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Ecstasy is not the answer
by Dr Ken Walton and Dr Jim Fleming

Navy Times    Translate This Article
4 April 2005

The Navy Times, Army Times, and Air Force Times published a letter in their April 4 issue about the Transcendental Meditation (TM) Programme as an effective approach for treating Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD). The letter was written by two members of the Center for Advanced Military Science (CAMS), Drs Ken Walton and Jim Fleming.

The letter was in response to a previous article which proposed using the drug Ectasy to treat PTSD. Walton and Fleming said, 'We were shocked. Why support investigation of a brain-damaging drug, when a safe and effective approach is already available?'

The writers went on to say, 'It's high time we acknowledge that virtually all drugs have negative side effects and look more closely at the human potential for healing ourselves. Research now shows that stress-reduction approaches can be effective for treating hypertension and heart disease as well as anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. Among these approaches, meditation has emerged as most effective for many outcomes. Within the different types of meditation, the Transcendental Meditation Programme has been researched most and has shown the largest effects in comparative studies.'

The writers noted a study that was done twenty years ago. 'Brooks and Scarano tested this programme in Vietnam veterans, randomly assigning those diagnosed with PTSD to either meditation or psychotherapy (Journal of Counseling and Development, Volume 64, Pages 212-215, 1985). The results were clear. Compared to psychotherapy, three months practising this meditation for two short periods a day brought significantly greater reductions in eight of nine measures, including emotional numbness, anxiety, depression, alcohol consumption, insomnia, family problems, unemployment and a scale for PTSD. If a Department of Veterans Affairs clinician prescribes the TM programme as part of a veteran's therapy, it is VA policy that the local VA medical center can pay the course fee from its discretionary funds.'

The letter appeared both in the paper edition and also on the publications' websites.

Copyright © 2005 Global Good News(sm) Service.

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