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Lunch » Tags » Book » Reviews » Slaying the Mouse: A True Story of Healing in the Spiritual Realms

Slaying the Mouse: A True Story of Healing in the Spiritual Realms

1 rating: 1.0
A book by Wendy Stofan Halley

"...reads like a fast-paced novel, alternately comic and moving and fantastic, that reminds us that the mind is never confined to the body..." --Robert Moss, author of Conscious Dreaming and Dreamways of the Iroquois    "A fascinating … see full wiki

Tags: Book
Author: Wendy Stofan Halley
Publisher: Lulu.com
1 review about Slaying the Mouse: A True Story of Healing...

The Miracle That Wasn't? Or Was It?

  • Jun 20, 2007
Rating:
+1
"Healing is simply a matter of paying attention to the wisdom of your body, mind and heart," writes author and psychotherapist, Wendy Stofan Halley.

First, about the author:

"Driven by a desire to explore healing possibilities beyond the scope of contemporary practices, Wendy became involved in the study and practice of Shamanic healing with an emphasis in Hawaiian mysticism and healing methods. She offers healing, counseling, and experiential workshops through Lucid Path Healing Arts."

Sure, I'm adventurous enough to at least consider most "out there" ideas and practices, and this promised to invite new thinking, or, as the case may be, an exploration of old thinking. The story was an account of Wendy's healing work with 19-year-old Jason, who had mysteriously slipped into a coma with no explanation from traditional doctors as to the reason why. The young man's family worked with traditional medicine, but, desperate for help, also called on Wendy, who then applied the far more non-traditional ancient practice of Shamanic Trance.

And why not? I have a son; if he were in danger, there's nothing I wouldn't do, no method I would eschew, no medicine or work of faith I wouldn't consider if it held even the slimmest hope for recovery. I read on, quickly pulled into the story that Wendy related -- the boy lies in deep sleep, doctors ponder one possibility after another (encephalitis? spinal meningitis?), eventually discarding all, only to develop yet another gloomy diagnosis. With narrative (presented in an omniscient perspective as if by Jason himself) interspersed with emails from various concerned parties -- parents, siblings, girlfriend -- the story unfolds with Wendy summoning spirits, called Helpers, to save Jason from death. There is an Indian Man, an Indian woman called Raventalker, a bald Asian man called Li Ming, a being of light called Oshira, and a buffalo who answers to, yes, Buffalo Bill. Drifting in and out of his physical body, Jason finds that he can communicate with these Spirit Helpers and Wendy with telepathy. They not only work over his body, they also work with his spirit, healing emotions alongside physical ailments.

If all of this sounds a bit farfetched, depending on your personal beliefs, sure it is. But isn't most everything we know today farfetched if taken in another time and context? Whenever I come across what may seem initially unbelievable if not impossible, I remind myself that solid science shows that we use a very small percentage of our brains, and who can say what possibilities are hidden in the unused portions? Surely telepathy is possible -- I've experienced many such similar "inexplicable" phenomena myself, with those who are especially close to me. And not one of us can unequivocally state that we know what happens to our minds and spirits in death, or in this death-like state of a coma. Recounting out-of-body experiences are many and surprisingly unvaried. I had little trouble suspending disbelief as I read about Jason's bizarre experiences while lying in a hospital bed.

If at times some of the accounts of Spirit Helpers seem a tad ticklish, Jason, too, treats them that way. He teases and jokes in his lighter moments, bursts out with profanities of exasperation at the darker ones, all of which perhaps aid the reader in accepting the unexplained. Other times, he gives in to his frustration, even anger, and tests his own endurance and limits of understanding.

"Jason could only stay in his body for short periods of time. He felt like a stranger inside. There was almost something perverse about being in it, like he was taking advantage of its vulnerability. But he knew it was important to keep trying; to get used to how dense and unresponsive his body felt in this state... while waiting for a sign, Jason had an enjoyable dip in the sea of his anxieties. And the water was mighty cold. His biggest fear: What if this was it? What if for the rest of eternity I'm going to be stuck in this `not alive, not dead' state? And this sparked the question, `what exactly IS eternity?'"

The slender book leads the reader along with ease. If some of the scenes are harder to accept than others, in general the story intrigues with questions surely we all must ask at one time or another. The suspense builds as we await Jason's reawakening, surely to affirm his spiritual connection with his Helpers, Wendy herself most of all...

... but it never happens. What?! That's it? Yes, Jason survives, as we'd come to expect. No surprise there. But if this isn't to read entirely like a piece of fiction, surely the end must justify the suspension of disbelief, and the recovering Jason, waking into our more accustomed reality, affirm that he did indeed experience a connection with Wendy and the other Helpers during his deep sleep. But there is no such affirmation. There is no statement of connection. There is no resurrected memory. And so this otherwise intriguing account of spiritual connection and healing concludes with nothing more than the story of Jason's experience as imagined by the author. A true story? Apparently we cannot know. Jason is awake today, writes Wendy, but recovery has been slow and difficult, "unable to communicate or speak with ease."

I am willing to learn new things, to stretch my mind, to consider the occasional miracle. But it is disappointing to be led to expect one -- and then not to find it. At the very conclusion of this book, I could only ask: "what's the point?"

~from the Summer 2007 Issue of "The Smoking Poet"

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