November 30, 1907


JAMA. 1907;XLIX(22):1850. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.02530220038011

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Sir Lauder Brunton is responsible, or the reporters have made him so, for the "unorthodox" (as it might be called) suggestion that if the Brahmins could persuade the Hindoo natives of India that the sacrifice of a dead rat as often as possible to Kali, the goddess of destruction, would avert pestilence, rats would very soon be destroyed and plague be at an end. To the average Anglo-Indian this idea would probably not seem especially out of the way. The average man sees no harm in utilizing the religious superstition of the natives for their temporal salvation, but how about the medical missionaries, on whom must largely depend the influencing of the native mind in matters of medicine and hygiene? It is not probable that there will be any attempt to follow out this suggestion, but an interesting opportunity for casuistry would be afforded if it were.

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