North American Indian tribes have been practicing medicine for what some claim to be over 40,000 years. The medical information and techniques are handed down from generation to generation; ensure the longevity of the practice.
Some remedies are tribe-specific, although all tribal medicine is called Native American Medicine, collectively. Native Americans believe that man is one with nature and that the elements provide strength and can cure disease.
It is fascinating to note that at the same time that Native American medicine was being practiced in North America, Traditional Chinese Medicine was being practiced a half a world away. Ayurveda (medicine practiced in India), was also practiced at this time, and will be covered next.
All of these traditional medical practices are based on the same fundamental belief that a person’s lifestyle and environment should be taken into consideration before choosing a treatment path. There are subtle differences between the practices that are specific to the region.
Native American medicine recognizes a purification procedure involving herbal smoke before and after treatment. Treatments include the use of sage and cedar smoke to repel negative energy. Negative energy is considered the pain released by someone who is ill, or the pain that the healer takes on themselves from their patients. Therapeutic touch is used. Singing, chanting, drums and rattles accompany the healing during the session.