Altar Call – Opelika-Auburn News
October 17, 2010
attitudes can ruin your health
health is determined to a great extent by our attitudes. Positive attitudes
improve our health. Negative attitudes have a disease-inducing effect on the
human body. This has been confirmed by the extensive research of medical
mind has an enormous impact on the body. Attitudes and emotions constantly
affect the body for good or ill. It is for this reason that many books are
being written about stress management. If we can become wiser about how to
manage our lives, the result will be healthier living.
you would like to research this subject I suggest you check out the book, Stress Without
Distress, by Dr. Hans Selye, or the book by Dr. Brian Luke Seaward, Managing Stress: Principles and Strategies
for Health and Well-Being.
for example, says that positive attitudes such as gratitude, praise,
forgiveness, and joy will improve one’s health. However, he points out, negative
attitudes such as anger, resentment, jealousy, and hate all have a debilitating
effect on one’s health.
insists that stress management and good health cannot be attained without
consideration of the spiritual dimension of life. The soul needs a sense of
inner peace in order to cope well with the demands of life. So it behooves us
to learn more about the interaction of the spirit (or soul) and the body, as
well as the mind and the body.
of this raises many tough questions for which I do not have all the answers.
But that does not mean we should not seek answers. So consider this question:
Can resentment cause a person to have arthritis? Surely in all cases the answer
cannot be yes.
there is little doubt that negative attitudes (such as resentment) can weaken
the body’s resistance and make it more vulnerable to physical disease. Who says
so? Well, for one, Dr. Loring T. Swaim does. I am indebted to my friend Maxie
Dunnam for introducing me to Swaim.
Swaim, a physician, specialized in
orthopedics for 50 years. At Harvard Medical School he lectured on arthritis
for 20 years. In his book, Arthritis,
Medicine, and the Spiritual Laws, he documents many case histories of
persons who were set free from crippling diseases by surrendering resentment
and bitterness and the submission of their self-will to God.
Swaim became convinced that negative
attitudes toward others can be “causative” of rheumatoid arthritis and other
organic diseases. And if not causative, then negative attitudes will definitely
weaken our resistance and make us more vulnerable to disease.
If these medical doctors are right,
then we shall be wise to examine ourselves – now and on a daily basis – to see
if we are allowing negative attitudes to make us vulnerable to disease. Some
conclusions seem quite logical:
If I am harboring resentment toward
someone, and that resentment is robbing me of my good health, then I need to
stop resenting that person. After all,
my resentment is not hurting the other person; it is hurting me.
If I am unwilling to forgive someone
for what they have done to me or said about me, and my unforgiving spirit is
making me vulnerable to physical disease, I need to forgive that person. If
practicing forgiveness can contribute to my good health, then I need to get
busy forgiving others.
If bitterness and jealousy are
endangering my health, I would be a fool to go on being bitter and jealous.
If hatred toward someone is making
me so angry that “I cannot see straight,” then I am paying a huge price – my
good health – for the privilege of hating another person. The price is too
Good health is one of our most
valuable assets. Surely not one of us is so foolish as to continue being
negative if by becoming positive in our attitudes and emotions we can enhance
our health. As in so many areas of our lives, it is simply a matter of choice.
And the choice we make will affect our health for good or ill. Good attitudes
contribute to good health. You can bank on it! +