Arnica flowers. Image by Goran Horvat
Narrated by Marie T. Russell
“May all things move and be moved in me
and know and be known in me.
May all creation dance for joy within me.”
Cell Level Meditation is a vehicle for finding our way “home.” We take the breath to our cells, offering them our deepest desire to be happy and healthy and strong. In some way, they hear us and respond. (Or maybe we hear them asking for the breath!) This meditative form is a gift that helps the mind and the body come into healing, which in turn, helps us be ourselves in fullness.
In the Odyssey, the great mythological journey told by Homer, the hero, Odysseus, spends years trying to get home. To get there, he goes through all kinds of trials and tribulations. He must use every kind of skill and every clever device you can imagine. He always has to have his wits about him because something new and different is always coming up, and he has to have the courage of his creative response for each ordeal.
Of course, this is the archetypal human journey we all are on in one form or another. We are trying to find out who we are and how to be full in that.
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What Is Health?
I would describe this as health: being fully who we are and having the body, mind and spirit in full congruence as an expression of that. As you begin taking this journey for yourself, you’ll discover that the journey into the body, into the cells is quite an adventure! You can take it for your own creative reasons.
Many years ago, during a particularly difficult period in my life, I went to the beach in Mexico with some friends for renewal, healing and inspiration. One day, I was out swimming in the ocean, and as I was coming in, I got taken by a wave and was slammed against lava rocks at the shore’s edge. I wasn’t injured seriously, but my foot was scraped and bleeding. I was jarred by the experience of being taken by the powerful force of the ocean.
What Is Healing?
I stumbled out of the ocean with my scraped and bleeding foot. I was a little dazed, but I managed to walk down the beach where I sat under a huge rock. In the shade provided there, I intuitively went into deep meditation, experiencing fully the sensation in my foot without “doing” anything but noticing it and being present with the sensations.
Within seconds, an image came to me. In my mind’s eye, I was seeing a moving kaleidoscope of orange shapes, like petals on a flower; the color was very brilliant. I was entranced by this spontaneous vision that came to me. I felt calmed by it.
I felt some excitement, and wondered if I were seeing Arnica flowers, since I’d never seen them. I am a homeopath, and certainly this is the remedy I would have taken if I’d had it with me, since Arnica is a plant used by herbalists and homeopaths to heal the trauma of bruised and injured tissue. I wondered if I were connecting with it, receiving its healing properties.
After a while in this meditative experience I began to “see” long, slender “fingers,” purplish in color, coming together.
The Power of Healing
By now, my foot no longer hurt, and I realized I had been healed. I opened my eyes and looked at my foot. The skin, which had been broken, was totally healed. There was only some minor redness left.
As you can imagine, I was amazed by this very dramatic healing. I felt touched by something very holy. I closed my eyes and went into this sense of amazement I was feeling. A question came to me: Did I want the power to heal people?
I pondered this question and followed it down a path of self-inquiry. I discovered through this that I didn’t want this power. From that clarification I also knew that what did (and does) interest me was accompanying people in their own discoveries of healing and unfolding and giving them any tools that might help them on their journeys.
I came out of my meditative experience and walked back down the beach to where my friends were. Now, one of the people I was with was my dear friend and mentor in homeopathy, Rosa. I asked Rosa what color Arnica flowers were, and she said, “They’re orange.” Then I wondered if I had connected with their essence in the first image given to me: the kaleidoscope of orange shapes.
Because of the way my mind works, I believe I somehow captured what I call the “geometry” or the essence behind the form. And, I understood that the purplish “fingers” I’d seen were cells reuniting.
Cell Level Meditation
This was one of my more dramatic moments with Cell Level Meditation. It was about seven or eight months later that a friend told my husband and me to contact Barry [co-author, Barry Grundland, M.D.], and we both began to work with him.
Over the years of working with Barry, listening to him, and accompanying other people in their healing journeys, I have been blessed and delighted to travel into myself and others, to the cellular level and beyond. I have witnessed the ordinary power of the extraordinary bodies we live in as they (and we) come into healing, and I just love that!
Each cell is kind of a mini-world that contains the whole in a peculiar way. At the most basic of levels, each cell does all the things a whole body does: it breathes, it has intelligence, it takes in food and converts it to energy for creating new things, it cleanses itself, it renews itself and communicates with other cells.
I also discovered that cells seem to have memories of events, beliefs, opinions, preferences, and habits. And there are color and movement, activity and rest, sounds and rhythm. They seem to be aspects of the template of life.
Consciousness Clues to Follow
Sometimes as we are going into concentration to meditate with our bodies, we are given images, metaphors or clues to follow. These images are made for us, according to our own nature. Consciousness seems to get our attention in ways that are best meant for us. Some people don’t get images at all, but rather they sense a rhythm or a tension or a stuckness that calls to them.
We are working with the notion of the analogue, in which a basic pattern reveals itself in different ways throughout different planes and states of awareness and manifestation. The cell can be seen as the basic template for life and living systems.
I have also discovered that the inner journey inspires a similar kind of wonder and reverence as the outer journey. The journey in, or the journey out—they are surprisingly similar, and they seem to mirror each other. Looking out at the night sky inspires awe and reverence.
We look up into the inky dark sky that holds glittery, sparkling lights and feel a deep sense of wonder. Going into the body—the tissues, the organs, the cells, the molecules and beyond—is similarly, breathtaking. The words spoken by the ancient master, Hermes Trismegistus ring true: “As above, so below. As within, so without.” Yes! Wonder and reverence above and reverence and wonder below.
Letting Go Into the Healing Journey
It’s true, I was probably primed for the experience I described above. I began wondering about mystical things when I was very young. Then I learned to meditate just out of college.
When I was in midwifery school in the 1980s, I learned about the power of guided visualization. In fact, I used guided visualization many times during my 12-year tenure as a midwife, sometimes with amazing results, and sometimes with disappointment. I had my doubts about it.
Being honest with doubt, looking it in the eye, acknowledging it’s there and sometimes turning my back on it, helps me go to a deeper listening. Again and again, I am brought to a very humbling reality: healing is a mysterious journey. I don’t control it. I don’t get to decide who heals and who doesn’t.
I have a tendency to want to know the answers, to know how to do things, but again and again, this journey is about letting go into the moment with all my best instincts and letting the Mystery direct the unfolding.
It is much more beautiful and thorough than I am, and in fact, it’s within the Mystery that healing happens.
Excerpted from the book's intro. written by Patricia Kay.
©2021 by Barry Grundland & Patricia Kay. All Rights Reserved.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher.
Cell Level Meditation: The Healing Power in the Smallest Unit of Life
by Barry Grundland, M.D. and Patricia Kay, M.A.
In this simple guide, Patricia Kay, MA, and Barry Grundland, MD, give you the tools to connect with the wisdom and intelligence of your cells and work with them to heal. They offer sample meditations to help you connect with specific cells, such as your liver or lung cells, yet emphasize that you should use the Cell Level Meditation technique to follow your intuition and discover the cells that are inviting you in. Sharing their own and others’ experiences, from both experienced meditators and those who had never meditated before, they validate experiences you are likely to have and inspire you with stories of profound healings from serious illness such as cancer as well as other ailments and everyday stresses.
The authors explain how during Cell Level Meditation, you may have a vision or an insight, or some inner experience of shape, color, movement, sounds, or smells. You may also feel a shift in your physical body. By bringing breath into these experiences and staying present with them, you open up to a new level of communication within yourself and discover your unique way of bringing harmony and healing to your life.
Guided to be an active participant in your healing, engaging many levels of your inner experience, you are led to a new level of mind-body coherence.
For more info and/or to order this book, click here. (2nd edition)
About the Authors
PATRICIA KAY, M.A., CCH, CSD, is a homeopath, teacher, writer, and retired midwife. She studied Cell Level Meditation with Barry for 15 years and currently works as a spiritual director, guiding people to bring mind, body, and spirit into alignment using his teaching.
Visit her website at patricia-kay.com/
BARRY GRUNDLAND, M.D. (1933-2016), was a psychiatrist who specialized in psychoneuroimmunology (mind-body healing).
For more than 40 years, he worked with people as a true healer with incredible insight and compassion. Cell Level Meditation was his life’s work.