‘Medicine is holly one, Medical Science is many, and Therapy is hundreds.’

Hippocrates, so-called the father of Western medicine, said “Life is short and art is long.” Medicine is strongly emphasized as a Healing Arts. As the Healing arts the medicine is fundamentally one viewed through all times and places while the medical science as the study of the medicine is categorized by Western, Eastern, Alternative, and so on. The therapy as the practical methods and medium for healing is over hundreds way. The art therapy is one of the therapies.


The historical flow if medicine has shifted from the ‘disease-oriented medicine’ to ‘health-oriented medicine’ in the twenty first century. It shows that ‘medicine for promoting well-being’ is strongly focused on recently rather than ‘medicine for discovering and eliminating diseases’. The physiological state of a person was divided into ‘health and disease’ in the past due to qite relative and dichotomous way of thinking. Now, we have a concept to describe the gray zone of ‘unhealthiness’, which is the area between health and disease. The guardian of genuine health is one who dominates the area of ‘unhealthiness’ and focuses on promoting wellness.


Clinical art therapy interventions can be seen as one of the most efficient treatment methods among the numerous complementary alternative medicines to comprehensively evaluate the patient’s physical, psychological, social, and spiritual condition. It is still being researched as a complementary alternative intervention method. Clinical art therapy plays a role as an important part of complementary alternative medicine and therefore has a potential in the development of a holistic medicine. If we understand medicine in this way, doctors should be able to implement art therapy themselves. To do this however, they need to be able to present rightful treatment courses and guidelines to their patients in their own areas by learning rightful research results and knowledge on art therapy.


Indeed clinical art therapy could contribute to the creation of a new world medicine. All medical models-Western, Eastern, and Complementary Alternative Medicines-have their own strengths and have their limitations and weaknesses. If, however, the effectiveness of each of the medical models were integrated as a whole, a model of integrative medicine or holistic medicine of a class higher could be produced. Bringing Eastern art and Eastern medicine, Western art and Western medicine together, and ultimately harmonizing them into an East-Western art and East-Western medicine would give birth to a model of art therapy that is integrative and integrating. This area of integrative is expected to act as a catalyst in creating a new universal holistic medicine. (‘Towards an Integrated Medicine’, Kim, S. H., 2011)





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