Sri Sri Ravi Shankar lovingly called as Guruji, the founder of Art of Living Foundation through which He relieves the stress at individual levels, thus reducing violence, sufferings and conflicts and spreading the love, harmony, peace throughout the world in various societies.
I am a doctor, what can I do for the world, and whom can I help?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
There is a lot you can do. You can do research. A doctor’s words carry a lot of importance for people, like the gospel truth. You should tell people, “Come on, sit and meditate for some time”. You can encourage people towards a stress-free state of mind and a stress-free life. You can give them talks on how to prevent diseases. I want neurologists to talk more about meditation and also give tips to people on what type of food they should eat and how they can maintain the nervous system better so as to not get into neurological illnesses.
I want liver specialists to tell people how to keep the liver healthy. We would like doctors to hold camps in rural areas. You can write some simple books or make simple handy pamphlets or leaflets describing how one can maintain healthy function of the kidney, heart and the liver. All these are very vital internal organs but people do not know how to maintain them, and how to detoxify them. People do not know what to eat, how to eat and when to eat.
Doctors should raise their voice against unethical practices in Medicine and the pharmaceutical industry. So many malpractices are happening in the pharmaceutical industry today. You must raise your voice against them.
Till about June last year (2015), the World was made to believe that butter is very bad for heart patients. Two years ago, a Vaidya from Mumbai (a doctor proficient in Ayurveda and other holistic healing therapies) had come to meet me in the Ashram. He was an elderly saint from Rishikesh and was having heart problems. The doctors he had consulted told him to not take butter or any fats in his diet at all. Allopathy had prescribed him not to take any fats. But when he consulted an Ayurvedic doctor, they told him, “Dear Sir, you should have butter and Ghee (clarified butter)”.
The allopathic doctor on the other hand would have a sarcastic smile on hearing this, thinking to himself, “This man does not know anything”.
Last year they discovered that butter has Vitamin-K and it does not do any harm to heart patients. Then this discovery also appeared on the cover page of the TIME magazine, that Butter is actually good for you. Research today has shown a completely different picture about Cholesterol. There has been so much hype and drama about Cholesterol. Today the doctors say that Cholesterol is actually good and there is nothing wrong with it. There is a whole different theory that has come up around this.
So, we should not think that Medical Science is the final and ultimate truth. It is a continually evolving and growing science. No doubt, you need to respect and follow it, but this is why today, Holistic Medicine is gaining importance and has found a strong voice everywhere.
Here, Dr. Nisha from our Ashram knew so many people diagnosed with Cancer to whom many hospitals had said that they cannot treat them and there was no way. They came here and underwent many processed, and many people have become healthier. With the regular practice of pranayama, meditation, Yoga, proper food and mind-set, and through Ayurveda, they have got very good results. We have to take towards holistic medicine.
So as doctors you can all do so many good things. You can recommend holistic medicine to people and also educate them about it. If you see, food habits, especially in North India is very bad. In the North, people mostly consume potato, tomato and brinjal very often. The nutritional value in the food consumed there is almost zero. The endurance power of the body amongst our youth is so low. It is only about 20% endurance. There is no energy among our youth; which is why we are so backward in sports.
At a time when China can win 50 medals, we become happy and jubilant if we even get one medal in any sporting event. Getting a bronze medal in the Olympics too is a big thing for us. Why is this so? We have not taken proper care of the health of our youth.
Just inspect and see how much starch do you eat? When you consume rice, potato, etc., it is all starch. Other nutritional vegetables are not being promoted very well. As doctors you should educate people about this. Tell them to have more of okra, green beans, and more of green leafy vegetables.
Where was tomato used in our ancient and traditional cooking? Today in every house you see people using tomato, potato, brinjals and onions in cooking. That’s it. There is very little nutritional value in these four vegetables. Yet we find that predominantly people eat more of these instead of other vegetables. And for these vegetables also, people usually boil them and then eat them after throwing away the water used for boiling these vegetables. By throwing away the water, they also throw away all the nutrients and minerals extracted in the water. As doctors you will really need to inform and educate people about all this. Tell them what they should eat and drink and how they should do so. This is why we suggested establishing a Meditating Doctors Association.
Many times we partnered with AIIMS (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) in New Delhi to organize such informative programs and sessions. Last time, 600 research papers on Sudarshan Kriya were presented in the last conference. It was one of the most widely written about topics.
Dear Gurudev, I am an allopathic doctor. When I learnt about Ayurveda, I feel my science is not complete. Yet I also cannot invest time to learn five years of Ayurveda. How can I make my medical practice more holistic with Ayurveda? How can I integrate Ayurveda?
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
You know, Ayurveda doctors ask the same question about Allopathy (laughter). I know that many queries and requests of this kind have come up and we shall discuss it with the Ministry of AYUSH, and see if it is possible to design a short course in phases for addressing this – whether by correspondence or in residential mode, and spanning between six months to a year in duration. We will have to think about a proper format for it, since you do know about anatomy already, and you know about diseases.
Here you need to know and learn more about Nadi Pariksha or Pulse Diagnosis. We will do a Pulse Diagnosis course for you. It can be an additional source of knowledge for you about Ayurveda. But to learn more about Ayurveda we will think about it and ask the Ministry of AYUSH about it.