Is there such a thing as “Compassion Fatigue”? Phakchok Rinpoche states there is no translation for that in Buddhism!
I had the rare opportunity to spend a few days at a remote ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyoming studying compassion as it relates to the practice of medicine. Though we were “dark” (no cell phones or internet access), it was a very enlightening experience!
Previously, I have written about the benefits of meditation. Now, having studied with a Tibetan lama, my understanding of the importance of meditation has deepened; especially as it relates to practicing compassionate and intuitive medicine. “Calm mind, kind mind, clear mind” is my new mantra. I feel confident this training has enhanced my skills as a physician. Perfect launch for the opening of Radiance Functional Medicine!
This was an amazing and rare opportunity for 25 hand-selected physicians to study the compassion of the Buddha. Beginning with a reminder that the nature of our mind is pure, we wished all sentient beings to be free from suffering and to find happiness. We then moved into the some of the skills necessary to cultivate compassion. This spilled over into forming a more open, intuitive mind. In the words of Hippocrates – it is more important to know the person who has the disease than the disease that has the person. That about sums up Functional Medicine!
The book is Medicine and Compassion written by Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, a Tibetan monk. Coauthor, David Schlim MD, ran the International clinic in Nepal for 15 years. He trained under Rinpoche for most of that time. Phakcok Rinpoche is the nephew of Choki Nyima and has take over much the travel and teaching of this important work.
I have heard in my Functional Medicine training that forgiveness is the key to a happy, healthy life. However, none of these previous lectures offered a process of how to actually well, forgive. Big thanks to David Schlim MD and Phakchok Rinpoche for helping me to find the pathway to forgiveness and teaching me how to cultivate compassion.
Stay tuned for my next blog where I will discuss aspects of our mind, which interfere with our true nature and can block our compassion!