These are exciting times in science and medicine, and Larry Dossey is a physician at the forefront of new developments on the interface of body and “soul.” Prayer, it seems, is holding its own in laboratory research despite the scientific assumptions it challenges. Dossey presents and evaluates the evidence, and explores its implications for both medical practice and individual healing. He goes even further, to an awareness of the deeper meaning of prayer and soul. Warning against “confusing God with vitamins” (seeing prayer as a tool for narrow practical ends), he reminds us of the larger context implied by the existence of soul, and the effectiveness not only of prayer but of non-attachment to results. A revealing and stimulating discussion for anyone with or without religious beliefs or skepticism.
Larry Dossey, M.D. is a distinguished Texas physician deeply rooted in the scientific world, and has become an internationally influential advocate of the role of the mind in health and the role of spirituality in healthcare. He served as a battalion surgeon in Vietnam, where he was decorated for valor. Dr. Dossey helped establish the Dallas Diagnostic Association, the largest group of internal medicine practitioners in that city, and was Chief of Staff of Medical City Dallas Hospital in 1982. He is the Executive Editor of Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, served as co-chair of the Panel on Mind/Body Interventions of the NIH Office of Alternative Medicine, and served on Hillary Rodham Clinton’s task force on health care reform in 1993. In 2013, Dr. Dossey received the prestigious Visionary Award that honors a pioneer whose visionary ideas have shaped integrative healthcare and the medical profession.
He’s the author of numerous articles and many books, including:
- Recovering the Soul: A Scientific and Spiritual Approach (Bantam 1989)
- Prayer Is Good Medicine: How to Reap the Healing Benefits of Prayer (HarperOne 1997)
- Reinventing Medicine: Beyond Mind-Body to a New Era of Healing (HarperSanFrancisco 1999)
- The Extraordinary Healing Power of Ordinary Things: Fourteen Natural Steps to Health and Happiness (Harmony 2006)
- The Power of Premonitions: How Knowing the Future Can Shape Our Lives (Dutton 2009)
To learn more about the work of Dr. Larry Dossey go to www.dosseydossey.com.
Topics explored in this dialogue include:
- Scientific research on the healing effects of prayer
- The meaning of theory and proof in evaluating prayer as therapy
- The “shadow side of prayer”
- The Hawaiian curse that resembles Guillaume-Barre Syndrome
- The possible flaw in the “double-blind” research practice
- The larger context of meaning in soul and prayer research
- The political and medical future of alternative/complementary healing in America
Program Number: 2422 Host: Michael Toms Interview Date: 11/2/1993