Not long ago Stephen Oakley asked if I would join him to speak at Alfalfa’s Wellness panel coming up on December 7th with the theme being mental clarity. I said sure, that would be fun, with a bit of an authoritative chip on my shoulder. We were actually having lunch together. Chatting back and forth, I began to wonder, am I the best person to be speaking on mental clarity? On more than one occasion I have left my treatment room to retrieve a remedy for a patient from the pharmacy and stopped in my tracks asking myself, “what did I come in here for?” Or lost my trend of thought when briefly interrupted by a child’s momentary demands of the mother I was treating. When I am tired after a long day and need to finish up paperwork it can be a challenge to hold my focus.
I decided to ask some of my sharpest patients who were not complaining of overt memory or cognitive issues what they experience on a day to day basis, to my surprise they shared similar experiences and most seemed amused when they thought about it. Janis, who works for us, said, “I have good mental clarity, but I have to work at it.”
Janis was referring to the way she held her attention, a way of being in order to achieve the results she was wanting around mental work. I realized that I did the same thing. I would dig in in a certain way, posture myself to hold concentration and when I did it I was solid and clear. Except when I hadn’t eaten for most of the day or when Mercury was in retrograde and the whole computer system in the office didn’t work for 5 days in a row. Then I turned to mental mush.
I’m pretty sure you can relate to this scenario. It is in all of us to a certain extent. And it requires our attention to breed attention and greater mental clarity. So it is clear to me, get it, clear to me that mental clarity is on a continuum from sharp to dull, from Einstein deep and clear to delusional. So the following is my ideas in brief, in categories, as to how we all can keep, for the most part, on the sharp side of the continuum. May we all support each other in the process!
I view the human being as having 4 members or domains that without each the others cannot express the fullness of life:
The physical body, which is grounded in the mineral world (primarily carbon) is what we sense with our five senses.
The etheric body, or life body gives form to the physical body. It offers the forces of growth and proliferation. The plant kingdom exemplifies the physical and the etheric.
The soul or astral body allows motions and emotions. It is the member that is linked with knowledge from external sources which forms “primal memory.” The astral body keeps the proliferative forces of the etheric in check. We share the three members with the animal kingdom.
The spirit or ego is the fourth member expressing the level of individuation only known to human beings. The spirit (ego) furnishes life to the soul (astral) and is considered the seat of consciousness – awareness of inner activity, creative thought based upon inner experiences and self- contemplation are examples of this member of the being
So, with this view, with this perspective, I want to plug in some examples of dysfunction in each domain that directly influence mental clarity.
Physical. Any conditions that affect the cell getting its needs meant to produce life (metabolism). A few examples:
- Hypoglycemia – low blood sugar – the brain consumes 45 % or more of the circulating blood sugar to function properly.
- Insulin resistance – the cell receptor does not accept the hormone that delivers glucose to the cell therefore less glucose get to the cell (this includes brain cells).
- Hypothyroid – this hormone plays a major role in the control of metabolism – low thyroid equals low metabolism (drowsy, sleeping, low cognitive function).
- Toxicity (toxic tissue burden) – our environment is loaded with them – they are ubiquitous, meaning they are everywhere and they inhibit normal life process.
Etheric (life body, chi). One of the laws of physics is energy precedes form. The etheric governs the physical body. If the etheric flow is inhibited, the chi is inhibited, then the physical is inhibited.
- In Asian medicine this disturbance is termed a disturbance in Shen (wakefulness, alertness, brightness).
- Psychoneuroimmunology is the study of how the disturbed feeling sense realm can cause illness in the body when the thought process overwhelms the felt sense realm of the being. The thinking gets out of control draining the heart-feeling-sense of the world and the knowing that comes from intuition. The heart is a cognitive organ. When it is not in the driver’s seat mentation gets out of control and disturbs mental clarity. This is a good one for open panel discussion.
Spirit. In our culture we’ve all experienced, one time or another, some level of disembodiment. This manifests as various forms of disconnect. Mind objectifies and separates from body, which in turn, places us out of touch with the feelings of the heart and the sensations of the belly.
Sometimes we are unable to perceive the pulsations of the earth’s heart, and we waver in our contact with the infinite heart that as one substance pervades all that is.
Mental clarity is directly connected to our state of awareness. Mental clarity does not always yield true clarity. True clarity is when the heart leads the mind in thought and feelings.
By Dr. Darryl Hobson, a wellness educator, author and a practicing physician of integrated natural medicine. His career in medicine began in 1969 when he awoke one day to find himself blind. Modern medical diagnostic approaches did not reveal the cause. He was taken to a healer who simply placed his hands over his body. Two days after that first session his eyesight returned. Darryl wanted to know what kind of process through the use of just the hands would bring about such a healing. He has spent the last 42 years investigating not only that form of energetic healing but many other areas of the natural healing arts with a particular interest in chiro-practic and energetic medicine.