Updated: Apr 21
A patient diagnosed with cancer in India has easy access to multiple opinions. There is often more than one approach to treating the same cancer, even in extensively researched modern-day oncology. Add to this the plethora of alternative medicine practitioners and non-qualified healers, and you get a pretty colorful menu- one that range from chemotherapy and surgery one one hand, to tomato juice and sugar pills on the other.
If you keep searching for opinions, you will eventually find someone who will tell you exactly what you want to hear. For instance, if you hope to find a chemotherapy alternate that has no side effects, you will find someone willing to sell you some sugar pills. If you want the tumor in your belly to be dissolved with magic waves, you will find someone to sell you that too. It won't work, but that doesn't mean someone wont offer it. There's plenty takers for this voodoo- because if you actually believe that a qualified cancer surgeon and the Godman with the tomato are equal authorities on the subject, why will you opt to undergo the knife? As it turns out, if you are simple-minded believer of magic and are unfortunate enough to face a life threatening disease like cancer, the odds are stacked against you.
"Why would they give it to me if it didn't work?" you may ask. The sad reality is that even after your lack of ability to discern science from voodoo has cost you your life, your 'healer' wont have learnt anything. He or she would be damned if they learnt from experience- that would be ridiculously akin to "evidence based medicine" wouldn't it.? In their world its unlikely that your cancer was curable disease even in early stage (cancer staging- whats that?!)
These magic healers do have one thing going for them-they are easy to relate to. They aren't these overqualified 'distant' oncologists; and their misguided sense of hope brings them close to the patients they share it with. Their 'kind' methods are the very thing their desperate patient is hoping to find.
I wonder at times whether these folks aren't crooks at all. Its likely they are just intellectually lazy individuals who in fact believe in what they do. They then get put on a pedestal by those even more simple-minded than they are. All in all, this cocktail of ignorance and incompetence, mixed with likability and unhindered confidence makes for one hell of a 'healer' who says "Come here don't worry, take this -no side effects" and kills you with the very kindness you seek.