Dr. Gladys was born in India to medical missionaries and there until she was 15. She was determined to become a physician like her parents, one that would heal and change lives, because of their profound impact on her life. After she came to the USA, discovered why learning was hard for her: she was dyslexic! Despite this hardship, Dr. Gladys transformed this challenge into a very powerful life lesson that she lives by to this day. It is a life lesson we all can use. She learned that, to reach her purpose and dreams, she would need to learn how to adapt and deal with every obstacle that she would face – even what others would term a “disability” – or make the conscious choice to just “live with it.”
Dr. Gladys then shared the following story to illustrate her point: “If you look at a tree that has roots that go several feet deep and there is a rock there, the roots must make a choice. They can sometimes go through the rock, but sometimes they can’t. When they can’t, they can go around the rock until they find soil again, incorporating the rock in their root system. In doing so, they can, in fact, actually make the tree stronger, so it can weather stronger storms. This lesson teaches us that, even when you have things you can’t change and or remove, like the rock, those things can actually make you stronger to weather the storms in your life. Just like some diseases can’t be removed (like the rock), they can make you better and stronger by giving you the motivation to change your habits to improve the quality of your life.”
In Dr. Gladys’ experience, conventional medicine is in the business of killing and getting rid of diseases. In her own words: “When you focus on something, then you are giving it life, and the disease can often make one lose the patient. This has taken the joy out of the profession for many physicians because many of them still want to heal the people they serve. This very powerful lesson shows that, sometimes, what we think is important isn’t – the patient is important, not the disease – and this very same lesson can apply to any area of life, which is priceless.”
When Dr. Gladys co-founded the American Holistic Medical Association (with 4 others, all men!), this organization was created to be complementary to conventional medicine – it was never to eliminate or replace it. Despite the attacks on her personally and professionally – and, being a woman, opening a new path made it even tougher –Dr. Gladys ignored everything that was said about her and focused on her dream. “Doing this on a daily basis, moving step-by-step, then doing everything you can on a daily basis to make it happen is what it takes to be the legacy-maker, so you can inspire others to do things that you can’t. And, if you create an intention for what you want to do from a place of love and live as if you have a promise from a higher being that you cannot fail, this means you will never live with fear anymore because fear can’t exist in the same place as love. Fear creates immobility. Yet a simple, though very profound, the shift of creating intentions from a place of love will change your outlook and actions going forward towards whatever you aspire to do.”
Now in her 98th year, Dr. Gladys is working on the evolution of Holistic Medicine into Living Medicine, which brings her joy every day and she began working on her seminal book, Living Medicine in 2006. She is actively engaged now in birthing the Living Medicine Village, envisioning an environment where healing will start the moment you step onto its grounds and into its buildings. This village is founded upon and will function according to the 5 healing principles of Living Medicine: life, love, laughter, labor and listening. They will be fully outlined and explained in the second edition of her Living Medicine book, which is being re-written now.