Jesuit Relations Proposal Paper
Disease and Medicine
The views taken by the Jesuits and Hurons towards medicine and disease varied during the spread of old world disease among the native population of North America. These two groups had very different ways of dealing with the diseases and there use of medicine. Throughout the reading of chapter 3 in the Jesuit Relations book, we see certain ways that these two groups collided heads because they did not seem to agree with each other’s methods. They (Jesuits and Hurons) both wanted to do help their town population and the only ways they knew what to do is what their culture and people had already done years before. Some of the methods of these groups worked while others not so much.
First point of view to be touched on is the Jesuits and what their role was during the old-world diseases. The Jesuits really focused on the question of why rather than how disease spread (The Jesuit Relations, page. 71). They questioned it, meaning disease, and believed that it was God’s plan to get certain people sick to “punish the wicked, test the resolution of the virtuous, or simply gather souls to heaven” (The Jesuit Relations, page 71). They thought God was testing them and was punishing certain groups or people. The Jesuits were already immune to some of the diseases that is why there population did not get hit as hard by some of the old-world diseases then others. Their main idea was that they (Jesuits) are that they were not doctors. All they wanted to do is to save the souls of the sick, and as well as that they baptized the dead. The Jesuits did not believe in reviving and curing the dead. This was all apart of Gods way and the sick would be baptized and join his or her family and friends in heaven. That was their idea and these people understood this and believed that it was the right thing to do; it was the way of God. Another idea they believed in was that if a person is ill,...