Ricky's Riffs:

Random thoughts on Travel, Education, Health, and the World in General

The Nature of Health and Healing

We live on many levels—the physical, emotional, chemical, and spiritual—each one vibrating at its own frequency, bodies of energetic resonance or dissonance. The source of these energies is the vast cosmic field through which we move, our bodies assimilating and then cycling back these universal forces, accepting and transmitting, smoothly and calmly, or resisting, blocking the inexorable flow that keeps us vital.

Under stress we tighten, back muscles become taut, endocrine glands pump out chemicals of anxiety, our nervous systems fire up, sending electrical impulses at lightning speeds, burning our neuronal tracts in sustained overdrive. We feel “out of sorts” or simply, in pain. This is dis-ease. And healing begins with an awareness of this process, a listening to the body, an intentional focus on what it is to be alive.

We start with the breath, breathing deeply, taking in the oxygen that fuels us. To do this we must sit and stand upright, to support this biochemical process, which in turn allows our lifes energy to flow freely. Whether one calls it chi, prana, or nervous impulse, it is the unimpeded streaming of this substance that animates us. We must move our bodies, because we were meant to move, our motion a part of the great dance that is our life. Joints must be mobilized, muscles stretched, then strengthened, our vascular, synovial, and lymphatic fluids pumped, lubricating our magnificent human engines. And we must live our lives with meaning, true to our innermost being, as this is what feeds the deepest part of who we are, for without this, a deep internal friction is generated, scorching us within.

Healing is both introspective and active, an inside and an outside job. We are not separate entities, disconnected from the world beyond our skins, but beings embedded in a natural fabric, parts of something much larger than ourselves. And healing must take place there as well—in the world of work, of society, of the physical and aesthetic realms we occupy. Each impacts us at every level of our beings. To heal is to recognize our internal connections and those that connect us to the great cosmic expansiveness, to move into balance and to participate in the infinite. To heal is to realize the unbounded potential each of us holds preciously within.

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