Written by John Mace
Probably the most well known event in medical history was the realisation of the English physician William Harvey (1578 -1657), concerning the true nature of the blood stream. It was not so much a sudden realisation but a growing awareness of what his experiments were revealing. When he published his findings his contemporaries challenged them because they were an affront to the accepted wisdom of Galen, whose theories had been accepted for about 1500 years. Galen was a brilliant Greek innovative physician from the 2nd Century so that his opinion that the blood ebbed and flowed like the tides was accepted as fact. Naturally enough after so many years of such ingrained belief, Harvey’s ideas were sacrilege to the medical fraternity and of course to the public at large. Today of course it would be considered an act of stupidity to agree with Galen. Times do change!
Quite a few other physicians and researchers over the years prior to Harvey’s time had delved into the nature of the blood stream but he was the first to offer a comprehensive description of its workings, which is why he is credited as its discoverer.
Another event worth recording was the introduction of Hygiene by the Austrian physician Semmelweis, 1818-1865. In his time, childbirth in hospitals was plagued by the illness Puerperal Fever, which had a high death rate. In a ‘light bulb moment’ he realised that the complaint was in fact an infectious disease that was transmitted by the doctors themselves as they moved from infected patients to those who were currently non-infected. He introduced the then unheard of discipline of doctors washing their hands after each examination, which resulted in the infection and death rate plummeting. Hand washing was of course too simple a solution for such a serious issue, so his revolutionary theories were challenged by his associates for two reasons: Firstly, hygiene was a totally new unheard of subject in medicine at the time and secondly and probably most importantly it implied, though inadvertently, that they were responsible for infecting new patients. Endowed with the attitude, “Don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is made up” the hand washing requirement was challenged and discontinued, resulting in him being dismissed and dying in an insane asylum. With hand washing abolished, the infection with its death rate quickly returned to its earlier levels. He is remembered and his work recognised with his statue in the Hall of Immortals for Surgical Science in Chicago. His story is a long and tragic one, for obviously driven by frustration that his discoveries were ignored, he became quite outspoken and perhaps irrational so was admitted to an insane asylum, where he was reportedly assaulted by staff members causing his death within 12 days of his admission.
As a final comment there is an old saying that is very appropriate, ”There is a fine line between brilliance and insanity!”
Joseph Lister 1827-1912 was a British surgeon who was influenced by Pasteur’s work and in the1860’s, in the same time span that saw the demise of Semmelweis, he introduced antiseptics into surgery. The revolutionary practice is taken for granted today. Unlike Semmelweis, Lister’s work was immediately accepted. He was knighted with a Baronetcy and the well-known household antiseptic Listerine keeps his name in the public domain. It would appear that in the case of Semmelweis it was bloody mindedness and jealousy that was behind his downfall. Erecting his statue in Chicago was a belated recognition of his brilliance and dedication.
Another individual remembered famously in medical history was Dr William Jenner of Small Pox fame. This disease, which had been around for thousands of years was in plague proportions with a high death rate in Europe and the Americas, when in his practice as a country doctor he got into conversation with a dairymaid. She proudly claimed that she would never get Small Pox because she had suffered from Cow Pox. Out of the mouth of babes!
This information held so matter-of-factly in the farming community and probably dismissed as an old woman’s tale in “enlightened society”, was a revelation to Dr Jenner. Intrigued and with his own “light bulb moment’ he suspecting the immunising effect that Cow Pox provided in warding off the infection of small pox, so he commenced experiments using fluid from Cow Pox pustules to inject into a local boy. His story and the opposition he encountered were not as clear-cut as the above individuals who fought to have their discoveries recognised and widely accepted. However, thanks to him, Small Pox is today eradicated in many western countries and slowly being eradicated worldwide.
The foregoing examples of vital health discoveries, together with relevant information are broadly and well documented in many publications. The only purpose in referring to them here is to illustrate the all too common human failure of scepticism for anything new and out of the ordinary. Added to that is the blindness of thought displayed when ones cherished beliefs are challenged by so called ‘authorities’, as illustrated by the detractors of Harvey and Semmelweis.
Today, an example of astronomical proportions concerning history repeating itself is demonstrated by the experience of a retired Australian master mariner, a ship’s captain, John Mace. Just as both Harvey and Semmelweis were challenged by the then extant authorities, so too is Mace challenged by both psychology and psychiatry for his revolutionary findings, teachings and practices. In the eyes of those practitioners Mace is likened to a religious heretic and in fact it is more correct to state that his work is totally ignored rather than challenged. The expression, “there are none so blind than those who do not wish to see“ is rather appropriate.
These two latter disciplines are the ultimate product of a 19th Century German physician, Wilhelm Wundt 1832 -1920. He decided that as the Psyche was invisible it could not be measured or used in any scientific study, whereas human behaviour offered an infinite variety of studies.
Mace’s story is an interesting one especially as he does not have any university credentials in psychology or psychiatry, the area which held his interest and into which he ventured. He spent a year at university but declined to continue into a second year. It just was not what he was looking for.
Earlier, in obtaining his maritime qualifications he studied the energy field of magnetism and then independently, did what can be best likened to post graduate studies in that subject. The knowledge gained stood him in good stead when he commenced his own research, with the practical component of his work appropriately and correctly named, Mace Energy Method. The procedures developed under that title all revolve around the invisible human element shunned by Wundt, namely the human Spirit, but which Mace has named Human Energy Unit.
Educating others has always been a part of his life, even from his days as a primary school student when he was asked by the teacher to take a backward student aside and help him with maths. His own theory of effective communication coupled with the education of others, mirrors the words of that great orator Sir Winston Churchill, “Never use a big word if a small word will do.” That principle is evident in all of Mace’s writings. He points out that on the negative side the quickest way to generate disinterest is to overwhelm readers and students with a barrage of technical text with obscure undefined meanings.
Copyright © International association of Causism™ Practitioners on behalf of John Mace . March 21st 2016 / All Rights Reserved.
For further information about John Mace and The Mace Energy Method – MEM please visit:
John Mace at www.maceenergymethod.com.au
International MEM Website at www.maceenergymethod.com
International Association Of Causism™ Practitioners – IACP at http://theiacp.weebly.com
Permission has been granted to share this article provided the content is not modified and full credit is given to John Mace. www.maceenergymethod.com.au