The Philosophy of Chiropractic

On this page we discuss the philosophy of chiropractic care. This information should help you to better understanding our unique approach to heath and how you may benefit.

From ancient Greek influences to an origin story starting in 1895, from your nervous system to our approach to chiropractic care, this page provides a comprehensive overview to better help you understand the philosophy of chiropractic care.

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The origins of chiropractic

D.D. Palmer

The history of chiropractic started in 1895 when Daniel David Palmer performed the first chiropractic adjustment on a partially deaf patient, Harvey Lillard. Following this adjustment Lillard was able to hear again.

D.D., as he was known, conducted years of independent research into the study of human health and disease.

D.D. had a background in natural healing philosophies and his early chiropractic work was rooted in vitalism, naturalism and metaphysics.

He soon realised that there was a strong correlation between the health of an individual and the alignment of their spine. D.D. found that when the spine was misaligned, what is known as subluxated, the body would be in a state of dis-ease. This is to say that there would be abnormal function in the body that would give rise to the varied conditions people suffered from.

B.J. Palmer

At the time very little was understood about the nervous system, however D.D. deducted that there must have been some interference to the 'electrical' system as a result of the subluxated spine.

His son, B.J. Palmer (B.J.), also known as the developer of chiropractic, took over from where his father left off and headed up the Palmer School of Chiropractic. He further developed the science, philosophy and art of chiropractic care.

Chiropractic, through the foresight of B.J. was the first health profession to use x-rays for the purpose of diagnosis.

Today, chiropractors are highly educated practitioners who facilitate the healing of patients without the use of drugs or surgery.

There are many conditions that chiropractors help people deal with. Over the years research has shown that chiropractic care is less invasive and more beneficial than medical care for some of these conditions.


The philosophy of chiropractic

Chiropractic is based on the teachings of Hippocrates and Galen, and the premise that the body is a self-healing and self-regulating organism.

The nervous system, comprising the brain, spinal cord and nerves is the system in our bodies that regulates and controls the function of every organ and tissue. It is through this nervous system that the self-healing and self-regulation is controlled.

Innate intelligence

Chiropractic also draws on the fact that our bodies have an innate intelligence. That is, the body has an inbuilt intelligence that is continuously working to keep us functioning at our best and as healthy as possible.

Now one of the challenges with Innate Intelligence is that it is not something that can be measured and has given rise to more than one debate.

The question is “If Innate Intelligence exists, where in the body can it be found?”

The author believes that EVERY cell in our body has its own innate intelligence and it is through the nervous system that this innate intelligence is guided.


Interestingly, the father of medicine, Hippocrates, was aware of this innate intelligence and referred to it as the "Natural Healing Force”.

“The natural healing force within each of us is the greatest force in getting well.”
― Hippocrates

“Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease.”
― Hippocrates

Interference to the nervous system

As mentioned above, the nervous system controls the function of each and every tissue and organ in our body.

Chiropractic philosophy assumes that if there is a reduction, excess or some other alteration to the normal communications between the brain through the nervous system to these organs and tissues then there will potentially be a situation where those tissues or organs may not function properly.

This interference to the communications between the brain and the organs and tissues generally occurs somewhere along the length of the spine.

Chiropractic has used the term subluxation to describe and explain this interference.

A subluxation may be thought of as a misalignment of the spine that causes interference to the nervous systems ability to transmit nerve impulses from the brain to the tissues and organs. The effect of these subluxations on the nervous system results in abnormal function within the body to the supplied tissues and organs.

Hippocrates also felt that the spine played an integral part in ones well-being.

Image: Hippocrates quote


The chiropractic approach to health and healing, based on its philosophy, is one that aims to remove any interference to the body’s healing ability, by reducing/removing these subluxations and thus allowing the body to heal itself.

The chiropractic adjustment is the means by which chiropractors help the body to heal.

B.J. Palmer (Developer of Chiropractic):

    “Medicine is the study of disease and what causes man to die. Chiropractic is the study of health and what causes man to live.”


Our approach to chiropractic care and your health

Chiropractor-Ian-Deitch-BellfieldAt Chirolife we draw on the philosophy of chiropractic that each person is their own healer. In other words healing occurs from within. You may give credit to your innate intelligence and your body’s ability to heal itself. We also add to this the wisdom gained over the ages based on the latest research.

In short we believe that “yes, we can help you”, no matter what your health challenge is.

Now in reality no practitioner or health profession has all the answers, so in some cases the best help we will be able to provide will be recommending and referring you to consult with another practitioner from a different profession.

One thing we are certain about, do nothing about a health concern may potentially lead to a greater problem.

You have three choices:

  1. Do nothing
  2. Call to schedule an appointment to see if we can help you, or
  3. Call and request to have a phone discussion with me, Dr Ian, to discuss your health challenge/s.


Consult with Chirolife today

If I believe I can help you I will schedule a time to do a thorough consultation and examination to confirm that I can help you. If not, I will recommend the appropriate person for you to consult with.

Please call Chirolife on 03 9458 3255





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