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Category Archives: meditation

Beyond the Darkness with Sam the Miracle Man.

On July 10,  I gave an interview to the podcast Beyond the Darkness.

Sam the Miracle Man, as he is affectionately called by his friends has survived two near-death experiences & five incurable diseases.
Sam Shelley spent most of his life in pain with his mental and physical disabilities & required thirteen medications a day and needed mobility aides (walker/cane).

Today, Sam lives free of disability, free of medicine, and free of disease. This is a story that EVERYONE needs to hear to believe.”

https://www.podcastone.com/episode/Sam-The-Miracle-Man

This interview received the most positive feedback that I received to date,  here a a few of the comments.

“Brilliant, Mind blowing interview with Dave Schrader.”

“Hey guys! My name is Emily, I’ve written once before to share an experience I’ve had. I’m writing you this morning to simply thank you. I struggle with the “head trash”/ depression/demons, whatever you want to call it. In fact, the struggle is so real sometimes I find myself looking at my three very beautiful children, one of which has Down syndrome, and think to myself…why can’t I enjoy my life? What a piece of crap am I that I cannot love my life and all that is in it. Still, as strong as I am and can appear to be these pains are real and it makes life…well it makes life harder than I’d like it to be but it’s not. I digress. I came to a dark point, yet again, where I found myself consumed by these dark thoughts. I sat in my tiny bathroom crying, asking my guides and angels to help me see the light because I felt blinded by the dark. I heard nothing. I felt…nothing and it broke my heart. I gathered myself and washed up to hide the fact I was just falling apart in my bathroom. I reluctantly went downstairs to start dinner. I pulled out my phone and kicked on your podcast as I usually do when I cook or clean. The miracle man. I didn’t see the title. I had no clue where I had left off because to be honest, I hadn’t cooked or cleaned in a long time. I couldn’t bring myself to do so. But that night was different. I was almost on autopilot or so I thought? The episode grabbed my attention immediately. I cried in silence. I cried out loud. I came out of the kitchen and brought my family together to listen. That podcast changed me and my family’s life. A simple thank you is all I wanted to say. I want to repay you and Sam but I know I cannot. Instead I am going to continue to spread his and your beautiful message because it is now my message. Great. Now I’m crying again. THANKS GUYS!!! All the love and positivity your way,”

“I was fortunate to listen to you on Beyond the Darkness. Thank you. I really, really needed to hear your story.”

 

 

“The Way” to Healing Pain

healing_rockI wake up Saturday morning at 3 am, my whole body is engulfed in pain.  I awake with a migraine, I feel feverish, and my whole body just aches.  I have lived the past two months on the road.  I took a job as a “roadie” setting up school assembly programs.  This job as a presenter requires long drives and unloading a van with a lot of equipment, setting up three large screen, three projectors, a Bose sound system with two large speakers.  A physically demanding job.

Prior to this job my body has endured forty years of serious trauma; from being crushed by a van, to Bipolar Disorder, to painful migraines, to being a disabled man from Multiple Sclerosis.   I was fortunate to reverse the damage done to the body.  I found “The Way” to heal through meditation, mindfulness, and yoga.  I detail all this out in my first book “I Don’t Dwell.”

When I got out of bed at 3 am, I fixed myself a little something to eat.  My body craves food with migraines.  After some water and a granola bar, I sit for meditation.   When people think of meditation they tend to shy away.  I have a no rules approach to meditation.  If you gave me a series of steps or rules when I was dealing with my OCD bipolar brain, I would have never found “The Way.”  Rules become a mental prison.

By 3:30 am I’m sitting in meditation.  I find that when pain, stress, or worry arrive in my mind, I go within and remove the garbage.  Within a little bit of time the garbage is removed and the pain is much less.  I write a few pages, and then return to bed.   When I wake up the pain is lingering and I head back into meditation and repeat.   After two days of this process I feel back to normal.

The body has an amazing ability to heal itself.  One simply needs to find “The Way” for them.   A one size fits all approach to life doesn’t work  There are 7.3 billion people on the Earth.  There are 7.3 billion paths to deal with pain; emotional, physical, or spiritual.   “The Way” is always internal, and the outside world is an aide.  The aide could arrive in a supplement, a vitamin, an essential oil, a specific diet, a doctor, a teacher, etc.  The number of aides is infinite.

The only requirement to finding “The Way” is to have an open mind.  A willingness to explore and remove the limiting beliefs –the garbage.  As Lao Zhou said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”   I moved my mountain of “incurable” diseases one pebble at a time.

I left my corporate job to help others heal, and find lasting happiness.

Please join the Heal Yourself Club on Facebook.   This is your one life,  you don’t need to continue to suffer.   Let’s find “The Way!”

A Heal Yourself Club closed group for discussions and personal help;  https://www.facebook.com/groups/healyourselfclub/

A Heal Yourself Club page for general help;  https://www.facebook.com/healyourselfclub/

My personal page;  https://www.facebook.com/shelley.sam

 

 

 

 

 

Changing Our Relationships With Our Thoughts: Mantra Yoga + Health interview

Here is the unabridged full interview.  A partial interview was included in issue 9 of Mantra Yoga Health magazine.

Laying in a hospital bed with 15 prescriptions each day ruling his life,
Sam Shelley finally said, “Enough!” His life had been a long series of illnesses, each one more crippling than the last. At age 6, a hit and Mantra  Yoga Healthrun accident with a van nearly killed him. Since then, the hospitalizations for depression and the anxiety began, eventually morphing into bi-polar disorder, suicidal tendencies and finally multiple sclerosis. During one particularly tough hospital stay, Sam experienced a profound shift — an awakening — that forever changed his life. Eighteen months after that shift, Sam slowly awakened and is today symptom-free (and drug-free).

Here’s how he did it:

Mantra Yoga + Health: Sam, your story is amazing. How did you first realize that meditation would help?

Sam Shelley: I didn’t know it would, but I began to read and was curious how meditation and mindfulness might work for me. I started to get very quiet and over time, I began to see that the thoughts I was having weren’t “me” — they were separate entities. I continued to meditate and separate myself from the thoughts — just note them as they floated by — and one day, I had an awareness. A clarity that spoke the words “perfect spirit” to me, and I then realized that my spirit — who I was — was pure. It was my thoughts that were not — and they were separate from me. I could choose to believe that “perfect spirit” was truth and the thoughts began to have less and less power.

Slowly, the ill health that had been plaguing me for so long began to dissipate. I worked with my doctors to reduce the drugs I was on, based on the reduction in symptoms, and following my perfect spirit, became stronger each day. I now see this as a true awakening and I feel strongly that I’m not that special — this ability is available to each of us, if we choose to see our thoughts as separate and re-write the things we tell ourselves each day.

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The Mind is a Liar!

meditation and inner peace
Confused Mind

Over the weekend, I meet a friend at Starbucks and we were discussing our businesses. She asked me if I had to summarize my core message in one line what that would be. I answered; “The mind is a liar.”

I can think of numerous events where I believed my mind was telling me the truth. When I was staring at a bottle of sleeping pills, and writing the suicide note. My mind convinced me that I “wasn’t worthy of life.” How can that be? My wife loved me; why wasn’t I able to see this?

Another time, I was laying in the hospital bed at age 37 unable to walk. After a few weeks, a doctor walked into my hospital room, and nonchalantly told me that I had multiple sclerosis. As quickly as he delivered that news, he walked back out of the room. No big deal to him – he wasn’t the one laying there suffering! After that news, I remember laying their crying. I could feel myself slip into a deep depression. My mind convinced me that “life was over.”  I simply gave up hope that I would lead a normal life. Once again, why I was convinced that the opinion of the mind was the truth?

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How Gratitude Has Led Me To Give Back To Others

“Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out.”
~ John Wooden

 

As a sit here reflecting on the book launch of “I Don’t Dwell,” I’m in awe.  When I think of my recovery, a deep sense of gratitude fills my body and tears begin to well up.  I think of Lou Gehrig who had ALS, when he said “I feel like I’m the luckiest man alive”.

practices to settle the mindHow did I survive that car accident at 6 years old?

How did I survive being suicidal with bipolar?

How did I survive with being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis?

I survived because I had no choice.  I like to think that I was in control of my life, but looking back I can see that I had very little control.  I was placed on this Earth for reasons unknown to me, only known by God.  As Einstein once said “God doesn’t throw dice”.  There are no mistakes and no luck; there is a divine plan unknown to us.

The only thing I know for certain is that I can control how I react and respond to my thoughts. That sounds so simple, but it wasn’t easy. It took time to see that I had thoughts, but they were not my thoughts.  Through my five minute daily practice I was starting to get separation from my thoughts.  It took a lot of vigilance to stick with the practice. My thoughts were in my face, yelling and screaming at me that I wasn’t good enough or wasting my time. These thoughts were impossible to ignore at times, but the more I ignored the mind the quieter the mind became.

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How to Fall Asleep by Stopping the Racing Thoughts

how to fall asleepI had to be knocked out, or the constant mind chatter would keep me awake.  I had racing thoughts most of my life, and I ended up taking sleeping pills for 20+ years.  With the sleeping pills I had difficulty waking up and I was very sluggish.  Avoiding the sleeping pills wasn’t an option since the lack of sleep was a trigger for my migraines or the lack of sleep triggered a manic episode (I was diagnosed Bipolar I).

My mind chatter was usually stuck thinking about how someone treated me earlier in the day, or thinking about the excitement or dread about the upcoming day.  I was possessed by my thoughts and I took all my thoughts as the absolute truth.   Since I took all my thoughts as my truth I suffered from very low self-esteem, high levels of stress, and was in a constant state of worry.   I developed a mindset that I wasn’t good enough or deserving, and became suicidal.

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The never-ending cycle of violence — school shootings, genocide and war

cycle of violence

Read the news, and you will be presented with the daily tragedies.

“Ukraine says Malaysian Airliner with 295 Aboard Shot Down”

“Gaza Toll Near 340 As Israel Presses Ground War”

This one headline captured the essence of the violent world:

“Oregon shooting: ‘This is becoming the norm’ — but will anything change?”

There’s no rational explanation for our society’s cycle of violence. Nor is there a rational explanation for why someone would take innocent lives, whether in the form of a school shooting, downing an aircraft, or kidnapping and then killing the innocent, which starts a war. All those events succeed to keep us living in a state of fear.

Franklin Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Fear is a very powerful force; it keeps the mind busy with ‘what if’ scenarios, always thinking of ways to keep us safe when there is no immediate danger. If there is immediate danger, we must take action or perish.

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Relax! You’re giving yourself an autoimmune disease!

autoimmune diseaseI was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, Psoriasis, and Psoriatic Arthritis. I was part of the growing epidemic of those diagnosed with an autoimmune disease.

According to the National Institutes of Health, “More than 80 diseases occur as a result of the immune system attacking the body’s own organs, tissues, and cells. Some of the more common autoimmune diseases include type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and inflammatory bowel disease.”

There are many factors to create an autoimmune disease. One factor is the environment. Food, water, air quality and mental state. also contribute. I was frequently under a lot of anxiety and stress, and later diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I never knew how my mental state affected my health, and I was not diagnosed with my autoimmune disorders until a period of time after my bipolar diagnosis.

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I hit the reset button, and discovered a new awakened reality

a new awakened realityMy life wasn’t falling apart, and my health was stable. I was simply tired of being sick and tired. I knew there had to more to life than suffering. The reliance on the doctors left me over-medicated. Between my six doctors, I was taking 13 daily medications.

I hit the reset button. I went exploring for alternatives and one day I discovered meditation.

One day after a 10-minute meditation session, I had a profound shift of consciousness after I heard an inner voice say, “perfect spirit.” I pondered that phrase for a moment, and I thought, “A-ha, that’s it!” I simply knew that my spirit was perfect and that the body/mind was damaged from the bipolar, MS, and a few other ailments. A moment later, a deep knowing came that “all is well,” and the health challenges were over. This knowing also revealed that I had to create a recovery practice to restore the damage done to the body and mind.

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Just sit with your damn mind!

Just sitAfter stepping out of the shower, I see my nude reflection in the mirror. Immediately, the mind begins to point out the flaws of my imperfect body.

Getting dressed is another challenge. The mind is telling me not to wear a certain pair of pants because they make me look fat. Then the mind is telling me to tuck in my shirt or I will look like a slob.

During breakfast the mind is dreading another day of the same crap. The mind begins to plot out the day making sure to note, “Don’t do something stupid!” I am now concerned about my words and actions. I’m afraid to be honest with anyone, since I want everyone to like me.

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