All the king’s horses and all the king’s men

In true dialogue, both sides are willing to change.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

There’s a famous monk here in Vietnam, the father of Engaged Buddhism.  He has published over 130 books, including more than 100 in English language, which have sold over 5 million worldwide.

Unfortunately, in November 2014, he experienced a severe brain hemorrhage, which put him in a wheelchair. Since then he underwent multiple — I quote Wikipedia – „aggressive” therapies. He’s still being wheeled around though, and is said to be still unable to speak.

After spending most of his life abroad, these days he’s back to his home in Vietnam. However, for his medical care they fly-in famous doctors from abroad, to administer their medications and needles. It’s complicated, because of the CORONA situation. But they have the fame and the money, so it’s possible.

I just don’t know how mindful someone can swallow pills and how mindful a therapist can stick needles into their client. And how much of „aggressive” treatment someone can take (or needs) before looking for something better.

I’m in Vietnam too. Just a short domestic flight away from him. It’s quite ironic. Even though I’m not specialised in stroke patients, nevertheless, with the teachings of Dr. Moshé Feldenkrais I could open a new world to him. After all I’m regarded as a distinguished, accomplished Feldenkrais practitioner, trusted by many. For him it would be very soothing, healing, magnificent. A big emotional and physical relief for him to experience this kind of becoming aware, learning, and movement acquisition. Western vegans have a track record to live well beyond 100 years of age. He might even take a few steps again. Maybe write, or dictate, a new book.

But there seems to be no way to bring us two together. More to my disadvantage than his, I guess. With such a treatment success I would benefit much more than he would. Allowing me to treat him would put me on the map of history and secure my livelihood for all years to come.

He on the other hand, even if unable to walk and speak, his new way of sitting and silent teaching touches upon all our souls, and I guess he’s happy inside, no matter what the outside world presents to him.