In Western medicine, we often compare the human body to a machine. 

We say the heart is like a pump, the joints are like hinges, and the liver and kidneys act as waste filters. It’s a helpful way to explain how things work when it comes to diagnosing and treating diseases. In fact, I use these comparisons all the time to help people understand the basics of how our bodies function. 

But here’s the thing — this analogy falls short in capturing the incredible capabilities of our bodies. When we use this analogy, we subconsciously put a cap on our understanding of just how dynamic and adaptable we truly are. 

So, let’s dig into the reasons behind this limitation and expand our perspective…


❌  It separates the mind from the body and creates disconnectIon 

We’re not just a bunch of mechanical parts meshed together; we’re living beings with complex physiological, biochemical, and emotional systems that all interact and impact one another.

Sure, it’s important to focus on specific body parts and systems in certain medical contexts. But let’s not forget that our overall well-being is influenced by a whole bunch of factors. Our mental and emotional states, lifestyle choices, environment, and social connections all play a role in our health. If we ignore these aspects and stick to comparing our bodies to machines, we miss out on understanding the bigger picture of our well-being and hinder our efforts to truly feel our best.

Oftentimes, the underlying cause of our physical discomfort stems from living out of sync with our environment. Whether it’s making poor dietary choices, overexerting ourselves, or excessively stressing over things beyond our control, we tend to lose our balance.

When we compare our bodies to lifeless machines, we inadvertently promote dualism—the belief that our mind and body are separate entities. However, the truth is that our mind and body work in harmony, collaborating in every decision and habit we make throughout the day.

It might sound like a small thing, but how we perceive and think about our bodies actually carries a lot of weight. It affects our overall outlook on health and can make a big difference in how we take care of ourselves.


❌  It fails to encompass the self-healing mechanisms of the body

Most machines do not have the ability to self-regulate or heal themselves. 

They require external intervention for repair and maintenance, while our bodies on the other hand, possess an innate ability to restore balance and heal themselves. 

A fascinating example of this innate healing power is the story of Dr. Joe Dispenza. After suffering a severe spinal injury, he was told by medical professionals that surgery was his only option for recovery. However, Dr. Dispenza chose a different path. Through focused intention, meditation, and a deep belief in the body’s ability to heal, he underwent a remarkable transformation and ultimately healed his own spine without surgical intervention. His story serves as a powerful testament to the extraordinary self-regulatory and healing capabilities of our bodies.

To learn more about Dr. Joe Dispenza’s journey and the power of the mind-body connection in healing, you can visit his website:

This remarkable capacity for self-regulation sets us apart from machines and underscores the complexity and adaptability of our biological systems.

❌  It implies that you can be “broken” and need a specialist to fix/repair it

In the machine analogy, the focus is often on identifying what is ‘broken’ in our bodies and finding ways to fix or replace those parts. This perspective can inadvertently make us feel like we are broken when we experience illness or health challenges.

Rather than embracing a holistic understanding of our well-being, this approach tends to prioritize symptom management through pharmaceuticals or surgeries, often providing quick fixes without addressing the underlying cause. While there are situations where such interventions are necessary and beneficial, relying solely on them can leave us feeling like fragmented pieces in need of repair.

By masking our symptoms with these quick fixes, we disregard the messages our body is trying to communicate, signaling that something deeper requires attention. It’s like covering up the check engine light in a car without addressing the underlying issue—it may temporarily hide the problem, but it does not address the root cause.

This narrow view of the body as a machine overlooks the incredible resilience and regenerative capacity that exists within us. Our bodies possess remarkable self-healing mechanisms, intricate systems that work tirelessly to restore balance and promote well-being. Embracing this inherent ability allows us to shift from a perspective of brokenness to one of empowerment, where we actively engage in understanding and addressing the root causes of our health challenges.


❌  It disembodied and disempowers you from your body

What happens when we feel that there is something broken, rattling, or in the process of breaking in our bodies? Does it make you feel strong, confident, or secure? 

When we view the body as broken, it disempowers our belief that we are capable of healing and fixing it. It’s easy to slip down into the rabbit hole of catastrophizing on how your body is “totaled”, that you may never be well again, and “it’s all downhill from here”. 

The body is kept alive by homeostasis and other intricate mechanisms that come into play when we are injured or ill. The ‘body as a machine’ metaphor is not only inaccurate, but also potentially debilitating. If you live with pain and have been led to believe the “broken machine” theory about your own body, it can affect your recovery. Our mental state and positive outlook on our healing process can have an incredible impact on our health…