by Dr. Lawrence Wilson

© April 2019, LD Wilson Consultants, Inc.


All information in this article is solely the opinion of the author and for educational purposes only.  It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.


Definition. A system is a group of items, all of which affect each other.  While not a rigorous definition, this is adequate for our purpose.  In the early 20th century, great minds realized the importance of viewing many complex phenomena as “systems”.  Among the pioneers was Ludwig Von Bertalanffy, author of General System Theory, Foundations, Development and Applications (1968).

While we take the word ‘system’ for granted, today, it is a relatively new word in common parlance.  Understanding the laws of systems, however, is essential to understanding development science.

Conventional allopathic medicine, by contrast, and even most nutrition science, often still thinks in terms of body parts and individual functions much more than in terms of the entire or whole human system.


Facts about systems.  Here are a few essential properties and facts about systems.  One of these is that systems are of different types.

Open systems are those in which the boundaries and all the parts are not known.  A prime example is our universe.  We don’t know how big it is, really, so we don’t know its boundaries.  Also, we don’t know much about many of its features or parts.

Open systems are exciting on a theoretical level, but very difficult to work with.  We know so little about our universe, for example, or on a smaller scale, the human brain, that exploring it carefully is difficult at best.

Open systems, you might say, are hard to get our minds around at all.  However, the definition is important because humans are open systems to a degree as well.  The more spiritually developed a person is, the more he or she is not ruled by the whims of the body.  This is the open nature of human beings.  However, for the most part, humans are considered closed systems.


Closed systems are those in which all or most of the parts are understood and often facts are clear about the boundaries of the system as well.  Thus, living organisms are generally considered closed systems under this definition.   Closed systems are much easier to study and analyze, which is fortunate for us.


Self-regulating systems.  These are systems that have so much feedback in them that they can self-correct to maintain equilibrium or homeostasis.

Our bodies definitely are members of this group of systems, as are animals and even plants to some degree.


Systemic events.  These are events within a system that affect the entire system or most of it, at least.  An example is the big bang that created an entire universe.  For a person, a systemic event is going to sleep or catching pneumonia.


Primarily Local events.  These are events within a system that have much less effect on the entire system.  An example would be the effect on the entire universe of the birth of a baby somewhere on planet earth.  In a human body, a local event might be a slight rise in temperature due to going outside on a warm day. 

Systems always have both types of events at all times.  It is important to realize this and be able to distinguish primarily local from more important systemic events.


Control points. A key to the whole system pattern recognition healing method is to find control points for the system.  These are certain places where the whole system of a human being can be altered rather easily.  This concept is discussed in a separate article entitled Control Points on this site, and is a key to the effectiveness and safety of development science.


Laws of systems.  Dr. Von Bertalanffy and other pioneers of systems theory discovered basic laws of all systems.  We will focus on laws related more to health and healing in this article:


1. The behavior of the whole is more than the sum of its parts.  This can also be stated that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

This is the hardest one for medical doctors and most people to appreciate.  Our education system, including medical schools, fail to teach it.  But it is true, nevertheless and needs to be taught widely. 

It kicks in, for example, when silly human beings think they understand something large like the environment or a human being just because they understand parts of the system.  They wrongly believe they know everything about the system, which they do not. 

The Soviet Union and Nazi Germany are examples on a governmental level.  They decided that by controlling everyone and killing those who would not go along, everything would work in their favor.  Instead, they self-destructed, with our help, or course.  They lost out to another systems principle, the one that follows.

Thus, parts of a system can be money, power, guns and so forth or parts can mean the liver, kidneys, spleen and the rest.  The principle is the same in any case.


2. One cannot predict the behavior of the whole from just knowing the parts. (This follows from principle #1 above).  This means that our world, which is a system, is inherently unpredictable. 

It is actually a great spiritual truth that is found in different words in the bible and every spiritual teaching, in fact.  It may be stated that God is in charge, or Allah is in charge, not us puny humans.  Smart people figured out this principle thousands of years ago.  However, it, too, is seldom mentioned in the schools.

In the healing field, this principle implies that just knowing everything about the stomach will not tell you about the whole person.  Neither will full body scans of all the parts.  It just doesn’t work that way.

Inventing new scanners and other tests is great, but it still will never explain a whole human being.

This is not bad or good.  It is just the truth about many aspects of complex, self-regulating systems.


General applications of this principle.  It is worth mentioning how systems principles apply elsewhere.  In business, this fact is called “the unseen hand of the market”.  The most brilliant financial minds will tell you they are sometimes wrong.  Government planners are wrong very often for this reason and are so arrogant they refuse to admit it most of the time.

In the environmental movement and weather prediction, it is called “the unpredictability of mother nature”.

Medicine, in its arrogance, mainly, gives it an esoteric Latin word, calling the unknown and unpredictable “idiopathic”, “essential” or using other terms as well for common conditions including hypertension.  They mean, in simple English, we just don’t know the cause.

However, instead of adopting system behaviors, they continue to deal mainly in parts only.  This is why their success with systemic illnesses is limited.


Local and systemic events.  Having said this, of course, an x-ray of a broken leg will help a doctor set the led properly.  This is because a broken leg is, in systems terms, mainly a local event.  It does not, hopefully, affect the entire person.  If it did, it would be a different kind of event, in systems terms.  Since it is not, it can be dealt with locally.

Thus one key to working with a person as a system is to know when an event is local and when it is systemic.  Admitedly, this is not always easy.  Modern medicine has made great strides in this area, however, which is why emergency medicine saves many lives every year.

Other areas of medicine, however, continue to confuse these two types of events often.  Local events, like a broken leg, are treated systemically with drugs that are not needed and are toxic.  Systemic events like cancer and heart disease are treated locally, with poor results in many cases.


Principle 3. If one knows some behaviors of the whole, one can often predict behaviors of the parts.  This is a critical principle of systems.

If one knows, for example, that human beings need eight or nine hours of sleep nightly, then one will know that if one does not get the rest one needs, the brain will not function correctly, the muscles may be weaker the next day and so forth.

The point is that by focusing on whole system behaviors, we can learn a lot about the behavior of the parts of the human system.

This brings up the question of what are some whole system behaviors of human beings.  An obvious answer is in what is called lifestyle.  This includes one’s rest and sleep habits, diet, exercise and activity patterns and others.  Social interaction patterns are others, thinking and attitudes are others.  By knowing these, we ca predict a lot about the behaviors of various parts of the human system.

I am continually amazed that most medical doctors and even some naturopathic doctors don’t ask about these simple whole system behaviors.  They could learn so much, so fast about a person and his or her likely health conditions.


Principle 4. If one knows some of the behaviors of the whole system and most of the parts, one can infer or learn the behaviors of the rest of the system.

This may be the most critical systems principle of all. It is the method used in development, acupuncture and other system sciences of healing. 

In short, the behavior of the whole human being that is most important is living versus dying.  The kidney is important, the brain is very important, but if the patient dies, then those are useless. 

So we must ask, what are the next most important behaviors of the whole system do we or can we know about?  Obviously there are many.  We have mentioned some basic ones, such as the person’s diet, liestyle, rest level and many more like this.

What about others?  This is where development excels.  Dr. Paul Eck realized, perhaps unconsciously, that to fine-tune a healing program he needed whole system behaviors.  The ones he found are called the metabolic or oxidation rate and type, the stage of stress and the levels and ratios between various minerals in the body.

There are a million others, such as the blood sugar level, the blood pressure and more.  However, this brings us to another principle of systems.


5. Systems have various degrees of local and systemic or whole system behaviors and events.  Fatigue, for example, is a systemic event because it will affect all parts of a person’s life eventually.  A broken finger is much more local because it rarely affects the whole person that much, though it could if it becomes infected.  If the infection spreads to the whole body, it is definitely no longer a local event.

These may sound very theoretical, but as you will see, we use them with our system of development.  Basically, we figure out whole behaviors of the body such as metabolic type, transmutations and others and then we can figure out how to proceed simply, powerfully and safely to alter specific behaviors such as blood sugar, blood pressure, inflammation and many others. 


Systems principles explain seeming paradoxes. For example, in some development regimens, minerals that read high on the hair test are supplemented.  Meanwhile, minerals that are low are left alone. 

Sometimes the patient is made to feel worse, such as with a four lows pattern on a hair analysis.  The person is already tired and we give more calcium and magnesium and zinc, which tend to make one feel tired.  Meanwhile, foods and supplements that give a sense of well-being are to be avoided.  This is also the case with the four lows pattern, for example.

A mineral level or ratio that appears at first glance to be alarmingly abnormal, may be considered evidence of positive progress.  Meanwhile, normal looking levels may indicate serious imbalances.

It all depends on what is going on in the entire chart.

To repeat the principle, only by starting with the behavior the whole system, can the behavior of the parts be correctly interpreted.


            Implications.  Systems theory has tremendous implications.  I will only give a few simple ones.  Our entire lives are a system.  We therefore ought to look at every aspect of life and make sure that they are integrated.  These include one’s job, relationships, health program, lifestyle, attitudes, emotional control and spiritual outlook.

            Many people have focused on just a few of these, but the rest are out of balance, causing unhappiness and ill health.

Another implication is the body must be approached as a system.  This means not just looking at a stomach problem in the stomach, but considering structural, nutritional, electrical, emotional and other aspects simultaneously for the best results.

A final implication is that any therapy must be viewed systemically, meaning to ask what the effects are on the whole person, not just a symptom.  For example, an antibiotic is very effective against certain bacteria.  However, it has negative consequences for the intestinal flora, often, and at times for the liver and other organs. 

Therefore, from a systems point of view, it is much less helpful than an alternative such as colloidal silver that has many fewer negative systemic effects, also called side effects.



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