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"The Big idea"

by Dr. Tim O'Shea

   Chiropractic is really quite simple: it just wants to turn the power on. The same power that grew you, cell by cell from the time the egg met the sperm. The power that changed you from a fetus to an infant to a child to an adolescent to an adult. The same power that may be dimmed a little by the stresses of life. Chiropractic just wants to turn that power back on. It's more than a figure of speech.

   Most people don't really get chiropractic, even after all these years. What they don't get is its completeness, its purity, and its simplicity. After 100 years, everybody's heard of chiropractic, but only about 10% use it, and only some of that 10% actually get it

   This is no accident.

   We all know how organized medicine has whomped on chiropractic for its entire history. Easy to figure out why - because chiropractic offers people a way out, an escape from life as an inevitable progression of decay, drugs, and disease. Organized medicine knows instinctively that chiropractic will never be engulfed by medicine, the way osteopathy and dentistry have been. Chiropractic will never be a docile subspecialty of medicine. By definition, chiropractic personifies a whole different paradigm of health, a different universe of being, different focus,


   What is the dream of organized medicine? Compliance. A world of submissive patients, willing to accept life as it is doled out to them: interventions at birth, vaccinations, an array of childhood diseases, each with its own drug or procedure, an adolescence monitored for minor psychological aberrations; an adulthood filled with checkups and appointments for cold medicine, antibiotics, antidepressants, heart drugs, cortisone, inhalants, allergy shots, and hormones; and an old age - medicine's real jackpot years - loaded with an uninterrupted stream of medications for arthritis, cholesterol, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, prostatitis, menopause, osteoporosis, and hopefully a number of surgical procedures requiring hospitalization, which will gradually and inexorably weaken the body's vitality, so that it is too weak to resist direction when confronted with the Final Problem. Once safely strapped into ICU for the Big Countdown, all the stops can be pulled out and the race is on - carte blanche on billing as many procedures and Machines on Wheels as possible before the final bell rings. Stop me if you're heard this.

   In between all these medical events, the person is supposed to live his life.

   What is the dream of chiropractic? Full individual potential. Highest quality of life, from the womb to the tomb. Let the inner wisdom of the body come to fruition: in every situation, give it the first chance. Unobstructed nervous system, optimum nerve transmission between the brain's central computer and the body, back and forth. Sensory experiences program the brain: input. Like a clean install on a brand new hard drive - the original programming sets up how the computer is going to operate from then on. The brain then organizes the whole enchilada and sends a thousand updates a second to every cell. This involves a lot of wiring - main trunk, branch trunks, smaller and smaller bundles, down to the single threads at the cell level.

   Messages can't afford to get put on hold. Any delays cause loss of life, starting on the smallest scale. Longer delays cause more significant loss of life, known as degeneration. After a certain amount of time, the damage caused by the nerve distortion becomes irreversible. Chiropractic seeks to remove that blockage and make a correction while the damage is fully reversible and 100% healing can occur. As we know, the human body can taken an immense amount of abuse. But there are limits.


   D.D. Palmer in 1895, that's who. I always thought how strange it is that even though chiropractic is based on universal principles of healing, it's only been around for the last hundred years. The day that Palmer restored his janitor's hearing with a single adjustment of vertebrae, a light came on and Palmer was the first guy who got to look into a Room that's been there since the Garden of Eden. A truth once viewed by a single mind cannot fail to impose itself upon the totality of human consciousness. Unless it opposes Big Money, of course. Which is why the totality doesn't know about chiropractic yet - real chiropractic and its true value.

   Chiropractic is not a version of medicine. Chiropractic is not a branch or specialty within medicine. It's way beyond that. Chiropractic is a completely separate world view and philosophy, based on three ideas:

   - the body is a self-healing organism
   - there's a universal intelligence in the body that directs its survival
   - the nervous system allows that intelligence to communicate with itself


   You fall off your rollerblades and break your arm. What drugs does the body need to mend the fracture? None. The body heals itself and the mend will be stronger than the original bone. You catch the flu. What drugs does the body need to overcome the virus? None. Antibiotics only work on bacteria. The body mobilizes its own immune system and neutralizes the flu. You cut your finger with a knife. Does all the blood just drain out? What drugs does the body need to make the blood clot and stop flowing out? None. The body contains all the repair materials to heal that cut.

   Examples are many, but it's always the same idea: the only way the body recovers from any illness is by itself, using its own healing methods. I hear all the science wizards out there saying - but what about ...? And then they say some infectious disease, like pneumonia or tuberculosis. It's true that some powerful drugs were invented in the 1940s which could temporarily block certain diseases. But there was always a downside, as there must be any time you transgress the boundaries of nature. And that is why most experts predict that the biggest medical problem in this century will be antibiotic resistance. For a closer look at the illusion of antibiotic panacea, see the chapter on ANTIBIOTICS

   The body can usually heal itself if given the opportunity the respond on its own.


   What's missing from a corpse? Break a corpse's arm. Why won't that bone mend? Sit a corpse in a chair on the railroad tracks. Send a train. Why won't the corpse get up and step to one side? Put an egg and a sperm cell together. How do they know to divide, then divide again and again, until a fetus is formed? What force directs them? The answer to all these is universal intelligence - no need to get religious about it - let's just call it universal intelligence.

   Other examples:

   - salmon know to swim upstream to spawn
   - old couples who die of separate causes within a short time
   - horses who can sense your intentions on the approach
   - when soulmates find each other in a big world
   - natural immunity after getting a disease
   - wound healing
   - bacteria mutate to survive antibiotics
   - human sperm count decreasing because of environmental pollution
     with xeno-estrogens - are we being selected out for screwing things up?

   What does chiropractic have to do with universal intelligence? Everything. Chiropractic is the only health philosophy in the world whose healing acts have a single focus: to enhance the Internet of universal intelligence within the body - the nervous system. A fancy way to describe cracking bones? It's the intent that gives chiropractic its sublime elegance. A gorilla can crack your bones. (I've actually seen that.) Why wasn't that chiropractic? Intent. The gorilla intended nothing besides cracking bones. Chiropractic intends to facilitate the expression of universal intelligence throughout the body. How? By programming the hard disk, and by un-crimping the cables: offering uninterrupted data to the brain, and by eliminating unwanted stimulation of nerve lines, using exact adjustment of specific vertebrae. Intent.


   The master system, controlling the rest of the body's systems. (Gray's Anatomy, p1)   There's something electrical about all that wiring, all those neurons and connections. Something electrical, something physical, and something metaphysical. And a whole bunch of other stuff too: we only know a little about how the body really works. Pseudo-scientists pretend to know a little more, perhaps in order to buttress their self-image, so that they won't seem too foolish when their lobotomies and psychoactive drugs and procedures and tests fail to have the desired effect. But about the bigger part of it, we are clueless.

   Brain. Spinal cord. Spinal nerves. Smaller branches, finally subdividing to reach every single cell. Controlling movements, monitoring sensations, evaluating muscle positions, remembering sense experiences, regulating organ functions for survival, getting general impressions from the environment - the nervous system does it all. And more that we don't even know about, involving the Life Forces. Through the nervous system, we manifest the universal, we share the universal in common with every life that has ever been lived. (Chopra)

   The nervous system runs into problems - the problems of overwork, stress, trauma, and posture. The perfect alignment of vertebrae, an elegant mechanical design, becomes imperfect as these problems shove the bones farther and farther out of line, day by day. When you recall what is housed in the vertebrae - the spinal cord and spinal nerves - you see the delicacy of the situation. It is the nervous system that is the crown of creation, the pinnacle of evolution. Nerve messages, which are life expressions, may be changed by pressure from a distorted position of vertebrae. Chiropractic calls such misalignments SUBLUXATION.

   Cirrhosis of the liver doesn't happen overnight. Neither does diabetes. Cancer takes seven or eight years before it grows from a single cell to a tumor the size of a pencil tip. (McDougall)   If you are an American you stand a 50/50 chance of dying from heart disease. That takes years to develop. How about chronic fatigue? Low immune function - auto immune things, on and on.

   What's the master system controlling all other systems? The nervous system. So what regulates all the above? The nervous system. What can cause all of the above? Distorted information, chronically garbled memos put through the nervous system. Garbage in, garbage out. Subluxation.

   For example, environmental stresses may speed up the heart - fight-or-flight. The brain may want to say to the heart yeah I know but really everything's OK. So slow down, chill a little. And the brain does send the instructions to the heart to calm down. So the heart calms down. But the phone line that was supposed to tell the brain that everything's fine now, that the heart has calmed down - that line is jammed. The brain is still operating on old information - it thinks the heart is still stressed out. So the brain is saying calm down calm down, but the heart is already calm, and is now supposed to get even calmer. See where this is going? And this is only one small example of miscued mental impulses that result from partially blocked lines of nerve communication.

   Of all the possible sites for nerve distortion, the vertebrae are #1. The first branches off the spinal cord are sort of large. And they have to fit between the vertebrae through holes that are sort of small. The whole design might have been beautiful for apes and monkeys living in trees in the jungle, but our lives are a bit more stressful. If you ever get the idea that man was not descended from the ape, you've never been to the Musee d'Orsay in Paris, right across the river from the Louvre. In one of the most magnificent expositions of prehistoric skeletons in the all world, you will see the spines of early monkeys and early man. You cannot tell them apart.


   We are the car-driving monkeys, the typing monkeys, the junkfood monkeys, the industrial monkeys, the welfare monkeys, the sedentary monkeys, the politically correct monkeys, the terrorized monkeys, the vaccinated monkeys. We are the monkeys who live our lives with powerful drugs and alcohol. We are the monkeys who drag each other into court for the flimsiest of excuses, employing life-forms of a much lower order, scamming for money. We are the monkeys who have stopped swinging from trees, with only 4% of us doing any exercise at all.

   No self-respecting monkey would operate like this.

   The result is a variety of unnatural stressors on our vertebral spine. The stress manifests itself in the spine by knocking the vertebrae out of place, interfering with normal nerve transmission, and sending distorted or excessive signals to the brain. That's subluxation.

   Subluxation is not a theory. There is abundant proof, both empirical and clinical. Empirical means what is plainly obvious, like spring following winter, or that moss grows on the north side of trees, or that water goes down the drain clockwise in the northern hemisphere. These things don't need to be proven in "scientific" studies. Millions of people worldwide go to chiropractors to have their subluxations removed because they know it works. They don't need more "proof."


   Chronic subluxations that are allowed to remain in the spine for years uncorrected create a definite pattern of weakness - the weak link in the chain. One bone is tweaked out of place; now the spine's not straight. Stress comes along every day and is concentrated on that exact flex point, because that's the point that gives a little. It's weak. It's gonna be weak tomorrow when the patient wakes up, and it's gonna be weak next month if no one finds it and makes a change. That's what a pattern is - a configuration that doesn't change.

   Distorted spinal patterns are bad. Why? Three main reasons:

   - a twisted spine can't support its weight or move the way it should
   - the normal muscle pattern gets out of balance trying to compensate
   - the spinal nerves start sending distorted signals

   Next bad thing that happens is that the body memorizes the new pattern and locks it in as the new Normal. The body eventually gives up fighting and accepts the tweaked spine as is. Three bad results then follow:

   - bad posture: soon it feels weird to stand up straighter than a lower primate
   - involuntary spasms of the back muscles 24 hours a day, wasting energy
   - distorted patterns of nerve signals offer the brain wrong information, all the time

   Screwed up patterns like this have been researched for decades. World famous physiologist Irwin Korr, way back in 1947 talked about facilitated segments - the tweaked bones, locked out of place in their false pattern. And he proved how such a spinal irregularity magnified stress by simply not being able to respond normally. Korr didn't use the word subluxation, but he was talking about the same thing.

   Think of birth trauma - maybe the baby came out all twisted, or the doctor did the twisting because he was in a hurry. So the baby is like a pretzel, and its spine is continually sending distorted information back to the brand new clean hard drive brain, programming it with 'I'm a pretzel. I'm a pretzel...' Soon the brain is gonna think of itself as the CPU of a pretzel. How could it think anything else? It's never been a brain before. It just follows the programming it receives, even if that input is totally distorted. Neural patterns are created that will last a lifetime, unless someone intelligent enough notices it. And what is the only profession trained to notice such distortions? Right. Chiropractic.

   Is this a big deal? Amigo, there is no bigger deal out there.


   There's another aspect to subluxation that's a little more subtle. Sometimes injuries heal without any treatment, but the internal wiring - the memory of that injury - continues to cause problems for years afterward. The injured part sent a continual flow of distress signals to the brain, the whole time it was injured. That relay pattern kinda got stuck in the "on" position. (Coderre) Doctors have now found that adjusting the spine can sometimes fix these mysterious persistent pain syndromes that all kinds of drugs and tests may not cure. We're just beginning to understand how.

   An extreme example of such a memory is phantom limb pain -where an amputee feels sensations in a hand or foot that is no longer there. Same principle with subluxation, only less severe.


   A system of health care that has challenged the mainstream approach since its very birth obviously didn't survive this long without overcoming colossal opposition. Big medicine has big money. Big money controls Washington. Washington makes laws which are open to interpretation by a whole menagerie of lawyers and judges, who have paraded down through the decades, usually representing big money interests.

   As we have seen in Conventional vs. Holistic Medicine, historically there is a tendency to suppress alternative health ideas, with the standard pose that the public is being protected from "unproven" ideas of health. Hopefully by this point in the book we have learned to be a bit suspicious of those who control the means of "scientific proof." Funny coincidence how drugs that have been scientifically approved as safe enough to be sold on the market are now the 4th leading cause of death in the U.S., ( Apr 1998) ahead of both AIDS and accidents.

   Both DD and BJ Palmer, as well as many other chiropractors were put in jail in the early decades of chiropractic, for "practicing medicine without a license." Although it was always a ridiculous charge, because they were practicing chiropractic not medicine, these doctors' lives were harshly traumatized by the ordeal.

   When it became obvious that chiropractors weren't going to disappear, and a revenue source was spotted in the issuing of licenses, gradually every state came to regulate and license the profession. But recognition wasn't yet forthcoming, because of the economic implications. Here was a profession co-existing with medicine that was telling people that the body could heal itself without drugs and surgery, as long as there was no nerve interference.


   There's a phenomenon that usually happens with new ideas. Somebody thinks up something original, like the Constitution, or aerobics, or an abs machine, or Coca Cola, or rock and roll, or Levis, or French, or Rolex, or surfboards, or airplanes and before long, another group comes along challenging the validity of the original idea with the knock-off. It's that whole purist/mixer thing. Pretty soon you have modern American PC, Tai-bo, and crunch machines, and RC Cola, and Alternative Rock, and designer jeans, and Quebecoise, and fake Rolex, and windsurfing, and helicopters --- get the idea?

   Same thing with chiropractic. BJ Palmer said he had the original idea - misaligned vertebrae - and he had the only technique and technology that could fix them. He built a machine for finding subluxations, and created a very specific technique for correcting them. Chiropractic was his baby.

   Very hard to patent the revelation of a universal idea. But BJ tried, and ended up polarizing the new profession for awhile. Many chiropractors went their own way, invented their own techniques, and founded their own colleges. At one time there were some 44 chiropractic colleges in the U.S. (Today there are 16.)

   But even though many chiropractors went their own way, all true chiropractors still acknowledge the great discovery and gift that the Palmers brought to the world. And they also will in some way relate the idea of subluxation removal with the body's own inner wisdom. These are the minimum requirements of a traditional chiropractor, above and beyond what the licensing boards may say. If the chiropractor is vague about this subluxation thing, you may not be talking to the genuine article.


   For those who do need proof, clinical studies, dozens of them, have shown that chiropractic care is very effective for a variety of conditions, not just back and neck pain. Here's a list of just a few of the bigger ones:

   1979 The New Zealand Report - a government study originally intended to discredit chiropractic, after two years of worldwide study, published a 3000 page report recommending that chiropractic should be added to the national health program.
   1986 OCHAMPUS STUDY U.S. Dept. of Defense, a 50-year study concluded that chiropractic adjustments increased mobility and shortened the duration of treatment.
   1987 Italian Study - Static Clinics, Milano 70,000 chiropractic patients evaluated showed faster recovery from injury, less time loss from work. Chiropractic is included in Italy's socialized medical package.
   1990 Meade Study British Medical Journal Study of 1600 patients showed chiropractic care superior to hospital treatment for low back pain. Recommended inclusion into Britain's socialized medicine.
   1992 Dutch Study British Medical Journal Chiropractic superior to physical therapy for long term back and neck pain.
   1993 The Manga Report, Canada Exhaustive review of current literature established chiropractic care as the most effective, cost effective approach to spinal dysfunction. The study was funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health to find ways to reduce the incidence of work-related injuries and to address cost-effective ways to treat work injuries.
   1995 US Agency for Health Care Policy and Research A federal study of 3900 patients, conducted by orthopedic surgeons. Chiropractic recommended ahead of physical therapy or surgery.

   This is ancient history. Except for a few ostriches, chiropractors today are not satisfied with the limits of these studies. Why not? Too restrictive, too narrow. These studies prove that chiropractic works for back pain. No duh. Everybody has known that since 1895. They do not describe chiropractic's range. They does not address the expression of universal intelligence within the body. They do not show THE BIG IDEA which relates chiropractic to the nervous system as our conduit to universal intelligence. Cracking the back is not the topic here. Rather, it's the intent of the doctor to restore optimum communication to the patient's nervous system, the master system. This requires careful analysis, touch skills, the ability to interpret the findings, and finally the technical skill to deliver an exact adjustment to the involved vertebrae. There is no limit to the healing results that can follow a well-timed, well-placed adjustment. Like golfing, or archery, there's a thousand ways to do it wrong, but when we get it right, we're in the Zone, in the Flow, the sweet spot, Instant Karma, zooed in - whatever metaphor you want. Hole-in-one, bulls-eye, hello again, brain/body. That's chiropractic's focus - trying to tap back into that Lost Connection with what is universal inside all of us.

   Religious mumbo-jumbo? Let's look at the study by Schneider where autopsies of 74 babies who died of SIDS (crib death) showed major subluxations of upper cervical vertebrae, protruding into the brain stem itself. Where would a baby less than one year old run into neck trauma severe enough to kill it? Ever see any obstetric instructional videos? Granted, they're probably not on the waiting list at your local Blockbuster, but they're out there. And they show doctors how to deliver babies by aggressively grabbing the head as soon as it crowns from the mother's womb, grabbing it with both hands or an instrument and forcefully twisting and pulling till the baby is "born." Or the newer "skull-plunger" which suctions onto the hapless infant's head, in preparation for some major yankage. What's the rush? Economics: the schedule. Lots of mothers waiting, let's keep the show on the road.

   What about the majority of babies that don't die, that survive the ordeal? Think they might have neck problems? Or mysterious health problems during childhood or adolescence that drugs don't seem to be able to fix, like sleep apnea, hyperactivity, allergies, or learning disorders? Or a weak immune system where they're always getting colds? Ask Christopher Reeve if those upper cervical vertebrae aren't important. Ask him what systems of the body can be affected by pinched nerves at that level. He's got a few more problems besides neck pain.


   What on earth does chiropractic have to do with the immune system? Everything. Think of it in terms of exercise: the less you do, the less you can do. As spinal mobility decreases little by little because of subluxations, immune messages are less easily transmitted, due to minor distortions in nerve action.

   AIDS patients are well acquainted with T-cells called CD-4s. The lower the count, the lower the countdown. HIV patients watch their CD-4 counts because they know the candle is burning down. CD-4 cells are a major part of the immune system, which help to fight off infection. No one dies of AIDS - they die from infections, usually pneumonia, against which they have no immunity. The bad bacteria have mutated beyond the reach of all antibiotics. With no more CD-4 cells, there's no more defense. Time to party with Elvis.

   There was an incredible study in 1994 in which HIV patients monitored at a medical center experienced a 48% increase in CD-4 cell count after a program of upper cervical chiropractic adjustments! (Selmo) Somehow, The New York Times didn't have enough room on the front page to carry that story. So no one heard about it. Do you think a 48% increase in immune function for HIV patients is a newsworthy item?

   Optimum immune function in the normal healthy person determines the quality of life, and also its duration.


   Sometimes chiropractors are accused of claiming that chiropractic adjustments can take the place of vaccinations. Or that chiropractors brainwash their patients so that the patients won't get the immunizations they need to protect themselves from disease.

   Statements like this are wrong twice. The first error is that chiropractic adjustments can take the place of vaccinations. The only thing that can take the place of vaccination is human intelligence. When people finally take the trouble to find out a little about the history of vaccination, and how they became so popular, and what's in the vaccinations, their new knowledge will take the place of vaccination.

   A brief review of that information is found in the chapter Sanctity of Human Blood.

   The second error is that immunizations have ever protected anyone from disease. They haven't. Do your homework, but realize who is writing what, and why. The main thing being protected is the public from finding out the real data.

   Chiropractors may be responsible primary health practitioners who urge their patients to find out the facts before blindly submitting their children to institutionalized programs of vaccination. Those making billions off peoples' ignorance don't like that attitude. They prefer sheep, thank you.

   Chiropractic adjustments don't replace vaccinations. Only an idiot or a lawyer would try to say something like that. Natural immunity is promoted by unrestricted communication throughout the body. Adjustment of subluxations promotes unrestricted nerve communication.


   If subluxations are bones locked out of place, is there any other way besides chiropractic to unlock them? Let's think about it. Many medical doctors don't believe that subluxation exists, even in the face of all the above research. Medical treatment for spine pain or for organ dysfunction is limited to drugs and surgery, which are expensive, and ineffective. Even if they know about subluxation, it is difficult for medical doctors to prescribe something simple, natural, and harmless because it's outside their scope. They don't get paid for it and therefore they don't do it.

   Occasionally a medical doctor will attempt spinal manipulation after taking a weekend seminar. As you might imagine, problems may arise. Spinal adjustment is an art and takes years to develop. Chiropractors spend hundreds of hours learning spinal adjustment under supervision in a clinic before they are allowed to treat the public. The idea here is adjustment is different from manipulation. Adjustment is very specific: chiropractors find the subluxation first, then unlock that particular fixation. Manipulation, by contrast, is a very general, shotgun method. Little attempt is made to find the exact subluxation; for general manipulators, every patient essentially gets the same move. General manipulation is little more than cracking the bones. Like the gorilla above.

   Unfortunately, even some chiropractors are just general manipulators. The patient is advised to learn beforehand if his doctor of chiropractic will take the time to actually locate the exact subluxation before making the adjustment.

   Osteopathy was a specialty of spinal manipulation which developed timewise in a parallel fashion along with chiropractic. The founder of osteopathy, A.T. Still, felt that misalignments of the vertebrae interfered with blood circulation. By osteopathic spinal manipulation, many patients received satisfactory results over the years. There were many osteopathic hospitals across the country in the 20th century, some of which are still in operation.

   In the 1960s, however, osteopathy was engulfed by medicine. In exchange for their patient base, osteopaths were given the right to prescribe drugs, the same as medical doctors. Almost immediately, the classic osteopathic manipulations began to be used less, in favor of drug treatments to cover up the pain. The result was the gradual decline of osteopathy, continuing today, with less than 30,000 left. Osteopaths lost their identity, or rather they sold it. Soon it became hard to tell the difference between an osteopath and an orthopedist, because they both prescribed drugs for joint pain. Medicine made a great gain by this acquisition, because without drugs, osteopathy had been in competition with medicine for joint pain patients for all those years. Today most people can't even tell you what an osteopath is.

   Physical therapists also may take some weekend seminars in manipulation, which they call joint mobilization. Again, it's a question of training and of intent. You wouldn't call a brake mechanic to repair your DVD.

   Conclusion: the only one who is going to correct subluxation is a chiropractor who knows about it. What sets chiropractic apart from any other health care system in the world is its philosophy. Simply stated, chiropractic advocates an aggressive, take-charge approach in maintaining the body as a vital, self-healing organism instead of awaiting the arrival of illness. Chiropractic feels that the body should be given every opportunity to exercise its inherent recuperative powers rather than immediately handicapping these healing mechanisms with an array of increasingly experimental drugs and potions.


   The developer of chiropractic, BJ Palmer, said that either chiropractic is specific or else it is nothing. The whole association with universal intelligence, described above, and the role of chiropractic adjustments in maintaining that communication within the body - this paradigm only holds true with the doctor who locates the exact subluxation and makes the specific adjustment. Intent. The doctor intends to restore the body to its normal state of communication with the life force inside. Quite a difference from a general manipulator who intends nothing more than to hear some bones cracking.

   A good analogy would be golfing. Driving range vs. golf course. At the driving range, the intent is to whack the ball as far as possible. Focus on the details of driving, but get the yardage.

   Playing a round of golf on a course is different. Much more finesse and attention to detail is required; it's a much more involved enterprise. Now the intent is to get the ball to an exact location with the minimum number of strokes. This calls for strategy, planning, and a great deal of focus and concentration. Distance is no longer the whole issue; many of the clubs are actually to keep from going too far. A combination of technical aspects must be mastered in order to achieve excellence, some of which - like putting - are whole worlds in themselves.

   The idea is - raising the level of intent involves raising the level of sophistication.

   Same thing with the chiropractic adjustment. The doctor makes a careful analysis, by X-ray, digital skill, and other exams, before deciding which adjustment to make, in which direction. A lot of variables.


   Check out the connection here: the spinal adjustment makes a 3-way link between three expressions of the same thing:

   - the intelligence of the chiropractor
   - the universal intelligence inside the patient's body
   - the patient's nervous system

   This is not Santa Cruz Cosmic Debris. Chiropractic's existence depends on its ability to make these corrections happen on a consistent basis. Life is stressful in specific ways. Physical, emotional, and toxic stress cause specific subluxations within the spine. No exercises or drugs or machines can correct a subluxation. Correction requires the doctor's awareness and focus on the specifics. So I guess that brings a fourth factor into the equation: the patient's ability to locate a chiropractor who knows all this. They're definitely out there. Just ask!


   Every profession has its mercenaries, the ones who ride on the coattails of a great idea, just for personal gain. The best tricksters are very hard to spot because they cultivate the appearance of the genuine item. So here's what you do for a quick-screen procedure, like an ID check:

   - look for posters that talk about subluxation.

   - listen if the doctor talks about subluxation or about the connection between the brain and the body.

   - listen for the priorities: which are we talking more about - is it the weather, your friend's divorce, the stock market, or some movie or is the discussion mainly about the condition of your nervous system?

   - how will the subluxation be found? X-ray, instrument, or test? Or is it a crystal ball while examining
entrails of a chicken?

   If you need a friend, buy a dog. If you need someone to hold your hand, see a manicurist. A good chiropractor has some proficiency with the spine and nervous system. If you don't feel that focus, you're parked in the wrong space.


   I have this sort of vision that chiropractic is like a zeppelin or a glider that floats above the earth, just cruising, offering itself to anyone who shows interest, but not swooping down to force itself on people. But there with this kind of universal availability, and you have to be lucky to be guided to it, because once you break through all the obstacles of organized monkeymedia and programmed misunderstanding and money and "expert" opinion and encounter someone with the clear light who knows that he knows, then you have a chance to get it.

   I mean, what are your options, really? Can the body heal itself, or can't it? Are diseases actually deficiencies of drugs, like we've been told? Or is there another way of healing - a simple way, that begins working immediately, along with the body's natural healing instincts, so that you start moving in the direction of completeness, like when you were born, tapping into that original pool of intelligence and power.

  (For more articles by Dr. O'Shea, please see "The Doctor Within" on "Health and Fitness Links" on the "Great Links" page).


   Gray, R---- Gray's Anatomy

   McDougall, John, MD----- The McDougall Program for Women 1999 Penguin

   Lazarou J et al.---- Incidence of Adverse Reactions in Hospitalized Patients JAMA 15Apr 98 279:15; p1200

   Schneider M et al.---- "Atlanto-occipital Hypermobility in SIDS" Today's Chiropractic Jan 1990

   Selmo, J et al.----"The effects of upper cervical adjustments on the CD4 counts of HIV positive patients" Chiropractic
   Research Journal 1994, vol.3 no.1 p32

   Korr, I.---- Neurobiologic Mechanisms in Manipulative Therapy : Proceedings. Workshop Held Oct 23-26, 1977

   Coderre TJ et al----Contribution of central neuroplasticity to pathological pain. Pain 52(1993)p259

   The RAND Corporation---- The Appropriateness of Spinal Manipulation for Lower-Back Pain; 1992

   Meade TW, et al.---- Low back pain of mechanical origin: randomized comparison of chiropractic and hospital outpatient
   treatment. British Medical Journal 1990, vol. 300, issue of Jun, pp. 1431-1437

   Rondberg and Feuling---- Chiropractic Compassion and Excellence 1998 The Chiropractic Journal