Welcome to my blog …

JRG Photo (6.28.14)November 17, 2014:  I am now approaching the three year anniversary of living with an extremely rare and serious cancer diagnosis (high-grade soft-tissue sarcoma), and more than 15 months of actively dealing with bony metastatic disease. It has been a tidal wave that has upended and reordered every aspect of my life — a full-blown, daily encounter with uncertainty, vulnerability, and the unknown. It has brought me face-to-face with many of the great mysteries and paradoxes of life and healing, and forced me to confront my own mortality more directly than ever before.

One of the great ironies in all of this, of course, is that it all arose in the context of 20+ years of working as a medical oncologist — providing guidance and care for thousands of patients and family members navigating the extraordinary challenges encountered on the journey through cancer. Beyond my professional work, I have spent most of my life personally exploring the great healing and spiritual traditions of the world. This spiritual knowledge and experience about the deeper dimensions of life — and possibilities for healing that transcend conventional paradigms, even healing from a rare and aggressive cancer — have been a lifeline for me.

At the same time, being an oncologist has in many ways made the journey harder and more challenging.  For better or worse, I understand the medical challenges and complexities of what I am facing.  I am also living each day confronted by the profound limitations of science and medicine — and alternative therapies as well — to adequately deal with this rare disease. Many of the decisions about what to do have been extremely difficult and uncertain, and the treatment options very limited. The journey has brought me closer to a deeper experience of my humanity — including reservoirs of inner strength as well as depths of fear, pain, and vulnerability — beyond anything I could have ever imagined.

During this time, being in contact with you — my dear community of friends and colleagues — has been an incredible blessing.  Your consistent thoughts, prayers, communications, and good wishes have been a profound gift.  In fact, it is hard to fully express how meaningful and important your presence, love, and communications have been.  I hope you know and can feel the difference you’ve made.  Thank you, again and again, for being there.

Until recently, I have sent out periodic email updates about my condition.  Over the past few months, however, events have been so challenging that it has been very hard to stay in touch.  After a lot of thought, and with the encouragement of many of you, I have decided to share and communicate through this new blog for a number of reasons:

  • First, this will be a deeper and more intimate way of communicating about what I am actually going through.
  • Second, it will create an opportunity for you to “check in” to know what is happening with me as the journey continues to unfold — at your convenience — and to share any comments or posts, as you feel called to do.
  • Third, it will provide a more robust forum for us to stay connected, and will provide a crucible of support and communication that feels very important and critical for me right now.
  • Finally, going through the cancer journey as a patient, I have learned much about life, death, cancer, and the mysteries and paradoxes of healing. The journey has also been filled with many unexpected blessings, insights, and understandings. I hope to be able to share some of what I have learned in a way that may be meaningful for others.

So, welcome to this new blog.  It begins at a time of great uncertainty in my medical situation, and my care.  I am facing upcoming decisions that will have serious consequences and implications for how my life, and my continued efforts to heal and live, unfold.  Your presence in my life, and the contact and communications we may have through this blog, feel more important to me than ever.  Thank you for being there, for staying in touch, and for sharing your comments in whatever way you feel inspired.

To view more current blog posts, please click here.

54 thoughts on “Welcome to my blog …

  1. shana parker

    The song “Mystery” which you wrote so long ago has been my ring tone for years. It always reminds me of your willingness to embrace love and life in all its wild and crazy incomprehensible spaces. If anyone can turn this tide of cancer it will be you. Holding you in an image of impeccable health. And of course sending so much love, Shana

    Reply
    1. Amara Geffen

      Rame, as time/energy permits, I wonder, do you have a recording of Mystery you can share with all of us? Kristina mentioned it when I visited….but it has been years and years since I heard it. I am sure it will melt my heart…but am prepared for that. I want to hear it again. Please????? Love you dearest brother!

      Reply
    2. Lucia Nicola Evans

      Jeremy…
      I am so so glad you are writing a blog about your journey. You have such a gift with words. The way you write makes me feel closer to you. I hear that this is a very uncertain time for you and I am so here with you as a friend. I love you dearly and feel grateful you are sharing your experience so others too will understand more closely what you are going through.

      Thank you for your courage and for your vulnerability. You are one INCREDIBLE HUMAN BEING. Thank you for your presence and openness.

      Reply
      1. Carole Abrahams

        I have a photograph of you in my meditation room on my puja. It is a photo in Profiles Florida from 2002 with your book is in the background. How horribly ironic!!
        You are writing from a new perspective now and it is all so valuable. Thank you for continuing to share your journey in such a personal and meaningful way.
        You are in my daily thoughts and prayers and I love you with all my heart always.
        Ganapati Ma

        Reply
  2. Brandon Bays

    You have been so with me kabir and I am thrilled to be able to send love thru this blog across the miles–such a generous way for all of us to to be included in your journey. Sending a huge embrace of love and healing beloved… you have left such deep footprints on my heart and are always with me.
    in love and always at the master’s feet, Janaki ( brandon)

    Reply
  3. Julie

    Jeremy, thank you for sharing in this way with your community. Your courage is a true inspiration, the way you embrace your own healing journey is the beacon of a true hero.

    Reply
  4. Kirsten West

    I absolutely heart you. You are a blessing to this world and, this world needs you.
    I miss our talk and reflections… sending you all the beautiful juju I can muster.

    Reply
  5. Sandy Sela-Smith

    You may be discovering, on the deepest of levels, that you are not alone even in the most difficult moments. There are many who love you and continue to support you in their hearts and in their prayers, I suspect far, far more than you would even imagine. The love from others that exists, unlimited by time and space, are and will always be there for you.

    Reply
  6. Mirabai

    This blog is a great idea, Kabir. Obviously the hints you offer about new challenges and impending decisions fill my heart with concern, but I am even more struck by your clarity, humility, and wonder in the face of this thing. Ganga Das joins me in sending you waves of healing light, and of course love.

    Reply
  7. cristos

    Kabir,
    You had me at hello…….
    So glad you’re feeling well enough to blog,
    I know so many will be grateful to be included on this journey;
    and I know it will be of great benefit for everyone, everywhere.
    I love you Kabir,
    cristos

    Reply
  8. Nancy Rumbel

    Hi Jeremy,
    I’ll be thinking about you and sending you healing thoughts! I was just in Boulder visiting my wonderful daughter and sadly heard about another friend of mine there dealing with stage IV cancers. As we walk this path of life our challenges are many and often so, soo unexpected. I was glad to hear from you and see your photo, but so saddened to hear of your suffering. Continued love in your direction always! I am happy to send you some music if you’d like :)

    Reply
  9. Omkar Naga Jaya

    Namaste Kabir,
    What a wonderful idea and exquisite start. Thank you for including all of us in this way.
    I send prayers and healing every day.
    Love,
    Omkar

    Reply
  10. Alan Tralins MD

    Hello my dear Friend,
    You most recently joined me on a Trek, although you may have thought you were dreaming I assure you, you were with me. We were in Bhutan and hiked to Tigers Nest where most surprising you transformed and became the smoke of incense and I watched as you were inhaled by one of the many faces of Vishnu and then exhaled as a Buddha laugh. Thru the many temples I rang bells and sent you prayers, including more than a few Jewish ones. You are so alive my friend…and this Blog is a good idea. I am always here for you if your up to conversation.
    Love,
    Alan

    Reply
  11. Dianne Rule

    Jeremy,
    THANK YOU for sharing your life, wisdom, insight and love with so many via this blog. I think of you so often, especially when near Mission, so it is a special blessing to hear from you in this way. Please know that I continue to pray for your healing and Peace.
    Much Love and a Huge Hug!
    Dianne

    Reply
  12. Charley Cropley

    Jeremy;
    I admire the poise with which you traverse this steep path.
    Speaking with you today in the gym, you conveyed a sense of the critical time you are in.
    I hold you in my prayers. I love you.

    Reply
  13. TaraNaga

    My dear Kabir,
    I send you all the encouragement & praises and all the prasad from the all the Babas and all the souls who have enjoyed your love and wisdom multiplied by the millions of songs you have sung. You are loved and it is a sweet and memorable love to energize your journey.

    Reply
  14. Marc Edwards

    Dear Jeremy,
    Thank you for initiating this expression with those who care about you, and feel your presence strongly.
    I had no idea you were Kabir to many! I want to know more.
    I am glad you have the will to continue, and the appreciation for your life, in its current, in part very difficult, form.
    The medical reading is not easy on this reader, either. Yet I know it is a dimension of your experience right now, and I appreciate that I can partake of it, in some form, with you.
    I will also share with you and Kristina that I became a grandfather last Wednesday. Little Zelda throws into a new perspective that my children are now parents, and my role shifts.
    Know that I, like all of these others, are here with you.

    With love,
    Marc

    Reply
  15. Mitch Sisskind

    Hi Jeremy —
    I’m so glad to see your blog and to find out what’s happening. I’ve tried to call a few times but could not get your current number. I’m so proud of the work we did together in the past and I would love to do more in the future. You have such strength and insight and I know you are equal to any challenge.

    With admiration and affection,
    Mitch

    Reply
  16. Alejandro Chaoul

    Dear Jeremy,
    Thank you for doing this blog, which is a powerful tool to share about as you call it the “great mysteries and paradoxes of life and healing.”

    I admire you and send you a big warm hug,

    ale

    Reply
  17. Michael Stillwater

    Jeremy,
    It is so good to ‘hear’ your voice in your words- at the same time the realization of how long its been since we’ve shared. What seems clear is that great spirits are given great tasks, and you are in the midst of such. And by opening this way to your community of friends and colleagues, you allow for us to be with you on this journey.

    Much love from Doris and I, Michael

    Reply
  18. Soma

    Dearest Jeremy,
    Your blog and the messages
    of so many of your dear ones is a truly
    beautiful and exceptional expression of the very best in each of us.
    Of course it hurts my heart so much to hear your pain on
    so many levels, but your words are
    exquisite and strangely uplifting and
    inspiring never the less. You hold such a special place
    in so many hearts that, if
    love and prayer alone could heal you,
    you would be very well by tomorrow morning!

    If there is anything at all that I can do
    for you – in any way – do not hesitate
    for a moment… except cook, of course –
    you know I don’t do that:-) And, one
    more thing. I’m right here to line edit
    your next book. Your blog is the
    beginning…

    With so much love, Soma

    Reply
  19. Varanasi

    Namaste my love,
    Cristos has given us a beautiful musical moment.
    This is a lovely gathering of community in love with you.
    So sweet, so very sweet. The inner smile is joyful.
    Kabir, more will be revealed as you gather with your closest loved ones.
    Enjoy the moments and the memories.
    and maybe go to the mountains enjoy the manifestation of great mastery
    seek the amrita as it manifest within the circle of the Rinpoches*.
    ” It’s all in the knowing”….Jaya Ma.
    There will be love and joy, nourishment and healing in every breath.
    … and if Deva Premal – Gayatri Mantra is heard between the rising of the sun and the glow of the moon
    … there will be more sweet sounds of equanimity,

    [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSmToj9VZ4s?rel=0&w=560&h=315%5D

    Reading here the words of kindness, friendship, honor, respect, familiarity , love and hope.
    looking forward to updates and tales of adventure and quiet peaceful silence.
    Varanasi Love

    * http://timon.hacks.arizona.edu/~scar/DrikungKagyu/dutsi.pdf

    Reply
  20. Pam Behler

    Jeremy,
    What a honor to read your blog and be a part of this journey with support and prayer. I continue you to lift you up and pray God’s miracle of healing on you, in Jesus name.
    Pam

    Reply
  21. Doshin Nelson

    Dear Jeremy:
    Deeply sorry to hear that things have gotten so interesting for you, and would love to support you in any what that presents itself. Would love to explore the possibilites if you have the energy. Till then I am sending you Silence, clarity and Selfless compassion.
    Much love,
    Doshin Roshi

    Reply
  22. Neeraja and Gopal

    Dearest Kabir,
    Dearest brother of the Heart. It it’s a beauty to be able to read you together with all your wonderful friends. The love it transpires from the sharing is moving.
    Thank you so much. You are a dearest friend to us and for so many years you have been a unique example of strength and courage and we feel so lucky to have you in our lives. We pray beloved Papaji to make you a Lion to face victoriously all those challenging moments you are going through. May His blessing shower on you day and night.
    We send you healing vibrations and pray in the heart for your long healthy life.
    It feels like singing your praises offering you all the love you so well deserve.
    Kabir we love you and love you.
    We keep in mind all the great time and good laughter we had since so long share together.
    Get well and come to see us in Italy together with dear Kristina.
    Big warm hug for both of you
    Neeraja and Gopal

    Reply
  23. Chris

    My Dear Jeremy,
    You are so precious to our community. I am sending you and Kristina a thousand marvelous blessings and the deepest healing love and light.
    Chris and David

    Reply
  24. Steve Cohen

    I’m thinking of you and sending my love, every day. Thanks for creating this blog and for sharing the journey with us.

    Reply
  25. Peggy Wrenn

    Beloved Jeremy, wow, wow, wow. . . your blog has blossomed overnight, like a 4-Dimensional lotus… we love you, Jeremy, so much! I will see you later today. Rivers of love.

    Reply
  26. Rhonda Akin

    Kabir-chan, Jeremy-ji,
    Thank you for creating this form of community to radiate around you.
    In all phases of your life experience and sharing, you are a great beacon.
    I’m here for you, too,
    Heart to Heart

    Reply
  27. Kathryn

    Dear Jeremy,
    I am so filled with gratitude for your blog , a place to be connected to you in your healing journey. I pray daily for your strength, peace, courage, and healing all of which I hear in your words of sharing. I hold you in the light of God asking Him to help you know His presence in each moment of each day. I love you my dear friend for you have helped me to know and love my God with a much greater love. I send many blessings and lots and lots of hugs.
    Kathryn

    Reply
  28. shana parker

    Hi Amara, I have Rame singing Mystery. If you get my number from him we can figure out how to get it from my computer onto this blog. I heard how much your visit meant to him. blessings, shana

    Reply
  29. Radha Baum

    Dearest Kabir,
    Thank you for your profound writing, sharing your honesty and heart.
    May the blanket of His grace and wonder continue to cover you with Love and healing blessings! Many thoughts of Love and gratitude are coming your way, beautiful one!
    Radha

    Reply
  30. Sandy Sela-Smith

    As with all of us, there are places inside you that can open and feel so much love that comes to you in this moment…and has been coming to you for years and decades. And like all of us, there are places inside that do not know how to take in all the love that has been pouring in to you from so many who have known and loved you. The parts that know how to take in love can send love to the resistant parts in you…and resistant parts in us. And we all can expand our ability to love along with you. Thank you for giving us that opportunity to grow in our ability to love. I continue to send love and healing energy to your whole being.

    Reply
  31. Diane Abbey Nunn

    Dearest Rame —- Yes this is a voice from the past thanks to the miracle of a FB connection with Mara and now the possibilities inherent in Blog technology.
    When I enlarged your photograph I saw immediately the face of the 6th grader whom it was my privilege to teach all those years ago. You’ve no idea how often I think of and wonder about all my Jones School kids plus those I taught in Texas, always wishing to know where you are and the lives created.

    And now I am able to send to you my love and support, adding to that already coming to you from so many people whose lives you have touched so profoundly. You have honored so beautifully your desire to heal and help by your commitment to searching beyond traditional Western medicine and that excites me so, being in line to my own belief that there is so much to learn from older civilizations and how I wish such opportunities had been available when my own husband, Charles Abbey whom you knew, was battling his cancers in the late 1970’s.

    Reply
  32. MaryAnn

    Dear Kabir-ji,
    We cherish you so deeply, and feel such appreciation for this connection with you. Your brilliant mind and open heart continue to provide us all with your enlightening, healing gifts of knowledge and experience.
    Thank you for including us on your journey, and as ever, we will keep you in our hearts ~ because it is safe there, and filled with Love.

    Reply
  33. Ram

    Dear Kabir,
    It was such a joy to see you and Kristina at Lina and John’s Thanksgiving celebration last night, and both an inspiration and delight to hear you speak of all that you are thankful for. As you said, whatever the situation, there is always much for which we can be thankful and, in my experience, gratitude lightens (as in “fills with light”) the journey. It is a joy to call you friend and companion on this awesome journey.
    Ram

    Reply
  34. Kumari Ellis

    Dearest Kabir,
    i remember you so well singing your beautiful Hanuman song to Papaji in lucknow all those years ago. i have just read your blog postings and i am of course deeply touched. i resonate with all you share and i honour your spirit your courage your incredible way with words at this profoundly challenging time. thank you deeply for your sharing. it is a great gift for all who read. is there any way that it is possible to listen to you singing that Hanuman song that you wore? it has remained a favourite for me. i send you love and prayers,
    Hari Om
    kumari x

    Reply
  35. Julie Parker

    Hello Dr Geffen,
    I first read about you being hired at Mission as the head of the cancer center late Friday afternoon… I spent the weekend anxious for the Cancer Center to open Monday morning so I could ask to profile you for the annual Y CHROMOSOME issue of the magazine I founded – WNC WOMAN. I was thrilled they had hired you (I ordered your book on Friday). I had a compete hysterectomy at Mission October ’13 for STAGE IIIa ovarian cancer and I was anxious to learn about the headway you were making at Mission (esp since they closed Lourdes Lorenz’s department!) I was SO disappointed to learn this morning you were no longer there (I’d been so looking forward to the interview!) and when I googled you I found this blog. Hunh. Well, here is MY blog – The Vocabulary of Joy – Celebrating the Blessings of Life with Cancer at http://julieparker.me You will see I turned down the recommended chemo. My CA 125 was 890 when the cancer was discovered a year ago and is 7 (seven) today…. and I feel fabulous. If you are up for it, I recommend the book RADICAL REMISSION. I wish you the best with your own dance with cancer!

    Reply
  36. Michael Stillwater

    Jeremy,
    Wonderful to read your most recent message. If you like to share it, we could post your message from Care for the Journey- ‘The Heart of Healing’. I am sure those who follow your story, if they haven’t heard it before, would appreciate hearing this profound and timeless message.
    Much love, Michael

    Reply
  37. walter

    Jeremy
    your words flow from a heart expanding through the process of healing that is supported by so many who you love and who return your love. I am sure that their caring enriches your days and and provides for the courage that we as cancer survivors so need. I wish you life from myself and my sister Elaine.

    Reply
  38. Jane Bialosky

    Dear Jeremy,

    I wanted you to know that you have been an important part of our journey even though you may not remember us at all. You have touched many more people than you will ever have imagined. When we were looking for a place to develop a meditator community, Mary Ann suggested that we look at Vero. She took us to your house and we met you. Vero has become home and we are appreciating its subtlety and synchronicity. In the last few weeks, your name has come up serendipitously in conversation several times and in each instance, it has been because of a gift of knowledge or compassion you have given.

    Your wisdom and dedication have saved so many lives spiritually and materially. Richard and I are joining your wide world of friends in wishing you a long long life to see the sun.

    Jane and Richard Bialosky

    Reply
  39. ellin

    Ji,

    Write. Return to your poetic self. Play music.
    Express they journey as it unfolds.
    Create, and blossom into the beyond.

    You are loved by me and life itself.

    e

    Reply
  40. Jean Watson

    Dearest Jeremy,

    You remain in my heart and thoughts and prayers. I am holding you in much love and light for the grace in which you are living your life’s experience in midst of such unimaginable happenings. Such a reminder for us all.

    This is my first time here to your site and I want to share a couple things.
    First my loving thanks for your enduring support of me and the establishment of the Watson Caring Science Institute. Without your leadership and endless commitment of time and devotion it would not have existed.

    By way of update; The University of Colorado College of Nursing will become the umbrella of all the programs and activities as part of the transition of WCSI to CU — to sustain the legacy of my work in Caring science and its role in education, practice, and research. A new, interdisciplinary, WCS/CU program is being created including an interdisciplinary PhD in Caring science. A new Endowed Watson Caring Science Faculty Chair has been crated to fulfill and continue the work. So I am very happy to see this transition and evolution.

    We are having a reunion of all the Caritas Coach graduates this coming Friday, April 24 at the Boulderado Hotel. I do not expect you would be able to attend, but if you could it would be a joyous moment for all.
    I will be celebrating with a formal certificate of appreciation to all of the founding leaders including you, Ron, Barbara and Don and Jim D’Afonso

    I am preparing a formal certificate for honoring you and your enduring support of me and the WCSI vision and mission which have such critical role in its success. If by chance you could show up anytime during the morning or afternoon of Friday, it would be a sheer delight to welcome you publicly, before all, and give you the certificate in person. Knowing that may not happen, I want you to know about this process and update. I will be in touch to see you in person afterwards as we can find the right time to see each other in person.

    My deepest love and radiant gratitude for you. I pray for right outcome for you and all of us on this life journey we share.

    In loving kindness and peace,

    Jean

    Reply
  41. Maddi

    Thank you, Jeremy for sharing your wisdom and beautiful thoughts on your journey. You continue in your many articles to help those of us who have been on the same path. I have been following you and your articles since I first saw a Caring for Cancer magazine with your photo on the cover at UPMC when I was receiving chemo treatments. Shortly after that, I was at a Memorial Day picnic at Amara Geffen’s home and I asked her if she was familiar with you and she said “That’s my brother”. What a coincidence!

    I will keep you in my heart, thoughts and prayers. Thanks again for sharing your journey with us.

    Reply
  42. walter kurtzman

    I have been following your courageously written blog. I want to wish you well and hope that a breakthrough in your treatment is near. My brother Myron, battled a blood cancer for some years and he too kept a blog which can be seen in the family tree. Seymour before his passing lived with prostate cancer and I am living with it now. I read your book and incorporated ideas from the book for my care. Your Dad was my first cousin. I spent pleasant times with him in Old Forge and New York City. I enjoyed long philosophical talks over breakfast or lunch.

    Reply
  43. Dale Figtree

    HI Jeremy, you are on my mind. I wonder how you are doing. Please send word through your blog. I am sure there are many that feel the same way.
    With love and blessings,
    Jyoti Hanuman

    Reply
  44. Connie Wong

    Dear Kristina,
    I can feel your pain and I heard about the news from Adam two days ago and I am shocked and saddened.
    Your unconditional love for Jeremy is beautiful and respectful. Jeremy is now free from pain and is in the wings of God.
    Take care and I shall see you soon.
    Love
    Connie

    Reply

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