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"Healthy action and sickly action are all vital action - ALL ONE. Health and Disease are the same thing differing only in degree." Dr. Shelton
Unity of Disease and Health
When we talk of the UNITY OF DISEASE in Natural Hygiene we usually mean the unity of disease and symptoms - but there is also a unity of disease and health.
Health and disease are different degrees of the same thing, and it may be more correct to say "good health" versus "poor health".
Compare e.g. light and darkness, and all the shades inbetween. And how heat and cold are degrees of temperature, with many intermediate degrees. And how dirty and clean conditions pass over into one another, and are as much under our control as diseased and healthy conditions.
Dr. Shelton: Gradual Transition Between Normal (Health) and Abnormal (Disease)
In what respect does disease differ from health? There is no sudden cessation of the "healthy action" and immediately subsequent establishment of "diseased action," or of an action the tendency of which is adverse to health. There is no reversal of the laws of life, no confusion of the vital forces, no assumption by the organs of the body, of functions or actions for which they were not designed and constituted.
"The action of any part of the body in Disease, is the same as its action in Health. Its action may be impaired, but it is not changed."
The organs of the body, have not (and cannot) taken on wrong action. They must obey the laws of their constitution, and so long as they have power to act at all, act correctly. The action of any part of the body in disease, is the same as its action in health. Its action may be impaired, but it is not changed.
Whether we have rapid breathing or slow breathing, it is still breathing. Whether heart action is slow or rapid, it is still heart action. Breathing and heart action are slow when we are lying down; they are rapid when we run. But neither of these represent wrong action. On the contrary we all recognize these as right actions. Why not in disease, also.
Healthy action and sickly action are all vital action - ALL ONE. Health and disease are the same thing differing only in degree. We have previously learned how natural a thing disease is - how natural a thing is recovery.
The very same phenomena, the same actions, and the same powers as are natural to the body, and which when manifesting easily and smoothly constitute the state of Health, are the same powers and phenomena, these latter slightly modified, that are observed in disease. The state of disease implies no new or additional powers, no action or phenomena other than those that belong to the organism in health.
"Health and disease are relative states of the living body. They are both natural conditions of the living organism."
Health and disease are relative states of the living body. They are both, in the truest meaning of the term natural conditions of the living organism. Not being different things, but only variations and natural variations of one and the same thing, no successful effort to set a precise boundry between health and disease is possible. The normal passes so gradually into the abnormal and the abnormal repasses so gradually back into the normal that is not possible to say where one begins and the other ends.
Disease is so like health that the powers concerned in it are themselves adequate to the cure of it. The living organism is a unity; and its vital powers are the same in Health and in Disease, - the same also in Recovery, which is Health regained by the operation of these powers.
The habitual tendency of all the vital operations is ever and always in the direction of the highest degree of health. This is the inherent bent or propension of all the vital powers and processes of the living organism. All the energies of the body are always directed toward health. This is equally as true of their actions in disease as in health. Disease action is not a mere haphazzard process, but serves a distinct and a useful purpose or end - the removal of offenses.
"Disease action is not a mere haphazzard process, but serves a distinct and a useful purpose or end - the removal of offenses."
Acute disease is a temporary, an evanescent, state. It arises under those conditions, as before explained, when unusual defensive action is required if life is to be preserved. The occasion or cause of disease removed or corrected, so that it is no longer operative, the organism quickly subsides into its usual tranquil state.
This is to say, as soon as the body, by means of the disease, has succeeded in freeing itself of danger, it returns to its normal state of ease and equilibrium.
In certain "diseases" there occur changes which, if permitted to remain, would endanger life. The organism possesses power to effect the removal and correction of these, and bring about a more or less completely natural condition in the parts. As an example notice the retrograde changes which occur in the absorption of the exuded serum in the lungs in pneumonia, and the restoration of normal circulation through the lungs. The limit of this condition is determined by the power of the body to remove it. The exudate is not self-limited.
If there is no necessity for a protracted disease - a prolonged renovating process - the vital forces can be driven into one only by "care and treatment" that produce such a necessity. If a cold is all that is required to cleanse the organism, a pneumonia, pleurisy, smallpox or measles, etc., will not be developed. Only such disease manifestations are developed as are needed. What is more, once these operations have thoroughly completed their work, the body cannot be driven again through the same.
Herbert M. Shelton, Human Life - Its Philosophies and Laws, 1928
"The normal passes so gradually into the abnormal and the abnormal repasses so gradually back into the normal that is not possible to say where one begins and the other ends." Dr. Shelton
"Nay, more, I have seen diseases begin, grow up and pass into one another. Now, dogs do not pass into cats."
Florence Nightingale: Diseases are Adjectives - not Nouns
Florence Nightingale, who taught the English physicians and surgeons the value of cleanliness, declares in her Notes on Nursing (1860), pp. 32-3:
Miss Nightingale distinctly recognized the unity of "Morbid" phenomena and saw that the names of the nosology are merely terms descriptive of varying conditions and not names for entities or things. She saw as well that this wealth of terms only confuses and misleads both the laity and the professions.
"Is it not living in a continual mistake to look upon disease, as we do now, as separate entities, which must exist, like cats and dogs? Instead of looking upon them as conditions, like a dirty and a clean condition, and just as much, under our own control; or rather as the reactions of kindly nature, against the conditions in which we have placed ourselves.|
"I was brought up, both by scientific men and ignorant women, distinctly to believe that small-pox, for instance, was a thing of which there was once a first specimen in the world, which went on propagating itself, in a perpetual chain of descent, just as much as that there was a first dog, (or a first pair of dogs) and that small-pox would not begin itself any more than a new dog would begin without there having been a parent dog.
"Since then I have seen with my eyes and smelt with my nose small-pox growing up in first specimens, either in close rooms, or in overcrowded wards, where it could not by any possibility have been 'caught' but must have begun.
"Nay, more, I have seen diseases begin, grow up and pass into one another. Now, dogs do not pass into cats.
"I have seen, for instance, with a little overcrowding, continued fever grow up; and with a little more, typhoid fever; and with a little more, typhus, and all in the same ward or hut.
"Would it not be far better, truer, and more practical, if we looked upon disease in this light?
"For diseases, as all experience shows, are adjectives, not noun substantives."
Herbert M. Shelton, Human Life - Its Philosophies and Laws, 1928
"Look upon disease as conditions, like a dirty and a clean condition, and just as much, under our own control."
DISEASES AS ADJECTIVES VS. NOUNS
is closely related to
BACTERIA AS ADJECTIVES VS. NOUNS
Conventional medicine relies on Pasteur's theories about bacteria,
while Natural Hygiene/Orthopathy supports Bechamp's theories.
Also read Dr. Herbert Shelton: The Unity of Normal and Abnormal Processes, 1973
"Inflammation may develop simultaneously in different organs; or, what is more frequently the case, one organ may become congested and inflamed; and, as time passes and the general health of the individual declines, one after another of several structures may become congested or inflamed. .....
The sick man sets out, at the beginning of his suffering with dyspepsia. After ten or twenty years he finds that he has disease of the throat and lungs, bowels, liver, kidneys, heart and perhaps of the spine. "
"As time passes and the general health of the individual declines, one after another of several structures may become congested or inflamed."
"The living organism is a unity; and its vital powers are the same in Health and in Disease."
"This wealth of terms only confuses and misleads both the laity and the professions."