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Healing and the Power of Thought By Dr. Christina Grant, in HealthNewsDigest.com

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by ggingues, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    (HealthNewsDigest.com) - The mind is so powerful that it alone can help you heal. This requires trust in yourself and your ability to focus your thoughts on what you want and how you want to feel. In each moment you can notice where your mind has gone, whether to worries, fears, judgments, and other negativity, or to thoughts that are more closely aligned with what you want for yourself.

    An American named Edgar Cayce (1877-1945) was nicknamed The Sleeping Prophet for his ability to enter a sleep-like state and answer the health questions of thousands of people who came to him for answers. Although he died 65 years ago, his teachings are widespread today, with hundreds of books written about him and his work. The Association for Research and Enlightenment in Virginia Beach continues to teach what he brought forth from his trance state.

    Although there are thousands of valuable pieces of information collected from his work, there is a theme that runs through his teachings. Cayce placed an emphasis on keeping a balanced mental attitude in order to maintain wellness. In one of his readings he said, Through diet and exercise the greater portion of all disturbances may be equalized and overcome, IF the right mental attitude is kept.

    Cayce also said, What we think and what we eat combined together make what we are, physically and mentally. The question then becomes how do we maintain the right mental attitude and turn our minds toward thoughts that heal? Can this become a habit and if so, how?

    The first step is to have an ongoing practice of noticing and managing your thoughts. This isnt easy to do if youre addicted to the television culture, where mass media sends a never ending stream of negative concepts into your brain. Or, if you like to get online and read the daily headlines followed by stories of horrific occurrences around the world. Or, if you like to trauma share with friends and colleagues about the annoying things that happen to you.

    In the case of serious physical illness, we might find ourselves in a doctors office listening to negative possibilities and statistics that dont sound promising. Because we are susceptible to these predictions, we often believe the bad news and accept it as fact when it isnt. This can hinder the ability to heal because the mind is powerful enough to create what it believes.

    We hear stories about people on their deathbeds whose families dont tell them what the doctors have said about their dire situation. The person gradually gets well and goes on to live a full life. The mind didnt have the opportunity to grasp onto the negative concept of doom, and instead believed in wellness. Our inability to really integrate this into mainstream medicine is a huge hindrance to our nations overall health and wellbeing. If we were masters over our own minds we could enhance and improve the entire medical system.

    There are very few more important things you can do than to shift your mind to the positive. Any negative thought can be transformed by focusing on its opposite. Writing down the opposite thought, even drawing it out, helps change the negative thought pattern. Notice what you think about. Are you hooked in to the latest gory or fear-based story on the nightly news? Do you have people around you who enjoy talking in negative terms, going over and over the same dark topics? Do you do this yourself? If so, noticing these times and making an effort to change them is your path to making a positive mind a habit.

    The best conversation I had over the past holidays was with a friend at a dinner party who said, Im focusing all of my attention on seeing the best in people. Im simply not talking negative about things. My challenge is to practice this even when others around me are being negative. Isnt that the challenge for us all.

    That was one conversation Ive had lately that could have carried into the wee hours of the morning. When you find another person whos on board with you, it is inspiring, uplifting, and life-affirming. Its refreshing! This is where true healing begins.

    Christina Grant, PhD, is a holistic healer, counselor, and writer located near the Monterey Bay in Central California . She works with clients by phone. Contact her at 831-236-1171 or on her website at Dr.Christina Grant

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  2. Cort

    Cort Phoenix Rising Founder

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    I think they are bit too optimistic but I do agree that becoming 'masters of our mind' is a very good thing to do....that our culture just doesn't get.

  3. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

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    Unlikely, and Edgar Cayce isn't really the best source of information on the issue.

    Sounds OK.

    I think I would rather know the truth, and the generic explanation of "because the mind is powerful enough to create what it believes" is problematic. A common theme in these sort of articles is unreferenced anecdotal stories about how powerful the mind can be. A few of these stories may be true and go beyond mere coincidence, and I'm not saying the mind has no effect whatsoever and should be ignored, but we really need evidence for sweeping claims as it gives false hope that it applies to everything and that everyone can just "tap in" at will.

    I did find (an abstract of) a review of prospective observational studies which found a small effect for "positive psychological well-being" on mortality. The effect on disease populations as a whole seems negligible (HR = 0.98) but they say significant effects were observed for "patients with renal failure and with human immunodeficiency virus-infection". The effect was more pronounced for healthy populations (HR = 0.82) and later on in the abstract they mention "reduced cardiovascular mortality in healthy population"s. They also found that "protective effects of positive psychological well-being were independent of negative affect".

    Considering the above paragraph on "deathbeds" and receiving bad prognosis in the doctor's office, what would "integration" of this into mainstream medicine entail exactly? Routinely lying to patients about prognosis in the hopes this will cure them, or suggesting to them think positive in the face of overwhelming statistics?

    It may help in some situations but we need to know what situations those are and consider the ethical issues. Also, people may have different interpretations of what positive thinking is, for some it may be pretending or assuming everything is going to be alright, for others it may be accepting death and seeking a spiritual perspective on the situation, for others it may be hardcore partying before the reaper arrives. The above review defined "positive affect (e.g., emotional well-being, positive mood, joy, happiness, vigor, energy) and positive trait-like dispositions (e.g., life satisfaction, hopefulness, optimism, sense of humor)".

    I have encounted people who believed ME/CFS patients should be aggressively optimistic about their supposed "temporary illness" improving or resolving within months, and when patients start to question their recovery this was misinterpreted as "getting depressed" and "giving up to the negativity" as if it such questioning is not reasonable after a decade of obvious decline!

    I was really into the "power of the mind" for years but it was a massive let down so I remain skeptical. Has potential but frequently overstated benefits for mental health, unreliable and dubious claims for physical health (but a good requisite to have if it is balanced to the situation, I'm certainly not saying to discard positivity or embrace negativity).

    I do find it useful to be quietly hopeful about the long-term future and work on contentment in the present, but I think misplaced optimism is delusional and can actually be detrimental to ME/CFS, draining precious mental energy, creating false expectations, leading to actions which worsen symptoms in the long run, etc. Again, balance is important and is something we have to determine for ourselves.
  4. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    Yeah, I think most of these docs are like that, but I thought it would be a good article to just give people some pep on keeping a positive outlook and hope alive! I am going on 8 years of being sick, and it's always a battle! Such is life, or at least mine. Sounds like she might be a more open minded Dr than most though!

    GG

    PS Very well said Biophile, I enjoyed reading your analysis.

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