Author: Mati Fuller, DIHom
Reviewed By: Elaine Lewis, CHom
Mati! I want to thank you for sending me your book, Beyond the Veil of Delusions; it has been a real eye-opener. I thought of doing a standard book review, but, this book is much too good for that!
First of all, I want to say that thanks to your book, I have solved two Staphysagria cases in men! The value of your book is that you bring a perspective to remedies that can’t be found anywhere else!
In one such case, I was about to be totally thrown off by the patient’s recurring dream that devils were trying to grab him, he even once saw the dream figure in a window while walking; I was thinking to myself, “Am I going to have to give Mancinella for the delusion of being chased by devils?” And then you straightened me out by asking, “In the dream, does he fight back, or is he the victim?” And of course, no, he doesn’t fight back!
MF: Thanks for your kind words, Elaine. Staphysagria has so many delusions they hardly have a clue as to what is real. Not only do they have delusions, they also live in their daydreams most of the time.The main delusion Staphysagria has is that he is “the greatest,” like Sulphur, but nobody respects him. You may not see how great he is at first glance, but he will be very happy to enlighten you about his “greatness.” (They often love talking about their own “greatness”.) In fact, Staph is so great, that he shouldn’t even have to prove it to anyone! We should just bend down and kiss his feet right now, and get it over with. This is why Staphysagria is so lazy – he was probably originally some kind of nobleman who didn’t have to do anything. He probably inherited the position and never had to prove himself to anyone.
But the laziness is also a protection for his ego. Yes, people can insult him and say he is a good for nothing bum, but that is not half as bad as what could happen if he got up to actually DO something, and he screwed it up somehow. Then you would have actual reason to call him “useless” and that would hurt his feelings even more. So, he prefers to be lazy and daydream. Everything is perfect in his dreams, nobody is criticizing him in his dreams, and the best thing is, he doesn’t have to do anything. (What is the point of doing anything, when the goal is so hard to achieve? His mother or wife will probably nag him anyway, so it is better to do nothing, and just be defensive, even before an unavoidable argument happens!)
So Staphysagria doesn’t have much perception of objective reality because he much prefers to live in his own virtual reality. This is also why Staphysagria often loves smoking pot – it is the escape from a reality that he has always wanted.
Simply stated, he is too sensitive to be here. Staphysagria is a plant remedy that is so hyper-sensitive they always feel like people are trying to criticize them, even when nobody is. That is also why Staphysagria is pretty much immune to psychotherapy – they get so defensive that they can’t or won’t hear anything that is being said. And, because of this defensiveness, they always feel like victims.
It is like a visious circle: They get criticized because they are lazy, and they are lazy because they feel like nothing they do is ever good enough, so what is the point? They want respect, but they don’t want to do anything to earn it. They are afraid to be rejected, so showing any kind of affection is scary for them.
They love credit cards, because someone as great as them, deserves a lot of nice things, even if they can’t afford to buy them. And this, too, will attract criticism from his more sensible mate. In other words, he wants grown up privileges, but at the same time, he refuses to grow up and be responsible. Therefore, he is always rebelling against his mate’s expectations of him – that he should be more responsible, and that is why he acts like a rebellious teenager.
So, it isn’t just the core delusion that matters. If you imagine a tomato plant, the core delusion is like the seed. If you are experienced enough, you may be able to look at the seed and say “this is a tomato.” But if you aren’t that experienced, you may have to see the leaves, the flowers and even tomatoes before you know for sure.
So, what your book offers is tomatoes!
MF: Exactly! Next there’s the compensation – what he does to make sure this never happens again. Then we have patterns he gets stuck in on the way, or we could call them “reactions” to things that happened in his life. Once we can dig out enough of these little odds and ends, it starts forming a picture we can recognize.
So, compensations and repeating patterns.
MF: If you compare Staphysagria to Sulphur, both are lazy, but Sulphur is lazy for a different reason. Sulphur already knows he’s great, regardless of what people think. Staphysagria’s “greatness” is totally dependent on what others think. Sulphur is lazy because he is more of a philosopher than a doer, and he doesn’t care what anyone thinks. Staphysagria is lazy because he is afraid of criticism of his work. Sulphur has natural self confidence, Staphysagria’s self confidence has to come from without (which of course never happens). So, to say that both are lazy doesn’t help you differentiate between them. It is what lies behind the laziness, that will give you the clues that you need.
The problem with prescribing on symptoms alone is that the symptom is simply the end result. You need to dig out the motivation behind the symptom before you can use it in the repertorization, and we are also looking for the other symptoms and motivations that are connected to each other.
The interesting thing isn’t the dream itself, or the scariness of the dream, but what role the person played. In the dream, he was the victim or about to be victimized… (Being a victim is Staphysagria’s core feeling – Delusion that he is unfortunate…)
The main thing about Staphysagria is that he is actually dependent on the people who insult him. He is dependent on them for praise, recognition and respect, but attracts insults instead because he isn’t willing to do what it takes to get the praise and respect he wants. So, the lessons he is here to learn is either, to get over his laziness and start earning the respect he wants, or to enjoy his laziness and simply be happy with whatever he has done, regardless of what anyone thinks. (And if he choses the second option, there is always a possibility that he could turn into a Sulphur at some point…)
Mati, maybe you can elaborate on where the classical Staphysagria image of the rape victim or victim of spousal abuse fits into this picture.
MF:Sure. It is still part of the same picture, just a more feminine expression of the same issue.
Rape, is an extremely unfortunate event. The woman, who of course is the victim here, may have felt very angry about it, but had to suppress her anger for fear of the consequences. She can’t let go of what happened. One of the things about Staph is that they have a great tendency to obsess about whatever unfortunate thing happened to them. They go over it in their heads again and again, like an old record that they play to anyone who wants to hear it. And this doesn’t just go on for a few weeks or months, it can go on for years! It is almost as if they enjoy being victimized on some level because they get to talk about it to everyone they meet in great detail. What happens when you tell people you are a victim? You get positive, sympathetic attention. If Staphysagria can’t get respect or appreciation, he or she is more than willing to settle for sympathy.
However, there is a big problem with being addicted to sympathy; you only get it when there is good reason for people to feel sorry for you. So you have to keep creating the reason – in other words, you have to make sure you are always a victim.
And, how do you become a victim and stay that way? You start attracting unfortunate events. And… it is NEVER Staphysagria’s fault in any way! The other person is to blame, 100 percent, always! And, whenever you come across the word “always” in a case, that is your clue that you are dealing with core issues! (In real life, nothing is ever “always so” – things change…)
From my understanding, male Staphysagrias seem to be more obsessed about wanting respect and recognition, and female Staphysagriass have more of a tendency to make themselves victims so that they can get sympathy from everyone instead. Both have suppressed anger in common, they both feel like victims, they both tend to obsess about their misfortunes and they both refuse to take any responsibility for anything in their lives. Things are always somebody else’s fault, without exception.
Thanks for the lesson, Mati, there’s much more on Staphysagria in your book for those who still have questions. This might be a good time for you to tell us what the basic premise of your book is and why it’s not just another materia medica, a la Margaret Tyler’s Drug Pictures, etc.
MF: I find that normal materia medicas talk a lot about “what.”
What, to me, isn’t very intersting. If my daughter pulls the cat’s tail, I don’t just want to know what happened, I want to know why she did it! What happened is simply a basic fact, but why she did what she did tells me something about her motivation. Was she teasing the cat, did she try to hurt the cat, or did she think the tail would become longer if it was pulled? The only way I can truly understand is to ask why and get her to explain her thinking at the time. Just looking at the fact, that she pulled the cat’s tail, isn’t going to give me any understanding of the situation.
This is the kind of information I was looking for in my materia medicas, too, but I couldn’t find it in a single book. The materia medicas were full of simple symptoms without any hints as to what lies behind the symptoms. Sulphur is lazy, Nux is irritable, Staphysagria is angry, Pulsatilla is weepy and Phosphorus has lots of friends, but WHY?
Do we actually know materia medica “people”, as if they were friends, or is our knowledge simply limited to objective symptoms that can easily be observed from the outside in a very superficial way?
Since I couldn’t find what I was looking for, I decided to do my own research instead. While studying the mental symptoms, I discovered that each remedy seems to have a core story or core situation that profoundly affects the way the person perceives his reality.
The core story is often something really traumatic that may have happened to somebody a long time ago. It may have been something that was impossible to let go of or resolve, and the memory of what happened was stored in their cellular memory and somehow passed down to their offspring.
MF: After a few generations of offspring, the new people being born have no memory of what the original situation was, but because the original situation was unresolved, it still affects them more deeply than they know. People act as if the core situation still applies, here and now, and all their emotions, reactions, coping mechanisms and life patterns also reflect this.
What you’re saying is, people go around trying to complete a story about which they know nothing!
MF: Yes, the original feelings have now become unexplainable delusions, fears, phobias and scary dreams, but they still determine what people THINK is real! This is why, if 3 people tell you about an incident, you end up with 3 different stories, 3 different perceptions of reality!
To give you an example, lets look at the very common desire for love from different constitutional points of view: Nat Mur thinks that she will be loved only if she is perfect, so she always tries to please by being as perfect as possible. Lycopodium thinks he will only be loved if he achieves his goals and secures his position at the top of the ladder.
Arsenicum believes that he will be loved if he can convince you that he is right.
Pulsatilla believes that she will be loved if she is soft and gentle, and Phosphorus believes that she will be loved only if she is the most beautiful.
This example illustrates how the same desire, the desire for love, can express itself in so many different ways, simply because each constitutional remedy has its own perception of what love is and how to get it.
So, back to your question about what makes my book different than other materia medicas: Beyond the Veil of Delusions was written in an effort to discover how each constitution actually perceives reality. I wanted to really understand why they do the things they do and feel the way they feel. I wanted to bring the remedy pictures to life in such a way that people can easily recognize who belongs to which remedy. In addition, I was also interested in what happens when two different perceptions of reality get together in a relationship. What issues or problems are going to come up, and how predictable are they? To find the answers to these questions, I interviewed several couples and analyzed their stories from a homeopathic point of view. These books are a cross between homeopathy and psychology. Because they are based on my understanding of how things work, I don’t think there is anything quite like it out there.
Mati, here’s what I think is interesting about your book. Now correct me if I’ve missed the point. Your premise is that there’s a story that goes with each remedy. It’s based on an unresolved issue in the distant past. Because the issue wasn’t resolved at the time, it can never be resolved in the present! It has to be relived just as in the original story, because only by repeating and reliving does the hope, the chance, of resolution exist!
So, we have a Nat-mur. person picking dismissive partners again and again so that the rejection issue never ends; Pulsatillas never grow up; Calcareas know what has to be done but they can’t seem to do it for themselves, and on and on, and you’re saying it’s because: The original story must not be allowed to resolve, because in reality, when it happened, it didn’t resolve! My favorite example was what you wrote in our article, “You Try Living With Arsenicum!” (https://hpathy.com/materia-medica/you-try-living-with-arsenicum/) The Arsenicum person you wrote about actually ended up threatening his wife so that she finally called the police. Why was that important? Because in the “original story” of Arsenicum, as you explained it, the police were called! Once the police were called in your example, the Arsenicum character was never threatening again; in fact, he seemed to relax, as if he had been under some strange post-hypnotic suggestion!
Would you care to comment on that?
MF: Yes, I think that it is very similar to a post-hypnotic suggestion. It is as if we are all operating in some kind of “automatic pilot” mode. We do things, but don’t know why, we feel things, but we don’t know why, we perceive reality in a certain way, but we don’t know how our perception is different from everyone else’s perception. All we know is that clear communication in relationships is often very difficult. And these are the issues that the book is trying to shed light on.
Mati, your book’s premise, I believe, is based on the observation that people are playing out a story that was passed down to them or that started very early in their lives. The story matches a remedy.
You explain what the various remedy stories are, The Original Story, as you call it. You present real life relationship cases showing how two different remedy types are usually talking past each other because they’re trying, unknowingly, to live out their stories, as if on auto-pilot, as you say.
Now, question: How does this premise change or reconfigure your case-taking from what it used to be? For example, do you ask, “What role do you play in your relationships?” Is this the most important question there is to ask?
MF: Yes, Elaine, that is exactly what I do. At first I simply ask why they have come to see me, and just let them talk, and while they are talking, I listen for clues. Are they using words like always and never? Absolutes often indicate patterns, or experiences that keep repeating themselves, and any kind of repeating patterns are usually part of the Original Story that they came in with.
MF: As an example, I once had a client who was suffering from anxiety and heart palpitation. Besides telling me her symptoms, she also happened to mention that she was having nothing but trouble finding a place to live. In the last 6 months she had had to move 6 times for various reasons, and she couldn’t figure out what that was all about. All her symptoms pointed in the direction of Calcarea Carbonica, and her lack of ability to find a suitable home basically confirmed it. The story about Calcarea Carbonica is that she only feels safe inside her house. The stress of not having a nice, safe house created, not only anxiety, but physical symptoms, too, and she did really well on Calcarea Carb.
As another example, a woman was suffering from extreme tension in her shoulders, calves and feet. As she was telling me about her symptoms, she kept referring to many different healers and doctors who all had different opinions about what was happening to her. When I asked her about it, she told me she was seeing a chiropractor 5 days a week, and that she spent most of her money going to all kinds of healers. I then asked her if she was concerned about her health, and she said yes and started telling me how well she takes care of herself: She eats only organic food, she runs every day, she is super disciplined and she takes a list of supplements too long to mention. When I asked what role she plays in her relationships, she told me she was usually paying for most things, and she felt that her partner was ungrateful. She also spontaneously mentioned that what she hated the most about her partner was the fact that he liked to make food in the kitchen to surprise her. She had a big problem with this because she didn’t know if he had clean hands, so she wouldn’t eat much if he had made the food. I immediately recognized the different aspects of the Arsenicum story, especially the part about her inability to trust the food that her partner had prepared (fear, poisoned being, suspiciousness and desire for everything to be clean) and she felt much better after being given Arsenicum.
So, first I listen for clues that indicate some kind of story, and if I can’t find any clues, then I always ask about what role they play in their relationships. This question often makes them go straight to the core, and sometimes it only takes one or two sentences to confirm a remedy.
One client told me, “My whole life I have been nagged and yelled at by women!” (Staphysagria). Another client told me that he always had apocalyptic dreams where he was helping provide easily made shelters for people and teaching them how to grow their own food (Causticum). So, the clues can be in their lives, in their relationships or even in their dreams! If you know all the stories that go with the remedies, all you have to do is look for clues that fit one of the stories.
So, the biggest difference in my case taking is that I am no longer trying to dig up pages and pages of symptoms. I have never found long lists of symptoms helpful anyway because it is difficult to tell which ones are the most important. Now, my main focus is to look for patterns that indicate some kind of story. And, when I think I have found their “story,” I confirm it with physical and general symptoms. Or, if I can’t see the story, I simply repertorize what I can see, and when it comes to differentiating between 2 or 3 remedies, I look at the core stories of each remedy to see if one of them fits the story of the client.
This approach has made a big difference in my ability to pick a matching remedy for someone. Many remedies have overlapping symptoms, but so far, I haven’t found any remedies with overlapping stories.
The Sankaran “Sensation” method is very popular these days. How does what you do compare to that?
MF: I think it is just a matter of preference. I think that the sensation method is very open to the homeopath’s own interpretation, and if the interpretation isn’t accurate, it is easy to miss the remedy. I think it works for Sankaran, who in my opinion is a bit of a genius when it comes to understanding homeopathy, but I don’t know how many other people it really, truly works for, since it isn’t an easy thing to do.
My method is very simple (I think). The core story is like a puzzle. First, there is the story itself, something which happened that was not resolved or understood, and in addition we also have to consider the person’s reaction to what happened, as well as how he coped or didn’t cope. How did he feel about what happened? Did he compensate in any way?
Take Tuberculosis, for example. If you found out at 23 that you had TB and only had another 3 years to live, what would you do? You would be in a hurry for sure. You would live life to the max, even if it burned you out. You would travel, you would party, you would have to squeeze in as much life as you could in the shortest amount of time because life is short… and, if you happened to have a child before you died, the child would (“inexplicably”) have the same feelings – life is short, got to live it now, better hurry!
So, it isn’t just the core delusion that matters when taking the case, it is the whole combination of issues that creates a picture that can be recognized.
Take Natrum and Ignatia for example – both are known for ending up in bad relationships, and both are known for grief, but the reasons why they end up in bad relationships are very different.
Natrum picks people who will disappoint her because her father disappointed her.
Ignatia, however, lives in her emotions so much that her judgment can be clouded. She follows her heart, regardless of the consequences, and sometimes she runs into bad luck. So, even though the outcome is the same, they are still coming from different perceptions of reality, and knowing what this perception is, makes it easier to differentiate between the remedies.
So, when I take someone’s case, I dig, dig and keep digging until I can see clearly what patterns and issues are connected, and when I get to the core, everything about the case starts making sense! Sensations are often part of this picture, but that is not where my main focus is.
You say, “When I get to the core….” Easy to say but, how does a person know that they’ve gotten to the “core”?
MF: You have gotten to the core when you find something that everything in the case seems to spring from or be connected to. Look at Carcinosin – they always try to save everything and everybody. They believe that they can only be loved if they save or take care of someone. Their whole lives start consisting of giving to others, and they always identify with the underdog. They don’t do anything that doesn’t have some of these elements to them. If they get a pet, they will save one from the pound, or pick one that has been hurt, or that all the other animals are picking on, and so on. You can see the “red thread” going through the story.
What is Carcinosin trying to avert by being a rescuer?
MF: Again, it goes back to the original story. In the original story, Carcinosin was in some kind of serious life and death crisis, and she was the only one who could save everyone who needed saving. So, now, she is attracting disasters and dramatic situations where she plays the role of the savior. She has even come to believe that if she saves someone, they’ll love her, and that that is the only way she actually deserves to be loved.
Well, this is interesting, really. What you’re saying is that it’s not so much that a person is behaving in a certain way so that he won’t have to face rejection or face one thing and another, but more that, quite simply, there is an issue–a “story”–an unfinished episode from the past or even the parent’s past–that gets passed down…someone was in a crisis; so now the child or grandchild acts like they’re in the same crisis; these things get passed down just like allergies and other traits get passed down, is that what you’re saying? Which is very interesting in itself.
Mati, let me ask you. Let’s say you’ve got a Carcinosin child rescuing everybody, and it turns out the maternal grandparent was the originator of this state, why does the child have this grandparent’s issue and not some other ancestor’s issue? Why not the father’s issue? Have you given any thought to this?
MF: Yes, you understand what I am saying exactly right. Your question is not easy to answer because it is quite complicated. What story is triggered when we come in, has to do with survival issues and the general family situation. We probably have a lot of stories that we actually COULD act out, since all our ancestors have stories that are passed down to us which also need completion. So, which story will be the one we decide to work on in this lifetime? Let me try to illustrate how it all works with some examples:
If someone comes into a family where the father is physically or emotionally unavailable and has a hard time showing that he cares, which role can he play in someone’s story? He can definitely play a role in a Nat Mur’s life so that she can get an opportunity to complete those issues. Do you remember how we always attract or draw to us people who can play a part in our stories? The same applies to when we are born into a family.
If the father can play a “Nat Mur part” in the baby’s life, the baby will have a great opportunity to complete the Nat Mur issues they are carrying. Or if the father figure is extremely strict and authoritarian, he can easily play a part in a Carcinosin’s life. In that kind of situation, Carcinosin will either wipe herself out and completely submit herself to the authority in charge, or she will become strong and rebellious and stand up to him.
I came across a very interesting Antimonium Crudum case that shows very well how this works. This woman was a very conscious person who could remember way back to when she was only a tiny baby. Her parents were very poor, and she once heard them arguing about the baby. The father said “we can’t even afford to feed her!” So the baby stopped eating. She didn’t nurse for 3 days, and then realized that her lack of feeding was disturbing the mother, so she started eating again. However, because she had been starving herself for 3 days, her survival instincts had been awakened, and when she started eating again, nothing was ever enough. She became overweight as a child, and even now, as a grown up, there is still a feeling that she can never get enough and always deserves more (the core feeling of Antimonium Crudum). So, when looking at what story that actually manifests in somebody’s psyche, it is basically a combination of what potential stories we come in with, what roles the family members are willing to play in those stories, and also what story will make it easier for the baby to survive.
This is getting very ponderous! So, you’re saying your mother may have passed down a Carcinosin story, your father a nat-mur story, and so on, and the one you adopt depends on your parents and what role they play in your life; a dictatorial parent might make you adopt your mother’s Carcinocin story that she had in her lifetime. A father who’s emotionally unavailable may move you toward adopting a nat-mur picture.
But Mati, an emotionally distant father would predispose you toward assuming a nat-mur. posture anyway; you could never prove that it was because it got passed down like an allergic tendency gets passed down.
Isn’t it really six of one, half a dozen of the other?
You say that the story you inherit is a function of the kind of parent you have, and one can just as easily say that the kind of parent you have is sufficient in and of itself to cause you to act out a story reminiscent of a remedy. I’m having trouble with the distinction.
MF: What we have to understand here is the issue of pre-disposition. We already know that people can come in with a pre-disposition for physical disease, like cancer, TB or diabetes. The pre-disposition doesn’t mean that someone is going to end up with any of these diseases, it just means that under the right circumstances, under specific kinds of stress, the body will tend to break down and manifest one of these diseases because it’s like having a weak spot in the organism.
It is the same when it comes to energetic traits. Unfortunately, we don’t understand energy very well because we can’t see it, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. We basically come in with just as many mental/emotional pre-dispositions as we do physical pre-dispositions because the physical is simply a reflection of our mental/emotional state. The body, with all it’s physical diseases is just a mirror of a dynamic energetic imbalance on a level that we can’t see or measure with instruments. The homeopathic remedies have the ability to restore the energetic balance, and then the physical healing follows. So, what we have to realize is that there is no separation between physical, mental and emotional pre-disposition. They are all part of the same picture. Once someone comes in with a pre-disposition for anything, the environment or living situation will simply tend to bring out whatever is there.
You mentioned how an emotionally unavailable father would tend to cause a Nat Mur condition in his daughter, but if that were true, the same thing would also happen if he had two daughters; but we know that isn’t the case! If he’s dictatorial, the sister may well become a rebellious Carcinosin! Therefore, it is not as simple as it looks. One person can play many different roles in different people’s lives and bring out a different story in each person, depending on the pre-disposition they came in with. Therefore, the story we end up playing, is a product of both environmental influence and inherited pre-disposition. So, basically, if you can accept that we come in with physical pre-disposition for disease (which is what the theory of miasms is about), then there has to be mental and emotional pre-disposition as well, since one can’t exist without the other.
I wrote these books after becoming aware of these issues, because to me, this is absolutely fascinating! Nothing much has been written about this before, and it adds a whole new dimension to homeopathy as we know it. By using our knowledge of the core stories that go with each remedy picture, we never have to end up with long shopping lists of symptoms, wondering which one to look up in our materia medica. Neither would we have to try to pinpoint a “core delusion,” which can also be difficult to do. When taking someone’s case, what we need to look for is their core STORY, which is a combination of all the person’s life patterns. These patterns have become what people call “The Story of My Life,” and I found that each of these stories are represented by one of the remedies. So, once we get a good understanding of someone’s Story, it becomes a lot easier to pick the right remedy as well.
Mati, just to make sure i understand, the same traits in a father that make one daughter a Nat-mur., could make her sister a carcinosin if she inherits a Carcinosin predisposition from someone in her family.
For example, her mother is Carcinosin and she inherits her mother’s remedy picture. She has a dictatorial father, so she finds herself rebelling eventhough her better judgement might be saying, “Go along to get along!” But she won’t be able to do it because she MUST finish the Carcinosin “story”; she has little control over it! Do I have it right?
MF: Exactly, you got it!
Thank you, Elaine, for doing this write up on Beyond the Veil of Delusions. I greatly appreciate your taking the time to do so!
It’s the least I can do considering that I am constantly bothering you! Your book was very easy to read and I’ve already solved three cases because of it, thank you so much!
You’re more than welcome!
Mati’s book can be found at Amazon:
Mati H Fuller, DI Hom (pract) http://www.homeopathyonline.biz
Elaine L. Lewis, DHom, CHom https://ElaineLewis.hpathy.com