My Ayurveda doctor friend tells me in conversation that all ailments begin in the gut. She makes a good, understandable case for it.

Zach Bush, M.D., is a triple certified American doctor who generally agrees with my friend and has created an impressive movement in support of eating of healthier foods. He too, makes a good case for the importance of the gut. These persuasive teachers are both outliers; both have moved away from the dogmatic dictates of their training. Each has done a very deep dive into the teachings of their respective healing models and they both agree that a healthy you begins in your gut. Both my friend and Dr. Bush have my attention, even my agreement.

Metaphysics teaches that everything we can be aware of, all physical things and all experienced events, including a healthy you, arises from thought; that managing your physical experiences happens by managing your thoughts. It teaches that nearly all ailments and physical conditions can be remedied by your focus of intention and willingness to change your habits of thought. It says nothing about your gut. At least not directly.

In practice proponents of both these models have successes. My Ayurvedic friend has suggested that perhaps the very best results are offered by combining the two models. (Indeed a traditional Ayurvedic course of treatment starts with a reading of your birth chart and its very complex forecast of your life’s possibilities). There are studies that conclusively show all kinds of healing from prayer work. Hypnotism, still mostly misunderstood by the public, has cured or healed all kinds of ailments (see the work of Milton Erickson, M.D., creator of contemporary hypnotherapy).

I’ve known offices where practitioners of chiropractic and naturopathy join efforts on a client’s behalf, sometimes joined by a homeopath. In the 1970s Dr. Irving Oyle said his studies of the world’s different treatments found over 60 different “models” for healing ailments. And they all worked… most of the time. Which means that some of the time they didn’t work. No one model worked every time. Key variable? Belief.

I think that takes us back to metaphysics, to the management of thoughts and focus of attention. Beliefs after all are just thoughts you repeatedly think, that you think a lot. And consciously or not, you actually choose what you think. Changing those choices can be tricky or difficult, but choosing to do so will change and can heal your life.