Dr. David Simon in Letting Go
Dr. David Simon is the co-founder of the Chopra Center, the internationally recognized healing center founded with his partner, Deepak Chopra. He is also a neurologist who diagnosed his own brain tumor. His son, Max, is helping him document the process that Dr. Simon has journeyed himself with countless other people as the doctor, healer, force of love, and grounding support. As Max says in the first installment of this documentary series, “He’s been everyone else’s doctor for as long as I’ve known.” It’s a strange turn of events in many ways.
Certainly Dr. Simon has lived his life as healthfully and mindfully as one could probably dream. And, from all accounts of those who know and revere him, he lived his life as lovingly and purely as one could hope. His 13 year-old daughter at her bat mitzvah spoke of his diagnosis: “We thought if we did good things, good things would happen to us.”
My dad died in 2009 of a combination of several lung diseases, including cancer, but we expected this. He smoked his whole life and didn’t take care of his body. For a long time I was angry at him for not taking care of himself because I knew he would be physically removed from my life far too early. But, Dr. Simon has a cancer for which there are no known risk factors. If there were any, he probably wouldn’t hit any of them.
The Simon family is far from angry. They are courageousnly and simply being with the reality of the diagnosis, the daily routine of treatments and living with how the disease shows up that day, and the moment by moment appreciation of being here now.
Simon speaks about his thoughts as he wakes up in the early morning: “I feel like there’s a sweetness in my body. I’m still here. I’m still here.”
I have seen three installments of his Letting Go video so far, and I’ve watched each several times over. There is something about Dr. Simon, and how he is living on this journey, that is breathtakingly inspiring. He is seizing life right now, being present even amidst the sadness and anxiety that comes with such a process. At the end of the first installment I viewed he said “Whatever my physiology is doing right now, it’s just generating bliss it’s just generating bliss.”
I happen to know someone who knows Dr. Simon. Otherwise I would never have been privy to this sacred and inspiring story. Please pass this on to anyone who might be like me: in need of the reminder to be present, here, now