Role of Spirituality in Cancer Patients

Role of Spirituality in Cancer Patients


Whenever we encounter serious life difficulty such as life-threatening illness or loss of a close person, many of us become more spiritual than before the event. The same is true for cancer patients. Namely, a new study examined the role of spirituality in cancer patients. The researchers examined 44,000 cancer patients and found out that patients who are more spiritual tend to experience fewer symptoms, and their illness gets a milder form. Cancer patients who cope better with their illness were the ones who already have a sense of purpose, believe in God’s guidance and benevolence. They better respond to treatments and have better health. On the other hand, patients who believe in God, but God who is cruel, punishing and rigid, do not show better results than the patients who considered themselves as an atheist. According to Dr. Ruediger Dahlke, a German psychotherapist, each disease appears as a result of inner disharmony of our soul. He explains that cancer occurs in people who want to suppress inner growth, patients who resist change and would do anything to secure the status quo. But, it is not life. Life is in a constant state of flux, it continuously changes and evolving. Resisting change equals resisting life. The fear of change is in the background of cancer, and might be that spiritual practice helps many patients reduce fear, find the meaning in their disease and keep the faith. To find out more about role of spirituality in cancer patients, the article “The Importance of Spirituality in Cancer Care” lists the following benefits.

Role of Spirituality in Cancer Patients

Studies indicate that the majority of patients rely upon spirituality to help them better cope with their cancer and treatment. Incorporating spirituality into treatment decreases depression while increasing well being, sense of autonomy, and personal satisfaction. Benefits of incorporating spirituality into cancer treatment include:

Decreased anxiety, depression anger and discomfort

Decreased feelings of isolation, loneliness and risk of suicide

Assistance helping patients adjust to the physical and emotional effects of cancer treatments

Increased ability to enjoy life during cancer treatment

Increased positive feelings, including optimism, freedom from regret, satisfaction with life and inner peace

According to medical experts, cancer patients, who find the peace with their illness, can heal themselves. Accepting their illness, they finally accept the change and open up to evolution. Even though spirituality cannot guarantee the healing, it will alleviate pain, remove stress and help cancer patients find inner peace.

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