Will humankind ever realize that healing is the will of God? What of the unbelievers and those that don't want to know? There will be two resurrections. One for good and one for bad.
Peace and Love,
Carl Patton writing for the FreedomJournal March 22, 2002 in the year of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
THE MEDICAL COMMUNITY AND HEALING
THE MIRACLE OF HEALING
PART 102: THE SCIENTIFIC DEBATE
OVER THE IMPACT OF RELIGION ON HEALING
the name of Jehovah God, Master of the universe, Ruler of the earth.
It is for sure that there is still
considerable controversy over the role of medicine and religion. In fact there
will always be different opinions about various procedures, practices, and
treatments etc. in the field of medicine. However, religion is another realm of
thought. Religion is known and unknown. Thus the believers will attest that the
unknown is often of much greater importance than the known.
So how can we diffuse this debate?
Also should our efforts be directed toward the impact of religion on healing?
However, for the sake of clarity we post the following discussion. We will
begin by noting the question raised in an article provided in the
This article was entitled
"Should Physicians Prescribe Religious Activities?" The opinion
regarding this question was rendered by a physician and a member of the clergy.
The opinion of both doctor and clergy was: "medicine and religion should
be kept as completely separate entities. Therefore, physicians should not get
involved in the topic."
Meanwhile Dr. Harold Koenig of the
"Dr. Koenig argues that he is
concerned that many of his colleagues justify supporting religion and
spirituality in their medical practice by holding up and condemning an extreme
The extreme position noted by Koenig
is that doctors should prescribe religious activities and counsel patients in
spiritual matters. Koenig agrees that physicians have no business doing either
of the above. However, they could take a spiritual history as part of their evaluation
of seriously ill patients.
Meanwhile, a Task Force of the
1. Does the patient indicate that religion is important in his or her medical care?
2. Does the patient use religious beliefs to help cope with an illness?
3. Supporting the religious beliefs of a patient does not mean recommending or prescribing. It means to acknowledge, respect, and encourage the beliefs that the patient finds helpful in relieving suffering.
4. Religious beliefs that run counter
to appropriate medical care may need further exploration with the patient, the
patient's minister or both.
Another view is noted by Dr. David E.
Nicklin. Here again we see an attempt not to diffuse the debate but a further
effort revealing the positive impact of religion on medicine healing.
Dr. Nicklin argues that "it is
not unusual for him to inquire about patients religious or spiritual lives.
This is especially noted with patients who are suffering from progressive,
incurable, or fatal illness, as well as those struggling with mental anguish or
Dr. Nicklin expresses a deep sense of
care and concern for his patients. Thus it is his practice to ask patients if
religion is important in their lives. From his observation and experience the
patients that know God describe the comfort and support they obtain from
religion and spiritual matters.
In conversations with his patients
Dr. Nicklin has determined that some patients have strayed from religion and
the church and wish to rededicate themselves. He is willing to discuss these
concerns and his diagnosis and treatment. Meanwhile he has had more than a
hundred conversations and not one patient has responded negatively. Thus, he
has established a mutual base of understanding with his patients.
Dr. Jacqueline Conner,
Dr. Anthony L. Schuman reveals
several contradictions presented by Sloan et al. For example they imply that
because religion is personal and private it is not appropriate for medical
discourse. "However Dr. Schuman argues that what is more personal and
private than the experience of illness.
Dr. Daniel Castro, Dr. Lawrence Loo,
and Dr. Debra L. Stottlemyer all concur regarding the following. These doctors
dispute the claim that only a minority of patients are interested in having
doctors discuss spiritual issues with them.
Meanwhile they note a recent study
that found that more than 70% of patients desire prayer with their physicians.
They also found that women (83%) were more interested in prayer than men (63%).
It was also discovered that the best indication of a patient's desire was the
response to a questionnaire item stating, "Indicate how important
spirituality is to you."
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