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Chapter 15 Excretions of the Body and the Mind, and their Relation

There are several organs whose physiological to separate from the blood the worn out, broken down, and devitalized particles, which can be of no further use in the system, and whose continuance there is positively injurious to the vital functions. If left to accumulate, the body becomes so far dead, as those corpuscles are no longer capable of receiving and retaining the influx of vital force from the animating spirit. Their connection and correspondence with the soul-principle is already sundered. The healthful state of the general system requires that they should be expelled from it, and their place supplied by new particles.

A great proportion of the diseases, for which the medical profession are called upon to prescribe, can be traced, in their secondary causes, to a want of proper action in the excretary organs, whose duty it is to throw off the effete and poisonous matter. A scrofulous diathesis or disposition, which is the root of numerous acute and chronic ailments, is nothing but an imperfect action of the excreting organs, which are five in number — the liver, the kidneys, the lungs, the perspiratory glands of the skin, and the large intestine or colon. If any one or all these discharge their functions imperfectly, disease, and finally death, is the result. The dead and the living atoms cannot mingle in harmonious fellowship. One or the other must be prodominant. The devitalized particles must be eliminated before the new and vital corpuscles can take their place. There are diseased conditions where the accumulation of effete matter gradually increases, and a person dies, atom after atom, until all vital action ceases.

It is to be remembered, that every physiological process is but a correspondence or effect of some psychological action. The latter is prior, and the former is an established sequence. And if that mental state which sustains a causal relation to the healthy tone of the excreting organs can be discovered, and is capable of being induced upon a patient, it will be of more value in the healing art than all the drugs and patent nostrums in the universe.

Can we discern the connection of the spirit’s movements with these organs ? It is well known that grief induces an inflamed condition of the intestinal canal. A fit of weeping is followed by thirst, which is only the system calling for water to quench the inward fire. A constipated condition of the bowels is a universal accompaniment of insanity and of most melancholic patients, while an over-excitement of the intellectual powers produces the opposite pathological result. Some of the most vigorons thinkers whom we have known were invariably attacked with diarrhea after a lecture or sermon. These phenomena are sufficient to establish a sympathetic connection between the states of the mind and the physiological action of the lower intestine.

A despairing habit of mind, and a tendency to forebode evil, will generate a weakened action of the bowels, while the opposite mental state will give to them a healthful vigor and tone. The bowels receive their cerebral stimulus from a part of the brain situated between hope and veneration. And in constipation, when long continued, we have often observed a congested and inflamed state of this portion of the brain. An abnormal or inverted action of hope is communicated to the part of the cerebrum adjacent to it, from which the bowels derive their power to set. By magnetic manipulations of this point of the brain, removing the unnatural heat, and stimulating the organ of hope to a boundless faith in the “good time coming,” and thus infusing a healthy mental stimulus into the bowels, will produce all the good effects, with none of the evil reactive results, of cathartic medicines. Such drugs, through the spiritual essence they contain, act upon the mind and this part of the brain.

A very moderate dose of rhubarb will sometimes lift the mountain of despair temporarily from the most gloomy patient. But this can be done more effectually and permanently by a psychological influence intelligently applied. All diseases having a mental origin, require spiritual remedies.

There are certain affections and painful derangements of the rectum, that indicate the connection between certain abnormal conditions of the body and their accompanping disordered mental action. Among these are hemorrhoids, sometimes ultimating in an ulcerous condition of the rectum. We have had occasion to observe many times, that this troublesome and painful affection is attended with great irritability of temper and impatience, and there is always in this disease a tendency to that spiritual state.

Let us see if we can trace any necessary connection between such a mental state and the disease under consideration. Is there here the relation of cause and effect? In this disease there is always an abnormal state of the liver. Impatience, irritability, and fretfulness exhibit a morbid excitability of what is celled com-bativeness. Now the liver receives its nerve-stimulus from a part of the brain between combativeness and caution. There is often a severe pain here in the headache occasioned by a derangement of the hepatic functions. The excited state of the so-called organ of combativeness robs the point of the cerebrum, with which the liver is in sympathetical connection, of its vital force.

When the patient is irritable or fretful, opposed to everything, and contented with nothing, the organ in the brain, through which these feelings are manifested, draws into itself the nerve-life from the adjacent parts of the brain that supply the peculiar force necessaly to the healthy action of the liver. Thus our pettishness and peevishness rob the liver of its vital power, and this occasions our hemor-rhoidal troubles.

To cure this painful complaint, the patient’s attention should be directed to the spiritual cause. The root of the trouble should be shown him, and he should induce upon himself the opposite mental state. If one would be his own physician, and cure himself, let him lay aside all nostrums — which only aggravate the trouble in their final results — and attend to his feelings. The cause being removed, the effect will cease. If he has not suflicicnt mental control to do this, he should permit the magnetic or psychological healer to induce upon him a calm, gentle, and patient frame, and to convert his soul to a meek and quiet spirit.

The office of the hepatic apparatus is to separate from the blood a certain portion of the waste, worn out particles, which are collected into the gall-cist, from which they are emptied into the contents of the duode- num or second stomach. All that csp be worked over into healthy blood passes with the chyle into the general circulation. The remainder is ejected from the system with the excrementitious matter of the rectum. The bile is alkaline in its chemical nature, while the urinary secretion contains an acid principle. As there is an affinity between an acid and an alkali, so there is a sympathetic connection between the liver and kidneys, and both are usually diseased together.

The careful student of human nature will not fail to observe, that the organs are connected in pairs in the discharge of their functions. We havo already spoken of the heart and lungs, and shown the dual nature of the brain. The liver and kidneys act in concert. The same is true of the spleen and pancreas. As the mind is composed of the two distinct departments of the love, or affectional nature, and the intellect, so the organs of the body receive the influx of spiritual life from the one or the other. The liver corresponds to the emotions or feelings, and the kidneys are influenced indirectly by these or through the intellectual principle.

As every affection has its correspondent or harmonious mode of thinking or intellection, so the action of the liver is attended with an answering or echoing movement of the kidneys. If the one is torpid, the other is inactive. The mental states that influence the one, act upon the other. This concordant movement of the two organs deserves to be noted, as it is certain that every morbid spiritual state that occasions a deranged action of the hepatic functions will indirectly affect the renal action.

As an evidence that the states of the mind affect the chemical action of the excreting organs, we have the demonstrated fact, that the effete products separated from the blood by the kidneys vary in character with the amount of cerebral action. Excessive activity of the mind is uniformly accompanied by the excretion of an unusual quantity of the alkaline phosphates. All abnormal nervous excitement produces the same effect, rapidly using up the element of phosphoric acid in the brain.

Everyone must have noticed the “peculiar odor of the insane,” implying certain morbid products in the perspiration, and showing the influence of unsound mental conditions upon the action of the perspiratory glands. No organ can, in a healthy manner, perform its appointed use in the human body, unless it is preceded by an equally normal state of the part of our mental nature to which it belongs and of which it is the external manifestation.

The office of the excretory organs is to throw off the worn out material, preparatory to the introduction of new particles, so that the body is actually renewed many times during our earthly existence. But the mind should also be renewed. The idea of spiritual renovation is no modern discovery. Paul even speaks of the inward man being renewed day by day, and enjoins upon us the duty of putting off the old man, or our worn out states, and of being renewed in the spirit of our minds, or our affectional nature and its emotions. There are faculties of the mind whose office is excretory. It is the office of what men call conscience to give us an instinctive perception of what is good and evil, and to influence us to receive the one and reject the other. By good we mean that which affords us delight, and by evil that which is undelightful. We have nothing to do with that which bears these names in the current theologies.

Every healthy mind possesses in itself, and as a part of its organism, an intuitive perception of what is needed for its happiness, and an instinctive repugnance to what seems undelightful. Call it by what name you will, — intuition, perception, an internal dictate, or conscience, — in the spiritual nature it performs an office similar to the hepatic functions in the bodily organism. It rejects what it deems evil, and incites to what seems to us our good.

That the correspondence of the liver and conscience is not imaginary, nor merely the expression of analogy in their action and use, but is vitally and sympathetically real, is made manifest from this — that in certain derangements of the liver we often witness a similar abnormal state of the faculty of conscience. It is sometimes morbidly sensitive, at other times it may be torpid and indifferent to good or evil. Its organ in the brain is also affected with inflammation and congestion.

The unhappy patient suffers a constant sense of self-imposed condemnation. He imagines that the theological scare-crows, hung up by the pulpit, are, in his case at least, living realities, that he is the most wicked of men, has blasphemed the Holy Ghost, committed the sin unto death, is obnoxious to the wrath of God, and is guilty of all manner of imaginary evil. Such persons suffer untold misery, seeming often to their fricnds as unnecessary, from the diseased sensitiveness of the conscience, and are overwhelmed with a sense of guilt, though the outward life is not disorderly.

We have noticed this state of mind to underlie that worst form of dyspepsia known as duodenitis, which involves a too sensitive state of the mucous surface of the duodenum, and a derangement of the biliary secretion. And we have known the whole disorder of body and mind to be removed, in an exceedingly brief time, under a judicious magnetic treatment. Every observing physician will have frequent opportunity of witnessing this state of body and mind, and of testing the correctness of the theory. And he will find that the shortest way to a cure of the body is by relieving the mind of the patient from this morbid action.

The soul must be delivered from the “body of this death,” before any remedial agents in the form of medicines will be of any avail. If this be done by his own psychological influence in his office, or at the anxious seat by the prayers of those who feel called to save “immortal and never-dying souls,” which is only the influence of happier minds upon the sufferer, it matters not, if it only be well and effectually done.

An habitually gloomy state of mind, and dejection of spirits, Which is, as Cul-len observes, a partial insanity, has received the expressive name of melancholy, from two Greek words, signifying black bile. Such a state of mind was intuitively perceived to be connected with a diseased liver. But what is melancholy but a clinging to old and worn out enjoyments, that now belong to the past? The melancholic patient, instead of finding his happiness in the living present, tries to feed his hungry affections with the memory of dead joys.

A state of mind that sees in the divine arrangements of the present moment, all that is necessary to constitute our highest good, and turns no longing look to the past, nor anxious gaze into the unknown future, is one that assures a healthy activity of the liver. Old enjoyments and worn out delights, that have subserved their use, should be cast off, to make way for new and more Vital pleasures. “Very often,” remarks a writer in the Christian Examiner, “the cause of mental disease is an abnormal adhesiveness of certain states, an involuntary pertinacious retention of the effete products of the spirit. Dreams, superstitions, imaginary conceptions, differentiated and offcast acts, old emotions, the clogged-up perspirations
of sentiment, — the excrementitious stuff of the mind — which should be regularly deported by the active excretories of thought and feeling, are sometimes unduly detained in consciousness, producing anxiety, fastening attention, and resulting in the most deadly disturbances of mental equilibrium and health. In the subjects of excessive melancholy, how often old joys, to be known now no more, and which should therefore be cheerfully dismissed, with sickly persistence float back over the memory in strains of elysian sadness to break the heartl!”

It is precisely this state of the inner nran and the interior life, that lies at the bottom of most forms of liver disease. And the best medicine for the patient is some new and living enjoyments. This will operate as a specific upon the biliary secretion, and obviate the use of all mercurial preparations. Magnetize the patient into the supreme bliss of the present moment, so that he shall feel that he has found the summon bonum [supreme good,] and need no longer to search for it among the decaying relics of the past, and you have loostened, at once, the grasp of the disease.

The corresponding state of the intellectual principle, the same ideas being retained in the thoughts, the brooding perpetually over old troubles and old delights, occasions a diseased action of the kidneys. In many nervous derangements, as they are falaely called, there is a tendency to frequent urination, the discharge being small in quantity sometimes and highly colored, as if the kidneys were trying to do the work of the liver, but usually the discharge is limpid as pure water. This is occasioned by the perpetual thinking of the patients. He sits for hours like a marble statue, his mind moving in the same old channels of thought, and his breathing in these morbid reveries almost imperceptible.

It is the office of the lungs, as an excreting organ, to eliminate the worn out hydrogen and carbon of the blood. It combines with the oxygen of the air and forms the watery vapor that goes forth with the breath. This in twenty-four hours amounts to no inconsiderable quantity, if it could all be condensed and preserved. In the patient’s state of perpetual thinking, the lungs perform this office only to a limited extent, and their work is thrown upon the kidneys. Hence the increased watery and saccharine excretion of those organs. Sugar contains the elements of water, oxygen end hydrogen, and also carbon, combined in definite proportions. This should pass off from the body through the lungs, and not through the kidneys.

To change the fixed habit of thinking, and educate the respiration of the patient, is the most efficient remedy for diabetes and other kidney diseases, which are confessedly difficult to manage by the ordinary systems of medication.

The kidneys were supposd by the ancients to be the seat of the intelligence. This arose from a vague apprehension of their correspondence with the intellectual principle. The heart was thought to be the seat of the aftections, and the reins of the reason. And it is an interesting fact in this connection, that the part of the brain whence they receive their cerebral stimulus, is situated on each side of the organ of causality. In their diseased condition, attended also with a morbid state of the liver, there is often felt a severe pain, commencing here and apparently extending through to the opposite pole between combativeness and caution.

The kidneys correspond in their use in the outer man, to the judgment or reason in the mental economy. They separate from the blood the uric acid, which if allowed to remain would poison and pollute the life of the body. This acid is an expressive symbol of devitalized truths, and truth without vitality is falsity. Acids are usually generated by certain putrefactie processes and fermentations. And the secretion of this waste and worn out material by the kidneys, and its elimination from the organism through the bladder and ureters, answers to the function of the judgment or the reason in the soul-principle.

The Greek word which is usually translatcd by the English term judgment, primarily signifies to separate, and to reject. The reason is that faculty of mind by which we distinguish truth from falsity, a living verity from a devitalized notion, and separate the latter from the former, or cast away the one to make room for the other. There can be no perfect health of mind, nor genuine spiritual growth, without this excretory action of the intellect. Defunct ideas should be laid aside, stereotyped and fixed modes of thinking exchanged for new methods of intellection.

Monomania, a form of insanity not uncommon, is only the fixedness of an idea, the petrifaction of a thought, and a calculus or stone in the mental bladder. Old and worn out dogmas, when they have accomplished their use and lost their life, should be rejected, that the intellect may become receptive of new and vital truths. The dead past should be decently buried, to make room for a future and better generation of youthful and living verities. If the excretory organs eject from the system vital particles, disease is the result. The new supply does not balance the waste, and the bodily tissues are diminished, and their substance impaired. So we should be careful lest we too hastily put away the truths of a former dispensation before they have lost their vitality to us, and ceased to be of any further use, for fear that spiritual leanness and mental emaciation should result.

But our greater danger is found in the reluctance with which we part with old and worn out truth, and the pertinacious adherence of the mind to its fixed modes of thought and feeling. We cling to them after we are conscious they are dead, and mourn over their loss, like Rachel weeping for her children, and refusing to be comforted because they are not. Or we are too often like Rizpah, the daughter of Aiah, who took the bodies of her seven sons, slain in the beginning of the barley-harvest, and, spreading sackcloth upon the rock, seated herself upon it, and guarded them day and night, lest the birds of the air, or the beasts of the field, should consume them.

Thus we cleave to the defunct and decaying truths of a past age and bygone era of human development, until their putrid exhalations corrupt the spiritual air we breathe, and poison our intellectual life. The prophets and apostles of the New Age are the best physicians for such a scrofulous diathesis of the interior man. It is not lifeless mineral or vegetable compounds their case requires, but living ideas, that shall act as alteratives in the mental organism, changing the fixed direction of their thoughts and feelings into other channels, that they may be renewed in the spirit of their minds.


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