Holism is approximately the big picture; it pertains to the idea that nothing happens in a vacuum. When seeking answers to an issue, holism puts the focus on the ‘whole’ rather than the parts.
The English Oxford Dictionaries define holism:
The theory that parts of a whole are in intimate interconnection, such that they cannot exist independently of the whole, or cannot be understood without reference to the whole, which is thus regarded as higher than the sum of the its parts.
And when holism is about health:
The treating of the whole person, considering mental and social factors, rather than just the symptoms of an illness.
Another way to think about holism is to apply the analogy of systems both natural and manmade (i.e. an ecosystem a health system, a family system, a solar system, etc.).
A system is really a complex ‘whole’ with a clear boundary; there is an outside and an inside. This content inside a system (for instance: weather, animals, and plants) comprises of interrelated, interdependent parts that directly reflect the entire context, within that they exist, (for example: an ecosystem).
Whenever the complete of anything produces an outcome higher than any of its parts could accomplish, individually, we call that synergy, (for instance: a thunderstorm, the music of an orchestra).
The contrary to holism, reductionism, instead analyzes something by its component parts.
Holistic Health: Treating the complete Person
The original approach of the medical system has taught us to identify health from a reductionist perspective. We visit the doctor to obtain some specific part of our body fixed because it has stopped functioning well and may be causing us pain.
Millions of people get excellent results using the medical-model. The only problem is that model considers, almost exclusively, just the fitness of the body. And when it comes to mental health, the normal solution is to prescribe antidepressant medicine.
Why is this an issue? We humans are complex beings. We have minds, emotions and a soul, the non-public, intangible relationship to a macro reality beyond ourselves. What’s more, who we are, is constantly influenced within the contexts of family, community, country and world.
A holistic approach to health and fitness addresses the reality of these multiple interrelated and interdependent parts that make us who we have been. The malaise of anybody of them can directly (and negatively), affect the health of other parts of our life.
For this reason alone, the initial focus of holistic care is on the person and not the issue or disease. Stress, anxiety, and depression, for example, often end up translating to a physical symptom. It’s all connected.
In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) national survey, in September, 2017, The American Psychiatric Association reported that antidepressant use had gone from 1 in 50 people 30 years ago to at least one 1 of 9 between the years 2011 and 2014, and today in 2018.
This is clear evidence of the rise in mood disorders for Americans.
Why the increased use? As mentioned, nothing happens in a vacuum therefore assessing one’s lifestyle regarding home, relationships, finances, work, etc. becomes a crucial task to find out their impact. The bottom-line would be to find the root cause (s) and establish a restorative plan.
Cannabis and Holistic Health
The medicinal usage of cannabis is a world aside from its recreational use. In many cases, the lower the volume of THC found in any medicinal formulation, the greater the desired effect. The word is: Start low; go slow. Treatment is never one-size-fits-all because the current interplay of someone’s body, mind and soul are of primary consideration.
Historically, the entire ancient cannabis plant was used for a beneficial impact on someone’s overall, general condition, far beyond mere symptom control. This makes it a perfect match to the holistic method of health.
Not unlike the complexity of the individual in context of our various lifestyles, cannabis a complex plant of the plant kingdom. It’s effectiveness being an overall tonic has to do with the actual fact of cannabis containing approximately 100 molecular compounds, with THC and CBD most researched and understood.
Once the whole of the cannabis plant can be used as medicine it offers a synergistic or ‘entourage’ effect which makes up about why the therapeutic usage of cannabis brings relief to a wide selection of conditions.
In alien labs disposable stands in stark contrast to traditional medicine that typically isolates plant compounds and manufactures them in pharmaceuticals to focus on one symptom or bodily system.
I believe that increasing numbers of people are discerning the difference between the medical and holistic types of health. Each has its time and place. When discovering the countless benefits of medicinal cannabis, our overall wellness, lifestyle and broader culture can transform for the higher.
Susan is really a 2018 graduate of the Holistic Cannabis Academy with over 45 years of personal involvement in the spectrum of wellness modalities. Her mission today would be to intervene in the noise of modern life and help people identify and remove stressors that trigger their dis-ease while providing strategies towards a full time income connection with inner calmness, contentment and inspiration.