All posts tagged: cura personalis

Hygiene and Wellness

When it comes to hygiene – personal hygiene – the cleanliness of body, clothing, and home environment are typically the focus. And while these are important, hygiene is much more: it is about maintaining health and preventing disease – and so that includes physical and mental cleanliness.  In the 19th century, the poet Robert Browning dropped us into the secret inner world of a monk who is enraged at “Brother Lawrence”. What exactly did this Brother Lawrence do? You might wonder, if you haven’t already read the fiercely gnarled interior monologue known as the “Soliloquy of the Spanish Cloister”. Well, for one, Brother Lawrence grew melons to share with the order. (The effrontery! The virtue signaling!) “Oh, those melons! if he’s able   We’re to have a feast; so nice!One goes to the Abbot’s table,   All of us get each a slice.How go on your flowers? None double?   Not one fruit-sort can you spy?Strange!–And I, too, at such trouble,   Keep them close-nipped on the sly!” This is a monk going through the motions of appearing pious, and while we witness his contaminated thoughts …

Kneipp*

Water always finds a way Have you ever wondered at how certain books seem to choose you, sliding into your life just when there is a specific longing and space for them, binding with threads of your destiny from the moment you choose them, too?  That’s how the young Sebastian Kneipp must have felt that evening when he returned from the library in Munich. It was at the end of the 1840s and he was trying to get through his university studies while suffering from a lung disease he couldn’t shake off. From a poor family, he had to rely on knowledge flowing to him from various, perhaps unexpected sources. Knowledge discovered. Knowledge earned by intellectual curiosity. And so one day in the library (was he trying to suppress his coughs in the studied silence of the reading room? Did he wander off into the stacks where nobody was, where he could cough into a handkerchief and not bother anybody?) he found a book by one Dr. Johann Siegmund Hahn — written a hundred years …

Wellness Journeys

The rapid changes of our accelerating era are calling for us to speed up… Wellness has been defined as a state of being in good health. In order for wellness to be meaningful, we must include mental, physical and spiritual well-being. When we apply the principle of cura personalis (“care for the whole person”), a holistic wellness practice can arise and move through our individual and interdependent realities. Cultivating and sustaining wellness requires knowledge and disciplined presence, then – to skillfully evolve and thrive in harmony with the elements: water, earth, fire, air, æther. Whenever circumstances require it, we seek counsel and care from qualified health professionals; and also, we must maintain our personal responsibility for healing and well-being. Wellness journeys are thus more than the sum of their parts; they are growth opportunities — aligning inspiration and experiences with discernment — guiding us to a sustainable daily practice. Wherever we are on the planet, wherever we are in our personal practice: the rapid changes of our accelerating era are calling for us to speed …