We Are Not Second Class Citizens

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The “outside-inners” (those that reject the vitalistic philosophy) in the chiropractic profession have somehow convinced themselves, the educational community, the government and, to some degree, us, that we are inferior because we hold to an Above-down inside-out (ADIO) world and life viewpoint.  They have managed to convince enough people that, by virtue of our philosophy, our educational institutions are inadequate, thus contributing to their demise.  This is rather perplexing.  Almost every poll of the American public, including a recent Gallup poll, indicates that a great majority of Americans (82% in the Gallup poll), believe in God.  Those who believe in God would logically deduce the existence of a universal intel-ligence, hence an innate intelligence, and accept the part of the ADIO philosophy that is straight chiropractic.  While straight chiropractic is not a religion, religious people are amenable to its vitalistic tenets.  How then did the minority gain control?  How did the outside-in mechanistic-thinking people gain control of health care delivery and worse yet, gain control of the chiropractic profession to the degree of making we who think like the majority of the American public, we who accept and are guided by a vitalistic philosophy, feel like second class citizens or worse?     

The chiropractic profession has had forced upon it the idea that belief, as an ADIO viewpoint, represents a kind of mystical irrationality and that those who take their philosophy seriously and conduct their practices based upon its principles, are scary and dangerous people capable of all kinds of irrational behavior.     

There is another issue that also needs to be addressed.  It is related to and, in fact, perhaps the reason for the first.  Why is it that 82% of the people profess an ADIO viewpoint (at least relative to theological matters) yet apparently don’t live it or at least fail to apply it to all matters of their lives, particularly health matters?     

Part of the reason may be that in our American society we have been taught the principle of separation of church and state and, therefore, we separate our thinking.  This fundamental principle of our republic was created with great wisdom and has served us well.  Unfortunately it has also served to teach us to split ourselves.  Society has accepted the idea that it is all right to adhere to a religion or a philosophy but

does not allow for its permeation into all or even certain parts of our lives.  The atheist cannot understand why abortion is such an important issue to the Catholic.  Religious thinking is especially bad if it involves dangerous behavior and worst of all if that behavior is outside scientific thinking.  We have seen how the government (which usually acts outside-in) has stepped in and forced Jehovah’s Witnesses to have blood transfusions.  We saw a year or so ago how they forced a sect of people in Philadelphia to have their children immunized against measles despite the fact that the people did not believe it was necessary.  Whether these groups are theologically correct is not the issue.  The point is that the state expects religion to stay out of politics but the state can step in if it deems the religion bizarre or dangerous, especially with regard to matters of personal health.  We chiropractors have faced the same problem with regard to vaccination.  Because of our ADIO (not our chiropractic) philosophy many of us choose to reject vaccination for ourselves or our children.  Just because that belief system, that way of looking at the world (ADIO), is outside the accepted scientific community we are deemed dangerous to ourselves and our children.     

It is bad enough that the medical-thinking world treats us that way but our own profession is no better.  Basically, we are being asked to set aside our philosophy if not permanently, at least with regard to matters of chiropractic science, chiropractic politics, chiropractic education and every other issue of importance.  Our ADIO philosophy does not change the facts of the world but it may change how we view those facts and that can make all the difference.  The outside-in political theorists see the discussion of chiropractic as totally aphilosophical.     

While it is true that philosophy and science (as well as art) are separate and distinct, we cannot discuss one in a vacuum exclusive of the others.  They (OI thinkers) would like to, for they believe that philosophy is fine but it, like religion, should be kept private.  They believe that like religion, it has nothing to do with the real world and should anyone use it, or worse, parade it publicly as an important aspect of their practice or profession, they are somehow less than they should be.  The mixer is perfectly willing to have dialogue with us on any issue as long as our position is not one that has been reached through our philosophy.  Medical research is all right, despite the fact it rejects our profession outright. Popular opinion is okay, even though it constantly vacillates.  Chiropractic research is welcomed, although virtually non-existent and anecdotal results are acceptable even though unacceptable to the “scientific community.”  But if the position is based upon philosophy, it is looked down upon.  If it has a Major Premise as its foundation and is deduced from that principle by virtue of reason, it is unacceptable.  Philosophy and a belief system is forbidden epistemology.     

We are coerced into keeping our philosophical ideas to ourselves.  The argument is made that we must discuss (dialogue on) issues that we have in common, e.g., science. In other words, we can argue with them as long as we don’t disagree with them!?!  “Let’s not talk philosophy, let’s talk science,” we are told.  This is like asking a person to split off a part of him or her self which precludes discussion with that particular person.  For their philosophy or religion or world and life viewpoint is as much a part of the person (as a man thinketh so is he) as is their sense of humor or ability to articulate.  If that is the end result, divorcing our philosophy from discussion, those who are in dialogue will only be talking to each other.  Should we agree to discuss issues apart from the philosophy, we will be those without philosophy.  The need to discuss or worse yet, make ourselves aphilosophical, pre-supposes that philosophy is not an essential part of our life, discussion, or any argument. That is the goal of the outside-in thinker, to delude, shame or in some other way get us to discuss and act based upon their frame of reference (OI).  To them, chiropractic philosophy is more a hobby, interesting parlor conversation. It is a course akin to chiropractic history (and is often taught as such).  But it is not a vital aspect of our profession or our lives.     

Philosophy poses a threat to the outside inners.  Human beings have a deep, abiding need to have their lives make sense.  For most, their religion is important to that end. That’s why 82% have a religion or at least believe in a supernatural Being.  For the chiropractor, the philosophy is a compelling force in daily decisions of practice and gives meaning and purpose to his or her professional life.  Our philosophy is a way of saying we are free, independent and will not accede to a different world and life viewpoint. Further, those without philosophy are frightened by it.  They want ADIO thinking people to become OI thinking people and the philosophy prevents that.  Worst of all, the philosophy invokes a thinking that mobilizes the deepest passions in people causing them to act with conviction.  It causes them not to accept the will of the majority, the controllers, the CCE, the state boards, the FCLB or anyone else.  Antiphilosophy people cannot handle that zealousness. They fear the dedication that caused the pioneers to go to jail rather than compromise even though that zeal gave those without a philosophy a right to practice.  That is the driving force behind the antiphilosophical crowd.  What we have scares them, threatens their ability to control us.  It keeps us (and the rest of the profession) free and able to practice in agreement with or in conflict with that philosophy.  So they will ridicule it, belittle it and most of all try to get us to talk, think and practice without it being a part of our very essence.  If they succeed, that part of the ADIO philosophy that we call chiropractic will cease to be an important force in the world.  If we succeed, the ADIO philosophy will in one more way become an integral part of mankind’s thinking and the world will be a better place. v11n3

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