lack of confidence
connecting the inner force
cancer, a deeper understanding
For many years already Carcinosinum has had a special place in my practice and I have been always seeking for the essence and deeper understanding of it. Slowly this remedy has revealed its secrets to me and I felt the need to publish my understanding and experience with this nosode, the more because Carcinosinum has become part of a total new way of treating patients, namely the treatment of universal layers.
Until recently I thought that the Carcinosinum we use all over the world, was everywhere the same. The one I used all the time was from Dolisos in Holland, which is the same as that from Nelson in London and is made at least with 15 different tumors. Colleagues who attended my seminars in the past and tried to apply my way of treatment told me that they were not able to obtain the same cures with Carcinosinum as I did and that they didn’t see as often as I did the shift to the next layer (most of the time that of Saccharum officinale) after a prolonged treatment with this remedy. One colleague from the USA even wrote to me: ‘Maybe you have special ability to connect and transmit healing through your understanding, because our results with Carcinosinum are not as good as yours.’ Though his explanation was very flattering for my ego, I was seeking for another explanation that I found only two years later: the quality of their Carcinosinum was not the same as the one I used. The one-tumor-Carcinosinum, made with a mammary tumor of one woman is surely not universal enough to resolve the whole Carcinosinum layer and not capable of causing a shift to the next layer. In many cases the one-tumor Carcinosinum will give only partial results for a short time and that’s what happened to my colleagues in the USA when they tried out what I taught them.
The Nelson Carcinosinum (London) is made of the following different carcinomas: Carcinoma Adeno (stomach), Carcinoma Papillary (colon), Carcinoma Papillary (ovary), Carcinoma Papillary (uterus), Carcinoma (bowel), Carcinoma Co. (bowel), Carcinoma Co. (K) -(K is a composite of carcinomas supplied by Koch Light)- Carcinoma Scirrhus (mamma), Carcinoma Scirrhus (stomach), Carcinoma Squamous (pulm). (source: A. Nelson & Co Ltd, London).
A little investigation in different countries taught me that there are Carcinosinums made out of 58 different tumors (source Stauffen, Germany) and of only one tumor. This gives us the following listing:
||58, with exclusion of bowel tumors|
This means that homeopaths all over the world use and discuss quite different remedies if they talk about Carcinosinum. It is clear that the one-tumor Carcinosinum is different from a 15 or 48 tumor Carcinosinum. I suggest that one-tumor-Carcinosinum should therefore be named after the tumor that is used, e.g. Carcinoma mamma, Carcinoma rectum. Only the remedy made with different tumors should be called Carcinosinum, followed by the number of tumors used, e.g. Carcinosinum (15T) 30K. The mixture of different tumors is important in my opinion because this makes it a universal remedy, applicable in a very wide range. That’s the reason that I made Lac Maternum out of 10 different samples of mother’s milk, the same procedure being followed for Vernix caseosa.
When we look at how Carcinosinum was born as a new therapeutic tool for the homeopath of this century, the first step, the basis of this remedy, was established by William Boericke, J.H.Clarke and J.H.Compton Burnett in the first part of this century and put under renewed attention by Dr. D.M. Foubister from England in the fifties. He mainly experienced the remedy in practice and never did full provings. This origin of the remedy he used is still not very sure until our days. I quote from the article published in October 1982 by Dr. Dorothy J. Cooper in the British homoeopathic Journal, Vol.71, no. 10. ‘ORIGIN AND HISTORY OF CARCINOSIN’. ‘Initially we must identify the substance under discussion. The preparation used by Dr. Foubister and Dr. Templeton in clinical practice and trials, was the original preparation of Carcinosin, the source of which is unknown. It was bought over from the United States and was probably prepared from an epithelioma of breast’.....
And then several other homeopaths published their experiences or did provings. Slowly the number of symptoms grew, but the deeper understanding of Carcinosinum remained unknown. In the 'Journal of the American Institute of Homoeopathy’, volume 82, number 4, December 1989, Jonathan Shore says in his article: 'Carcinosinum: an overview with case studies.' "I cannot say that I have identified a single thread or idea around which the whole image crystallizes, a kernel which sets this remedy clearly apart from all the others such as the idea of being overwhelmed which one often sees in Calcarea, t "The desires and aversions are often the first clue that sets the prescriber's mind thinking of Carcinosinum." he diffusion of Phosphorus, or the cowardice of Lycopodium." and further on:
But if we understand the essence, desires and aversions become much less important and in this remedy the desires and aversions are not stable indications for its choice. That’s why I retained only ‘desire chocolate’ as a valuable symptom in the synthesis of keynotes.
BACK TO THE ESSENTIALS
The problem with this remedy is that so many homeopaths added symptoms of which a certain number turned out -at least in my experience- not to be reliable or not relevant. For many years I verified all these symptoms with every prescription and it became clear to me what symptoms to focus on and what symptoms should be eradicated from the picture to have a more reliable and practical picture to prescribe on. It seems to be difficult, once a symptom is entered in the Materia Medica, to get rid of it, even when it turns out to be based on an error. So I started to take out symptoms from the picture that were of no value in enhancing the image of Carcinosinum and to add some others that seemed important to me from the essence. The fears of Carcinosinum are a good example. The most important fears of Carcinosinum are: FEAR of cancer; fear in a crowd; fear in narrow places; fear in high places; fear of spiders, mice, snakes; fear of failure in examinations; fear of failure; fear of thunderstorms. Therefore I removed fear of dogs, fear of the dark, fear of frogs. That doesn't mean that a Carcinosin patient cannot have fear of the dark or fear of dogs, but once we understand the essence of the remedy and we see this essence in our patient fear of the dark and fear of dogs are not reliable symptoms and do not add any reliability to our prescription. Therefore such symptoms should be taken out of our materia medica to make the real picture more evident. When the essence of a remedy is not clear then we are obliged to collect every symptom that comes out of a proving or out of one or more clinical cases and this makes the picture more confused. When we really understand the essence of a remedy it is possible to build up the whole picture in accordance with this essence. That is what I shall try to do.
THE ESSENCE: WEAK EGO AND ITS COMPENSATION MECHANISMS
To discover the essence of Carcinosinum we have to understand the basic problem of the cancer patient and what exactly is a tumor, because Carcinosinum is made from the materialization of the cancer problem. The cancer patient has permitted cells that are 'not him' to grow in his body without activating his defense mechanisms sufficiently to destroy them. The tumor is a foreign entity that does not respect him and finally destroys him, without even respecting structures such as blood vessels, muscles, lymph nodes. It grows by transgressing every structure, every border. We can easily understand what happens when we compare the patient to a country that has borders and an army to defend its integrity as a country. If an enemy soldier crosses the border and establishes himself inside the country and the army is not well-trained enough to capture the enemy, to imprison him or to kill him, the enemy will call his friends and other soldiers will pass the border and settle down. Their base will be stronger and stronger. Without any respect for the original people, they will destroy everything around them which is not to their own advantage and will take all the food that was intended for the indigenous people. They will send soldiers to other places in the country (metastasis) to take over all the power of the country. The only possibility the country has finally is to ask other countries to help it and to attack the enemy with heavy weapons (surgery, radiation and chemotherapy). But such a massive fight greatly weakens the country and the outcome is very uncertain.
On the cellular level the same process takes place. The membrane of the cell is unstable and weak and the cell is ingesting toxins, not able to defend its integrity. These ingested poisons damage his normal functioning, creating anarchy and estranging himself from his own essence. But the whole process had already started long before on the emotional and mental level. What happens the most on the emotional/mental level to a patient having taken Carcinosinum is that his self confidence grows and that he starts to listen more to his own needs and to defend himself better. He fortifies his borders and gets into a process of more awareness of what is ‘him’ and what is ‘not him’, no longer allowing the poisonous energy from outside to settle within his borders. He takes more care of himself, being attentive to his own needs and desires. A process of cleaning out at all levels takes place, poisonous relationships are broken off or corrected, a consciousness of being someone that deserves respect and love blooms gradually, and a marked influenza or inflammation with high fever for the first time in twenty years cleans the poison from his body. All this means that the reactivity is increasing.
Influences from outside that are experienced as attacking him or weakening him without giving him the possibilities to defend himself can stimulate the same process: first of all massive vaccination. I once asked a lady during regression therapy to go to her first vaccination and to tell me what this vaccination meant to her and without hesitation she said: ‘It took away an opportunity to defend myself.’ With massive vaccination in early childhood we give the message to the child and his immune system that his own defense mechanism is not reliable and that he has to be protected from outside. This not only weakens his immune system but also gives his personality the feeling that he is not strong and good enough and that he has to rely upon other people rather than upon his own force and vitality. (See my publication about ‘The Post-Vaccinal Syndrome’)
Also the suppression of fever, a defense mechanism par excellence, the use of antibiotics and corticosteroids can lower the defense mechanisms. If during every infection the parents suppress the reactivity of the child by giving aspirin and penicillin, how can he still believe that he is able to defend himself against his invaders (bacteria, viruses, etc.)? This practice engenders a lack of reactivity and the development of severe illnesses in childhood as pertussis, pneumonia, chronic inflammation (otitis, bronchitis, rhinitis, etc.).
The Carcinosin patient has a tendency to place strength outside himself and to feel weak and vulnerable inside. That's also what happens when he finally gets a tumor and he has to be operated on, radiated and treated with chemotherapy. He is helpless, desperate and completely dependent on his doctor. I always insist with cancer patients that they have to decide for themselves and feel what is good for them and what they want and do not want. You have to give them back their strength and they have to take it back. Dr. Bernie Siegel, an American surgeon, insists in his excellent book Love, Harmony and Cure, that as a patient you have to be assertive, to ensure that when hospitalized you have a room with a view, to ask for your favorite music during the operation, etc. To stand up for yourself and to fulfill your own needs is of primary importance in cure.
Maria Late, who was one of my patients, can help us to understand how difficult it can be for these people to stand up for themselves. She was a young woman, a doctor, with operated breast cancer and metastasis. One day she had to undergo an examination of her bladder. The surgeon decided to do a suprapubic puncture, but she felt strongly that a catheter would be better for her. So she asked the doctor not to do the puncture, but he had to ask the surgeon responsible, who said ‘no’ and decided she should undergo the suprapubic puncture. She finally felt unable to contradict him. Then the contrast fluid was injected by error in her abdomen. She was very ill and recovered only slowly during two months of hospitalization, but died some months later.
The Carcinosin personality has a tendency to let others violate his own space. He doesn't take sufficient space for himself, but his space is invaded by others and he is too weak to throw them out. The Carcinosin personality has to learn to take his destiny in his own hands.
RESTORATION OF HOPE
Part of the allopathic damage is unfortunately often the complete annihilation of any hope for cure for the patient. To be sent away without any hope for better, without any support, leaves the patient in despair. But the patient needs hope. In hospitals this hope is often killed completely, because of some curious thinking of the doctor and the use of inexorable statistics. Leave any hope for cure to the patient is often considered by allopathic doctors as giving ‘false hope’. But what is false hope? False hope is saying to your patient that you will surely cure him, that he will not die, etc. But no patient can cure if he, himself, does not decide to survive and for that he needs hope. Hope that he will not necessarily die, that his doctor will sustain him in his effort to find a solution to his life threatening illness and that he is also capable to do so. He has to be respected in his attempt, knowing that his doctor will give the best treatment that is available. Not statics are deciding how many chances he has to cure, but the patient himself. He has to reconnect with his inner force, even if during the operation, radiation and chemotherapy he felt completely delivered to the authority of his doctor. He has to be helped to take up again responsibility for his own life and he has to be guided to do more than only wait and hope that there will not be any relapse. I have a patient that reacted wonderfully on chemotherapy and had almost no side effects and after 7 cures her doctor decided to give her two more cures to see if even more progress was possible. But she didn’t have a good feeling to do so and decided herself not to take more cures and to wait to see if the tumor would shrink without further chemotherapy.
Dr. Bernie Siegel gives us a clear vision on false hope.4 "The concept of false hope is one of the most ridiculous things I know of. Why should we try to authorize hope according to the statistics? Hope is a variable that can change the statistics. If only 99% die of a condition, then let’s stress the fact that that person has a chance of not dying. If you tell a group of those people that they are the 10% who will survive, you may find that 30% or 40% or 50% get better."
Take one’s own destiny in one’s hands and discuss the treatment as someone who is completely responsible for his own health and life is very important and enhances the possibilities to cure. The patient has to be strong to face remarks from her doctors and other people who don’t believe in any possibility to cure.
RESTORATION OF REACTIVITY, from the tumoral stage back to the infectious stage
Reactivity can be defined as the capability of a person to maintain his mental, emotional and physical integrity by an efficient system of protection against perturbing influences from outside. Onthe mental level the person has to be equipped with reinforcing ideas about himself, his life, and about the surrounding world, i.e. that his life is meaningful, that he came on earth with a purpose, that what he is doing is good for himself, for others and for the world, -namely a positive look. On the emotional level he needs joy, feeling of love toward himself and other people, to nature, to the earth and the universe. He needs the capability to express his emotions, even those that are commonly labeled as negative: anger, grief, irritability, for example. On the physical level he needs a good immune system, capable of cleansing his body of indisposing bacteria, viruses, toxins, etc. Surely the best reaction of our organism to activate our immune system when our equilibrium is in danger is fever. Therefore it is hard to accept that anyone who really understands this mechanism still considers that fever is an enemy to be suppressed. For most people and doctors this is even common practice nowadays. Children often have sudden high fever for only one or two days, and this is in fact a sign of good reactivity. But when again and again such reactions are suppressed by antipyretics and antibiotics or in more serious illnesses with corticosteroids then slowly but surely the reactivity is broken down and there is a slide from infectious disease to tumoral disease. The infectious stage is a more reactive state (with fever) than the tumoral stage (without fever). In the tumoral stage the organism is weaker than the tumor, whereas in the infectious state our energy is mostly strong enough to overcome an infection or can be fairly easily activated by a well-chosen homeopathic remedy.
In the infectious stage the energy of the person organizes everything to overcome the disease: high fever which enhances the metabolism of the body enormously, an increase of white blood cells, acceleration of blood circulation, vascular dilatation in the affected area or all over the body, loss of appetite to give our digestive system the possibility to concentrate on the elimination of toxins, diarrhea, sweating, a running nose and eruptions, all elimination mechanisms. These kinds of elimination processes occur frequently after the administration of a homeopathic remedy. But also an infection can be a sign of a curing process. I remember this man, 45 years old, who got a double otitis with running ears after a dose of Saccharum officinale 200K. He never had otitis since his 5 years and had no ears problems. But shortly after this inflammation and elimination process joint pains disappeared completely and his general condition was much better.
It is not by coincidence that children go through a certain number of eruptive diseases, as Rubella, German measles, Scarlatina, fifth or sixth disease, etc. and that they have easily a running nose or infections with high fever. Everybody who is aware of these facts knows that vaccinations, antipyretics, antibiotics and other suppressive drugs that are so largely used in routine modern medicine practice have also their reverse. It pushes the human being already at a very premature age in the direction of the tumoral stage. This fact was already described by Hahnemann 200 years ago. Therefore it is not surprising that we have to face cancer and all kind of internal diseases as one of the most wide spread diseases on this earth and that the number of cancer patients increases still every year.
The tumoral stage is a low reactivity stage. There is not a acute phase, no fever, no eruption, no accelerated or enhanced evacuation of toxins. There is no acute outbreak followed by a restoration of balance as in the infectious stage. There is a chronic unbalance sometimes even without any visible or noticeable physical expression. Cancer can grow without any perceptible sign that something is wrong. Sure, for the holistic doctor there are already a lot of symptoms not only on the mental and emotional plane but also on the physical plane, which he can interpret as a precancerous stage. He is able to help his patient to return from this insidious tumoral stage to the infectious stage and can prevent that his patient slips down to chronic internal diseases as heart diseases, cancer, etc. In But such preventive treatments are still more exception than daily practice. The majority of patients are suddenly confronted with cancer and often wondering that this happened to them, because they were almost never ill, had no influenza, no fever, no major health problems for decades and believed to be in excellent health. It is as if cancer manifested suddenly in the body, but we know that tumors grow slowly for years, even decades before they attain sufficient volume and invasive power to become a major health problem.
In ageing there is a spontaneous shift from infectious to tumoral diseases enhanced by vaccination and other suppressive treatments as . So reactivity is an important quality not only of our physical but also of our mental and emotional body. If a person has a tendency to let be suppressed himself by others, then the immune system does the same thing on the physical level. In the USA they found out that the immune system of optimistic people was about 60% stronger than that of pessimists. Therefore it is of great importance that cancer patients believe in their cure, that they feel stronger than their tumor(s) and that they ‘go for it’. It is a bad sign that cancer patients are so often robbed of any hope of cure. One of my cancer patients had this experience several times. I saw her for the first time five years ago, completely desperate after two breast amputations in one year followed by metastasis in the spine, lungs and liver. The first physical signs of cure were the calcification of the metastases in the spine about six months after the beginning of the ‘alternative’ treatment. Seeing this she expressed her joy and the radiologist said: ‘Oh Madam, you surely don’t believe that you can still be cured?’ Now all her tumors are almost completely gone and she is in an excellent state, convinced that it is only a matter of time before she is cured completely. But her surgeon said at her last visit, perturbed by her enthusiasm and that of her husband: ‘Madam, are you well aware that you have an incurable disease?’ These kind of experiences taught me to make an appointment as soon as possible after hospital check-ups, because a depressive state weakens the immune system and has to be repaired as soon as possible.
THE FATHER PRINCIPLE
The father takes an important place in this remedy, or rather the father principle. The father is the symbol of self confidence, of strength, of social position and realization of the possibilities of the child. The basis for the Carcinosin problems lies therefore in childhood. The father has to confirm the child in his capabilities and encourage him when things seem to go in the wrong direction. If he is criticizes the child and never gives any praise when he has done well, or when he is simply not there to stimulate and approve him, or if he is too demanding, the child will feel incapable of fulfilling his father’s expectations and feels too weak to do anything. By being given too much responsibility, or being punished too severely when he has done something wrong, or by being given the impression that whatever he does it's never good enough, his self confidence is slowly but surely undermined. Then he will try hard to please his father, mother, teacher, etc. by being very industrious, being fastidious in his work, being the best in his schoolwork and being a nice, good boy or girl to have the approval or praise of his father. He will be afraid to make mistakes and will be anxious before examinations. He will avoid every criticism by being on time, doing what others ask him to do and accepting whatever people inflict on him to avoid quarrels and to please the other person. So he hasn't learned to defend himself and to watch over his boundaries. Already as a child he is teased by his school mates, who feel his weak defenses. All this doesn't mean that the father is the only person that is responsible for the weak defense mechanisms and the fear of failure of the child. Every authority can contribute to this situation, the mother, a priest, a nun, an older sibling or a teacher, saying for example in the class that he is a stupid and that he will never learn anything. The fundamental lack of self confidence is a universal problem and everybody in some way has to work this out. Many people have completely compensated for it by working hard and performing on a high level, this earning the praise and esteem of everybody. Often the baby is already born with this fundamental lack of self confidence and in his early life this problem is only activated, so that the father is not always to blame for it.
DEVELOPMENT OF THE CARCINOSINUM PICTURE FROM THE ESSENCE
The Carcinosin patient has a verylow self esteem and fundamental lack of self confidence combined withweak defenses. Therefore he is very sensitive to everything that can undermine his self confidence (see causations), and is not able to stand up for himself. One way to survive is adaptation and avoidance of criticism as much as possible. He is very fastidious in his work, but not especially when he hasn’t to perform, e.g at home he can be rather untidy. He adapts to the demands of others trying to regain their approval.
There is also a tendency to escape this demanding, critical and unfriendly world by entering a world of fantasy, dreams and harmony by reading for hours, being in nature, playing with animals, being transported by music and dancing, thus giving expression to the emotions that have been suppressed as part of his survival strategy. Often he weeps with the music. Also traveling is a way of escaping the harsh world he lives in. The outer world is threatening and he has a strong need to escape this threatening world. So horrible things affect him profoundly, because he has weak boundaries. In situations that he cannot flee from he becomes anxious as in narrow and high places and in a crowd. But reading, music ans dancing can also harmonize his energy and help him to get rid of perturbing energies.
Because of his weak self confidence and his fear of failure this person can also try to nourish his confidence by seeking approbation by being brilliant. He feels ill-at-ease with people that are as good as him. This can make him arrogant with a tendency to talk just a little bit too much about his achievements. He is critical about the achievements of others and is very sensitive to criticism. He needs to be admired. This can push hem to very great heights, working continuously to stay on top and having no other interests in life. We feel the big ego problem that he is manifesting, but what manifest itself as a big ego outside, is in fact a weak ego inside. In a more passive person feeling less talented the projection on to a master can be very helpful. He knows that he is less brilliant, but he likes being in the shadow of the master trying to do as he does and approach his excellence, even while knowing that he will never attain that.
It is true that all this compensation can in some way calm the weak ego, but it's like taking sweets when you need love and affection: you never feel completely satisfied. Here Carcinosinum can be very helpful, because it can resolve the ego problem from inside. After treatment for one or two years with this remedy people are really more confident in themselves and their ego is satisfied and can sleep peacefully like a cat on the sofa.
There is still another way to escape from this weak feeling, namely by refusing to do whatever is required and say ‘No, I cannot do this’ without even trying. These kind of children are very uncertain, shy and every negative experience confirms their incapacity. They are very easily offended, sensitive to reprimand, very obstinate, incapable of admitting their errors, sometimes refusing to obey their parents. They are very afraid to have to perform and avoid every disappointment. This makes them very unhappy and easily angered and aggressive at home, but weak and yielding at school, so they are teased a lot.
Another way to resolve his problem of feeling weak and worthless is to prove that he is capable by controlling everything. So he becomes very persevering, extremely well organized, plans everything, leaves nothing to chance. This attitude is known as the Cuprum metallicum picture that exists in so many Carcinosin patients. Cancer patients very frequently have high copper concentrations in their blood and the copper concentration of tumors is higher than that of normal tissues. I have already said in my publication about the mental picture of Cuprum metallicum (Homoeopathic Links 2/92) that Cuprum is the closest remedy to Carcinosinum. We often see in the same patient both the Carcinosinum and the Cuprum picture. That's why I now use frequently a combination of both, called Carcinosinum cum Cuprum from Dolisos in Holland, that was potentized from C5 to 30K and upwards. This gives really marvelous results. I will publish this later, but will stay now with the Carcinosinum picture.
WHAT CARCINOSIN PATIENTS TELL US BEFORE THE TREATMENT
If we have understood well what Carcinosinum is all about, it is interesting to see how patients express this. I noted carefully what they told me and give here some examples.
- I am not allowed to fail, to make mistakes; everything has to be beyond reproach
- I didn't get praise, rather my father used to tell me I was not capable of doing this or that; I let myself be suppressed easily; there is still a lot of suppressed anger in me
- I feel less worthy than other people, I am the black sheep; my father criticized my appearance
- I cannot say no, I accept everything otherwise I feel guilty; I always avoid conflicts
- I easily agree with everything and everybody, I cannot stand up for myself
- I cannot remember that I ever had fever
WHAT CARCINOSIN PATIENTS TELL US AFTER THE TREATMENT
- I feel that I am someone; I don’t feel less valued than other people any more; I am more confident
- I can take time for myself without feeling guilty; I can help others’ problems without taking them on my shoulders; I feel more clearly what is mine and what is theirs
- I can more easily say no and defend my own space; I don’t feel guilty any more when I take time and care for myself
- I allow myself to be angry when anybody shows me a lack of respect
- I express now what I think and what I feel; I do my best and then it is okay, it doesn’t have to be perfect
- I now do what I want to do myself
- I keep at a distance from my father, I also have my own life
- I set boundaries for my children and satisfy my own needs
Physical complaints are most of the time not our best guides to finding the correct remedy, but can be sometimes especially in acute illnesses of great value and confirm the remedy or help us to think about a special remedy. In my opinion every physical problem can be helped by Carcinosinum if the mental and emotional symptoms indicate it. Nevertheless some physical signs are often seen in this remedy: the blue sclera, the moles, caf-au-lait spots, the blinking of the eyes, the nails too short from biting, the warts on palms and soles, molluscum contagiosum, acne, cysts, fibromas, all kind of tumors, sinusitis, coryza, swollen and painful breasts before the menses, painful menses. Certainly it is possible to add other symptoms. I selected only the symptoms that seem to me of some importance.
(published in Homoeopathic Links 1/98)