In this remedy there is great strain upon the emotional centers. Recurrent shocks develop sensitivity, an aversion of personality, and confusion in the normal rhythm of the thought mechanism and indecision in action, which leads to various forms of irrational behavior. Ignatia basically typifies irresolution throughout the mental function; a heart breaking jumble of contradictory impulses, immature in formation and destructive in action. This characteristic symptom places the remedy in a position for easy selection.
I know no more distressing form of mental sickness than that in which one is torn between the impulse to do or not to do. Although these people appear in the attacks to be aggressive there is no depth of action, the balance between the emotions and the will is painfully disturbed and presents the picture of despair. The apparent exacerbations lack the proper foundation, are more or less spurious, and end in defeat of purpose.
The physical erethism, which accompanies this mental state, produces a multitude of symptoms. Many of these persons have a kind spirit, are misunderstood by their associates, and are raked by the shellfire of indecision, which exposes to view the vicious and caustic elements to the exclusion of the good. Our duty in homoeopathy is to face the realities of the complex mental entity, ferret out the discord in the ebb and flow of the thought unit, and from a logical conclusion of what we need in the search of the remedy. When this is done, and often we fail in the effort, the physical accessory symptoms naturally fall in line.
Ignatia is oversensitive, impulsive and ignites easily destructive tendencies, has alternate moods (Lyc.) with an undercurrent of jealousy. These people love much but not wisely, project their idealism more or less into strange concepts of life relationship. There may be psychic shock, although generally in fluxion, corresponding to its pathogenesis and clinical experience. Its sphere of influence covers many cases of misplaced affection, disappointment, grief and financial reverses. I have found in my practice among the Indians and other primitive peoples an uncanny ability to early sense the approach of death. In their simple relationship to the great forces of nature some unexplained adjustment exists within which has been lost to most of us. When death finally struck there was a simultaneous outcry, which shook the old timbers of the domicile. No words can describe the pandemonium of grief, which poured out of the hearts of the relatives gathered about the deathbed. Nature was exacting her toll and the subsequent reaction was beneficial. We are indeed fortunate to have Ignatia and similar remedies at our command, giving a clear-cut picture of tragedy in the pathogenesis.
There is fear and timidity, a shrinking from realities, a desire to be alone. A man in the late sixties who had a long history of convulsion attacks of a minor nature, with intense fear, especially at night when waking, always burning a light, suddenly through death lost the companionship of his wife. He had always depended upon her comfort during these attacks and now was in great emotional distress. Ignatia brought about a quick and favorable reaction. As an evidence of the depth of action in this person attacks of migraine, violent in nature many years, have disappeared. A favorable reaction from the remedy shows in a definite stiffening of the moral fiber, clearer understanding of the particular problem, and lifting of the defeatist attitude.
Transitory ill humour and anger; fixed ideas; broods over unpleasant occurrences, alternating with laughing and weeping. He is obstinate and nothing satisfies him.
Natrum mur has long been recognized as a natural complementary. Calcarea, Sepia, Silica and Sulphur may follow; Lycopodium when there is fear, desire for company and the 4-8 p.m. aggravation. Sighs and sobs; sensitive to noise; morbid and inconsolable grief; apprehensive feeling in chest, stomach and abdomen, which interferes with breathing; silent anguish; paroxysms of terror causing her to shriek. Desire for solitude, with fear of strangers, who may cause her to be very angry. This remedy has violent anger with irresolution. Fear something will happen, and weeping ameliorates (Lyc). Contradiction
aggravates, becomes quarrelsome.
A woman having had a severe disappointment with marked despair, silent grief, inconsolable, feeling unable to continue her work, was given Ignatia, which took off the rough edge of the emotional shock, but did not bring the balance desired and which was necessary. The impatience she had was directed toward some minute finger warts appearing on the neck. Nitric acid was given with the most astounding results, clearing up the condition of shock, which again proves the remarkable difference in the similars we select.
There are spasmodic affections; in the throat with hysterical symptoms. The remedy covers a wide range of suppressed mental suffering. We have at our disposal truly curative remedies in all forms of emotional shock, the one under discussion ranking among the best. Homoeopathy brings a balance in a gentle way, eliminating the routine direct sedation. It is worth all the effort and study we put into the selection of the remedy to see these unfortunate people again regain the equilibrium which nature has intended for them to possess.