Metta's assessment

- through Francois Leclercq

Published on

Welcome, dear readers, to a new month of taking put from the meditation cushion and into the world.

Last month's article, "Metta's Tent Revival", allowed me to generate put for those who grow our food, especially at the regenerative farm where I always volunteer. Surprisingly, the theme continued much closer to home this month, generating put for those who take care of our mouths.

My toothache started harmlessly enough, with a slight sensitivity in a back molar with a twenty-year-old filling. Considering I had never had any problems before or since this cavity, I assumed it might have fallen out and made an appointment for a dental exam.

Despite all my moves over the past two decades, I've stuck with my dentist for simplicity's sake: they're located in London, easily accessible from wherever I've landed, and are always happy to provide me administrative references for passports. and others, and I normally only have to see them for routine checks.

But this month, I was about to discover the real reason for my loyalty.

As I slid into the examining chair and my dentist turned on the overhead lamp to get a closer look, she was surprised that I wasn't in more pain: this back molar had cracked in two and exposed the nerve ! She recommended I get a crown fitted before it cracked further and booked me in for a hygienist cleaning and mold check appointment in two weeks.

I left, feeling unusually like a total failure. . . . Why hadn't I noticed it sooner? Had I caused this in some way? Memories of years of visits to the dentist during my childhood came to light. They had never been particularly traumatic, but I couldn't shake the feeling that, somehow, I had let them and myself down.

Over the next few weeks, for reasons I couldn't quite put my finger on, I sat with a growing sense of nervousness about returning. The pain was bearable and the memories that resurfaced no longer really felt like mine. When I sought advice from a healer friend, she explained that tooth problems are usually the root of an energetic problem, and gently reminded me that nothing ever has to be perfect (not even our teeth) and that I hadn't missed anything.

At my next appointment I was greeted with soothing words music theory-high frequency music as I entered the dental hygienist's office. I commented on how comforting it was to listen, and as she placed me in the examining chair, I noticed all of her beautiful crystal bracelets as she adjusted the overhead light. She confided that she was a reiki practitioner and has combined her healing interests with her cleansing treatments.

Well, it gave this put immediately caught the meditator's attention and I asked to hear more.

As she flossed, scaled, and polished my teeth, she described that her most satisfying outcome was working on her own mother, who had been deeply traumatized by visits to the dentist as a child and who, for many years, as an adult, could not bring herself to return until her daughter helped her release those memories. She believed that our teeth, more than any other part of our body, cling to the fears of our ancestors.

Between rinses, I told him how much I admired Nadine Artemis, a champion of holistic dental care and the oral rather than digestive microbiome, and Dawn Crystal, a sound frequency healer who I had listened to to heal any possible problems ancestral. trauma linked to this mysterious crack that appeared in my molar.

The hygienist listened with interest and asked me to write both down so her mother could explore them further.

Encouraged by this surprisingly beautiful experience, I went to my dentist to pick up a mold for my next crown. Again, a totally enjoyable visit that was at odds with the fear and memories surging inside. Interestingly, I discovered that she had trained to become a dentist in the small German town where my mother was born and raised.

Then I returned to the regenerative farm where I still volunteer, not far from Highgrove, the recently crowned King Charles organic farm, happy to be distracted by the full growing season in the market garden until my next appointment.

And then the real pain set in a few days before my dental crowning: the left side of my face was swollen, my head felt like it was going to explode, and my poor jaw felt like it was on fire.

The dentist took one look and exclaimed that the exposed half-tooth had turned into a volcano of pus. And no matter how much numbing agent she injected, the pain remained excruciating, just after embolizing two fibroids, as described in "Metta Projector. »

I sobbed and sobbed from the physical pain, as well as the pain I had yet to identify.

My dentist said soothing things to me in my native language, reassuring me that it was his last appointment of the day so we could take our time, and twice sent me outside to the park to hug a tree to relieve the pain.

When she first suggested this, I thought I heard it wrong. And when I realized she was serious, I accepted her offer.

As I sat shaking on a bench surrounded by natural dental assistants offering both oxygen and pain relief, I continued to sob to myself, for the pain I felt, for the person I had been when I first got the filling that ultimately caused that crack, for all the painful ancestral memories resurfacing, and for something too primal to articulate even now with the clarity of hindsight. But I also found the courage to go back so my dentist could continue her excavation.

With every scrape and passing of dead, diseased matter, she cooed comforting words and apologized for what was happening to me, while I held a hand over my heart to generate. put for me, with the other ready to indicate when the pain became too unbearable. At one point, she even told me she would make me a cake to celebrate the end of the day.

Satisfied that I had finally exhausted the volcano in my mouth, the dentist explained to me that she was going to leave the tooth exposed because, without laboratory tests, she could not be sure whether aerobic or anaerobic bacteria were the cause. pain. If they were anaerobic bacteria, covering the crack now would deprive them of oxygen and cause them to multiply and create an even bigger volcano.

She kindly gave me her private number so I could call her anytime in the coming days if something didn't go well or if I just needed a chat, a prescription for a cure of antibiotics, and asked to see me first thing after the long holiday weekend.

I spent much of the next three days catching up on lost sleep, with an ice pack for a pillow, while the antibiotics and painkillers slowly worked their magic. Although I generally avoid all forms of pharmaceuticals, in this case I was grateful for their quick action. A fellow gardener very kindly brought me some botanical mouthwash and a pot of Choucroute to repopulate my intestine with good bacteria. And our boss very kindly offered to take me if I got stuck on the way because of a railway strike.

When I returned to the clinic, there was only one baby volcano left to drain and my dentist apologized again for hurting me. Rather than blaming her for the pain she had to inflict to get the job done, I surprised her by asking how she had retained her compassion after all these years. I teased that every colleague or friend I had described his kindness to had also asked for his private number!

She laughed, fell silent, and, after a thoughtful pause, replied, “I always imagine myself in that chair and treating patients the way I would like to be treated.” »

Never before has the golden rule of treating others as we would want to be treated been imposed on us at this level. . . at the very root of the mysterious pain where perhaps my generation of put you still haven't been able to reach it until now?

When everything that needed to be removed was finally gone, I hugged my dentist and his assistant and went to sit outside with the trees to rejuvenate. put for me, for my ancestors, for everyone who helped me last month and for everyone who has ever had a toothache, inner bubbles to fill the dry volcano inside.

So, dear readers, in these eruptive times, remember to fill the cavities with kindness and crown your imperfections. To quote Leonard Cohen, who was born into a Jewish family and became a Buddhist monk later in life, about the writing of his 1992 album L'avenir:

The future is not an excuse to abdicate your own personal responsibilities to yourself, your work and your love.

Or for put-morphs the lyrics of his best-known song entitled “Anthem” which he wrote during the fall of the Berlin Wall:

Ring the bells that can still ring
Forget your perfect offer
There's a crack, a crack in everything
This is how even more metta enters.

photo of author

Francois Leclercq

François Leclercq is the founder of Buddhist News, a website which aims to disseminate information and practical advice on Buddhism and spirituality. François Leclercq was born and raised in Paris. He studied Buddhism at the University of Paris-Sorbonne, where he graduated in social sciences and psychology. After graduating, he devoted himself to his passion for Buddhism and traveled the world to study and learn about different practices. He notably visited Tibet, Nepal, Thailand, Japan and China.

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