Unfettered and Reborn
By Ho Lee Fong, Singapore Translation by Shengning
I have always been an optimistic person. But in the last 10 years, I felt trapped in a web of illnesses. Faced with various challenging bodily conditions, I was dejected and felt helpless in my struggle against ill-health. Eventually, I lost all hope in life.
Thanks to my smoking habit, I suffered from asthma. Probably owing to work stress, I had been unable to break the habit. As a result, during the 10 years before I joined Bodhi Meditation, I had to take medication daily and I ended up in the hospital two to three times every year because of my asthma attacks. In addition, I had sinus problems and needed to use nose spray daily. If I didn’t, the discomfort in my nose would trigger my asthma.
Three or four years ago, my neck became very stiff, likely another side effect of excessive work stress. As the condition worsened, numbness took over my left hand and subsequently my right. At that time, simple tasks like picking up the telephone, holding a document and buttoning my shirt – which made me perspire profusely – were hard to accomplish, let alone carrying any heavy objects.
Seven years ago, due to an ovarian illness, I had to have one of my ovaries removed. Believing that I was still young and that my body would soon recover, I didn’t think much of the matter. But six years later, during a check-up at the hospital, I was startled to discover that the condition had deteriorated. So in April of 2011, I had no choice but to undergo surgery to remove the other ovary.
I had originally thought that the operations would have gotten rid of some hidden problem, thus allowing my body to fully recover and be healthy. Who would have thought that a nightmare had begun? Post-surgery, I always felt lethargic, as if I never had sufficient sleep.
The nature of my work was such that I had to move around outside the office. The chronic fatigue made me feel that my knees and legs had become very stiff and a month after the operation, my knees and legs were increasingly seized with pain. Even walking was a tiresome task. When climbing stairs, the leg pain coupled with my chronic asthma forced me to pause and rest after every three or five steps. It was very tiring indeed and I would just stand at the foot of a flight of stairs feeling totally daunted and sigh!
In November of 2011, my mother asked me to accompany her to Beijing for a holiday in March. After finalizing the itinerary, I was really worried – with my precarious health situation, how could I sustain myself while traveling?
Actually, what worried me more was this: Without a pair of healthy legs for walking, how was I going to make it through the rest of my life? I was not yet old, but I was frightened that I might have to continue to live prematurely in the body of an elderly person.
Meditation & Health Opens Me to a New Life
In February of 2012, through a stroke of serendipity, I got hold of a copy of Meditation & Health magazine. After browsing through it I felt I had received a message. Then, armed with hope, I walked into the Singapore Bodhi Meditation Center.
I didn’t know why, but from the moment I stepped into the Meditation Center, a feeling of joy welled up in me and I felt a sense of confidence. After reading the Bodhi Meditation course introduction, I decided to join an upcoming class on prostration.
What made me elated beyond measure was the fact that after doing prostration for a month, I threw away my asthma and sinus medicines and have not had need of them since. My knees and legs have also improved tremendously. In March of 2012, my mother and I traveled to Beijing as scheduled, and we climbed the Great Wall of China without a hitch. I was really delighted.
By June, my sustained prostration practice had continued to heal my asthma and improve the vitality of my lungs. My health conditions were much better than when I was taking medication. The numbness in my hands and stiffness in my neck were also profoundly alleviated. This tremendously raised my confidence in Bodhi Meditation.
In July, I joined a Bodhi Retreat and learned The Meditation of Greater Illumination. The feeling I had from doing prostration after Greater Illumination practice was awesome! After this period of cultivation, my health improved immensely, and I felt relaxed from head to toe.
As I went deeper into my cultivation, I felt this sense of emotional liberation – that the old feeling of being under tremendous pressure had vanished suddenly. Gone also were the many issues that used to cause me anxiety, and since I didn’t need to depend on smoking to deal with pressure, my body naturally became stronger.
In such a short time, Bodhi Meditation has brought me so many positive changes. It has allowed me to free myself from the grip of maladies, and regain my sense of joy and relaxation. Indeed, I am overjoyed and contented.
I am grateful to Grandmaster JinBodhi for imparting all these wonderful meditation techniques; I will share these practices and pass on Meditation & Health magazine to many, so that more and more people can partake in Bodhi Meditation and become healthier and happier!