By definition, placebo is deception. It doesn’t accord to any Aurelian value.
This ain’t no easy world for sure.
Yep. A much easier world would be one in which one can plainly say: only truth can truly cure, so we stick to that as much as we can (which may sometimes not be very much, but at least we try).
In medicine, what is at stake is becoming healthy as a total person.
Therefore, also becoming healed / whole / holy. [These three words have the same origin.]
Psychosomatic symptoms are there because somehow (in reality, not merely in theory) we have lost contact with ourselves, more precisely with our non-conscious, our ‘deeper self.’ This is pretty widespread. People are increasingly ‘dissociated’ within, of which C.G. Jung reminded us more than half a century ago. A bit more dramatically said:
We are losing contact with ‘soul’.
Starkly in depression, but it happens in daily life, for many people, continually.
Then the body comes to remind us of our destiny. It does so by way of psychosomatic symptoms. We can ignore this by killing the symptoms, or we can try to communicate appropriately with deeper self.
In the latter case, the symptom itself is a good entry point, like a channel open in two directions. Something comes from deep inside as a symptom. We can take the same route in the other direction, towards deeply within. The symptom is, at that point, part of the deeper self’s vocabulary. We can make use of that same vocabulary. Thus:
Take the symptom as a starting point for communication
and use it further in symbolic ways. [see: “From Placebo to Insight“]
Hard-core placebo – without symbolic meaningfulness nor the aim of being open – doesn’t do that. Its purpose is to get rid of the symptom by closing the channel. The person feels better, comfortable, ‘cured’ even… in a cosmetic way. Is this the reason why the symptom is present in the first place?
So, to placebo or not to placebo?
As said, no easy question. Intellectually in mere coldness, one should get rid of hard-core placebo. Something that by definition circumvents full truth is problematic, which is what hard-core placebo does by definition. It is, therefore, quite different from empathy, a distinction that should always be made.
Humanly, morally, warmly, one should think twice before striving to get rid of placebo just like that. Due to long-time presence, certain kinds of placebo – even the hard-core ones – may become indispensable for many people depending on them for mental and physical stability. Drop placebo, and a lot of people drop to the ground.
People have wings from birth on.
I am a firm believer in this. People may lose their ability to use their wings. They may lose the knowledge of having them. Therefore, if you point towards these wings, you point towards ‘nothing’ in the eyes of many.
And yet, the wings are there and will always be there. I’m talking of proper use of the non-conscious. This is: of integration of ego and deeper self into one total self. This is what the symptom is calling for. Eventually, it’s what being alive is about.
This makes the purpose of any psychosomatic symptom understandable: for the total person, being bothered by symptoms is better than not being fully alive.
There is a wake-up call in this!
Hard-core placebo may stand in the way of life itself.
People need to be asleep as long as they don’t know how to be awake. But is it a good thing to not try to awaken them at all? Let’s ask nature. Her answer is clear: she didn’t intend us to sleep all our lives. If she did, we wouldn’t have psychosomatic symptoms in the first place. Nature points us towards awakening.
So, in the end, should one more than needed prolong any placebo that is but suggestion in disguise? Of course, we’re human, not superhuman. But keeping placebo even if we attain the possibility to transcend it towards open autosuggestion is problematic. [see: “Power of Placebo < Autosuggestion“]
So, to placebo or not to placebo?
Hard-core placebo doesn’t accord to any Aurelian value. With AURELIS in place, placebo must go.
[see: “Placebo Is Not Good for You“]