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The history of hypnosis is as ancient as that of mysticism, rituals, and medicine; indeed, hypnosis has been used as a method in all three. Its scientific history began in the latter part of the 18th century with Franz Mesmer, a German physician who used hypnosis in the treatment of patients in Vienna and Paris.

The discoveries of hypnotherapy led onto the understanding of the mind/body connection with that the body reactions to mental issues. Later the development of chiropractic medicine with a organ/spine connection with spinal tensions and misalignments influencing the organs and glands. Chiropractic as a profession began in 1895 when its founder, Daniel David Palmer, adjusted the spine of a deaf janitor and restored his hearing. Spinal manipulation was not a new treatment and Palmer never claimed to be the first to use it but was actually used long before. 

So here two very different approaches to tackle disease in the body. One a physical manipulation and the other a verbal deprogramming. Both producing a healing effect on the body other than the spine and ears. 

In the 1960s Humanistic Psychology became the first major alternative movement in modern Health Care. In the 1980s Holistic Medicine was introduced; soon thereafter, the terms Complementary, Integral, Quantum, Integrative, and Alternative Medicine became synonyms for concepts of Health Care that did not fit into the standard convention that has dominated global medicine for almost a century. In 1989, Dr. Elmer Green and colleagues substantiated the comprehensive and inclusive term Energy Medicine. We now currently identify five fields of complementary and alternative medicine:

  • Alternative Medical Systems/Machines

  • Mind-Body Interventions

  • Biological-based Therapies

  • Manipulative and Body-based Methods

  • Energy Therapies

Energy medicine as it is practiced and studied is not restricted to what is included in Energy Therapies, but also overlaps with practices in the other four fields, such as the Ayurvedic Medicine, Chinese Medicine, Bio-resonance machines, and Hypnotherapy.

During this forty-five year evolution people have embraced the many therapeutic approaches offered by the proponents of these movements. In the UK around 9 million people use some kind of alternative medicine. Even medical schools and hospitals are tentatively offering a few basic courses and programs. 

The Field of Energy Medicine

Energy Medicine includes all concepts of energy: light, sound, electro-magnetism, body, mind, spirit and consciousness. In addition, older traditions of "life force" or "élan vital" are commonly found in the discourses of Energy Medicine. From Taoist alchemy and Chinese Medicine comes the principle of Chi, with its Cosmic and Microcosmic cycles and flows through the meridians in the physical body. From Yogic Hinduism comes the breath or Prana, and the principles of multiple energy vortices in the body – the Chakras, and especially the concepts of multiple bodies beyond the physiological body, conceived in various systems as layers such as the etheric body and the astral body.

Many roots and paths have contributed to these ecumenical and syncretic endeavours that are loosely allied around the concept of energy. The psychology of Carl Jung, with his conception of the collective unconscious and especially his emphasis of myth and Kundalini Yoga is a major root. Another main stream is Christian mysticism in its many forms. Christian Science and the spiritual healing practices of both conventional religious denominations and the "New Thought" churches such as Unity and Science of Mind are also threads that underlie various practices in energy medicine. Recent studies on the healing efficacy of prayer are contributing to the resurgence in spiritual healing. Northern European folk healing traditions have come in through Naturopathy and the teachings of skilled healers such as Olga Worral and Hanna Kroeger. On the more intellectual side, the emphasis on Spirit also has roots in American Transcendentalism and from Northern Europe, in German Idealism, which was heavily influenced both by the Hermetic Alchemical tradition coming via the Arabs in the fourteenth century from late Alexandrian Greek culture, and by Chinese Alchemical traditions coming into Continental Europe in the seventeenth century via the Jesuits, such as in the work of Athanasias Kircher. The Hindu Yogic revival in Europe comes in the Nineteenth century such as through the Theosophy of Madam Blavatsky and the later Anthroposophy of Rudolph Steiner, and then again in the second half of the Twentieth century in both Europe and America, as part of the enthusiasm for meditative disciplines and consciousness studies.

In the 1960s,  pioneered investigations in biofeedback studies and what was called voluntary control of autonomic physiological processes. The world view and research questions were influenced by exposure to traditions of psychic healing in the early Twentieth century and researches in India in the 1950/60s, studying the physiology of Yogic adepts and Tibetan traditions.

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The use of Energy Therapy dates back to the start of human history

Scientific studies have proven the effectiveness of Energy Work

Biofeedback studies have shown the difference of energy health

James L. Oschman book introduces global studies at major institutes and universities - Energy Medicine: The Scientific Basis, 2nd Edition, 2015

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