The anatomy of an illness A.K.A. the ego’s secret weapon
“A sick thought can devour the body’s flesh more than fever or consumption.”—Guy de Maupassant
You might have heard that the American Psychiatric Association came out with a new manual this year for diagnosing mental illness. It’s called the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and you probably won’t be surprised to learn that there are a number of new “diseases” in this 5th edition.
The first DSM, that came out in 1952, listed 26 general disorders. Today, there are more than 400.
I’m not here to debate whether we’re 16 times crazier today, but I have observed that illness (of all kinds) usually starts in the mind and goes from there.
Steven Pressfield, recent Oprah interviewee and author of one of my favorite books (The War of Art) said that his boss at a Madison Avenue ad agency instructed him to invent a disease, because “then we can sell the hell out of its cure.”
According to A Course in Miracles, my main spiritual practice, our physical bodies are potent tools used by the ego for obscuring Truth, for hiding our bodies inherent natural healing power.
Here’s how it works:
1. You notice something’s off.
2. You begin focusing on it.
3. You wonder what “it” might be (as opposed to knowing this
Truth—that you are a child of the most high and cannot inherit illness)
4. You begin investing in it.
5. You give it a name.
6. You google it, start telling your friends about it, you join a support group.
Jill Boelte Taylor, a Harvard-trained neuroanatomist who studies the brain and became famous for her Ted Talk, “My Stroke of Insight,” says that an unresisted thought passes through the brain in 90 seconds.
That is unless you decide to apply the above six steps.
Pam Grout is the author of 16 books including E-Squared: 9 Do-it-Yourself Energy Experiments that Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality.