Medicine and Healing
are returning to original beliefs that the mind and body cannot be
Herbert Benson, MD
the meridians as they approach the poles, science, philosophy and
religion are bound to converge as they draw nearer to the whole.
Phenomenon of Man
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin (scientist, mystic)
must also remember that the biggest problems for the human race in
the future are those associated with our own behavior and misbehavior
and the impact of the social and physical environment on our bodies
S. McEwen, Ph.D, Neuroscientist, Rockefeller University
century has brought remarkable advances in biomedical technology and treatment.
As a society, we have come to expect that effective treatments and cure
should be available for most medical conditions. Yet, most of the symptoms,
syndromes, and illnesses that people and patients experience cannot be
explained by organic disease identifiable by currently available medical
tests. Most of these "functional"
symptoms, syndromes and illnesses and many
serious diseases, such as Metabolic
Syndrome X are related to medical labeling of symptoms as syndromes
(medicalization), stress, emotional distress, negative
thinking and beliefs, and unhealthy lifestyle choices and behaviors,
such as unhealthy eating, lack of exercise and smoking.
of years, people with symptoms and illnesses from all societies have turned
to healers who have relied upon the natural capacity of the body to heal
through physiologic bodily systems activated by states of mind. The placebo
response and capacity for self-healing represent the intersection and convergent common
ground of ancient, traditional, complementary/alternative, and Western
biomedical approaches to health, disease, illness, and healing. There
is a scientific and neurobiologic basis for the MindBody Connection that
is common to all healing traditions. Furthermore, this MindBody Connection
is embedded within a spiritual dimension that includes a connectivity
extending beyond the finite. Health is seen as a harmony and balance within
this connection, while illness and disease are related to a loss of this
harmony and balance. Scientific evidence continues to confirm that spirituality
and religion may be beneficial to health. It is no longer appropriate
to separate mind from body, mind from gut or mindbody from spirit. A more
appropriate and inclusive term is the MindBodySpirit
Connection. All of us – people with symptoms, patients with syndromes
and diseases and doctors who care – now have the opportunity to explore
and understand the MindBodySpirit Connection and its interrelatedness
to genetics (heredity) and the environment, both physical and social.
too much emphasis upon treatment and underestimate our healing potential.
MindBodySpirit Medicine and healing can be our common language.