There are two dominant philosophical views of health. Which one a health professional holds, will to a certain degree guide how he or she goes about providing care. These views correlate with how one views the universe as a whole.


Human beings react to things in the environment which cause them to be healthy or ill. We transfer, exchange, balance and use energy. 

Health-Illness continuum.  Health is good, illness is bad.

The Traditional Perspective of Healing

Humans react to the environment in positive ways resulting in improved well-being. If they react to the environment in negative ways, it will result in illness.

Occurs by way of cause and effect.

Death is the end/opposite of life and is often perceived as the enemy.

Practitioners hoping to assist in healing do things that they believe will be conducive to health & healing for the individual.  Cause & effect.


Human beings participate with the environment (actually they are inseparable from the environment) to actualize unique potentials. 

We do not use or exchange energy, rather we are unceasingly transforming energy along with the rest of the universe. 

No continuum. No good, nor bad.  Labels are nonexistent--what is perceived as illness is still the actualizing of human potential.

A Unitary Perspective of Healing

Humans transform--change, in unique purposeful ways.  Occurs by way of communal process.

Death is another (different) manifestation of energy, another way of being/becoming.

Practitioners hoping to assist in healing engage in communal process with the individual they hope  will heal.  Acausal process of participation.

This perspective of healing is evident in the work of nurse theorist Martha E. Rogers.  For more information on unitary health care click here: M. E Rogers Homepage or The Science of Unitary Human Beings Wiki



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