Indian doctors will NOT be taught how to deal with ghosts, contrary to BBC headline
On Thursday, the Beeb ran a story on the new six-month course from the Banaras Hindu University (BHU). The Varanasi-based university “is offering a certificate course to teach doctors how to treat people who claim to see or be possessed by ghosts”, the report said.
Bhoot Vidya: India university to teach doctors Ghost Studies https://t.co/C1CkVmU1jf— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) December 26, 2019
A reader would have to continue beyond the clickbait headline to learn that the ‘Bhoot Vidya’ course is about psychosomatic disorders and therapy rather than paranormal activity. One of eight principle branches of traditional Ayurveda medicine, Bhuta Vidya suggests remedies to ailments like psychosomatic disorders whose causes are not obvious. Ayurveda’s other branches focus on things like midwifery, trauma surgery, longevity and infectious diseases.
Others pointed out that, while advanced pharmacology may have an advantage in treating severe mental conditions, plenty of things invented in India have become widely accepted as a means of improving wellbeing – like yoga and meditation.
I don't know the 'curriculum' in the 'Bhootvidya' course. One thing I've discovered is that many 🇮🇳 traditions get repackaged in the west and then sold for good £$. Yoga, meditation, mindfulness, vegnsm are ancient, but 🇮🇳 didn't give it much importance (certainly in 80s).— Girish Vaidya (@DrGirishPsych) December 27, 2019
According to Professor Yamini Bhusan Tripathi, the dean of the Ayurveda department at the BHU, he and his colleagues are studying solutions offered in ancient texts to see if they have a scientifically measurable effect.
"We just borrowed the name as mentioned in the original and ancient Ayurvedic texts by Charakh. All our study and evaluations will be done based on scientific parameters, physiology and modern biochemistry." 3/6— Bhuvan Bagga (@Bhuvanbagga) December 26, 2019
The Bhuta Vidya courses are relatively small; a group of 10 students will be taking them for a fee of about $700.
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