"Ho ye who suffer. Know ye suffer from yourselves.

None else compels—no other holds ye

that ye live or die."


by C. Leslie Thomson

Extracted from: Thomson, C Leslie, ND. 1949. But Is It Nature Cure? (Pamphlet). Edinburgh: Kingston Clinic.


Many of our longer-established adherents will recognise this as an augmented revisal of the statement first published eight years ago. The need for its message has not diminished in that time.

Its first appearance aroused considerable antagonism from many of those whose practices and theories it described. The reaction built up steadily and reached full fury after the publication, by the Incorporated Society of Registered Naturopaths, of a leaflet entitled This Nature Cure. This clear statement of beliefs included the following extract from the Society’s by-laws:

"Members shall not prescribe ‘remedies’, eg biochemicals, tissue salts, gland extracts, vitamin concentrates, allopathic, homeopathic or herbal preparations, nor shall they offer or promise ‘cures’ for specific conditions."

Understand, please, that our Society did not, and does not, attempt to impose that simple regulation on anyone except the practitioners on its Register. There is not the faintest suggestion of either seeking power to stop any one from going to any kind of practitioner that he or she may choose, or to interfere with the free choice of that practitioner in the methods he may use. Yet in a heated, and at times personally abusive onslaught, and at times personally abusive, which occupied a large proportion of editorial space in a "health" magazine for the best part of a year, we were accused of attempting to "dictate" to herbalists, homeopaths, biochemic dosers, tissue-salters and number of other varieties of the genus cure-seller.

It is a sincere, although unwelcome, compliment to Nature Cure that these people should be so anxious to claim a place within it. The principles of Nature Cure certainly reach far beyond the treatment of people in ill-health, but these principles are not to be extended, twisted and mutilated to serve the purposes of those who profit by pill-vending.

Every so often, one or other of the many unorthodox practitioner groups attempts to persuade the others to unite and demand some form of "official recognition": The aim is not always the same: sometimes the BMA is to be asked to grant recognition, sometimes the government. Either way, the hoped-for prize is a fairer deal for the non-medical patient and a legal status for unorthodox practitioners equal to that enjoyed by medical doctors.

Nobody could deny that the National Health Service imposes heavy and grossly unfair burdens upon citizens who wish treatment other than that provided by the scalpel-and-drug school; but there are many reasons why we cannot sink our professional differences to present an apparently united front to the government of the day. If the hope is to further the cause and teachings of true Nature Cure, we must not start off by abandoning its fundamental principles. Just how these differ from the principles of any other variety of unorthodoxy may not be immediately obvious to our patients, who may accordingly feel that we are weakening our political potential by maintaining our individual identity.

This critical survey is presented in the hope that it will show why we remain "awkward". We believe that reason is on our side.