Holistic Approach VS Modern Medicine #TuesdayTalkWithTat
After our last post about holistic health, I wanted to take the time to answer a question I often get: “Between modern medicine and a holistic health approach, which one should I choose?”. In order to answer this question, it’s essential to understand the focus of each approach.
Modern medicine aims to treat or minimize symptoms and addresses strictly the physical body through medication, surgery or physical therapies, to control or manage the disease. When we feel ill, we consult a medical doctor with the hope that, with their extensive knowledge of the human body, they will be able to provide us with their expert opinion, and hopefully an accurate diagnosis as to what is ailing our body. A medical diagnosis provides some reassurance since medical professionals can identify what is wrong with the body and are able to recommend a treatment plan. Our hope for medical treatment is that the disease will disappear or, at the very least, its symptoms can be minimized, controlled or managed. Therefore, in many cases, the use of modern medicine is indispensable. One thing worth nothing though is that while the role of the treating physician is imperative, the role of the patient is mostly a passive one.
While modern medicine focuses on the physical aspect of a person, holistic health approaches such as acupuncture, Chinese medicine, homeopathy, and Reiki, to name a few, are made to address the subtle bodies: the mind, the emotions, the energies, and the spirit.
In the holistic model of health, the physical illness is a manifestation of an imbalance in the subtle bodies. For this reason, the restoration of balance at these subtle levels is the holistic health practitioner’s primary concern; as it goes through the subtle to get to the physical.
Since the primary concern of modern medicine is the physical body and that of a holistic approach is the subtle bodies; which approach should we choose? The answer is both because these approaches complement each other. Once we arrive at this conclusion, the question then shifts from “Which one should we choose?” to “How can we effectively integrate both approaches?”. On its own, the modern approach fails to address the simultaneous need for balance at every level: physical, mental, emotional, energetic and spiritual. For instance, when we consult our doctor for having a certain feeling of uneasiness in our body and mind, we often leave with the understanding of a happy diagnosis of being perfectly healthy. Despite the treating physicians best efforts and ordering various lab tests, all results can come back negative. Although this news might provide initial relief, we soon realize that it is temporary once we come to the realization that that “off” feeling is still very much present. If medical lab tests can’t detect anything wrong with our physical body, what causes this “off” feeling? It begins with the imbalance of the subtle bodies. In any holistic session, the therapist invites us to take on an active role and participate in our healing process. They believe that, if we ignore that “off” feeling, it’s only a matter of time before it extends to the physical body in the form of disease or illness. Thus, it is to everyone’s advantage to use both approaches as complementary to each other.
While many prefer to note the differences between the modern and holistic approaches, it is far more beneficial is to focus on their commonalities and find ways to integrate both in the best interest of our health.
Light, Love & Kindness
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