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Benefits of Bodywork
Receiving Bodywork
Bodywork After Care
About Hypnosis
History of Integrative Therapy
About Integrative Therapy

Thousands of years ago, tribal Shamans, Kahunas, Gurus, and Medicine Men believed that the body, mind, and spirit were connected. When a person got sick, it meant that they had fallen out of favor with the God(s). Through a combination of ceremony, ritual, and herbs they would treat their patients.

In ancient China, doctors were only paid when their patients were healthy. As a result, they would visit their patients regularly and prescribe a combination of herbs, diet, bodywork therapies, and exercise to keep their patients healthy. The medicine they practiced was preventative for the most part.

In the mid 17th century, René Descartes, a philosopher, theorized that the mind and body were separate. Descartes proved that he himself must have the basic characteristic of thinking, and that this thinking thing (mind) is quite distinct from his body; the existence of a God; the existence and nature of the external world; and so on. His most famous quote and rationale for this thinking was, “I think, therefore I am.” As a result of this theory, the body was soon viewed as a machine that held the spirit.

Sir Isaac Newton extended this philosophy in the early 18th century with his theory of “cause and effect.” The basis of this theory is that for every action taken, there will always be an equal and opposite reaction. By combining this idea with the theory that the body was just a machine, the conclusion was reached that if body was “not functioning properly,” a remedy applied to the body resulted in the body fixing itself appropriately. In other words, if the body was sick in a certain way, the same pill would always help it get better. This became the basis of most Western or Allopathic Medicine—treating only symptoms. This was drastically different than the philosophy of Eastern Medicine, which was grounded in preventative care.

Contrary to Newton, Albert Einstein proposed in the early 1900's his “theory of relativity.” The basis of this theory was that all physical things relate to perception. If things that happen to the body are relative to the perceived mental experience, then by this theory, the body and mind are not separate entities, but actually work together. Einstein's assistant, Max Karl Ernst Ludwig Planck, expanded this theory by stating, “separateness is seen to be an illusion caused by our lack of understanding and a misperception of our experience.”

In the mid-1900's, Dr. Andrew Stills stated three major theories:

The body is a whole organism.
The body is self-healing.
The structures of the body follow their functions.
By implementing these theories in his practice, Dr. Stills founded the first school of Chiropractors.

While doing a cranial dissection, Dr. Sutherland, a student of Dr. Stills, noticed that two of the bones in the cranium looked similar to fish gills. He hypothesized that if form follows function, and since fish gills allow “breathing,” then the bones must move. He expanded on this theory by stating that if the bones didn't move or were prevented from moving, the body would lock and have problems until the bones could move again.

Dr. Sutherland began experimenting and designed a helmet that applied pressure to the different bones in the skull. He found that as each bone was immobilized, it caused problems throughout the body, including emotional shifts, problems with balance, and ability to walk correctly.

These studies by Dr. Sutherland proved that the body and mind were interrelated. Several doctors began exploring how the body affected the mind and vice versa. Traditions that had been used for thousands of years by the ancient tribes were re-examined and combined with modern medicine, and integrative therapy was born.

Today, Allopathic Medical Doctors are beginning to take a serious look at the theories and benefits of Integrative and Holistic Medicine. Many hospitals now have programs that include anything from aromatherapy to massage. Some hospitals have even added homeopathy, nutrition, and many other forms of alternative healing. There seems to be a rising trend that many allopathic and holistic doctors are realizing that each of their forms of medical treatment can be complementary to the others in many cases.

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