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NEWS : Physicians Turning to Religion

Posted By Dr. Jai Maharaj (jai@aloha.com)
Mon, 06 Jan 1997 11:43:29 -1000


Going to church may be one way to
stay healthy. This news comes from
a national survey released in
december at the annual convention
of the American Academy of Family
Physicians. As VOA's Rosanne
Skirble reports, this low-cost
treatment is gaining greater
recognition and use in the medical

Written by Rosanne Skirble
Edited by Kleinfeldt
January 6, 1997
Worldwide English Feature

more and more doctors -- regardless of speciality --
are turning to spirituality to help patients get well.
ninety-nine percent of the family doctors surveyed said
that religious faith contributes to physical healing.
about half said they already integrated meditation and
relaxation techniques in treatment.

as director of the mind body medical institute at
harvard university, dr. herbert benson runs regular
conferences on spirituality and healing. he says, it is
not just religion, but a strong belief in anything that
promotes wellness.

tape cut one herbert benson (:39)
"it's really a function of the facts. namely, we've
known in medicine for years that belief in expectancy
can heal. we've called it the 'placebo' effect where
(it) can heal upwards of fifty to eighty percent of many
disorders. for example, it aids in asthma, in ulcers,
in skin rashes, in virtually all forms of pain. and, it
happens that with 95 percent of americans believing in
god, it's not surprising that a lot of people will have
religious belief and religious beliefs do indeed heal."

herbert benson says spirituality is an important, but
not exclusive component in the recovery of physical

tape cut two herbert benson (:22)
"you should view this kind of healing as being part of
an overall approach to medicine. like a three-legged
stool where one leg is drugs, another leg is surgery,
and the third leg is what you can do for yourself. and
in that third leg we have relaxation techniques. we have
belief. we have nutrition and exercise."

while it has been known for some time, scientists are
now beginning to study the link between spirituality and

tape cut three herbert benson (:27)
"and, i point this out in my book, timeless healing,
that we have patterns of brain activity that remember
sickness, other patterns that remember being well. and
if you believe that you can be well ... and i'm not
saying that this is for all diseases and in every case
... but if you believe that you can be well, your brain
will remember that, and the mind-body connection will
help develop that mind body wellness in your body."

herbert benson with harvard's mind body medical
institute, says a patient should treat belief as any
other drug, and recognize the power to heal that you
have within yourself. (signed) neb/rs/rpk

06-jan-97 3:33 pm est (2033 utc) nnnn report 7-16903

Source: Voice of America

Jai Maharaj, Jyotishi
Best wishes for the future!
Om Shanti

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