Note to readers from Dr. Jayesh Shah:
“I would like to introduce my approach to cases that may be called as process-approach or life force-approach. This is based on the simple phenomenon that the life-force has an inherent tendency to resonate with the similar. The method involves getting the patient into a state of experience rather than into talking about the issues. Anything experienced / expressed spontaneously or intensely has the charge to guides the patient to move into deeper levels of experience. This is done by a gentle suggestion from the physician to the client to close their eyes and experience the symptom, sensation, or the emotion that is expressed or experienced with intensity. This resonance creates an imagery or a dream-like state within the patient. It’s as if the person has started seeing and experiencing a dream right in your presence. It feels like she/he is in a kind of a trance or non-ordinary reality. Once the person closes the eyes it is amazing to see the surfacing of parallel realities.
I have shared a case here, consulted at ‘the other song’, which illustrates this methodology. The patient came to me with the chief complaint of intense burning pain, and scabs in the genitourinary tract; and this methodology immediately took her into the experience of ‘vulnerability’! As the case proceeded into deeper depths of her reality, we could see that this experience of ‘vulnerability’ was the center of everything that was happening in her life; her sexual sphere that is blocked and hyper active at the same time, her physical symptoms of recurring urinary tract infections, and also her nature and mental tendencies..
And then the final confirmations came from the materia-medica, repertory and also in the source. At the end of your reading, it will be great to look at the short videos in the ‘U tube’ links to see how it expresses in the remedy-source and compare it with its manifestations in the vital-drama of a person’s life.”
Case of a 52-year-old female suffering from chronic recurring urinary infection.
Date of first consultation September 7th 2011:
(The case below is summarized and interspersed with the physician’s understanding.)
She had urinary problems and bladder related difficulties for about three years, recurring repeatedly. Her condition was diagnosed, based on pathological investigations, as genito-urinary tuberculosis. She was on a course of anti- tuberculosis drugs. They initially helped the situation but recently the problem relapsed with severe episodes of flare ups again. “It is also associated with some sort of rash or scab with pain with h/g (of as if fist closing),” she said.
I could see there was a kind of ‘charge’ to this feeling of pain and the scab. As if there was a deeper layer of emotions under this description. At that point she was asked to close her eyes and take herself into the experience of the pain and the scab and see what shows up. She was suggested to trust what visually, emotionally or physically came up. Often I use this meditative approach to help the person connect with a deeper level of experience. This allows the person to connect with whatever is most obviously painful and important for her.
This method creates a resonance with something. The pain and the scab is a doorway into the symptoms and also the inner state.
After a pause and many deep breaths she came up with the word ‘vulnerable’.
You can see how the life force immediately resonated with vulnerability!! She was assured to feel safe to experience whatever came up. She was sitting there with eyes closed as if in a deep meditative state. After a long pause she described it as an abrasive, cynical, bitter feeling.
The ‘vulnerable’ leads to ‘abrasive, cynical, bitter’. The deepest sensitivities were reached in such a short time in the case-taking. Her body posture at this time was as if her thighs were tightly crossed and clenched. And her ankles were curled and locked around each other; as if she had tightly closed or blocked her genitals. Here you can also see how every physical pain is a kind of cellular memory. Every injured or sick tissue carries the blue print of the entire disturbance. Every local pain or sensation is only an expression of something general. She was sitting there for quite some time with her eyes closed as if in a deep reflection, a journey within.
It was suggested to her that she go deeper into this ‘vulnerable, cynical, abrasive’. After a long meditative pause she spontaneously removed herself out of that situation and experienced a kind of floating away. She further felt removed, closed off, blocked from the unfolding of this abrasive situation; as if there is no way to go. She repeatedly called it ‘blocked’. ‘Whatever I do to overcome this, I cannot’.
At this point her thighs and legs got even more clenched.
She said, “I don’t know what to do with the block and I cannot identify the block. I am hesitant and scared to ask myself what has caused this block.” She started feeling helpless and would take a long time and reflect and meditate a long time before answering. Further, after long pauses, she felt constricted, tired, and helpless. At that point she described her experience as if she had become inert. She was still in a meditative state with eyes closed, in a kind of strange experience, as if in a trance, as if in another world altogether.
She then transported herself into a vision of a closed damp room with dirty brown colored walls and these walls started getting smaller and smaller and she was feeling even more constricted. She described herself as if sitting in a crouched position like a small animal. The feeling was of immediate inescapable death. After another pause, she spontaneously felt a sense of floating as if she was beyond death, and she felt beautiful, familiar and secure. She felt at home and peaceful. At that point a healing music was played and she was allowed time and space to experience this safe and beautiful feeling. Her body posture of tight clenched genitals – crossed thighs released completely. She actually slowly moved into a posture of completely open thighs! This almost looked like an attractive posturing.
And she said, “There is no danger, and no enemy. I am safe.”
This was the turning point in the unfolding of the case. Now we can see that ‘vulnerability’ makes sense. Vulnerable to this danger and enemy! So what is the danger and what is the vulnerability?
She was gently asked about ‘danger’ and ‘enemy’, and she said, “You have to be aware, wary and on your guard at all times. There is someone who can energetically or otherwise hurt you physically or any other way. It is best to be prepared and be aware so that you don’t get surprised unnecessarily. You have to be armed and you should be on your guard to be able to go ‘on attack’ if necessary.” This was described as a feeling of power.
There was quite a lot of energy in her emotions and in her tone while she was describing this experience. These are probably indicating the animal themes of victim versus aggressor situation. She later on confirmed a situation of assault and abuse on her. She described elaborately the sense and need to be protected and for preparedness against the feeling of danger and enemy. She described ‘attack’ as something powerful against which you have to be physically alert prepared and poised at all times. She described this feeling of power as in the moment you are poised to respond appropriately to whatever violent situation. This kind of power will feel centered, really good, positive and great.
The case taking moved to investigate her fears. The main fear was of being betrayed and physical violence. Fear as if someone comes up from behind and she gets a fright like a shock. “You are unprepared and you have to gather your wits to respond.”
At this point she described the situations when she was assaulted and abused.
At this point, one could see why her genitals were tightly clenched – double crossing of thighs and ankles. One observation was that her voice was very hypnotic and choice of words cautious. There was some kind of a charm in her voice.
She was asked what things fascinate her, and that she enjoyed very much. She described that she loved the beauty of nature, travelling, seeing different cultures and how different people have different bodies. Their appearance fascinates her. She is also fascinated with dancing. All the above mentioned situations give her a feeling of power like an energy flowing through her. Like a feeling of a high.
She then described herself as very creative, and liked by people. She said she gets along with people but with those whom she does not get along she likes to fight. She has very strong emotional responses to things, if she loves, she loves a lot. She is easy on the one hand, however she can be very intense too. She called herself a “black and white personality, not a lot of middle ground.” On the one side she can be easy going and loving, but on the other side she can be very bad tempered and extremely revengeful. She is intensely sensitive to disloyalty and betrayal and can get violent in anger to the extent that she can smash the face of that person. Her anger is very explosive, like war scenes in movies, and it reminds her of the color red.
I tried to understand her experience of violence and a power situation. “Power,” she said, “is power of someone over someone or my power over someone else. You submit or make someone else submit. You can make them do what you want.” She is also very sensitive to people talking behind her back, about the way she looks, and feels humiliation. Her appearance for her is very important, she wants to look attractive and draw the positive attention of people.
As she described violence and power the word ugly came to her mind. The ugliest thing that came to her was “Bulky kind of guy just beating someone to a pulp. Quite monstrous, disabled, ill kept and disgusting and something that people would run off from.”
Local physical symptoms were described as:
A burning kind of weight. She has to be vigilant and be on her guard when she urinates, that all the urine is expelled. It was interesting she used the same words when describing her physical symptoms. The sensation in the urinary tract was as if someone had a motor bike accident and they get scraped on gravel for a long distance. Violent burning of this kind. One can see the pain could be related to experiences of unhealthy sexual experiences in her life. Pain was markedly aggravated with intercourse. Entire urethra and vagina felt like on fire with intense burning. Gentle massage and walking would ameliorate her.
There is nothing worth reporting in her other general symptoms.
The issue that comes up very clearly in the case is that of victim—aggressor – clear animal theme. There is a sense of constant danger and that she has to be vigilant at all times. One more peculiarity was that she had to be attractive at all times. This two together is the key to the central theme of this remedy – Cenchris contortrix! In the face of this violence she feels vulnerable. There is a cynical violence that is abrasive! She anticipates danger and has to be on guard, be prepared to attack if necessary. This is seen throughout the case, like, for example, her idea of power where she said, “Power of someone over someone or my power over someone else. You submit or make someone else submit. You can make them do what you want.” We see the two polarities of power and vulnerability. This is very characteristic of the animal kingdom.
The nature of danger is as if someone is coming up from behind, which keeps her on guard, alert, prepared to attack. Then her main fear is of being assaulted, esp. as if someone comes from behind and catches you unprepared. The danger or attack is sudden, unexpected. Her other fear is of being betrayed. Her nature is to be revengeful-hateful; and she is extremely sensitive to disloyalty. This makes her really angry and explosive, to an extent of smashing the head and being violent. The violence is so bad that she also described it as a smashed face into the grass, broken pane of glass. This is the nature of violence. Her areas of sensitivity are to people backbiting and not looking attractive.
So we need to find an animal remedy which has the following qualities.
- Sudden unexpected attacks.
- To be on guard, prepared, on attack.
- Extreme violence almost to inescapable death.
- Very attractive
- Genito-urinary and sexual vulnerability.
- On the one side she attracts and on the other hand she feels vulnerable.
- So the theme often can be of enticing, luring, attracting and being on extreme guard and alert at the same time. This results in an excessively sexually attractive person and issues to do with sexual assaults.
- This is the peculiarity of Cenchris contortrix in my clinical experience.
Known symptoms of Cenchris contortrix from the materia medica:
- Violent sexual desire in both sexes.
- Dreams horrible and vivid; lascivious.
- Sexualizing connections. Eroticisation.
- This is one snake remedy with dreams of rape and sexual assault.
- Dreams: of indecent behavior of men and women, animals copulating, rape, being pursued for rape, seeing rape, that he has committed a rape. These dreams in the repertory indicate the sexual content of this remedy. It is also one of the snake remedies in the rubrics under female genitals of increased sexual desire and sharp pains in the genitourinary region.
- Proving symptom: “Awoke with throbbing in vulva and anus, followed by a dull aching in the sacral region, better by walking about.”
My clinical observations about Cenchris contortrix:
- These individuals are closed, blocked, protected.
- Fear of opening up, expanding.
- All coiled up in the fearful alert state.
- On the other side want to be open and sexually attractive.
- Opening means penetration and death.
- They are very sharp and precise. Will not use wrong words. Choice of words and vocabulary is very precise.
- They attract misrepresentation of their motives. Hence they are exposed to danger of being attacked sexually. There is vulnerability in Cenchris.
- Symptoms common to snake group of remedies include: betrayal-hate-revenge-anger-explosive.
- Feeling of some harmful energy lurking.
- Abrasive, cynical, bitter, hateful.
- APPEARANCE, concerned too much about his physical: stylishness
- COMPANY: desire for
- COQUETTISH: too much
- DELUSIONS, imaginations: raped, she could be, in very seductive women
We can see here some confirmations of my findings from Massimo Mangialavori.
“Fascinating, sexy people. Want to be appreciated by others, but are afraid of being raped. Fear of rape in very attractive people, who provoke it. They want a very strong sexual partner or they are themselves masculine. Are not crazy about tenderness or cuddles.” [Mangialavori]
Dreams of rape; being pursued for the purpose of rape; seeing of rape; that he has committed rape.
The sense of persecution, common to all snake remedies, is here related to sex.
Delusion someone is behind him.
The most characteristic behavior of this snake in nature is caudal luring.
In this Youtube link you will be able to see this behavior of attracting and being vigilant at the same time in the copperhead (Cenchris) Snakes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwskAXxbvDk (attractive behavior and on the guard at the same time)
Watch the attractive tail movements: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Za8m35FTnc. In this video the movements are so inviting as if saying, ‘come, come’!
Throughout these references one can appreciate the sensitivity and vulnerability towards rape as very characteristic and a central theme to this snake remedy. The entire case revolved around her locking and blocking her genitourinary energy and being very sore and sensitive in that area. Attractive behavior with ‘sexual-violence’ vulnerability was the main aspects in the case. Genitourinary system was vulnerable in the memory of painful injurious experiences of unhealthy violent abrasive sexual experiences. This is experienced as a power game. The ME vs YOU, victim and aggressor themes. Feelings of betrayal and revenge like in snake remedies.
Remedy: Cenchris contortrix 200, single dose
FOLLOW UP AFTER 18 MONTHS:
There has been a marked difference in her recurring urinary tract infections. Her anti-tuberculosis drugs was stopped the moment she started homoeopathic treatment, as the remedy looked very good and the complaints did not seem like tuberculosis.
In the initial few months there were some episodes of the acute attack which responded instantly to Cenchris contortrix 200. After 4-5 months of treatment the attacks reduced significantly and were very sparse. Each time the remedy was repeated, she reported like a miracle where with one dose itself, and the pains would be much, much better. She had not felt such a profound and quick effect even after taking the allopathic medicines.
Over a period of 18 months the change was very remarkable. The physical symptoms were much better. The mind state underwent a great change. She said that she had been living in ‘constant fear’, and it was really horrific. Now all those fears have reduced. She felt very “powerful and confident to deal with the stresses of life.” There was a desire to escape from the situation of stress, which was not the case now.
Over all she reported marked changes in her physical as well as mental complaints.
In the initial few months the repetition of the remedy was frequent. At one point when she was mentally disturbed and expressed a lot of irritation with her situation at work which aggravated her urinary complaints Cenchris contortix was given and she responded well. Since then she has received 4-6 doses of the remedy. In the last 3 months of treatment she is on placebo, enjoying good health.