The Dangers of Eastern Alternative Medicine (II)

In part one, the occult principles underlying alternative medicine were highlighted. Now let’s delve into some examples of these techniques and their potential dangers.

1. Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a key component of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It involves stimulating specific points of the body (acupoints) using thin sterile needles. Acupuncture has been alleged to cure dysentery, headache, neck pain, stroke, post operative pain and even hypertension.

Various scientific studies however declare that there are little evidence of its effectiveness or long term benefit. Other studies indicate that acupuncture works mainly due to the placebo effect. Scientists have been unable to cure people by merely engaging in unspecific needle stimulation, thus, what makes acupuncture effective is not physical.

Acupuncture originated in China circa 100 BC from the traditional Chinese text, The Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Internal Medicine. It spread to Japan and Korea in the 6th century AD and was adopted by Europe in 17th century. In the 20th century, it spread to Western countries.

Acupuncture is based on the occult principles of Taoism. In this system, chi/qi, yang and yin, zang fu, meridians and acupuncture points play vital roles in sustaining the human body. In this occult philosophy, when the body’s organs are deficient in a proper supply of cosmic universal energy (chi), it creates an inbalance or disharmony which results in diseases or pain.

The chi is said to flow from the body’s primary organs (zang-fu organs) to the “superficial” body tissues of the skin, muscles, tendons, bones and joints, passing through invisible channels called meridians. Acupuncture needles are often inserted into locations along these meridians (acupoints) to stimulate the flow of the blocked chi in restoring bodily health. This is not science and can’t be explained scientifically, it’s psychic healing.

As TCM spread to the West, other theories undergirding acupuncture emerged, resulting in conflicting theories and claims such that “TCM practitioners disagree among themselves about how to diagnose patients and which treatments should go with which diagnoses. Even if they could agree, the TCM theories are so nebulous that no amount of scientific study will enable TCM to offer rational care.” [1]

This therapy is at best, a dice game. There also the potential danger of misdiagnosing serious illnesses if applied. Given that acupuncture is based on an occult model of the human body, there’s a possibility of opening patient’s spiritual portals. A person can get cured of nausea and from there pick up arthritis.

In the occult human anatomy, there are acupoints that control sex and blood circulation. This meridian point, if activated by psychic means, can awaken a person’s sexual energies. There’s another point (called “Point of the Nail” grip in Mormonism) which can cause symptoms like convulsion, rage and even insanity if psychically stimulated! [2]

Some documented side effects of acupuncture include infections, nerve damage, punctured lung and convulsion. Several Chinese scholars in a review of the Chinese language literature found numerous acupuncture-related adverse events including pneumothorax, fainting, cardiovascular injuries, traumatic cataract, recurrent cerebral haemorrhage, thoracic and lumbar spine injuries. [3]

Conclusively, acupuncture involves an ancient pagan therapy inexorably tied to Taoism. It can open up a Christian to spiritual defilement.

2. Reiki

This is an ancient Japanese technique which stresses psychic healing through the manipulation of mystical life energies. From the meaning of its name “spirit vital energy” it involves tapping into a supernatural power or force and causing this power to produce healing.

Reiki is said to reduce stress, boost the body’s immunity, increase the body’s supply of “life energy” and make people feel calm. It is said to impact not just the body, but also the mind, emotion and spirit. Hence, it’s said to be used for personal transformation.

Reiki was “rediscovered” by Dr. Mikao Usui (1865-1926) in Japan. Apparently, after many years of studying ancient Indian writings, he invented a formula for activating and directing mystical life energy. He was said to have taught Reiki to more than 2,000 people during his lifetime.

In an attempt to fuse New Age medicine into mainstream medicine, the National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine has been funding researches attempting to validate Reiki as a healing therapy.

When scientists examined the works however, they not only found problems with their methodologies, but also their results, which appeared to lack validity or reliability. They found that there was no consistency in the application of Reiki; the same practitioner could produce different outcomes in different studies. Thus, it’s pseudoscience.

Some scholars note that: “Reiki postulates the existence of a universal energy unknown to science and thus far undetectable surrounding the human body, which practitioners can learn to manipulate using their hands.” [4]

When these Reiki practitioners pass their hands over a subject’s body they claim to look to “repelling energies,” “magnetizing energy” or “vibrations” that indicate where the balancing of chi is needed, but these ‘scientific’ terms are misleading. There’s no scientific evidence for chi or life force energy; they are spiritual forces.

Reiki instructors are often recruited by Reiki Masters. The master injects his psychic energy into the students, allegedly opening his psychic centers (chakras) and activating his ‘life-force.’ This is no different from how occult power is transmitted from a Hindu guru/sadhu to his disciples (shaktipat diksha). [5]

Reiki instructors are often initiated in a secret ceremony and when they reach the second degree, they are given the occult abilities to heal from a distance. These are purely demonic interactions, only that the demons have been given fancy names like “life energy,” “forces” or “vibrations.” As Christians we can’t control the Spirit of God, therefore, anybody that’s controlling or manipulating an “energy” of “force” is utilising demons.

Some specialists combine Reiki with elemental spirits. They can for instance, invoke a fire deity (“angel Michael”) using red candles with certain herbs and incense to effect cures. These techniques do work, but they are demonic and no Christian should try them out.

3. Homeopathy

This is a system of diagnosis based on the principle that the same substance causing symptoms in a healthy person will cure those symptoms in a sick person.

Homeopathy was developed by Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843). He was a physician who while translating a book which described the effects of quinine or Peruvian bark on Malaria, decided to take the drug himself. He was struck with the idea that there’s a possibility that a substance which causes symptoms in a healthy person can possibly cure those symptoms in a sick person. From there, he began testing this drug on himself and others and believed his results confirmed his theory: like cures like.

Later, Hahnemann and his followers began administering minerals, herbs, and other substances to healthy persons, including themselves and recorded their observations. Today it’s alleged that homeopathy cures typhoid, dysentery and malaria.

The first problem with his theory – which forms the basis of homeopathy – is that Hahnemann confused the symptoms he felt after taking quinine as malaria symptoms. “Hahnemann had taken quinine earlier in his life, and it is quite probable that his experiment had caused an allergic reaction which can typically occur with the symptoms Hahnemann described. However, he interpreted them as malaria symptoms.” [6]

Second, his methodology eliminated controls by assuming that the particular substances he introduced into himself and others actually had the effects he observed. He took it for granted that people can experience physical sensations after taking certain substances through prior suggestion that the substance will produce those symptoms.

Third, he made experiences the determinants of truth, and this accentuates the flaw of homeopathy. Both the practitioner and the subject assume that relying on one’s own experiences is all the proof one needs that homeopathic medicine seems to cure. They never ask why or seek to investigate if other factors led to the cure instead of the homeopathic medicine. Again, we are confronted with the placebo effect.

Homeopathic medicines, following Hahnemann’s model, are susceptible to magical thinking. He discovered that certain substances produced some unusual reactions in some patients. He therefore sought to reduce the dosage given. In an attempt to find the smallest effective dose of the substance, he diluted it. He thought he found a curious phenomenon: the more diluted the substance, the more powerful it becomes.

Thus, homeopathic medicines are successively diluted until not even a single molecule of the original substance remained – supposedly making it more effective. [7] This is not science, because it’s not dealing with a physical substance treating a physical ailment, but relying on psychic power to produce a cure.

Hahnemann even admits that: “The diseases of man are not caused by any [material] substance,… but they are solely spirit-like (dynamic) derangements of spirit-;like power (the vital principle) that animates the human body. Homeopathy knows that a cure can only take place by the reaction of the vital force against the rightly chosen remedy that has been ingested. Thus, true healing art is…to effect an alteration in…energetic automatic vital force…” [8]

Homeopathy is based on metaphysical or psychic power. It invariably replaces conventional therapy especially in life threatening cases such as meningitis, asthma etc. which call for immediate treatment. A survey revealed that most homeopaths have a general negative attitude to immunization. All these indicate it is a dangerous therapy.

4. Therapeutic Touch

This is a healing therapy said to reduce pain and anxiety by placing the hands near the patients. Though it is said to cure people of stress, heal wounds and boost immunity, there is no justifiable scientific evidence of its efficacy.

Its practitioners state that by placing their hands on, or near a patient, they are able to detect and manipulate the patient’s energy field to produce healing. Like other examples of alternative or New Age medicine, it works based on occult principles, not science.

Therapeutic Touch (TT) was developed in the 1970s by Dora Kunz, a Theosophist and Dolores Krieger. While the practice is rooted in ancient mysticism, it has now been adopted as a course in several colleges and universities in various countries and adopted as a medical therapy in some hospitals in North America. The works used to substantiate TT such as Science of Unitary Human Beings by Martha E. Rogers are metaphysical works that only seem “scientific” at the surface level.

In a certain case involving Emily Rosa, a 9 year old girl who tested the efficacy of TT, its efficacy was debunked as 21 practitioners were unable to detect her “aura” or energy field being demarcated by a cardboard screen. The slightest possibility of locating even her hands were due to chance [9].

The whole concept of tapping into and manipulating energies is witchcraft. The “energies” being utilized in TT are not physical but spiritual powers inherent in spiritual beings. Therefore, for a person to utilize them, he must first be inhabited by demonic entities, and the patient can also become open to them. And be rest assured, demons can also heal.

A Wiccan Pagan Spiritualist who narrated her story on Obsession: Dark Desires, said:

“Bill [her husband] had a major stroke at the age of 40 … when I spoke with the doctors, I asked and I said “Is there not any hope?” and they told me, ‘No hope.’ I began to do healing touch which is where you actually give people energy, healing from the herbs (?), which comes up through your body and through your hands. With the grace of god, I was given him back, and three weeks, he was home.” [10]

Without much ado, it is safe to conclude that a Christian seeking alternative healing therapy is playing the equivalent of a Russian roulette. It may have offer some temporary relief, but at a huge spiritual price. In all, it’s important that we keep our physical bodies – God’s temple – free from defilement (1 Corinthians 3:17).

Notes

[1] Barrett Stephen, M.D., Be Wary of Acupuncture, Qigong and “Chinese Medicine”, December 2007.

[2] Bill Schnoebelen and James Spencer, Mormonism’s Temple of Doom, 1987, 31-32.

[3] Zhang et al., Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 2010, 88(1): 915-921.

[4] Lilienfeld et al., Science and Pseudoscience in Clinical Psychology, Guilford Press, 2014, 202.

[5] Holistic Health Practices/ Part 35 by Dr. John Weldon, 2009.

[6] Samuel Pfeifer, M.D., Healing at Any Price? Milton Keynes: England, 1988, 65.

[7] Samuel Hahnemann, The Chronic Diseases, Jain Pub., India, 1976, 19.

[8] Organon of Medicine, 6th edition, New Delhi: India, 1978, 173.

[9] Rosa et al. Journal of the American Medical Association, 1998, 279 (13):1005-10

[10] Aired on Investigation Discovery July 5, 2017.

 

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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.