You’ve no doubt heard the term ‘mind, body and spirit’ (or mind, body and soul) at some point. But what do the three entities – mind, body and spirit – represent?
Why are they important and how does have having a deeper connection to our mind, body and spirit improve our health and wellbeing?
I’ve been pondering these questions for some time and here’s what I think.
The mind represents our feelings and experiences. This entity is concerned with what we do, our awareness of the world around us and our thinking ability. If we go about things mindlessly, we are doing things without awareness of our surroundings. Let’s take the example of driving. Have you ever experienced that sensation of driving somewhere and when you arrive you cannot remember how you got there? This is an example of doing something mindlessly. The opposite of this is mindfulness. Mindfulness is the act of being present and engaged in the moment and being aware of thoughts and feelings. Awareness of the mind is the first step towards mastery of it.
The body relates to our physical structure – both internal and external – and, not surprisingly, is the most physical aspect of the three entities. The body also reflects our physical health and wellbeing. If part of our body is out of balance, we become aware of it through different sensations such as pain, discomfort, heat, cold, numbness, tingling, cramping, etc. The body creates signals for us to pay attention to, and hopefully as a result, we act with awareness to rectify the problem. Unfortunately in today’s world, many people numb the sensations of their bodies and neglect their physical health. The body is the vehicle for our mind and spirit so it is our job to take care of it as best we can, as without a functioning body, living in the physical world becomes difficult.
The spirit (or soul) is our higher consciousness and is our ‘divine connection’ to the universal life force. The spirit is our guide throughout our life journey. When we tune into our spirit, we get closer to discovering our true purpose and life direction. You may have felt connected to spirit whilst doing something you love and enjoy. This is called ‘flow’. Flow can be characterised by moments where we get so absorbed in what we are doing that time passes without us realising it. As a result, a deeper awareness and connection to our spirit brings more joy and meaning to life.
Throughout our lives, and even through the cycle of a day, we experience different levels of connection to all three of these elements. I believe that we have the ability to tap into these entities and deepen our connection with them, and ultimately improve our overall health and wellbeing. Taking time in our day or week to do yoga, meditation, prayer, exercise, spend time with loved ones, be in and observe nature, enjoy time with pets or animals, read, reflect, journal, and do the things we love and enjoy are all opportunities to deepen those connections. As we engage in these experiences, our lives become richer and more fulfilling, and by experiencing more joy and love for ourselves and others, we become more aligned with our deeper purpose in life.