With the advent of the germ theory
of disease, centuries of interest in what is now called the body-mind
connection fell into disrepute. I have described myself as a
medical philosopher and would like to begin the incredibly difficult
and important section
on emotions with a few broad remarks.
During the time of the Inquisition,
doctors were prohibited from "curing"
patients because the medical fashion at that time, dictated by
a Church going through one of the most incomprehensible eras
of history, was that disease is consequence of sin.
So as not to interfere with either God's wrath or the opportunity
that patients had to expiate their sins, doctors neither cured
nor provided relief from suffering.
I never understood this dark period, especially
not in the context of a Christian faith founded on the concepts
of forgiveness of sins and compassion for those who suffer. Despite
the teachings of the spiritual leader of Western civilization,
the Inquisition burned approximately nine million people at the
stake, mostly women who practiced gentler and more humane forms
of healing than those espoused by the officialdom of the times.
What Does This Have to do
with Anything Today?
Like every other discipline, medicine
is a product of its history and the age. It goes through fashions.
Hippocrates, the Father of Modern Medicine, practiced natural
medicine. Hippocrates lived in what might have been a Golden
Age of Knowledge, but he lived before the Christian Era and was
neither an heir to Judaism nor a great influence on Christianity.
Western civilization is more a product of the convolutions of
insane quests for dominion: dominion over souls, minds, property,
and ultimately bodies. Reformers have not, in truth, been very
successful in changing this picture.
After inheriting the enormous academic
superiority of both Islamic and Judaic learned traditions, the
West plunged into a Dark Age, burned books and witches, and nearly
destroyed the entire legacy of natural medicine with its emphasis
on observation, herbs, harmlessness, and healing. Instead, it
focused on evil. Disease was evil. People who had diseases were
sinners. Doctors, most of whom were trained in monastic institutions,
cooperated with a vengeful God by using methods that increased
suffering, and they persecuted those who offered kinder and more
humane relief from disease.
It's no wonder that so many risked
perilous voyages to create new lives in distant lands, away from
the Inquisition and the Black Death. We who live in the U.S.
cannot understand our history if we look at the Protestant Reformation
as an issue of whether the Bible could be translated into the
vernacular and read by common people. Life in Europe was dangerous,
and people were leaving by the droves.
Separated from their homelands,
they became dependent on Native American medical traditions for
knowledge of the herbs that could make their lives safer in the
face of diseases. The revival of natural medicine is thus very
much a part of the New World, a place with no history whatsoever
of the bizarre official medicine of the Old World. Thus, here
it was that botanic medicine secured its rightful place in Western
Why is this Important?
These historic events are important
because natural medicine is focused on healing, not on disease.
It is based on relief, not on identifying pathological organisms.
It is clinical and empirical, meaning that all trials are carried
out on real people with real problems; and the task of the healer
is to make accurate observations and good decisions so that
the treatment can be fine-tuned to the precise needs of the patients.
There is no mass production of cure-alls and no transplanting
of diseases from one species to another much less deliberate
attempts to make creatures ill in order to find out what will
make them well again.
In short, natural medicine is humane,
logical, and appealing to one's common sense. However, it isn't
scientific, at least not in an academic sense. Natural medicine
is about healing, and the reason this is important to the germ
theory is that had Bechamp won the debate with Pasteur, you and
I would have had an entirely different medical curriculum from
the day of our first smallpox vaccines. We would have learned
that those who are healthy and have good immune systems and adequate
immune responses do not get sick even if exposed to pathogens.
Doctors would have been trained to support healthy bodies rather
than to look for microscopic causes of diseases, and they would
have developed wholesome medicines instead of pusses and poisons
to treat illness.
In my opinion, we have gone completely
amuck. We are fouling our Planet with ludicrous chemical and
pharmaceutical products and terrorizing people into submission
by telling them of the dangers of germs instead of the value
of healthy foods, harmonious personal relationships, job fulfillment,
and spiritual bliss. Who profits from this? We know the answer,
but do we really understand that Pasteur was wrong. He himself
admitted it on his deathbed. He recognized that the terrain in
which the disease appears is the cause of the illness, not the
microorganism. We wasted a century on never-ending promises of
miracle cures hyped by an overpaid Madison Avenue propaganda
machine and a political system that is in the pocket of this
hugely profitable industry.
Is this Really Relevant?
Yes, it is. For many reasons, it
is important to know these facts because one will never be totally
comfortable with one's pursuit of natural approaches to healing
unless one also recognizes that many of the premises of modern
medicine are flawed by an obsession with microorganisms and powerful
drugs that can allegedly destroy these hugely adaptable microorganisms.
Is the whole of modern medicine incorrect? No, obviously not.
Even zealous natural healers admit the existence of germs. The
difference is that healing involves the strengthening of the
constitution so that it is better equipped to deal with insults.
It is also relevant because many
of the theories of constitutional type and the psychosomatic
characteristics of different disease conditions are part of natural
medicine and its history. Modern medicine discarded this knowledge
when it embraced the germ theory. It failed to see individual
differences as relevant to disease process and thus created a
one size fits all prescription for humanity. However, when the
germ theory gained ground, the idea of disease as a sin died,
but the price paid for this relief from blame has been high and
also extreme since karma does play a part in all that we experience
so going from one extreme to the other did not help us to find
the middle way!
on pH Balance
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