During this conversation between cardiac surgeon Dr. Devi Shetty and Sadhguru, Dr. Shetty inquires how to convince patients that surgery is not always a necessity. Sadhguru explains that long term health cannot be achieved through medical science the way we know it. Instead, a better sense of how to keep the body, mind, breath, food and atmosphere around is needed to evolve a culture of health.
Devi Shetty: Sadhguru the… by the great work done by all the senior cardiac surgeons, cardiologists and all the good doctors of this country, heart care has attained lot of… it has got lot of confidence from the people. It’s very interesting Sadhguru, when I started my career twenty-five years ago, I left England twenty-five years ago, I started in Calcutta. If I told a patient then…
Sadhguru: Lot of heart break there (Devi Shetty laughs).
Devi Shetty: …if I told the patient then that he needed an operation, it required more than an hour of convincing him for an operation but today I face a different problem…
Sadhguru: They are standing in a line (Few Laugh).
Devi Shetty: Today Sadhguru when I tell a patient after seeing all the reports, that you do not need an operation, I have to spend one hour to convince him, why he doesn’t need operation (Laughter/Applause). Everyone wants heart operation Sadhguru (Laughter).
Sadhguru: Is it for romantic reasons or… (Laughter/Applause).
Devi Shetty: How do we… how do we convince people that fixing the heart is not like, you know… if something wrong with your house you get a plumber, he will fix it or you know if something wrong with the car you change the parts - it is something different. There are… th… the… we are not the magicians or we are not the gods and the nature is the best healer and cardiac surgery is only a fifty year old phenomena, people have lived for centuries...
Sadhguru: I think they have also realized it’s a dumb part (Laughter).
Sadhguru: Yes (Few Laugh). If not heart, many other parts ___ (Unclear) (Laughter). Yes as I said probably in other fifty years, fifty percent of the population will be going through these surgeries, which is not health, which is medical industry but not health.
Devi Shetty: Yes.
Devi Shetty: It’s a big dilemma for all of us Sadhguru. Today people want something to be done on their body all the time.
Sadhguru: If health has to happen, as I was trying to you know briefly outline in the beginning “The mechanics of health,” a culture of health has to come in. Not health care systems, not hospitals, not more doctors, not more surgeries but a culture of health has to evolve. Right now world is in a way of imitating everything that America does. They eat badly, they live badly and they have a three trillion dollar bill of health care, it’s sinking the country.
Devi Shetty: Yes.
Sadhguru: Okay, it’s sinking the whole nation - health care. We want to follow the same things, we want to dress like them, we want to eat like them, we want to live like them and we want to get unhealthy like them but our country cannot spend three million… three trillion dollars on you for sure. We will let you die (Laughter). Yes, we’re not going to reach out to everybody and do surgery for 1.25 billion people. That’s not going to happen in near future and if it doesn’t happen it’s a disaster, if it happens it’s a bigger disaster. That people do not know how to live well is a disastrous way. That I would say seventy percent of the ailments on this planet can be just handled with better sense of living, eating, atmosphere, if you manage, seventy percent will be gone. You can achieve this in twelve to fifteen years of time on the planet, if a determined effort is made by the people, by the policy and by everybody concerned, particularly the hospitals. They can do a lot because when they are sick they listen you know, (Laughter) otherwise they don’t (Sadhguru Laughs) yeah?
Devi Shetty: Yes.
Sadhguru: When they are well they don’t listen, when they are sick they will listen, their… they have ears… more ears than two when they are sick. That’s the time to talk to them as to how to live better. These things are not new to us, these are very strongly rooted in our cultural milieu. But we’re throwing it away for something which will bring us lot of trouble. For immediate attention, for immediate intervention of course medical intervention is primary and it’s most vital there’s no question about that. But long term health will not happen because of medical sciences as we know it. Long term health of a society or a nation or the planet will not happen that way - we have to bring a culture of health. What is the way to live, what is the way to eat, how to keep our body, how to keep our mind, how to keep our breath, how to keep the atmosphere around us, if this culture is not brought into us from our childhood - I would say it must be brought into the school curriculum itself. It must be brought in - healthful ways of living - because if you do not build healthy people, you’re going to have educated and sick people and you’re going to build a nation or a world out of it. With sick people you are not going to build a great nation, you can only build a sick nation. And that is happening across the world, the major nations are suffering enormous amount of illnesses.
The most affluent countries who have no nutritional problems, okay - India’s half the problem are nutritional problems, right from their childhood they have not eaten properly - affluent nations who have a choice of nourishment look at the level of… a… health issues they have. That should not exist at all when they have choice of nourishment they should not have… I would say eighty percent of the people should not have any health issues till they die. One twenty percent, twenty-five percent will get something, infections will come because of close proximity…
Devi Shetty: Yes.
Sadhguru: …those are different but these are all on self-help. People are on self-help to create ailments for themselves. This can be one hundred percent taken away if we establish a culture of health for which I think not just medical professionals, people from various other areas have to work together to make this happen. I don’t see any major synergy like that right now, small efforts are happening here and there but that’s not enough. It’s good but it’s not enough.