PraXis combines evidence-based wellness practices with ancient Christian tradition. PraXis wants to bring the healthy body and mind back into daily prayer life as a way to glorify God.
“Your Faith has made you well.” [Luke 17:19]
What is Christian Wellness?
Wellness represents a $4 billion industry centered on addressing two specific conditions: heart disease and mental health (anxiety and depression).
Wellness tends to refer to mind, body, spirit practices that help to address these long-term health issues. But in order for it to work, you need to change daily habits, and that takes time, support from a real-life community and for Christians, participation in Christ.
Christians have a very unique religious view of the body, mind, and spirit. We believe you are just as much a bodily being as you are a spiritual being.
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” [1 Corinthians 6:19-20]
That’s why you have to take care of your body and exalt God through the body [Phil. 1:20].
We also have a unique view of wellness. Our English word salvation, comes from the Greek soteria, which, among other things means, healing and well-being. That said, the Church often focuses our attention on mental and intellectual pursuits, communal life, and charitable actions in the world, but not a lot about the bodily and mental soteria discussed in Scripture. That’s where PraXis comes in.
What do you have to do?
First, PraXis is not a substitute for going to church—it is a wellness practice designed to integrate into your existing spiritual life. We simply practice way of integrating mental prayer, fitness and fasting/diet into a prayerful life. We do this through our MeetUp group, our blog, social media, and through partnership with local churches. The theology comes directly from scripture and from the traditions of the Great Church.
“Be sober-minded; be watchful.” [1 Peter 5:8]
Christian Mindfulness: You can call this silent prayer, wordless prayer, pure prayer, noetic prayer or neptic [watchful] prayer. There are so many terms. There are many forms of prayer that are considered contemplative. That is, when one sits in silence with God. This silence or stillness becomes a space in which God can emerge. Contemplative prayer, also produces a byproduct that science now refers to as Mindfulness, in which one learns to observe thoughts and emotions in a neutral way. This helps with anxiety and depression, and Neuroplasticity, AKA mental resilience. Christian might call it sober-mindedness.
“Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off.” Acts 13:3
Christian Diet: Controlling what you eat is central to good health. In the Christian tradition this is called fasting. This involves the fruit of self-control, [Gal. 5:22-23] as we turn away from certain foods, mostly meat and cheese, from time to time, and turn towards God.
This kind of fasting or plant-based diets have been practiced since the days of the Hebrew Scriptures. But fasting has a number of health benefits, when we reduce carbs, sugars, processed foods and fatty meats. But short periods of no food intake at all, 16 hours to 3 days, are both biblical and when practiced carefully, can help cleanse the body and attune the spiritual senses.
“I discipline my body and keep it under control”
[1 Corinthians 9:27]
Fitness: For most of human history people really haven’t needed to deliberately exercise to stay healthy. The Apostle Paul was a manual laborer. In his time, the vast majority of people not only worked with their hand, but everything humans needed to do to stay alive was done by hand. It’s only in our modern times that we need to go out of our way to physically exercise. Only 5% of American adults are physically active for at least 30 minutes a day, and only 20% of kids. The body needs constant stretching, strength training and cardio fitness. So while there really isn’t anything known as ancient Christian exercise, Greco-Roman gymnastics was well established before the founding of the Church. We will show you some simple exercises and explain how they relate to all the other practices we do.
Your Body and the Body of Christ
Ultimately, this is about you, your body, and God. Ideally, program is meant to be done in cooperation with your local church. We can tell you the exercises, and the science, but ultimately you need the Church and God to pull this off.
So please explore these links below and come to PraXis with us.
Cornelius and Jamie
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