Vitali Health Centre in Wilderness, South Africa Vitali Health Centre in Wilderness, South Africa
Healing Body, Mind & Spirit
VITALI | Health & Wellness
Healing versus Cure - Dr Jon Morley
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Dr Jon Morley

Dr Jon 
VITALI Health Centre

Cell:+27 (0) 44 889 0119
Tel: +27 (0) 44 889-0119

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Healing vs Cure

It is believed that the word ‘health’ comes from the Old English word ‘Hal’, which means wholeness, soundness or spiritual wellness.

The World Health Organisation defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmary”. Thus the goal of healing is to return to this balanced state of being.

Cure, on the other hand, to doing something, (like surgery), or taking something (medication of sorts) that leads to the eradication of a troublesome condition or disease.

Healing does not equal cure.

So we can cure high blood pressure by using a medication, (natural or pharmaceutical) that leads to normalisation of the blood pressure. Whereas healing would facilitate changes that reduce stress, improve diet, promote exercise and increase a person’s sense of community. In doing this, we help improve the balance of health of the body-mind, that may result in the ability to reduce or even stop the medication, reducing the need for cure.

We could aim to cure and fix when able, but if we ignore healing, the cure will likely not last or will give way to another disease that may be more difficult to cure, or not be able to cure at all.

The classic example of this is the simultaneous occurrence of high blood pressure and stomach problems. As discussed in a previous article, our guts are most commonly the seat of our emotions. The heart is also the ‘aerial and transmitter’ of our emotions. Of course we are all familiar with a broken heart, heartache etc. Both stomach and heart problems are known to have dietary, emotional and lifestyle causes.

The temptation is to take the cure: something for the heartburn, and something for the hypertension, easy. If healing is not considered, the poor diet, high stress levels, lack of exercise, excess weight, etc, will in all likelihood lead to greater problems within the gut-system as well as the heart-system, and even further afield into other organ systems in the body: gout, angina, diverticulosis, irritable bowel, arthritis, depression, etc.

While healing sounds quite idealistic in our fast-paced, success-driven, ego-centric modern society, where the hugely successful pharmaceutical industry has all manner of cures in bright lights, fancy adverts and billboards, the need for healing cannot be emphasised enough. The cure is very attractive, it removes any responsibility for the individual’s wellbeing. When prescribed these medications, you are generally told to take them for life. The downside?

For example: take the pills for stomach problems, which are generally pills to reduce stomach acid, and down the line you start to lose essential nutrients for proper body function. By reducing stomach acid, you will reduce your uptake of iron, VitaminB12, calcium and proteins. These nutrients are central to a multitude of functions throughout the body, and hence losses provoke more pathology. The heart pills may provoke losses of magnesium, zinc, antioxidants like co-enzymeQ10. Again these losses will have further reaching consequences.

Lifestyle changes are a lot easier than they seem, whether it is in diet, stress management, exercise or community building. Less bread, an extra serving of veggies and a walk with a friend or two surely can’t be that difficult?

A great physician in his time and regarded as the ‘founder of modern medicine’, Sir William Osler, had this to say: “One of the first duties of the physician is to educate the masses not to take medicine.” (circa. 1900)

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