What Do We Really Know About Health?

What Do We Really Know About Health?

For as long as I can remember I’ve been pondering these three questions:

  1. What makes us sick?
  2. What helps us to heal?
  3. What keeps us healthy in the first place?

When I was growing up my mother often suffered from the pain of arthritis. It concerned me and I wanted to help. I wanted to understand; how did she get sick? Why arthritis? What could we do about it?

Are we victims of our genes and germs? I used to think so but now I’m not so sure. I don’t want to believe this amazing machine called the human body is so foolishly weak and vulnerable.

Years ago I read about a study of people who lived in the Bronx. These people ate red meat, smoked heavily, drank a lot of alcohol and faced serious economic challenges. The researchers expected to find heart disease, cancer and other diseases typical of people who lead an unhealthy lifestyle but they found none of them. They looked closer and discovered the reason for their robust health: they lived together in community and they laughed a lot.

Is it possible that the way we feel trumps all the other factors? Are we really victims of germs and genetics or is there something else in play?

Louise Hay draws correlations between the physical and the emotional. It’s not as revolutionary an idea now as it must have been when she first published You Can Heal Your Life. We know the mind, body and spirit can no longer be divided rationally. Yet in most cases our conventional medical model has a long way to go to incorporate this knowledge.

In my Reiki healing work I don’t have to look very deeply to discover the emotional root of the physical condition.  My first task, then, is to suggest to the client that what the doctor said about their “condition” may not be carved in stone. “Spontaneous remission” is merely a cautious explanation for an unexpected cure.

German New Medicine claims many diseases, including cancer, are the body’s natural biological response to a crisis designed to help us to deal with it. Then there’s the powerful  placebo affect.

It bothers me when a doctor tells someone they have a condition or a disease and there is nothing they can do about it. If the patient has faith in the doctor’s expertise this statement will shut the door on any possibility of healing. I believe the doctor should add a caveat which leaves that door open: but we really don’t know for sure – your body which has a blueprint for wholeness it can access to heal.

What do you think makes people sick? What do you think helps people to heal? What keeps us healthy in the first place?

photo credit: Perfecto Insecto

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About The Author


I am passionate about writing and community building. I’ve written a book about healing and happiness, The Happy Place, as well as a Community Building book, Sounding the Drum: Community Building in the Digital Age, now available at any Amazon store. I’ve been through life changes that I thought were the end of my world, but I’m still here. I never know what will happen next. Isn’t that what makes life interesting?