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  • Writer's pictureJohn K Maltby II, D.C.

Standing on the shoulders of Giants

Updated: Mar 25, 2022

"We are like dwarfs sitting on the shoulders of giants. We see more, and things that are more distant, than they did, not because our sight is superior or because we are taller than they, but because they raise us up, and by their great stature add to ours."

  • John of Salisbury (1159 A.D.)

September 18th is a special day for me. It is the birthday of the United States Air Force (USAF) as well as the birthday of Chiropractic. This year, 2017, Chiropractic is 122 years old, and the USAF is 70. I served in the USAF for a six year enlistment and received an honorable discharge. I am proud of my time and will always feel a connection to the uniform I wore, but I have never known a day without Chiropractic in my life. My father is a Chiropractor and has been taking care of people for 40 years. Like my father before me I too became a Chiropractor. I cannot think of a better profession to be a part of.

While I was still in the USAF there were two tests that one had to take in order to increase in rank. One was a test on your knowledge of you specific job, the other was on USAF procedures and history. The history was always the fascinating part for me. To know where it all came from and the thoughts that led up to where it is now is an amazing story and with that knowledge it is easier to make decisions about where you want to take your experience. By understanding where you came from, you will know better the way you should go. On the USAF’s website there is a phrase in the history section, “The Sky was Never the Limit.” It gives you the idea that as you read and study the history of this branch, know that it pertains to the direction it takes in the future.

I could write for days and days on subject after subject on how learning from the greats of the past one can learn what directions you should take in the future.

Standing on the shoulders of giants. This phrase is written in my office as a reminder that those who devoted their lives to this profession before me have relevance today. On September 18, 1895 D.D. Palmer made that fateful adjustment that was the pebble thrown in the health care pond whose waves are now being felt all over the world. His son, B.J., after him devoted his entire life to this profession and conducted more research than anyone really knows.

B.J. was a giant in the Chiropractic profession. He is one of the few that I read at least 4 times a week. I have a phrase that I use on my website and few other places to help describe process in my approach to the health of those who come to see me.

Combining the best science and technology with experience and tradition.

The science and technology is ever evolving and changing. I am constantly amazed at the research that comes out at such an alarming rate demonstrating the vast reaches of the specific Chiropractic Adjustment. In this data driven society it is imperative that we are able to demonstrate what we are talking about and feeling with hard data. At White Pine Chiropractic we can do that, we have the ability to show you hard data that helps explain what is going on. This is so important because everyone deserves to see the facts, not opinions, about their current state of health.

All this new technology and science is fascinating, but what is really fascinating to me is this: it all points to what the past giants of my profession were saying and writing about. B.J. was a prolific writer and researcher. He wrote several books on the power of the specific Chiropractic Adjustment, and tirelessly shared it with the world. He did not have the ability to get the data we can get now, nor did he have the technology to do the research that is being done now. Yet, because of his complete focus and determination he wrote about the things we are seeing in the research today.

Standing on the shoulders of giants is what you must do to move forward in any aspect of your life. I am constantly digging deeper into new research as it comes out and the writing of the giants in my profession who came before me.

D.D. Palmer

B.J. Palmer

R.W. Stephenson

B. Pettibon

D.D. Harrison

D.E. Harrison

R. Sweat

J. Strauss

F. Barge

H. Schwartz

W.H. Quigley

J. Maltby (Sr.)

These are a few of the giants whose shoulders I attempt to stand on. When I say that I am combining the best science and technology with experience and tradition, I am referring to the experience I gain everyday helping people as well as learning from the experience of those before me. Those who have been in the trenches for 30, 40, even 50 years. These individuals who built this great profession to where it is today did it selflessly for the hope of a brighter future in health care, one that did not consist of the prescription drug epidemic that is happening today.

Just as the Air Force begins its story with “the sky was never the limit” so did B.J. Palmer when he stated:

“We have laboriously and scientifically sought to specifically locate that specific subluxation which specifically occluded a lumen, which specifically produced pressures upon nerves, at a specific place, in a specific way, impulse supply, which caused all dis-ease in the human body; which could be adjusted under certain specific rules, under certain specific methods, and repeat itself specifically, should occasion and conditions necessitate.”

Is your vision that big? Is the sky your limit? B.J. Palmer wrote that in 1934, in his pivotal 870-page volume The Subluxation Specific The Adjustment Specific. He continued to research and write until his death almost 30 years later. These are the shoulders I wish to stand on as I use the best technology and science at hand to provide the Specific Scientific Adjustment to you.

Happy Birthday United States Air Force

Happy Birthday Chiropractic

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