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The Witch Doctor Will See You Now...

I have a mixed view about traditional remedies and treatment. It's all great with natural herbs and exotic spices, but when it comes divining illnesses and shady practices (in my point of view) I avoided them like the plague.
Last Sunday my mom asked me to accompany her and a few friends to a 'bekam' session. BEKAM is an ancient tradition, where blood is sucked out of the skin at some points of the body. A needle (or lancet) pricked the skin at a particular spot and then a container was placed upon the tiny wound, vacuumed so blood can be drawn. For every few minutes, the container will be removed so the trickle of blood can be wiped off the skin, and then replaced. Each session might last for one and a half hour, and the amount of blood drawn vary for each subject.
My mom and her friends finished their sessions (hours!) as I read a very thick book, outside waiting for them. Then my mom asked me to take the treatment as there was no one else in line for it. As a dutiful son, I obliged, took off my shirt and trousers (a towel is provided) and had my blood drawn voluntarily by the practitioner.
It was one of the most boring few hours of my life (this new year).
As I walked out of the small treatment room, I saw my mom and her friends listening to another practitioner with rapt attention. Oh, oh, I smell a money trap.....
And I was right. My mom had ended up spending a few hundreds ringgit on medications I don't think she really needs. The girl was also trying to bait me by asking about my health, and even had the NERVE to guess my illnesses through reading my palms! Major quack clackety clack!
But I played it cool, and smiled at every foolish noises that came out of her mouth.
Like I said, I am a dutiful son ;)
And this quack prescribed me a bottle of the essence of garlic of all medication! I ate garlic on a DAILY basis, girl! That's why I am healthier than the next person. But I kept my mouth shut, and took the prescribed bottle gracefully (my mom paid for this too).
On the way back, my mom chirped at how much better she was after the treatment. She said she felt lighter and her hands trambled less. I nodded to all, but the same cannot be said to me.
I felt nothing. There was no improvement, or anything less with me after the treatment.
Maybe my body refused to believe in such a celebrated treatment (prescribed medication notwithstanding).
Or maybe my guardian angel wont let me get influenced so easily.
My mom wants to return soon. And I will drive her there.
I am a dutiful son, yessiree!

P.s.- i tried to find a suitable picture to put here.... But I don't think the lot of you will appreciate me for it :p

9 comments:

Ms. A said...

Guess I will have to look it up!

There are plenty of quacks in the traditional medical field, too!

I love that you are a dutiful son, however, I don't think you should have to comply with something you don't necessarily agree with. It doesn't make you any less dutiful. Just my opinion.

Ms. A said...

Okay, we call that "cupping". There's dry cupping and wet cupping. You were talking about scarification and cupping, which is a form of bloodletting. (to remove congestion, stagnation and blockage to improve and increase blood flow)

Rock Chef said...

Sometimes this sort of thing has a grain of truth in it and can do some good. My favourite thing like this is the old saying that eating carrots helps you see in the dark. The grain of truth is that carrots contain something that helps prevent the deterioration of the eyes with old age.

Often it is just rubbish and relies on the patient believing that they feel better. I don't think that bleeding is a good thing, but at least they don't use leaches to suck out the blood!

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

Ms. A; thanks for the info! I asked a few friends what 'bekam' is in English and no one can provide me with an answer. I tried googling for it too.
My mom is a single mother, so I try to humour her as much as I can now.

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

RC; there is vitamin A in carrot, for the eyes. ;)
Oh, bleeding with leeches is also quite common here. I even believe it was a better treatment than cupping. Do you have leeches in the UK?

CiCi said...

The description of the way they draw blood was good enough for me to picture it. Sometimes people want to believe something and talk themselves into feeling better. If your mom says she is better, then more power to her. It is a good thing you are doing to encourage her and to drive her places. You are being kind to someone who has always been kind to you.

I notice you still have TechnoBabe's Adventures in your side bar. I will never re-open that blog. I have moved on and am enjoying the new one. As me.

Nice to hear more about your mom.

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

Cici; my mom is a kind woman, sometimes excessively so. It is the job of his evil but dutiful son to steer her away from apparent danger. But if i see no harm done in a bit of dodgy schemes which made her feel better, i just let her have her fun.
A lot of our blogger friends had succumbed to the Bloggers' Void... They left suddenly, and maybe return after a very long while.
I will remove that link to your old blog.

Rock Chef said...

No leeches here - they used to breed them for medical use, but not now.

Vitamin A? Is it that simple?

Shadowthorne @ Ramzu Zahini said...

RC; The leech treatment happens to be very successful in many ways. But I do not think it is a better alternative of cupping. Many maimed limbs were saved by those little bloodsuckers!
Yes, vitamin A. That simple.

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