The first court proceedings about the healing prohibition (1951- 1952)

Gröning's work a healing activity in the medical sense?

Bruno Gröning angeklagt

Indictment for unauthorized practice of medicine

In 1951-52, Bruno Gröning appeared for the first time before the court in Munich, charged with practicing healing without a permit. Though the Bavarian Ministry for Internal Affairs had viewed his activity as a free act of love, now it was being evaluated as the practice of healing in the medical sense.

The charge was based on the Non- Medical Practitioners Act of 1939, which had replaced the Freedom of Healers Law, which had been in force up until then, and which was intended to put all healing practice into the hands of National Socialist (Nazi) doctors.

The yes and no of violating the Non-Medical Practitioners Act

Bruno Gröning was acquitted at the first and the second hearings. The chairperson of the Munich court stated in his judgment in March, 1952:

„The court would not consider it fitting to condemn the accused on the basis of one-sided expert testimony, because, whether the activities of Gröning are covered by the Non-Medical Practitioners Act at all is more than doubtful, because they fall into an area that is today researched far too little.“

In the appeal, the not-guilty verdict was upheld, but Gröning’s activity was clearly defined as healing practice within the confines of the Non-Medical Practitioners Act:

„The accused has thereby, without permit and without being a doctor, practiced diagnosis, healing or relief of diseases, suffering or physical defects on people, which is viewed as healing activity under the Non-Medical Practitioners Act.“

Honest error in judgment means healing prohibition

The judgment continued, “A sentencing of the accused cannot follow, however, because in view of the objective nature of the events concerning the exercise of a healing practice, he made an honest error of judgment and thereby did not act deliberately.”

Because the honest error in judgment, which Bruno Gröning supposedly had made, was stated in the judgment, this effectively amounted to a legal healing prohibition, despite the not-guilty verdict. From this point in time on, Bruno Gröning knew that his activities were considered a healing practice as defined by the Non-Medical Practitioners Act, and as such were forbidden. The true nature of his work, which demonstrates that his means of working had nothing to do with healing practices in the medical sense, was not recognized.


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Bruno Gröning”

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