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What is subtle energy? Underlying physical reality are subtle, or indiscernible, energies that create and sustain all matter. The so-called real world—the one you can touch, smell, taste, hear, and see—is constructed entirely from these energies, which are imperceptible through the five senses. In fact, all of reality is created from organized and changeable systems of subtle energy. To most effectively help
someone heal—to aid the sick, alleviate suffering, and bring hope where there is darkness—we must acknowledge and work with the subtle energies that create imbalances and disease. We must work causally, not just symptomatically. When we do, we expand the field of medicine to include the entire picture of the forces at work in illness and health.
Until a few years ago, modern medicine was divided into two main categories: Western and Eastern. Western health care, also called allopathic medicine, is mechanistic; Western practitioners seek to alleviate symptoms through scientifically documented methods. We must honor and revere this approach: where would we be without antibiotics or cardiac pacemakers? At the same time, Western medicine has been on the scene for a relatively short time. For thousands of years, what we now call Eastern medicine was dominant.
Eastern medicine is devoted to holistic care, which treats the total person—mind, body, and spirit—not just his or her symptoms. In the West, we use terms like complementary or alternative medicine to describe this approach. Elsewhere in the world, Eastern medicine is called traditional medicine. It is the medicine of the culture.
Western and Eastern methods seemed diametrically opposed, and the schism between them seemed unsurpassable, until practitioners and patients noticed that the two approaches enhance one another. With this discovery, a new health care process was born, termed integrative care: the marriage between West and East.
Western, Eastern, and integrative medicine are all vital paths to healing. But there is another component to truly full-spectrum health care. It is called energy medicine—specifically, subtle energy medicine. With knowledge of it, healing professionals can attain a new level of medical excellence. This is because all diseases are energetic, or related to the flow of energy. The optimum healthcare approach, therefore, encompasses energy issues.
Everything is made of energy: molecules, pathogens, prescription medicines, and even emotions. Each cell pulses electrically, and the body itself emanates electromagnetic fields. The human body is a complex energetic system, composed of hundreds of energetic subsystems. Disease is caused by energetic imbalances; therefore, health can be restored or established by balancing one’s energies.
We can’t see all the energies that keep the body healthy, however. Those we can see are called physical, or measurable, energies. Those that we can’t yet perceive are called subtle energies. Subtle doesn’t mean delicate. In fact, science is beginning to suggest that the subtle—the as yet immeasurable—actually directs the measurable and forms our physical framework.