Why this film?
My mother died quietly one night in her bed. No warnings, no farewells.
In the morning, when the doctor came to certify her death and lifted her nightgown, he discover a very advanced tumor that was eating away her right breast. We didn’t know. She had kept it secret.
My father started to cry after the funeral and didn’t stop until he died few days later.
Those losses broke my heart in a million pieces and made space for a much bigger love and contribution.
As a tribute to them I did this movie without any economical support. I sold my school and I borrowed from trusting friends when I run out of cash… and here it is.
That’s how this movie was born, to transform this personal tragedy into a piece of art and a gift for the world.
To your health and greatest bloosoming! As it is said, give unto others what you need to receive.
The making of the movie has brought me so many gifts and profound, unprecedented transformation and has turned my life around into this exciting adventure of sharing with the world the priceless wisdom I gathered interviewing the world experts on psychoneuroimmunology, neuroplasticity and epigenetics applied to cancer.
Few years ago I was diagnosed with cancer and I didn’t tell anyone, I went through all the scary procedures by myself and when my mother died I realized I was repeating her silent destiny.
I had been for 3 years interviewing the researchers that have been investigating what causes cancer and what cures it. My findings are gathered in this film.
Hopefully it will inspire you to explore more of the untapped power to heal that resides within the human psychophysical organism and the unused resources that enables us to co-create with Life the health and passion that makes us into superhuman heroes by comparison with the ones that accept passively their fate.
The movie has given me the opportunity to put together all of the passions I had cultivated throughout my life as a dancer, artist and performer, psychotherapist, naturopathic doctor, Alexander Technique teacher and trainer of teachers as well as architect of high performance programs for all kinds of organizations and communities. A life long investigation into the mindbody potentials for health, creativity and social evolution.
I faced many obstacles, setbacks, mistakes, accidents, delays etc…It is being totally worth it. All the way!
It is my desire that this film inspires and informs in you the same radical transformation that has produced in my health and happiness levels and in my sense of deep connection and service to the Greater Web of Life.
Director & Producer
I strive to be more me each day, more real and more of service to you.To heal enjoying myself and to enjoy helping others heal themselves. I am interested in what wants to be born, in the untouched health behind illness, in the depth that shows itself on the surface of the world, in the evolutionary playful impulse behind all creation, YES, behind you also, In the illness particularly. YES illness as an opportunity to let light through the cracks.
I am interested in the mystery that meets me in every encounter, I want to know all that is looked behind bars and keys. I want to open all doors and walk every step of my path , dive, reach, jump, carve, forge, shake and dance.
I believe the world is ready for a unprecedented r-evolution, the r-evolution of self responsibility, interdependence and co-creation. I think we are all discovering at one that it is more fun and easy all together.
I feel that feminine power and global consciousness together with a radical commitment to embody and live from the personal truth and collective contribution is going to create a coming renaissance of unimaginable creativity and communal well-being.
I crave for a crowd , better an organized tribe , that cares about illuminating the dark places , injustice to be eradicated, and resources to be distributed more egalitarian, and as I look around I see a world that is changing rapidly toward new ways of living in the same shared planet-home, spaceship mother Earth.
I believe cancer is not only genes gone arbitrarily mad, but a toxic environment, a toxic relationship with self and world,and a lost sense of what all this abundant proliferation of information, goodies and Facebook friends is going when we had lost grasp of who we are here and now.
In my experience we all need inspiration and encouragement to heal and thrive after been hurt and touched by illness, then we gather up, we recover the broken dreams, and we flourish with the sweetest fruits and the coziest shade under our treetop where new life huddles together.
I believe we get sick when we lie about who we are, the friction of the incongruence depletes our immune system, the bigger the inconsistency the greater the depletion. To be oneself is a divine imperative that takes a whole life to fulfill.
Of course I never pretend to have all the answers. My commitment is to bring to you the distilled elixirs and concocted practices from a lifelong exploration on the living leading edge of art and medicine, somatics and shamanic, philosophy and psychology, spirit and science, mind and matter, psyche and soma , to share with you all I have learned from the most influential therapists, healers and pathfinders of the 20th. and 21st century, and to keep it real and honest as I go.
I made the movie Turn Off Cancer. Turn On Life to ignite in you a passion for your possible healing, to provide a pile of evidence to hold you in the moments of uncertainty in your recovery from cancer. It excites me to see how the film is loosening up the hearts and minds of so many people and how incites them into an adventure that will get them to look back some day and say: “It has been a formidable ride”.
Before that I had many other lives, In one I was a rebel adolescent that worried my parents with my social activism, I danced and performed in different companies for years.
In another life I was a scholar with many degrees in naturopathy, philosophy, psychology, art and an unfinished doctorate in quantic mechanics that allowed me to have coffe with Ilya prigoyine.
Then I broke my back and tired of being in a wheel chair came to train Alexander Technique in NYC where I learned to walk and danced again, married and lived for many years .
I directed my own business in the 80, The Wealth of Life, teaching Wall Street business people BodyMind techniques for stress management.
Also teaching Alexander Technique and movement somatics to many dance companies and orchestras, as well as at the Experimental Wing of the Theater Department in NYU.
I had the honor of having trained with the most important therapist and somatic pioneers of the 20th century Tomas Hanna, Charlotte Silver, Gerda Alexander, Alexander Lowen, Stanley Keleman, John Pierrakos, Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Marion Woodman,E G Gold, A H Almaas, Tonny Robins, Yapko, Gilligan, Rossi, Robert Dilts, Barbara Brenan, Caroline Myss,to name only few, and many Shaman and spiritual leaders, and I had the honor of being the assistant of Philippine surgeon Alex Orbito where I experienced literally thousand of miracles that defy all scientific explanation.
I had spent all my life integrating the most sophisticated body awareness and somatic techniques, the Ericksonian Hypnosis and NLP developments, the jungian mythic framework, as well as many body centered psychotherapies within an evolutionary Spiritual background
In my next life I returned to Spain, where I founded in 1996 and directed to present, Transform-Action a pioneer Centre where all kinds of art modalities (movement, theater, film, writing, music, photography, dance, sculpture, etc) were used for health, growth and individual and social transformation.
In 1997 I founded IDEITA, the institute for research, development and education in the Alexander Technique , much more than a a training school for Alexander Technique Teachers, a place of investigation into the mindbody relationship underlying optimum health and expression of the individual, both in clinical settings and the performing arts.
I had created numerous Peak Performance Programs for many communities, companies and universities. Also had a private practice and worked with individuals in all kinds of transitions for for more than 25 years.
In my present lifetime, for few years now researching the new fields of Psychoneuroimmunology and neuroplasticity as they relate to cancer survival. I had developed few programs and had lead numerous retreats for cancer patients and their families.
My own diagnosis and the death of many friends and family members with cancer, specially my mom and a week later my dad lead me to create the movie Turn Off Cancer/Turn ON Life where I dance and also interview the leading edge scientists of the fields of psychoneuroimmunology, epigenetics and neuroplasticity.
Yes, myself again.
I wanted to offer you my interpretation of the myth of Inanna*****,
As a cancer survivor I wanted to explore the emotions suppressed few years ago when I was diagnosed. I dived in the body, letting the memories in the cells and tissues and organs to be embodied and expressed. I went through months of exploration of images, associations, buried traces, I painted, sculpted and let the bodymind express itself in the flesh the most basic and extreme emotions, raw feelings, sentiments and mindbody states in its pure form. What you will see is not the result of any acting or dance technique but the tangible and visible act of surrender and the desire to find out what had been suppressed and buried in the flesh.
Body, mind and spirit aligned at the service of creating a form, a shape that touches and compels to follow her own sincere act of self exploration, the very same act that will aid us in our own healing journey.
My journey takes me from the meaningless life of loneliness in the middle of the crowd, through the piercing pain of listening to the abandoned self, to a courageous exploration of the riches buried in the depth of my body, the ancestral history and through voluntary death of what has to die in order for a new life to be born, to the tentative steps in the creation of a new context for the unfolding of the potentials uncovered, to the glorious ecstatic celebration of the gifts of Life.
The diagnosis as a cry of the soul, screaming to be heard. Something inside me suffers, I am ill, something doesn’t work well, after resisting for many years in many ways (TV, work, addictions, distractions…) I descend to find out, to visit what has being buried, wounded, refused, devalued, repressed, suppressed, hidden, crazy, mad and angry. The mask, the persona, the image that protects me, falls in the Fall.
I know I have a light and dark side. I need to learn to listen without judgement my shadow part so it can somehow ascend to consciousness.
This journey deepened my love and compassion for my pain and the pain of the world, deepens my understanding of life and death, gets me in touch with powers I didn’t know I had.
I have made peace, and learned to love all the sides of myself. Overcoming all this tasks gave me strengths I couldn’t acquire otherwise.
After I had recovered some of the lost instincts, the will to live, the passion, the truth of who I am, all creativity and generativity comes back to the surface, I regain the motivation, I know I matter, I have the courage to be myself and do my thing and I can also cartography the trip for others , I can be a model and an inspiration, I can bring hope , I have a message and a map for the ones that are in the same situation.
This descend leaves marks, traces, scar tissue, loss. Healing and remission has required to find out what kind of life will make me happy, will make me wake up in the morning with desire to live, what gives me joy, peace, harmony.
To re-ignite the enthusiasm, the vitality, the creativity, I had to start cultivating my dormant talents and recover some of my broken dreams.
I need to let go of the burden of an inauthentic life, reconnect with my personal meaning.
I inquired into what worked, into what was still alive, what was blocked in the past, how can I do more and more of what brings life and less and less of what brings death.
“What is unique about me? What is special? What’s true for me? Who do I love? What work fulfills me? How am I going to feed my soul today? How am I going to make things more beautiful, am I going to sing today? What’s my song?”. Jean Shinoda Bolen, Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Marion Woodman and some other wonderful Jungian analysts were my main guides in this journey , together with the questions they propose to ask ourselves as a way to find our way up into the upperworld.
One step at a time, choice after choice I created my new life.
I knew that there was hope. That feelings and thoughts can change our physiology.
When I put in communication all this parts of my psyche and body, when all of me heard the message “YOU MATTER”, I knew I was well on my way to healing.
For the soul the illness is an initiation into the mysteries of life and death and this effort makes sense. When I came back, all was different and all remained the same.
The return is the return to joy, to a more complete life.
I cannot go back to the same. I know this is not only my case.
All cancer patients that survive experience that: they want to help, to volunteer, they know how precious Life is and they want to serve Life. Now they can act as guides not as victims . They have transformed suffering into wisdom and they can give a hand to the ones that come behind.
In many occasions has felt very, very scary. It has required from me to come out of the slight contraction that made life safe and comfortable and say out loud that cancer is not a curse but a blessing in disguise if we want to listen to the message and the opportunity to rescue ourselves from wherever we are hidden and dare to grow to the next level.
This journey of death and rebirth, descend into hell and ascend to bring heaven to earth, is a journey that started in the privacy of my own body, mind and heart and that I want to extend to you.
I needed a kind of ferocity to stand up and be on the leading edge of what wanted to be born through me, as me.
Now I’m hungry for rich, juicy, passionate co-creative life filled up with deep connection, high creativity and magic. I want to rally a movement of people committed to show up for what is true for them.
I really hope you enjoy this soulful sharing of my embodied mythical spiritual journey .
The 28 scientist that I interviewed have been researching on the cutting edge for most of their lives, more than 1500 years all together of wisdom in the field of cancer:
Dr Robert Ader PhD, the father of psychoneuroimmunology, discovered the possibility of conditioning the immune system and proved the actual mindbody connexion.
Dr David Felten PhD, neuroanatomist that found nerve endings on the immune cells providing physical evidence for mindbody unity, pioneer of Integrative Medicine.
Dr Lydia Temoshok PhD explains the connexions between cancer and personality.
Marilyn Schlitz PhD presents the research done at IONS Institute on consciousness and health.
Joan borysenko PhD. founder of the first mindbody clinic in Harvard shares 30 years of wisdom
Sharyle Patton, Greenpeace Board Director, teaches you how to make intelligent choices in a toxic World.
Bernie Siegel PhD creator of Exceptional Patients invites you to pick a new name and start a new life.
Ernest Rossi PhD demonstrates how to turn on new genes for healing using the mind.
David Spiegel PhD from Stanford has done the most exhaustive research on cancer and stress .
Jeanne Achterberg PhD shares with you her spontaneous remission from a inoperable large melanoma on her eye without using surgery, chemo or radiotherapy.
Michael Lerner PhD inspires us to reinterpret our wounds as openings to light.
Susan Brown show us that Death can be as beautiful as Birth.
Caryle Hirshberg PhD expertise in survival will fill you up with hope.
Dean Shrock PhD who has found in his research that joy is the best antidote to stress.
Dr. Lorenzo Cohen Ph.D. Professor of General Oncology, Cancer Medicine.Director of Integrative Medicine at MD Anderson Cancer Center UT Houston Texas.
Richard J. Davidson Ph.D. Director Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience .University of Wisconsin
Sharon Salzberg .Founder Insight Meditation Society
Wolf Singer PhD Director Max Planck Institute for Brain Research. Frankfurt. President European Neuroscience Association
Brother David Steindl-Rast. Monk of Mount Saviour Benedictine monastery in New York
David W. Wetter Ph.D.Cullen Trust for Health Care Chair. UT M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Britta Holzel PhD. Department of Psychiatry.Massachusetts General Hospital
Elissa S. Epel PhD Phd.Professor Department of Psychiatry at UCSF
Cynda Rushton PhD, R.N., FAAN. Professor at School of Nursing; and Director Care Program Children’s Centre at Johns Hopkins
Tim Gard.MSc. Researcher at the lab of Sara Lazar , Division Psychiatric Neuroscience.Massachusetts General Hospital.Studies the effect of Mindfulness on pain
Chris Jung PhD Litigator with the Navy JAG Corps. Worked in developing the rule of law in Afghanistan
Thaddeus Pace PhD Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, School of Medicine at Emory.
Tim Ryan. Congressman for Ohio.
Susan Bauer-Wu PhD Researcher on stress and mindfulnes for the NIH and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute; educator at Harvard, Emory, author and clinician.
Jesús Sanjurjo Portus
Gabriel Francisco Molera González
Thanks to all of you for your generous contribution.
Also I want to thank you the people that have supported and inspired me all along
Clarissa Pinkola Estés
jean Shinoda Bolen
Katherine Woodward Thomas
Barbara Max Hubbard
so many others that have been a source of strength and inspiration in the difficult moments.