Monday, 13 April 2009

Scientists say Bharatanatyam will help fight cancer

Syed Akbar
Hyderabad: What has Bharatanatyam to do with cancer or sculpture with jaundice? Well Bharatanatyam may soon be prescribed to fight away the cancerous cells, sculpture to treat jaundice, painting to cure digestive problems and music to enhance the overall immune system.
"Human body is not a chemical machine. So doctors need not feed it with chemical medicaments to treat diseases. Human body has a rhythm and it responds to rhythmic movements and sounds. Give a patient a perfect dose of rhythm and limited quantity of medicine and the system responds quickly," says medical scientist Dr Michaela Clockler.
Dr Clockler leads a team of medical experts from around the world in "Anthroposophic Medicine", which is fast emerging as an "alternative" medical system in Europe, Australia and Africa. Over two dozen anthroposophic doctors from different countries have converged in the city to popularise the medicine in this part of the world.
According to Dr Clockler, Bharatanatyam, sculpture, pottery, music, singing and painting are the best "rhythmic" exercises which will control the disease in a patient. The practitioners of Anthroposophic medicine also prescribe, though in limited quantity, some specially prepared medicines based on minerals and plant and animal extracts.
"I am a practising allopathic paediatrician and I have reduced antibiotics to just five per cent of the cases after I took to Anthroposophic system of medicine. Patients are not only saving money but also avoiding unnecessary drug resistance," she points out.
The Anthroposophic medicine, though had its origin in 1925, is yet to become popular in Asia. Now an increasing number of doctors in Europe, Africa and Australia are practicing it. Dr Clockler points out that there's a doctor sleeping in every human being and anthroposophic medicine simple awakens him.
"There are several ways of awakening the sleeping doctor. The best way is rhythm based on sculpture, painting, music, speech and movement therapy known as eurhythmy," Dr Clockler observes.
Unlike other systems of medicine which gives importance to body, anthroposophic system revolves around body, mind, soul and spirit. It focuses on the sources of health and well-being in body, soul and spirit. On the one hand it draws on an ancient spiritual concept of health being a result of processes of balance, and illness as the result of imbalance; on the other hand, it represents the new medical thinking of the 21st century.
"We need a paradigm shift from the pathogenetic towards the salutogenetic concept. Salutogenesis looks at what maintains health even in times of stress and outer or inner problems: What allows people to remain healthy despite disasters, starvation or exposure to pathogenic factors? What gives human nature resilience and strength? Where are the sources of self-regeneration and Self-healing?," says Dr Peter, another practitioner of this system of medicine.

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Syed Akbar in an island in river Godavari with Papikonda hills in the background

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Syed Akbar at the 11th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity