The Dangers of Eastern Alternative Medicine (I)

Eastern Alternative Medicine currently enjoys increasing popularity all over the world today. In many countries, they are frequently sought as an alternative therapy to conventional medicine. The New Age movement has also popularized Eastern alternative healing practices in the West, and they can be termed New Age medicine. The Mayo Clinic reports that nearly 40 per cent of adults use complimentary and alternative medicine.

The combination of these therapies with conventional medicine is called “integrative medicine.” They can be classified into ancient healing systems (from China, India etc), naturopathy (acupuncture, herbal remedies, massage and lifestyle counseling), mind-body medicine and homeopathy.

Many Christians are introduced to Eastern alternative medicine by doctors, scientists and individuals (even church leaders) with scientific credentials. They are told that Holistic medicine works better than mainstream medicine and comparatively has no side effects. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is presented as a set of “natural remedies” for longevity and health preserved by ancient sages. Some people see these interwoven with their culture. I have been reliably told that many Christians in the East patronize alternative therapy. [1]

New Age medicine are series of alternative therapy to physiologically, scientifically, medically based analysis, diagnosis and treatment. They are also known as holistic medicine because they claim to deal with the spiritual side of man and utilise it to effect physical healing. Scientists agree that these therapies do sometimes work, but their efficacy cannot be scientifically explained.

Scientific studies have revealed that Eastern medicine can be harmful. They “show very clearly how dangerous the products of TCM can be” says Frite Sorgel, head of the Institute for Pharmaceutical Research in Nuremberg, Germany. “The public needs to be better informed about these dangers,” he said. Researchers at Murdoch University, using modern sequencing technology analysed 15 samples of traditional Chinese medicine by extracting the DNA from the mixture.

Through this method, they identified the DNA of animals and plants used to make to the medicine. They found DNAs of animals present in the mixture which weren’t listed on the pack. They also found potentially toxic chemicals as part of the herbs which could become carcinogenic as well as chemicals that could pose danger to health when used in combination with other drugs. [2]

Dr Stalker and Glymour observe that “holistic medicine is not a scientific tradition. It has no paradigmatic work, no recognized set of problems, and no shared standards for what constitutes a solution to those problems; it also lacks the critical exchange among its practitioners that is characteristic of the science.” [3]

This lends credence to the potential of Eastern alternative medicine to weaken the demands of scientific evidence and rational thinking even within the medical community. Most of what are touted as therapies and “clinical trials” in New Age journals are not science but Eastern religion.

Dr. Thomas Chalmers, a distinguished Service Professor of Medicine, after examining the scientific quality of articles in the Journal of Holistic Medicine says that the journal “has a long way to go to achieve the same standards of scientific reporting as the more orthodox journals.”

There are 5 major differences between scientific medicine and New Age medicine

1. Scientific medicine is based on the starting premise that diseases operate at the physical level and should be treated physically. But New Age medicine is based on the premise that diseases begin at the energy level and should be treated energetically.

2. Conventional medicine is rooted in materialism or naturalism which is quite compatible with Christian theism. On the other hand, alternative therapy is rooted in occultism, pantheism (”all is God and God is all”) and spiritualism.

3. Scientific medicine is based on scientific disciplines such as chemistry, anatomy, physiology, biology and pharmacology but New Age medicine is based on Hinduism, Taoism, American Indian spirituality and Western occultism.

4. In conventional medicine, diagnostic methods are based on physical, observable and consistent methodologies, whereas Holistic medicine is based on psychical and contradictory techniques.

5. Mainstream medicine is backed by scientific data, clinical trials, confirmed medical testing and peer review. Eastern alternative medicine is based on little or no data, no proven methods, uncritical attitudes and pragmatic measures.

Most scientists agree that such alternatives work as a Placebo effect, because their efficacy cannot be empirically tested or repeated. It cannot be scientifically explained why it works for some people but not for others. But one thing is clear: the principles behind such alternative medicine are neither novel nor scientific. They are old techniques utilised by witchdoctors for centuries before they found their feet in medicine.

Michael Harner, a shaman, wrote: “The word ‘holistic’ is an euphemism for witchcraft … The burgeoning field of holistic medicine shows a tremendous amount of experimentation involving techniques long practiced in Shamanism, such as visualization, altered states of consciousness, aspects of psychoanalysis, hypnotherapy, meditation, positive attitude, stress reduction, and mental and emotional expression of personal will for health and healing. In a sense, Shamanism is being reinvented in the West precisely because it’s needed.” [4]

Although Eastern alternative medicine is often camouflaged with scientific, neutral or spiritual terms, it is based on ancient occult principles. All through history witchdoctors, pagan priests/priestesses, spiritists and occult healers in different cultures have sought the spirit world and followed demonic instructions on how healing can be attained.

Dr. Walter Addison Jayne, in his work, The Healing Gods of Ancient Civilization chronicled the dramatic influence of the gods and spirits in ancient medicine. “The spirit guides supply constant medical advice … and even give treatment in case of illness,” he wrote.

Below are 3 examples of occult concepts on which New Age medicine is based:

a) Chi/Qi

This means “breath,” gas, energy flow, life force which is believed to permeate everything in the world, link their surroundings together and flow through the human body. It is an underlying principle in Chinese traditional medicine and martial arts. In most pagan belief systems, Chi/Qi is said to be an impersonal energy which flows through various “meridians” of the human body. When its flow is blocked, disrupted or unbalanced, diseases result.

Now, this is simply one of the basic tenets of witchcraft, that there is an impersonal life force that can be tapped into and used for various purposes. “We refer to the substance as psychic energy. The same substance is called ‘Prana’ by yogis, ‘Chis’ by practitioners of the martial arts, and ‘bio-energy’ by therapists.” [5] From a Biblical perspective, we know there are no “impersonal energies” animating everything on earth – for that is based on the pagan lie of Pantheism. These so called “energies” are actually demon spirits and they are very personal (1 Cor. 8:5-6).

“Perhaps it is this concept of a cosmic, universal, mystical or “divine” life energy (supposedly uniting people, God, and the universe) that is most frequently associated with Spiritistic phenomena. For example, New Age medicine teaches that in order to really understand health and disease, we must switch our thinking from a model of health based on matter to one based primarily on energy. In the end, this is an open door to spiritism under another name. [6]

b) Wu Xing

This refers to the 5 elements, 5 phases or 5 agents (the types of chi dominating at different times). In Chinese occultism, these five elements are: wood, fire, earth, water and metal. In Western occultism, the 5 elements are: air, fire, earth, water and spirit (or ether). In the East, the elements are also linked with five seasons: wood (spring), fire (summer), earth (late summer), water (winter) and metal (harvest).

Wu Xing dates back to the earliest records of Chinese intellectual history. “Shang dynasty (1600-1046 B.C.E.), oracle bone inscriptions (used in divination rituals to predict and discern outcomes in nature and human affairs) rely on the number five. Typically, this is the pattern of four around a center, where four represent the cardinal directions expressed in the territories…” [7]

The Wu Xing is widely applied in geomancy, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), astrology, music and martial arts. It is a basic belief of witchcraft. The spirits associated with the four elements are linked with the four cardinal points and the four seasons of Western hemisphere. These elemental spirits are often invoked in witchcraft rituals.

When a famous witch, Laurie Cabot was featured on an edition of NBC’s Sunday Today programme, using a pentacle (the 5-pointed star emblem of witchcraft), she conjured spirits, saying: “Earth … air… fire…and water…and the Great Spirit, I invoke the god and goddess within my body.” [8] This concept is denounced by the Bible (Deut. 32:20-21).

c) Yin-Yang

These are complimentary cosmic forces that interact to form a dynamic system in which the whole is greater than the assembled part. Yin is the “female principle” – dark, negative, passive and associated with the moon. Yang is the “male principle” – light, positive, active and associated with the sun. It is believed that there must be harmony between both forces for there to be “balance” and life.

Zhuang Zhou, an influential Chinese philosopher who lived around the 4th century BC wrote: “The highest Yang is the most restrained. The highest Yin is the most restrained. The highest Yang is the most exuberant. The restrained comes forth from Heaven. The exuberant issues forth from the Earth. The two intertwine and penetrate to form a harmony, and [as a result] things are born”. [9]

What Zhuang is reiterating is the father-mother (sky-earth) binary interwoven into all fertility pagan systems where a sun deity is complimented with a moon goddess. In Taoism, this is represented by the Tai-Chi symbol which says that there is no distinction between good and bad. Philosophically, yin-yang implies that good must be balanced with evil. Thus, occult systems have the light “right hand” paths and the dark “left hand” paths. But the Bible teaches the opposite: “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all” (1 Jn. 1:5).

This is a compelling reason why Christians should avoid Eastern alternative medicine. They lead Christians astray from Biblical truth because they are founded on a view of reality that is contrary to Scripture. They are not pointing to the Creator of the universe, but powers, energies, forces or a “mind” out there. They are based on tapping into an occult energy which the Bible unmasks as powers emanating from Satan and his demons.

Barbara Brennan, a New Age healer who was ranked in 2011 as the 94th most spiritually influential person in the world, revealed in her book that demon spirit guides usually healed her patients when she applies her techniques, sometimes taking them out of their bodies while they are unconscious. She said, “I usually have about three [spirit] teachers that guide me. The person who has come to me for help will usually be accompanied by his guide or guides” [10].

She’s not lying. People can pick up strange spirits by consulting Eastern healing therapies.

In part two and three, I will be highlighting some examples of these occult healing techniques and what a Christian needs to watch out for before adopting a trending “healing therapy.”

Notes

1. Thanks to Sister Elly Anny for sharing her insights on this crucial topic.

2. Kai Kupferschmidt, The Dangers of Chinese Medicine brought to life by DNA Studies, 2012 (Coghlan et al., PloS Genetics 8).

3. Michael R. Miller and Josephine M. Harper, The Psychic Energy Workbook, Aquarian Pub., 1987, 9.

4. Michael Harner, The Way of the Shaman, HarperOne, 1980, 136.

5. Douglas Stalker and Clark Glymour, Examining Holistic Medicine, Prometheus Books, 1989, 26.

6. John Ankerberg and John Weldon, Encyclopedia of New Age Beliefs, Harvest House Pub., 1996, 492.

7. Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, art. “Wuxing”.

8. David Benoit and Eric Barger, Entertaining Spirits Unaware, Evangel Publication, 2000, 49.

9. Burton Watson, The Complete Works of Zhuangzi, New York: Columbia University Press, 2013.

10. Hands of Light: A Guide to Healing Through the Human Energy Fields, Bantam Publishers, 1988, 171.

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Why Allah makes Women Bleed

One of the diminishing features of Islam – which stems from Muhammad – is its sick, prurient obsession with women’s bodies. Islam’s teaching about menstruation in the Quran and hadiths underscore this.

Sura 2:222 “They question thee (O Muhammad) concerning menstruation. Say: It is an illness, so let women alone at such times and go not unto them till they are cleaned. And when they have purified themselves then go in unto them as Allah hath enjoined upon you…”

The Quran depicts menstruation as an ailment; something harmful or unwholesome. The above instruction was plagiarised from the Torah without considering its dispensational timeline. Muhammad was born about 6 centuries after the time of Christ, hence, his return to the ceremonial laws given by Moses indicates a rejection of the liberty brought by Christ and this results in bondage.

The Mosaic laws did include menses as ritual uncleanness and disallows sexual contacts with women in that state (Lev. 15:19-24; 18:19), however, these laws were contingent and have been done away by Christ. “The law was put in charge to bring us to Christ that we might be justified by faith” (Gal. 3:24). In contrast, Islamic beliefs about menstruation (and women in general) reduce it into something vile and satanic.

In the hadith, Muhammad says: “Sneezing, drowsing, yawning in prayer, also menstruation, vomiting and nose-bleeding are from (the acts of) Satan” (Tirmidhi, No. 315).

Apparently, Muhammad was the one repulsed by these reflex actions whenever he was with his followers; he wanted an undivided attention. So he conditioned them to see these linked with Satan. It was a tool of controlling the superstitious. The problem is when Muslims today now take these injunctions, after some 14 centuries, as divine prescriptions they impose on themselves. A reasonable Muslim needs to ask why an exalted God would be so offended by natural body reflexes.

In Muhammad’s biography, he quotes Allah saying: “It is My obligation to make Eve bleed once every month as she made this tree bleed. I must also make Eve stupid, although I created her intelligent. Because Allah afflicted Eve, all of the women of this world menstruate and are stupid” (Al-Tabari Vol. 1, p. 280). Here we have Muhammad’s misogynist thinking being projected back onto his “Allah.”

On another occasion, Muhammad told a group of women that women are “deficient in intelligence and religion.” When one asked him “What is deficient in her religion?” He replied, “Isn’t it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast in her menses?” The woman replied in the affirmative. He said “This is the deficiency of her religion” (Bukhari 1:6:303).

Muhammad and his Allah regarded women as doltish, spiritually deficient and cursed because of their monthly cycles. Allah is repelled by menstruation, yet he supposedly afflicted women with it. He’s also offended by yawning, flatulence and mouth odour! If Allah was really all-knowing, he should have explained to Muhammad that menstruation is a natural process that is crucial to women’s reproduction. You see, people usually love to worship something that is identical to them. They may claim to worship an Infinite, Impersonal or Unknowable deity, but at a closer look, he is just as petty, feeble and small as they are – a deity made up to validate their desires and prejudices. That was Muhammad’s god.

An outgrowth of such a retrograde religious system is the burden of rules levied on women having their menses:

a) They must not pray to Allah. But when their menses are over they must make up for the prayer (Bukhari 1:6:303).

b) They cannot fast (Bukhari 1:6:301)

c) They are forbidden to tawaaf (circumambulate) around the Kaaba (Bukhari 1:6:293).

d) They are not to stay in the mosques (Muslim, 298).

e) They must not have sexual intercourse (Q 2:222). This actually forbids men from physically touching them, but some jurists, seeing how the hadiths belie this rule, allow it.

f) They have to undergo a ritual bath (ghusl) at the end of their cycle (Bukhari 1:6:305).

With the many women surrounding Muhammad and his morbid fear of their menses, one would have expected that he strictly adhered to his own rules. But we see a different picture.

1. ‘Aisha narrated: “The prophet and I used to take a bath from a single pot while we were Junub. During my menses, he used to order me to put on an Izar dress (dress worn below the waist) and used to fondle me. While in Itikaf, he used to bring his head near me and I would wash it while I used to be in my periods (menses)” (Bukhari 1:6:298).

2. ‘Aisha said: “Whenever Allah’s apostle wanted to fondle anyone of us during her periods (menses) he used to order us to put on an Izar and start fondling her.” Aisha added “None of you could control his sexual desires as the Prophet could” (Bukhari 1:6:299).

One wonders why a man who had many wives, concubines and sex slaves in his household would resort to fondling his child bride who was in her menses. Some Shi’ite Muslims point out that the English translator of this hadith has censored these parts. The Arabic word rendered as “fondled” there is mubasharath and it means to have sexual intercourse. Properly translated from Arabic, the second narration says: “If anyone of us was having her menstrual period, Allah’s Messenger ordered her to come to him for sexual intercourse while she was on the peak of her period” (Muslim 1:590).

The Kashaf al-Ghimma narrates Jabir words from Aisha: “During my menses, Rasulullah (s) would ‘bashr’ [have intercourse] with me. He would order me to tie a knot in a large cloth; after I did this he would embrace my chest” (p. 65). This is one proof that Muhammad was a hypocritical, calculating charlatan who violated the “eternal words” of his Allah.

3. Aisha said Muhammad came to her place one night and said: “Come near me. I said: I am menstruating. He said: Uncover your thighs. I, therefore uncovered both of my thighs. Then he put his cheek on my thighs and I lent upon him until he became warm and slept” (Abu Dawud, 1:270).

4. Maimuna (the wife of the holy Prophet) reported: “The Messenger of Allah contacted and embraced his wives over the waist wrapper when they were menstruating” (Muslim, 3:579).

5. ‘Aisha said: “The Prophet used to lean on my lap and recite the Quran while I was in my menses” (Bukhari 1:6:296).

The Quran commands Muslim men to purify themselves with water or sand if they have touched women (Q 4:43). Muhammad himself told a woman “I do not shake hands with women” (Muwatta bk. 55 No. 55.1.2). No Muslim in an impure state would dare touch the Quran, because it’s supposedly too holy to be touched. But we see their guru wobbling naked with women in their periods and even reciting the words of Allah on the laps of his menstruating child bride!

The same man who called menstruation an illness, an act of Satan and an affliction on women threw all that into the trash when it came to satisfying his lubricity. Jesus Christ identified false religious leaders as persons who “tie up heavy loads and put them on men’s [and women’s] shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them” (Mt. 23:4). This is an apt description of Muhammad. We invite honest Muslims to reject him and come to the way, truth and life, the Lord Jesus Christ.