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Traditional Medicine and Mental Health Conference in Peru

Published: April 17, 2009, Author: MHirch

“It is the lack of meaning in life what generally leads to drug-addiction,” says Jacques Mabit, director of Centro Takiwasi in Tarapoto, Peru. And if society does not deal with this, he believes there is no point in continuing to develop health policies or eradication campaigns.
“It shows the basic dysfunctionality of Western culture: the absence of a spiritual dimension.”
“This is a culture that has destroyed the meaning of the sacred, and there is a tendency to control all aspects of society, without allowing room for freedom and creativity.”

Tarapoto the Centro Takiwasi’s headquarters is located in the region of San Martin, until recently one of the main areas of the production as well as consumption of crack cocaine. As a region in the upper Amazonian, at the same time, it possesses a rich bio-diversity. Numerous native medical practices can be found that remain very vibrant and dynamic. And might propose valuable alternative therapies so much more important today considering the contemporary great challenges in public health.

The high level of efficacy of traditional medicine in the treatment of addictive pathologies like dependencies on toxic substances has been scientifically proven. While conventional medicine offers oftentimes poor results in the treatment of these illnesses.

Despite the WHO recognizing the valuable contributions made by ancestral traditional medicines (TM) in the area of Mental Health, so far, little has been done to respond to the WHO’s recommendations. To promote discuss, develop and share ideas on the valuable contribution of TM in providing solutions to the pressing and growing contemporary problems in mental health a conference on the topic is organized in the city of Tarapoto, Province of St. Martin, in the Peruvian Upper Amazon from 7 to 10 June 2009.

Chief George Manuel Memorial Indigenous Library

The library is dedicated to the memory of Secwepemc Chief George Manuel (1921-1989), to the nations of the Fourth World and to the elders and generations to come.

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