Thomas Ambrose Bowen was born on April 18, 1916. He left school at around 15 years of age and became a carpenter like his father. He married his wife Jessie in September 1941 and they went to live with Tom’s parents in Geelong, Victoria, Australia where they had 3 children.
During their married life Jessie suffered from very bad asthma, often being hospitalized in an effort to help her breathe. This was in her early forties. Tom started to somehow learn how to help her shift her congestion and Jessie received considerable benefit. It was most unusual in those days to change your diet for an “illness” but Tom was convinced this was the way to Jessie’s recovery. After some years she no longer required the medicine but thanks to Tom’s method and diet she never had to go to hospital again.
In the late 1950’s Tom worked for the Geelong Cement Works and it was during this time that there were obvious signs of an interest in healing. What he did and how this came about is a mystery. During this time he became friends with a man, Stan Horwood, who believed Tom had a unique gift. Tom started helping people with ‘bad backs’ and other ailments. Stan Horwood invited Tom to set up a practice at his home every evening after completing a days work at the Cement Works.
The business grew and grew through word of mouth. There was no advertising. He eventually had to move to bigger premises where he would move between 2 rooms treating people. Tom did not have appointments as such. At the clinic patients were given a number from 1 to 33 in order of presentation. He would see people in order, go home for lunch and start again in the afternoon. He would go out and see housebound people in the evenings often not returning till 9.30pm. He saw around 13,000 patients a year.
Tom had a Saturday morning clinic for special needs children where they were treated free. Parents would bring their children to him from many miles away, sometimes travelling 3 – 4 hours. Results were not immediate with these children but over a number of years results were amazing. Many Bowen Practitioners in this country have set up such Saturday clinics following in Tom Bowen’s footsteps and will treat all children for free or for a nominal fee. These clinics are very popular and often 2 or 3 practitioners will work on any given day.
At this stage of his career he could have made a great deal of money, but this was definitely not his priority. What Tom could do for people was his greatest reward and this continued to be his cause throughout his life.
Today Tom’s work has been taught world-wide and is taught at university level in Australia.
A sign which hung in Tom's waiting room read:
“I expect to pass through this world but once,
any good thing therefore that I do,
or any kindness that I can show to any fellow-creature,
let me do it now.
Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall never pass this way again."