The human body in the fullness of health is an instrument of almost infinite possibilities. No other mechanism in all the world is capable of so wide a range of application and development. When we reflect upon all that man has done we realize that there must be almost no limit to the genius of his mind or the magic of his touch. “What man has done man can do”, and, sooner or later along comes someone who sets a new record of achievement.
Although genius may express itself in the face of apparently overwhelming odds and terrific physical handicaps, nevertheless tireless energy and radiant health make easier the path of attainment and help to bring into actually the ruling desires of the mind and heart. Realization comes generally to those whose thoughts and desires are sharply focussed.
Radiant health. Is it yours? No. Is it mine? No. We, most of us, are just dragging along and trying to take things as they come. Of course, we are not as young as we used to be but, after all, that is really no excuse. Health should not be so much a matter of age or years.
At one of the meetings of the Hahnemannian Round Table in Philadelphia the point was made that everyone, sick or well, should have his chronic or constitutional remedy worked out and prescribed from time to time as necessary. One of the students took exception to the idea that well people should require treatment. It was explained that the term well was used relatively and that in our present civilization there is scarcely to be found an individual who is entirely well and free from at least some deviation from normal health. This the student resented as an erroneous and morbidly pessimistic attitude of mind for a physician to entertain.
Each student in the group was then questioned individually to ascertain the presence or absence of symptoms indicative of a subnormal state of health. Although the gentlemen were all in their twenties and some no more than twenty-two and twenty-three years of age, none were entirely free from complaints. Even surgeons had been working on some of them.
Of course, we often hear of someone who was “never sick a day in his life”. Such people are not always a safe risk. Every now and then they do the unexpected. Sudden death from apoplexy or heart disease proves how deceptive may be the ruddy or florid complexion and the firm, unfaltering step.
On the other hand, there is the individual who is always complaining and apparently enjoying a certain amount of poor health. If a little ache or pain comes along, on the air it goes and duly amplified. Some such people are eating three square meals a day at eighty or ninety years of age and still complaining.
In general, the more expressive a patient is the less deeply affected is he. This rule applies not only to expressions of grief, anger and other emotional states, but also to disease expressions in the form of abscesses, eruptions and catarrhal discharges. Beware of the hidden things– sullen anger, silent grief, pent up and unexpressed emotions. Always lend a kindly ear to one who finds it imperatively necessary to “get something off his chest”. Emotions, like electricity, can be built up to high voltage and dangerous potential.
People differ greatly in sensitiveness and, consequently, in their reaction to certain conditions. There is, for example, a tremendous range to pain sensitivity. One would scarcely expect the pugilist, the wrestler or the stevedore to be as sensitive as the poet, the artist or the musician.
For countless centuries disease has been shrouded in mystery. In fact, to a great extent it still is. Sickness and sin have been associated more or less in the mind of the race from ancient times, although seldom in a rational or practical manner. To this very day many a poor sufferer feels that he is being punished for some or all of his innumerable misdeeds, but just why he should be singled out as the object of divine wrath is quite beyond his comprehension.
Disease has remained more or less a mystery largely because it has been approached with fear and awe as if it were essentially and of necessity mysterious.
Intelligent people no longer regard sickness as an act of God or the work of the devil. Nevertheless, many educated men and women are unreasonably afraid of disease germs. The big, old devil has been supplanted by countless billions of little, microscopic devils, but the fear remains.
The modern bacterial theory of disease causation has failed to solve the mystery, and the immunizing campaigns based upon this inadequate theory are insidiously poisoning and slowly undermining the health of the oncoming generation. In fact, it is more than suspected by many physicians that the progressive increase in cancer and other forms of malignant disease are definitely related to the growing volume of traffic in serums, vaccines and other commercially successful biological products.
Faulty living is the cause of disease. Countless generations of ignorant, selfish and greedy living have produced deformities, warpings of mind and body and practically every disease and misery known to man. Effect follows cause, in this as in every other department of life and nature.
There is no exception to and no escape from the universal operation of natural law. The past holds us in its grip, but through the ever-fleeting present we can, to a considerable extent, modify and mould the future, not only for ourselves but for unborn millions, whose heritage of health and happiness the present generation now holds in trust.
If the idea of individual and collective responsibility could be inoculated into every child and held as a conviction through life, misery and suffering would burn themselves out to a great extent in the course of comparatively few generations, and humanity would live in health and peace, fearing neither war, famine nor pestilence. If this is asking too much, then the future must of necessity enfold less fortunate and inspiring eventualities.
The very day a child is born his troubles often begin. He is for the most part wrongly fed, wrongly clothed, and more or less improperly managed in general. It is becoming increasingly uncommon for a mother to adequately nourish her children as Nature intended. Sometimes this is due to physiological inability as from poor health, faulty diet and incorrect mode of life. Sometimes the failure is one of choice, for which there is no valid excuse and no explanation save monumental selfishness and deliberate shirking or maternal responsibility.
Occasionally a physician orders the discontinuance of breast feeding. At times this is really necessary for the good of the mother or the child or both. Frequently, however, such action is ill-advised, in as much as suitable hygienic and dietetic management and careful constitutional treatment of the mother will often enable her to continue nursing with mutual benefit to herself and her offspring.
In case artificial feeding is resorted to, the danger of nutritional derangement becomes a very real one. Pasteurized milk is deficient in lime, phosphorus and in Vitamin C and these deficiencies must be made up by the use of supplemental foods. Orange juice and other citrus fruit juices will supply Vitamin C, but the addition of lime water to the milk mixture will by no means supply lime to the tissue cells. It will merely cause lime-salt indigestion and disturb the body chemistry. There are all sorts of infant food preparations on the market. Most of them are poorly balanced and many of them provide a carbohydrate excess. These foods are advertised as supplying all the essential minerals and some of the vitamins as well. The minerals thus supplied are mostly inorganic and, therefore, in a form largely unavailable for use. They merely bombard and irritate the cells, they cannot feed them.
Certified or clean raw milk provides a more complete food than does pasteurized milk and this should be suitably modified according to the directions of the attending physician.
Chemical treatment of the water supply is, in the absence of adequately controlled filtration, perhaps necessary in order to prevent typhoid fever and other intestinal infections. Nevertheless, these chemicals are constipating to many children and adults and they are, moreover, insidiously toxic to susceptible individuals.
The laxative drug habit is often established during infancy and childhood and may lead to life-long chronic constipation and an endless chain of obscure symptoms and complaints.
Other forms of slow drug poisoning are all too common and unsuspected. Many medical preparations advertised in the papers and magazines and over the radio are not only entirely worthless; if they were merely worthless we could almost forgive them, but they are absolutely damnable in their effect upon the system. The tremendous traffic in some of these nostrums is an index to the woeful ignorance and colossal greed of the manufacturers, the cunning of the advertisers and the gullibility of an incredible number of people. The indiscriminate use of drugs is so great that if all such traffic could be stopped once and for all a tremendous load of needless misery, suffering and disease would be lifted. Suppose sane living could be substituted for useless drugging. Sane living would not pay such big dividends but it would necessitate a change of occupation for a lot of people, and anyway it is easier to drag along in the same old rut.
Ignorance and selfishness and greed, are more deadly than all the disease germs yet discovered, for after all germs are more a result of disease processes than a cause of disease.
Greed adulterates many articles of diet and adds dangerous chemicals and preservatives to our food and drink. It lures many to alcoholism and to narcotic drug addiction. It scares us into spending huge sums for patient medicines. Through the power of advertising it creates new appetites and unnatural cravings for a host of harmful and nonsensical concoctions of every kind and description.
Time will not permit of further illustrations of disease causation. Much of our disability is due to our own dietetic errors and to our own careless and thoughtless habits of living. A little self analysis, a little study and reflection will show us many ways in which to help ourselves and our families to a larger share of health and happiness.
Scientists will continue to pursue germs to the ends of the earth and to search for serums with which to combat the germs. These pursuits may bring fame and fortune to some of the pursuers but they will never reveal the cause nor provide the cure of the plagues which torment mankind.