We look at our bodies as a mass of muscles, bones and cells. We think this sum of biology as all there is. So when we don’t feel well, we only look at the muscles, bones and cells. But a person is so much more… Each person is made up of at least three components: a physical body, an energy body and a spiritual body. If one of these is absent, the body cannot live.
You may be familiar with the spiritual body. This is the component which makes you “you”. This is your soul, your being, your essence. You can nurture the spiritual body by cultivating a connection with God, Creator or the Universe, that which is greater than you. This is often done by participating in prayer, meditation, reading of religious texts, participating in religious services and joining part of a religious community such as a church, synagogue or mosque. Many who have visited family and friends in the hospital know when the spiritual body is no longer there. The machines may be making the physical body work, but that doesn’t mean the person is still alive.
There is one final component, the energy body. Energy moves through every atom in the universe, including all of the atoms in you. Some of this energy is measured when EEGs and EKGs are run on the heart and brain. But the energy flows through the entire body. Your thoughts, feelings and emotions are all energy. This energy also connects these emotions to the physical responses in the body.
The power in the energy lies in your emotions. When you are angry, your blood pressure goes up and your muscles tense. When you relax, the opposite occurs, your blood pressure will go down and your muscles will relax. Dr. Herbert Benson, Associate Professor of Medicine at the Mind Body Medical Institute of the Harvard Medical School and Director Emeritus of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, and William Proctor, JD, just released a new book, Relaxation Revolution: Enhancing Your Personal Health through the Science and Genetics of Mind Body Healing. This book details Dr. Benson’s most recent research which revealed, “our own current research at Harvard, published in July 2008 in the peer-reviewed online journal of the Public Library of Science, PLoS ONE, shows conclusively that the mind can indeed influence the body down to the genetic level.”
This research has a profound message to every person: negative emotions will affect your body negatively; positive emotions affect your body positively. The problem is that not only do many people have more negative emotions than positive emotions, but they also hang onto the negative emotions, sometimes for years or decades.
Dr. Benson’s research clearly shows that the use of relaxation techniques on a daily basis can change gene expression from the stress “fight or flight” response to the relaxation or unstressed response. Dr. Benson found that “the genes which acted differently have been associated with stress-related medical problems, including unhealthful regulation of immune responses; various forms of inflammation; premature aging, including thinning of the cortex of the brain; and other health conditions that may involve oxidative stress.”
There are many different ways people can relax: repetitive action such as walking or running, repetitive phrase or prayer, or repetitive meditation self-guided or listening to an audio recording. Dr. Benson found, “There is no single, correct approach for triggering the relaxation response or employing any other mind body technique.” Here at The Delta Institute, the preferred relaxation technique is the emotional freedom technique or EFT. EFT combines repetitive action with repetitive phrases; relaxing the body and releasing negative emotions, often in just minutes. This combination allows a person to release negative emotions often years or decades old. When the body is in a relaxed state, it can function at a more optimal level by directing energy where the body needs it the most – including healing. Many people who use EFT find that as their emotions are released, their physical bodies start to heal.
The Delta Institute offers EFT in individual private sessions in person or through the phone or Skype. The Delta Institute is located in Mobile, Alabama.
Book Reference: Relaxation Revolution: Enhancing Your Personal health Through the Science and Genetics of Mind Body Healing. Herbert Benson, MD and William Proctor, JD. Simon & Schuster, Inc. 2010. ISBN: 978-1-4391-4865-5.