Friday, November 12, 2010
Friday, November 5, 2010
Often my friends and I have been approached for help for a variety of problems, ranging from anxiety, baldness, headaches to digestive disorders and beyond. Anyone who has given advice for health, from the amateur to the professional, can all understand that there are many ways to deal with one problem. It hasn't ever been that difficult to find something that helped or made the situation bearable, but it’s always been our goal to do better than that if we can.
I recall a case I had earlier this year. This woman was suffering from some digestive problems. She had poor digestion, poor elimination, and a variety of similar problems. Being a student of Dr. Christopher, of course I was thinking of the health of the bowel. So I asked her about her diet. It wasn't ideal with the white flour biscuit she ate regularly, but something was odd. I have no endorsing love for white flour, but even though she was eating it, she was eating fruits, vegetables and other wholesome foods, and shouldn't have been having problems as severe as she was.
She was also eager to use any herbs she needed to to feel better, as well as do anything dietary that would help. So I started to probe a bit. I told her I didn't think that some of the food she was eating was helping or doing any good for her, but I didn't think that explained her problems. She asked what herbs people use for these problems. I told her about slippery elm, cleansing the colon, and things of that nature.
When I was asked if she should do these things, I expressed my concern. I knew she would certainly notice some improvement, but I dislike it when someone only feels 30% better, then plateaus in their progress. It is easy to give someone hope, and make them excited with a formula that will help them. But what really happens? This is why feedback is so important. Not getting told how someone is responding to a therapy makes it difficult to get a statistical idea of how valuable it is. Even if it does help, six months down the road, is the problem forever gone? Or does it pop up again? This is the very problem that kept mercury in use as the miracle, essential drug of choice for hundreds of years, despite the inevitable, horrific deaths.
So when I answered her question, I told her that on a very rigid diet and faithful use of herbs, I expected her to only make mediocre improvement from where she was. This is not what I normally say. I'm sure many dietary programs I've put together for people could be accurately called 'mercilessly inflexible'.
I then asked her if she had been under a lot of stress recently. That's when the tears started coming. With the amount of turmoil this person was going through, I wouldn't have expected her to digest lettuce very well. This is when we find ourselves having to work on things on an emotional level, where the concrete minerals, chemicals and plants don't have that big an impact.
We have been very fortunate in recent times to see what does work in these extreme cases. It is no secret that during World War II, you had some prisoners in concentration camps go through years of shear torture, survive, and be happier, brighter and healthier than some that had been there mere months. In almost all of these stories, the people who witnessed these scenarios attributed the well-being of these prisoners not to physical constitution, but their positive perspective on the situation. There was a common thread of love in these individuals that made them unique in the way they viewed things.
This is not to say that those with illness are hateful beings (although you can certainly find some people that are). But it does make it clear that the way we view things is worth our consideration, and might serve us in the long run to change them.
There are some curious approaches to working on the emotional level. Apart from state of mind, you see a lot of other methods in alternative healing for these. Homeopathy would be in this realm. I think Dr. Bach explained this point of view rather well. He spent years observing plants and their 'personalities'. He noticed quirks they had, like the black walnut tree growing without any other plants being able to grow near it. He saw the black walnut tree as a living example to own one’s own power, free from the influence of others.
So he prepared homeopathic extracts of these plants, in which he attempted to catch the spiritual essence or energy of the plant. The end result had no real amount of the plant or physical components left in it, which flies in the face of an atomistic point of view, which would call it a placebo at best. This debate is not the point of the newsletter, but I do nonetheless find it fascinating that homeopathy has been the biggest forerunner in developing an emotional laxative.
Stories like this happen in our own area. The manager of our local herb shop recalls a case where a woman who suffered years of coughing asked for help. She told this woman the usual herbs and traditional remedies for coughs. The woman said she had tried all of them with no results. So the manager said 'Well, what is it you're trying to say that you're not being allowed to say?'. The woman briefly looked shocked, regained her composure, and said 'Oh, well, fine then'. She then began to open up.
I have more experiences I could quote, but for the sake of brevity, I will just note some common patterns I have observed. The experienced disease is painful. It eventually hits a peak where the pain becomes so great, that the person will let go of a strong attachment to a person, thing or belief. At first they may feel like they've lost everything. But then they find that the sadness linked to what they were holding onto wasn't based on anything true. Suddenly the pain is no longer something they have to fight, but was working with them to show them what is really going on, or who they really are. It becomes a great blessing in their eyes, having helped them discover something they otherwise wouldn't have known. Gratitude swells in them for every particle of the experience, and the situation can either immediately shift or physically remain the same. It doesn't matter either way. All that's left is love.