Experiences of health and healing are very much a part of everyday life. Whether it be visiting a hospital, consulting the world-wide web, taking the advice of a witchdoctor, or sipping herbs from a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner, the means available to us to understand our bodies and their complexities are as varied and vast as they are context and culture-dependent. But whatever our journey, all this knowledge and information can be overwhelming. When things go “wrong” how do we know who or what to turn to? How do we make sense of what advice is authentic to our situation? And why are some options available to some, but not to others?
Although periods of ill-health have the capacity to detach us from our fellow human beings and our environments, might they also offer opportunities to connect us? Might ill-heath provide the need to pause and reflect on our situation: a delicate balance of regulation, movement and the nurturing of a deeper sense of self through inner reflection. Increasingly research indicates that by forming and nourishing social connections we are helping to heal; by enjoying our natural spaces we feel a sense of wellbeing in the world.
In this activity area we would like to explore how we make meaning of health and healing at the intersections of knowledge and through the messy web of social, physical, mental, emotional and spiritual means of understanding and conveying our health and healing experiences.