Monday, 18 May 2009


: HEALTH - Forgotten Nature Within and Outside

HEALTH means healthy body and mind. Health means absence of illness, disease. Health does not mean medical care. Indian traditional medicine recognises the body – mind connection; if one is healthy the other is.

Work and Rest, likewise the Environment too, influences our physical and mental Health, for good or bad. We are conceived in our mother’s womb which is ecological niche provided by Nature. No sooner the breast feeding is stopped and/or outside food is started, innumerable bacteria start to make the child’s gut their home. Some of them are helpful, some harmful. But we can’t stop outside food. What food and how to feed it is our problem.

Now, environment is not only natural environment, but also the manmade environment – social, economic, political, and habitat. The places where we live, work, move, our means of travel, and how safe (unsafe) are the air, water, food that we continuously consume, and their quality and safety to our health, are holistically parts of our environment. Which Authority can give guarantee of their safety?

In brief, we cannot separate Environment, Ecology and Energy from each other. Unfortunately the professional and pundits, politicians and traders, the State and its policies continue to keep them apart, and wage wars of words, or of arms. Environment is not merely a climate change, or depletion of ozone, or melting glaciers in polar or Himalayan regions... These are effects used merely as populist propaganda, to divert the attention from the real reasons of how this situation has come about and accelerated since the rise of Industrialisation, to hide the truth by the vested interests of the “powers” and the “power-hungry”.

They assume that rest of the humanity is dumb. Isn’t it funny? Even the animals intuitively understand environment. Birds and bees migrate seasonally. During the recent tsunami in Asia, the animals were the first ones to run to safety at higher places, their senses being alert.

Of course, the villagers and the tribal are very sensitive to environment, because it holds their lifeline. But like plants and animals, they too are feeble before the invisible powers, whether there is democracy or dictatorship. Recently a visitor to Andaman – Nicobar islands informed me the tribes in Nicobar were least affected by the tsunami, because they, as well as animals moved towards higher grounds. (See: (1) “Tsunami Warning Systems of Aborigine Tribes”, by Manmohan Melville (2) News)

In the present circumstances social–political–economic disparity and inequality is so extreme among regions, that the people, the so-called masses, are tongue-tied, their hands and feet are shackled. They work hard. But their labour, toil is not a mindless activity: It is an intelligent action, contrary to what the educated class, with blinkers on, believe.

There are a few individuals and institutions, who try to do something about the masses and the environment. Though they are well-intentioned, and despite their size and resources, their standards are, qualitatively and quantitatively poor. They lack holistic approach in the first place. Hence their efforts are like “managing the herd of sheep while riding on camel” as the Marathi saying goes here. Of course, a faceless entity called government, too, is not an exception.

But when the entire civilised society including the educated urbanite, has been a victim of the poisoned environment, how much and what anyone can expect? Their efforts amount to “curative” measures.

What are the effects of prevailing environment not only on our physical and mental health, but also on Work, Rest, Learning and Propagation must be studied, a bit by bit, regularly, by each one, individually. There is only one option left, which is to observe with attention our daily living. It adds a lot of fun / live entertainment, also. In this, I must remember there is no authority, no power, over my health, other than myself. The same rule goes for all my other intrinsic functions and my needs (food, shelter and clothing) over which I have autonomy granted by Nature.

Lack of wholesome Rest would not only affect our other intrinsic functions but also the Health of body and mind. How far these situations help us in Learning? The illiterate have no access to what is happening in the farther world; even the media is biased. The literate don’t practice their literacy. The educated are ignorant about other compartment of disciplines than theirs.

Birds and animals, however attractive some leaves-flowers-fruits may look, keep away from them, boycott them. Whether they get this knowledge by intuition or mimetic pool or from watching the clan is a different matter. They have no gurus, no scriptures, and no institutions. The nature and their intelligence are their gurus. Perhaps we my make them our gurus.

How helpless is this human animal?
What is the “Lowest Common Multiple” in this story?

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(Links to Previous Posts: 1. Arithmetic in Real Life, 2. Dharma or Fundamental Law by Nature, 3. WORK - Breaking the Mind Block, 4. Leisure - Perpetual Crave for Rest

© Remigius de Souza, all rights reserved.

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