The Brain ‘Minds’ the Body. (ii) (Continued from previous blog).

Continuing on from my last blog, the pity of it is that having begun very early on in childhood to lose the sense of wonder and vibrancy about life and the world in which we presently live, we become happier and more accustomed to exchange it for ‘surface’ knowledge about external sources of help. By way of illustrating this point, we do, at times of pressure and stress, not infrequently turn first to proprietary brands of pills and potions for immediate relief whilst simply remaining blissfully unaware of already ‘on-board’ resources. Worse still, we also run the risk of, for instance, ignoring the possibility of accidentally overdosing and/or of such preparations’ possible noxious side effects.

Even the esteemed science which medicine has doubtless and rightly become, still – because of its centuries old traditional separation of mind and body – seems from time to time, to regard the “miracle” of the human body as little more than a “mindless machine”. Thus as we move away from childhood by that process generally known as “growing up”, we are increasingly content to exchange the wonder and marvel of it all for an altogether more – if seemingly safer – ordinary and mundane. The truth of it is of course that the “miracle” referred to above is in fact the amazing and inseparably intermeshed and interconnected “whole” which, in simple terms, is you and me.

Nor am I remotely near to being the first to recognize and pay tribute to the fact that the brain is the body’s “minder” and its number one predictor of survival. Indeed and increasingly so over the past three decades, several scientists and specialist authors seeking to unlock the secrets of human individuality and uniqueness, have drawn attention to the centrality of the brain; to almost every conscious and unconscious human response and to what it is to be truly human. However – and as already stated above – one is often forced to conclude that conventional modern allopathic medicine, i.e. the orthodox system of medicine in which treatment  and  the use of drugs is aimed at cure or control via the alleviation of symptoms of the illness/disease, introduces a reductionist attachment to systems.  Examples of such an approach is evident in references made to the respiratory system, the cardiovascular system, the gastrointestinal system, the neuroendocrine system etc. and has come in effect, to portray the body, if not as the mindless automaton to which I earlier referred, then certainly as a kind of “hapless hostage” to the chances and changes that occur over the total span of a lifetime.

Somehow, it seems not to matter too much that the brain’s primary function is, as we shall see, decidedly not to serve or support reason and thought, so much as rather to prescribe, maintain and promote survival and stability, in its myriad forms. Our social links, for example, in promotion of our mental and emotional ‘worlds’, are inextricably connected to our internal physiology in the interests of health. Any breach in their determined and intended flow, can wreak havoc on quality of life and general well being which, unless recognized and rectified, is highly likely to constitute the primary causes of failing health and even serious and life-threatening illness. ©SB.



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