Critchley offers insights on health from a Christian perspective in this debut holistic medicine guide.
All health is interrelated: Spiritual health affects mental health; mental health influences physical health. Readers’ bodies are not simply a reflection of their behaviors and attitudes, argues Critchley. They are, in fact, a way for God to get people’s attention: “Sickness and disease are telltale signs that it is time for us to make changes in our lives…. Knowing that our ways and standards can be the cause of our own illnesses, we can begin to take a second look at our lives.” With this book, the author aims to place readers more in tune with their bodies’ physical and spiritual needs in order to better accept God’s love, behave according to His will, and achieve better health. Using the Bible as a guide, particularly the Ten Commandments, Critchley expounds on the relationship between bodily health and spirituality. Each Commandment relates to a different area of the body and is associated with specific behaviors that lead to good health. The Third Commandment, for example, “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain,” relates to the mouth, throat, and teeth, and is associated with the behaviors of good manners and speech. For each part of the body, the author deftly outlines the spiritual causes of relevant afflictions and antidotes. Critchley’s prose is lucid and professional, even if the claims she makes are not backed up by Western medicine: “Muscle problems reveal the inability to listen to God’s instruction and adapt to change. Extending our will too far and for too long can cause us to experience muscle problems.” Her reasoning seems primarily based on metaphoric and synecdochic associations, which imbue the ideas with a certain pre-modern quality. Like most promoters of holistic treatments, the author advises using mainstream medicine in addition to these spiritual teachings (though she makes her suspicions of the health care industry known). Christian spiritualists will likely be persuaded by her viewpoint; other readers perhaps less so.
An accessible spiritual health care manual based on Christian interpretations of the Ten Commandments.