'Holism' - Why is it important?

According to Dictionary.com, the term 'holism' was introduced in 1926 by J.C. Smuts in the book Holism and Evolution. Holism is a "theory that whole entities...have an existence other than as the mere sum of their parts."

As someone in college in the 1970s, holism was a concept I remembered learning about in my education classes. At the time, whole language pedagogy had taken over. I was drawn to its logic. Of course! Expose children and young people to whole poems or stories, not segments used to teach elements of grammar or spelling rules. Help them to grasp the structure and the depth of the work, not to analyze its parts, at least not before experiencing the whole!

Years later, upon entering the energy healing field, the emphasis of my training has been to view the person as a whole. Once again, I have found the concept of holism very compelling. 

Working from the framework of holism enables me to keep the focus positive, reinforcing clients' innate capacity to self-heal. Holism requires me to consider where the person is at on their developmental path. And also to ask, "What is the context?" Then, when addressing specific client concerns such as headaches or pain in their limbs, issues are considered from a holistic perspective.