Mental health is a wonderful concept to incorporate into the myriad conversations on health as a whole. Now shortly before I wrote this entry I was facilitating a yoga class. What may appear to be a strictly physical process is in fact shaped, held and digested in the mind. The mind as an uncanny ability to chatter, think, worry, fear, judge, channel and imagine with very little prompting or effort. And like a radio we are privy to all the different stations, static and frequencies.It’s a matter of tuning in to the one we would like to experience. Finding the right station takes practice. In our yoga practice we tune into the breathing process and wrap our minds gently around each inhale and exhale. While tapping into our feeling, pulsating bodies, we simultaneously transcend form and mind, moving from the greater life force-energy. Moments within practices such as yoga, qi gong, meditation, dance, making music, etc., allow our minds a moments rest. Residual pain, memories, fears and insecurities have much power over us until something positive, some divine grace or motivation enters our path. In terms of treating mental illness there is a range of approaches that would prove beneficial. Affirmations, prayer, whole food nutrition, herbs and supplements, time and nature, ceremony, connection to community… On the other hand labeling, chemically based western medicine, anti-depressants, and mental institutions, these things are to topically numb the pain and to possibly never discover the cause. Also let us remember that we are living in a very stressful and disconnected society. We no longer honour our instincts in relation to Mother Nature and the Almighty Creator. We are out of balance, and our family fabrics aren’t always strong in love and nurturing, as the almighty dollar distracts and distresses many a family and many an individual. Providing loving environments and fostering positive mental, spiritual, emotional and physical relations with our children may be our greatest way to reverse this epidemic.
Perhaps we label some people as mentally ill or ‘crazy’ because they do not fit into a controllable mold. Maybe in other societies this same mentally ill person was in fact a seer, a healer, an artist, someone with a gift, a direct link to the spirit world or a channel to the ancestors. Maybe the voices in his head were passing on valuable messages. On the other hand when contemplating negative and violent personas, I almost feel as if they are possessed. Through compounded life experiences they may have become susceptible to the negative or dark forces and they are being ruled by the unfortunate cause and effect of such thoughts and actions.
Healing is available for one and all. Redemption is given with open arms to all those souls ready to receive and practice love. Spiritual health influences mental health and wellness. And arguably all ‘dis-ease’ comes from a spiritual disconnection and all illnesses are first perceived in the mind. If we believe ourselves to be deficient or lacking in any way it may end up showing in the body or mentality. A healthy, positive mentality creates a healthy and positive person. Even though we may doubt our capacity of greatness we truly must trust the higher power and know that we are inherently blessed whole and completely meant to be here. We can have faith that our struggles and tribulations are truly for our growth and enlightenment.