The acceptance of sickness as a decision of the mind, for a purpose for which it would use the body, is the basis of healing. And this is so for healing in all forms. A patient decides that this is so, and he recovers. If he decides against recovery, he will not be healed. Who is the physician? Only the mind of the patient himself. The outcome is what he decides that it is. Special agents seem to be ministering to him, yet they but give form to his own choice. He chooses them in order to bring tangible form to his desires. And it is this they do, and nothing else. They are not actually needed at all. The patient could merely rise up without their aid and say, “I have no use for this.” There is no form of sickness that would not be cured at once.ACIM:M-5.II.2
Paradigm change is at the heart of the deeper shift in healthcare that is going on and as I have argued in recent articles, both on this blog site and here, published on the site of Bernardo Kastrup, in The Metaphysical Rubber Meets The Road in Healthcare Reform. But we need to go further than what I discussed in that article. It is a giant step to see that we are in a universe of downward causation, i.e. the body is in the mind, not the mind in the body, and indeed the entire universe is in the mind. Quantum mechanics implies it, but it makes sense in many ways, and explains a lot of things that are otherwise going unexplained. Bernardo is a master of that particular point, and his books are brilliant. Highly recommended, in particular are Brief Peeks Beyond, and The Idea of the World, but also an earlier book, Why Materialism is Baloney, are all highly worth reading.
In particular, I recommend reading Bernardo alongside T. Colin Campbell’s Whole, for his criticism that the reductionist methods of nutritional research (and by implication drug research also) and the life sciences in general generate demonstrable nonsense points directly to the idealist paradigm. The reasons for that all follow from the way the materialist/reductionist “scientific method,” turns reality upside down and thus is quite unscientific once you understand the logic of holism that the mind is not an epiphenomenon of the brain, but rather the brain is in the mind and an epiphenomenon of it – it is the projection of the mind onto physical, dualistic reality. The brain is the copy, the mind is the original, which is the nature of duality. Campbell’s book does not go as far as all that, he is a biochemist, not a metatphysician, but it’s only a small step, the two connect beautifully. Campbell’s “wholism” (I like holism better for etymological reasons) and Kastrup’s idealism are really the same thing when you get right down to it. In fact most of the books in my Bibliography of Healing are related to this topic in one form or another.
The Russian Dolls in the Healing Paradigm
Projection makes perception. The world you see is what you gave it, nothing more than that. But though it is no more than that, it is not less. Therefore, to you it is important. It is the witness to your state of mind, the outside picture of an inward condition. As a man thinketh, so does he perceive. Therefore, seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind about the world. Perception is a result and not a cause. And that is why order of difficulty in miracles is meaningless. Everything looked upon with vision is healed and holy. Nothing perceived without it means anything. And where there is no meaning, there is chaos.ACIM:T-21:In.1
Let’s start with Western Medicine as we know it, allopathic medicine. The points where the doctor says: “You’ll have to take this medicine for the rest of your life,” are the points where you find out that you need another paradigm – the map you are going by is not conformal with the experience you are having. This is no different than finding out that the world is round, not flat. The sequence that applies to medicine, health and healing could be described as follows:
- Communicable diseases are the home turf of allopathic medicine, founded firmly on the trackrecord in combating infectious disease in the first part of the 20th century, when gradually ‘victory’ over infectious disease seemed assured. We will ignore the problem of drug resistance and how it affects antibiotics for another day. For now, it is obvious that allopathic medicine developed on the back of the germ-theory of disease, and will continue in that role, but the far larger area of non-communicable diseases will become the domain of lifestyle medicine. Often the two are combined in the same practitioner.
- Non-communicable diseases are what we mostly die from today (heart disease, Diabetes, Autoimmune Diseases, IBD, Asthma, Cancer, RA, Alzheimers, etc.). These are the case where an MD, who has usually never learned any nutrition in school, comes up with nothing better but: “You’ll have to take this medicine for the rest of your life. This is becoming the domain of lifestyle medicine, which is complementary to allopathic medicine, in the sense that it is proving that many so-called incurable diseases, but it also means a widening of the paradigm, to include nutrition. So this Russian doll includes nutrition, and renders preventable or reversible the diseases that make up 86% of healthcare spending that is now spent on treatments by allopaths, who are not trained to look at diet as a cause. Hereby Hippocrates’ old dictum of Let food be thy medicine, is restored. Today, these two functions are mostly combined, i.e. regular MDs are gaining additional qualification in this area.
- After the inclusion of nutrition, the need for a further step becomes immediately obvious, namely that the decision to take responsibility for their healing is in the mind of the patient. So it is not the bad diet that was the cause of the chronic illness, but the decision to eat what we ate, and we can now change that decision.
Here is where our self-destructive tendencies tend to get exposed. What many don’t understand is that it is not safe to assume that people simply want to be well, or otherwise they would not be sick. Given we understand that the world is but an outside picture of an inward condition and that in order to perceive something it is projected first by the mind, our outlook on disease becomes very different – it is an opportunity to heal. In order not to feel guilty it is important to realize that we are not conscious of these things that drive us, they come from the unconscious, but ultimately a hurricane, an abusive husband, a virus or any disease, or a car accident, they all are projected from the mind. It is up to us to change our mind. In fact it is when we see them on the screen of “our world” that we can recognize them and address them.
The bottom line is that this Russian doll moves the dialog to the mind, and motivation is everything. Healing is first and foremost a thing of the mind.
- There really is a fourth step, which flows logically from the third. Once we know that the mind is the locus of healing, then we can also see that any reasonable healing modality that makes sense to the patient should be taken seriously. This perspective validates the whole concept of integrative medicine. The evolution from the traditional allopathic model of medicine, which is materialist (Newtonian, if you will) first towards Lifestyle Medicine and then towards knowing the mind is in charge and realizing that the healing first and foremost is a matter of the mind, automatically leads to a whole new way of looking at the value of new healing modalities.
The fundamental issue of the role of the mind in healing also makes it clear that all healing is really the same and all disease is just the projection of a thought of dissociation and attack onto the body or the world. That thought is the cause.
Healing is Making Whole
And He was saying to them, “To you has been given the mystery of the kingdom of God, but those who are outside get everything in parables, …Mark 4:11
Since everything we see in the world, including our own body is projected from the mind, illness and accidents are really all the same, and the healing comes from following the trail back and meanwhile doing whatever we need to do to take care of ourselves. We thus some to realize that medicine including lifestyle medicine, although amazingly powerful, are mere palliatives that give form to a choice for healing. The model for healing is what Henry Grayson discusses in the video above. Asking for guidance to understand the metaphor (the parable) of our illness, is really the path to healing.
Duality is metaphor, of necessity, for only truth is true, nothing else is. Truth is one, whereas in duality nothing is one, given we start from two. Outside the Kingdom, i.e. in duality, truth is different for you and me, since it is tied to our individual points of view. Consciousness is the expression of individual identity and the view of myself and the world are merely two sides of the same coin. In Henry Grayson’s example of healing a disk it is clear that the key is to ask for guidance from your inner teacher (Jesus, the Holy Spirit, Krishna, Quan Yin or whatever represents Oneness, Love and Truth to you) to understand the metaphor of the illness, which opens it up for healing, for the question cannot be answered on the level on which it arises.
In his recent interview on Oprah, Dean Ornish also describes his inner process of learning to listen to that inner voice, the voice of (non-dualistic) knowing without dialectic reasoning. No wonder then he learned to see his unifying theory of disease, which ties together the entirety of non-communicable disease by its common cause of diet. We can go even further, for once we realize that the mind is the locus of the healing and the disease, in any form is just the classroom setting for the healing, then not only are all healing modalities of equal value if they work for the patient, so also are all diseases the same, and the distinctions of infectious disease versus non-communicable disease or even accidents is more or less irrelevant. The work of healing for all of them begins in the mind.
A Course in Miracles uses the terms ego and Holy Spirit, where ego is really the thought of separation and Holy Spirit stands for the though of wholeness. Sickness, regardless if it is a communicable or non-communicable disease, or an accident, is the projection of the thought of separation onto my body, my world. The ego, the separation thought, cannot heal it, only the Holy Spirit, the thought of wholeness, can guide the healing, for again the healing is of the mind – our choice for separation, dissociation is made manifest in the illness. The focus must be on the healing of the mind, even while you do whatever you need to do to take care of the body. Grayson’s book Your Power to Heal is an excellent place to start, and so is Cindy Lora-Renard’s A Course in Health and Well-Being. Checkout all of the books in my Bibliography of Healing, or feel free to research the many other sources of excellent insights into the nature of sickness, health and healing.
Healing is making whole, is an opportunity to become whole. And the Whole Foods, Plant-Based diet is an obviously sensible modality, and certainly a good place to begin. Many people have experienced first hand that it is more powerful than any medications, though you should be advised that if you do take medication you need to do this transition with guidance from your physician – some medications may need to be adjusted quickly, such as insulin and other diabetes meds, or statins and Blood Pressure meds. The critical part in the whole process is to realize that you now accept responsibility for your healing. That is the key difference.