THE VERY OLDEST way of healing is touch, a connection between the hand and the heart. But we are trained to diagnose and cure, to connect the hands to the mind. In our CME workshop on healing, we may ask doctors to do hands on healing with each other. At first it feels a little strange to lay your hands on someone and encourage the life in them. But many physicians say they felt as if something in them had always wanted to touch their patients in this way, and they couldn’t think of a way to do it without being embarrassed. It’s not just physical touch. It’s more about the sense of belonging, of occupying a level playing field, a shared vulnerability and a shared strength. The experience I have, is, you greet the life in someone. You accept its present shape, accept it as it is. You recognize its holiness. After [exchanging] hands-on healing, you never see the person you were partnered with in the same way again.
TO SERVE IS to make whole in some way. Service. It’s more of a grace. It’s very close to love, but a very pure kind of love. A befriending of the life in others, unconditionally.
Rachel Naomi Remen, from an interview with Peter Warshall in "Whole Earth Magazine," summer 2000