There is an Eighth Dimension of Wellness!
Lo and behold! There is an eighth dimension of wellness!
I am labeling this eighth dimension the Cultural Dimension of Wellness. Some people may try to lump it in with the social dimension, but it is more than that. In fact, it’s quite different when you get down to the basics of it. Therefore, I believe it deserves a dimension all to itself.
I love this dimension, yet I fear it. It is the dimension of your past, and it is the dimension of your calling which has been with you since birth. It is the dimension that holds the special talents you were gifted with. It is the dimension of family heritage and memories; just as it is the dimension of dreams, when or if we act on our calling. No one’s cultural dimension is the same, but we all have one that aches to be remembered and developed.
Parts of it may have been cultivated beginning when you were a child. Perhaps your father was a hunter and he taught you to hunt. Maybe it’s fishing or a sport like golf in your family. It could be ballroom dancing that has morphed into ballet, jazz, or tap. Or perhaps you were taught to master the handcrafts of your grandmother’s day (and her grandmother before her): tatting, crocheting, knitting, embroidery, quilting. It could be something unique to your religion or ethnicity. These are family values that have their roots deep in the dimension of culture.
Perhaps you’ve had this gnawing feeling that you were meant to be a writer. So, you tinkered with writing poems of your own after learning about poetry in school. Or you were moved to write your thoughts to someone because it seemed easier than speaking to the person directly. Perhaps you discover you can paint. You can intimately “see” the shapes, colors and varying hues that bring each masterpiece to life. Or you hear a melody ringing in your head and are moved to get it down on paper. Perhaps it is an instrument you feel called to play such as a guitar or piano. These are the special talents that are inherent in each of us.
These are the driving forces behind this dimension and this is why I fear them. I don’t always feel like complying with this dimension of wellness that brings the culture and creativity out of me and into the world. Or I’m afraid that I’ll fail or embarrass myself, so I don’t want to try. We must be willing to follow the tugging-at-the-heart that so often accompanies this dimension. To not do so keeps us from becoming whole and experiencing the wellness that this dimensions holds for us.
Do you understand now, why I say this dimension is so much more than the social dimension? To me it seems to almost be a cross between the spiritual dimension and the social dimension. I believe it is strong enough to stand on its own and deserves to be a dimension all to itself – the cultural dimension.
Are you honoring the cultural dimension’s heritage in your life? Are you listening to the uniqueness of the cultural dimension’s “calling” you forth to your dreams? I encourage you to embrace your cultural dimension, learn all you can about it and let it shine outward from your life.
CULTURAL WELLNESS – Our heritage and future belong to this dimension. Honor healthy family traditions and values. Recognize and develop your inherent gifts and talents and share them with the world. Enjoy and appreciate the diversity in the talents, gifts and heritage of others.