Profound Healing


Profound Healing was born out of Cheryl's personal experience with advanced cancer. What happens when we find out that the life we have taken for granted may soon end? What do we do with the flood of questions and emotions that pour in? How can this be happening to me: Why??!

This is Cheryl's down-to-earth account of her journey as she confronts a diagnosis of advanced cancer in 1989. Turning down the proposed radical surgeries, she focused her attention on attempting to come to a place of peace before dying. In the process she began writing a book to be called Dying Well. As she experienced complete healing and a return to radiant health the title became Profound Healing, containing her subsequent reflections on physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual healing. Her story is intertwined with exercises, dreams, visualizations, and experiences that assisted her healing process - from her encounters with the modern mystic Peace Pilgrim, to her own acceptance of cancer. Canfield summarizes her healing techniques— emotional clearing, meditations, and lifestyle changes—into twelve self-help practices of wellness so others may use he hard-earned insights as a source of hope, inspiration, and practical advice. Relevant to anyone seeking personal growth and life wisdom, Profound Healing is not merely about dying or living; it is about discovering one's life and living it fully.

Cheryl Canfield is a wellness counselor, clinical hypnotherapist and hypnotherapy instructor who lectures nationally on topics of profound healing and steps toward inner peace. She lives in northern California.

Foreword by Joseph Chilton Pearce


So many books on healing flood the market today—making audacious claims, often opportunistic and self-serving—that I can seldom read one through. I have read this work of Cheryl Canfield's four times, however, and shall no doubt read it again. I carried the manuscript around with me for the first few weeks, rather as a warm companion, and still dip into it some two years later.

Canfield builds her book around several themes: First, she offers a play-by-play account of her experience with cancer—from the initial death sentence, to her eventual deliverance from that shadow—which she achieves without fanfare, and entirely on her own. Canfield shows us that a first step in healing is assuming responsibility for every aspect of one's life, including learning all we can of the affliction facing us, and, as the Sufis say, "keeping the devil in front of us, in clear sight."

Second, she uses brief biographical glimpses into her background, not from the ego posturing of one who has held the grim reaper at bay single-handedly, but rather as a foundation on which her new understanding of cancer, disease in general, and health itself could take shape and be shared. Thus Canfield's story proves far more than just an account of moving beyond illness. It is a story of transcendence and moving into new life.

Third, while subtly sensational in substance, the way of healing she describes is marked by quiet humility and understatement, from which a fresh insight into the human spirit unfolds. In claiming so little for herself she offers so much to us all. The glimpses into her spiritual background are richly revealing, particularly her long association with that elusive giant of the spirit, Peace Pilgrim.

Throughout this book I found Canfield's modesty, integrity, and honesty so compelling that I flew to the West Coast to meet her. That personal contact was even more rewarding than the intellectual contact I experienced through her book - one of those rare occasions where one finds the author in person even more genuine and impressive than that person in print. She doesn't just walk her talk, she is her talk - so much so that her inner radiance is infectious and we carry something of it away with us.

Above all: Canfield shows that the onset of a disease, even a deadly one, can be the opening of an adventure of the spirit; the discovery of a wholly different aspect of life; and a challenge that can be every bit as life changing as life threatening. I have heard others speak of affliction as opportunity, but Canfield clearly demonstrates that disease and impending death can be a source of grace and liberation rather than a curse. This good news runs as a clear stream throughout her narrative. And here is a priceless hidden pearl in this work: at some point, in following her precepts for transcendence through forgiveness and nonjudgment, body healing becomes almost secondary to the many other levels of freedom and new life that open.

Surely readers will find their own gems in this work. More important, they may also find the incentive to undertake the simple journey into wholeness the book offers. Whether one is in boundless health, as was Peace Pilgrim, or facing crisis, as Cheryl was, the rewards will inevitably be great.

“This book is an absolute pleasure to read—rich in wisdom and expression.”
—Carolyn Myss, Ph.D., author of Why People Don't Heal and How They Can

“I was deeply touched—there is profound wisdom here, including in Cheryl's 12 steps.”
—Wayne Dyer, Ph.D., author of Your Erroneous Zones

“A sensitive, clear description of guidelines for dealing with a catastrophic illness—from someone who has been there—that can help the reader cross the bridge of forgiveness and spiritual transformation.”
—Gerald Jampolsky, MD, author of Love is Letting Go of Fear

“To say the book is extraordinary is understatement...There is a critical need for this book, more so than any spiritual book I have found in years.”
—Joseph Chilton Pearce, author of Magical Child

Excerpts from Profound Healing

“It isn't enough to pray for a miracle. We have to take responsibility for making good choices—life and health enhancing choices—and acting on them. Once we've done all we can for ourselves, then we can leave the results in higher hands.”

“Intuition can also be a sense of knowing or rightness about something that persists in spite of logical opposition. It persists even when the people we care about most, or persons in authority, are telling us we're making a mistake. We humans often think we can save people from themselves —but it is only the ego in us asserting what we would do in similar circumstances. In truth the best gift we can offer a loved one or anyone else, is confidence in his or her ability to find and act from that place of knowingness within.”

“It is not uncommon for adverse situations to open a whole new pathway in life or to add a new dimension in our relationship to God, ourselves, or to others. It takes patience and trust. We don't ordinarily see the lessons we're working on when we're in the midst of them. Insight usually comes in retrospect and grows and develops with time.”

“One of the biggest stresses we can put on ourselves is trying to control situations that are out of our hands. We strain with all our might to push the immovable mountain out of our path instead of putting our attention into the things we are able to do in a given situation. A life-threatening illness or catastrophic event can be like that mountain; we can drain our energy trying to get it out of our way when we could be forging a path around the mountain or perhaps climbing the heights where we might find an extraordinary view of life.