Kalarippayat: Ancient Healing for Today

In Kannur, India, Gurukkal C. Muhammed Sherif and his family are bringing health and wellbeing to a spreading number of Western visitors, and local people. Thanks to this shared knowledge of an ancient healing and fighting practice that was almost wiped out during British colonial rule, many Europeans and locals are reclaiming the health of their minds and bodies.

Though colonialism’s days are done, domination of cultures continues in other forms. Like so many individuals around the world, Gurukkal Sherifks was pressured to walk away from a lineage of understanding to pursue economic goals.

As Wade Davis says, what might we lose if we continue to allow the ‘crude face of power’, in its various forms, to take precedence over the world’s cultural knowledge?

The exchange of knowledge and ‘way of life’ happening in Kannur is a real example of the value of a world full of diverse intelligence and understanding.