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Book Story

At the age of 17, I had the first of many mystical experiences that took me to a place ‘outside time and space’. This led me to the concrete personal experience that, at least for me, there existed more than one ‘parallel universes’ of which I was part.
The experiences were so exquisite and personally satisfying that it set me on a path of exploration of spiritual teachers and teachings of many world traditions, that appeared to tell folks like me, how to take things forward. At age 62, I now see that this interest has engrossed me for the last 40+ years, and will probably continue until my dying day.
However, the present offering is a book about Medicine, and not Spirituality.
Even philosophers and mystics have to eat, and I remember with total clarity one day in 1972, that the thought came to my mind that I wanted to be a doctor and that was my intended career.
With the aid of hindsight, I have enjoyed a fulfilling and successful career, the first several years in the UK hospital system in the specialty of Ear Nose and Throat Surgery and then some twenty years, (including training), as a fulltime General Practitioner in Richmond-upon-Thames, one of London’s particularly pleasant suburbs. This latter point is important, because the practice of medicine is very dependant on the doctor’s type of clientele. Richmond is in fact so wealthy that an average doctor cannot afford a house there. Many of my patients worked in ‘The City’ and private health insurance came with their jobs. In times of health crisis, they wanted to discuss their options and be recommended to specialists.
The life for general practitioners serving the inner cites is a different experience altogether. Social, linguistic and cultural issues affect consultations making comparisons with practising in London’s middle class suburbs impossible.
Outside work my entire social life revolved around meditation groups and the type of people associated with these types of interests.
Many were individuals training to be some form of Alternative Medicine Practitioner.
My interest in the unexplainable, the intangible and the esoteric led me to dream of becoming a ‘General Practitioner specialising in knowledge about Alternative Medicine’ and develop this as a private practice sideline to go alongside my NHS practice.
In the 1990’s this was an entirely viable option as there was an explosion in Alternative Health Centres in the wealthier parts of London, and consequently a need for patients to consult conventional doctors ‘open to alternatives’, to make more informed choices. There were GPs in my area seeing patients privately offering Homoeopathy, Acupuncture, Allergy Testing and their own brand of Psychotherapy.
I myself did approved courses in Western Medical Acupuncture at the then Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital ( this is an easy to learn cookery book form of Acupuncture to treat painful conditions). It is still used in Pain Clinics all over the UK.
I practised this on my NHS patients with good results, but as my NHS workload grew, this became too difficult because of time constraints and I stopped. I was also doing sessions as a Benefits Agency Medical Services (BAMS) Approved Doctor assessing Sickness Benefit claims. This also became too onerous and I stopped as it wasn’t worth my time and effort.
However I never lost my interest in what became known as CAM ( Complementary and Alternative Medicine) and kept all the articles on the subject that came my way published in magazines like Pulse, GP , Doctor and the British Medical Journal.
In 2012 my conventional career as a GP came to an end as my small independent practice ( The Vineyard Surgery), became financially unviable, in my hands, and I decided to take early retirement to do other things.
The Vineyard Surgery, 35 The Vineyard , Richmond, I am glad to say, continues to function as a branch surgery of a large practice based elsewhere.
Whereas my focus turned to writing a book and doing an audiovisual product on non medical things, my calling to find a way of practicing medicine returned.
Over the 2017 new year period, I had a profound dream and ongoing intuition about writing a book on the practical application of Complementary Medicine as an adjunct to conventional therapy. The book had to be something that a patient could directly use without reference to their doctor.

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