When Helping Hurts, and Ho'oponopono Sets Me Straight

An Ancient Chinese Fable
"A monkey and a fish were caught in a terrible flood and were being swept downsteam amidst torrents of water and debris. The monkey spied a branch from an overhanging tree, and pulled himself to safety from the swirling water.

Then, wanting to help his friend the fish, he reached into the water and pulled the fish from the water onto the branch.

The moral of the story is clear: Good intentions are not enough. If you want to help the fish, you must understand its nature."
Many of us struggle with urges to "help" our family, friends, and others. If we work in healthcare, this is part of our everyday life. We think we're doing what's best for others.

It's not that altruism is inherently wrong, but it can be confused with so many other things.

Also, like the Chinese fable above, our conscious minds are clueless about the others' true natures. We interpret these according to our own skewed perceptions, rather than as they are.

People are driven into healing professions by all kinds of things, any of which may conflict with the needs of the person seeking "help". If this is so, we're at risk of yanking perfectly good fish out of the water that gives them life. We mistakenly think we're rescuing them.

Heroics are needed at times (massive trauma, strokes, heart attacks, etc), but most of the time they're not. Most situations call for allowing the person's own healing resources to materialize and consolidate. They usually have more than we realize. We're more likely to be in such a place with others when we're listening and cleaning, than when we're rushing around trying to decide what they need.

Doctors can help support whatever in the patient temporarily seems to need this. But healing itself is God's work. Dr. Hew Len has told me that there are really no illnesses, only memories showing up for release. Patients bring endless opportunities to clean, that's all.

This could certainly be so, yet I'm unevolved enough that seemingly ill people show up around me. So, I have cleaning to do as I work with whatever in me attracts them. Hopefully I can be calm enough to clean as they share their suffering, rather than get swept up or lost in drama. Hopefully in this peaceful space, Inspiration can come.

"People aren't there because they need you," says Dr. Hew Len. "What they need is God. Are you going to stand in the way?"

For me, that puts it in a nutshell -- just like the Chinese fable above. To recognize I am clueless, yet to also be unafraid to act when it seems through cleaning to be correct, is hard for me. I do the best I can, and take another step along the path.

Peace Begins with Me,


Unknown said…
Dear Pam

Thanks for a great post.

Pam when you do the cleaning on yourself do you hold an individual clients issue in mind before you begin? Or do just do the cleaning?

Pam Pappas MD said…
Hi Susitha,

Thanks for your comment and question. I do think of the patient's/client's seeming issue while cleaning, but I also realize that what I "think" I'm cleaning is not all that's being cleaned. The person comes in with a problem, but the problem is only a memory we share (or s/he would not be coming to me). Divinity knows the whole story, and I just clean with my observations and reactions. The beautiful thing about ho'oponopono is that we don't have to know what's going on -- once we give permission by cleaning as issues and people show up, Divinity (Who does know what's going on!) can transmute whatever is "up" for that.

The best thing is to clean in advance of seeing the people at all, before you even start your day.

Be well,
Trying to explain to a particular client the mindset has been challenging. Using this fable and she suddenly had a light bulb moment. Thank-you for this insight!

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