In the United States and Western Europe, we are caught in a health crisis. Not only is there an obesity epidemic, which leads to an increased incidence of certain types of cancer, a range of cardiovascular diseases, and other lifestyle conditions like type 2 diabetes, this is also symptomatic of a deeper range of illnesses.
In the West, anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medications are always in the top ten of annual prescriptions. These products sell in the billions of dollars every single year without fail. On top of that, in the United States, in particular, there is an opioid epidemic.
For the longest time, doctors have been prescribing very powerful opiate-based medications. People have gotten used to these. In fact, they’re so dependent that they found a way to unleash the full pain-killing power of prescription medications like OxyContin and hydrocodone.
The result is an opiate epidemic that has resulted in thousands upon thousands of overdose deaths in the United States. The carnage doesn’t look like it’s going to be stopping any time soon.
The common thread that unites all these sad scenarios is the fact that in the West, we have forgotten about wellness. We really have. The traditional Western view of wellness is very restricted and, given what’s going on, on the ground, quite short-sighted.
Traditional Western medicine’s attitude towards wellness is built on the assumption that the body and the mind are separate. They are not joined, they are not related in any way, but they are separate.
Just as importantly, whatever treatments are created for either body or mind, have to be based on biochemical compounds. In fact, it’s only been recent that we have steered towards the direction of biochemistry. Prior to this, it’s mostly just hard chemistry.
This idea of the body and mind being separate has led to doctors treating the symptoms, but overlooking the disease. It’s impossible to treat the body without addressing the mind and the spirit.
Unfortunately, in the West, the spiritual component of wellness is hardly mentioned at all. In fact, people get really antsy and uncomfortable the moment the idea of spirit enters any conversation. It’s like it’s completely off-limits to “credible” scientific investigation.
On top of all of this, the typical diagnosis for physical ailments leaves out the attitude, mindset as well as the emotional configuration of the patient. In fact, it’s only been recent that general-practice physicians have factored in lifestyle considerations.