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reader comments: consegrity (consilience mirrors)

8 October 2012

Debbie Harrison was my aunt; she was very involved in our family life and my childhood up until she became intertwined with Mary [Lynch]. After that, ties were slowly severed due to the fact not all of the family bought into what they were saying and therefore Mary would not have doubters or naysayers in Debbie’s arena.

Through the course of meeting Mary and creating Consegrity she finally found what she felt was lacking all her life and that would eventually cost her her own. I think she had a weakness for it just the same as people who adhere to any fanatical cults or beliefs. She was susceptible to manipulation. Yes, Debbie holds a responsibility in this cult by being a part of its nonsense and promoting it, but I do hold the belief that Debbie was a victim. I think Mary was very calculating and at the end of Deborah’s life made financial and business related moves to protect herself… she knew Debbie was wasting away and protected herself beforehand. That in it of itself screams of culpability to me. As much as I would like to vilify Mary in this feedback I offer, I would rather not focus on her and let you know what I knew of my Aunt.

My reasoning for this is purely to protect the woman that I knew as a child. It was very difficult reading your article, and seeing her name opens up a rather tender wound. She may have gone down a dangerous path, but that wasn’t all Debbie did in her lifetime. I would have others know a little behind her name as well. Debbie was a sweet and giving person. When my family needed a roof, she supplied it. Once when my mother couldn’t attend a mother/daughter function with me Debbie graciously stepped in and made the hole from missing my mother a little less gaping for a moment (my mother was living in California at the time, while I resided with my father).

She had a presence and quiet dignity to her. Debbie was an incredible homemaker and when she decided to go after her education in her later years she did so with great tenacity and resolve. Nothing was as infectious as her smile and her laugh. When I was about 11-12 years old, she had planned a family trip to our Grandma's home in California. As she was getting ready to depart, she saw my brother and I forlornly watching her family prepare for an adventure…. She decided to cram us into her minivan and take us with her. Debbie did these acts of kindness effortlessly.

I believe she really wanted to make a positive impact on the world. She offered anyone around her a sense of acceptance and security. She was a beautiful, glowing woman before she lost her way. When I think of her I try to push away the nonsense that clouded the end of her life and choose to remember what a wonderful person she was. I hope that other people who have lost loved ones to cultish behavior can reconcile their emotions behind “who the person they loved once was” and “who they eventually became”.


14 May 2011

I read your article about Mary A Lynch and her energy theories. I was her patient for 3 years. Some of her staff was most excellent in their therapy skills. However, when I had serious pain, she informed me that it was family problems. In a way, she was right...I had internal injury to my female anatomy and a broken L5 [one of the vertebra in the back]...and more.

reply: When you say "in a way, she was right" I think you mean that her "diagnosis" of "family problems" was so vague that it could have meant any one of a thousand different things. Speaking vaguely is common among hucksters and the self-deceived, and is reinforced whenever others provide a specific meaning to vague utterances. The huckster and the self-deceived healer or psychic depend on our natural inclination to find meaning and personal significance in vague, ambigous, and obscure utterances. For more on this practice see my entries on subjective validation and cold reading.

I don't think that she means bad to anybody. In fact, I heard that she was premium in the surgery field before she switched over. I simply believe that she had a bit too much faith in herself. Also, she is very intelligent. I just think that she has made some serious mistakes.

reply: The road to hell is paved with good intentions, as my high school algebra teacher used to tell me when I offered some lame excuse for my bad behavior in class. Fortunately, I was not intelligent enough to cause much damage to myself or others by my behavior. Intelligence can be dangerous. You say that Mary Lynch had too much faith in herself. Cockiness about being right in an intelligent person who has been led into folly by "insight," "faith," or some strong emotion can make a person impenetrable to contrary evidence and argument. This trait goes both ways. I'm sure many of Lynch's patients were very intelligent and thought they couldn't be wrong about her and her ideas. It can happen to the best of us: check out this story by an intelligent woman who was duped by Sylvia Browne. Psychics and faith/energy healers follow the same pattern.

See also my entry on the Nobel disease, where I list a number of Nobel Laureates and medical doctors who have gone down a similar path to Mary Lynch. One of my favorite examples of smart people duping themselves into believing dumb things is the case of Dr. Karl Ludwig Freiherr von Reichenbach (1788-1869) who thought he had discovered a new basic force in nature.

Unfortunately, we often think of people who have weird ideas as being stupid or morons. Some may be, but most are not. Many get hooked for emotional reasons and, if they are clever, they can rationalize any contrary evidence presented to them and figure out a way, often a very complicated way, to make their ideas appear indubitably true. Astrologers are good at this and so are doomsdayers.

Perhaps a combination of what she does along with some real medical treatment would work fine.

reply: Your idea of combining or integrating scientific medicine with unscientific healing practices is a popular one and shows just how how strong is the hold of the power of hope that magic can be done by special people who are not understood by the scientific community. There is much science does not know, but the methods of science have proven themselve far superior to magic and superstition, which is what the Mary Lynchs of the world offer.

The source of my real pain was finally found 10 years after my accident, or 5 years after my last appointment with her office, and I had 2 pounds of scar tissue removed, a complete hysterectomy (I was ripped apart internally) and infection from internal bleeding...then they closed my cervix to try and build my pelvic floor stronger. I'm now pieced together, inside. We DID find perhaps why I could not heal for so long. 1. I was not repaired and 2. sometimes when you have major impact, it can cause pituitary dysfunction. So, here we go again, last year the bones in my legs died and we found that my pituitary gland was not working properly. No WONDER I could not heal. The L5 could not be repaired when it was finally discovered. It was too late.

I wish her the best luck.

Mary S.

reply: You are very charitable. Perhaps had Dr. Lynch looked for a physical problem in your body, she might have been able to have spared you many years of pain and suffering.

Mary replies:

I was not a believer. I just had never been in physical therapy and had no idea...duh... She did have us doing multiple movements routinely in some form of p.t. and meditation is a common practice for pain management. So, a smidgen was real enough to make one think she was right-on about things. I had nothing to compare it to other than she was cutting edge and nobody else much did some of her recommendations. She could be very threatening. I was so hurt and sick, I had no choice other than to depend on my doctor. Now that I am functional to some degree, I can see what she did to me. That is why I wish her the best of luck. That's like shaking hands and walking away.

consegrity (consilience mirrors)

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