Alternative Medicine: Real Benefits and Real Problems

Ecover-medicine300x461 In a recent two-part post on this site (June 18 and 19) I wrote about the new physics and the new medicine. I am very aware that this conversation has some strange extremes to be found at both ends of the spectrum. The mere mention of “new” medicine makes some people react with intense passion, pro and con. I am not on the extremes of this debate thus I want to explain how I have come to appreciate alternative medicine without buying into the “hype” that so often surrounds this subject.

One of the first questions people ask when this subject comes up is very basic: “Why are so many competent and good physicians so negative about complimentary, or alternative, medicine?” If this is really beneficial why are so many opposed to it?

If my non-scientific sense of things is accurate the mainstream media presents a lot of negative information about the flaws of alternative medicine and the hype often associated with it. The truth of the matter is that there is a lot of hype in alternative medicine. The media does us a favor by pointing this out routinely. Even if you believe, as I do believe, that there is a lot of good to be discovered in alternative medicine, you should always welcome good criticism. Every gain, in any field of research and study, has positives and negatives.

Some of the criticism provided by mainstream Western medicine reminds us that no complimentary therapies have been found to cure cancer thus we should not rely on such theories in treating it. I agree, but with one caveat. We have no single proven approach to cancer, though great advance has been made and some Western models are proving beneficial in major ways. I would opt for a combination approach to most illnesses, including cancer, for which we have no proven (single) cure. Since I have an illness that the medical world in the West offers no solid cure for I speak from some experience at this point.

However, many of these critical articles and news releases contain some implied facts that are not proven on the opposite side of the debate. For example, bio-energy fields are real and measurable. This study has been going on for more than thirty years. I gave, in my two previous articles, an example of how the new physics and the new medicine had combined in producing a way to break up kidney stones with a totally non-invasive approach based on sound waves. These studies are not based on placebo effects or “self hypnosis.” The mind is powerful and habituated patterns of thought can be changed. There is much more to learn in this field. My appeal is that we become open to learn more and to use all that science reveals to us, including the way the mind works to promote healing and wellness. Surely Christians, who have read so much in the Bible about the mind and human thought, can be open to such an approach to health.

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