Becoming a Healing Presence

A Guide for Those Who Offer Care

Over the last three decades the delivery of health care has gone through enormous changes. The insurance and managed-care industries have grown exponentially. Pharmaceuticals have become a first response to any complaint. Costly, high-tech medicine reflects our fascination with pathology and lack of attention to wellness.

In the midst of these changes, have we developed a bit of amnesia? Have we forgotten the capacity of human beings to help heal other human beings? Have we overlooked the need to cultivate ourselves as instruments of healing? Are we in danger of losing the healing power of the relationship between those giving and receiving care?

The large tribe of those who offer care – laypersons, volunteers, and health-care professionals alike – is in need of some potent medicine. These essays and practices will help transform your care and compassion into effective action and assist you in becoming a powerful healing presence.

To review the Table of Contents

To read a sample chapter

To purchase my book now

Praise for Becoming a Healing Presence:

“This volume should not be required reading, but required study for everyone offering care in America. The biggest complaint about care in the USA is that “nobody listens.” Tom Balles’s book lays out, in simple detail, the basic human habits that we lost in our addiction to technology. Care is about individuals caring for other individuals.”
—ROBERT M. DUGGAN, MA, MAc (UK), Dipl Ac (NCCAOM), author of Common Sense for the Healing Arts and Breaking the Iron Triangle: Reducing Health-Care Costs in Corporate America

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“Becoming a Healing Presence is simply elegant. Tom Balles calls all those who offer care to a high standard—to be present, with senses wide open. He offers uncomplicated practices for exploration, inviting us to sharpen our attention and deepen our awareness. Tom knows the rewards are great when we infuse our care for another with authenticity and compassion. The book serves head and heart and will transform the caring experience for both giver and receiver.”
—BARBARA CAITLIN, founder and director, Bigger Conversations, Columbia, Maryland

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“Becoming a Healing Presence is an evocative and inspiring manual that is essential for anyone providing care. With a wealth of wisdom from his years of clinical experience, Tom encourages us to speak and live from the depths of our hearts. He clarifies and deepens the idea that our presence alone can have a healing effect on our selves and others. In an era when the relationship between patient and practitioner is too often mechanical, Tom’s voice calls us to be authentic, present, and compassionate. In his new book, he gives us an invaluable roadmap to the experience of wholeness that is possible between any two human beings.”
—DAVID MERCIER, LAc, author of A Beautiful Medicine: A Radical Look at the Essence of Health and Healing, Grand Winner 2013 Nautilus Book Award

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“Tom Balles’s book, Becoming a Healing Presence, caught my attention immediately when he highlighted five human core needs: to be touched, understood, acknowledged, heard, and seen. This important book shows ways of interweaving these basic needs into patient communication and care, thereby creating a more effective healing presence.”
—FRITZ FREDERICK SMITH, MD, founder of Zero Balancing®, author of Inner Bridges and The Alchemy of Touch

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“The Sufi poet Rumi called us to “be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder.” In this new good book, Becoming a Healing Presence, when Tom says, ‘Please accept the gift of these words,’ he is calling us to ways of being a lamp, a lifeboat, and a ladder for others. Thank you, Tom, for your guidance. I am in practice with you.”
—DIANNE MARY CONNELLY, PhD, MAc (UK) Dipl Ac (NCCAOM), author of All Sickness is Home Sickness and Medicine Words: Language of Love for the Treatment Room of Life

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“Tom Balles is a worthy guide to aid us to be ever learning, ever becoming the healing presence that, at our core, we always are.”
—JOHN G. SULLIVAN, PhD, author of The Spiral of the Seasons: Welcoming the Gifts of Later Life and Living Large: Transformative Work at the Intersection of Ethics and Spirituality

Dancing with the Ten Thousand Things

Ways to Become a Powerful Healing Presence


Each day calls us to tend life beyond ourselves. Dancing with the Ten Thousand Things helps you answer that call and become a more powerful healing presence in the world.

You already possess all that you need to be a healing presence. Imagine amplifying your gifts and applying them in your family life, friendships, work, organizations, and community. Transforming care and compassion into effective action will become your way of life.

This book outlines the journey of waking up through being of service. Over time you will learn to consciously tend to life one moment at a time.

To review the Table of Contents

To read a sample chapter

To purchase my book now

Praise for Dancing with the Ten Thousand Things:

“Tom Balles has gathered his years of study in a variety of traditions and offers them as a gift. He succeeds in blending the richness of the deep wisdom traditions with daily practices to enhance your learning. This is very rich food for the body, mind, and soul. Take the time to digest this feast slowly over the days, weeks, and months ahead.”
—ROBERT M. DUGGAN, MA, MAc (UK), DiplAc (NCCAOM), author of Common Sense for the Healing Arts and Breaking the Iron Triangle: Reducing Health-Care Costs in Corporate America

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“This practical guidebook for creating a richer, deeper life for all of us comes from someone who walks the path and marks the trail. If you yearn to become a more powerful healing presence in the world, trust Tom Balles to show you how. Less unnecessary suffering and greater possibilities for our shared life - a worthy conversation, indeed!”
—HELEN BUSS MITCHELL, PhD, author of Roots of Wisdom, creator of the PBS telecourse “For the Love of Wisdom”

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“Tom Balles has created an in-depth guide to enhance your healing presence. For the beginning practitioner it points a way; for the seasoned practitioner it presents new possibilities.”
—FRITZ FREDERICK SMITH, MD, Founder of Zero Balancing®, author of Inner Bridges and The Alchemy of Touch

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“Tom’s opening line is “Each day calls us to tend life beyond ourselves.” The us, dear reader, is thee and me, taking seriously and joyfully that we are here at all. This book stirs the pot of an essential conversation about being, and about being together here on earth. Read it and be stirred.”
—DIANNE MARY CONNELLY, PhD, MAc (UK), DiplAc (NCCAOM), author of All Sickness is Home Sickness and Medicine Words: Language of Love for the Treatment Room of Life

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“Tom Balles walks in life in a thoughtful, compassionate way. To walk with him through this book is to continually find resources that illumine and deepen our common life.”
—JOHN G. SULLIVAN, PHD, author of The Spiral of the Seasons: Welcoming the Gifts of Later Life and Living Large: Transformative Work at the Intersection of Ethics and Spirituality

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