A Christian Doctor’s Views On Acupuncture: Is it Dangerous?

Because I am a board-certified medical sub-specialist in pain management, I am frequently asked about acupuncture. Narcotic addiction has tripled in prevalence in the past couple decades, so patients want as many non-addictive pain management tools as I can give them.

First, let me give you a little background on acupuncture. It is an ancient technique that involves inserting fine wires under the skin at some of the over three hundred “energy points” and either twirling or electrically stimulating the needles to effect pain relief. The purported mechanism of action of acupuncture is to restore normal energy flow or “qi” (pronounced “chee”) through the body.

Though I don’t want to get into the science of acupuncture here, suffice it to say it’s impressive. Acupuncture has been proven to work.

Acupuncture has been shown to effectively lessen the symptoms of arthritis, post-operative pain, nausea of pregnancy and chemotherapy, headaches, morning stiffness in fibromyalgia, allergies, dysmenorrhea (period cramps), bursitis, and tendinitis. Its level of efficacy in reducing pain is about that of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines like ibuprofen and naproxen.

The problem is some Christians don’t want to hear about acupuncture because it originated in the East and it involves manipulating the body’s energy. They see that as being spiritually dangerous and I can see why. You don’t necessarily want a person messing with your God-given energy, especially if you don’t know the acupuncturist’s personal religious beliefs.

But here’s the important thing to remember: acupuncture is just a tool, just as a hammer is a tool. If you put a hammer in the hands of a good-hearted and skillful person, e.g. a person on a foreign mission trip into a destitute area, he or she could might use that hammer to build homes for the homeless. In the same way, acupuncture can be used by the right people to manipulate your energy in the right way, in a way that glorifies God, for your benefit. In addition to making sure your acupuncturist is highly qualified, you also should make sure the conditions are right, spiritually.

To ensure that the spiritual conditions are right during your acupuncture treatment, pray! Perhaps you might like to say something like this, “Dear Lord, I know you can use non-believers to help me because you are God. So, regardless of this person's belief system, please use him [or her] to realign my body’s spiritual, emotional, and physical energy so the essence of my being lines up with how You envisioned me in the beginning. Dear Jesus, stand between me and any negative or ungodly force that tries to mess with the good energy you want me to have. Remove anything negative or unholy that doesn’t belong to me and restore the good things that others have taken from me. Bring my energy into balance, Lord, and please remove my physical pain. I dedicate this acupuncture experience to glorify You, Father. Thank you for Your infinite love and mercy. Amen.”

See also:

A Christian Doctor’s Views On Yoga: Is it Dangerous?

A Christian Doctor's Views On Hypnosis And Meditation: Are They Dangerous?

A Christian Doctor's Views On Energy Work: Is it Dangerous?

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