Last October I had blogged about using Diamond Sutra to overcome dental pain caused by dental-drilling.

Yesterday, I have my third dental crown done.  With previous two pain-control experience with Diamond Sutra, I thought this trip should be painless.

Alas!  Life always gives you some surprises (or “sh** happens” in daily language).  Age must be catching up with me after hitting 60,  I forgot the first sentence of the Diamond Sutra while the dentist was drilling my teeth.

While in panic (and pain!), I recite silently the easy-to-remember compassion mantra “Oṃ maṇi padme hūṃ“.  But it did not reduce the pain.

Out of desperation, I had recited Diamond Sutra without the first sentence while whacking my brain trying to remember the first sentence of the Sutra.

Amazingly, Diamond Sutra still stopped the drilling pain without reciting the first sentence. Eventually, my brain had recollected the first sentence of the Sutra.

A questiondiamondSutra come to my mind– why the shorter Sutra “Oṃ maṇi padme hūṃ” does not work?  Is it too short to keep my mind busy enough to divert its attention to dental drilling?  If this is the case, any longer sutra or prayer from other religions should work too.

As an intellectually curious or dummy,  I had sacrificed myself as an experimental subject to test this hypothesis.   I had stopped recited Diamond Sutra and recited the Catholic “Our Father” prayer.

But….the last time that I had recited “Our Father” prayer was in 1974 when I was a senior in a Catholic high school.  I had forgotten most of it!

Was I in big trouble?

No, it actually worked better in stopping pain while my brain frantically search through the brain cells for the “fragments” of this prayer.  In other words,  this “search” had directed or distracted the focus from the dental pain to the prayer.

“Ken,  I am an atheist.  What can I do instead of reciting prayer or sutra?”

You may try to recite some passages, poems, lyrics … that you had learned during your childhood or anything that you can barely remember as distraction.  It should work just the same.

This is my little pain control without drugs tip to humanity.  But there is no escape for the pain of paying tax and dental bills. You may help reduce my bill-paying pain by reading my ad below and click the link if you could.

Ken Lai

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