Item description for Healing Words: The Power of Prayer and the Practice of Medicine by Larry Dossey...
Overview Shares the latest evidence that links prayer, healing, and medicine, presenting examples and anecdotes, and showing readers which methods of prayer show the greatest potential for healing
Publishers Description Capturing the attention of the AMA and the presidential task force on health care, Dr. Dossey's provocative and controversial book shares the latest evidence linking prayer, healing, and medicine, and calls for a bold new integration of science and spirituality.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.05" Width: 5.41" Height: 0.79" Weight: 0.95 lbs.
Release Date Feb 1, 1995
ISBN 0062502522 ISBN13 9780062502520 UPC 099455012003
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More About Larry Dossey
Larry Dossey, M.D., is the author of the New York Times bestseller, Healing Words, and Prayer Is Good Medicine. An authority on spiritual healing, he lectures throughout the country and has been a frequent guest on Oprah, Good Morning America, CNN, and The Learning Channel. He is responsible for introducing innovations in spiritual care to acclaimed institutions across the country. He currently resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Larry Dossey currently resides in Santa Fe, in the state of New Mexico. Larry Dossey was born in 1940.
Larry Dossey has published or released items in the following series...
365 Blessings, Poems & Meditations from Around the World
Reviews - What do customers think about Healing Words: The Power of Prayer and the Practice of Medicine?
A Must Read! Jul 3, 2007
While conducting research on the power of prayer and healing, I was encouraged to get this book and I am so glad I did! I could not but this book down once I began to read it. This is a must read if you are interested in the subject. It is well written and it is based on true experiences in Dr. Dossey's practice.
Renewed belief in prayer Jun 30, 2006
This book reaffirmed my belief in prayer, and helped me to better understand its healing powers.
Where's the Free Will in Prayer Healing? May 30, 2005
I'm having a problem. I'm in a dilemma and I'd like to know what you think. I hope you'll let me know. Here's the problem. I kinda take it for granted that we have free will. It seems like some kind of defining characteristic of the human soul. Although we may breathe the same air, and although the same Spirit runs through us, it's our free will that defines our individuality. The Biblical tradition seems to point to our free will. The concept of sin sure requires it. In the Edgar Cayce readings there is the idea there is nothing more powerful than our individual will. On TV it says, "The power of one!" There you have it. On the other hand, I've been reading a book on prayer and healing. It's the almost classic and often referred to book by Larry Dossey, M.D., Healing Words: The Power of Prayer and the Practice of Medicine, (HarperCollins). He writes about how over one hundred experiments, exhibiting good scientific methodology, indicate that "prayer brings about significant changes in a variety of living beings." This includes fungus, bacteria, animals and humans. Moreover, the healing effects did not depend upon whether the person praying was in the presence of the organism being prayed for or at a great distance. Healing occurred whether the healing object was in a lead-lined room or a cage shielded from electromagnetic energy. It didn't seem to matter if the person (if it was a person and not a medical sample) knew about the prayer or believed in prayer. "The fact that prayer works (at least some of the time) says something important about our nature, and how we may be connected to the Absolute," he says. It also shows that we are connected to each other. It shows that our thoughts matter. Dossey is smart and brave enough to discuss the flip side of this revelation. Call it "toxic prayer," where our negative thoughts have a negative effect on others. I'm not talking just about curses or swearing (as in asking the Absolute to squash you or condemn you to an eternity in the fires), but even those so-called "harmless" black thoughts we have about people from time to time. If we can be helped by prayers, we can be harmed by the mental negativity of others, even when we do not know they are being negative toward us, even when we are safely in our own homes, even when we are minding our own business. Sounds to me like an invasion of free will, a bruise to my autonomy, an assault on my integrity. Now I have often heard that we are not supposed to pray for people without their permission. If Dossey is right, it is possible to pray for people without their knowledge and they still get well. We can hope that they wanted to heal! Seems like we shouldn't say to someone, "Good morning," but rather, "Good morning, by your leave, unless you have other plans!" But I'm not joking, I'm serious and seriously confused here. I have read of experiments begun in Russia and duplicated here, where one person can mentally affect the physical functioning of another person, making that person tired, sleepy, even putting the person to sleep. It is possible to telepathically affect a person's heart rate. I guess that means that it is possible to stop a person's heart, especially if some writings on Voodoo are to be believed. Now if it is true that we can mentally, telepathically, energetically--however you want to envision it--affect another person, even when they are in the privacy and safety of their lead lined home, then what does that mean about free will. Do we have free will if someone else can, from a distance, without our knowledge or consent, make us do their bidding, think the thoughts they want us to think, make the moves they want us to make? It is even possible to hypnotize a person at a distance, telepathically. The Russians called it "mental suggestion." Now we've all heard the soothing reminder, "you can't hypnotize a person to do something against their will." So does that mean you can't telepathically induce a person to think, feel, or do something against their will? If the telepathic influence was effective, then at some level the affected person was willing to allow it to happen? Is that how we get out of the quandry? Or is there really a hole in the protective shield of our free will? I've met many people who complain that someone is sending them bad energy, invading their thoughts. Do we take the complaint seriously? Is the person "psychotic"? Since mental influence exists, maybe the person is right. If so, then is the real problem is that the person is willing to have it happen? The person objects to the invasion but feels helpless to stop it. Where's the free will, the willingness? Maybe not all of our free will is available for our freedom of choice. Maybe some of it is hidden in the dark depths of the soul. What do you think? Let me know. www.henryreed.com/publications/bookreviews
Nonlocal mind and the (possible) power of prayer Jul 16, 2001
It's probably tempting to dismiss this book as "New Age" claptrap. That would be a mistake.
In fact Dossey is highly critical of the "New Age" movement. And despite some overblown cover blurbs, he doesn't claim to have "proven" anything about the power of prayer in healing; he's making suggestions and exploring possibilities, not laying down law.
Nor, for the most part, is his speculation wild or unfounded. His suggestions are founded on two things: empirical research that seems to show prayer is effective in promoting the biological growth of certain forms of life under controlled laboratory conditions, and the theological/philosophical view that reality is ultimately a single, universal, "nonlocal" Absolute Mind.
However controversial these foundations might be, he presents his suggestions with proper caution. And he is especially careful to avoid falling into the New Age blame-the-patient trap; he is well aware that prayer doesn't always achieve the results we might like and that this isn't because somebody has done something to "choose" or "deserve" ill health.
On the contrary, he has a healthy sense that prayer is really (though this language isn't quite his) for the purpose of adjusting us to the Divine Will rather than vice-versa. (Anthony de Mello tells a story somewhere about a man who said, "In your country it is regarded as a miracle when God does the will of a human being. In my country it is regarded as a miracle when a human being does the will of God.") On his view, the "power" of prayer is shown as much in our acceptance of our health limitations as in their elimination.
There are a couple of places where Dossey threatens to wander off the deep end (e.g. his suggestion that prayer can change the past), and there's a little bit of language (e.g. "Era I, Era II, and Era III") that recalls bad 1970s self-help books. But I really have only one bone to pick with Dossey: he tends at times to overstate the difference between his views and those of traditional, "classical" theism.
There is a tendency among those (of whom I am one, which is in part how I know this) who left their childhood religions in their early teens to assume, more or less unconsciously, that our understanding of such religion was complete at that time and none of its adherents understood any of the cool things we went on to discover for ourselves. It's hard to shake one's implicit belief that those hidebound "fundamentalists" couldn't _possibly_ have known any of this nifty "spirituality" stuff; "dogmatic" religion is, of course, the arch-enemy of "true" spirituality -- isn't it?
Dossey has a very mild tendency in this direction. In consequence I suspect he will occasionally leave more traditional religious believers with the sense that they are being misunderstood, patronized, or both.
But it doesn't happen very often, and it hardly happens at all in this book. On the whole, Dossey's approach tends to confirm rather than undermine the great theistic religions' view of prayer.
A wealth of information on prayer-based healing! May 7, 2000
Dr. Dossey explains in HEALING WORDS how prayer-based healing works. It has been scientifically proven in hundreds of experiments to be a balanced part of health care that can significantly decrease health problems and significantly improve our quality and quantity of life. Dossey shares some of his own real-life stories of caring for patients... including an American Indian shaman, who requested Dr. Dossey's medical help for his aching neck! This book contains a wealth of information about prayer experiments written in Dossey's characteristically down-to-Earth style. I love the way Dossey raises questions about whether some prayer experiments are ethical, and why some scientists continue to resist the mounting body of evidence that so clearly shows how prayer has a powerful effect on healing.