John Diamond (doctor)
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John Diamond (August 9, 1934 - April 25, 2021) was an Australian-born physician who initially trained and worked in formal psychiatry, and then in mid-life branched out into studying and using music and art in therapy, among other modalities.
Life Energy: Unlocking the Hidden Power of Your Emotions to Achieve Total Well-Being (1985)
- It is life energy that causes us to grow. It is life energy that enables us to heal. ... It evokes the true and only healing, that which occurs from within. A drug may relieve the symptoms of a disease but it does not cure. The true cure always involves a major change in the person's attitude toward himself and toward life.
- p. 4
- The most basic and primitive emotion is love in its various manifestations. This has been neglected in medicine, neglected in psychiatry, and neglected in our society. We don't read in the newspapers about love. We don't read in the medical textbooks about love. We don't read in the psychiatric textbooks above love, except to study it in a pathological way. We must realize that love can activate our life energy and promote healing. This is a matter of vital medical importance. Medicine today pays little if any regard to love and its power to heal. Perhaps what is needed more than anything else is to put love back into medicine.
- pp. 37-38
The Life Energy in Music, Vol. 1 (1981)
- The basic purpose of music is to be therapeutic, to raise the life energy of the listener. This simple yet profound truth seems to have been forgotten in this era which acclaims technical virtuosity and sophisticated musicology. The function of music since its beginning has been the spiritual uplifting of the listener so that his life energy is enhanced by the experience.
- p. 7
- Our first appreciation of music comes through the sounds of the mother, especially her voice and her lullaby. Our earliest musical expression, of which speech is a part, is in a sense a duet with her. And later in life we should still be able to discern the voice of love in the music.
- p. 25
- For years I have encouraged my patients and students to play musical instruments. I believe that it is essential for their ultimate health to be able to express themselves musically. Inside each of us is the deep desire to open our hearts and sing out with love. I find that when they allow music-making to enter into their lives, there is a beautiful change. There is an opening of the heart.
- p. 105
The Way of the Pulse: Drumming with Spirit (1999)
- Why does the drum, of all instruments, have the greatest potential for life enhancement? I don't really know but here are some thoughts. First of all, there are no notes, therefore fewer judgments to be made by yourself and by others. There will be less right and wrong—especially if there is no counting. Is it the vibrating membrane? So alive! Is it because of its roundness? What I do know, is that everyone's association with the drum is with Life, with Heart—even more with the Mother.
- p. 79
- Play with joy, with a smile. If you aren't enjoying it—stop. Never practice—that's just the brain. Always play, even if the audience is afar. That's the heart as well. Don't judge your playing—for then it is not play, but hard work. Just aim to refine your intention.
- pp. 89-90
The Veneration of Life: Through the Disease to the Soul (1999)
- Through my mother's disease I came to know her as Spirit. The name of her disease hardly matters—no more than the name of the disease of your loved one. What matters is seeing through the disease to the sufferer's very essence, to their Soul.
- p. 9
- We can accept any and all events in our existence if we believe our mothers love us. For, as I say, she was, and still is, all the world to us.
- p. 54
Facets of a Diamond: Reflections of a Healer (2002)
- Holistic does not mean doing all things, but bringing all of yourself to all of the sufferer, and him bringing all of himself to you.
- p. 11
- Now we must remember that there is no Orion's belt in the sky. There is only a collection of stars that appear to us, once they are pointed out, to resemble what we imagine Orion's belt to have been. But there is no more relationship between the stars comprising the belt than there is between all the stars in the universe. The only relationship is that which we have created in our own fantasy. A medical diagnosis is like Orion's belt. It doesn't really exist. It is just putting together a few easily observed findings that seem to have some special relationship. But when we do this, we ignore all the thousands of other findings that are really just as equally related and equally important in the whole universe of the patient.
- p. 15
- He [the chief psychiatrist] complimented me on how brilliant my diagnoses were: "You can smell a delusion, you can ferret out a hallucination, but"—and this has always stuck in my mind—"did you know that this woman grew prize camellias? Did you know that this man played the piano?" "No," I replied, a little bemused, "I wasn't trained to find the good things." But from then on I started to, and ever since I have looked for the good things. What the patient can do, not what he can't. His deficiencies and his weaknesses are so obvious, but his strengths, tragically, are deeply hidden: that is what makes him a patient, a sufferer. For it is his strength alone that will alleviate his suffering.
- p. 109
- The healer must love the sufferer as his [surrogate] mother and be loved in return by the sufferer as his [surrogate] mother. For the ultimate healing is knowing the Love of one's own mother... However, only when the surrogate role is kept firmly in mind can the Love be true, be altruistic.
- p. 269
- I've tried to make my writing itself therapeutic—that by your act of reading it your Life Energy may be enhanced. One of the ways I have sought to achieve this is to make it singable, as best I can do. Not singable like song lyrics, rather more chantable. Encouraging you to sing along, moving with its flow, its pulse, its pulsations.
- p. 286
Stillpoints: An Introductory Guide to Haiku Painting (2008)
- What matters is not what you paint but what your hand dances. The painting is only a notation of the dance of the hand, of the gesture of love.
- p. 20
A Few Words on Art (Just a Few) (2010)
- The test of every act of creativity: Does it help you to enthusiastically, passionately, whole-heartedly and gratefully Embrace all your life? This, I believe, is the basic purpose of all the arts—and thus should be the basic Intention of every artist.
- p. 2
Art for Healing: Guided Painting Then and Now (2011)
- My deepest intention is that some day a sufferer, no matter how afflicted, will be able to look at a painting, at a photograph, and be instantly healed. That is my ultimate hope. Not to be realized in this life, maybe, but that is what I believe art can do.
- p. 39
Beyond the Obvious: Photography for Healing (2014)
- Photography is not about seeing, but about Knowing. Going so deeply into the subject, whatever, whoever, that you find the spirit within. And then you memorialize it for others to also Know.
- p. 3
- Taking a photograph is, it seems to me, a momentary revelation of an instance of the universal unity. The subject and I are one.
- p. 77