Richard G. Petty, MD

Tapping Therapies

Hearing that my friends in the United Kingdom at were about to have a conference on Thought Field Therapy (TFT) was all the encouragement that I needed to write a few more words about TFT and some of the other tapping therapies. I made mention of two of them in a blog entry for February 28th 2006, and I have dedicated several sections to it in my book and CD series Healing Meaning and Purpose.

TFT was the creation of the psychologist Roger Callahan, who discovered that stimulating a number of acupuncture points while connecting with an negative emotion, thought, impulse or memory, could initiate a cascade of healthy neurological, chemical, emotional, cognitive and even physical effects. There is an interesting sidebar here. When I first came across his work, it seemed absurd. It looked like a collection of unproven techniques cobbled together into some sort of system. I worry about sick people being treated by ineffective therapies, so I was determined to debunk TFT. I was a little taken aback when I sent for some of the Callahan materials and saw a smoker permanently cured in about five minutes. Undeterred, I flew to California to expose what I thought might be another scam. Within two days, I discovered that it was no scam. Roger has indeed made an extraordinarily important discovery that supports the notion that the laws of healing are changing. As a simple example, I used one of Roger’s simplest treatments on inveterate smokers. The first 11 whom I treated all stopped smoking, and when I followed up almost one year later they still were not smoking. This could have been beginner’s luck or a placebo effect, but both are unlikely. We know a great deal about the duration of the effectiveness of placebos.

TFT is based on the concept that thought is a form of energy, structured by a field and that psychological problems are manifestations of distortions within “thought fields,” which Roger defines as “a complex of forces that serve as causative agents in human behavior.” He conceptualizes psychological problems as the consequence of “perturbations” in the thought field. These perturbations contain the information that triggers negative emotions, and they also have relationships with specific major acupuncture points on the body. Fixing these perturbations involves tapping specific points in a specific order, while doing a series of other small tasks.

An important aspect of TFT is the concept of psychological reversal. Roger calls this the energetic blockade of natural healing, caused by reversals in the flow of Qi through the acupuncture channels. It now seems that much of what has been described as therapeutic resistance, self-sabotage or lack of willpower is a result of psychological reversal. He has devised some deceptively simple treatments that have shown us that people’s difficulties were often not a matter of a lack of willpower at all, but were the result of reversed energy. Deal with that, and many problems can melt away.

Like Roger Callahan, I emphasize the importance of toxins, of extending our concept of them, so that we conceptualize them as units of rogue information. In recent years Roger has done pioneering work into how to track down and deal with them.

Not everyone will be helped with any single form of treatment, and even with the best therapists, TFT is not for everyone. However, when someone says that he or she has not been helped with TFT, it most often for one of these seven reasons:
1. The treatment has not been done quite correctly.
2. The problem has been only partially treated.
3. Psychological reversal has not been dealt with.
4. There are still some toxins lurking around.
5. There is more than one problem, and they haven’t both been treated. (Somebody who said that he felt silly doing TFT needed to treat that fear of appearing foolish and then getting on with the primary problem.)
6. The problem may need the help of someone trained in TFT.
7. The person may have needed a combination of therapies.

TFT is the original tapping therapy, but others have now sprung up, including Emotional Freedom Techniques, and I have just read a new book called the Tapping Cure that claims that tapping an array of points on the surface of the body, while at the same time doing a specific affirmation, can be just as effective.

I have tried all these techniques, with varying degrees of success. Not just for clinical problems, but also for sports and other types of performance. While I was recording the CD series Healing, Meaning and Purpose, I several times found places where I fluffed my lines. On each occasion, the problem was resolved by tapping the border of my hand, because I was developing psychological reversal.

Unfortunately, proponents of each of these – and there are others – tend to be competitive with proponents of other techniques. And some enthusiasts have made some pretty incredible claims about what they claim to be able to cure. The competing claims really need to be resolved through empirical research.

Until we have that, I strongly suggest exploring the tapping techniques as adjuncts to other forms of therapy.

Technorat tags:

About Richard G. Petty, MD
Dr. Richard G. Petty, MD is a world-renowned authority on the brain, and his revolutionary work on human energy systems has been acclaimed around the globe. He is also an accredited specialist in internal and metabolic medicine, endocrinology, psychiatry, acupuncture and homeopathy. He has been an innovator and leader of the human potential movement for over thirty years and is also an active researcher, teacher, writer, professional speaker and broadcaster. He is the author of five books, including the groundbreaking and best selling CD series Healing, Meaning and Purpose. He has taught in over 45 countries and 48 states in the last ten years, but spends as much time as possible on his horse farm in Georgia.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

logo logo logo logo logo logo