Dear Friend and fellow Celt,
A man is in great need of a surgical procedure.
He is prone on the operating surface.
The surgeon walks in, followed by other surgical team members. They are all wearing odd-looking outfits.
Some surgical tools are available to the surgeon.
The surgical team uses a mix of natural elements and chemicals.
There are many risks of complications for the patient.
The surgeon uses a knife to make an incision to start the surgical procedure.
What is it that I am describing?
A simplistic outline of the start of a modern surgical procedure?
A simplistic outline of an ancient Celtic surgical procedure?
If Your Answer is BOTH, then you are correct!!
You see, the ancient Celts were not a backward ancient society. Based on the evidence we do have, they were quite advanced, considering the time period in which they existed.
There is a good reason why I am discussing this topic now.
In one week, on June 13, 2023, I will be undergoing major spine surgery.
Among other things, my surgery got me thinking about the modern surgery I am undergoing vs an ancient Celtic surgery.
Let's take a look...
The field of modern surgery has witnessed remarkable advancements over the years. With the advent of anesthesia, sterilization techniques, and sophisticated surgical instruments, surgeons today can perform complex procedures with precision and efficiency.
The integration of minimally invasive techniques, robotic surgery, and advanced imaging technologies has revolutionized patient outcomes, leading to shorter hospital stays and faster recoveries. Hopefully, this is what I will experience.
Long before the advent of modern surgical techniques, the ancient Celts possessed a deep understanding of the human body and its ailments. Celtic surgical practices were rooted in their spiritual beliefs and relied on the knowledge of herbs, rituals, and the skill of the surgeon. In the absence of modern tools, Celtic surgeons demonstrated remarkable ingenuity and resourcefulness in their approach to healing.
One striking similarity between modern surgery and Celtic surgical traditions lies in the use of herbal medicine. Celtic surgeons utilized a wide array of medicinal plants and herbs to alleviate pain, promote healing, and prevent infection.
In modern surgery, while pharmaceuticals have largely replaced herbal remedies, there is a renewed interest in the use of natural substances, such as honey-based dressings, to promote wound healing and prevent surgical site infections.
Modern surgical techniques, such as laparoscopy and robotic-assisted surgery, have transformed the field by minimizing invasiveness and reducing postoperative complications. These advancements allow surgeons to perform intricate procedures through smaller incisions, resulting in less pain, scarring and faster recovery times for patients.
In contrast, Celtic surgical practices involved more rudimentary techniques, such as wound suturing and bone setting, which relied heavily on the skill and experience of the surgeon.
While modern surgery is primarily focused on scientific principles and evidence-based practices, Celtic surgical traditions incorporated spiritual beliefs and rituals into their approach to healing.
Celtic surgeons often performed surgeries in sacred spaces and invoked the assistance of deities or spirits for successful outcomes. This spiritual element sets Celtic surgical practices apart from the strictly clinical approach of modern surgery.
I believe that we should be incorporating spiritual practices into surgery and our daily lives, for that matter. In my humble opinion, treating the "whole" person will lead to better outcomes.
But don't just take it from me.
Dr. Christina M. Puchalski wrote a paper titled "The role of spirituality in health care," which expounds upon this topic in great detail.(1)
Also, an article in the Harvard Gazette, by Nicole Rura, "Spirituality linked with better health outcomes, patient care,"(2) indicates that Harvard's rigorous study shows that not only does spirituality lead to better outcomes, but that it should be a part of whole-person centered care going into the future.
One of the key differences between modern surgery and Celtic surgical traditions is the significant scientific advancements that have shaped the field of surgery.
From the discovery of anesthesia and antiseptics to the development of surgical specialties and advanced imaging techniques, modern surgery has become a highly specialized and evidence-based discipline. These advancements have contributed to safer surgeries, improved patient outcomes, and a deeper understanding of surgical procedures.
While I appreciate the contributions of ancient Celtic surgical practices, it is clear that the scientific advancements of modern surgery have greatly enhanced patient outcomes and safety.
By combining the knowledge gained from the past with the innovative techniques of the present, we can strive for a more comprehensive and compassionate approach to surgical care.
Put Up, or Shut Up
It's time to put some Celtic practices to a tough test.
Given my mental health issues, especially my anxiety, the process of this surgery and the anticipated recovery have really been stretching me to the limit!
If there was ever a time for a big test of the Celtic practices I have been sharing, it's now.
In the lead-up to my surgery, I have increased the repetitions of my Celtic practices, and I really believe it has been a very positive addition to my mental health meds.
I am honestly sure if they had an impact on my nerve compression pain. If they have, I would hate to know what the pain would be like without the Celtic practices.
On the other side of my surgery, while in the hospital or recovering from home, I will continue the ramped-up practices. Even after the surgery, the lack of mobility and other restriction are definitely anxiety triggers.
Also, I am very curious to see if Celtic practices have any impact on the surgery pain. As I understand it, the recovery from my surgery will be long and painful. So if making it a Celtic recovery helps, all the better.
I invite you to check my YouTube channel regularly. And please subscribe if you have not already done so.
I intend to upload a YouTube Short regularly from now through my recovery. I will let you know which Celtic practices I employed and any results.
With that, I will sign off.
See you on the other side!
On Monday, May 1, 2023, I released my free guide, "10 Celtic Practices to Level Up Your Mind and Relieve Anxiety and Depression."
All subscribers were sent their very own copy of my Celtic goodness. If you did not receive it, please let me know, and I will make sure that you do. You can contact me at email@example.com.
Also, if you know someone else who might be interested, please direct them to http://join-free-guide.mikeguarneri.com . Here they can sign up and receive their very own copy of the guide.
I am here to serve.
With a skeptical mind and an analytical eye,
"May the Road Rise to Meet You!"
Who is Mike?
Mike is a recovering accountant making his way through the world of Druid, Celtic, and Pagan traditions.
His goal is to uncover truly valuable Celtic, Druid, and Pagan practices that upgrade your mind (and life)—and here's the key—without any of the b.s. you find everywhere else!
(1) Puchalski CM. The role of spirituality in health care. Proc (Bayl Univ Med Cent). 2001 Oct;14(4):352-7. doi: 10.1080/08998280.2001.11927788. PMID: 16369646; PMCID: PMC1305900.
(2) Communications, Nicole Rura Harvard Chan School. “Spirituality Linked with Better Health Outcomes, Patient Care.” Harvard Gazette (blog), July 12, 2022. https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2022/07/spirituality-linked-with-better-health-outcomes-patient-care/.
P.S. - My awesome interview with Eimear Burke, Chief of the Order of Bard, Ovates, and Druids, is available on YouTube and your favorite podcast platforms. Check it out, you won't regret it!