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Chapter 40: The Body Does Not Have Beliefs

But if the process starts from the mind and extends to some point in the body, then it can be easily changed. Religions have exploited it. There are many religions in India - Mohammedans do it, Tibetans do it, Burmese do it: dancing in the fire without being burned. But these are not ordinary people, they are monks. For years they have been hypnotized, and this thing has settled in their unconscious - that fire cannot burn them.

But remember, only seventy percent.. And that reminds me of a strange phenomenon that physiologists, medical people, and others who are concerned with man’s body, are very much disturbed about and have no answer. Allopathy succeeds only in seventy percent of cases; homeopathy succeeds only in seventy percent of cases; ayurvedic medicine succeeds only in seventy percent of cases; Greek medicine succeeds only in seventy percent of cases; Tibetan medicine succeeds only in seventy percent of cases; Chinese acupuncture succeeds only in seventy percent of cases - all the methods for curing the body succeed only in seventy percent of cases. This is a very strange coincidence.

Looked at from the outside it is a mystery. Homeopathy has nothing in it - just small sugar pills - but it succeeds, and succeeds to the same percentage. The only factor is: it succeeds if the person believes in homeopathy. The only difference in allopathy is that you need not believe in it and still it succeeds. Naturopathy, homeopathy, ayurveda - their basic need is that you should believe.

I had one ayurvedic physician, a man of rare intelligence, a nice man. He used to take care of me, and he was very famous in that area. But he became a victim of tuberculosis. When I heard it, I went to his house and there I found out he was in the hospital. I said, “This is strange. He is such a great ayurvedic physician, why should he go to allopathy?”

I went to the hospital; I asked the physician, “This is strange behavior. You have helped so many people through your medicines, can you not help yourself with your tuberculosis?”

He laughed and he said, “No I cannot, because the basic thing in ayurvedic medicine is that you have to have faith in it. I don’t have faith in it. I know all about it - it is nonsense. But if people are healed, I keep my mouth shut. I don’t say anything to anybody, but one thing is certain, it won’t help me. I will die if I take those medicines - which cured innumerable people, even of tuberculosis! So don’t be surprised, and don’t tell anybody anything, because if I survive I will have to continue my practice. If I die then you can tell the truth.”

But the truth is, you need faith. It is the faith that changes the mind and affects the body - but not vice versa. The body is not superstitious, nor is it faithful; it is simply natural. It doesn’t care about anything else.

There used to be a sect in America.I think it still survives in a few places, but in the beginning of the twentieth century it was very prominent. It was a Christian group, they used to call themselves Christian Scientists. They believed that everything can be cured, you just have to believe in Jesus Christ, and that your diseases are nothing but your beliefs - you believe that you have tuberculosis, so you have tuberculosis.

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