Human beings have contemplated the issue of fate vs choice, and the issue of free will since the beginning of thought. Our current society still struggles with this question; in philosophy, religion, science, social issues, medicine. Here I want to look at it in the field of healing, particularly our own healing and well-being at the individual level. People come to me because they want their life to be better. Maybe they are suffering or they want to have a better quality of life now and in the future and haven’t found that the choices they have discovered so far are satisfying to them. Mainstream medicine has a lot going for it, based on scientific method, which has brought a lot of power and control of nature to our culture. Alternatives such as traditional or new remedies and therapies, new ideas, prayer, magic, and non mainstream philosophies offer possible increased control over our health and well-being. One thing to consider is that healing and the alleviation of symptoms are not always the same thing.
How much choice do we really have, and where do we have it? Some times and some places we seem to have a lot of choice, other times not so much. If we have pain, we may have trouble finding a way through it. It may seem at times that we lose hope of finding a way as we see only unsatisfactory or no choices. How much choice do we really have over our experience? That existential question arises. In the field of healing, I would say that we don’t have control over the present manifesting experience. For future experience, we have a lot of choice. The further out in time, the more leverage we have. Where do we have that choice? How do we access it? How can we make the future move in the direction we wish? Where can we find the place to effectively influence our future?
I have come to the belief that only choice we really have is what we put our attention on. We do have the ability to direct our attention. The more we exercise that option, the more effective we become at it.
Regarding healing, we can give our attention to our experience of health and well-being and then that will increase in our experience over time. We can give our attention to our experience of pain and ill-health and then that will increase over time. My work as a healer is to present this choice of attention to my client, in large part by helping them to experience well-being directly and clearly, and to assist them in choosing well-being more of the time so that well-being can become their dominant experience. It is an experiential skill that takes time and practice.