Tag Archives: traditional medicine

The Sufi healers of Sudan: caring for those without care

Ahmed Elhag  Albany County, New York, United States   Fig 1. Dervishes in Omdurman, Sudan gather at the Shrine of Shiekh Hamid Nil, a 19th century Sufi Saint of the Qadriyya Sufi order. Photo by the author. Traditional medicine has been the dominant form of healthcare for much of human history. To many today, traditional […]

Traditional medicine in Yang Talat district, Isaan, Thailand

Khwan Phusrisom Baan Dong Bang, Thailand & UK   Fig 1. Baan Dong Bang village, Yang Talat district, and surroundings. Isaan is northeast Thailand, wedged between Laos and Cambodia. I grew up there, in Yang Talat district, (Fig 1) in the Baan Dong Bang village headman’s teak house, where I saw traditional medicine in use […]

Blood beliefs and practices in Iran

Bahar Dowlatshahi Tehrann, Iran   Circulation of the blood (human). Wellcome Collection. CC BY Blood is believed to have special abilities and properties in many eastern countries such as Iran. Even human personality traits, emotions, and relationships are referred to with blood. Angry people boil their blood; those who are kind and loving are called warm-blooded. […]

More than “toil and trouble”: Macbeth and medicine

Mariel Tishma Chicago, Illinois, United States   The Witches. Hans Baldung (called Hans Baldung Grien). 1510. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The image of a woman – a witch — working over a bubbling cauldron filled with stomach-turning substances is a staple of both horror and more family friendly media. One such example is Shakespeare’s […]

A change in mindset

Asayya Imaya London, United Kingdom   “This is witchcraft,” my father said with authority. I had questions that I dared not ask; my father was a formidable and austere character. The terror he had instilled in me as a child was still palpable, and I still feared him as an adult. I am not sure […]