Eastern medicine refers to the more ancient and close to earth forms of medicine that are still practiced. Eastern medicine is a form of medicine that is dichotomized from Western medicine, and represents the more organic but also the less scientific of the two branches of medicine. Western medicine is more recent and focuses on the science of a particular condition, as well as treating it through pharmacological methods.
Eastern medicine originates from ancient societies, such as India, China, Japan, Greece and other Asian and European cultures. The methodologies of these medical practices included the use of herbal and plant remedies to treat disease and dysfunction, and the application of preventative medicine by examining the patient’s inner and outer life to treat their entire person instead of merely their illness. This metaphysical examination of a person, in addition to a physical examination, is what Western medicine called “unscientific.”
The idea that Eastern medicine is less scientific than Western medicine is becoming a dated notion. Throughout the 19th century and for a majority of the 20th century, Eastern medicine was largely regarded as quackery in Western culture. As the marriage of science and medicine commenced in the Western world, Eastern practices became somewhat obsolete. However, in the latter part of the 20th century, value began to be restored to Eastern philosophies of medicine. Physicians and the populous alike began to observe the value of a medical practice that examined the person’s entire life rather than only their illness. This, along with the value on sensible preventative medicine, is returning Eastern medicine to a place of respect in Western culture.
For decades, even centuries, a bias has existed against Eastern medicine and favored Western medicine, but that is changing with the emergence of homeopathic and naturopathic practices across North America. Participating in medical treatments that are natural and organic have never been so popular in North America.