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Posted on 05-19-2012

We chiropractic people just do not think the same as other people. While there are comparatively few who think the way we do, it is significant because it makes a dramatic difference in the way we live. And while it is different, I am confident it is right because logical reasoning says it is.

Chiropractic and chiropractic philosophy are based upon what is known as "deductive reasoning." Without providing a lengthy discussion as to what that is exactly, we can define this type of reasoning generally as "any set of logical reasoning that moves from a self-evident, true generality to a specific particular." For example, organization requires intelligence and the body is organized (both self-evident, true generalities), therefore the body must have an innate intelligence (more specific truth).

It should be noted that this is in opposition to medical thinking that uses "inductive reasoning," which moves from a specific or part to a generality. For example, it has been noted that some smokers develop cancer (specific truth) and hence, the conclusion that smoking causes cancer (not necessarily a true generality). In fact, smoking in and of itself does not cause cancer. We know that because there are many smokers who never develop cancer and many more people who never smoked that have developed cancer. As you may know, part of the truth is not necessarily the truth. Let's look at some other examples, all of which were taken from a single issue of a popular "health" magazine.

One short news clip discussed the effects of ultraviolet B rays--the type that have been identified as causing sunburn--on the immune system. Findings of the only noted study showed that volunteers who were tested with an allergy-triggering chemical when sunburned and again three weeks later did not develop as much redness or swelling at the 2nd testing (specific). The author suggests that sun exposure weakens immune response (generality). Isn't it possible that the decreased redness and swelling at the second testing was a sign that the body was better able to adapt to the induced "stress?" It may be that the body had a way to recognize the chemical and so it responded in a less dramatic way. See how the conclusion is not necessarily true!?!

Another clip suggested that exercise could prevent the development of diabetes (a generality drawn from the following specifics). The article noted a study that showed that exercising once a week reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 23%, 2-4 times a week cut the risk by 38% and 5 or more times cut the risk by 42%. These numbers would suggest that indeed the conclusion is true but how do they determine risk? If a person does not have a disease and does not get a disease how do you know that they would not have developed the disease no matter what they did. The fact of the matter is that exercise is good for everyone and should be done in some manner regardless of your age, sex, weight, or predisposition to any disease (self-evident truth).

You see, deductive thinking focuses on the entity--in these cases--health, while inductive thinking focuses on the absence of that entity--disease. So the next time you are reading a health magazine, remember there are two sides to every story. Try to think deductively and see if it does not just make more sense.

Chiropractic and chiropractic philosophy are based upon what is known as "deductive reasoning."

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