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SPIRITUAL DIMENSIONS OF HEALTH

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Title: SPIRITUAL DIMENSIONS OF HEALTH


1
SPIRITUAL DIMENSIONS OF HEALTH
  • BY ALLAN R. HANDYSIDES M.B.,Ch.B.. FRCPC, FRCSC,
    FACOG.
  • DIRECTOR HEALTH MINISTRIES
  • GENERAL CONFERENCE OF SEVENTH-DAY ADVENTISTS

2
SPIRITUALITY?
  • DEFINITIONS VARY
  • ACCORDING TO THE DICTIONARY IT MEANS RELATING TO
    THE SPIRIT
  • PROBLEMS MAY ARISE BECAUSE THE DEFINITION OF THE
    SPIRIT IS NOT CLEAR.
  • TO ADVENTISTS THE SPIRIT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT THIS
    THEN MEANS SPIRITUALITYOUR RELATIONSHIP TO GOD

3
HEALTH?
  • WE REFER TO A WHOLE PERSON
  • LISTING PHYSICAL
  • MENTAL/EMOTIOAL
  • SOCIAL AND
  • SPIRITUAL
  • COMPONENTS OF A WHOLE PERSON

4
WHAT DO WE MEAN BY SPIRITUAL?
  • LOOKING FOR SCIENTIFIC STUDY WE ENCOUNTER
    PROBLEMS BECAUSE OF A LACK OF AGREEMENT ON
    TERMINOLOGY OF THE SPIRIT,
    SPIRITUALITY, AND THE SPIRITUAL NATURE OF MAN
  • THEREFORE MOST OF THE LITERATURE FAILS TO DEFINE
    SPIRITUALITY AND INSTEAD FOCUSES ON
    RELIGIOSITY

5
CONFERENCES MAY END UP CONFUSED
  • SO ADDRESS RELIGIOSITY
  • FAITH IN A HIGHER POWER BUT THIS MEANS DIFFERENT
    THINGS TO HINDUS, BUDDISTS, MOSLEMS, CHRISTIANS
    ETC.
  • MANY STUDIES INDICATE FAITH IN GOD POSITIVELY
    INFLUENCES CLINICAL OUTCOMES AS DOES THE USE OF
    PRAYER

6
JESUS OFTEN STATED
  • TO THE EFFECT THAT YOUR FAITH HAS MADE YOU
    WHOLE
  • MANY SEEK TO PROVE THAT IT IS GOD WHO MAKES ONE
    WHOLE NOT ONES OWN FAITH
  • OF COURSE THE RESPONSE MIGHT BE IT IS GOD WHO
    GIVES FAITH
  • WE NEVERTHELESS HAVE TO BEWARE THE TEMPTATION TO
    PROVE GOD

7
PHILIP YANCEY
  • WROTE A BOOK
  • WHAT GOOD IS GOD? THE TITLE CONFRONTS THE ISSUE
    MANY RESEARCHERS SEEK TO DEFINE
  • THOUGH THE QUESTION SPIRITUALITY AND HEALTH? IS
    A DIFFERENT ONE. IT LOOKS FOR CORRELATION WITHOUT
    NECESSARILY SHOWING CAUSATION .

8
MANY STUDIES ARE WEAK
  • POOR DESIGN
  • LACK OF CONTROLS
  • INSUFFICIENT NUMBERS
  • WOOLY DEFINITIONS

9
HAROLD KOENIGCO AUTHOR HANDBOOK OF RELIGION AND
HEALTH
  • DEFINES SPIRITUALITY AS
  • THE PERSONAL QUEST FOR UNDERSTANDING ANSWERS TO
    ULTIMATE QUESTIONS ABOUT LIFE, ABOUT MEANING, AND
    ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS TO THE SACRED OR
    TRANSCENDANT

10
JUSTIFIES USING RELIGION AS AN INDICATOR OF
SPIRITUALITY
  • It suffers from a degree of imprecision and
    confounding because not all religion and
    religiosity actually defines the quest for
    understanding and answers to our ultimate
    questions (some religiosity never raises such
    questions)

11
NEED TO EXPLORE
  • If spirituality is the relationship between the
    individual human and the individual sacred or
    transcendent
  • We have to examine the nature of EACH to
    understand SPIRITUALITY
  • SPIRITUALITY THEN MEANS DIFFERENT THINGS IN
    DIFFERENT CIRCUMSTANCES

12
INDIVIDUAL HUMAN
  • WE DIFFER AND SOME HAVE ASKED
  • Is there a God gene?
  • Are some better wired for Spirituality?
  • Does everyone possess a different degree of
    hardwiring?
  • In other words is Spirituality innate or
    acquired?
  • Are some more SPIRITUAL?

13
INDIVIDUAL SACRED
  • WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF THE CHARACTER OF
  • A TRIUNE GOD?
  • HINDU GODS?
  • BUDDAH?
  • ALLAH ? On the relationship?
  • Does the nature of GOD influence our
    Spirituality ?
  • If so do we have different Spirituality
    depending upon our religion?
  • Can we compare between religions as to which is
    best?

14
ATHEIST?
  • CAN SPIRITUALITY EXIST WITHOUT A GOD?
  • THE NEW AGE SEARCH FOR THE AUTHENTIC SELF AND THE
    QUEST TO TAP THE POWER OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT TO
    BRING INNER HARMONY!
  • IS AN ATHEIST CAPABLE OF SPIRITUALITY BY
    MAKING HIMSELF A GOD?

15
SUCH DIVERSITY PLAGUES THE STUDY OF SPIRITUALITY
  • HENCE MOST STUDIES ARE DONE ON RELIGIOSITY

16
FOR MANY SPIRITUALITY IS THEIR SPIRITUAL
EXPERIENCE
  • Such is an awareness of ones fundamental
    yearnings, aspirations, hopes, fears, doubts,
    anxieties, convictions and beliefs in
    relationship to the supreme being or higher
    power
  • THIS WOULD MEAN SPIRITUALITY IS HIGHLY INDIVIDUAL
    and INTERNALIZED

17
Such is a very personal experience
  • UNCLE PAUL
  • I asked what is the most important lesson you
    have learned in life?
  • He responded that God is real
  • He here expressed his personal awareness and
    relationship with God

18
C. S. LEWIS
  • OFTEN USED HOMEY EARTHY METAPHORS TO ILLUSTRATE
    HIS WRITING SUCH AS POACHED EGGS, MUD PIES, AND
    MOUSE TRAPS
  • I WILL TRY ONE TODAY

19
FROG SPAWN
  • THIS TOPIC OF SPIRITUALITY AND HEALTH IS AS
    DIFFICULT TO GRASP AND GET A HOLD OF AS FROG
    SPAWN
  • AS A BOY I WOULD COLLECT THE STUFF AND WATCH THE
    TADPOLES DEVELOP
  • THOUGH BOTH SPIRITUALITY AND FROG SPAWN ARE
    DIFFICULT TO GRASP THERE IS A REALITY THAT BOTH
    ARE PRODUCTIVE

20
MY JAM JAR OF FROG SPAWN
  • WITHOUT ME UNDERSTANDING HOW GAVE RISE TO A FEW
    DOZEN TADPOLES
  • SPIRITUALITY OR SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE ALSO WITHOUT
    OUR UNDERSTANDING HOW, GIVES RISE TO MANY
    ATTRIBUTES IN LIVING ONE OF WHICH IS AN
    IMPROVEMENT IN OUR HEALTH.

21
RELIGION
  • DEPENDING ON HOW WE MANIFEST IT CAN AUGMENT OR
    INHIBIT PROCESSES INVOLVED IN HEALTH
  • ESPECIALLY THOSE INVOLVED IN THE PSYCHOSOCIAL AND
    EMOTIONAL AREAS

22
A SURGE IN INTEREST HAS LED TO THE STUDY OF
RELIGION AND HEALTH WITH A CONCLUSION
  • SOME 85 OF STUDIES SHOW A POSITIVE CORRELATION
    WITH RELIGION AND HEALTH
  • KOENIG ET AL HANDBOOK OF RELIGION AND HEALTH

23
POTENTIAL HAZARDS IN SUCH STUDIES
  • OBSERVER BIAS
  • METHODOLOGICAL SHORTCOMINGS
  • IMPRECISE DEFINITIONS OF WHAT IS BEING STUDIED

24
STUDY SUPPORTS THE SDA POSITION OF WHOLE PERSON
  • WIDER ACCEPTANCE IS NOW APPARENT IN THAT 50 OF
    AMERICAN MEDICAL SCHOOLS NOW TEACH COURSES ON
    SPIRITUAL CARE
  • ADVENTIST HEALTH STUDY 2, IS EXAMINING MANY
    ASPECTS OF THE CORRELATES

25
APPROPRIATE IN A SOCIETY WHERE
  • 95 BELIEVE IN A GOD
  • 94 BELIEVE SPIRITUALITY IS IMPORTANT
  • 77 WOULD LIKE SPIRITUAL ISSUES CONSIDERED IN
    THEIR CARE
  • YET ONLY 18-20 OF PHYSICIANS DISCUSS THEM WITH
    THEIR PATIENTS ASSUMING THIS IS NOT A CONCERN OR
    PROJECTING THEIR OWN UNBELIEF

26
WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION
  • RECOGNIZES PHYSICAL, MENTAL, AND EMOTIONAL HEALTH
    BUT BY REASON OF THEIR CONSTITUENT BASE (NATIONS)
    HAS STEERED AWAY FROM INCLUDING SPIRITUALITY AS A
    COMPONENT OF COMPLETE HEALTH

27
WELL BEING AND SPIRITUALITY/RELIGION
  • RELIGIOUS PRACTICE AND BELIEF IS ASSOCIATED WITH
    REDUCTIONS IN
  • SUBSTANCE ABUSE, ANXIETY, SUICIDE RATES
    DEPRESSION
  • RATES OF CARDIAC DISEASE, CHOLESTEROL LEVELS,
    BLOOD PRESSURE, AND USE OF TOBACCO.
  • LOWER DEATH RATES FROM CANCER
  • KOENIG ET AL

28
WELL BEING AND SPIRITUALITY/HEALTH
  • IS ASSOCIATED WITH INCREASES IN,
  • HOPE AND OPTIMISM, PURPOSE AND MEANING, SOCIAL
    SUPPORT, MARITAL STABILITY AND SATISFACTION.
  • IMMUNE SYSTEM FUNCTION, GOOD SLEEP PATTERNS,
    EXERCISE , RECOVERY FROM HEART ATTACKS
  • KOENIG ET AL

29
CHURCH ATTENDANCE
  • ASSOCIATED WITH
  • INCREASED LONGEVITY (7YEARS IN WHITES AND 14
    YEARS IN BLACKS WITH FEMALES BENEFITTING MORE
    THAN MALES)
  • KOENIG ET AL

30
NOT ALL RELIGIOSITY IS ASSOCIATED WITH GOOD
OUTCOMES
  • LEGALISTIC OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE RELIGION BRINGS
    NEGATIVE OUTCOMES
  • HARMONIOUS,SUPPORTIVE GROUP ACTIVITY, SHARED
    VALUES AND THE SENSE OF COMMUNITY ARE ALL
    SYNERGISTIC AND POSITIVE.

31
RELIGION
  • INVOLVES THE COMMUNITY OF THE CHURCH
  • THIS EXTENDS ITS INFLUENCE BEYOND SPIRITUALITY TO
    SOCIAL EFFECTS
  • RELATIONSHIPS OF RELIGION ARE BOTH WITH GOD AND
    WITH OTHERS
  • BOTH MAY HAVE IMPLICATIONS FOR HEALTH

32
SOME DIVIDE SPIRITUALITY INTO 3 COMPONENTS
33
1, The intellectual component
  • This encompasses the philosophical aspects of our
    spirituality.
  • It deals with our world view
  • The purpose and meaning of life
  • The TRUTH we hold dear

34
2. The Experiential Component
  • Deals with the equanimity or the inner mental
    harmony. Hope grows in the soil of this
    experience.
  • Often rising close to the surface in illness we
    see the strata on which love, comfort, peace,
    forgiveness, guilt, and inner strength are founded

35
3. The behavioral Component
  • OUR EXTERNAL MANIFESTATION OF THE INNER SPIRITUAL
  • Sometimes a mask is worn. But just as I would
    always remove my mask when talking to a patient
    pre or postoperatively we need to remove our
    masks in Spiritual dialogue and care.

36
SPIRITUALITY AND ILLNESS
  • ONE OF THE HAZARDS OF LINKING SPIRITUALITY WITH
    HEALTH IS THAT WE FALL INTO PHARISAICAL THINKING
  • WHO HATH SINNEDTHIS MAN OR HIS PARENTS?
  • THERE IS TREMENDOUS DANGER OF BECOMING
    JUDGEMENTAL WHEN CAUSATIVELY LINKING SPIRITUALITY
    TO HEALTH OR DISEASE.

37
THE QUESTIONS I HAVE BEEN ASKED
  • SHOULD WE DISFELLOWSHIP A PERSON WHO IS
    DEPRESSED?
  • IS A PERSON WITH CANCER NOT SPIRITUAL ENOUGH?
  • DOES DIABETES INDICATE LACK OF SPIRITUAL
    CONNECTION ?

38
THINK OF JOB!
  • THOUGH HE SLAY ME YET WILL I TRUST HIM
  • I KNOW THAT MY REDEEMER LIVETH
  • YET IN MY FLESH SHALL I SEE GOD
  • SPIRITUALITY MORE THAN A DETERMINANT OF DISEASE..
    MAY BE MORE A DETERMINANT OF HOW WE COPE WITH IT.

39
  • THANK YOU

40
  • APPENDIX FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

41
Spiritual Distress
  • Many patients will have a past exposure to
    religion that may lead to EXTREMELY POSITIVE OR
    NEGATIVE attitudes.
  • Spiritual distress is present when the sources of
    MEANING fail. Additionally negative experiences
    engender even more powerful negative effects,
    than positive experiences do positive effects.

42
Scuba Diving
  • When the tank runs out!
  • Buddy system
  • Sharing a necessity. We need to recognize
    different levels of spirituality may be required
    and to avoid elements of religiosity at the first
    encounter, just as diving at different levels has
    different timing requirements before we can reach
    the surface

43
Learning needs of both patients and care-givers
  • SPIRITUAL SELF CARE
  • We cannot minister that which we do not possess.
    To be patient centered WE must be Spirit
    Vitalized
  • All three aspects already covered are important

44
Patient encouraged to seek his/her own spiritual
relationships
  • Identification of the patients progress in the
    spiritual journey is important
  • Activities that assist in reaching spiritual
    relationships may include Family and
    friends Nature Recreation Spiritu
    al Readings Pastoral interactions

45
Good Patient/Health Professional relationships
  • Spiritual strength is imparted by truthful,
    transparent, concerned caring.
  • Professionalism may be an impediment if self
    serving and based in pride and a sense of
    superiority
  • Though we laugh at the doctor who thinks he is
    God there are many of those who laugh who in
    reality are no different.

46
Appropriate Timing
  • Telling a joke requires impressive timing but no
    more than the sensitivity in broaching
    spirituality at an appropriate level with a
    terminally ill patient.
  • Too soon may be discouraging too late loses the
    only opportunity

47
THE IMPORTANCE OF HOPE
48
H ope we need to explore
  • What are the patients sources of hope, comfort,
    strength, and peace?
  • Pertinent questions may include
  • I was wondering, what is there in your life that
    gives you internal support?
  • What are your sources of hope strength comfort
    and peace?
  • What do you hold on to in difficult times?
  • For some their Religious or Spiritual beliefs
    give strength .Is this true for you?

49
When the response is in the NEGATIVE
  • We could ask Was it ever, what changed?
  • If the response was in the affirmative we then
    are free to progress to the other letters in HOPE

50
O rganized Religion
  • Do you consider yourself part of an organized
    religion?
  • How important is this to you?
  • What aspects of your religion are most important
    to you?
  • Are you part of an organized community of
    faith?
  • Does it help you, how?

51
P ersonal spiritual practices
  • Do you have personal independent spiritual
    beliefswhat are they?
  • Would you feel you have a relationship with God
    how would you describe it?
  • What aspects of your spirituality do you find
    most helpfule.g. prayer, meditation, reading,
    attending religious services, music, hiking in
    nature?

52
E ffects of spirituality on medical care and
end life issues
  • Has being in this situation affected your
    ability to do the things you usually find helpful
    spiritually?
  • Is there anything I can do to help you
    spiritually? (as your Dr. Nurse, etc.)
  • Are you worried about any conflicts between your
    medical treatments?
  • Would it be helpful to speak with a clinical
    chaplain/spiritual leader?

53
Such a Spiritual History
  • Helps in the delivery of WHOLE person care.
  • To believe in the integrated wholeness of the
    Physical
  • Mental/Emotional
  • Social
  • Spiritual
  • And yet neglect to take a history in each of
    these areas is to give care below our own
    standard.

54
  • THANK YOU
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