One of the four basic ideas within Eastern medicine is that each human being is a unified whole of body, mind and spirit. Because these three aspects are one, it follows that one cannot exist without the other. Therefore, no problem can be effectively solved without dealing with all three realms. When we look at any physical malfunction in the body it indicates not only physical characteristics, but also psychological and spiritual characteristics of the person. Therefore we can treat any physical disease by looking at it in the context of symptoms of mental and/or spiritual disease.

Many great healers in the past have carried out huge amounts of research on this subject. Dr David R Hawkins MD, PhD (a Western psychiatrist) has clinically proven the relationship between mind, body and spirit in healing. He developed a Map of Consciousness in which he defines lower and higher life emotions ranging from grief and fear to love and peace, and his medical work has proven how patients are far more likely to recover from physical illness if they can resolve their emotional and mental state of mind. Similarly, Louise Hay has made distinct connections between physical conditions and the suffering caused by what is held in the mind or consciousness.

I personally have found that to achieve optimum health I have to place an equal emphasis on body, mind and spirit (or consciousness), thinking of them as three legs of stool. If any one aspect is neglected my overall equilibrium wobbles, just like a stool with uneven legs. Half the art to achieving good health I feel, is being able to keep this fine and delicate balance.