Has energy healing existed in other cultures?

Energy healing is deeply buried in antiquity. Over 5,000 years ago, Indian mystics spoke of the universal source of all life, which they called it prana, and cultivated it through yoga and other disciplines.

3,000 years ago the Chinese were referring to this energy as Qi or Ch'i, and seeking to regulate and balance its flow in the body through martial arts, massage and acupuncture.

The Nobel prize-winning scientist Albert Szent-Györgi stated, 'In every culture and in every medical tradition before ours, healing was accomplished by moving energy.'

There are references made to the human energy field (HEF) or the aura in 97 different cultures, according to John White in his book Future Science.

In our own Christian-influenced culture, Jesus is quoted as referring to a mysterious life energy, using the Greek word pneuma - which can be variously translated as breath, spirit or wind:  'The wind blows where it wants to. You hear its sound, but you don't know where it comes from or where it is going. That's the way it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.'  John 3:8

According to the New Testament record, Jesus displayed considerable prowess in what might today be called energy healing, or hands-on healing.  And he seemed to think it was nothing special - anyone could do it.

So the short answer is that energy healing, or cultivating the fundamental energy of the life force, has been very widely studied and practised in other cultures. 

But because we can't look at this kind of energy under a microscope, or find the energy channels running like electrical wiring in our physical body, we have tended to find other explanations for health, sickness and disease.