13 Key Ideas: My Cancer Is Me

We often think of cancer as the enemy who’s come to destroy us. But we can see the real story if only we choose to see. Through the 13 Key Ideas from the book My Cancer Is Me let’s explore what is cancer, the different requisites of healing and what can you take back from your cancer journey.

Key Idea 1: MY CANCER IS ME

MY CANCER IS ME

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Most people are conditioned to think that illness is caused by external or foreign agents outside one’s body, and that illness is often beyond one’s control; there is a tendency to externalize illness.

However, cancer usually arises from within a person and one needs to understand this at two levels: at the physical level, where the body’s own cells start growing uncontrollably; and, at the deeper level of one’s inner experiences, thoughts and emotions.

We will show you that the manner in which you live your life can actually create the conditions for cancer to occur; equally, living your life in a different way can create conditions for healing to occur.

Once you shift your perspective to acknowledge this, your entire approach changes and you begin to take full responsibility for your experience in a way that honours your body and your illness. Read more

Key Idea 2: CANCER: AN OPPORTUNITY FOR GROWTH

CANCER: AN OPPORTUNITY FOR GROWTH

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Society prefers to view cancer as a random and unfortunate event, a ‘bump in the road’. We view cancer as a ‘fork in the road’.

This fork can point you in a new direction and help you move away from the comforting but stifling notions of normalcy and of life as you have always known it. Instead, it can take you towards growth and transformation.

Our message to you is that cancer, like other serious illnesses, is an opportunity for deeper self-awareness and self-transcendence. While this may seem controversial and counterintuitive at first, we assure you that the reality is very different.

We invite you to see cancer as a blessing rather than a curse. Read more

 

Key Idea 3: NEW LANGUAGE & MINDSET ARE NEEDED

NEW LANGUAGE & MINDSET ARE NEEDED

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The vocabulary surrounding cancer is not just limiting but defeatist as well. Cancer is spoken of as a ‘monster’, a ‘scourge’ and an ‘internal terrorist’.

Viewing your illness in such negative terms will dishearten you and drain you of hope and energy. We offer you a positive vocabulary that will actually energize and empower you. Read more. Read more

Key Idea 4: CANCER: A CELL THAT FORGETS TO DIE

CANCER: A CELL THAT FORGETS TO DIE

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Cancer is a complex and formidable disease. To add to this, the fear and social taboos that accompany this illness make it even harder to comprehend.

We demystify cancer by explaining its basic cellular process in simple terms. Cancer starts with one cell that escapes its regulating mechanism and forgets to die on schedule.

Thereafter, this one cell replicates continuously, hijacking nutrients from surrounding tissues. Eventually, it can bring down the entire organism.

Once you begin to understand what cancer is and how it grows, you will feel better equipped to deal with the fears and anxieties that this disease brings. Read more

Key Idea 5: HOLISTIC & INTEGRATED APPROACHES

HOLISTIC & INTEGRATED APPROACHES

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The terms ‘holistic’ and ‘integrated’ are often used interchangeably by the lay person, and the meaning of both is diluted as a result.

We help you draw a clear distinction between the two:

  • the term ‘holistic’ refers to all the levels of a person’s being (physical, mental, emotional, systemic and spiritual)
  • ‘integrated’ means bringing together different healing systems (such as Western medicine, Ayurveda, homeopathy, Chinese medicine, energy therapies and mind-body medicine) to heal a particular condition. Read more
Key Idea 6: FOUR VIEWS OF ILLNESS & CANCER

FOUR VIEWS OF ILLNESS & CANCER

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Based on available research, we propose four different views of illness:

  1. the body as a machine
  2. the body as a system
  3. the body as an organism
  4. the body as a symbol.

While each view has its own considerations and implications, no single view is likely to be fully right.

The challenge – and opportunity – is to hold all these views simultaneously. In this way, we help you open new lines of enquiry into your illness; doing so can bring you fresh insights to support your healing. Read more

Key Idea 7: IMMUNITY IS ESSENTIAL FOR GOOD HEALTH

IMMUNITY IS ESSENTIAL FOR GOOD HEALTH

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Our key premise is that your best defence against cancer’s occurrence and recurrence is the maintenance of optimum immunity.

Nature has given you an immune system that is fully capable of keeping you in good health. It is now well established that the body routinely produces cancerous cell mutations that are detected, dealt with and flushed out by the immune system.

We explain the twin functions of the immune system: protection and repair – with reference to cancer – and show you how stress is one of the major factors that can compromise immunity.

This premise is scientifically supported by the field of psychoneuroimmunology (PNI). Read more

Key Idea 8: STRESS IS MULTI-FACTORIAL

STRESS IS MULTI-FACTORIAL

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Most people have a limited and narrow understanding of stress. According to us, stress is multi-factorial and can originate at various levels within a person – physical, mental, emotional, systemic and spiritual.

If you can discover your stressors and what triggers them, you can take specific and targeted actions to recover from them. This discovery and recovery restores peak immunity. Read more

Key Idea 9: DECONSTRUCTING AND RECONSTRUCTING THE SELF

DECONSTRUCTING AND RECONSTRUCTING THE SELF

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We contend that cancer cannot be approached superficially. True healing requires you to dive deep into yourself and confront yourself at all levels.

Then, you need to ‘deconstruct’ or examine all aspects of your life: your body, thoughts, emotions, relationships, lifestyle and so on.

After this, you have to ‘reconstruct’ or build yourself up on a fundamentally new basis.

We support you through this process by illustrating, through our own experiences, how cancer can give you an opportunity to begin your life anew. Read moreĀ 

Key Idea 10: DEATH: A FOCUS ON LIFE

DEATH: A FOCUS ON LIFE

Modern society is so afraid of Death and Loss that it avoids them as much as it can. A cancer diagnosis is traumatic.

A person who has cancer must necessarily confront both death and loss, but usually does not feel adequately prepared or supported in doing so. We help you address the subject of death by explaining how bereavement affects everyone.

We also prepare you to anticipate and face cancer’s five ‘shocks’. Further, we offer you a way to conduct a ‘dialogue’ with death; this will help you release your natural fears and uncertainties. Read more

Key Idea 11: DIET & NUTRITION FOR CANCER

DIET & NUTRITION FOR CANCER

There is a lack of clarity about the diet and nutritional needs of a person with cancer. While you are advised to eat normally and sensibly, there is, at the same time, an overwhelming amount of information, on the internet and in other media, on foods considered suitable or unsuitable for cancer. At times, this information is contradictory.

We highlight the key dietary principles that have a bearing on cancer and propose certain nutritional guidelines that will help you in creating a healthy regimen you can adopt or adapt as appropriate. Read more

Key Idea 12: THE CAREGIVER'S PERSPECTIVE

THE CAREGIVER’S PERSPECTIVE

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Even though cancer traumatizes the family as much as it does the individual, the implications for the primary caregiver and the rest of the family are largely ignored.

In some cases, cancer can cement family relationships; in others, it can create cracks.

Through our personal story, we highlight the crucial role of the caregiver in the healing process, as well as different types of patient-caregiver relationships. Read more

Key Idea 13: THE HERO'S JOURNEY

THE HERO’S JOURNEY

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Since cancer is such a difficult, challenging and testing experience, human nature tends to focus on its negative aspects.

Without denying the reality of pain and suffering that cancer brings, we reframe this narrow view by applying to the cancer experience the metaphor of the archetypal hero’s journey.

Just as every mythological hero must answer the call to adventure, take on a variety of challenges, encounter helpers and tricksters along the way, confront his worst fears, drink the elixir and finally bring it back to transform his society, so can every individual with cancer.

We explain how to do so and invite you to manifest the hero within you. Read more

 

 

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