Summer, Fall, Winter and Springtime all affect us in different ways. Each season has a distinct set of characteristics that define it as such. These seasons are linked to symptoms of Chronic Miasms, which are inherited disease tendencies that are related to why specific symptoms come up for many of us during a season and why many diseases run in the family. Some degree of Chronic Miasm affects everyone as they exist latently in each one of us. When we are in a weakened state they become most apparent and show up acutely. By treating for them at the right time, we can be cleared of their influences and live our lives more fully. I often wondered why I felt a certain way during a specific season and related it to the elements and how we are connected to nature. With my studies and treatment in Heilkunst, I was able to understand better why I might be prone to certain symptoms during a specific season. With treatment, many of the symptoms diminished and some I am better prepared for. The eight Chronic Miasms are listed below along with the season that shares their characteristic traits. Let’s begin with Psora that comes into effect generally in the late fall around mid-September to the end of October.
Psora (Sept 15-Oct 30)
“I don’t have enough – money, energy, confidence, resources or anything I need in order to succeed”.
Psora is related to the end of the season when leaves are falling, vegetation is dying and the fruits of our labours have been collected as we struggle to finish projects left unfinished. We prepare for the coming months and get ready for quieter times. It is a time when all the activity of being out and about in the summer working and playing has caught up to us and we are ready to begin reflecting on all the things we did.This is when our immune systems are compromised and we need to take care of ourselves better so we don’t get sick. Things may get under our skin more, leaving a skin irritation that just won’t go away. There may be some feelings of anxiety and hopelessness about the future along with a general sense of pessimism. As the winter threatens to come with the cold winds and shorter days, emotionally we may feel a sense of despair and a chill that comes with the cold. We might catch colds easily around this time and may be slow to recover. After the last of the summer harvest is gathered and put away, there is a fear of whether there will be enough to keep us alive during winter along with the fear of what was once gained is now being lost. There is the feeling that there needs to be a struggle in order to re-gain what is now gone. The essence of Psora is a form of struggle in order to survive.
“I am in danger of being infected and vulnerable to infection”.
Generally, malaria symptoms come into play around late fall to early winter. There is a feeling of threat that comes up in an acute manner that leads one to feel unfortunate. They feel they must accept this fate as there’s nothing left to do. The feeling is that the world is an unsafe place and exposure to it will affect us negatively. We become over sensitive to our environment and become prone to infections at this time. The feelings here are of victimization, persecution, suspiciousness, irritability and pessimism. Physically this makes us more prone to general aches and pains, digestive issues, fatigue, flus, colds, diarrhea and vomiting. Generally, there is some chilliness. The main essence here is that of feeling like a victim and accepting this fate.
Tuberculinum (Dec. 15 – Jan 30)
“I need to act quickly before the walls close in”.
The Tuberculinum miasm sets in when winter is here and physically people are feeling run down and prone to infections of the ear, nose, throat and lungs. There is a feeling of oppression that can be related to the chest as many of us develop coughs and lung infections at this time. We may be more prone to colds and the feeling is of “never being satisfied”. People may want to travel at this time, seeking the high mountains, the ocean or just anywhere to keep them moving and not stagnant. It feels almost like the blanket of snow is more like a thick sheet of ice holding us down and preventing any movement so that the natural reaction is to try and break out of this rut and quickly. This may be a time for rapid changes for some people, both physically and emotionally. There is a huge need to get up and out as quickly as possible to escape this sense of oppression. Some feats may be rash, bold, daring and could be destructive. Symptoms can constantly change and there may be a weariness to life. The essence of the Tuberculinum miasm is that of escaping their sense of being cornered as quickly as possible.
Ringworm (Feb.1 – March 14)
“I keep trying but just can’t overcome this hurdle no matter how much I try”.
There is a feeling of struggle and inadequacy with a sense of “want to but can’t” along with the resignation to accepting this state of struggle. There is an effort to come out of the struggle giving a bit of a feeling of hope, but with this there is a feeling of not being able to do what one wants, of not being able to meet expectations and a feeling of being trapped because of this. There may be procrastination to finishing projects, a certain angry irritability at their circumstances and a motivation to do something but losing all energy to carry out one’s wishes. This in turn creates internal frustration and negativity that makes us look and feel depressed. This is still during the winter when there is still some time before the spring. The hope is there though, knowing that spring will come and the days will start to slowly show more light as they progress. The main feeling here is that there is still some struggle before we can actually make it over the hump and thus the efforts to change things are still there.
Physically there may be issues with constipation, lack of energy and digestive issues. Mentally and emotionally we may feel trapped and irritable.
The essence in Ringworm is of an intense struggle which is not life threatening and a resignation to the fact that there is always going to be a level of some discomfort.
Sycosis Medorrhinum ( Mar 15-April 30 )
“No one can know about my weak points. I must show I am strong and capable because it is wrong to be weak”.
This is a time when we’ve had enough of the hibernating and are ready to bust out and live life to the max after a period of winter blues. Extremes are apparent here, making it necessary for people to want to experience everything and fully. After the quiet sleep of winter, trees are budding and vegetation is starting to come through the soil, ready to be shown to the world. “Sex, drugs and rock and roll” is the phrase that describes this state of mind well. There is a need to express all that one is made of to hide the inner weakness felt inside, often leading to a kind of exaggeration of feelings and actions. Mentally this may be seen as a weak memory where people are forgetful and lose the thread of conversation easily. There is a fear that someone is behind them as if they will be caught and exposed of what they fear and are trying to hide. The time feels as if it passes too slowly and one fears that something bad will happen. The main essence here is a feeling of weakness and if found out, the patient will lose all they have worked for and be taken advantage of.
Cancer or Carcinosin (May 1 – June 15)
“I don’t know who I am without my role but must keep going in order to survive”.
This can mean a period of intense and passionate activity, making one over-extend oneself on many levels. Everything has to be perfect. This could be a time when there are a lot of thunderstorms and the excitement over them is well loved and appreciated. The reason for the flurry of activity may be because of a feeling of being unfulfilled and a need to work to satiate this longing because on one level, the patient feels incapable of doing what’s needed in order to survive. Failure would mean death and destruction. We can see this in nature too as bees are busy pollinating flowers, ants are moving busily along trying to make their homes and pack all the food they can to keep them alive for winter, and mayflies are born and live just a day in order to reproduce for posterity. There is a need to begin gardening projects to get as much out of the summer as we can during these valuable months for growth of food. It is as if this struggle to keep going and the work seems to have no end. It may be when dancing, travel, art and music are appreciated and cravings for chocolate especially along with eggs, fat and milk are common. There may also be an anxiety about the future and what it will bring along with related fears. The essence here is of needing to perform tasks that seem impossible, in order to survive.
Syphilis (June 16 – July 31)
“My path is going towards destruction. There’s nothing to do but give in to it with a bang”.
Syphilis is in full force in the hot summer months. Rage, fury, destruction, accidents, road rage – these all represent this time. Emotionally, there is a complete feeling of hopelessness and despair so in order to survive, one needs to act in a manner as if it is their last attempt, even if it means death. This pessimistic outlook is responsible for this feeling that nothing can be done to save oneself and thus must react impulsively. There may be violence that is destructive to the self or others. Physically there may be insomnia due to the long days, exhaustion and violent infections.
In the natural world, this is a time for raging, out-of-control forest fires, heat to the point of exhaustion and death of the flowering period. This may be when people are risking their lives more whether it be from cliff jumping, rock climbing, base jumping or other extreme sports. The main theme here is that the struggle is over and there is only death and destruction left.
Lyme (Aug 1- Sept 15)
“I am alone in the world. Nothing will change this and there is only darkness”.
Lyme is known as the great masquerader in its symptoms because they are constantly changing. One may feel alone, cold, betrayed and separate from others. There is a deep feeling of disconnection, dark hopelessness and a sense of despair coming out of their situation. This is a time when there is a withdrawal into the self and away from others. It is similar to the feeling of Syphilis but it is more inward, deeper and darker in its pathology. There is a deep sense of isolation and victimization to get to this point. Seasonally, this is the time when there is still some hot days left but things are wrapping up and starting to go inwards and die off to get ready for the fall. The symptoms that one may feel during this time can range from pain, depression, headaches, brain fog, light sensitivity, memory loss and cognitive problems along with fatigue. In an extreme sense, there may be a feeling of being trapped within their own body and wrapped up like a mummy without the ability to move or speak and as if the will of the body has been taken over. There is a slow deterioration of the former self in that there is just no way out, leading to feelings of depression. The main essence here is of hopelessness and giving in to the destruction quietly, and in isolation.
The chronic miasms are thus like seasons that exist within each of us. We know when they are here from the state we are in. The symptoms can be uncomfortable but as long as we know what’s coming, we can actually have a hold on them and prevent these bothersome issues from occurring. Heilkunst focuses on treating one for these acute manifestations as soon as they appear and according to season for preventative measures. Through this, we can better enjoy the seasons as they come instead of having to endure them.