Health, as defined by the World Health Organization, is a state of full physical, emotional and social well being and not just the absence of illness and disease. A number of definitions have actually been in use since time immemorial. For example, the famous Biblical Book of Genesis attributes the creation of humans to a divine, perfect act of creation. This definition has sometimes been called the anthropological definition of health, because it involves an analysis of how health affects human life as a whole. It considers not just the physical aspect of health, but also the emotional, psychological, social and spiritual aspects.
Health is also related to a person’s emotions and other dimensions of his or her well-being. The prevailing culture and current ideas about health are considered part of the definition. People’s thoughts and perceptions about wellness are shaped by their experiences both in the here and now and in the past. The definition also includes the dimension of what is normal for a person, what constitutes illness or disability, and how these experiences influence their ability to cope with the typical elements of life. The dimensions of health may vary from country to country.
There is also a fourth definition of health, which is more inclusive and more controversial. The other three definitions (physical, emotional, and social) are considered to be in opposition to each other. By this definition, there is no room for the existence of a state of sickness or disease. Instead, there exists only a state of well-being, which can be affected by disease or its absence. This third definition is the most influential of all three.