This is an image of Haripriya Suraj & Suraj Manjunath - When Spirit Meets Science
mindfulness

Life Lessons Over Chocolate

The wisdom life offers in every moment is never-ending.

An evening out with my husband Suraj brought forth two important lessons.

More Is Not Necessarily Better Than Less

When eaten mindfully, two small pieces of chocolate bring as much pleasure as one giant bar! After a sumptuous dinner, Suraj and I felt we ought not to put more pressure on our tummies by indulging in a plateful of dessert. The Cafe honoured our request and served us just two pieces of chocolate. While it appeared hilarious to have this teensy quantity of chocolate served on a plate and I couldn’t stop laughing about it, the truth is that we relished every bite of it! It inspired us to eat the little we had mindfully. The same wisdom of mindfulness can be applied to several areas of life where more is not necessarily better than less.

Time Can Be Created

Unless you consciously create time for your relationships, you will never find it. In today’s fast-paced world, where we always have bills to pay, calls to take, emails to reply to, homes to maintain, children to look after and a hundred other things on our daily to-do list, it may feel impossible to find time for the people who matter most. Relationships, like plants, can stop growing unless you make an effort to nurture them. Time is an illusion. If you really want to, you can certainly ‘create(not find) quality time with your loved ones.

And what better way to connect than over some chocolate!

This is an image showing healing in a post by Haripriya Suraj in the blog 'When Spirit Meets Science.'
energy medicine, personal, reiki

The Healing Energy Of Young Children

My little toddler is a bundle of energy and knows how to keep everyone on their toes! Her activity is not just restricted to the day but spills over to the nights too.

She often wakes up around 3 a.m. and stays up and about till the break of dawn. This is the time when my energy is lowest and I can barely open my eyes, forget the possibility of playing with an energetic one-year-old!

My husband, being a surgeon, is more accustomed to erratic sleeping hours and most often steps in to do the night shifts with the little one. However, if he has surgery scheduled for early the next morning, I take over so he can get some quality sleep.

Recently, on one such night, my toddler was cranky when she woke up. She did not want to play but wanted to be held instead. I had barely had two hours of sleep and I spent the rest of the night holding her. This went on until 5:30 a.m. By this time, my eyes were heavy and I realised I couldn’t keep them open any longer. I put her back in her crib assuming she would be ready to go back to sleep too. However, she stood up and began sobbing. My heart melted, for it was apparent she was in some sort of distress. I lifted her out of the crib and put her beside me on my bed.

It was 6 a.m. already and I knew I just had some time left for a snooze. I was certain I would wake up feeling cranky and a bad day would follow.

As I drifted into slumber, I could feel my little angel’s warmth enveloping me. I am not sure how exactly to describe the experience but it almost felt like a Reiki session in progress. I felt a soft sweet energy flowing from her to me. The negative loop in my head soon stopped playing. And I fell into deep slumber.

I woke up 45 minutes later and saw my little daughter fast asleep beside me.

I knew something had shifted within me from having her beside me. I woke up feeling as recharged as I would be after my six hours of sleep. My worries about having a bad day had transformed into positive anticipation and I looked forward to the goodness the day could bring. And yes, I did have a great day!

I have no idea what the logic to this experience could be. But I personally feel some magic unfolded in those minutes. I was holding her for several hours prior and do so every single day, but those few minutes stood out in some way.

Young children are pure souls. Their energy is light and uncontaminated. I feel some of her purity rubbed off on me and healed my grumpiness.

I am grateful for the sweet energy young children bring into this world. I believe they are the closest representation of divine love and purity.

energy medicine, reiki, Spirit, when spirit meets science

Divine Downloads: Tapping Into The Force Of Creative Flow

I have always felt the book ‘When Spirit Meets Science’ was a ‘divine download.’

The idea for the book came to me as a vision when I was in deep meditation one morning in the December of 2018.

I casually mentioned this to my partner Suraj and asked what he thought of it. He immediately said it would be a good idea for us to work on it and bring it into reality.

The book, which we began authoring in early February 2019, was ready by the end of the month.

The creation of the book was effortless. It almost felt like someone was dictating the content and we were only putting whatever came to us down on paper.

This is what I mean by a ‘divine download’ – when a project just flows and requires minimal human effort; when it almost feels like another force is at work to make it happen.

This force is not something ‘out’ there.

I personally believe and feel this force is part of each one of us.

It is an aspect of our own consciousness.

It may be unexplored territory for many of us.

It is not something concrete that can be measured or explained by the physical senses.

If you begin to look for evidence to support the existence of such a force, it most certainly will leave you disappointed.

In energy healing circles, we believe we tap into this inspirational and creative force through the ‘third eye’ energy centre, the space between the eyebrows.

From a scientific perspective, I am certain there is a centre in the brain that governs creativity.

But here we are talking about much more than creative function or capacity. We are talking about an inspired and effortless flow of activity that ends in the creation of a beautiful piece of work.

A certain level of trust and surrender may be necessary for one to experience ‘effortless flow’. If the logical mind is going to overpower you and you begin to feel you are imagining things, it may be harder to get a taste of the ‘flow state.’

Don’t get me wrong! The logical mind is a valuable asset and this work we are doing is all about integrating the forces of magic and logic. However, at times, the barrier of the logical mind can be so hard to break that being open to different experiences becomes literally impossible.

Practices like Reiki and meditation can help one experience a state of flow easily.

I can go on and on about this but no amount of my explaining can do as much justice to these concepts as can your personal experience of them.

Do you feel ready to explore different dimensions of yourself?

Maybe even access some Divine Downloads waiting to be birthed through you?

Have fun exploring!

This is an image of Yin Yang in an article on Divine Feminine & Divine Masculine based on the book 'When Spirit Meetes Science'
when spirit meets science

The Dance Of The Divine Feminine & Divine Masculine

The Divine Feminine refers to the Feminine Energetic Component of creation, while the Divine Masculine refers to the Masculine Energetic Component.

It does not matter if one is born a woman or man, for these terms do not represent the gender of an individual. They represent the essence of the Feminine and Masculine energies. However, if you are a woman, you may find it easier to tune in to the Divine Feminine, and if you are a man, you may connect more to the Divine Masculine.

To bring in greater balance, it is possible and also necessary to tune in to the opposite energy from time to time.

Going with the flow of life, taking things slow, being soft and gentle, operating from your intuition, expressing your creative potential, and nurturing yourself or others are examples of the Divine Feminine at work.

Planning & strategizing, taking efficient and swift action, being tough, harnessing the power of your logical mind and providing for yourself or others are examples of the Divine Masculine at work.

Don’t we all do some or all of the above at different times?

Strong rational Masculine

And soft intuitive Feminine,

When thee merge in time divine,

Earth and Sky awaken and shine

This little poem is taken from the book ‘When Spirit Meets Science.’

Enjoy discovering and connecting to your Divine Feminine & Divine Masculine!

modern medicine, when spirit meets science

First Encounters With Surgery & Life Lessons

Every experience is a teacher. And the greatest lessons are often taught by the people closest to us!

Back in 2007, in the early days of his career as a cancer surgeon, my husband Suraj (then fiance) was also tending to general surgical cases. He was also ‘on call’ a few times every month. This meant he had to attend to emergency surgeries through the night in addition to his routine surgical work during the day.

The hospital he worked for at that time was a high-volume centre. The on-call nights saw a minimum of three or four surgeries lined up for him, sometimes more!

That year was our courtship period. The possibility of us meeting the next day depended on the number of surgeries he had to perform the previous night!

Appendicitis, peritonitis, intestinal obstruction, accident and trauma were the most common cases that came streaming into the Emergency Room.

Suraj was also a mentor for students training in surgery. I marveled at the stamina possessed by him and the team of students. It was hard for me to imagine how these folks could work through the day and then stay up all night performing multiple surgeries!

I was even more stunned by the cancer surgeries being performed. For cases of esophagal cancer, a portion of the stomach could be used to create another esophagus. In certain cases of rectal cancer, a separate opening called stoma could be created for the elimination of digestive waste. Often, portions of organs affected by cancer ( such as liver or intestine) would need to be removed and patients would continue to lead a near-normal life after recovering from surgery.

I knew modern medicine had made tremendous progress in the twentieth century. But I had no clue such sophisticated procedures could be performed.

For someone like me, who feels rather nervous at the sight of blood, it was overwhelming yet inspiring to watch surgeons encounter blood, day in and day out.

I also felt it required tremendous courage to cut open another human being and set right whatever had malfunctioned within their body.

Our partnership also brought out some of my own subconscious fears and anxieties around health and blood in particular.

On the spiritual path, we believe that every close relationship acts as a mirror. Partners mirror to us our weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

Being a sensitive person, I am sometimes prone to unnecessary and irrational anxiety. My partner’s courage and rationality serve as a mirror and present to me a choice to work on irrational fears.

What lessons do your dear ones teach you?

Look closely and you may see the mirror they hold up for you!

energy medicine, reiki, Spirit, Uncategorized

Energy Body : Meaning & Significance

Working with the ‘Energy Body’ is an integral aspect of wellness therapies like Reiki.

The Energy Body also goes by other names such as aura and energy field.

The Energy Body is typically depicted as an invisible field of energy around the physical body. It is not static. Instead, it is seen as a fluid and dynamic field that intermingles with the physical body.

From a practical standpoint, the Energy Body represents the sum total of an individual’s quality of life. This includes –

  1. Physical Health & Wellness – How healthy an individual is and how good they feel in their body.
  2. Mental Makeup – What kind of thoughts pre-occupy an individual’s mind, how they harness the power of their mind , does their mind mostly work for or against them.
  3. Emotional Wellbeing – How an individual feels and processes their positive as well as negative emotions.
  4. Social Support & Connection – How connected one feels to family, friends and to the world at large, what is the quality of these connections.
  5. Spiritual Strength – How much one is able to tap in to their source of inner strength, what is their level of connection to the Universe (or a higher non-physical power) and their ability to feel supported by the same.

The Energy Body is divided into sub-systems called ‘Chakras’ or ‘Energy Centres.’ Each of the Chakras represents a certain aspect of human life.

Since the Energy Body and its Chakras cannot be seen or measured in a concrete manner, their existence may be labeled a ‘hypothesis,’ when viewed through a scientific lens. Such concepts may also seem illusory to many.

However, before dismissing the hypothesis, it may help to reflect on the inherent wisdom it contains and the potential it holds to help people create well-being in their lives (the significance of each Chakra shall be discussed in detail in future posts).

When we work on a specific chakra, we work on a certain aspect of life and strive to bring it into balance and harmony. In other words, we work on becoming better.

When we work consciously on each of the chakras, we address almost all aspects of human existence and move towards creating a well-grounded and well-rounded life.

This is one of the primary goals of energy based wellness therapies.

Uncategorized

The Marvels of Modern Medicine

Modern Medicine is one of the greatest offerings of Science.

As a child, I looked up to modern medicine. I loved being checked on gently by my kind-hearted physician. I knew that a visit to his clinic would often involve receiving a bottle of colourful potion, drinking which would help me feel better!

I watched my grandparents with multiple health problems lead long lives of fairly good quality, while the generation prior to theirs succumbed to simple illnesses in their forties and fifties. Thanks to the support of modern medicine, my grandparents lived into their eighties.

My own life was saved by modern medicine when I developed a pregnancy-induced life-threatening condition. Had I developed the same condition a century ago, I would have been one among millions of women who lost their lives to pregnancy.

Much of what we take for granted today posed a huge threat to our ancestors – smallpox, typhoid, cholera, rabies, snakebites, measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus and the list goes on.

Appendicitis meant death in the past whereas today it is no big deal at all!

Anaesthesia for surgical procedures is another feather in the cap. It’s hard to imagine how terrifying it may feel to be cut open without being put to sleep!

The life-saving measures offered by modern healthcare, both in the form of medicine and surgery, are one of its greatest contributions to humanity.

Certain common health conditions like diabetes and hypertension may not have a cure yet but they can certainly be managed well through a combination of medicine and lifestyle measures.

Vaccinations are another significant contribution of medical science. All of us reading this have witnessed the havoc caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. While some are not for vaccines, the fact remains that vaccination has been a safe and reliable solution for several million people in the last few decades and more recently during the Covid outbreak.

I am sometimes asked why science must focus on the remedies to illness. Why not teach people to be well so we can prevent illness from developing in the first place?

My answer is that illness is part of the world we live in.

As wellness practitioners, we can certainly teach people about how to stay well.

But does that guarantee that illness will disappear?

All of us need the support of healthcare from time to time, even if just for simple health concerns.

Let’s intend and work towards creating a safe and disease-free world.

Let’s work towards helping people embrace wellness.

At the same time, it is important to be awake to the fact that illness is as much a part of the current world as wellness.

Opposites co-exist on this plane of duality called Planet Earth.

For as long as this is the case, healthcare is required.

Wellness can go hand in hand with medical care (where required).

Medicine has always been part of humankind’s history.

The Native Medicine of the past has evolved into the Modern Medicine of today.

When we take a moment to see how far we have come due to the progress made by medical science, we may find ourselves feeling grateful for it.

Thank you, Science!

Uncategorized

Your Body Is More Than A Machine

The human body is one of the greatest marvels of creation.

It is so close to us that we often take its magic for granted!

Spend some time contemplating the groundbreaking work your body accomplishes every moment and you may just find a renewed sense of appreciation for it.

Your body is bubbling with intelligent life!

You are able to experience this beautiful creation, thanks to your body.

Are you able to see the vivid colours around you?

Say thanks to your eyes.

Are you able to smell the fresh rain-kissed mud?

Say thanks to your nose.

Are you able to eat and drink?

Say thanks to your digestive system.

Do you walk, run or dance?

Express gratitude to your legs.

Are you able to understand and process the information you are reading here?

Express gratitude to your brain.

The list can go on and on….

Every part, organ and system in your body works tirelessly to keep you alive and well.

It is hard to even comprehend how the body manages to accomplishes such a feat!

The body is not just a mechanical system. We may be so used to its presence that we begin to view and treat it like a machine. In truth, the body is a brilliant work of science and art and it deserves love and care from the one inhabiting it.

Take a minute each day to express your appreciation for your body.

Send love to your body.

Do whatever it takes to support your body. No excuses!

Eating a wholesome diet, exercising, taking time to rest well – all of these are common sense but can feel like a big deal to achieve in today’s fast-paced world.

Who wants to spend time connecting to the body when there are more important things to do?

But remember you are able to do the more ‘important’ things only because your body is supporting you.

All it takes is a twisted ankle or swollen eye to appreciate the remarkable gift of good health the body strives to maintain in each moment.

When you begin to recognise the invaluable contribution made by your body, you develop a love and reverence for it. Neglecting or abusing it in any way becomes impossible. Wellness practices like Reiki and meditation can also help you connect with your body.

The body is a gift of the Universe to you.

Honour it. Bless it. Love it!

Uncategorized

Healing The Clash Between Energy Medicine & Modern Medicine?

As a Reiki healer, my work involves applying principles of energy healing to create wellness for myself and also to help others who are seeking the same.

So why am I choosing to write about modern medicine?

Over the years, I have witnessed an unhealthy clash develop between the worlds of energy and modern medicine. I feel this clash is uncalled for and arises from misconceptions that have formed around modern medicine.

In the year 2007, Reiki synchronistically opened doors for me to view and understand the system of modern medicine and to appreciate the possibilities for healing it brings to this world.

Taking a peek into the world of modern medicine and liking what I saw was not easy. It meant having to periodically clash with the viewpoints of my dear friends in the energy healing community. This was not fun at all, for my energy healer friends are my kind of people, my tribe! They are beautiful souls I can be myself with. I can show my flawed human self to them without fear of judgment and they can do the same with me. We share a bond cemented by unconditional love. Therefore, clashing over a topic like medicine felt rather painful.

Having understood the principles of medical science thoroughly, I could no more find a valid enough reason to be critical of it or to compare it with energy healing. This isn’t to imply that medicine is always practised perfectly. It just means I developed a sense of appreciation for the foundation on which modern medicine is based. As in every other profession, it requires a competent and compassionate healthcare professional to execute it well.

Being an energy healer, it is hard for me to make statements like-

“Modern Medicine treats only the manifestation of the illness and not the root cause.”

“Pharmaceuticals must be avoided because they have side effects.”

Medicine may treat only the manifestation of illness but that doesn’t make it any less significant. Very often, the manifestation of an illness has to be addressed on priority. Modern Medicine is life-giving and life-saving. And this isn’t only in the case of emergencies like heart attacks or accidents. If we look closely into our own households, we can see that it spans way beyond that. Almost all of us know someone who is alive or healthy today only because modern medicine helped them manage a ‘non-emergency’ health condition effectively.

Pharmaceuticals have side effects. But do they deliver the results they are expected to? Almost always!

The side effects of every pharma drug are rigorously documented. There is no sugar coating or guessing game. Besides, these drugs are meant to be prescribed only when their benefits are much greater than their risks. They aren’t meant to be consumed for pleasure, like chocolate! They must be taken when required and this is not something to be ashamed of or looked down upon. Several energy healers feel they are letting their body down if they so much as pop one pill. I personally feel it isn’t necessary to punish ourselves with these beliefs.

Comparing the two streams of healing is similar to comparing a tiger with a cow! It doesn’t make sense to say a tiger is bad and a cow is good or vice versa. It also isn’t fair to compare these creatures without understanding the larger purpose each of them serves in the ecosystem.

The strength and alertness of the tiger are as appreciable as the gentleness and calm of the cow!

So why compare and clash?

It is possible to drop all judgment and be empty.

Let us honour each path for exactly what it offers!

Uncategorized

The Promise of Science

Considering my history, I find it interesting that I feel inspired to write about science today!

As a student, science was never a subject I looked forward to studying. I did not like that it had to be learnt by rote. Mugging up scientific facts and theories without understanding their essence ripped the joy out of learning and concepts remained vague.

Over the years, I began to despise science for I felt it was reserved for an elite section of individuals with a special intelligence and I presumed I did not possess it.

Several years down the line, when learning science was just part of my history, I bumped into my partner Suraj who had an in-depth understanding of science – not just knowledge of fancy theories but varied applications too. And this opened doors for me to learn science again! Not just to learn but also to appreciate it.

It’s amazing how much people we know can teach us if only we are willing to learn.

Co-authoring the book ‘When Spirit Meets Science’ with Suraj made me understand and appreciate one of the core principles upon which the world of science is based.

A hypothesis is rigorously tested before it is presented as fact to the world.

I never appreciated the importance of this principle until I began to ponder the fact that if airplanes weren’t rigorously tested and sure to fly, no one would have the courage to board them.

If anaesthesia wasn’t guaranteed to put people to sleep during surgery, no patient would step into an operation theatre!

If electronic and electrical gadgets were not certified to work as they do, no one would spend money acquiring them.

Science is a huge part of everyone’s life today, irrespective of whether we notice, appreciate or understand it.

All scientific and technological inventions come with a guarantee of working as they are expected to. There is the occasional plane that crashes or gadget that malfunctions. But those are the exceptions. Most of the time, science delivers results almost perfectly.

A hypothesis is rigorously tested before it is presented as fact to the world.

That is the promise of science.

And also its greatest blessing!