As humans, we seek connections—to others, to the world around us, to ourselves, and to God. Without connection our lives would be solitary, lonely, and without much vibrancy. By maintaining connections we can be “a part of” instead of “apart from.” Connection is fostered by presence.
In the medical sphere, one curre
nt approached to health and uses a biopsychosocial-spiritual model of the individual and of illness. The biological component encompasses things like genes, physiology, medications, exercise, diet, and sleep. The psychological component includes moods, thoughts, defense mechanisms, and psychotherapy. Although connections and presence play a role in these two components, these elements are more apparent in the latter two components—social and spiritual. The social component includes support systems, community, and relationships. The spiritual element can encompass suffering, meaning, faith, prayer, and meditation.
This model would suggest that being present to one another and being in the presence of God can be important for overall wellness. So how can we be connected more deeply to God, self and others, and the world around us? One way is to intentionally foster relationships with those around us—keeping in touch with family and friends, even when it might be hard to pick up the phone or walk down the block. We can also keep in touch with God in a variety of ways including prayer, meditation, participation in religious observances, reading sacred or other meaningful literature, and asking questions.
I encourage you to consider the question: How am I present today?
The Franciscan Spiritual Center is a great place to foster a sense of presence with others and with God. Welcome!