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Stroke-hit pianist makes full recovery – ‘thanks to Scientology’

Grave concern was felt around the music world when Cyprien Katsaris was rushed to hospital after being taken ill during a Berlin recital at the beginning of the month. Yesterday, Cyprien sent out a letter to friends and supporters announcing his miraculous recovery – with a little help from his faith in Scientology. The letter is intended to reassure the music world. We hope he does not mind us sharing it:

Dear Friends,


On October 1, I gave a concert in Berlin at the Konzerthaus. This recital was organized by the Cyprus Embassy on the occasion of the Cypriot Presidency of the European Union and the 52 years of the founding of the Republic of Cyprus (1 October 1960).

Five minutes before the end of my performance, I had a brain stroke on stage. As a matter of fact, I suddenly lost any feeling of the left side of my body, including my left hand. I was immediately hospitalized at the famous Hospital “Charité” of Berlin. This paralysis lasted during the whole night. However, despite the seriousness of the stroke I regained the complete left side, together with my left hand, early in the morning. Despite the excellent care and treatment of the doctors they were very concerned because I could either: A) die, B) remain paralyzed, C) never fully recover the left hand, or D) fully recover in the long term with the help of several physiotherapy sessions.

The doctors were happily surprised when they saw me moving my fingers already the next day. I offered them to play on the piano of the hospital. When I did so they could not believe what they heard. They even filmed my playing in order to show it to other doctors. One of the doctors said to Mrs. Solomontos, Cultural Attaché of the Cyprus Embassy: “Incredible”!

Finally, on October 16, I attended all day an important meeting at the UNESCO because Mrs. Irina Bokova, General Director, invited all the Ambassadors of Good Will, Artists of UNESCO for Peace and UNESCO Champions for Sport in order to exchange views. Claudia Cardinale, Jean-Michel Jarre and Renzo Piano were among the participants-members. A special “Tea Ceremony” was offered for Peace by Dr. Genshitsu Sen, the fifteenth-generation Grand Master of the Urasenke tradition of tea.

On 17 October I played my first recital in Brussels at the “Piano Festival” and on 19 October my second recital took place in Angoulême, at the Festival “Piano en Valois”. Both concerts were among the very best of my whole career.

Some people, including my doctors, wonder how I managed to recover so quickly… this is due to the fact that I have applied the principles of Scientology: No superstitions, no mysticism, only rationality. Most naturally, when a medical treatment is needed, it should be applied. However the power of mind over the body and the full understanding of its mechanisms is vital for a quick recovery especially in desperate situations.

Last but not least, I would like to thank very much all the friends and those who have expressed concern about my health. Please do not worry: I feel great!


Cyprien Katsaris, 23 October 2012

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  1. It’s wonderful that you “feel great.” But there are plausible explanations for the prompt and wonderful recovery. It is important to realize that because now would be the opportunity to investigate and discover what could be done to prevent another stroke that might not recover so completely.

    Some possibilities include embolism from the heart, from a hole in the septum (wall) between the two sides, irregular rhythm and a clot in the atrium, and others. Atherosclerosis of any of the 4 arteries supplying blood to the brain can also cause embolism to the brain, a partial seizure caused by a brain tumor often causes temporary paralysis. Complicated migraine can too.

    That’s only a partial list. Almost all causes fall under the competency of a neurologist , cardiologist, or internist.

    • it sounds good for me:

      “Some people, including my doctors, wonder how I managed to recover so quickly… this is due to the fact that I have applied the principles of Scientology: No superstitions, no mysticism, only rationality. Most naturally, when a medical treatment is needed, it should be applied. However the power of mind over the body and the full understanding of its mechanisms is vital for a quick recovery especially in desperate situations.”

      Great Story, best wishes from germany!

  2. Good ole Ron Hubbard – clearly not a fraud. Must give this Scientology a whirl sometime.

  3. Forgive me here but: OY VEY. I can’t believe you included this. C U L T.

  4. It's That Steve Again (ITSA) says:

    Yes, such recovery is to be acclaimed. As to cause and effect, that is a different matter.

    Some 30 years ago, I knew someone who had a stroke and died some 9 months later, and for whom I became the primary caregiver for a while, before shuffling back-and-forth to hospital for so many false alarms that when the phone at work rang, I literally jumped. The days were so long that I had to pull over to the side of the road for a kip so I could avoid falling asleep at the wheel. For some reason, these sorts of things become memorable. Despite the fact that this person died, some rehabilitation did occur, even then: it’s just that said person’s health was so wrecked by the time of the stroke, that an early death was inevitable, occurring as it did at age 44.

    Since then, I have put a huge amount of study on a large range of topics through a very harsh wringer, and I have only ever found one thing, and one thing alone that consistently survives such wringers: an approach from the perspective of striving for a healthy lifestyle (although I can trace the genesis of this quest back to age 10, when it occurred to me that I wasn’t getting sensible answers to reasonable questions).

    These days stroke is very well known and described, and a considerable amount is known about early detection, and rehabilitation. So I for one am not surprised to learn of recovery of any sort, dependent upon a range of variables.

    I concur with Carl: there are a range of plausible explanations, which this musician would do himself a favour to get investigated by sound practitioners.

    As to the role of Scientology, I have my doubts. Indeed I have my doubts about the credibility of Scientology, period. I’m not alone on this: a range of scientists and skeptics have written informatively on this lot.

    For example, this Scientific American article by Michael Shermer.

    The real question is “why people believe weird things”, which Shermer has attempted to address – and rather well at that, in a book by the same title:

    As I understand it, Scientology derives from L. Ron Hubbard’s Dianetics, about which the late Martin Gardner’s writings are considered among the classics in skepticism, per his “Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science”:

    I for one can never, under any circumstances, subscribe to any belief system that requires suspension of my own skeptical processes. The key to freeing oneself from any belief system is to keep asking questions, and to keep thinking for oneself. The key to remaining the captive of any belief system is to never dare break through the metaphorical wall on which would be written “beyond this point, I think no more”. The less a belief system is amenable to questioning and crashing through such walls, the less one should trust it.

  5. I once had a lucky pencil (red mechanical one) that was responsible for my having aced all of my conservatory entrance exams. It got me all the way through Juilliard. Didn’t need scientology. Less expensive too. I don’t recall it curing any illnesses though.

    Dan P.

    • It's That Steve Again (ITSA) says:

      Oh, yeah. I forgot to mention the lucky pencil. That also survived the wringer. In fact it bounced off the wall, and was then used to write the above statement in quotation marks. Yep, lucky pencils it is, and the wall stays man, bugger it. Watch out for the blue pencils though.

  6. I spent Wednesday evening in the Berliner Konzerthaus at a performance with the Staatskapelle Berlin and I feel that one must say that the grandiosity of the hall and the audience full of stern looking suits, and the statues of frozen kings of yesteryear, add an element of pressing Prussian-ism, which in turn combines with the overstrung coffee many Berliners ingest, that could easily lead to a form of clog or clot.

    Anne-Sophie Mutter personally advised me to avoid playing the fiddle while sitting for the very reason. Circulation!

    Also, once in the Riccardo Chailly’s Milan Verdi Orchestra, I overdosed on caffeine. It’s possible!

    I think we can learn from the great virtuosos of the 19th century. Touring in those days was much more civilized: a month or two per city, instead of rushing it. Remember: the music of the 19th century was written to be performed by people who could take time to ingest and reflect upon it. If one rushes during the intellectual digestion and re-enactment of a piece, then it can lead to disastrous results!

  7. scientology gave him back his possibilities? what a short cut… never forget that it is maybe (scientology) the worst sect ever!!!! as well as was for tabachnik was the “temple du soleil”…

  8. In case this blog post inspired anyone with a blood circulation problem in their brain to try Scientology, see

    in addition to all the wonderful materials of the Church of Scientology.

  9. William Safford says:

    May he have a full recovery.

  10. Robin O'Neill says:

    I am delighted that Mr Katsaris has made such a speedy recovery but I must have missed something here; is this the same rational and non-superstitious Scientology that believes that a human is an immortal alien, i.e. extraterrestrial, spiritual being, termed a thetan, that is trapped on Earth in a physical body? L. Ron Hubbard described these “thetans” in a “Space Opera” cosmogony. The thetan has had innumerable past lives and it is accepted in Scientology that it’s lives preceding the thetan’s arrival on Earth were lived in extraterrestrial cultures. Descriptions of these space opera incidents are seen as true events by Scientologists.

  11. I had a nice chuckle, when he stated the “principles of Scientology: No superstitions, no mysticism, only rationality”
    Only rationality. Except that their infamous e-meter is scientifically nonsense. Hahaha.
    Religion is a poisonous drug. Probably the most dangerous one we know on this planet.

  12. Could Dan P. tell us where he got that red pencil ?

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