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Alternative Medicine

Hello, is irodolgy permitted in judaism? what about reflexolgy and acupuncture? (or are these derived from a”z practices?)



The alternative healing methods you mentioned are permissible. They are based on a system of understanding the bodies inner workings and energies, and the connection between body and mind. Although the value in engaging in these practices is questionable, this does not make the practice forbidden. At least contemporary forms of these practices involve no religion, worship or the like and have no connection to Avoda Zara.

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  1. But could not these treatments be regarded as lifnei iver given that so few CAMs are ineffective?

    1. Please explain your self a little better.

  2. Apologies I made a couple of typos. As a former cancer sufferer I was advised by many well intentioned friends to investigate alternative remedies as well as those offered to me by medical science. I completely ignored their advice on the grounds that apart from a palliative effect complementary and alternative medicine are deemed to be useless for genuinely serious illnesses. I actually regard such advice a placing “a stumbling block before the blind”. Recently an old friend of mine has been diagnosed with a serious form of cancer which is not localised. He has great faith in alternative medicines, positive thinking and other “remedies”, and this encouraged by the circles he moves in. His high level of sensitivity prevents me from speaking to him about his choices, but I suspect that the same “well intentioned” people who encouraged me in that direction are doing the same with him. So my question is, if this is the case, would this not be livnei iver?

    1. There are many things that can be helped by alternitive medicine. I personally don’t think that it should be used instead of conventional medicine to cure cancer, but for many things alternitive medicine does work. There are hospitals in England that use it, and the insurance companies in Israel started covering some of them.
      You don’t have to use it if you don’t feel that it won’t work, but It isn’t a sin to suggest it to someone that would want to try it.

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