What is Health?

It’s a broad question and everyone’s answer probably differs to some degree.  In trying to provide a good answer there’s a lot we can miss.  For example, some common ideas include regular exercise, eating healthy, losing weight and low blood pressure, etc.  But do these things really typify true health?  These are nice images and good goals, but they still leave us incomplete.  So what else is missing?

Balance is Crucial in Life

To find a complete answer lets consider the concept of balanceTo illustrate the point, imagine a round table and the legs that support it.  You see how the table can’t stand without a least 3 legs.  However if one leg is removed, one side falls to the ground and everything that was on top of the table (perhaps your beautiful vegetarian dinner), is destroyed!

On the other hand, if 1 or 2 legs are longer or shorter than the others, the table becomes wobbly.  It’s not a strong place for anything, let alone your beautiful vegetarian lunch (hint – eat more veggies)!  The strength and length of each leg needs to be at least very close to that of the others.  Otherwise, your table (or your life) is not a very firm place for the future.  It creates a situation ripe for many disasters.

Having at least 3 strong, well made, balanced and equal size legs, ensures greater stability and long use of the table.  It’s important to look at the areas of your life where imbalances exist and correct them.  Try to figure out where you’re missing a leg on the table or have uneven legs in place.

The 3 Legs of Health

Applying this image to health, most people first think of physical health.   However, less consideration is given to the aspects of mental and spiritual health.  Each is closely related and equally important to the entire body.  In reality, we are more than just physical beings, having a distinct mental and spiritual capacity that define who we are.

Physical Health

Keeping the body physically strong and flexible through exercise and movement is vital.  Our bodies need training on how to do our jobs and enjoy our favorite activities.  In also means that the body systems and organs are functioning well and regulating the body, keeping us from becoming sick.  Physical well being also allows the mind to progress towards its full potential.

Mental Health

It’s easy to forget about focus and discipline when we look at physical health by itself.  Mentally we need to concentrate on our tasks in order to make progress in them.  We usually see the most skilled and intelligent individuals having a strong mind and concentration that sets them apart.  As we progress physically and develop expertise in life we are also moving forward mentally, and vice versa,.

Mental health brings a stable mind and helps us control our thoughts, emotions and feelings.  It also includes relaxation of the mind and physical body and its functions.  As awareness, or consciousness of the body grows, so does the ability to control or correct our body’s functions through the use of our mind.  Meditation is a great example filled with amazing potential!

Spiritual Health

Even though all are intertwined, spiritual health cannot thrive without having a strong foundation in either physical and mental health.  In other words, physical and mental well being allow for the development of spiritual health and awareness.  As we begin to learn greater truths about ourselves we begin to progress spiritually.

The knowledge of greater truths as we progress leads to a transformation of thinking, desires and actions.  We can find a deeper connection to God and the world around us.   As our awareness and connection to people around us grow, the desire to share and unite becomes even more important.  It begins to define us and help us reach our potential.

Withdrawing from the body and separating from the ego marks the point where we’ve begun our journey to spiritual truth.  It brings peace and confidence and a way for physical and mental healing to occur naturally.

There’s No Perfect Answer

And it’s my opinion that true health is found somewhere on the way to strong physical, mental and spiritual balance.  There is great potential in all 3 of these aspects of health within each of us.  The key is being able to recognize the imbalances and bring them into equilibrium as much as possible.  From there the path becomes clearer as we move forward!

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