Health and Wellness

Hope, Healing and WellBeing

Mary Treacy O'Keefe

Hope, Healing and WellBeing – Healing Spaces with Dr. Esther Sternberg

Dr. Esther Sternberg, author of Healing Spaces: The Science of Place and WellBeing explains how she was drawn to the field of mind/body medicine by the interactions with a single patient, whose recovery motivated her to discover the connection between the brain and immune system. She describes how the body responds to stressful events. Fortunately, our bodies have many stress-reducing mechanisms, including the ‘relaxation response’ which is a way to ‘reset’ the stress response and bring balance back into our lives.

She shares some of the anecdotes from her book, Healing Spaces, including how views of nature enhance the healing process, especially for people who are hospitalized. Art and music therapy are also potent forces for healing. When someone looks at certain scenes, it can evoke pleasant memories that can help replace stressful feelings. There are sacred locations that also offer healing, even when there is no physical cure. At places like Lourdes, France, sometimes miraculous cures do occur. She also discusses other many health benefits that result from prayer, meditation, and creating a healing space between two people who care about each other. For more information, please visit

NOTE: Dr. Sternberg will be speaking at 4:00pm on Monday, April 30 at the University of Minnesota, with the Center for Spirituality and Healing ( and May 1, at 7pm at The Marsh in Minnetonka, MN (