Kent Gentempo Senzon 2014

I really enjoy my quarterly discussions with Kent and Gentempo. Since 2011, we have recorded a segment called “Chiropractic History with Simon Senzon (aka Simon Says Segment)” as part of On Purpose. As I continue to research, publish, and teach throughout the year, I get this wonderful opportunity to discuss my latest passion with them. Many of these discussions are posted as blog posts on this site.

Below are our three talks from this year (turned into video/slides with some animation).

Nine Books Published in 2014

The latest discussion was recorded over the summer and published in October. This talk was a great recap of the books I published this year. Since the talk, I published three more: Peters’ An Early History of Chiropractic, Drain’s Mind and My Pencil, and Smallie’s Ratledge Philosophy: Volume 2.

Segmental Neuropathy

One of the most incredible books I published this year was Segmental Neuropathy. It is published online for free. The talk we did back in February, which was published in April goes into the details of the book.

Amazingly, both Kent and Gentempo were familiar with the book. Kent taught from it in the past. He met Himes several times. The synchrotherme technology helped to inspire the thermography instrument Kent and Gentempo developed.

The Gen/Wave Model

In the last year I created the Gen/Wave model as a simple way to teach the history of the philosophy of chiropractic. I started developing the model in 2013 and refined it as part of my writing and teaching. This discussion took place while I was teaching on the West Coast. I created the animation as a way to help you understand it better.

I am looking forward to 2015 with great anticipation. My plan is to continue to publish the book series and develop 36 hours of online courses. Kent, Gentempo and I have already scheduled our talks for the year.

Ratledge and Drain

I love republishing chiropractic classics for a few reasons. The top two are that some of the the writings of chiropractic’s first generation are just awesome and few people have read them!

The two new books describe the philosophical perspectives of T.F. Ratledge and J.R. Drain. Not only did both of these guys study with D.D. Palmer, but they each taught chiropractic for decades, pioneered chiropractic across the country, and led the early efforts for chiropractic scope of practice, educational standards, legalization, and accreditation. Both men focused on defining chiropractic based on its science, art, and philosophy.

The Ratledge book is volume two of a two volume set originally written by Paul Smallie. Smallie graduated from Ratledge Chiropractic College in 1935. He published Ratledge Philosophy Volume 1 and Volume 2 in 1979. Smallie seems to have developed these books from Ratledge’s Manuscript (which I plan to publish next year along with Smallie’s The Guiding Light of Ratledge).

Ratledge Philosophy Volume 2 describes Ratledge’s depth of understanding of the chiropractic principles. Ratledge emphasized several important elements of the philosophy of chiropractic: the way the organism responds to the environment, the expression of universal energy through the nervous system, and the innateness of matter. He felt that the best way to assist the organism to adapt to the unneutralities of the environment was the chiropractic adjustment, which restores function.

Environmental unneutralities may arise from within or outside the body due to the body’s response to the three primary qualities of matter: density, chemistry, and temperature. The influence from the environment may lead to chemical changes, temperature changes, or mechanical stresses. Any of these could disrupt the functional balance of the organism, which may result in vertebral subluxation.

When you study Ratledge, you will gain an insight into the chiropractic point of view like no other.

The Drain book was created by me as a compilation of his writings. Last year, I published Drain’s Chiropractic Thoughts (1927). I did not include the final section that he added to the second edition (1946). I wanted to publish that separately because it is special.

Mind and My Pencil: Why Majors Change and Other Chiropractic Writings is a tribute to Drain. I was able to include more than the final section of Chiropractic Thoughts (second edition), which includes his many weekly letters and essays designed to inspire chiropractors in the field. I also included several pamphlets and essays written between 1926 and 1956.

The book is one of a kind. It inspires, philosophizes, and teaches adjusting, palpation, and even includes some 1930s business advice. Drain’s brief adjusting manual, his tract on Nerve Tracing, and also his detailed explanation of Majors are also incorporated into the book.

Mind and My Pencil has everything, science, art, philosophy, and practice advice from one of the best chiropractic thinkers of the 20th century.

As Drain would say, I am

Chiropractically yours,

Simon Senzon

Chiropractic Clear Light Books

It has been an amazing year thus far! Nine new books reissued, republished, or coming soon! I have decided to call the volumes, The Chiropractic Clear Light Books. I wasn’t going to continue with the “volumes” theme but then something happened! The books just took on a life of their own.

At first I was planning to dedicate this blog post solely to the historic republishing of the 1965 text Segmental Neuropathy: The First Evidence of Developing Pathology (announced to my email list in February). The book is just amazing, especially when we consider that it was published 49 years ago. As incredible as it is however, it was part of a much larger project and inspiration.

Inspired by Drain, Valdivia Tor, & Ratledge

As many of you know, in 2013, I republished J.R. Drain’s 1927 text, Chiropractic Thoughts. I was inspired by Drain’s book. I decided to republish it as the first of the new chiropractic classics series. If you haven’t gotten a copy yet – you will love it. It is philosophically on par with The Green Books and much easier to read!

I was also inspired by Joaquin Valdivia Tor, DC. Joaquin not only translated D.D. Palmer’s 1914 text into Spanish, but also wrote an index to that book in Spanish and English. His new book will be released next month. It includes the translation as well as an early history of chiropractic in Spanish!

With these two projects underway, I decided to re-release three of my four books and also publish the first of the Ratledge books. Ratledge was one of the last students of D.D. Palmer, a chiropractic educator for fifty years, and one of the true leaders of non-therapeutic chiropractic. Ratledge Philosophy: Volume 1 was written by his student, Paul Smallie.

It is very important for all chiropractors to study Ratledge’s work. Please consider this sentence the official announcement that Ratledge Philosophy: Volume 1 is now available for the first time since 1979.

Chiropractic Classics

Segmental Neuropathy, Chiropractic Thoughts, Ratledge Philosophy, and Valdivia Tor’s translation of D.D. are part of the Chiropractic Classics series. We should also include the new edition of D.D. Palmer’s Traveling Library. This book is the second half of my book, Chiropractic Foundations (Volume 3). It is an abridgment of the books D.D. Palmer was studying about magnetic healing, Spiritualism, and the philosophy of disease prior to his discovery of chiropractic.

There are other major texts written by 1st and 2nd generation chiropractors. Most of these books are virtually unknown to the profession today. I have already made a few of these classics available as free downloads, such as Carver’s 1936 book, History of Chiropractic (retyped by Keating), Forster’s 1921 book, The White Mark (scanned by the National archives), and Stephenson’s other 1927 book, The Art of Chiropractic. The republished classics will be growing each month.

The Breakthrough

While doing the layout and design for these books, I got inspired to redo my first three books. This has been on my wish list for years. I wanted to make them bigger, more professional, improve the quality, edit some text, and convert the books into the print on demand format like my fourth book. I did.

The big breakthrough came after a visit with Ken Wilber, while I was in Boulder studying with Donny Epstein in January. I asked Wilber if I could use some of the diagrams from his books to enhance my book Chiropractic Foundations. He gave me permission. I expanded chapter three from that book with 30 new diagrams.

This addition of the AQAL diagrams so transformed Chiropractic Foundations that the book is no longer in production. I decided to split it up into two shorter books.

The first book is based on my lectures at the Academy of Chiropractic Philosophers in 2007. The topic was the history of philosophy from Socrates to D.D. Palmer from an Integral perspective. It is being totally rewritten and republished as Towards An Integral Philosophy: A History of Universal and Innate Intelligences. The second book is D.D. Palmer’s Traveling Library: The Essential Inspirations (mentioned above). It includes several of the original chapters (from Chiropractic Foundations) establishing an historical and philosophical context as well as 300 pages of D.D.’s favorite authors.

Even though I decided in 2010 (with the reorganization of B.J.’s Epigrams) to stop referring to my books as volumes, with the publication of these nine books, I realized it was time to embrace the inevitable. A new chiropractic canon has emerged.

Reggie, Thom, and the Greenbooks

When I published my first book with a white cover and a subtitle of Volume 1, I did so with intention. There is an amazing tradition in chiropractic to publish books according to volume in a series with a colored cover.

This tradition was started by B.J. Palmer with his 39 volumes of green books with gold writing. Many have copied this style and a few have even created their own colored volumes (Cleveland’s Red books, Strauss’ Blue books, and Barge’s volumes are the most well-known attempts). I remember my own philosophy teachers, Val Pennacchio and David Koch used to jest about the colors of their own future series (purple for Val I recall – David’s book is green with gold writing!).

While president of Sherman College, Koch issued two small volumes in hardcover, Reggie Gold’s Triune of Life, and Thom Gelardi’s Inspirations. Thus, I continued, with Volume 2, The Secret History of Chiropractic: D.D. Palmer’s Spiritual Writings and Volume 3, Chiropractic Foundations: D.D. Palmer’s Traveling Library.

The Clear Light Books

I decided to refer to the volumes as The Clear Light Books. One of the main reasons for this comes from Wilber’s model of consciousness, referred to in his books as Altitude. An Altitude of Consciousness (think climbing higher on a mountain) is the space into which consciousness emerges. Each new level leads to new views of reality for the individual. Wilber refers to this as ladder (levels/structures), climber (individual), view (the perspective the individual views the world through at the new level). The philosophy of chiropractic emerged from a view of reality gravitating at a highly complex level of consciousness. Books on the philosophy should reflect this.

As you can see from Wilber’s diagram, the color spectrum is used as a way to unify several lines of development. “Clear Light” is the highest of the levels in the diagram. So the books, especially mine, point toward ever higher levels of growth and development. (This is also why my publishing company is called Integral Altitude.)

Clear Light has many other meanings as well. This is important, especially for my friends in the Sandbox (if you have read this far). One meaning relates to Gebser, one of the great cultural historians of the last century. He explained that as each new level of consciousness emerges, a greater transparency becomes evident. He called this diaphaneity. I have written about Gebser’s work in this context elsewhere.

We should be able to use the philosophy to see through the stuff that has kept the profession from developing, the shadow stuff, the un-integrated stuff, the junk that no one ever seems to talk about. Clear Light dispels shadows.

Agreement and Disagreement

The idea behind these books is not agreement although we will probably find much in common throughout The Clear Light Books. By bringing together lost classics, as one series, we capture our history and bring it forth into the future. It is time we learn from the men and women that led the first and second generations. Unfortunately their ideas have been lost to the current generation. For example, there should be a national board question that asks the aspiring chiropractor to distinguish philosophical differences between D.D. Palmer, B.J. Palmer, T.F. Ratledge, and J.R. Drain. Chiropractors should not just understand the basic facts of history. They should be taught to integrate the development of the ideas and the underlying principles of the chiropractic paradigm into daily practice.

I have already been “warned” that some groups in chiropractic might not recommend me because of the content in Segmental Neuropathy (it may go against their views on vertebral subluxation). I only posted it two weeks ago and have already gotten flack! (Please be sure to get on the email list as there are some big announcements coming up – just click the drop-down arrow above)! Why should a 1960s text critiquing a 1930s view of the nervous system stir controversy in 2014?

Controversy may also get stirred up by some of the content from Ratledge, Drain, and certainly from some of the future books. As my friends in Mexico say, “history is history.” Do we learn from the greats? From those who spent decades pondering all things chiropractic? Or do we continue to blindly fight our way into the future? I think we can widen our foundation just a bit. Don’t you?

The First Ten Volumes of Chiropractic Clear Light Books

Volume 1: The Spiritual Writings of B.J. Palmer: Anniversary Edition

The tenth anniversary edition is filled with over three dozen high resolution pictures as well as some excellent edits and additional content. This book has taken on a life of its own. Many chiropractors have told me it sits on their desk for daily inspiration. That was my hope. The new edition rocks!

Volume 2: The Secret History of Chiropractic: Second Edition

This expanded edition of Secret History has some important editorial changes. As new historical facts come to light, we need to change the way we understand what happened. The core of the text is the same although it too has expanded and has much nicer pictures. Many of the changes are focused on Solon Langworthy as his contributions to the profession, while important, were not as profound as I once thought. Other important changes relate to the landmark Morikubo trial. The book is a great introduction to the early history without losing the depth of the philosophy developed by D.D. Palmer. 

Volume 3: Chiropractic Foundations (retired)

As noted above, this book is no longer in print. 

Volume 4: Success, Health, and Happiness: The Epigrams of B.J. Palmer

 Interestingly, I wrote the title of this book without realizing that James Parker used that phrase as well.as B.J.’s writings on success, chiropractic, health, medicine, women, and food. Other topics are organized by chapter with excerpts of his later writings as context. The book is a real treasure. 

Volume 5: Chiropractic Thoughts by J.R. Drain

 Drain’s book was written in 1927 after over a decade of practice and about seven years of teaching. He was one of the leaders of chiropractic education in the first of the twentieth century. His philosophical insights around everything from the normal complete cycle to retracing are invaluable to the modern chiropractor. To read my preface to the 2013 edition, please click here: Chiropractic Thoughts Preface

Volume 6: Los Origenes de la Quiropractica by Joaquin Valdivia Tor

 It is a great honor to help bring this translation of D.D. Palmer’s 1914 book into the world. Please share it with students and chiropractors. 

Volume 7: Ratledge Philosophy 1 by Paul Smallie

What if I told you there were some excellent short writings about the philosophy of one of D.D. Palmer’s final students? And, what if you also knew that the student owned and operated his own school for fifty years, pioneered objective straight chiropractic, kept spiritual terminology out of his teachings, made very clear distinctions between chiropractic and medicine, and wrote down most of his thoughts after 70 years as a chiropractor? What if I also told you that you may have never heard of him and probably have not read anything about him? Would you be curious?

Ratledge taught us that symptoms are manifestations of bodily adaptations to internal or external stimulations (mechanical, chemical, or thermal) and not the result of magical disease entities. Ratledge wrote down much of these ideas after selling his school in 1955 to Carl Cleveland, dealing with science boards for thirty years, legal battles, and then in the 1960s, the AMA’s newest offenses.

For 70 years, Ratledge emphasized the law-like approach to health that chiropractic utilizes. His MCT (mechanical, chemical, thermal) principles are consistent with D.D. Palmer’s teachings. Ratledge considers them to be the three primary attributes of matter. He writes, “The human body and the environment each have these qualities and are, therefore, similarly responsive to their influence, singularly and/or in combination.” His work is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the philosophy of chiropractic and the chiropractic paradigm.

Volume 8: Segmental Neuropathy: Online Edition

 Only 2000 copies of this book were printed in 1965. Instead of dissecting the text for you in a wordy and eloquent blog post (I’ll save the lecture for another format), I spent my time laying it out as a hyper-linked pdf and as a webpage. I know you will enjoy it. The book was coauthored by several leading chiropractors of its day. Himes (PSC ’31), Peterson (PSC ’47), and Watkins (Lincoln ’42), were the guiding lights. (The profession owes gratitude to Steve Walton, DC, FICC, for inspiring this release, doing all of the initial layout, writing a preface, and adding EIGHT appendices!).

Volume 9: D.D. Palmer’s Traveling Library: The Essential Inspirations

 When I completed the layout of the new edition of Chiropractic Foundations, I realized it was now way too long and it truly was two distinct books. If you are curious about the roots of D.D. Palmer’s philosophy, this is the book for you to study. 

Volume 10: Towards an Integral Philosophy: A History of Universal & Innate Intelligences by Simon Senzon

 This book is a real joy to complete. I was able to expand on the Integral chapters and also add dozens of paintings and photos to the history of philosophy sections. I am currently writing three new chapters so that the book is relevant to many of the philosophical discussions and confusions in the profession today. Stay tuned and get on the email list for announcements. 

In The Matter of The Preservation of Chiropractic

 

The chiropractic profession is at a crossroads once again. This is not the first time. Over sixty years ago, the leaders of the profession stood strong and issued an ultimatum to all professional associations and groups. You can read the text of their address called IN THE MATTER OF THE PRESERVATION OF CHIROPRACTIC as part of the larger history of education in chiropractic. This dialogue is part of an ongoing series with Drs. Senzon, Kent, and Gentempo. The future is bright for chiropractic. The choices we make and courage and perspective with which we move forward will determine what that future looks like.

Chiropractic Lineage

When most people think about chiropractic lineages, chiropractic families come to mind. Chiropractic history is characterized by families like the Palmers,[1] the five generations of Clevelands and Austins,[2, 3] the Montaño-Luna family,[4] as well as other famous families like the Parkers, the Gelardis, the Clums, and the Logans. The list goes on and on.

The Palmer Philosophy Lineage

The lineage I am most excited about lately is what I am referring to as The D.D. Palmer Philosophy Lineage. It is a way to explore the philosophy of chiropractic more completely.

As one of my philosophy professors once asked, how can you develop a philosophy if you don’t know what came before you? By exploring the developments in the philosophy from each of these individuals (and more), we may evolve the philosophy further than it has gone before.

D.D. Palmer’s Sojourn in Oklahoma

After inventing chiropractic and opening his school in the late 1890s, D.D. Palmer traveled extensively between 1902 and his death in 1913. He opened schools all over the United States from Davenport to Los Angeles, Oklahoma City to Portland, Oregon. He encouraged his students to “practice and teach,” the new science, art, and philosophy of chiropractic. And they did.

By exploring the writings of his actual students, we may begin to explore the impact he had on the philosophy of chiropractic in some interesting ways. We may even better understand Palmer himself, as seen through the eyes of his disciples.

Three of his students I am currently fascinated by are Tullius de Florence Ratledge, C. Sterling Cooley, and A.T. Godzway. Each of these students met Palmer during his time in Oklahoma and studied with him in 1907.

This was just after Palmer spent 23 days in jail for practicing medicine without a license. He moved to Medford, Oklahoma, with his new wife (his fifth) and went into the grocery business for a short time. He also maintained a small clinic and school out of his home.

D.D.’s brother T.J. Palmer (publisher of the Medford Patriot), loaned D.D. $300 so that he could move to Oklahoma City and open a school. He opened the Palmer-Gregory School of Chiropractic in 1907, with Alva Gregory (a Carver-Denny grad). D.D. remained as part of that school for nine weeks due to Gregory’s teaching of medical concepts. (I wonder what D.D. would have thought when Gregory’s wife changed the name of the school in 1939 to the Palmer Gregory Chiropractic College and School of Physiotherapy?)[5]

In the spring of 1908, D.D. formed his own Palmer Fountain Head School also in Oklahoma City. By November of 1908, D.D. and his wife moved to Portland, Oregon and opened the D.D. Palmer College of Chiropractic. It was in Portland that D.D. penned his magnum opus, The Chiropractor’s Adjustor, where he sought to “adjust” the misconceptions of other chiropractors as to what chiropractic science, art, and philosophy really were.[5, 6]

T.F. Ratledge

Ratledge was an amazing individual. He received his chiropractic degree from Willard Carver. Carver opened the Carver-Denny School of Chiropractic in 1906 in Oklahoma City.[7]

Ratledge also attended D.D.’s lectures in 1907. He had Palmer and his wife, Mary, over for dinner often. They discussed all things chiropractic far into the night. D.D.’s final teaching appointment was at Ratledge’s school in Los Angeles from 1912-1913.[8]

I recently discussed aspects of Ratledge’s legacy with Drs. Kent and Gentempo.[9] Here is the conversation turned into a short video:

C.S. Cooley

Cooley was another fascinating individual. He and his father both studied chiropractic under D.D.’s tutelage in 1907. Cooley’s father was a non-practicing medical doctor. Both were so amazed by Cooley’s recovery and healing at the hands of D.D. that they became chiropractors. In 1943, Cooley wrote,

“The interest of my Father and myself was due, in part to the promptness with which the strange exponent of Innate Healing Intelligence freed me from an affliction which had defied the best of orthodox methods. Daniel David Palmer rescued me from invalidism and helped me to health. The chances are that, except for the ministrations of his gifted hands, guided by a mind which seemed never to err or falter in expressing Chiropractic principle, my voyage on “Life’s tempestuous sea” would have ended years ago.”[5]

Cooley was instrumental in leading the early NCA (the 1930s merger between the UCA and the ACA), which became the current ACA in 1963. So it is important for us to understand his philosophy of chiropractic, especially since he was a lifelong disciple of D.D., whom he referred to as “The Old Master.” I have posted several of Cooley’s articles on D.D. Palmer as well as a few other pieces he wrote.[10-14] My hope is that such a first-hand account may help us to better understand D.D. and his impact on the full spectrum of philosophy in chiropractic. (Cooley also wrote six essays on D.D.’s life in James Drain’s 1949 book Man Tomorrow.)

Only by learning all that we can about D.D. Palmer and the writings of his students can we begin to make sense of the challenges facing the profession today. They planted the seeds we now sow.

A.T. Godzway

This Oklahoma lineage of D.D.’s students would not be complete without a glimpse at A.T. Godzway, formerly EL Cooley, classmate and father of CS Cooley. According to Godzway, he bore the brunt of D.D.’s famous temperament. D.D. referred to A.T. as the “old medical fool.” This helps us to better understand D.D. as a man, with faults and challenges, like any of us. It also helps us to see how Palmer dealt with the medical paradigm. Most importantly, it gives us yet another glimpse into the first hand teaching from D.D. to one of his students.[15]

The Lineage

By exploring the writings of each of D.D.’s students and subsequently, their students, we may begin to piece together the puzzle that is the philosophy of chiropractic. While the most familiar and widely taught components of the philosophy came directly from the Palmer school, the seeds that D.D. Palmer planted were many. Which of those early students grew those seeds into important philosophical approaches to Innate, healing, subluxation, and life itself? Which ones took D.D.’s philosophy in a completely different direction, a direction he may not have approved of?

The only way to truly find out the answers to these questions is to go back and reconstruct the lineage. Only then may we move forward. Knowing what came before and knowing the pioneers of each chiropractic idea helps us to move forward into the future.

1. Palmer, D. Three generations: A history of chiropractic. 1967, Davenport, IA: Palmer College of Chiropractic. [Palmer family]

2. 5th Generation Chiropractor Graduates Palmer West. 2011.

3. Five Generations of Chiropractic. 1995. Dynamic Chiropractic.

4. Benet-Canut, E. Chiropractic in Mexico. Chiropr Hist, 2004. 24(1): p. 17-28. [Keating’s Mexico-Chiropractic-Chronology]

5. Keating, J. Chronology of Alva Gregory, M.D., D.C. 1998.

6. Palmer, D.D. The science, art, and philosophy of chiropractic. 1910, Portland, OR: Portland Printing House.

7. Carver, W. History of Chiropractic, ed. J. Keating 1936/2002: National Institute of Chiropractic Research.

8. Keating, J., R. Brown, and P. Smallie. T.F. Ratledge, the Missionary of Straight Chiropractic in California. Chiropr Hist, 1991. 11(2): p. 27-38.*

9. Kent, C. and P. Gentempo. On Purpose: Chiropractic History with Dr. Simon Senzon (quarterly segment). 2012.

10. Cooley, C. The guiding principle for success is ”To Thine Own Self Be True.” National Chiropractic Journal, 1940. 9(11): p. 11-2.**

11.  Cooley, C. One important “extra” every chiropractor should employ in his practiceNational Chiropractic Journal, 1941. 10(2): p. 11-2,44-5.**

12. Cooley, C. Daniel David Palmer: a tribute to the founder of chiropractic. The Chiropractic Journal (NCA), 1936. 5(4): p. 5-10,36.**

13.  Cooley, C. Daniel David Palmer was the first true “basic scientist.” The Chiropractic Journal (NCA), 1938. 7(3): p. 9-13.**

14. Cooley, C. Daniel David Palmer: an immortal among the great names in history. The Chiropractic Journal (NCA), 1937. 6(3): p. 7-8,50-1.**

15.  Godzway, A. “That old medical fool!” said the Old Master with great disdain! The Chiropractic Journal (NCA), 1934. 3(4): p. 5,30.**

* Republished with permission of the Association for the History of Chiropractic.

** Republished with permission of the ACA.

***Ratledge school list was quoted from: Wiese, G., and Callender, A. How Many Chiropractic Schools? An Update. 2007. Chiro Hist.*

© 2020 The Institute Chiropractic - Senzon Learning, Inc.