Alternative Medical Systems: When Do They Work Best?
Renowned cardiac surgeon, Dr Devi Shetty, founder of Narayana Hrudayalaya, asks Sadhguru if medical systems other than Allopathy can be effective.
Devi Shetty: There are large number of Indian or western techniques of healing, which may not have scientific data, but they work. And I have a personal experience. Many years ago, my wife developed lower backache. It was intense pain, excruciating pain. As usual I took her to a neurologist, they did MRI and everything is fine, there is no problem. But poor thing she was really…
Sadhguru: I’m glad you were not a spinal surgeon, otherwise you would have done it (Few Laugh).
Devi Shetty: Then my brother-in-law suggested that I should take her to see a (n) acupuncture specialist. As a doctor… you know it was a bit embarrassing for me to go to somebody… (Laughter) And he didn’t have a fancy clinic, I went to his house. And he talked to my wife for few minutes and he made her sleep flat on the floor and Sadhguru he took… you know from the…the… the heel he started pressing on her lower back for ten minutes as I was watching. I am not exaggerating, she never had the lower back pain ever since.
Sadhguru: I’ll show you thousands and thousands like that, not even… not even with any needles, simply…
Devi Shetty: I was so fascinated, because he cured my wife and he did something which I couldn’t do it for thirty-two years, she was fine. There are many ways of treating people and as professionals we have to respect all the ways of treating.
Sadhguru: Definitely. I would say allopathic system is at its best, when there is an emergency. When there is time, definitely other systems are way better if you ask me, in many ways. Particularly this is something hardly known to people, in southern most part of India, largely in Tamil Nadu we have what is called as Siddha - Siddha Vaidya. It’s a most incredible medical system. So comprehensive, there are over three hundred thousand formulations. I don’t think even modern pharmacopeia has that, over three hundred thousand formulations elaborately written down. And the fundamental difference between Ayurveda and Siddha is - Ayurveda is herb based, Siddha is elemental. The only thing is the skill level that it demands from the doctor is a challenge in modern world. This is something that you have to live, then only it works. The person who administers it is as important at (as?) what is administered. so who administers it is important, not just what is administered. But the nature of modern medicine is, you write a prescription some chemist who knows nothing about it gives it, and they take it. It’s only purely chemical and it works. But when there are chronic ailments, if there is infection, killing it with whatever you know chemical bombing it, is the way to do it. But when you are generating an illness from within, correcting it from within is most important. If there is an emergency, you have to intervene more aggressively, that’s different. But these systems have such a comprehensive knowledge about health and well-being. But the problem is it needs a lifelong involvement and dedication to become something good with this kind of system. It is not something that you can acquire as a profession and do it. Always it was seen as a sacred duty that you can actually see I want everybody to think about its… and I’m sure many times you are facing this within yourself. It’s not… it is not a prescription, it is not a surgery, it is not something. It is a person’s life, whether he lives or dies. I mean, your existence… it’s… it’s not a… it is not a case, it is not a statistic. For that person it is the only life that he has. This needs far more deeper attention than just being handled as a profession, I think that sense of dedication and involvement individual doctors might have grown into it, but still that’s not there as a culture, that is not there it should not be seen as a profession, that’s what I’m saying. Yes, of course monetary requirements are there, that will happen, that’s a different thing. But first of all it must be seen as a certain commitment and a certain privilege - that you are able to either end or extend somebody’s life is not a small privilege.