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on July 13, 2000
Dr.Gordon's book was referred to me by a Ph.D. in genetics, the second woman to present at the Sorbonne. Mdme. Curie was first! At the time I just beginning my battle with breast cancer, and frustrated trying to acquire a competent, purposeful, ethical, and loving team, willing to accept me as an equal member! That was four books ago -I've loaned them out and somehow they seem to adsorb into the bodies and minds of those to whom I loaned them. They have not been returned; however, I have decided they should have been a gift to begin with.
Dr. Gordon's thorough and conscientious review of the different modalities available to increase, intensify, complement, and/or impact on the mind-body connection is comfortable reading. There is no question that in this book the doctor is paving the way for the the long overdue paradigm shift in medicine: the male medical model. A model that has been said will change for at lest the last forty years, and it hasn't budged, except in area where there has been strong public input, and therefore supported the initiation of the manifesto for a new medicine. This was especially apparent in from 1960-1974 when parents fought and organized for family-centered maternity and child care: human childbirth experiences with a prepared couple;husband attending the birth; family reunion post partem, including the mother's other children. The first excellent model of this was at Kaiser in California, which in the 70s had a central nursery so parents could have their babies in their room all they wanted or leave them to the safety of the nursing staff. Of course, the Mennonite hospital in Kansas had been doing this for 100 years! But, it took the public to bring this to an everyday option; not that the applied science of obstetrics has improved incrementally, (though technologically lives may be saves more easily) because parents both knew what was suppposed to happen, prepared to participate.
One must think, and feel strongly enough about the new medicine Dr. Gordon is writing about, and/or get an advocate to help them to seek and demand a partnership in their care, the health care "system" we have today can only decline further.
In the end, we are all patients. There is technology and treatments available now to cure! And, as Dr. Godon emphasizes complementary alternatives that individuals, find effective.
Dr. Gordon's book takes one to a new level of consciousness, and is a must in everyone's personal library, and reading clubs!
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on May 11, 1997
I recommend this book to everyone interesting in exploring what Gordon calls the "new medicine." The latter basically consists of techniques and approaches that are alternatives to the predominant practices of "modern, scientific medicine." There are many features of this book I like and a few I don't but there's little doubt that most wellness-oriented readers will find it a worthy read.

Gordon has "been there" and "done that" with respect to most of the techniques described and evaluated. He has, in fact, personally undergone a multiplicity of the treatments and remedies discussed as part of his quest for relief of back pain and other maladies that he personally suffered. In addition, he uses or has experimented with these approaches as part of his ministrations to patients. The man, in short, has been on a long road in a conscious journey of discoveries. Gordon makes it quite clear that his goal is to incorporate and blend the best of both medical worlds, new and current, for the benefit and empowerment of his patients and the effectiveness of his profession. The latter is very broadly defined, for this physician is less interested in being a scientific M.D. than he is committed to being a wise healer and patient facilitator.

Among the features of MANIFESTO that I found most compelling were the following:

A passionate advocacy of the idea that healers of all manner owe their patients quality service, which Gordon describes in part as knowing where they live and with whom, whom they love, the joys and tensions in their relationships, how they eat and exercise and, "most especially," what gives their lives meaning. Hells bells, a new medicine healer type can stuff me with herbs, drum and dance, pray and stick me with needles but if she's as involved as all this in my personal life, I'm going to be one satisfied customer, even if I die in the process.

An informed description of the nature of many new medicines, with attention to the evidence such as it exists for the effectiveness of each technique described. Covered in much detail are approaches that deal with vital functions of touch, movement, breathing and manipulative practices (massage, yoga, chiropractic, Feldenkrais, Alexander and Rolfing) and mind-body techniques (biofeedback, relaxation, imagery and hypnosis).

An extensive review of the value of self-care, with the focus on nutrition and exercise.

I mentioned that there were a few things I did not like. Most of these can be found in the twelfth and fourteenth chapters dealing with "other medicines" and "the healing path," respectively. Here I had the impression that Gordon never met a treatment modality or healer type he didn't like, provided it was not modern or scientific. In my view, there are a lot of quacks and quackery out there in new, current and old medicines and Gordon has too little to say about these hazards. He does offer a few general hints about how to avoid getting ripped off or worse, but then he refers approvingly to Deepak's mysticism and gobbledygook. Homeopathy and prayer are also described as efficacious elements of the new medicine. Whether you want to believe in prayer as more than talking to yourself is your own business but my sense is that prayer has been around a lot longer than the new medicine. It's part of the old time religion and, like most of the practices discussed in "the healing path" chapter, has to be swallowed on faith or not at all.

A fine work--many stars. But, can't decide how many.
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on October 23, 2001
Jim Gordon's book is useful for those looking for a complement or alternative to traditional western medical practice. Appointed by President Clinton to chair the White House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine Policy, he is considered an authoritative figure in the field.
As more and more people become disenchanted with the limitations of "western" medical practice, the need for accurate information on the myriad of non-traditional medical options will become more important. The statement of the first commentator above referring to alternative medical care as a "fad" and a Gordon as a "fraud" is typical of the unwillingness of the medical establishment to even consider non-traditional medical practices, many of which do have academic research to back them up, particularly as preventitive measures. But you can't blame the medical establishment, including the drug companies, for not wanting to rock their multi-billion dollar boat. After all, there is a lot more money to be made in expensive treatments, such as chemotherapy, surgery, and patentable drugs, than in affordable and natural preventetive methods which intergrate and emphasise lifestyle prevention such as good nutrition and stress management.
It is for those whom the established medical techniques have been a failure that Manifesto for New Medicine will be most insightful.
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on April 18, 2000
Dr. Gordon speaks from a vast experience in both traditional allopathic medicine and alternative health care. He knows what he's talking about, and he makes a huge amount of information accessible to all. He writes from personal experience as well, which lends humanity and compassion to his work. If you ever get a chance to hear him speak, jump on it. The book is a great start to a new way of thinking about illness and wellness and how we can get our doctors to help us best.
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on February 6, 2005
For those open to a broader way of looking at healthcare that combines the best of traditional modern western medicine with alternatives, this book suggests a new way. I found it to be inspiring, insightful and bold. It deserves to be widely read and contemplated - particularly by those in the medical profession and by those who would like to reclaim more control over their lives and their state of health.

Gordon provides an interesting primer on several of the more popular alternative healing modalities, along with examples of what kinds of ailments they may be most appropriate in treating. He also provides many useful and colorful examples of doctors challenging and encouraging patients to change their lives in ways that can profoundly improve health (e.g. through changes in eating, exercise, breathing, relaxation, self-awareness and expression, social-emotional support, etc). How many MDs dare to go here, and what could be more sensible and empowering??!!

And, by the way, he does not - as one reviewer suggests - blindly endorse alternative therapies. He points out that many alternatives can be used to intelligently complement what classic western medine offers. At the end of the day, it's really about being open to understanding and responding creatively and intelligently to all the factors that influence our health. Self awareness is a key piece of the puzzle. Read it and improve your health and your practice!
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on March 15, 2014
I guess if you're new to this (i.e. alternative medicine), 299 pages might not seem like a lot; but for me, some ideas seemed to drone on, and I periodically lost attention. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed most, if not all of the case studies. I even enjoyed reading Dr. Gordon's path to how he came to alternative medicine and his healing crisis was fascinating, sparking an interest. However, some of his points on exercise and diet seemed like common sense (especially to someone who has read this type of thing before). Also, he quoted "let food be your medicine and your medicine food" in a couple of different places in the book. Personally, I thought once was sufficient, when he brought up it up the first time. When he brought the topic up an additional time, it just seemed redundant to me. Again, this might be good for someone new to these concepts.

Overall I liked the book, but some points were slow and redundant, which made it very tempting to skip around.

A plus about the book is the subject index (p.347-358). I enjoy it when non-digital books with over 250 pages a have an index for a reader's convenience if they want to refer back to a cetain topic. Putting this book on Kindle would be even sweeter. That way a reader can just do a word search. (Why isn't this book on Kindle yet?)
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on June 10, 2011
I purchased this book for a friend. I first came across Dr Gordon on the Diane Rhem show on NPR about 10 years ago and after talking with him by phone was referred to a Dr Heffron in Bethesda who practiced medicine as he does. I was coming up on retirement and was concerned that I was going to retire a cripple from arthritis. However Dr. Heffron, in Bethesda, put me on a regimen of herbs that after three weeks had me walking without pain and I have been pain free to this day. I do have to continue with the herbs but they are so inexpensive that it is not a problem.

In addition the herbs are in quite large pill form and provide the bulk I need so that my cholesterol levels have fallen into the normal range.

I heartily recommend this bool!!!
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on December 23, 2014
As a board certified holistic practitioner, I have clashed with conventional medicine for many years. I took it upon myself to
do the research and educate the integrative modailites that are available. This book is excellent from a medical doctors
perception. He describes in detail his training, and how it wasn't working for health care. It is really what I describe as
'sick care'. Over prescribing, not spending time with a patient, treating patients as machines instead of people, all part
of the system that he could no longer invest his time or energy in. If you want to understand the medical system from
someone who was in the trenches, then this is the book for you.
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on April 4, 2013
What an excellent advocate for personal integrative medicine! Gordon's book is inspiring and is shifting my perspectives on how to achieve a healthier, satisfying life
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on April 3, 2014
My wife loved the book. Great information about health and eating properly. Its a great reference and book to have in your library.
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