Healing Epilepsy with Meditation: Tamara’s Story

I was diagnosed with childhood epilepsy (grand mal seizures) at 7, and that continued throughout my childhood until I was 11. I was then re-diagnosed at 15, during puberty, with a different type of seizure called “absent seizures,” a kind of seizure where I was still conscious.

I have always been fairly detached from the label of “epileptic” because as a child I was unconscious during seizures. Most of the experience was through the eyes of my parents, family, and friends. Twenty years ago when I was first diagnosed, the prevailing stigmatization and the limited technology of the available anticonvulsant medications were more the challenge. When I was 7, my parents were told that I would have learning difficulties and never be able to have children—the medication was a foreign and potent substance and I was fearful of the long-term side effects.

Hiding from being “different”

When I was re-diagnosed as a teenager, I began to hide my condition. It was a very intimate part of me. I would ignore the seizures or would apologize for having them. I put up a mask of strength, control, and independence. I couldn’t communicate how I felt because I truly didn’t understand this part of myself entirely. I adapted and compensated, not wanting to be “different” from others or perceived as a victim.

As I grew older, I worked out that I was triggered by stress and sleep deprivation. I discovered the power to regulate my own body and that my mind was a huge contributor to stress. I began to ask questions. Who am I? How can I be the best version of myself? I knew that there was more to this existence than this label and that was something that I wanted to discover and enter into a deeper journey of who I was.

A Yearning for More

I had an inner yearning and motivation to remove myself from my day-to-day life. I knew stress was a construct, it wasn’t real; it was a creation of my mind. So, I decided to go to travelling. India, in my eyes, was a multi-dimensional challenge and an opportunity to face myself completely. I had an intuition that there I would find this “moreness” that I was seeking.

After India, my travels led me to Mexico, where I found Hridaya Yoga. I followed my heart and found an inner spiritual revelation that was stronger than any physical or egotic limitations I had on myself at the time. The language and techniques of Hridaya resonated so deeply within me.

Healing Epilepsy with Meditation

When I entered my first meditation retreat January 2013, I decided to take myself off medication. It was the most natural feeling in the world. I recognized how “foggy” and clouded the medication had made me. I could almost feel in my physical brain that there wasn’t that disconnect anymore; that this condition wasn’t a label of abnormality.

As I continued with my meditation practice, there was a direct causative effect, i.e. the consistency of not having seizures. The awareness of the physical, emotional, and intellectual bodies was expanding and purifying. The Hridaya Teacher Training course in 2013 was truly a deeper journey into dissolving the ego. I witnessed “Tamara” and the insights into who I became because of this condition revealed themselves. I discovered the many attachments I had around epilepsy. I noticed the Western limitations that had certainly shaped the ego and the decisions I made consciously and unconsciously at a young age. I had formed a lot of who I was without consciously knowing it. Ultimately, there was a shift of perception and I could witness this part of me with light and sacredness.

Clearing the Label

When I came back to Australia after the HTTC, I returned to my neurologist with the intention of clearing the “label” on my medical history. My neurologist was dumbfounded. He reported that although he could not provide the “evidence” that meditation cures epilepsy, he did support my decision to stay off medication. He reported that if I have another EEG (measuring brainwave activity) it will more than likely demonstrate abnormal brainwave activity. Basically, now I just have a lower threshold to trigger a seizure. It doesn’t really change anything, it just is…

The Moral of the Story

The openness of the heart is within us all. We limit ourselves with labels of who we “think” we are. I revealed within myself that this condition/illness is a gift, an opportunity to let go and rest in our True Nature, the Spiritual Heart.

I am teaching and sharing the teachings of Hridaya Yoga in Newcastle, Australia. This journey is about revealing the radiance of our being and understanding that we are all expressions of divine consciousness, of unconditional love.

–By Tamara Coughlan

Tamara teaches Hridaya Hatha Yoga and Meditation in Newcastle, Australia. Website: www.heartspaceyoga.com.au & facebook.com/yogaheartspace

6 raspunsuri
  1. Nick says:

    I think this is a brilliant tale. And you should listen to your own wisdom. The body can heal, the spirit is far more powerful then people realise. I’m so tired of this age of science and medicine has all the answers. I really think it has about 10% maximum, that’s why everyone is really unhappy. Trust your own wisdom.

  2. Joan says:

    Hi Tamara

    Thank you for sharing your story.

    Four years ago I started having seizures, every year several grand mal seizures. The doctors tried a bunch of drugs which didn’t really help.

    I am meditating every morning for 15min with an app and I am very curious what kind of meditation you are doing?

    Thank you for your answer.


  3. Vito says:

    Hi Joan,

    I’m also looking for ways to help my epilepsy with meditation. What I learned about meditations is that meditations that are about 15 min’s long are only relaxing and I would think that those would be too weak to help. Meditations where you can go deeper in yourself take about 1 hour. I tried Vipassana meditations. I would recommend to check them out and try them.

  4. jimm nancy says:

    My son started having seizures he had his first seizure at 6 year within 12 hours We spent 6 days in the hospital where different doctors looking at different things couldn’t agree on why he suffered a seizure… He has had genetic tests including a muscle biopsy. I used to wonder why my son were getting so many vaccinations shots at such a young age, Still the doctors wouldn’t admit it was the vaccination shots. After his 2nd seizure I wouldn’t allow my son to be vaccinated anymore but I believe the damage is done. It was during a casual conversation with a friend that I learned about Doctor Lawson Bryan i was so glad to know him on how his herbal product work, I contacted Lawson and explain everything to him and make purchase of his product. few days later i received the herbal medicine my son used it for 3 mouths i notice improvement in less than a month my son was totally cured of seizure now he have not experience any sign of seizure. Contact doctor Lawson Bryan on this + 1 (979) 475-5130 or e-mail dr.lawson52gmail.com.

  5. Sonia says:

    Thank you, Tamara for sharing your experience. It as i started reading it i saw myself this the same case with me from starting but now i am encouraged to learn yoga and meditation after going through your experience, Thanks a lot once again

  6. Renu says:

    hi Tamara,
    I have been on anti epileptic medicines for past 28 years.The latest episode of seizure happening after a gap of ten years this July.I am more comfortable with my reality because now I see it as a gift,so that I can explore my self.


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