Dr. Gerald Epstein is a physician, a pioneer in mental imagery, and an authority on the Western spiritual tradition and its application to healing and therapeutics. He is the author of the bestselling classic Healing Visualizations: Creating Health through Imagery and four other books. He founded and directs the American Institute for Mental Imagery, a postgraduate training program for health professionals and an educational center for the public. During more than 30 years of clinical experience, he has taught thousands of people how to transform their lives using imagery. Visit him at www.drjerryepstein.org.
Epstein became a student of imagination and an apprentice of mental imagery under the guidance of Colette Aboulker-Muscat (1909 - 2003), a healer who was born into an aristocratic, Kabbalistic, Jewish family in Algeria and spent 50 years of her life in Jerusalem as a generous and gifted teacher of imagery tailored to an individual's needs. Epstein describes imagery simply as "the mind sending to us pictures." Colette understood this language of the inner life and taught thousands of loyal and adoring students this healing and transformative tool.
Barbarah Fedoroff is the other editor of this work which offers Colette's immense legacy of 2,100 visualization exercises. She was responsible for gathering and transcribing this evergreen material. Colette used and recommended brief exercises, ones that could be done in just a few minutes yet had life-affirming and life-restoring power.
In the book's introduction, Epstein gives instructions for doing imagery and creating a regular practice of it, including finding your own images to work with. He explains what he learned from Colette about this spiritual work: "Imagery takes place in an inner realm of existence, free of time and space, where we access a 'vertical axis' beyond the constraints of gravity. Spiritual seekers have acknowledged the existence of this vertical axis for centuries, and it is understood through all cultures as the axis of freedom. Imagery always attempts to put us in connection with this vertical axis enabling us to escape the ordinary limitations of earth-bound living."
Epstein and Fedoroff have organized these visualization exercises into forty thematic categories ranging from personal restoration to transforming the evil impulse. To create imagery exercises, Colette drew from the Bible, Taoism, Sufism, Einstein, Wilhelm Reich, and many others. As a result, they can be used by people of all spiritual and religious traditions. Search through the table of contents, and you'll see recurrent themes of union with God, uniting differences, repairing disorders, and coming into order. Open the book to any page, and you'll find an exercise, no doubt, that speaks to your own condition.
Mary Ann was privileged to study with Colette Aboulker-Muscat directly in Jerusalem on two occasions, and she worked with many of her exercises in Gerald Epstein's classes in New York City. She found her to be, as she described herself, a "teacher of Life." We are so grateful to now have this encyclopedia of her gifts to the world!