Traditional African Medicine - A Perspective in 2001

Author: Kokayi K
Conference/Journal: First World Symp on Self-Healing & Power of Consciousness
Date published: 2001
Other: Pages: 38 , Word Count: 255

The beginning of the third millennium has marked the ascent of traditional healing systems around the world. Complementary and Alternative medicine in the US is receiving input from Western and non-Western sources. Within this dialogue very little has been said about traditional African medicine. The public and medical community have been conditioned to look at Africans as a people without an indigenous medical science and the negative images of traditional healers, i.e. witchdoctors, continue to permeate the collective Western consciousness.

As the Western world becomes more aware of the role of consciousness and the non-physical world in healing there has been a renewed interest in traditional African medicine. Fundamental to traditional African medicine is the perception and experience of the Universe as a living entity that is inclusive of plants, animals, inanimate objects, and the metaphysical universe of ancestors and spiritual forces. The practice of traditional African medicine requires the initiate to undergo a process that heightens their connection to the metaphysical universe. In certain cultures an initiate cannot graduate unless they successfully demonstrate their psychic abilities. Through the process of divination and direction communication with the non-physical world, a patient is diagnosed without recourse to history or exam. Direct communication can come in the form of dreams or waking trance induced by dancing, drumming, singing and herbal mixtures.

This presentation will look at the unique role that consciousness and spirit play in the practice of traditional African medicine. A brief film trailer on an upcoming documentary on traditional African medicine will be shown.