Historical and Social Evolution of the Healers’ istorical and Social Evolution of the Healers’ Charisma

Anja Petaros, Mislav Čavka, Andrea Šuran, Amir Muzur


This study aims to explore the relation between charisma and healing and how the concept of charisma evolved within medical profession over time.  The development of medical profession from shamans to modern medical doctors, the gradual transition from ritual to physical healing, the relation between the physician and common people, and the transition from personal to professional charisma are presented in a medico–historical context. The article concludes that there is an indisputable link between the phenomenon of charisma and healing. Healers have often been considered among the most significant charismatic figures in their societies. With time physicians have lost their personal charisma and replaced it by a stable professional charisma. Today, the growing involvement of patients in healing and demystification of the medical profession is diminishing the charisma of the physicians, although medical profession still retains qualities found in classic charismatics and with it also some authority over patients.


authority; charisma; healing; history of medicine; physician

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