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How mind affects your body

Have you noticed how, after someone you know has gone through a stressful situation, he or she developed health problems? The mind affects the body in ways that science is still trying to understand.

health and fitness Updated: Sep 18, 2010 17:48 IST
Shikha Sharma

Have you noticed how, after someone you know has gone through a stressful situation, he or she developed health problems? And have you noticed a connection between the health problems of a mother and her relationship with her children? If a child refuses to accept his or her mother’s long cherished dream, the mother will develop knee pains or wheezes. That’s because the mind affects the body in ways that science is still trying to understand.



According to Indian holism, the body has five energy layers that are created and affected by their corresponding aspects. These are

annamaya kosh

– the food energy layer;

pranmaya

– the breath layer;

manomaya

– the mind layer;

vigyanmaya

– the higher wisdom layer; and

anandmaya kosh

– the bliss layer.



When we say stress affects the body it’s because negative thinking blocks the

manomaya kosh

. According to ancient philosophies, negative thinking cuts you off from the power of the spiritual self (which can also be seen as a portion of divine power). When a block occurs, you suffer from a total lack of energy – just like the power going off.



All in the head

What is negative thinking? Is it thinking badly about someone? Actually, in most cases, negative thinking is thinking unpleasant thoughts about yourself and the situations you’re in. Here are some common negative patterns.

Blaming yourself for everything: You usually see this among mothers who blame themselves for all their children’s problems, even if the circumstances are beyond their control.

Ego-based rigidity: Many of us are completely run by our egos. We would rather see a major project fail than be proved wrong.

Jumping to conclusions: Many of us hurry to label someone or some situation without actually getting all the facts of the matter. We use improper reasoning and jump to a judgement. You see this most often during a first meeting with someone. If that does not go well, then we close our minds to that person and create an emotional picture of him or her that means subsequent meetings are bound to fail.

Other common situations are, “The boss did not return my greeting, someone must have said something to him about me”. Or, “My boyfriend has not called for days. He must be having an affair with that hot girl at his office”.

Many of us believe that negative thinking is realistic thinking, so we protect ourselves by expecting the worst. But actually, negative thinking makes us powerless and joy-less. Safety lies in our wisdom, not in our minds. To think from the wisdom layer, you have to transcend the mind layer.

(To be continued)