Letters To The Editor – Spring 2007

Sharing Medicine Around The World

Dear Carol,
A recent letter to the editor from James Carbone regarding a midwife center in Concepcion, Guatemala (Winter, 2006) mentions that an organization called IMEC is providing medical supplies for this project. As a volunteer with this organization, International Medical Equipment Collaborative, I would like to extend an invitation to others who would be interested in helping provide medical equipment and supplies to developing countries around the world.

IMEC recycles, repairs and restores medical equipment that is being replaced or discarded by hospitals, nursing homes, and physician offices. Medical supplies are donated by companies. Volunteers do the repairing, the packing and the shipping. Medical experience is helpful, but certainly not necessary. At present, IMEC is working out of the former Lucent Technology plant in N. Andover, MA. For more information on this program contact imec@imecamerica.org. — Jean Jackson, Stratham, NH

No Offense Intended

Dear Editor,
I just read a letter in response to an article titled "The Energetic Placenta: Healing From Abortion And Miscarriage" (Spring, 2006). The writer of the letter, Licia Fields, derails the original article as anti-choice. Her letter struck a cord with me. I had an abortion about seven years ago which was one of the worst experiences of my life. I had to read the article, so I found it online in the archives.

Personally, I found the article to be fair, and it did not lean towards pro-choice or pro-life. I would like to know if Licia ever had an abortion herself. I do not understand why she took such offense to the fact that some women do have a hard time with it and do require healing and counseling. I wished that I were more educated about abortion when I decided to have one. I found it to be excruciatingly painful, and I honestly felt the life that had been developing in my body and that was totally dependent on me was trying to hold on for dear life. I screamed in agony and cried my eyes out. The doctor would not even look at me as my baby was being sucked out by a vacuum. The pain was awful, all the way down my legs from my abdomen. The whole experience was wretched. It took me years to not be upset about it. I am definitely more pro-life than I was. I believe in choice, but I believe counseling and education would be very helpful.

On a purely physical level, being pregnant one day and not the next due to an abortion does a number on the body. I can't believe that Licia wrote this line: "The idea that abortion causes trauma which needs to be released before marriage is offensive to body practitioners." I find it utterly offensive that she completely discounts the possible trauma, and thank goodness I never worked with a healer with that kind of attitude!

Licia also discounts the practice of burying the placenta and suggests to the author to find her own traditions as a white woman. Unfortunately, we have grown up in a society that is very disconnected from nature. If borrowing a practice from a different culture can help someone feel the connection, then that is a beautiful thing. Also, can she be sure that the author is white?

What an offensive letter it was on so many levels. I am actually disappointed that you printed it. It blows my mind. — Jessica Bok, Online submission

TFT/EFT…Tap This Way

Dear Editor,
In response to your article “Holistic Self Care at Your Fingertips (Summer 2006), I’d like to offer the following paragraphs summarizing the definitions, history, applications and differences between Dr. Roger Callahan’s Thought Field Therapy® (TFT) — the original “tapping” therapy — and Emotional Freedom Technique® (EFT), the adaptation of TFT offered by Gary Craig, who learned TFT from Dr. Callahan.

Thought Field Therapy® (TFT) is a technique for rapidly reducing and often completely eliminating emotional distress. This technique consists of tapping on a specific sequence of one’s own acupuncture meridian points for specific concerns, and making specific eye movements, while thinking about the problem. Done correctly, the client experiences as much as a 90% reduction in the distress — in minutes, as compared to hours.

Emotional Freedom Technique® (EFT) is an adaptation of TFT. Using EFT, one also taps on meridian points and uses TFT’s eye movements while thinking about the problem, using a “recipe.” However, it teaches that the sequence of meridians tapped upon is not particularly significant to the reduction of the distress.

TFT has about thirty (more are discovered regularly) algorithms or “recipes” for problems including trauma, anxiety, phobia, guilt, anger and rage, obsession, depression, and many more. These are used in a very specific protocol, which Dr. Callahan created through use of Applied Kinesiology, informally called muscle testing. This is a system of accessing the body’s wisdom through testing a muscle, such as the deltoid, to see what makes it strong or weak, and using that mechanism as feedback for the next action. These thirty algorithms were identified by using muscle testing on thousands of people during twenty-plus years of Dr. Callahan’s practice. Advanced training available with Dr. Callahan teaches the practitioner to utilize this technique and research information for each individual client.

EFT offers a basic “recipe” and includes some of the protocols developed by Dr. Callahan. Gary Craig is a kind man, certainly of good heart, originally trained as an engineer. He felt the TFT work was valuable, but disagreed with the need for specific tapping sequences to eliminate the distress. He decided to simplify the protocols to make them more accessible, i.e., easier to learn and to use, and then offered it as Emotional Freedom Technique®.

I first learned of tapping by being offered an EFT sequence that reduced my discomfort faster than other emotional healing techniques. I was impressed. Soon after, I learned of Thought Field Therapy® and Dr. Callahan’s work. I investigated, and learned more about the process of specific testing of meridians that brought Dr. Callahan’s work into being. I also saw what had been lost in the simplification of TFT by Gary Craig that, in my opinion, contributes to TFT’s often dramatic effectiveness.

When I speak of TFT or tapping, I often hear people say something like, “Oh yes, I tried that tapping. It didn’t really do much for me.” Further questioning typically has revealed that their tapping was EFT from a less than optimally trained person, or from an EFT Internet site, and I am saddened because the sub-optimal experience with EFT has left the unfortunate and inaccurate impression that tapping isn’t very effective.

EFT offers easier learning and use, although to accomplish this it limits the functionality and effectiveness as offered by TFT. TFT requires more thorough training, but is not difficult to learn. TFT has an association of practitioners who take opportunities to serve in traumatized situations, such as in New Orleans and Rwanda, and both EFT and TFT are used by Green Cross in its disaster service. As the world needs all the healing it can get, both techniques offer free information on their websites: http://www.TFTRX.com — official website of Thought Field Therapy; http://www.EMOFREE.com — official website of Emotional Freedom Technique

Sparkles and wonderful blessings upon you! — Constance McGrath, Boston MA