The word ‘holistic’ means, ‘the whole’.
A thought that is worth considering is taking care of the self and all it encompasses; this means the body, the mind and the spirit (the whole) which make up the person. It is only when the self has begun the journey to wholeness, can we then begin to consider the wider self; what is around us. With this thought in mind, the concept of ‘wholeness’ is of great importance. When considering the holistic, we are addressing ‘the whole’; the body and its need to keep the machine running; the mind and its effects on feelings and interaction with its environment; the spirit that combines with the body and the mind; all of what makes us who we are, each individual different and affecting what is within and all that is around us.
If we take this concept further, and consider ‘the self’ to be a starting point, and then move on to consider what is around us, and attempting to cause that too to become whole; our family, our surroundings, the society we live within, our culture, the land we live upon, our country, the world.
But this would be a huge undertaking, one which we individually may not have the ability, or the time, to achieve in one lifetime, but we can put things into place for our children, and our children’s children to continue, then the Holistic could be of great use.
But we would need to begin first with the self, and achieving wholeness in body, mind and spirit. And when considering these three there is a great deal we can do to gain control of the self.
Perhaps a second thought after considering the self may well be our physical family.
Families in Britain today are different to what they were as near back in history as fifty to sixty years back, where families tended to live close together, with all members contributing and caring for each other, again the whole working as one being. Today the use of the internet and social media, along with accessibility to a wider world, have stretched the unit of ‘the family’ to such a point that some families have lost the ‘oneness’ the ‘holisticity’ that once tied families together. Some would consider this to be a good thing, and it is for each individual to choose for themselves, but to consider what all this has cost ‘the family’ may be cause for thought.
The family once consisted of grandparents, parents, aunties and uncles, children and cousins, all living closely together. Each generation of the family taking care of those who needed care and love, passing wisdom and help when needed, and including each generation in the family as not just separate people, but as a whole.
One generation is considered to be 20 years, long ago a family would have consisted of three generations at most, with older people not living much longer than 50 to 60 years. Today a lifetime can be much longer, with many older people living to be 90 to 100 years old, meaning any one family can now consist of up to five generations; a wealth of knowledge and wisdom possibly being accessible through five generations. Sadly most of the fourth and fifth generations in today’s Britain usually sit alone and lonely, being mostly ignored. What knowledge is lodged in the memories and experiences of this mostly unused commodity!
In past times the family looked after itself, although it must be said that today’s societies are experiencing different and sometimes difficult pressures upon its individuals.
But the family should be a core; the very core of the society it lives within. There are some families that are very broken indeed, and what is passed to the children of these families, is that being broken is acceptable, or even what is 'normal', (the word 'normal' is used here with the restrains that the written word places upon communication.) Until these broken families can be healed, then society will continue to contain some who will never, in their lifetime, find the key to unlock the door to becoming whole again.
But each of us can make a beginning, a start upon the journey to bring wholeness to the individuals we are.
Considering a holistic way of being for the self is the beginning, a child, or an individual’s children, will, through nurture, attempt to follow the philosophies of its parents, and if that way is a holistic way of being, then this has a possibility of continuing through generations to come. Once the individuals that make up the family have two or three generations, all having a basic understanding of what the holistic means, and its potential, and they understand the positive effects of care of the self, then the family has the possibility of being at the forefront of a revolution in what society can become.
Every path begins with one step forward and this one step beings with the self.