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ABOUT......ILLNESS

Posted by on in General Ideas

Most people would agree, being ill or suffering from a disease is undesirable. Some would agree that we may bring it upon ourselves, but hardly anyone would agree, that one may choose or want to be sick. Why would anyone want to suffer when already a simple cold makes life quite miserable? The only exception as one knows, is the malingerer, who claims to suffer when he does not. But then again, there are others, who feel ill as good as, or even worse, than one would expect from the ailments they seem to have, raising doubts and questions by the doctors and nurses, or even people around them, if all really is as it looks like. Therefore, when we talk about illness, we are talking about something more intriguing than the eye meets, because illness, though it may be due to a disease, is not a disease. And, despite feeling ill, not necessarily is there an identifiable cause, but there are many reasons. 

Probably it is best to have a clear understanding of the terms illness, sickness and disease. All relate to the same thing, compromised health that is. The terms are interchangeable, but their implications differ on the occasion. Therefore, no harm is done to look at their definitions. In a nutshell:

Illness is a state of feeling unwell, for various reasons and causes. Some of these may be identifiable, others are not.

Disease is a disorder, interrupting or ceasing bodily functions, characterized by a recognized cause and identifiable group of symptoms and signs.

Sickness is the external and public mode of “unhealth”, a social role or status. It is an officially recognized legitimate reason for not fulfilling ones usual duties.

When we talk about health we usually mean a person’s health, though of course every living organism can be sick, ill, or diseased, as can be families, societies and environments. Indeed, a whole planet can suffer from poor health. 

And if anyone believes feigning sickness is only a human misbehavior, he is mistaken. I had a dog who realized that limping got her my particular attention. Having been injured I patted her a lot. She limped thereafter again and again, successfully, before I realized, what these limps were all about, because there were no limps when I was out of her sight! Sweet Tassie, what a clever dog she was! But for the sake of the article the focus will remain on the human species. 

Sozieterna’s view on the subject and health care in general, differs from the views of Western, Eastern or any other type of medicine, including ‘Alternative Medicine’.  Knowledge and principles of health care from all schools of medicine are appraised, and utilized, as long as they enhance their own practice and understanding, and benefit the patient. 

Sozieterna’s principle concept of good health rests on the fundamental view of a human as a three unit entity, consisting of 

body (matter), 

mind (substance), and 

soul or spirit (essence). 

These units are inextricably linked with each other. Naturally, if all work well, the individual is well. Should any unit be out of order or its functioning be impaired, it will affect, at least eventually, the other ones too. The units may or may not be the primary cause for malfunctioning. And, for good measure, the interactions between them may also be fertile ground for complications. Therefore, having someone suffer from poor health, their presentation to the doctors may be so complex, that the health professional has a hard time to get to the bottom of it. Sometimes the web cannot be untangled at all. Treatment is then rather a problem, and patients even die despite the best efforts. Or the other way round, some people may recover from afflictions against all odds, leaving the doctors scratching their heads as they have no logical explanation. Some may even call it a miracle. Naturally, it is not as simple as that and is certainly no miracle either, for the simple reason, that the workings of body, mind and soul have not been explored, or recognized, at least not in the science based model of health; nor have the collaborations of the three units been considered as a contributing factor to good health. Though the journey of discovery is ongoing, and as slow as it may be, bit by bit, the veils are lifted, making miracles disappear.     

But let us look at the units, one by one, and consider some of their interactions as we go. However! It has to be stressed that the article is not an in depth treaty, the subject being far too rich for that. 

Thanks to science the most explored and easiest unit to understand is the body. It is the world of matter. Because humans are familiar with matter, they feel very competent to deal with it. The advances of science have brought so much knowledge that there is hardly anything that we do not know about the body, its anatomy, physiology and chemistry and all its wonderful mechanics and functions. 

The body is the vehicle that carries us around, with engines superbly designed and developed, hardly ever faulty at its beginning. Generally, if it is properly cared for, it will serve us well indeed. Apart from the occasional defects on assembly, or delivery, only wear and tear, the natural course of matter and its inherent use-up date-line, will have it put to the scrap heap. 

Of course, that is the ideal, but living in an environment that might cause damage by the sheer fact that it is hostile, not fully controllable and far more powerful than our tiny little body could ever be, it is rather amazing that it survives at all. Besides the natural hazards, humans contribute to their own demise, either by not looking after their vehicle, driving it too fast, too slow, with the wrong petrol and oil, in places that they shouldn’t or where they don’t belong. And then there are the little invaders, that suck our blood and nest in the cell and even our genes, the body is doomed without mercy. Though that is only one side of the coin. There is survival of the human race in its numbers and, being a living organism, not just dead material, the body has an incredible ability to regenerate, adjust, and meet the demands of the external world by genetic modification and ever increasing intelligence. The human body is an impressive unit that is hard to beat. Such a pity to see it mistreated, instead of being truly loved and cherished for the wonderful thing it is. And as much as the environment is hostile, it also generates our life, giving the body all it needs for survival and tools for its prosperity. Such a pity to see the environment being polluted and destroyed, instead of being nurtured and valued as the source of our life, and health.  

But not only can the external factors make the body, or any of its organs, sick. There are the internal factors, far more intricate and far more difficult to be identified and treated. Any or both other units may be responsible for a body malfunction, or illness. Hidden away they become the invisible enemy one cannot effectively fight.

Now to the unit consisting of substance, our mind: It is a powerful thing, less understood and more difficult to manage than the big body. Mind you, it is still matter we are dealing with, as in nerve cells and the brain as an organ, and as well as all the physiological and biochemical substrates. The latter are of particular significance as they do not just maintain the cell’s organic functioning, they are also the agent of mind. Sozieterna calls it substance because it consists of matter and contains something elusive; humans consider it to be more than just matter, the something called mind. In fact, within the crude lies the refined, the first being the building block for production and transport of all things mental, the other expressing mind content. Simply said, one is thought production, the other thought itself. The nerve cell’s special function, and the organ most specialized in harvesting its potential for a highly sophisticated purpose, is the brain. It is the center of management at executive level where organizational decision making takes place. To put it in perspective, the vehicle moves on the ground or plain, mind hoovers above and moves within space, it has another dimension. 

The brain is indeed a masterpiece, working continuously, sorting, producing, calculating, estimating, ordering and putting everything into storage as well as retrieving it on command with or without our attention. No computer in this world has so far been able to do what the brain does on a daily basis as if there was nothing to it. It is no surprise then that any malfunction may have detrimental effects. Disturbances can occur to the cell’s body or its internal substrates, or both, and the presentation of these in form of illness or disease vary accordingly. The medical distinction is made by calling one neurological disorders and the other mental illnesses.  All are traumatic for different reasons. Just consider mental illness, where the disorder lies in the cell’s biochemistry, like in mood disorder, or schizophrenia, or brain damage due to injury, or dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. 

If the body is the vehicle, the mind is the chauffeur who drives the vehicle and who is responsible for its maintenance and proper working order. If that is not done dutifully and as required, the consequences are sinister.  

Though some conditions can be treated, but recovery, if possible, is usually slow. However, as mentioned before, some patients surprise even the hard core professional, showing incredible resilience and abilities. They may overcome damages nobody would have thought possible. Then we speak of the power of mind over the body, and while this holds true in many instances, it is certainly not the norm and certainly not simple. If all humans were able to control the body with their mind alone, no one would be sick, except the ones who want to be. Of course, one can learn, and there are the ‘masters’ who do have the control, but they are a minority amongst the human race. It is however not just a matter of mind control. It is indeed the collaboration between all units, the mind being only the mediator between body and soul or spirit. This collaboration is crucial. Only then can repair and damage control be achieved, with the brain’s own particular regenerative capability and flexibility, known as the plasticity of the brain. 

By the way! The brain’s development and sophistication was and is driven by demand and specialization. The process is ongoing. As impressive as the current state is, it is not the end of it and one can only speculate what the climax might be.

As the mind can be used positively to restore a person’s health, it can also cause ill health, or at least contribute to it. Most people would have heard about the immune system, the body’s defense against invasive foreign substances or organisms. If the defense is strong we are less likely to fall ill. For example, in flu season many, but not everyone, will get the flu. The old and the young are more prone to infection than the general adult, having lost, or not gained yet, full capacity of defence. However, the normal adult may also have his system weakened, be it due to increased stress at work, with family or other psycho-social stressors. It is well known, that stress triggers the release of ‘stress hormones’. One of it is cortisol which has an immune suppressive effect, meaning when the levels are high the immune response is lowered. Clearly, the flu virus has a far better chance to violate a stressed than a happy person, who has no problems and therefore, no hormonal imbalance that weakens his defense, like the tired guard who can’t keep proper watch.’

The relationship between mind and body has been recognized in a branch of medicine that is called psycho-somatic medicine. It correlates the psychological with the physical. Odd as it is, quite often the names we have for our diseases point to the psychological factors of the disease a person suffers from. “Heart attack”, “stroke”, “cold”, “constipation” or “having the runs”, just to name a few to point out the obvious. 

For example, the heart is unable to withstand the constant emotional or psychological assaults. ‘Dying of a broken heart’ is a commonly used expression and everybody immediately understands what it means. The heart works hard but more so when emotions run high. They are like torpedoes fired at it. Well these actually attack the wall of the coronary blood vessels which carry the fuel to the heart to keep it working. The constant bombardment is indeed an ‘inflammatory’ process causing the walls to weaken and to break down. The vessel gets blocked in the attempt to plug up the hole. Sadly, it interrupts the fuel supply the heart needs to carry out its duty, but instead the supply stops and so does the heart, sometimes for good. 

Or the stroke, when the brain’s functioning suddenly has a blow- out, like the fuse cutting off the electricity flow due to circuit overload or a faulty appliance where the weakened condition was already waiting for the shut-down to occur. 

Or one is left in the “cold”, not receiving the loving tender care that would boost the energy needed to be able to fend off the viral free-loaders. Maybe work place not caring, administration not listening, partner not available? All leaving you in the ‘cold’ with no warmth left to fire up the reserves, and the lurking invaders jumping at the opportunity to get the rest of you. 

Or someone is piling up all the hassles they have in their life, literally not able to let go of them as the waste they are. Not ready for the dump yet, they are collected and stored by the bowel, with lots of space as a suitable storage facility, compacting them to solid parcels of stone, until there is no space and a clean-out must be done. Storage has the purpose of freeing up the mental energy attached to things we have no use for, but cannot discard either. 

And then there are the ones who have to empty out all the toxins they have been exposed to, in a rush, flushing them out as vigorously and as relentless the more toxic they are. Amongst the physiological reasons, there is the psychological need to let go of or being forced to let go of something we would rather want to hold on to but we cannot. Literally, nobody wants to get rid of the food they have just eaten, but with food poisoning, there is no choice. And so it is with the psychological nourishment, we desperately want to hold on to something we cherish, but we are forced to let go, relentless and radical at all cost. 

You see, the physical ailment is the end result and expression of an existing emotional, and, or, mental problem, affecting that organ that expresses best the failure to successfully navigate, negotiate or indeed eliminate psychological distress. The body then takes over by taking on the sick role because the mind is not capable of dealing with the problem any longer. Though it frees the mind, it impairs a part of the body, or all of it, depending how complex the original problem is. Some reader may find this farfetched, but psycho-somatic medicine is no humbug, it has an acknowledged place in modern medicine.  

Please note, this is not neglecting the fact that bugs or environmental conditions cause disease. They may be the immediate and obvious culprit but, like the algae bloom occurring only in the right conditions, so it is with illness. It would be negligent, to underestimate the psychological link that underlies illnesses. The body is just a willing carcass, and a dumping ground when all else fails. It is the most robust, being on the frontline of the battlefield that man calls existence. Vulnerable to decay, as all matter is, but an excellent tool and a skilled survivor, coming to the rescue, when the mind is overwhelmed. If we want to be healthy, all our units need to work in harmony. It is therefore never a waste of time to look at cause and effect closely. However! Not always is it useful or appropriate to dig deep. It warrants careful evaluation. It may not be in the patient’s interest to do so either, for whatever reason, and his permission has always to be sought and respected if he declines. He then just has to endure the storm and suffer the illness or the disease. Most often it will get him back on his feet but every so often it will not, and he may end up with chronic problems. The illness, the pain and the suffering are the prize he has to pay to carry on with life.   

If the above is too “fancy” for the reader to accept, let us look at a condition called Conversion Disorder. Doctors encounter it more often than the public knows, and it is a classic example of the body-mind connection and the process of problem shifting. In that particular illness an intense stressor precedes the sudden onset. Most often patients present with a distinct neurological problem, like an acute paralysis of one or more limbs, or blindness, or collapse and inability to walk, etc. There is no evidence in any investigation for a biological cause and no evidence that the patient is feigning the symptoms. 

For the purpose of demonstration, it is best to talk about an actual case: A young male student was brought to the emergency department after he collapsed. He could not get up suffering a sudden paralysis of both his legs. He was to play soccer in a competitive game and was ready to go on the field when he fell down, not losing consciousness but unable to use or feel his legs. It raised, justifiably so, big concerns and the ambulance was called. On arrival in ED he was put on a drip and the whole apparatus of medical work-up was set in motion. When nothing pathological was found, the psychiatrist was called in for further evaluation, to the dismay of the patient. Why would anyone think he had a mental problem? He could not walk, nothing to do with psychiatry, isn’t it? The assessment of course delved into the patient’s personal history and background story of the event. It included a father who was very hopeful for his son’s future as a professional soccer player as he was a gifted and well recognized talent, and a mother who did not like that prospect at all. She wanted her son to be something brainier, like a doctor or lawyer, as he was a very good student too. It caused constant and bitter fighting between the parents despite them being divorced. The son lived with mother, but father would be at every soccer game to cheer him on. On that given day there had been a big fight again. Though the son, driven by his father to the sporting grounds, intended to play and got ready for the tournament, he could not after all, collapsing instead. Needless to say, and sadly, the young patient was not interested in any psychological intervention; neither were the parents. Admitted to the ward, he recovered quickly and was discharged the next day. He was keen to leave the hospital and get on with his life. Clearly, though he could walk again, the psychological problem he obviously had was not addressed. Gone for the moment, it sure was not gone for good. It will follow him around like a faithful dog, given to him as a birthday present to which he cannot connect. Poor puppy, and with that I mean the young man!

Conversion disorder converts a psychological conflict into a physical problem. It happens without the patient’s conscious consent. Now, subconscious and unconscious actions are the domain of the ID, and the Superego, according to Sigmund Freud, and from the psychiatric perspective, it is a pity when a patient ignores the conflict instead of attempting proper repair. As in this young man’s case, his life carries a parcel of unhappiness and as he does not want to lie down on “Siggi’s couch”, he just has to lie down in a “sick bed” instead. 

The mind and its health is usually left to the psychiatrist’s expertise who, sadly, has to put up with the hierarchical ignorance that celebrates all physical and disrespects all mental, because in the domain of matter all can be measured and weighed, in contrast to the mind, where nothing is what it seems and, nothing can be numbered nor counted on, due to its shifting nature. Science uses the mind as its tool but is ambivalent towards it. In other words, science cherishes what the mind can do, but does not really understand it; knowing how something works, does not explain why it does.

In health, when it comes to chronic and systemic conditions, ignoring the mind in all its aspects, limits the vision into new fields of therapeutic intervention. Cancer for example, or the so called auto-immune diseases, overall debilitating and life threatening illnesses, they drive the medical establishment to desperate actions as they struggle to find effective treatments. With the focus on the body alone and hardly any consideration of the other dimensions, the hope for a definite cure is limited. Despite the rather harsh interventions, particularly for cancer, some patients do recover, but their understanding of, and their attitude to life, will undergo significant change. It is not unusual to hear such people say that their life has in fact become far richer and more meaningful because of the illness, forcing them to re-evaluate everything. One can only wonder, why it had to be done the hard way. 

Looking at the auto-immune diseases, the name already says what these illnesses are about. The own immune system attacks the body, which it is not supposed to do. Instead of defending the body against external enemies, it becomes the enemy, destroying the body’s own cells, leading to defective tissues that in turn impair the normal body functioning. Medically speaking, how the immune system attacks the body, is known, but not the why. Psychologically speaking, it is an act of self-harm. There are many reasons why people self-harm. Mental health services deal with such patients on a regular basis. They also know that most of these patients rather harm themselves than others, even when others cause or contribute to their distress. 

Now the same is applicable to patients with immune disease. Though they do not deliberately self-harm as the others do, and no obvious reason or cause explains their self-destructive attitude, there is never the less reason and cause, alas buried beyond the conscious mind. Generally speaking, self-harm is aggression directed at one self, not against others, though others will have to deal with the ‘fall out’. It may however be a disguised aggression towards others too. In any case, it is never easy for anyone to cope with the illness, neither for the one suffering the illness, nor for the ones around them.  

Research is optimistic for a future treatment for multiple sclerosis, but, and that is unfortunate, the psychological cause of the illness will, as it has so far, remain unacknowledged, meaning, that it is more likely than not, that treatment outcomes will vary at best. One of the reasons will be the unconscious resistance by some patients to be healed. One has to remember that being sick, with any illness, benefits the sufferer not just for the obvious reason of having everyone’s attention and compassion. It can also be used as a tool of control, of one’s environment, family or others. This is known as ‘pathological’ illness behavior. Sometimes patients terrorize not only family at home but are the nightmare of staff on wards in hospitals as well. These patients may or may not be aware of what they actually do, but they certainly achieve their ‘unhealthy’ goals, having everyone tiptoeing around them. 

And there is the other benefit of self-deception, particularly for the patients who are terrified to face the psychological conflict they carry. Though the conflict literally eats them up, or so they feel anyway, it is easier for them to just suffer an illness with the body, as devastatingly however. These conflict(s) of course are as varied as there are patients. They belong to them individually. Generally, it does not really matter how the patient suffers, with his body or his mind, he suffers, this way or that way. The only difference being, if he can find the conflict and get rid of it, the suffering will not only end but it had a purpose, as it is or was guiding him to the culprit for the sake of resolution once and for all. Otherwise, no external treatments or medicines, however effective they actually are, will necessarily be the end of their pains.

But why should a patient choose to suffer, or why should there be suffering at all? Now that question leads ultimately to the third unit, the soul or spirit of a person. It is there where planning and designing takes place and shape, that is, the project is realized, dreams are made true, the master plan becomes the prototype for testing and practical experiences or evaluation. Of course, not all may go to plan and the risk of shortcomings and failures are there. It means that suffering comes with it as a natural byproduct, nothing really is gained without pain.   

How the mind functions has been explained by science, at least as far as the substrates are concerned. There is enough literature around to read up on it. However, many questions remain unanswered. The mind is still a vast white field on the discovery map. It is worse for the third unit, the soul or spirit, which is in fact a total Blanc. But, mind and soul are far more enmeshed with each other than humans will have it or are ready to acknowledge. 

Soul or spirit, consisting purely of essence, has not even been considered as matter, and is therefore not a possible field of interest, at least not in the field of medicine. Besides, medical research has hardly the tools for it. Though more tools than ever are available today, boosting the research into the brain, they still leave a lot to be desired. Little however exists that can be used to investigate essence in a living organism, the nature of the soul or spirit. The domain of soul or spirit is therefore left to priests and spiritual leaders, being declared as their specialty. They may talk and teach about that aspect of human beings as much as they like, science does not care. Soul or spirit is not part of biological, or any life, as far as science is concerned.

Sozieterna strongly disagrees. Essence, the third unit is as much an integral part of what constitutes life generally, as is matter, or substance, gases or plasma, being just extremely minute and flighty. Soul or spirit as a unit is however only displayed in biological life and hardly a negligible part of organic life forms such as animals, including and particularly humans, no matter how much it is disowned by science. The truth is that the triad of life cannot be separated, nor should it be. By the way! The human embryo develops from three germ layers, (it is known as tribloplastisch)!  

While the mind is substance that carries content, within or superimposed on the biological substrates, soul or spirit is intrinsic to and in all matter, including substance of course. It feeds everything with its energy and contributes to its content. Mind you, because essence is still matter, just so elusive, really only particle physicists deal with it. There they are more than happy to do so, because being matter, as minute as it may be, is considered to be their domain after all. Naturally, they are interested for a different reason, the exploration of the universe that is. They use devices so big and so sensitive, like the Hadron Collider, that the normal citizen is flabbergasted and in awe, leaving all the pleasure of exploration to the scientists because he does not really understand the work they do. Their findings hold however more than just the answer to cosmological questions, like how it all fits together and works, as the creative power, that religions like to call God. 

To prevent any misunderstandings, for Sozieterna, soul and essence are the same, intrinsic to life, all life that is. For everybody else, the nature of soul is unknown and remains a mystery. It is considered to exist in humans only, animals are as much excluded as everything else. Ironically, not anyone seems to consider humans as animals, though we are. But then again, many still believe that earth and life was created in seven days.

Sozieterna however tends to science and cherishes the work of the particle physicists particularly, because they do what religion cannot, offering the evidence to their core concepts of what life and death (and after all God) is all about. 

The topic of soul or spirit is far too complex for this article. It deserves to be discussed on its own merit and will be at another time. But every so often the subject will, and has, come up in and around related topics, as it does here. It may be worth the while for the reader to go for references back to the article, “And more about Sozieterna”, or to the book of DNA II, chapter 5, parts 2-4, which deals with and contemplates on questions of life and death specifically. Also the article about the ‘Good and Evil’ may assist.

However, some general aspects of soul must be considered here. One of these is the question of rebirth. Obviously people die, with or without illness. Well, matter is always recycled, including substance and essence or energy. Nothing is ever lost, no energy just dissipates. Everything, including thought, is collected and stored in waves of their own frequency, or transformed and re-utilized wherever it can be or it is drawn to. Seen from that perspective rebirth is really nothing extraordinary. The complexity of it may however be put up for discussion another time. 

Another general aspect is that soul or spirit is pervasive. Nothing exists that is not touched by it, nor is it excluded from it. Essence or soul is in fact the basis of all that is. Particle, wave, strings? There is no difference, and they are not nothing, but essence they are. It is the all and ever present energy, the all-pervasive omnipotence of life. The smallest particle, every atom, all cells, all complex organic life carries energy, is exposed to and limited by energy, within it, and around it.  Soul  or  spirit  is  life  in  the  realm  of  energy.  It is part of the evolutionary process all matter is subjected to in order to achieve utmost sublimation, or, if you like, complete differentiation, where it reaches the conscious omnipotent state. Souls or spirits are facets of the ever evolving cosmological consciousness. As such it has a beginning and a goal with all developing stages in between. In fact it has its own evolution. 

This article’s priority is however the soul or spirit in the event of illness, and its role in it. Too few facts are known on the level humans operate on, but all humans agree that they have something in themselves that is bigger than blood and bones and mind alone. The role the soul plays in illness is significant but its own illnesses remain shrouded, one can only speculate. Sometimes people say someone is ‘sick to the soul’, meaning, being at the end of the tether, if not having lost the zest for life altogether.

On a general note and using once again a simple analogy, if the body is the vehicle, the brain the driver, the soul or spirit is the project manager and supervisor. The make of the vehicle is a given, it may be a racing car, a Mercedes or a tuk tuk. The energy or power that this vehicle can master are the limitations and opportunities the soul or spirit has to contend with. Though the soul or spirit can tap into the vast expanse of its own origin, the pool of cosmic energy at its own individual level, - the body needs to be able to cope with it as well. Simply said, a tuk tuk can never perform as good as a formula one car even when it is enhanced and modified. While the mind is the facilitator between organic life and soul or spirit, soul or spirit is the link between organic life and cosmic awareness. It is however bound to the body’s specifications and though it determines the journey and destination of the vehicle, it is not tangible without the body and its mind.

Sometimes people may experience an odd discrepancy of what they want, or need and ought to do, to the decisions they actually make. Such decisions are made so immediately, defying their “gut feelings”, or their logical considerations, which can leave them perplexed. The following, sometimes irrational, and often rather impulsive actions, may be for the better or worse, but they are decided in split seconds, intuitively, as some may say. Well, this is the language of the soul or spirit. No matter what the body wants, no matter what the mind thinks, the soul does, regardless. It raises often enough the question: Is there a free will, or is it all predetermined? Well, we live in a dualistic world, (remember: day and night, good and bad, man and woman!), there is no simple answer as to yes or no, both are correct, depending on the angle you see it from. Maybe it helps to put it that way: One does not choose the weather, but one can choose what to do with it. 

If a ballerina loses a leg and can never dance again, one may call it fate, an accident or God’s will. Or, it may be the soul’s choice, pushing the dancer into another direction of life. None makes the sufferer less suffering, but the soul or spirit will determine, how the loss, as any other illness for that matter, is managed and how it may be overcome.

Can soul really be sick? Of course it can. It is matter after all, and all matter is subjected to faults from within or from around, or both. When our ‘vehicle’ malfunctions, we call it disease, when the ‘driver is sick’, we call it mental illness, when the soul suffers an illness, we see the life-force being weakened and in the end life will extinguish. People know it as “no will to live”; a patient dies despite the best efforts to keep him/her alive, while others even return from ‘the other side’, meaning, they were clinically dead, but returned to carry on living. They had the ‘will to live’, so they say.

Whatever the illnesses of the soul may be, they have no place in the arena of science. Not yet, at least. Therefore it is best discussed another time. 

However! It may be comforting to know that, if the soul or spirit is weakened, it can find healing all the same, just not with pills and potions. Some may find solace in prayers, others may seek the help from the often shunned “healers”. They are not all one of a kind. They have their own different and distinct capabilities. Unfortunately there are the charlatans too, who bring the whole fraternity into already existing doubt and disregard and sometimes it is difficult to tell them apart. The genuine healer has the gift to work on the level of energies which mainly address the mind and the soul or spirit of a person. They never claim that they do the healing, because no one really heals or cures the sick. The sick cure themselves, the healer only helps them to do so. They know their methods cannot be compared with the evidence based model of care, but they are successful in what they do, if not more, particularly in illnesses where the usual medical interventions fail, to the disbelief and often disregard by the medical fraternity. Even then, they will not insist, that they healed someone. But that is true for any health guru, be it doctor of modern medicine or witch doctor of tribal kind. May be the surgeon is the exception, you may ask? No, he only removes a diseased organ, mutilating in fact the body, he does not heal it. Of course it helps the patient to survive and he can feel cured, but the surgeon is not a healer and he will not claim to be one either. In the realm of body matter he is simply a competent mechanic. 

Concluding, it must suffice to state that the principles as outlined here are not complete though rudimentary they are: Soul or spirit is life-force. Unstable in its beginning, disintegrating easily unless it can coalesce and solidify. From the “Big Bang”, according to current theories, to the stone, to the organic life forms, soul or spirit finds its expression accordingly. Initially too elusive for the emergence of anything tangible, later as life forms become more complex, it is there with clear evidence of its own evolution as well: And the DNA gets longer and longer chains! The human species, becoming the very intelligent and complex minded, though other animals are not far behind, is an excellent example. The life force in it not only is captured, it is also far more elaborate. The soul or spirit as it takes shape, makes itself known and becomes aware of itself. ‘’DNA”, deoxyribonucleic acid, or ‘Designing New Awareness’, as Sozieterna sees it. The DNA is a biological history book. 

Summarizing, the soul or spirit acts as a mediator between organic life and cosmic awareness. It is a facet of the cosmic awareness, expressed and encapsulated in matter that has gone through eons of revolutions. It is the cycle of the life-force, a cycle of cosmic proportion.    

To prevent any misunderstandings from arising, soul or spirit is not God, neither is cosmic awareness. Only because essence is elusive in its biological expression does not make it God.  

Last but not least, it may be of interest how Sozieterna’s organizes its own health care system. It is one of the best, though there is no need for elaborate policies or an overblown administration or big institutions. They emphasize on prevention, rather than cure. Their life style includes proper self-care that goes beyond the practice of focusing on the body alone though they look after the body the best way possible and repair what is faulty in whatever way appropriate or possible. That includes their brain, making the most of its plasticity by feeding it constantly with interesting things and challenging it regularly. But they also nurture their soul by connecting with all things beautiful. Nature plays a particularly important role in this, the more unspoiled the better. Sadly, that is more and more difficult to find amidst all the destruction they witness, committed by an out-of-control greedy beast called man. It is the demise of an otherwise capable species.

One final and utmost important point has to be made: Self-care has a ripple effect. Not only is there the obvious benefit for the individual itself, all benefit, family, communities, indeed the whole planet does.    

               

    

 

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Guest Saturday, 21 October 2017