Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Naturopathic Medicine Week: Oh, Bastyr! Such 'Principles Opacity, as Usual'...

here, Bastyr's 'naturopathy marketing shenanigans' this Naturopathic Medicine Week 2015:

001. first, a screen capture of a Facebook post by BU 2015-10-06: 
now, particularly for that principle "the healing power of nature", we're told "trust in the body's inherent wisdom to heal itself."  That's fascinating, in terms of the context it does not communicate clearly.  Also, for "treat the whole person", we're told "view the body as an integrated whole in all its physical and spiritual dimensions."

so, there's overt supernaturalism.  And what I like to call coded vitalism.  Now, Bastyr claims all this is "science-based."  Science-based supernaturalism?  Not possible.  And as for HPN, isn't that the "life force" "spirit" at the heart of naturopathy?  You wouldn't know, from Bastyr, as they set their marketing lures, though.  You'd have to dig deeper, into the essentially naturopathic.  For instance, you could use the book published by ND Pizzorno titled "Total Wellness: Improve Your Health By Understanding the Body’s Healing Systems" (ISBN 0761504338, 1996).  Pizzorno was the founding president of Bastyr.  In that book, he explains:

"some important concepts. The healing power of nature (vis medicatrix naturae). Our bodies have a tremendous ability to heal [...] natural healers refer to this inherent drive as 'the healing power of nature' or the vis medicatrix naturae [...] our underlying healing systems [p.003...] the routes to total wellness. Seven underlying, health-sustaining systems of our body must function effectively to ensure our well-being, prevent disease, and allow a full life [...including] our life-force (or spirit). Weakness in any of these seven systems results in susceptibilities that allow most common diseases to develop. Follow the recommendations below, strengthen all of these seven systems, and total wellness is yours [p.024...] live in harmony with your life-force [p.026 ...] live in harmony with the psychosocial/spiritual/life-force [p.317...] in mind/body medicine, the placebo effect is recognized as a marshaling of our self-healing abilities -- the life-force within each of us, which naturopathic physicians call the vis medicatrix naturae [...] it is increased awareness of and access to this teleological force, the healer within, that is the essence of each of us [p.333...] life force. See spiritual system [p.410]."

yes, that's life force = spirit = healing power of nature = vis medicatrix naturae = healer within = spiritual system.  They have supernaturalized biological phenomena: which is a RETURN to medieval thinking.  Now, if BU was up front that this is a science-exterior belief system, I'd have some respect for them even though I wouldn't share the belief.  But, instead, BU engages, minimally, is what I'll term 'academic epistemic incompetence'.  I think it's more egregious and deliberate, by the way.

002. why the facade, Bastyr?

I've been watching this ruse for more than a decade: the HPN that really is a supernatural belief / article of faith, then posed falsely as within SCIENCE.  This is the epistemic muddle that is naturopathy, falsely posing as an epistemic distinction.  Well, I'll muse about why, as this blog is a kind of scribbled musing about naturopathy that forgoes typical manuals of style!  

it's bad for business to market yourself succinctly and transparent, and fairly as: a pseudoscientific belief system falsely posing itself as scientific.

003. now, if you go the the bastyr.edu page that they point to in that Facebook post, "About Naturopathic Medicine" [2015 archived], you're told:

"a naturopathic doctor uses the Western medical sciences as a foundation for diagnosis and treatment [...]";

but that's bullshit, because science doesn't support the supernatural and can't, and definitely doesn't support the science-ejected medieval.

"naturopathic physicians must pass rigorous professional board exams [...and] NDs are trained in [...such things as] homeopathic medicine [...]";

and in fact that supposedly "rigorous" board exam contains homeopathy labeled falsley as a "clinical science."  What kind of rigor is that?

"the underpinnings of naturopathic medical practice are in six principles [...] the healing power of nature, vis medicatrix naturae [...] see a more detailed description [...]";

so there's HPN and a promise of detail.  So, the detail they provide is:

"the healing power of nature (vis medicatrix naturae: naturopathic medicine recognizes the body's inherent ability to heal itself. Naturopathic physicians identify and remove obstacles to recovery facilitate this healing ability in patients [...]";

and that's all you get.  As I'd said, expert manipulators: not what they say they are, and not communicating what they really are.  No transparency, and therein, basically, no respect for patient and public informed consent.
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