Baha’i Writings


3.     Material / Physical


3.3              Health & Healing (Spiritual & Material)



3.3.1                   Health & Healing – Competent physicians

            Whatever competent physicians or surgeons prescribe for a patient should be accepted and complied with, provided that they are adorned with the ornament of justice.  If they were to be endued with divine understanding, that would certainly be preferable and more desirable. Well is it with the physician who cureth ailments in My hallowed and dearly-cherished Name.

Baha'u'llah:  Health and Healing          Pages 459 



3.3.2                   Health & Healing – Medical treatment & Nutrition

            Do not neglect medical treatment when it is necessary, but leave it off when health has been restored....  Treat disease through diet, by preference, refraining from the use of drugs; and if you find what is required in a single herb, do not resort to a compounded medicament.  Abstain from drugs when the health is good, but administer them when necessary.
Verily the most necessary thing is contentment under all circumstances; by this one is preserved from morbid conditions and from lassitude.  Yield not to grief and sorrow:  they cause the greatest misery. Jealousy consumeth the body and anger doth burn the liver:  avoid these two as you would a lion.

Baha'u'llah:  Health and Healing          Pages 460


3.3.3                   Health & Healing - Moderation

            In all circumstances they should conduct themselves with moderation; if the meal be only one course this is more pleasing in the sight of God; however, according to their means, they should seek to have this single dish be of good quality.

(Baha'u'llah:  Health and Healing          Pages 459)

3.3.4                   Health & Healing - Prayer

            Thy name is my healing, O my God, and remembrance of Thee is my remedy.  Nearness to Thee is my hope, and love for Thee is my companion.  Thy mercy to me is my healing and my succor in both this world and the world to come.  Thou, verily, art the All-Bountiful, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.

(Baha'u'llah:  Prayers and Meditations     Pages 262-263)


3.3.5                   Health & Healing - Alcohol

            Alcohol consumeth the mind and causeth man to commit acts of absurdity, but this opium, this foul fruit of the infernal tree, and this wicked hashish extinguish the mind, freeze the spirit, petrify the soul, waste the body and leave man frustrated and lost.

                        (Baha'u'llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 239)


3.3.6                   Health & Healing – Material and spiritual means

             There are two ways of healing sickness, material means and spiritual means.  The first is by the use of remedies, of medicines; the second consists in praying to God and in turning to Him. Both means should be used and practiced.
     Illness caused by physical accident should be treated with medical remedies; those which are due to spiritual causes disappear through spiritual means.  Thus an illness caused by affliction, fear, nervous impressions, will be healed by spiritual rather than by physical treatment.  Hence, both kinds of remedies should be considered.

`Abdu'l-Baha:  Baha'i World Faith*          Pages 375-376)


3.3.7                   Health & Healing – Material healing and the science of medicine

             Now let us speak of material healing.  The science of medicine is still in a condition of infancy; it has not reached maturity.  But when it has reached this point, cures will be performed by things which are not repulsive to the smell and taste of man - that is to say, by aliments, fruits and vegetables which are agreeable to the taste and have an agreeable smell.  For the provoking cause of disease - that is to say, the cause of the entrance of disease into the human body - is either a physical one or is the effect of excitement of the nerves.
     But the principal causes of disease are physical, for the human body is composed of numerous elements, but in the measure of an especial equilibrium.  As long as this equilibrium is maintained, man is preserved from disease; but if this essential balance, which is the pivot of the constitution, is disturbed, the constitution is disordered, and disease will supervene.

`Abdu'l-Baha: Some Answered Questions        Page 257


3.3.8                   Health & Healing – Cure by foods, ailments and fruits

            It is, therefore, evident that it is possible to cure by foods, aliments and fruits; but as today the science of medicine is imperfect, this fact is not yet fully grasped.
When the science of medicine reaches perfection, treatment will be given by foods, aliments, fragrant fruits and vegetables, and by various waters, hot and cold in temperature.

`Abdu'l-Baha: Some Answered Questions   Pages 258-259

3.3.9                   Health & Healing – Healing of illnesses by means of food

            At whatever time highly-skilled physicians shall have developed the healing of illnesses by means of foods, and shall make provision for simple foods, and shall prohibit humankind from living as slaves to their lustful appetites, it is certain that the incidence of chronic and diversified illnesses will abate, and the general health of all mankind will be much improved.  This is destined to come about.

`Abdu'l-Baha:  Selections ...     Pages 156-157


3.3.10                   Health & Healing - Children

            Let them also study whatever will nurture the health of the body and its physical soundness, and how to guard their children from disease.

`Abdu'l-Baha:  Selections ...  `Abdu'l-Baha      Pages 124-125

3.3.11                   Health & Healing – Proper food for human beings

            Regarding the eating of animal flesh and abstinence therefrom, know thou of a certainty that, in the beginning of creation, God determined the food of every living being, and to eat contrary to that determination is not approved.  For instance, beasts of prey, such as the wolf, lion and leopard, are endowed with ferocious, tearing instruments, such as hooked talons and claws.  From this it is evident that the food of such beasts is meat.  If they were to attempt to graze, their teeth would not cut the grass, neither could they chew the cud, for they do not have molars.  Likewise, God hath given to the four-footed grazing animals such teeth as reap the grass like a sickle, and from this we understand that the food of these species of animal is vegetable.  They cannot chase and hunt down other animals.  The falcon hath a hooked beak and sharp talons; the hooked beak preventeth him from grazing, therefore his food also is meat.

    But now coming to man, we see he hath neither hooked teeth nor sharp nails or claws, nor teeth like iron sickles.  From this it becometh evident and manifest that the food of man is cereals and fruit.  Some of the teeth of man are like millstones to grind the grain, and some are sharp to cut the fruit.  Therefore he is not in need of meat, nor is he obliged to eat it.  Even without eating meat he would live with the utmost vigour and energy.

`Abdu'l-Baha:  Health and Healing           Page 462


3.3.12                   Health & Healing – Smoking and addiction

            But there are other forbidden things which do not cause immediate harm, and the injurious effects of which are only gradually produced: such acts are also repugnant to the Lord, and blameworthy in His sight, and repellent. The absolute unlawfulness of these, however, hath not been expressly set forth in the Text, but their avoidance is necessary to purity, cleanliness, the preservation of health, and freedom from addiction.


Among these latter is smoking tobacco, which is dirty, smelly, offensive -- an evil habit, and one the harmfulness of which gradually becometh apparent to all. Every qualified physician hath ruled -- and this hath also been proven by tests -- that one of the components of tobacco is a deadly poison, and that the smoker is vulnerable to many and various diseases. This is why smoking hath been plainly set forth as repugnant from the standpoint of hygiene.


                       (Abdu'l-Baha, Selections from the Writings of Abdu'l-Baha, p. 147)



3.3.13                   Health & Healing – Tobacco, wine and opium

            Experience hath shown how much the renouncing of tobacco, wine and opium, giveth health, strength and intellectual enjoyments, penetration of judgment and physical vigor.


            (Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith - Abdu'l-Baha Section, p. 336)