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Safeguarding And Safekeeping Health


The difference between safeguarding and safekeeping may be tenuous, since they are synonymous terms, however ‘guarding’ gives a sense of protection, while ‘keeping’ gives a sense of preservation. The reason for making this distinction as it relates to health is not farfetched.  The thought of safekeeping health puts the preservation in the hands of a trustworthy keeper, whose job it is to keep health safe and sound, similar to the job of a goalkeeper in a game of soccer. The thought of guarding health on the other hand suggests that, in the case of attack, it behooves the owner of the health to take steps to defend it. This is similar to what the full backs , also in a game of soccer, do. Both activities of course are important.

Generally individuals, corporations, institutions and governments take steps to guard against disease, accident, injury, disorders and so on. Health professionals, nutritionists, Standards Organisations such as NAFDAC and FAO all contribute in their own way to safeguard the health of the citizenry. For example, recently, according to Aanjalie Collure [fellow at IntraHealth International] and Leonard Rubenstein [Director, John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health], in December 2014, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution to not only protect health workers but assure patients have access to health care in situations of conflict and pandemics.

Exercise, diets, drugs and protection of the environment are some of the more common methods employed to safeguard the health of humanity. As laudable as these methods and efforts are, they still have not reduced the incidence of ill health, which can often seem to the sufferer like an unrelenting attack. Unlike safeguarding, safekeeping health is however not addressed by the best medical, pharmaceutical or dietetic theories. Rather, it is left to the unsure realm of genetics at best, or luck at least.

Huge sums of money, research and the skill of the best professionals are committed to finding reliable, provable and practical ways to safeguard and safe-keep the health of humanity. Spirituality, long overlooked as irrelevant by medical, material and physical science, is being found to be of more significance than hitherto thought. In response to this, Wellness clinics, that pay attention to the spiritual dimension while offering medical treatment, are becoming quite popular worldwide. The ideas of spiritual thinkers such as Mary Baker Eddy are being referred to more and more, as respected authorities in the quest for maintaining health.

In her seminal book Science and Health with key to the Scriptures, Eddy discusses the spiritual rules that enable individuals be well and stay well. It removes the onus for wellbeing and sound health from fallible human ability to the more secure jurisdiction of spirituality. In safeguarding and safe-keeping health, the first duty of the individual is to guard their thought. This spiritual exercise brings practical, scientific, spiritual understanding, which in turn results in better maintenance, even recovery, and certainly preservation of health.

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