by: Michael J. Lincoln Ph.D. on
The key factor in the maintenance of bodily health is the immune system, which is controlled by the brain via neural connections, chemical reactions, neurotransmitters, lymphocytes, neurohormones, endorphins, and the like.
Through these linkages, what is going on in our consciousness is continuously affecting our body - and vice versa. In many ways, the body and the mind imitate and imprint each other.
Ultimately, of course, consciousness underlies and is the final determinant of everything, and the body reflects this vividly. It should be noted in this regard that “consciousness” will be used here to refer to both aware and unaware processes and phenomena, as well as what is happening in our brains and in our souls.
What is in our consciousness is determined by our life experiences and by the nature and history of our soul. We design our destiny, and then we encounter the interaction between ourselves and the world around us. We react to what happens.
Illnesses, ailments, disorders and damages in our bodies therefore represent the final warning system regarding the things in which we are caught up and are causing us significant, serious, and perhaps even lethal outcomes. These messages from the body point to what needs to be tracked and modified in our emotional / cognitive / behavioral / evaluational / spiritual system.
Symptoms and syndromes (clusters of symptoms) express what we are unconscious of, as well as what we are “shoving into our shadow.” The “shadow” is that part of us where things that were (or are) not acceptable to us, and/or to those around us, are relegated.
This is especially true during the intensely impressionable childhood period, where at the beginning in particular, we tend to put God’s face on the parents and other significant caretakers and relationships.
What the symptoms and syndromes of illness and disorders often represent, is a de-evolution of a "shadow-shoving” process, in which we are refusing to integrate our qualities or needs into our consciousness and lives, due to severely repressive, suppressive, exploitative and/or abusive reactions to these aspects of our nature when we were children.
There is an old saying to the effect that “As a person thinketh, so they shall be.” In other words, what is in our consciousness determines the way our life goes. And that gets started in childhood. This means that how one handles one’s core themes determines who and how one will become.
Some example core themes here are things like self-support, belonging, being safe, getting love, needing validation, being responsible, knowing and understanding, mutual support, honesty, perfection, being able to love, being able to have, cultural and community commitment, being without doing, attention input, abandonment, cosmic connection, etc.
A major source of bodily malaise is the impact of one’s negative experiences on the neurotransmitter conditions that result from formative processes. Chronic and/or repeated traumatic experience patterns have specific impacts on the individual’s neurotransmitters that tend to last the lifetime.
Specifically, what has been found is that:
- Dopamine is lowered by joy-deprivation.
- Norepinepherine is elevated by fear- and/or rage-induction.
- Endorphine is lowered by love-deprivation.
- Serotonin is lowered by status-deprivation and powerlessness-induction.
Illnesses and disorders are linked to beliefs and changes of beliefs about oneself, about the nature of one’s relationships with others, about one’s position in the social world, and about where one stands in relation to the Universe. And these, in turn, are determined by one’s life experiences, by one’s interventions in the world, and by one’s soul history.
Every condition in our lives exists because there is a need for it in one way or another, either on the time-space level or on the soul level or both. The symptoms, reactions or conditions are the outward effect of the inner condition of the individual.
A specific sickness is the natural physical outcome of particular thought patterns and/or emotional disharmonies. They are coded messages from the body to the effect of what is happening and what needs to happen. In effect, illnesses and ailments teach us, expand us, and move us on - if we can understand them and heed them.
In effect, when we are afflicted with a physical disorder, what we are being told in no uncertain terms is that this dysfunctional way of being must go. The meaning of bodily break-downs, can in effect be succinctly summarized in three words: CHANGE THAT PATTERN! The basic reality here is that awareness heals.