Energy Medicine Interviews

Interviews with Ellavivian Power, Robert Waterman, and Ron Hulnick

The following interview was transcribed from The Healers videotape produced April 30, 1992 by Karen Cherniack and Lightvision Productions.

  • Ellavivian Power: aura balancer; helped develop the aura balancing and self-forgiveness techniques; author of The Auric Mirror.
  • Dr. Robert Waterman: Noetic Field Therapist and counselor; founder of Southwestern College, Santa Fe, New Mexico; developed Noetic Field Therapy; founder of the Quimby Amenti Foundation, Santa Fe, New Mexico; trains Noetic Field Therapy practitioners.
  • Dr. Ron Hulnick: President of the University of Santa Monica, California.

BOB ROUNDTREE (Moderator): Throughout recorded history, and probably even before, there have been those among us who heal: Who cure our ills, who soothe our pains, who care for our well being. During every age, healers have worked in many ways. They have employed fantastic tools. They have drawn on nature. Some have turned inwardly to our spiritual world. But all healers share common ground to have a passion for life, a dedication for serving, and a deep understanding of the universe around us.

Have you ever heard it said that someone has an aura about them? Some might refer to the aura as the field of energy that surrounds the body. Others might simply call it charisma. It may explain why we tend to be drawn to some people and put off by others. Maybe when your cat just sits there and stares at you, Tabby is seeing something you don’t. This aura may be very real indeed.

ELLAVIVIAN POWER: I went to Sunday school like the rest of the kids, you know. And I remember when I was little, I loved that song “Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam.” And one day, I was sitting in Sunday School on my little chair, and the window was open and the sunlight was coming in. I never could make the correlation to what a sunbeam for Jesus was. And that day, the light came in and I saw the beam, and then I thought, “Oh, that’s a sunbeam, and that’s what he wants me to be. He wants me to be a light like that.”

BOB: Ellavivian Power is a healer drawn by her concerns for people to explore the aura in a new approach to healing.

ELLAVIVIAN: Well, I eventually joined a church with my dad and mother. And my dad and mother both taught Sunday School. And I studied the Bible, and I learned a lot about the Bible. But a lot of the religious teachings didn’t make any logical sense to me whatsoever. I couldn’t understand why, if God is love, a child would come in blind or crippled, and I couldn’t understand the difference between myself and that. Why was I so fortunate?

BOB: In time, Ellavivian’s questions led her to the exploration of healing techniques originated thousands of years ago by early civilizations. Since 1945, she has researched and studied the aura and developed a deep understanding of how it affects us all. The concept of an aura, or the body consisting of energy fields, is the basis for energy medicine. The centuries-old Chinese practice of acupuncture is one form of energy medicine. Acupuncture points are said to be located within meridians of energy within the body, somewhat like our image of the body’s nervous system.

Aura balancing is the science, or art, or practice of focusing on the aura surrounding an individual and using it as a tool for healing. Those who use the aura to heal say it gives them sort of four-dimensional image of a person: The three dimensions we’re used to, as well as the dimension of time, giving a history of a person’s life experience.

The aura might be explained scientifically as an electromagnetic or a biomagnetic field that extends some distance around our physical being. Some say it can be thought of as a blueprint that forms our inner body that then provides access to our inner being.

But whatever it might be, there is strong evidence that an aura exists around each of us. How do we know? Because it seems that some people can actually see the aura. They can touch it, feel it, understand it, and use it to heal our bodies, our minds and our spirits. Indeed, aura balancing seems to have provided astonishing cures for people around the world.

To find out about this technique and philosophy, our researcher, Mark Hochlender, talked with some authorities and pioneers and alternative approaches to today’s western medical practices. So, Mark, where did you start your investigation?

MARK HOCHLENDER: The first person I spoke with was Dr. Ron Hulnick of the University of Santa Monica. This university in California is an experientially based university specializing in applied psychology. Ron has dedicated his life to helping people understand what it is that helps make us healthy.

What’s your definition of health, Ron?

RON HULNICK: To define healing not so much in terms of physical symptoms, but in terms of well-being, I would have to say, on all levels. So physical, mental, emotional, spiritual as well. From a medical point of view, of course, we would talk about the well-being of the physical body. From a psychological point of view, we would talk about mental clarity and we would talk about emotional maturity and emotional stability. But more and more, I like to think of the work that Dr. Dean Ornish in San Francisco is doing with — I guess the word he is calling it, he is calling it psychocardio-immunology, or something like that. But he started out with the idea that if you begin with people who have heart disease, veins and arteries filled up with cholesterol or plaque to a certain degree, could you reverse the trend, literally have, like, a Drano effect of cleaning that out, by doing things such as practicing techniques designed to relieve stress, like yoga techniques, nutrition, meditation?

BOB: The studies conducted by Dr. Dean Ornish and documented in his book scientifically support the idea that the effects of heart disease could indeed be reversed through techniques that not only address lifestyle and physical activity, but also the patient’s state of mind.

Dr. Ornish’s research was paralleled by the work of Carl and Stephanie Simington, a cancer specialist and a psychotherapist. Their treatment encourages cancer patients to actively participate in their care and recovery through their own positive mental attitudes.

RON: He would tell you that bypass surgery, he thinks, is a metaphor for the condition that this country is in. We’ve largely bypassed the heart, the function of the heart. We’ve got the physical function of the heart, but then there’s the psychological or spiritual function of the heart.

Now, you can see, if one holds that position, it changes the whole definition of what health and healing is all about. And a lot of people — and maybe the pioneers in this were the Simingtons, with their cancer work — they stopped defining healing as the remission of cancer symptoms, and they started defining healing as the degree to which a person enhanced the quality of their life as a result of their work. So the emphasis is away from physical alleviation of symptoms, more toward healing the life rather than the physical symptoms.

ROBERT WATERMAN: The first ways of healing were energy.

BOB: Robert Waterman is the president of Southwestern College in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Mark went to Southwestern to learn more about Robert Waterman’s pursuit of the idea of healing the life, not just the physical symptom. Southwestern College was originally named Quimby College, in honor of Phineas Quimby, a 19th-century thinker who fostered a link between natural internal powers and the ability to heal. He recognized that this was an integration of philosophy with science, and aptly named his approach the Science of the Christ. But it was a philosophy of healing, not religion. Mark learned about the very unusual experience that brought Quimby’s philosophy into being.

MARK: You mentioned auric healing, energetic healing. Is there a history to this?

ROBERT: Phineas Quimby had this unusual experience where he was following all the prescription of how one had — we call it a consumption or, I guess, it’s TB — how you’re supposed to take care of yourself, which is take it easy, get fresh air.

ELLAVIVIAN: And, you know, they didn’t have any cure for it back in those days, and they would tell their patients to go out in the sun and get air. So one afternoon — every afternoon, he took a ride with his horses in his carriage. And that afternoon while he was — climbed up in the carriage, had the reins in his hands, and something spooked the horses.

ROBERT: His horse bolted, and by the time he brought it back into control, his TB was gone.

ELLAVIVIAN: And when he got them calmed down and climbed up into the carriage, he was healed. He didn’t have any more TB.

ROBERT: So being a curious person, he wondered, well, what’s that all about?

ELLAVIVIAN: And one of the things was that he was not conscious of himself when that healing took place; that he was so mentally involved with stopping the horses, and in that interim, when he was so concentrated outside of himself, the healing happened.

ROBERT: And so he looked into mesmerism; he looked into a number of things, and eventually he developed what he called the Science of the Christ, which was — there’s a natural energy form of healing inside. He called it the Inner Christ. And that if it isn’t blocked and has free expression into your life, you’re pretty healthy and balanced and handle most things well, and that if you had created beliefs or thoughts that blocked that flow, you’d get sick.

ELLAVIVIAN: And this is the bottom line of what he decided: That man was created perfect. And at the end of God’s creation, he was called good. And if man was not manifesting his perfection, it was because he had accepted a concept that was contrary to truth. And that if that could be brought from his subconscious mind to his conscious mind and be forgiven, that that energy could be released, and he would be healed.

RON: The healing process is one of creating environments, situations, and philosophies and approaches that support people in getting in touch with the places inside that hurt, so that they can release them.

BOB: Illness, whether physical or mental, may very well be a manifestation of larger imbalances of the body, mind, or even spirit. If so, the process of healing requires that we look beyond the symptoms of illness itself and into our inner being, into ourselves.

RON: I would say to you that if you are — if you heal an illness, and you don’t heal the things that produced it in the first place, psychologically, it will either re-emerge later on down the road, or some other illness will emerge to take its place. I’m actually saying there is causality here.

ROBERT: Healing, to me, is helping a person use their situation to get larger inside. So as an artifact of that, they become — they feel better physically, they feel better emotionally, they feel better psychologically. Those kind of things happen, but not as the goal.

BOB: So the aura balancer believes there is a way to tap into our inner being, to get inside of ourselves through this force called the aura.

But what exactly is the aura? Can we see it or feel it? Touch it? Where is it? Mark posed these questions to Robert Waterman.

ROBERT: See, “aura” just means energy. I mean, the word translates to energy. Like the aura aurora borealis, or, you know, the glow around the high-powered line. Aura just means energy. So when you’re talking about “the aura,” you’re talking about the life force that constitutes a person. We could probably relate to a nerve having a field of energy around it, calling that an aura, or the heat coming off the body would also be an aura, where it’s a result of that life being there. What we are not as attuned to or comfortable with or common with is that all the person is energy, and all of it has an energy that is involved with it. So when we talk about an individual identity, we’re talking — another way of saying that same term is that there is an energy form that is coherent, has integrity, and has identity in itself. So it’s a form of energy.

MARK: Ellavivian, what is the aura, and what’s its place in this work that you do?

ELLAVIVIAN: Well, everything that’s lived or has lived has an electromagnetic field, and that’s a scientific fact. And that electromagnetic field reflects and radiates from everything. And from a human being, they call it an aura.

And your aura is a sea of undulating colors that move with your thoughts and your feelings, and everything — it’s more or less a record of who you are and what you’ve experienced since you’ve lived on the planet. And it moves constantly. It’s like a sea of energy, reflecting the beautiful colors and the rays: The oranges and the blues and the pinks and the yellows and the lavenders. And you have a constant color in your physical aura, in your mental aura and in your spiritual aura. And that’s where you get the stories of the colors, because as that moves and seethes, that energy, it generates different colors. And it speaks louder than anything than anything that you can ever say with your mouth, because it reflects every emotion, thought, feeling, et cetera, that you may experience.

ROBERT: With a given individual, this energy is structured according to how that person is psychologically, how they are spiritually, and then how they are creatively: In other words, the choices they make, the beliefs they create, the ways they identify themselves, like their self-concept. That shapes it. And that governs how that energy is within their person.

RON: There is work – a lot of work going on these days where people are learning how to tune into and work directly in the energy fields that are directly responsible, or that seem to be directly related, to the different physical systems. Those relationships have been known for thousands of years, or at least they have been written about.

ELLAVIVIAN: You know all the wonderful paintings of the saints, you can see the halos around their heads and hands and feet, that’s — the artist was able to see the aura when he painted that around the saints and highly spiritually evolved people.

RON: People who are clairvoyant, for example, will talk about seeing systems of energy around the body. And throughout history, people who have had profound spiritual experiences where all of a sudden they see the levels of energy around the body, or they see what’s commonly called the aura.

ROBERT: In energy healing, which — aura balancing is a kind of energy healing — there’s a connection. We normally have a sense of our space or boundaries and somebody else’s space and boundaries and treat it symbolically and abstractly as if — not really considering that maybe when somebody is too close and they feel too close and they’re feeling their space, they actually might be, that kind of thing. But when we have a smooth rapport with someone, that there is actually something – energy connection, an energy connection going on. So really, what happens in energy therapy or aura work is that there is a touching of the two realities energetically — not just energetically in terms of visual light bouncing off of things, but energy connections in terms of energy coming out of someone, what feeling is coming from them in a connection, so that there is not the same barrier. So there’s an involvement that’s really very intimate in some ways.

BOB: Ellavivian explained to us how the aura affects our state of health and how distortions in this energy field can cause physical illnesses. She also talked about how the aura can be used in the healing process.

ELLAVIVIAN: It gets out of balance and distorted by the experiences that we go through in life, the challenges that we have to meet, the emotional traumas we go through, the physical traumas we go through.

Say a man comes in and has had a very difficult time with his mother when he was growing up: that he felt like he was never loved by his mother, and that she was controlling and manipulating and dominating, and he was rebellious. That would create a distortion in his aura and in his own electromagnetic field. There are people who run their hands through the aura, and they can feel that radiance in their hands, and they may perceive that as a block, and their hands may be their sight. I knew a man who worked entirely from the feel that he got from his hands, running it through the aura. And then he would question, and then when he felt like that he had reached the seat of it or the bottom of it or whatever had caused it into a pattern of self-forgiveness, then that can be removed out of the aura, and then that — there would be no more block in the aura.

BOB: Aura balancers believe that the aura can actually become distorted or blocked or unbalanced by judgments we make about our life experiences, which in turn can cause physical illnesses or other manifestations. And at the core of these auric imbalances are feelings that lie deep within. We asked Ellavivian to explain how this idea of self-forgiveness became such a critical part of auric balancing.

ELLAVIVIAN: We lectured before the parapsychology forum in New York in one of the hotels. And there would be, oh, all the way from 300 to 500 people there. We’re there that night, and we had all given our talks, and here comes this little old lady, and she had on this gray knit shawl. She walked up to Dr. Hunter and says, “I need an appointment.” And Dr. Hunter says, “Well, I’m sorry but all the appointments are taken.” She says, “Well, you eat lunch don’t you?” And Dr. Hunter said yes. She says, “Well, I’ll be there tomorrow. What time do you eat, 11:00?” And we said yes. And she had weeping ulcers on her legs, and she had to come over from New Jersey on the train. And so at 11:00, here comes knock, knock on the door. We open up the door, and here she stands, and she’s got this basket, and she has homemade bread and has made these tuna fish salad sandwiches, and she had freshly squeezed carrot juice, and she had carrot cake.

And Dr. Hunter had her come in and take off the stockings, which were soaked by that time, and had us go in and wash out the stockings and hang them up to dry. And we started working on her. And at the end of the hour, why, her stockings were dry. She took her basket and she left. The next day, here she comes, and she had in her basket all of her goodies, and we washed out her stockings. And Dr. Hunter usually would come in at the end to check her out, and she looked up at her and she says, “Tomorrow you’re going to heal me.”

So the next day, here she comes. And we went through the same procedures, took her hose off and washed them. And she was on the table. And we had done the pendulum work, and I looked up and down the hall, and here come Dr. Hunter — had her pendulum in her hand. And she walked up, and she always put her hand on the body. That’s how she got in tune with it. And she dropped her pendulum in the aura, and then she said, “Why do you hate God?” And this old lady said, “Why shouldn’t I hate God?” She says, “He took my mother and he took my father. He took all my brothers and sisters, my aunts and uncles, and I am left alone with these crying legs.” And she was a nurse. And just at that moment — “And I hate him,” she says. And just at that moment, all those jackhammers stopped. And it was just like silence fell over the whole city. And then all at once, she said, “Oh, my God, what have I done to myself. What have I done to myself?” And she says, “Oh, Father, Mother, God, I forgive myself. I forgive myself. I forgive myself.”

Dr. Hunter laid her pendulum down, and walked out. And she — we go in and get her clothes. And before she left, Dr. Hunter came back into the room, and she looked up to Dr. Hunter, and she says, “I knew you could do it.”

So that’s how self-forgiveness came to be incorporated into the work.

RON: It appears as though we’ve been given a cosmic delete button, which is forgiveness, so that we can literally erase or delete the judgments. So it’s not uncommon in our work where people will bring up judgments that they have — that they may go back for years and years and years and years, and they release them. And instantly, there is like a flood of well-being that comes through the system, a relief, a feeling of having let go of a heavy weight, that kind of a thing. To me, that is truly the healing process.

ELLAVIVIAN: It’s incredible, the way that the energy will release out of that when someone says “I forgive myself.” And then forgiving themselves, for creating it for themselves, for passing a judgment on themselves, for feeling guilty about whatever caused it — there’s many, many implications in it.

The person may even feel it in their physical body. They may have been carrying it for years and never known that they had any energy block. But when it’s released and the energy flows back through again, they feel a lot better.

RON: The concept of self-forgiveness is becoming more and more accepted in the field of psychology, at least as I’m seeing it today. The work of John Bradshaw around shame, they use forgiveness a lot. He recognizes it. And more and more, I’m seeing psych books that are coming out that talk about the need for self-forgiveness as psychologically helping.

ROBERT: In the development of aura balancing, when they started, Dr. Hunter and Ellavivian Power and those folks that were developing that, hit upon this idea of self-forgiveness. It was like the epiphany of human existence, in a sense. That’s a good word. It’s where — it’s that moment that brings the meaning of life suddenly clear. It’s like an epiphany. So the person’s life is directed at realizing something larger of something that’s hurt inside.

RON: So if we can move our consciousness into the place where we really can move into acceptance and don’t do judgment, just do evaluation, and we behave on the basis of the evaluation for the highest good of all concerned, but we don’t make the person wrong; when we make them wrong, we go into the negativity.

ROBERT: It’s not that because you’re evil, this happens to you; it’s because you separated from your loving, unloving things happen to you — to bring the loving back into it, it’s more of that kind of relationship. It’s — you have to resolve all this by being who you are.

RON: It’s like there’s the act of holding this bad thing against myself, so that I forgive myself, and I can — and I can really allow myself to feel that forgiveness come in. The most amazing thing will happen that will drop down deeper, and they’ll drop into a place inside that is filled with love and compassion.

So we would say that healing, really, is the application of loving to the parts inside or outside that hurt. If you think about it, if you set a broken arm, that’s a very loving thing to do to that arm. And I’m suggesting that this idea of healing energy is really loving energy. And I’m not saying anything that really hasn’t been said for thousands of years by people who talked about those things.

If we can all learn to forgive ourselves and to forgive judgments that we’ve placed out, that one thing, to my way of thinking, would do more toward healing in all of the systems than any one single thing that I know of.

It’s also very challenging, because most of us have not been brought up that way. We have been brought up to make people and things and situations wrong.

Ellavivian Power, from my point of view, has had a lot of impact on a lot of people. Vivian is the kind of person who I call almost a crusader.

I think that Viv’s impact in the fields of health and the fields of psychology has been a substantial one. The way that ideas seem to disseminate is from individual people, and it’s always been this way. Individual people go around and tell people about it, and then it spreads that way.

ROBERT: Ellavivian’s led squarely in that lineage of accepting a mantle, bringing it in, bringing it to the public interest, finding people who really catch on, nurturing those people who really catch on.

RON: Without people like Viv, having gone out there 10, 15, 20 years ago, to sort of spread the word and to talk to those people who were ready to hear it, I don’t think that we would be ready to be doing the quality of work with the numbers of people that we’re doing now.

ROBERT: And in all that, she continues to share her way of doing aura balancing, interesting people in it, helping them out, helping individual lives, as part of her — the fulfillment of her life and her mission.

But it’s larger than that. She’s not just another energy therapist, the way I see her. She holds this other kind of relationship to the development of culture, development of the United States, development of the destiny of a nation into what its potential can bring about.

ELLAVIVIAN: I think it’s a response from the heart. I think there’s a sounding board of truth within everybody that knows the truth. And what was it? Know the truth, and it shall set you free. And I think all of us know when we’re doing what we need to be doing and when we know we’re not. It’s been my experience that the more disciplined we are, the more obedient we are to the God within and the spirit within and the inner voice, the more secure we become and the more centered we are and the more we’re on course.

And I think that each of us know from that real deep place within, when we get off, and we’re not doing what we’re destined to do and when we’re not fulfilling our own spiritual needs. By one spark, you can encourage somebody to be enthusiastic in life and in love and in joy and in fulfillment. It’s a great service to mankind.

ELLAVIVIAN: Always remember this: That the individual is the healer. I’m there to love and support and maybe suggest – to assist the person in doing the work themselves.

And we do create and promote and allow everything that happens to us, regardless of whether we know it or not or if it’s in our conscious awareness or not. And that’s more or less exactly the same concept that we work with today. Releasing it out of the subconscious, becoming aware of the distortion against the capital T truth, and forgiving yourself and putting yourself back in tune with God.

RON: She was doing counseling and working in people’s energy fields 20, 30, maybe 40 years ago. I don’t know. Long before it had kind of acceptance that it has today. And she knew very, very, very well, way back then, of the importance of self-forgiveness, of the importance of releasing negativity from the system, and has been quite a courageous person, from my point of view, to have traveled around the way that she does and work with people.

ELLAVIVIAN: I just love people. I just love God’s creation. God’s creation is humanity. And any way possible that I can serve God’s creation in his loving, I need to do that.

Everybody has something very important to say, and it’s my job to listen. And it may be God giving me the greatest message I’ll ever hear in my life. I was told in the very beginning that Earth is a schoolroom, and we go to school; we learn our lessons here. And our teacher says that there isn’t any difference between soul and spirit except that soul is inexperienced. So we come in here with the soul, and we gain experience by going through this schoolroom.

RON: And if you think about it, with respect to learning of how to be loving and peaceful beings on this planet, we’re kind of like that little kid who’s just learning how to walk.

ELLAVIVIAN: I would say that the pursuit of spirit within is the greatest mystery that’s ever been written, and it’s the greatest challenge, and it’s the greatest satisfaction, to solve that mystery of yourself.

BOB: Mark, you’ve met some very interesting people with amazing experiences. What conclusions did you come to about healing?

MARK: It was amazing to be out in the desert to get some sense of the aura itself. In the big picture, the research by Dr. Ornish and the Simingtons showed that the difference between the patient who regains health and one who does not is in part a matter of attitude towards the disease, and believing and being able to influence it.

Practitioners of aura balancing believe that when we make negative judgments as opposed to evaluations, that this in turn creates distortions or contractions in our aura.

BOB: And they believe that this directly affects our health?

MARK: Physically, this restricts circulation, the nervous system and other bodily processes, which in turn interferes with the rest of our health. They believe that these contractions also diminish our psychological and spiritual well-being.

Aura balancing and self-forgiveness, it seems, allow us to release these judgments, regain a balanced energy field, and begin the process of healing.

BOB: So in other words, it’s part of this whole-being approach to healing.

MARK: That’s it. Like Ron Hulnick said, heal the life, not just the symptoms.

BOB: And it seems that Ellavivian has really committed her life to this healing of the whole person.

MARK: She’s truly one of the healers. I asked her if she was standing in front of the pearly gates and St. Peter said he had one more test of faith for her before she could come in, what would she say?

ELLAVIVIAN: Well, I’d say, St. Peter, I’ve passed all my tests. I had them when I lived on earth, and I have one regret that I didn’t have a garage sale.