Scientific Support for Energy Medicine
“Happiness is what we feel when our biochemicals of emotion, the neuropeptides and their receptors, are open and flowing freely. . . . It is a scientific fact that we can feel what others feel.The oneness of all life is based on this simple reality. Our molecules of emotion are all vibrating together.” –research biologist Candace Pert, author of the bestselling bookMolecules of Emotion.
Because we human beings are so interrelated from an energetic perspective, there is a refreshing optimism in energy-medicine approaches and in the practice of Healing Touch. In essence, the presence of a focused, intentional practitioner facilitates healing and movement toward well-being for someone who is in distress. The work offers a beacon of hope in relieving physical and/or emotional pain. It serves as a fine complement to conventional medical interventions and is an essential component for preventive and integrative healing practices.
Current science does not yet fully understand all the dynamics involved in achieving the effects noted in energy medicine, but relief from human suffering abounds in the clinical reports of HT practitioners. Even though the exact mechanisms are not yet fully known, use of this well-recognized practice is sought out and welcomed.
Take, for example, people who are very anxious about diagnostic tests or specific medical procedures. It’s common knowledge that anxiety and worry by themselves can increase pain symptoms and block the flow of biochemicals essential for a procedure to be effective. Psychological concerns and expectations, either positive or negative, decidedly help to shape outcomes. The presence of a caring HT practitioner can help promote much-needed relaxation as patients think of new ways to anticipate a procedure and focus on positive outcomes.
In this chapter, we’ll consider the growing scientific evidence for seeing the human body as a series of vibrating electromagnetic fields that can be positively influenced without the invasion of foreign substances such as chemicals or drugs. We begin with the realities of current medical practices that point to the vibrational nature of the body for diagnosis and treatment. We’ll continue with a brief discussion of modern physics with its views toward unlimited, open-ended possibilities as opposed to ideas of direct cause and effect. Emerging concepts in neurosciences such as neuroplasticity will be explored with an eye to the vast capabilities of the human mind to influence health and wholeness. And, perhaps most exciting of all, we’ll look at the new biology that demonstrates the direct effect of thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors on cellular messaging and expression of genetic material.
Scientists describe their understanding of the world through theoretical models. The concept of human energies as a vibratory matrix of nonmaterial structures, such as those described in the previous chapter, gives a useful starting place. These vibratory structures seem to interact with identified physical structures such as cells, fluids, and organs to facilitate the flow of information throughout the body. We might think of this informational system as a flowing river that can be impeded where there are blocks to its flow pathways. Such impeded areas can cause disturbance, congestion, and subsequent illness in our bodies. The concept of energy-flow patterns is thus a useful model for understanding human illness and how we might alleviate further suffering. For example, determining how energy flows in a given part of the body is already a part of conventional medical diagnostics. As we shall learn, medicine is becoming more and more energetic in practice, even though the mechanisms for its effects are not yet fully explainable. Other more effective models, theories, and inferences will undoubtedly emerge as science evolves.
Practitoners of Western medicine are becoming more interested in understanding how energy moves in the body as medical science considers the electrical and magnetic qualities of the human organism. For diagnosis, a variety of noninvasive scanners can now give feedback about molecular exchanges within soft tissue. Sophisticated scans such as CT (computerized tomography), PET (positron emission tomography), and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), show areas of constriction or obstruction that interfere with healthy flow patterns within cells and organ tissue.
The EKG (electrocardiogram) and the EEG (electroencephalogram) measure the electrical outputs of the heart and brain and then compare those outputs to normal electrical outputs in healthy persons. Newer tools, such as the EMC (electromagnetic cardiogram) and EMEG (electromagnetic encephalogram), additionally measure the magnetic outputs of heart and brain, which give even more accurate details of deviations from normal function in these vital organs. Technology using SQUID (superconducting quantum interference device) allows scientists to measure the human biofield and evaluate relative bodily strengths.
Medical treatments are also becoming less invasive as comprehension of the electromagnetic nature of the body increases. Orthopedic surgeon Robert O. Becker began to explore the electrical circuitry of the human body to treat complex bone fractures that did not heal with known methods in the late 1960s. He identified numerous direct currents of electricity that flowed throughout the body and found they reversed their flow pattern or direction at the site of an injury. When this “current of injury” was supported with a small amount of electrical stimulation, bone healing occurred.
Over the next several decades, Dr. Becker mapped out the energetic grids of the body and surmised that the energy system paralleled the nervous system in providing the communication of information to all parts of the organism. Unlike the nervous system, however, this system is nonmaterial and electromagnetic in nature. Thus, humans and higher life forms have dual information systems: 1) the nervous system with its many physical components such as nerve cells, dendrites, axons, and the spinal cord, and 2) the subtle energies that are electromagnetic in form, which I like to call the human vibrational matrix. These dual systems seem to augment each other to ensure optimal functioning. If a part of the body is diseased or surgically removed, other cells learn to take over missing functions as much as possible through our energetic information networks.
Almost every day, new concepts for stimulating electromagnetic areas within the body are being developed to treat illness. Current energy-related treatments include high-frequency sound waves to break up kidney stones, electricity to relieve pain and shrink tumors, focused radiation to pinpoint and destroy specific cancers, electromagnetic fields to accelerate bone healing, laser surgeries to minimize tissue damage, and magnetic fields to alleviate inflammation associated with arthritis. Further explorations in modern medicine continue to study the presence of differing electromagnetic frequencies within the body to find new and more effective treatments.
The energy resources of the body can also bring about balance within body and mind to prevent illness or further disability. Working with HT is known to bring about relaxation, relief from anxiety, a sense of well-being, and enhanced wound healing and immune system function. (These effects are confirmed by ongoing and extensive research cited in the next chapter.) Because of these effects, many physicians are now encouraging their patients to explore energy therapies as part of treatment planning.
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