The way in which the treatments were chosen for integrated medicine, in many cases, derives from considerations of convenience or ‘supply and demand’ and not from treatment rationale. Integrated medicine means the integration of different treatment methods (holistic and scientific) in the treatment ‘basket’ so as to provide a solution for the helping of body-mind in four dimensions: spiritual, intellectual, emotional, and physical .
Over human history, many researchers have presented an attitude on integrated medicine but never has this subject been a focus of attention in practice as in contemporary times.
The Book of Creation , which is ascribed to the Patriarch Abraham, was the first to instruct in the integrated approach. The relationship between numbers and letters (male and female) and the creation of the four dimensions – spiritual, intellectual, emotional, and physical, senses, inner forces, outside impacts, and the relations between the desire to give and the desire to receive, relations between the body limbs and the seasons of the year, the zodiac, the stars, measurements, human traits and intelligences – everything is related, everything is one (Lousky, 2005). This can be seen as the determination of basic rules for integrated medicine.
Reference to health in a holistic approach is also found in Socrates, who warned two thousand four hundred years ago that a part cannot be healthy unless the whole is healthy. Jan Sumitz in 1926 proposed to see life as an entity that is greater than and different from the sum of its parts. According to him, when things are limited to a certain perspective, some are lost. Even if it is possible to examine every part separately, the perspective of the whole, which is above everything, will still be absent.
The model of the four dimensions, which describes the whole person (physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual) appears in Eastern doctrines – Buddhism of Buddha (the eight paths, 2500 BC) and Taoism of Confucius (Cong Fu Ze, 551-479 BC) (Pearle, 2000) . The pattern model for the description of the whole is an inseparable part of the holistic methods of treatment. The four dimensions for the description of the whole are found in Jewish medicine and in Western philosophy. Complementary medicine, which is also called holistic (whole) medicine, has a number of treatment methods at the basis of which are two essential principles:
1. The person is one whole entity in which there are dynamic reciprocal relations between body and mind in four dimensions – physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual.
2. Every person has inner healing powers that can be intensified and directed to perform the healing work.
An illness is linked to the disruption of the delicate balance that exists between body and mind. Therefore, the first aspiration in the healing process is to reach the point of equilibrium to allow the inner healing powers in every person a good platform and appropriate conditions to act. The aspiration to harmony and balance exists not only in times of illness but is essential even more to maintain the health and avert the development of illnesses. The body mind relationship and reciprocal relations between them have been scientifically proved (Shechter, 2004) . The scientific field of research that engages in these relations is called psycho-neuro-immunology (psycho – brain, neuro – neurons or nervous system, immuno – the activity of the immune system, logy – science). Many researches have proved that there is a relationship between science that examines the mind and the immune systems and that there is a relationship between stress and the activity of every system in the body. According to Shechter (2004), there is scientific proof that stress harms the heart’s activity, increases the risk of getting sick, and impairs the chances of recovery. Other researches found that it is possible to improve the activity of the immune system through simple means such as physical activity, correct sleeping and eating habits, optimism, and even laughter. Researches that examined the relationship between optimistic thinking and recuperation from severe illnesses, such as heart disease, brain strokes, and cancer found that there is a direct relationship between a positive approach and believe in the ability to recuperate and the recovery itself. Shechter (2004) maintains that people who believed that they would recover or whose mental situation was better coped better with illness and their chances of recovery were greater. Hence, these are not conflicting approaches – it is definitely possible to phrase a good formula that combines between scientific medicine and holistic medicine.