A while back, on the Mindfulness and Psychotherapy Blog, one of my favorites, Dr. Elisha Goldstein interviewed Vidyamala Burch. Ms. Burch has written several books on how to live a full life despite pain. Below is an excerpt:

Dr. Elisha Goldstein: In the beginning of your newest book you quote 13th century Sufi Poet, Rumi saying:

Do not look back, my friend

 No one knows how the world ever began.

 Do not fear the future, nothing lasts forever.

 If you dwell on the past or the future

 You will miss the moment.

How have you applied the message of this poem in working with your own chronic pain?

Vidyamala Burch: Living in the moment has been one of the most important ways I have reclaimed my life whilst living with chronic pain. It all began when I was in hospital when I was 25 and had a night of very intense physical pain and mental anxiety while in a neurosurgical intensive care unit. I thought I would not be able to survive the night and then, when I really felt I would go mad with the stress of it all, a quiet inner voice came to me that said “you don’t have to get through until the morning; you only have to do get through the present moment.” With that voice came a very deep shift in perception and my entire experience changed. I relaxed in the deep confidence that this knowledge brought: I knew very deeply that I could not only ‘get through’ the present moment, but I could live it to the fullest, even though I was experiencing pain.

To read more go to The Mindfulness Blog. Living Well with Pain and Illness