What is health?
P. Jenkins & M.S Jenkins (2017 May 1)
What is health? This is a great question, one people have strong opinions about. Most people relate health to our diet and exercise. Sure, those are a factor but it’s actually a bit more complicated than just two factors. Health is like a Rubik’s cube; each face consists of many blocks and the turning of a single row or column has an effect on the whole cube. Each part moves and plays a role in completing the shape. The definition of health is “the state of being free from illness or injury.” Interestingly enough it’s Germanic root is related to the word, “whole”. And I feel that the latter interpretation is revolutionary to our way of thinking about health.
When I think of that word ‘whole’ my mind goes to the Bible. In John 5:6 “When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, ”Wilt thou be made whole?“ Jesus was at the pool of Bathesda, and had been walking among people who were filled with physical ailments, the blind, the impotent, and the crippled. And here he asks a man who has suffered from a physical condition, whether he wanted to be made whole. Although this man, may have initially thought of his physical condition, I believe Jesus’ desire for the man’s benefit went further, deeper. In Christ’s invitation was complete restoration, not just the physical, but emotional, psychological and spiritual restoration. This is what I believe Christ meant when he said, “Wilt thou be made whole?”.
As we see the plant-based lifestyle movement making gains around the globe, we are seeing people’s lives being transformed. People say things like, “I got my life back.” “I feel more energy.” One friend of mine even said, “I didn’t expect that I’d be more spiritual.” The more science investigates on the benefits of a plant-based diet, we can see the results not only on the physical apparatuses but the emotional, mental and spiritual faculties as well.
Looking deeply into the topic of health, we can see the Creator’s divine plan that we be whole. After all, according to the Bible we came from the Creator’s hand, made in a perfect garden by a perfect Creator. The thing that disrupted the perfection of humanities perfect home was the invader, Sin, and with its rise to power over humanity, brokenness was the ultimate result.
Dr. Deepak Chopra made a statement relating to this notion,
"Healing is the return of the memory of wholeness. Healing, health, whole and holy all mean inclusiveness. Body, mind, spirit, environment, relationships, social interactions are all one wholeness, and you’re a part of that one wholeness."
I agree. God seeing our brokenness, has been trying to help put the pieces back together, so that we can be whole once again.
We don’t have to look very far to see the effects of diet on mental health or the ramifications it has on one’s physical and spiritual state. Many of us have experienced it ourselves or know people who suffer from addiction, depression, eating disorders or suicidal thoughts. How can we reach wholeness when our view of health is self-imposed narrowness of vision?
When diagnosing an illness or disease a doctor needs to consider all the primary symptoms and secondary symptoms a malady might produce. This leads to inclusive thinking; very frequently many symptoms point to a single specific problem. Treating the symptom only helps the Doctor get the patient out of his office, but doesn’t address the underlying cause. Our health is exactly the same. We need to start looking at health in its multifaceted form when trying to make changes. Living a healthy lifestyle isn’t just about abstaining from animal products or wearing generic leather shoes. It is about wholeness and what must be done and done away with to achieve that goal.
So, no matter where you are in your journey, a very relevant and important question to ask is…
“Wilt thou be made whole?”