Healthful Living embraces the principles of holistic health and healing for all living things. This paradigm and approach applies to each of the six are of Healthful Living (Health of body, mind, spirit, community, economy, and earth). In order to restore things to their inherent design, their purpose and healthful ways of being, we must step back and understand a broader scope of what's going on and how things got to be the way they are.
This is what we do by choosing healthful living, we're stepping back, assessing, and re-strategizing on how to achieve healthful functioning of various components of our life experience. Here is an introduction to holistic that is primarily focused on holistic health for the body, but you will learn though your exploration of healthful living that holistic comprises your broader comprehension and approach to all things.
Introduction to Holistic
About 400 years BC, Plato said:
'The cure of the part should not be attempted without the cure of the whole. No attempt should be made to cure the body without the soul and if the head and the body are to be healthy, you must begin by curing the mind. That is the first thing. Let no one persuade you to cure the head until he has first given you his soul to be cured. For this is the great error of our day in the treatment of the human body, that physicians first separate the soul from the body.'
The words "whole," "holy," and "heal" come from the same word meaning Oneness. They are all the same.
China, Japan, India, Tibet, The Americas, Africa, and Australia have had a natural holistic approach throughout their histories, e.g., Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), acupuncture, Tai Chi, QiGong, Reiki, Shamanism, Ayurveda, meditation, massage, etc.
Many of these can be used today as complementary therapies - they can work alongside conventional (Western) medicine. Complementary Medicine "complements" the patient at physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual energy levels of consciousness and is Holism in practice.
For thousands of years herbs, flowers, tree bark, mushrooms, water & plants (as well as sound, light, massage, yoga, prayer, meditation, dreams, astrology) were used to relieve and cure dis-ease. Holistic approaches and "alternative" therapies were the norm until the advent of conventional medicine in the 19th century.
Broadening perspective and options
Conventional medicine stemmed from specific problem/solution analysis of treating illness and typically treats humans as machines, with separate parts - likes cogs in a machine. It does not inherently look at the interconnectedness of mind-body-spirit when diagnosing the cause of illness nor prescribing remedies. Its focus is primarily on the physical level and the "repair" of malfunction in the body. Doctors are not routinely trained nor learn much about; nutrition, power of the mind, Qi / Ki / Prana, power of love, prayer, ancient wisdom or soul purpose. For true healing to occur we believe, the original source (eg. trauma, cause of dis-ease) of a problem needs to identified and resolved holistically… and then the body begins to return to balance.
At Healthful Living, we embrace conventional medicine for what it is – a phenomenal set of modern techniques to help restore well-being to the body. We believe though, that we should approach healing holistically and not blindly rely on any single modality to "fix" us, or keep us going. Conventional medicine should be a tool that we choose given our analysis of what is needed in a given situation.
A simple why
When one has disease, conventional medicine comprises only a fraction of available treatment options. A conventional-only approach would fail to investigate several valid resources that have proven helpful to people. Adopting a holistic paradigm will expand your options and choices significantly and begins to create greater self-empowerment and understanding. Being restricted to few options can lead to feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, lack of direction, lack of self –love - all of which contribute to stress and further the conditions for illness (stress is correlated with 90% of illnesses).
At Healthful Living, we collaborate with many physicians that are holistically minded, take a broader perspective, and employ an integrated model for wellness. They are changing the face of medicine for the better. We believe that a broad integrated approach to individual healthcare will increase the collective health of our community. With expanded options, we can all empower our desire and choice to live healthfully.
An integrative approach allows us to choose the best from all healing modalities, and provides access to practitioners who can incorporate this holistic healing perspective.