I received a call from Mel Fish the other day. He thanked me for the favorable post I wrote last month about his excommunication. It’s funny. I had been thinking about him all day. I just finished re-reading Healing the Inner Self, The Power of Unconditional Love, Become a Being of Light and The Search for Light and Truth.
I’m honored that Mel would do that. It just reaffirmed for me what a thoughtful man he is. His call relieved a great burden I have been carrying ever since I posted that entry. I was concerned he might not like the fact that I decided to tell the story of his excommunication before I actually wrote about any of his published works.
I did not tell him but his call was an answer to prayer. My Facebook friends know that almost immediately after I published that post, I began to suffer from the worst migraine headaches of my life. They were accompanied with sleeplessness, anxiety and panic attacks. The migraines were so bad they required visits to the hospital.
Blessings and Curses
It’s as if someone was not happy with what I had written and decided to curse me. Now, I know that sounds crazy, but before you dismiss the idea, let me share a few details. I promise to get to the book review in a few paragraphs. I ask the Lord to bless people all the time when I learn of something they said or did that helps me.
I have read about people who do the opposite. When they read something with which they disagree or that bothers them, they curse the writer. Worse, because there are people out there who prefer darkness to light, they invoke the power of Satan to enforce their curse, asking him to send devils or demons to make it stick.
Some readers asked, so I shared the details of my encounters with those devils in private emails. They were not pleasant and not something I want to go through again anytime in my life. I did not ask for such knowledge, but I now know things about certain classes of devils and the power they have to inflict real spiritual pain.
Generic Priesthood Blessings
At the end of my conversation with Mel, I asked him to check to see if I had been under attack. He checked and confirmed that someone who knew how these things work had sent a curse with teeth. He reminded me how to properly identify and clear the curse, which I did immediately. I felt gratifying relief within minutes.
I’m 56 years old and have been a member of this church all my life. I’ve given and received priesthood blessings for about as long as I can remember. They have been a part of my life since childhood. I asked for and received blessings while suffering through the migraines but I did not say anything about the attacks from the devils.
I was blessed that I would “get through this OK” or words to that effect. I have used similar words many times. I felt the power and comfort of the blessings for the few minutes they were pronounced and a few moments afterwards. But the attack continued unabated until I properly identified and cleared the curse today.
Darkness and Light
That brings me to the book review: Healing the Inner Self: From Darkness Into Light. As I noted in a previous post, Mel first published this in 1999, a few years after receiving his PhD in Counseling. In 2005 he published the accompanying clinical examples. This is not some theoretical book. It has real-world application.
The first nine chapters of the book contain what for me is basic doctrine. Mel sets a groundwork of common understanding that seems so familiar, having heard most of it growing up in the Church. He focuses on the idea that healing is a matter of getting rid of the darkness within us and filling ourselves with the Light of Christ.
After telling us how he got started in his search for spiritual healing he discusses the greatest power in the Universe – the Light of Christ – as well as the opposite force of darkness – The Darkness of Satan – or the Dark Force. Mel teaches early in the book how everything – including thought and emotion – is made of energy.
The Power to Create
I like how he gives us twenty pages of discussion on the Light Force and a short four pages on the Dark Force. In chapter six Mel teaches us about the Atonement and shares some marvelous insights about how it relates to light and darkness. In the next short chapter we learn how victims who also have darkness can be freed.
There is a marvelous chapter on the law of attraction filled with examples from life that explains in great detail how we either attract darkness or light unto ourselves. The secret is that on which we choose to focus. Faith only exists where there is an absence of doubt. Faith and doubt cannot exist in the same mind at the same time.
I have read a lot of self-help and self-healing books in my life. Mel’s teachings on the power of visualization are the best I have ever read. I have watched Mel work using this technique. The images we create in our mind are more powerful than we will ever realize. Be sure to read his instructions on the power to create (pp 79-80).
Is Life Really a Test?
I want to spend a minute on chapter nine – The Purpose of Life. You would think this would be a no-brainer, but Mel throws a curve ball in there with his thoughts addressing the question: Is Life a Test? I’m sure you’ve heard or read that this life is meant to be hard because otherwise it wouldn’t be a real test, now would it?
Well, guess what? There is no scripture that uses the word “test” in it. There are many scriptures, however, which use the words “try” and “prove.” Testing has an implication of being compared against other people. Acceptance is not determined by qualification but rather by relative position, as compared to other test takers.
Salvation does not work that way. We really cannot earn salvation by our own works. Secondly, there is no limit to the number who can be exalted. All those who qualify will be exalted. To say the purpose of life is to be tested implies we have the power to pass the test on our own efforts, thus denying the need for a Savior.
Tools to Determine Truth
Up through chapter nine, there really is nothing that a typical Latter-day Saint should find weird or unusual. It is great gospel-centered teaching about how to come unto Christ to increase our light and ultimately our happiness. The rest of the book focuses on specific tools and techniques for identifying and healing darkness.
One of those tools is applied kinesiology or muscle testing. It’s been around a long time and is used by thousands of people each day. Go read the Wikipedia article on the subject. You’ll come away convinced that it’s quackery. Now go read my blog on how I was introduced to muscle testing to get a supporting alternate viewpoint.
In seventeen short little posts, I take you from someone who had never had any exposure to the technique to one who uses it all the time to discover truth for myself. Those who are experienced with the process know that finding answers is all in the questions that are asked. Sounds somewhat similar to prayer, doesn’t it?
Mel’s work is centered in Jesus Christ. He teaches of Christ. He has those seeking his help command in the name of Christ. He does not use priesthood. So how in the world he was excommunicated for priestcraft is beyond me. The key to healing is the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the real power of casting our burdens on Him.
Sin is only part of the burdens we bear. Christ took upon himself all the burdens of those who are willing to let Him do so. Mel also teaches that casting off burdens is more effective when the right arm is raised to the square. I know others who teach several different ways to draw off the negative or dark energy from our bodies.
The healing process does not need to be complicated and does not need to be a long drawn-out process. I did not receive my initial training from Mel, but it has been my experience that great relief can be achieved through one-hour sessions using tools described in his book to question the spirit about what is needed.
Devils and Unclean Spirits
If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know I have written often about this subject. I continue to learn about them every day. Often we hear people say we should not think about these things because they’ll just bring us down. Joseph taught that we should study all we can about the spirit world and the inhabitants.
Mel spends about ten chapters on how to rid oneself of these little beasties, and provides many examples of how it is done. I recommend you get his companion book of clinical examples if you are serious about learning how to do this yourself so you can help others. It is good reading even if you do not plan to help others.
He addresses: Releasing Darkness and Stress, Good and Evil Gifts, Bonding, Soul Retrieval, Multiple Personalities, Same Sex Preference, Contracts, Satanic Abuse, Ego, Sensitives, Overcoming Fears and Phobias, Subduing the Flesh and more. He ends the book on a positive chapter discussing The Law of Deliberate Creation.
The Definitive Textbook
I had been looking for a book like this when I was first introduced to the idea that we can ask questions of and receive answers from our own intelligence or spirit about our past, especially for our healing. I planned to write one based on hours of recorded interviews with other practitioners. I’m glad we scrapped the project.
Mel is much more qualified to write this book than I ever would have been. My views would have been those of an outside observer. His are those of someone with every-day, clinical experiences in helping people heal their inner self. Mel is more than qualified to present what he has documented about spiritual healing.
In case it’s not obvious, I highly recommend this book for those who are serious about learning how to find and heal hidden spiritual / emotional distress in your life. This book is not for everyone. Some will not know what to do with it if you do not intend to learn the basic tool of discovery – muscle testing – on yourself.
A Prolific Writer
Mel has quite a selection of books to choose from at his website. I have seven of his items. The three most popular can also be found on Amazon. But I recommend you also pick up his autobiography back at his site – The Search for Light and Truth – as well as his amazing little booklet – The Power of Unconditional Love.
If you’ve read Mel’s autobiography, you know he served his Mission in Taiwan and has studied much of the oriental culture, using the good that he found in his healing practice. There are some sacred stories in his autobiography that you will not want to miss, especially the one entitled “validation” on pages 231-232.
Finally, I want to mention Mel’s latest book, Become a Being of Light. This one is not for everyone. Mel even asked me on the phone the other day that if I bring the book up to be sure to let people know that this addressees “possibilities” and “what ifs.” He wanted to be sure we know he is not teaching reincarnation / past lives.
Last of the Great Healers
I don’t know how much longer Mel will be with us. He is 80 years old now. I want you to know he is a very approachable and humble man. He is delightful to talk to. He was gracious in allowing us to interview him, open, warm and caring. I am now friends with some of his family and have found them to be just as nice and kind.
If I lived in Southern Utah, I would want to be in his ward and assigned as his home teacher. Sadly, I wonder who from the Church visits him now that he has been excommunicated. I still can’t get over that. I don’t think I have ever met a man more unassuming, humble, Christ-like and loving in all my years in the church.
If you get a chance, read some of his books. Get to know him. Email or call him. He still holds seminars and loves to teach. You can get a sample of his style from his DVD. If you suffer from unwanted and unresolved hidden stress, let Mel help you as a facilitator in bringing about the deep healing your soul wants and needs.
Dr. Melvin C. Fish, Ph.D.
Cedar City, Utah