15 September 2021

It's All in Your Mind


“The Mind is not in the Body, but the Body is in the Mind.”
Hindu saying

Hopefully, the reader has not personally encountered the following problem in life. But, he or she probably knows someone who has.

Common Scenario: A man or woman has long-standing discomforts: aches and pains, coming and going, changing from time to time, but not letting go. Neither dire nor specific, but quite disturbing. S/he sees several physicians, because the first doctor “tries” several avenues without luck and then sends the individual on to specialists. They check and test this and that while experimenting with different medications to deal with symptoms. “Let’s try one more thing.”

All efforts leave the last medic on the list to say, “We have checked everything. There seems to be nothing organically wrong. The problem must be in your mind. Maybe we should get you see a psychologist or psychiatrist.”

The “professional” admits to being stumped – after spending much of the patient’s time, energy and money. His/her tools can’t handle the job. So then, the medic is ready to pass the problem on to a “head doctor.”

In one way, s/he is right to think along the lines of Thales, the ancient Greek:
“A sound mind in a sound body.”

Still, Thales and moderns alike have their euphemism in reverse order. You see, we really need, “A sound body in a sound mind.” We might add “… and in a sound soul.”

You may ask, “How can that be?” You have heard the original idea many times and believe it to make sense. It sounds so “right on.”

So, we direct you to the opening quote from the East, which is one much like that which Meister Eckhart, the Dominican mystic of the 13th century, championed:

 “The body is in the soul, rather than the soul in the body.”

This idea is quite simple, but the implications are truly profound as well as somewhat daunting to contemplate. Would that medical profession had taken up this idea long ago.

Unfortunately, medicine has long treated human beings schizophrenically by separating bodily (somatic) problems from mental ones. Thus limiting the mind, placing it in a box at the top of the shoulders, imprisoning it in the brain.

But, the fact is that the mind is only limited by medical thinking, that it works through more organs than the brain, and that it actually manifests through the whole body.

Image from Babbitt

A field of mind, like our energy body, but broader and subtler, surrounds and interpenetrates every human being. The brain is its chief but not only means of exchange with the physical form as well as the surrounding world.

The mental vehicle is the source of the ideas, also called thought-forms, which we create consciously and unconsciously in the course of our lives. The greatest of these thought-forms are IDEAS which can be borne through us in order to benefit our fellow and humanity as a whole.

But, the general Western conception is quite opposed to the long-held Eastern view. We erringly continue to believe that the mind is strictly an attribute or function of the brain (mind = brain). Ergo, the mind is contained solely within the bounds of the skull.

Yet, there is much evidence – even scientific – that the mind is far greater and more encompassing than we are generally aware. (How often have you heard that we use only one tenth of our mind? Maybe that is partly because we have imagined its function restricted to the organ which sits between our ears.)

Earth Aura

Fortunately, we have had a few profound thinkers in the modern West who have tried to “lift the veil” between mind and body. One of them was Carl Jung. The great psychiatrist spoke and wrote about the collective conscious especially in regard to his dream work. But, we can take another step to say his Collective Conscious is really another name for Universal Mind to which we all respond to one degree or another.

Humanity interacts with the Collective Mind regularly and frequently – but quite unconsciously most often. In similar manner, we individual humans relate to our own personal minds. It is a fact that humans in toto exist within a vast orb of mind and consciousness, with the latter having its conscious, subconscious and superconscious aspects.

All that we experience and recognize is In Our Mind. In one dimension or another.

It is All in Your Mind. – – It is All in My Mind.

Nothing happens to our outer form nature without registering first and much more deeply in the mind.

Finally, we dare not forget the Soul, composed of even more subtle substance, which interpenetrates mind and body. Do remember that the suffix psycho – common to psychology and psychiatry – really refers to soul. Ψυχη comes from the Greek and means soul.

The soul is the ultimate source of mind and body. 

“The spirit (soul) is the master,
the imagination (mind) the tool,
and the body the plastic material.”

Psycho-somatic health exists in a spectrum with psycho-somatic illness which covers the whole territory. The spectrum covers soul, mind, and body – the natural trinity of every human being.

Imagine now, someone telling you that your state of bodily comfort or discomfort, “… is all in your mind.” You may readily and wisely agree:

“Quite so. It is all in my mind. Just like it is, all in your mind.”

Comments always welcome at theportableschool at gmail dot com.

Emailed comment:

In my view, a very good article. Maybe one of your best.
The article brought to mind the French philosopher Descartes who tried to liberated science and knowledge from belief and authority as the source of right or wrong. He therefore instituted doubt as a methodology to release reason.
As a mathematician (and making the whole "story" short) he looked for Certainty rather than truth, but that is fine, and he also separated the cognition self from the material self. This separation ended up at the root of many of our now outdated but still rolling paradigms:
A material view of nature, a need for certainty based upon (material) confirmation of (material) facts. A reduction of the concept of science, nature, humanity, and therefore of health and wealth. The paradigms got us into the age of reason and enlightenment but only to some extend. Now we are tried by its limitations and nature is slipping thought the great gaps and limitations of such paradigms and the materialism it promoted where everything; health, food, housing, education, security, etc. etc. becomes and are viewed as commodities. Once again narrowing ta very quantitative material view all that is not so and does not fit in. No wonder we have a global crises and a need to move on to other ways of understanding and thinking. Slowly we are getting there….
Your article certainly shows this dichotomy or separation and the way to a unified view of reality that suppresses current common thought.
Here is one of the quotes that match what I refer to above:
"Unfortunately, medicine has long treated human beings schizophrenically by separating bodily (somatic) problems from mental ones."

Nic - in Mexico City

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