Homeopathic Doctor in Houston Texas

Arnica–not just a trauma medicine

Filed under Clinical Cases

People have been dispossessed from their land for centuries. Having one’s own land is a precious commodity. For some it is an extension of oneself. To have that land unlawfully seized or arbitrarily threatened to be taken away can arouse intense feelings of being violated. What follows is one small example of how a land feud ended up causing extreme physical pain and mental anguish.

A seventy year old woman, a self-confessed workaholic, came in complaining of extreme pains in her left upper arm and, to a lesser extent, in the right upper arm. She said the areas were “hard and painful.” Recently, she had been gardening. It involved bending over planting seeds, also pulling weeds. These simple maneuvers, which she had been doing for many years, were no longer possible because of the pain.

“It feels like someone is ripping my arm off,” she said. “All the muscles are being ripped.”

Also, the left heel felt as if “bruised by a stone.” She could not step on it without pain.

She could not lie on either side because, she said, “The pain is excruciating.”

In addition, her boss had been cutting back on her hours and she felt she was being forced out of her job, a job she had been faithfully performing for many years.

I had known her for over ten years. She was entirely accustomed to hard physical work and was, if anything, something of a stoic who rarely complained of anything so for her to use “ripping” to describe her pain caught my attention.

I asked if anything else stressful had occurred in her life recently.

“Yes, the worst thing in our whole lives…it’s about our land,” she said.

They lived and farmed trees on twenty-three acres in East Texas. Eleven of the acres her husband had inherited. The other twelve had been deeded to him by his great uncle and aunt. Her husband had been living on the land for sixty-nine years. He discussed the deed with a title company. These twelve acres had been part of forty acres. This uncle had a gambling problem and sold twenty-eight acres to settle a gambling debt. That was in 1946.

With the title company’s comments attached, he filed the deed in the local county courthouse. Sometime later, a survey team appeared on their property. Her husband, not suspecting anything, allowed them to proceed. It turned out another party was laying claim to his land. The survey was grossly inaccurate. He protested and one day a swarm of off-duty law enforcement officers entered his land and belligerently asked him, “What right do you think you have to this land?” Another threatened to grab him out of his living room and take him to jail.

He stood his ground. He was certain these off-duty lawmen had been hired to intimidate him. Eventually, they left but a few days later a bulldozer appeared on his property and brazenly bulldozed down shrubs and trees on three to four acres right in the center of his twelve acres.

The other party started a lawsuit claiming his land was theirs. He counter-sued. The matter is currently being adjudicated.

I asked my patient how she was reacting to having her land unlawfully surveyed, having corrupt law enforcement officials threaten her and her husband and having her land entered and bulldozed.      “It has been absolutely the worst thing to happen to us in our whole lives,” she said. She felt she was confronting supremely evil people and feared they might possibly succeed in their efforts to take their land.

She volunteered, “It feels like I’ve been beaten within an inch of my life.” Though she was describing her bodily pains, it was an apt metaphor for the way the other party had been abusing her and her husband.

She needed Arnica montana, a homeopathic medicine known to all amateur homeopaths for its effectiveness in treating bruising following a blow to the body or a hard fall. It is often effective in sports injuries. It can relieve the sore, bruised feeling and it can reduce the swelling of the traumatized area. People needing Arnica invariably say they feel “bruised” and “sore” and, sometimes, “beaten.”

But I was not prescribing Arnica as a first-aid medicine. Arnica has another, virtually unknown, side. The bruised, sore, beaten feeling can result, not from trauma but from financial loss and the perceived threat of evil.

In Materia Medica Pura by Samuel Hahnemann, in the section describing the effects of Arnica it is written: “Fears; anxious dread of coming evil.” That means that at least one prover, after taking Arnica, reported experiencing a dread of impending evil.

Though the physical symptoms of Arnica are well-known, few homeopaths are aware that Arnica can be of use when confronted with stark evil. Examples: female children in bed at night afraid of a male figure coming to abuse them; fear of a terrorist bombing; fear of torture, etc., etc.

It is important, however, that the physical sensations of Arnica, that is, the bruised, beaten feeling, the ripped apart sensation, be present along with the “anxious dread of coming evil.” In addition, my patient and her husband were under financial strain because of the litigation.

She received a single dose of Arnica in the 1000 potency (diluted 1000 times).

The next day she called to say she had the worst headache of her life. I told her it would pass. Often patients experience a worsening of symptoms before the improvement starts. Sure enough, the next day she was beginning to improve. Within two to three days, she was back at work though still unable to lift heavy objects.

When I saw her three weeks later, she reported feeling seventy-five to eighty-five percent better.

“I was really bad when I saw you three weeks ago,” she said. “That pain was excruciating. It was like, ‘Please, God, take my life.’

“You know, within minutes of taking Arnica my feeling of hopelessness disappeared. It made me feel like a human being again. I was feeling like a poor little donkey they beat until he falls down in the mud.”

Her report of immediate improvement deep in herself is important. A true cure should begin with a sense that the patient has improved in the very core of herself. Then the physical symptoms will follow, gradually (sometimes quickly) decreasing. Her pains decreased markedly day by day. “The pain is not nearly as intense as it was,” she reported. “Now it is more of a dull pain. Also, I can now lie on either side. Before, I could only lie flat on my back.”

I asked about her emotional state. “It is much better. I was really, really depressed when I saw you,” she said. “I’m a lot more cheerful now and not so worried about the land.”

This case illustrates how a long-standing fearful situation can result in unbearable musculoskeletal pains. By treating this woman’s anguish and her sensation that she had been beaten as a single phenomenon, the Arnica was able to successfully resolve both.