Centuries ago, Greek philosophers and the physicians had a more holistic view of man (including woman) than we modern humans do. They saw man as made of more than just the physical body – that his wholeness was also comprised of things of the Spirit.
But, over the last few hundred years, especially in the last century, we have come to believe that spiritual things belong to the clergy and health issues belong to some system of care focused entirely on the mechanics of our bodies – the latest recommending for example that we diagnose disease through our DNA and track our diet and exercise through wrist wear.
Yet, in the evolution of human thinking and understanding about the real essence of who we are, Jesus – the unparalleled healer of all human ills – proposed what he saw as the source of our health when he noted that we all have the “kingdom of God within”. (Luke 17:21) To me, this speaks to the divine nature of God expressed by each one of us.
Furthering this point with imagery, Jesus admonishes us to take less thought with what we eat, drink or wear, i.e. the physical, and to trust the wisdom of the universal source of all intelligence, God. “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin,” he avers,” yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.” (Mat. 6:28,29 NRSV)
Many people, including some physicians, are now seeing the link to this innate, divine source and its effect on our health.
Dr Jeffrey Rediger, a Harvard medical school professor, has been exploring the idea of the “Kingdom of Heaven within and at hand” and he now believes there is a very important connection between our health and spirituality. He states: “In my studies of [patient’s] recoveries from an incurable illness, the similarity in their paths suggests to me identifiable mental and spiritual principles associated with their recoveries.” And he believes such recoveries are “consistent with mental and spiritual laws that we are only beginning to study.”
The idea that healing is a result of mental and spiritual laws we can study and, thus, understand isn’t new.
Christian healer Mary Baker Eddy discovered, through her own study of the Bible and experiences of healing, an applicable Science in the spiritual laws of God that undergirded Jesus’ healing. These laws govern one and all. In her seminal work, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, she outlines some of the steps needed to experience that kingdom within:
“Let unselfishness, goodness, mercy, justice, health, holiness, love — the kingdom of heaven — reign within us, and sin, disease, and death will diminish until they finally disappear.”
An experience some years ago taught me a lot about how to rediscover the “kingdom within” and find my true source of health. One year, during a standard health exam for workplace insurance purposes, I was diagnosed with an imbalanced condition in my thyroid. Medication was recommended as I was told this condition was incurable! Diet and exercise were of no avail.
A lifetime of taking medication was not something I would resign myself to. As I prayed about this prognosis over the next few months, the idea of the “kingdom within” resonated with me, because it spoke to me of my spiritual purity as a child of divine Love, in which everything about me was in perfect balance.
I saw that I needed to reflect this innate “kingdom” in my daily living, and so made a better effort to express qualities such as unselfishness, compassion and brotherly love. The following year, the insurance exam resulted in a perfect health score.
Discovering and living with God’s presence and influence in our lives – the kingdom of heaven within – reveals that health and spiritual wholeness are one and the same thing.
This article can be read in Metroland Media news sites. Read here in York Region.