Tuesday, May 25, 2021

927: MedicaL Science...

Of course, homo sapiens has been familiar with illnesses and injuries from day one. 


Ötzi, also called the Iceman, is the natural mummy of a man who lived between 3400 and 3100 BCE, discovered in September 1991 


in the Ötztal Alps on the border between Austria and Italy. One of his possessions was herbs, probably used for medical purposes.


In Babylonia, the oldest known text is the "Treatise of Medical Diagnoses and Prognoses" from circa 1600 BC. 


It consists of forty clay tablets and contains about three thousand descriptions of diseases and their course. 


The Diagnostic Handbook, Sakikkil, dates from five centuries later. From this handbook, we also know the author, 


Esagil-kin-apli, who was a court scholar in the service of King Adad-apla-iddina (1067-1046 BC). 


This handbook contains not only descriptions of diseases, but also diagnostic procedures. 


The Babylonians were able to distinguish a variety of ailments, from strokes and epilepsy to disorders of the eyes, ears, skin, and heart.


In addition, the manual provides directions for the treatment of the conditions. 


Egyptian medicine is older than that in Babylonia: the Kahun papyrus from circa 1800 BC is in fact the oldest surviving medical document. 


It contains descriptions of women's diseases, elaborations on fertility and infertility, and the first description of a contraceptive. 


The later Ebers papyrus from around 1550 BC is no less than 20 meters long and lists seven hundred medicines and eight hundred prescriptions.


Some of these drugs indicate proven procedures. For example, the fried beef liver was prescribed for night blindness, which is rich in vitamin A, a deficiency of which can indeed cause the disease. 


As in legal science and astronomy, diagnoses, prognoses, and treatments followed an IF - THAN pattern. 


Within this pattern, we can distinguish three basic patterns in the Diagnostic Manual. 


The first pattern makes a diagnosis based on symptoms, sometimes with a prognosis: IF <symptoms> THEN <diagnosis and / or prognosis>. 


The other basic pattern establishes a treatment based on a diagnosis, sometimes mentioning the prognosis: IF <diagnosis> THEN <treatment and / or prognosis>. 


The patterns in the Diagnostic Handbook are systematically arranged, along the body from head to foot and left to right.


Nowadays it is possible to predict on the basis of genetic properties that someone will develop this or that condition. 


Of course, no such knowledge structure existed in the days of Egyptians and Babylonians. The pattern they followed was the IF - THAN pattern. 


There are no theoretical medical treatises from that time. It is therefore not known how the causal rules came about. 


The diagnostic and treatment rules may have arisen through trial-and-error in connection with traditional and ritual practices. 


There was no distinction between magic and germs as the cause of disease. The treatment could just as well consist of a herbal paste or an amulet or incantation formulas. 


But the gathering and recording of medical knowledge had thus begun.


Thank you for your attention again....


MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
Rens Bod: "Een Wereld vol Patronen".  2019

The Discussion

[13:16] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman

[13:16] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:17] herman Bergson: What strikes me is how the consciousness of causality is so deeply embedded in our system

[13:17] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): seems to me it took a very long time between treatment then and today

[13:17] herman Bergson: We can't do without it

[13:18] herman Bergson: Some treatments were even counterproductive Beertje

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): like drinking mercury and crude oil

[13:18] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): those are classics

[13:19] CB Axel nods

[13:19] herman Bergson: or 'aderlating'.....draining blood from the patient...

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): OR radioactive things

[13:19] herman Bergson: I don't know the english word

[13:19] CB Axel: Or drinking bleach or taking hydrocholoroquin for covid. :)

[13:19] herman Bergson: lol

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hahahahaha yes

[13:19] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lol CB

[13:19] CB Axel: Blood letting, Herman.

[13:19] herman Bergson: it isfrom all times CB

[13:19] CB Axel: Or just bleeding.

[13:20] herman Bergson: ahh yes, blood letting

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (takes a slurp of hydrazine) mmm yum! Rocket fuel!

[13:20] CB Axel: If you drain enough blood you won't have a disease any more.

[13:20] herman Bergson: good for your hair, Bejiita :-)

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (flies through roof with a crash) CRABROOOSSSH!

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ooops sorry!

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hhahaha

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (rubs head)

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): indeeed many crazy methods existed, some worked some didn't

[13:21] herman Bergson: Again, given the circumstances....people in those days behaved as intelligent as we do

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the ones that worked are still around

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): more or less

[13:22] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah

[13:22] herman Bergson: The brain didn't evolved further since those days it seems

[13:22] oola Neruda: I spent some time with Native Americans... and their concepts were quite ... unusual

[13:22] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok

[13:22] CB Axel: Like what, oola?

[13:23] herman Bergson: Spend some time with Republicans and you find really unusual concepts :-)

[13:23] oola Neruda: well... witches... ghosts... magic... etc

[13:23] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): grins

[13:23] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa the usual stuff them

[13:23] oola Neruda: same in Africa

[13:23] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): WODOO

[13:23] CB Axel: Those seem normal for that time.

[13:23] herman Bergson: That you find still today in African countries where they do not trust western medicine

[13:23] oola Neruda: but there is modern medicine in both instances... but it is suspected of being bad

[13:24] CB Axel: When something isn't understood the go-to explanation is usually magic or something supernatural.

[13:24] herman Bergson: Well...as I said...in those old times magic and medicine were  close and used next to each other

[13:25] herman Bergson: That is what Egyptians and Babylonians did CBm, indeed

[13:25] CB Axel: Too many people now still do it.

[13:25] CB Axel: God will cure them.

[13:25] oola Neruda: the Native American stance is... the doctor "gave me".... the flue or whatever the doctor said... chicken pox... the diagnosis.... but they felt that he gave that disease to them

[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): give them some mercury mixed with hydrazine and bleach, maybe a bit sulphuric acid to top it off

[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): that should do magic!

[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lol

[13:26] CB Axel: Death cures everything.

[13:26] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): there is only one man who needs that Bejiita

[13:26] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well not sure i would want to drink that for sure

[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehe indeed

[13:27] herman Bergson: the fact is, that medicines is knowledge and where there is no knowledge there is room for all kinds of beliefs

[13:28] oola Neruda: the Chinese emperor who had the clay armies buried.... was given mercury on a regular basis... he went mad

[13:28] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): like a hatter (same form of poisoning)

[13:28] CB Axel: Those clay armies are pretty cool, though. :)

[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa yes

[13:29] CB Axel: Right, Bejiita.

[13:29] herman Bergson: I  agree CB

[13:29] oola Neruda: but not before preparing his "tomb" which included a RIVER of mercury to sustain him after life.... it is also why modern archeologists won't examine the "tomb" closely

[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): that sounds more like a trap to me

[13:30] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): but well that was indeed what they believed back then

[13:30] oola Neruda: no... he / they really believed in the mercury.... although they did notice his "decline" mentaly

[13:30] herman Bergson: What you see here is, that the medical actions were based on the IF - THEN pattern,

[13:30] CB Axel: Modern medicines are poisons, too, if the wrong amounts are taken.

[13:31] herman Bergson: but there was no underlying theory about the human body, about metabolism etc

[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): like ooops he died! maybe mercury was no good medicine after all!

[13:31] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): they couldn't know that at that time

[13:31] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): nope

[13:31] herman Bergson: Right Beertje

[13:31] CB Axel: They believed in the "humours."

[13:31] herman Bergson: for instance

[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): what i believe is they thought the liquid metal was sort of magic and thus had healing properties

[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): thats one theory

[13:32] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): as we don't know everything about the human body

[13:32] oola Neruda: blood letting with leaches

[13:32] CB Axel: We still use words like phlegmatic or sanguine to describe people's moods in English.

[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): because metals are normally solid

[13:32] herman Bergson: underlying theories in medicine date from the 19th century

[13:33] CB Axel: We still use leeches, too.

[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ah

[13:33] oola Neruda: 78yuk

[13:33] herman Bergson: At this moment with the Babylonians we are centuries away from the emergence of scientific theory

[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): (shudders)

[13:34] herman Bergson: In other words, we have still some lectures to go to see that happen.....^_^

[13:34] herman Bergson: For now we may put our brains to rest and enjoy a nice weekend....

[13:34] CB Axel: I'm afraid we're going backwards.

[13:34] oola Neruda: there is a book out now... amazing one... about the woman who came up with Crisper

[13:34] CB Axel: There are too many undereducated people around.

[13:34] herman Bergson: For some the Holy Spirit may come :-)

[13:35] herman Bergson: you mean that DNA technique oola?

[13:35] oola Neruda: yesw

[13:35] oola Neruda: yes

[13:35] CB Axel: Did you hear that the lawyer for one of the people who attacked the US capital building said that those people are just stupid?

[13:36] CB Axel: He's having to defend someone is it mentally deficient.

[13:36] herman Bergson: oh....yes good argument....

[13:36] CB Axel: Although, I think they're probably just uneducated.

[13:36] oola Neruda: yes

[13:36] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the mob dudes?

[13:36] oola Neruda: lack of education

[13:37] CB Axel: Yes, Bejiita.

[13:37] Athwale: i need to go, sorry

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well that is definitley true

[13:37] Athwale: have a nice evening

[13:37] CB Axel: The US educational systems are terrible.

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa ok At

[13:37] CB Axel: Bye, Athwale.

[13:37] oola Neruda: and attitudes around them that do not encourage education

[13:37] herman Bergson: Time to end our discussion.....

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): bye then

[13:37] Athwale: thank you Herman

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): cu arotound

[13:37] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:37] herman Bergson: Thank you all again ....

[13:37] CB Axel: Thank you, Herman.

[13:37] herman Bergson: Class dismissed....

[13:38] CB Axel: Bye, everyone. I hope you have a nice weekend. :)

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:38] herman Bergson: It is back to normal for you again CB :-)

[13:38] CB Axel: Now I'll go change into some more comfortable clothes. :)

[13:39] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): i like it the way you are dressed

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yes

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):


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