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Avicenna - The Canon of Medicine - The importance of exercise



Type of spiritual experience

A description of the experience

Avicenna (1999). The Canon of Medicine (al-Qānūn fī'l-ṭibb), vol. 1. Laleh Bakhtiar (ed.), Oskar Cameron Gruner (trans.), Mazhar H. Shah (trans.). Great Books of the Islamic World

"Since the regimen of maintaining health consists essentially in the regulation of:
(1) exercise
(2) food and
(3) sleep,

we may begin our discourse with the subject of exercise

……….Once we direct the attention towards regulating exercise as to amount and time, we shall find there is no need for such medicines as are ordinarily required for remedying diseases dependent on [abnormal] matters, or diseases of temperament consequent upon such. This is true provided the rest of the regimen is appropriate and proper.

…………..The value of exercise includes the following
(1) it hardens the organs and renders them fit for their functions
(2) it results in a better absorption of food, aids assimilation, and, by increasing the innate heat, improves nutrition
(3) it clears the pores of the skin
(4) it removes effete substances through the lungs
(5) it strengthens the physique.

Vigorous exercise invigorates the muscular and nervous system

The source of the experience