The Splendid Alternative

Some people can apparently look deep into the internal processes of their own or someone else’s body simply by closing their eyes. Dr. Shafica Karagulla, a neuro psychiatrist, spent many years studying this phenomenon. As a doctor and psychiatrist she was able to gain the trust of other doctors when lecturing on the subject, and found that many of them use it to aid their diagnosis (1)

Recently my son Leon and I sat with a man, Andrew, who wanted to experiment with this ability. Andrew had been using the internal sight for some years, but wanted to test it with ourselves as witnesses. As a subject, Leon, who is reading natural science at Cambridge, chose a question about stick insects he was observing. For two days he had seen that occasionally they held a drop of water between their front legs. He could not decide whether this was condensation they drank or something they produced. If they did produce it why?

Andrew knew little about stick insects. He closed his eyes and told us in moments that he had a sense of observing the insects internally. “I have the feeling that a difference arises between the creatures internal fluids and its environment. The creature has no organ for discharging excess body fluids, so it discharges it from its mouth. This has something to do with the atmospheric pressure and its body fluids.”

Within an hour of searching through text books on the insects, Leon found information which enabled us to check Andrew’s statement. The textbook said that as the class of insects did not have organs to specifically excrete body fluids, excess fluids were discharged using a salivary gland in the mouth.

At times human beings are capable of the most extraordinary things. Sometimes these are explained in a way to make them sound mysterious or disturbing, and sometimes in a manner to deflect interest from them. George Washington Carver, one of the USA’s greatest scientists (2) played down his own abilities in this area. Having by his own efforts revolutionised the agriculture of the American South, he was faced with a crisis arising from his success. He had pressed the poor black farmers to stop growing cotton, which depleted the soil, and plant peanuts. A huge glut of peanuts resulted, leaving the farmers without a saleable product.

Carver shut himself in his laboratory and prayed. He threw into that obscure place within himself that Andrew tapped, the question of what could be done with the peanut. Information started bubbling up into his conscious mind. He tested it. After three days, during which time he had not emerged from his laboratory, he had solved the problem. Out of his internal quest he had defined ways of producing oils, creosote, salad cream, fibre boards, paint, and several dozen synthesized products, all from the peanut and its shell.

In recent years evidence has shown that attempting to mobilize our own splendid alternative of self-healing can greatly aid recovery during serious illness. In fact crisis is the best time to try accessing our own potential in alternative problem solving. The wild talents humans have are not limited to looking into the secrets of the body or nature. They include healing of ills; an amazingly heightened perception of other people and the world, which usually brings depths of understanding not previously achieved; insight into where our own or other peoples participation in events is leading; an ability to know the history of objects; and many more. Being in need, or having serious reasons to access our alternative sources of information and power, is one of the best ways of producing a response.

After teaching for a month in Greece, I was lodging at a study centre in Athens for a week waiting my flight home. During the middle of the week I developed a gum infection. I had experienced this once before. It had lasted for several days, and at times caused me to be delirious. It was cured only by antibiotics. The pain of the present infection became so intense during the night I got up at two a.m. and searched the bungalow for pain killers. I couldn’t find any and felt homesick and a long way from my doctor and dentist.

I paced the floor for a while holding my face; thought of waking the manager of the centre in another building, but then remembered that for the past month I had been encouraging people to reach out for the MORE when they needed it. The More being their own potential ‘splendid alternatives’- and I needed it. My gum was so swollen it was beginning to overlap the back tooth.

In front of where I stood was a photograph of Sai Baba, an Indian guru connected with the centre. I took his image to represent the help I needed, reached out and touched the photograph, touched my cheek and said, “Please help me. I need it.” Still with the pain I crawled into bed to keep warm. In fifteen minutes I was asleep. All pain had gone. In the morning the swelling had disappeared. The skin on the gum was loose because the swelling had gone so quickly.

The degree of response one gets from reaching for the More ranges from zero to a reaction that taxes our ability to comprehend or believe. The latter happened to Dr Clair King who eventually had to accept there was a power to heal beyond his own ability as a surgeon. Five year old Robert Kasner was taken to him for an emergency eye operation. His cornea had been slashed by a piece of flying glass, allowing the liquid in the eye to drain out. The operation was performed at Aultman Hospital, and a flap of conjunctiva pulled to patch the wound. After twelve days the dressing was removed, only to reveal that the patch had not held. The iris was protruding again. Robert needed another operation. An appointment was made for three days later.
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When Dr. King examined Robert prior to the operation after three days he could not believe what he saw. The eye was completely healed. He was astonished, even embarrassed. On asking the parents how this was possible, they told him simply that, “We took Robert to a Kathryn Kuhlman service. Prayers were offered for his healing.” (3) Dr. King Later joined the Order of St Luke the Physician.

That our present world view is in general such a mundane one is very strange. We are always surrounded by the miraculous. Every day if we look into the sky we see wonderful cosmic phenomena. On a clear night we view the past of millions years ago because of the time the light of the stars takes to reach us. But we clothe our mind in a sense of pettiness and limitation which shuts out new possibilities. Kathryn Kuhlman, who was one of the great focal points for alternative healing in the USA, says of this, “When I walk out onto the platform – for a healing service at Carnegie Hall, Pittsburgh – I trust God for miracles to happen and they do. There is no mental block whatsoever.”

We often complicate our view of our own ability to touch the MORE by thinking we must develop the ability, earn it, do something worthy of it, lead a blameless life – anything but accept the simple fact that it is as near to us, yet as mysterious as our own memory. But perhaps we do not want to allow it into our life. Writing on this C. S. Lewis says, in his book Miracles, there comes a time when people who have been dabbling in a search for what I have called The Splendid Alternative, suddenly draw back. Supposing we really found it. Worse still, supposing IT found us! It is a sort of Rubicon. One goes across; or not. But if one does, there is no manner of security against miracles. One may be in for anything!

For the past thirty years I have searched for the miraculous. For twenty of those years I have worked as a therapist. This often meant taking for myself, and helping others to take, a long circuitous route to health, wholeness and creativity. One looked for causes, dealt with them and moved on. But I sense out of those years a more splendid alternative. I see how we clothe ourselves in ideas and emotions of separation, of limitation, of paralysis. It is like standing together by a pool of sparkling water with a cup. You want to drink but cry out – Is it mine to drink? Does it belong to someone else? Will I have to pay for it? I feel so weak I can’t manage. But I am honestly ill. Is it a mirage?

Reach out. Fill your cup. Drink of your wholeness. Take the water of life. It IS yours.

1 See her book Breakthrough To Creativity, published by DeVorss.

2 A biography was to be published in the seventies. It never appeared – only a feature in Readers Digest.

3 See Kathryn Kuhlman’s book God Can Do It Again, published by Oliphants.

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