The mind-body connection is quite an interesting phenomenon. The mind, or brain, is physically connected to the body, yet there are connections that seem to go beyond the physical aspects of connection. Modern medicine has worked laboriously to figure out why people experience pain, and in most cases, there is no actual medical reason for this pain. When we begin to experience pain, we automatically begin to think that there is some type of medical problem that is causing our suffering; sometimes there is an actual reason, however, sometimes the reason is quite elusive.
What is pain and dysfunction then? How can someone have pain, disease and sickness without any apparent cause or link to the problem? If you break down the word disease, you will find that it simply means dis--ease – or your body out of alignment or out of ease – a dysfunction of normal operations. So, how does one reach a point of disease, dysfunction, and pain? I think the best way to describe the word pain is – “pain is just the body’s request for change”. Pain is truly a signal that something is out of alignment and needs resetting or healing. We can take it for granted that if you have some type of physical trauma, you will certainly have pain. However, where does pain come from that does not start from an apparent reason?
I have researched the topic of pain quite a bit because of my profession. I believe the most enlightening book I read was about back and spine pain. The author discussed a study in which hundreds of patients, without physical pain, were examined in depth. Each of the participant received an MRI, CT Scan and X-Rays of their entire spinal column. Approximately 95% of the participants turned out to have physical reasons that should manifest pain. These reasons were issues such as bulging discs, herniated disks, bone spurs, and spinal misalignment to mention a few. However, those 95% of the participants had no pain, even with the images that clearly showed they should have pain. So, where does pain come from if it does not necessarily come from actual reasons to have pain? A percentage of these participants were informed of the findings of the identified issues, and you probably already guessed the outcome, they began to develop symptoms based on the findings.
The research project was then turned towards why actually develop pain and how it can be diminished or negated all together. Our minds are divided into many levels of consciousness, however, there are two basic levels that we will discuss that demonstrate how pain can manifest in our bodies. The two basic levels of consciousness are the conscious mind and the subconscious mind. We spend our whole lives training and hardwiring our subconscious mind to perform our automatic daily activities. The subconscious mind is like a Private in the military that just salutes the flag and carries on with the mission it is given. Our conscious mind is the primary trainer, much like a General in the military, sends order to the Private and they are obeyed. Our subconscious mind is also concerned with survival and is sometimes referred to as the reptilian brain, the portion of our mind that makes sure we can make carry on with life. However, the subconscious mind can become overwhelmed with concern about the stressors in life and will find a way to get the attention of the body to make a change. The biggest problem with this scenario, is that most of do not realize that unrelated pain and disease is a signal for change.
When it comes to survival, we all know that there are limitations to our actions if we expect to keep a job, stay out of jail, maintain healthy relationships, etc. There are times when we must stuff our true thoughts and actions when our boss treats us badly, our relationship partner is pushing buttons, and situations in our lives keep us from venting our feelings. Our conscious mind is smart enough to know that if we mouth off at our boss for treating us badly, then we will not have a job, then we will not have money to survive. Over time, all these feelings and thoughts become a burden for our subconscious mind, so this part of the mind begins to cause pain and disease within the body to distract us from our problems and stressors. If we do not figure out that these unrelated issues are really a request for change, they will continue to fester and become great physical and mental problems. The participants, noted in the aforementioned study, were provided this simple guidance, and you probably guessed it again, they began to have reduced pain and disease.
So how does the mind choose what part of the body to manifest symptoms? Each part of the body is related to aspects of our lives, and if you understand this, you can likely figure out what part of your life needs attention. One example would be your left leg – this part of your body is about your past, your awareness of the past, and your willingness to work on your past. Many people, at least that I know, have left knee pain but have no real reason to have the pain. The left knee is that link between your awareness of your past, and your desire to do something about your past. If you have past trauma and related issues, yet you won’t or cannot work on these issues, then left knee pain is your request to change that aspect of yourself. I could write an entire book about how the body corresponds to aspects of our live, so I will digress for now, and not annotate everything in this article.
It is time that we take our lives back, pay attention to what our body is telling us, and do something with those messages from the mind.