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Recipes for Immortality – Healing, Religion, and Community in South India - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Recipes for Immortality: Healing, Religion, and Community in South India

Richard S Weiss


This book illuminates the present success of traditional doctors by examining the ways that siddha medical practitioners in Tamil south India have won the trust and patronage of patients. While biomedicine might alleviate a patient’s physical distress, siddha doctors offer their clientele much more: affiliation to a timeless and pure community, the fantasy of a Tamil utopia, and even the prospect of immortality. They speak of a golden age of Tamil civilization and of traditional medicine, drawing on broader revivalist formulations of a pure and ancient Tamil community. This work illuminates th ... More

Keywords: siddha medicine, India, Hinduism, traditional medicine, healing, siddhas, siddhars, Tamil, science and religion, healing and religion

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2009 Print ISBN-13: 9780195335231
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195335231.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Richard S Weiss, author
Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand
Author Webpage