the six realms of existence automatically appears, and where they exist in the six realms, is up to the resultant fruition of their own karma. Unfortunately, they can’t blame their karma on their parents, their teachers, demons, evil spirits, the Buddhas and Bodhisattva or the government. How people experience Tibet is solely based on their own karma and no one else’s. If someone has a negative experience in Tibet then that’s their own negative karma. If someone has a positive experience in Tibet then that’s their own positive karma. Whether someone has had a good or bad experience in Tibet is therefore based on their own prior conduct and present karma, regardless if they are a layperson or a lama. Many people with less than positive Tibetan karma had to leave during the Cultural Revolution and when they came west they brought their karma with them. However, their karma of Tibet doesn’t have to be yours!

There are many western citizens who have a nihilistically fixated view of Tibet even though they’ve never been to Tibet. Even more unfortunate is that there are western students of Tibet Buddhism who simply repeat the mantra, “it’s all been destroyed’ like a robot even though they’ve never been to Tibet either. Even sadder is that there are teachers of Tibetan Buddhism who expound the view of the Middle Way, Great Symbol or Great Perfection during the seminar and after the dedication prayers are over they return to the nihilistic fixation of the “it’s all destroyed” mantra. It’s very sad too see minds permeated with such nihilism, which is unhopeful, sad, depressing, pessimistic and leaves now room for possibility, growth or awakening. If they simply recited Om mani padme hum instead they would be able to transform their nihilistic fixation into positive, hopeful, and optimistic phenomena instead, and eventually be freed from both, which is really the mind of the Buddha. Only mortals believe in existence. Arhats believe in non-existence. However the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas neither believe nor disbelieve in either or both. Free from the extremes of attachment and aversion they need to free nothing because they themselves are already free. So, if you really want to Free Tibet then you should free your mind first.

Sacred Journeys has enjoyed extremely positive Tibetan karma leading pilgrimages, study tours, adventure travel and healing missions to the roof of the world for the past three decades. It’s been an amazing blessing. Tibet, like the rest of China has undergone an unbelievable metamorphosis from the devastation of colonialism and revolution to a socialist free market society, which has created the great Tibetan and Chinese renaissance of today. Their culture is flourishing, the temples are booming, monks and nuns are busily chanting and their societies have grown out of poverty into an affluence that equals our own. Even though the six realms still exists the eastern wind that is blowing thorough the world today is far more hopefull than the nihilism of yesterday. Instead of simply adopting the vibration of people who didn’t have such a positive experience in Tibet when they were there forty years ago we should all go to Tibet to see for ourselves what it’s really like, and have our own Tibetan experience, for as the saying goes, “you’ve got to go to know”. Then when someone asks you about Tibet at least you can own your own opinion. And, if you are fortunate enough to receive the transmission of the Great Perfection then you just might find that Tibet really is perfect just as it is, with nothing to add and nothing to take away, free from the stains of attachment and aversion, resting in the nature of mind, the real blessings of Tibet are obtained.

It’s not that Tibet is nihilistically or eternalistically fixated, only sentient being can be fixated, but through the cultivation of the Buddha dharma you can free your mind of both!

A gift from the Buddha, Guru Rinpoche

If you are a disciple, follower or student of the Buddha Guru Rinpoche then Sacred Journeys would like to give you a special gift. Lamas and students all around the world know many of the famous stories of Guru Rinpoche, most especially of how he established Tibet as a Buddhist nation. During the eighth century the Tibetan King Trisong Detsun tried to build a Buddhist monastery during the day but demons would destroy it at night. So the king invited Guru Rinpoche to Tibet to defeat the demons, build the monastery and establish Tibet as a Buddhist nation. Most people know the story but very few people know the mechanics of how he actually did it. Well, When Guru Rinpoche came to the Samye Valley he stood on top of Hepori Hill and made it rain meteoric iron clearing out all of the demons in the entire valley so that the Samye Monastery, which still stands today, can be erected and Buddhism take root in hte land of snows.

Then with the help of the king, workers, and the newly transformed dharma protectors, Guru Rinpoche built the Samye Monastery based on a cosmic mandala with stupas surrounding the perimeter representing the cosmos, the four great stupas representing the four directions, and the main chapel built in three stories representing the three kayas and the three dharma kingdoms of India, China and Tibet. There are many chapels, practice centers and a university all within this inconceivable mandala. Though this might sound like a fairy tale to some, this is the actual history of the Samye Monastery and how it exists today. The little rain drops of meteoric iron that Guru Rinpoche used to dispel the demons can still be found throughout the valley and if you have a good karmic connection with the glorious Guru Rinpoche you might find one yourself.

If you are a student, disciple, follower or believe in Guru Rinpoche and are following his teachings practicing the nundro, tsa-lung-tigle and Dzog Chen teachings then send a self address stamped envelop to Sacred Journeys and we’ll send you a meteoric rain drop relic that Guru Rinpoche used to dispel the demons and consecrate the holy land of Samye. Sacred Journeys also has some protection cords from the deep recesses of the cave complexes where Guru Rinpoche stayed in retreat. You can put it in a relic stupa, a statue, a wish fulfilling vase, or simply put it on your shrine so that you can bring Guru Rinpoche’s blessings and protection into your shrine room.

Guru Rinpoche’s Blessings are profound, may they benefit all sentient beings!

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