Golden cure for cancer
By Sheela Rani Chunkath | Express News Service | Published: 05th August 2017 10:00 PM |
Gold nanoparticles can treat prostate cancer with fewer side effects than chemotherapy,” was the headline when the University of Missouri ‘discovered’ this great truth in 2012. This is what Ayurveda and Siddha vaidyars have been doing during the last hundreds of years. Gold bhasma or nanoparticles of gold are being produced by small and large producers. There are village vaidyars who people go to because they have seen them and their forefathers treating their village folk for hundreds of years. There are multimillion dollar companies such as Dabur, which run all the toxicity tests and produce non-toxic bhasmas as any university in the US can.
However, because we still have the slave mentality and think that anything produced by the white man is better, we immediately applaud their efforts. I recently read in the paper that the same university is now producing non-toxic gold nanoparticles using a green technology. They are trumpeting to the world that nanoparticles produced by their green technology is environment-friendly. I don’t understand how that can be so. If you use plants instead of mercury you are probably harvesting herbs, which seem to be more echo-unfriendly. And then there was this hype about how the university is helping Ayurvedists and the people of this universe by giving them this technology, which of course is patented and, in truth, is intended to make the pseudo scientists rich.
Much of the technology is already there in Rasa Sastra; the purification process and the manner in which the bhasma is to be made. The scientists are exploiting the irrational and often propaganda-induced fear of heavy metal bhasmas and touting a green technology for producing gold bhasmas. Our acharyas know all about the herbs and if they felt that same purification needed mercury it would have been for some good reason. The scientists of Missouri have produced this gold bhasma, which has not stood the test of time nor been tested by double blind trials to prove its efficacy in the human system.
Why should Ayurvedists in India take their word for it and why do we need it anyway? The way the gold bhasma is prepared as it is given in our Rasa Sastra texts produces nontoxic bhasma. And anyone can produce it because our vaidyars did not patent the process. We should be more skeptical of the Western world especially when it comes to food nutrition and medicine. For the past 50 years we were told saturated fat is bad and we were asked to stay away from ghee and coconut oil. Today, the same Western scientists admit that they have made at least two generations of Americans obese by telling them to eschew saturated fats.
There is no one to beat our vaidyars when it comes to food and medicine. They have classified all herbs on the Rasa Panchaka basis—rasa (taste), guna (property), virya (potency), vipaka (after-effect on digestion) and karma (action). So the acharyas were aware of what herbs can do and cannot. So I wouldn’t trust these western scientists when they find alternate methods of making gold bhasma and try to make you believe that it is better than the nontoxic bhasma produced by our traditional methods.
I find many students of Ayurveda still think that Western medicine is more scientific. While I grant that Western medicine is needed for surgery, it is to Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani that we have to turn to, for the prevention of disease, the promotion of health and the curing of diseases.
The writer is retired Additional Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu. She can be reached at sheelarani.