Case Study in Integral Health
This subject was a female aged forty, who fought the scourge of malignancy courageously. She made of her illness and death a means of progress.
X was diagnosed as Stage IV ovarian carcinoma with multiple metastasis in the peritoneum, liver and lungs in December 1989. The primary tumour was excised (about 80% of the main mass) and she was subsequently managed with a month’s full course of radiotherapy and 6+3 courses of combined chemotherapy.
She was informed about all the details of her illness by those close to her. Her initial response was one of anger and depression. This was transient and passed away in a few days.
Then she summoned her inner resources and decided to fight. The prognosis was 6 months.
These six months passed uneventfully. She showed a remarkable recovery. The mass and secondaries disappeared. Psychologically, she was cheerful and confident. She continued her job as a psychiatric social worker and was a constant source of strength and succour to all.
In addition, a subjective metamorphosis was observed. She, who was a thorough materialist and atheist, developed an inner opening. Within the next few months, she visited the Sri Aurobindo Ashram twice, developed a love for the Divine and had her own set of inner experiences, of which I shall mention a few here as they are symbolical. 1) In late May 1991, she had a dream vision of a pink clock whose needles were stuck at 6 o’clock. She was trying to move the needles with full strength but they wouldn’t move. All around her she saw or felt the presence of parijat flowers, her favourite ones.
[Interpretation: (though not told to her) she had 6 months more. The choice to leave her body at that time seems to have been determined by her true being ( the psychic) as revealed by the pink colour and the parijat (‘aspiration’) flowers.] She left her body on 14 December 1991.
2) In Oct. 1991, she developed jaundice. Detailed investigations indicated viral hepatitis. The possibility of obstructive jaundice was considered but the investigations were inconclusive. A CT Scan of the abdomen was normal. Her serum bilirubin was 21 mgm% (conj. 6; unconj 15). Other liver function tests were within normal limits.
A day before, her CT Scan was done she had a vision: a turbid sea under which many crab-like, greyish creatures were floating.
[Interpretation: a return of malignancy and a possibility of peritoneal deposits. This was confirmed later. Interestingly, she had mentioned several times that the only illness she was really afraid of was jaundice].
3) Towards her end, some time in early November 1991, she started invoking the Grace to help her recover. She was advised to surrender herself entirely to this Grace. Two experiences seem to be related to her aspiration: a vision of Krishna for whom she had never felt any affinity. He was surrounded by blue light and from him she felt waves pouring into her body. (an action of the healing and soothing force of Sri Krishna). Strangely, for no apparent reason, within three to four days her bilirubin dropped from 21 to 4 mg%. Just before the vision she used to slip into stuporous states. She recovered from that, regained her appetite and every clinical and metabolic parameter showed marked improvement. This indeed baffled the entire medical team. The possibility of viral hepatitis was again thought of.
4) Despite this sudden improvement, she used to feel shaken at times. Then she would remark that her surroundings were not conducive to spiritual growth (as it was a family of non-believers).
On 4th December, she suddenly remarked that she had no more than 10 days to live. She told her husband to get remarried and to look after their son’s education, etc. This was strange since she was recovering remarkably well and had received reports of no malignancy in August 1991 from the Tata Cancer Institute, Bombay. She had never talked thus even under the stress of the initial diagnosis. A few days prior to her death, she had her last vision.
She saw a circle of light like a sun above an ocean. There was a flame in the centre into which she entered and fused.