Worried About Worrying? How to Silence That Internal Chatter

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During a recent TV interview I was asked, “How do you pray?” “Desire is prayer," I found myself quoting from the book that has largely informed my spiritual discipline as a Christian Scientist, " . . . and no loss can occur from trusting God with our desires, that they may be moulded and exalted before they take form in words and in deeds” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 1). The quote comes from a chapter all about prayer and even though I’ve read it many times, I still Continue Reading

Is Prayer No More Than a Placebo?

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Debates abound on the power of the placebo. There’s one man who has made it his mission to try and settle that debate, or at least shed significant light on it. Described as wanting to “broaden the definition of healing” (The New Yorker), Ted Kaptchuk is considered the leading researcher on placebos as a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and the director of the Harvard-wide program in Placebo Studies. Kaptchuk’s research points to a question often left unanswered in medical Continue Reading

News Anchor Dan Harris on Happiness and Faith

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By Guest-blogger Kim Shippey in recognition of Men's Health Week, June 9-15, which concludes with Father's Day on Sunday:  I have long been an admirer of ABC Television‘s news reporter and host Dan Harris -- a seemingly unflappable anchor, in the truest sense of that word. Then, in June, 2004, live on air, Harris suffered a panic attack in front of an audience of millions and we came face to face with a vulnerability we wouldn’t have believed possible in someone of his experience and Continue Reading

Women’s History Month: Mary Baker Eddy as a Pioneer in Health

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March is Women's History month. This year's theme, according to the National Women's History Project site is: Celebrating Women's Character, Courage, and Commitment. The following blog honors an extraordinary woman in the 19th century who made significant contributions to spiritual and religious education as a teacher, writer, and leader. Her courage and commitment are clearly evident in the body of work she accomplished. Mary Baker Eddy was no ordinary woman. Behind her Victorian-era Continue Reading

Three Mental Exercises to Practice in the New Year

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The United States health care system has largely trained people to believe, "Someone will take care of me if I don't...or I can always just take a pill." But that paradigm is gradually changing and what better time than the new year to celebrate those changes as they advance. USA Today reported that America's health is improving, with Massachusetts listed as number four in the state rankings. But the article also emphasized that our health care system needs much more emphasis on the Continue Reading

Who’s in Charge of Your Mind?

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Guest blogger Kim Shippey has traveled widely as an international  journalist and is now a full-time writer and editor based in Boston. When Dr. Larry Dossey’s latest book One Mind landed on my desk recently, I was reminded that I first came to know him about 20 years ago when I spoke with him at a Mind-Body conference organized by Harvard Medical School and reviewed his book Healing Words:The Power of Prayer and The Practice of Medicine. Dossey is a medical internist and former chief of staff Continue Reading

The Benefits of “Thank You”

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Send just one letter of appreciation to someone who has never been properly thanked and the feel-good benefits could last up to a month. Write in a gratitude journal every day for 10 weeks and you will likely feel more optimistic about your life and visit your physician less often. If you're a manager and you take the time to say thank you to your employees you'll find they'll be motivated to work harder. That's according to research at Harvard Medical School ("In Praise of Gratitude"). In the Continue Reading

One Man’s Journey From Obesity and Diabetes to Health

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I recently met John, a trim, silver-haired, energetic man in his mid-sixties who was a guest at our church. In my remarks at our evening service for the community, I shared some of the ideas I had gained after attending a lifestyle medicine conference. John introduced himself to me afterwards and offered his story. We both feel our meeting wasn't a coincidence. A few years ago John was a self-described chocolate and Mountain Dew addict, ate the "American" diet of meat and potatoes, and was Continue Reading

Therapy Dogs Give Furry Loving Care

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Guest blogger Kim Shippey is a full-time writer and editor in Boston. He often writes in the company of Piper, who is a fluffy source of inspiration, and scratches away at lines that don’t work! In recognition of Veteran's Day, Kim's post points out that the U.S. Army currently has funding to study the ameliorating effects of service dogs on veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. Various programs across the United States provide trained service or therapeutic companion dogs to US Continue Reading

When Health Care Providers Take a Page From A Gardener’s Handbook

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"Would you like your doctor to be a mechanic or a gardener?" That's the question Dr. Donald B. Levy posed at a talk I attended in mid-October at the Kessler Library in Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital. He addressed the almost entirely female audience, giving an introduction to integrative medicine and speaking on "Health Care for the Whole Person." "A mechanic fixes broken parts," he said, "and a gardener is interested in the whole plant. You have to till the soil, strengthen the Continue Reading