Dear Miracle Mama readers,
It is with immense pleasure that I share with you another inspiring story that illustrates the miracle of love and compassion.
Jack Kornfield tells a beautiful story about Tenzin, a Tibetan refugee. Kornfield worked as a hospice nurse when he met Tenzin.
Tenzin was diagnosed with a curable form of cancer. His doctor admitted him to the hospital for the first round of chemotherapy. Now, Tenzin was a gentle man, but during the treatment, he became very agitated and argumentative with the nurses and the doctors.
Tenzin’s wife explained to them that he had been held as a political prisoner by the Chinese communist army for seventeen years. They killed his first wife and repeatedly tortured and brutalized him throughout his imprisonment.
She told them that he feels tortured by the hospital treatments. They gave him flashbacks of what he suffered in the prison and it caused him to feel hatred inside just like he felt toward those Chinese soldiers.
She said, he would rather die than have to live with the hatred he feels again. Further, she added that according to their belief it is very bad to have hatred in your heart at the time of death.
Tenzin’s wife stressed that he couldn’t go on like this and he needed to be able to pray and cleanse his heart.
The doctors discharged Tenzin and assigned a hospice team to his care.
Jack encouraged Tenzin to talk about his prison experience, but Tenzin would not have it. He told Jack that he must learn to love again if he was to heal his heart. Tenzin stated further, it was Jack’s job to teach him how to love again.
Well, Jack wondered how he would do this, so he asked, “How can I help you to love again?”
Tenzin replied, “Sit down. Drink my tea. Eat my cookies.”
So Jack did that.
For several weeks, Jack sipped the not easy to drink Tibetan tea and munched on cookies while visting with Tenzin in the hospice room.
When Jack arrived for the scheduled visits he saw Tenzin sitting on the bed reciting his prayers from his books. Gradually the room was transformed into a beautiful religious shrine.
Two months later, Jack asked Tenzin what Tibetans do when they’re ill in the spring. Tenzin explained that they sit downwind from the flowers to be dusted with the new blossom pollen that floats on the spring breeze. To Tibetans, this new pollen is strong medicine.
Jack began bringing flowers to the house, but soon found this an overwhelming task. A friend suggested Jack take Tenzin to a local nursery.
Jack explained the situation to the nursery manager and the following weekend Jack took Tenzin and his wife along with provisions of tea, cookies, prayer books and beads to enjoy the aroma of the fresh flowers for an afternoon at the nursery.
The next weekend they visited another nursery. The third weekend they went to another.
By the fourth week, Jack began to get calls from the previous nurseries inviting Tenzin and his wife to come again. One manager said a new shipment of Nicotiana was arriving and they had some wonderful Fuschia and Daphne. Tenzin was sure to love the scent of the Daphne. He also had some new lawn furniture they might enjoy as well.
Another nursery called to say they received some colorful wind socks so Tenzin could predict where the wind was blowing so he could sit properly downwind.
The nurseries all around were competing for Tenzin’s visits. People began to know and care about Tenzin and his wife. The nursery employees set up the lawn furniture for them and brought them fresh water for their tea. Regular customers would leave their wagons of fresh flowers near them when they shopped. A loving community grew around Tenzin and his wife.
The spring turned into summer.
At the end of the summer, Tenzin returned to the doctor for another CT scan to determine the extent of the spread of the cancer.
The doctor could find no evidence of cancer at all. He was dumbfounded. He said he couldn’t explain it.
Tenzin lifted his finger and said, “I know why the cancer has gone away. It could no longer live in a body that is filled with love.”
He explained to the doctor that when he felt all the compassion from the hospice people, from the nursery, from the employees, from the customers and from all the people who wanted to know him, he started to change inside. He felt fortunate to have had the opportunity to heal in that way.
Tenzin wanted the doctor to remember that medicine was not the only way; sometimes compassion can cure cancer as well.
Hope you enjoyed Jack Kornfield’s story. To listen to the full recording click here.
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