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Life Abundant: Values, Choices, and Health Care (1988)

An effective address to human health needs requires a comprehensive, whole-person approach to health and health services. Pneuma, psyche, and soma, spirit-mind-body, are interconnected in complex ways. To ignore the spiritual or mental dimensions of a person while addressing physical injury or illness is as scientifically irresponsible as it is religiously irresponsible to treat spiritual needs and ignore the physical and mental dimensions of the human body. The understanding and definition of health and healthcare should be largely derived from this holistic perspective rather than a purely medical one. Health, it can be argued, is the ability to respond effectively to a wide variety of challenges to live up to potential and promise. Illness can be understood as the inability to respond with adaptability to life’s challenges or assaults on well-being and balance.