LISTENING TO THE SILENCES
Seek the beginnings
Learn from whence you came
And the various earths of which you are
- Edwin Muir
* * *
"Je suis mois même la matière de mon livre."
In the same way that sixteenth century philosopher, Michel de Montaigne could assert that he himself was the "material" of his book of Essays, so, on reflection, have I myself become the core of mine. When I began to write I had no intention of writing a book - such an idea would have stopped me in my tracks.
As with many journeys of exploration, a few tentative excursions revealed territory that invited further examination, and with the examination and exploration courage grew, fuelled by the encouragement I received from friends. Filled with this new audacity, and inspired by the view that I began to perceive, namely that of ultimate publication, I have gone on and on, arriving at this, which I hope will be my last chapter.
At the very outset, the first words that I wrote were "I am one of the people least likely to write anything remotely autobiographical", and yet everything, yes everything, is just that. Beginning with descriptions of actual real time happenings, the words have accumulated, and just like a Christmas tree being dressed with care, they form the "presents" and "gifts" hanging from it, and that have come from the squirrel store of my garnered lifetime experiences and my understanding of these events. These presents and gifts are there for anyone to take and to use, either for their own benefit or that of others. Even though I have given all that I could from myself, strangely I do not feel diminished, but paradoxically I feel enhanced by the hope that some will find encouragement and incentive.
Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the self analysis and personal revelation is that, apart from incidents and events that were played out in public situations, by far the greatest bulk of my writing relates to what was going on in my mind. Thoughts and self analysis are there now for all to read - but the spiritual exchanges that have pervaded all of these, and that are with me continuously, what of them?
There is no "cloud" of activity buzzing around my head as is often seen in cartoons, and representing all that is happening within the skull. I don't adopt a particular stance or facial expression. When walking, driving, shopping; when engaged in activities ranging from the most mundane to the most intimate, there is often the inner exchange or intrusion and interjection. And not only into and within my mind, but often silently, mutely, physically into and within my body and senses.
Yet I am but one of many billions who inhabit this planet - an individual - I repeat - an individual. My DNA is unique to me; likewise my fingerprints and the colours in the irises of my eyes. And had I not told you about them, the events that I have related would have stayed within the confines of my mind and memory; silent and also unique to me. Which is why I question so strongly conclusion about mental health and perceived problems of the mind that are addressed through studies of multiples of individuals.
I keep returning, sometimes with mild sarcasm or criticism to the analysis of the lives of 50,000 Swedish conscripts, and to the conclusion that have been drawn from their behaviour that allegedly resulted from the use of cannabis. Already the study is being quoted widely in the context that "smoking cannabis can cause schizophrenia", and with 50,000 men having been studied, the sheer number is taken as giving weight and stature to the results of the analysis.
And yet, totally ignored is the fact that drugs such as cannabis, mescaline/peyote are used by shamans and similar "seers" to induce a physical and mental state in which spiritual intrusion is desired and actively sought. Fear not, it is not my intention to go on and on in detailed scrutiny of other people's work, but rather to use it as a stalking horse to gain access to yet more thoughts of my own.
Where does our uniqueness begin? At birth? Before? In the womb? Before? In his Healing the Family Tree, Dr. Kenneth McAll invites one to do just that, to look at the family inheritance to try to find the source of an "unquiet spirit" that persists in plaguing individuals of subsequent descent, and, in some cases, causing physical and mental illness.
[from the back cover] "He believes that many supposedly "incurable" patients are the victims of ancestral control. He therefore seeks to liberate them from this control. By drawing up a Family Tree he can identify the ancestor who is causing the patient harm. He then cuts the bond between the ancestor and the patient by celebrating, with a clergyman, a service of Holy Communion which delivers the tormented ancestor to God."
Many people, myself included, have problems with the conventional representation of "God", yet, in the context in which I am writing, we would do well to ponder the words of psychiatrist William James, who commented, "We and God have business together: in opening ourselves to his influence our deepest destiny is fulfilled. God is real because he produces real effects."
McAll's book is both informative and provocative, and can lead one to a whole range of speculations. For example, and still considering the influences that can form a person in the womb, he treats of the case of a young man who lived under his mother's protection and feared any relationship not only with women, but with chaplains. Analysis and discussion over a period finally produced the revelation from the mother that while pregnant and continuing her work as a nurse, she had allowed intercourse to take place with one of her patients, an army chaplain.
Many prospective parents play music to their unborn infants by such composers as Mozart, in the belief that there is something sufficiently significant in the music that can influence subsequent development. Who knows? Humans are the only mammals that continue to have sex after conception. This is obviously a conscious choice, and not the result of an evolutionary imperative.
Indeed, searching the Web for any comments about "sex during pregnancy", I was surprised to see how many sites there are, and all promoting the desirability and "safety" of the practice - even, in one case, into the ninth month. Intercourse and orgasm activate just about every cell within the body, and must obviously communicate something to the foetus. Who can say what, and whether it is desirable for the ultimate development of the child?
The emotional state of the mother-to-be in its general sense must be yet another strong influence on the developing child within. I am well acquainted with two people, now past middle age, both of whom were conceived out of wedlock when that was a serious cause for concern, particularly for the girl and her family. Discussion with both provides much insight into lifetime problems that appear to have their origins in that time, and not only during the actual pregnancy, but afterwards.
In one, the father appeared to hold deep resentment against his daughter, as unwittingly she had been the cause of his enforced marriage. In the second, the behaviour of the mother towards her son seemed to stem from the fact that she had actually been "found out" in her misdemeanour, and that he was the constant reminder. One can only imagine what emotions must be coursing continuously through the mind of a girl in the times, seemingly now past, when the disaster of pregnancy struck - emotions that must be communicated to the child within. I remember vividly the comment of one friend in 1951 as we watched someone with whom we were well acquainted as, heavily pregnant, she set off for her wedding. My friend was from a small and traditional Welsh community, and all of her upbringing was contained in her deeply felt and expressed "Oh! The shame of it!"
The child of the marriage developed cerebral palsy and I think that it is reasonable to speculate about the possible influence upon it of the state of mind of the mother, and wonder whether this contributed to the child's illness. Her parental home was at the other end of the country, and there was none of the support that would normally have been forthcoming from family in what in those days would have been a trying time. And a Registry Office wedding with four friends would have been vastly different from the wedding that most mothers plan for their daughters and that most daughters anticipate as they grow up.
It is interesting to note, and not even remotely suggesting pre-marital conception, of the five children that I am acquainted with who were Down's syndrome, autistic, or had serious developmental problems, all were first born.
I sometimes speculate on what might have been the state of mind of my own mother as she came near to giving birth to me. My arrival came twenty-two months after that of my brother, and, in giving birth to him, she had come close to dying from a haemorrhage, only being saved by the quick thinking and immediate action of her family doctor who attended the birth. Was she consumed with anxiety as my "time" came nearer? Did her anxiety communicate to me, and did it make me somewhat pusillanimous as a child?
And what of my father? Apart from his obvious role in my procreation, if he had not found two bricks at the urgent insistence of the doctor who had delivered my brother, my mother might not have survived, and I definitely would not be here. The bricks propped up the foot of my mother's bed and helped to reduce her haemorrhage.
And he gave me the Vincent genes. Very different from my brother who inherited the Matthews/Fortune variety -making us dissimilar even in something as fundamental as blood group - Bruce being AB while I am O. We grew at different rates until, as we were dressed alike, people took us for twins. But with his age advantage, he could beat me at almost anything - which is probably why to this day I detest board games.
However, in another respect, we each had the same early imprint. I have never liked hyacinth flowers in the house - for some reason they always make me think of death. When, in our sixties, my brother and his wife were visiting, we were in a garden centre, and I heard her say "Will this be the year that you let me buy hyacinths?". It seems that he had the same aversion, and he knew, being older, that when our grandfather had died in our home, our mother had brought bowls of flowering hyacinths into the house to disguise any odour. I was about three at the time, and he five.
My brother cried a lot as an infant, and when taking him out in his pram our mother used to hurry to where the trees in Major David's garden overhung the pavement - where he was pacified. The possible connection of this phenomenon and my mother's haemorrhage is something to which I'll return later as I expand my analysis.
My present theme develops from an understanding of one of the many points of inheritance that I trace to my father and the Vincent gene. Not the belly that I have developed that matches those of my father, grandfather and Uncle Will; not the wavy hair that was both my pride and problem as I was developing my contacts with "girls" in my teens. None of those and the other similarities that prompted someone who was asked to guess who I was on one of my return visits to my former home. "Well it's obviously a Vincent", came the first approximation.
From my father came this peculiar body electricity, knowledge of which, in my own case, came to the fore as my personal healing talent became apparent. It is reasonable to assume that the natural healing that he undertook, and that which had been performed by his parents, derived some of its force from this inexplicable part of our make up. My grandmother, in particular, was a powerful and much sought healer, and her untimely death that resulted from the effects of an accident was deeply regretted by many at the time. As a minor example, and before the advent of anti-magnetic watches, my father could not wear a watch on his wrist, for they invariably stopped. Whether they ever went again is something that I cannot recall.
For me, the knowledge began to provide explanations for certain reactions and sensitivities that I have already alluded to, and which I am going to explore more fully. If you skipped all or part of Chapter 4, this, I am afraid, is where you may have problems. But to help you - and I hope that those who were obedient and read it will be tolerant - I may revisit and reprise some of the earlier points.
It is impossible to ignore the fact that all life depends for its function upon electro-chemical and bio-electronic processes. You cannot ignore this and say "But I am only interested in the ultimate function, the intelligent processes of the mind, and the psychology of this person, this patient. Why should I even bother to consider any of the internal detail?" The reason is that this person, this patient is a totality - an individual totality; an electrical phenomenon that lives on a huge electrical machine, the earth, and interacts with - everything.
Robert Becker writes of the Body Electric and its complexities, and Crosscurrents. Fred Soyka wrote of his mental and medical response to the varying concentrations of electrical ions in the air. Gustav von Pohl described vividly the illnesses, both physical and mental, that affected individuals who slept or worked in locations influenced by geo-electricity, as did Käthe Bachler in her seminal work, Earth Radiation,and as does Rolf Gordon in his book, Are You Sleeping in a Safe Place?. [Bibliography]
Becker began his research into the current of regeneration required to mend fractured bones, and ended with a wide analysis of the electrical function of various bodily processes. Along the way he confirmed that the acupuncture matrix that links all parts of the body and brain is, in fact, a series of subtle electrical circuits, and it is with this particular body-brain phenomenon that I will begin.
"But", you may say, "Even if does exist, what possible connection can the acupuncture system have with mental health - and particularly with spirit intrusion". Here, and making allowance for simple translation from the original Chinese, are just a few sample conditions that are capable of being treated from various acupuncture points - madness, epilepsy, "alarm in children", vertigo, sadness, "stage fright", "a few days before menstruation cries, depressed anxious and nervous", "mental stupidity", "prone to fear and unhappiness", "wishes to remain at home", "does not wish to live", "walks around madly", delirium, insanity, forgetfulness, frequent weeping, "eyes move wildly", suicidal.
Many in mainstream medicine dismiss acupuncture out of hand; others acknowledge the possibility of a limited role in analgesia, while GP friend "Harry" used to adopt the "Pavlovian dog" conditioned and immediate response, and come out with dire warnings about "getting hepatitis from the needles". Although it is not my intention to write a dissertation on the subject of acupuncture and the relevance to physical and mental health, an acceptance of its significance and an understanding of the complex "circuitry" interlinking every strand and function of the body, mind and senses, is necessary to be able to follow my argument.
In acupuncture treatment, the goal is to try to restore the exquisite balance that should exist between the various parts of the matrix, called meridians, and between the two sides of the body. A corollary is that damage or distortion at the seat of an acupuncture point can act in reverse, so to speak, and has the potential of causing the very conditions that would be treated from the point.
My purpose at this stage is to suggest various ways in which imbalance may be caused, and then to show how the intelligent sources of spiritual intrusion can exploit the resultant disturbed mind and body for their own inexplicable purposes. But more than that, I believe that this subtle "circuitry" provides the open door through which other forms of electrical interference enter, and hence widens the range of discomfort and inexplicable unease that can be exploited so easily.
It is very easy to dismiss acupuncture and indeed many other branches of Oriental and Asian medicine as coming from "primitive" ideas and cultures, and to say that real medicine only began in Europe from about the eighteenth century onwards. Anyone with an interest in the inheritance from "the East" might find The Genius of China by Robert Temple to their taste. "3,000 years of science, discovery and invention" are described and analysed. For example, in engineering, the Chinese used techniques for deep drilling for brine and natural gas from before the first century B.C., while in medicine, as well as acupuncture there are early records that demonstrate knowledge of the circulation of the blood and of circadian rhythms.
Chapter 14 Part 2
Before I proceed any further, let me make it absolutely clear that I am not promoting acupuncture treatment as a remedy for the sorts of ailments that I am using as examples. However, an understanding of the whole system and its ramifications, and how, in a way, it parallels the distribution of the blood, will help me to develop my proposition. If the flow of blood to any organ or part of the body is inhibited and reduced from its natural level, inevitably disease will result.
Regarding the acupuncture system as electrical circuitry carrying minute currents, there are many ways in which the "resistance" of a circuit can be increased, imbalance caused, and disease created. Remembering that I am an electrical engineer used to dealing with the minute currents that one had to measure in a variety of nuclear installations, certain reactions will be obvious to me that may escape others.
Let me give some actual examples that may serve to illustrate one of the points I am trying to make. I was helped in the development of my thinking through an encounter with someone who practiced the electrical form of acupuncture. Diane used electrical measurements to detect imbalances between the various meridians.
At the time that I met her, I had been pondering on the reason why so many women who developed breast cancer did so in the left breast. I had been going for some time to assist at one of the centres that offered the "Gentle Approach" to cancer, and of those who came for my therapy I only met one whose initial cancer was in the right breast. My original thoughts focussed on the wedding ring, for this reason: if an electrical conductor is surrounded by another conductor, then the current in the former will be reduced. Thus, I thought, the wedding ring might inhibit the normal flow in a meridian that has the peculiar name of the "Triple Heater" meridian, that begins on the ring finger and which is very closely associated with the endocrine system. Might this be the culprit?
With Diane's help we first took measurements on a finger, and then repeated them with a ring in place, and found what I had expected - the measurement taken with the ring in place was lowered. The same results were obtained using close fitting metal bracelets, such as expanding wristwatch straps.
I soon had a real demonstration with a woman who had a right breast cancer. As I applied my therapy I pondered "why?", and then had a potent response. Having comparatively little time with each person, I had devised a strategy that involved touching certain acupuncture points in sequence - sequences that usually concluded with points on the circulation meridians that are found on the wrist. My touching them actively stimulated the circulation and resulted in a feeling of well-being and warmth being felt by the individual.
Pulling the sleeves back to locate the points, I found on her right wrist two tight gold chains that "I never take off". The chains had been in place since her teens and she was now in her fifties and they were tight to her wrists, though not so tight that they interfered with the circulation of the blood. Finding my points, which were above the level of the chains, I sat touching both arms for about five minutes. Her final comments as she left me were that she felt a lovely "glow" throughout herself - except for her right hand, which was stone cold. I tried to develop the ideas that I was formulating through discussion with a variety of people, but apart from a passing interest, active support was zero, and one soon gets tired at pushing at "closed door" minds.
I first became aware of the possibility of a connection between "acupuncture" and mental health in relation to Alzheimer's disease. I had never actually thought about the condition until I saw on television a film called "Do You Remember Love?" It was a sympathetic depiction of the development of dementia in a middle-aged American woman university lecturer.
At the time I could only name two individuals who had died from Alzheimer's. One was the film star Rita Heyworth, and the other was someone from the village in which I had formerly lived. Apart from being female, they had one important feature in common - they had both been dancers. The local woman had been a ballet dancer and had continued with dancing as she taught many young aspirants in our district.
The thought that came to me on seeing the film and thinking about the two women, was that damage to the feet of a dancer is likely to occur frequently. This would be particularly so in someone who regularly dances on points, and bearing in mind that for many girls the urge to become a dancer develops early, when dedicated practice can soon distort feet that are still being formed. And so, unlikely though it may seem, I am proposing a link between damage to the feet and damage to the brain.
I shall include diagrams of the feet in the final section in which I shall give other references. [Illustrations] It will be a short section and so easy to print and refer to while reading this discussion. The meridians are named for the organs of the body, but are not specific to those organs when treating ailments.
Those involved on the feet are: Spleen, Sp; Liver, Liv; Stomach, S; Kidneys, K; Gall, G; Bladder, Bl.
I have listed only those points that are relevant to my argument, and would point out that while some of the conditions listed are not specific in the terms used in Western medicine, the descriptions are appropriate to my proposition.
Liver (Liv) 1 Unconsciousness, fainting, "appearance as though dead", headaches.
Liv 2 Headache, head dizzy, insomnia, angry easily, hysteria, madness, insanity, epilepsy, fits, convulsions in children, neurasthenia.
Spleen (Sp) 1 Madness, little children cantankerous.
Sp 2 Agitated, melancholic.
Sp 3 Mad, agitated, melancholic.
Stomach (S) 40 Throat numb, cannot speak, madness, "sees ghosts", laughs madly.
S 41 Vertigo, madness, fits, convulsions in children, incoherent speech, frightened, agitated.
S 42 "Wants to undress in public", wanders around aimlessly, "every month madness".
S 44 Melancholic, fear and trembling, nightmares, "dislikes the human voice".
S 45 Fainting, cerebral anaemia, "like a corpse", deviation of mouth, dementia, insomnia, neuropathy.
Kidney (K) 1 Fainting with cold limbs, prone to fear, madness, epilepsy, alarm in children, paralysis, pain in head and nape of neck, eyes dizzy, vertigo, hypertensive ecephalopathy. (The position of K1 is on the plantar surface of the foot, almost below and two centimetres proximal to Liv 2).
Point A is on the second toe, adjacent to Liv 2; it is not a classical point but has been added by more recent research. One could use it to treat "articular degeneration of the atlas/axis joint".
Other vulnerable locations are at the ankles where one might encounter either physical damage or the commonly observed "going over" at the ankle. Acupuncture points that could become activated in these circumstances, together with relevant maladies are:
Bl 62 Madness, epilepsy, dizziness, occipital neuralgia, tension headaches, spastic conditions of the uterus. The symptoms of many diseases of the spinal cord can be helped, though not cured, in the early stages of the disease, by this point.
G 39 Cerebral haemorrhage, hands and feet uncoordinated, throat numb, chorea, neurasthenia, madness, fear, bad temper. (Specialised point for bone marrow, leucocytosis).
In 1997 I responded to a broadcast on BBC radio 4 in which the discussion centred on the high proportion of professional footballers who were contracting and dying from Alzheimer's disease. The natural conclusion of the programme contributors was that it was heading the ball that probably caused the onset of dementia. My own assessment, based on the arguments above, was that equally with heading the ball, foot, ankle and shin damage are the most likely injuries sustained by footballers. Nervous depression, insanity, "suddenly becomes mad" are just three relevant conditions that could be treated from points on the lower leg.
I also pointed out that of the inmates of a ward for demented women where I used to visit a friend, very few were likely to have headed footballs. A patient in Lancaster Moor Hospital, my friend had chosen to be placed in this particular ward because she found it to be quieter than the one that normally housed women with her range of problems. Of the women in the ward, one stood out in the context of my argument. About sixty years old, she walked around incessantly in stocking feet, revealing the most distorted bunions that one could possibly see. The big toe on each foot crossed the others virtually at right angles - Liv 2, K 1 and Point A being the three most likely to sustain damage.
Visiting someone else in my local hospital, someone who was a patient in the geriatric ward, I overheard the nurse who was issuing medication say to one woman, who appeared to be marginally demented, that if she took her medication "the voices would go away". Did the dementia result from hearing the voices, or did the voices manifest as the mind became disturbed? Somewhat "chicken and egg" it would seem.
Chapter 14 Part 3
As I have mentioned, scars from operations, trauma resulting from such as fractures and scar tissue left after accidental damage are all potent sources of imbalance in the meridians and possible causes of seemingly unrelated ill health. Scars created during hysterectomy have always struck me as major sources of a range of adverse conditions.
While she did not have an actual hysterectomy, Esther, whom I wrote about much earlier, had a near equivalent in terms of scarring. You may recollect that she had a malignant tumour at the base of her brain, and prior to having radiation treatment along the whole length of her spine, her ovaries were relocated to minimise the possibility of her becoming sterile.
On one of my visits, she agreed to let me photograph her abdomen with the relevant acupuncture points marked on it - you will find the picture in the final chapter as "Esther 1". [Photo] Apart from the point at the right of the picture that I missed because she was laughing so much, all of the others marked are in true locations. As you will see, several lie directly along the line of the incision and the scars. What the long-term effect might have been I shall never know, for she died a year later.
The points are associated with many vital female functions and the resultant emotions, and their disruption may account for some of the emotional trauma experienced by a proportion of women following hysterectomy. If the incision is made vertically up the abdomen it will be seen that several points would be affected, points for treating a similar range of ailments to the ones that I have mentioned, with the significant addition of one that would be used when "the patient wants to die".
Esther also had deep exploratory surgery at the back of her neck in the vicinity of the tumour; surgery that produced scars through a number of major acupuncture points, one of which could be used to treat meningitis. The fact that she died from meningitis gives me food for thought.
Living where I do, frequently I have visitors coming to stay, and inevitably I drive them around the district, for there is so much to see and so many places of interest to visit. Many of our routes run through the neighbouring valleys and dales, where the roads are very narrow, with acute bends and hills, moving through woods, past rivers, lakes and mountain waterfalls. At every bend of the road there is a new vista, and often we stop and the scene is viewed with an artist's eye, or that of a photographer, fell walker or angler - and the actual journey becomes as interesting as is the ultimate destination. After reading some of my writing, one of my visitors likened it to a recent trip that we had made in the car. She said that although she new what our intended destination was, the journey with its variety and many facets was equally delightful and she looked forward to returning to each of our intermediate points for a longer and more comprehensive visit.
With my friend's comments in mind, let me try to define for you what I plan to be the ultimate goal of this episode. In earlier chapters I have described the variety of ploys used by spiritual intruders that I have identified, and I have referred to the varying circumstance in which the ploys are most successful in having a disturbing effect upon me. I have tried to demonstrate the fact that both the type of ploy used, and its coincidence with the undermining effects of external phenomena, show that the strategies derive from an intelligent source.
Having referred in earlier chapters in an almost piecemeal way to the wide range of phenomena that cause disturbance, my plan now is to try to bring them together into a coherent whole. As I have commented earlier in the book, one cannot prevent the different winds from blowing, nor stop the moon in its track, nor yet eliminate earth currents, but one can minimise the emotional and other disturbance with the knowledge that the influence is outside oneself, that the effects will be transient, or can be avoided, and that one is not intrinsically mentally ill.
If you have looked ahead to the final chapter in order to see the illustrations of the feet that are there, [Illustrations] you may be wondering, and justifiably so, why there is a photograph of Esther's back, and several of nude models. Why, also, is there a drawing of a horse?
It was the drawing of the horse in a book on equitation, and what it actually represents, that opened my eyes to the facts that I am next going to write about, and explains why the other pictures are also there. Anyone who has been involved in the initial training of a young horse will have become aware of one salient detail. The training usually begins with the horse being worked on a circle at the end of a lunge rein - a single long rein that connects the noseband on the horse to the trainer who stands at the centre of the ring. Once the horse has got used to the situation it is always found that it proceeds amicably and freely in one direction, but is reluctant to go in the other, and often tries to break back and circle in the direction in which it was comfortable.
Those who farm red deer soon learn that the pens used to corral the deer have to be constructed with a clockwise lead, otherwise the deer will not "herd". Likewise sheep being gathered move calmly on a clockwise curve, and break away if turned anticlockwise. If you watch horse racing you probably will have noticed that when horses are galloping on a straight, they are actually running with their hindquarters offset to one side of the direct course. Likewise if you see a long dog approaching you on a straight path, you will undoubtedly see that its hindquarters are also offset.
My good friends Tricci and Peter have over 150 milk cows. For record and identification purposes the cows have a number tattooed on one hip, and for some perverse reason, it is always on the cows right hip. Perverse, according to Tricci, because almost every time she has to find a particular cow by its number, the animal is lying down with the right hip underneath.
In other words, as far as it is possible to observe free-ranging mammals, they all have a lateral curve as shown in the illustration of the horse [Horse]. When animals in the wild appear on TV, I always keep one eye open for any evidence of the curve, and my greatest find was in a programme about orang-utans. Centre stage was a venerable and solitary male, and as I watched, and it moved away from the camera down a straight path, plainly seen was the curve in the spine and a slightly asymmetrical walk or shuffle that matched it.
Humans are mammals, and it is not very long in evolutionary time since we were quadrupeds. And yes, humans are born with a lateral curve. There are many ways in which it can be confirmed as I shall illustrate, although for reasons that appear to follow from our "domestication", some curve to their left and are left-handed, while the majority curve to their right and are right-handed. The two models are right-handed and are standing or sitting in a relaxed manner, and no doubt believing that they are upright.
I took Esther's photograph shortly before she began the radiation therapy along her spine. She wanted to see where the radiographers had made their marks when planning her treatment. Esther was lying completely prone and relaxed, and was left-handed. I am right-handed, and will list the observable features for a right-hander. The most obvious is the left shoulder, which is higher; the left breast, also. If a shoulder bag or satchel is carried, it is almost invariably on the left shoulder. I have heard people say "My left shoulder is higher because I carried my school bag on it". The reverse is actually true - that shoulder was chosen because it was already higher, and the bag lodged on it more securely than the other.
Ballroom dancers follow the majority handedness and always circle anti-clockwise, likewise skaters on a rink, although solo figure skaters usually demonstrate their handedness, left-handers going clockwise, and making their jumps, toe-loops and spins also in a clockwise direction.
The most obvious difference between the two "hands" is usually not readily observed, and is only ascertained by asking the question "How do you wipe your bottom?" - guaranteed to produce an interesting reaction at a dinner party! There are two schools of bottom wipers - those who reach through between the thighs, and those who reach around behind. Right-handers who reach through, use the left hand, and as right-handers are in the majority, the left hand became the "cack" hand. It is much more obvious in the situation where one does not use a toilet seat, but crouches down to defecate; the curve of the body makes the left-handed reach through of a right-hander more convenient, and vice versa. (Conversely, reaching around behind for a right-hander is much more easily accomplished with the right hand.)
As the body curve determines one's stance when throwing or when holding a sword and shield, the left foot comes forward, the shield is naturally held in defence on the left arm, while the sword is most easily wielded with the right hand. From this fighting posture, the sword hand became the "noble" one, and the left with its anus cleaning association, the "dishonourable" hand. Many books and articles have been written on the subject of handedness, and if I did not have to limit my discussion after introducing the topic and showing how it fits into my main theme, I could no doubt write another, for I have been making these observations for nearly thirty years.
I have never seen any reference to the natural body curve in humans, whether in relation to handedness, or in any other context. So, remember, you read it first here, and as the explorers of old named islands, rivers and mountains after themselves, I shall name the curve "The Vincent Anomaly, Asymmetry, or Curve", and claim my rightful place in posterity!
The views of the models' backs illustrate my reason for including them, and including them particularly within the total context of body asymmetries and differential stresses. Far from them having the smooth continuous curve that is seen in quadrupeds, the upright stance adopted by humans has served to divide the spine into a series of "chords" of curves.
The lumbar spine is rigid, and has very little noticeable curve, although when observed in actual people whom I have studied, the intersection between the lumbar and thoracic vertebrae has been anything up to 3 cms off the centre line. "Sit up straight", "Stand up straight" - these are the commands one heard as a child, and so we attempted to comply, and caused a discontinuity between Thoracic 12 and Lumbar 1 vertebrae. The thoracic spine has a more noticeable and smoother curve, until it enters another discontinuity at the intersection with the cervical spine, where again attempts to obey the commands to sit or stand upright result in a kink.
A spine that has more than its fair share of problems belongs to a young woman of my recent acquaintance. As she was being born her chin became caught on the inside of her mother's organ and she was bent severely backwards - there was no spare theatre for a caesarean section, and so there was a lot of cutting and pulling. "Vicky", now a young adult, has a number of emotional and behavioural problems some of which seem to stem from her difficult birth, and are particularly appropriate in the context in which I am writing.
Her spine has the most peculiar double-jointed connection between the lumbar and thoracic elements, where there are two adjacent acupuncture points, one of which may be used to treat insanity and epilepsy. It also coincides with a point that has importance in Japanese medicine, and where treatment would be applied "to stimulate heart action, the kidneys, aorta, peritoneum and brain".
There are other factors that take one back to where I wrote about the influences that can be created before the birth, and which might result from the stresses that can be created from pre-marital conception. This was the situation with Vicky's parents, and a reluctant bridegroom seems to have turned into a reluctant father, whose negative influence upon his daughter may add to those problems that seem to stem from the physical difficulties that I wrote about above. It is equally feasible that the stress of the pregnancy upon the mother may have been at the root of the difficulties experienced at the time of ultimate delivery.
Chapter 14 Part 4
One does not have to watch TV for very long before one can observe the results of these asymmetries and imbalances in the speakers in front of one. TV gives a major advantage to the observer of human behaviour in that it allows individuals to be studied when they believe that they are behaving normally, and they can be stared at without embarrassing them or oneself. Many times I turn off the sound so that I can watch posture and expression without the distraction of the actual words. The slant of the shoulders and sometimes of the whole body, the breasts at different levels, the obliquity of the neck, and the tilt of the head are all there to be seen, and I can indulge in my personal guessing game of trying to decide if a person is left or right handed.
At the base of the neck, and where the neck meets the skull at the atlas joint, there are acupuncture points that may be used to treat a number of serious "mental" and "nervous" conditions. Among the ailments listed are: hysteria, paralysis, limbs and body not coordinated, "St. Vitus's Dance", convulsions, epilepsy, neurasthenia, vertigo, "walks around madly", "eyes move wildly", suicidal. At the junction between the thoracic and lumbar vertebrae there is a point that may be used to treat - madness, epilepsy, anorexia.
I derive personal benefit from the results of my observations when I want to achieve total relaxation. I lie supine on a firm surface in a posture resembling what Yoga practitioners call "The Corpse", in which they try to lie symmetrically about a centre line. Instead of trying to be symmetrical, I next arrange my body in a gentle curve from the top of my head to my feet, keeping my coccyx in place as my "reference" point. Being right-handed, the curve is concave to my right, and my head and feet are approximately 15 cms removed sideways from the original straight posture. The relaxation that I achieve is far superior to that gained when I simply lie symmetrically.
Returning briefly to the role and status of acupuncture therapy, it is not something that can be dismissed, treated casually, or "learned" in a weekend "workshop". I have had treatments from two practitioners of Traditional Chinese Acupuncture. I went to them partly for prophylactic purposes and also to be able to experience the practice at first hand. Their training had been full time over three years, and had included half a year in China.
In both cases, my first visit lasted well over an hour, and involved the most thorough analysis, testing and assessment that I have experienced in any form of medicine, apart from when my eyes were examined recently. As I recall, and for my own purposes, I went continuously for about ten weeks to each practitioner, and was impressed by the thoroughness of the practice. And contrary to "Harry's" dire warnings of hepatitis infection, the needles were either brand new from a sealed packet, or direct from the local hospital surgical sterilisation unit.
For my own reference I use a book by Dr. Felix Mann - The Treatment of Disease by Acupuncture - his Atlas of Acupuncture, and Acupuncture Therapy by Dr. Mary Austin. The last one came out in paperback, but as it excluded much from the hardback that I considered invaluable, I would not recommend it. The Mann book also has different editions, the 1974 that I have being fully comprehensive. There are undoubtedly later works by different authors, but the ones that I have cited have filled all of my requirements.
"Imagine a perfect skeleton" my physiotherapist friends were instructed during their initial training - and yet many years experience has told them that there is no such thing. "No one has a symmetrical face, and children's faces are the most asymmetrical" - so said my optician. Television, again, offers many opportunities for observing faces, with asymmetries ranging from the slight whimsical twist to the mouth, to the face that resembles a comma. Conversely, I have many opportunities for looking at the heads of animals - sheep, cattle and deer - where the horns and lugs stick out with complete symmetry.
There are many reasons why the variations occur in humans, and there are a significant number of acupuncture points affected, points that could used to treat a variety of nervous and "mind" conditions. I have identified a number of "thought patterns" that over time can create some of the asymmetries, and in the fullness of my analysis in this book they have a significant place. Hopefully I shall be able to put them into a coherent form and include them later in this chapter.
A persistent pattern of thought that occupies the mind for large parts of the waking life can create both body and facial twists and tensions, and over time can produce a wide variety of diseases. I have already described in an earlier chapter the way in which deep concentration can result in very limited breathing, and how this state can be created and exploited by various intruders into the mind.
The very prolonged inner tension that results from personal distress such as occurs during emotional trauma can both be created and exploited by adverse intrusions, although they were not specifically involved in the very recent illness of a close friend, while prolonged emotional stress was. Her malignant breast lump was directly in the site of a significant acupuncture point - significant in that it is classed as a "Judo knock-out point". It occurred in the left breast at the point labelled Kidney 23, which is in the sixth intercostal space and about half-way between the sternum and the nipple. Among the ailments that could be treated here are: "cannot breathe", ulcer of breast, tumour of breast, anorexia, spasm of rectus abdominus.
This last muscular "lock" is something that I have identified in myself during periods when I had been held in deep speculation or concentration by them, and when my breathing had been so shallow as to be virtually still.
Chapter 14 Part 5
My persistence in following aspects of the acupuncture system is justified when one begins to interpret interaction with external sources of electrical stimulus. The analysis by Dr. Becker that demonstrated that acupuncture meridians behave like minute electrical conductors, takes one into a new realm of speculation. A moment's examination of your radio, TV or mobile phone will reveal the presence in each of an aerial. From the simple piece of wire or rod, to the more elaborate digital dish, they all have one purpose - to intercept "electricity" from the air, from the ether. The original term "Wireless" for the now more common "radio" says it all - the "wire-less" connection between source and receptor.
Everything "electrical" that travels through the air does so as "electromagnetic waves". Most transmissions are intentional, as in communication, entertainment and ra-dar, or are accidental or adventitious as are the electromagnetic fields that occur around electrical conductors such as overhead power lines, or in the proximity of electrical equipment, machines or apparatus. In this environment the acupuncture meridian behaves as an aerial, and, by a process known as "induction", becomes activated with its own current.
All waves have a frequency and wavelength - i.e. how many occur in a given time, and the distance from peak to peak. Normal household electricity has a frequency of 50 cycles per second - known as 50 hertz - and a very long wavelength. Modern radar and communications transmissions have frequencies of many millions of hertz - megahertz - and very short wavelengths, as low as millionths of a metre.
In his book Electromagnetic Man, Dr. Cyril Smith describes how the wavelengths of some of these latter transmissions are of the same dimension as the cells of the body. He then describes how the intrusion of the radiation into the body can have a significant impact on the normal functioning of the whole nervous system sufficient to cause it to malfunction and produce physical and mental illnesses.
I have illustrated how the acupuncture meridians can become distorted and restricted sufficiently to vary the electrical resistance and cause an imbalance within the system with resulting illness. This is one of the reasons why I have discoursed so widely on the subject of acupuncture.
Apart from his analysis of the interference at cellular level, I don't think that Dr. Smith considered the mechanism through which the effects were created. I would find it very difficult to be specific about the "mechanism" through which the motor neurone disease of the other Dr. Smith, my late friend Sandy, was caused. Having measured the electromagnetic field in which he sat for many hours in his consulting room, there is no doubt in my mind that that was the cause of, or at the very least, a major contributory factor in the creation of his illness.
Strong em fields featured in the daily lives of others with M.N.D. of whom I have been told - a man who spent a large part of each day operating a circular saw and another who was a professional wood turner, both men standing with a high-powered electric motor less than a metre from their abdomen. Was the field from electrical under floor heating involved in the death from M.N.D. of the close relative of one of my friends? Was the same type of heating a factor in the causation of leukaemia of one person, and the severe depression of another, both living locally?
There is sufficient evidence that will, if examined without prejudice, implicate electrical fields from numerous sources in the creation or aggravation of many ailments of the human nervous system. I sometimes speculate on the possible adverse effects of these same fields upon a developing foetus. If a pregnant woman sleeps under an electric blanket, or if she works at an industrial sewing machine where the motor is very close to her womb - what then? Is the subsequent development of the infant affected? Is there permanent change caused to its nervous system? Is there the potential cause of future mental health problems?
I grew up without electricity - our house had only gas, and apart from the work with the naval radar, I had minimal exposure until I reached twenty-five. Even for homes that had electricity, the occupants had only a little exposure themselves, for apart from a radio and possibly a very basic washing machine, the sources that would create em fields would have been few.
Reviewing these times with my brother, we find it difficult, if not impossible, to recollect anyone of our acquaintance, adult or child, who had anything resembling the nervous and mental problems that beset many individuals today. We knew someone who became depressed and was hospitalised when abandoned by her husband coincidentally with the menopause, but only the one.
No one amongst our school and teenage contemporaries exhibited any of the common problems of hyperactivity, depression, self-harm, suicide even, which trouble today's youth. There were the "dunces" of course, and we speculate on whether they were the dyslexics of our day. Asthma was rare, maybe non-existent; some kids had the inevitable nits, and some had ringworm, while most of us went through mumps, measles and chickenpox.
We were spared the effects of too much electricity in that we did not have television, computers, play stations and mobile phones - we played "out" instead. We were spared the junk foods and all or most of the food additives - all of the E numbers that constitute so much of today's diet. Maybe the rose-coloured spectacles are working overtime, but truly, our lives had a happy "simplicity", until the war came and changed the situation - although it made our diet even more basic.
As I wrote earlier, the effect of ambient conditions upon the developing foetus cannot be ignored when assessing the nervous and mental problems of the adult. Something that is insidiously present and potentially harmful is the "geo-electricity" that I have referred to in earlier chapters.
I was briefly acquainted with one young woman who had developed muscular dystrophy at a very early age. While her mother was pregnant with her, the marriage was breaking up, and, as has been ascertained later, the parents slept in a location that was subject to severe geo-pathic influence, itself possibly a potent contributor to the aggravation between the parents.
In yet another situation I used to join a friend when she baby-sat for her daughter who lived in a mobile home. Her grandson would cry incessantly, and struggled and struggled in his cot, pushing against the side with such effort that he developed a hernia. This is "classical" behaviour of an infant that is put to sleep where geo-electricity has a strong influence, as was the behaviour of the mother who became strongly verbally aggressive to my friend. Both the mother and the child became tranquil when they moved shortly afterwards. The behaviour of the two should be borne in mind by anyone considering the causes of "shaken baby syndrome", for the incessant crying of the infant and the aggravated and provoked state of the parent together make an explosive mixture that often has fatal consequences for the child.
Käthe Bachler was a schoolteacher in Austria who became concerned that certain children in her classes did not achieve the potential of which she new they were capable - children who were often uncharacteristically disruptive. Becoming aware of the phenomenon of geopathic stress, and being taught by an experienced dowser, she began a programme of surveying and analysis of the classrooms that she used, and found, almost without exception, that the under-performing and disruptive children sat in badly stressed locations.
Her book Earth Radiation describes her work and its consequences - consequences that, for example, resulted in the children being moved regularly in their seating so that no child spent long in the undesirable locations. Her work was treated seriously by the education authorities and formed the basis for her further research and grants under the auspices of the Pedagogical Institute in Salzburg, for whom she produced her "Research into the connections between geopathic zones of disturbance and academic failures in school children".
It is almost worth reading the book for one entry alone. This is a commendation from the then Archbishop of Salzburg, who, after commenting favourably on Ms. Bachler herself, wrote:
"With her dowsing instruments she can find the "good places" and has thus helped many people including several priests and nuns of our archdioceses."
After giving cautions about the misuse of the "divining" gift, the Archbishop continued:
"If however a Christian wants to do God's will and protects himself with prayers when doing radiaesthesic works and uses his or her instruments only in a helping way, based on love, when examining houses and finding water, then this work is blessed by the Church. In this sense I can recommend unreservedly and warmly the work of Ms Käthe Bachler, and especially her book."
The commendation does two things - it acknowledges the existence of the phenomenon and the use of dowsing to locate good and bad places, and, importantly in the overall purpose of my book, it acknowledges the potential for "evil" work and the existence of the spiritual component in dowsing. The Bachler book itself contains many authenticated case studies and analyses - and is unfortunately now very rare. The last time that I searched the Web I found a site where someone was proposing a reprint. If you are interested, I suggest that you search using just the author's name.
Emphasis is usually placed upon the "bad", the stressed zones; however, it is important that one should remember that there are others that are specifically good, and can create well-being. I am fortunate that quite by chance I have found such a place to live, and remember well the comments of Bruce Macmanaway when he dowsed the house for me - they were to the effect that if anyone was actually seeking somewhere to practice healing work, they would be hard put to find somewhere better. Most of my visitors relax on arrival and almost all invariably have excellent sleep. Left to themselves, animals will find places that feel good to them - on some farms there are even recognised places where female animals will go to give birth - although it is well recorded that cats are happiest in places that are harmful to humans.
I came to the field of "earth currents" as a sceptic - that is until I experienced the reality of them for myself. First in the home of my friend John whose leukaemia developed during the time that he slept in the bed in which I found it impossible to sleep - the fact that his first marriage broke down when that had been the marital bed came as no surprise. Then in the flat where Esther lived with her partner, and at the head of the bed beside which no plants thrived, where I felt distinctly nauseated and where the pair woke following "teeth grinding nightmares", "with a heavy weight on the chest", "feeling very depressed", where Esther developed a brain tumour - and which all changed when the bed was moved, although far too late for Esther, who sadly died.
And again in the home of my cousin in Carlisle, where my own reaction was to experience severe backache, and where my cousin developed crippling muscular rheumatism - for which the only remedy seemed to be steroids and more steroids - and I curse when I recollect the sight of this lovely, caring woman bending more and more forward as her spine disintegrated and she could no longer breathe, and died. (When I wrote of my cousin in an earlier chapter I also noted that the friend with whom she shared the house had developed persistent and aggravating teeth grinding, which is commonly experienced in geopathic places, and that the friend's dog would not remain in the badly stressed room, which again is typical.)
I feel considerable anger when I reflect that there are so many serious physical and mental illnesses whose origins may be traced to a variety of electrical, electromagnetic or simple magnetic influences, and when I realise that there appears to be no coherent or coordinated research into these phenomena. In his book Chemical Victims, Dr. Richard Mackarness refers to the "Society for Clinical Ecology" that had been founded in 1965. The society worked for an understanding of the influence of food and environment upon the health of individuals, but seemingly, unless the objectives have changed, restricted to the influence of substances. My concern is that that is only a part of the total picture, a picture that will not be nearly complete until the electrical environment in all its aspects is added to the "chemical".
Chapter 14 Part 6
Within the last twenty-four hours I have had a potent demonstration of how the whole planet is, in fact, a "whole" and that "no one is an island". Yesterday (21 May 2003) I said to a friend that because of the way that I felt, I expected there to be an earthquake soon. This morning the news bulletins were full of descriptions of an overnight major earthquake in Algeria.
Several things had come together in my perception. The first was the way that I felt, which is very difficult to describe except to say that there was something "electrical" going on that past experience has shown me is associated with a major earthquake or volcanic eruption somewhere in the world. The second "notification" came from the poor performance of my television, in that several normally reliable satellite channels were playing up, while terrestrial channel reception was frag-mented. Thirdly, the disposition of the moon and major planets in combi-nation was likely to contribute to significant variations in the "pull" upon the earth - often coincident with an earthquake or eruption.
I did not write that to demonstrate that somehow I have "extrasensory" powers or anything of the sort, but rather to indicate that, to someone who is in tune with his environment, subtle changes may be sensed, changes that experience can allocate to a source. But just as a particular radio signal may be masked by all of the noise and chatter over the airways, so the effects that I have referred to are easily masked by all of the pollution experienced in urban and industrial living.
When I was still in work, I might possibly have gone to the medical department with a complaint that would have been recorded as "general malaise", and been content with an analgesic of some sort. In times past I may have believed that the analgesic had "worked wonders", whereas the actual cause of my discomfort had simply moved away.
The whole episode illustrates why I continue doggedly - almost obsessively - describing and analysing the various natural phenomena. From my experience, observation and subsequent analysis I know that there are many individuals who respond in a similar manner, but who, not knowing the cause of their "general malaises", might become disturbed. This may be particularly so for those who are undermined or distressed in different ways, who just might be pushed "over the edge" by feelings that they cannot understand.
Certainly I know that such times and occasions are fully utilised by the intelligent intruding entities to aggravate and provoke in the ways that I have described earlier. Equally I know that there is no medication yet devised that will have any real effect on the sufferer. The children studied by Käthe Bachler were not aware that they were being studied and so did not "jump through hoops" that were held for them; the plants in Esther's flat reacted without prompting, as did the dog belonging to by cousin's friend; the female animals seeking good places to give birth were doing so because it felt good, and not for any other reason that might spring to mind.
Geo-electricity exists - of that there can be no question. The real question is - when will the reality be accepted by mainstream medicine and psychiatry, and then be incorporated into an understanding of the role that geopathic stress plays in the causation of many illnesses of the body and mind?
Much damage has been caused by the blurring of the reality and actuality of a true electrical/electromagnetic phenomenon with another reality - the "ley-lines" of Alfred Watkins. As I have written, the name "ley-lines" has been hijacked by those who are intent upon surrounding the two phenomena with magic and mystery. In the context in which I am writing I beg you to abandon and forget any link that you may have had in your mind with "ley-lines", and accept and work with the reality that is geo-electricity and the observable evidence of its presence.
The fact that dowsing is the easiest way of locating earth currents discourages many people; if this is so in your case, I suggest that you should re-read the statement from the former Archbishop of Salzburg, Dr. Karl Berg, a statement of understanding and approval that would not have been issued lightly.
The harm caused by geo-electricity may be due to direct "radiation" or to the fact that the desirable negative ions are repelled from the zone, with a consequent high concentration of positive ones. When I wrote earlier linking my mother's haemorrhage and my brother's incessant crying, this is what I had in mind. The house in which they lived and in which my brother had been born had been built on land that had been reclaimed from a fresh-water marsh that was still influenced by the surges of the water in a nearby tidal inlet. I speculate that there remained underground aquifers that created the currents and a resultant pos-ion concentration.
Referring to the Ion Effect book, failure of blood to clot with resulting haemorrhages, and incessant crying of infants are two common results of such a concentration. My brother ceased crying when he arrived under the overhanging trees - trees that are well-known creators of negative ions, and a pleasant relaxed feeling - witness the pictures one can often see of Chinese practicing T'ai Chi out of doors and almost invariably under trees.
Käthe Bachler wrote exclusively about underground water. Gustav von Pohl accepted the other major generator of earth currents - the rotation of the earth itself. Rolf Gordon in Are You Sleeping in a Safe Place? illustrates the "Curry Grid" and the "Hartmann Grid" - two groups of "force lines" that are created by the rotation of the earth, and he and von Pohl both give details of case studies reflecting the types of malady that result from time spent in the adverse zones. Von Pohl also describes other observable effects that result from the presence of strong earth currents - effects discernible in the growth of trees and the striking of lightning. He illustrates how certain trees are stunted and die, while other species thrive, or yet others grow lopsidedly in an effort to avoid the harmful zone.
I had a practical demonstration of this effect in one of my own pine trees. Its growth where it left the ground was almost horizontal, recovering in a long curve then to grow upwards. Because all of the other trees - probably planted 150 years ago - are sturdy and upright, I conclude that they were all looked after properly, and that the twisted growth was an aberration. The significance became very obvious when I had my field dowsed at the time that I was planning to have my borehole sunk. The dowser's reaction as he passed over the line that we ultimately chose was most remarkable to see as he and his twig vibrated violently. The line passed under the original planting of the pine tree, and it now became obvious that the tree had tried to grow away from it. Directly across a narrow minor road that skirts my field and where the line of the aquifer continues, there is a gap in the hedge where nothing will grow, although the rest of the hedge flourishes.
Von Pohl declares that lightning strikes most frequently at the point where two of the grid lines cross. This effect was dramatically observable in a house that I have visited several times. My original visits were to a friend who lived there. As a widow, she had married someone whose wife had died of cancer while living in this particular house. In time, her new husband developed cancer and died, while she herself experienced a recurrence of cancer, having been cured of an earlier attack, of which she had been declared free for several years. Quite by chance I became acquainted with the new occupants of the house, and visited them on a number of occasions.
It was during one of these visits that I felt the same unpleasant internal reactions that by this time I associated with geopathic stress. Some little time later, I was told of a remarkable lightning strike - their dog, while in the kitchen, had suddenly become very distressed, and shot out into the garden, when, moments later, the house was struck and a strong flash flew from the light fitting in the kitchen ceiling down to the floor. The husband has since developed a serious thyroid condition for which there is no obvious explanation, which, again, may be the result of living in a stressed location.
The reaction of the couple has been revealing and exhibits a phenomenon that I have observed in others. They are very enlightened in their attitude to health matters, teachers in the field of naturopathy, and very aware of the existence of earth currents. Yet when it comes to the application of the knowledge to their own health, they exhibit a total blank, a blindness, or maybe a determination not to, or to want to see.
I met a similar response when I raised the topic with the husband of a woman whom I had met at the cancer centre where I had helped. She had leukaemia, and where they then lived on the Fylde coast there was an almost identical situation to the one where my mother and brother had lived. I described earth currents and geopathic stress to the husband and gave him the Gordon and von Pohl books to read. However, on the next visit to the centre, he returned the books, unread. He said that he did not want to consider the possibility that their house might be subject to the phenomenon, because he didn't want to have to move!
Whether or not the house had an effect upon his wife's illness was immaterial - they were putting such a lot into the house and he liked the location. Likewise the possibility that his own health or that of the two young daughters might suffer just did not penetrate the self imposed blindness and determination to ignore what I was trying to tell him.
In the realm of spiritual awareness that is the mainstay of my book, I remember an occasion when I had described some of my experiences to my nephew. He had already established a dogged determination not to accept anything of a "spiritual" nature into his life or beliefs, and had one, and one only, repeated response to my description.
The response was to the effect that "it had happened to me". I kept saying "that it had happened" - meaning that the phenomena that I had experienced had a much wider relevance than solely within the confines of my life; that what had happened to me was not specifically unique to me, but had consequences for others, whereas Mark wanted to treat them as if they were somehow completely encapsulated, and had no significance to him, his beliefs or the way he should live.
The "earth radiation" of Käthe Bachler depends upon the presence of an underground aquifer - and don't dismiss them as being rare; they are not. As I sit now I can look along the length of both of my fields, and can recollect the first visit of the dowser, when he surveyed them. He had arrived with some of his children, and we all carried bundles of canes or sticks. As he walked at a steady pace, holding between his two hands a forked twig that he had pulled from my hedge, we saw the twig keep dipping at frequent intervals, indicating points where one of us stuck a cane into the ground. Back and forth he went, with yet more canes being inserted, as the lines of the aquifers began to be revealed, each with its own "hedge" of canes.
In the smaller field, which is about 100 metres long and where the borehole is sited, Jack located four crossing lines. The day before the drilling rig was due, I had asked him to return, because I began to worry that my chosen line might also be the one that fed the spring at the farm of my neighbour down the hill, and I didn't want to alter his flow. So diligently we followed the respective lines, finding that my chosen one veered past the neighbour's farm, while the aquifer feeding his spring also ran diagonally and passed under my field at an unlikely looking place. Finding the line of that particular spring explained why there was a gap in the growth of our dividing hedge over which we had had a dispute some years previously!
The actual drilling of the borehole was one of the more memorable events of my life. During the night I had suffered all of the qualms of doubt that accompany a journey into unknown territory. It was November, and the day dawned wet and windy - and prolonged rain had made the field with its clay soil become very slushy. The heavy rig soon got bogged down, and it took heroic efforts by a neighbour with his tractor to manoeuvre it into position. A huge compressor had been deposited beside the road the day before, and that soon sprang into life, alerting neighbours who came to join some other friends who had also come to see the fun, as well as Jack the dowser whom I had invited. The drilling started and went through some surprising layers - 5 metres of solid clay, then absolutely dry sand and pebbles that gradually aggregated into sandstone, until, as the sandstone was giving way to granite at 25 metres, a blast from the compressor brought a huge geyser of water jetting up into the sky. Water strike!
The rest, as they say, is history. But strange was the attitude of some, in that knowing that such a good water strike ("The best I've seen in the Lake District" - said the pump man) had been located by dowsing, and seeing the dowser demonstrate on other lines, they nevertheless said "Oh, if you drilled anywhere in the field you would be bound to find water." When I offered to let anyone drill anywhere there were no takers, but still the dogged determination not to believe. Exactly the attitude adopted by my nephew, and, regrettably, the attitude taken by some who, having been told of all that had happened to me, all that I have described in the book, are still stubbornly determined not to accept what I am describing from my actual experience, and are prepared to continue with what are nevertheless far-fetched "explanations" of their own.
Late on the second day, the rig was hauled off the land, the compressor fell silent, and everyone departed, leaving a field that resembled a World War 1 battlefield, and a half metre of pipe sticking up from the mud where the borehole began. The dowser is a farmer, who had learned from an uncle who had dowsed for water in the desert when in the army and in North Africa. As with most people with a true natural gift, he would accept no payment. Perhaps his most lasting payment is the constant gratitude that I feel each time that I turn a tap and out pours the ice-cold, pure, unadulterated water.
Chapter 14 Part 7
The running water in the aquifers can create its own current, and also act as a conductor for electricity created by other natural means. I wrote earlier of the "battery" effect at the interface of two dissimilar rock types, or between rock and mineral deposits. Where such a battery exists, the current will flow and create its own geoelectric field directly above.
On a far greater scale are the currents created by a phenomenon that was only discovered in the last year of World War ll. Pilots on high level bombing runs over Japan found that they could not hold on their targets because of a high-speed wind that blew from west to east with velocities of up to 500 kilometres per hour. Investigation and research over half a century have revealed more information about what have become known as the "jet streams". Very fast flowing currents of air snake from west to east over the middle and upper latitudes, carrying with them the components of the weather systems that make Western European weather so variable. An equivalent set of streams flows along similar latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere.
During daylight hours, the air at the altitude of the streams is ionised by the sun's ultraviolet rays. The resulting electrically charged particles are whisked along at very high speeds and together form a continuous electrical current that can reach a magnitude into the millions of amperes at local noon. At nightfall the ions recombine, and the current falls to zero.
In considering the impact of electromagnetic radiation on people I mentioned earlier the process of "induction", where a current is induced in a conductor from external sources. The very strong current flowing parallel to the ground therefore induces electrical flow in the underground water streams, with the consequent geoelectric stresses. The major differences between day and night may account for some of the behavioural changes that are noted in some individuals.
The movements of the jet streams (in the northern hemisphere) to the north in the spring and south in the autumn, probably explain some of the seasonal changes that take place in sensitive people. These might be a component of the influences that provoke the suicides that increase in number in the spring, and trigger the onset of depression in November.
It is almost impossible to separate the phenomena of earth currents (see: telluric currents), [Wikipedia] geopathic stress and ionisation of the air. Where their existence has been accepted and the results of study incorporated into medical thinking, a greater understanding of aberrant human behaviour has resulted.
Two of the books from which I have quoted frequently, have their origin in the same part of Central Europe, and, from the more recent Bachler book, there is evidence of the knowledge of earth currents being incorporated into official thinking and action. Whether this demonstrates a different attitude to ideas that are a little offbeat it is impossible to say, although in other perhaps parallel areas of medical thought, there is evidence of a ready acceptance of treatments that simply do not exist in other countries such as Britain.
Digressing from my main theme, but still continuing with thoughts about personal and mental health and differences of attitudes and treatments between nations, I want to comment on a herb that is part of the accepted pharmacopoeia in such countries as Germany and Austria, but which has no official recognition in Britain. I refer to hawthorn - Crataegus oxyeantha - otherwise known as "mayflower".
Following my recovery from my disastrous encounter with prescribed drugs, I determined that wherever possible I would take responsibility for my own well-being, and follow my own path. Commencing with the comfrey that I have already noted, I began a thorough study of common herbs and their properties. Hawthorn was one that soon came to the fore as I confirmed practically for myself the properties with which it is credited.
It chanced that I first read of its characteristics at a time when the bushes in my hedges were in full bloom. I collected some of the blossoms, which are the most effective part, and incorporated them in tea that I was brewing. Just as it became ready, my friends Des and Carol arrived by chance and joined me in this trial. In almost no time at all, Des was fast asleep in a chair, and when later he arrived home, he rang to say that he could have been had up for "driving under the influence of hawthorn"!
That, in a nutshell, illustrates one of hawthorn's most valuable properties - it acts "to re-establish the equilibrium of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system on which depend the proper functioning of all our organs and our rest." So writes Jean Palaiseul in my well-used copy of Grandmother's Secrets. It is one of the most delightful and useful books that I have ever owned, combining as it does factual information about the natural substances, with family and historical anecdote. I would never be without it and refer to it frequently.
Continuing to write of the properties, Palaiseul notes - "The ancients used it as a remedy for gout, pleurisy, vertigo, insomnia, angor; and modern science confirms that its chemical components are in fact antispasmodic, sedative, diuretic and above all constitute a remarkable regulator of arterial blood pressure as well as a valuable heart stimulant with excellent sedative effects upon the cardio-vascular system, and therefore on angina pectoris and disturbances of circulation whether due to the menopause or not."
I could go on, recounting the way that hawthorn is valued and venerated in popular culture - but not in Britain! Why? Because of the Reformation! Flowering in May, the month dedicated to the Virgin Mary, hawthorn was "her" flower and herb, and its benevolent properties were ascribed to her influence. When, with the Reformation, all veneration of Mary was condemned and forbidden, propaganda proclaimed hawthorn to be the devil's herb and any contact with it was deemed unlucky. I shall not lightly forget the eldritch scream that came from the mouth of one traditionalist visitor who arrived just as I was taking some flowering hawthorn into the house - predicting all sorts of malevolence that would descend upon me as a consequence!
I have used it along with meadowsweet as my "blood and heart" prophylactic for nearly twenty-five years, with not a single noticeable side-effect - which is another feature of hawthorn, the only caution being that one should not use it if the blood pressure is already low. Meadowsweet - Spiraea ulmaria - "Queen of the meadow" - is one of the original sources of aspirin, and an anagram of part of the specific name "spiraea" became in fact, "aspirin", and I use it regularly instead of a daily aspirin tablet.
I did not give blood until in my fifties because of the cocktail of prescribed drugs that I took. When the "pollution" had cleared from my system, I went regularly to blood donor sessions. On the first few visits, my blood flowed sluggishly - at one time so slowly that the session was abandoned. However, soon after I began my regular use of these two herbs I went to another donor session, and commented to the doctor as he put in the needle that my blood came reluctantly. "Oh, you're one of those are you?" he grumbled, and then as the needle entered the vein - "Oh no, this will be a two minute job" - and it was, as the blood came freely and fluently.
While writing so enthusiastically about hawthorn and its benefits, I do so to illustrate its effects upon myself, and what I have learned about it. I would never presume to advise or prescribe for anyone else, for such is not my practice. I have found the herb to be nothing but benevolent with not a single side effect, and value immensely its gentle tranquillising properties. The unravelling of the "knot" that frequently tightens my solar plexus, and which is part of the legacy of my earlier benzodiazepine drug regime, has to be experienced to be believed.
For those who use their sexual function (or lack of it) as a measure of the state of their active health, all I can say is that my function and "potency" are as good as they have ever been, which is probably due in no small part to the vaso-dilating properties of hawthorn and to its ability to unwind inner tensions via the sympathetic and para-sympathetic nerves. I laugh when I read of the much-trailed "sexual dysfunction" in males and now females, and hear in my mind the chink of money landing in the coffers of the pharmaceutical companies as they generate anxiety in both sexes about their potency or prowess. Properly used, hawthorn would probably relieve most people's problems.
At one time I use to collect and freeze the berries, but latterly have obtained my dried herbs from a main supplier - Midland Herbs and Spices - or as tinctures from the "Herb Company" in Scotland (01807 590 303), who, along with many reputable herb companies, supply standard strength tinctures from acknowledged apothecaries.
From time to time various bodies in mainstream medicine mount campaigns against the use of herbs, discounting their efficacy, and often "discovering" new and "highly dangerous" side effects. A moment's reflection will demonstrate the fallacy and farce of these campaigns - one simply has to refer to the facts relating to prescribed medicines.
One of the most frequently listed causes of death is given as that resulting from those self-same prescribed medicines - and when one looks at the side effects of, for example, one of the more commonly prescribed anti-depressant types based on fluexotine, one can only gape wide mouthed and incredulous, and understand full well why large numbers of individuals are made ill simply by taking them. What herbal remedy properly used has the potential to cause "visual disturbances, palpitations, mania/hypomania, tremors, loss of sex drive, antisocial behaviour, double vision, memory loss etc, etc"? And what herbal remedy fills hospital beds just as they are filled with people who have been made ill by prescribed medicines?
I have described above only one substance, hawthorn, that is capable of giving relief to a wide range of common problems that are often treated with tranquillisers or anti-depressants; there are in fact many others that are efficacious as anyone can find out for themselves. I simply strayed into this field today and made these comments as a result of making comparisons of attitudes obtaining in different medical and national cultures, and, as I wrote earlier, it is not my function to recommend or prescribe.
Just let me mention another of my own favourites before moving on. It is woodruff - Asperula odorata - and it is credited with having a wide range of qualities that are too numerous to describe in my present context. I will simply quote this:
"However, it is chiefly remarkable for its action upon the nerves: it calms, soothes, relaxes - exactly like the tranquillisers in which people indulge so freely today, but with the advantage that it causes no side-effects and is in no way toxic. Infusion of woodruff may therefore be given safely to all those who are troubled with disturbances of the sympathetic nervous system - including children and old persons - or who suffer from insomnia, vertigo, angor, neuralgia and excessive nervous tension."
I usually have a quantity mixed in with my ordinary tea because it imparts a most delightful flavour.
Returning to the "global" world and the necessity to consider our total interaction with it and all of its varied properties, there is one major component that just cannot be ignored. The earth's magnetic field protects the planet from the drastic effects of the "solar wind" - a huge and constant stream of electrically charged particles that are thrown out of the rotating ball of the sun in a manner resembling a Catherine wheel. Our magnetic field repels the particles and they flow past, being mainly observed in their transit at the poles where they create the northern and southern lights - the auroras. Planets such as Mars, where the magnetic field has declined, have been "scoured" and their atmosphere whisked away. However, it is not that aspect that I want to discuss, but the omnipresence of the field, and its importance in our continuing healthy life.
It is an essential part of the environment in which we evolved, and we cannot live healthily without it. Inside a car, it vanishes completely - which might explain some of the bizarre behaviour of some drivers who spend many hours behind the wheel - while in nuclear submarines steps are taken to minimise the effects upon the crew of the long-term depletion that they would otherwise suffer as a result of the deprivation. Experiments upon the embryos of amphibians whose initial development resembles that of humans, reveal major deformities after short-term withdrawal of the normal terrestrial field.
In a practical sense, a large lump of iron such as a central heating radiator will cancel out the local field for a distance on either side that depends upon the size of the radiator - typically, about 70 cms. If someone lies with their bed close to a wall on the other side of which a radiator is hung, they will experience total or partial screening, depending on whether they lie head to the wall, or parallel with it.
I have experimented on myself in this type of situation, lying on the floor adjacent to a radiator. I don't lie there for very long, for the effects created are not pleasant, particularly those in my head when I place myself head to the metal. I have long thought of this as a possible contributor to cot death, and in the past I have written with these thoughts to representative organisations, with what success I do not know, for, apart from acknowledgments that I have received, there has never been any follow up from them.
However, if someone sleeps in such a location in which they are wholly or partially deprived of the natural field, I am certain that they will not have good sleep, and that they could well develop problems. Disturbed sleep and a feeling of disorientation that persists into the day, create a happy hunting ground for spiritual intrusions intent upon causing mischief. As well as radiators, large chunks of building iron such as R.S.J.s [rolled-steel joists, I-beams] can act similarly in creating areas devoid of a magnetic field. Where the field is present in the fullness of its natural strength, all may still not be well. Left to itself it pulses regularly, and it is the pulsing at 10 cycles per second (hertz) that is so very important in the maintenance of mental and physical well-being.
"Left to itself" being the operative words. A few moments thought will confirm that we live on a planet that, whether one believes it was created by God, or arrived courtesy of the Big Bang, is an exciting phenomenon. Rotating on its axis; orbiting the sun; performing a "dance" with the moon and other planets. Surviving collision with asteroids and other nasties; generating life; having this life suffer successive extinctions from trilobites down to dinosaurs and Neanderthals, and recovering and stabilising - until along comes man and Super Power Politics and rivalry, beginning a process of buggering up the whole lovely harmony. Many people have written and spoken about all the harm that has already been "achieved" in this process; I am here concerned with only one aspect, namely the damage that is being done to our health environment through interference with the natural magnetic field and its pulsing.
Conjure up "HAARP" [Wikipedia] and also "USSR Woodpecker" [Wikipedia] from the Internet, and you will learn about high-powered electromagnetic transmissions that are or were created by the US and former Soviet Union. The Russian one is called Woodpecker, because that is what it sounds like on a radio receiver as it pulses at 10 hertz - OUR frequency. Ostensibly and originally designed to enable communication with nuclear submarines, no one outside the two Administrations really knows what is going on. HAARP stands for "Highly Active Auroral Research Project". It is located in Alaska and pumps enormous amounts of power into the atmosphere.
The Web sites will provide much in the way of fact, speculation and conspiracy theories; my concern is with the effect upon mental health. Reports cited on the Web express concern that the transmissions are the cause of mental disturbance and depression in susceptible individuals, and it was these reports that came to mind when I read the papers describing the work done with 50,000 Swedish conscripts.
You will recollect that the studies over a number of years had shown what was claimed were correlations between cannabis use and the onset of schizophrenia and depression. My contention is that it is most difficult to ascribe any one cause in the presence of many triggers. Sweden is very close to Russia, and, when measured over the North Pole, very close to Alaska also. It would be in the focus of much of the transmission aimed at nuclear submarines that patrol in Polar waters, whether Russian or US. Do these transmissions have a greater effect on people living in the Nordic countries? Who knows? One can only speculate.
But "speculation" is the name of the game in much that surrounds mental health. American psychiatrist Thomas S. Szasz provides a great deal of fuel for speculation in his two books The Manufacture of Madness and The Myth of Mental Illness. The classification as a mental illness of "schizophrenia", however it is defined, is, according to Szasz, a social convenience that enables "authority" to be able to control a group of people who are, in the main, harmless, but who are socially deviant - he likens their treatment to that of witches in the past. When there is so much that is classed as mental or nervous illness that can only be contained or cured through the use of mind-altering drugs, one wonders how we actually managed to evolve for so many millions of years without them.
I made another "rose-coloured spectacle" trip down memory lane with a friend of the same age as myself. Born and spending her early years in rural Essex, she, like me, confirms the absence in our youth of many of the ailments that beset so many people today. Asthmatic herself, because of a later identified wheat intolerance, she cannot recall other asthmatic children of her generation. She cannot recall either, as I cannot, children who were as disturbed as are those of today's generations.
Like me she grew up without electricity, junk and fast food and aerosols; she drank water from wells, and wore natural fibre clothing and leather boots or shoes. There was no "instant" coffee, and very few of our acquaintance made "proper" coffee - in my friend's case, the drink offered to visitors to the house was usually homemade wine, which was apparently made in large quantities.
I place emphasis upon the wearing of natural materials because there is much to indicate that man-made equivalents have had an adverse effect on health. We evolved naked, with our hands and feet in regular contact with the ground, and in an atmosphere that had a much higher concentration of negative ions than exists now. It is widely believed that the ion concentrations have an influence via the air that we actually breathe in, and also through contact with the acupuncture meridians and the points on them.
If you have an ioniser it is very easy to demonstrate these effects, first by holding the device about 45 cms in front of the face and breathing in the ionised air - I find it very refreshing myself. Secondly, if the ioniser is held a short distance from an unclothed part of the body, it is possible to experience beneficial results. Reports described in Fred Soyka's book suggest that healing of wounds and of burns is speeded up if there is a good supply of negative ions.
Man-made clothing can behave as an electrical insulator, and prevent the access of ions to the skin. It also creates electrical fields of its own, and can act to repel those ions that try to make contact. The materials that make up most modern footwear are also excellent electrical insulators - and isolate the wearer from any "earthing" contact with the ground - essential if one is to try to simulate the healthy conditions of evolution.
Only today I had a demonstration of my own reaction to wearing wellingtons as I worked in a wet garden. I don't normally wear them because past experiences have demonstrated what I felt today - namely a profound ache that developed in my lower back, and a very noticeable drop in my energy level. Normal services were quickly restored when I kicked them off and went barefoot on a quarry-tiled floor. I recognise these effects as a consequence of my acute sensitivity to my electrical ambience: others who do not have this awareness are likely to persist and might even make themselves ill over a period of time.
Leather soled shoes and boots - not readily available today - allowed closer connection, and in my belief were much healthier. Modern youth probably grows up with the very minimal contact with the ground or with any regular connection with earthed surfaces. Most modern furnishings, bedding and carpets are synthetic and create their own static electricity and electrical fields, and create dusts that equally have peculiar electrical properties.
Living in an unnatural electrical environment, surrounded by a variety of devices that produce their own electromagnetic fields, sleeping in a room that most probably has a TV and computer and who knows what else electrical, is it any wonder that modern youngsters leave the womb clutching in one hand an inhaler ready for the asthma that will inevitably be their fate, and in the other a prescription for Prozac or Librium? - and that is before they embark on a life with cola drinks, adulterated chicken pieces, E-numbers and Aspartame. What happens to their vulnerable minds, I'll leave to your own imagination.
Chapter 14 Part 8
Returning to the possible effects of clothing upon the access of the desirable negative ions to the body, I think that it would be useful to speculate on the effect of wearing a bra, particularly one made from synthetic materials, and particularly upon the development of breast cancer. Going back down memory lane, I believe that the first encounter that girls of my generation had with bras was when they joined one of the armed forces, where they were standard issue (together with passion-killing "blackout" bloomers, according to my WREN friends!). These were essentially always made of cotton. Breasts are obviously tender and vulnerable parts of the female body, and I think that it is fair to speculate that their electrical isolation inside the insulating fabric of a modern bra may be a contributory factor in the creation of breast tumours.
I can only speak for myself (not about wearing a bra, although if I continue to put on weight, one may become necessary!). I avoid absolutely manmade fibres in my clothing and bedding, having on many occasions in the past been made to realise that their use brings discomfort and "agitation". One always faces this problem when trying to describe bodily sensations in terms that others can identify and relate to in themselves. As with all forms of "pollution", it is difficult to know what is the threshold between discomfort and actual harm.
Many people grow up in an environment that surrounds them with numerous sources of pollution, and never have the opportunity of knowing what unpolluted life is like. As an aside - from about 1970 I gave up television, and didn't own one for about twenty years. When then I acquired one and recommenced regular viewing, I felt that I had arrived at another planet. While the technology had developed in many ways, the standards of acceptability had plummeted to depths hitherto undreamed of.
It is outside my remit to comment on much that I see as the degradation and humiliation of individuals, and yet the whole ambience is akin to that in which the obscene spiritual intrusions thrive. A casual moment channel hopping the other day saw a brief glimpse of the V. Graham Norton "show", and the sight of a man being publicly confronted with his "wank sock", which his future bride had given to the show! I didn't stay to see what tasks he had to accomplish to recover it - Norton had even opened the sock to reveal what purported to be the residue from masturbation. That to me is just one instance of what I regard as the "pollution" of people's lives and living environment and which can result in the creation of a hedonism that makes the entry of malevolent intrusion into the minds of the vulnerable all the easier.
One form of pollution that affects most urban areas is that created by all of the light sources flooding the sky and blotting out the stars. I find it sad to think of the deprivation of youngsters who grow up having never seen the stars in an "unpolluted" sky. About the only pleasure derived from wartime blackout was the vision of the undiminished brilliance of the stars overhead. When I view the human dross that passes for "stars" in the modern media/pop culture, I find it equally sad that today's youngsters have no outstanding living stars to inspire them.
The Pole Star in the northern sky, or the Southern Cross in its own hemisphere have been fixed and constant and have guided and comforted mariners throughout recorded time. Where, I wonder, are the points of reference, sources of inspiration for the youngsters of today? In many ways the young are sold short, deprived of their childhood and "innocence" by a culture that sees them in no other light than as consumers and creators of wealth - for others, the exploiters.
Bombarded into accepting that certain soft drinks and fast foods are manna from heaven, driven by what is "cool", they are encouraged from all sides and quarters to believe that the only purpose in living is to have the latest play-station - and to have sex. Young girls now are encouraged to wear clothes with pretend breasts - because it is "sexy" - when they have hardly left the cradle. Peer pressure, and pressure from all of the elements that want to exploit them encourage sex at the earliest possible age.
What has evolved as a fundamental method of procreating and enhancing the species, with functions and reactions that reach into every cell of the body, has sunk to what - descriptive words fail me - in popular esteem? Hardly any TV programme, other than the dedicated documentary, can run without its embedded episodes of bonking, shagging, or fucking - to think that it used to be called "making love"!
Spring is at its peak as I write, and I have been watching the birds and the bees. Each year I marvel that the little birds can be conned yet again. I watch them in the garden and hedgerows frantically trying to find mates, singing their little heads off and posturing and fluttering - and then they copulate - just once. That one act of togetherness immediately throws a switch - and suddenly it's frenetic nest building, egg sitting, and frenzied food carrying to the fledglings, then nurturing and protection until flight becomes possible and the young fly the nest. Then the idiots do it all over again for a second brood - one moment of bliss leading to frantic, compulsive activity.
All of those imperatives reside in all creatures, and stifling the consequences of the initial action can produce many results that are destructive. A young teenage girl, possibly pressurised into her first sexual encounter, is immediately subjected to all of the responses exhibited by the female bird - even if it was just a casual fumbling shag from an equally inexperienced lad.
To list all of the inner responses that will be triggered within her is beyond my scope, but what I am leading to is the consequence of a natural process that has been frustrated. The disturbing unfulfilled responses may lead to a feeling of revulsion with herself and her body, and have been known to provoke the reactions of self-harm and eating disorders from an urge to "punish" the vehicle of her inner disgust. A situation such as this is so easily exploited by the malevolent intrusion - an unhappy girl, not truly understanding the source of her unhappiness, seeking isolation - a mind possibly wide open to intrusion and increased depression - encouraged into further isolation and suicide?
And what of the children, the offspring of such casual and promiscuous encounters? Children whose father might be any one of a pick and mix collection. Another coffee break switch on and I found myself in the Trisha experience on ITV. There for the morning's entertainment were young women who had become mothers and who weren't sure which of several men might have been the father, and the programme had done DNA comparisons that were revealed in the full panoply of the prurient build up of the show and its eagerly gawping faces in the audience.
No thought is given to the children, not just these children but also the many who are the product of these collective copulations. Is there any wonder that there is so much domestic violence when possibly the putative father in a marriage or relationship finds out that he is not in fact the actual father, and has been deceived and conned? More importantly the children as they grow and realise the casualness of their creation might feel little worth in themselves, and, possibly feeling sullied, resort to self-harm and the isolation that again opens the door to malevolent intrusions and their taunts that can lead to suicide.
These are topics of such wide scope that I can do little more than mention them, but it is a realm of human experience where spiritual intrusions wreak immense amounts of harm in the minds and lives of the vulnerable. Any enlargement would include the ways in which cravings can be stimulated and addictions fostered and driven, but that is for another time.
Meanwhile, returning to my main theme, it may seem that I am labouring the problems created by the variety of electrical phenomena. I am in fact underplaying them, and only limit my writing in deference to those who have problems with science and technology, and find difficulty in relating any of this to mental health, and particularly to voice hearing and all of the rest that I have written about. Be assured that I include everything as a component of the totality of human experience and daily life.
I reiterate my point that anything that undermines and depletes the normal function and well-being of our bodies and minds plays into the "hands" of the sources of spiritual intrusion. I am tempted to write at length about the influence of diet, food intolerance and allergy upon mental health, but realise that it is an immense subject that is frequently written about in many books and articles. The problem is that there are many conflicting opinions, and it is difficult for the average person to arrive at a balanced judgment.
It is claimed that there is a "Balanced British Diet", and that it provides all of the nutrients that a person needs. I heartily disagree, and, to give one example from the Food Standards Agency's latest pronouncement, at 40 mgms, the recommended level of vitamin C intake is just about that which will prevent scurvy. They spoke about the possibility of stomach upsets and diarrhoea being caused by high intake - apparently not recognising the availability of slow release products that "trickle" the vitamin out over several hours. I regularly take 1 gm per day, and experience no problems - in fact, if I don't take as much I often get problems in my gums. When one considers that our simian immediate antecedents were largely herbivores and fruit eaters, is it not obvious that we through our evolution require vitamin C in significant quantities - as well as the magnesium that would have come from the plant chlorophyll?
How I wish that the medical establishment would put its own house in order and control the use of many of the harmful substances that pass for medication or are used in food additives - especially those - and let individuals such as me kill ourselves with mineral and vitamin supplements if that is our wish - although most people who take supplements are too well informed now to do anything so drastic. (Currently as I write certain doctors are trying to develop a campaign to have taxes levied on "fatty foods" i.e. the junk foods that are making so many young people so obese. Part of the campaign propaganda declares that the British diet today is too heavily loaded with unsuitable and junk foods lacking in nutritional value, but promoting obesity. Whatever happened to the "Balanced British Diet"?)
Over the years I have obtained much personal benefit from taking charge of my own diet and intake of supplements - much of the benefit coming from what I don't ingest, as much as from what I do. To be brief, I have latterly followed a diet based upon my blood group, and find benefit from the elimination of a number of items, resulting in greater mobility of my upper body and shoulders - a very important consideration in a driver who is well past seventy, and who needs to be able to turn his body freely to be safe at road junctions. Likewise I have had food intolerance tests, and again have experienced benefit from the elimination of certain items - including my much-liked dark chocolate!
A recital of all that I have done would not, I feel, be helpful, and anyway is specific to myself. Guidance has come from Nutritional Medicine by Drs. Stephen Davies and Alan Stewart whose aim is to try to treat a wide variety of ailments and diseases, including mental problems, by nutritional means: this one of my "bibles". (One has only to look in it at the role of the B vitamins to realise their importance in maintaining mental health, while something as simple as magnesium can, in depletion, result in apathy, confusion and disorientation, depression, learning disability and memory impairment, vertigo, convulsions and epilepsy, insomnia, hyperactivity. Because of past glaciations, magnesium is almost absent in northern soils, in the local water, and in food that is produced there.)
Mental health and nutrition are the prime concerns of an interesting book jointly written by Dr. Carl Pfeiffer and Patrick Holford. From one end you enter the Pfeiffer contribution - Mental Illness - the nutrition connection, and from the other, the Holford contribution - Mental Health - the nutrition connection. But by far the greatest revelation concerning diet and mental health, and "alien" substances and mental health came to me from Dr. Richard Mackarness' two books Not All in the Mind and Chemical Victims, which may still be found second hand if one is prepared to look.
Some may say that they are dated, but even so, they provide an excellent starting point from which to dig further into the whole topic of diet and mental health, and I am certain that there must be many recent books and articles that provide sound advice. However, be cautious, for, as with many emotive subjects such as cancer and mental health, there are many therapies and diets that flourish in the media and in the chat shows, and then drop from view, leaving no trace other than in the additions to the books abandoned on the shelves. As with everything else that I have written about - discernment, discernment, discernment!
Chapter 14 Part 9
Reviewing the most recent parts of my writing, I may appear to be drifting away from the main purpose of the whole book - that of describing the intrusion of spiritual malevolence and the creation of dominance and mental distress. If I have done do, it has been purely unintentional and has only occurred because I have tried to develop the theme that intruding entities take intelligent advantage of any circumstances that result in the physical and mental depletion of individuals, and of the resulting feelings of insecurity that these can create. I must in this last descriptive and speculative chapter take steps to return to the declared purpose, although, like much of my attack, my thrust may at times seem oblique.
Hark back, if you will, to where I wrote of the occasion when I had climbed to a nearby plateau on the fell side and where I had gone to look for signs of ancient trackways. In the beautiful stillness and evening light I sat taking in the scene, and watched a fox as it crossed in front of me some short distance away. Suddenly, and with no apparent preliminary check, it dashed for safety, its whole demeanour and behaviour having changed within a milli-microsecond. And it dashed away from me - which may seem to be doubly stating the obvious. But why?
I had made no sound, hadn't moved and was not obviously visible. All that had triggered the fox's reaction had been my scent that had drifted down on a light breeze. So only its nose figured in this early warning system, and it was highly directional. But so is all of the mammalian early warning system. The eyes, the ears and the nose have their primary personal defence role, and in that role connect directly to the centre of instinctive locomotion - the "solar plexus" - bypassing the brain.
My description is probably too simplistic for some, but nevertheless serves to make my argument. The left eye, ear and nostril send signals to the right half of the brain, and the reverse for the right hand sensors. Normally when "free ranging", the animal is sensing globally - i.e. the eyes are intent on peripheral vision and each eye covers a wide arc on its own side; each ear likewise has its sweep of coverage - "sweep" being the operative word, for the ears are very mobile, and one has only to look at racehorses as they move down to the start of a race to see the two ears independently "semaphoring" as they respond to sounds that are arriving from all directions. Not so obvious, particularly to humans, is the directional capability of the nose, yet it must be there for the fox to have acted as it did.
If anything potentially dangerous is sensed, several changes take place instantly and instinctively - there can be no place in the equation for logical thought and deduction. If the threat is to the left, the left eye adopts focussed vision, while the right is de-focussed and turned slightly to prevent so-called "macular" vision. The left ear goes into directional hearing and lifts and "cocks" towards the source of the sound, while the right ear is "de-tuned", in that an inner muscular contraction takes place that mutes the sound, and concentrates the hearing into the left ear. The left nostril flares and goes into "sniffing" mode, while inside the right nasal passage a minor contraction occurs that diminishes the airflow and scenting capability.
The early warning system has detected danger to the left, and the limbs are provoked into action to take the creature away to the right. There is no pause for consultation; the instinctive body is already primed with instructions from its evolution - threat from the left, limbs gather to strike off to the right.
As I have written several times, we, you and I, are mammals. I know that you don't really need to be told that, but it must be emphasised. But what has to be emphasised further is that all - all - of the early warning systems continue to exist in us and our organs and limbs, and that all of the same instinctive instant responses are created within us. We humans differ in that the different sides of our brains have certain dedicated functions dictated by our intellectual development.
In writing this I do so as someone who spends much time in imaginative, ruminative, speculative, introspective and, at times, mildly apprehensive thought. All of the time that I am writing or planning what I am going to write, I am indulging in mental "verbalisation". In other words, I am engaging in what is now commonly and simplistically called "right brain" activity. Also I am right-handed, and so can only write from the standpoint of someone who has this particular combination.
It is only in minor ways that I can observe and comment on other mind and body combinations. However, I am writing as carefully as I can, and with as much detail as possible, because as well as the mind of the "thinker", what I am describing might be the inner mental state of someone who is locked into the internal voices, someone who is constantly listening and adding these instinctive responses to those that are happening within as the inner "presence" provokes, cajoles, threatens, agitates or holds the "listener" enthralled.
Constantly, I am creating in my right brain images and "sounds" (i.e. my verbalisation) that, to my animal brain, appear to be arriving from the left side, via my left eye and ear - and the instinctive "me" kicks in and primes my body for a particular action. Except that it doesn't "kick in" - the instinctive responses are there all of the time as I persist, and have persisted for most of my life, in this mode of thinking.
The responses within the wild creature are transient as either it responds and takes evasive action, or decides that the threat is not real and relaxes. For the thinking human, the pattern of thought goes on and on and on. Through all waking time, the process persists, and the body becomes polarised, as it is constantly primed for a response and a resultant action - that never happen.
The animal me is receiving signals ostensibly from my left, and wants to take action that propels me to my right. The quadruped me "coils" ready to jump off, and engages my limbs diagonally - left upper half and right lower half work together (left diagonal), and vice versa. One diagonal is poised to spring and the other locked to give the balance. All of the muscles of locomotion are engaged, and the whole process will produce results that I am sure most of you will begin to recognise within your own bodies, although the roughly twenty percent of you whose thinking is essentially and predominantly verbal, will probably recognise them in the right diagonal.
Remaining with the left diagonal, the reaction within the musculature of the left upper has the effect of lifting the shoulder, taking it even higher than the lift created by the curve of the body, the "Vincent curve", and reinforcing the "kink" at the base of the neck. Pressure applied between the upper inner corner of the scapula and the spine will, in most individuals, reveal a very tender area. Associated acupuncture points in this location that may be influenced, (Bl 37, 38), are used to treat: "lungs empty"; weary and paralysed; weak; emaciated; madness; loss of memory.
Tension created within the shoulder joint itself that is continuous can contribute to such conditions as a "frozen shoulder", particularly when added mental or emotional stress has compounded those stresses that have become a permanent feature. The biceps of the left arm are in a state of permanent contraction, and eventually produce a point of soreness in the centre of the muscle approximately 2 cm below the level of the deltoid vee. This is the location of two points on the acupuncture "Lung" meridian, L 3, & 4. Again allowing for the seemingly "quaint" direct translation from the Chinese, these points may be used to treat: cerebral congestion; speaks to himself or doesn't speak at all; "possessed by a devil"; confused; forgetful; vertigo; depressed.
It is possible to go down the arm and at every joint and point of tension locate acupuncture points that may be used to treat a variety of serious "mind" conditions. There is no reason for me to catalogue them all in what is meant to be an overview, and so I'll skirt them and conclude the arm repertoire with the eighth point on the "Heart" meridian. This is on the palm of the hand immediately proximal to the space between the ring and little fingers, and in the "crease" where the painful and disabling condition known as "contraction of the palmar aponeurosis" occurs. This acupuncture point, H 8, has a large repertory that divides into two parts, the first being the "nervous" group: " "disease and feelings of calamity in the heart and chest"; palpitations; hysteria; fear; "frightened of people"; trembling". The second group centres on the urinary, genital functions, and takes the discussion logically into the other part of the diagonal - the lower right, in my case.
"Difficulty in urination; urinary incontinence; one side of scrotum larger than the other; impotent; general uterine disease; pruritis vulvae; prolapse of the uterus" - these are all conditions that are capable of being treated from H 8, and analysis will show that they may be caused by the permanent "coiling" of all of the musculature of locomotion of the right lower half of the body - from the bottom of the ribs down to the toes. Study a horse in motion and observe the full scope of the action, and translate it into yourself.
Experiments on myself reveal that persistent and aggravated tension consistent with prolonged apprehension or intense concentration will cause sharp pain in the very region where the presence of pain is used to diagnose appendicitis, and the presence of pain from this particular mind-induced source is the most probable reason why over fifty percent of appendixes removed turn out to have been healthy. The preparation for movement of the buttock and thigh and the prolonged contraction of their muscles lead to a wide range of other problems that self experiment will reveal for you.
Just two will suffice - the hip joint above all others is firmly involved in locomotion, and persistent tension there may affect the point on the Gall meridian, G 30, at which location one could treat: "half of body uncoordinated"; paralysis; epilepsy; nervous exhaustion. The gathering tension of tendons immediately above the ankle creates a zone where, over time, a feeling akin to paralysis can be produced, in a region where there are several places where serious mental conditions are capable of being treated.
In an account of the work of Sigmund Freud, he is credited with observations concerning the early onset of multiple sclerosis. He records double vision, paralysis above the left eye, and paralysis of the right ankle. The difficulties with the eyes may be explained by the fact that the left eye is straining to look to the left, where the imagined visual images are perceived, while the right eye has to concentrate upon the task of practical vision - its role that eventually makes it the dominant eye.
I have noted earlier how it is possible when driving, suddenly to say to oneself "How did I get here?" One has been driving on automatic pilot, locked in one's thoughts, "viewing" the mental images with the "circuitry" of the left eye, while the driving has been conducted by means of automatic responses to what is seen with the right eye.
When this "split viewing" is persistent, or carried to extremes, then the conflict between the musculature of the left eye and that of the right can lead to serious problems. The right eye difficulties are accommodated by turning the head slightly to the left, bringing the right eye forward. Watching people on TV when they are following an autocue reveals the fact that many are obviously reading with the dominant eye, and with the head slightly turned.
When a person is absorbed in internal listening or deeply engrossed and lost in imagination, and when this state lasts for long periods, the struggle between the two eyes may result in severe stresses of the musculature, not only of the left eye, but of the whole left face and scalp as far around as the back of the neck. And not only that associated with the eye and its struggle to turn, but also the ear, which is also trying to focus to the left. As well as the numbness and paralysis that develop around and above the left eye, there is the possibility of causing left side migraine, and in extreme cases, dyslexia.
I was once acquainted with a family in which the mother and three daughters all suffered severely from migraine, while two of the three boys were dyslexic. The mother was very imaginative in a constructive way, but also could be most apprehensive. Her sister was permanently locked into the inner space of the voices in her mind, and hardly engaged with the real world. I believe that the children were "foetaly programmed" with the potentially divided vision that stemmed from the mother being deeply absorbed in her world of imagination/apprehension - which, if it was a family trait, may have resulted in her sister having become lost in her inner world that had then been taken over by the intruding voices.
The dyslexia of Jane whom I have mentioned must have had a similar cause. She was very much a victim of her profound imagination combined with the stresses to which she was subjected. Her eyes were obviously working to two different agendas, but then came back together when gradually her fears were calmed, and her life became secure.
Freud was convinced that the MS-associated symptoms of two women whom he had studied had also included nymphomania. Most odd, until one finds that an acupuncture point at the base of the skull, and which would be severely stressed by the mechanisms that I am describing, may be used to treat nymphomania! Whether the perpetual aggravation and stimulation of the acupuncture point resulted in interesting stimulation elsewhere is a question to which I have not yet found an answer, even through practical experimentation.
Chapter 14 Part 10
I had made up my mind that I would make no further reference to the effect of natural phenomena on people, whether as individuals or in the mass, but it is rapidly becoming impossible to ignore as the whole world seems to be running on a very short fuse. Events that I associate with the fast approaching perihelial opposition of Mars are happening right on cue. Already there have been several earthquakes, we have had our war, and we have our pestilence in the shape of the SARS virus. Everywhere there are major confrontations, whether between nations; by groups demanding change; within businesses and employees organisations - and between individuals or within families and similar groups, as almost daily tragedies are revealed in the media.
I will not repeat all that I wrote before, but as my sleep becomes more fragmented, just as it did in the equivalent period in 1988-9, so I am aware now, as I wasn't then, of the rapidly increasing number of spontaneous comments coming from a variety of people of all ages. The actual event peaks on August 28th, and I fully expect there to be more earthquakes as well as some volcanic eruptions during the next few months, although it is the effect upon the behaviour of individuals and groups that is most germane in the context of my book. July 2018 is when the next event occurs, so get it marked in your diaries well in advance!
In observing the wide range of reactions - or, in fact, nonreaction - of individuals to natural events, or to the imperatives of their evolution, I am as much interested in the lack of response as I am in the instances where it occurs. Where there is no apparent reaction, or very little, I speculate that there already exists such a base-load of entrenched stress that any increase is barely noticeable.
Additionally, reactions and responses may be put down to other triggers that exist in the person's life. I suspect that very few individuals know just what a range of automatic reactions exist in our inheritance, or what is involved in the "autonomic nervous system", other than a vague recollection of "flight, fight, adrenalin". (Mind as Healer, Mind as Slayer by Kenneth R. Pelletier is a useful and readable sourcebook).
Even if treated simplistically, as I intend to do, there is much more than "flight, fight and adrenalin" involved in the mind/body, body/mind interactions that are features of our lives. There are many situations that one encounters where flight and fight are not practical, nor do they fulfil the needs of the moment. Domination, whether by one partner over another, parent over child, employer over employee places the dominated one at the receiving end of the anticipated violence, whether physical or verbal, and from which escape is not an option. "Anticipation" is the operative word, for such can hold a person within a perpetual state of stress that in the world of animal interplay is purely transient as domination and subservience are sorted out.
The mammal that is apprehensive undergoes a number of automatic and instinctive reactions. It waits poised while the degree of threat is assessed. Breathing is suppressed, ears are cocked, anal and bladder sphincters are locked (although some creatures immediately void their bladders and bowels), the tail is pressed down and genitals are tightened. Additionally, a lock is put on the oesophagus, and at the base of the throat, and the body is primed for such reaction as may become necessary. Variants of these reactions occur if the perceived threat comes from within the social group, when events are dictated by established pecking orders.
The perpetual state of apprehensive listening is one that I have tried to describe in those sections of my book that have been more specific about the behaviour of intruding entities. And perpetual become the responses within the body, responses that add to the diagonal tensions that I have already written about.
Although I have condemned the universal and perpetual obsession with sex in virtually every strand of modern Western human activity, paradoxically it is the only reason from our evolution that justifies our existence. The purpose of each generation is to prolong and improve the species - thus the only real function for the male is to protect and inject the sperm, while the female has to allow access to her eggs and womb only to a chosen male, and to repulse others of lesser stature. Consequently, many of the instinctive responses are governed purely by those two imperatives.
Males have to protect their testicles, and, in animals in their natural environment, this is done by retracting them as much as possible. The whole process in human males is confused by all of the conflicting signals that are being generated by the mind in response to the many real and imagined threats to which they are exposed in daily life, and which they create for themselves through their persistent thought patterns.
It has long been observed that men have one testicle, usually the right one, higher than the other. Only a small percentage, it is said, have the left one higher. Many explanations are offered to account for this phenomenon, the most recent that I have heard being that with the upright stance, the asymmetry became necessary to allow both testicles to fit into a restricted space. Each autumn I used to corral in one of my fields up to twenty rams belonging to a neighbour, where they were held until the appropriate breeding time arrived.
As I gardened or worked in my workshop I had plenty of opportunity to observe them, and it is impossible to ignore the testicles. In every case, the testicles were level, as is the situation with other male animals that I have noted. During the comparatively short evolutionary time in which humans have stood upright, there has not been long enough for the lopsided testicle to have developed - so why did it?
There are two influences at work: the first is the instinctive uplift resulting from the very act of thinking. A human thinking is the same as a wild creature listening and wondering. The response is to lift the testicles, until, as listening/thinking is a permanent function, the testicles are always partially withdrawn. The second influence comes as a result of the body being primed diagonally as I have described earlier. The priming tenses the right buttock and adjoining musculature, including the suspensory muscles of the testicles, further drawing up the right one, until the scrotum appears lopsided. (Recollect, the acupuncture point H 8, with its repertory for treating conditions that could be construed as "nervous", "emotional", was also indicated if one side of the scrotum was higher than the other - a certain confirmation that the asymmetry is not natural).
There is an account in one version of One Thousand and One Nights of young men of the time practicing diligently to be able to retract their testicles sufficiently to pass themselves off as eunuchs, and enter the baths on days reserved for women. Conversely, I have proved to my own satisfaction that it is possible to relax sufficiently to be able to lower the higher testicle, and eventually both.
I have knowingly encountered only one man with a left high testicle, and that was in the Navy, where living conditions were such that very little was hidden. This man was very "left brain", in that he was provocatively verbal, and was a verbal confrontation waiting to happen. If my analysis is correct, he was polarised on the opposite diagonal to the majority.
Another who came into the same category of being ready to fizz verbally with little provocation was someone that I once knew who developed right breast cancer. Again, the polarisation, this time on the right diagonal, I believe, resulted in permanent contraction of the muscles across the chest, with a consequent diminution of the flow of blood and lymph in the breast itself. This woman was told by her surgeon that she was one of about 20% of women who develop right breast cancer.
Another observation relating to breasts that I have made is that, of friends who have newly given birth, and who develop mastitis, everyone has been in the left breast; again, I believe, giving credence to my analysis of the effects of prolonged mental activity of a particular type - and not necessarily stressful mental activity - and of the diagonal polarisation of the body and its musculature.
As a corollary, I have noticed effects in myself that confirm the left breast stress - not, in my case, mastitis, although I believe that it is not unknown in men, but my left nipple is larger than the right, and frequently itches - to such an extent that many of my shirts have a hole just there.
The whole question of the polarisation of the body, brain and senses in relation to the two diagonals is one that deserves detailed research. I am certain that answers will be found to problems such as impotence and female frigidity, both of which may result from the fact that the two sides of the genitals are responding to two different types of stimulus - possibly to the extent that only one side is sensitive, while the other is less so.
The lateral contrast in sensitivity explains why, when I peel an onion, only my left eye and nostril react. Likewise, if I get a sore throat, only the left side feels the irritation. (I have heard other individuals make similar comments). This is the result of the action of perpetually trying to "sniff" to the left, and "closing down" my right nostril.
It probably explains why I chewed only on the left side of my mouth, for, along with my sense of smell being confined to the left nostril, that was the side where taste was also most acute. Over latter years I have cultivated chewing on both sides, and also chewing in a more blatant, "animal-like" manner, moving the food around, quidding it and reducing it to a fluid before swallowing - living alone I have no resulting "social" problems! The effect has been to improve my digestion and general sense of relaxation as the body responds to natural behaviour.
A consequence of not sensing any irritation down the right inside of the throat might be that phlegm and debris that would normally be sensed and coughed up would simply be undetected and descend unchecked into the right lung, with a consequent build-up and potential disease.
I could go on, for, as with much that I am trying to describe, I have been observing and experimenting for over twenty years. If I did so, however, it is unlikely that I would add significantly to my case, and could easily lead to confusion or distraction. I'll simply add that much can be done to balance the two diagonals with proper attention to breathing, particularly by concentration on maintaining a balance between the two nostrils, where, in my case, there is often a serious imbalance. As I correct the differential it is possible to feel beneficial internal reactions as a degree of harmony is restored.
Je n'ai fait celle-ci plus longue que
parce que je n'ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte.
I have made this [chapter] longer than usual,
only because I have not had time to make it shorter.
- Roy Vincent
In almost twenty-five years I have learned or devised many ways of coping with intruding voices, ways that I hope will have become evident from all that I have written and recorded. My strategies are successful in that I am no longer troubled by any of the presences that intrude.
Voice hearers who are deeply embroiled in the conflicts within the mind are most unlikely to have the resources to cope with, let alone devise a strategy, and are most likely to succeed in reclaiming their minds with the sympathetic and understanding help of others. The help must be in the form of an "enabling", "opening up" support. Never begin a sentence with "Why don't you...?" If the person was capable of doing the "why don't you" bit, is it not most likely that they would already have made the attempt?
Surprising though it may seem, you may find some clues in the way that the large primates have been studied. There is a process known as "habituation" through which the presence of the observer is gradually introduced without provocation and without imposing any stress upon the gorillas. Your relaxed presence has always to be there in an undemanding way, ready and able to say - "Let's ..." There has always got to be an easy avenue to follow towards something desirable, and an easy path down which to retreat to the safety of known habits.
How you proceed will depend obviously upon the individuality of you both - the individuality that I have insisted on through all that I have described and analysed. Only you can see the problems, set the possible goals. It is difficult, but you must try to efface yourself and let the other flourish.
There are many practical steps that can be taken. Most are obvious, and almost suggest themselves, such as an adequate and wholesome diet, free from junk and additives. Hair analysis to detect any shortfall in minerals - many now have their hair analysed when planning pregnancy, and the "Foresight" organisation provides a reliable service that is available to others as well as the potential parents, while there are other laboratories to be found on the Internet.
When one considers that only microgrammes of iodine are necessary to prevent cretinism in iodine depleted regions, and that the intake provided by iodised salt will ensure a healthy physical and mental life for a child, is it not obvious that there must be an exquisite balance among other minerals that may be absent or present in excess?
One can learn much from the way in which farm animals are looked after. To take one example, barley which is grown on the farm for animal feed is preserved using proprionic acid (Propcorn). This protects against moulds, but has the effect of killing the germ of the seed and depleting the vitamin E content. Calves fed this grain develop a deficiency condition called white muscle disease, and are fed supplements of vitamin E, but are also fed selenium which is necessary to promote the absorption of vit. E. Would that the same care was used to ensure the proper physical and mental development of human children in the face of all of the unnatural substances that they ingest as food. Equally fundamental is food intolerance analysis, as the work of such specialists as Richard Mackarness demonstrates.
One simple and practical step that I took for myself was to wear around my neck the sort of watch that joggers once used. I set the timer to ring on every hour, when I took stock of everything - posture, breathing, what was going on in my mind - then with a brief prayer, I re-established my links with reality and continued with whatever I was meant to be doing. Numbers of individuals find the loneliness of 3 a.m. intolerable as they are then at their most vulnerable. With some friends I used to make "pillow crosses"*. These were crosses made of a semi-rigid material, about 12 - 15 cms long that could be kept under the pillow. Held in the hand during these times of personal despair, they formed a tangible link with a universal source of comfort and hope.
* Our simplest and best liked were made from wooden beads 15 - 20 mm in diameter threaded on leather thong or bootlace: they were comforting to hold, and presented no problem if rolled on in sleep.
Chapter 14 Part 11
Many who suffer from diseases of the central nervous system such as multiple sclerosis, and who have mercury amalgam in their fillings, are having these removed and replaced with material that is neutral. The same considerations may apply to individuals with long standing intractable problems in the "mind".
Anyone planning such removal must use the services of a dentist who really believes in this strategy, for the fillings have to be removed in a pre-planned sequence over a considerable time as the whole body readjusts to the changes, and it must be done using secure protection against ingestion of the debris. The amalgam fillings that have been in place for some time will have created electrical battery effects between the respective fillings, and between the fillings and other metal that may be in the mouth. Someone whom I know who is having her fillings removed properly has the added problem that at the core of her crowned incisors she has a different metal - largely nickel - to which she has been shown to be allergic, and which compounds her overall difficulties and is making the sequential removal a long term process.
I have indicated how the body can become the source of unpredictable ailments as it responds to the inner-looking, inner-listening mind. A long term voice hearer may have lost connection with the true physical self, and may need a great deal of help to find it again. There are so many ways in which the body can be rehabilitated and made to feel a good place to live in, rather than a shell in which to have a soulless existence.
Simplest of all is yoga, which can be introduced in a very gentle undemanding manner, particularly if there is a complete understanding of the absolute importance of breathing in a full and relaxed manner. There is a caution, however, for some use yoga to achieve deep mental "emptiness" - often ending group sessions with a led meditation - and such is anathema for anyone who is trying to maintain control of their inner mind.
One of the most rewarding therapies that is aimed at achieving complete awareness and harmony within one's body is the Alexander Technique [Wikipedia] - although I will be castigated for referring to it as a "therapy". The aim of the "lessons" as they are called is to help a person rediscover their true physical self. Many musicians avail themselves of the practices, for their profession is one in which physical stresses become embedded in the body, and which can lead to distortion of the frame.
The feeling of walking tall and gracefully that the Technique engenders has to be felt to be appreciated. As with acupuncture, I have experienced fully the practice at the hands of a well qualified teacher, and very well remember the revelation of even the first lesson, as my body enjoyed the release and renewal that can be engendered.
As well as the actual benefits for myself, it means that I can now write from personal experience, which is, after all, the only stance from which one can either praise or criticise. Too often, therapies and practices are condemned out of hand from uninformed prejudice. I sometimes think that there would be a seismic shift in the way in which mental ill-health is treated if the psychiatrists and other practitioners had first to experience themselves the therapies and drugs that they prescribe for patients. A course of, say, five E.C.T.s, plus a fortnight on each of the major drugs such as Prozac, Librium et al would soon focus minds - minds that might then be prompted to press for less invasive and mind suppressing "therapies".
I described above how the anal and bladder sphincters are kept in a state of constant contraction that has become the norm. It is only after one has perfected the technique of releasing them at will that one realises the extent of the contraction, and experiences the inner relaxation that release can bring.
In The Secret of the Ring Muscles Paula Garbourg presents a therapy that takes one aback by its very simplicity. She describes a series of exercises that mobilise the sphincters and through them induce striking benefits in many parts of the body that are remote from the site of the exercise. As well as the actual and obvious sphincters, the author treats other groups of muscles as if they also are sphincters, and the benefits of exercise are remarkable - and the exercises are so simple!
One immediate benefit resulting from the release of the anal and bladder sphincters is that there is a slackening of the constriction that is perpetually locked on the lower end of the throat. The upper region of the chest becomes less tense, and breathing is deeper and more relaxed - and the body and mind start to lose the "hunted" feeling that is induced by the constant listening into the mind. All of these steps - so simple in themselves - when taken regularly have the effect of awakening lost sensations within the body, sensations associated with happiness! And gradually the mind begins to believe in the possibility of release, control and joy.
If you are a carer and leading the process, the picture of a three-legged race might help you to see your role more clearly. At first, self-motivation is almost completely beyond the capability of someone who has had their inner strengths of will and decision making eliminated by the intrusions that have been working so skilfully. Ideally there should be available the resources of an organisation that somehow manages to combine the approach of the Camphill communities, the attitude that is still being developed in such centres as the Retreat Hospital in York, and the perceptive outreach found in organisations such as the "Gentle Approach to Cancer" with its concepts of mutual support and encouragement - support and encouragement for carers as well as the mentally disturbed.
I'm sorry to have to write it again, but I do not believe that the agenda of those who are promoting the idea of "Mad Pride" is the one that will endear the majority of people who are trying to rebuild their lives after mental illness. Most individuals want simply to have the quiet support and understanding that provide a firm foundation from which to redevelop and recover their own vision of a life that is worth living.
That is the most important vision of all - their vision, not one dictated or imposed from outside by others. It is exceedingly difficult in any relationship to discover what the other person's vision and agenda are, but no relationship will truly succeed unless both vision and agenda are open and clear to both parties.
How then do you explore those of someone who cannot believe that they have a stable future in which they have control of their own mind? How do you discover what is really going on in the mind of anyone, let alone someone who is or has been mentally disturbed? How do you form a compact with them, a relationship in which they will feel free and not threatened?
Too often a relationship can develop into something that is not free and lightly balanced, and in which one side becomes dominant at the expense of the other. This is true of all human relationships, but is much more difficult in those where one partner is still struggling to find their own identity, and where the other, the carer, has the problems associated with trying to keep their own life going evenly, over possibly many years of coping.
Satellite television has brought me a fascinating window on a wider world and the opportunities to observe and try to understand people from a vast range of cultures - people whom one saw, if one saw them at all, as "performers" in documentaries or devised programmes, and subject to the presentation and interpretation of the programmes' compilers. Now I can watch them completely untainted by the intervening "editor interpreter".
I watch them [in foreign languages] in their own dramas, chat shows, news bulletins and a variety of presentations and versions of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" I look at faces and expressions, moods and reactions, but "look" and "watch" are the two operative words, for apart from sensing the general mood of the piece I have not the slightest idea of what is being said.
When I watch Chinese television there are subtitles - but they also are in Chinese. I would dearly like to know what Dunia and the people whom she interviews on Abu Dhabi television are discussing, because it appears to be serious and intelligent, but apart from words that sound vaguely like "Iraq" there is nothing to guide me. Worse still is a news bulletin when the person being interviewed is speaking English, but is then being talked over and the screen has rolling subtitles all in Arabic.
The world and outlook of those who are locked into their inner voices is something like this. They have their own transmission received inside their head that no one else can hear or comprehend, while, viewed on the screen of life that is going on outside them, they see people, faces expressions, actions, moods and reactions, and try to interpret something that is far off, something that is almost unreachable from within a mind and body that are often numbed by the drugs that are meant to make life more bearable (but which often are there solely to "contain" them) - a world with which they find it increasingly difficult to communicate, to such an extent that attempts to do so may be abandoned altogether, especially when the inner world can be warm and friendly.
Is it easiest simply to abandon them to their inner world and the companions that frequent it? An inner world that can be welcoming, friendly, comforting - an inner world that suddenly can spawn terror and threat; create immeasurable anxiety; propose devilish and obscene compacts - compacts that if accepted can bring down an even heavier rain of threat and castigation from the unseen tormentors. One can go on and on in seemingly endless speculation, and offer insights and advice that may or may not have relevance to an individual - if indeed one knew that the torment was actually there behind the closed door that a life and the face fronting it have become.
It would be difficult to forget the time when my stable was being reroofed. Right to the fore of the action were the two Geordies - Big Derek and Brian. They came and worked - and worked hard - for "readies", and stayed until about one o'clock when they went to the King's Head for a liquid lunch, and then possibly an afternoon fishing off the beach. One morning they came and they were immensely subdued, in fact for such a big man it was odd that Derek seemed close to tears. "Clarry's topped his self" said Brian eventually. Work was pointless, and they went off to the King's Head for more appropriate solace. Clarry - or Clarence to give him his Sunday name - had farmed with brother Ronnie, until they had given up the farm. But farmers never retire, and one met them here and there as they helped out on other farms - hedging, dykeing, hay-timing - or working in people's gardens.
Clarry had retired to a cottage beside the main road and I saw him frequently as he worked around a friend's premises. This particular morning, his daughter had come downstairs, to a fire newly laid in the grate, a cup of tea part drunk and still warm, a sandwich half eaten, and, puzzled, had gone outside to find Clarry hanging. And no one knew why! It was over ten years ago, and I don't think anyone knows to this day. There in his inner world something had thrown a switch - but he had not been ill that anyone knew about - certainly not mentally. What was it that Clarry couldn't talk to anyone about - confide - consult?
I thought of him in happier times, as for instance when the local Shepherds' Meet and a meet of the beagles had coincided, and the Brown Cow had been open all day - and Clarry hadn't wasted a minute. There he was, well into the evening, a huge turkey drumstick in his hand, beating time to the choruses of the hunting songs, and swaying perilously to and fro, and the picture of him swaying gently at the end of a rope is one that even now I find unbearable.
I have difficulty revisiting the time when I desperately wanted to die and escape from all that plagued my mind and the situation that I couldn't understand but from which I frantically wanted to flee. I wasn't then hearing voices, but had seemingly insurmountable problems. Why didn't I just do it? As I wrote earlier, it had to appear to be an accident, and I couldn't devise one that I thought would be convincing.
Relevant to my thoughts about Clarry - I couldn't talk to anyone, because I couldn't put my inner agony into words. I vaguely remember once saying to the Consultant, MC, as I attempted to broach the subject, something such as "I wish I had a terminal illness" - thinking that that would be a way out that would not create problems for anyone. "I suppose you want cancer" he said - and said it with a sneer; nothing else will describe his tone. I never tried to speak to anyone about it ever again, and I have only recalled the painful times for the purpose of writing to you to help you to understand the torment in the unseen world behind the facade of a face, and a life that is seemingly being "lived" successfully.
"Writing to you" - I began to write more then five years ago. Some has come easy; some with the pain of unhappiness and disaster revisited. I hope that it has been worthwhile in that it may help someone. I began with the words of the diminutive Brazilian bishop, Dom Helder Camera - and cannot think of any that are more appropriate to end with.
Don't get annoyed
If the people coming to see you,
If the people wanting to talk to you
Can't manage to express
The uproar raging inside them.
Much more important
Than listening to the words
Is imagining the agonies
Fathoming the mystery
... Listening to the silences ...
Go to EPILOGUE: chapter-15.htm