I had a recent question from a reader:
A question about healing came up for me recently that I wonder if you could shed light on.
When someone is healed physically, i.e. their physical symptoms are gone, do they necessarily heal emotionally or spiritually as well? I know homeopathy aims to do this, but do other modalities such as TCM, reiki, or hands-on-healing? I am thinking particularly of chronic conditions like cancer or diabetes or MS, etc.
I think you raise a fascinating question. A lot of things can happen that cause physical symptoms to subside. Not all of them come hand-in-hand with emotional and spiritual healing. Nevertheless, such healing has an effect on emotional and spiritual well-being.
The Chinese medicine perspective helps us understand this. The Chinese focus on energy balance in all the body’s organs (meridians). Blocked energy in an energy meridian eventually expresses itself at the physical level. Yet, It can also go the other way. For example, if my liver energy gets clogged and stagnant (maybe I decide to eat solely at McDonalds) I could become depressed and irritable as a result.
I can put in an acupuncture needle, release the blocked liver energy, and cause related physical symptoms to go away. Restoring this energy flow likely helps me become less irritable.
In my experience, if there are strong emotional conflicts, springing from the individual’s state of consciousness and aggravated by life stress, acupuncture and other vital energy therapies do not help that much. Vital energy therapies may temporarily relieve the problem, but have difficulty resolving it. Because the underlying spiritual and emotional conflicts have powerful vital energetic effects, this can continually create physical symptoms that will not go away, or go away only briefly before coming back. Vital energy therapies treat vital energy problems. That said, realize that depression is a vital energy problem to a greater or lesser degree. Just how much so you can find out after the work of a good acupuncturist. If acupuncture works–and holds–we can say it is predominantly a vital energy problem.
To sum up, healing at the physical level means one of two things:
1) The person’s energy state is better, allowing the physical symptoms to subside. This could be because of an energetic intervention such as reiki or acupuncture. There are countless other reasons a person can get better that have to do with the energies that surround us: people are affected by seasons, personal energy cycles, cosmic energy cycles, and so on. Some of this the Chinese can track, e.g. 2010 for the Chinese is a metal heavy year and problematic for people with liver and gallbladder weakness.
2) The physical symptoms are suppressed and the body seeks balance by beginning to develop a deeper illness.
In the case of #1, the person has been helped at the emotional level as well, even though it may be too insignificant for them to notice. In the case of #2, the person is negatively affected at all the deeper emotional, spiritual, and energetic levels.
You ask about deep diseases such as cancer or MS. My current approach is that a healing plan should address all levels–physical, vital energy, emotional, and deeper levels, which include the state of consciousness and spiritual dimensions–to some degree at once. You may know from people who work with cancer patients that it can be unpredictable who survives. Some people who should do well do terribly. This is evidence of getting stuck at the deeper emotional and spiritual levels.