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Thuja Occidentalis – The Tree Of Life

Abstract – Thuja occidentalis called the tree of life is an endemic plant in eastern North America and cultivated in northern  Europe and in Brazil as ornamental tree [1]. This plant has been popularly used in herbal and homeopathic preparations for acute and chronic infections of the upper respiratory tract, warts, as adjunctive antibiotic, immunostimulant and in many diseases based on the totality of symptom .

Introduction – The remedy is prepared  from a tincture of the fresh green twigs of Arbor  vitae, the Tree of Life. Referring  to Biblical allegory we are reminded of the tree of eternal life, the fruits of which the banished Adam and Eve did not eat for had they done this, then they would have become immortal – neither disease nor death would have assailed them!

In folk medicine, Thuja occidentalis has been used to treat bronchial catarrh, enuresis, cystitis, psoriasis, uterine carcinomas, amenorrhea and rheumatism . Today, it is mainly used in homeopathy as mother tincture or dilution.

Keywords – Arbor  vitae, the Tree of Life , Warts ,Condylomata, Uterine carcinomas

Miasm and constitution

Thuja belongs to sycotic miasm as common with many sycotic remedies Thuja  is applicable to Hydrogenoid constitution – worse from water .These patients are worse for wet conditions.

In Clark’s dictionary it  is mentioned that thuja abounds in the upper zone of North America from Pennsylvanian northwards , where it often forms commomly known as cedar swamps ,grows upon the rocky banks of rivers, and in low swampy spots ,proving brought out a general aggravation from cold and wet conditions .

Different mental themes of Thuja[1][2][4][5]  

The windows of the soul are the eyes, it is said. Thuja is bold type alongside Opium in the rubric, contracted pupils, which given the themes of shame and deceit, is enlightening .This interpretation sits well with the Vithoulkian description of the guarded, hidden personality, who, walled off behind a lifetime’s habit of secretiveness, is viewed by others as manipulative and sneaky. Clarke, quoting  Millspaugh, writes,  the arbor vitae assumes a conical form which such true lines as to appear ‘clipped’, thus  forming  one  of our most valued high-hedge trees’. Hedges are grown to provide a screen. Douglas Borland suggests that Thuja patients are well mannered, sensitive, polite, truthful  and scrupulous  in  all their undertakings.

‘Religious fanaticism’ — fixed ideas, fixed religious ideas, are another  Thuja strong hold, born of an excessively rigid sense of correctness . Thuja is listed bold type in the rubric, ‘conscientious about trifięs’, and is added to ‘fastidious’.

 ‘Delusion that animals are in the abdomen’, delusion,’voices are in his abdomen’ and ‘thought herself pregnant.’ There is hysterical pregnancy , rather a fixed notion that it is so, complete with movements as of foetal limbs and swelling of abdomen. These are symptoms of a super-abundance of vegetative/animal life, as are the fleshy warts.

Delusions ‘that the body is brittle; that the body is delicate; diminished and too thin; that the body is made of glass;  and in insanity, will not be touched’, These symptoms give  impression of fragility, as if there were a defeciency of life.

Delusion  as if soul and body are separated .

Delusion that as if some one else was lying  by her side. Thuja produces a confusion in the thoughts which patients cannot rid themselves of on account of great weakness and pain in the head.

Herring  writes  of  Thuja, ‘ there is a surplus of producing life; nearly unlimited proliferation of pathological vegetations, condylomata, warty sycotic excrescences, spongy tumours, and spongy pack exudates organized  hastìly; all morbid manifestations are excessive, but appear quietly, so that the beginning of the disease state is scarcely known’.

Bœnninghausen  found Thuja both preventive and curative in an epidemic of small-pox. It aborted the process and prevented pitting. In veterinary practice Thuja has proved curative in farcy and in “grease.” These facts open up  another great branch of  Thuja’s  homœopathicits anti-vaccinal action.[1]

 Bad effects of Vaccination

Thuja has proved indeed a tree of life to numberless sufferers from the vaccinal taint. By “vaccinosis” Burnett  means the disease known as vaccinia, the result of vaccination, plus “that profound and often long-lasting morbid constitutional state engendered by the vaccine virus.” To this state Thuja is homœopathic, and therefore curative and preventive of it .

Thuja is a strongly left-sided medicine .[1]

Headache -:As if a nail were pressing into vertex. As if vertex were pressed with a needle. As if a nail were driven from within outward in vertex. As if a nail were driven into right parietal bone and left frontal eminence[1]. Lightning-like headache. As if a convex button were pressed on that part.[4] As if head were screwed asunder. As if forehead would fall out. As if bones of head were being knocked to pieces .

As if knives went tearing around in brain. Scalp as if beaten. As if insects on occiput and temples.

Thuja in hernia:

 (1) Women of sycotic history who have a tendency to left-side inguinal hernia after labour (Thuja, high). (2) When babies cry much the umbilicus protrudes, growing red and sore; especially when the father has a sycotic history. (3) Left inguinal hernia in infants; child cries all the time, and is only quiet when the left inguinal region is relieved from pressure, or the thigh is flexed on the abdomen.

Thuja in Toothache :[1]

Boenninghausen observed this symptom of  Thuja , which bears on the action of Thuja on the sides and roots of teeth (a sycotic symptom), rather than on the crowns: “on blowing nose, a pressing pain in the hollow tooth, at the side of it.

Thuja also has chronic incontinence from paralysis of sphincter vesicæ. This is related to the general paretic weakness of Thuja. The patient feels she “could not go on exerting any longer.”

Thuja in warts

Warts on any part of the body, with little necks, called fig-warts, tubular warts, same size all the way out; “mother’s marks.”.─Warts, hard, cleft, and seedy.─Black sessile warts.

Thuja and sleep

It  has a very marked action on sleep, and its symptoms appear by preference at night . Cannot sleet after 3 a.m. Dreams much of falling .[1][2]

The symptoms are aggravated by – By touch (scalp; vertex; eruption; anus; condylomata; = fingers to bleed); but > pain in eyebrow and in left malar bone.. Closing eyes <. Fall = wart-like growth ill labium. Overlifting < headache.. Lying on left side = anxious dreams. Lying on affected side > asthma. Motion <. Extension <. Letting arms hang down <. Walking <. Talking < asthma. Ascending = palpitation. Riding = incontinence of urine; < pain in ovary. < 3 a.m.; early morning (the sycotic time). < Night. < Cold water; cold: damp weather: change; draught; overheating; sun’s rays. < Bright light. < Warmth of bed. Warmth <.  < After breakfast, after eating; after tea; coffee; fat food; onions. < By coitus. < Blowing nose (pain in side of teeth). < Increasing moon. < Sun; bright light.[1][2][3][4]

 Ameliorated by  – Cold > rheumatism. Pressure >. Rubbing >. Scratching >, Looking up > headache. Throwing head back > headache. Rest > headache. Bending head backward > headache. .[1][2][3][4]

Conclusion – From the above mentioned symptoms Thuja can be found very useful in different sphere of action  and can help homoeopaths in curing different diseases both symptomatically and on the totality of symptoms .

References :

 1. Clark. J.H  A Dictionay of Practical material medica  vol 3; B. Jain Publishers (P) Ltd; 2009.

2. Boericke W. Boericke’s New Manual of Homoeopathic MateriaMedica with Repertory. Third revised and augmented edition based on 9th edition. Noida, India: B. Jain Publishers (P) Ltd; 2018.

3. Kent .J.T Lectures on Homoeopathic Materia Medica low price edition 7th impression 2009 page no 947, B. Jain Publishers (P) Ltd; 2009.

4. Allen .H.C Keynotes rearranged & classified wioth leading remedies of the materia medica &bowel nosodes ,10th edition; B. Jain Publishers (P) Ltd; 2009.

5. Kent JT. Repertory of the Homoeopathic Materia Medica. B. Jain Publishers(P) Ltd; 1992.

Dr. Neha Sahu  MD1 (PGR)Dept. of  Materia Medica,

Dr.M.P.K.Homoeopathic Medical College, Hospital & Research Centre, Jaipur (A constituent unit of Homoeopathy University, Jaipur, Raj.)

Dr. Sudeepti Sharma MD2 (PGR)Dept. of  Materia Medica,

Dr.M.P.K.Homoeopathic Medical College, Hospital & Research Centre, Jaipur (A constituent unit of Homoeopathy University, Jaipur, Raj.)

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