Why Rachel’s Vineyard? (Part III) — Full use of our Five Senses

“Everything that we learn, we learn through the senses.”

This basic principle of Aristotelian philosophy may seem to be too simple, but it is absolutely true. Every single thing that you and I know, we learned, at the most basic level, through seeing, or hearing, or touching, or tasting, or smelling. Every piece of data that we have in our minds, came there through our five basic senses. Once we have used our five senses to gather information, we are able to remember, to use our imagination, to compile images into bigger pictures, and to reason about all those things that we have perceived through the senses.

Why is this important when we think about healing the wounds of abortion? Most ministries that work in the area of post-abortion healing are using only one or two of our five senses. Counseling, or “talk therapy,” generally is using only our sense of hearing. Others might use our sense of sight (pictures of Jesus forgiving a sinner, or carrying the lost sheep). But Rachel’s Vineyard retreats actually use all of our five senses. We listen to the Scriptures and the conversations (hearing); we see the setup of the table at the center of our retreat circle (and many other things as well); we feel things with our sense of touch; and we even use our senses of taste and smell as well! All five of our senses are activated, and this means that more information is being presented to our minds – all directed toward the spiritual and emotional healing of the wounds of abortion. This is actually the same principle that is used so effectively in the education system of Maria Montessori, including the teaching of our Faith through the method known as the “Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.” Rachel’s Vineyard retreats are very effective in healing the wounds of abortion because they respect and use all five of senses with which we have been gifted by Almighty God, to help us to open ourselves to His Mercy and Healing!