Q: I’m dealing with a severe illness. I inquired and found that I have little or no will to live, that I fear God is punishing me with this illness, and that I also feel I don’t deserve to be healed or have a passionate, full life. I sense that I need to heal my lack of a will to live before I can heal my disease.

A: I’m very impressed with the depth and honesty of your inquiry. It does seem that to heal your physical illness, you must first “heal” the issue of your will to live. In this case, the deepest healing is the recognition that there is nothing to heal. By that I mean that there’s nothing wrong or bad here, and you have done nothing wrong. It is simply not your fault that you feel this way but the fault of your conditioning, which is based on your actual life experiences. And your conditioning is not your fault.

Everything you’ve done in this life has been the best way you knew to take care of yourself. How can that be wrong? How can you judge someone for that or ever consider punishing them? (Note: I’m not saying it is never true for society to protect itself by jailing someone; it just doesn’t make sense to punish people for acts that aren’t their fault, which is probably why punishment rarely heals or rehabilitates anyone.)

If God is a halfway decent version of a god, he/she would know this. A real and worthy God is never judgmental and would never even consider punishing someone. If there is a god that does any of that, then I say it is time to get a new God and fire the old one! Fortunately, all we have to change is our belief about God, since the reality is that God, or True Being, never judges or punishes.

You deserve and have always deserved to live, love, be loved, have a passionate life with people you enjoy, and live wherever you wish. The first step is to continue exploring your beliefs. You can also send these beliefs the same healing energy you might send to others or your own body. Maybe you could put your hands on your head and send healing energy to your beliefs, your guilt, and the whole package of conditioning. You don’t have to get rid of those beliefs. Since belief is just a habitual thought and you can’t get rid of your potential to think something, all you need to do is love your beliefs, let them be here, and see that they are not very true.

The important thing is to see that your thoughts are not very true. The truth is whatever opens your Heart and quiets the mind. Any thought or belief you uncover that has the opposite effect on your Heart and mind is simply not very true. That belief isn’t wrong or bad or even false, but just a very small expression of the truth trying to act as if it were a big truth, like a little child trying to act big and strong. You can just love that belief for the truth it does have and invite it to relax and rest from trying so hard to be a big truth. There’s room in your awareness for all of the truths, no matter how big or small, for all of the thoughts and all of the fears. But you can also see these thoughts as they are and see that they are not very true. This is what heals beliefs—simply seeing them as they really are.

Seeing the whole truth of any dis-ease or difficulty is the healing of it—seeing the conditioning behind it, seeing the nature of the sensations your body is having, and also seeing your beliefs and conditioning about the difficulty. What is actually true right now? These sensations are here, but what is true about them? Are they really bad sensations. or are they just particular sensations? Are your fears about them very true? Is the love that can still flow through your hands and your heart to your own body very true?

The only trick to all of this is to start where you are. If right now you don’t want to live, then that’s what you need to explore and love and allow. You don’t have to get rid of the feeling that you don’t want to live, just explore it as it is. How true is that feeling? What happens if you just let it be here? What else do you feel? What else is true? You don’t need to change how you feel or get rid of any feeling, just find out everything you can about each and every feeling. This isn’t an attempt to get rid of anything, but an inquiry out of curiosity and love for these strange and miraculous things called feelings. These feelings are arising here in you to be seen and loved, not to be fixed or gotten rid of.