Once I realised that researching osteopathy in other countries was a fantastic excuse for going off in the big wide world, I decided I should think about it in a little more detail than just purchasing a round-the-world ticket and getting off the plane wondering what I should be doing…
Initial research showed me that there were hands-on manual therapy in most (if not all) cultures of the world. Unfortunately, modern day medicine is slowly taking over the world, and erasing all these diverse ways of treating off the map.
Moreover, many cultures are forgetting their own ancient healing methods in today’s city-orientated, impatient, buzzing new ways of life.
Keeping to my initial idea of actually going around the world, I realised how difficult it would be to find these ancient techniques in certain parts of the world, especially being a foreign, white female.
So I selected a few places, which particularly attracted me. Keeping the number down means I’ll spend several month in each country.
INDIA: where it all comes from. Ayurveda is the most ancient form of Oriental Medicine, it is even the basis of Chinese Xi-Gong (and Tai-Chi)! It is a complete medicine, using plants/herbs, massage, physical exercice (Yoga), lifestyle advice and spiritual guidance.
THAILAND: Hands-on, worldwide famous, non-erotic, therapeutic massage initially developed from traditional Indian Medicine. Using yoga poses, ayurvedic medicinal plants and stretches, it is highly effective prophylactic and symptomatic treatment for everyday aches and pains, as well as more serious pathologies.
AUSTRALIA: Aboriginal people arrived in Australia about 50,000 years ago, and have since developed a very unique form of Medicine. It has no common roots with its Asian neighbours, and is actually closer to African way of life. Aboriginals believe that bad spirits cause sickness and disease. Both Medicine-Men and Women practice, using medicinal remedies, hands-on techniques or incantations.
FIJI/VANUATU/MICRONESIA: The people living on small Pacific Islands have developed unique forms of their own medicine. Using locals plants and blending beliefs of surrounding cultures. For each ethnical group, there is a subtil blend of India, Thai, Chinese, and Japanese influences.