Science is made to supplicate to faith in the name of patriotism
Science is made to supplicate to faith in the name of patriotism

It is always said that science has several questions but does not have clear answers and hence it always moves in search of answers but on the contrary, the religion has answers for all most every question but none of such answers are allowed to be questioned.  

The state administrations all over the world may not be tampering / interfering with the faith systems of people because such belief systems however superstitious it may appear but ensures reasonable self restraints and discipline among people from overdoing with law.  Fear of God at some level makes people to limit their esoteric thoughts and perversions from translating into actions.   

More than the law of the land, faith in God can restrict large number of people to go crazy & whacky and hence the state administrations in general do not interfere with the faith systems of people.  But the question is can we attempt to translate and extrapolate all such faith and belief systems as sacred science and integrate to our health care delivery planning because many such practices have had existed much before the advent of scientific system of medicine?  

Today if look at various developments that are taking place in our health care delivery system, at least at perception level, conscious attempts are being made to mute the science to overrate the narratives of many pre-historic health care practices as advanced medical wisdom and are essential for the contemporary world.  The question is not about searching out the useful tit bits from the ancient traditional healing practices but qualifying all such practices as Holy Grail science without any proof and merit and gifting to innocent people in rural India looks dangerous.  The importance given to cow urine to cure even cancer is one such example.  

What really ails our health care delivery system is not the lack of doctors but having more doctors.  Irony is that we have doctors from different healing streams with different disease diagnosing expertise and with different drugs to treat almost the same disease.  Does that not look shocking?  

For example, treating of Dengue, we have different types of doctors such as Siddha doctor, Ayurveda doctor, Homeopathy doctor, have own method of diagnosis and medicines from the respective systems.    When we promote such health care practices to flourish are we doing justice to our society and to the science that has saved humanity from the brink of extinction from malaria, polio, typhoid, measles, mumps, pertusis etc?    

No country on earth other than India has given traditional systems of medicine equal right, status and recognition at par with scientifically established allopathic medicinal science.    Owing to the religious and traditional origin, questions cannot be asked beyond a point about the merit and validity of such system or why the Government is sponsoring such system from public exchequer.  

When we progress towards New India where cashless economy, digital modes of transactions, E- governances are going to be the dictums how we can promote faith healing for treating human ailments?  Does that not look going after the bullock cart for transportation as it is safe, does not pollute the environment, traditional, doesn’t over speed, never raise BP or blood sugar, restrict import of crude oils etc.   

Are we not offering confusion to the poor man in the village by gifting doctors from different streams of traditional healing practices with own preparations?   Are we not allowing our health care delivery system to be corroded by promoting all such faith healing practices as advanced medical science?   

Promoting the traditional healing practices as pre-treatment option or post treatment option can hold reasonable justifications.  The traditional healing practices and practitioners must be encouraged to work under the clinicians from the scientific stream of medicine to provide paramedical care to the patients.  Such an approach would certainly help the ancient healing practices to be relevant and useful.  

Producing graduates from such faith based healing practices as doctor would neither help the society nor the graduates as most of them finds no drugs from own system to address the medical challenges of the patients.  As a result many of them resorts to cross pathy, breaching the ethics, medical & professional code of own system of practice.   If the healing science were really scientific, states like Bihar, UP etc., should have sumptuous health care delivery system as these state produce large number of graduates from ancient healing practices. 

Cross pahty actually complicates the health care delivery system because it unnecessarily exposes the patient to combination of proven allopathic drugs along with some unproven products from ancient healing practices.  How adversely the products (mostly unproven) of ancient healing practices can affect the performances of the scientifically proven allopathic drugs are not known.  But such possibility is quite high as we have sufficient scientific proof.   

The doctors from different steams ancient healing practices have own diagnostic methods and how they diagnose the modern day diseases with such ancient recipe and how the products that are tailored to contain some of the symptoms of Tridosha can be accepted as drugs as per the scientific definition remain billion dollar question.  Further the possibility of medication health fraud due to such healing practices and products also cannot be neglected.  

The question is can we allow the holy men and temple priests to treat diseases in rural India and is this way we are going to build NEW INDIA?  Let us march to science and silence the tradition, faith and God based healing practice to enjoy the title –Medical science.   When we wakeup to NEW INDIA, let us take our health care system also along with us and not surrender to faith practices.  

S Ranganathan