Forward to Leah by Richard Gere:

Reading Leah, the phrase that speaks strongest to me is that “miracles are hard work.”

The healing process is one of opening— opening the heart (to Love) and the mind (to Wisdom). (Curiously, when Tibetans refer to the mind, they gesture to the heart.)

Throughout this autobiographical story, Stuart describes spiritual techniques to generate love and gratitude that have been discovered and developed by the great teachers and spiritual friends of the countless ages and world systems, more specifically his own teacher Swami Rudrananda, who I was not fortunate enough to meet in this life.

Obviously, these techniques have little to do with our normal view of medicine which primarily focuses on the relief of external symptoms, without reference to their inner spiritual causes.

But that is how we have been raised and how our brains are structured. We then, in turn, project this distorted view “out there” on the movie screen of our conventional reality. Therein lies the “hard work” Stuart refers to— the total transformation of our minds. And it is hard work— the constant and ruthless monitoring of our minds and hearts in order to root out and utterly destroy negativities, self-cherishing ignorance and other defilements and obscurations that impede the natural flow of infinite and tireless healing energy (Love) within us and without us. This is the miracle.

In the end it is for each of us to find within ourselves the heroic courage to really change our lives, and really let go of our ordinary (deluded) selves and ordinary (deluded) world view, however frightning and painful that may be. Spiritual friends and Wisdom Beings will be there to help us, but again it’s up to us and us alone to do the hard work necessary to open ourselves to receive their grace. Not Christ, nor Buddha, nor all the assembled armies of Shambhala can do it for us.

May we all quickly find the heroic courage to attain supreme Health, Wisdom, and Happiness through Love.

—Richard Gere

An excerpt:

When I think of Leah and the brief time we shared, it’s impossible to believe that she lived anywhere but in my heart.

I still lay awake remembering the time I spent with her, the moments more precious now than when we were together; moments impossible to recapture, faint and dreamlike apparitions somehow touched with truth and purity. It’s as if those moments have engraved themselves in my memory.

She liked to walk through Central Park, to stop at the bronze statue of Alice-in-Wonderland, and climb on the Mad Hatter. She liked to count her unbirthdays. She insisted that we exchange presents and have small celebrations. She was absorbed in her precious world and shared it more by instinct than premeditation. I never tired of watching her climb on the Mad Hatter’s shoulders, as if she were part of Lewis Carroll’s dream, her long blond hair touching the bronze face, her arms wrapped around the neck, at one with the fantasy. Yellow leaves lay in piles around the statue, and the cool autumn breeze swept through the park, swirling them in every direction. She was seven years old. She carried herself with the air of an older person, had a disdain for petty things and seemed to me a princess surveying her domain, taking pride in being the center of the universe…


“An immediate and very easy to understand account of the healing process as it works within the healer. If this book falls into the right hands at the right time, it could save lives.” —Alan Arkin, Academy Award-winning American actor, director, and musician.

“With open heart and deep insight, Stuart Perrin explores the true nature of health and disease. In Leah, cancer is a disorder of the spirit whose roots can finally be cut by a fundamental change in ones spiritual life. An important story of purity, loss and understanding.” —Richard Gere, Golden Globe-winning American actor, social activist of many causes, co-founder of Tibet House, and writer.

“There is a powerful simplicity and directness about this story and I have no doubt that it will have a wide audience. The quality of the writing and the nature of the narrative give the book a strong hold on the reader’s attention. Please accept my thanks for the priviledge of reading Leah.” —Norman Cousins, American political journalist, author, professor, and world peace advocate.