Health and the “Holism/Atomism” Observation Challenge

by drnorton on October 15, 2012

I’m convinced that our long-term health and well-being requires that we better understand and integrate holism into our lives.

The long-dominant medical/pharmaceutical symptom-management and disease-treatment approach can sometimes save a life under crisis first-aid conditions, but is generally upside down and a failure when it comes to restoring or supporting our health.

Far too many people live in pain and are sick and dying as a result of “excessive belief” in this worldview.

What do you think?

I want to challenge you to begin paying close attention to the news and to your daily life for evidence of “atomistic” perspectives or practices. See how often these appear versus messages that are more “holistic”. Let me know what you notice by commenting on this blog post.

Here’s a summary of some of the distinctions to assist you.

Holistic methods:

  • Are concerned with wholes and systems rather than an analysis based upon the separation into parts.
  • Approach disease by taking into consideration every part of the body with the goal of bringing the internal environment into balance.
  • Nurture the entire person – physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.
  • Promote balance and harmony for the individual, society, and the planet.

Atomistic methods on the other hand:

  • Divide people into separate and seemingly disconnected pieces.
  • Focus almost exclusively on treating painful or diseased parts rather than seeing and exploring a system out of balance and locating its underlying cause.
  • Fail to see people and their health conditions in the context of their environment and life as a whole.
  • Don’t see people as self-healing by nature or understand that sick people don’t get well through toxic chemical treatments.

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