Strychnos Ignatii also called Ignatia Amara, Ignatius Bean or Ignatia is first aid for when the thermometer system of our body fails and this article lists my top 6 situations in which Ignatia is a powerful medicine that few other herbs can match in those situations.
Ed, one time I was going to have a heat stroke when I was in the last few months of being pregnant with Gabriel. I was so beyond hot, and no amount of water I drank was hydrating me enough. My internal organs, already extra warm because of being pregnant, were each radiating heat of its own.
I tried all the usual remedies like Gelsemium (Yellow Jasmine) and Glonoinum (dilution of nitro-glycerine – usually works immediately), but their effect was very short lived.
I realized that for whatever reason, my body was now generating its own heat like crazy, as if it thought I was too cold!
I’d come across this strange behavior of the body before. When the thermometers of the body go awry and tell the body it’s cold or it’s hot when that’s not true.
An example of that came into my awareness recently. I was in the bathroom with my phone when it slipped suddenly into water. Only one half of it went into the water as it was shallow container. I got it out immediately. It brought up a message, “Battery temperature is low, phone will shut down.”
I did all the things that have to be done to protect it from water damage.
Unfortunately Ed, this was not the first time I’ve dropped my phone in water, so I actually know the drill. I turned it off, dried it with tissue paper, opened it, dried it inside, put it in a bag of rice (to absorb any moisture remaining inside).
It turned on as usual with all its functions working.
A strange problem however now presented itself. It would not go to sleep or stay shut down. It kept turning the display on, and kept starting up on its own every time I shut it down. This was draining the battery a lot faster than usual of course.
I tried a few things and concluded that it was still reading the battery temperature wrong and that’s why it kept turning itself on – in an attempt to heat itself up.
Sorry Ed, I’m no phone expert, so I don’t know if phones are that “intelligent”. But that’s what I felt. So I applied my understanding of the human body to the phone.
Only half the phone had fallen into the water. Half the battery had registered a fall in temperature, while half hadn’t.
My commonsense said that if I united the battery in feeling one temperature uniformly, maybe it would solve the problem.
So I got out the blow-dryer, and gave the phone some gentle heating for about 20 minutes with breaks in-between whenever I got tired of holding the blow dryer up.
It solved the problem!!
I realized I just had to write an article about when our bodies’ thermometers malfunction.
The medical system, Ed, considers the hypothalamus and pituitary glands in the brain as the primary temperature readers of the body.
However actual experience points to the lungs as being where temperature gaging really starts. Perhaps it is because the lungs work with air – putting oxygen into blood – that is – working with air on one side and liquid or blood on the other.
It’s such an amazing miracle of a process if you look at it Ed. They take oxygen from the air and infuse it into blood – from air to water. It’s just amazing.
Those cells in our lungs that do this magic, they are incredibly temperature sensitive and the nerve endings that go up from them tell the brain what the temperature is – because they have information coming to them both ways – from outside with the air, from inside with the blood.
And therefore, Ed, the first thing to do when when our thermometer system is challenged is release nervous tension around the lungs.
For this I find Ignatia or St. Ignatius Bean or Stychnos Ignatii one of the best medicines.
As inviting as it looks, and so very much like passionfruit, it’s a fruit that pretty much causes paralysis of the nerves of the body that attach onto muscle. The heart, the lungs, the uterus, the stomach, are all muscle.
You give the body one tiny tiny drop of Ignatia and suddenly the nerve endings on those muscles relax. You definitely don’t want too much because that’s poison.
They call it the herbal “prozac”.
Because of my extensive experience with herbal medicine for heart conditions, I’ve ended up using Ignatia a lot and found it to be more than just a medicine for cardiac emergencies.
In one line Ed, remember Ignatia’s first name is “Strychnos” and think of “Stricken.” Any time the body – or soul – is stricken, reach for Strychnos.
Think of a person keeling over from being given a blow to the head. Imagine the person going into a sort of unconsciousness and in shock not able to hold onto anything and stop his or her fall.
That’s the sort of situation Ignatia heals.
Notice I said “unconsciousness“.
Ignatia is just the medicine for when trauma is so sudden, so extreme that the person cannot face it, but stays in a sort of numb disconnection from some parts of reality while focusing on others.
Yes, I know everyone’s been there to some extent, but Ignatia is needed if we’re not able to come out of that in a day or two or maybe a week.
Those who have gone years numb, need Ignatia even more, and regularly for a long while, maybe months.
Now, it so happens Ed, that the body works as one and not as separate units. So the body reflects the soul.
How we know we’re gone numb to some harsh reality we should have faced is – our thermometer system malfunctions.
Perhaps it’s something to do with the fact that the cells of the lungs, our thermometer, have to be so very awake in the present to do their job of taking oxygen from air and putting into our blood. They’re very sensitive and that’s why changes in our breathing rhythm are one of our first indications of stress, and one of the first indications of us really calming down.
Those who are long term breathing challenged are invariably long term temperature challenged and that’s the beginning of hormonal imbalance – whether that’s the thyroid malfunctioning, or the pleasure hormones or the sexual hormones or even the sugar regulating hormones going imbalanced.
All of the conditions called hormonal imbalance, can be helped in a big way by treating our thermometer cells in the lungs for nervous tension and PTSD.
Unfortunately it’s not as simple as blow drying my phone was, but it isn’t all that complicated as well.
My most favorite herb for hormonal imbalance is Mistletoe or Viscum Album. It helps all the temperature balancing parts of the body heal and get back to full function.
However, when there is direct evidence of critical thermometer malfunction, such as me perspiring way beyond normal, releasing so much heat, Ignatia – Strychnos Ignatia will immediately relax those nerves on the lungs and heart and restore sense to our panicked thermometer system.
The feeling of calm helps us face the suppressed realities we’ve gone numb to avoid.
Ignatia also just happens to work amazing for radiation induced muscle cramping.
When the energy field of the body is attacked as happens with radiation exposure, the nerve endings on muscles get cramped or go limp. Ignatia helps them relax and come out of shock and get back to being themselves.
Ignatia has a powerful healing effect on all problems of the throat and the region.
Ie. the throat itself, voice function, thyroid and parathyroid glands, parotid glands (the swelling of which causes mumps) and the common strep throat.
The throat region being chronically stressed, ie. the person regularly gets strep throat, and ENT infections, and there are indications of a thyroid imbalance like regular bouts of hair loss, too much or too little perspiration, sleep cycle imbalances (those caused by falling in love do not count here). A history of mumps and ear infections.
All these for me have been an indication of Ignatia being a great remedy – because of how it helps our thermometer system get back to normal and because of how that helps us release trauma patterns.
Another powerful way Ignatia works is by doing what I call “energy reversing”.
Imagine a car going backwards. It’s in reverse gear when that happens. That means, the wheels are turning backward. If you step on the accelerator you’ll go backward not forward, because the wheels are turning back.
Think of a rope with a pail in a well, You send the rope forward to get water, you pull the rope backward to lift the pail back up to you.
Energetically Ignatia (and most plant poisons) have energy fields that pull in rather than flow out. The pulling in herbs are classified in old herbal science as feminine and the ones which flow out as masculine.
Most infection fighting herbs like Garlic and Golden Seal are outward flowing or male. The average chronic ENT and strep throat sufferer has already taken a lifetime’s worth of these medicinal herbs and is often stuck in an energetic crisis because of way too much outward flow.
Ignatia with its inward or backward or reverse energy flow, gives the body a much needed holiday from the constant grind to flow outwards.
Granted it doesn’t stimulate the immune system like the others too, and isn’t technically an antibiotic or antifungal or anti anything.
But what it does is help the nerves in stressed out places who have been overworked and over stimulated for a long while, relax, calm down and repair themselves.
Another powerful help Ignatia offers is for those who are memory challenged due to trauma or conditions like stage fright.
Think of a child who was once humiliated in front of the whole classroom when he forgot his lines, now going into a state of panic every time he has to go up in front of the class again.
Think of those who forget little details in places like Govt. offices because of previous bad experiences.
Think of the movie Runaway Bride, in which the bride all happy to get married, suddenly flees for her life just before the wedding. At that moment she cannot remember why she wants to get married. It’s a memory issue.
For all those who have those moments of blanking out and not being able to remember why they’re there doing that, Ignatia is a wonderful support.
Another of Ignatia’s area of expertise is swollen toes, corns, callouses and scar tissue.
It’s the nerve endings again – nerve endings not reading the situation right and maintaining an extra thing protective layer in a place long after it’s required.
Granddad used to call it, “Umbrellas out after the rain has stopped”.
Physically and emotionally, Ignatia helps.
I could go on and on Ed, but I’ll stop with one last way Ignatia helps.
It’s with something very few other herbs will help. It’s with directing energy. For me this is one of Ignatia’s most valuable characteristics.
There are lots of herbs which will cause energy release in the body. Spikenard, one of my most beloved best friends ever, makes energy in the body free to go where it wants.
Other stimulating herbs like Guarana and Coffee help the body feel energetic.
But there are a precious few herbs that will help you use that energy right.
It’s been my experience that a lot of people give up on herbs because they use them initially for energy, but then that doesn’t really translate to benefits in their lives, because the energy dissipates – maybe gives them a bit of a high for a while – and then dissipates. And then you have to deal with the tiredness of the body after doing all that work.
We need returns on our energy release and expenditure, or it’s all meaningless.
I love the way Ignatia has the frequency of heart centeredness.
God, Ed, is centeredness a word? I hope so!
Ignatia has that way of cutting out all the extra drama in the moment so you can be in touch with what’s important to your heart.
You’d think Ed, that it’s what’s important for physical survival, that’s the main thing we should be focusing on in times of stress. You could argue for that, but I’ve been in hell a lot, and I’ve found over the years that the one thing everyone regrets later is that they didn’t focus on what was important to their heart in those moments when push came to shove.
The key to everything, is what the heart wants. As long as we’re following our heart, one way or another we’ll get where we want to go. Energy will flow eventually even if we go through the doldrums at certain points.
But we get absolutely nowhere by ignoring our hearts. We find ourselves later having to backtrack and go back looking for where we left our heart, to pick it up and start all over again.
Because I took Ignatia every day for months and for such lengths of time over the years, I found Ignatia changing me, and truly healing my life by bringing my heart’s needs to my awareness in moments of crisis. It’s made all the difference Ed.
For all these reasons and especially how Ignatia saved me from a heat stroke when I was heavily pregnant, I consider Ignatia to be a medicine, a person who has been facing stressful and overwhelming situations in the long term, should have twice a day and carry about for emergencies, till they feel instinctively that they don’t need her anymore.
Remember – 1 drop of the tincture to 100ml or one cup of water, put in a bottle and used two or three drops at a time, is dose enough.