Wednesday, 16 June 2010

*'Jyorei' - Japanese Spiritual Healing

One of the odder sights at this year's Mind, Body, Wallet festival in London was a slightly comical form of "Japanese Spiritual Healing" called Jyorei.

UPDATE, 1 Sep: The ASA have written to me. They say the advertisers have "given [them] an assurance that they will amend their leaflet to remove all the contested claims, including 'clearing blockages and cleansing away of toxins', 'a natural healing process', 'the immune system becomes strengthened, which increases the body's ability to recover from physical illness' and 'physical and emotional problems may be relieved or sometimes cured'..."

Shinji Shumei-kai UK is a registered charity which offers the healing - in return for a donation, of course. I wonder how the money is spent?

Charity Commission can't tell me, unfortunately, because Shinji Shumei-kai's accounts are (as of today) 136 days overdue.

I was pleased to take home one of the charity's flyers (available here and here). The flyers boast that, by using Jyorei, "Physical...problems may be relieved or sometimes cured completely".

Oddly, I can find no clinical evidence for these claims. ASA complaint follows.

I write to complain about a flyer I picked up at the "Mind, Body & Spirit" festival, in London, in May this year.

The flyer, for Shinji Shumei-kai Uk, promotes "Jyorei", a form of "Japanese Spiritual Healing".

I suspect that the flyer may be in breach of two sections of the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP) code. I can provide the original flyer by post, if necessary.

1. Shinji Shumeikai Uk is a registered charity (no. 1051493) with a history of failing to submit its accounts on time [1].

2. "Jyorei" is a form of spiritual healing developed in the 1930s[2], not to be confused with the Japanese social health insurance system of the 19th Century.

3. I have been unable to find any clinical evidence for the efficacy of "Jyorei" spiritual healing on the PubMed website or elsewhere.

4. Under Sections 3.1 and 50.1, I challenge whether the advertiser holds documentary evidence to prove the following claims, and I challenge whether the claims are backed by evidence, where appropriate consisting of trials conducted on people:

(i) The practice of Jyorei causes "Divine Light" to flow through the body, thus "cleansing away toxins"
(ii) "Jyorei also promotes a natural healing process...The immune system becomes strengthened, which increases the body's ability to recover from physical illnesses"
(iii) By using Jyorei, "Physical...problems may be relieved or sometimes cured completely"
(iv) Jyorei is a form of "powerful...healing"

5. I confirm that I have no connections with the advertiser or the alternative medicine industry in general. I confirm that I am not involved in legal proceedings with the advertiser.



  1. what are you getting out of this complaint/critic?

    who cares what their flyer states? are they hurting you or anyone else?

    what ever happend to live and let live?

  2. Hi Anonymous,

    A good question! The best answer I can give you is this: the advertising codes exist to protect vulnerable consumers from unscrupulous marketers.

    Are you arguing that there should be special exemptions for people who imagine that they have magical fingers?

  3. hi i was at rds dublin ireland last sunday where shinji shumei-kai uk s branch from rathmines were there with two japenese people and an irish man that looked more like something u dragged off the street runners jeans unclean and unprofessional looking there the irish man was supposed to be healing this girl with his hands sitting in chair infront of her with one hand about a couple feet away from her /her eyes closed while he TEXTING on his mobil phone with other hand??? i ask yeh donations were 5Euro or jus donate bucket overfilled with money for JAPAN VICTIMS?? i wonder so is the money getting there? how is it distrubed how are they scam artists?

  4. @Anonymous

    "what are you getting out of this complaint/critic?"

    Some people actually care about others enough to report fraudulent, unscrupulous businesses who prey on the gullible.

    Not everything necessarily revolves around "what are you getting out of this".

    "who cares what their flyer states? are they hurting you or anyone else?

    what ever happend to live and let live?"

    Consider the people with life-threatening conditions who waste their time and money on parasitic charlatans promising to heal them with magic vibes.

    At best, it may take away time that would be better spent with family. Worse, it might prevent the victim from getting real (i.e. based on logic and evidence) medical treatment.
    Worst of all are cases like Eben Byers, who was convinced by quacks to drink a radium tonic to improve his health, which caused his jaw to fall off. Live and let live?


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