This section is from the "Impaired Health: Its Cause And Cure" (Volume 1) book, by John H. Tilden. Also available from Amazon: Impaired health its cause and cure: A repudiation of the conventional treatment of disease
One of these laboratory experts has practiced medicine, thereby familiarizing himself with the peculiarities, habits, and customs, of both a mental and a physical character, of sick people. Theoretically they perhaps knew all about man, his mind and body; but to know--positively know--all knowledge must be lived. A doctor may have a lot of textbook and laboratory knowledge; but, unless he spends years in applying it, it is not his knowledge, and he only thinks he knows.
According to the laboratory expert's opinion, man is an automaton--a fixed entity--that has no power within himself to stay well or make himself sick. It is true that there is a perfunctory recognition that the body has within itself anti-bodies--a given amount of self-protection or immunization; but that activities, both mental and physical, have more than anything else to do with determining whether man shall be sick or well, is not recognized as the great field of causation; and, as to man's having within himself power to live in health--as to his having autoimmunizing power--being a living, breathing, activating knowledge--this is left out of the mental equation of all these eminent bacteriologists; hence the inexplicable failures that have accompanied every well-worked-out plan of cure on a bacteriological basis that has been advanced by them.
Perhaps I should not be personal; but, inasmuch as what I am about to say is of vital importance, I am justified in declaring that each one of the eminent gentlemen named above was a semi-invalid--and that, too, with his knowledge of germs. If germ infection was the cause of their ill-health, they certainly should have kept their bodies free enough from unfriendly organisms to have enjoyed health. A theory of cause and cure that will not give a reasonable amount of health to its possessor is not of great importance.
The conclusions arrived at by the bacteriological experts have been reached by approaching the subject of disease with the fixed hypothesis that there is but one cause of disease; namely, animate agents--that of germs; and then taking for granted that the cause--germs--is irresistible, unless headed off by immunizing the body by inoculating it with the virus of disease--germs. Then the logically obvious must follow; namely, if disease is headed off by immunization, health must be inevitable.
The absurdity of this one-sided search after the cause of disease should be apparent to any intelligent observing mind.
At this point a little reasoning should not be despised: There are a few people who enjoy health and long life. Is it because they are not exposed to the omnipresent germ? They have not been made immune by virus or serum inoculation. This cannot be the reason. Then it must be because they have within themselves power to resist the influence of germs.
There are people who are well a part of the time, and a part of the time they are sick. Is it because they are exposed to germs a part of the time, and a part of the time they are not? This is not true. Then what causes the immunization a part of the time? They have no artificial immunization. If germs cause them to be sick a part of the time, why not all the time? Do germs cause disease a part of the time, and then a part of the time not? If so, are there subjects whom they never influence, and others whom they never immunize?
There are people who are, like Pasteur and Metchnikoff during their lifetime, in poor health all the time. Is it because they are infected and infested with germs more than other people? Surely this could not have been true of the laboratory experts! Who, knowing the cause of disease, would willingly suffer when a cure was at their hand?
If all that they taught about germs causing disease were true, surely a willingness to live as semi-invalids would be most inexplicable in the two great bacteriological experts.
In our own country, C. A. Herter, M.D.--once a very popular professor in Columbia University, and author of a book on bacterial infections of the digestive tract--died quite young. His perfected knowledge of germ influence in disease availed him nothing when he was called upon to save himself.
Of course, I do not believe that death can be done away with, but we should be able to have health for the most part while we do live, and certainly avoid premature death and waste of life.
Why do germs, in chronic invalids, fail to work out an immunization? Why is it that this class of invalids can be put in very good health when trained into health-producing habits--and this, too, when no attention whatever is paid to the germs that are supposed to produce the disease?
To illustrate my meaning: A few years ago a gentleman living in Tampico, Mexico, wrote me, saying that he understood I did not believe in drugs, and he wished to know if I would undertake his case. He had been suffering from malaria for five years, and every drug having a reputation as a cure for the disease had been tried and found wanting.
I gave him correspondence advice for one month. At the end of the month he said: "You have made good, and that, too, with a skeptical, doubting patient."
Two and a half years afterwards I heard from him, and he was still enjoying health, having had no return of the malaria.
The treatment I gave him was simply correcting all errors of eating and care of the body.