Nature of Human Life as Subject Matter of Nursing

BASIC BELIEFS My theory of human care begins with my view of personhood and human existence; that in itself becomes metaphysical. What is essential in human exis- tence is that the human has transcended nature-yet remains a part of it. The human can go for-ward, through the use of the mind, to higher levels of con- sciousness by finding meaning and harmony in existence. My conception of life and personhood is tied to notions that one's soul pos- sesses a body that is not confined by objective time and space. The lived world of the experiencing person is not distinguished by external and internal notions of tirne and space but shapes its own time and space, which is unconstrained by linearity. Notions of personhood, then, transcend the here and now, and one has the capacif to coexist with past, present, and future, all at once. As a result of this view, there is a great deal of regard, respect, and awe given to the concept of a human soul (spirit or higher sense of self) that is greater than the physical, mental, and ernotional existence of a person at any given point in time. The indi- vidual spirit of a person or of collective humanity may continue to exist throughout tirne, keeping alive a higher sense of humankind. Although a body may die, be murdered, kill itself, be diseased, be infirmed, and so on, the soul or spirit continues to live on. However, the soui can be underdeveloped, dormant, and in need o1 reawakening. According to Jung (1968, p. 99), People will clo anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own soul. They will practice yoga and all its exercises, observe a strict regime of diet, learn theosclphy by heaft, or mechanically repeat mystic texts from the literature of the wholer world-all because they cannot get on with themselves and have not the slightesl, faith that an''thing usefi:l could ever come out of their own sor_r_I. The belief that a person possesses a soul is to be regarded as sacred, to honor with the deepest respect, dignity, mystery and awe because of the continuing, J o,co-nr l. r' ,." 57 /,r,,,,,r'{, ,','*,", (): l'i:, l/" , ' '('''': ,' )'
58 crnrrnn 6 . NeniRs op llunmli Ltrn aS suzuocr Meman on NrrRsiNC yet unlcrown, journey throughout time and Space' irrfinite and externa]. The soul thenexistsforsomethinglarger,greater,andmorepowerfulthanphysicallife as we lorow it and could lcrow it for time past' time present, and time future' Theconcept,ofthesoul,asusedhere,referstothegeist'spirit'innerself'or essence of the person, which is connected to higher source of infinity, of the cosmos, and is tied to a greater sense of self-awaxeness, a higher degree of con- sciousness, an irmer ,rr"igth, and a power that can expand human capacities and allowapersontotranscendhisorherusualself'Thehighersenseofcon- sciousness and vaiuing of irurer self can cultivate a fuller access to the intuitive and even sometimes aio* t car,ny, mystical, or miraculous experiences, modes ofthought,feelings,andactionsthatwehaveallexperiencedatsomepointsin our life but from which our rational, scientific cultures bar us, The terms "soul," ,,inner Self," "spiritual Self," and "geist" all refer to the same phenomenon and tend to be used intercha:rgeablY. one,s ability to trarrscend time and Space occus in a similar marrrrer through one,s mind, imagination, ancl emotions. Our bodies may be physically present in a given location or situation, but our minds and related feelings may be located elsewhere. For example, I have a body but I am not just my body' I have emotions and thouglrts, but I am not my emotiors and thoughts. we transcencl and exist beyond body,emotional,andmentalexperience;ourtrueself'higherself'transpersonal selfisbeyond'Thetranspersonalperspectivea]IowsuStogobeyondphysical- ego self to quiet depths of the soul, beneath the turbulent waves of the passing experiences, and connect with that which is timeless and etemal-the etet'nal mimmtthat Whitehead wrote about (Watson, 2011)' Each of the assumptions underlying the view of human life is that each of us is a magnificent spirituat being who has often been unclemourished and reduced to a physical, materialistic being. we know both rationaily and intuitively, how- u.,".,thutaperson'shumanpredicamentmaynotberelatedtotheexternal, physical world as much as to the pelson's inner worlcl as lived arld erperienced' Awareness of one's self as a spiritual being opens up infinite possibilities. poets, sages, and philosoirrers ti'oughout time have refe.red to the spiritual side of life and living and have advocated that self-knowledge, self-revelence' self-control, ancl even self-healing come from the inner, spiritual self' from an inner process that, connects one with the life source throu$h the miracle of breathing in spint and source of life. The notion of a spiritual self and irner power that connect us with a universal source requires a different starting point for how we view people, existence, Iife, the world, and our universe. The idea of transcendence is fairly alien lo the westem world with its mind-body schism' yet ancient civilizations, philosophers, ancl poets have iong believed, practiced, and written about the transcenclence of self, higher consciousness, over-soul, spiritual experience, miracles, mystical experiences, alrd so on'


Nature of Human Life as Subject Matter of Nursing

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