Medical Science (evidence based medicine) as developed during the 20th century is a left-brain approach to the management of health and disease
Traditional healing skills, as practised over the centuries, are a right-brain approach to health and lifestyle problems
Combined together the two approaches make a powerful combination
Scientific Medicine is based on the premise that people and animals are biological mechanisms operating in logical and reproducible ways and that healthcare professionals and researchers are detached observers capable of detecting consistent disease patterns (diseases, diagnoses, syndromes).
[ More on Evidence-based Medicine (EBM) (opening in new windows): On-line lecture Literature ]
Healing is based on the concept that human and animal life are biological manifestations of "consciousness" - a non-physical (metaphysical) entity which can exist (e.g. as a "soul") within a physical body, but also has non-physical (energetic) connections with other consciousnesses and to a "divine" or "universal" consciousness of some kind. "Healing" is primarily concerned with underlying abstract metaphysical processes (beliefs, connections, experiences, meanings, motivations, perceptions, suffering) as well as their (secondary) material manifestations (disease, dysfunction).
[ More on Complementary & Alternative Medicine (opening in new windows): UK USA ]
|Aids natural mechanisms, uses natural forces||Materials & methods often un-natural|
|Methods derived anecdotally, intuitively or experientially||Methods derived from rigorous documentation & critical analysis|
|Placebo (psychogenic) effects exploited||Placebo effects discounted|
|Works with metaphysical (spiritual) as well as physical phenomena||Scope restricted to physical and linguistic phenomena|
|Can deal with new or unresearched situations||Restricted to research that has been done|
|Healer personally involved, uses personal charisma, gives unconditional love, vulnerable to counter-transference||Provider is detached, objective, safe from intimacy or projection
Subject may become "a case of..."
|Focus: integration of past fragmentation, cleansing of acquired "impurities", moving forwards to a more expansive experience||Focus: curing (restoration of normal structure, function), alleviating suffering|
Healing and Scientific Medicine have areas of overlap but also some fundamental differences in approach. They can often be used together, either in complementary or contemporaneous alternative ways. Both systems can make significant contributions to healthcare and both are also open to abuse, error, and inconsistency - as are all human activities (a UK scientific medicine doctor recently became the greatest British serial killer of all time, after deliberately killing 215 of his patients).
Healthcare workers have the opportunity to be simultaneously scientist and healer - thus practising both the science and art of medicine!
See also this editorial in British medical Journal: December 2002 (in new window)
is movement towards
is movement towards
Dis-ease & Dysfunction
|Wholeness (resource-fulness)||Fragmentation (separation splitting)|
|Balance (centredness self-discipline)||Imbalance (craving driven obsessed)|
|Direction (manifestation, "on course")||Entropy (deadness, collapse, emptiness)|
|Harmony (humility, synchronicity)||Discord (conflict, dissonance)|
|Flow (life force, vigour, vitality)||Blocked (stuck, dissociated)|
Author: Dr. Mike Meredith