Dr. Rajiv Juneja (aka Dr. Raj) has written a book, a very useful book called You are More than That, A Guide to Embracing the Spiritual Being Within and Becoming Fully Human. Like many of us on the western culture’s success track, Dr. Raj’s personal journey is a cautionary tale filled with the potholes and revelations of the human experience. We are fortunate for his sharing which comes in the form of a handy playbook of insight, exercises and compelling narrative.
Dr. Raj moved with his family from India to the United States when he was five. His story is not unlike many. As he explains, “My father, in his guidance, said ‘Become someone.’ Neither one of my parents were able to go to college and basically migrated here for the American Dream. Now how I heard that was not that I am someone but I am an empty glass and I am to fill this with something. So I said ‘doctor’ sounds good. Everybody seems to give it a lot of value. I like science. I’m going to become a doctor! I felt this was the ticket to self worth.”
Flash forward 15 years later to graduation day on the stage at Lincoln Center in his cap and gown, it hit him like a “ton of bricks.” He didn’t feel any different. Of course he felt a sense of accomplishment but internally he didn’t feel more worthy.
Dr. Raj has explored many avenues in order to crack the riddle of self-worth. His message of connecting with one’s spiritual being, to marry the human with being is given full explanation and practical bearing in this book. There’s science about how to handle addictions, definitions of energy and manifestation as in the explanation of the Higgs boson principle of magnetic particles and a plethora of formulas for well-being.
We are urged to connect to our “purpose-filled highway” which reconciles our internal and external purposes for lives holding more meaning to our selves and the ones we love. We are coaxed to become more self-aware as we bring our unconscious thoughts to consciousness, thereby sweeping away unnecessary limiting self-beliefs. And finally we are reminded many times through the course of the book that we are “more than that,” meaning we are not limited by the perceptions we have “learned” from our life story. We must understand that we are both Human and Being and our points of attachment to our human story determine how we show up in our lives. The wrong turn we make is when we think our self-worth is determined by our story rather than something innate that we are born with. The problems and challenges of life are Human in nature, i.e. are part of the human experience, but have little to do with our wholeness which is and always has been perfect.
Rajiv Juneja, M.D., M.S., is double board-certified in adult psychiatry and addiction medicine. Prior to attending St. George’s University School of Medicine, he underwent graduate training in neurosciences at Northwestern University. Recently, Dr. Raj completed a fellowship at the University of Arizona, studying integrative and alternative medicine under Dr. Andrew Weil. He currently chairs the committee on public education for the American Psychiatry Association’s New Jersey chapter.
Dr. Raj practices adult psychiatry, addiction psychiatry, and integrative psychiatry and is an individual and family therapist in New York and New Jersey. For more information visit www.thedrraj.com.
Please enjoy the following video clips from a recent interview with Dr. Raj: