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The Rudolf Steiner Archive

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Fundamentals of Anthroposophical Medicine
GA 314

Lecture III

27 October 1922 p.m., Stuttgart

As we begin to view the human organism increasingly in the way that I unfortunately have been able to indicate only very briefly, many things become terribly important concerning judgment of the human being in health and disease, things not otherwise appreciated in their full significance. Very little attention is paid nowadays to what I have called in my book, Riddles of the Soul, the threefold nature of the physical being of man. Yet a proper assessment of this threefold nature of the physical human being is of the greatest significance for pathology and therapy.

In accordance with this threefold nature of the physical human being, the nerve-sense system is to be pictured as localized mainly in the head, though of course this head organization really extends over the entire human being. The nervous and sensory functions of the skin, and also those within the human organization, must be included. However, we cannot arrive at a well-founded conception of the modes of activity in the human organism unless we differentiate, theoretically to begin with, the nerve-sense system from the rest of the organization as a whole.

The second system in the human being, the rhythmic system, includes in the functional sense everything that is subject to rhythm—primarily, therefore, the breathing system and its connection with the system of blood circulation. In the wider sense, too, there are rhythms that are of essential significance to the human being, although these can be disrupted in many ways; I am referring to the rhythms of day and night, of sleeping and waking, as well as everything else rhythmical, the rhythmic assimilation of food and so on. These latter rhythms are constantly disrupted by the human being, but the consequences of such disturbances have to be brought into equilibrium by certain regulative factors found in the organism. As a second member of the human organization, then, we have the rhythmic human being, and, as a third member, the metabolic organism, in which I include the limb organism, because the functional processes that arise as a result of the movements of the limbs are inwardly connected with the metabolism in general.

When we consider this threefold nature of the human being, we find that the organization described in the last lecture as being mainly connected with the ego has a definite relationship to the metabolic human being in so far as the metabolic human being extends over the whole being of man. The rhythmic human being has a definite relationship to what I designated this morning as the system of heart and lungs. The functions of the kidneys, the forces that proceed from what I called the kidney system, are related to the astral organization of the human being. In short, in his threefold physical nature the human being is related to the individual members of his super-sensible being and thereby also to the individual organ systems, as I showed this morning. These relationships, however, must be studied in more precise detail if they are to prove of practical value for understanding the human being in health and disease. Here we will do best to begin with a consideration of the rhythmic human being, the rhythmic organization of man.

This rhythmic organization of the human being is very frequently misunderstood in relation to one of its definite characteristics, namely the ratio that is established between the rhythm of the blood circulation and the rhythm of the breath. In the adult human being, this ratio is approximately four to one. This, of course, is only the average, approximate ratio, and its variations in individuals are an expression of the measure of health and disease in the human organism. What is revealed in this rhythmic human being as a ratio of four to one continues in the entire human being. We again have a ratio of four to one in the relationship of the development of the metabolic human being (including the limbs—for simplicity's sake I say “metabolic”) to the nerve-sense human being. This can be verified by empirical data, as is the case with other things mentioned in these lectures. Indeed, so far-reaching is this ratio that we may say that all the processes connected with human metabolism take their course four times faster than the work done by the nerve-sense organization for the growth of the human being.

The second teeth that appear in the child are an expression of what is taking place in the human metabolic system as a result of its coming continually into contact with the nerve-sense system. Everything that flows from the metabolic system toward the middle, rhythmic system, set against that which flows from the nerve-sense system into the rhythmic system, takes place in a tempo of four to one. To speak precisely, we may take the breathing system to be the rhythmic continuation of the nerve-sense system and the circulatory system to be the rhythmic continuation of the metabolic system. We can say that the metabolic system sends its effects, as it were, up into the rhythmic human being. In other words, the third member of the human organization works into the second, and this expresses itself in daily life through the rhythm of the blood circulation. The nerve-sense system sends its effects into the breathing system and this is expressed through the rhythm of the breath. Thus in observing the ratio of four to one in the rhythmic human being—for there are some seventy pulse beats to every eighteen breaths—we see the encounter between the nerve-sense system and the metabolic system. This can be observed in any given life period of the human being by studying the ratio of everything that proceeds from the human processes of metabolism in their impact on everything that proceeds from the head system, the nerve-sense system. This is a ratio of exceptional significance.

We may therefore say that in the child's second teeth there is an upward thrust of the metabolic system into the head, but in such a way that in this meeting of the metabolic system with the nerve-sense system the latter gets the upper hand to begin with. The considerations that follow will make this clear to you. The second dentition at about the age of seven represents a contact between the metabolic system and the nerve-sense system, but the effect of the nerve-sense system predominates. The outcome of this collision between what proceeds from the nerve sense system and the metabolic system is the development of the second teeth.

Again, in the period when the human being reaches puberty, a new collision occurs between the metabolic system and the nerve-sense system, but this time the metabolic system predominates. This is expressed in the male sex, for example, by the change in the voice itself, which up to this period of life has essentially been a form of expression for the nerve-sense system. The metabolic system pulses upward and makes the voice deeper.

We can understand these effects by observing the extent to which they encompass the radiations in the human organism that originate in the kidney system and liver-gall system on the one hand, and in the head and skin organizations on the other (everything that therefore forms the nerve-sense system). This is an extremely interesting ratio, one that leads us into the deepest depths of the human organization. We can picture the building and molding of the organism in this way: radiations proceed from the side of the kidney-liver systems, and they are met by the plastic, formative forces proceeding from the head system. If we were to try to draw what takes place schematically, we would have to do it in this way (sketching). The radiations from the kidney-liver system (naturally they do not stream only upward but to all sides) have the tendency to work in a semi-radial direction, but they are thwarted everywhere by the plastic, formative forces that proceed from the head system. We can thus understand the form of the lungs by thinking of them as shaped sculpturally by the liver-kidney systems which are met by the rounding-off forces proceeding from the head system. The entire structure comes into being in this way: radial formation from the kidney-liver systems, and then the rounding off of the radial formation by the forces proceeding from the head system.

In this way we arrive at a fact of the greatest importance and one that can be confirmed empirically in every detail. In the process of man's development, in human growth, two force components are at work: (1) the force components that proceed from the liver-kidney systems and (2) the force components that proceed from the nerve-sense system, rounding off the forms and shaping their surfaces. These two components collide with each other, but not with the same rhythm. They collide with each other in varying rhythms. Everything that proceeds from the liver-kidney systems has the rhythm of the metabolic human being. Everything that proceeds from the head system has the rhythm of the nerve-sense human being. This means that when the human organization is ready for the emergence of the second teeth, at about the seventh year of life, the metabolic organization, with all that proceeds from the kidney-liver systems (which is met by the rhythm of the heart), is subject to a rhythm that is related to the other rhythm, proceeding from the head, in the ratio of four to one. Thus not until the twenty-eighth year of life is man's head organization developed to the point reached by the metabolic organization at the age of seven. This means that the plastic principle in the human being develops more slowly than the radiating principle, the non-plastic principle. In effect it develops four times as slowly. This is connected with the fact that at the end of the seventh year of life, regarding what proceeds from our metabolism, we have developed to the point reached by growth in general (in so far as this is subject to the nerve-sense system) only at the twenty-eighth year.

Man is a thus a very complicated being. Two streams of movement subject to totally different rhythms are at work in him. And so we can say that the emergence of the second teeth, for example, is due in the first place to the fact that everything connected with the metabolism comes into contact with the slower but more intensive plastic principle, so that in the teeth the plastic element predominates. At the time of puberty, there is a predominance of the metabolic element; the plastic element withdraws more into the background, which is expressed in the male sex by the familiar phenomenon of the deepened voice.

Many other things in the human organization are connected with this: for instance the fact that the greatest possibility of illness fundamentally occurs during the period of life before the arrival of the second teeth—the first seven years of life. When the second teeth appear, the inner tendency of the human being to disease ceases to a great extent. The system of education that it has been our task to build up* has compelled me to make a detailed study of this matter, for it is impossible to found a rational system of education without these principles concerning the human being in health and disease. In his inner being, the human being is in the healthiest state during the second period of life, from the change of teeth to puberty. After puberty, a period begins when it is again easy for him to fall prey to illness.

  • Referring to the Waldorf education movement, founded in Stuttgart, Germany in 1919, and now a worldwide independent educational movement.

The tendency to illness in the first period of life until the change of teeth is quite different from the tendency to illness after puberty. These two possibilities of falling ill are as different, you could say, as the second dentition is from the change in the male voice. During the first period of life, up to the change of teeth, everything proceeds from, the child's nerve-sense organization to the outermost periphery of the human organism. Everything proceeds from the nerve-sense organization. The nerve-sense organization, which predominates until the change of teeth, is the origin for pathological phenomena in the first period of human life. You will be able to form a general conception of these pathological phenomena if you say to yourselves: it is quite evident here that the radiations from the kidney-liver systems are rounded off, sculpturally rounded off by the plastic principle working from the nerve-sense human being. This plastic element is the main field of action of everything that I have described as being connected with the ego organization and the astral organization of the human being.

Now it may seem strange that I previously spoke of the ego organization as proceeding from the liver-gall system and the astral organization as proceeding from the kidney system, and that I now say: everything connected with the ego and astral organizations emanates from the head organization. We shall never understand the human organization with all its tremendous complexities if we say baldly that the ego organization proceeds from the liver-gall system and the astral organization from the liver-kidney systems. We must realize that in the first period of life, up to the change of teeth, these radiations from the liver system and the kidney system are rounded off by the nerve-sense system. This rounding-off process is the essential thing. Strange to say, the forces supplied to the ego and astral organizations by the liver-gall system and the kidney system reveal themselves as a counterradiation, not in their direct course from below upward but from above downward. Thus we have to conceive of the child's organization as follows: the astral nature radiates from the kidney system and the ego organization from the liver system, but these radiations have no direct significance. Both the liver system and the kidney system are, as it were, reflected back from the head system, and only this reflection into the organism is the active principle.

How, then, are we to think of the astral organization in the child? We must think of the workings of the kidneys as being radiated back from the head system. What of the the ego-organization in the child? The workings of the liver-gall system are also radiated back from the head system. The physical system proper and the etheric system work from below upward, the physical organization having its point of departure in the digestive system and the etheric organization in the heart-lung system. These organizations work from below upward and the others from above downward during the first epoch of human life, and the radiation from below upward works into the radiation working from above downward in a rhythm whose ratio is four to one.

It is a pity that the indications here have to be so brief, but they really are the key to the processes of childhood. If you want to study the most typical childhood diseases, you may divide them into two classes. On the one side you will find that the forces streaming from below upward meet the forces streaming from above downward with a rhythm of four to one, but there is no coordination. If it is the upward streaming forces with their rhythm of four that refuse to incorporate themselves into the human individuality, while the inherited rhythm of the head organization is in order, then we find all those diseases in the child's organism that are diseases of the metabolism, arising from a kind of damming-up against the nerve-sense system in which the metabolism is not quite able to adapt itself to what radiates out from the nerve-sense system. Then we get, for example, that strange disease in children that leads to the formation of a kind of purulent blood. All other children's diseases that may be described as diseases of the metabolism arise in this way.

On the other hand, suppose the metabolic organism is able to adapt itself to the individuality of the child and that the hygienic conditions are such that the child is properly adapted to its environment—if, for example, we feed him in a regular way. If however, as a result of some inherited tendency, the nerve-sense system working from above downward does not harmonize properly with the radiations from the liver-gall system and the kidney system, diseases accompanied by cramp-like conditions arise, the cause of them being that the ego and astral organizations are not descending properly into the physical and etheric organizations.

Childhood diseases, therefore, arise from two opposite sides. Nevertheless, it is always true that we can understand these diseases of the child's organism only by directing our attention to the head and nerve-sense organization. The metabolism in the child must be shaped so that it is brought into harmony not only with outer conditions but also with the nerve-sense organization. In the first period of human life, up to the change of teeth, a practical and fundamental knowledge of the human nerve-sense system is necessary and we must be aware that despite the fact that everything in the child radiates from the head organization, it is nonetheless possible for the metabolism to press too far if the metabolism is normal while the head organization, through hereditary circumstances, is too weak.

Now when the second period of life sets in, from the change of teeth to puberty, it is the rhythmic organism from which everything radiates. The astral and etheric organizations of the human being are essentially active here. Into the astral and etheric organizations between the change of teeth and puberty streams everything that arises from the functions of the breathing and circulatory systems. The reason that the human organization itself can offer the human being the greatest possibility of health during this period of life is that these two systems can be regulated from outside. The health of school children of this age is very dependent on hygienic and sanitary conditions, whereas during the first period of life external conditions cannot affect health in the same way.

Out of a real knowledge of the human being we become aware of the tremendous responsibility resting upon us with regard to the medical aspect of education. We become aware that we may have dealt wrongly with the causes of disease that make their appearance between the seventh and fourteenth years of life. During the elementary school years, the human being is not really dependent upon himself; he is adapting himself to his environment in his breathing, by inhaling the air and by means of all that arises in his circulation through metabolism. Metabolism is connected with the limb organization. If children are given the wrong kind of gymnastics or are allowed to move wrongly, outer causes of disease are cultivated. Education during the elementary school age should be based upon these principles, which should be taken into strictest account in all our teaching.

This is not done in our time, as you can conclude from the following. Experimental psychology—as it is called—has a certain significance which I well appreciate, but among other transgressions it makes the mistake of speaking like this: such and such a lesson causes certain symptoms of fatigue in the child; such and such a lesson gives rise to different symptoms of fatigue, and so forth. And according to the conditions of fatigue thus ascertained, conclusions are drawn as to the right kind of curriculum. Yes—but, you see, the question is put incorrectly, it must be posed in a different way. From the seventh to the fourteenth years, thank God, all that really concerns us is the rhythmic human being, which does not get tired. If it were to tire, the heart, for instance, could not continue to beat during sleep throughout the whole of earthly life. Nor does the action of breathing get tired. So when it is said that we must pay attention to whether more or less fatigue arises in an experiment, the conclusion should be that if there is fatigue at all, something is amiss. Between the seventh and fourteenth years our ideal must be to work not primarily upon the head system but upon the rhythmic system. We do this when we form our education artistically. Then we are working upon the rhythmic system, and we will see that it will be quite possible to correct all the conditions of fatigue arising from false methods of teaching that are being researched today. Excessive strain on the memory, for example, will always exert an influence on the breathing action, even if only in a mild way, and the results will appear only in later life.

At puberty and afterward, the opposite is the case. Causes of disease may then arise again in the human being himself, particularly in his metabolic-limb organism. This is because the food substances assert their own inherent laws, and then we are faced with an overpowering effect of the physical and etheric organisms in relation to the human organization.

In the organism of the very young child, therefore, we are essentially concerned with the ego organization and the astral organization working by way of the nerve-sense system; in the period between the change of teeth and puberty we are concerned mainly with the activity of the astral and etheric organizations, but now arising from the rhythmic system; after puberty we have to do with the predominance of the physical and etheric organizations arising from the metabolic-limb system. We can see how pathology confirms this absolutely. I need only call your attention to certain typical diseases of the female sex; actual metabolic diseases arise from within the human being after puberty, so that we can say that the metabolism predominates. The products of metabolism get the better of the nerve-sense organization instead of duly harmonizing with its activities. In childhood diseases before the change of teeth there is an inappropriate predominance of the nerve-sense system. The healthy period lies between the change of teeth and puberty; and after puberty the metabolic-limb organism, with its quicker rhythm, begins to predominate. This quicker rhythm then expresses itself in everything connected with deposits of metabolism which form because the plastic organization from the side of the head does not meet them properly. The result of this is that the products of metabolism invariably get the upper hand.

I am very sorry that I can speak of these things only in a cursory, aphoristic way, but my aim is to indicate at least the goal of such thoughts, which is to see that the functional aspect in the human being is primary, and that formations and deformations must basically be regarded as proceeding from this functional aspect. This is expressed outwardly in the fact that up to the seventh year of the child's life the plastic, shaping forces work with particular strength. The plastic structure of the organs is developed by the nerve-sense system to such a point that the plastic molding of teeth, for example, up to the time of the second dentition, is an activity that is not repeated. In contrast to this, the permeation of the organism by the metabolism enters an entirely new phase when—as happens at puberty—a portion of the metabolism is given over to the sexual organs. This leads to a thorough change in the metabolism.

It is terribly important to make a methodical and detailed study of the matters I have indicated to you. The results thus obtained can then be coordinated in a truly scientific sense if they are brought into line with what I told you at the end of the last lecture, if they are related to the working of the cosmos outside the human being.

How, then, can we approach therapeutically everything that radiates out in such a complicated way from the kidney system, from the liver system? We simply need to call forth changes by working on it from outside. We can approach it if we hold fast to what can be observed in the plant—I mean, the contrast between the principle of growth that is derived from the preceding year or years, and those principles of growth that stem from the immediate present. Let us return once more to the plant. In the root and up to the ovary and seed-forming process we have what is old in the plant, belonging to the previous year. In everything that develops around the petals we have what belongs to the present. And in the formation of the green leaves the past and the present are working together. Past and present, as two component factors, have united to produce the leaves.

Now everything in nature is interrelated, just as everything is interrelated in the human organism, in the complex way I have described. The point is to understand the relationships. Everything in nature is related reciprocally, and by a simpler classification of these relationships revealed in the plant we come to the following.

In the terminology of an older, more instinctive medicine (which we by no means want to renew; I only mention it so that we can understand one another better), we find constant mention of the sulfurous or the phosphoric. These sulfurous or phosphoric elements exist in those parts of the plant that represent the forces of the present year—in the blossom, not in the ovary and stigma. When you therefore make a tea from these particular organs of the plant (thereby extracting also what is minerally active in them) you obtain the phosphoric or sulfurous aspect. It is totally incorrect to imagine that the doctors of ancient times thought of phosphorus and sulfur in the sense of modern chemistry. They conceived of them in the way I have indicated. According to ancient medicine, a tea prepared from the petals of the red poppy, for instance, would have been “phosphoric” or “sulfurous.” On the other hand, in a preparation derived from a treatment of a plant's leaves (naturally you get totally different results depending on whether you use pine needles, for example, or cabbage leaves for your decoction) we get the mercurial element, as it was called in ancient terminology. This mercurial element is not the same as what is also called quicksilver. And everything that is connected with the root, the stem, and the seed was for ancient medicine connected with the salt-like element.

I am saying these things only for the sake of clarity, for with our modern natural scientific knowledge we cannot go back to older conceptions. A series of investigations should be made to show, let us say, the effects of an extract prepared from the roots of some plant on the head organization, and hence on certain diseases common to childhood.

A highly significant regulating principle will come to light if we investigate the effects of substances drawn from the roots and seeds of plants on the organization of the child before the change of teeth. For illnesses of the kind that are acquired from outside—and, fundamentally speaking, all illnesses between the change of teeth and puberty are of this kind—we obtain remedies, or at least preparations that have an effect upon such illnesses, from leaves and everything akin to the nature of leaves in the plant. I am speaking in the old sense here of the mercurial element, which we meet in a stronger form in mercury, in quicksilver itself, though it is not identical with this substance. The fact that mercury is a specific remedy for externally acquired sexual diseases is connected with this.

What manifests in sexual diseases is really nothing but the intensification of illnesses that may arise in an extremely mild form in the second period of life. The sexual diseases themselves are only a more potent form of what can be acquired externally from age seven to fourteen, until puberty. Before puberty they do not develop into sexual diseases proper, because the human being is not yet sexually mature. If it were otherwise, a great many diseases would attack the sexual organs. Those who can really observe this transition from the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth years, on into the fourteenth, fifteenth and sixteenth years, will see that symptoms that arise in earlier life in quite another way express themselves at this age as abnormalities of the sexual life.

Then there are diseases that have their origin primarily in the metabolism, in so far as the metabolism is bound up with the physical and etheric systems of the human being. These diseases must be considered in connection with the workings of the petal nature of plants.

The cursory way of dealing with these matters that is unfortunately necessary here may make a great deal appear fantastic. Everything can nevertheless be verified in detail. The obstacles that make these things so unapproachable to orthodox medicine are really due to the fact that, to begin with, they all seem beyond the range of verification. This is because we have to reckon with complicated phenomena in the human organism such as the particularly striking example that I spoke about at the beginning of this lecture. I described it in such a way that it appeared irreconcilable with what I said yesterday. This confusion clears up, however, when we see that what proceeds from the liver-kidney organization appears first in its counterreactions, and in this sense it represents something quite essential for the ego organism and astral organism of the human being. In this case it is especially evident, but in a similar way there is a direct cooperation and counterreaction between the rhythms of the blood circulation and of the breathing in man's middle system. Here, too, many an influence that proceeds from the rhythm of the blood must first be looked for in the beat of the breathing rhythm, and vice versa.

Now connect this with the fact that the human organization, for example, really lives in the inner warmth-man, as I said this morning, and that this warmth-man then permeates the airy, the gaseous man. In the forces proceeding from the ego and astral organisms, we then have seen physically something that is working primarily from the warmth organization and the airy, gaseous organization. This is what we have to see in the organism of the very young child. We must see the cause of childhood diseases by studying the warmth and airy organizations in the human being. The effects that appear if we approach the warmth and airy organizations with preparations derived from roots and seeds are caused by the fact that two polar ways of working collide with each other, the one stimulating the other. Substances arising from the seed or root organizations and introduced into the organism stimulate everything that emerges from the warmth organization and the airy organization of the human being.

Through this I merely wished to indicate to you that in the influences working from above downward, so to speak, we can discern in the human being, from the very outset, a warmth-air vibration that is strongest in childhood, although in reality it is not a vibration but an organic structure taking its course in time. What goes from below upward in the physical-etheric organism is the solid and fluid organization of the human being. These two are in mutual interaction, inasmuch as the fluid and gaseous organizations permeate one another in the middle, bringing forth an intermediate phase of the states of aggregation by their mutual penetration, just as there exists in the human organism the well-known intermediate stage between the solid and the fluid. So likewise in the living and sentient organisms we must look for an intermediate phase between the fluid and the gaseous, and again a phase between the gaseous and the element of warmth.

Please note that everything I am expressing here in a physiological sense has a significance for pathology and therapy. When we look into the human being who is organized in such a complex way, we find that one system of organs is continually pouring its influences into another system of organs. If you now study the whole organic action expressed in one of the sense organs, in the ear, for example, you will find the following: ego organization, astral organization, etheric and physical organizations are all working together in a certain way so that the metabolism permeates the nerve-sense being; this is then permeated by rhythm through the processes of breathing, in so for as they work into the organ of hearing; it is permeated by rhythm and organization through the blood rhythm, in so far as this penetrates the organ of hearing. Everything that I have thus tried to make transparent for you in these ways, threefold and fourfold (in the three members of the human being and in the four organizations that I have explained)—all this finds expression in definite relationships in every single organ. And in the long run, everything in the human being is in metamorphosis.

For instance, consider what appears normal in the region of the ear—why do we call it normal? Because it appears precisely as it does in order that the human being can come into existence, can come into existence as he lives and moves on earth. There is no other reason for us to call it normal. But consider now the special relationships that work in shaping the ear by virtue of the ear's position, notably by virtue of the fact that the ear is at the periphery of the organism. Suppose that these relationships were working in such a way that a similar relationship arose by metamorphosis at some other place within the organism, a similar reciprocal relationship to all these members. Instead of the reciprocal relationship that is appropriate to that place within the body, something incorporates itself into this place that wants to become an ear. (Forgive this very sketchy way of hinting at the facts. I cannot express what I want to say in any other way, as I am obliged to say it in the briefest outline. ) For instance, this may incorporate itself in the region of the pylorus, in place of what should arise there. In a pathological metamorphosis of this kind we have to see the origin of tumorous formations. In fact, all tumorous formations up to carcinoma are really displaced attempts at the formation of sense organs. If you penetrate the human organism in the right way regarding such a pathological formation, you will find what part is played in the child's organization—even the embryonic organization—by the organisms of warmth and air in order to bring these sense organs into being. These organs can indeed be brought into being in the right way only through the organisms of warmth and air encountering the solid and fluid organisms, which results in a formation composed of both factors. This means that it is necessary for us to look into this relationship existing between the physical organism (in so far as this expresses itself in the metabolism, for example) and the formative, plastic organism (in so far as this expresses itself in the nerve-sense system). We must see, so to speak, how the metabolic organism radiates out that which carries the substance in a radial way, and how the substance is plastically molded in the organs by what the nerve-sense system carries to meet it.

Bearing this in mind, we shall learn to understand in what way we can really approach a tumor formation. We can only approach a tumor formation by saying that there is a false relationship between the physical-etheric organism on the one side, in so far as it expresses itself in metabolism, and the ego organism and astral organism on the other side, in so far as they express themselves in the warmth and airy organisms respectively. Ultimately, therefore, we have above all to deal with the relationship of the metabolism to the warmth organization in the human being, and in the case of an internal tumor—although it is also possible with an external tumor—The best treatment is to envelop the tumor with a mantle of warmth.(I shall speak of these things tomorrow when we come to consider therapy.) We must succeed in enveloping the tumor with a mantle of warmth. This brings about a radical change in the whole organization. If we succeed in surrounding the tumor with a mantle of warmth, then—speaking primitively—we shall also succeed in dissolving it. This can actually be achieved by the proper use of certain remedies that have probably been suggested to you by our physicians, which are then injected into the human organism. We may be sure that in every case a preparation of viscum (mistletoe), applied in the way we advise around the abnormal organ (for instance around the carcinomatous growth) will generate a mantle of warmth, but we must first have ascertained its specific effect upon this or that system of organs. We cannot, of course, apply exactly the same preparation to carcinoma of the breast as to carcinoma of the uterus or of the pylorus. One must study the path taken by what is produced by the injection, but you will achieve nothing unless you bring about a real reaction. This reaction comes to expression as a state of feverishness. The injection must be followed by a feverish condition. You can at once expect failure if you do not succeed in evoking a condition of feverishness.

I wanted to lead you to this principle so that you could see that these things depend upon a ratio; but the ratio is merely a regulating principle. You will see that these regulating principles can be verified, as all such facts are verified by the methods of modern medicine. There is no question of asking you to accept these things before they have been verified, but anyone who really looks into these things today can make remarkable discoveries.

Although this brief exposition may at first be somewhat confusing, everything will become clear to you if you go into the subject deeply. Everything that I have presented to you today can be verified in a remarkable way if only you take the proper facts that are reported in the literature. These things are reported somewhere, and you need only connect them then with the picture presented today. This is particularly the case if you bring this into connection with something else, with the many comments found in the literature that one can only reach a certain point in these matters and then go no further. Thus you will find confirmation from two sides in existing medicine for what I have suggested sketchily today.

Tomorrow I will allow myself to speak about therapeutic matters, and then things will be clarified further that may not be clear to you today because of the sketchy method of presentation.