Cayce Health Database
THE LOWLY LYMPHOCYTE
by Robert McNary, M.D.
and immunosuppression, prednisone and corticosteroids are major factors
in late twentieth century medicine. Fifty years ago, it was penicillin.
Today, it's prednisone.
Actually, a host of later generation
antibiotics and a bevy of steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are the focal
points of modern medical management of a large number of ailments which
reach the clinic and a majority of those which present to the emergency
room and the hospital. It would not do to let the patient's defensive
mechanisms meet the "invaders" on their own when a physician has an inkling
that a patient may have an "infection." Bring on the "artillery," bring
on the antibiotics!
Likewise, should an acute or
chronic inflammatory process occur, an indefinable syndrome develop, an
unpredictable immune response arise in the body, steroids must be sent
to the rescue.
One unfortunate aspect of the
whole thing is that after all these years of antibiotic and steroid administration,
the medical community still does not have a sound understanding of homeostasis
and body economy, immune actions and healing mechanisms regarding
microbes, allergens, and the like. Symptomatic
rather than scientific medicine is the emphasis of modern allopathy.
New age medicine and healing
call for scratching beneath the surface and discovering new dimensions
of the human frame: pathological and physiological, energetic and symbolic
as well. A deeper and broader awareness of the function of the lymphocyte
- one of our lowly white cells- can give
us not only greater understanding of the healthy human being, but also
enlighten us regarding many growth and development, disease and healing
Pathologist Jack W. Shields
has stated, "With a surging interest in immunology, most medical scientists
believe the function of lymphoid organs to be principally immunologic.
All have yet to fathom the true and deeper meanings of trophism!"
Shields penned those words 25
years ago. But, he was only one in a rather long line of anatomists, microscopists,
pathologists, clinicians, and seers who have detected an added if not
greater function for the lymphocyte than the commonly recognized immune
In 1677, Johann Peyer described
the patches of lymphatic tissue in the small intestine which now bear
his name. Peyer thought they were involved in some sort of secretion.
However, their association with infection in typhoid fever through post
mortem studies during the next century pointed medical scientists in the
direction of its current view of the immune system.
However with the advent of microscopy,
Rene Dutrochet in 1824 recognized the work of "the vesicular globules"
producing cellular nutrition. They "add themselves to the tissue of organs
and fix themselves there for growth and repair. . ."
William Addison (1840) summarized
his findings writing, "The globules of the blood are the sole agents of
Kremiansky (1868) and Zimmerman
(1871) concurred, contending that, "All new formation was traceable
back to extravasated white blood cells."
One hundred years later, medical
nutritionist Henry Bieler and pathologist Jack Shields authored books
supporting the feeding function of the lymphoid cells. In his book, Food
is Your Best Medicine, Bieler concluded, "I believe that cells called
small lymphocytes carry food necessary for the growth and reproduction
of body cells."
In the 1970s, Jack Shields performed
detailed modern laboratory studies to validate his thesis on The Trophic
Function of the Lymphoid Elements. Firstly, he verified the direct
correlation between lymphoid activity and cellular growth and renewal.
Secondly, Shields recognized the specific nutritive function of
(1) intestinal lymphoid tissue via its conversion of newly absorbed molecules
into mononuclear populations, (2) lymphocytic secretion of normal and
immune globulins and shedding of lymph, (3) lymphocytic donation of nucleoplasm
to feed other cells with substrate,information
and energy for growth, resilience to stress, and capacity to repair cell
Shields also noted the pathology
of malabsorption, malnutrition, and wasting which results when intestinal
lymphoid tissue fails to develop normally or become diseased. This notation
correlates with the well known effect of acute and chronic therapeutic
steroid administration: lymphocytolysis, poor wound healing, and increased
susceptibility to infection.
It is interesting to compare/contrast
the way in which gases (O2 and CO2) are carried via the bloodstream to
that of solid nutrients. The modern picture is that 97% of oxygen is carried
to the tissues via hemoglobin in the red blood cells, leaving 3% traveling
in and picked up from the blood plasma. On the other hand, modern science
suggests that practically all food nutrients enter the tissues from plasma
using active transport mechanisms which call for tremendous expenditures
of energy. This view is not nearly as well documented as the transport
of oxygen and carbon dioxide by hemoglobin in the red blood cells. Unfortunately,
the older and also alternative view which suggests the feeding function
of the white blood lymphocytes is practically unheard of.
Further support for this function
of lymphoid tissues comes from the unorthodox avenue of psychic channels
such as Edgar Cayce. The Edgar Cayce readings repeatedly point to "leukocyte
plasm" producing nutriment, "rebuilding or coagulative
forces." The Peyer's patches (mesentericlymphatic
nodules) provide for "globular forces to cause the coagulation" especially
to create "perfect contact between sympathetic and cerebrospinal activities
of the body." The lymphoid and lymphatic tissues provide for "emunctory"
support to the vital ganglionic junctions between the two great
nervous systems as they meet along the spinal column.
Alice Bailey has written that, "There
is no symbol quite so representative of the creative process as the human
frame." If such is true, as seems naturally so, it follows that
the individual components -cells, tissues,
organs, and systems - of the human organism can be viewed as icons, that
their works image deeper meaning, and their dysfunctions are truly metaphorical.
Lymphoid tissue can thus be
seen energetically and symbolically in its nutritive, trophic, and sacrificial
role giving up self for the betterment of the whole organism. Disease
of such tissues suggests internal conflict and disharmony between organs,
centers, and energies which must coordinate to support the health of the
greater being. Paul Solomon has said, "That all disease processes and
syndromes, not only are psychosomatic in their form (that is, built by
the thought process and the concerns of karmic conditions within the self)
but also are symbolic of that process clinging to that which is obsolete
for the nature and for the self." Consideration of the lymphoid elements
can help us see the unity of our own being in body, mind, and soul as
well as our continuing potential to integrate and harmonize our selves
when we practically and symbolically move away from wholeness.
Going one step further, Edgar
Cayce, Ray Stanford, and Paul Solomon saw the therapeutic value of castor
oil packs as an aid to lymphatic circulation and lymphocytic function.
"Castor oil packs . . . enable an expansion of the various circulatory
vessels of the lymphatic system to an extent, particularly of the nodes
of concentration of lymphatic activities. They create a loosening
or division of such, by the nature of some of the factors absorbed from
the castor oil, whereby the lymphatic fluid may more freely carry those
factors for which it serves as a medium. Hence, rather than a tightness
of the lymphatic system, there comes a balancing of the acid and the base
factors in such, and this affects the thymus in the freedom of its function."
William McGarey has suggested
that castor oil emits white light at an energetic level. Castor oil appears
to "lighten" the solar plexus center and the organs, tissues and cells
within the radius of its influence. The lymphatic nodules and lymphocytes
are secondarily affected. Castor oil applied to the abdomen undoubtedly
soothes that center, conditions its renewed activity and reflexly benefits
the heart center and the thymus.
Through the course of its often
short life the lowly lymphocyte gives of self toward the betterment of
the greater being. It seems that this microscopic white cell is both servant
and savior, dying that its Lord and fellows might live. In its example,
we have a pattern to follow. One day, we too may live and act much like
the lovely lymphocyte.
Jack W. Shields, M.D., The Trophic Function of the Lymphoid Elements,
Charles C. Thomas, Springfield, IL, 1972.
L.J. Rather, Addison and the White Corpuscles, University of California
Press, Berkeley and Los Angeles, CA, 1972.
Henry G. Bieler, M.D., Food is Your Best Medicine, Vintage Books,
NY, NY, 1973.
Emily Martin, Flexible Bodies: Tracking Immunity in American Culture
from the Days of Polio to the Age of AIDS, Beacon Press, Boston, MA,
[Note: The preceding commentary is provided by Robert McNary, M.D. and
is used with his permission.]
Note: The above information is not intended for self-diagnosis
or self-treatment. Please consult a qualified health care professional
for assistance in applying the information contained in the Cayce Health