Today i went to see a traditional Balinese Healer.
I came up with the idea yesterday evening, it just popped into my mind on the way back from the waterfalls when i saw the name Pak Ketut Jaya Spa Alternative Massage on google maps. I was still feeling double my 47 years with my shoulders stuck under my ears after the long distance travel and first couple of sleepless nights on arrival in Bali. I looked at a photo of Pak Ketut Jaya on facebook and decided to phone him up. His English is excellent (turns out he was a tour guide before going full time as a healer) and we have a friendly chat. He says all the right things. That he doesn’t do the healing, it comes through him from God, that only the recipient can decide to receive this healing and that the body know how to heal itself. He also receives donations rather than a set fee as his door is open to everyone tourists and locals alike. He explains that the treatment begins with a deep tissue massage, Balinese reflexology, hands on healing (a bit like reiki) and a welcoming of the pure soul essence into the body. I get a good feeling and arrange to go at noon the next day. I research on line and find out that Pak Ketut Jaya is in fact the grandson of a healer and herbalist and his knowledge has been past down to him from both his granddad and grandma. You can find out more about him here.
So i wake this morning feeling intrigued with a dash of trepidation and as i roll over in bed i drop my rhodochrosite crystal healing massage stone on the marble tiles and it breaks in two. My trepidation levels dial up from a 3 to a 6.5 and i feel a bit puzzled. Does this mean i’m going to be broken in two by the crazy Balinese healer? Does this portent to my shield really cracking and little old me being revealed to the outside air? Turns out that rhodochrosite’s energy is all about self love and reaching the wounds of the inner child, and as i look at the insides of the crystal now its broken and no longer shiny and polishes i see these beautiful soft pink striped striations of stone all ragged but revealed.
I’m doing a morning meditation practice at the moment that focuses on these seven principles – peace, patience, generosity, kindness, discipline, diligence and humility. So i stick my headphones in whilst sitting on the edge of the pool to breathe and follow the audio of the guided meditation. My normally out of control monkey mind manages to just about stay on track but somehow i’m really on it with the humility section and my thoughts don’t travel. I really hear the words “breathe in humility and breath out pride, self-importance and worthlessness”. And it hits me – worthlessness, all that low self esteem and putting oneself down is just as much an issue as arrogance and self-aggrandising. Its no different, its still as draining, attention seeking and life force zapping as being, what was referred to at my school as “full of oneself”. So i realise this is my intention for the healing session – to let go of that spiral of worthlessness, the lost and lonely child caught in a self-belief story of being worth nothing. Well i’m certainly going to give it a go.
So off i go to Batuan to meet with Pak Ketut Jaya, i take my flower and incense offering all wrapped up in a big leaf with my 500,000 IDR rolled away inside (a friend told me this is what you do) and Wayan my driver from Kailash finds the place within 10 minutes and he walks down to the family compound with me, i can tell he’s excited too. We enter the compound and Wayan explains how its all set out. The most beautiful house for the grandparents, the family temple, the central covered area, all the other family houses in order of status, the kitchen etc.
Pak Ketut Jaya comes out to greet me and invites me to come and watch the healing session he is already doing. His healing room is wonderful. Its lined with glass jars of herbal potions, with the wide eyed Balinese protection masks hanging on the walls. His altar is huge and covered with all manner of esoteric things including many healing medicinal plants and instruments. I sit on the second massage bed and pretty much instantly go all super heavy relaxed with a low aum sound emerging from my mouth. Pak has warned me that the treatment can be painful and i can see that his current client is really going through it. She turns to me and says “I once had a Chinese medicine treatment and thought nothing could ever be more painful, well this is, but i’d do it again in a shot as the results were so good.” Later she’s squealing and you can see that Pak is using a whole host of Balinese reflexology tools that look similar to a set of torture equipment, so i focus on omitting healing energy and breathing deeply.
Then its my turn and i remind myself that i gave birth to 3 children, i can deal with pain, and seriously focus on my breathing. I can only describe Pak’s touch as the most gentle loving kind connection combined with the ability to deeply penetrate muscles and tendons and kind of reshape the bones whilst unraveling all the knots. But he’s doing psychic surgery at the same time, praying, aum-ing, flicking, swishing, just entirely rearranging the firmament of my physical being. Did i mention that he is chucking oils, a sort of eau de cologne, blessed water at me the whole time too? Well it was just so intense but so beautiful and i cried and hollered like a baby but in a really good way. Then onto the Balinese reflexology to re balance the internal organs, a deep scorching pressure/pain that felt like fire but didn’t hurt. You see that’s the amazing thing – it was painful but it didn’t hurt and i really felt my body release tension i’ve been carrying around for a very long time. So after all this physical work crystals were laid on, instruments played, prayers chanted, flowers and oils applied and Pak invited me to call out my name and invite my soul back into my body. It was incredible, the whole thing, you couldn’t make it up, he even did pressure points on my tongue and put a sort of funny herbal liquid in my eyes. I was so pleased that the first client stayed to watch my session and afterwards we laughed and hugged and teased Pak a little bit about his reflexology torture tools. It was so uplifting and by the end Pak brought us fruit and we giggled about it all, and he showed us all his esoteric treasures including a picture of his grandmother who was covered in a herbal mixture and laughing her head off.
So back at Kailash guest house where i am staying, i can only say i feel great! Really energised and relaxed. It’s been a hot day, with no rain, i can hear the humming of insects and frogs and the sky has a tropical lavender hue to it.
My driver was so excited on the way back today to show me the places where they shot Eat, Pray, Love. It was here he says around the corner from Kailash. He’s got me sussed!
May all the beings in all the worlds be happy