The Lourdes Enigma
It has been estimated that more than 100 million people have visited Lourdes in France since it opened for business in 1860. Most sought to be healed by the grace of the Virgin.
A mountain of research has been done on the remission rates achieved in Lourdes (as indeed at many other religious health spas, Christian, Buddhist and Hindu). What is astonishing is that so few visitors were (and still are) actually cured of their illnesses, indeed, far less than the French placebo whiz kid, Emile Coué, was able to achieve in Nancy at the turn of the 20th century. It has been conservatively estimate that the remission rate in Lourdes is about 2 per 10.000, more or less the same is in any other religious or non-religious location, inside or outside a hospital environment.
So why so few remissions? The answer seems obvious. The self- healing (i.e. wholeness making) placebos installed at Lourdes are defective.
If I assume that the placebo used at Lourdes basically runs: ‘Mother of God (or Mary), please heal me of my illness (= sins)”, or words to that affect, then it is clear why this placebo could not activate the Pygmalion Effect.
The Lourdes placebo is ill directed (to wit, at another ill-defined placebo) and non-defined (i.e. fuzzy). It is ill-directed because directed at an external (or transcendental, hence vague) healing source, not, as it should be, at a person’s own self-healing programs (and which the Catholic Church does not allow). Its lack of specific definition, including a time or outcome frame, does not permit the individual’s Bio-Nav (and which is a logic machine that requires quantised, hence limited/finite data to operate) plot a course (i.e. outcome) and then activate its innate (possibly epi-genetic) self repair functions.
In short, the Lourdes visitor does not address his or her own Bio-Nav directly and furnish it with precise, meaning: specific, hence self-logic, instructions. No logic, step by step computer, such as the brain, can produce an outcome if it is not given direct and specific instructions.
Example: Supposing I were an Airbus 380 driver. I get into my cab (i.e. cockpit) and say: “My God! Get me to Southeast Asia!” Obviously nothing would happen because my instruction is misdirected and fuzzy. What I have to do is address my autopilot directly and say: “Get me to Southeast Asia!” Again nothing would happen since I have not instructed my autopilot decisively when to start and which runway to use. And even my bus does take off (because it computes the next best step (or route) based on previous journeys) it won’t go anywhere. That’s because it needs an exact (yet always virtual … my autopilot or Bio-Nav operates solely in a virtual reality of its own devising) destination, for instance New Delhi, and a time-frame (to wit: landing slot) to plot a precise and cost efficient course, thereafter to instruct the airbus’ 1 million bits do their respective jobs.
Hence if you’re on your way to Lourdes, and which I recommend since it’s a wonderfully peaceful and inspiring place, you might consider redesigning your placebo prior to installation as follows: “Mother of God, hear me, a sinner. Please instruct my brain (i.e. my personal navigation system) to change direction (from my current, at best, though unhealthy state) in order to activate my self-healing programs so that within a period (say 21 days or 3 months, or before I get married) it eliminates the causes of my asthma attacks!” If you’re smart you’ll also make her an offer she can’t refuse, thereby upping the ante (to wit, empowering the placebo).