25 March 2007: At the Critical Moment

Do you believe in the saying that ‘the human body is the mirror image of its mind and spirit?’ In March 2007, Hong Kong Breast Cancer Foundation (HKBCF) took the liberty to invite Taiwan’s Dr. Hsu Tien-sheng during his visit to Hong Kong to participate in a feature forum entitled “At the Critical Moment”. The objective of this forum was to enable Dr. Hsu to share his insight in cancer treatment on the reliance of physical, mental and spiritual support - an area of study he has researched extensively for over ten years. In his study on cancer treatment, he stresses strongly on the need to start from the ‘heart’ with a positive mindset rather than immediately resorting to surgical and chemotherapy treatments.


In other words, apart from curing the body, one must attend to the aspect of psychological support as well. According to Dr. Hsu, “surgical operation only cures the symptoms, but in order to get to the root of the problem, the patient must face cancer with an open heart and mind”. When Dr. Hsu was serving his internship some years back, he remember one patient in particular who was given a positive diagnosis of liver cancer in the morning, surrender to the disease and perish that same evening. In the young intern’s opinion, it was more a case of ‘scared to death’ rather than dying of the cancer disease. This is what prompted Dr. Hsu to start his research in the subject of the connection between ‘physical, mental and spiritual support’ as a complement to clinical treatment.


The body is the mirror image of the state of mind

There are three core concepts to the physical, mental and spiritual health preservation. First and foremost, one must firmly believe that one is basically born healthy and keep reminding himself or herself daily: I am perfectly healthy. Secondly, one must confide in the physical strengths of oneself and in the unbelievable fact that human beings are magically self-curable. In the face of ill health, one must maintain and remain enthusiastic and optimistic, while believing firmly that the battle against ill health is bound to be won. Besides, the body is said to be a mirrored manifestation of the mind and spirit, therefore feeling bad and sad all day long would take its toll on one’s inborn immunity. Henceforth, a patient must first remove pain and pressure from both of his or her mental and spiritual sets.


Women’s pressure stems from self-expectation over-pitched

In the modern world, a woman plays various roles in both family and society. She is a mother as well as a wife, or a daughter come professional or academic. She tries to do her best in each role, to prove her value and worth, as well as to avoid being the target of criticism. This is precisely where the pressure comes and what constitutes a cause of ill health. Dr. Hsu elaborated saying that ‘whether it is the case of a responsible mother or a successful woman manager, she always feels that something is left to be desired no matter how well she has tried. For this reason, she will try relentlessly to prove her worth at the expense of succumbing to mental pressure and bitterness.


Be a die-hard Optimist

To release or remove pressure, one has to adopt an open mind – Dr. Hsu plainly advised. At no time should you over pressurize yourself. At the same time, you should learn how to appreciate your own self and in this way, ill health becomes a thing far and between. You have to feel that you are born with great value and good. When I have not done well enough, I am still very good; and when I have done well enough, I am even better than good. Dr. Hsu thus imparted me with an effective means to rewind myself and that is, to be a die-hard Optimist all the time. Of the seven days in a week, try to keep half a day free to do something to please yourself or to recover your own identity, irrespective of how others would judge you. “Remember that one’s mission to the planet Earth is to run an errand, to travel, to learn, to observe and study, to play and to vow to become a die-hard Optimist!” - Dr. Hsu exclaims with a broad smile.



Speaker’s Profile:
Presently, Dr. Hsu Tien-sheng is the Head of the Physical and Psychological Support Department of the Taipei County Hospital. He is also a Committee Member of Taiwan’s Chinese New Age Society come Advisor on Psychological and Spiritual Support. Dr. Hsu also established in Taiwan the ‘Physical, Mental and Spiritual Health of the Whole Group’ and the ‘Beautiful Life Cancer Patient Support Group’.