PSYCHOTHERAPY SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS

A Broad Perspective on Mental Healing

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448         PSYCHOTHERAPY : SCIENTIFIC AND RELIGIOUS chap.
art, while no inborn love of the sea absolves a sailor from a prolonged study of the art of navigation. In the same way, the man who possesses the gift of healing should consecrate it by training and acquiring the necessary medical (or psychophysical) knowledge which would allow him to develop his gift and to use it to a greater extent. Indeed, we may assume that it is the possession in some degree of this gift, and the natural sympathy with suffering which often accompanies it, that has influenced many men to become doctors.
Generally speaking, the aim of medical treatment is to reinforce the natural tendency of the organism to resume its normal state. Even the surgeon has to rely upon ' the wisdom of the body ' in a large measure. He makes the coaditions favourable for the healing of the wounds he inflicts upon the organism, in the expectation that it will assume responsibility for the healing processes themselves. The psychotherapist is in a similar position ; he applies all those remedies which appear necessary in the light of the general conditions present, and then he relies upon the biopsychic organism to resume its normal state of equilibrium in relation to the social environment in which it lives, moves, and has its being. The old French aphorism, ' Je le pansay, Dieu le guerist ', gives apt expression to a very real truth.
The psychotherapist should not be one-sided : he should adapt his method of treatment to every case with a view to its special condition in other words, he must individualize his method of treatment. There are cases in which the dialectic method of Dubois persuasion is best; others to which hypnosis is most suitable and for the cases which prove refractory under the other methods the analytic technique.
A most important qualification for the psychotherapist is a completely unprejudiced attitude of mind.