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Spiritual Medicine (Part II)

Philip Incao, M.D.

Dr. Philip Incao has more than 40 years of experience in medical practice. Since 1972, he adopted Anthroposophical Medicine as the approach in his work with patients. At Crestone, Colorado in June 2007, Dr. Incao gave 2 lectures to participants of Lapis Lazuli Light workshop. The following is 2nd installment of the transcript, lightly edited by Ashyea.

Today, I’d begin the lecture with a quote from the Buddha.

“Do not believe of what you have heard.
Do not believe in the traditions because they have been passed down for many generations.
Do not believe in anything because it is rumoured and spoken by many.
Do not believe merely because a written statement of some old sage is produced.
Do not believe in conjectures; do not believe in that as truth to which you have become attached by habit.
Do not believe merely in the authority of your teachers and elders.
After observation and analysis, when it agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and gain of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

Some people have questions when I spoke about karma as a source of illness [in my previous lecture]. Let me elaborate a little and see if it addresses the questions.

What is a healthy attitude to an illness?

We should respect illness but we should not fear illness. Illness is like a dangerous animal; if you fear it, the fear might make it more dangerous. However, we should always respect an illness. We should not surrender to it, but we should surrender our personal self and recognize that in the illness, our true self is trying to manifest.

We will place what Dr. Mitchell May calls the Personal Self at the level of Soul. And what he calls the True Self, we will place it at level of Spirit. In illness, we need to get our Personal Self out of the way so that the True Self can come in. And we must always assume that the illness has a good reason for visiting us, even if we have no idea what that is. We may realize the reason much later. If we have no interest in the reason, the illness may keep coming back in one form or another until we learn to take more interest in our health.

We need good judgment and discernment in evaluating what kind of practical help we need in the course of an illness. Some illnesses are self-healing – they burn themselves out like a fire that runs out of fuel.

Anyone who wants to help and support an ill person, must never, never, never blame a person for his/her illness. We also should not encourage the belief that illness has no meaning, that there is nothing to learn from illness.

Those of us who try to help another – healers and doctors – should never assume that we can know exactly what the lesson or meaning of the illness is for a person. We should support and validate any ill person who wants to find and discover for themselves the meaning or lesson of their illness. The doctor must never assume that he can know this patient’s karma. So the doctor should forget about karma and do everything possible within reason to preserve and prolong this patient’s health and life.

No doctors can change his patient’s karma but we can change our own karma by making the changes in our attitudes, thoughts, feelings and habits that our True Self wants us to make. The healer or the doctor can support and encourage the patient to make those changes.

The different kinds of illness

The 4 basic realities of spirit, soul, life and body can combine themselves in different ways. Generally, they combine themselves in 2 different ways to form a polarity. This polarity evolved, and it is similar to the ancient polarity of Yin and Yang, though not exactly the same.

One form of polarity lives in the human head. The other lives in the human gut, digestion. This polarity comes from above. As above, so below. The human being is designed in the image of God. In the ancient times, people perceived a God in the sun. They didn’t believe that the sun was a God. They perceived that the sun was a God because they had a certain amount of clairvoyance. And they saw two aspects in the sun – one aspect was light, the other was warmth. They recognized and we recognize it too, that without the sun, all life on earth would die. They perceived that in the light lived wisdom, and in the warmth lived love.

Wisdom in the Light

When these spiritual forces work themselves down into matter, they create different kinds of matter. The light shines on the matter from the outside and it gives wisdom and form – a pattern along which the matter can form itself. Just like silica.

The wise man said, “Silica is formed by the light and for the light because it’s transparent. And it reflects the light.” These are formed in certain geometric patterns. It is a divine spiritual geometry that comes down to earth. That same formative principle is what forms in the human body, the nervous system, the brain and the sense organs. In forming a crystal, the light gives it its direction. But the crystal is then formed out of physical substance. It is a substance which can reflect, just like the brain can reflect the thinking, the crystal can reflect and transmit light.

We human beings have inner light within us. We have light in our thinking. We have light that strings through our nervous system. That light is spiritual and cannot be detected with physical instruments. Yet the spiritual light in our thinking, brain and our nervous system break down into electrical impulses that can be detected with physical instruments. This is one aspect of the divine spirit.

Love in the Warmth

The other aspect of divine spirit is warmth or love. It doesn’t just stay on the outside of the matter. It loves matter and it dives right into matter. Then the matter gets warmer and begins to burn. This is a sacrificial fire. In all ancient religions, people burned a sacrifice to appeal to the Gods. Smoke would rise to the spiritual world. Ancient wisdom said, “Fire attracts”. In burning the sacrifice, they hoped to attract the divine spirit to come down and bless them.

It is a destruction when the spirit works this way: it goes right into matter, burns and destroys the matter in order to attract more spirit. It is a death in order to make a rebirth. And this process goes on in our body continually because all our cells are continually dying. It is the fastest in the digestive system and in the muscles, continually replaced by new cells. Working in this way, the spirit would continually destroy and remove the material body. In 7 years, all the cells in our body would have died. All of you who are sitting here now were not here 7 years ago in your physical bodies. Spirit keeps forming based on these two principles so that we are still the same person even though all our substances have changed.

It is fascinating to see how that wisdom appears in different cultures. There was an ancient Greek philosopher, before Socrates, named Empedoeles who also had a little clairvoyance. He saw the same polarity and he called it ‘cosmos and chaos’, ‘hate and love’. In ancient alchemy, it was salt and sulfur. Salt also forms crystal. Sulfur burns. The German poet, Goethe, called it ‘contraction and expansion’. Rudolf Steiner called it ‘cosmic antipathy and cosmic sympathy’. In the human soul, it is ‘thinking and will’. In the human body, it is nerve and blood. In human illness, it’s sclerosis and inflammation.

The American poet, Robert Frost, also artistically perceived the same two cosmic principles and he wrote a poem called “Fire and Ice”. I’d like to read that poem for you.

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favour fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

I’d like to quote Steiner from his book:

“There is no absolute truth. Each truth has its particular mission at a certain time. Truth evolves as does everything else in the world. Truth is the form of the divine spirit. But the divine spirit has many forms. It is our duty to enter into what another person says. We need only make clear to another person that we value him at that stage of truth where he stands. Everyone has to learn for himself and that’s we shall become tolerant for every form of truth. Love is higher than opinion. To be interested in another person is a form of love. If people are interested in one another, the most conflicting opinion can be reconciled.”

Every illness is an exaggeration of a normal process in the body. There is the Yin and Yang; there is warm and cold. Our belly needs to be warm in order to digest in a healthy way. It’s hard to digest when the belly is freezing cold. Head needs to be cool in order to think. You can’t think when your head is very, very hot. We continually have an energy in us that is warming us. It lives in our blood, circulation and our heart. We also continually have an energy in us that is cooling us. That energy lives in our brain and our nervous system. If this warming energy goes too far, it creates inflammation in the body. If the cooling energy goes too far, it creates hardening, scleroses.

What is an inflammation? 

An inflammation is a pimple on your skin. A sore throat. An influenza. Pneumonia. It is all of the diseases that we call infections. The word ‘infection’ is new, only since the time of Louis Pasteur. Now we don’t use the word inflammation, we say “I have an infection, virus or I have bacteria.” But the virus or bacteria is not the true cause of the problem.

There are 4 cardinal sciences that have been known since ancient Greece, ancient Roman and, I am sure, in the East also. The 4 cardinal sciences of inflammation are fever, pain, redness and swelling.

The inflammation is trying to destroy because it’s the fire process, the warmth process. In the warmth process, spirit destroys matter. It’s trying to destroy the matter in our body that is old. Our body is like a house. We are constantly remodeling all the time. But if we get lazy and we don’t want to repeat remodeling the house, we leave it alone. Then when the material of the house gets old, it begins to decay. When it begins to decay, our spirit says we have to get rid of that stuff, it’s turning rotten.

There are other causes of inflammation like any toxic chemicals that we absorb. The cigarette we smoke provoke inflammation in our lungs. As we absorb substances (tar from the tobacco), they are in our lungs, and our spirit does not want anything foreign in our body. So we get bronchitis or pneumonia. Then spirit starts to break down matter in our body, not only the tar but the cells in our body that have absorbed the tar. And it creates a lot of toxicity in our lungs through the process of destruction.

In your kitchen, if you don’t clean up after you make a meal, leaving the food out, it starts to decay and attracts a lot of flies. Then the scientist comes to your kitchen and says, “I have the solution for this. I will kill the flies.” But he does not clean up the kitchen. That is what happens when you take an antibiotic. You go to the doctor because you have smoked cigarettes and you have bronchitis or pneumonia, fever. The doctor takes a culture of your sputum and he says, “You have a bacteria in there, we should kill it. So here is this antibiotic.” And you say thank you because you are getting very frightened about that bronchitis or pneumonia.

The antibiotic kills the germs which were stimulating the immune system to create the fire. The fire (the inflammation) is created by the immune system. The germ is only the stimulus to create fever, pain, redness and swelling. All of that is produced by the immune system. This is an inner fire and the fuel for the fire is the tobacco tar that we took in. The germs are there too, because they like all that garbage. When the immune system creates fire that kills the germs, it dissolves the tobacco tar, pushes it out of the body and we cough up brown mucus. When we take an antibiotic, that whole process is shut down. All the toxicity that was trying to come out goes back into storage in the body. And it stays there until we get the next bronchitis. If we keep going to get antibiotic every time we get bronchitis, after a while we don’t get bronchitis any more. Instead, we will get lung cancer.

Healing versus Suppression

There are two ways to treat inflammation. One is to help it comes out of body and the other is to push it back into the body. The first method, which is to draw out of the body, is healing. The second method, which is used in modern medicine predominantly, is suppression. If you keep suppressing toxicity that wants to come out, you push it deeper into the body and eventually it can become, not always, a cancer.

When the inflammation is acute, which means we will have a high fever, (This is the way pneumonia behaves in the old days before antibiotics), the fire would burn very strongly until it would discharge and the patient would have a soaking sweat. After the sweat, the fever will be gone, and the pneumonia will be gone. That is still the way large part of the world treats inflammation. I once had a young man in my medical practice. He was born in Africa. He looked very healthy, radiating. And I asked him, “When you got a fever, when you were a child, what did your parents do? Did they take your temperature?” He laughed, “No, they wrapped me in blankets until I broke a sweat which would take a long time. After the sweat, I was better.”

The other side of the problem is that when you have an acute inflammation that is burning, it can heal itself or you can die from it – either the spirit pushes out all of the poison, or the spirit leaves and you die. The job of a doctor is to figure out which one is happening. If it looks like the spirit is going to leave, you need antibiotic. It is usually not that difficult to tell. As a patient who is going through an illness, if you are not paralyzed with fear, you can sense how severe your illness is. You can sense whether you have the forces to push out the poisons or whether you are overwhelmed and you need help.

About taking an antibiotic: If you take it on the first day of the illness, you will suppress the illness. If you take it after several days of illness and you really feel you have no energy left, then perhaps you already purged out 80% or 90% of the illness, and you just need help with that last 10%. Here, you take the antibiotic, suppress not the whole illness but only 10% of the illness. And you can always work out that 10% at a later time.

When I was practicing in upstate New York, I saw a lot of children with fevers and inflammations. Most of the time, I was able to help them through the infection, inflammation without an antibiotic. Once a mother called and asked me to visit her house as her little girl was violently sick with a fever and inflammation. You can sense from the intensity of the process that she was overwhelmed by this inflammation. And I knew that either I have to send her to the hospital or to give her antibiotic. I gave her an antibiotic and she responded it and the inflammation cooled down. This was around the time of her birthday. After that was over, the mother said she’s not herself. She’s irritable, feeling really uncomfortable in her body. But she wasn’t sick. The inflammation was over. Yet she was a little bit irritable. This inflammation was pneumonia that cleared with the antibiotic, suppressed. A year later, again around the time of her birthday, she got another pneumonia. This time, it was not so violent or intense. I said to her mother, “I think we can get her through this without the antibiotic.” That was the last 20% of what she did not work out the first time. She worked it through the second time. And the mother said now she’s acting like herself again. So you need to find a doctor that understands the difference between healing and suppression.

Time-honored methods of treatment

In many traditional medicines, there are three time-honored methods that have been used for thousands of years to treat inflammation. These three methods are designed to bring out the illness. There is an old saying “You must bring out what is within you. If you bring out what is within you, what you bring out will save you. If you do not bring out what is within you, what you do not bring out will kill you.”

One of the real causes of illness is chronic resentment. Resentment is an anger that we don’t let out; we hold it inside for years and years in time. The healing of resentment is to let it go and forgive. If you do that, it will save you. If you bring out what is within you, what you bring out will save you. If you do not bring out your resentment, it can become a cancer and kill you. Poison on the consciousness or soul level eventually becomes a poison on the physical level. Resentment works in us like a poison in our soul. Eventually the soul wants to get rid of it so it pushes into the body and then it becomes a cancer. Just like the rain coming down onto the earth; the resentment is the cloud in the sky, but when that falls down to the earth, it becomes a sclerotic, contracting, hardening illness because resentment is hard. Forgiveness expands, resentment contracts.

The first method is the one that the African patient told me – sweating. The second method is fasting. And the third is purging the bowel. These work very well. Usually when I had a person sick with the inflammation, I told them to get in bed, get warm, sweat and take laxatives. I told them not to eat any protein. The old saying: “Starve a fever.” If you have a fever, don’t eat eggs or meat or fish or even tofu, just take very light food.

If you have a tendency toward the cold diseases, toward storing your feelings, then the best thing that could happen to you is to get a good strong fever. A fever is the natural enemy of cancer. It can prevent a cancer. If you already have a cancer and you are able to get a fever, it can break down the cancer. Not just cancer but other sclerotic illnesses.

Back in 1922, there was a psychiatrist in Europe who won a Nobel Prize for healing what was up until then incurable syphilis sickness with fever therapy. Syphilis is a disease that starts as an inflammation but ends in a sclerosis in the brain. Now in this country and all over the world, we have lyme disease which also starts as an inflammation but can sometimes ends in nervous system as a sclerotic problem. It starts on the hot side and progresses to the cold side, so it was a form of degeneration.  It de-generates the nervous system. This doctor injected the patients with malaria. His patients got high fever and he healed thousands of patients in that way and he won a Nobel Prize. That just demonstrates the principle that a fever can cure something that is stuck in the body. If you have this (holding a big piece of crystal) that’s stuck in your body, it is very uncomfortable. You should pray for a fever and then this dissolves, you cough it up and spit it out. This (crystal) is resentment.

  • To be continued in third and last installment…

Further reading: 
For articles by Dr. Philip Incao, please visit  www.philipincao.com
For works by Dr. Rudolf Steiner, please visit  www.rsarchive.org