Wednesday, October 2, 2013

'The Spirituality of Disease and Healing' by Lori Phillips

The Spirituality of Disease and Healing
by Lori Phillips

Those who do not accept that life here on earth has spiritual origins think of disease as an unhappy, bad-luck-of-the-draw type of occurrence. Being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Bad gene pool. Self-destructive habits. Environmental toxins. True, all of the aforementioned can negatively affect the body's ability to function properly. But there is more to the story of disease than that.

Lori Phillips writes about disease and healing as part of a dual experience that aids the progression of spirit. When one changes his paradigm towards his health challenges, he can release fear and anger while expressing gratitude and self-love which are the foundational energies that promote healing of all types.

Read an excerpt


How many parents and teachers feel the dismay of watching intelligent students not live up to their potential? Young minds don't see the long-term benefits of the lesson of the day. "Why do I need to know this?" is oft repeated in classrooms around the world.

Disease can seem like a pop quiz when we haven't studied the textbook. We groan. We sweat. We blame the teacher for being unfair. What is the purpose of a pop quiz? Well, the teacher can gauge how well the students are paying attention and learning important information. If the student is well-prepared, there is no need to fear on his part. It's always those students who have been goofing off or been too distracted by less important matters when outside the classroom.

Teachers rarely grade students on those pop quizzes. The real intention is to provide feedback to the STUDENT as a warning to get with it before the final exam. When disease appears in your life, take this as an opportunity to see how you're doing with the more important lessons in life.

Disease is an opportunity to be both student and teacher. Generally speaking, as we move through our lives, we aren't meant to be isolated. We are each other's students and each other's teachers. We don't realize how our very lives serve to teach or otherwise influence each other. It's good to do so consciously or we may unintentionally teach the wrong message with our words, behaviors and lives.

Learn, learn, learn. Having a disease or witnessing someone with disease, as was mentioned in the previous chapter, teaches so much. Look for those lessons and absorb them. When you are filled with wonder, curiosity and inspiration or when you're facing hopelessness, angst and pain…that's when you know you're being presented with an opportunity to learn a spiritual lesson.

And teach. Be aware of how you affect others. Does your behavior and attitudes reflect your ideals? Many of us have good intentions and fall short of fulfilling them. We have lofty ideals but rarely exemplify them. We teach more by the very lives we craft than the words that we expound.

There is a saying, "Don't worry that children never listen to you. Worry that they are always watching you." (Robert Fulghum)

Take this opportunity to teach people:
1.How to be there for others during dark times. Mother Teresa who tended to the "poorest of the poor" and the diseased in Calcutta India taught what real compassion, real faith, real love was all about by her very life. 2. How it doesn't take much to provide a great gift of your time, attention and caring.
4. How giving is receiving.
4. How to face adversity with courage and grace.
5. How to self-heal by tapping into the vast, unknown resources of the physical body.
6. How to connect to Source energy which is God.
7. That there is more to life than the physical body.
And so much more.

Disease provides an opportunity to serve and to be served. There is great spiritual power in both serving and by being humble enough to allow others to serve you. I would venture that allowing others to serve you is the greater service. Everyone likes the feel-good feelings that spring from helping others. Those who are served have to reckon with the potential feelings of guilt, unworthiness and such that come with being served.

Serve with humility and right intentions of which really there is only one and that is love. Humbly accept the service of others because it is a spiritual opportunity for them to learn through service. Typically, there is some karma to work out between the one who needs to be served and the one who is serving.

Disease is an opportunity to suffer. According to some religious doctrines, suffering is essential to spiritual progression. I don't know if this is true for all. We can learn from others who suffer without having to suffer those same unpleasant conditions ourselves. But consider what happens when one suffers. What feelings and emotions emerge?

A shocking array of emotions bursts out of a suffering soul. Desperation and helplessness are humbling, and humility is essential to spiritual growth as no one can grow if the ego is prideful, hardened and closed off to expansion. This is not to say that those who suffer are egotistical. But some can be. Suffering also calls you to be in the moment. You can't think of anything else but this moment in time. Being in the moment is hard for many as our minds always seem occupied with the past and the future. Suffering teaches you to be in the here and now.

What do you reach for when you are suffering? What provides relief? Do you know the gladness that come with relief?

It helps to step out of the body for a moment and look at your suffering from an outside viewpoint. Pain is a curious and necessary component of the physical body. Pain serves to warn us about damage to the body.

When my wrist was inflicted by a serious burn, I watched with great appreciation and curiosity how the cells of my body began to heal. It was accompanied with sharp, stinging firing of nerves as they regenerated. Pain. But my mind suddenly did a paradigm shift: instead of squealing in pain, my mind kept thinking, "This is remarkable. Thank you for repairing yourself. Thank you, dear and amazing body for healing." It was a magnificent experience for me to learn how my body is an intelligent mechanism and how pain is subjective.

Suffering is also subjective. My daughter suffered from the time she was an infant due to her medical conditions but when I used to tell her that I felt sorry for her suffering, she would remind me that suffering was subjective. In her eyes, she doesn't feel as though she suffered much at all. Somehow, her soul has been able to maintain an eternal perspective in life even with her terminal genetic illness.

Disease is an opportunity to grow spiritually. When you can accept with gratitude the opportunity to suffer, your paradigm shifts in a remarkable way. You can see physical manifestation of spiritual energy.

Your spiritual eyes can open. You learn to ask for divine help and will be gratified when it comes into your life. Pain can feel like a sacred purging, which feels good to the soul. "The vibration of pain and hope is different from the vibration of pain and despair." (Abraham Hicks)

It sounds impossible but with God, all things are possible. (St. Matthew 10:27)

Disease is an opportunity to balance your karma. This is where one must take a leap of faith because we come to earth without memories of our prior life. And so many religious doctrines view reincarnation as blasphemy. To avoid a doctrinal debate, I will say only that we reap what we sow and sometimes those seeds were sown long ago.

Disease is an opportunity to absorb and deflect negativity. Sometimes, sacrificial souls do accept the suffering of others. Jesus is an example. There are a few healers who take on a diseased person's ailments for a short time until they transmute or release the energy. But this begins to cross boundaries of different spiritual belief systems and I do not wish to confuse people here.

Disease is an opportunity to focus on yourself and healing. No one calls a person lazy when he is recovering from a disease. But take time out to nourish your mind-body-spirit can people raise their eyebrows. What? Taking vacation days for what? No one will call upon a person undergoing medical treatment to sign up for the kids' soccer pool or to stay late at the office. Rest is expected. It's sad because rest might have helped this person avoid disease in the first place but ah well. At least now, rest and self indulgence is encouraged. You can feel good about this without any guilt.

Suffice it to say that disease provides such opportunities.

Book links
Also available on CreateSpace

Author bio:

Lori Phillips writes about spirituality, health, dreams and relationships. She lives in Southern California with her husband, children and three Chihuahua mixes they adopted from the local animal shelter.

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