The practice of “therapeutic touch” or Reiki, is based upon the claim that practitioners can somehow “channel energy” to help people.

Now the National Institutes of Health (NIH) will spend $400,00 to determine if there is any physical and objective proof to substantiate the claims made about Reiki, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Basically, to any objective observer Reiki is simply someone waving his or her hands over another person. And this activity looks more like a religious rite than a medical practice.

However, Reiki practitioners claim they are somehow moving “energy,” which in turn affects the “chakras” of their clients. They often charge for such sessions.

Some of those that have experienced Reiki say it makes them feel better, but these anecdotal stories are subjective. There is no proof that the practice actually accomplishes anything physically.

NIH will do a controlled study through the Albert Einstein Health Care Network.

But such a study has already been done and published within a prestigious medical journal.

Emily Rosa, a nine-year-old fourth grader, tested 21 “therapeutic touch” practitioners and found that they were unable to detect an energy field, reported CNN. Rosa’s findings were later published in JAMA.

So why must taxpayer’s money be needlessly dumped for any additional study? And why waste valuable NIH staff time when Ms. Rosa has kindly already done the work for free?

The editor of JAMA said, “I do not believe age should be a bar on anything, either young or old, it’s the quality of the science that matters.” And they accepted Rosa’s findings. If its good enough for JAMA, why not NIH?

Obviously it doesn’t take an “Einstein” to prove that “therapeutic touch” is bogus, much less a Health Care Network named to honor the late scientist.

Reiki appears to be little more than quackery and with the budget deficit rising, the government could easily find better uses for taxpayer’s money.


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