No, really. Here’s what they say in 2018 about the placebo effect (you start to get better when you think you are getting better):
“OUR minds aren’t passive observers simply observing reality as it is; our minds actually change reality. The reality we experience tomorrow is partly the product of the mindsets we hold today.” That’s what Alia Crum told global movers and shakers at this year’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. It may sound like New Age nonsense, but Crum, who heads the Mind & Body lab at Stanford University in California, can back up her claims with hard evidence showing the mysterious influence the mind has over our health and well-being.David Robson, “How a positive mind really can create a healthier body” at New Scientist
“Mysterious influence”? Isn’t the mind just an evolved illusion, as Darwinian philosopher Daniel Dennett insists?
New Scientist types didn’t always think about the placebo effect this way: In 2005, New Scientist listed the placebo effect as Number 1 among 13 things that do not make sense, things that need to be explained away
They started turning around in 2015: They wanted to try to “harness” what didn’t make sense.
Well, good. But given the trends we see among non-religious people today, someone, please stop them before they get to ghosts and magic and stuff.
The fact that the mind is real but not a material entity does not lend credibility to just anything that people who have known that all along have, at times, believed. 😉
See also: Parkinson’s patients learn to use placebos?
Human mind: Knowingly taking fake pills actually eases pain
The brain is not a “meat computer” Dramatic recoveries from brain injury highlight the difference
Boy loses large hunk of brain. And is “doing just fine.” When pundits talk glibly of creating artificial minds or claim that consciousness is an illusion, it might help to remember that few predicted cases like this could exist or thought that high tech diagnostics would lead to their discovery.