The way a book is read- which is to say,the qualities a reader brings to a book- can have as much to do with its worth as anything the author puts into it.
If ignorance about the nature of pain is widespread, ignorance about the way pain-killing drugs is even more so. What is not generally understood is that many of the vaunted pain-killing drugs conceal the pain without correcting the underlying condition. They deaden the mechanism in the body that alerts the brain to the fact that something may be wrong. The body can pay a high price for suppression of pain without regard to its basic cause.
Illness is always an interaction between [mind and body]. It can begin in the mind and affect the body, or it can begin in the body and affect the mind, both of which are served by the same bloodstream. Attempts to treat most mental diseases as though they were completely free of physical causes and attempts to treat most bodily diseases as though the mind were in no way involved must be considered archaic in the light of new evidence about the way the human body functions.
Suppose I stopped taking aspirin and phenylbutazone? What about the pain? The bones in my spine and practically every joint in my body felt as though I had been run over by a truck. I knew that pain could be affected by attitudes. Most people become panicky about almost any pain. On all sides they have been so bombarded with advertisements about pain that they take this or that analgesic at the slightest sign of an ache. We are largely illiterate about pain and so are seldom able to deal with it rationally. Pain is part of the body's magic. It is the way the body transmits a sign to the body that something is wrong.
Time is the one thing that patients need most from their doctors--time to be heard, time to have things explained, time to reassured, time to be introduced by the doctor personally to specialists or other attendants whose very existence seems to reflect something new and threatening. yet the one thing that too many doctors find most difficult to command or manage is time.
People who develop the habit of thinking of themselves as world citizens are fulfilling the first requirement of sanity in our time.
Not every illness can be overcome. But many people allow illness to disfigure their lives more than it should. They cave in needlessly. They ignore and weaken whatever powers they have for standing erect. There is always a margin within which life can be lived with meaning and even with a certain measure of joy, despite illness.
The library is not a shrine for the worship of books. It is not a temple where literary incense must be burned or where one's devotion to the bound book is expressed in ritual. A library, to modify the famous metaphor of Socrates, should be the delivery room for the birth of ideas - a place where history comes to life.— Cited in ALA Bulletin, Oct. 1954, p.475
The most costly disease is not cancer or coronaries. The most costly disease is boredom - costly for both individual and society.
Nothing is more essential in the treatment of serious disease than the liberation of the patient from panic and forboding.
It is nonsense to say there is not enough time to be fully informed. ... Time given to thought is the greatest timesaver of all.
The human body experiences a powerful gravitational pull in the direction of hope. That is why the patient's hopes are the physician's secret weapon. They are the hidden ingredients in any prescription.
The capacity for hope is the most significant fact of life. It provides human beings with a sense of destination and the energy to get started.
Respect for the fragility and importance of an individual life is still the mark of an educated man.
People are never more insecure than when they become obsessed with their fears at the expense of their dreams.
What was most significant about the lunar voyage was not that men set foot on the moon but that they set eye on the earth.
It makes little difference how many university courses or degrees a person may own. If he cannot use words to move an idea from one point to another, his education is incomplete.
The tragedy of life is in what dies inside a man while he lives - the death of genuine feeling, the death of inspired response, the awareness that makes it possible to feel the pain or the glory of other men in yourself.
It is reasonable to expect the doctor to recognize that science may not have all the answers to problems of health and healing.
The individual is capable of both great compassion and great indifference. He has it within his means to nourish the former and outgrow the latter.