Manataka American Indian Council









Medicine for the People

By Harvey Walks With Hawks Doyle


Stressed to Sickness


 Stress is ignored so much in our life and sometimes it seems normal to be stressed out. Stress to me is an everyday affair if you think of the events that are upsetting to you or your loved ones and even your animal friends. Your animal friends also have a way of relieving stress for humans.  All inhabitants on Mother, can encounter stress in our ever day lives.  The bottom line is that just about everything that is not a common factor with each individual becomes stress from our relationships or environment.


Western civilization really got off to a wrong start by adopting the idea from Descartes for many years that he taught that the body is here and the mind is there, and one does not affect the other.  We know that is a mistake now since everything the mind does affects the body. Studies have shown a very high measurement of stress in the years shortly before the development of cancer.  Just a few years ago a major story on stress indicated researchers who were quoted as saying, “It is as if the immune cells themselves were expressing grief.” The human body is such an intricate piece of work that it is necessary for it to operate as a wheel of balance: just like the web of life and circle of life ( Hoop of Life).  Studies were done on dental students before an exam and the white blood cells of the stressed subjects had significantly reduced function to fight infections.


We know that stress is intimately involved with higher stomach acid levels (ulcers), higher adrenaline levels (hypertension and heart disease, faster heartbeat), reduced hormone function, and now it is said to accelerate wrinkles in the face (faster aging). You still want to be stressed out; let’s not worry so much about things that we cannot alter in our family or walk through life.  I have known some people who think that they are not living properly if they don’t have stress in their lives. They think that something is wrong if they are not stressed out all the time. If there is none then they will try to make some type of stressful event come to life.


Orientals or other medicine teaches that each organ/meridian system is connected to a particular emotion.  Pathological emotions can lead to pathology in the organ/median system. (Heart – joy, excess or lack of), (Liver – anger or depression), (Gallbladder – rage), (hence the term, green with envy, green bile), (Lungs and large intestine grief), (Kidney and bladder, fear).


Some other versions or theories on how this all works is that every cell in the body is in one way or another connected to the nervous system (The great circle of balance).  For our immune cells then they are thought to be a direct extension of the nervous system. Although there’s no fixed wiring to the brain, immune cells carry receptors on them identical to receptors in the brain.  Body cells all have nerve endings adjacent to them etc.  Stress can alter the output of the nerves causing aberrations in the information they give to target cells.  Every cell in the human body has an electrical charge across the cell.  This is why the researchers said that it seemed that the cells were communicating with each other. I think that we can meditate and move our energy fields to communicate with our cells thus diverting diseases from our bodies. I will discuss this area of meditation some other time.


Here are three lessons you can learn to control stress:

(1). Never feel irrational guilt.  When you’ve done something to cause guilt, deal with it appropriately.  But if you haven’t done anything wrong and still feel guilty, you need to change the way you are looking at the situation.


(2). Never blame others (it provokes irrational guilt in them).


(3). Always take responsibility for your own actions.  (With this, there will almost never be a reason to feel guilt or blame the other since he will already have accepted responsibility.)


There is only one thing that we take to our grave – our body.  Think it does anyone any good to take negative thoughts about another person or ourselves to the grave? No.  What will help the other person is unconditional forgiveness and love.  And of course, that is exactly what we need for complete inner healing. Stress cannot compete with love.


There is an old saying: As I think, I am. If you really think of this; then it is true to form or accurate. When we hold emotions and feelings in then they get held in a particular area of the body, affecting the local nervous system and causing deterioration.



Physical as well as emotional trauma and scars can be held in by the body for years. If you get cut or injured then it usually leaves a scar; it is the same with emotional stress there is scarring in the mind and body.  What you are harboring in your subconscious mind can also affect what diseases you have in your physical body.  Arthritis, rigidity in the body, is seen as inflexibility in the personality of the individual.  This has is a proven fact.  Cancer, a disease that eats out the body, also very often represents something that is eating out the mind.  Something eating out the mind must eventually take a toll on the human body since the body and mind are one.  Scientific studies have studied this and confirm it.


I cannot at this time list all the research showing how the mind and body are intertwined or list all the ways our lives are affected by mind, body or spirit.  One human does not exist well without the other and each is dependent on the other. Brother, Sister, and animal friends must coexist with respect to each other with love.  I would encourage meditation, and if spiritual, prayer, or any technique that will help an individual quiet the overactive mind.  It is up to us to learn from our diseases we have, what it is trying to tell us, and when we have learned then we don’t need it anymore since it has done damage on our lives and most of the people around us, (Stress).  Unconditional love and forgiveness, letting go of the past, living in the present, and moving toward the future, as taught by masters of old, is the best advice anyone can take at heart.


After all that is said; here are some herbs that are might help relieve restlessness, nervousness, and stress: Always keep in mind that if your are already taking antidepressant drugs you should consult with your physician before trying these natural herbs.

Bilberry Catnip Chamomile Gingko Bilbao Ginseng Hops
Milk Thistle Passion Flower Skullcap St. John's Wort Valerian  

Bilberry:  Helps prevent destruction, mutation, and premature death of cells throughout the body.


Catnip:  An effective anti-stress herb that also causes drowsiness.


Chamomile:  A gentle relaxant and good nerve tonic, soothing to the digestive tract, and pleasant sleep aid. (Do not use this herb on an ongoing basis and avoid it completely if you are allergic to ragweed).


Gingko Bilbao:  Helps to aid in proper brain function and good circulation.


Ginseng (Siberian) :  Helps the body cope with stress


Hops:  Helps to ease nervousness, restlessness, and stress.  It also decreases the desire for alcohol.


Milk Thistle:  Cleanses and protect the liver, and has antioxidant properties. (Most effective if taken in capsule form).


Passionflower: Is calming and is a potent addition to any anti-stress formula.


Skullcap:  Is good for nervous disorders.  It also relieves headaches and aids sleep.


St John’s Wort:  Is good for depression and nerve pain.


Valerian:  Keeps the nervous system from being overwhelmed.  It also is a powerful sleep aid when taken at bedtime and helps to ease stress related headaches.



May we all always strive to walk in the spirit; respecting the Creator and thanking Mother Earth for giving us our bountiful supplies of medicinal herbs that just might help others to deal with stress?



This information is for educational purposes only. It is by no way intended to treat, diagnose, or cure any type of disease or ailments.  When taking alternative medicine, herbs, or supplements always consult your health care provider or physician before using them.





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