by Alberto Villoldo: You can grow a new body. You know you can, because you have already grown a body…
once before. Ten fingers, ten toes, all of the exquisite beauty of your physique grew from an egg and a sperm following careful instructions. And to grow a new body, all you have to do is break into the password-protected regions of your DNA to switch on these same codes.
I know this is possible because I did it.
You see, I had no choice.
At the time of this incident, everything was going well for me. Professionally I was at the top of my game, a best-selling author with 12 books to my credit, a medical anthropologist with a Ph.D. in psychology, a teacher and healer with a following worldwide. The Four Winds Society that I founded had grown exponentially: more than 5,000 students had gone through our training in energy medicine or had accompanied me on journeys to the Amazon and the Andes. And those were just the accomplishments the public could see. Close to my heart were the many inner gifts I had received on my journey, including the most precious gift of all, a beloved partner who walks a spirited path beside me.
Just when it looked as if life couldn’t get any better, I was stopped in my tracks. Suddenly I was in a fight for survival that called on everything I’d learned in 30 years of studying with some of the world’s most gifted healers. While I was in Mexico as a keynote speaker at a conference on science and consciousness, without warning I found I couldn’t walk 100 feet without collapsing in exhaustion. Friends chalked it up to my crazy travel schedule, but I knew something was terribly wrong.
A few days before the trip I had gone for a head-to-toe checkup, a complete battery of tests from medical specialists in Miami. I got my test results in Mexico; the news was not good.
Apparently, during my years of research in Indonesia, Africa, and South America, I had picked up a long list of nasty microorganisms, including five different kinds of hepatitis virus, three or four varieties of deadly parasites, and a host of toxic bacteria. My heart and liver were close to collapse, the doctors said, and my brain was riddled with parasites.
When I heard the words, “It’s your brain, Dr. Villoldo,” I sank into despair. The doctors advised me to get my name on a liver transplant list. Maybe my heart would recover, but where was I going to find a healthy brain? After the conference, my wife, Marcela, was going on to the Amazon to lead one of our expeditions through The Four Winds Society. I stood in the departure wing at the Cancún airport, staring at my options: Gate 15, the flight to Miami where I would be admitted to a topmedical center, or Gate 14, the flight to Lima and the Amazon, where I would be with Marcela in the land of my spiritual roots.
All my test results indicated I was dying. Miami was the logical choice. I boarded the plane and eased into my seat. Just as the flight attendant offered me a moist towel, a primal instinct made me sit bolt upright and summon up the courage to put my future where my mouth was—to live what I had taught to so many. My journal entry for that night reads: I knew I had to go to the jungle. Otherwise I would be looking for my medicine in the wrong place. Now I am with the woman I love, returning to the garden where I first found my spiritual path.
My return to the Amazon was the beginning of my healing. But first there was an enormous amount of work to do. I was gravely ill. I had to hack my biology to switch on the genes that
create health and that would help me to grow a new brain, a new heart, and a new liver. And I had to remind myself: There are no guarantees, Alberto. There is a difference between curing and healing. You may not be cured; you may die. But regardless of what happens, your soul will be healed.
Spirit was offering me another lifetime within this one. I was being called to step into a new destiny, without self-importance, without the subtle seduction of worldly accomplishment. The externals of my life might not change, but my attitude had to.
I realized that I did not have to die. I could stay and heal myself so I could help others to heal. Once I made that choice, I felt my spirit extending roots into my body once again. Awe and wonder returned as my brain fog began to clear and I experienced Oneness, where life and death flow seamlessly into each other and where I reside in infinity.
When have you experienced Spirit offering you another lifetime within this one? What was the new destiny you were called to step into?