Body and Mind: The Constant Search for Balance

How to achieve harmony in the relationship between the needs of the body and the desires of the mind
Irene Schiff

We live in a time where a lot of emphasis is placed on caring for our bodies. Hard-to-reach imaginary models are proposed to us, sometimes even imposed, and yet are seen as essential requirements for a person to be accepted by others. So here we are, loving our bodies, following or even suffering the dictates of aesthetics, not accepting the limits of physicality such as fatigue and aging, constantly looking for the elixir of youth.


What about our mind, the other thing that makes us unique? What role or what importance do we attach to it? Mind, character, personality, thinking. There are so many sides to a single polyhedron, the mind and the body of the newborn, the changing teen, the mature adult. The nature of thinking is constantly evolving. What is it based on? On acquired characteristics in the DNA? On one’s education? On the environment in which we grew up or the one we are now experiencing? What are we thinking about, what are our values, what is our experience, our willpower, our true possibilities, our sense of duty? Are we able to bring all these things together, and does that correspond to what our bodies want, desire, can do? Is there a common thread that keeps all this in balance and in motion? Is there unity between mind and body, is an alliance possible or is there dichotomy? Humanity has been for so long looking for answers to these questions: scientists, philosophers, theologians, artists continue to question themselves (and will forever do so). And we obviously cannot provide here any sort of answer. We can, however, try to confront each other, beginning with our own self, to find out if our minds and our bodies are sufficiently in harmony and, at the same time, in a dynamic relationship. In this regard, it could be useful to remember a quote from Einstein: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”



1) Expo 2015

a) too complicated to go

b) you had no interest in the matter

c) you certainly went


2) You hear “His heart is beating in his throat”; you think about

a) a long run

b) an anxious wait

c) the first love


3) During Renaissance, you would have liked to be

a) Cavour

b) Garibaldi

c) King Victor Emmanuel


4) The good old days...

a) were they that good?

b) you would like to go back in time

c) the future can also be good


5) You have a flat tire while driving in the countryside and you don’t have your mobile phone

a) you try changing the tire

b) you walk to the nearest village

c) you wait until someone passes by


6) The orchestra conductor

a) how difficult it must be to coordinate all the musicians

b) does he know how to play every instrument?

c) today we don’t listen to classical music so much


7) “Stability” makes you think of

a) a scale

b) someone walking on a hanging rope

c) a moderator in a debate


8) When you hear “A punch in the stomach”, you think about

a) a boxing match

b) some bad news

c) an exercise for abs


9) You have been wronged; your first thought is

a) this always happens to me

b) he’s going to pay for this

c) how do I tackle this problem?


10) What is your favourite quote?

a) the heart has its reasons of which reason knows nothing

b) at the end of the journey, the turtle can tell more things than the hare

c) patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet


11) There is an interesting conference but you’re tired and it’s raining

a) it’s interesting and you go

b) is it really that interesting?

c) it really isn’t that interesting and you stay home


12) Yoga 

a) gymnastics

b) philosophy

c) boredom


13) A young person asks your advice on choosing the faculty of a university; you answer

a) the one that offers more job opportunities

b) the one you like best

c) the decision is his


14) There is a quarrel among colleagues; you

a) leave

b) listen carefully before intervening

c) immediately give your advice


15) Christmas is coming

a) you try to lose a little weight

b) it’s useless to go on a diet; you’ll gain weight anyway

c) you do more sports





Question A B C

1) 1 2 3

2) 1 3 2

3) 3 1 2

4) 2 1 3

5) 3 2 1

6) 1 2 3

7) 3 1 2

8) 2 3 1

9) 1 2 3

10) 1 2 2

11) 3 2 1

12) 2 3 1

13) 2 1 3

14) 1 3 2

15) 3 1 2







Balance is an important and infrequent skill. You try to balance the instinctive side with the rational side; hence you are appreciated by many because they can count on your unbiased and considered opinion.





You’re a sensible person and you like to explore things extensively. Instead of an evening at the gym, you prefer to spend time discussing with friends the facts of life. You have various interests and this is good, but sometimes try to let go a bit more.





Spontaneity is what characterizes you and you need to be on the go, to work on various projects even if you can’t complete them all. Sometimes you struggle to control your emotions. Because of that, you may want to take more time to think about things so that you don’t regret anything.