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SPREADING STRESS GERMS DR. SHRINIWAS KASHALIKAR One of the major stressors; in our society is; advertising spree on print and electronic media; of products detrimental to the individual and universal welfare. Whether we are involved in creating and telecasting; these ill conceived, ill informed, ill intentioned and ill informing advertisements; or we are victims of these advertisements; in either case; we are bound to undergo pathological stress; and ruin ourselves and others. When we are shamelessly and unabashedly obsessed by our petty pursuits; we get blinded to the most vital principles; viz. individual and universal blossoming. Because we get blinded to such a sublime principle; we create laws, policies, rules and administrative system; which promote manufacture, promotion, and use of products, which are detrimental to individual and universal health and well being. Alternatively; because as we are blind; we use and make publicity by word of mouth; of the products detrimental to individual and universal health and well being. The case in point is advertisements of disinfectants, washing powders, washing bars and toilet soaps! The illusory fear of germs; is conceived and spread through the media systematically, followed by suitable policies, plans and programs; to benefit the manufacture, marketing and sale of germicides; in various forms! The advertisers blatantly claim anywhere from 90 to 99 percent disinfection, when no one knows the number of organisms; before and after the use of a particular disinfectant. But we; because of our blindness, ignorance, indolence and non-receptivity to wisdom; believe and fall prey to such advertisements; and also become party to spread the “stress of germs” and “germs of stress”! Actually the medical science is in total agreement on the fact that the “germ theory”, which proposed that the germ is a singular cause of infective and infectious diseases, is far from being completely true. The mass of germs, which include; viruses, bacteria, ricketssiae, fungi, protozoa and so on; constitutes; according some authorities; approximately 100 times the mass of human beings. In other words; they are ubiquitous. We are surrounded in and out by them! Moreover the germs are not always harmful. There are symbiotic (beneficially dependent on each other), commensals (harmlessly coexisting together) and saprophytes (living on dead tissues), which are harmless and/or useful germs. Even those germs, which can infect and harm us (referred to as virulent or pathogenic); do so; only when our immune system i.e. body resistance is relatively inefficient and/or their number is excessively increased, in very short time so that we can not resist. By overproduction, deceitful advertisements; and sale; of the soaps, disinfectants, and germicides; we are destroying the natural oil (sebum) and useful organisms in our skin, thus rendering our skin dry and lusterless and vulnerable to infections; and rendering our sewage and sullage (the silt washed down); detrimental to the fertility of our soil. Once upon a time; we (if urgently required) used (and very rightly so) fruits such as lemon, ritha, gram flour, milk, honey and such natural products for body cleaning and neem, cow urine and such natural and harmless products for disinfection. Thirty nine years ago I bought; a toilet soap and used it with great (idiotic) pride! But ever since, for last thirty nine years; I have been feeling very happy (and wisely so); in not using toilet soap for either bath or washing face; barring in few exceptional circumstances! As a rule, I take bath (which has ten different health benefits, according to Hindu Shastra) twice a day, instead of once! I am happy to share with the readers, that excepting once, (due to reduction in my body resistance due to metabolic problems) I have never suffered with fungal infection of skin or bad body odor. Without any cosmetic efforts, my hair and skin do not look weary, lusterless, older or more wrinkled than friends of my age. What is true about disinfectants, soap and germicides; is also true for tooth pastes. The advertisers of tooth pastes and tooth powders variably claim that there is 90 to 99 percent disinfection within few minutes. How can one measure the quantity and/or count the number of different varieties of germs and/or identify and confirm their harmful nature (virulence or pathhogenicity) or otherwise; before and after the use of tooth paste? But we blindly “see” some mercenary voluptuous model brushing teeth and grinning to show her or his teeth; and embracing some other mercenary individual; and begin to brush with the same tooth paste! I also used to get influenced by such gimmicks and hence brush teeth with some popular and hyped tooth paste; only to show that I was “modern, progressive and advanced”! This was also because foreign ideologies and way of life were hailed and hyped as superior; and being Hindu and Indian was inculcated (directly and indirectly and knowingly and unknowingly) to be retrogressive, primitive, unscientific, lowly and backward! But today, I am pleasantly disillusioned. I do not any more think that daily brushing with some hyped tooth paste; is essential! I use tooth powder and rub my teeth and gums in a prayerful attitude and with great happiness and self esteem! To my great satisfaction, I don’t have halitosis (bad mouth odor) and I do not have any tooth problems; for last at least 20 years! Like disinfectants, soaps and germicides and tooth pastes, there is propaganda of products depending upon the season and situation. Thus spread of germs through water is hyped during monsoon. It is true that water borne diseases are common in rainy season. But they are common due to scarcity of water during summer also; and not merely due to contamination of drinking water; by sewage and sullage; as often occurs; during rainy season. In any case; that is no excuse for blatantly threatening the people with the fear of diseases and coaxing them to buy water filters and/or mineral water bottles. What is actually required is adequate supply of safe drinking water. We are abysmally ignorant about the truth (and ignorant about ignorance) underlying the claims; of killing a specific organism such as swine flu, specific percentage of killing such as 99 percent, specific stoppage of hair fall such as 98 percent, specific stoppage of splitting of hair such as 97 percent, and specific certification of a particular product about its efficacy by some medical or dental association with respect to the content, dependability, guarantee and basis such certification such as double blind clinical trials! Can we “see the truth” and defeat the “stress of germs” and “germs of stress” caused by wrong policies, plans and programs; promoting overproduction, propaganda, hype and inadvertent and indiscriminate use; of potentially harmful disinfectants, soaps, germicides, tooth pastes, water filters and mineral water? Yes! We can! As regards the “stress of germs”; we can take certain simple precautionary measures, such as drinking sufficient water in morning, eating two leaves of neem, tulasi (holy basil) and bel each; taking juice of aloe Vera (korphad i.e. kumari) and tinospora cordifolia (gulvel i.e. guduchi), eating Chyavanaprash 1 teaspoon daily, drinking a cup of cow milk with turmeric (halad), dry ginger (sunth) and honey (madh), doing Kapalbhati i.e. active abdominal expiration without discomfort; (while making sure that we don't have trauma, surgery, hernia of any kind and pregnancy and any other wound on abdominal or related regions), taking bath, changing clothes and washing hands; at least twice a day, applying a drop of cow ghee, anu tail, shadbindu tail or panchendriya vardhan tail in both nostrils, taking a capsule of multivitamin and B complex alternate day, avoiding lifts (elevators) and crowded places and centrally air conditioned places such as railway stations; and cinema halls, theatres, and malls respectively; to reduce the chances of infections, taking decoction of jaggery, pepper (kali mirch) and ginger (or adding it to tea) if we are suffering from cough and cold, and thereby get fair degree of protection, though; no one, including the advertisers of various products mentioned above, can give any guarantee! But over and above all, we can conquer all the varieties of stress; by; practicing NAMASMARAN on the top priority basis, getting its universal and eternal empowerment and enlightenment, seeing the truth; and responding wisely, fearlessly and appropriately in any and every challenging situation.

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