Burzynski Clinic: Chakras, The Golden Ratio and Cancer

I just watched the short video that Eric Merola shot at the last Burzyński Clinic Christmas party. Not a particularly interesting video on the whole. More of a promotional piece showing Transformers actor Josh Duhmel and his thoughts on Burzyński.

While Josh was talking at the front of the room, addressing what appears to be about 200 people, I noticed something a little unusual. Well, I say unusual, I mean really bizarre.


On the white board, to the right of shot, appears to be a ‘golden ratio’ drawing and then underneath a list with lines from the words going to something out of shot. The list, from top to bottom is:

Golden Ratio
—7—crown shakra.
—6—3rd eye forehead.
—4—heart (sternum)
—3—solar plexus
—2—Above pubis

An odd list, but come back to that. My interest was most certainly spiked! But I couldn’t get a good close up of the whole board. There’s a shot of Josh being interviewed with the whole board in the background, but it’s just too far away. DAMN!

Then I remembered, the photos! I refer to the photos taken at the party, which were published on a Huston forum site called Forum Polonia Houston.

My masterpiece!

Finally! I found enough snippets to knock it all together into one picture.


Are you proud of me? Well, you bloody well should be! This is the best I could do by using the clearest, best defined sections from the photos and syncing it together. Now you’ve seen my master piece, Pareidolia should help you with this more distant, but more complete image.

What are we looking at here then?

To the top left appears to be a representation of the compound methane (CH•4). Then to the right of the board is a not uncommon visual representation of the golden ratio, followed underneath with a sticklike person and words to the side, that I listed above.

Sorry, what?!?

This raises ALOT more questions than my original curiosity thought it would lead me to. I’m genuinely perplexed.

This is “New age” thinking. The idea that the golden ratio relates directly to the human body has been thoroughly disproven. Brian Dunning did a good job with this over on Skeptoid and it’s from him I quote;

“Volumes of nonsense have been written claiming that all sorts of arbitrary body measurements betray the golden ratio. The width of the shoulders compared to the height of the head; the height of the navel relative to the height of the whole body; the length of the forearm compared to the distance from the head to the fingertips; and so on, and so on, and so on. Obviously these measurements are different on everyone; there is probably not a single living human for whom these many claims are true.”

But we’ll choose to ignore the lack of relationship between the golden ratio and human body for a minute and have a look at that list and the health implications.

The list relates to the a western interpretation of the 7 chakra points. This is an interpretation of a Hindu belief. These are supposed points on the body where, “energy channels” are focused. I say “a” western interpretation, because as far as I could see, there are hundreds of different points, used by different people. Believers say:

“Blocked energy in our 7 Chakras can often lead to illness so it’s important to understand what each Chakra represents and what we can do to keep this energy flowing freely.

Omm Omm Omm

If you can face it, this 1990’s design website it as good (bad) as any other website and lists plenty of ways to “think yourself better”.

Utter nonsense, of course, with every link in the chain is broken. The golden ratio doesn’t relate to the human body, the human body doesn’t relate to chakras and the chakras don’t relate to actual physical health.

But there it is, on the white board of a cancer clinic, in Texas.

So, here’s the question. Why? What the hell is this doing there? This is supposed to be a reputable medical facility with high and exacting medical standards. Right?

Oh wait! It’s the Burzyński Clinic. Where the rules of science and understanding are replaced with magical and wishful thinking. I mean, why not have that on the wall? Who knows what this was part of and I think is raises some legitimate questions about the practices they conduct.

Were they and are they teaching people about the chakras and how this can help them with their cancer?

I know you have to be medically misguided to be a doctor there, but is there no limit‽

As for the methane, you tell me! I’ve read up at much as I can and unless I’ve missed something, I have no idea that this could be a reference to. Feel free to speculate in the comments section, pretty sure I will be.

I do hope that cancer patients at the clinic aren’t being taught about this. They really do have enough to deal with.

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16 Responses

  1. The stuff on the board is from when Dr. Carlos Orozco visited and offered his lectures to staff and patients. He also came back to see the tree he had planted a year earlier in honor of his fiance who passed a year earlier from cancer.

    Anyone can be anyone in this forum. Anyone can be Wayne. Anyone can be Eric.

  2. Jo Brodie says:

    I must say I did wonder about the possibility of other people using the room – it definitely happens that the blackboard or whiteboard is covered with arcane incomprehensibilities whenever I use an academic meeting room after mathematicians or computer scientists have been anywhere near it :)

    Also I have never understood this ‘skeptic payroll’ concept either. Surely anyone moved to write something like that understands well the (in this case misapplied) urge to correct misinformation on the internet – it works both ways.

    I quite enjoy good-natured arguments on the web, no-one needs to pay me any money to do it at all.

    It’s just such an odd criticism. We do this primarily* for free – it’s interesting and fun, and in some cases genuinely useful to investigate claims that we think might be misleading.

    *some skeptics will have adverts on their blogs but I expect this covers bandwidth or hosting costs more than comfy yachts and getting the silver polished. I accept no advertising or financial support for anything I do that relates to skepticism, or any of my ‘hobby’ blogs.

  3. Do not want to ruin your obviously intense research, but the room where the Burzynski Christmas party was held, is used by various other tenants in the large building. Just thought I would let you know.

  4. Bob says:

    The new PR guy, Wayne Dolcefino, shot footage at the Xmas event. If he was the official videographer for the event, it was likely him. Though it could have been anyone at the PR event.

  5. Gary Meisner says:

    Re your quote from Brian Dunning, “The idea that the golden ratio relates directly to the human body has been thoroughly disproven.” Of course it doesn’t apply exactly to every out-of-shape body in the world, but Brian’s statement is incorrect, misses the point and reflects a biased agenda which you can hear in his tone if you listen to his related podcast. He makes many similar disparaging claims, such as “Give me any number, any ratio, or any shape, and I can just as easily come up with an equally long list of body features that’s equally accurate” but provides no evidence to back them up. I don’t promote any mystical power of the golden ratio but to categorically state that it doesn’t appear in nature or in attractive examples of the human form is the result of a closed mind, not informed, objective study. I recommend trying a golden ratio app like PhiMatrix and doing your own study on images like those shown at goldennumber. net/face/ and other pages on the site to come to your own objective conclusions. See also the pages at goldennumber. net on nautilus spirals and the Parthenon to see actual illustrations rather than biased opinions.

    • David says:

      “Of course it doesn’t apply exactly to every out-of-shape body in the world” – Yep, well you’ve completely made my point. Phi is a specific ratio, either something fits exactly or it doesn’t, you can’t have it both ways.

      Also, if you have a problem with Brian Dunning, I recommend you take it up with him. I didn’t refer to the section you quoted because it wasn’t relevant to the post.

      “I don’t promote any mystical power of the golden ratio” – Well I suggest you actually read the post then. You’ll see that the assertion is in relation to chakras and how this can be used to help cancer patients.

      Please advertise your app somewhere else.

  6. Mrs Grimble says:

    The methane molecule is often cited as an example of a Platonic solid found in nature; it’s tetrahedral (the drawing is copied from the Wikipedia article on methane). And Platonic solids tie in the the Golden Ratio as the GR can be found in many of the measurements and angles of these shapes.
    And Merola? He should really try being nice sometime; it’s good PR at the very least. And he might find he likes it!

    • David says:

      Ah! Thank you Mrs Grimble. I knew someone would be able to tie it all together for me. I was worried they were teaching some science!!

      I’m sure Eric is a lovely person with his friends and family, but he doesn’t give a good account of himself, either online, or by promoting the Burzyński clinic with such vitriol.

  7. lurkingabout says:

    Out of lurking, just to ask Merola: why the threatening vitriol? And who’s payroll are YOU on?

    By the way, comparing skeptics to Westboro protesters who are near borderline domestic terrorists, does nothing to afford you credibility.

    • David says:

      It does nothing for anyone’s credibility. Sadly, where evidence is lacking, personal attacks aren’t usually that far round the corner.

      If he feels his point is made by referring to me as a Westboro protester, then he loses the argument. If he had something factual to actually say about the pieces I’ve posted over the last few weeks, he’d be all over me like a rash. He isn’t.

      Wouldn’t it be nice if Stan had just published his data 30 years ago?

  8. Eric Merola says:

    I did not make that video. Change your blog post for accuracy. I have no idea who shot that video.

    This is what we mean—you people do ZERO research. You have no earthly idea what you rant on about. You are like the Westboro Church people, protesting dead soldiers. The FBI’s classification of a “hate group” is what you people are.

    Either that, or you too are on the skeptic payroll, paid to lie intentionally like the rest of them.

    Fix it.

    – Eric

    • David says:

      Thank you for your correction Eric. It has been altered and you’re right, I did make a mistake. You know what that feels like, right?

      As to your other points. You sir, are a nutbar. I feel ashamed to associate myself in the same species group as you.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      – David

    • H-Jo says:

      “The skeptic payroll”? Really, Eric? The skeptic payroll which means we all do this in our spare time making sod all money from it, as opposed to, let’s say, “The Burzynski payroll” where folk get paid to, let’s say, make shoddy promotional movies for someone that makes a very comfortable living out of vulnerable people with cancer?

      If there is a “skeptic payroll” I would love to know where it is. You’d probably be in line for some cash from them for proving how not to conduct a reasoned argument.

    • There is no “skeptic payroll”. If you believe otherwise, please explain why. I don’t know of anyone being paid to point out any of the many and varied scandals and controversies surrounding Burzynski.

      You also mention lies. That is a serious accusation which requires evidence. If such evidence exists, please provide it. As I’ve said countless times, if you or anyone else believes I (or anyone I’ve quoted or linked) has written anything which is untrue or misleading, please let me know and I will take steps to correct it.

  1. February 19, 2013

    […] Burzynski Clinic: Chakras, The Golden Ratio and Cancer David James, SKEPT!CAL blog, East England Skeptical Society, 17/02/13 […]

  2. February 19, 2013

    […] comment on my blog post “Chakras, the Golden Ratio and Cancer“. I’ll save you the click, here’s a […]

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