THE WISDOM OF THE BODY
The following is from Edgework, Exploring the Psychology of Disease, by Ronald Peters, MD, MPM, Chapter 4, page 36, The Natural Intelligence of the Bodymind
You live in a body as magnificent and wondrous as the universe you gaze into on a clear, starry night. In fact, the body that you take for granted has its own near boundless universe within it, comprised of approximately 100 trillion cells.
The unfathomable complexity and wonder of the human system sparks the imagination of scientists, poets, and mystics alike as they contemplate the genius that organizes and directs it all. It has been termed the wisdom of the body.
The source and foundation of healing is the wisdom of the body, a term coined by the famous English physician William Harvey and then used again by Professor E. H. Starling and finally becoming the title of Walter Cannon’s seminal work, published in 1932: The Wisdom of the Body.
Harvey, Starling and Cannon were pioneering medical physiologists who are studied to this day in medical schools around the world. Their inquiries into the inner world of the body left them with a sense of awe about the astonishing complexity of the body’s regulatory systems. They opened the door to the molecular universe that permits us to live our lives and scientists are still puzzling over the infinite detail of life within.
Then later in the 20th century, doctors discovered that the immune system was governed by the mind, thereby birthing the field of psychoneuroimmunology. As physicians looked into the body and psychologists explored the mind, their research gradually united into the conclusion that all the body systems are controlled by consciousness to some degree.
Brain neuronal firing, neurotransmitters, hormones, cytokines, and autonomic nervous function blended into the rhetoric of stress, thoughts, emotions, and beliefs. The wisdom of the body became the wisdom of the mindbody because mind and body are one. What goes on in your mind influences your body moment to moment, or, as some have put it, “Your body is listening to your every thought”.
Regardless of your personal health issues, it is important to regain confidence in the healing power that lives naturally within you. In modern times we are led to believe that it is the doctor’s responsibility to keep us healthy. We think we are fatally flawed and we must hover near the medical system to get tested, immunized and monitored for disease. We are stressed out day after day, living in a polluted world and depending on a disease focused medical system offering us drugs for every ailment. No wonder chronic illness is everywhere and many feel overwhelmed.
The solution is mindbody healing. Take back the responsibility for your health by learning about and supporting the healing power found naturally in your body and mind.
Consider the following features of your body wisdom:
- Within each of the trillions of cells in your body there are 30 billion biochemical reactions going on moment to moment, none of which requires any thought on your part.
- Your bone marrow makes 2.5 million red blood cells per second.
- The set of instructions that created you and every cell in your body is contained in your DNA. Within the nucleus of every cell is the DNA double helix that measures 135 billionths of an inch in length, and yet this mysterious strand of material contains genetic information that if written down would be three billion words long, enough to fill 3,000 books of 1000 pages.
- Each day there are billions of DNA replications occurring amongst the trillions of cells in your body in order to keep you going and repaired as a fully functioning human. The DNA molecule unzips and creates two cells from one in order to replace old cells with new ones. And, each cell uses its DNA to create the proteins that orchestrate the wonder of your body at every level.
- You cure cancer every day of your life. Because of the staggering amount of DNA directed activity that goes on in your body each day, there is a system for detecting and eliminating any cells whose DNA division has gone wrong, thereby creating a defective cell. This surveillance system is maintained by your immune system and its army of natural killer cells (NK cells). NK cells have the ability to detect a cell that is behaving aberrantly, or reproducing excessively without normal controls, and to kill it. In other words, a healthy immune system kills cancer cells on a daily basis.
- You can heal a cut or scratch on your skin through a symphony of cellular intelligence.
- Your thoughts, your digestion, your every movement, the beating of your heart, the migrations of your eternally vigilant immune system, are all on-going with an orchestrated harmony of power, beauty and complexity.
- And, it is all standard equipment for your life journey.
Disease occurs when we disturb this natural intelligence by the way we live and the choices we make. Poor diet, lack of exercise, and chronic stress are the general patterns of interference and disease is the message sent by the mindbody to slow down, reconsider and make changes.
Healing occurs when we listen to and restore our internal wisdom. In addition to changes in lifestyle, healing depends on changes in mind-style. Dysfunctional beliefs, emotional blockages, stifled creativity, and troubled relationships are a few of the issues that contribute to disease over time.
You can rely on the creative intelligence of your mindbody to keep you healthy and to restore your health when you experience disease. Our high-tech medical world often obscures the fact that all healing is self-healing. Doctors simply assist the body’s innate healing system, the wisdom of the mindbody.