LP writes: "My sister is into 'energy healing' using the book called The Emotion/Body Code. The writer and founder of this is Dr. Bradley Nelson (who is a Mormon). Have you heard about him and what he is doing?"
Dr. Nelson is a chiropractor who invented what he calls the Body Code System after years of practice. He calls it "the most advanced method of energetic healing and of natural healing, that exists on the planet today."
The key word in this statement is "energetic" and the way Nelson is using the term is vintage New Age, meaning it refers to a universal life force that some believe can cause illness when it is not properly balanced. Nelson, who is a believer in this life force (which does not exist, according to science) claims that his body code system teaches anyone how to find these imbalances and correct them.
Referring to himself as being an expert on "bioenergetic medicine" and energy psychology (whatever that means), one of his instructional videos references Kirlian photography which he claims can capture evidence of this energy in the body. However, the energy that appears in these photographs - which at times can appear as auras - has nothing to do with a universal life force.
According to Victor Stenger, Ph.D., professor emeritus of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Hawaii, what people are seeing is “black body” electromagnetic radiation (a form of veritable energy and completely substantiated by science) which produces an invisible infrared light that is the result of the random movements of all the charged particles in the body that are caused by heat.
But this isn't stopping Nelson from claiming that it's a life force energy and that his books can teach you how to use it to fix anything that ails you.
Nelson has an interesting background. Although he never mentions anywhere in his bio that he's a Mormon, he appears to have been a prayerful man all of his life. While suffering from a debilitating kidney disease as a child, he claims that a pair of Osteopathic doctors treated him and caused the illness to go into a "spontaneous remission". The experience convinced him early on that he wanted to be a healer.
But as he grew up, he became fascinated with computers and wanted to go into this field until his father encouraged him to reconsider his old dream of becoming a healer. After praying to God for guidance that night, he claims to have been awakened in the middle of the night three times, each time with his mind full of "warm fuzzy feelings" about going into the healing arts. The next night he did the same thing and once again was woken up three times with his head full of thoughts about healing, but this time he heard a voice say, "This is a sacred calling."
The experience convinced him to enroll in chiropractic school and he went into practice after graduation. Throughout his career, he made a habit of saying a quick, silent of prayer to God for help before treating each patient.
"There were times, especially during the last years that I was in practice when the patient might present a problem that I didn’t know how to deal with, something that I had never seen before, and there were times when, in answer to my silent prayer of help, the information I needed to know would instantly flood into my mind. Sometimes this information was a completely different way of looking at things that I had never even considered before."
As time went on, his patients came in with more and more serious diseases that "Western medicine" couldn't fix - fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus, and even cancer. He would tell his patients that he couldn't promise them a cure, but that he would "simply try to find the imbalances that are going on in the body" because he had come to believe that the symptoms they were having were due to the fact that there were [energy] imbalances in their body. When he could find those imbalances and fix them, the problems went away.
In 2002, after 20 years of practice, he received another message from "upstairs" telling him to turn over his practice to someone else and sell everything he owned. Why? So he could begin to share his healing methods with the rest of the world.
He obeyed, and published The Emotion Code in 2007, a book which details how to let go of your emotional baggage.
"One early morning in August of 2008, I woke up to find my mind full of a very specific instruction to 'Take all the information that you have gained, take everything that you have learned about healing, and put it into a self-study course that anyone can use and learn, and make it available to everyone, everywhere'.”Nelson claims that he was able to develop a "mind mapping" system which he was later told to reveal to the world by the same "voice" who had been directing him throughout his life.
This is where he admits that he developed a "mind mapping" system and that the "secret weapon" he used while in practice was his ability to access the subconscious mind of his patients through an occult-based practice known as muscle testing. This method combines elements of psychic philosophy, Chinese Taoism, and a belief in what early chiropractors called “Innate Intelligence” (aka universal life force). The method has been subjected to scientific scrutiny where it failed to produce any viable results - which is why it is considered to be a pseudo-science.
Nevertheless, this became The Body Code, a self study system that retails for more than $1400 dollars. To become a certified Body Code practitioner will set you back another $1200.
Not surprisingly, his site is loaded with glowing testimonials, but not a single study proving that any of his claims are valid.
It is not surprising to me that your sister - and probably thousands of other people - were swept off their feet by Dr. Nelson's story, as implausible as that might seem. However, some people are just so fed up with the high cost of conventional medicine with its drugs, unnecessary surgeries, and insensitive practitioners, that they become vulnerable to every charlatan who talks a good game.
These are the people who need to thoroughly read Dr. Nelson's disclaimer where he admits that none of the statements made on his site have been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration, that his revolutionary new methods that he claims can cure anything "are not intended to . . . cure any physical or medical condition" and that he takes no responsibility for any harm that might come to them. Even more ironic, his statement ends with this: "If you have a physical or medical condition, you should seek the advice of your medical professional immediately."
So much for the "miracle" of alternative healers.