PSYCHOTHERAPY SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS

A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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CHAPTER I
Health and Disease
A living organism is said to be healthy when it is so adapted to its normal environment as to be able to react adequately to the demands made upon it without suffering injury. While there can be no exact criterion of health, an idea of the general meaning of ' healthiness ' is gained by observation of a large number of healthy individuals. What results from this is not a rigid standard, and it is only when an individual's reaction exceeds the normal range of variations that we speak of the presence of disease, which can be defined therefore as a failure, either temporarily or permanently, of normal reaction. Disease includes a variety of conditions leading to a disruption of this harmony between the organism and its environment ; but in common usage of the term congenital abnormalities and certain acquired deformities are excluded. It represents the sum of the causes morphological and physiological previously set up in the individual. The study of the causes, processes and effects of disease and its nature is the concern of pathology.
The aetiology of disease forms an important basis for all work in preventive, diagnostic and curative medicine. Causes may be classified in a variety of ways, according to whether their origin is within or outside the body, and whether the agent is physical, chemical, mechanical or bacterial. Most important of all is the division into predisposing and exciting causes. The former category includes all those possible variations in the environment, and especially in climatic conditions, such as alterations
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