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How Is The Wellness Model Integrated Into Holistic Mental Health?

The wellness model is a holistic approach to healthcare that emphasizes the importance of taking care of the entirety of the body, including their physical, mental, and social well-being. Proponents of the wellness model believe that this approach can lead to better health outcomes and a higher quality of life for individuals. Some of the main proponents underlying the wellness model include the need to take responsibility for individualized health and long-term wellbeing, the importance of addressing physical, mental, and social factors that may impact health, and the need for a comprehensive, personalized approach to healthcare.

In the context of development for the wellness model, it is assumed that the body has an inherent wisdom or intelligence, and the best way to know one's health is through one's own experience and awareness of one's own body. As physical postures in yoga are held to be an essential gateway to spiritual discovery (Iyengar, 2005), the philosophy of yoga is congruent with the assumptions of the wellness model. Stated by Iyengar, 2005, “there can be no realization of existential, divine bliss without the support of the soul's incarnate vehicle, the food and water fed by the body, from bone to brain. If we can become aware of its limitations and compulsions, we can transcend them. We all possess some awareness of ethical behavior, but in order to pursue yama and niyama at deeper levels, we need contentment, tranquility, dispassion, and unselfish, qualities that have to be earned. It is asana that teaches us the physiology of these virtues. Health begins with firmness in the body, deepens to emotional stability, then leads to intellectual clarity, wisdom, and finally the unveiling of the soul. There is physical health, moral health, mental health, intellectual health, and even the health of our consciousness, health of our conscience, and ultimately divine health. As long as the body is not in perfect health, you are caught in body consciousness alone. This distracts you from healing and culturing the mind. The body will prove to be an obstacle unless we transcend its limitations and remove its compulsions. You cannot catch a glimpse of the divine except through the body.” (p. 11-26).

Iyengar, Y. B. (2001). Yoga: The path to holistic health. Singapore: A Dorling Kindersley Book.


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