Editor’s note: This is part two of a two-part series focusing on brain health. In this week’s installation, Dr. Terry Rondberg discusses the definition of brain health. Here is part 1 from last week.
The quotes that I just shared last week defining health are yet another indication that a new paradigm is struggling to be born. The other side of the medical paradigm, the newly emerging paradigm of health, I call the brain-based spiritual model, and it is big and multifaceted.
The brain-based spiritual model of health takes a holistic approach rather than a medical approach to promoting health and addressing illness and pain. As I see it, there are four key components to this model.
First, health comes from within. Whether you want to call it the “wisdom of our cells,” “homeostasis” or “innate intelligence,” the fact is that our body is always trying to direct us toward, not merely survival, but health. Each one of us has experienced this countless times, starting with the early days when we were constantly skinning our elbows and knees, only to have them heal themselves as a natural course of events.
I take great comfort in the fact that health is our birthright, a “possession” that we always have at our disposal. When I approach a patient, I know that all I have to do is get my ego out of the way and gently correct interferences to the brain, and this will allow a patient’s health to be restored.
Secondly, holistic brain health includes honoring specific symptoms but also promotes the overall holistic brain-based health and well-being of individuals, families and communities. Spirituality, as well as the way we think and the beliefs we hold about ourselves and the world, has a role to play in this aspect of holistic brain health by supporting actions that enhance physical and mental well-being. For example, many traditions address caring for the body, avoiding behaviors that debase the body and spirit or supporting healthy diet choices.
Thirdly, holistic brain health recognizes that for some individuals and families, the experience of illness and pain may relate to deeper – even spiritual – concerns and that those concerns may manifest themselves as physical symptoms. The brain health practitioner advocates their patients growing in these deeper ways, in large part by working on themselves and modeling holistic brain health to the patient.
Fourth, holistic brain health approaches address not only the causes of physical symptoms in the individual but also recommend that their families – the direct extension of an individual – receive the care and support of a brain-based health practitioner. I believe that just as the family is an extension of any individual member of it, a person’s community is an extension of the families that live in it, and brain health practitioners should seek to support the unfolding of wellness throughout the community.
While there are four key components to the brain-based -spiritual model of health, there are many smaller, but no less significant, aspects of this paradigm. They include, of course, a holistic perspective – that the body is greater than the sum of its parts. The new paradigm is actually a return to an older, wisdom-based paradigm of vitalism – something that got left behind in the Cartesian model of the world, which holds that something invisible animates, organizes and facilitates healing in the body. We refer to that, of course, as life energy, aka bioenergy.
Furthermore, the brain-based spiritual model of health is concerned with something larger than “curing.” We are concerned with the patient healing from the inside out.
Imagine what would the world be like if people were able to express their full potential? And what would families, communities and the world be like if this were to happen? What would it be like for everyone to know, experience and feel their personal connection to the energy that pervades the universe? To the energy that makes their life possible?
Hopefully, by now, it is becoming ingrained in your mind that the brain health is a consciousness of healing rather than curing. Healing is a process of alignment and unification with body, mind and spirit. It has little to do with curing symptoms or ailments. It is a process rather than an event and involves personal growth and development.
Healing is not about making symptoms go away but about helping you face yourself in the mirror and love what you see. Illness is a communication from a deeper place within us. It is telling us about something in our lives that needs to change in order for us to be all we can be. Until we understand that communication, there can be no healing. Symptoms in the brain health model are viewed as signs of change, alerting us to changes that are necessary for us to make in our lives. Healing allows our individual identity to emerge. It creates love and respect for life. For what is the one thing that is common to all expressions of life but energy?
Our brain health system contains very few guidelines for how a person should live. We make suggestions regarding eating, moving, thinking and relating in positive ways. What we have found, however, is that lives change from the inside, not by trying or forcing change to happen, but when the internal wisdom of our cells can freely express itself without energetic restriction. I believe this freedom is the missing link in health care today.
The brain health process is like peeling layers from an onion or removing the petals from an artichoke and arriving at the heart. As the interference to the flow of our life energy is dissolved, the connection with all living beings is restored.
What makes the brain health system unique is the intention. It does not compete with the body, trying to fix something that is broken, but seeks to release the adverse tension in the suboccipital area, the portal to our energy system, through gentle and specific vibrational input. When our brains improve, our life energy is free to flow, and our aspirations and dreams can be fulfilled.
By now I hope you’re becoming excited about this therapy. This method of health care is what we have always deserved: a holistically balanced life, the dynamic interplay of body, mind and spirit, a life worthy of falling in love with and the ability to share it with others.