We have learned through experience that when we suffer a cut or cold or ordinary upper respiratory viral infection that our bodies will heal themselves and that ultimately we will be returned to a state of good health. We take for granted the truth that our physical bodies are possessed of remarkable healing and recuperative powers.
Without any conscious awareness our immune system is activated in order to fight infectious agents or early cancerous changes. We often feel ‘ill’ in response to such attacks on our bodies. In fact the body’s response to infections with significant fever is a powerful physiologic response which can kill and immobilize these agents.
Although we may feel very uncomfortable, even miserable we ‘know’ that we will be fine. This knowledge enables us to bear the suffering–we ‘know’ it will be a short term affair.
I believe that our brains also responds to emotional suffering in an analogous manner. Anxiety and depression are a part of the human experience. We evolved with a tendency to fear and the resultant mental states have always been with us.
I believe that our mind/body self is capable of producing healing of these emotional mind states. I believe that our brains are capable of releasing anti-anxiety and anti-depressant peptides which can help us in the process of emotional self-healing.
My evidence for such a belief is based on the observation that pharmaceuticals [drugs] have been produced which can and do relief these symptoms. Of significance is how they work. They can only be effective if the human brain already possesses chemical receptors to which these drugs can bind and become clinically effective.
The fact that these receptors exist is strong evidence that human beings possess the ability to ‘manufacture’ their own ‘drugs’. Endorphins are naturally occurring opioids. Most of us are familiar with the concept of ‘runner’s high’ or the effects of meditation on our ability to tolerate emotional and physical stress.
Since we do possess these brain receptors, we can only conclude that we possess the innate ability to heal ourselves through our own peptide production.
Of course this is not to diminish the need for utilizing manufactured drugs during severe and prolonged bouts of anxiety and depression. My point is that during the ordinary ebb and flow of life’s difficulties we should be aware that these emotional states can and do heal themselves. We often feel that we if we are anxious or depressed even for short periods of time, that we are doomed to remain in these uncomfortable mental and emotional states or to experience an inevitable worsening.
I believe that we can and do possess the ability to heal many of these episodes. We may be too quick to reach for the bottle or vial rather than to allow our inherent healing abilities to become manifest.