Traditional Indian Medicine and Native American Cancer Patients


Most excellent article;

Here is a portion:

Focus of this Commentary. The purpose of this commentary is to describe a brief overview of the cancer experience and its positive relationship to Traditional Indian Medicine. As is true with any person of any ethnicity, spiritual and cultural beliefs may vary greatly from one tribal Nation in comparison to another. Obviously, all patients need to be assessed for their spiritual beliefs (see Dr. Walt Hollow's Spiritual Model ) and supported as much as possible. A common foundation among almost all cancer patients (regardless of race) is strong spiritual beliefs in a higher power, Creator, God. Spirituality is evident in many forms. The individual cancer patient may choose to use organized religion (Native American Church, Shaker, Baptist, Catholics) or combine organized religion with Traditional Indian Medicine, or use Traditional Indian Medicine as the sole form of spiritual guidance. The emphasis in this commentary is on the inclusion of Traditional Indian Medicine for cancer treatment, recovery and healing by the Native cancer patient.

  • "After I prayed with the healer and he gave me my medicine, I felt more at peace. I knew I could beat this disease. I wasn't afraid anymore. I felt strong - like I could do anything!"
  • "The healer did ceremony with my whole family. He said that cancer affected all of us and that all of us had to help get back in balance so that I could get rid of the cancer. And we did. It feels good. I think the cancer and working with the healer really helped me to get back into my spiritual beliefs. Now, I pray morning and night like I was taught as a child. But, you know, you get bigger and you think you understand stuff, but you really don't. All of us do ceremony now. We all sing a morning song and an evening song together. It feels good."
  • "I couldn't deal with the pain. I was afraid to take the narcotic drug because I thought it would make me an addict. But the local healer, he told me I needed something because I was in pain and I was being really mean to my family. So he told me that I had to stop it. He gave me a soup and it really tasted bad. But after a while, I really started to like it because I wasn't in such pain anymore. So, I told my family I was sorry for how I had acted. Then the healer came over and prayed with all of us. That was good. I really felt better and I've felt good ever since he did that with us."

Full article located here:

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