As are many scholars today, Tibetan historians looking back on the early period were troubled by the relationship between medicine and Buddhism. The
existence of two historical narratives about the origins of Tibetan medicine suggest that historians felt conflicted about the relationship between medicine and Buddhism. Most Tibetan historians emphasize the cosmopolitan nature of the early period of medical learning and development, as we will see in the next few pages. But another strain of historiography, by contrast, emphasizes the contextualization of Tibetan medical knowledge within the history of Buddhism in India. As Buddhism increasingly dominated Tibetan intellectual and institutional domains, a pressure to make medicine Buddhist is seen not only in the historiography of medicine but also in the way medical scholars wrote about topics such as the structure and origins of the human body.