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Sunday, May 30, 2010

Medical hierarchy may influence whistleblowers

While reporting the acquittal of Anne Mitchell RN in Texas, Jennifer Patterson Lorenzetti references a prepared statement by Thomas Moore in an article headlined “Medical Accountability: Texas trial sheds light on whistleblowing” for MD Publishing, 1 June 2010 . After Mitchell wrote an unsigned letter about perceptions of improper conduct by a doctor with whom she worked, she was indicted with the possibility of 10 years in prison.

In a section sub-titled "Cultural Factors" Lorenzetti reports:
“The medical world is set up in a hierarchical fashion,” says Thomas Moore, PhD, author of Care of the Soul in Medicine: Healing Guidance for Patients, Families, and the People Who Care for Them (Hay House, 2010). After all, he says, “Doctors believe that they have a kind of training that puts them above nurses. [Physicians] can get into a place where they feel very superior.” This superiority is often based on the perception that scientific knowledge and analytical ability are the most important factors in treating patients.

Indeed, modern medicine would not exist without these skills. In a prepared statement, Moore explains: “A highly mechanistic and technological fantasy about life dominates the medical world. Young doctors not only learn the science of medicine, they are [also] indoctrinated into the philosophy that puts science above all other concerns.”

However, focusing purely on analytical proficiencies ignores some of the more intuitive skills that the nursing profession brings to the fore. “Nurses have a very intimate knowledge of their patients,” says Moore. This interpersonal skill is often undervalued. “We don’t respect human savvy quite so much,” he says. “We evaluate workers on technical ability because it’s easier to measure.” But, sometimes, this focus neglects the other ways of measuring patient care, and it may lead to friction between doctors and nurses in the healthcare environment.”


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Moore featured on Boston radio tonight, 10 p.m.

Tonight Jordan Rich talks with Thomas Moore at 10:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Boston's WBZ News Radio 1030. Moore discusses his new book Care of the Soul In Medicine: Healing Guidance for Patients, Families, and the People Who Care for Them. The Jordan Rich and Friends show offers a Listen Now button.

"The program features an eclectic mix of authors, actors, athletes, musicians and interesting personalities along with lots of "open line" conversations with listeners from all over the country and Canada."

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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Workshop includes practical spirituality for life

While in San Diego for Hay House's I Can Do It! convention, Thomas Moore speaks at Vision: A Center for Spirituality on 16 May 2010 starting at 4 p.m. Promotional material describes Moore as "one of the leading popularizers of the principles of an archetypal, soul-based psychology. Originally a Catholic monk, he has spent thirty years as a practicing psychotherapist." His workshop, entitled Dreams, Art, Spirituality and Having a Great Life, provides opportunities for asking questions and open discussion. It features stories of  Moore's personal and professional life, including 13 years of monastic living and how he came to reject dogma and live a more personal, spiritual life. According to the workshop description, Moore's "writings have reintroduced many ancient spiritual teachings into a well-integrated 21st century life." Tickets are $30 at the door and $25 in advance with "special reserved" seating available for $40 (the first two rows of the sanctuary, 30 seats). Information is at


Friday, May 14, 2010

Moore talks on Wisconsin Public Radio, May 19

Wisconsin Public Radio presents Thomas Moore on its program Here on Earth: Radio Without Borders, hosted by Jean Feraca on Wednesday 19 May at 3:00 p.m. Central Time. Program notes include, "Few experiences throw a person into crisis as illness does, affecting not only the body but the spirit and soul. Yet the current health care system is not structured around these considerations. We talk to Thomas Moore, author of Care of the Soul in Medicine, about his vision for improving health care." Check for an archive of the program after its air date.


Read about balls, clubs, bags, holes and traps

Google Books offers an excerpt from Thomas Moore's new book of short stories, The Guru of Golf and Other Stories about the Game of Life, published by Hay House. In his Preface, Moore writes:
"In a sense, these stories are a game of golf. Read these 18 tales and you will have played a round. At the same time you will have made a tour of the planets, as old theologies recommend. You will have met the "hazards" of life and maybe even accomplished the miracle of a hole in one.

I don't want to explain it all away, but let me say that the phrase hole in one reminds me of the Zen circle representing the fullness of whatever has been completely emptied. A game seems empty, from a certain point of view. It is a waste of good time. Adult men and women chase a tiny ball around heaps of earth and occasional absurdly cultivated "greens." All the while, they could be doing something productive. But from a spiritual point of view, this emptiness is precious."

Title: The Guru of Golf and Other Stories about the Game of Life
Author: Thomas Moore
Hardcover: 240 pages
Publisher: Hay House (May 15 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1401925650
ISBN-13: 978-1401925659

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Special interview features Moore's new book

In addition to her I Can Do It Hour program of 26 April 2010 that showcases Thomas Moore, Diane Ray interviews Moore about his new book, Care of the Soul in Medicine more extensively in a special program on Hay House Radio, titled Care of the Soul in Medicine. In this 50 minutes special, available Wednesday 5 May 2010, Moore answers deeper questions about his new book and expands ideas presented in it. Moore's radio feature is available now for online listening.


Thursday, May 06, 2010

Passions and themes point to your life's work

Thomas Moore talks about Discovering what You were Born to Do with Hay House Radio host Lauren Mackler during her Life Keys show on Tuesday 4 May 2010. Moore, a guest in the second half of the program, shares insights published in his book, A Life at Work: The Joy of Discovering What You were Born to Do, published by Broadway Books. This radio program is available now online. To listen for his participation, check the progress bar (Start: 27:25, End: 47:25).

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Tuesday, May 04, 2010

How may we encourage healing placebo effects?

The New York Times offers an opinion piece by Olivia Judson titled "Enhancing the Placebo" in which she considers medicine's use of this effect for healing. She writes:
"The problem is that humans are not machines, and emotions are not abstractions. Hope and expectation, anxiety and fear, trust and suspicion — these cause physiological changes in the brain that can interact with drugs, changing their effects.

This is even true for a drug like morphine. Yes, it’s a powerful painkiller. But it’s far more powerful if a doctor marches in, tells you he’s going to give you morphine, and injects you, than it is if it is administered secretly by a hidden machine.

Differences in hopes and fears, and the resulting physiological changes, may explain why the placebo effect varies so much: individual experiences matter. Some people are more anxious than others, or may find the thought of a particular disease especially alarming. Moreover, in different cultures, similar diseases may be treated with different degrees of gravity.

Expectations around medical rituals may also explain why placebos tend to be more powerful if the pills are expensive or you take them several times a day; why injections and exotic machines are more powerful than pills; and why surgery is more powerful than injections. (In placebo surgery, the patient is anaesthetized, cut, and sewn back up again, but no manipulation is done. For obvious reasons, there have been few tests of this. But when it has been done, it has often produced good results for the patients.) ...

One idea would be to deliberately increase the element of formal ritual in medicine. Studies of "alternative" therapies show that strong placebo effects can be induced by ritual. Indeed, in mainstream medicine, surgery is the treatment most surrounded by ritual; perhaps this is one reason it appears to be the most powerful placebo."
Thomas Moore writes about the power of rituals and images for healing in his new book, Care of the Soul in Medicine, published by Hay House.

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Sunday, May 02, 2010

Listen to Moore in Topsham, Maine, 7 May 2010

Maine Sunday Telegram announces Thomas Moore's public lecture, "The Importance of Not Knowing Yourself: Protecting the Mystery of Who You Are" on Friday 7 May 2010. This event is sponsored by the C. G. Jung Center in Brunswick, Maine.

WHEN: 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Friday 7 May 2010
WHERE: Orion Performing Arts Center, 50 Republic Ave., Topsham, Maine
COST: $15 for members, $20 for non-members.

To register or for information:
Visit or call 207 729-0300.

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Saturday, May 01, 2010

A life at work on Hay House Radio, 4 May 2010

Hay House Radio's Life Keys host, Lauren Mackler, interviews Thomas Moore, Tuesday 4 May 2010 at 3 p.m. Eastern Time,  about his book, A Life at Work: The Joy of Discovering What You were Born to Do. This show helps listeners "learn how to manifest joyful work that can serve as a pathway to living a more fulfilling and integrated life." Listeners are encouraged to call toll-free during the live show in the U.S. and Canada at 866-254-1579. Other international callers dial the country code then 760-918-4300.

According to the program description, Life Keys offers information to move beyond fears, limiting beliefs, and habitual behaviors that keep listeners "in an unsatisfying personal or professional life", or from achieving dreams and goals. Mackler and her guests "provide practical tools and strategies to help you move through life’s challenges and barriers, live a life that activates your innate potential, and allows you to more fully become the person you were born to be."

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Let's keep together archetypal parts of healing

The May 2010 issue of Vision Magazine, Catalyst for Conscious Living includes an excerpt from Thomas Moore's new book, Care of the Soul in Medicine. This section, "Service to Humanity" presents the work of Albert Schweitzer in the context of healing as a calling. Moore also writes about the professional arrogance of some doctors:
"One of the best explanations of professional arrogance I have found is one offered by the Swiss Jungian analyst Adolf Guggenbühl-Craig. He talks about a split archetype. In the best of situations, a doctor treats a patient as a fellow human being—both of them are susceptible to mistakes and illness and both have intelligence and good intuitions. But usually this archetype of healing, which has two sides—healer and patient—gets literalized and split up between the two people. The doctor is the healer and the patient the one to be healed. The doctor forgets that he is human, too, and is sometimes a patient. The patient forgets, or may not even realize that she plays a positive role in the healing and can make good judgments and have helpful intuitions as well. This is fertile ground for the dangerous and disrupting condition of doctor arrogance.

Guggenbühl-Craig describes the situation perfectly. “The doctor is no longer able to see his own wounds, his own potential for illness; he sees sickness only in the other. He objectifies illness, distances himself from his own weakness, elevates himself and degrades the patient.” The solution to this split archetype is to face yourself, acknowledge your arrogance, and make a genuine effort to do something about it. Notice your defensiveness when people give you hints about it. Face your anxieties, your attitude toward your work, and your fears."
Care of the Soul in Medicine: Healing Guidance for Patients, Families, and the People Who Care for Them, published by Hay House, is available at bookstores or at