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The Whispering Body

I heard Lissa Rankin, MD; in a TED talk discuss The Shocking Truth About Your Health. Near the beginning of the talk she states that, “Caring for your body is the least important part of your health.” I wasn’t sure that I agreed with her and by the time she was done she said that the body was one component in a balanced and healthy life. Nothing shocking about that!

As an OB/GYN physician she said she was seeing patients with health problems but all their test results would come back normal. In the end she could never find a pill to fix the problem. Even when she switched to holistic medicine, giving herbs and acupuncture needles, patients would resolve one issue only to turn up again with another.

Being a Reiki practitioner I was intrigued. When we learn the history of Reiki and about its founder, Mikao Usui, we also learn about the precepts that he developed for his patients and his practitioners. They are meant to be guiding principles for living and not meant to be any type of religious dogma. They are:

Just for Today…

Do not be angry

Do not be worried

Be grateful

Do your duties fully

Be kind to others.

The reason he developed them was because he found that his patients who received Reiki would resolve one issue only to turn up again with another. Usui Sensei, as he was called, realized that if people were to remain healthy, they also needed to look after their mental, emotional and spiritual health

In the end that is what Lissa Rankin reminds us as she encourages collaboration in health care; works to foster self-healing; tries to reconnect health care and spirituality; as well as empowering patients to tap into their mind’s power to heal the body. Through the practice of “caring for the mind, caring for the heart and caring for the soul,” she says “you can heal the body.

The key then is the body. When one aspect of your being gets out of balance, your body starts to whisper, to nudge, and let you know something is off kilter. How I wished I had listened to those whispers before I was diagnosed with a herniated disc in my neck. But I didn’t and one day woke up in severe pain that lasted for years. Do you pay attention? Do you hear the whispers before they become alarm bells? Maybe it’s already too late for you because you are already in chronic pain? What then?

Start listening. Begin to see the patterns of what makes a good day. Copy those days as best you can. Look into all parts of your life. How is your emotional state? Do you have unresolved issues? Lissa Rankin talks about a patient who had a file inches thick even though she was physically fit, ate well, and cared for her body. It turned out that she was in an abusive relationship and was still traumatized by the fact that she had been molested as a child. She would not heal her body until she healed her emotions.

What about your mental state? Are you generally happy, sad, numb, or something in between? Do you focus on the problem or the solution? Are the people around you uplifting, are you able to enjoy your creative side, do you have healthy relationships? It all matters. Sonja Lyubomirsky, professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of California, Riverside and the author of The How of Happiness says that, “research shows that its in our power to fashion it [happiness] for ourselves.”

“Healing from the inside out is more powerful than anything medicine can give you,” says Lissa. Will you start the process today or will you let those whispers grow?

Tell me about the times when you did and didn’t listen to the body and how it affected you. Leave a comment on Facebook. I look forward to hearing from you.

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