by Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharya
The current raging debate demands to know whether we will be forced by governments to get vaccinated. Parents work themselves into a panic attack worrying about a microchip or heavy metal being injected into their children. Pro-vaxx advocates shout reminders of the scourges of measles, smallpox and polio and how they killed our children just 100 years ago. They thank God for the brilliant men who invented vaccines and those great companies who make them available. They are ready to pre-order the corona vaccine and wait on line as they do on Black Friday for a new dishwasher.
Modern vaccines are not as well understood as we imagine they are from the data we are shown. The public certainly do not understand how vaccines work. Public health graduates often muddle the issues, settling on the points handed to them in class. Health officials find it easier not to keenly observe what is happening because the realities of cold chain are disparaging and the information on the science keeps changing. Instead authorities simply obey the laws, relying on greater authorities. We all trust that the science is determined by smarter people who are in charge of knowing the Truth.
Transparency in science is assumed. Logic and objectivity rule. Yet, though talks on immunology may be free on the internet, most do not have an education complicated enough to understand vaccine technology, the language of medicine, engineering, pharmaceutics and the epidemiologic process of testing. Most of society follows along, blindly quoting reliable journalists and recycled, easy-to-digest injections on Facebook that advise us to defer to expert immunologists who appear in suits or labcoats.
Who are these experts? Experts Dr. Amulya Panda and Dr. Bali Pulendran remind fellow immunologists that coronavirus has challenged the very tenets of what we thought we understood about the immune system. Now that is embarrassing, after billions of dollars on research… Researchers state today that the antibodies made to corona are disappearing in months. Those who recover from Covid-19 often have no antibodies in their blood to show that they encountered the virus. Vaccinated people can still infect others. People dying with coronavirus infection are not dying of known coronavirus complications. The virus mutates and gives unpredictable variants of diseases. The testing for the virus is often 40% sensitive, meaning scientifically that it cannot accurately detect Covid-19 60% of the time.
The immunologists and vaccine makers will be the first to tell you that there are a lot of unknowns on the road to making a vaccine. The process is a sandwich made over several eras, from understanding how the human immune system works against a particular virus, to how to preserve a vaccine in a vial and get it safely into a person to evoke an immune system response. Using knowledge from different disciplines brought together to test something that should work is a feat, because everyone is in it for the prize. Either the test wins and money is made, or it fails and money is lost. This gamble is readily prone to investments where greedy hands not only exchange bets but do their best to manipulate whatever is needed so that their investments bear fruit, regardless of whether the truth wins. Each step along the patchy road of vaccine science is an opportunity to win big, but also to bend the reality to make it yield dollars in an already uncertain world.
Vaccine technologists alter each simple component of a vaccine slightly to comply with patent rules so that profit can be made. Because each step is done by a different type of scientist, none of whom can take personal responsibility for the human immunological reaction of their work, they are safe from prosecution. But they do not connect the dots from molecule to clinical efficacy.
To prevent dissent from the public, the regulators, or any voice that may minimize profit, large voluntary organizations are recruited for public health awareness. They are armed with selective knowledge and sent out to the radiowaves with clever and compassionate stories to get into our psyche that not vaccinating is unAmerican, unDemocratic, and pure quackery. They do not allow us to trust our instincts, fully confident that all of us have lost our intuitive powers as they have.
What endangers us is not the vaccine but the process used to make the vaccines, by people who understand only a small portion of the spectrum and never learn the big picture because they are not clinicians working with living human bodies. Instead of non-invasive powders or pastes on the skin as were used in olden times, injections are made with suspensions in sterile liquids and using preservatives to keep the virus alive but not too alive. The vaccine molecule should be stable in nature to have the most robust effects on the natural human body. A vaccine should not be genetically manipulated, but naturally bred like pink flowers genetically hybridized from red and white flowers. American vaccines put 3-4 vaccines into the same vial to quicken the dose, which task the immune system and penalize those children whose parents did not learn how to develop a robust immune system in them. Most parents leave health responsibility to a pediatrician, most of whom know disease better than wellness. Ancient immune-building practices used nature-made stabilizers, something well-known in Ayurveda.
The medical hegemony tries to convince us that sophisticated sterile vials with expensive cold chains is a superior way of vaccination. Yet we know that these hi-tech methods fail too often. Instead, playing in the mud as a child prevents childhood asthma and clean syndrome. We know that mother’s milk, fresh vegetables, and unprocessed wheat build the gut microbiome and the immune system. After the immune system is robust around age three, a child should be exposed gradually to poisons, toxins, and various challenges to continue its immune growth.
Immunity-building in Ayurveda emphasized making the ecosystem of the body so robust that no micro-organism could penetrate. Known as krimi or bhuta, these micro-organisms could mutate based on the combination of energy and matter in the environment, and thus protection of the body was an exercise in building strong tissues and resilient channels, much as we do with our land. Medicines were delivered using stable molecules produced in Nature, by Nature, in an individualized way to the recipient based on ten factors that determine the readiness of a person. These instructions are detailed in the texts on kaumar-bhrita, the study of healthy children, robustly understood by those practicing authentic Ayurveda, waiting to be rediscovered by anyone who can think openly.
The ancient production of vaccine-like protection remains suppressed today because it would reveal the lack of intellectual property that would actually be required to develop a robust competent immune system as a whole functioning part of an individual’s ecosystem. Emphasis on health rather than a science that nullifies ancient clinical observations science would put Health back into World Health Organization. Suppression allows westerners to claim intellectual rights on technology and true discoveries made by ancient scientists and used quietly, steadily, and successfully in quiet corners of the Ayurvedic world.
Should you vaccinate? If you can become robust in a process of preparing the environment of your body, known as ksetrikarana, you will be ready for a safely made vaccine. Demand this wisdom to be learned by the doctors who claim to understand science. Boost your immune system with the right foods and lifestyle for a month before the vaccination, and use herbs that line up the body’s defenses, such as guduchi and tulsi. Fear destabilizes the mind and immune system, so meditate daily, especially as you will need your instinctive powers. Ayurveda whispers that vaccination is simply an exercise in building up your immune system so strong that you can digest poison and transmute it.
Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharya
The South Asian Times columnist Dr. Bhaswati Bhattacharya is a Fulbright Specialist 2018‐2022 in Public Health and Clinical Asst Professor of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College in New York. Her scientist father developed vaccines. Her bestselling book Everyday Ayurveda is published by Penguin Random House. [email protected] www.drbhaswati.com