Heart – The seat of the soul

June 2012

Which organ of yours is the first to be affected by your anger, thoughts of threat, or any negative and positive thoughts? Is it the stomach, or the brain?

In Causae et Curae (1994, p.85), the 12th century healer and Christian mystic Hildegard of Bingen wrote, “In the same way, the soul lives in the heart as in a house; causes thoughts to enter and leave as through a door… the power of thought climbs to the brain, and the brain holds them fast…”  Similarly, the Chinese believe that the spirit or Shen resides in the heart. For individuals with heart disease, psychological stress is the strongest predictor of cardiac events such as cardiac death, cardiac arrest and heart attacks. Stress, more than diet, is known to increase your cholesterol level. High cholesterol production by your liver is a reaction to your stress, which leads to inflammation. Does it make sense to continue to suppress cholesterol production with long term medication, or to treat the stress factor?

A new medical field, Neurocardiology, informs that heart diseases and healing of the heart is not only about the physical body but also the emotional, mental and spiritual bodies (Samuels, 2007).

Research in this field conducted by the Institute of HeartMath (McCraty, Atkinson and Tomasino, 2001) reveals that it is the heart that first processes our initial reaction to stress before sending the information to brain. If the heart perceives a situation as a threat, the brain then sets off a series of alarm signals to produce stress hormones, which eventually leads to inflammation – weakening of blood vessels, constriction of blood vessels, platelets turning sticky, raising heart rate and elevating blood pressure.

Established evidence has shown that hostility, anger and aggressiveness are high risk factors for coronary heart disease (Smith, Glazer, Ruiz, and Gallo, 2004).

According to Hildegard of Bingen, anger and a sense of hopelessness are the worst diseases. The Chinese believe that anger affects the liver. Hildegard went further to say that the liver, in turn, sends ‘poisons’ to the heart, stomach and the lungs.

Hildegard had a few remedies for a person with a tendency of having negative thoughts and anger.

The Quenched Wine

One of the remedies is the quenched wine –

Boil red or white wine (around 100mL). As soon as bubbles start to form, add a shot of cold water. Remove wine from the heat and drink in sips (preferably warm).

Try it. It works for many.

The Blue Chalcedony

Another effective remedy is to wear a blue chalcedony bracelet around the wrist as shown.

blue chalcedony bracelet

This precious stone calms the person and instills a peaceful attitude. Sounds fairy tale?  If you understand that precious stones, like all other nature elements (plants, herbs, the earth, the air we breathe), are natural agents given to us by the Creator to benefit us, then it will not be a surprise to you. We are never separate from nature. When man-made elements, like radiation from mobile phones, can affect our body metabolism, what’s more nature’s effects on us?

We should not take lightly the impact of emotional stress on our heart and overall health. Start to incorporate simple lifestyle remedies to your life and you will experience better health without the need for long term medication.

The impact our lifestyle has on our health is the subject focus at our upcoming Leaf to Life Retreat. Visit www.slnaturopath.com for details and application. Join us on this journey towards holistic well-being and youthful living.

Pax (Peace)
Sebastian Liew, MNHAA (Australia)
Bingen, H. (1994). Causae et Curae. Collegeville, Min: The Liturgical Press
McCraty, R., Atkinson, M., Tomasino, D. (2001). Science of the heart: exploring the role of the heart in human performance. Retrieved from http://www.heartmath.org/research/science-of-the-heart/introduction.html
Samuels, M.A. (2007). The Brain – Heart Connection. American Heart Association, Circulation, 116, 77-84, doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.106.678995
Smith, T.W., Glazer, K., Ruiz, J.M., Gallo, L.C. (2004). Hostility, anger, aggressiveness, and coronary heart disease: an interpersonal perspective on personality, emotion, and health. Journal of Personality, 72(6), 1217-1270, DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-6494.2004.00296.x
Copyright ©2011-2012, Sebastian Liew Centre Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved.
No part of this material may be reproduced in whole or part, or stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of Sebastian Liew Centre Pte. Ltd. For information regarding permission, please email to sebastianliew@slnaturopath.com .
The information contained in this diary is for educational purpose only. We encourage our readers to seek out a competent health professional for any treatment required. We do not take responsibility for the use of information contained in any article published in our journal or diary by the reader. We do, however, caution readers of possible unintended consequences of self–medication, and that the consultation of a competent health professional is always advisable.

About Sebastian Liew

Matthew Wood, the renowned American herbalist described Sebastian as ‘one of the most unique and talented practitioners of natural healing and herbalism.’ The New Paper (Singapore) called Sebastian Liew 'The Medicine Man'. Indeed, Sebastian is a qualified and registered Medical Herbalist (accredited by the National Herbalists Association of Australia), with a Master's degree in Herbal Medicine from the University of New England, Australia. He is the first medical herbalist in Singapore and is known to popularize phytotherapy (Western herbal medicine), European traditional medicine, and St Hildegard medicine (Germany) in Singapore and probably in Asia. Sebastian has 20 years clinical work experiences and treated numerous patients with different medical conditions from all age groups in his Singapore clinic. Sebastian authored the book, Leaf to Life: The Natural Approach to Slow Down Aging and Living a Healing Life, which set the fundamentals for healthy aging and the prevention or treatment for almost all diseases. Please visit website http://slnaturopath.com
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