SYMPTOMS OCCURRING DURING FASTING
SYMPTOMS of disease are the evidences of abnormal conditions that are present within the body, and they indicate with more or less accuracy the degree of functional or of organic disturbance. In addition they enable the experienced observer to apprehend the point or points of least resistance, the organ or organs that are hampered in the performance of function. In fasting, these signs of disease, during the first days of abstinence, are seen to be exaggerated or increased in severity; but this is a logical consequence of the method as applied, for its purpose is that of elimination of circulating, clogging, poisonous material. The extreme process of elimination in operation at this time fully uncovers the focus of disease, and exaggerates in the very cure itself signs characteristic of morbid conditions in the organs involved, organs whose resistance has been assailed to the point of break-down in function. To the orthodox view this phenomenon at once is suggestive of an increase in the severity of disease alone, since in the commonly accepted opinion the symptom represents a segregated cause. But, rightly regarding disease as arising from a single primary source, the intellect trained in the application of natural means of treatment finds cause for rejoicing rather than for fear. Exaggeration of symptom is apparent because nature has accepted the open road presented, and is proceeding rapidly to effect relief and cure. And it is to be observed that the greater the struggle made at this time, the greater the vital force in reserve.
In any method for the treatment of disease nothing can be done unless nature cooperates. In some methods her means of cure, elimination, triumphs in spite of treatment, and this is nowhere so fully demonstrated as in traditional orthodoxy, which regards the symptom as disease in segregated form. By means of drugs and measures allied, the signs manifested are checked, suppressed, turned into other channels. The fact has been and is ignored that, with cause thus suppressed but still in action, disease is certain of return in aggravated form.
To delay treatment in order that a distinct symptom may develop, thus permitting of accurate symptomatic diagnosis, is evidence of faulty conception both of the character of disease and of its remedy. While waiting, the case is proceeding either to cure or to death. At the first appearance of distress active natural measures are in order, and these are certainly not to be classed with drugs or with any means for the suppression of a localized pathological condition.
For centuries the human race has been educated therapeutically by precept and argument diametrically opposed to truth. For instance, in the orthodox method of handling the sick, if heart action is high, a depressant is administered; if it is low, a stimulant is given. When signs of illness appear upon the skin, attempts are in order, not to remove the inward cause, but to eradicate the outward sign, "to drive it in." In these instances, because of energy consumed in fighting both disease and drug, reaction occurs, and the organs affected are less able to recuperate when the obstructed avenues of vitality are finally cleared sufficiently for function. The latter occurs when nature, as she often does, asserts herself despite the drug. Orthodoxy refuses to admit the unity of disease and cure, and likewise refuses to assist nature in the purifying process of disease. The thought and hope of the physician trained to regard disease from its natural concept is this: that the organs of the body of his patient may prove equal to the work of elimination; and to further this end, he makes use of every natural eliminative aid. In spite of the mildness or the severity of its manifestation, it is only through bodily purification that disease may be cured.
Since the physiological changes involved in the application of fasting for the cure of disease need to be made gradually, as has been related, the ideal method of approach to the period of abstinence is to prepare the system by lessening by degrees the intake of food; but, whether begun in this manner or without preparation, as is necessary in acute crises, resultant symptoms are in general alike. When the intake of food is stopped, the stomach is naturally emptied and commences its enforced vacation. All energy heretofore applied to the processes of digestion is now directed into eliminative channels, and, with the assistance of a blood current continually growing in purity, inflammation that may be present is allayed, and congestion in veins and glands is relieved. The stomach will from time to time be disturbed by its neighboring organ, the liver which during a fast is solely an organ of elimination, and which then discharges its bilious excretion in large amounts into the alimentary canal It has been stated that this product of the liver is essentially waste, but that, even so, it has its use as a digestive fluid in health. However, when a fast is in progress, bile is profusely poured into the intestines, and it is then to be regarded as naught but poisonous refuse excreted by tissue, and it is at once to be removed from the system lest it be again absorbed into the circulation.
When food is no longer being ingested, the bowels proceed to evacuate their fecal contents, receiving and casting out the waste then deposited in them from blood and the visceral organs; the kidneys, the lungs, and the skin assist in the purifying process; in short, the sewerage system of the body centers its entire energy in supreme effort to overcome toxemia by clearing away internal impurities. The involuntary absorptive functions are, however, still active, and they continue their work, even upon excreted waste; hence, lest poisonous reabsorption occur, the most expeditious means must be employed in order to remove this refuse from the intestinal channel. The blood, following its mission, gathers excrete from cell structure, and supplies what it may for rebuilding purposes. The latter it discovers in that reserve supply of nourishment that is naturally stored in the interstices of tissue. As the process of elimination or purification continues, as refuse diminishes in amount, the density of the blood stream is gradually reduced, and the labor of the heart is thus progressively lightened.
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