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
What are schools, creeds, state medicine? The disposition of men to fix beliefs so that there will be no progress--no mind-growth. This is the ignorant manner of expression--this is the social understanding; but the truth is that creed is for mind what the rock is for plant; namely, obstruction to growth. But it must cling to it until safely attached to a more substantial support.
The so-called intellectual always impose on the credulous and ignorant. Man must worship something, and it is immensely gratifying to his vanity if he can manage to be the object of worship. The selfishness of man would cause him to stop progress, if in doing so he could become a god; for the word "god" means a finished product. As soon as God is discovered, be he a man, or a deity, one on the outside of the universe, progress ends. As soon as a cure is found, progress stops; and around the little god of cure, or stone of obstruction, every protection is built to immortalize it.
Simple-minded people and the credulous allow themselves to be dominated by those who are selfish. As a result, obnoxious laws and customs are established which prevent progress.
The regular school of medicine is struggling with might and main to saddle on the people its present germ theory, and its corresponding immunization and therapeutics. Which tacitly means: We have arrived at perfection, and it is time to stereotype and ossify.
This is the curse of school, creed, and church. Around and through these obstructions, mind-urge must force its tender shoots. I dispute that it is love or worship that causes mind to cling to heroes, churches, or god. Indeed, they are obstructions to mental growth; but growing mind must cling to them until strong enough to grow independently.
The intellectual have imposed, and always will impose, upon the ignorant and credulous. The medical profession is working largely on the theory that people want to be humbugged; and it is supplying the want.
The priests were the first physicians. Prophets and divines were consulted. Pythagoras, Aristotle, Athenaeos, the early Christian teachers, the mystics of the later centuries, on to the present, not only "instructed in arcane, metaphysics, and general knowledge, but treated disease."
The late Dr. Alexander Wilder declared: "The knowledge anywhere possessed of the art of healing is the measure of the refinement and civilization to which the people have attained." Show me the doctor any family employs, and I will tell you of the intellectual level to which that family has attained. Their beliefs in regard to church, healing, drugs, etc., mark the stratum in intellectual life to which they have attained. This may be a questionable compliment to those who pretend to be intelligent, yet are clinging to childish superstitions.
See people chasing after quacks--chasing after cures that are not cures--willfully helping the physician give a distorted notion about their diseases, so they will not be interfered with in their daily habits! It is obvious to what an intellectual level people have attained when they will take drugs, or are vaccinated, to cure diseases caused by bad habits. When habits are of more importance than health, and when people will struggle in every possible way to secure a healer who will indulge them in their habits, and cure them without requiring them to stop the habits, that cause disease, it is easy to see where they belong intellectually, titles to the contrary notwithstanding.
Man is civilized by social relations. His refinement depends entirely upon the mental attitude of those with whom he associates. Has a man true refinement who will, for the sake of gain, recommend an operation when he is doubtful in his mind as to whether it is necessary--doubtful as to whether any good will come from it? There are a few barbarians who say: "Damn the people! I am not my brother's keeper. We are here to give the people what they want." What kind of civilization is that? And yet we boast of our civilization.
Kindness and charity represent real culture. The only country that boasted largely of its culture before this European war was Germany. Does war represent culture? aaaa
Does the preparedness of a country represent culture? Is that an ideal religion? Is Christendom Christian? Do Christians believe in Christianity? Is Christianity a reliable therapeutic remedy for misanthropy? Does Dr. Christian know how to use Christianity to cure man of his unethical disease?
The art and technique of healing proceed from knowledge, refinement, and culture. The province of intelligence is to investigate and discover the cause and origin of disease. Scientific knowledge and artistic skill are not so much concerned with cure as with the individual himself. It will always be impossible to get rid of the personal equation in formulating a system of healing. So long as systems are formulated with the personal equation of the patient left out, the system must fail. Indeed, the patient must be the doctor, and the present doctors must become teachers. Medicine is an art. Science, when it is used as an art, will help; but when it is taken out of art, science will never give a solution to the problem of cure.
A man may paint a beautiful picture scientifically; he may have planned the picture carefully, laid out the plans beautifully in advance, and prepared formulas for his colors, blendings, light and shade-all correct according to the best formulas. But when the real artist comes along-the one who carries his model in his soul, the creator- he will make a picture of the same subject that will throw the first into the shadow so far that a second look will never be given it. That is the difference between art and science.
Do not jump to the conclusion that I do not believe in science! It is the basis on which we must build; and every man should have as much science as he possibly can get. But if he is going to cut loose from everything else, and have nothing but science, he will make a bungling record.
In a general way, the skilled physician can tell that his patient suffers; but he cannot know anything of the state of emotions, the wants, the longings, the heartaches. The doctor can see the results of appetites and passions, the same as he can see the results of an accident, the cause of which he knows nothing about. There is an element in every disease that the doctor cannot know without the aid of the patient; and there is an element of cure that belongs to the patient, without which the doctor is helpless. It is nonsense to expect cures to be performed on patients whose lives, physical and mental, are not known.
Taking a drop of blood for analysis, or examining the urine, tells but one thing--and that is the state of the blood or the urine; but nothing of how the perverted state was brought about, if it is perverted. A cure must be formulated on the cause, and not on the effect.
Without an understanding of cause, hope for cure must be lost. How can there be anything done toward removing cause without a complete understanding of what cause is?
The divine conquest of the human intellect is made when cause is known. All before that is chaos. Knowledge, religion, ethics, and morality are in a state of chaos until a knowledge of cause comes to set man right. That cause must be known not only scientifically, but artistically as well.