The link between emotional and physical well-being

I was talking to my landlord just now. We were on the topic of health. She said that there’s a book written by a doctor which suggests/theortises that diabetes develops within a person as result of unhappiness, particularly resentment (at least that’s what I understood based on my limited Spanish). For those who read Spanish, the book is “La Enfermedad Como Camino” and seems to be available here.

Anyway, there is a connection between emotional and physical health based on the postulations of many self-help books in the market. Logically, that’s seems right too. So, do you have any emotional ailment which you are infected with?

Wait. Emotional ailments. Let’s expound on this idea. Physical illnesses are diverse and varied. Diabetes, heart failure, renal failure, high cholesterol, cancer, just to name some of the more common ones. If there’s such a concept as emotional ailments, what would they be? Say, resentment, unforgiveness, jealousy, low self confidence, hopelessness, pessimism, negativity? What if instead of a traditional doctor who diagnoses you with physical ailments, there’s one who diagnoses you with “Ah, Joseph, you are suffering from hopelessness. Here’s your prescription. Write down three things that you are thankful for each day. Read your list aloud three times each day. Do it for 45 days.”

That’s totally bizarre, isn’t it? But, what if, what if, this concept of emotional health is valid? What have you got to lose anyway*? If you have a case of sore throat, would you ignore it? Perhaps, since it goes away with time, especially if you are a healthy young person. But what if it doesn’t go away on its own, you would want to consult a physician, wouldn’t you? As it’s making you uncomfortable. As in, with a sore throat, you might not be able to enjoy/appreciate certain of your favourite foods. It might also lead to a cough, etc. Likewise, when you are “infected” with say jealousy, it’s kinda affecting your life, making you uncomfortable as well, isn’t it? It probably colours your thoughts, causing you not to be able to enjoy/appreciate as much (compared to when you are not jealous of something). It’s probably also apt that there’s a phrase in Mandarin 心病 which means an ailment of the heart.

So, my friends and readers, is anything of an emotional/non-physical nature ailing you, besides physical sicknesses?

* This reminds of CS Lewis’s Mere Christianity. Though I acknowledge that the link is not that substantial. The following is extracted from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mere_Christianity on March 8, 2013:

Lewis, arguing that Jesus was claiming to be God, uses logic to advance three possibilities: either he really was God, was deliberately lying, or was not God but thought himself to be (which would make him delusional and likely insane). The book goes on to say that the latter two possibilities are not consistent with Jesus’ character and it was most likely that he was being truthful.

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