By H. Spencer Lewis, Ph. D.
Published in 1950.
(This is a little old writing I recently found in an old book. Scanned and OCRed for your reading pleasure.)
After twenty-five years of experience in metaphysical healing work as an individual practitioner, and in connection with the Council of Solace of the Rosicrucian Order, I feel that I can greatly assist many of our members and their friends by outlining some of the important principles that each may apply for himself in the healing or curing of many mental and physical conditions.
I suppose that each one of you who has ever had any treatment at the hands of a metaphysician realizes that such a physician always insists that the patient aid in the cure or the relief of a condition, if the most efficient results are to be obtained. Truly it is possible to work many marvelous changes in the physical body without the knowledge of the patient, and, therefore, without the patient’s cooperation. But it is equally true that such a method takes a longer time and is surrounded with many difficulties and problems.
The thing that astonishes even metaphysical practitioners is that the patient often waits too long or delays too long in bringing his case before the attention of the physician and thereby complicates conditions. The patient might have started the treatment processes himself before coming to the physician and thereby saved time and the aforesaid complications. In the cases of those living at long distances and who write or telegraph for help, there is often a delay of several days or many hours before their case can be given proper attention. During such time the patient is doing nothing to help himself but is allowing the condition to become exaggerated, or at least so developed that a longer time and a more difficult process is required to bring about the relief desired. And, in many cases, we know that had the patient attempted to do something for himself at the very beginning of the condition, he would quickly have found that there was no necessity for asking for outside or distant help.
The first point to be considered in connection with self’ healing is to recognize the absolute law that every mental or physical manifestation of illness or disease is only a culminating outer manifestation of something that has occurred previously within. It matters little whether the condition is that of swollen tonsils or severe pain in the back, or the suspected development of a growth of some kind in some part of the body, or a so-called cold or rheumatic condition, the fact remains that these terms and symptoms are, after all, only an outer sign of something that is wrong within.
The specific name given to a disease or the specific location of a pain in no way indicates either the real cause for the condition or the method of treatment. We used to laugh at the little child in the crib or the little boy playing on the floor who, when suffering from some pain, would say that he had a “stomach-ache,” and then place his hands over the lower part of the abdomen and plainly indicate that the pain was not in the stomach but in the intestines. We smiled at the child’s lack of knowledge of physiology. The whole of the child’s abdomen was a “stomach” to him and any pain in the abdomen was a “stomach-ache.” But the average adult is not much different from such a child, inasmuch as each one tries to localize the condition or pain and to think of it as existing in just one part of the body, independent of the rest of the body.
To the metaphysician there is no such thing as a case of tonsillitis, in which all of the condition is located in the tonsils and the rest of the body is free from any association with the abnormal condition. Neither is appendicitis a condition exclusively located in the appendix, nor is a goitre a condition that is located exclusively in the neck. Rheumatism is commonly classified in various ways until we are asked to believe that there can be one form of rheumatism that is exclusively in the joints of the bones, another affecting the nerves, another affecting muscles or other parts of the body. If there is any rheumatism at all in any part of the body, the real condition is throughout the entire body and it is absurd to focus the attention upon that point in which the greater manifestation is made.
An analogy would be that of seeing a factory at night burst forth in flames through one of the windows, which was suddenly broken by the heat and temperature from within, allowing the flames to shoot forth. Would any rational person claim that just the window was on fire, because the flames were visible only at that one part of the entire building? The reasoning person would immediately say that if the flames were shooting forth from one window with such grand display, there was probably a larger amount of fire elsewhere in the building.
The primary cause for all abnormal or subnormal mental and physical conditions in the human body is lack of attunement with the creative, constructive, harmonious forces of nature. The Rosicrucians have a very brief term for this condition which they call “out of harmony.” Perfect health they call a condition of “harmonium.” This lack of attunement with harmony is the primary physical cause, yet there is another cause even more remote than this. It is the mental cause or psychic cause. This cause will be found in the mind of the patient or, in other words, in the mental attitude or psychic attitude of the patient during some time previous to the inharmonious condition.
It seems to be an almost impossible thing to make the average human being realize that the very moment he or she allows the mind to concentrate or think about, ponder over, or talk about anything of an envious, jealous, revengeful, critical, or destructive nature, that moment the mental attitude is out of harmony with the Divine Mind. The next result will be a lack of harmony in the physical forces of the body with the physical forces of the universe. Such a state must invariably result in the physical forces of the body becoming somewhat destructive or inharmonious in their action. In some part of the body an outer manifestation will gradually occur. Even persons who are thoroughly convinced that losing one’s temper and going into a violent rage is disastrous to the nerves and blood of the body and is sure to produce a physical or mental reaction of some kind, do not seem to realize that when thoughts held in the mind, or expressed, are unkind, critical, or destructive in any way, they are sure to bring a reaction in the mental and physical states of the body.
I have noticed in the past twenty-five years that whenever a man or woman spends any thought energy in occasionally venting his wrath, his criticism, or his unkind remarks or feelings toward any individual or group of individuals, that sooner or later the reaction from this inharmonious attitude produces a physical or mental condition that is more or less serious. The man who believes he has some enemy, or some person who has done him an injustice and about whom he must make critical or derogatory remarks, or who constantly finds some opportunity to tear that someone to pieces in his mind or in his expressions is sure to bring all kinds of ill health and very often ill fortune into his life. The woman who feels that she must hold or vent her bitterness or her criticisms against some person or group of persons whenever the thought of them comes into her mind is sure to suffer from many of the conditions typical to the female body and constitution. It is a metaphysical fact that for each minute of time spent by the mind of man in thoughts of unfavorable impressions, unkind criticism, or hate toward any person, there will be hours of physical and mental suffering as a reaction.
Air, Water, and Sleep
The first thing to do then in considering the relief of any mental or physical condition, is to analyze your mental self over a period of weeks and months preceding the physical condition. You must discover what thoughts, what attitudes, what conditions of mind you have been in or held in yourself, or expressed in words, and immediately eliminate this attitude by reversing your opinions, reversing your thoughts, and holding thoughts of love and kindness instead. In other words, the poison from the mind that has been eating at the very heart of every cell in your body must be eliminated before any treatment can be given to relieve the ultimate and outer manifestations. Any other process is merely treating the outer manifestations and easing them, as though giving them a drug to nullify the senses without removing the actual cause.
Therefore, after having analyzed your inner self and with or without discovering what thoughts you have actually held that were destructive, purge yourself of any possible poison by immediately holding thoughts of love, goodness, kindness, and spiritual oneness with all human beings and with every living thing on the face of the earth. Fill yourself with the thought that all is good, everyone is loving and kind, and that none are bad, only different, and that no one is evil, for all are Children of Light and Children of the Cosmic.
If you have an enemy or one toward whom you have felt otherwise, immediately send toward them good thoughts and try to undo the evil or unkind thoughts you have held in your mind. If you are dissatisfied with any condition, or any groups of persons, or any action on the part of anyone, immediately purge that from your mind by reversing your opinion and filling your being with thoughts of toleration, sympathy, kindness, and love. So much for purging yourself of the original cause, for to the same degree in which you succeed in eliminating this mental, psychic poison within your own being, to the same degree will you remove the cause for any condition from which you are suffering at the present time.
The next step is to assist Nature in the physical and material purging of the bodily condition. Several fundamentals must be considered in this process. First, since all vitality and life force of a constructive, recreating nature comes through the air we breathe, the patient should at once begin to breathe deeply of good fresh air. He should go to a window or out in the open spaces a few minutes of each hour and take many deep breaths, holding them as long as possible, and exhaling as greatly as possible. This will change the air in the lungs and allow new vitality and new powers of the Cosmic vibrations to enter the lungs and carry on Nature’s vitalizing processes. Five or ten minutes of such deep breathing every hour with the chest thrown out and the lungs expanded to the utmost will be a wonderful help. If the breathing can be done in the sunshine and with the head thrown back so that the sunrays will enter the open mouth and strike against the walls of the throat for a moment or two of each hour, it will be especially helpful.
The next step is to take a good drink of fresh water. It need not be filtered or boiled, or purified in any special way, but just ordinary drinking water, cool enough to be enjoyable. Two glassfuls at a time is better than one if it is possible for you to drink two. Nature requires the water and the elements in it, in conjunction with the air you breathe, to carry on her reconstructive processes, and every hour one or two glasses full of water should be drunk until the physical condition is changed. You are not likely to drink too much water, even if you consume three or four quarts in a day. This water will also flush the kidneys and the bowels to some extent, as well as the bladder. It is like internal bathing.
The next step is to sit down quietly, or lie down in a relaxed condition as much as possible. Give Nature every opportunity to use all of the vital forces in the body for reconstruction, instead of expending this energy in moving your body about, or in doing other unnecessary work. Resting the body and relaxing it, with the eyes dosed and with just the thought of peace and nothing else in the mind, will give Nature every opportunity to carry out the work of the Cosmic in changing your physical condition. Do not concentrate your thoughts upon the nature of your illness, its location, its pathological or histological cause in a physiological sense, or on the diagnosis that a physician, nurse, or friend has given. All of these mean nothing to Nature and nothing to the Cosmic, and should mean nothing to you, for the time being.
While you are lying relaxed, bring your finger tips together by putting both hands in such a manner that the finger tips of the left hand are touching against the finger tips of the right hand, with the fingers partially separated. This will short-circuit the emanations of energy from the fingers and prevent the rays from going off into space; it will keep the extra amount of energy in your body from leaving it, and will cause it to recirculate through the body and help in the healing and constructive work. If the feet are bare, allow them to touch closely against each other while lying relaxed and resting. If you are inclined to fall asleep, keep in your mind the thought of peace and of the healing currents of the Cosmic passing through your body while you breathe, and with only this thought in mind, allow yourself to sleep. Do not have anyone awaken you for the drinking of water or the breathing exercises if you want to sleep more than an hour. The sleep will be just as helpful if not more so than the drinking of the water each hour or the breathing. If you are awake, do not neglect these latter things.
If you go to sleep at night and have a peculiar sensation around two o’clock or three o’clock in the morning that your temperature is rising, or that you are uncomfortably warm, do not get up out of your bed and attempt to make yourself cool or in any way suddenly lower your temperature. Keep yourself well covered and allow Nature’s purging process through perspiration to continue, and you will find that by sunrise, or shortly thereafter, the temperature will lower. By seven or eight o’clock in the morning you will find a marvelous change in your condition. This is apt to occur either the first, second, or third night of your healing process, according to the seriousness of the condition or its length of duration. In mild conditions, this may not occur at all, for it may not be necessary. I am only speaking of it to warn you so that in case you notice something of this kind you will understand it and be prepared for it.
When the patient has taken a drink of cold water just before retiring, as should be done by every person carrying on any healing processes of his own, this purging process during the night through an increased temperature will be very beneficial. However, it may not always occur in every case because it may not always be necessary.
Remember, also, that in self-healing, it is not necessary to dismiss the services of any other physician of any school or of any system. This method cannot possibly interfere with what anyone else is doing.
Bear in mind that if you have a belief that the illness is of a contagious nature or of a very serious nature, the law requires you to have a regular physician in attendance. You may save yourself a great deal of unpleasant criticism and inconvenience by having a physician in attendance in such cases.