Oz grew up in a mixed Muslim environment where his father’s family practiced more traditional Islam, while his mother’s family were more secular Muslims. Oz identifies himself as a Muslim and says that he has been influenced by the mysticism of Sufi Muslims from Central Turkey, as well as the ideas of Emanuel Swedenborg, the Swedish scientist, philosopher, and Christian theologian.
Oz is a practitioner of transcendental meditation. “When I meditate, I go to that place where truth lives”, he said. “I can see what reality really is, and it is so much easier to form good relationships then.”
In the November/December 2007 issue of Spirituality and Health, a glossy bimonthly devoted to New Age topics, Oz coauthored an article titled “Mehmet Oz Finds His Teacher,” about how his wife Lisa introduced him to the theology of Swedenborg (Dr. Oz’s wife Lisa is from the Swedenborgian community of Bryn Athyn, Pennsylvania).
In my practice I have struggled to provide holistic healing. For example, helping a transplant recipient deal with the emotional crisis of a rejecting heart is often more of a challenge than the surgery itself. Nothing in science can address the hopelessness we feel when our hearts fail us completely, or give us comfort when we face the possibility of our own death or the loss of a loved one. As a physician, I seek to connect with my patients on both the physical and spiritual levels, since true healing is never about curing just the body. Although I rarely mention him by name, Swedenborg has made this easier for me.
“You Are the Lungs,” a Swedenborg Foundation video about the way that individual people form part of a greater whole in heaven, was featured on the February 3, 2017 episode of The Dr. Oz Show.