Ever since I wrote about Creations for Parkinson's, I have been attending their Sunday night angel's dance. Several friends, including some of the other Newser Reporters, also make frequent trips to Creations. I have also made many new friends there. Last Sunday, Maia Antarra asked me if I would be interested in writing about the coming opening of a new healing center which she was involved with. This new center, "Paradise Eiland Retreat & Event Center" uses non-medical, New Age therapies, like Reiki, Tai Chi, meditation and sound to restore balance and health. I found this topic very interesting, for two reasons. I have been looking into the idea that Second Life can provide real life therapy. Add to this, in the last few months I have developed a problem with poor circulation and pain in my feet and legs. I have very little faith in medical doctors and have been trying to book an appointment in a RL healing center, like the one Maia was describing in SL. I was given a LM and told to contact the owner, Rod Eiland. When our Sunday event ended, I headed for Paradise. In addition to reporting on it, I was hoping to offer myself as proof that these virtual reality techniques do, in fact, work.
The landing put me right in front of the healing center. While waiting for things to rez, I noticed and enjoyed the soothing music stream. The peace was enhanced as natural scenery and classic Greek architecture came into view.
Entering the healing building, I found a group prayer/invocation animation and some massage tables, with animation balls for the healers to use. The walls were decorated with iconography from various world religions. From experience, I knew that healing requires the patient to believe in the effectiveness of the treatment. I could tell that this environment would be very believable, for most people. I went back outside to explore more of the center and spotted Rod Eiland was on the West end of the sim with another member of the healing staff. I found them dancing on a beautiful glass dance floor. Introducing myself, I learned that they had already been told to expect me. The three of us talked, until Rod's assistant had to log off. Rod then offered to give me a private tour. The center occupies the Southern half of the Sugar Valley sim http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Sugar%20Valley/193/17/23
Our first stop was the Tai Chi area, on the North side of the dance floor. Rod explained that his specialty was sound healing, using brass bowls and gongs and he offered a free session. He said it would work best if I wore headphones, so I dimmed my lights, lit a candle and put my headset on. I could feel the sound vibrating, all the way down to my solar plexus and, for the first time in weeks, was not having any shooting pains from my left foot.
I made an appointment to return the following night for a full treatment. Our timing was off, so I missed the scheduled time and spent time getting more details of the upcoming grand opening.
The center will open on November 26, with opening ceremony beginning at 1pm SLT, with the release of a flock of eagles. Technically speaking, I can't tell you that these healing techniques will cure anything. I can say that, based on experience in SL and RL, there is great potential for real healing here. These things also take time, so don't expect any instant miracle cures on your first visit. I'm going to keep my walking cane handy, until I've been to a few more sessions.
At this point of the story, I would normally be telling readers to come have a great adventure. What I will say is, if you or a friend have been feeling your light has dimmed, you owe it to yourself to explore Paradise Eiland and see if they can turn up the light and get you in the pink.