Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
J Hist Med Allied Sci. 2014 Jan;69(1):135-62. doi: 10.1093/jhmas/jrs041. Epub 2012 Jul 27. The lourdes medical cures revisited. François B, Sternberg EM, Fee E. Former Emeritus Professor of Medicine, Université Claude Bernard, Lyon 1, 13 Ave. Debrousse, 69005 Lyon, France.
This article examines the cures recorded in Lourdes, France, between 1858, the year of the Visions, and 1976, the date of the last certified cure of the twentieth century. Initially, the records of cures were crude or nonexistent, and reports of cures were accepted without question.
A Medical Bureau was established in 1883 to examine and certify the cures, and the medical methodology improved steadily in the subsequent years.
We discuss the clinical criteria of the cures and the reliability of medical records. Some 1,200 cures were said to have been observed between 1858 and 1889, and about one hundred more each year during the "Golden Age" of Lourdes, 1890-1914.
We studied 411 patients cured in 1909-14 and thoroughly reviewed the twenty-five cures acknowledged between 1947 and 1976. No cure has been certified from 1976 through 2006. The Lourdes phenomenon, extraordinary in many respects, still awaits scientific explanation. Lourdes concerns science as well as religion.
Lourdes, cures, healing, prayer, psycho-neuroimmunology, religion, tuberculosis
The source of the experiencePubMed
Concepts, symbols and science items
Science ItemsPlacebo effect
Activities and commonsteps
OverloadsVisiting holy wells and springs
SuppressionsBelieving in the spiritual world
Enacting ritual and ceremony