Do you want a cure or do you want to heal?
When you’re trying to get healthy, trying to change your overall health picture, hard work trumps hope in miracles every time.
It may be tempting to look for a miracle solution whether that be a prescription or an alternative remedy. You’re hopeful that this will solve your problem without you having to do the hard work of actually making a real change. But unfortunately even if you’re to find short-term relief you’re probably not going to have long-term relief.
Unfortunately we’ve been taught to look outside of ourselves for the answers to our health problems. We’ve been trained to look to an expert who can offer that magical fix. When you take this approach you’re really looking for a cure and not healing.
Healing can only happen from the inside out. It can only happen when we allow our body to engage in its natural process of healing itself.
Here’s an article I wrote for my patients about Cure versus Healing:
You have everything you need to heal anything — in you right now.
Make the distinction between the words; cure and heal.
To cure is to do or administer something to someone that makes his or her disease disappear. The disease is gone and no longer exists. It is something that someone else does to you. The person who receives the cure is passive. The concept of cure does not necessarily take the cause of the problem into consideration. Certainly the person being cured needs not.
You can pay someone to cure your illness. Once you are cured the implication is you can go back to whatever it was you were doing before you got sick. To be cured is based on the skill or the effort of the person curing you, or on the quality of the cure that is being administered to you. Cures are usually not free. The best cures are most often the most expensive ones. Once cured it is frequently possible and often likely that the disease will come back again and necessitate another cure. Most cures operate on the paradigm that the disease happened to happen to the person being cured. The victim had bad luck or was cursed. The person being cured had no responsibility or role in their catching the disease. The paradigm of cure assigns no positive value to the disease. The disease is inherently bad, evil and abnormal and must be stopped. The disease is the enemy and the cure is the solution. The disease and the person are at war. The cure is the weapon of mass destruction against the disease.
Some examples of cures are; penicillin cures strep throat, excising a skin cancer tumor cures the skin cancer, coronary bypass surgery cures coronary artery disease.
We take the expectation that modern medicine either has now or will soon have the cure for our problem when we see our physician. We believe that if s/he is good s/he will have the cure to our problem, or have the referral to the specialist that does. We expect that if our doctor is on the ball they will make the diagnosis and will then, if we can afford it, prescribe the cure for us and we go on our merry way. None the worse for wear. If the doctor cannot offer a cure then they are probably a quack or incompetent and can’t figure out what disease we have. We then must enter into a search or quest to find that one special, brilliant and gifted doctor who can make the diagnosis that will lead us to the cure. Few people in modern occidental society ever operate outside of this paradigm.
It is not necessary for the person administering the cure to be healthy. Often doctors are sick themselves. Doctors interestingly as a group have one of the shortest life expectancy and highest disease rates in society. Knowledge of how to prevent a disease is not needed to administer its cure.
Sometimes after interminable searching, frustration and increasing fear that their disease will be the end of them, a person becomes disillusioned and gives up hope for a diagnosis/cure. This is a sad, lonely and isolated place full of anger, resentment and an overwhelming sense of betrayal. Some feel betrayed by modern medicine others have sunken to the point of feeling betrayed by God. Sadly it is all too common in our system of advanced scientific medicine. It is a place many of us stop first on our way to our graves. I pray for you the reader you never have to experience this space in life.
To heal is to restore to the state of health. Health is not merely the absence of disease. Health is the state of wellbeing and full functionality that enables the individual/family/community to fulfill their life purpose and enjoy life to its fullest.
To heal is something you do for yourself. Healing is something your body or your mind does. Healing is active for the person that does it. Healing does not require a diagnosis. It is even not always necessary for a person to go to a doctor at all to heal.
Healing is a natural process that occurs automatically, given the right conditions — the body and mind restoring its own functioning. Healing is a consequence of right living. The person who heals is responsible for his or her own healing. Healing occurs when and only when the cause of the disease is removed. Healing occurs only when the person cooperates with nature and properly cares for him/herself. Healing requires an expenditure of energy on the part of the person who is in the process of healing. No other person can heal you.
The process of healing is not a war. A person healing is not at war with their disease. A person who is healing or has healed has made peace with their disease. They have come to view their disease as their temporary ally. A person who heals has come to realize that their symptoms are in fact a sign of health. They have come to view their disease as their guide for changing their behavior. The changes needed are those that will if assiduously followed will restore health. Their symptoms are the normal messages from their body that they are not taking proper care of themselves. Or they are the signs that their body is in the process of healing and are notices that behavior change is needed to cooperate with this process.
Healing requires not a faith in others but a faith in oneself. Healing is a spiritual act. It requires a faith in the goodness of God. It requires obedience to right action the laws of nature represent. Healing occurs in the nexus of the person healing and God.
A person who is a healer is someone who helps the person realize that it is they themselves who does the healing. A healer has the skill and wisdom to help a person become aware of the messages their body is giving them — not just the pain, bodily/mental dysfunction or the disability, but also more subtle messages that are leading them to change their behavior. These behavioral changes lead them to live in harmony with nature. A healer can at best help nudge a person in the direction of health. They cannot drag a person to health although they may lead them.
Healing is ultimately peace. Peace with oneself and with nature. Healing is acceptance of what is here and now as in harmony and in right order. Healing is surrender. Surrender of the ego centric, childish and selfish attitude that one is entitled to do whatever one pleases without consequences that can later be erased with a check, health insurance or credit card. Healing is an act of love — love of life itself.
Healers are not sick people. Anyone can heal yet only a wise person who has healed or is healing himself or herself can be a healer. Healers rarely claim to be healers, because they know it is not they that heal but the person that is sick in cooperation with the divine. God does the healing. You have to cooperate with God to be healed.
Atlanta, GA July 2012
Now we’d like to hear from you! What do you think about this concept of heal vs cure? Are you willing to do the hard work of healing? Is so what are you doing?