An Insight of Tibet Medicine and Healing Practices versus Western Medicine

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We, as human beings, need different remedies to cure diseases and, ultimately, stay healthy. Medical practices vary from culture to location. Around 400 A.D. Tibetan Buddhist associated illness with the philosophy of doing good personal deeds in order to stay healthy, as opposed to illness being caused by a virus. The idea of personal responsibility resulted in health or illness spread throughout Eurasia, specifically in India, China, and Persian-Greek society, affecting medical approaches that we in the U.S. use today.
Medical anthropology, the study of human health, has led to cures of illnesses and diseases throughout the world. Medical anthropology “concerns itself with human health—the factors that contribute to disease or illness and the ways that human populations deal with disease or illness” (Susser, 2003, 14). Illness hinders the body from its full capacity of normal work. A disease inhibits the body from working to its full potential, and populations could die as a result from being infected. Medical anthropology is further described as “human health and illness in local settings to social, economic, and political processes operating on a national scale” (Susser, 2003, 14). Medical anthropology is the study of finding new cures to heal the ill.
A significant difference between the two different societies is the belief, specifically in the Tibet culture, of personal responsibility. As the text states, “Buddhist medicine posits that the self of ‘ego’ is ultimately the cause of all suffering, including that of the ill” (Janes, 1995, 21). If a person thinks highly of himself, then there is a belief that strongly relates that a person is sick due to a high ego. As a result, a strong pride in oneself can be interpreted as...

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...h medical approaches. Both have the purpose of healing their populations, but different medical practices led to a variety of changes in beliefs and cultures in Tibet and Western societies.

Works Cited

Janes, C.R.
1995. The Transformations of Tibetan Medicine. Medical Anthropology Quarterly, 9: 6–39.

Frances Garrett
2007. Critical Methods in Tibetan Medical Histories. 2007
May. The Journal of Asian Studies. Vol. 66, No. 2, pp. 363-387

Loizzo, J. J., Blackhall, L. J. and Rapgay, L
2009., Tibetan Medicine. A Complementary Science of Optimal Health
Tibetan Medicine. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1172: 218–230.

Starr, Paul
1982. The Social Transformation of American Medicine.
Basic Books.

Baer, Hans, Merrill Singer, and Ida Susser.
2003. Textbook Anthropology. Chapter 1. Medical Anthropology and the world system, 2nd ed. Westport, CT: Praeger.
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