Healing power of Holy Words

Power of Mind over the Body

Call me a cynic, if you like, but I have no hesitation in asserting that I have a healthy disbelief in the reports of the clinical tests which are performed on the body. Pulse rate and blood pressure (BP) are routinely checked by doctors to diagnose disease. Their well researched ‘normal’ values have been specified by the medical councils. Over the years, I have seen that there are substantial variations in the observed figures. The cause of the difference in the findings is the emotional state of the patient, which changes from moment to moment. It has been proved that yogis can control their pulse rate and the BP through meditation, and bring them down to near zero.

The range and depth of the other clinical tests has been increasing with each passing year. Specialists and super specialists can drill deep holes in the pocket of hapless patients. What worries me is that, ever so often, we get different results if  the same test done in multiple laboratories. It is also a well known fact that  doctors and testing laboratories are in league with each other. Medical ethics has declined to a very low level.  I have even heard of a laboratory which saves on the ‘testing kits’ and gives the report on the basis of the previous test reports, without conducting the test at all!  When I look at the sprawling mansions of the doctors and the limousines they drive, I think of the likes of me who pay for them. Real money is in surgery, and so the ‘trigger happy’ surgeons miss no opportunity to cash on the gullible patient who agrees to sign the document to go under the knife.

Psychosomatic Disorders.

It has been known since long that many diseases are caused by emotional tensions and worry. The other fact which I have ‘discovered’ is that the human body is an integrated system. Those of us who run to super specialists,  often get lost in the process of focusing on a specific organ are led to the wrong road. My personal favourite are the ’GP’ doctors who base their findings on the palpable symptoms and simultaneously understand the emotional condition on the patient to suggest the course of action. They generally prescribe very few medicines and rely more on proper diet and exercise. The stethoscope around their neck is their sole and most trusted test instrument!


Old Wine in New Bottles

How was it, before the doctors became selfish and greedy?  I searched the literature, and discovered that very little has changed over the years!  Guru Nanak appeared on the scene more than five hundred years ago, and gave us some very profound information. On page 1279 in the Guru Granth Sahib, I saw a hymn composed jointly by Guru Nanak and Guru Angad Dev ji. It is in Raag Malhar, and I think I will leave it for the readers to comprehend the meanings himself. I am giving below a snapshot of the ‘shloka’ which  has been sung by many hymn singers. Amongst them are the redoubtable Lata Mangeshkar and the noted singer, Anuradha Paudwal. In this text, you find the original Punjabi text followed by the words written in Roman letters, and in the third line, you have the English translation. For listening to Lata ji singing this hymn, please click on the  link given at the end. And then click on the bottom of the list, which says, “Vaid bulaya vaidagi

snapshot vaid bulaya

Rendering by Lata Mangeshkar

For this particular hymn, please scroll to the bottom and click on “Vaid bulaya vaidagi”

This was like “eureka”! I shouted out for joy!!! I had hit upon a diamond mine. When I looked farther, in my quest for more, I dug deeper into the tomes on the shelves in   libraries. And since I did not confine myself to any particular faith, I read the Vedic texts, the Holy Bible, the Quran, the Tirukural, some Buddhist literature and the selected quotes of Confucius. There is remarkable similarity in the thought contained in all the books mentioned above. It has become increasingly clear to me that :

diseeases of soul ed

At that time, I was young, and the body was a lot more agile. I could travel far and wide, with no problem. And therefore, I also reached out to some living ‘gurus’.  I  heard the discourses of Shree Rajneesh, Shri Sathya Sai Baba and the master at Shri Ram Krishna mission amongst others. In Calcutta, I a learned man give us the following suggestion,

“If you fall sick, go to a hospital, so that the Doctor may live.

Then,  buy the medicines prescribed, so that the Chemist may live

Finally, at home, throw the pills and capsules: so that you may live!!!” 

The Story of how I got the Bible

A copy of the Bible was first given to me by my lifelong friend, Joseph Thomas. I could not go beyond the “Genesis” chapter in the Old Testament. The story of how the “New Testament” came my way has a message in it. And I consider it necessary to place it on record.

I was away on a short visit to the land of our erstwhile rulers. One evening, I had gone for a stroll to a Park, and for the return journey, decided to try a ‘shortcut’. I lost my way, and to to add to my woes, it began to drizzle. I took shelter under a shed to wait for a let up in the shower. To my horror, it turned into a steady rain. Just then, a kindly old man appeared like a Godsend and asked me if he could help. I apprised  him of my predicament. In a jiffy, he went to a Church nearby and returned with two umbrellas. He offered to escort me up to  Hotel St James Court, where we were lodged. For want of choice, I accepted his help. On the way, he told me many things about how and why we become anxious, worried, afraid and angry, and said that it was possible to overcome these ‘negative thoughts’. At our destination, he gave me a copy of the Holy Bible, and told me that merely holding it in the hand gives solace and strength. I offered to pay for that lovely looking pocket sized book, but he said that it was a gift from the Gideons  International. Before I could thank him for his noble gesture, he was gone. Here is a picture of what he gave me:

gideons bible


Retirement Blues

I did not read much of this holy book until a few months before I became due to retire from the military service in 1997. I confess I was filled with anxiety and nervousness at the prospect of being without a job. Later, I learnt that this is what is known as ‘retirement blues’. As I was coming to terms with the reality, I accidentally opened the Bible. On the opening pages, there was a very useful link, which said, “Where to find help when:” And there I found what I was looking for. Look at the scan of page 4-5:

where to seek help scanned

I turned to the suggested sermons, and found some very soothing and re-assuring words. Here is what I saw,

Philippians 4:12

12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

Matthew 6:34

34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.


Since then, I have turned to the Bible for help many times; and have rarely been disappointed. An additional reason why the Gideons Bible has become so dear to me is the story behind how it was presented to me. I am convinced that the man who gave it to me had no selfish motive for the invaluable service which he rendered. I have read somewhere that, “The hands which serve are holier than the lips that pray” And at that particular moment, he had emerged like a Saviour for me. His image in my mind is in the form of  hands that protect.

hands which serve are holier than lips that pray

How words help the healing process

It is well known in the military circles, that it is easier to kill than to defeat the enemy. This is because death is of the body, and defeat is in the mind. Over a hundred years ago, on 12 Sep 1897, in the battle of Saragarhi, 21 soldiers of the 36th Sikhs (now called 4 Sikh) were attacked by 10,000 Afghan and Orekazai tribesmen. They fought literally to the last man and the last bullet, refused to give up their position. They were inspired by the words of the Guru, “Nishchay kar apni jeet karon” (I am determined to emerge the victor )  These words are strengthened by the deeds of the Guru, whose sons had proved true to the words, “Jab av ki audh nidhan bane, at hi ran mein tab joojh maron” (When the events take the worst turn, I shall die fighting valiantly till the very end) 

Disease is like an enemy which has to be fought in much the same manner. The directions have to come from the mind. Words, whether they are read or heard assist in ensuring that the mind entertains only the positive thoughts. Negative emotions like envy, fear, anxiety, anger and lust need to be dispelled with resolute determination. Death is inevitable, but those who fear the ultimate end die a thousand times before the call arrives.

The Power of Music               

Music adds an essential dimension to the words. That is why, hymns are sung and the ‘mantras’ are chanted. Sometimes, it is necessary to repeat a prayer several times, and therefore the ‘gayatri mantra’ is repeated, whilst the ‘aarti’ is sung just once.

Recently, I  again heard the English song, “Don’t worry; be happy”. Its words  are extremely simple and the tune is very catchy. Twenty odd years ago, when I was afflicted by a nagging low back pain, my sons used to sing it to me, and I benefitted a lot from it. An abstract of the lyrics is given below, and a link to the song itself is the concluding note of this somewhat long post.

Here’s a little song I wrote
You might want to sing it note for note
Don’t worry, be happy
In every life we have some trouble
When you worry you make it double
Don’t worry, be happy
Don’t worry, be happy now

Ain’t got no cash, ain’t got no style
Ain’t got no girl to make you smile
But don’t worry, be happy
‘Cause when you worry, your face will frown
And that will bring everybody down
So don’t worry, be happy
Don’t worry, be happy now

Now there, is this song I wrote
I hope you learned it note for note
Like good little children
Don’t worry, be happy
Listen to what I say
In your life expect some trouble
When you worry you make it double


And here is the link to the rendering of these soothing words:




  1. Brig Dharam Prakash says:


    It has been wonderful to read and admire your research/compilation.Basic tenet for all human beings is same ie our origin is from ONE (thus brothers & sisters) whom we have given different names and exclusiveness led to all our miseries,if only we had remained focus on human relationship & controlled anger,greed and hatred,we would have been better & peaceful lot.
    Best wishes for 2015

  2. Prophets have all preached the message of peace. only the confused minds see

    contradictions among them. Here is my own favourite.

    “Come, Lord Jesus, our guest to be

    And bless these gifts

    Bestowed by Thee.

    And bless our loved ones everywhere,

    And keep them in Your loving care.”


  3. Lt Col MN Kelkar says:

    Hi Surjit,
    It was the best Christmus Greetings ever received. We reciprocate warmly. Thanks and Regards
    To Joseph Thomas. We will be simple in wishing you all “Merry Chrismus” and pray “May God be with you, always and every time”


  4. Harindar Bedi says:

    Dear Surjit,


    I must say that every email that I get from you carries a meaningful message – hallmark of a true intellectual! Look forward to many more such pearls of wisdom.

    Sarab joins me in wishing you and Surinder Merry Christmas and a very happy NEW YEAR as well.


  5. Jagwant Singh Bath says:

    Forwarded to friends, with great pleasure!

  6. Lt Gen Kamal Khanna says:

    Dear Sir,

    Wish you all the best in 2015.


  7. Brig Sanjay Sharma says:

    to me

    what nice words and thought from you !
    thanx and Wish you and madam a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year
    Brig Sanjay Sharma

  8. George Poonen says:

    HI Surjit:

    As Indians we have been very fortunate to have grown with the wisdom of several religions. It is great that we can find comfort in all of them.

    Your words are always thoughtful and also often full of wisdom.

    May God bless you and your family.

    Happy New Year

    George and Karena

  9. Joseph Thomas says:

    Thanks. Jesus is one of the prophets in Islam. Large parts of the Koran and the Bible are common.

    There’s lots of differences between the Old Testament and the New Testament. Jesus replaced the violence and the “eye for an eye” philosophy of the Old Testament with a message of love, peace and forgiveness. The Bible, in its present form, is a collection of books by different authors and was compiled about 500 years after Jesus. Even though Jesus revised the teachings of the Old Testament, it remains. So we have huge contradictions and inconsistencies. Our priests conveniently ignore the portions that are inconsistent with the New Testament.

    The first five books are essentially an autobiography of Moses. Called Pentateuch in English and Torah by the Jews. Moses was a cruel and violent person. He got 3000 Jews killed to force them to adopt his religion. He preached and committed genocide on the tribes he conquered. Yet, Jews, Muslims and Christians venerate him as a prophet.

    King David and Jehangir have one thing in common. They both got a man killed in order to marry the widow.

    All said and done, I don’t consider the Old Testament as scripture but only as a history of the Jewish people. It is no coincidence that all the portions you have quoted are from the Psalms and the New Testament.

    Greetings for Christmas and the New Year

    best regards,

    J Thomas

  10. Kohli Veena says:

    same to you….

    glad i have a friend in u …

    I read Bible Quran and others too

    composed by great ones like

    Wahe Guru and you

    MERRY Xmas and Happy New Year to you all

    from all at Canada

    my full family ten of us… r today here

    Col SSM got his Ph D

    luv ya’ll


  11. Ravi Minocha says:

    Hello Sir,

    Indeed these are ver positive thoughts and advice which one should follow and remain happy and contended

    Best Wishes and Merry Christmas

    Ravi Aruna Minocha

  12. Lt Gen SA Hasnain says:

    Lovely message, Sir. Thank you so much for it.

    I have also studied(not simply read) the Bible in school. Wonderful feeling going over each page. Gives much peace of mind and humility.

    That is why I pity those who do not give Christmas the importance it deserves. I am a better human only because I read the Bible, so extensively and imbibed so much of its rich messages of love and peace.

    Warm regards


  13. Col SS Malik says:

    Dear General,

    It is great master piece of real/practical wisdom coming from you. When Great Gurus hundreds of years ago and so the Bible and other holy books were written it had the originator, director, controller as well as the co-ordinator ‘GOD- The Truth’ personally supervising them. These rich/devine GUIDES have survived the diktats of TIME. There is nothing more to guide us through this sojourn.

    They were true then and will remain true for deep/far in FUTURE. I can comprehend better the intimacy MUSIC /frequencies of AUDIBLE RANGE(20 HZ -20000 KHZ) ENJOY. RIDING ASTRIDE THESE WORDS OR THE VICE VERSA, ‘CAUSE HE keeps talking to us every moment. prevades everything, transcends the senses too.

    ‘Tum phoolon ka rang lelo, hum khushboo mien dhall jayein,

    Yeh Do pal hi junoon ke hain, dil kyon na machall jayien.

    Have we ever wondered how great environment of plants, animals, microbes, electrons, EM spectrum, space and time survives without colleges, hospitals, doctors, internet, hotels, guides etc.


    got my PhD few days ago as environmentalist.

    Col(Dr) SS Malik

  14. Brig BJS Oberoi says:

    An excellent subject & piece of work.Very motivating.All must read for their own good & good of others.It is akin 2 healing of self by their SUB concious mind. We R proud of U .

  15. Viren Bajaj says:

    Did you return the umbrella to the kind old man?
    Wish you a happy new year.

  16. Harbhajan Sahni says:

    Dear Sir,
    This is a thought provoking article, and I have forwarded it to my friends.

  17. Lt Gen Sanjeev Anand says:

    Dear Sir,

    The mail was indeed extremely POWERFUL and HEALING……a much needed solace for the soul ….I have placed it on my DESKTOP , to be read and imbibed daily, as a balm..

    Our sincere and warm wishes to you and the family for a wonderful New Year


  18. Bindiya Khatri says:

    Hello Sir,

    Wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year. Can you see something that I have adopted from your last mail.

    Just see my Signatures on the mail . I have taken this resolution this year not to worry !!!! ”

    “Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.
    Each day has enough trouble of its own”

    This was sent by you to me in your last mail. I really liked it so much that I added the same in my signature mail.


    बिंदिया खात्री/Bindiya Khatri

  19. J Thomas says:

    The mind controls the body. So a healthy mind and a positive outlook are pre-requisites to good physical health.

  20. Brig PT Gangadharan says:

    Dear Sir,

    It is wonderful.You have produced again a master piece with very few words.Your research is of immense value to many who do not read much. Infact the Bible gives many words on healing ( Spirit,Soul& Body).If you repeat these words (meditate) one is sure to be healed.Faith in God is the only condition required.Faith comes by hearing hence the meditation.

  21. Brig PT Gangadharan says:

    Dear Sir,

    It is wonderful.You have produced again a master piece with very few words.Your research is of immense value to many who do not read much. Infact the Bible gives many words on healing ( Spirit,Soul& Body).If you repeat these words (meditate) one is sure to be healed.Faith in God is the only condition required.Faith comes by hearing hence the meditation.

  22. Brig PT Gangadharan says:

    Dear Sir,

    It is wonderful.You have produced again a master piece with very few words.Your research is of immense value to many who do not read much. Infact the Bible gives many words on healing ( Spirit,Soul& Body).If you repeat these words (meditate) one is sure to be healed.Faith in God is the only condition required.Faith comes by hearing hence the meditation.

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