The Medical Empath

17 May

“There is no other medical intuitive with such deep and accurate capacity to diagnose patients,” said the skipper of the interplanetary hospital vessel. “Wherever we happen to go, Dr. John Petrov is able to produce fast, accurate reports on the fundamental illness that each individual is suffering from. This is true regardless of the particular aspects of the environment in which the person was born, grew up, and acquired a specific malady or disease. People have checked medical records going back centuries and generations. They can find nothing about any healer of comparable ability.

“Dr. Petrov is a unique phenomenon in the history of our Pinwheel Galaxy. He is a born empathic genius.”

The new hospital administrator, Hari Dunkel, gave the Captain a broad, confident smile. “I believe that I should get to know such a wonderful physician as soon as possible. I think he can help me a lot in deciding how to run and operate our migrant, rotating facility.

“He could turn out to be the man with precisely the attributes that we need in order to keep our hospital current and up-to-date with our rivals and competitors.”

The two men parted in an elevated mood of confidence.

John Petrov was a comparatively young-looking fellow for a physician with his experience and achievements.

Back on his home planet, he had published several diagnostic manuals for general practitioners. One of them had the title “Heal Your Body.” Another had the provocative name “Why Patients Don’t Heal and How They Can”. In all his writings, Dr. Petrov called for the encouragement of empathic sensitivity among the doctors of the future, especially among primary and family physicians who remained the front line of combat against illness.

One of the main arguments of this healer was the development of the “laying on of hands” by doctors for the dual purposes of diagnosis and immediate treatment and rapid curing. John Petrov did not flinch from supporting a method looked at askance by the traditional practitioners of previous generations. There were snide rumors that he was an advocate of outmoded folk remedies and methods that science had long before discredited and found wanting.

The tow-haired, blue-eyed newcomer had been given the reputation of a radical innovator long before he arrived aboard the gigantic hospital ship that was dedicated to introducing even the least developed galactic planets to the most up-to-date breakthroughs in contemporary medicine.

Petrov was certain that he would be able to prove the efficacy of a revived intuitive method of treatment.

The first and greatest opponent of empathic diagnosis and therapy proved to be Dr. Marika Volkov.

This attractive young physician was a stubborn, unyielding critic if his ideas and methods.

“I cannot see anything positive coming out of using ways that were discredited generations ago, back on our birth planet. Folk traditions and practices have no place whatever in our contemporary galactic stage of medicine,” she told Petrov with an icy smile that came close to condescension.

“If something can be established to be effective,” argued John, ” its roots and origins should not be used against its adoption and use, Dr. Volkov.

“There have been no convincing tests anywhere,” she countered. “Your hand diagnosis and treatment remains in dispute. It is considered too dangerous to depend on everywhere. Where is it being applied with any success?”

Having no ready reply, Petrov decided to change the subject. “We will soon move into orbit around the large planet called Gargantua. That is the home of many strange and unfamiliar diseases, I have learned from my readings. There will be many opportunities to apply new methods not common elsewhere to the multitude of the near-human hominids who can be expected to be sent up to us. Our skills and knowledge of physical illness will be severely taxed, I can predict.”

What Dr. John Petrov foresaw came true. Atmospheric vessels brought advanced, serious cases wracked with pain to the hospital ship for final, desperate treatment. The number of casualties from Gargantua began to accumulate immediately and did not decline.

The medical staff was stymied and baffled by illnesses none of them had ever encountered before. Unknown infections, bacteria, and viruses caused pain and wailing among the new patients from this bedeviled planet.

John continued to lecture Marika on the efficacy of intuitive, empathic diagnosis and treatment. He would sit down across from her in the staff cafeteria and tell of his attempts to use the touch method for identifying the precise variety of Gargantuan malady in a case.

“An empath should be skilled enough to read the blood and the organs of a patient. That is what I am attempting to do. I scan them with my hands for areas of imbalance. My purpose is to map out the energy system of the body in question. I hunt for the specific emotions that helped caused the illness and that are the results of it. This body-work and energy-work leads me to the energy locations and imbalances causing the severe symptoms. I wish to destroy these artificial weaknesses in the body and its energy system.”

“I have never come across any successes due to such mumbo-jumbo. It sounds a lot like what witch-doctors once did,” smirked Marika as she went on eating her yellow salad.

“There have been many such practitioners back on our Birth Planet. I am thinking of the famed Edgar Cayce, the so-called Sleeping Prophet. In his lifetime, he made over 30,000 individual health readings and diagnoses, the bulk of them accurate and successful in nailing down the specific disease or illness. Cayce has had many followers. I myself can claim to be one of them.”

“He must have had extraordinary talents,” cynically noted Marika.

“He taught that the empath must feel very deeply so as to understand what is happening within others. He must be sensitive enough to resonate with the inner being of the patient and feel their true, genuine emotions. His attitude is one of profound compassion, going beyond the outer cover protecting the privacy of a person.

“This capacity has its roots in the DNA of the empath. He is aware of eye movements and unconscious body movements. The intuitions of such a doctor must be totally observant and able to duplicate the energy imbalance within himself so that he can tell what it is and where it lies.”

Marika frowned. “Medical treatment cannot afford to be so dependent on the character of the one trying to heal another,” she coldly said to him.

A knock came on the door to John’s cabin as he lay resting in his bunk. “Who is it?” he inquired.

The Skipper, Hari Dunkel, entered with an alarming message for him. “I am sorry to have to tell you that Marika has taken seriously ill. The cast on her face is that of the green fever that troubles so many of those sent up here from Gargantua. I, like most others, believed that the illness was non-contagious, but it appears that she was vulnerable to it from constant contact with patients.

“She is semi-conscious and groggy, but you are welcome to see her and help in her treatment, however you can, John.”

Having said what he knew, the captain-physician of the space hospital turned and left. The shocked and disoriented Petrov sprang to his feet and got into his professional uniform.

How much would Marika allow him to help her? he wondered. Until now, he had experienced rare cases of success with the ill ones from the planet of Gargantua.

Marika, fortunately, was asleep when he stepped into her patient cubicle. Faint, nearly inaudible snores came from her nose and throat.

John slowly approached her hammock through the dim light, noticing that her left arm was not covered by her woolen blanket. Should he attempt to read her emphatically? He decided that he owed it to her do what he knew he could.

He leaned down and took hold of her hand, not lifting it, but holding it loosely. It would not do to alarm or awaken her by pressing too tightly or firmly.

The pulse of Marika could be heard through her fingers.

John patiently waited until he could sense the centers of energy within her body. He soon felt her aura, which was an extraordinary white one emanating from deep within her. It was shining with radiance, though her mind and body were both sound asleep.

He remembered the patterns that he had sensed in his patients from planet Gargantua. These had a number of similarities, although in the body of a human female of the type from the Birth World.

John decided to focus his search on the pure essence of the energy that kept Marika Volkov living. That was the reservoir of force that could save and cure her, if he were able to spark it into recovery and strengthening.

If only he could revitalize her energy system as it fought to overcome the green fever components that had attacked her. He was thankful she was not awake to argue against what he planned to do in restoring her to normal health. This had not worked as yet with the near-human hominids of Gargantua. His hope now depended upon being able to affect the energy system of someone of the same species as himself.

John held her hand in his for nearly a quarter of an hour, pouring from his own energy into hers. He stayed on the look-out for any sign of change. She was still asleep when he withdrew his hand, letting hers gently fall onto the bed sheet. He had harnessed all of his empathic capacity and now was left with hope alone. Had he been right to try this on her? he asked himself.

The exhausted empath returned to his cabin and waited in silence for awhile. He grew restless with each passing minute, so that he decided at last to return to the cubicle that held Marika Volkov. He could not have said what it was that he expected to see there.

Two nurses and an older physician stood about the hammock that held her. She was now awake and speaking clearly to the three people around her.

“I awoke and I immediately felt as if something had changed in me, and was continuing that way. I seemed to have some of my old strength and energy back. I can’t explain it. There has been no new treatment that I can remember. But I suddenly feel like I am on the road to recovery. It must be a miracle!”

She then spied John Petrov at the entrance to her cubicle.

“John, please come in and see how I am improving. I don’t know what is causing it, but I feel strengthened and invigorated. I may still be quite ill, but I know that I am definitely improving in both my body and my spirit.”

As the other three made their way out of the cubicle, he entered and approached the patient.

“Can I take your pulse, Marika, and feel your forehead?”

She nodded yes to him. “You see, I had a spontaneous reversal of my illness. My body put up sufficient defense to defeat the assault upon it. There has been no room for any kind of empathic laying-on of hands or intuitive treatments. Nature did its work on me without any human intervention like the kind that you have been so enthusiastic about. There was no need for that sort of primitive treatment based on folklore.”

Unable to do or say anything, John merely smiled like a knowing cat.

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