Pathology Prevention with Spiritual Health

Pathology Prevention with Spiritual Health

In this day and age, many people are losing their religion. These people don't believe that spiritual health should be discussed in context of pathology prevention practices. So I need to explain that this 'Spiritual Health' isn't what you may think. For our discussion, your Spiritual Health is about finding your purpose of life, actualization processes, maintaining a world balance, and emotional stability. Your church or personal beliefs may be different, or they may address these things, but for the majority, these topics are outside of religion. For the Health Guardian, or person concerned with pathology prevention in your life, these topics must be evaluated, understood, nurtured, and managed.

Many seem to believe that a purpose of life arises from your special gifts and sets you apart from other people—but that’s only part of the truth. It also grows from our connection to others, which is why a crisis of purpose is often a symptom of isolation. Once you find your path, you’ll almost certainly find others traveling along with you, hoping to reach the same destination—a community.

Here are a few things that have been shown to build a sense of purpose in life. Reading - So, if you’re feeling a crisis of purpose in your life, go to the bookstore or library or university. Find books that matter to you—and they might help you to see what matters in your own life. You can also Turn hurts into healing for others. Of course, finding purpose is not just an intellectual pursuit; it’s something we need to feel. That’s why it can grow out of suffering, both our own and others’. Certain emotions and behaviors that promote health and well-being can also foster a sense of purpose—specifically, awe, gratitude, and altruism. Of course, awe all by itself won’t give you a purpose in life. It’s not enough to just feel like you’re a small part of something big; you also need to feel driven to make a positive impact on the world. That’s where gratitude and generosity come into play. Giving thanks can help you find your purpose. But you can also find purpose in what people thank you for.

If you’re having trouble remembering your purpose, take a look at the people around you. What do you have in common with them? What are they trying to be? What impact do you see them having on the world? Is that impact a positive one? Can you join with them in making that impact? What do they need? Can you give it them?

As we try to improve our spiritual health, self-actualization should be part of your practice. It's important to remember that self-actualization is not a one-time event, but goes on throughout life as one is faced with opportunities, just like our spiritual health is not a fixed status. In self-actualization, and spiritual health development, intention, intuition, and action are all required to move toward an actualized life, and that process is not linear. 

It is believed that there are three key processes in moving towards an actualized life—intention, intuition, and action. They are woven together. Each is integral to the other. Each is necessary for actualization to happen.

These three processes can be used to discover what an actualized life means to you. What calls to you? What are you passionate about? This will be different for everyone, but the discovery process will be the same.

Both conceiving a purpose and desiring to bring it into realization will strengthen your spiritual health. The clearer you are about your intention, the more likely you are to realize it. Intuition is the ability to understand instinctively, without conscious reasoning, the rightness or wrongness of something. It’s your right brain function. As you explore your options, when you land on one that resonates, you will feel a bodily felt sense of rightness. Action is taking what you have intuited and intended and committing to do concretely what is needed to bring your intention into reality. Although spiritual health is straightforward, the processes can be challenging and unique to everyone. It is not linear. It involves giving yourself the space to explore your innermost thoughts and feelings, discovering a clear intention, and then having the courage to act.

I'm not sure that maintaining a world balance is something we can achieve, check off a box somewhere, and move on to other goals. Philosopher and physician Albert Schweitzer wrote that a culture can only be as healthy as its worldview. What is the worldview of healthcare today? It is that disease must be conquered. We attack disease, not realizing that the very inclination to attack is the genesis of disease. We trumpet the successes of this incomplete approach in our medical journals while waging a never-ending battle.

We will know when health care is really serious about shaping up when we begin to pay as much attention to health and wellbeing as we do to disease; when medical education and practice requires self-care as much as it requires the practice of prescribing and cutting; when doctors learn about food as medicine; when medical education teaches us how to collaborate inter-professionally across different healing systems; and when medical science catches up to the physics of 100 years ago and recognizes the human body as more than a physical structure.

Today, we can no longer talk only about local cultures. The culture of wellbeing we will create in healthcare cannot be separated from the culture of food, housing, politics and every other culture. If we’re serious, we have to talk about our global culture – literally, across the globe. The world has become small enough that our worldview must encircle the planet. The internet and social media have made it so that local change can become global change within minutes to hours. The successes and failures of our neighbors on the other side of the planet are our own, as our own successes and failures are theirs. It has always been this way. Now, we are seeing it more distinctly. What is the worldview that will sustain us and carry us forward? Wellbeing.

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