Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

Energy healing – real, deceiving or illusory?

In Dutch (the language spoken in the Netherlands) there is only a two-letter difference between alternative medicine and all too naive medicine (alternatieve geneeskunde, al te naieve geneeskunde).

Look at That

When the University Maastricht was in its first years, it decided to specialize in investigating alternative medicine. One of the experiments was set up with iridologists – people who diagnose and treat people after only studying their irises. Twenty of such experienced healers received extremely high-quality photos of the irises of patients with known illnesses. They were asked to give each their diagnosis.

All of them happily agreed. None of them said: But I can’t do this just from pictures. In other words, they were each convinced that science would now confirm their special skill. Finally recognition.

The result: all of them were more wrong than if they would just have just guessed while being blindfolded or would have drawn straws. They were not even close. Like an infection or cancer but in the wrong organ, or the right organ but the wrong illness. Total failure.

My conclusion: their “talent” was an illusion but they themselves believed in it. They were not fraudulent – only mistaken.

Put Your Energy to a Good Purpose

Therefore, there is no need to assume that energy healers are frauds.

But it is important to establish how they do it. That’s not just to establish if such healers should be paid for or be consulted. If there is anything to it, we should know what and teach caring people to learn this.

I saw a few clips with “healer” Charlie Goldsmith. I know little about him. He wants physicians to find out how it works. He works for free, what one would expect from someone with a gift for humanity. I don’t care that he’s been seriously doubted and attacked; skepticism is a good thing.

(He’ll start teaching an expensive course in (his claims) how to feel good by taking care of your health. I’m not dealing with that program at all.)

Looking at his clips, I think I can tell how it works. Needs no research.

He works mostly with people who have severe pains. Now, pain is a funny thing. Fear makes it larger. If you expect pain, you have a bigger chance to actually feel pain. That doesn’t mean that if someone helps you not to expect pain, that you have been fooled. In fact, you are fooled by the expectation that you had pain all the time and therefore you must be in pain the next second too.

Pain is an alarm signal to the brain for you to pay attention. It’s a gift (that nobody wants). To focus on where the pain seems to come from makes you feel it more. But if the alarm is very large, you may continue to focus on the pain, ending up in a vicious cycle having pain because you had pain. That cycle is hard to break.

And this is how I think he works (he has a lot of strings to his bow):

  • He asks details about the pain. He wants to know exactly where and what it has done to you. He shows no hesitation and zooms in close and stays close. It comes across not just as caring but also as being there with and for the patient. (Compare this to many doctors who are often distant and clinical(!) – impersonal, businesslike).
  • He does not hesitate to touch or point really close up. (There is nothing sexual in the way he touches. He is good-looking so it’s nice to get attention from someone so handsome but he doesn’t act superior to his patients who suffer and therefore don’t look that hot.)
  • He seems not scared of the pain, to hear about it. (Many people are not just scared of their own pain but also about that of others, as if it would be contagious.)
  • He is humble in saying that he never knows if he can help and how much. That gives the feeling of: we are together in this uncertainty. His attitude is that not he heals but something may. (Not like a famous professor who thinks he can proclaim your chances at healing.)
  • Most importantly, it seems to me, is that he’s calm, light, optimistic, confident, hands-on and quick. This confidence seems to say: sometimes, great things are possible. (He is not timid or lethargic.)
  • In other words, he radiates belief in that goodness may happen. The power to heal ourselves is enormous if only we could believe in us. Placebos (fake treatments) tap into this but that doesn’t mean that this power does not exist. When we cannot anymore believe in ourselves, someone believing in us may make us leap over buildings (so to speak).
  • When he does his thing with fluttering eyelids he seems to concentrate and recharge this belief. It comes across as: you are struggling with something very big. I need to recharge to help you all the way but that it’s big doesn’t mean it couldn’t be done.
  • He asks all the time how it is now. He’s not surprised at all when suddenly, after decades, a familiar hurt is gone. But if still there, he wants to know all about it. He’ll look it into its face as if to stare it away.

I think that this is how he works. This can be taught to and done by other humble empathic people. Many people will be healed or be a bit better.

It is not true that when this talent is less rare or mysterious it’ll be less wondrous or effective. When you know how biochemically a flower opens up in sunlight, is it less marvelous?

About the Author
The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch Holocaust survivors in The Netherlands (Westerbork), and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo and Rav Zev Leff. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism), Oppression and Liberation (of young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners, and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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