Fear is the key

Is fear the key to why we get ill? We are surrounded by more stimuli than we can possibly control or assimilate. At a certain point your whole organism says, stop that is enough. Depending on your background history, medical, emotional , social etc, you will react with a certain amount of fear, often triggered subconsciously by reminders of past events.
The fear response is in-built to our organisms to cope with danger. The Fight or flight adrenaline rush is well known (some thrill-seekers deliberately cultivate it) but there is a deeper fear response which, when it keeps going for a long time can lead to chronic constriction.  This affects the whole body – blood supply closed off to certain areas, chronic muscle tension, nerves ready to fire any moment.  There will be spasmodic pain, chills and general twitchiness.

If sufficient relaxation does not occur, in time this will lead to other imbalances.

Lack of blood and energy circulation gives rise to hot congested tissues and problems like eczema and fibroids.

This congested heat in turn gets tissues excited and inflamed.  Hay fever is an example of this in some people.

Long term constriction can also lead to degeneration of tissues, atrophy. There is too much dryness in some places e.g. dry skin.

Herbalists try to correct these imbalances as they occur with herbs which counteract the effect.  In addition, we try to unpick the root cause and treat that accordingly. We give remedies which help to “build you up”, tonics which enable you to adapt to situations rather than over-react with fear.  We give remedies to tone your nervous system to allow a better balance between external activity and internal recuperation.

No two prescriptions are alike because each person is different, in a different predicament and in a different stage of “illness” at each visit.  This is why a consulting herbalist will take a thorough case histroy to assess all the angles before dispensing a tailor-made herbal medicine.


About donaldpurves

Traditional Herbalist since 1989, qualified originally with National Institute of Medical Herbalists (Tutorial Course, School of Herbal Medicine/Phytotherapy), joined Unified Register of Herbal Practitioners in 2011. University lecturer in Herbal Medicine since 2005. Born and brought up in the Scottish Borders. Higher Education at University of York (Biology 1980) and Scottish School of Herbal Medicine (MSc Herbal Medicine 2003). Married to Rukshana Afia, an artist working with drawing, textiles and ceramics. Passionate about environmental, economic and social justice.
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