Over time, I have become exposed to numerous individuals from a wide variety of spiritual backgrounds. Inevitably I have seen how a person’s spirituality, regardless of the form it takes, can profoundly affect their well-being whether it is of a negative or positive nature. Similarly, one could say that a person’s attitude and emotional influences are dramatically intertwined with whatever spiritual avenue they currently travel, and can significantly impact their physiological and pathological status. They have a name for this, and I am sure you have heard of it. Psychosomatic illness; literally psych (mind) and soma (body) is the term. Asthmatic children being relieved of their asthma via martial arts as their chests open and they become confident within themselves is a perfect example. Bedwetters overcoming the malady as they come to terms with their powerful fears is another. The damage that can be done by panic and anxiety attacks to body and psyche, and the crippling, long term effects they promise as a result. We’ve all heard of the ‘will to live’, or ‘living on beyond any natural function to support it’. Likewise, we’ve heard of ‘dying from loneliness or heartbreak’; the elderly who are physically fine but die within 3-6 months of their long-term spouses’ passing. Although these latter are extreme examples, innumerable milder scenarios could be stated exemplifying the constant need for emotional and psychological equilibrium in order to maintain and sustain a physical state of well-being.
So regardless of the spiritual beliefs and practices that accompany a patient, at some point we are likely to delve into their emotional and psychological positions. We might want to explore how they can be enhanced or broadened, in an effort to acquire better protection of and from themselves, as well as from outside influences. Old emotional patterns may need to be dismantled. Perhaps these were defensive mechanisms that have now become second nature, but are actually harmful to the current situation.
I have lived many of these inhibiting influences myself, and firmly believe you don’t really need a spiritual teacher, pastor, priest, guru, psychologist or drug in order to overcome the destructive mental pathway. Of course it’s always nice to have an expert in your corner to navigate the way. But in my opinion, you just need to recognize it, study it a bit, insert your will to counter it, and get on top of the negative emotional influence by any method that works for you. Your brain creates these chemicals remember (aka thoughts and behaviors). Ask yourself, who is in charge? You, your brain, or chemical influences elicited by the outside world? I flatly refuse to be manipulated even by myself. In my opinion, so should you. Personally, I think that is a large part of growing up, (filtering external and internal manipulations), because ultimately you are responsible for you. Who you are and what you think and do, are all on you. So why would anyone want to attract disease and illness? It can come unbidden, why ask for more? If I see this or sense it, I will push you to recognize and deal with it by whatever means works for you.
Understand I have zero interest in being your psychologist or spiritual leader, guru or general know it all. My interest lies in being your partner or guide into a better, healthier, pain free and functional reality, regardless of where the answers come from.