Twenty years ago, Noetic scientists decided there needed to be a body of literature dedicated to collecting and organizing reports of patients’ diseases mysteriously going into remission. These were patients who chose not to receive drugs or surgical treatment for disease.
Some were receiving minimal care for these diseases. Their conditions were expected to worsen but instead they improved or disappeared, for good or for a period of time.
Scientists wanted to know what was going on and discovered there was other work happening around the world in an effort to collect the same data. Without communication between organizations there was no sharing of information, knowledge, and support. The Spontaneous Remission Bibliography Project was born to show there is plenty to be learned and studied about the way one’s consciousness contributes to recovery from physical or mental illness.
What are Noetic Sciences?
Any science dedicated to exploring states of consciousness and self-healing is considered a noetic discipline. Proponents believe they can “think” themselves healthy in one of many ways: through meditation, visualizing wellness, prayer, and other methods.
This is an alternative branch of medical sciences which advocates of hard science (biology, chemistry, neurology, etc.) don’t know what to do with. There is evidence that sometimes medicine is not responsible when a patient’s condition goes into remission.
Doctors around the world are stymied when an individual’s cancer or other disease seems to enter a period of decline in spite of the patient receiving no care or care that would otherwise seem insufficient to affect such dramatic results. When someone is facing the reality of stage-4 cancer and has received a terminal diagnosis, one would think the end is coming soon, but several installments in the Bibliography show otherwise.
Noetic scientists formed their own body within which to discuss their beliefs and to dig deeper without resistance from Western researchers. They have pooled intellectual resources as an organized body better enabling members to support one another and share findings. More fluid communication allows for continued and significant progress in their studies and also prevents bodies from working in isolation on identical projects. When organizations are aware of each other, they can join forces and put their skills to more effective use.
The Spontaneous Remission Bibliography Project
A bibliography is a collection of data, not a story, but there is something of a story unfolding within the pages of this tome. When authors Brendan O’Regan and Caryle Hirshberg first had the work published in 1993, their intention was to show just how much evidence there is for mind-body healing.
The evidence had always been there, but it was scattered and disorganized. Medical practitioners and mental health workers were only aware of some instances of self-healing, not the weight of evidence supporting mind-over-body recovery or the huge variety of illnesses which had been brought under control without the use of conventional Western medicine. Its impact on Western medicos was to show them there was more to transcendental notions of healing than exaggerated stories.
The book is organized according to the type of diseases being discussed and areas of the body affected. First, the pathology is listed: cancer, infections disease, viral illness, and injury. Second, these sicknesses are divided according to where they take place in the body. Readers can see that mind-body healing has taken place in the respiratory system, blood, bones, brain, heart, and other organs.
Hundreds of individuals have experienced recovery from tissue damage, breast cancer, sexually transmitted diseases, and lymphatic conditions. They have overcome pregnancy-related disorders, mouth cancer, and illnesses affecting digestion. A reader can delve directly into the area of his specialty, explore commonalities between diseases or healing in certain parts of the body, or tackle unfamiliar subjects according to her interests.
Amazing Facts Revealed
Responses to the project have been mixed, but one cannot deny the veracity of cases reported in the Bibliography because they were medically reported, not anecdotal. While it is not statistically typical for someone to experience healing from late-stage cancer or a serious disease without medical intervention, there are numerous cases of illness going into remission after a period of focused prayer or deliberate transcendental practices. There are over 3,000 references in the Bibliography which have been taken from hundreds of journals published around the world.
Responses to Noetic Sciences
How does the rest of the scientific world regard the noetic sciences? This interdisciplinary area of study devoted to understanding mind-body connections explores personal experiences which are difficult to discuss and quantify along objective terms. Experts talk about emotions, instincts, and other intangibles which many doctors and other scientists are wary to delve into. Association can affect their credibility within the medical world or their scientific field.
Yet, the effect of consciousness as a force in the physical realm cannot be overlooked or denied. There is too much evidence in support of their reality to individuals who once thought their cases were isolated and freakish. They now belong to communities of others who went through similar circumstances and can see the cultural relevance of their victory over illness. The Spontaneous Remission Bibliography Project has powerfully impacted many lives and has given credence to an area of scientific study.