Application of Tibb-i-Nabi to Modern Medical Practice

Medical practice in the United States is facing its most serious challenge in the past 100 years. While no medical system can be expected to have a monopoly on cures, to day allopathic medicine is facing an ever- growing number of unorthodox assaults, on top of the malpractice increase. And, these charges are being lodged despite the outstanding advances and cures which can be attributed to scientific medicine.

The chief complaints against the orthodox system are that it is often harmful, often ineffective, and often too expensive. Modern hospital medicine is vulnerable on all three counts. It uses techniques and drugs that are productive of many adverse reactions, cost too much and frequently do not cure. Indeed, Dr. Lewis Thomas, President of the Sloan-Kettering Memorial Cancer Center in New York, confessed in a recent interview, that all internists know that ninety percent of all illnesses get better by themselves.

In the late 1979's in modern and scientific America (and much of the rest of the developed world), there need be no concern for the plagues and diseases which leveled civilizations in the past: smallpox, poliomyelitis, cholera, measles, and especially systemic bacterial infection are simply not a threat to life. In one sense, then, men and women and children are much healthier than they have ever been in human life; yet, they are much more apprehensive and disappointed about their lives than ever before.

The reports of unnecessary surgeries, suicides, drug abuse, sexual perversion, alcoholism and a wide array of "nervous" disorders, affect the entire population. What is more the causes of death for most people cancer, heart disease contain a clue as to the true source and cause of the problem, the gradual withering away and withdrawal of the life Force itself. Still, women abort their children, everyone seems quite willing to ingest substances known to shorten their life span, and engage in life habits and patterns which demonstrably build disease.

Coincident with this growing lack of true health, there is an assault upon the very integrity of the physician, and the substantial proportion of malpractice suits are rooted in the common misunderstandings about medicine and responsibility for health. Patients feel that the doctor has all the answers and the patient is but a passive participant in the relationship. Such an expectation is beyond the ability of medical science to satisfy. Physicians themselves have difficulty overcoming the psychological and financial temptations involved in assuming such a role. Thus, they too fall into the traps inherent in relationships based upon unjustified dependency.

It is at this critical juncture, when Man seems to be losing the physical and psychological underpinnings necessary for rational life-that we must turn to our Gracious and Merciful Creator, Allah t'ala, for the infallible remedy and vital prescriptions for our time.

Insha allah, in this presentation, I would like to suggest some conceptual framework within which we can begin to utilize the most Complete and thorough Medical Tradition, that of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (AS), and arrive at a renewed view of man as healer and man as patient.

Allah t'ala tells us in Surah An'am, verse 17:

"If God touch thee with affliction, none can remoe it but He;" (VIII 7)

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